PARADISE LOST: CONFESSIONS, WEST OF MEMPHIS

  For those unfamiliar with the case of the so-called West Memphis Three, here’s a chronology of events. And here’s a short history of my interest in the case: 1) On May 5, 1993, the day the three cub scouts were brutally murdered, hogtied and tossed into a watery ditch, I was tanning all day […]

Re-Ranking the Sight & Sound Top 100

The results of last year’s Sight & Sound poll shook the film community to its sedentary core. Cinephiles everywhere could be heard shouting from the rooftops their recliners – Oh my God! Jesus Christ! Holy shit! Citizen Kane, officially the “greatest film of all time” for 5 decades, had been dethroned by Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo! […]

Once Upon a Time in America – The Restoration

Follow-up post on Blu-ray release here  About a year ago Sergio Leone’s children, Andrea and Raffaella, announced that they would be working with the renowned Bologna Cinematheque to digitally restore Once Upon a Time in America. Tonight, that restored version is being shown at the Cannes Film Festival, almost 28 years to the day after it […]

Murdering Morality with Rope

This post is part of the For the Love of Film: The Film Preservation Blogathon III. Click the button to donate. ______________________________________________________________ “There are no moral phenomena at all, but only a moral interpretation of phenomena.” – Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil Alfred Hitchcock’s Rope stars Farley Granger and John Dall as thinly disguised […]

Beneath the Earth Film Festival Revisited

The winners of this year’s Beneath the Earth Film Festival were announced on 10/31, and although I didn’t see completely eye to eye with my fellow jurors (or with the audience for that matter), the selections were generally solid. Here, then, are the winners of the 2011 festival: Best Film – Photographs Audience Award – After […]

Murdering Morality with Rope

“There are no moral phenomena at all, but only a moral interpretation of phenomena.” – Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil “The mere material world suggests to us no concepts of good or evil, because we can discern in it no system of grades of value.” – Alfred North Whitehead “No known race is so […]

Missing Scenes: Once Upon a Time in America

In response to my post below about the restoration of Once Upon a Time in America, I was asked if I knew anything specific about the missing 40 minutes. The answer is, yes. I have it on good authority that the additional material includes a whopper of a twist. It turns out that, like Max, […]

Once Upon a Time in America: For a few minutes more

It has been reported recently that Sergio Leone’s children, Andrea and Raffaella, have purchased the Italian rights to Once Upon a Time in America and will work with the renowned Bologna Cinematheque to digitally restore the film. This is exciting news for fans of the film. But I’m more ambivalent about plans to insert 40 […]

For the love of film (noir)

A couple of dames over at the Self-Styled Siren and Ferdy on Films are hosting a fundraising blogathon this week called For the Love of Film (Noir). If you know what’s good for ya, you’ll help support film preservation by donating to the Film Noir Foundation here. My little contribution to this blogathon is divided […]

A Fistful of Pellets

   People sometimes ask me why I watch so many movies when I seem to like so few of them. The answer, I think, lies in a behavioral psychology concept called intermittent reinforcement. Under intermittent reinforcement, the behavior of an organism can be maintained over long periods of time even when a reinforcer is given […]