Aaron Sorkin may be famous for his dialogue, but this video argues that his character development goes deeper than just talk.
While Aaron Sorkin is considered one of the greatest writers of dialogue in Hollywood history, this video from Jack's Movie Reviews argues that "just focusing on his dialogue takes the conversation away from all the other elements that make his films so great...specifically his character development."
During an interview when asked about his process of writing dialogue, Sorkin himself said that dialogue is "the last thing" he considers, and Jack puts forward the hypothesis that in Sorkin's films there is a "larger than average emphasis on the protagonist." It should also be noted that the focus here is on Sorkin's work since 2007, films like Charlie Wilson's War, The Social Network, Moneyball, and Steve Jobs, rather than his previous work in TV.
Keep it diverse.
The buzzword in Hollywood over the past few years has been diversity. Like anything in life, though, it's easier to talk about change than to effect it, and particularly so in an industry that is, to paraphrase Oscar Wilde, so deeply superficial. It's one thing to treat diversity as a seasonal trend and yet quite another to bring anything like systemic change in terms of hiring practices to an industry that is still hidebound to outmoded traditions and dangerous ways of doing business.
While the #MeToo movement brought long-overdue attention to entrenched sexual harassment (and campaigns like April Reign's #OscarSoWhite turned a spotlight on the biggest award ceremony of them all) Hollywood made "no progress in on-screen diversity" in 2017, according to a recent study from USC. Another look at the industry from UCLA found women and minorities underrepresented in many categories.
There is an ever-growing market for documentaries. Let's hear from the sales agents and film reps who broker the deals.
The documentary marketplace is growing. With success comes inevitable change in the form of "new buyers, more complex deals, celebrity partners, and fiction remakes." These high profile films are often guided through the development and distribution process by Hollywood talent agencies, and in a panel discussion at TIFF sponsored by Showtime Documentary Films, several top agents talked new trends and opportunities.
The panelists included Amanda Lebow of CAA, Kevin Iwashina of Endeavor Content, Rena Ronson of the Independent Film Group and United Talent Agency, Jessica Lacy of ICM Partners, and the discussion was moderated by Thom Powers, Documentary Programmer at TIFF.
During a panel at this year's TIFF, filmmakers, theater owners, and studio executives gathered to discuss the role of theatrical distribution in 2018.
In 2018, film fans and pop culture consumers have more options than ever before, and there's unprecedented competition for their time and attention, a situation that presents challenges and opportunities for movie theaters.
In a panel at this year's TIFF moderated by John Fithian, exhibitors, filmmakers, and executives came together to discuss the present and future of theatrical exhibition in a wide-ranging conversation that touched on everything from the influence of a theatrical release on the creative process to the importance of theatrical revenue on the industry at large and the future of theatrical release in a world of changing demographics.
This video is an introduction to the mind-bending alchemy of the films of one of the most singular, symbolic and influential surrealist filmmakers of all time.
As Lewis Bond points out at the start of this new video from Channel Criswell, "fewer filmmakers have been more perplexing, more outrageous in their artistic output than Alejandro Jodorowsky" and that's even when the Chilean-French filmmaker, novelist, poet, editor, psychoanalyst, sculptor (and on and on) is compared to other "surrealist filmmakers."
Jodorowsky's "attention-grabbing style of exhibitionist cinema puts him in a league as beyond replication" in Criswell's opinion, which is saying a lot for someone who has only made six official films in his career (thus far, and he is only 89, after all). Check out the video below.
Christopher Nolan's ultra low-budget indie debut provided signs of the director's later work.
While Memento was the first film that catapulted him into public consciousness, Christopher Nolan's first film was actually made two years prior. Following is an urban noir and the story of two men. One is a a shy, retiring writer and the other a burglar, though they are united by a voyeuristic fascination with the lives of others that will lead to no good end and a double-twist ending of remarkable dexterity.
In the video below, Thomas Flight looks for hallmarks of the director's style that are already present in his debut, a film that should be a true inspiration for any would-be indie filmmaker out there, a feature shot on a year's worth of Saturdays for $6,000.
This essay looks at how Alfred Hitchcock deployed our fine feathered friends to such great effect in 'The Birds.'
As the below visual essay from Grace Lee points out, "Birds and cinema go way back, as far back as the very inception of the medium, with Etienne Jules Marey's early photographic series of birds in motion."
As a species, their most enduring portrayal in popular cinema belongs to, probably, Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds, and this essay looks at that film, as well as others, to try and tease out their symbolism and examine why they so often appear as harbingers of doom.
Hitchcock didn't only make use of birds in the film that bears their name, but also doves (in The Lady Vanishes) and seagulls (in Young and Innocent.) An interesting question asked here: what is it about birds that "endears them to the makers of horror films?"
This video looks at the screenplay for 1974's 'Chinatown,' examining why it's often cited as one of the greatest scripts ever written.
Ever since there have been books on screenwriting (the modern age can probably be said to date from Syd Field's Screenplay, first published in 1979), Robert Towne's screenplay for Chinatown has been cited as one of the greatest screenplays ever written.
In the video below from Jack's Movie Reviews, Jack looks at the structural elements of the Chinatown script to find out why it stands out from so many others and is even today held up as an example of perfection via its screenwriting form.
Wes Anderson is one of the most distinctive filmmakers working in Hollywood today, and this video looks at his debut '
to find the roots of his style.
Wes Anderson is, arguably, the most influential filmmaker of the past 20 years. Certain stylistic flourishes are indelibly associated with him, and perhaps more than any living individual, Anderson can claim credit for the ascendance of 'quirkiness' as an aesthetic. He has been the subject of countless parodies and birthed a thousand indies; without Wes Anderson, would there be a Napoleon Dynamite?
However, there was a time before Wes Anderson was Wes Anderson, and it's this time period (and the movie he made then) that is under examination in a new video by Thomas Flight, searching for the roots of Anderson's mature style throughout his first film, Bottle Rocket. Check out the video below.
The legendary Oscar-winning DP has seen quite a lot in his five-decade filmmaking career.
Haskell Wexler, ASC was one of the most influential cinematographers in Hollywood history (and one of the only cinematographers with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.) A two-time Academy Award winner, activist, and filmmaker whose career began in the 1940s, Wexler spent decades working with directors Elia Kazan (America America), Mike Nichols, (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?), Terrence Malick (Days of Heaven), Miloš Forman (One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest) and many more.
In 1968, Wexler wrote and directed the influential political and cinéma vérité classic, Medium Cool, and in later years devoted considerable time to a campaign for better working conditions in Hollywood.
In the below recently-released and wide-ranging discussion from 2014 with Cass Warner of the Warner Sisters, Wexler, who died at the age of 93 in 2015, discusses his life and career, sharing stories from some of his most famous films, thoughts on politics, and the state of the industry.