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Everything posted by kenmorefield

  1. First, thanks for sharing the video. I agree Jeremy did a terrific job, and it pleases me that this video is in the world regardless of whether it functions as an ad for A&F or a homage to the films or both. The link to the full list is: http://artsandfaith.com/index.php?/films/year/8-2020-top-100/ The link to the master page for all lists is: http://artsandfaith.com/index.php?/films/ There has been some discussion in the last year about how the list(s) are preserved and archived, most of it here: http://artsandfaith.com/index.php?/topic/31704-top-100-and-top-25-pages/ I also remember some chatter, more dispersed about whether or not it was worth having a separate landing page for the site in general. Most notably this came up when I asked for feedback about adding a separate "Reviews" forum for people who wanted to write reviews for A&F or repost reviews in full. There wasn't much interest. That's a longer discussion that involves whether this board could or should migrate from being only a discussion board to a sihe that has multiple purposes with the discussion board as one arm. But as long as we are relatively small, I don't anyone really having the time, vision, or money to do massive board design overhaul. It also would mean thousands of broken links as the board became a subdirectory rather than the landing page, and it would force those who only use the forum to click through the landing page to get to the forum and resave that direct link. That didn't strike me as a great tradeoff, though I not opposed to discussions or suggestions of how to implement it or other changes. The entire list is available to the public at the link mentioned on top. I am not aware of any plans to present the list in full in some other way, though I am not opposed to other forms of publicity or writing about it. There are copies of the list on Letterboxd, Twitter, and YouTube, and the list itself is in a publicly viewable format on the site. I'm not sure I agree with this assessment, but, again...I'm open to suggestions. The banner tabs are pretty standardly place and have contact forms for staff if people have questions. New users get an e-mail directing them to the "About You" Introductions form and the community, small as it is, is generally helpful (especially Spitznas) at welcoming new people and answering questions. Maybe my perspective is genuinely skewed because I've been using forum software for two decades, but I'm having a hard time imagining someone seeing the video on YouTube, going to Artsandfaith.com and not being able to find the content. (There's also a copy of the list and a direct link to the list page in the pinned comments under the YouTube video.)
  2. David Cook at Christian Spotlight:
  3. On the flip side, I haven't bought a movie ticket in months, so the price of a one month subscription to any three of these is still less than what my wife and I would pay to see Tenet (assuming it was good enough to taker her to a non-critic's screening).
  4. kenmorefield

    Tesla (2020)

    This is one strange movie. Can't say I liked it, but I suspect those who liked Marjorie Prime and Experimenter could be enthralled. And Ethan Hawke is fearless these days. I think the film is meant to convey the fuzzy line between madness and genius, legend and history. It varies wildly in art design and style -- perhaps an emblem of "alternating current?" and didn't quite come together for me. But boy some of the individual scenes are great as set pieces. I'll be curious if the Experimenter fans in A&F are entertained...paging Mike Leary....? Link to Experimenter thread: Link to Marjorie Prime thread:
  5. We do not have a thread on The West Wing, apparently, so I changed the title from this former thread about one particular episode to a thread about the show in general. Happened to run across an old interview with Rob Lowe and he said before Martin Sheen was cast the actor slated for the role of Bartlett was....Sidney Poitier. I never knew that.
  6. kenmorefield


