Vying for the attention of a foxy film buff? In the Seattle vicinity and searching for something to do? Or are you simply a cinema-appreciating citizen of the world, with a thirst for knowledge about the latest, greatest, weirdest developments in moving pictures?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above, you should know: The Seattle International Film Festival (aka SIFF)—the largest and most highly attended fest of its kind—is happening now through June 9.
Think film festivals are too artsy-fartsy? Consider this: Alien (yes, that Alien) world-premiered at SIFF in 1979—
Not sure about you, but that’s most definitely our kind of film festival. Planning a special evening tonight (Saturday, May 18)? If your date is the prim and proper type, try ‘Mad Men’ meets ‘I Love Lucy’ French rom-com Populaire:
As if three weeks packed with 447 SIFF films weren’t awesome enough, the festival includes An Evening with Kyle MacLachlan—complete with a Q&A, screening of the ‘Twin Peaks’ pilot, and reception (we hope they serve black coffee and cremated bacon). Check out SIFF’s tribute to one of our generation’s finest, oddest actors below—along with a choice ‘Twin Peaks’ scene:
Thomas Campbell is a soft-spoken guy with larger-than-life ideas. He grew up skating and surfing in California in the ’70s and ’80s, a scene in which, he says, exploring different forms of do-it-yourself creativity was second-nature—be it making music, taking photos, drawing graffiti, or writing a ‘zine.
Campbell parlayed the creative ethos of his youth into a full-time career—or, more accurately, a self-sustaining lifestyle. He lives in Santa Cruz, travels the world, meets interesting people, and “makes stuff.” His artistic output ranges from sculptures to films to paintings—to the the swim trunks and T-shirt below, made in collaboration with California surf and skate brand Element.
Campbell—who was profiled alongside other likeminded, DIY, oddball geniuses like Shepard Fairey and Harmony Korine in the 2008 documentary Beautiful Losers—has also put out three surf films, which are widely revered for their break from the aggro, adrenaline-rush intensity of “extreme sports” in favor of a more meditative, nostalgic homage to surf culture. Beautifully photographed at locations spanning the globe, these excerpts from Thomas Campbell’s Sprout (2004) and The Present (2009) should offer a welcome respite from your Monday-afternoon malaise:
Do your best to ignore the souped-up Rolls Royces, the gyrating flappers, the sinister-sounding Kanye West / Jay-Z / Frank Ocean beat (which would have been infinitely cooler here if a handful of mediocre action flicks didn’t already use it), the hypnotic visual overload director Baz Luhrmann made famous in 1996′s amped-up Romeo & Juliet remix—and even try to look past Carey Mulligan’s beauty mark, if at all humanly possible.
Instead, feast your eyes on the impeccable menswear Great Gatsby costume designer Catherine Martin created in collaboration with 195-year-old American institution Brooks Brothers. Delving into the brand’s archives, Martin nailed every detail—from straw boater to gold collar pin to powder-pink peak lapel.
Watch a behind-the-scenes mini-documentary on the film’s costume design here, and catch The Great Gatsby in theaters May 10.
[Trailer courtesy of Warner Bros and Village Roadshow Pictures. Still images are captures from the Brooks Brothers video about the film's costume design. Individuals pictured do not endorse Nordstrom.]
The 85th annual Academy Awards ceremony airs this Sunday evening at 4pm Pacific on ABC. Have you seen all the films yet? With nine nominees crowding the Best Picture category alone, we won’t blame you if you haven’t. However, these things are always more interesting when you have a dog in the fight (and something to talk about at Oscar parties come Sunday)—so if your Friday and Saturday plans permit, consider taking in a last-minute film or two.
We’re honored to have five original, exclusive poster designs below, created just for us by LA-based graphic artist (and film buff) Midnight Marauder, representing five of his favorite Best Picture nominees. Read his crib notes, watch the trailers, and then hit up Fandango to find a screening near you, pre-Oscar night.
ARGO - Directed by Ben Affleck. “I went a little Syriana on this design. I guess the film struck me as CIA on a mission. George Clooney produced the film, so it has that vibe to it.”
LINCOLN – Directed by Steven Spielberg. “I’m a big Civil War buff. I ritually watch Civil War by [documentary filmmaker] Ken Burns a few times a year. So the entire Lincoln story is something I’m deeply passionate about. Only a true maverick like Daniel Day-Lewis could bring Lincoln’s last few months to the screen with such vigor. For the design, I wanted something simple and nostalgic.”
DJANGO UNCHAINED – Directed by Quentin Tarantino. “QT is a marvelous writer. I can imagine him giddy with excitement when he called Christoph Waltz over to read his part. I loved the energy of each character—but when Waltz and DiCaprio left the film, it lost me a little.”
AMOUR – Directed by Michael Haneke. “Haneke has crafted quite a love story, with devastating effects. This one will really get to you if you let it. I couldn’t help bringing a Polish touch to such a depressing and beautiful film.” [Ed. note: Artists in Poland have been particularly renowned in the realm of poster art for decades.]
