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A New Column by Arielle Bernstein: Without a Caveat: Can Girls Look Past GoldieBlox?

Consumer culture has always been about the illusion of options. GoldieBlox, a toy that encourages girls to be engineers, both plays off of stereotypes about female needs and yearnings (the need for a story, the requirement of pink packaging) while also attempting to undercut current pink princess culture.
  • By Arielle Bernstein
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  • November 29, 2013 1:35 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Why Sokurov's FAUST Could Not Have Been Made in America

On seeing Alexander Sokurov's FAUST, my first thought was an odd one, almost tautological: this film could not have been made in America. When I tried to figure out why the non-American-ness had struck me, the answer I came to was a simple one: American filmmakers (and critics) fear surrealism.
  • By Max Winter
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  • November 23, 2013 8:38 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Craig D. Lindsey Recalls His Correspondence with James Wolcott

I think it’s about time I told you about my association with James Wolcott.
  • By Craig D. Lindsey
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  • November 21, 2013 2:20 PM
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  • 0 Comments

In the Future We Will Have Less of Everything: On HOW I LIVE NOW and Its Predecessors

Has there ever been a film about the future that advocated in favor of progress, rather than against it? "How I Live Now," in its own quiet way, works beautifully and admirably against this trend, pervasive as its gloom might be, in suggesting that the sanctity of human relationships can create a barrier between the self and the crumbling world.
  • By Max Winter
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  • November 20, 2013 7:35 PM
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SUNLIGHT JR. and American Film's Misunderstanding of Poverty

American filmmakers don't understand the poor. From Charlie Chaplin's Tramp films on through "Push: Based on the Novel by Sapphire," the portrayal of impoverished people in films has settled into a comfortable group of cliches.
  • By Max Winter
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  • November 18, 2013 4:04 PM
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  • 0 Comments

The Good Struggle: ILYA AND EMILIA KABAKOV: ENTER HERE

"Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: Enter Here" is less a documentary than a study of the ways we react to tragedy, to trauma, to past suffering--in Kabakov's case, the trauma was the time he spent living under Soviet rule, from 1933 to 1987.
  • By Max Winter
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  • November 16, 2013 4:37 PM
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  • 0 Comments

A NEW COLUMN BY ARIELLE BERNSTEIN: The Princess, The Queen and The Warrior: Part 1: Teeth and Swagger.

This column will be centered on the question of female agency, which I see as being fundamentally tied to positive images of women in power, rather than princesses on the cusp of coming-of-age.
  • By Arielle Bernstein
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  • November 15, 2013 12:49 PM
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  • 1 Comment

12 YEARS A SLAVE: Glory Without Redemption

It is exceedingly rare to find a story about slavery that doesn't emphasize how good-hearted white people can be and how inherently just, good, and equal America is. In American movies, black suffering redeems white characters and affirms white nobility.
  • By Matthew Cheney
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  • November 13, 2013 1:38 PM
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  • 3 Comments

The Tragic Absorption of THE MOTEL LIFE

There are times, during THE MOTEL LIFE, when it seems as if the film is sustaining itself on pure mood.
  • By Max Winter
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  • November 9, 2013 10:37 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Why DEEP THROAT Should Be Placed in the National Film Registry

It's almost that time again. Every December, the National Film Preservation Board, with the sheltering authority of the Library Of Congress hovering benevolently over its shoulder, announces the twenty-five "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" movies that will be enshrined in the National Film Registry.
  • By Violet LeVoit
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  • November 5, 2013 10:25 AM
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  • 2 Comments

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