Opening weekends are breaking Hollywood: Peter Bradshaw at the Guardian complains that the pressure to pull in massive numbers on a film’s opening weekend is destroying cinema in general, and that good films are often pulled before they have a chance to build an audience. This is at least as true for indie films, most of which are dribbled into New York and LA first before being platformed out if they perform well, and which, if they don’t, get maybe a week before being moved out for something else in the ever-crowded arthouse market.
Sequels suck: Patrick Goldstein at the LA Times sings a tried and true song, and supports it by beating up on some occasionally poorly chosen examples: "X-Men 2" was good, and, if you acknowledge that Spielberg probably isn’t making "Indiana Jones 4" because he needs the money, then maybe you can acknowledge he might have ambitions for it as well? Glanced on, but not explored, is the idea of being what director Wayne Kramer calls in the piece being "someone’s sequel bitch." Juan Carlos Fresnadillo seems to be doing a rare breakout job as sequel bitch on "28 Weeks Later…"; for that matter, we’d take "Better Luck Tomorrow" director Justin Lin‘s "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift" over the franchise’s previous installments anyway. But we digress…
Ain’t It Cool gets more access than you: Francis Ford Coppola sits down to reveal details on "Youth Without Youth" with… Harry Knowles? Who admits, given that this is his first time doing a one on one, that he had his voice recorder on the wrong setting. The press world grumbles with resentment, but there is something compelling if unnecessary about how all 4000+ audible words of the interview have been transcribed and posted:
Harry: You shot YOUTH WITHOUT YOUTH digitally didnâ€™t you?
Coppola: I had never said how I did it, because I shot film and digital and I kind of maintained that everyone should look at it and kind of figure out how I did it…
Coppola: …but, we did shoot film as well.
Rom-coms suck: Ian Johns at the London Times wonders when "romantic comedies become so bad, so laden with lame humour and couples that barely spark and so transparent as therapy substitutes designed to make the audience feel good about themselves (the assumption being that we all feel bad to begin with)?" He blames the fact that modern technology and mores have eliminated the obstacles that prospective movie couples used to have to overcome, and that rom-com set-ups have become more outrageous and idiotic to make up for this. Clearly, it’s time to bring back acknowledged class systems â€” for the genre, it’s all been downhill since Jane Austen.
Canada, arr!: Gayle MacDonald and Alex Dobrota at the Globe and Mail report on Canada’s newfound status as a hotbed of piracy. Warner Bros. announced on Tuesday that they were pulling Canadian preview screenings of "Ocean’s Thirteen" and the next Harry Potter film, due to Canada’s failure to crack down on piracy and an MPAA study that claims that "analysis of counterfeit discs in 2005 revealed close to 75 per cent of all films illegally camcorded in Canada were recorded in theatres in and around Montreal, recently identified as the No. 1 city in the world for surreptitious camcording."
+ Weekend psychosis (Guardian)
+ Patrick Goldstein: Cue the sequel, and the safe, boring route (LA Times)
+ Harry sits down in Austin with Francis Ford Coppola and talks YOUTH WITHOUT YOUTH, Seventies film, Wine, TETRO and the Coppolas (AICN)
+ Boy meets girl: it always ends in tears (London Times)
+ Why Warner Brothers is cracking down on Canada (The Globe and Mail)