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Recent Headlines
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-De Palma hopes to
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-De Palma doc
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Poster is here

-Raising Cain Blu-ray
due Sept 12/13, 2016,
extras 'in progress'

Washington Post
review of Keesey book

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Exclusive Passion
Interviews:

Brian De Palma
Karoline Herfurth
Leila Rozario

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AV Club Review
of Dumas book

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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.
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Wednesday, July 20, 2016
BIRTH. MOVIES. DEATH. ON 'RAISING CAIN'
"A FORMAL MARVEL THAT IS IN DIALOGUE" w/THE THRILLER DIALECT DE PALMA HAD ALREADY PERFECTED
As we gear up for the upcoming Blu-ray sets of Brian De Palma's Raising Cain, Birth. Movies. Death.'s Jacob Knight writes about the film in the latest edition of his bi-weekly column, "Everybody's Into Weirdness"...
Brian De Palma loves to make movies that act as funhouse mirror reflections of one another. Carlito’s Way could be interpreted as he and Al Pacino’s tear soaked apology letter, pleading for redemption after the wanton, bloated excess of Scarface. Redacted is a found footage update of Casualties of War, reminding us that combat can often act as a warm blanket for society’s greatest monsters. Obsession and Body Double find De Palma returning to the well of Vertigo, the motion picture that helped his brain fuse its understanding of functional mechanics with a need to tell tales of possessive madness. Nevertheless, none of the pairings quite complement each other like Raising Cain and Dressed to Kill. Building on his tendency toward first-person trash art with reckless abandon, Cain is a dream state rehash of Hithcock’s Psycho, tossed into a cinematic blender with Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom. An in-joke seemingly told only for the hardcore heads and his own amusement, De Palma’s nineteenth feature is a formal marvel that is in dialogue with the thriller dialect its author had perfected over the past twenty years.

Posted by Geoff at 10:12 PM CDT
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Monday, June 13, 2016
ARROW TO RELEASE 'RAISING CAIN' BLU-RAY/DVD
COMING SEPT 12 - SHOUTFACTORY EDITION NOW MOVED TO SEPT 13


Arrow Films from the U.K. announced last week that it will release its own Blu-ray (plus DVD in a dual format set) of Brian De Palma's Raising Cain on September 12, one day before ShoutFactory's previously announced Blu-ray edition, which has now been moved to September 13th (it had originally been slated for June 28th, and then August 9th). The beautiful art (seen above) for Arrow's edition is by designer Nathanael Marsh. It would have been even better had it been a stuffed rabbit rather than a bear, but still a perfectly creepy interpretation of the film. Here are the details for Arrow's release, for now (with more to be announced later):

Brand new 2K restoration from original film materials
High Definition (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD Presentations
Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
Brand new interview with John Lithgow
Theatrical trailer
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Nathanael Marsh
MORE to be announced!

First pressing only: Collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by David Jenkins


Posted by Geoff at 7:52 PM CDT
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Tuesday, May 17, 2016
'RAISING CAIN' BLU-RAY MOVED TO AUGUST 8
BUT 2 WEEKS EARLY IF YOU ORDER FROM SHOUTFACTORY, PLUS POSTER OF COVER (WHILE SUPPLIES LAST)
As they still appear to be working on the extras for the upcoming Blu-ray edition of Brian De Palma's Raising Cain, the release date has moved from June 28, 2016, to August 8, 2016. "We apologize for the inconvenience," reads the listing at ShoutFactory. If you pre-order straight from ShoutFactory, they'll send it to you two weeks early. Also on the page is a "Special Offer: Order from ShoutFactory.com and get a FREE 18" x 24" poster of our new cover art (while supplies last), plus get it TWO WEEKS EARLY!"

Posted by Geoff at 5:16 PM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 17, 2016 5:18 PM CDT
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Saturday, April 23, 2016
DOUG KRANER HAS DIED
PRODUCTION DESIGNER ON 'RAISING CAIN', ALSO WORKED ON 'THE UNTOUCHABLES'
Doug Kraner, the production designer on Raising Cain, died on April 4 at the age of 65, according to Variety's Maria Cavassuto, who adds that Kraner had been battling cancer and died in West Hollywood, California.

Prior to working on Raising Cain, Kraner was officially listed as a technical advisor on Brian De Palma's The Untouchables, apparently having worked in the art department for that film. His other credits include Louis Malle's My Dinner With Andre (set decorator), Mike Nichols' Working Girl (art director), and Phil Joanou's State Of Grace (production designer).

Posted by Geoff at 1:34 AM CDT
Updated: Saturday, April 23, 2016 1:38 AM CDT
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Thursday, February 25, 2016
'RAISING CAIN' BLU-RAY FROM SCREAM FACTORY
EXTRAS STILL IN PROGRESS FOR "COLLECTOR'S EDITION" DUE JUNE 28
Scream Factory announced today that it will release a "Collector's Edition" Blu-ray of Brian De Palma's Raising Cain on June 28, 2016. The pre-order page for the title currently mentions, "Extras in progress and will be announced at a later date." We certainly hope they are attempting to somehow include the Raising Cain Re-Cut from four years ago, in which Peet Gelderblom made an "attempt to approximate Brian De Palma’s original vision of Raising Cain, before the director chose to compromise its structure in post-production." You can watch the re-cut at Press Play.

