Winter 2018

American Head Trip: Joshua Oppenheimer Talks to Errol Morris About his Netflix Docudrama Hybrid Wormwood

Recounting a recent conversation, Errol Morris says that he’s happy his friend understood Wormwood, the documentary filmmaker’s epic new work, as “an essay on ‘doing history.’” “I think it’s a lot of things, too,” Morris goes on to say, “but I like to hear that it’s about my obsessions with epistemology.” Obsession and epistemology—doesn’t the latter usually require the former? It certainly does in these reality-challenged times, when the act of landing on some honest reckoning with the social and political record requires a scrupulous method, unrelenting tenacity and, indeed, some small degree of obsession. All these qualities have been […]

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Features

Elizabeth Olsen and Aubrey Plaza in Ingrid Goes West, courtesy of Neon

Hits and Misses: Anthony Kaufman Surveys the Sundance Class of ’17

The headlines said it all: “Hollywood Faces  August Death March,” “Bummer Summer” and “Beleaguered Box Office.” OK, Hollywood had a tough year, but does that necessarily apply to independent films? Well, as the saying goes, a receding tide sinks all boats. And so it was in 2017: If people were going out to fewer movies and streaming more episodic content at home, it affected both indie films and tentpoles. But if we look back at the films that premiered at Sundance 2017, there are a few instances to inspire hope: The Big Sick, of course, was the big one; Wind […]

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  • Disquiet

    “There’s an ambition that comes with wanting to work for Harvey Weinstein. Every day that I worked for The Weinstein Company I woke up with fear. You rationalize it as normal, that this is the dream we all want to be a part of; thinking you have to act a certain way, even though it’s an outdated way, an old way of doing business, but still how TWC operated. You begin to feel that hopeless, dreamless Hollywood factory. The culture was just so toxic. Everyone was scared, nervous, anxious, and now we’re confronting not only the sexual violence but the […]

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  • Clothes Make the Man: Costume Designer Mark Bridges on Phantom Thread

    His last narrative feature, Inherent Vice, focused on disheveled hippies in 1970s Los Angeles. With his latest, Paul Thomas Anderson has swung to a wildly different milieu. Phantom Thread concerns Reynolds Woodcock (Daniel Day-Lewis) — a near-monomaniacal designer working during couture’s greatest age, the early 1950s — and Alma (Vicky Krieps), the young woman who is sucked into his orbit. With Anderson goes his longtime costume designer, Mark Bridges, here given a dream assignment: not only to design his own couture visions but also to dress the entire world that surrounds them. The film is about an artist, and Bridges’s […]

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  • In the Light of History: Rachel Morrison on Shooting Mudbound

    With Rachel Morrison the first woman cinematographer nominated for a Best Cinematography Academy Award, we’re running today online from our current print issue David Leitner’s interview with her about shooting her nominated film, Dee Rees’s Mudbound. When Dee Rees’s Mudbound premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, the director was returning to the fest six years after her feature debut, Pariah, launched there. The same year also marked DP Rachel Morrison’s first feature to be included in the festival, Zal Batmanglij’s Sound of My Voice, and she returned the following year with Ryan Coogler’s Fruitvale Station; Mudbound is her eighth […]

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