Sunday, November 5, 2017

Episode #97 - K. Austin Collins (Margaret)

"I try to move from the text to the outer world...but I always start with the text."

Since debuting in the fairgrounds during the Fin de si├Ęcle of the late 19th century, movies have never been inseparable from our culture around them. So how does one write about them in a way that gives both the text and the world a fair shake? Over at The Ringer, K. Austin Collins has been using his writing to explore how films operate as cultural artifacts, even as the machine of Hollywood has attempted to vacuum itself from any discussion. Kam dives into his interest in writing as a practice and how he moved from the academic sphere into the weekly reviewing gig, and how he finds ways to bring his training to even writing about blockbusters. The two have a long discussion in particular about movie stars and the particular pleasures of watching them and seeing them create identities. Finally, Kam brings on Kenneth Lonergan's almost lost to litigation masterpiece Margaret with Anna Paquin, which leads to a discussion of what exactly is melodrama and how and why do movies affect us.

0:00-3:22 Opening
4:07-1:11:48 Deep Focus — K. Austin Collins
1:12:48-1:16:33 Sponsorship Section
1:17:56-1:45:33 Double Exposure — Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan)
1:46:37-1:48:36 Close 

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Notes and Links from the Conversation
—Follow Kameron on The Ringer and Twitter, as well as Letterboxd
—No Establishing Shots This Episode
—Learn more about the closing of Gothamist / LAist and other website with this All Things Considered Interview with former editor Julia Wick.
—The couch scene from Batman Returns
Sex, Etc. Magazine
—Some talk on Kam's college blog
—Opening Credits from Spike Lee's 25th Hour
—Kam on mother!
—Majorie Garber on scholars writing their second book first
—Kam on Lee's Chi-Raq
—Manohla Dargis on Collateral
—Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essay on The Silence of the Lambs
—Vadim Rizov writes wells of the perils of political cinema writing in the Age of Trump
—Kam on Call Me By Your Name and Beach Rats
—A.O. Scott on Moonlight
—Kam on Moonlight
—Manohla on Guardians of the Galaxy
—Kam on Kingsman: The Golden Circle
—Oprah special on Titanic
—Kam on stars: Viola Davis, Kate Beckinsale, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Chris Pratt
The Politics of American Movies
—Kam on Eastwood: Unforgiven and Sully
—The tortured history of Kenneth Lonergan's Margaret
—Kam on 25th Hour and Manchester By The Sea
—The Laura Donna Scene from Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me

Theme Music: “Forward” by Northbound

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