Summary of “Ken Burns on His Eight-Year Dive into Country Music”

Best known for his epics, including his Civil War documentary, which aired on PBS over five nights in 1990 to an audience of 40 million people, the filmmaker is now readying for the premiere his latest deep-dive, Country Music.
Even the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers, the two acts recorded at the big bang of country music in 1927, don’t sound anything alike.
So I assumed we would be exploding the presumption that country music is this white, Southern, rural, conservative music.
In the film, you note that controversy surrounding what is or isn’t country music actually sparked one of its most vibrant eras-the 1970s.
There were a lot of purists saying, “Hey, that isn’t right.” But I would submit Patsy Cline’s version of Willie Nelson’s great classic “Crazy” as an example that the Nashville sound works-and it’s still country music.
The history of country music is a history of super strong women, and we rejoice in being able to tell that tale.
Our last episode is titled “Don’t Get Above Your Raising.” It’s an old Southern thing that means “Don’t get too big for your britches. Don’t forget where you came from.” And country music stars don’t.
As much as we want to dump on country music and say, “Oh, it’s just good ol’ boys and pickup trucks and hound dogs and six-packs of beer,” what it is really about are these poets who have crossed the last century, decade after decade after decade, writing about, talking about, singing about love and loss-and particularly loss.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Inside the Facility Where Kodak Brings Film Back to Life”

The elevators in Building 30, where Kodak blends film chemicals, help workers’ eyes get used to the conditions that light-sensitive compounds demand.
Learning to work with the fussy animal-derived material is what spurred Kodak founder George Eastman to create the film giant’s research arm in the late 1800s.
The 52-inch-wide film rolls pass through a coating waterfall, a cooler, and a dryer.
Kodak paints the airtight containers flat black on the inside, and seals them with collars to ensure no light can seep in and prematurely expose the film.
This device, which Kodak calls “The heart,” punches holes in the edges of the film so sprockets inside a camera can crank through exposures.
During production, Kodak uses night-vision cameras to monitor the film for irregularities such as uneven application or breaks.
The final film goes on to the packaging area, where a machine wraps it around plastic spools like these.
The machine at left funnels empty metal film cans via conveyor belt toward the last packaging step-inserting rolls into their canisters.

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Summary of “Why Donna Tartt’s The Secret History Never Became a Movie”

Set in the 1980s at a liberal arts college in New England that’s a thinly veiled version of Bennington, The Secret History is an ode to fatal flaws and the beauty that can be found in terror, in which intellectual pursuits feel as romantic as spiritual ones.
The Secret History is a novel of ideas with plenty of action-there’s sex, drugs, murder, and a Bacchanal gone horribly wrong, all of which are excellent ingredients for a blockbuster movie.
Around the time of its release, literary adaptations including The Silence of the Lambs and Fried Green Tomatoes were thriving at the box office, so The Secret History seemed like the perfect candidate for a screen treatment.
Director Alan J. Pakula snapped up film rights for Warner Brothers when The Secret History was published, with no less than Joan Didion and John Gregory Dunne signed on to write the screenplay and Scott Hicks set to direct.
Pakula died a few years later in a 1998 car crash, and his Secret History project never got off the ground.
In this case, Miramax let film rights for The Secret History revert back to Tartt.
Still, as recently as 2013, there had still been talk of adapting The Secret History.
Will the release of The Goldfinch prompt another attempt to bring The Secret History to the big screen? We can only hope.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The 100 best films of the 21st century”

Hugh Grant recently called this the best film in which he’s ever been involved – and he might well be right.
A beautiful, strange dream of a film, Italian director Alice Rohrwacher’s drama looks at first as if it’s set sometime in the dim and distant, a portrait of villagers exploited by feudal oppression.
The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw ranked The Incredibles as Pixar’s best ever film, the jewel in the crown.
A knockout blow for the lazy, patronising stereotype that Germans don’t have a sense of humour, Maren Ade’s Toni Erdmann is one of the funniest films to hit cinemas in years.
Who is the double-crosser? Depending on your tastes, a candidate for sexiest film of the century.
Kelly Reichardt is a master of slow cinema, the maker of films about American outsiders, living without a safety net.
Probably most Wes Anderson-y of Wes Anderson’s films and certainly his finest, with a to-die-for cast and the best fur coat in the history of cinema.
“To ache?” Few films try to answer: this Fabergé egg of a film does.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Just Mercy’s Michael B. Jordan Is Our Next Great Movie Star”