Posted by Geoff at 5:37 PM CST
Updated: Thursday, February 25, 2016 5:39 PM CST
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Monday, February 15, 2016
SO, I WAS WATCHING 'TOOTSIE' THE OTHER DAY...
AND COULDN'T HELP BUT THINK OF MARGO, GUARDIAN OF THE CHILDREN

Posted by Geoff at 11:54 PM CST
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Thursday, December 31, 2015
HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Posted by Geoff at 9:25 PM CST
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Sunday, March 15, 2015
LITHGOW ON 'RAISING CAIN' - BIGGEST CHALLENGE
"THE REHEARSAL PERIOD WAS SIMPLY CHARTING THE CRAZY"
The March 2015 issue of EMPIRE magazine, on stands now in the U.S., includes a one-page C.V. in which John Lithgow discusses his signature roles. Under the heading, "His Biggest Challenge," is Brian De Palma's Raising Cain, with the characters listed as "Carter/Cain/Dr. Nix/Josh/Margo, deranged doctor and his brood." Of his role(s) in the film, Lithgow tells EMPIRE, "The most plot-heavy film I've been in. It was only two characters, and yet you wanted to fool people into thinking it was three or four. The rehearsal period was simply charting the crazy."

Posted by Geoff at 1:14 PM CDT
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Friday, March 21, 2014
1992 VIDEO: DE PALMA & HURD TALK 'RAISING CAIN'
"MY THRILLERS ARE VERY MUCH ME, AND VERY MUCH MY SENSIBILITY"


Thanks to Antonios for posting the above video onto YouTube. It's a CNN Showbiz clip from 1992 about Brian De Palma's Raising Cain, and it features interviews with De Palma and his wife at the time, Gale Anne Hurd, who produced the film. The pair brought the film in more than one million dollars under its $12 million budget, De Palma having gone extravagant on the film he made at Warner Bros. immediately beforehand, The Bonfire Of The Vanities. In the above video, De Palma tells CNN's Jim Moret, "It's sometimes an artistic challenge to work within limitations, as opposed to having all the money in the world to do anything."

A lot of discussion in the video is about how De Palma mixes satire with horror in Raising Cain, using humor as a set-up for springing a shock on the viewer. De Palma also attempts to separate his movies from those of Alfred Hitchcock. "Even my thrillers, I mean, most people want to compare me to him. They're very much me, and very much my sensibility. And what I find similar in Hitchcock is his incredible visual sense in telling stories. And that's something anybody can learn from."

Indeed, you can see De Palma's sensibility from movie to movie. Look at the scene in The Bonfire Of The Vanities, how he highlights the ridiculous rationale behind Sherman taking his dog out for a walk in the rain (so that he can call his mistress on a payphone away from his wife), underlining the humor with the shot of the dog being dragged along the floor by his leash. That scene has a correlative in Raising Cain, when Jenny tells herself that she can't let Jack open Carter's gift, and sneaks out of the house underneath her husband's nose in the middle of the night to sneak into Jack's hotel room. That ridiculous notion (what really would be the harm in Jack opening that gift?) is simply a rationale for disaster, and although it happens in a dream this time (Jenny's dream logic?), you get the sense that an equally ridiculous notion would happen with Jenny when it comes to Jack either way, as long as it ultimately gets her into his bed. Although the Bonfire scene (and in particular the shot of the dog mentioned above) is played a bit more broadly for a definite laugh, the scene in Raising Cain might not seem so funny until the second time you watch it, after you know everything that has and hasn't happened-- it's one of those scenes CNN's Moret might have been thinking of when he tells De Palma he may have felt uncomfortable laughing, not knowing whether or not something was meant to be funny. De Palma assures him it was-- that's the De Palma sensibility.


Posted by Geoff at 12:58 AM CDT
Updated: Friday, March 21, 2014 4:49 PM CDT
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Saturday, October 12, 2013
HURD ON WORKING WITH CAMERON, DE PALMA
LEARNED EVERYONE ON SET NEEDS TO SHARE THE VISION OF THE DIRECTOR
The Hollywood Reporter's Lesley Goldberg interviewed Gale Ann Hurd, who produced Brian De Palma's Raising Cain while the two of them were married. Of course, Hurd had previously been married to James Cameron, and produced some of his films, as well. Goldberg asked Hurd what she learned from working with each of them, and this is what she said:

"I collaborate best with people that others might call aggressive or assertive; they have a defined vision and can communicate it. It does mean that it tends to be a rather monomaniacal perspective. When we were doing Aliens, Jim knew in his mind every cut point in every scene and what look he wanted. Our initial DP was Dick Bush (Victor, Victoria), who was used to doing lighting, camerawork and the [duties of the] DP, and he didn't want to know what the director's vision was. He felt that was his domain. If Jim wanted something in the cooler tones backlit, he would do warmer tones front-lit. Two weeks in, he was fired. I learned it's really important that everyone on a set share the vision, and the vision really should be the director's."

Posted by Geoff at 9:19 PM CDT
Updated: Saturday, October 12, 2013 9:21 PM CDT
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