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a la Mod:

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
of the 7th Art

The De Palma Touch

The Swan Archives

Carrie...A Fan's Site


No Harm In Charm

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

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Fan Page

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Icebox Movies

Medfly Quarantine

Not Just Movies

Hope Lies at
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Motion Pictures Comics

Diary of a
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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
Are Snakes Necessary?
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Columbo - Shooting Script
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Fury, The
Genius of Love
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Get To Know Your Rabbit
Ghost & The Darkness
Happy Valley
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Hi, Mom!
Home Movies
Inspired by De Palma
Iraq, etc.
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Key Man, The
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Lights Out
Magic Hour
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Montreal World Film Fest
Mr. Hughes
Murder a la Mod
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Newton 1861
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Paranormal Activity 2
Parties & Premieres
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Phantom Of The Paradise
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Prince Of The City
Print The Legend
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Raising Cain
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Responsive Eye
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Rotwang muß weg!
Sean Penn
Snake Eyes
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Stephen H Burum
Sweet Vengeance
Taxi Driver
The Tale
To Bridge This Gap
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Sunday, March 13, 2022

"It’s such a weird film," says Jakub Flasz, co-host of the Uncut Gems Podcast, near the beginning of the latest episode. "But the more I think about it, the more I realize that it’s probably incredibly personal, as well." Flasz is speaking about Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise. "Aesthetically," he continues, "it’s such a beast. It’s such an art deco sort of screaming, jazzy sort of experience that’s super-hyper-stylized, and then narratively-speaking and thematically-speaking, this film has a shit-ton of things to say that are relevant for the time, that are relevant today, and I think we’re going to get some of it, because I have notes. And also, I feel like this film is kind of, against all odds (because it has been a failure that only has been reappraised after a long while), it’s incredibly influential, I would say. I will put it that way."

Here's the podcast page's description of the episode:

In this episode of the show we embark on our DEPALMARCH marathon also known as 4 DECADES OF DE PALMA where we will pick four films directed by Brian De Palma and give them a fair shake. We begin with a conversation about his 1974 absurdist horror rock opera Phantom of the Paradise. Over the course of our chat you will hear us talk about the multitude of references embedded in this film, both literary and cinematic, how it functions as a prescient commentary on the rotten culture of Hollywood, how it is above all an ode to storytellers and their artistic integrity, how it is a bona fide oddball in Brian De Palma’s filmography and much more!

Posted by Geoff at 6:26 PM CST
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Saturday, March 12, 2022
@cypnk HAS "FUN FACTS" AND "alt.alien.vampire.flonk.flonk.flonk"

Posted by Geoff at 11:51 AM CST
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Thursday, March 10, 2022

Al Pacino recently spoke by phone to Dave Itzkoff of the New York Times about The Godfather, which was released 50 years ago, on March 15, 1972. At one point, Itzkoff brings up Pacino's role as Tony Montana in Brian De Palma's Scarface:
There is an intense quietness to how you play Michael in “The Godfather” that I don’t think I ever saw again in your other film performances, even the later times you played him. Was that a part of yourself that went away or was it just the nature of the character that called for it?

I’d like to think it was the nature of that particular person and that interpretation. I can’t think of any other characters that I did that could have used that kind of framework. I was a young actor — on “Part III,” I was no longer young, but that’s not my fault. [Laughs]

But compared to other characters you’re also closely associated with, like Tony Montana in “Scarface” ——

Well, that character, Tony Montana, was written by Oliver Stone and directed by Brian De Palma, who wanted the heightened reality. Brian wanted to do an opera. All I wanted to do was imitate Paul Muni. [Laughs] But if I put “Dog Day Afternoon” with “Godfather,” or “Serpico,” I don’t see a resemblance there. Would you call Michael more introspective? That’s what I would say. And I don’t know of any other introspective characters I played. But if I sit down with you and go to the almanac, we’ll find something.

Pacino mentions De Palma earlier in the article, while talking about meeting Francis Ford Coppola:
When you get a call asking you to talk about “The Godfather,” is there some part of you that thinks, oh God, not again? Does it ever become tedious?

