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Crowdfunding offers freedom to filmmakers

Jul 27, 2016

Crowdfunding offers freedom to filmmakers

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It’s not easy making indie movies in Japan. The big studios only want commercial projects with proven fan appeal, usually based on hit manga, novels or TV dramas. Given the need, government funding schemes are paltry, with much of the money going to films ...

'Dope': It's hard to kick the stereotyping habit

Jul 27, 2016

'Dope': It's hard to kick the stereotyping habit

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Growing up black in America inevitably means dealing with the stereotypes that the majority (white) culture places on you, and more than a few films have explored those tensions. With “Dope,” Nigerian-American writer-director Rick Famuyiwa takes it a step further and asks: What does ...

There's a starman, waiting on the screen . . .

Jul 20, 2016

There's a starman, waiting on the screen . . .

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In 1975, just as David Bowie had achieved breakthrough success, he was simultaneously teetering on the verge of a nervous breakdown. A re-issued single of “Space Oddity” was No. 1 in the U.K., and he scored his first No. 1 single in the States ...

'While We're Young': Generation X, meet the millennials

Jul 20, 2016

'While We're Young': Generation X, meet the millennials

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Noah Baumbach (“Frances Ha,” “Greenberg”) examines the concept of youth in “While We’re Young” with a kind of clinical detachment. There’s no glorifying or romanticizing, and he certainly doesn’t seem too enamored by today’s Bright Young Things. Not that this comes as a surprise ...

'Trumbo': Shining over Hollywood's blacklist

Jul 20, 2016

'Trumbo': Shining over Hollywood's blacklist

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American conservatives are forever whinging about “liberal Hollywood,” but really they have only themselves to blame. When they were in the cultural ascendancy back in the 1940s-50s, they used their power — through groups such as the MPA (Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation ...