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Latest Topics

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Race swapping in Hollywood

Hollywood has a history of casting white men/women in minority roles from the blackface of Othello to the recent casting of Scarlett Johansson in the upcoming Ghost in the Shell. But what about the casting of minorities in white roles? On Flash we see an africian american Iris West and on Gotham an asian Hugo Strange. Does this race swapping help open the doors to more minorities being in cast in Hollywood or is it simply an easy way out for studios that don’t want to write original minority characters (like Finn in The Force Awakens)? Or is just a band aid on a more ingrained racism issue in our society? Discuss.

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    The Superhero Origin. Why?

    Do you know the origin of how James Bond came to be a spy? Does it take away your enjoyment of the Bond films if you don’t? What about Indianna Jones? Movie after movie after movie, it’s still fun, they are like issues of a comic book series. Why does Hollywood insist on pummeling us with repeatedly telling us the origin of a superhero? Whether it’s 45 minutes of the "first" Spider-Man film, or a five minute recap to remind you (Batman vs Superman) before the next installment commences. Is it necessary? Can’t we just go into the next installment of the movie?

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      Meta Deadpool

      Analyze the way in which the new film Deadpool uses meta-cinema techniques for the advancement of character, plot, and theme. How do the self-aware references to popular culture enhance the audience’s experience?

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        Should 'Hamilton' be adapted to film?

        Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ‘Hamilton’ is currently a cultural phenomenon. It has won several awards, including the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. It is no surprise then that the show has been sold out through to January 2017. Should such an important interpretation of the founding of the U.S. be adapted to film in order to reach a much larger audience? What, in the writing and performance, would be lost in this adaptation? What would be gained?

        • Perhaps it would be helpful to examine other musical adaptations and what elements made them successes or failures. – SamStarlight 2 days ago
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        The role of trailers in movie storytelling

        What is the role of a movie trailer? Is it simply to build excitement for a movie, increasing its revenue, or can it be used as a storytelling tactic? Some trailers can be seen as works of art in themselves (1979’s "Alien" is a particular favorite) while many modern trailers have been criticized for "giving too much away," or simply summarizing the plot ("Batman V. Superman" tried a few approaches.) Trailers on the internet can be seen by audiences more easily than ever before: how have they been used, and how should they be used, as a storytelling device?

        • I'd be interested to read about different trailers for the same movie -- sometimes one trailer paints a movie in a different light than another trailer, but both obviously can influence a person's interest in seeing the film or reasons for committing to watch it. – Cait 2 days ago
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        Rising Directors

        Hollywood can be difficult to break into, but yet there are new directors emerging every year. Examine directors from the past four years who have directed their first blockbuster film and the journey they took to get there.

        • The examples that come to mind are definitely Josh Trank and Colin Trevorrow, both of which were put at the helm of major, tentpole blockbusters with light resumes. Given how much media attention was put on Josh Trank's stumbles, it would be good to discuss the troubles that new directors face, and I would hope this article discusses the way race/gender biases come into play at such a key point in a director's career. – bbctol 5 days ago
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        What makes a scary movie...scary?

        Examine the elements of horror movies that are generally considered the most effective at scaring, disturbing, or unsettling audiences, and how these have changed over the decades, from early silent films to Hitchcock’s masterpieces to modern remakes.

        • One direction this article could go could be to make a list of the recurring motifs in horror film according to film theorist Robin Wood, which are Psychos, Nature, Satanism and possession, the Terrible Child, and Cannibalism. It could also explore the idea of repression and the Other in film, not to mention the idea of horror originating from something totally normal being scarier than horror originating from the outside world. – VelvetRose 9 months ago
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        • What's interesting to note here is the mood and setting when sitting down to watch a horror film. The setting created by the atmosphere of the movie and the music's score help turn things which would normally not be scary for some, and makes them terrifying. Example, I am not scared of clowns but you be darn sure I freaked while watching IT for the first time. – cdenomme96 9 months ago
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        • Whoever takes on this article should also consider comparing older films with their remakes and examine the changes. Classic horror movies are known for being terrifying while remakes are often bland and watered down. It may be easier to pinpoint what makes a movie scary. – Vexliss 1 week ago
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        • Great idea! Music is so important too. – Munjeera 7 days ago
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        • The psychology of scaring people is fascinating, especially once you get past the often-cheap jump scare: the mechanics of tension building are deeply interesting, and the part that music plays in making something terrifying cannot be understated. – Barselaar 7 days ago
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        Taken by Emily Deibler (PM) 1 day ago.
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        Whitewashing and Hollywood. Racism or Outdated Business Practises

        From Mickey Rooney’s portrayal of I.Y Yunoshi in Breakfast at Tiffany’s to recent controversy of Scarlett Johansson playing Motoko Kusanagi in the Ghost in the Shell live action adaptation. Many Hollywood films give various roles meant for minorites to Caucasian actors but is it really racism or just Hollywood not quick enough with times to adapt to our rapidly changing world.