Well, no. You expect it. You expect to talk about what things worked and what things didn’t. You get a sense that somebody’s going to come at you. You just go: OK, been here, done this. But it’s cool. It beats talking to myself about it.

How did the role of Michael Corleone first come up?

At that time in my life, I didn’t have a choice. Francis wanted me. I had made the one film. And I wasn’t as interested in film to the extent that I became interested. My head was in another space. I felt out of place in the early films that I made. I remember saying to my friend Charlie [his mentor, the acting teacher Charlie Laughton]: Wow, they talk about it being real, but meanwhile it’s not. Because there are wires all over you. And also, you’ve got to do it again! [Laughs] You do it and they say, well, go again, do it again. It’s real and not real at the same time. Which takes some getting used to.

When did you and Coppola meet?

To give a little history to it, Francis was this filmmaker who had Zoetrope [his production company, American Zoetrope], and people like Steven Spielberg and George Lucas and [Martin] Scorsese and [Brian] De Palma were all part of a group. And I remember seeing a few of them when Francis asked me to come to San Francisco after he had seen me in a play on Broadway. Do you know that story? I’m telling old stories now. [Laughs]

That’s OK. It’s why we’re here.

He saw me onstage [in the 1969 Broadway run of “Does a Tiger Wear a Necktie?”] but I never met him. He had written “Patton” by that time, and he sent me a script for a wonderful love story he had written [which was never produced]. He wanted to see me. That meant I had to get on a plane and go to San Francisco, which is something I was not used to. I thought, is there any other way to go? I can’t tell this guy to come all the way back here, can I? So I said I’ll bite the bullet and I went. I spent five days with him. It really was special, this film. But we were rejected, of course. I was an unknown actor and he had made a couple of films, “You’re a Big Boy Now” and “The Rain People.” So I went back home and never heard from him again.

But you did, eventually. When was that?

Panic in Needle Park” hadn’t come out yet. And I got a call from Francis Coppola — a name from the past. First, he says he’s going to be directing “The Godfather.” I thought, well, he might be going through a mini-breakdown or something. How did they give him “The Godfather”?

You didn’t think it was possible that he was making it?

I’ve got to tell you, it was a big deal already. It was a big book. When you’re an actor, you don’t even put your eyes on those things. They don’t exist for you. You’re in a certain place in your life where you’re not going to be accepted in those big films — not yet, at least. And he said, not only was he directing it, [breaking into laughter] but he wanted me to do it. I’m sorry, I don’t mean to laugh here. It just seemed so outrageous. Here I am, talking to somebody who I think is flipped out. I said, what train am I on? OK. Humor the guy. And he wanted me to do Michael. I thought, OK, I’ll go along with this. I said, yes, Francis, good. You know how they talk to you when you’re slipping? They say, “Yes! Of course! Yes!” But he wasn’t. It was the truth. And then I was given the part.

Posted by Geoff at 11:00 PM CST
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Wednesday, March 9, 2022

The Hollywood Reporter's Mia Galuppo reports that the new season of Karina Longworth's podcast You Must Remember This, premiering April 5, will discuss erotic films of the 1980s and 1990s, with each episode devoted to one year:
Longworth spent much of the early COVID-19 pandemic watching movies from these two decades, telling The Hollywood Reporter, “One thing that became clear to me is that the world has changed in many ways that are very evident in cinema.” Racism, sexism and homophobia were far more prevalent in these movies, says Longworth, but “at the same time, there was this sense that a lot of really big, hit movies — that reflected the culture — dealt with people’s sex lives in a way that movies don’t do anymore, at least Hollywood movies. I wanted to try to figure out why that was.”

The season will be split into two parts, with “Erotic 80s” set to premiere on April 5. The second part — “Erotic 90s” — will premiere in the fall. Episodes will focus on erotic thrillers, body horrors, neo-noirs and sex comedies, and tackle the fall of the MPAA’s production code and the brief legitimacy of the X-rated movie, among other touchstones.

Some films discussed in the season will be American Gigolo, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Fatal Attraction, as well as works from Steven Soderbergh and Brian De Palma, among others. Each episode will focus on one year, discussing movies and stars, with the season culminating in the year 1999, focusing on Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut.

