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September 11, 2009

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Dan Coyle

ANOTHER Wellsian Stalinist purge? This reminds me of the joke in the opening pages of Warren Ellis' newuniersal, which posits a 2006 where the Soviet Union never fell, announcing their SIXTH five year plan.

bill

Glenn, you might consider adding an "Onion AV Club-ism of the Week" to this feature. I don't know if you ever go to that site, but the site used to be somewhat interesting and fun, but now it's a hotbed of smugness, condescension and bad writing (and what passes for humor there is basically just repeating jokes made famous by others. In a recent review, the opening paragraph contained at least two jokes from "The Simpsons" and one from Patton Oswalt. I don't think the reader was meant to NOT know where those jokes came from -- quite the opposite -- but the writer still seemed to want the jokes to count as their own).

Anyway, in a headline for one of their Toronto Film Festival articles, whoever wrote the headline says that "Diablo Cody Throws Gasoline on the JUNO Backlash". I guess in order to find out how backlashes react to gasoline being thrown on them, you'll have to read the article.

bill

Also, Glenn, just as an aside, I've always loved that Sept. 11 piece you wrote.

Michael Adams

I still attribute Wells' crankiness to a depleted sex life.

bill

"I still attribute Wells' crankiness to a depleted sex life."

I attribute it to him being an asshole.

Dan Coyle

How do you throw gasoline on a backlash? When did Thomas Friedman start writing for the Onion? Not that Thomas Friedman qualifies for the Onion. Or Highlights. Or Betty and Veronica.

Depleted sex life? Jeffrey Wells has had sex? Really? With other people?

Jonah

GreenCine Daily took a nosedive a year or two back. Did they change editors? Policy? It used to boast regularly-updated, fairly no-nonsense news and interviews from the world of cinephilia. Now it seems to be largely "think pieces," either mediocre or much worse, generally information-free. Wha' happen?

otherbill

@ Jonah. GreenCine did indeed change editors some time back. I can't remember the names involved but I recall the previous editor passing the torch in a piece and the site changing pretty much the next day. I share your distress with its current state. It used to be the homepage on my browser. It's still bookmarked but I couldn't tell you how many months ago I last visited.

On another note- oh dear god "Trouble Every Day". I saw that film at the annual French film fest in my neck of the woods. About 3/4 of the audience left during the screening. And not in the way that people wandered out of the screening of "The Thin Red Line" at my local mall cinema. People FLED. I saw a woman break into a run and leave her boyfriend behind because he wasn't moving fast enough to suit her. I must admit with some shame that I was one of those who quit the scene. I've watched some very tough, gory, and confrontational stuff over the years but never felt like I did watching that film. I remember it as a weird combination of being unnerved and simultaneously very... wearied by what I was watching. I had this visceral need to not be in the room with that film. It was a very odd experience. I've since thought of renting it on numerous occasions but I always seem to leave the store with something else.

Bonus trivia: the other two films I've walked out on are "Batman & Robin" and "Art School Confidential". Quite the triple feature.

bill

@otherbill - I've told this story on this blog at least once before, but when I watched TROUBLE EVERY DAY at home, by myself, during one particular scene I broughy my hands up to my face and actually muttered out loud "Stop doing that..." She didn't, though.

Arthur S.

THE LADY AND THE DUKE is a sure-fire placement in my end-of-the-decade best-of list.

Glenn Kenny

@ MIchael Adams, bill, and Dan Coyle: Easy there, fellas. Don't make me pull a you-know-what kind of purge. Ar ar ar.

@ Jonah and otherbill: The longtime editor of GreenCine Daily, David Hudson, really invented and refined the digest style that made it so invaluable, and when he left, he continued to work in that vein at IFC, which then decided it couldn't afford him, or something. Now he works his particular magic in a broader context at The Auteurs' and on Twitter, and he's just as invaluable there as he was at GreenCine. Whatever you might think of where new editor Aaron Hillis has taken GreenCine, you'd have to admit that any attempt to emulate or compete with Hudson would have been pretty ill-advised.

@otherbill and bill: Yes, "Trouble" is really quite an experience, unique in Denis' oeuvre but in a way very representative. I remember watching it with a weird combination of utter revulsion and guilty giddiness. Great score, too; I recall talking to Denis about getting the Tindersticks to write a whole new song around an old Frank Zappa title...

Jason M.

Not sure I'd want to see Trouble Every Day again - at least for a long time, but I revisit the score, and particularly that fantastic theme song with quite a bit of frequency. It's gorgeous and haunting, much like the movie itself. Which is part of why the film unsettles me so much; were it not so beautifully crafted, poetic and, yes, delicate at times, I'd very quickly have mentally filed it away with other exploitation films that never have to be revisited and leave it at that. Have found it pretty much impossible to do that with Denis' film though.

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