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Domino is
a "disarmingly
work that "pushes
us to reexamine our
relationship to images
and their consumption,
not only ethically
but metaphysically"
-Collin Brinkman

De Palma on Domino
"It was not recut.
I was not involved
in the ADR, the
musical recording
sessions, the final
mix or the color
timing of the
final print."

Listen to
Donaggio's full score
for Domino online

De Palma/Lehman
rapport at work
in Snakes

De Palma/Lehman
next novel is Terry

De Palma developing
Catch And Kill,
"a horror movie
based on real things
that have happened
in the news"

Supercut video
of De Palma's films
edited by Carl Rodrigue

Washington Post
review of Keesey book


Exclusive Passion

Brian De Palma
Karoline Herfurth
Leila Rozario


AV Club Review
of Dumas book


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De Palma interviewed
in Paris 2002

De Palma discusses
The Black Dahlia 2006


De Palma Community

The Virtuoso
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The De Palma Touch

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Carrie...A Fan's Site


No Harm In Charm

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a la Mod

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Fly Rule

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The Filmmaker Who
Came In From The Cold

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Greetings & Hi, Mom!

Scarface: Make Way
For The Bad Guy

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(Blow Out)

Carrie: The Movie

Deborah Shelton
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De Palma a la Mod

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Tuesday, May 3, 2022

At The New York Times, novelist Megan Abbott reviews Magpie, a psychological thriller by Elizabeth Day:
Early in “Magpie,” a twist comes that made me gasp out loud. And it’s the kind of twist that makes you re-evaluate everything you’ve read before. And the twist marks the novel — at least for its first two-thirds — as one of the Grand Guignol school of thrillers of which Gillian Flynn remains the current master and, as much as countless book jackets in recent years have asserted otherwise, few have approached her virtuoso, go-big-or-go-home approach. These novels — much like their cinematic equivalent, Brian De Palma’s giddy, baroque and self-referential thrillers — place their characters in increasingly extreme situations, requiring them to make hairpin turns or Jekyll-Hyde transformations that risk straining credibility. We watch Marisa, Jake and Kate make choices that strain credibility or at least consistency of character. But realism isn’t the point. It’s not about how things are but how they feel — and the deeper truths that can be mined within that feeling.

As we’ve seen with novels like Jessica Knoll’s “Luckiest Girl Alive,” this expressionistic style can be a wildly effective means of excavating the pains and terrors of toxic relationships, partner violence, trauma, mental illness. In the case of “Magpie,” the near-constant fever pitch of the narrative matches how it feels to be suffering through pregnancy anxiety, fears of romantic betrayal, in-law strife, body horror. And the spiraling energy at the center of the novel captures the way fertility struggles can serve as a tripwire, upturning everything else in one’s life, laying bare all one’s vulnerabilities.

And we’re in it with Day, along for the ride as each baroque plot turn mimics the many shocks of womanhood. The whiplash is part of the fun. But it’s the smaller stuff that really sings, such as the way Kate and Marisa look at each other’s bodies with both envy and repulsion. Their gazes are shot through the punishing lens of childbearing potential and male desire. One is the “Thomas Hardy milkmaid” and the other, a Breton-shirted gamin — each, at different points, a more desirable, or grotesque, vision of womanhood.

The dilemma with such novels, however, is that once you’ve raised the pitch that high, once all bets are off and narrators have shown their inevitable unreliability, how do you bring it home in a satisfying way? Few have been able to approach the audacity of, say, Ira Levin’s “Rosemary’s Baby,” in their relentless, go-for-broke commitment to a tone that requires the novelist keep escalating until a final operatic close that is, against all odds, bigger (and darker) than anything that’s come before.

Posted by Geoff at 11:55 PM CDT
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Monday, May 2, 2022

At MEL Magazine, William Katt talks to Tim Grierson about taking on the role of Tommy Ross in Carrie all those years ago:
Tommy was played by William Katt, who grew up in the Valley, his parents Bill Williams and Barbara Hale both actors. Now 71, he still can’t get over how different he was than the usual prom king — which, of course, is exactly why he was so good as Tommy. “I didn’t go to my own prom,” Katt tells me. But as luck would have it, after he graduated from high school he went to the proms of girls he was dating. “I ended up going to about three proms, and they were horrible. I never enjoyed going to the proms, and I just remember wanting to leave as quickly as I could. I have an aversion to being around a lot of people, and that started at a very young age — I didn’t like to be in a large group. But at the time, my dates, that’s what they wanted to do, and I wanted to appease them, so I would go.”

