Earlier today Awards Daily ‘s Sasha Stone, Boxoffice.com‘s Phil Contrino and I chewed the usual fat. Actually, not usual — interesting, sometimes amusing fat. Source Code, France again, early VOD windows, 48 to 60 fps photography, Sasha’s belief that Woody Allen has been off his game since the mid ’90s, etc. Here’s a non-iTunes, stand-alone link.
So Movieline critic Elvis Mitchell might have read an early draft of Ben Ripley‘s Source Code screenplay and remembered a line about Jeffrey Wright‘s character smoking a pipe, and somehow this recollection found its way into his review of the film…in which Wright doesn’t smoke a pipe. So effin’ what? Every so often processed information and impressions and memory fragments bleed into each other and scramble around. And then you fix it.
Anton Corbijn‘s Control, which I first saw at the 2007 Cannes Filn Festival, is probably the most beautiful black-and-white film of the 21st Century. (Francis Coppola‘s Tetro is a close second.) It’s been crying out for a Bluray, and so far the Weinstein Co. hasn’t announced one. Today I ordered the Alliance Region-A Bluray — sure to look great on the 50″ plasma.
At the end of Source Code is Jake Gyllenhaal‘s Colter Stevens finally over as a half-living entity (i.e., dead), or is he living a happy smiling life with Michelle Monaghan in the Source Code realm, or is he “alive” in the body of Sean Fentress, the guy he’s been inside all along, in the real-world realm? I’m not recalling all the particulars. Consider this bold-faced spoiler warning before watching the video. (Thanks to Rope of Silicon‘s Brad Brevet for starting this off.)
Last Wednesday I did a phoner with Paramount’s Ron Smith, the restoration guy who quarterbacked the work on the Ten Commandments Bluray. (And on the theatrical version.) A ten-minute portion of our chat is on the video. The film is best appreciated as “a Cecil B. DeMille proscenium arch experience,” as I put it. It’s immaculate old-world fakery, shot almost entirely on a sound stage. The 44 days spent shooting location footage in Egypt mean nothing to me. The Exodus scene could have been shot in the Mojave desert.
“Digital processes have made it cheaper and easier to assemble such multitudes in films like Gladiator and 300, but pixels are pixels, no matter how artfully deployed. Only DeMille and his army of assistants could have captured the spectacle of The Ten Commandments, a human spectacle, with weight, warmth and life.” — from Dave Kehr‘s 4.1 N.Y. Times appreciation.
Sunday night update: TMZ is reporting that during tonight’s Torpedo of Truth show in Chicago, Sheen said “he’d go back to Two and Half Men, but that the people who run it are bloodsuckers. He [also] called Jon Cryer a ‘rock star.'”
Earlier today: “The word is from one of Charlie Sheen‘s friends is that he’s in talks to return to Two & A Half Men, but along with traditional rehab he will have to write formal letters of apology to CBS, Warner Brothers and producer Chuck Lorre as well as make public statements to the same. There will be provisions in place that will ensure this doesn’t happen again during production.”
Serious rehab and apologies and accepting provisions would obviously be the best solution for Sheen, but they’ll never happen…no way. Not from the guy who played Detroit last night. Sheen is way too cranked on his own juice to eat humble pie.
25 minutes at Gallery 825 on La Cienega and then a drop-by at Bergamot Station where a swarm of bicycle night-riders poured into the main parking lot (like a scene from Fellini’s Roma or Blow-Up) as a thrash-rock band started playing [see video below]. Quite a moment. And then finally down to Culver City for some food. We passed on Harrison Ford‘s…I’m sorry, his son Ben‘s Montana food joint (i.e., Ford’s Filling Station).
The night before I spent some time at a mini-street festival on Abbot Kinney Blvd. In the late ’80s and ’90s this arts-and-crafty, non-corporate Venice neighborhood was one of the toniest in Los Angeles. Three to five years ago it was still cool in a festive but mostly low-key way. Now it’s swamped with “whoo-hoo!” under-30 eager beaver beardos in T-shirts, sandals and pork-pie hats — i.e., the night-life equivalent of crabgrass. The only thing missing is a karaoke bar.