Friday, May 14, 2010

The Cinephile Emerges

It's been over two weeks and it's time to get back down to business. Cinema Styles will be returning to full time posting starting this Monday. I enjoyed a somewhat successful hiatus; the story I was working on is pretty much complete with but a few changes necessary before sending it off to my friend for the screenplay part of it all but the short film I'd hoped to finish seems like an aimless disaster to me at this point. I can't get my mind around it no matter how hard I try and forcing inspiration isn't very... inspiring. Still, I'll keep at it.

In my time away from Cinema Styles I watched many movies but mainly documentaries, on subjects ranging from the Manhattan Project (for the millionth time) to Howard Zinn to Sacco and Vanzetti to revisiting Ken Burns' superb The Civil War. I also re-watched Malcolm X and was more impressed by Denzel Washington's performance this time than I was when I first saw it. Also, it's one of the few biopics that doesn't feel like pure drudgery even if it does follow the standard mold. And it does but it does so with a vigor absent from so many biopics outside of the more recent The Aviator which I also liked much better the second time I saw it.

That's it for now. Next week more posts and more video, including a new The Land Before CGI. Have a good weekend everyone!

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pictured above is producer Darryl Zanuck studying a map at a Normandy beach entrenchment for his 1968 television special Revisiting D-Day.

27 comments:

Ryan Kelly said...

Good to have you back! Now I can write something at my blog too. I've been on strike in protest of your absence.

Greg said...

Solidarity, my brother!

Blogger of the Film World Unite!

Ryan Kelly said...

I'm also on a hunger strike, so you may want to go ahead and post soon, because I've been drinking alcohol for nourishment the last few weeks and my kidney's are starting to hurt.

Greg said...

I've been drinking alcohol for nourishment the last few weeks...

Wow, we really are alike!

Ed Howard said...

C'mon Greg, we all know that "hiatus" just means "rehab," and "working on my screenplay" means "downing copious amounts of booze."

Good to have you back anyway, though I hope the quality of the posts won't suffer now that you've been detoxed.

Greg said...

Good to have you back anyway, though I hope the quality of the posts won't suffer now that you've been detoxed.

I assure you, the incoherent ramblings of Cinema Styles will remain as half-assed, ramshackle and barely thought-out as they've always been. I won't let shaking hands affect my baseless opinions one iota. Not one!

bill r. said...

I hate Spike Lee, which makes the fact that I agree with you about MALCOLM X all the more surprising to me. Washington is amazing in it. But I think he's almost always amazing. In fact, I think he's probably the best living actor who routinely chooses to appear in lackluster films.

bill r. said...

Also, you guys should now all come over to my place to comment. I'm on fire, you guys! ON FIRE!!!!!

Greg said...

Yeah Bill, you're right about Washington. Not only an amazing actor but lordy does he pick a lot of ho-hum discount bin movies to appear in. Who wants to be "King of the Discount Bin?" Well, I guess Denzel but someone should let him know that's not a good thing.

Greg said...

Also, you guys should now all come over to my place to comment. I'm on fire, you guys! ON FIRE!!!!!

Wait a minute, is the only reason you're glad I'm back? So you can plug your blog? Okay. Hey, I commented on the No Country for Old Men post this morning but got no response. I guess I shouldn't have expected one since I didn't actually mention the post. But, you know what? Damn good post. It was worth the screengrabs.

bill r. said...

Yeah, you commented in order TO PLUG YOUR BLOG! Turnabout is fair play, or whatever that saying is.

Seriously, though, glad you're back. The internet felt much smaller without you.

Greg said...

I figured you'd get the joke there. See, I asked about you plugging your blog then mentioned my... oh, whatever. Thanks for the glad tidings. It's good to be back.

the dame said...

Glad you're back! When I take a hiatus, I disappear for 6 months to a year. Your approach is far better. ;)

Greg said...

Dame! You're still here! Oh my God, I figured you weren't going to be online anymore. Thanks and welcome back to you as well!

Brian Doan said...

Not only an amazing actor but lordy does he pick a lot of ho-hum discount bin movies to appear in. Who wants to be "King of the Discount Bin?" Well, I guess Denzel but someone should let him know that's not a good thing.

So, does this make him the Gene Hackman of his generation, then? Or maybe the Michael Caine?

Great to have you back!

Greg said...

Gene Hackman, Michael Caine and Denzel Washington should do a movie together. It should be directed by someone competent, scored by someone workmanlike and written by three or four acceptable staff writers. The name of the movie should be chosen from a random title generator and the female lead should be this year's Anne Archer, if there is such a thing.

And thanks Brian, it's good to be back.

Brian Doan said...

That movie sounds great! I assume it would turn out like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFicqklGuB0

Greg said...

Bottom line: In five months it's 6.99 on the checkout shelves at the local Target.

Greg said...

Full screen, of course.

bill r. said...

Personally, I think Caine has been making better choices lately. I might be saying that only because I'm dying to see HARRY BROWN and love Christopher Nolan, but whatever, that's how I feel.

And Hackman bailed for this very reason. I don't know what Washington's deal is.

Greg said...

Maybe he's just taking over for Hackman. There could be some kind of "Carry the Torch" deal that each successive generation has to fulfil.

bill r. said...

The torch was passed on the set of CRIMSON TIDE.

Greg said...

Of course!!! How did I not see that?

Brian Doan said...

Bill, I thought Caine was an excellent Alfred in the Batman films, and I really loved him in THE QUIET AMERICAN.

bill r. said...

He was great in THE QUIET AMERICAN, and he's the perfect Alfred. But I also give him full credit for a much smaller role in THE PRESTIGE. That scene where he tells Christian Bale what it's really like to drown...chilling.

Arbogast said...

written by three or four acceptable staff writers

I'm available after the 1st.

Greg said...

Tony Scott will give you a call.