Katt’s always been a good-looking guy, though: Was he voted prom king at any of those later dances? “No,” he says with a laugh. “Usually, that was toward the end of the night when they would do that, and I was typically gone before then. [I did not] hang around with those kinds of people that would be running for prom king or queen. Usually those were the jocks, you know?”

What’s funny is that Katt actually was something of a jock — or, at the very least, he played sports. “I was a benchwarmer on the basketball team because I never got to be tall enough, but that’s about it,” he says. “After that, I just hung out with the musicians and the stoners. I didn’t date much in high school. [I was focused on] music and surfing. I was surfing on a team and doing surfing events on the weekends. That was the most important thing in my life — that and playing music and smoking joints. I didn’t know what I wanted to do at that time.”

Eventually, he got into the family business, switching from pursuing a music career to becoming an actor. He wasn’t dreaming of stardom, just steady work. “I love the theater,” he says. “That’s where I started, South Coast Repertory. Most of my career, I had done a play at least once every year or two years. But at that time, I was just happy to make a living.”

Many know that Katt was one of many up-and-coming actors who auditioned to play Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars. Around the same time, though, he also tried out for Tommy. “I knew I was out of the running for George’s film, and then Brian’s screen test came shortly thereafter. I forget the studio where we did it, but I did some reading with Amy Irving — that’s mainly who I did my screen test with. I don’t even remember screen-testing with Sissy, to be honest. I remember seeing everybody there, her and John [Travolta, who played the snide Billy Nolan] and Nancy [Allen, who was Chris Hargensen, the leader of the mean girls] and some of the other people, but I don’t recall actually doing a screen test with Sissy.”

Katt had known Irving, who played his onscreen girlfriend, before their screen test. “She had been studying in England, and when she got back to the States, we had mutual friends,” he recalls. “We hooked up and dated briefly, but mainly we were friends. We stayed friends for an awful long time.” But whatever Katt did during his audition worked for De Palma, even though Katt didn’t feel like he had much in common with the character. “It was a revelation to me that Brian would cast me as Tommy Ross because I was the antithesis of that,” he admits. “Maybe he was making a statement. It was the mid-1970s, and I think things were changing, how we thought about who our heroes were.”

But that wasn’t the only way in which Katt, who doesn’t consider himself a big horror guy, wouldn’t have seemed like a natural fit. He had read King’s novel — “I briefly skimmed the book, to be very perfectly honest” — but when he took a look at the script, “I didn’t really realize it was a horror film. It felt to me like a morality tale. It was the story of the ugly duckling, and the ugly duckling gets superpowers. And all these people get their comeuppance from treating this girl so badly and bullying her.”

When I ask about conversations he had with De Palma about the character, Katt replies, “We did about a week or two of rehearsals in his apartment in Hollywood. We would get together and do the scenes and improv, and he would make changes to the script. Once we got to shooting, though, he had done all the work with the actors and he was really all about the camera and lighting and everything else.”

Katt has talked about how he modeled Tommy’s demeanor off some of the football players he knew in high school, giving the character the same swagger. But he confesses that he didn’t necessarily torture himself to figure out how he could make someone so unlike him come to life.

“I had done a lot of theater before then,” says Katt, who was 24 when he filmed Carrie. “I had worked at the Taper and whatnot. I studied with Gordon Hunt in his scene-study classes. I did all that stuff. So I’d like to say, ‘Yeah, I dug in…,’ but that would be false. Really, all I did was, it was a lot of me. I think I am a nice guy. I try to be nice to everybody that I meet and gracious and always have my best intentions to like somebody and have them like me.”

He credits his mom and dad for shaping that part of his personality. “My parents were both just great people,” he says. “They were full of grace, and they were generous and gracious and just kind to everybody. I guess that’s the way I grew up.”

From Tommy’s first scene, when Carrie nervously mentions in the back of the classroom that she likes his poem — later, we’ll learn he plagiarized it — he seems to genuinely take a shine to her, no matter how uncool she is. He’s initially confused by Sue’s request for him to ask Carrie to prom, but he gets on board with the plan pretty quickly. And even when Tommy’s first attempt to ask her out fails — Carrie thinks it’s a trick — he keeps at it, the two starting to hit it off over prom night.

