Winter 2016

Seeking Arrangements: Lodge Kerrigan, Amy Seimetz and Steven Soderbergh on The Girlfriend Experience

Shot in New York City during the 2008 financial crisis, Steven Soderbergh’s feature The Girlfriend Experience was a cool movie about a hot topic. Ostensibly about a “new” kind of prostitution, where escorts would simulate the casual intimacy of a real relationship, it starred real-life porn star Sasha Grey even as it contained virtually no sex. But what began as a look at how the Internet enabled a new kind of solo entrepreneur sex worker — “As we were making the film, I didn’t consider [prostitution] as a metaphor for anything,“ Soderbergh said then — wound up a trenchantly austere […]



Now It’s Dark: Robert Eggers on The Witch

Read about Robert Eggers’s staggeringly accomplished first feature, The Witch, winner of the 2015 Sundance U.S. Dramatic Best Director Prize, and the first thing you’ll learn about is the writer/director’s obsession with authentic detail. As he has explained in articles like the one Filmmaker published when selecting him for our 2014 25 New Faces list, the writer/director developed his 1630s-set story of a Puritan family under attack by a witch living in a nearby forest from not just period fairy tales but diaries, court records and other primary source materials. He wrote his dialogue in the Caroline-era English of the […]

  • The Pre-Fight: Arnaud Desplechin on My Golden Days

    Arnaud Desplechin invigorates through assault tactics: aggressive camera movement, even more aggressively fragmented editing, seemingly irreconcilable musical cues that butt chromatic classical cues up against golden age hip-hop, a university library’s worth of citations and allusions. His films are scarcely less restless than their characters, who chafe against themselves and others. In his 1996 breakthrough My Sex Life…or How I Got Into an Argument, Desplechin promoted Mathieu Amalric from supporting bit player (in 1992’s La Sentinelle) to his regular onscreen alter-ego. A philosophy graduate student adept at tormenting both himself and girlfriend Esther (Emmanuelle Devos) while putting off completing his […]

  • Mathieu Amalric on My Golden Days

    I spoke with Arnaud while he was here for the festival. One of the things he talked about is that he’ll model things for you, that he’ll show you where to touch your nose or how to grab a glass. He’s very specific when he’s blocking. It’s very good. He said that that’s something that you’re not supposed to do when directing actors. Were you the one who asked him to do that for you, initially? Oh, he does that for himself, to find all the characters. He plays all the characters, especially women, extraordinarily well. It’s impressive. He’s such […]

  • Family Plot: David Lowery Interviews Krisha Writer/Director Trey Edward Shults

    One of the most impressive debuts of this year, Trey Edward Shults’s Krisha — the story of a recovering alcoholic thoroughly derailed by the pressure-cooker of her sister’s Thanksgiving Day dinner — is a work of astonishing performances, formal control, filmmaking ambition and, finally, deep emotional wisdom. It’s a movie that has all the dramatic pyrotechnics one expects from the “home for the holidays” sub-genre, but, loosely based on a true story about one of Shults’s actual relatives, is suffused with a real understanding about issues of addiction and recovery, regret, and the difficulties of being and feeling accepted. Winner […]


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Also: Reality, Boxed and “The New China” Parting Shot: Chloé Zhao Editor’s Letter

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