Stranger Things borrows heavily from three titans of ’80s film and literature: Steven Spielberg, slasher and horror flicks, and Stephen King. ScreenPrism starts its list of the Netflix series’ references and homages with ones related to Spielberg.
Film editor Jacob T. Swinney compiled this intense reel of moments from Darren Aronofsky’s films in which the camera gets up close and personal with its subjects. The technique provides an immediacy and sense of involvement that’s about as visceral as it gets.
(PG-13, Flashing lights) Director Darren Aronofsky has an incredibly consistent filmography. It’s not only in terms of his movies’ quality, but also in the themes that he chooses to tackle and visualize: ambition, fantasies, and the gap between parents and children.
Video essayist Patrick H Willems explores an interesting notion in the world of film criticism – that the original Ghostbusters was missing something that virtually every other movie has ever has – a theme, subtext, message, or story arc for its main characters.
Seventeen years ago, Christopher and Jonathan Nolan bamboozled us with their breakout film, Memento. If the film’s alternating backward and forward stories still puzzle you, imagine the mental gymnastics that the Nolan brothers had to go through to bring it to life.
Now You See It suggests how you can tell if a plot twist is good: watch or read the story again and see if you still enjoy it. Because unlike reality, fiction has to make sense. Instead of being a complete tangent, the twist has to fit in with the rest of the tale.
Film essayist Nerdwriter1 looks at Paul Thomas Anderson’s masterwork There Will Be Blood as an example of how its relatively modest use of edits and subtle framing adjustments have much greater emotional impact than the crazy rapid cuts we’re used to these days.
(SPOILERS) Master of None‘s second season makes no secret of its Italian neorealist influence. But ScreenPrism gives a great breakdown of the show’s ambitious yet successful mission: adopting the dour style for the middle class while remaining sincere.
“There are only two emotions – pleasure and pain.” Lessons from the Screenplay gives two reasons why Game of Thrones remains fresh and engaging: its scenes often have a simple flow, but every now and then the show will break from convention to keep us guessing.
(PG-13, SPOILERS) Wisecrack uses The Society of the Spectacle to summarize Black Mirror: social media and ads encourage us to subscribe to a commercialized and self-fulfilling form of validation, instead of acknowledging our individuality and imperfections.
Now You See It reminds us that the clothing of characters in movies are meticulously chosen or made, and not just in superhero or fantasy films. From blending in with the setting to reflecting a character’s story, costumes offer viewers many clues to better understand a film.
“The mysterious thing about telling stories is that it ends up changing you.” Lessons from the Screenplay relays how co-director Pete Docter and the rest of the story team for Inside Out got stuck in a rut, and how they eventually figured out how the movie would play out.