The past few days brought the initial offerings from the members of the New York Film Festival Critics Academy. There will be more to come as the festival progresses, but the first few pieces are featured below.
Words of Wisdom from the Critics Academy: It's a magnificent collection from the nine members making their way through this year's NYFF, observations concise and insightful.
Holy Celluloid Versus Digital Passion: After the recent hand-wringing over the corrupted "Passion" screening at NYFF, Peter Labuza looks at how it and two other festival films ("Holy Motors" and "You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet!") represent different shades of the ever-growing film/digital rift.
YouTube Aesthetics Invade Film Festival Documentaries: Alec Kubas-Meyer posits that recent NYFF fare "Leviathan" and "Room 237" might have some roots in the influence of online videos, even if the technological innovations feel slightly gimmicky at times.
As festival-goers enjoy the riches of NYFF, there was plenty to talk about that wasn't happening outside the East Coast:
Weekend Reel Reads: Bodybuilders, Bibles, Bengals and Bond: Last weekend's list of film-related stories from around the web featured a tribute to NFL Films' Steve Sabol, a pair of interviews with "Looper" director Rian Johnson and a profile of filmmaker David Ayer.
The Criticwire Survey: Most-Wanted Criterions: Our respondents share the films they'd most like to see be released through the Criterion collection. To call this an eclectic list would be an understatement (but that's a good thing).
Total Recall or Total Denial? How a New Interview Reveals the Subtext of Arnold Schwarzenegger Movies: Despite being one of the world's most recognizable faces, Schwarzenegger's filmography is filled with examples of him trying to create a general emotional distance.
From the Wire: A, Um, Handy Guide to the Year's "Kinky" Oscar Movies: A certain series of fan fiction may or may not be to blame for the rampant naughtiness in this year's slate of Oscar bait, but there's no denying there's the makings of a trend.
Reports of Film Culture's Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated: Lately, Hollywood hasn't offered a tremendous amount of reason for optimism, but recent, ominous calls for pessimism have a storied history.
Criticwire Picks: "The House I Live In" Headlines a Packed, Promising Weekend: Eugene Jarecki's latest documentary about American drug policy is just one of seven new releases with a Criticwire average grade of "B" or higher.
Siri Now Reviews Movies (Sort Of): She's got a particularly robocentric view of film, so should we be worried?
From the Wire: P.T. Anderson's Sad Decline (of Amazing Movies): Sometimes, the work of a filmmaker doesn't capture the same wonder in subsequent films that an initial exposure had. But that can't be held against an individual piece of work.
Watch J. Hoberman Discuss the State of 21st Century Cinema: The former Village Voice critic brings together his personal views on some of the central issues of the criticism field (and does so over the course of more than an hour).
The Least Plausible Sequels of All Time: If you prefer your franchise attempts with a side of ridiculous and a dash of Connery, this collection is for you.
VODetails: 'Decoding Deepak': The new documentary about legendary guru Deepak Chopra, also available in theaters, might just be worth your hard-earned VODollars.