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<i>Honeyland</i>. Directed by Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska. Apolo Media/Trice Films, 2019. 85 minutes.

The Real Real

Are there still documentaries? A glance at this year’s Oscar nominees, a thriving festival circuit, and my own Netflix history makes the answer plain. And yet the question persists. It squats at the end of long days spent consuming “real” images and “true” stories, navigating the apps and feeds animated by user content, the video-driven news homepages, the platforms that upload hundreds of vlogs and tutorials each minute. It confronts those who spend the same long days being captured, consensually and otherwise, by the cameras surrounding us, embedded in the screens we use to watch other people eat, unbox, talk into their bathroom mirrors, and react to other people in other videos. A world in which reality is screened by definition would seem to pose a threat to a genre rooted in its claim on real life. What now distinguishes documentary from the air we breathe? 

<i>Toni Erdmann</i>. Directed by Maren Ade. Sony Pictures Classics, 2016. 162 minutes</p>

Professional Lives

“Career woman” is a term that enjoyed a certain vogue across the latter half of the twentieth century. An American idiom much bound to the eighties but coined in the thirties, under the guise of defining what a woman is, the phrase points emphatically to what she is not: “a woman whose career is more important to her than getting married and having children.” An archetype born of its time, the career woman is bound to that era’s signature medium: The movies helped midwife her into Western culture; on film she was made unruly (and almost always white) flesh, fed on drive and solo popcorn dinners, dressed in power colors, and sent into an unreconstructed world, where her success or failure typically depended on her willingness to obey a more natural order. There is, of course, no such thing as a career man.

Rogue Taxidermy

July 5, 2016

In this short film, Dawn Whitmore interviews Robert Marbury and Katie Innamorato about taxidermy.

Jungle Jangle

sic on it, the cameras: witch-green greasepaint canopy—
pan down: the thick bamboo lattice
twine-bound—pan down: dirt with rags to gag up,

Mark Hamill Remembers Tunisia

Twenty-four-year-old Mark Hamill auditioned for the role of “Luke Starkiller” on December 30, 1975. Two and a half months later, he landed in Djerba, Tunisia, took a harrowing taxi ride to Tozeur, and began playing the role that would define his early career. 

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