I’m Not There

Criterion Files

The 1980s proved to be an interesting and difficult time for auteurs of the 1960s and 1970s. Directors like Copolla, Scorsese, De Palma, Altman, etc. offered works that were far from their classics of the previous decade, but many of these films have aged well and proven to be compelling entries within the respective ouvres of these directors precisely because they aren’t part of their canon. While British director Nicolas Roeg did not play a central part in New Hollywood in the same way as the directors I listed, his 1970s work was certainly part and parcel of this brief countercultural revolution in narrative storytelling. I see Roeg as something of a British equivalent to Hal Ashby: someone who made brilliant entry after brilliant entry throughout a single decade, only to fade out of the spotlight once the 1980s began. But unlike the late Ashby, Roeg has continued making films during these years, and The Criterion Collection has taken one of his most perplexing entries from the era of Reagan and Alf out of obscurity. Insignificance (1985) is a strange film about a strange time. Based on the play by Terry Johnson, Insignificance stages an impossible meeting between iconoclastic minds as the likenesses of Marilyn Monroe (Roeg’s then-wife Teresa Russell), Albert Einstein (Michael Emil), Joe DiMaggio (Gary Busey), and Sen. Joe McCarthy (Tony Curtis) move in an out of a hotel room as they share a variety of 50s-topical dramatic scenarios.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, we see how drunk we can get on Avatar, on the movies of the decade that were overlooked, and table wine.

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culturewarrior-amelia

The successful biopic is something that takes a truly masterful hand to accomplish, but not many movies do it well. This week’s Culture Warrior asks why.

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DVDs I Bought This Week!

Brian Gibson loves to buy DVDs. Come with him on his weekly journey into the depths of credit card debt as he tells you what to buy, rent and avoid.

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I’m all hopped up on Heath Ledger news right now, and it’s pissing me off from every angle.

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Director Todd Haynes certainly has a vision with his new film I’m Not There but that vision doesn’t translate well onto the screen.

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I haven’t seen the right kind of review for I’m Not There yet. While critics struggle to shove the title into the review template that made up years ago, readers and movie-goers alike are finding out that it just doesn’t fit.

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Todd Haynes’ supposition on the life and music of Bob Dylan, “I’m Not There,” is unlike a film experience you’ll have this year.

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Todd Haynes’ I’m Not There, aka “The Bob Dylan Movie”, attacks, head-on, the hokum that is the standard Hollywood biopic.

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