The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere.
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“Passing of a Video Store and a Downtown Aesthetic” — Tom Roston at The New York Times profiles the famous Kim’s Video on the edge of its demise, tying its end to the loss of a cultural tidal pool of appreciation and quirk. It’s a bittersweet read, but the money quote is undoubtedly and without surprise:
“I am the loser. Netflix is the winner.”
“Lucy is the shot in the arm the superhero genre needs” — Monika Bartyzel at The Week relates Scarlett Johansson’s mind-accessing badass to Dr. Manhattan’s loss of humanity.
“Let’s Talk About Sex: Pier Paolo Pasolini’s ‘Love Meetings,’ 50 Years Later” — Daniel Walber at Nonfics attempts to discover why a documentary that shouldn’t feel anywhere close to taboo today still feels fresh and challenging.
“How an Obscure 2nd Century Christian Heresy Influenced Snowpiercer” — Michael M. Hughes at io9 plays around with a bullet train, The Truman Show and a trickster God.
“Exploring Israel-Palestine Through Movies” — In part 2 of a series, Omer M. Mozaffar at RogerEbert.com connects dots between Munich and World War Z and The Band’s Visit and more in order to recognize the chaos of attempting to portray chaos.
“‘Rule Followers’ Flock to a Convention Where Fake Violence Reigns” — If you ever wanted a sign that people can bathe in aggressive fiction and come out the other side respectful, Michael Cieply and Brooks Barnes at The New York Times spoke with San Diego police about the non-event that is Comic-Con.
“The Strange Year of the Posthumous Performance” — Through happenstance and commercial malevolence, Adam Sternbergh at Vulture tilts his head against the many dead who are still around on big screens and stages.
“Every joke there is to be made about Tupac Shakur’s notoriously prodigious afterlife (pre-death: three platinum albums; post-death: seven platinum albums and one appearance with Snoop Dogg at Coachella) has already been made, and in some sense that’s the whole problem. Dead celebrities are suddenly popping up everywhere, and they don’t freak us out in the least. Not when they’re showing up in new movies, releasing books, or, like Eric Hill, the Bachelorette contestant who was killed before the most recent season aired, appearing as potential suitors for the Bachelorette. Not when they’re being digitally exhumed to perform for us anew. They’ve become both the benefactors and victims of a kind of artistic grave-robbing.”
“The Worst Horror Trailer and Poster of All Time” — Cody Clarke at Smug Film points out a truly bizarre/laughable/terrible case of marketing going the wrongest it could possibly go.