ZERO DARK THIRTY – Directed by Kathryn Bigelow. “Female directors are a bit rare in the industry, but I love Bigelow’s films. She’s right up there with action guys like Paul Greengrass and Guy Ritchie. Again, I was feeling inspired by Polish poster design.”
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The Real Winner: As many critics might attest, the year’s truly best movies don’t always win awards—or even get nominated. In Mr. Marauder’s opinion: “Honestly, the best picture this year is The Master. It’s a shame that Paul Thomas Anderson [director of There Will Be Blood and Boogie Nights, among others] hasn’t yet gotten the recognition he rightly deserves.”
More Midnight Marauder: The grid above contains just a few of our latest favorites from Marauder’s vast archive of hundreds of eye-widening poster designs, spanning from celluloid classics to upcoming releases. We chose these based solely on aesthetics—but given the designer’s taste level, you can bet money each is worth adding to your Netflix queue as well. [Click images to enlarge. Ryan Gosling's The Place Beyond the Pines, bottom left, is due in theaters late March.]
Marauder’s latest limited-edition print—created for a recent ‘Oscar Legends’ exhibit at Hero Complex Gallery in San Francisco—is still available for sale (framed if you so desire). It depicts 1978 Best-Picture winner The Deer Hunter, about which Marauder had the following to say: “One of my favorite films of all time…it encapsulates everything that I adore in cinema. Director Michael Cimino’s intimate epic about family, brotherhood and war is the ultimate ’70s film. The Russian roulette scene is one of the greatest gifts to cinema ever realized.”
If you find yourself in the Portland, Oregon, area this Sunday—see the Deer Hunter print in person, along with Oscar Legends as depicted by many other artists, at Hero Complex’s pop-up gallery at the Hollywood Theatre.
The internet (yes, pretty much all of it) is wigging out over the February magazine cover above, which GQ revealed for the first time yesterday. Below are a couple more images from the shoot—see the rest here, and read the GQ interview with Mrs.Knowles-Carter here.
We get it. The Feb cover has its charm. However, we’re still hung up on last month’s magazine, fronted by the illustrious Bill Murray. (Extra points for the improvised pocket square.)
Here are some classic Murray moments—to tide you over ’til Beyoncé lands in your mailbox:
From R. Kelly to The Princess Bride, Seattle residents can always count on our friends at the Seattle International Film Festival—aka SIFF—to serve up something unexpected. (Besides organizing the US’s largest film festival each year, SIFF also hosts film events year-round.)
To celebrate December 12, 2012 (12/12/12—get it?), and count down with a signature dark sense of humor to midnight, December 21 (a dire date according to certain interpretations of the Mayan calendar), SIFF is screening a series of apocalyptic films.
It all starts tonight with Terry Gilliam’s 1995 sci-fi mind-bender 12 Monkeys (trailer above), and culminates 12/21 with a scientific debunking of the movie 2012 (starring John Cusack) by Neutrino Astrophysicist Jason Detwiler, PhD—followed by a 21+ party with post-apocalypse-themed music videos as the backdrop. Other highlights in the series include Dawn of the Dead (destroyed by zombies!), Planet of the Apes (destroyed by primates!) and Children of Men (destroyed by infertility!). What a way to go.
[Clockwise from top left: Peter Sellers in Dr. Strangelove, Matthew Broderick in WarGames, Clive Owen in Children of Men, and Britney Spears—a featured artist along with Duran Duran, Billy Idol, 2Pac, the Scorpions and more—in SIFF's Post-Apocalypse Music Video Bash.]
With New Year’s Eve parties approaching, we took a minute to locate some inspiration for perhaps the most quintessentially masculine garment known to man: a Tuxedo. For a garment whose smashing success or massive failure hinges almost entirely on a razor-sharp fit, customized precisely to your body, sack-like rentals are not a realistic option—even if you only need your tux once a year, a modest investment is worth looking like a million bucks once in a while.
1. Peak Lapel. The classic choice. Broader lapels are swinging back into favor, lending modern suits a throwback, menswear-machismo vibe. Combined with the elegantly aggressive peak lapel, this style of tux creates a universally flattering V-shaped torso.
Hickey Freeman Classic-Fit, Peak-Lapel Tuxedo.
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2. Shawl Collar. Whereas a peak lapel is boldly assertive, a shawl-collar tux is silky smooth. Put one on, and you’re equally apt to channel a 1962 Sean Connery in the original Bond flick, Dr. No, or a hip vintage revivalist like Albert Hammond Jr., depending on your haircut and facial expression.
BOSS Black Trim-Fit Shawl-Collar Tuxedo. Eligible for Free Next-Business-Day Shipping. Shop Now
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3. Midnight Blue. Daniel Craig’s Bond is rougher around the edges than his predecessors—and his choices in evening wear are just as unapologetic. Opting for inky blue instead of the classic black is a subtle tweak on the color spectrum, but speaks volumes. Amp it up further with a creative shirt, or keep it classically subversive as Craig does above.
