Today I’m introducing a new feature on Popshifter, the Assemblog: a collection of what has captured my attention this week, pop-culturally speaking.
The debate over digital continues in Hollywood. LA Weekly ran a piece last week with this alarming title: “Movie Studios Are Forcing Hollywood to Abandon 35mm Film. But the Consequences of Going Digital Are Vast, and Troubling.” Director Christopher Nolan shares his thoughts on the medium in a long interview for the Directors Guild of America magazine’s Spring 2012 issue. /Film pulls a quote from Nolan on reshoots which actually provides insight into his entire narrative process (and why a lot of people “just didn’t get” Inception, perhaps):
I always overwrite the exposition in my scripts so that I’ve got multiple ways to get a point across. If you tell the audience something three times they won’t understand it, but if you tell them only once, they will. It’s an odd thing.
Finally, The Hollywood Reporter claims that, according to the NAB Show’s Technology Summit on Cinema, “more than half of the world’s cinema screens are digital.” The most intriguing thing the article reveals, however, is this: “A staggering 95% of pirated content is recorded in a theater with a camcorder, according to Mike Robinson, executive vp, content protection and chief of operations at the MPAA.” Though I am hesitant to link to an article that I am still not convinced is anything more than half-assed trolling, THR’s article does provide an interesting post-script to this proposal from Twitch.
Horror film purists are complaining about the upcoming remake of Carrie, scheduled for Spring 2013. Many feel that remakes are ubiquitous and unnecessary, but if a film is based on a book in the first place, can a new film adaptation really be considered a remake? This new Carrie is going to be directed by Kimberly Peirce, who wrote and directed the incredible Boys Don’t Cry. So it’s not like she’s a talentless hack. In addition, according to Coming Soon, it’s going to be “less a remake of the De Palma film and more a re-adaptation of the original” Stephen King novel.
If you haven’t seen the trailer for David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis, which premieres next month at Cannes, you can check it out here, courtesy of Twitch.
I shudder to use the phrase “return to form” as I feel Cronenberg’s recent films have just been an evolution of his style, but it definitely feels more like Videodrome than Eastern Promises. And maybe it’s just because I watched Suede’s “We Are The Pigs” video earlier this week, but it also feels very J.G. Ballard, though that could be the source material by author Don DeLillo (which I have admittedly not read).
Another potentially great film will be released in September: Rian Johnson’s Looper. It’s a time travel film that seems visually impressive and action packed (and according to the trailer, has one glaring typo). Casting Bruce Willis as the future/older Joseph Gordon-Levitt is inspired casting, and considering the film’s premise, more than a shade reminiscent of 12 Monkeys. Watch the trailer (via Film Junk) here.
New on Blu-Ray from Kino’s Redemption is The Asphyx, a British horror film from 1972 that’s definitely worth watching. Although “goofy” is not exactly the word I’d use for it, for those raised on post-eighties horror fare (and special effects), it may come across as a bit quaint.
What is decidedly NOT quaint is “Rat,” from the new Unsane release, Wreck. Dusted Magazine provides a link to this excellent track in their excellent review of the album.
Another intriguing new release comes from John Talabot. Brainwashed provides a few snippets from Talbot’s debut album ƒIN here, along with a hilarious one word takedown of dubstep.
Diehard Teenage Fanclub fans likely already know about Gerald Love’s Lightships and their new album Electric Cables, but for the rest of us, it comes as a nice surprise. If you like Love’s vocals and songwriting skills, you’ll like “Sweetness in Her Spark,” which you can listen to courtesy of Dusted Magazine.
Dick Clark, a.k.a. the world’s oldest teenager, passed away this week at the age of 82. How you feel about his impact on the music world is probably directed related to your age, but if you think he was a square, I beg you to reconsider. Clark had Sparks on American Bandstand six times over the years, which is pretty impressive, considering the band’s highest charting single in the US was #6, for 1986′s “Music That You Can Dance To.”
Here are three of the band’s six appearances on American Bandstand, courtesy of YouTube, which means you should watch them now, because they’ll probably get yanked soon.
From 1983: Sparks performs “Cool Places” with Jane Wiedlin, along with “Popularity.”
Watch Ron Mael—literally—steal the show from Dick Clark when the band performs “Pulling Rabbits Out Of A Hat” in 1984.
My personal favorite is this 1982 performance of “I Predict” and “Eaten By the Monster of Love,” in which Ron Mael provides an unexpected, lightning-fast comeback and Dick Clark just loses it.
You were a good sport, Dick Clark. We’ll miss you.
—Less Lee Moore, Managing Editor