This week in Arts & Culture — Malick at IFS

This week at CU-Boulder’s International Film Series, programmer extraordinaire, Pablo Kjolseth, has Terrence Malick’s first five films — Badlands, Days of Heaven, The Thin Red Line, The New World, and The Tree of Life — on 35mm with special introductions. Yours truly will be introducing Badlands on Monday, March 19, 7:30 p.m. The world is bigger than you think. Continue reading This week in Arts & Culture — Malick at IFS


“How do I begin?” Knight of Cups, the latest movie from writer/director Terrence Malick, follows Hollywood screenwriter Rick (Christian Bale) as he tries to understand what his life is now that his brother has died and his career is on the precipice of a momentous piece of work. True to Malickian form, none of this is spelled out, and the above quote does not come from a piece of dialogue snatched from a conversation, but from Rick’s inner thoughts. Or from a prayer. Or maybe just a simple voiceover. There is no real way of telling, but that doesn’t matter. … Continue reading KNIGHT OF CUPS

2013: Another Year of Moviegoing

2013 was an excellent year at the movies, but I said the exact same thing about 2012. Film critic for The New Yorker, Richard Brody, chose to open his year-end summary with this quote, “The year 2013 has been an amazing one for movies, though maybe every year is an amazing year for movies if one is ready to be amazed by movies.” I am always ready to be amazed by movies, and 2013 did not disappoint. I was consistently surprised how many movies continue to develop and unfold in my mind days, weeks, and months after I saw them. They refused to leave and I … Continue reading 2013: Another Year of Moviegoing

Born On This Day – November 30

“Working as a screenwriter, I always thought that ‘Film is a collaborative business’ only constituted half of the actual phrase. From a screenwriter’s point-of-view, the correct rendering should be ‘Film is a collaborative business: bend over’.” –David Mamet “I’m a yarnteller. My job is to engage you as much as I can and as often as I can. I love the process and still continue to adore the process, actually. I don’t get attached to anything. I’m like a good antique dealer. I’m prepared to sell my most valuable table.” –Ridley Scott “Normally, people tend to shut off their ambitions … Continue reading Born On This Day – November 30


Badlands - TitleIn 1973, The New American Cinema was well underway. The French New Wave had blown the doors of cinema open as to what was possible, and American movies like Bonnie & Clyde (Penn, 1967) and The Wild Bunch (Peckinpah, 1969) had broken down barriers and led the way for a new crop of young filmmakers. The closing film for the New York Film Festival was not only the impressive debut of writer/producer/director Terrence Malick, it was also a unique and lasting look at the American criminal. Loosely based on the real life exploits of serial killer, Charles Starkweather and his fourteen year-old girlfriend, Caril Ann Fugate, Badlands also drew influence from French New Wave and American literature (mainly Mark Twain and Robert Lewis Stevenson). In this tale of criminals on the run in America’s Heartland, Malick wove together a fairy tale steeped in philosophy, American vistas, and role-playing.

Continue reading “BADLANDS (1973)”


Dear Grandma Mary – Thank you very much for coming with me to see To The Wonder. I really enjoyed it, and I hope you did too. The first thing you said to me when the credits came up was, “Deep”. Well played! It is deep, but I like that little touch of comedy in you. I also agree with your initial review, “good music and good pictures.” I suppose that is all that really matters when it comes to a movie. We could have just left it there: deep, good pictures, good music, but you asked for more. You … Continue reading TO THE WONDER