Whichever style you choose, get thee to a skilled Nordstrom Tailor for a fully personalized fit. Here’s a graphic of Mr. Jake Gyllenhaal, a red-carpet pro, with a comprehensive play-by-play on how a classic tux ought to fit, courtesy of the NY Times. Click to enlarge:
In honor of today’s ominous holiday, movie buff and design mastermind Midnight Marauder recently released a series of re-imagined movie posters inspired by his favorite horror films of the past 40 years.
In a true feat of artistic prowess, the LA-based graphic designer constructed a self-imposed challenge of creating five posters in five days. The results are below, along with notes from Marauder himself. Now all you need is the proverbial bowl of candy on the porch, so trick-or-treaters don’t egg your house while you’re busy freaking the [expletive] out in front of your flat-screen tonight.
#1 of 5: The Exorcist. “For the first poster in the series, I wanted as little color as possible. I also tried to bring an edge that the film gives from the very beginning—as if the film was made by a demented Polish director.” [Editor's note: Some might call the on-set methods of Amercian director William Friedkin demented indeed.]
The Exorcist airs on IFC tonight.
#2 of 5: Drag Me to Hell. “One of my favorite horror thrillers of the last 10 years. It’s a gem, a masterpiece of a film—it’s a ‘Treehouse of Horror’ story put to film. I tried to really bring the sense of evil, with the hands clawing themselves up, and the eyes that stare right back at you.”
#3 of 5: The Fly. “Cronenberg’s fascination with the human body takes new form in his remake of the classic. Not much color to speak of—I didn’t want any colors that we tend to associate with the film, glowing greens and blues. Metal-grey is more bleak. The halftone image represents the molecules morphing within the teleportation machine.”
#4 of 5: Let the Right One In. “This film really moved me like no other vampire film has ever done before. It’s a beautiful love story. With this poster, I didn’t want to use any element from the film. I had this old photo of a little girl that reminded me of the girl in the film, so I fixed it up slightly, and the final poster is rather chilling.”
#5 of 5: The Silence of the Lambs. “Everyone knows this one, it’s a marvelous film. Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster are amazing, but I think the real star of the film is Ted Levine. A pure genius in acting, hands-down the greatest serial killer in movie history. The poster has various levels of shapes and hidden surprises. The colors are simple as with all the posters in the series; I wanted simplicity with the entire group.”
True Blood Skarsgård x Melancholia Skarsgård. As 1,000-year-old vampire Eric Northman on HBO’s True Blood, Swedish actor Alexander Skarsgård always comes off as consummately evil in black leather jackets and a toothy smirk. He’s never looked sharper, though, than in director Lars von Trier’s arty end-of-the-world flick Melancholia, in which he plays a forlorn Kirsten Dunst’s pitiful groom in their awkward pre-apocalypse wedding.
For today’s costume idea, we’d like to add the bad attitude (and incisors) of the former to the dapper tux from the latter. Accessorize with incandescent fangs (because who wants regular ones once you’ve seen these suckers?) and some fake blood for dramatic effect. We might recommend a light spattering, rather than the full-on blood-soaked chin above—less likely to rub off on your date’s cheek at the end of the night.
True Blood Season 5 just concluded, but you can catch up on HBO GO. Melancholia is available on Netflix.
[Images: True Blood still courtesy of HBO; Melancholia still courtesy of Zentropa and Nordisk Film; Fangs courtesy of Oriental Trading; Gallon of Blood courtesy of Spirit Halloween. Individuals pictured do not endorse Nordstrom.]
The latest limited-edition print by LA artist (and movie-poster revisionist) Midnight Marauder pays tribute to 2001′s surrealist Hollywood head-trip Mulholland Drive.
It’s not every day you can pick up a piece of home-theater decor that mixes eerie visual impact with intellectual street cred to a degree guaranteed to impress your Xbox buddies and highbrow film-buff friends alike. (Nab a signed and numbered print for just $40—details here.)
Just don’t ask David Lynch—the film’s abstract-expressionist auteur and winner of a Cannes best-director prize for his work here—what exactly the movie is about.
Although critics, fans, and cast members have their theories on the film’s meaning, Lynch insists on leaving it open-ended. As is true of a piece of music, or even a dream, the director feels adamant that a film’s ideas, once put into motion, cannot adequately be translated back into words. (Watch an in-depth interview on the subject—fascinating for Lynchephiles and casual film fans alike.)
As always, Marauder’s poster design wordlessly conveys the filmmaker’s intentions better than a small army of critics ever could. Askew, dueling blondes, implying the film’s identity crises…The subject’s obscured gaze (a classically anarchic punk-rock poster motif)…Minimalist elements used to maximum effect. It all adds up to a strange but powerful feeling—similar to that imparted by the film’s moody score (see above) and Lynch’s one-of-a-kind work itself.