Faith, Hope and Cinema

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Makhmalbaf’s new masterpiece explores religious need The secular tendency that dominates today’s movies makes the spiritual inquiry in The Gardener even more remarkable. It is the bold new film by one of the great international moviemakers, Iran’s Mohsen Makhmalbaf, who typically, transcends genre; here mixing the religious feeling of Biblical epics like Frank Borzage’s The [&hellip
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It’s a Nerd, Nerd, Nerd, Nerd World

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Computer Chess is Mumblecore’s first gear shift Whatever else is going on in Andrew Bujalski’s Computer Chess, it is also–unmistakably–a satire on film culture’s extinction. The weird weekend gathering of chess and computer geeks at an early 80s conference (they’re testing whether a machine can outplay a human being) is deliberately antique-looking; it becomes a [&hellip
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Smelling a Rat

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown

The Wolverine’s decomposition of a summer blockbuster As I sat down at the AMC Empire cinema in Times Square for that evening’s all-media screening, I could smell a dead rat–and then The Wolverine confirmed it. It wasn’t the first time that an all-media screening took place in that filthy, Crossroads-of-Consumerism flea pit (very recently a [&hellip
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Key Krazy

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Notes from a piano extravaganza  Jerome Rose presides over the annual piano extravaganza at Mannes College. More formally, this extravaganza is the International Keyboard Institute & Festival, or IKIF. Rose is its founder and director. IKIF takes place in the second half of July. And, every year, Rose gives the opening recital. This year, he [&hellip
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Toys Are Rust

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Dusting off Del Toro’s fatally childish Pacific Rim After Zack Snyder‘s Man of Steel brought visual ingenuity, emotion and moral gravity to the sci-fi spectacular, it’s hard to settle for over-the-top childishness like Pacific Rim. Director Guillermo del Toro favors frivolous exaggeration–the world under attack by Kaiju, gargantuan sea monsters. Mankind fights back by building [&hellip
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Praise Yeezus

Written by NYPress on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Idylls of Self-Projection It’s fitting Kanye West kicked off the promotional campaign for his new album Yeezus with a series of 66 projections, many of which were reportedly unsanctioned by authorities, of the New Slaves video onto landmark buildings throughout the world. Yeezus is all about projection. Just ask Lou Reed, whose July 3 review [&hellip
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Le Corbusier’s People and Places

Written by Kate Prengel on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Exposing the soul of a thinker at MoMA The MOMA’s exhibit of Le Corbusier opens on a defensive note. Jean-Louis Cohen, the show’s curator, wants to “re-skew Le Corbusier from his bad reputation of constructing generic buildings.” Cohen aims to prove that the Swiss architect, often blamed for the brutal, “towers in the park” style [&hellip
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Swaghili: Learn It. Know It. Live It

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Why Kanye West’s New Slaves matters Performance art is dead. At least it felt that way until Kanye West’s New Slaves–an in situ projection that played in 66 cities around the world. Kanye’s single-take recitation of the song “New Slaves” stared back at its spectators, a rare, unexpected video reminder cinema’s power when writ large. [&hellip
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