“You see certain people that you wouldn’t expect would ever end up together, and then they do because they’re exact opposites,” Katt says of Tommy and Carrie’s surprising rapport. “There’s something about the chemistry that works.” It wasn’t hard for him to build a connection with Spacek, who received a Best Actress Oscar nomination for her role. “I really liked Sissy, not in a romantic way, but just as a person, as a friend, who she is when she’s not on camera.” In fact, Spacek was already married to her husband Jack Fisk, an Oscar-nominated production designer who handled Carrie’s art direction. “She’s just lovely,” Katt says. “You can’t help but like her. So I just tried to let myself like the person I was talking to.”

Carrie exudes an almost clinical detachment to its characters, viewing them like lab rats or specimens in a Petri dish. The effect is alienating, which is the point, amplifying the queasy unease that’s a signature of high school. The normal rituals of teenage life — dating, going to class, playing sports, attending prom — are shot with such chilliness that De Palma invites us to see how surreal and awful these adolescent rites of passage actually are. Even Tommy’s garish prom tuxedo feels like a sly commentary on the requisite high-school-dance uniform.

Katt insists he had no input on his frilly tux. “They chose that,” he says, laughing. “It was horrible. There was tackiness about it, but it really spoke to that era. It was an actual tux — it wasn’t uncomfortable, but it was kind of clownish.” He can, however, proudly claim credit for his terrific mane of curly blond locks. “[That’s] my hair just the way it grew out of my head — curly and twisted like my brain,” he jokes.

Like Katt, Spacek was well into her 20s when she made Carrie, and while they look older than their characters’ actual age, it lends them a certain maturity that separates them from the often shallow and thoughtless teens around them. In King’s book, Tommy comes across as a bit of a dope — or, put more kindly, the typical horny teenager. But in the film, there seems to be a hidden depth to the guy — maybe something he hasn’t himself yet realized — and he locates it by spending time with Carrie. Between Carrie’s hellish home life tormented by her religious-fanatic mother (Piper Laurie, who was nominated for Best Supporting Actress) and the social anxiety of high school, she doesn’t have many safe spaces. As a result, Tommy becomes a welcome oasis amidst an inhospitable terrain of cruelty. To their shared surprise, they find something in each other that no one else in the world can give them.

“I think Brian wisely decided that the audience had to like these people,” says Katt. “We had to think that Carrie and Tommy might have worked out. That she could fall in love with him.” He points to one of Carrie’s most memorable moments, in which they’re slow-dancing at the prom, the camera rotating around them in a dizzying, euphoric 360-degree fashion. “That’s a great scene,” Katt says. “They start spinning around each other. We end up laughing, and I think that’s the moment when Tommy [thinks], ‘I really like this girl.’ And I think Carrie felt the same. And the audience is going to buy it — you really cared about these people. So when the bucket comes down on their heads, it’s horrifying.”

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 3, 2022 12:13 AM CDT
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Sunday, May 1, 2022

The Mahoning Drive-In, which is "nestled in the scenic Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania," is planning a triple-feature "De Palma-Rama" on July 2nd. Here are the details from a Mahoning Instagram post:
This July 2nd, prepare yourself for “De Palma-Rama!”, a 35mm triple feature of masterfully macabre movies from Brian De Palma, the man who made you shiver and shake, quiver and quake with his cinematic sizzlers since the 70s!

We’ll present three De Palma classics, two announced and on 35mm, followed by a digital secret feature that’s sure to get your pulse racing well into the wee hours!

We begin with a trip to the prom. Your date…CARRIE (1976)!

Based on Stephen King’s bestseller about a quite girl who’s pushed too far, and enacts revenge on her tormentors, Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Nancy Allen @nancyallen624 and John Travolta @johntravolta star in this telekinetic shocker. If only they knew she had the power!

Up next, John Travolta returns in a starring role as a sound man who accidentally records something that powerful people would prefer he hadn’t, and must race against time to piece together a mystery and save lives…including his own. BLOW OUT (1981), De Palma’s take on Antonioni’s Blow Up '66. This thriller expertly mixes suspense, mystery and horror into gritty noir mix.

Our third feature will be another De Palma classic, but in the spirit of his work, we’re going to keep you in suspense until it hits the screen!

Come early for themed eats, limited merch, live dj, raffles, photo ops & more..

General Gates at 6pm each night.
Showtime at Sundown.

Posted by Geoff at 11:48 PM CDT
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Saturday, April 30, 2022

Thanks to Ryan for sending us a link to this video (below), which was posted to YouTube this past February by Jeff Sabu. Ryan notes that the narrator on the documentary portions of this ten-minute production short for Brian De Palma's The Fury sounds like the same voice as that of the narrator in the documentary that Jay Cocks made for De Palma's Sisters about five years earlier. In any case, this is quite a discovery, as it includes some behind the scenes elements that most of us have never seen before.


