Hello and welcome to the unofficial Brian De Palma website.
Here is the latest news:

De Palma a la Mod


De Palma Discussion

Exclusive Passion

Brian De Palma
Karoline Herfurth
Leila Rozario


Warren Beatty's
Howard Hughes
moving forward

Filmmaker Mike
Cahill believes
he has world's
first double-
vertigo shot

Rie Rasmussen
to direct remake
of Cronenberg's

Mentor Tarantino
says she's the "perfect
choice" to direct

AV Club Review
of Dumas book

Spielberg Predicts
'Implosion' of
Film Industry

Scorsese tests
new Zaillian
script for
The Irishman
with De Niro,
Pacino, Pesci

James Franco
plans to direct
& star in
adaptation of Ellroy's
American Tabloid

Coppola on
his recent films:
"What I was
trying to do with
those films was to
make three student
films in order to
try and set a new
trajectory and try to
say, 'Well, what
happens if I have no
resources?' Now, having
done that, my new
work is going to be
much more ambitious
and bigger in scope and
budget and ambition,
but now building on a
new confidence or
assurance. The three
little films were very
useful. I'm glad I did
it. I hope George Lucas
does it, because he
has a wonderful personal
filmmaking ability that
people haven't seen
for a while."

Sean Penn to
direct De Niro
as raging comic
in The Comedian

Scarlett to make
directorial feature
debut with
Capote story

Keith Gordon
teaming up
with C. Nolan for
thriller that
he will write
and direct

Recent Headlines
a la Mod:

-Picture emerging
for Happy Valley

-De Palma's new
project with
Said Ben Said

-De Palma to team
with Pacino & Pressman
for Paterno film
Happy Valley

« May 2009 »
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30


De Palma interviewed
in Paris 2002

De Palma discusses
The Black Dahlia 2006


The Virtuoso
of the 7th Art

The De Palma Touch

The Swan Archives

Carrie...A Fan's Site


Paul Schrader

Alfred Hitchcock
The Master Of Suspense

Alfred Hitchcock Films

Snake Eyes
a la Mod

Mission To Mars
a la Mod

Sergio Leone
and the Infield
Fly Rule

Movie Mags


The Filmmaker Who
Came In From The Cold

Jim Emerson on
Greetings & Hi, Mom!

Scarface: Make Way
For The Bad Guy

The Big Dive
(Blow Out)

Carrie: The Movie

Deborah Shelton
Official Web Site

The Phantom Project

Welcome to the
Offices of Death Records

The Carlito's Way
Fan Page

The House Next Door

Kubrick on the

FilmLand Empire

Astigmia Cinema


Cultural Weekly

A Lonely Place

The Film Doctor


Icebox Movies

Medfly Quarantine

Not Just Movies

Hope Lies at
24 Frames Per Second

Motion Pictures Comics

Diary of a
Country Cinephile

So Why This Movie?

Obsessive Movie Nerd

Nothing Is Written

Ferdy on Films

Cashiers De Cinema

This Recording

Mike's Movie Guide

Every '70s Movie

Dangerous Minds


No Time For
Love, Dr. Jones!

The former
De Palma a la Mod

Entries by Topic
A note about topics: Some blog posts have more than one topic, in which case only one main topic can be chosen to represent that post. This means that some topics may have been discussed in posts labeled otherwise. For instance, a post that discusses both The Boston Stranglers and The Demolished Man may only be labeled one or the other. Please keep this in mind as you navigate this list.
All topics
Ambrose Chapel
Bart De Palma
Becoming Visionary
Bill Pankow
Black Dahlia
Blow Out
Blue Afternoon
Body Double
Bonfire Of The Vanities
Boston Stranglers
Bruce Springsteen
Capone Rising
Carlito's Way
Casualties Of War
Columbo - Shooting Script
Daft Punk
Dancing In The Dark
David Koepp
De Niro
De Palma Blog-A-Thon
De Palma Discussion
Demolished Man
Dionysus In '69
Dressed To Kill
Eric Schwab
Femme Fatale
Film Series
Frankie Goes To Hollywood
Fury, The
Get To Know Your Rabbit
Happy Valley
Hi, Mom!
Home Movies
Inspired by De Palma
Iraq, etc.
Key Man, The
Magic Hour
Mission To Mars
Mission: Impossible
Montreal World Film Fest
Mr. Hughes
Murder a la Mod
Nancy Allen
Nazi Gold
Oliver Stone
Paranormal Activity 2
Parties & Premieres
Paul Hirsch
Paul Schrader
Phantom Of The Paradise
Pino Donaggio
Prince Of The City
Print The Legend
Raggedy Ann
Raising Cain
Red Shoes, The
Responsive Eye
Rie Rasmussen
Robert De Niro
Sean Penn
Snake Eyes
Sound Mixer
Star Wars
Stepford Wives
Toronto Film Fest
Treasure Sierra Madre
Tru Blu
TV Appearances
Vilmos Zsigmond
Wedding Party
William Finley
Wise Guys
Woton's Wake
Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
RSS Feed
View Profile
You are not logged in. Log in
Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Filipino filmmaker Brillante Mendoza won the Best Director prize Sunday at the Cannes Film Festival for Kinatay. The film was hated by some (Roger Ebert suggested that it is the worst film in the history of the Cannes Film Festival), but according to a report at Inquirer.net, Quentin Tarantino called it "extraordinary," telling the French newspaper Metro, "I’d gladly defend Kinatay … it reminded me of Brian De Palma." Kinatay (the title translates to "slaughtered" or "butchered" in English) follows a young policeman as he agrees to join an unnamed operation with a shady friend. The job turns out to be the kidnapping, rape, and butchering of a drug-money-indebted prostitute by a gang of men, some of which are senior members of the police force.

