Assemblog: July 19, 2013

Published on July 19th, 2013 in: Assemblog, Feminism, Horror, Legal Issues, Movies, Trailers, TV |

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Frankenstein’s Army

New this week on Popshifter: I urge everyone to see Pacific Rim as soon as possible; Melissa is surprised and delighted by the new Blow Monkeys album Feels Like A New Morning and thinks that Boyce & Hart’s I Wonder What She’s Doing Tonite is filled with the “finest pop gems”; Jeff equates Powerman 5000’s Copies, Clones & Replicants album with being trapped in Hell; and Brad is ecstatic for Scream Factory’s upcoming release of The Fog on Blu-Ray.

The Hollywood Reporter has a brief interview with Justin Swartz, who “spearheaded the groundbreaking litigation against Fox” regarding their unethical treatment of interns on the set of Black Swan. Swartz is also the driving force behind some more recent lawsuits against other huge media companies like NBCUniversal, Conde Nast, and Hearst Corp. regarding their treatment of interns.

Something that may have been lost in the discussion over the case and the summary judgement is the way that these kinds of internships have excluded a large number of those who would be otherwise qualified. Says Swartz:

This is not just a labor issue. It’s also a social justice issue. Generally, people in position to work for free come from privileged backgrounds. An important byproduct of the intern cases is that it will open up industries like media and film to those who need to work when they are in school. There are plenty of kids who work at McDonald’s because they need to earn money to live. If internships were paid at Fox or Hearst, those folks can apply to those jobs.

Another social justice issue has been raised on Jezebel, though I first heard about this via the Women And Hollywood blog on Indiewire. Editor-in-Chief of Jezebel, Jessica Coen, publicized her frustrated email reply to her boss, publisher Nick Denton. Why? Because Denton took issue with a recent Jezebel piece lamenting the fact that there were no female directors on the last season of Doctor Who. Denton, who clearly refuses to understand his audience one bit, used this for his email subject line: “Seriously? It’s a freaking geek show. I hate this quota shit,” thus insulting women and geek culture in one fell swoop.

Coen’s reply is excellent and definitely deserves to be read in full. I’d like to draw your attention also towards this comment from Women And Hollywood reader “Mary” who cuts to the heart of the issue:

“She’s so right, and I wonder whether the backlash against all these discussions has to do with a fear that IF things were to change, many men in the industry would suddenly have to compete for their jobs in a world where the odds were not skewed in their favor. Right now they are, and it’s a tough industry to compete in. Who wants to have to compete with the other 51% of the human race? This kind of backlash has to do with protecting one’s privilege, and we should probably expect more of it.”

On the other hand, Film School Rejects’ Landon Palmer gets some feminist points for his thought-provoking article on the lack of discussion regarding abortion in cinema, asking, “But what of mainstream narrative cinema, of movies that aren’t used to overtly propagate a position or preach to the converted on a signature issue?”

And now, trailers!

The first Twelve Years A Slave trailer is out and it’s every bit as epic as one could have hoped considering the cast, the director, and the story. The film will be released October 18.

Frankenstein’s Army, which played at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, will be out in limited release on July 26. The premise of this movie—Nazis and Frankenstein—might seem to be corny, but this trailer has a great look and feels like an alternate universe version of Martyrs. Good stuff.

There’s a trailer for the James Deen and Lindsay Lohan movie The Canyons, you know, the one written by Bret Easton Ellis and directed by Paul Schrader? The beginning of the trailer is actually fairly well done, but I’m not so sure about the second half. Did you want to see The Canyons before? Did this trailer change your mind?

Indiewire tipped me off to the trailer for Southcliffe, a Channel 4 miniseries “set in a fictional English market town devastated by a spate of shootings that took place over a single day, examining the tragedy through the eyes of a journalist returning to his childhood community as well as those closest to the victims of the tragedy.” The cast is impressive—Rory Kinnear (Skyfall), Sean Harris (Prometheus), Shirley Henderson (Intermission, among many other things)—and the editing and pacing of this trailer are excellent. Definitely something I’d be interested in seeing in the future. It was directed by Sean Durkin, who also directed Martha Marcy May Marlene.

—Less Lee Moore, Managing Editor

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