Thank you all for your patience as I gather together some films for a new blog series I’ll be starting soon, as well as a set of Warner Archive MOD DVD reviews, all coming shortly. Meanwhile, please to enjoy some of my articles that have appeared elsewhere around Le Interwebbe, plus a few interesting things I’ve stumbled across recently.
* UPDATED TO ADD: Spectrum Culture’s snarky little Oscar article, where I blather (occasionally at length) about the nominees. For anyone interested (no one will be interested) I and about seven million others will be live-tweeting the Oscars on Sunday night.
* Redemption Tomorrow for Sin Today: The Fallen Woman in Pre-Code Films: My latest Pre-Code Obsession article for ClassicFlix, focusing on those out-of-nowhere endings in pre-Codes that were designed to help mitigate all the naughty, naughty things that went on in the first 95% of the film. If you’re interested in the topic, I highly recommend Lea Jacobs’ The Wages of Sin, a terrific book with in-depth info on the censorship and editing process behind plenty of pre-Codes, particularly the notorious Baby Face (1933).
* Underrated: Night of the Comet (1984): A fine 80s low-budget horror/sci-fi flick that far too many sniffy guys dismiss as unimportant, because they’re sniffy guys.
* Oeuvre: Two Weeks in Another Town (1952): Part of Spectrum Culture’s Oeuvre series, focusing on Vincente Minnelli. I had seen Two Weeks before, but when re-watching it for this article, its flaws hit me particularly hard. One of the side effects of the Oeuvre project at Spectrum is that you get a much more accurate feel for the director’s work, a fuller grasp of the context, and that can be delightful, but can also turn you against a film when the seams start to gape and you see all of the director’s petty, ridiculous concerns manifest themselves on celluloid. In short, I am not kind to either Two Weeks or Minnelli in this article.
* Al Goldstein’s Infamous “Midnight Blue” Cable Access Program, by Heather Drain at Dangerous Minds. From synthetic cocaine to Tiny Tim, a fascinating look at a man time has almost forgotten.
* SOME FUCKING WRITING TIPS. What happens when Matt Haig isn’t allowed to swear, and also wants to give some solid advice to burgeoning writers.
* A little something different, as seen on Twitter: Ernest Baker’s (interrupted) interview of Rick Ross, for Noisey. “Ross is closed and guarded, so lapses in his ostensible persona—moments of imperfection that show a real human—become the most interesting things he’s done.”
* CineFiles from University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. A collection of reviews, presskits, program notes, articles and more, for hundreds of directors and films nationwide. H/t to Cinephilia and Beyond for the link.