Tarantino surely saw similarities between Kinatay and De Palma's Casualties Of War, where the audience is driven to identify with a soldier who finds himself caught up in a kidnap-rape-and-murder situation that he feels helpless to do anything about. Mendoza opens the film (which I haven't seen) with the young man's wedding, and these daytime scenes are shot in 35mm. The night of the horrifying mission is shot in HD, as Mendoza, according to his press notes, attempts to show that "like the character, the city of Manila is full of mystery. It becomes a totally new character at night."

In the press notes, Mendoza presents his film as a Christian morality experience (the prostitute is named Madonna) that he states was based on a true event that he heard about first-hand from a criminology student. Mendoza wanted the audience to feel, like the young man, "trapped as both victim and accomplice." Screen Daily's Mike Goodridge wrote in his review of Kinatay, "Offering audiences no relief or redemption, it is perhaps most notable for its daring in attempting to capture the moment a young man crosses the line into irrevocable evil."

A couple of clips from Kinatay can be watched at YouTube. Click here to access the Cannes press notes. IFC's David Hudson has links and quotes from several other reviews.

Posted by Geoff at 12:19 AM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 26, 2009 12:22 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Brian De Palma's Scarface will be rereleased in digital theaters August 25th, as Universal rolls out five Cinema Classics between now and November. The other four films being reissued are: Spartacus (June 9), The Blues Brothers (July 28), The Thing (John Carpenter's version) (September 15), and National Lampoon's Animal House (November 2). Empire has a nice trailer for the series at its website, and we thank the Swan Archives for the news!

Posted by Geoff at 11:59 PM CDT
Updated: Monday, May 25, 2009 12:01 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Saturday, May 23, 2009
The June 2009 issue of Empire celebrates the 20th anniversary of the British film magazine with guest editor Steven Spielberg. Tom Hanks is interviewed in the issue by assistant editor Ian Freer, who notes to Hanks that his first Empire cover was for The Bonfire Of The Vanities in 1991. Hanks has some very interesting things to say about the film:

That's a very interesting thing because, when we were making it, that movie was huge. We couldn't make a move anywhere in New York City. Everyone was talking about it: "They took this book that had entered into the national consciousness and now they're making a film out of it and everybody is miscast!" Everybody was miscast, me particularly. Brian De Palma deals with iconography more than filmmaking. He is the most uncompromising filmmaker-- both in a good way and a bad way-- that you'll ever come across. This is the guy who made Scarface. Motherfucking Scarface. So his take on it was just one of those things. You can't take a book like that, that has changed the way people talk and think-- Masters Of The Universe, Styrofoam peanuts, and $900,000 a year and still going broke-- and change it into a palatable movie, or alter the thrust of what the source material is talking about. It may not translate in a way that is going to work.

(Since I could not find a scan of the Empire cover mentioned above, I dug up this American Cinematographer cover from the same period.)

Posted by Geoff at 11:19 PM CDT
Updated: Saturday, May 23, 2009 11:22 PM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Friday, May 22, 2009

According to Bloomberg's Farah Nayeri, Pedro Almodovar cites Roberto Rossellini, Luis Bunuel, Sergei Eisenstein, and Brian De Palma as sources of inspiration for his latest film, Broken Embraces, which premiered in Cannes this week. The film, which takes its title from an episode in Rossellini's Voyage To Italy, stars Penelope Cruz in a film noir that Nayeri was not crazy about, although she does say it is, "as usual, a visual feast."

Screen Daily's Barry Byrne says Broken Embraces will thrill Almodovar's fans, and further cites some noir references within the film:

Devilishly clever and shrewdly cast with a stable of Almodovar regulars, the storyline casts a particularly gorgeous Cruz as an actress struggling to escape the suffocating constraints of the aging millionaire lover who has bankrolled her career. The film is awash with references to the noir genre, Italian neo-realism and even to Almodovar’s own quirky oeuvre. Stylistic nods to films including Nicholas Ray’s In a Lonely Place and Vincente Minnelli’s The Bad and the Beautiful form part of Almodovar’s valentine to cinema.