Posted by Geoff at 6:39 PM CDT
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Friday, April 29, 2022

In an article today with the headline, "You’ve been reframed: how playing with split-screen and aspect ratio went mainstream," The Guardian's Anne Billson offers a concise sort of chronology of the use of split-screen in cinema:
Michael Bay once described his bombastic film-making style as “fucking the frame”, but if any director fornicates with the frame it must surely be Gaspar Noé, who blitzes us with flashing neon, 360-degree camera movements and intercourse closeups. So it’s a surprise when his new film, Vortex, begins with an elderly married couple (played by Françoise Lebrun and Italian horror maestro Dario Argento) sitting serenely on their Paris balcony.

When the soundtrack plays a lovely Françoise Hardy song, you wonder if Noé has mellowed. But wait! If he doesn’t actually shag the frame here, he fiddles with it in two ways. First, the square-ish Academy ratio (1.37:1) of the serene prologue expands into a letterbox shape. Second, that widescreen divides into two side-by-side images, shot simultaneously with two cameras, enabling us to watch as Lebrun’s character, stricken by dementia, meanders around their cluttered flat, while Argento’s, wrestling with health issues of his own, nixes their adult son’s suggestion they move into a care home. Vortex could be Noé’s toughest watch yet – but this is due to its brutal honesty, and not because of the split-screen, which pays devastating emotional dividends.

Most of today’s cutting-edge directors have at some point used split-screen sequences in their films. The effect still seems mildly adventurous, though it has been around since the birth of cinema. Lois Weber’s Suspense (1913) uses an innovative triangular split that still looks startling. In the last reel of Abel Gance’s 1927 epic Napoléon, the Academy screen opens out into three sets of film projected side by side to form a widescreen triptych. Split-screen was often used, with unobtrusive matting, to show one actor playing identical twins in the same frame, or as a witty ploy to sidestep censorship, making it look as though unmarried couples, such as Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant in Indiscreet, or Doris Day and Rock Hudson in Pillow Talk, are sharing a bed rather than just talking to each other on the phone.

Split-screen is perfect for phone calls: see Mean Girls. But as Guy Ritchie’s retro-styled The Man from Uncle reminded us, it’s an aesthetic we associate with the 1960s. Genius credits designer Saul Bass used split-screen montage for the opening of Grand Prix (1966); when Film Dope asked him about the technique a few years later he said: “I think it is terrific at expressing muchness, but I suspect it’s not capable of expressing deep feeling.” Bass’s split-screen is based on multiplication of a single image, but one year after Grand Prix, Christopher Chapman demonstrated his innovative “multidynamic image technique” in A Place to Stand, a landmark short made for the Ontario pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal. (Earworm warning: I saw this film 50 years ago, and the maddening theme song has been lodged in my head ever since.) Chapman presents multiple panes in various sizes and shapes on a single screen; sometimes the images in the panes move independently, sometimes as components of one big picture.

Steve McQueen saw A Place to Stand at an advance screening in Hollywood and was impressed. One year later, Norman Jewison inserted split-screen sequences into The Thomas Crown Affair, including the opening credits, and McQueen playing polo. That same year, in The Boston Strangler, Richard Fleischer divided his screen to show a creepy phone caller, the recipient of the call, and the call being traced, all at once. Spilt-screen enabled Michael Wadleigh, director-cinematographer of Woodstock, to show crowd reactions in the same frame as the performers, while in 1973, Soylent Green employed it in the opening credits to encapsulate the “muchness” of proliferating industrialism and pollution.

The director most associated with split-screen is Brian De Palma, who turned it into an operatic art form. In Sisters, he shows the point of view of a dying murder victim at the same time as a witness looking back at him, and in Phantom of the Paradise he ramps up tension between the planting of a bomb and its explosion. Many mainstream audiences encountered split-screen for the first time in Carrie, when the traumatised antihero wreaks telekinetic carnage at her prom. De Palma told Cinefantastique magazine: “I felt the destruction had to be shown in split-screen, because how many times could you cut from Carrie to things moving around? You can overdo that.”

