Pixar’s movies are often tearjerkers. But they are also about characters who change for the better. ScreenPrism looks at Toy Story, Up and Ratatouille to show the three types of obstacles that Pixar characters overcome on their way to making us cry.
We don’t think there’s any way to accurately depict hallucinations, but filmmakers have tried for years to give us an idea, and thanks to CGI, we’re getting some really trippy effects on screen. Film Qualia explores how psychedelic imagery has made it into mainstream films.
(SPOILERS) Science fiction movies often explore human tendencies. But Alex Garland’s adaptation of Annihilation tackles large ideas: duplication, self-destruction and mutation. Lessons from the Screenplay looks at how the film manifests its themes.
While computer graphics can be used to greatly expand cinematic worlds, they can also be overdone. Marvel Studios is one of the worst culprits when it comes to slathering on the CGI, and film essayist Browntable provides some examples of why it takes us out of the action.
Back in 2014, CineFix named its picks for best long takes in films. Now, they revisit their list to add new ones, defend some picks, including fight scenes, slow burning shots, scenes that involve hundreds or thousands of people, opening shots, Steadicam shots and more.
(PG-13: Language) “What do I want a way outta here for?” Lessons from the Screenplay uses Good Will Hunting to demonstrate how writing fictional characters can sometimes be writing about psychology. Characters have traumas that need to be overcome before they change.
After showing us how movie heroes have evolved, Wisecrack takes a look at the bad guys. Villains are as much reflections of the times as heroes. Going from “the other” to corruption to terrorists, we now have villains that have heroic ideals, but insane methods.
From Wes Anderson to Edgar Wright to Stanley Kubrick, there are some filmmakers who make such a distinctive mark on the screen that you can tell they made a film from a single frame. CineFix looks at these and two other auteurs of the screen in their latest film analysis.
(SPOILERS) ScreenPrism looks at the work of director Mamoru Hosoda (Wolf Children, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, The Boy and The Beast, Mirai). Some are calling Hosoda the next Hayao Miyazaki. Regardless, his films are about exploring love in everyday life.
These days, we’re accustomed to such seamless and realistic visual effects on the big screen and even some TV series that we’ve become pretty jaded by CGI. But one look at Diane Bullock’s reel of 1990’s movie VFX should serve as a reminder of just how good we’ve got it today.
Kaptainkristian looks at how director Guillermo del Toro designs and presents monsters in his films. Using quotes from the director himself, the film essayist identifies the key elements of a del Toro monster, including transformation and the use of prosthetics and motion actors.
(PG-13, SPOILERS) CineFix presents more brilliant moments in film, this time focusing on patterns. They showcase five scenes from different films that establish a pattern using cuts, camera angles, character movements, only to subvert our expectations.
Looking for a movie to watch with your pals this Halloween? Look no further than Chopping Mall – a cult classic from the 1980s about a group of horny teens hang out in the mall after work, only to be stalked by killer robots. In Praise of Shadows explains why you need to watch.
(PG-13: Language) We’ve seen Superbad at least a dozen times, and it doesn’t get old. The Cosmonaut Variety Hour provides his take on why he thinks the 2007 film is the greatest teen comedy of all time. It’s a great coming-of-age story disguised as a horny teen sex comedy.
CineFix presents its picks for the best movie soundtracks. There are soundtracks that seem like scores, familiar ones that evoke nostalgia, anachronistic soundtracks, ones that introduce us to new genres or artists, soundtracks that inspired the movie itself, and more.
Lessons from the Screenplay looks at how the screenwriters and sound designers created the sounds of A Quiet Place. The writers became creative with the screenplay, while the sound designers avoided extended silence, and used sound to mimic the flow of tension.
Lessons from the Screenplay looks at how No Country for Old Men makes us put its story together instead of using dialogue alone. Characters are given depth and the plot is implied through actions, and the film’s progression clues the audience into its moral.
“Watching a Lau Kar-leung film is similar to watching an illustrated guide or documentation of kung-fu and its philosophy.” The Museum of Modern Art’s La Frances Hui talks about the history of kung-fu films before breaking down the work of legendary filmmaker Lau Kar-leung.
Jacob T. Swinney and Fandor dive into the film trope of an object of desire that its characters are searching for, but the audience doesn’t necessarily care about. It can drive motivations and momentum, but as we’ve learned before, MacGuffin’s aren’t always the best plot device.
(Gore) ScreenPrism talks about the trademarks of a Coen Brothers film. It often starts with a crime that goes awry, and eventually punishment gets dealt but in a roundabout manner, with random acts and vile characters as the jury. But it’s not totally hopeless.
In The Awesomer Shop