Finding Vivian Maier – a film by John Maloof and Charlie Siskel
At one time or another many of us may ask ourselves if we possess hidden talents. But what about those who deliberately choose to hide their gifts? In 2009, at a Chicago auction house seeking material for a book, photographer John Maloof serendipitously came upon just such an unacknowledged, purposefully obscure talent, an ostensibly forgettable, recently deceased nanny named Vivian Maier, who left behind a horde of photographs, negatives and motion picture film that convinced him to investigate who she was.
Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay is a bustling urban metropolis, yet one whose past casts shadows on its present. This is the setting for The Lunchbox or Dabba, a 2013 film by Ritesh Batra. The Lunchbox pivots around a mistaken delivery of a lunchbox ordered through a food service to a senior accountant, Saajan Fernandes, who is approaching an imminent retirement. The food has been prepared by Ila, a housewife, for her spouse, Rajeev. The error provides the impetus for a curious culinary connection between Fernandes and Ila, the whimsical plot around which
Several years ago, while visiting my brother in New York, I found myself strolling through Central Park with no destination in mind. I spotted a very large building at the edge of the park, and curiosity tugged me to it.
It turned out to be the Metropolitan Museum Of Art. So I went inside. A notice mentioned that the curator was about to resign, and to mark the occasion, he’d assembled, in one room, all of his favorite pieces.
What the heck, I thought – that would be a good start. So in I went. As I walked into the room, I turned to the right, and there, next to the doorway was the most magnificent painting I have ever seen. I must have stood before it for well over an hour. I couldn’t walk away. For at least ten minutes, I was in tears. I don’t really know how to describe the impact of that painting. I did walk away, after an hour or so. But I soon returned to it, and stayed parked in front of it until I had to leave the building.
The Girls in the Band
This has been quite a fertile post-Oscar film season, illustrated by two well-paced documentary films to be screened locally for short stints of one week each. The first is The Girls in the Band, by Judy Chaikin. The Girls in the Band begins with a shot of the famous photo called A Great Day in Harlem, in which the principal living legends of the jazz tradition assemble for a historic photo in front of a Harlem Brownstone. The shot was taken by Art Kane, a freelance photographer, for Esquire magazine in 1958. It was so important that it later became the basis of a 1994 film.
KUSP Film Reviewers David Anthony and Dennis Morton
The short films up for Oscars show all the artistry and craft of the feature films and you can view them in 30 minutes or less usually. KUSP’s film reviewers gave a couple looks at the animated and live action short film categories. Above, hear David Anthony’s review of Oscar nominated short animation films. And here is Dennis Morton’s review of the live action shorts.
Or read on:
Oscar Nominated Short Animation – Review by David Anthony
In the run-up to the 86th 2014 Academy Awards, the category of short film subjects includes two subdivisions, live action and animation. Last week my colleague Dennis Morton discussed the live action nominees. Today I will focus on animated offerings.