Posted by Geoff at 11:09 PM CDT
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Thursday, April 28, 2022

Reviewing The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent side-by-side with Keith Phipps' book Age of Cage: Four Decades of Hollywood Through One Singular Career, Washington Examiner's Peter Tonguette highlights Cage's work in Snake Eyes:
What qualifies as a great performance? Decades of conditioning by movie critics, not to mention Oscar voters who insist on recognizing Meryl Streep each time she adopts a new accent, have led many moviegoers to think they must applaud when an actor is said to “disappear” into a part. Such performers are thought to be paragons of selflessness and subtlety, willing to set aside their own personalities for the sake of high art.

In truth, moviegoers have always taken pleasure in performers who remain blatantly and unapologetically themselves on the big screen — those who seem less interested in incarnating a character than simply summoning their own reserves of charisma, intelligence, and even eccentricity. During his long reign as America’s most widely admired actor, Marlon Brando became so flagrant in his tics, mannerisms, and improvised riffs that it was impossible for an audience to suspend disbelief and accept him as an actual character. In his brilliant late-career turn in the Mafia comedy The Freshman (1990), Brando managed to render the plot, and sometimes even the jokes themselves, irrelevant thanks to his torrent of self-referential mumbling and random bits of business — say, the long, drawn-out way he deposits sugar into Matthew Broderick’s cup of espresso. This is less performing than performance art.

For audiences to enjoy this sort of thing, however, an actor has to be willing to hover above the material: to kid it or act around it or simply ignore it. Such is the secret to the success of Samuel L. Jackson, whose signature rhetorical device, over-the-top screaming, arguably contributed immeasurably to the success of Quentin Tarantino’s early films. (Try to imagine anyone but Jackson saying, in Pulp Fiction, “Do they speak English in What?”) And it formed the basis for at least one entire movie, the regrettable (but not unentertaining!) 2006 fright film Snakes on a Plane.

Yet the undisputed master of molding movies to his persona is surely Nicolas Cage, who, long before becoming something of a punchline for his gleefully unrestrained performances in a series of increasingly odd, random, and ill-funded productions, seemed to delight in disrupting otherwise ordinary movies with his jittery, hyped up, always-on-edge performance style.

I remember the first time I became conscious that Cage was no longer putting his gifts at the service of mere characterization — if he ever was. In 1998, just three years after he gave an Oscar-winning performance in Mike Figgis’s Leaving Las Vegas, Cage headlined Brian De Palma’s Atlantic City-set morality tale Snake Eyes. Playing proudly corruptible detective Rick Santoro, Cage looks to have remembered and recycled every actor who ever played a small-time wheeler-dealer in a movie, placed them all in a blender, and come out with a rich, thick puree of smooth talk, hustle, and con. His performance is loud, wild-eyed, and delightfully vulgar: as garish as the Hawaiian shirt he wears and as hyperactive as director De Palma’s roving Steadicam. At the time, Cage’s uninhibited acting choices did not seem so strange. Those of us who had grown up with the actor — he had already made the Coen brothersRaising Arizona (1987), David Lynch’s Wild at Heart (1990), Michael Bay’s The Rock (1996) — were more or less getting what we wanted: pure, unvarnished Cage.

But as H.L. Mencken said of what democracy delivers to the people, we who cheered on Cage’s scenery-chewing got what we deserved, and we got it good and hard. As his projects became more obviously questionable and less auteur-driven — for example, his appearance in the gooey holiday comedy The Family Man (2000) or the preposterous World War II romance Captain Corelli’s Mandolin (2001) — Cage’s accumulated weirdness stood out more and more. I concede that there’s something deeply unfair in this analysis: Cage was the same unruly, unpredictable, unrealistic actor when he was appearing in respectable art house releases as when he was showing up in schlock on the order of Ghost Rider (2007) and the National Treasure series. Cage didn’t change as much as our tolerance for him did — a tolerance lowered, undoubtedly, due to the almost unfathomable increase in his output starting in the early 2010s, which coincided with, or resulted from, a period of financial difficulty.

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: Friday, April 29, 2022 12:10 AM CDT
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Wednesday, April 27, 2022

In a profile article by Lacey Rose posted today at The Hollywood Reporter, Michelle Pfeiffer recalls working on Scarface early in her career:
Pfeiffer’s introduction to the darker side of Hollywood came a few years later, when she fell under the spell of a controlling L.A. couple. She was young and desperately seeking answers, and the pair seemed to have all of them. “There was a lot of mind-fucking and brainwashing,” she says, and a lot of money handed over to them, too. It was her future husband, Peter Horton, who finally extricated her. He was prepping for a movie about cults, and asked Pfeiffer to join him for a meeting with a real-life deprogrammer. There she was, listening to them talk about the psychological manipulation that goes on, when it clicked: “I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I’m in a cult.’ It was like a light bulb went off, and I never went back.”