Longworth says that, while the pandemic has kept her traditional avenues of research like the Academy’s film archives shuttered, she turned to vintage magazines as source materials. “I am reading this vintage issues of People or Playboy, Us Weekly, GQ, Vogue, and seeing how different stars and filmmakers are being presented through the media,” says Longworth. She was particularly surprised to see the anger that surrounded the release of Flashdance, from critics to industry execs.

You Must Remember This, which won a 2021 iHeartRadio podcast award, is presented in partnership with podcast studio Cadence13. Recent seasons have focused on gossip columnists Louella Parsons and Hedda Hopper, and the lives and careers of Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin.

“I don’t want anybody to be turned off because this season is so recent compared to talking about the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s,” notes Longworth. “What I am trying to do is put the ’80s and ’90s in the context of 20th century Hollywood and talk about the things that happened in the ’20s and the ’30s have a direct relationship to these movies.” The host surmises: “I am always excited to get people to watch movies that they maybe wouldn’t have watched otherwise or to look at movies that they think they know in a different way.”

Posted by Geoff at 11:17 PM CST
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Tuesday, March 8, 2022
(Thanks to Chris!)

Posted by Geoff at 7:09 PM CST
Updated: Wednesday, March 9, 2022 8:04 AM CST
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Monday, March 7, 2022

Ida Random, the production designer on Body Double, received a Lifetime Achievement Award this past Saturday from the Art Directors Guild. The award was presented to her by Kevin Costner. Deadline's Scott Huver reports that Costner's tribute "included the revelation that he might not have an an acting career without her intervention." Huver continues:
From the stage at the Intercontinental Los Angeles Downtown, an admittedly nervous Costner – who’s worked with Random on his directorial efforts including The Postman – recounted the critical impact she had when he was an extra on the 1981 film Frances, on which Random served as art director.

“For six years I’d been trying to break into Hollywood, and despite all my best efforts, I was just unable to get a SAG card,” said Costner, who had a minute appearance in a scene set in an alleyway outside a theater where actress Frances Farmer, played by Jessica Lange, was exiting after appearing in the play Golden Boy.

“I’m singled out among the extras by casting director Elisabeth Leustig, who would later go on to become my casting director on Dances with Wolves,” he continued. “She walked me up to Ida, who I couldn’t help but notice on the set having been there for three days. She [Ida] was really Annie Hall before there was Annie Hall, if you know what I mean. She always seemed to be around the camera and without notice, she would move into the set as if no one was watching, pick up a book and move it. In fact, she would pick up anything – lamps, ashtrays, pictures…Anything that seemed to be bothering her she would just move it, maybe inches.”

“Suddenly I find myself standing in front of her, and she’s looking at me, and it’s safe to say that I had gone from thinking she might be in trouble [for moving things] to now wondering if I was,” Costner explained. “She looked at me in a very real way, and I don’t know how else to describe it. I had no idea what I had done or what she was looking for…What she couldn’t have possibly known as I waited for her to speak was how shamefully desperate I was to be seen as an actor.

“After a long moment – an Ida Random moment, you’d have have to see one to know one – she turned to Elizabeth said ‘This works.’” Because he fit in Random’s aesthetic vision for the scene, Costner got to deliver a single line – “Goodnight, Frances” – “and it would change the trajectory of my career.”

As he told the story, Costner choked up, and attendees were caught up in his emotional moment.

“I’ll never forget you, Ida,” he said. “You changed my life that night.”

He continued, “That’s what Ida does: She changes lives. She makes things better, sometimes by inches…She’s the director’s best friend and confidant. She’s the actor’s biggest cheerleader as she walks them through her perfect sets…You’re a filmmaker in every sense of the word, adding your most personal touch to the movies you call your paintings.”

With this, it seems like a good time to post this excerpt, highlighting Ida Random, from Susan Dworkin's 1984 book Double De Palma. The photo at the top of this post, taken by Ralph Nelson, comes from Dworkin's book, as well.