Posted by Geoff at 11:57 PM CDT
Updated: Saturday, May 23, 2009 12:34 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Thursday, May 21, 2009

Photo and article courtesy the New York Times:

A jury in Kentucky sentenced a 24-year-old former soldier to life in prison without parole on Thursday for raping a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and murdering her, her parents and a younger sister in Iraq.

The verdict spared the defendant, Steven D. Green, death for a crime that prompted Iraqi demands for retribution and raised questions about Army oversight of its most combat-stressed forces.

Posted by Geoff at 7:49 PM CDT
Updated: Thursday, May 21, 2009 7:50 PM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
While I definitely don't agree with his statement that Brian De Palma's Mission To Mars is "not worth seeing," Christopher Campbell's comparison of the alien in that film to the blood-soaked Carrie in De Palma's earlier film is somewhat inspired:

Even if the Flintstones were around earlier than we thought, this wouldn’t necessarily prove Creationists right. In Brian De Palma’s Mission to Mars there is another sort of missing link that people tend to dismiss along with the theory that aliens impregnated the “virgin” Mary. This is the link between life on Earth and prior life, from elsewhere, which seeded our planet. The Martian at the end of the movie (sorry if this is a spoiler — the movie isn’t worth seeing anyway), who isn’t so much our ancestor as our trillionth cousin thrice removed, is kind of creepy but also kind of sexy in a blood-soaked Sissy Spacek sort of way (this is the director of Carrie).

Posted by Geoff at 12:00 AM CDT
Updated: Thursday, May 21, 2009 1:45 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Producer Gale Anne Hurd is making the rounds thanks to the new Terminator movie, and the JoBlo Movie Network's Arrow In The Head has posted a teaser scoop about The Boston Stranglers from a forthcoming interview with Hurd. Hurd tells the site's Jimmy O that the upcoming Brian De Palma-directed picture has been set up at Overture Films, where Michael Moore is currently working on his sequel to Farenheit 9/11 (other projects being developed by the company, which recently developed and/or distributed Righteous Kill, Last Chance Harvey, and Sunshine Cleaning, include remakes of Let The Right One In and The Crazies). Hurd said they are casting now on The Boston Stranglers, with an aim to shoot in the fall. Here is the full text of what Hurd said, according to Arrow In The Head:

The true story of something that we… we all think we know the true story now, but we don’t. Which is that Albert DeSalvo was branded The Boston Strangler, there was a movie about him with Tony Curtis as DeSalvo. As it turns out he was never convicted of the crime. The film is set up at Overture and we’re in the process of casting. And we hope to shoot in the fall.

Posted by Geoff at 11:15 AM CDT
Updated: Monday, May 25, 2009 12:07 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hollywood Elsewhere's Jeffrey Wells caught a screening of Bong Joon Ho's Mother yesterday at Cannes, and called it "a richly stylized Brian De Palma-esque thriller about a mom who mightily endeavors to prove that her mentally handicapped son, accused of killing a young girl, is innocent." Wells continued:

There's no doubting that Bong Joon Ho is a De Palma devotee in the same way that De Palma was a Hitchcock acolyte in the '70s and '80s. Mother was by far the most interesting sit because of his immaculate and exacting composition of each and every element. The result is consistently flourishy and at times operatic -- deliberately unnatural, conspicuously acted, very much a director's film. Ho is coming, however, from a fairly well-worn genre place, although I'll give him points for delivering a surprising third-act twist. The talk is that Mother should be remade for the U.S. market with a name actress in her late '40s or early '50s in the title role.

Let's just say we're looking forward to seeing Mother, but much less so the remake...

Posted by Geoff at 11:01 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Jennifer Salt and Margot Kidder, who each starred in Brian De Palma's Sisters (1973), have been making marks in various TV projects of late. Kidder has recently made guest appearances on series such as Brothers & Sisters, Smallville, and The L Word. Kidder's most recent role was as one half of a lesbian couple in the here! TV murder mystery On the Other Hand, Death: A Donald Strachey Mystery, which is now available on DVD. In February, Kidder was interviewed about the film by The Advocate's Harrison Pierce, who asked her about hanging out with De Palma and friends at Kidder and Salt's Malibu beach house in the early 1970s... [Advocate] Early in your career you shared a beach house with actress Jennifer Salt at Nicholas Canyon Beach in Malibu that served as a hangout for not-yet-famous filmmakers like Martin Scorcese, Brian De Palma, and Steven Spielberg. That period has become the stuff of Hollywood legend, hasn’t it?

