Speaking as someone who’s been intrigued by Ridley Scott’s film Blade Runner for a long time now, I found Paul M. Sammon’s Future Noir to be a fascinating look at the film’s creation, production, and subsequent placement in the cult canon. With Blade Runner 2049 out this fall, Sammon revisited Future Noir with a host of updates and additions. Via email, we discussed Blade Runner‘s influence, the challenges of adapting Philip K. Dick, and more.
The Vivian Mire (Revisited)
I never met Vivian Maier and doubt whether we’d have gotten along if I had. Taciturn, solitary people obsessed with their own struggles don’t often make friends. Yet we walked the same streets, went the same places. We probably crossed paths more than once, but it was as strangers—the way so many do in the city—never meant to know one another as anything but passersby. Now, many, many strangers know Maier, or think they do. She probably wouldn’t like the […]
Documentaries Taught Me How to Confess
Ask me about my literary influences, and I’ll reflexively cite what I imagine is the usual collection of MFA-program darlings for an American man in his 30s: Flannery O’Connor, Raymond Carver, John Cheever, Lorrie Moore, Tobias Wolf, James Baldwin. Then a number of personal fetishes: Julie Hecht, Jane and Paul Bowles, Nicholson Baker, Amy Hempel, R.V. Cassill.
“If Anything, the Film Directs You”: Nicholas Rombes on Making “The Removals”
The Removals, the first film from writer-director Nicholas Rombes, simultaneously occupies a number of bold artistic territories. It’s a speculative work about an underground organization revisiting and re-enacting moments from history to change society to their own end; it’s a paranoid thriller about members of that organization growing disenchanted with it; and it’s about the troubles can come when you attempt to revisit the past. (In this film there are echoes of everything from Charlie Kaufman’s film Synecdoche, New York […]
Avant-Garde Realism (Redux)
Little did I know, 16 years ago when I wrote an article about the experimental uses of digital cinema, that one day I’d be putting theory to practice in my own film. The Removals—a lo-fi, sci-fi love story produced by the film production wing of Two Dollar Radio—conjures the genre of the paranoid thriller to explore the idea of replication and disruption in the digital age. What I had wondered in that original article at CTheory was this: how is […]
Nicholas Rombes’s Film “The Removals” Debuts Next Month
In 2014, Nicholas Rombes‘s novel of secret film history, The Absolution of Roberto Acestes Laing, was released by Two Dollar Radio. This year brings with it Rombes’s first film as writer and director, The Removals, also released through Two Dollar Radio’s cinematic arm. The film will have its premiere screening in Columbus, Ohio at the Wexner Center for the Arts on May 4th. The trailer promises plenty of ominous dialogue, mysterious buildings, and shadowy disappearances–all promising ingredients for a paranoid […]
The Vivian Mire
Dmitry Samarov looks at the work, life, and posthumous reception of photographer Vivian Maier, examining questions of artistic intent, visual legacy, and more–along with a look at the film Finding Vivian Maier.
Live That Philip Marlowe Life in the Hollywood Hills
Ever want to live like Elliott Gould as Philip Marlowe in Robert Altman’s 1973 adaptation of Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye? Here’s your chance: At the end of a cul de sac near the Hollywood Bowl, park your car in a garage carved into the hill. Walk through a gated tunnel to a private elevator where you’ll be taken up 6 stories through the hill to the top of a Tuscan tower. Nestled in a quiet walk street enclave high above the […]