Michael B. Jordan has never been here before, but once he arrives-wearing a blindingly white T-shirt and a friendly grin-he can’t get enough.
That’s why Jordan might be our next and last great movie star: he has the box-office bona fides and the leading-man good looks, but his movies, for the most part, all say something, even the popcorn flicks.
Like many movie stars before him, Jordan got his start in television.
The pair next worked together on a Rocky spin-off, Creed, but with Black Panther, Jordan became a household name.
Just Mercy is the first project made under those new directives, and Jordan hopes it highlights the continued need for more inclusion in Hollywood.
“Or maybe doing a movie once every two or three years.” Yet the next few years will be busy: Without Remorse is out in 2020, and he’ll star in Journal for Jordan, directed by Denzel Washington, who’s emerged as a mentor for him.
Like Washington, Jordan wants to be a role model for the next generation.
The original version of this story misstated Michael B. Jordan’s involvement in the film Just Mercy.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Most Anticipated Movies Coming Out Fall 2019”

After what seemed like a lackluster summer, the year in movies is about to start showing some real signs of life.
Substitute film for stage and consider Baumbach’s ugly breakup with Jennifer Jason Leigh, and the prospects are sunny indeed.
It: Chapter TwoSplitting the interwoven time lines of Stephen King’s 1986 tome into two movies was a risky move, but the first film, released in 2017, was a huge hit.
Doctor SleepStephen King’s 2013 sequel to The Shining was well liked as a novel, but as a film it’ll have to contend with the legacy of Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 horror masterpiece, which the author famously detests.
A Beautiful Day in the NeighborhoodThe nicest man in film, Tom Hanks, stars in this film about the nicest man on TV, Mr. Fred Rogers.
Frozen IIThe first was not just the highest-grossing animated film of all time; it was a cultural phenomenon with its Hans Christian Andersen-meets-girl-power story line and viral soundtrack.
Its pointed complication of the male gaze, coupled with passionate performances from leads Noémie Merlant and Adèle Haenel, might just turn this into one of this year’s hot-button movies.
Film nerds will go to war as usual over Malick, but the resonant subject matter could also hit a nerve.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Wizard of Oz: Five Appalling On-Set Stories”

“They told me to get the hell back to work,” Ebsen said.
When the studio was told that Ebsen-whose skin had turned blue during his reaction-could not immediately return, production replaced him with Jack Haley.
Though the aluminum makeup was changed, it still caused Haley a serious eye infection.
In lesser makeup horror stories, actor Ray Bolger-who played the Scarecrow-removed the rubber prosthetics mask from his face the last day of filming to discover he had burlap scars around his mouth and chin.
Margaret Hamilton’s friend alerted her, about a month and a half before filming ended, that she looked “So odd.” When she looked in the mirror, the actor realized the friend was right: Her Wicked Witch of the West makeup had “Sunk into my skin. It must have been months before my face was really normal again.”
Sadly for the actors playing the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Cowardly Lion, they were also banned from eating lunch inside the MGM cafeteria because the sight of them eating in their makeup was deemed too disgusting.
In the days before computer-generated effects, film crews had to rely on practical tricks to simulate snow.
It wasn’t just The Wizard of Oz that relied on asbestos-laced snow-that substance was also used in the ’30s in holiday decorations.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The subversive messages hidden in The Wizard of Oz”

