Sundance: Eat Through L.A. With Pulitzer Winner Jonathan Gold

Categories: Film and TV

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Film still
Halfway through Laura Gabbert's documentary City of Gold, a salute to Jonathan Gold, the Pulitzer Prize–winning food critic's brother Mark reveals a dark family secret: Gold grew up devouring iceberg lettuce and orange Jell-O.

Every day, we eat. It's a must. And those meals tell a story: The peanut sauce Grandma invented, the Korean tacos that signify L.A.'s mash-up culture, and even that Jell-O, a shorthand for a childhood in South Central, where Gold's father, a probation officer who dreamed of being an English professor, cared more about filling his sons' heads with high culture than he did filling their bellies with fancy food.


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Miwa Matreyek Steps into Her Animations

Categories: Art, Film and TV
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Photo by Gayle Laird, (c)Exploratorium
Miwa Matreyek, The World Made Itself 
For Walker Art Center's Expanding the Frame, a series combining film with performance, California-based animator and performer Miwa Matreyek will be presenting her unique work where she juxtaposes shadows of herself performing on various images. There will be two screenings this evening, each including two works. In Myth and Infrastructure, Matreyek meditates on creativity in a loose, fantastical way, while The World Made Itself takes on the history of Earth using a surreal space that creates a visceral journey for the audience. 

We chatted with Matreyek about her process and work.


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Sundance: Samuel Klemke's Time Machine Is the Sad Sequel to Boyhood

Categories: Film and TV

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Samuel Klemke's Time Machine
Richard Linklater ended his feel-good Best Picture contender on a high. His star, eighteen-year-old would-be artist Mason, graduated high school and was ready to conquer the world. But what if Linklater had kept filming? And what if Mason wasn't an actor, but a real teenage boy?


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The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore Asks the Right Questions, But Doesn't Have Any Answers

Categories: Film and TV

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Screengrab from the show
The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore's great misfortune isn't that it replaces The Colbert Report, but that it premieres after Last Week Tonight With John Oliver. The Colbert Report was sui generis, and will likely remain so, because such a series makes leviathan demands on its host: crackerjack comedic skills, superb acting chops, and the massive humility to subsume himself completely into his character. Last Week Tonight, on the other hand, is a gauntlet thrown down before every other late-night comedy show (and news program), defying them to attempt its rare combination of smart, sidesplitting, and viral.

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Oscars Podcast: Can you Identify the Traits of 'Oscar Bait?'

Categories: Film and TV

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American Sniper
The bi-coastal film pod continues in 2015! In New York, Village Voice film editor Alan Scherstuhl, along with Voice film critic Stephanie Zacharek, connect via the magic of the Internet with LA Weekly film critic Amy Nicholson to discuss the nominations for this year's Academy Awards, announced on January 15. The trio attempt to settle once and for all what sorts of movies make the Academy salivate, while other seemingly great films go stale. As always, send barbs, jabs, claims or jokes to filmpod@villagevoice.com and follow us on the Twitter at @voicefilmclub. Read all of our movie reviews here.


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Ruben Ă–stlund's Films Explore the Ugliness of Humanity

Categories: Film and TV
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Photo courtesy Magnolia Pictures
Force Majeure
Imagine this: You're sitting at a mountaintop café with your spouse and your two kids. All of a sudden, an avalanche heads toward you. At first you think it's controlled, but then you realize that it's about to barrel over everyone in the restaurant. Do you, a) run for your life, b) put your body over your loved ones to protect them or c) other? In Force Majeure (Turist), a film by Swedish filmmaker Ruben Östlund, the main character picks the first option, and then has to live with the fact that he abandoned his family in a moment of crisis, even though the incident didn't cause any real physical harm.

The film, along with two others by the filmmaker, will be screening this weekend.

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Girls, Season 4: Lena Dunham Doesn't Let Hannah & Co. Grow Up

Categories: Film and TV

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Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/HBO
Among many other things, Girls has always been great satire, lampooning with scolding empathy the callowness, narcissism, and insufferableness of early-to-mid twentysomethings who are privileged enough to spend their post-grad years making mistake after mistake with no serious consequences. But the HBO dramedy's fourth season, in which Hannah (Lena Dunham) leaves Brooklyn to attend the University of Iowa's famed writers' workshop, suffers a kind of repetitive-motion injury from hitting its tiny target one too many times. Despite the new setting, the show's failure to develop past its initial raison d'être of sending up youthful foibles encases it in a cast of sitcom stasis.


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Podcast: The Hobbit Project Hits Its Spectacular End

Categories: Film and TV

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Photo by Mark Pokorny
Talk some sense into 'em, Bilbo.
Village Voice film editor Alan Scherstuhl and LA Weekly film critic Amy Nicholson discuss the third-and-final Hobbit movie: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, in this special bonus episode of the Voice Film Club podcast. As always, send barbs, jabs, claims or jokes to filmpod@villagevoice.com and follow us on the Twitter at @voicefilmclub

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Podcast: Our Favorite Movies of 2014

Categories: Film and TV

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Only Lovers Left Alive.
Village Voice film critic Stephanie Zacharek and LA Weekly film critic Amy Nicholson run down their ten favorite/best/top/whatever movies of 2014, along with Voice film editor Alan Scherstuhl.


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Santa Claus Conquers the Martians: Trash Film Debauchery Screens a MST3K Classic

Categories: Film and TV
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Trash Film Debauchery, a series featuring the weirdest and trashiest movies that modern cinema has to offer, has a special treat for Christmas. Hosted by Theresa Purcell, the evening will feature a screening of the MST3K version of Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. It's a perfect way to enjoy the holiday if you're not really planning on celebrating the holiday. 


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