Monday, March 31, 2014

WENG'S CHOP 5 is Out Now!



The new massive issue of WENG'S CHOP, that I am happy to be a part of, is now available at Createspace and Amazon. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Last Chance to Help Our Indiegogo campaign!

So, this is it! Less than twenty hours left in our Indiegogo campaign and we still have a number of great rewards available. Thank you all for the amazing response! We are all so grateful and blown away!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Our ART DECADES Store is now open for business



18.00 (SHIPPING INCLUDED)
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MISTRESS DREAD: 
PHOTOGRAPHER:  WHITLEY BRANDENBURG
MODEL AND STYLIST:  RHIANNON LAKE MILLS
A very soft and extremely durable tee featuring superior print quality on 4.5-ounce, 100% ringspun cotton.

Monday, March 10, 2014

ART DECADES Updates

So it has been an incredibly busy last couple of weeks! For those who haven't been following the progress of Issue 1 of our upcoming print publication ART DECADES at our website, Facebook or Twitter pages here is a quick rundown. Our Indiegogo campaign is almost two weeks in and we have been thrilled with the response. We are at almost 75% of our goal and all the support has been so appreciated! Fingers crossed we can make our goal before March 28th when the campaign ends.



We did our first photo shoot for Issue 1 and it was such an incredible and beautiful experience. I know you all are going to be blown away by the work that our photographer, Whitley Brandenburg, and make-up artist and model, Rhiannon Lake Mills, did. Here is a short behind the scenes video of the shoot.

ART DECADES Issue 1: "Mistress Dread" (Behind the Scenes) from ART DECADES on Vimeo.

I also had the pleasure of conducting a Skype interview with our first cover star Celia Rowlson-Hall for the feature I am writing for Issue 1. Also, last week we had the great thrill of conducting our first in-person interview with one of our favorite bands CHAPPO! We spent about an hour chatting with these amazing guys and then caught their incredible show with Royal Teeth and Parade of Lights. Here is another behind the scenes video for you to enjoy.

ART DECADES (Issue 1) Behind the Scenes with CHAPPO from ART DECADES on Vimeo.


Even though we are still in the early stages this has already been the most emotional and exciting experience of my creative life. I am so grateful for my team of Kelley, Lake and Whitley and am blown away by all the contributors we have lined up. The idea of sharing all their work this November brings me great, great joy.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Please Help Our Dream Come True: Support ART DECADES at Indiegogo

Our IndieGogo campaign for our upcoming publication Art Decades is now up and running.  Any and all help via contributions and/or spreading the word is so greatly appreciated!  Thank you so, so much!

Help Support ART DECADES from ART DECADES on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Collapse of an 8mm Amateur: Krzysztof Kieslowski's CAMERA BUFF (1979)

More than a decade before he mesmerized audiences with masterful works like The Decalogue (1988), The Double Life of Veronique (1991) and the Three Colors Trilogy (1993-1994), Polish born filmmaker Krzysztof Kieslowski had mainly worked in the field of documentary shorts. While some of these shorts had been fictional works, it as a documentary filmmaker that Kieslowski had initially made his name, throughout his first full decade, as a director in the seventies.  
Camera Buff (also known as Amateur) was not Kieslowski’s first feature-length narrative film (he had previously shot both The Scar and The Calm in 1976) but it was his first truly accomplished fictional work. Like his later more well-known works, including Blue (1993) and Red (1994), Camera Buff shows Kieslowski as a supremely gifted artist and storyteller and it remains a sometimes dazzling, if mostly subdued, opening chapter to one of the most important film careers of the modern era.
 Relatively successful middle-class factory worker Filip Mosz and his wife have recently welcomed a newborn baby into their lives. Filip buys an 8mm film camera with the hopes of capturing his new child in the early stages of its life. What he thought would be an innocent hobby turns serious when his boss asks Filip to begin using the camera to film his company’s board meetings. Soon Filip has a film crew at his disposal and his once happy life is altered as he becomes more and more obsessed with the idea of capturing what is real, even if it means putting his marriage and career in jeopardy.
Camera Buff is a significant film in not only Kieslowski’s career but also Polish film in general, as it manages to be not only a truly transcendent personal work but also a pointed political one, as it carefully criticizes the cloud of censorship that had hung over Kieslowski’s generation. Kieslowski shows the process for a young filmmaker to be a difficult one, as personal visions were often subjected unfairly to an outside authoritative hand.
Camera Buff is, at its core, an extremely serious film but it contains the particular kind of wit and warmth that seems specific to certain Kieslowski works, like the often-undervalued White (1993). Few directors have ever come close to matching Kieslowski’s ability to get inside the spirit of a soul in transition and Filip, like Kieslowski’s greatest characters, is very much a man in crisis but by the film’s final frames, in which he bravely turns the camera on himself, he has had a very valuable and necessary spiritual breakthrough.
While it lacks the refinement of Kieslowski’s later films, Camera Buff is a beautifully composed work that shows the influential filmmaker stepping away from the grittiness of his early documentary style and into a more polished cinematic technique.
 Camera Buff is ultimately about a man’s growth as a filmmaker and one can easily draw a parallel to Kieslowski’s own strides at the time. Camera Buff might be a transitional piece in Kieslowski’s career, but it is an undeniably important one. Camera Buff wouldn’t completely solidify Kieslowski as one of the great filmmakers of his generation but it served as fair enough warning that, even at this early stage, he had qualities that few of his peers could match. While nowhere near as perfect as his triumphant run of final films, Camera Buff is a wonderfully rendered and moving work that acts as not only a meditation on the human condition but also cinema itself.