The pig-tailed Dorothy Gale is so wholesome, the Harburg and Arlen songs are so delightful, and the Technicolor adventures are so exciting that it’s still easy to mistake The Wizard of Oz for traditional family entertainment, 80 years on from its release in August 1939.
Another film might have contrasted this earthbound huckster with the genuine marvels performed by the wonderful Wizard of Oz, but in this one the wizard is played by the same actor as Professor Marvel, and he turns out to be much the same character: a fast-talking fairground showman who hides behind a curtain, waggling levers, and using mechanical trickery to keep his subjects loyal and afraid.
In a gloriously gonzo final flourish, he floats off into the sky with a cheerful cry of: “I can’t come back. I don’t know how it works!” There aren’t many films that show politicians being quite as brazenly incompetent as that.
True, we can’t take anything the “Humbug” Wizard says too seriously, but these are radical sentiments to hear in any Hollywood film, let alone a Hollywood film aimed at children.
Baum’s novel may have been published at the turn of the century, but the film directed by Victor Fleming is very much a product of the 1930s.
The film doesn’t send audiences over the rainbow to a mythical past, but to a garish parody of the noisy, industrialised present.
If The Wizard of Oz had come out in the patriotic 1940s or 1950s, it’s hard to imagine that this counter-cultural classic would have got away with making a flying monkey out of contemporary society.
Love film? Join BBC Culture Film Club on Facebook, a community for film fanatics all over the world.

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Summary of “The Sixth Sense 20th Anniversary: Oral History with M. Night Shyamalan – Variety”

“The Sixth Sense” was almost a serial killer film inspired by “The Silence of the Lambs.” In the original draft of the thriller by director and writer M. Night Shyamalan, Bruce Willis’ character was a crime photographer with a son who experienced visions of the victims.
Ten drafts later, Shyamalan morphed the script into what we know today: a psychological drama with a monumental twist ending that would launch the career of a young director with comparisons to Spielberg and Hitchcock.
Haley Joel Osment, who plays the young boy who utters the words “I see dead people,” told Variety that the cast knew intuitively that the script was “Something really special,” and they were right: “The Sixth Sense” earned six Oscar nominations including best picture, best director, best supporting actress for Toni Collette and best supporting actor for then 10-year-old Osment.
M. Night Shyamalan, who is now 48, spent nearly a year on the script, not sure where the story should go or what it should be.
The film landed at Disney’s Buena Vista Pictures, with Shyamalan set to direct his own script.
When thinking back to the scariest scene in “The Sixth Sense,” most will recall Barton writhing under a bed, trying to get Osment to realize her mother killed her.
It’s of Cole in a freezing cold bed saying the line, “I see dead people.” Shyamalan decided not to use CGI to facilitate the image of his breath; instead, he put Osment in a a real-life ice box.
Shyamalan: “The Sixth Sense” was the movie that didn’t have the legacy to deal with.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Leonardo DiCaprio Became Hollywood’s Last Movie Star”

In an age of pre-branded franchises and social media currency, DiCaprio is a Hollywood unicorn, able to gross hundreds of millions of dollars without wearing a cape, wielding a lightsaber or even having an agent.
The film’s star, Leonardo DiCaprio, already enjoyed a budding global popularity thanks to the studio’s 1996 release Romeo + Juliet, which had earned $148 million worldwide – 69 percent of its haul coming from overseas.
Fast-forward 22 years, and DiCaprio remains a global movie star, one whose consistent bankability and acclaim set him apart from his peers.
Unlike waning megastars like Will Smith, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert Downey Jr., DiCaprio sits alone atop the Hollywood pantheon without ever having made a comic book movie, family film or pre-branded franchise.
Sources say DiCaprio took a $15 million upfront payday – $5 million less than his usual $20 million – in order to get Once Upon a Time made, but he stands to make north of $45 million if the film meets expectations.
After the unprecedented success of Titanic – then the highest-grossing movie of all time – DiCaprio made a choice that would define his career over the next two decades: Instead of following up the blockbuster with a tried-and-true formula of tentpoles or high-concept thrillers, the Los Angeles native eschewed box office glory to work with the top directors in Hollywood.
While Smith is doing Netflix originals and a Disney remake, Lawrence is on a cold streak and Downey only makes money as Tony Stark, DiCaprio continues to choose films that would seem risky on paper – typically R-rated, longer than 2½ hours and with budgets topping $80 million – bets that have paid off and given him an unrivaled amount of power.
Regardless, the Red Granite debacle appears to have had little effect on DiCaprio’s standing in Hollywood – agents will say privately that there is no actor or actress that they would rather put their clients next to in a movie.

The orginal article.