[Kidder] I guess it has. For us it was just a bunch of broke kids passing the hat for dinner. We didn’t think we were unusual, although we had a great degree of cockiness. We were sure we could change the entertainment business and the world and everything else all at once. It was a wonderful time, and we had a great sense of community. After it all sort of fell apart and everybody got successful and went off to do their own thing, I never got that sense of community again until I moved back to Livingston. I think it’s an essential in the human experience.

[Advocate] Any anecdote you can share from that particular period that gay readers might get a kick out of?

[Kidder] Oh, well, once I dropped mescaline and lost my boyfriend to another man. Oh, no, it wasn’t mescaline, it was the love drug. What the hell was the love drug?

[Advocate] Ecstasy?

[Kidder] MDA. It wasn’t ecstasy because it didn’t have speed in it. In those days, the pre-cocaine days, we took drugs only once in a while. The guy who wrote the book [Peter Biskind, author of Easy Riders, Raging Bulls] makes it seem like we were all loaded all the time, which wasn’t true at all. I mean, pot, maybe. We were very innocent. We were deeply innocent people. So we took the love drug to find love or something, and I remember looking over and there was my boyfriend necking away with another man, so the love drug worked for him [laughs].

In a separate interview last March, Kidder talked to A.V. Club's Nathan Rabin about getting the Sisters script from De Palma...

[Kidder] I was with Brian De Palma at the time, and he said he wrote the role specifically for me. I don’t know what that says about the way he saw me, since the role was of a castrating killer. Brian came one morning to the house that I shared with Jennifer Salt, who is still a good friend and is currently a writer-producer on Nip/Tuck. He said “Here’s your Christmas present.” He wrote the character to have a Swedish accent, but since I couldn’t pull that off, he switched it to French-Canadian. It was such a romantic time in my life. Everyone was young and passionate and convinced they were going to change film forever. Brian and Marty Scorsese and Robert De Niro would come over and hang out, and we’d all work together.

[AVC] That’s a cinematic period that’s been romanticized and documented in books like Peter Biskind’s Easy Riders, Raging Bulls.

[Kidder] Yeah, but [Biskind] missed the whole essence of that. He made it seem sordid. I was saying to Paul Schrader that he missed the idealism and the passion of that era in Hollywood, but also in American life, that ’60s sense of optimism and hope. He made it all about drugs, when to most of us, that just meant pot and magic mushrooms. He made it seem like we were all shooting heroin into our eyeballs. But that’s part of the whole ’60s and what it represented: feminism and civil rights and trying to stop the war. Hopefully we’re starting to see some of that optimism again, through the excitement around Obama.

In the interviews, Kidder raves about Richard Donner's original version of Superman II which was released on DVD a couple of years ago. Donner was fired off that picture, which was then finished by Richard Lester.

Aside from writing and producing F/X's Nip/Tuck, Salt is also working on the screenplay for the film adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert's bestselling memoir Eat, Pray, Love, which is being directed by Nip/Tuck creator Ryan Murphy, and will star Julia Roberts and Richard Jenkins. Meanwhile, Variety reports that Salt is pitching a concept for a new series called The Quickening, "about a bipolar LAPD detective who performs better when off her medication."

Posted by Geoff at 1:00 PM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Private Steven Green, who was the ringleader of the shocking 2006 attack on an Iraqi family that De Palma's film Redacted was based on, was found guilty on 16 charges by a Kentucky jury Thursday. According to an article in The Independent, the charges include rape, premeditated murder and obstruction of justice. The jury will reconvene on Monday to decide Green's penalty. Relatives of the murdered Iraqi family said they will only be satisfied if Green is given a death sentence that is then carried out, according to The Independent article by Kim Sengupta:

"So they decided this criminal was guilty, but we don't expect he'll be executed. Only if he's executed, will we know that the right thing was done," a cousin, Yusuf Mohammed Janabi, told Reuters. The dead schoolgirl's uncle, Karim Janabi, added: "By all measures, this was a very criminal act. We are just waiting for the court to sentence him so he gets justice and the court can change the image of Americans."

According to an AP article by Steve Robrahn, government prosecutors at Green's trial stated that Green had "bragged during a barbecue celebration later that what he had done [to the Iraqi family] was 'awesome.,'" and that Green was only interested in killing Iraqis "nonstop." According to Robrahn's article:

In opening statements at the trial, Patrick Bouldin, a public defender, said Green's platoon had been decimated by deaths and injuries before the crime.

"You have to understand the background that leads up to this perfect storm of insanity," Bouldin told the jury.

Bouldin said Green had sought help dealing with combat stress after the deaths of close colleagues and was unsure whether Iraqis he encountered were friend or foe.

"They couldn't tell the village people and the farmers from the insurgents and the terrorists," he said.

Posted by Geoff at 10:15 PM CDT
Updated: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 11:49 AM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink | Share This Post