 -Jeremy Richey, a rejected Directory of World Cinema piece from a few years back revised in 2014-

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Ms.45 Soundtrack is Now Available to Pre-Order from Death Waltz Recordings



Fans of Zoe Tamerlis Lund, Joe Delia and Abel Ferrara have certainly had to wait a very long time for the soundtrack release to their mesmerizing masterpiece Ms.45 but the wait I finally over.  Delia's incredible score is now available to pre-order over at Death Waltz Recordings and Light in the Attic via a limited to 500 copies Vinyl edition.  Hardcore fans will want to order directly from Death Waltz because they will get an instant free download of the score and over an hour of unused music from the film!   I am listening to it right now and to say it was worth the wait is an understatement...it is absolutely incredible. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Europe Endless: Alain Robbe-Grillet's TRANS-EUROP-EXPRESS (1967)

Only available for years via dreadful quality bootlegs, the classic films of the legendary Alain Robbe-Grillet are finally getting ready to land on American shores on Blu-Ray and DVD courtesy of Redemption's new The Cinema of Alain Robbe-Grillet collection.  The first two releases in the series, Trans-Europ-Express (1967) and Successive Slidings of Pleasure (1974) come out in early February and both are nothing short of spectacular.  
It is fitting that Redemption's first Robbe-Grillet release is his groundbreaking Trans-Europ-Express, a miraculous work that stands as a perfect gateway into the French renegade's most distinctive cinematic world.  Alternately playful and subversive, Trans-Europ-Express is still an astonishingly forward thinking work detailing the complex, and often surprising, relationship between an author and his characters.  Starring New-Wave icons Jean-Louis Trintignant and Marie-France Pisier as two characters being constructed right before our very eyes by Robbe-Grillet and his wife Catherine (both appearing as themselves), Trans-Europ-Express perhaps feels even more adventurous today than it did in the more openly confrontational and experimental sixties. 
Like many of Robbe-Grillet's early literary works, Trans-Europ-Express manages to avoid the pretentious pitfalls of most deliberately self-reflexive post-modern works by maintaining a sharp wit throughout.  While Trans-Europ-Express is rightfully grouped among the most serious European Art Films of the sixties it is also one of the funniest and Robbe-Grillet's delightful willingness to play with pre-conceptions of character, story and the filmmaking process is incredibly refreshing.  It's among just a handful of films that makes you questions cinema's role while enhancing your enjoyment. 
Trans-Europ-Express was just the second film Robbe-Grillet had made as a director (with the 1963's mesmerizing The Immortal standing as the first) but he already had mastered the difficult task of translating many of the questions his novels posed into answers on the screen.  As a filmmaker, Robbe-Grillet's daring framing skills and his dazzling use of space were already apparent in Trans-Europ-Express and in cinematographer Willy Kurant he found the perfect artist to help bring his black and white world of eroticism and intrigue to life, although the two wouldn't work together again. 
A lot of the credit for how successful Trans-Europ-Express is as an incredibly entertaining film, and not just an odd experiment, has to go to Robbe-Grillet's incredible stars, Trintignant and Pisier, whom both dive into this uncompromising material with an absolute gleefulness.  Many actors would have shied away from some of the satirical self-poking that these two iconic stars are asked to perform in Trans-Europ-Express so it is to their credit, and the film's benefit, that they were so game. 
Redemption's Blu-ray of Trans-Europ-Express is a thing of beauty.  Mastered in HD from the original 35mm elements Kino and Redemption's team wisely didn't overly digitize this print and the silver grain necessary for its glorious black and white photography is still in place.  It's truly lovely to finally see this film looking and sounding like this.  Extras include a thirty minute chat with the much-missed Robbe-Grillet and a trailer reel.  Sadly, the Tim Lucas commentary tracks that grace the international releases are absent but, otherwise, this is an absolutely essential release in every way.  Pre-order it at Amazon

-Jeremy Richey, 2014-

Monday, January 20, 2014

Celia Rowlson-Hall to Appear on the Cover of ART DECADES (Issue 1)



When I decided this past October that I finally wanted to launch my first publication one thing I knew for sure was that I wanted the cover to be something incredibly special.  Even before I came up with a name for the publication, ART DECADES, I knew that my first and only choice for our first cover star was a young filmmaker whose work has meant oh so much to me the past couple of years.  So, I am incredibly excited to announce that the genius New York based actor, choreographer, director and writer Celia Rowlson-Hall will be appearing on the cover of Issue 1 of ART DECADES in a photo taken specifically for the publication.  I will be writing a long piece on Celia's remarkable work and I am beyond honored and thrilled that she agreed to appear on the cover.  I cannot possibly began to express my eternal gratitude. 
More information on ART DECADES is coming soon including a look at some of the contributors and more.  Also keep a lookout for our IndieGoGo Crowdfunding campaign which will be starting in the next week or so.