    I think this film has aged phenomenology well, especially if (like me) you don't care much about baseball. The questions of meaning are very poignant, and I think the film is stronger for not totally repudiating one side of a debate or another. Sorkin is one of my favorite writers, but he's tempered a bit here (I'd be curios the extent of the Zaillian/Sorkin collaboration or if one was a fixer) and it's for the better. Sorkin is exceptional as something very few people in Hollywood are: writing smart people. Beane's comment that he's made one decision in his life based on money is a typical example of the film's beautiful ambiguity. That is a goal well worth having (as exemplified by turning down the money at the end) but I think the film is keenly aware that it's also a lie. Nearly *every* decision Beane makes every day is about money...and Pete's comment at the end that the money means the same thing it means to any ballplayer is forceful. That unwillingness to break down life's dichotomies to a yes/no answer is what I like. He does change the game but he doesn't. If he doesn't win the last game nothing else matters...but, then again (a la Ecclesiastes) even if he does win the last game, what does that matter? (The fact that he changes the game and still is longing, still not fulfilled, still unable to enjoy the show, gives the movie a sadness that is about something more than losing a game...an awareness that all is hebel and a pursuit after the wind.)
  7. I've been doing some YouTube videos to introduce various films on the list and have something to link to other than trailers. Always looking for people who might be willing to participate in these sort of brief video introductions:
  8. My understanding from publisher is that the project is still a go, but things have slowed considerably due to COVID-19. They did recently sent me a form for people considering submitting a chapter. I've attached it here. Ken Spiritually Significant - Essays on the Arts & Faith Top 100 Films.docx
  9. That's a good reminder. VFF credentialed me several years in a row back when I was writing for CT. I found their line up less attractive (little bit more retrospective and regional stuff with only 1 or 2 headliners), but if they are digital I might definitely apply. (Even pre-this election cycle, Charlottesville was not my favorite place to attend. It's a college town in a more rural out-of-the-way area which means hotels are overpriced (and run down from football weekends) and if you are not a student or personnel it isn't conducive to getting from one end of campus to the other for the alternate venues. That said, the downtown area is great and the press liason (if it's the same guy) was very responsive.
  10. I thought all the major festivals were combining this year...aren't they in coordination with Telluride and NYFF? Anyhow, Andrew, time permitting, you could reach out to the Filmfest 919 people, their selection has been great the last two years, and I would suspect they are going to go digital this year if they hold it at all.
  11. Probably not. With the academic semester being condensed due to COVID, it is harder to schedule a block of time to "get away." I'll always value my years at TIFF, but the rise of Filmfest 919 locally has made it easier for me to catch many of the films I would go to Toronto for in years past. I expect I'll go back some day, maybe when I'm retired, but I've found that aging takes its toll as well...it's harder than it was 12 years ago for travel and sleep limitations to not set me back. These days, I get a much better response approaching studios directly (or publicists) that I ever did from TIFF's press accreditation.
  12. I've been playing around with videos since Pandemic has moved instruction online, and I'm thinking about making some brief introductions to films on the list. No more than 5 minutes. If you have interest in doing something like this either with me or on your own, let me know.
  13. I have updated the blurbs for This is Martin Bonner (me), The Mission (Rob Z), and The Man Who Planted Trees (Rob Z).
  14. I finally caught the movie from Redbox, and as I knew in my heart was inevitable, it failed to live up to my vague hopes for something great that would channel my nostalgia and combine it with wit, insight, or pathos into something meaningful No luck there. My "it's not you it's me" thumbs-down on Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/kenmorefield/film/scoob/
  15. This doc played at Sundance and is coming up on Apple+ TV. It might be of interest to some around here because it was co-directed by Jesse Moss, who also did The Overnighters. I had a tough time with my review since I disliked some of the participants in it, but that made me think about some documentaries where I dislike the participants but still like the documentary. Normally a non-judgmental tone goes a long way, so I'm not sure why it bothered me here, especially since those who come off the worst are still young enough that they way still be in the process of becoming who they are. There's a chicken-egg question here with topics such as abortion and gun control -- how many people have those positions and choose to live in places like Texas and how many adopt such positions just because they live in Texas and it's easier to go along to get along? And if everyone is going along to get along, at what point do people realize and confront the fact that this is how the middle is driven to either extreme? Politics is about compromise, I suppose, but I miss the days (if they ever existed) when persuasion was possible -- where peope were expected as rational citizens to listen to and respond to reason rather than simply brainwash themselves with bromides to parrot (or bogeymen to invoke) when they other side gives their reasons.
  16. kenmorefield

    Babette's Feast

    The BFI Classics volume on Babette's Feast cites A&F list in the introduction: I was not aware of this until today when I was reading the book and stumbled across this:
  17. kenmorefield

    63 Up

    I could have sworn I posted a thread about this in December, but darned if I could find it. I was doing some blog maintenance today and found this: http://1morefilmblog.com/2019/12/02/63-up-apted-2019/ I was a little surprised at how little response there has been to this project. Granted the television release in Britain complicated distribution, and we've had COVID-19, but it just felt like all the Up films were met with fanfare and then this one just came and went with a shrug... Is that reality TV making this passe? The death of Roger Ebert (champion of the series)? Or did everyone just get bored with it and maybe Apted went to the well once too often?
  18. Some interesting stuff about religion in the pilot. Since they went to it two-three times, I think it is going to be an ongoing theme....hopefully more than the Hispanic Catholicism making the parents anti-gay. Probably the most interesting part is the mother's dependence on Victor (the son). She says when she "prays" for the family she doesn't pray for Victor, just says "thank you" for Victor. That's kind of twisted in a way that I think the show realizes, but I'm not confident about.
  19. I was listening to Alan Dershowitz Great Books/Modern Library CDs on courses that shaped America and he claimed that Roy Cohn admitted to him personally that he had "framed" a guilty man -- i.e. manufactured evidence against Joel Rosenberg. And that he and the government manufactured the case against Ethel (whom Dershowitz opined was almost certainly not guilty) as leverage to get Joel to name names. He also said, interestingly, that although Cohn had Kaposi Sarcoma at the time, he would not admit he had AIDS since doing so implicitly admitted he was gay. I've really been mulling what sort of place one has to be in as a lawyer or person to brag about executing an innocent woman but be unwilling to admit the truth about one's own sexuality.
  20. kenmorefield


    I thought this was an accomplished film. In some ways, it was the film experience I was hoping for from Young Ahmed in that it allowed me to understand and empathize with characters even if/when I didn't always agree with their choices. http://1morefilmblog.com/2020/07/24/nakom-norris-pittman-2016/
  21. I was listening to Alan Dershowitz's "Modern Library" lectures on CD about trials that shaped America, and I did not know that the textbook that Scopes used was a "Civic Biology" textbook that used evolution to promote Eugenics and drew heavily on Darwin to justify the supremacy of the white race: https://teva.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/scopes/id/125/ FWIW, Dershowitz (who claimed to be a fan of the film) said that in his reading of the trial transcripts, Bryan more often got the better of Darrow, with the latter coming across as an ignorant bigot who knew nothing about the Bible.
  22. I was thinking of trying to make a couple of videos using Zoom to introduce films on our Top 100...no more than 10 minutes with participants each giving a brief statement about why they voted for it or why they think it is appropriate for our list. The two films I have rewatched most recently are I am Not Your Negro and This is Martin Bonner; if anyone would like to participate in making such a video send me a PM with time you would be available. For it to work best, I would think we'd need at least two participants and no more than 4. If I manage to get it done this week, I may use this thread to post other invites in subsequent weeks.
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