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The Reeler Blog

Screening Gotham: A Picture's Worth a Few Dozen Words

(Photo: Richard Burbridge, NYTM)

Some of today's movie news of note from around New York:

--Considering my disappointment over last year's emulsion abortion that was The New York Times Magazine's Great Performers photo package, I required a 24-hour taste-conditioning detox regimen before writing about the 2007 version unleashed last weekend. While it didn't help me understand the enduring cache of miserablist glamour shots (take Penelope Cruz, photographed in post-nap profile) or the lingering appeal of Babel exhibitionist Rinko Kikuchi, I must acknowledge that the patchwork disfigurement of Sasha Baron Cohen is a step up from the phone-book doodles that so afflicted Jeff Daniels in 2006. Baby steps, I suppose. Or something.

--Film Snob godheads David Kamp and Lawrence Levi will be on The Leonard Lopate Show today discussing Oscar culture and, according to their Web site, "touching upon such topics as 'Is it at last Marty’s year?' and 'Jackie Earle Haley -- who knew?' "

--Tangos in the news: Carpetbagger second-in-command Paula Schwartz talked to Robert Duvall at Sunday's WGA Awards, who had a hard-on not only for Apocalypto, but also the recent tango world championships in Argentina. Not to be outdone, Movie City Indie's Ray Pride has a careful listen-and-look at the tango motifs utilized by Martin Scorsese in The Departed: "To simplify brutally, the tango began as a dance between men: a ritualized, sexualized knife fight of dance between pimps in Buenos Aires. And so the dance: the doppelgangered Damon and DiCaprio; Scorsese’s American cinema and Hong Kong cinema." A nifty read.

--B-movies on iTunes: Lionsgate made its video catalog available for download, unwittingly enabling thousands of rational filmgoers with iPods to confront Crash fans with incontrovertible scene-by-scene evidence of the film's shittiness when those arguments start. It's the most necessary $10 you'll ever spend.

Posted at February 13, 2007 9:00 AM

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