        • I think another issue the article writer might tackle is the justification I've heard that even some global markets prefer white/light-skinned actors and how this affects actors of color worldwide. Concerning just America, I've seen a lot of discussion about the effects on Asian-American actors when whitewashing happens. Gene Yang, a Chinese-America graphic novelist and proponent on diversity, made a comic about The Last Airbender's whitewashing. Constance Wu and Ming-Na Wen have addressed The Ghost in the Shell. Another older film to look at could be The Conquerer with John Wayne as Genghis Khan. – Emily Deibler 1 week ago
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        • The latter for sure. – Munjeera 1 week ago
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        • As an Asian, I really take this issue quite personally. I would recommend the person looking into this article and accompanying video http://www.vox.com/2016/4/21/11477914/hollywood-asian-whitewashing. It speaks about Asians being underrepresented or portray as a fool. I don't think it should be considered revolutionary to cast a Japanese for a Japanese role. It's galling to see that "yellow face" is still acceptable in 2016. – Jill 1 week ago
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        Latest Tides

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        Tidelist

        Japanese Horror: What to Watch Next

        After watching Ring and The Grudge, some horror fans can be at a loss of where to go next. Here is an eclectic mix of J-Horror for you to try out next.

        Audition, 1999, Dir. Takashi Miike
        A lonely widower holds an audition in order to find a girlfriend. Unfortunately for him, the woman he selects has some dark secrets that destroy their relationship and even his life.

        Battle Royale, 2000, Dir. Kinji Fukasaku
        A class of delinquents is stranded on an island, forced to kill each other over the next three days. If there isn’t one person left at the end of those three days, everyone dies. Hell breaks loose, with friendships and rivalries being taken to whole new levels.

        Dark Water, 2002, Dir. Hideo Nakata
        A recently divorced mother moves into a run-down apartment building with her daughter. The constant presence of a mysterious handbag, dripping water, and strange appearances of a dead girl threaten the mother’s sanity.

        Hausu, 1977, Dir. Nobuhiko Obayashi
        Six girls travel to one of their aunt’s house for vacation. But after decades of living alone, is the aunt still the same woman she was?

        Ichi the Killer, 2001, Dir. Takashi Miike
        Depraved hitman Kakihara is out for revenge when his gang’s boss is taken out by a mysterious assassin. What follows is a blend of dark humor and disturbingly graphic imagery.

        • I'm not sure if you would call Battle Royale a horror, but it did have its gruesome moments. I can't believe I was able to watch that on my own! – YsabelGo 6 months ago
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        • I thought I left a comment but maybe it didn't go through. If you're talking about great horrors and you include Hausu and Onibaba, I feel there is a need for Jigoku and Kwaiden. Otherwise, solid list of the Japanese horror notables. – Connor 6 months ago
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        • I've never experienced Japanese horror. It sounds interesting! – trapgrandma 6 months ago
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        • I'm afraid of scary things. They didn't actually used to bother me. I can pinpoint the EXACT movie that ended my scary movie watching. The Ring hahaha. Never been the same. I had to have my parents remove my TV from my room so I could sleep. So I'm sorry to say, that even though a lot of these sound super interesting, I'm going to stick to the ones clearly marked as "more suspense than horror." Haha. – Tatijana 6 months ago
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        • Great list! I'll be sure to check these out. – Emily Deibler 5 months ago
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        • Japanese are the best at horror! – crolins 5 months ago
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        • Japanese are the best at horror! – crolins 5 months ago
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        • You always gotta love a brilliant Japanese horror! – Kevin Mohammed 4 months ago
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        • Good article! I'll check it out. – lolreconlol 2 months ago
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        • Japanese has made many famous horrors like Ju-On. I don't think Battle Royale is the horror for real but it is an exceptional piece to define the human ugliness. – moonyuet 1 month ago
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        • Great list: I especially enjoyed Uzumaki! – Barselaar 7 days ago
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