Awesome Film Essays
Now You See It lists some of the common criteria that we use to deem a movie “great”: introducing or perfecting a cinematic technique, influencing or defining pop culture, etc. But for many of us, the great movies are the ones that we saw at the right moment in our lives.
Kirby Ferguson looks at J.J. Abrams’ approach to filmmaking and the parallels between The Force Awakens and A New Hope. While referencing the past can be an homage, some might see it as a lack of creativity. In this case, combining the familiar and the new worked brilliantly.
Kaptainkristian articulates Pixar’s recipe for success. The movie studio consistently makes wonderful animation and art, and their best movies are the ones that depict core values and relatable experiences, as opposed to parent company Disney’s more thinly veiled approach.
Unlike many recent superhero movies, Fox’s X-Men films have shied away from colorful and distinctive costumes. Kaptain Kristian points out how ironic this is, given that this team symbolizes oppressed minorities accepting who they are and standing up for their identities.
“In movies, you don’t photograph the reality. You try and photograph the photograph of the reality.” Channel Criswell breaks down Stanley Kubrick’s brand of fillmmaking: expressing dark and high concepts by creating a surreal world where everything is a symbol.
Every Frame a Painting explores how conversations are filmed using a basic shot/reverse shot, and how Joel and Ethan Coen use the technique so effectively in their movies. Their use of wide lenses, close shots, and impeccable rhythm brings it all together.
Editor Semih Okmn gathered together some classic movie moments in which the bad guys celebrate their insanity with a smile. Barry Manilow’s Can’t Smile without You makes for the perfect backing track to the madness. After all these years, Norman Bates still freaks us out.
(NSFW Language) People swear like truck drivers in today’s R-rated flicks. But there was a time when swearing in movies was considered so heinous that filmmakers could be slapped with huge fines. Movie Munchies walks us through the way we got from there to here.
“These creatures require our absence to survive, not our help.” Digging Deeper argues that the Jurassic Park sequels The Lost World and Jurassic World are self-aware commentaries on blockbuster films. The Lost World‘s clues are quite telling. Jurassic World just plain sucks.