She married Horton in 1981, and landed her first big break, as Stephanie Zinone in Grease 2, while they were on their honeymoon. The marriage lasted less than a decade, but Pfeiffer still credits the Thirtysomething star for believing in her long before she knew how. “And nobody ever writes about that, so feel free,” she tells me, and then provides examples, like the time she was considering some “sexy role” for TV, and he made her see that she was worthy of more. “I was doing my normal torture dance, whether or not I should do it, and he just read it and went, ‘I never really saw you this way, I always pictured you more like Katharine Hepburn.’ And it stuck,” says Pfeiffer. “I realized that I did, too, I just wasn’t confident enough to see that through.”

It was also Horton whom Pfeiffer continually turned to as she was struggling her way through her second major role, as coke-addled ice queen Elvira in Scarface. “I was with this group of incredibly seasoned actors and only one other woman, who I didn’t even work with, and I was just waiting to be fired the whole time,” she says. “I would go to bed every night crying.” Thirty-five years later, she appeared on a panel with director Brian De Palma and her co-star Al Pacino, where she was asked by a male moderator not about her performance but rather about her weight during the production — a question that was met with audible groans from the audience. “I mean, I was playing a cocaine addict!” she jokes now, though at the time she spoke candidly about “living off tomato soup and Marlboros.” When I tell her how impressed the internet seemed to be by her ability to gracefully shrug off the sexist query, she cocks her head and smiles: “I’ve had a lot of practice.”

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CDT
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Tuesday, April 26, 2022

"What precedent does Hollywood have for someone like Nicolas Cage?" asks the staff at Thrillist. "He makes Jack Nicholson look buttoned-up. (Imagine Cage's Jack Torrance.) America's wildest actor, now 58, is enjoying a renaissance that adheres to no playbook anyone could have contrived a decade ago. It works because it makes sense: 'Gonzo' has long been the go-to word to describe Cage's performances, and if he is testing the limits of just how unhinged a movie star can be, that trajectory has roots in early roles like Raising Arizona and Wild at Heart. When he doesn't let loose, his films tend to sink (see: It Could Happen to You and The Family Man). He calls his technique 'nouveau shamanism,' a way to heighten one's imagination in order to feel like a particular character. Now, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent—a hyper-meta curio that wouldn't be possible without the electricity of recent projects like Mandy and Color Out of Space—lets Nicolas Cage play Nicolas Cage, literally. Almost no one else could pull off a self-reflexive gambit to such a degree."

What follows in the article is a ranking of Cage's "20 best performances," kicking off with Snake Eyes at number 20:

Working with director Brian De Palma, fresh off the blockbuster success of Mission: Impossible, Cage brings an admirable sliminess to this rain-soaked, twist-filled crime thriller, which finds him playing a corrupt cop thrust into the middle of an assassination plot at a boxing match in Atlantic City. Unlike many of his A-list peers, Cage has no problem playing unlikable heels. David Koepp's propulsive script sends Cage yammering through the back doors and narrow halls of a casino, the perfect labyrinth structure for De Palma to let his camera crawl over the walls and ceilings. Does everything in this movie make sense? No, not exactly. But when the filmmaking is as flashy as Cage's tropical-print shirt, you won't mind feeling like you're playing a rigged game. —Dan Jackson

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CDT
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Monday, April 25, 2022

"Brian De Palma’s iconic remake is most likely Al Pacino’s most memorable starring role, playing the cocaine-fuelled gangster Scarface whose greed to become a drugs kingpin leads him to his own demise," writes Far Out Magazine's Calum Russell. Russell places Scarface at number 7 on his list of Pacino's ten greatest performances. "Featuring alongside Michelle Pfeiffer, Steven Bauer and F. Murray Abraham," Russell continues, "Pacino gives one of his most fervent and intense performances, starring as a gangster you can’t help but love. Inspiring countless other reimaginings, Scarface is due for a Hollywood remake by Italian filmmaker Luca Guadagnino, no doubt thanks to Pacino’s timeless performance."

Meanwhile, over at People magazine, Andrea Wurzburger brings up Scarface on the #3 slide in her article, "Al Pacino's Most Memorable Film Roles: From The Godfather to The Irishman." Wurzburger's list ends at #15 with Carlito's Way, a movie which does not get mentioned in Russell's article.

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CDT
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Monday, April 18, 2022

Posted by Geoff at 11:15 PM CDT
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