Posted by Geoff at 10:36 PM CST
Updated: Wednesday, March 9, 2022 8:06 AM CST
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Friday, March 4, 2022

While promoting the new movie Big Gold Brick, Andy Garcia was asked by ComingSoon.net's Tyler Treese about The Untouchables:
This is kind of hard to believe, but The Untouchables turns 35 this year. That was your big breakout role, and you’ve done so much great work since then. How do you view the legacy of that film?

People dig it. People dig that movie and it holds up really well. Some movies you do, then you revisit them and you go “Eh,” but this movie holds up so well, it’s such a great film for all the reasons you know. The script by David Mamet, the execution by Brian De Palma, and then all the wardrobe, the actors that are in it. Ennio Morricone’s work and the scores, all the elements in this movie really, really hold up to a great film forever, really. So I was honored to be a part of it. It was a privilege.

You talked about the great actors. Being that young, and being around so many huge stars. Was it a bit intimidating when you were filming that?

I did most of my work with The Untouchables with [Sean] Connery. [Robert] De Niro was obviously [Al] Capone, but I didn’t have, other than scenes in the courtroom, we didn’t really have the opportunity to interact that way. But Connery, I worked with all the time. Of course, he was a hero of mine growing up in the sixties. He was James Bond. He was the hero of our times, and so getting a chance to work with him was a great honor. I wouldn’t say the word “intimidated” because that’s my job. You’re coming there, you got to take care of your character. You got to take care of what you’re there to deliver. But I was extremely, obviously respectful and enjoying the proximity to someone that when you’re young, you’re in awe of. You’re so inspired by. But once you start working, once you start working he’s [Jim] Malone and I’m [George] Stone and all that disappears in a sense, you know?

Posted by Geoff at 12:55 AM CST
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Thursday, March 3, 2022

Following this week's season two finale of Euphoria, RCA Records has released a digital version of John Williams' soundtrack music from Brian De Palma's The Fury, according to Film Music Reporter. This new edition mentions "HBO's Euphoria" in the title of the opening track, now streaming just about everywhere.

Euphoria taps John Williams' Theme from The Fury
Sam Levinson's Euphoria keeps De Palma vibes in its feverish mix

Posted by Geoff at 7:47 PM CST
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Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Today, Rolling Stone posted its list of "The 100 Greatest Movies of the 1980s." Two Brian De Palma films made the list, at very far ends of the spectrum: at #20, it's Blow Out, with a paragraph about it by Scott Tobias:
Brian De Palma’s satirical thriller brought his entire arsenal of Hitchcockian effects to bear on a decade of American misadventures, referencing the conspiratorial mood surrounding Chappaquiddick and Watergate, and the feeling that country was held hostage by the elite. It’s also one of the great movies about the movies, casting John Travolta as the sound editor for Z-grade slashers who witnesses (and records) a car crash involving a major political figure and a prostitute (Nancy Allen). Like Blowup and The Conversation, the two films that inspired it, Blow Out posits the idea that the painstaking construction of a truth that could be deceptive, dangerous, or all of the above. But as the fireworks of Philadelphia’s Liberty Day celebration pop off and the screams of ordinary people go unheard. the scary part is that it might not matter at all.

Coming in at #96 is Scarface, with a paragraph from David Fear:
“Say hello to my little friend!” Brian De Palma’s controversial remake of Howard Hawks’ 1932 mobster movie hands Al Pacino a license to kill and chew abundant amounts of scenery, and not necessarily in that order. It’s been embraced by an entire generation of fans and a good portion of the hip-hop community for it’s over-the-top portrayal of the aspirational gangster life, from the copious amounts of commodified cocaine to its garish portrayal of Miami’s good life — the name “Tony Montana” is now synonymous with kingpin panache, yayo-fueled luxury, and bootleg bootstrap-capitalism. Even without the quotable lines every few minutes (“All I got in this world is my word and my balls, and I don’t break ’em for no one!”), it’s a memorable update of the old chestnut about crime paying off handsomely before the inevitable fall, ’80s style.

(Thanks to Brian!)

Posted by Geoff at 12:01 AM CST
Updated: Thursday, March 3, 2022 12:11 AM CST
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Monday, February 28, 2022

Posted by Geoff at 12:08 AM CST
Updated: Monday, February 28, 2022 5:57 PM CST
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