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Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Believer’s annual Film Issue

posted by Nell Minow

My very favorite magazine, The Believer, has an annual issue on one of my very favorite topics: Movies. And this one is their best, yet, with Chuck Klosterman’s essay on what I always say is the single most popular theme in film: the journey, or road movie. It often seems to me that at least 20-30 percent of films have as their theme two or more people who don’t know each other or who know each other and don’t like each other having to accomplish something together, usually involving a trip of some kind. That includes everything from “The Wizard of Oz” to “Toy Story,” “The African Queen,” “Midnight Run,” “North by Northwest,” “From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler,” “Two for the Road,” “Easy Rider,” and even “College Road Trip.” Rolf Potts writes about the way that international marketing of movies affects their content, dialog, and humor. Two of the most fascinating directors, Werner Herzog and Errol Morris, have a conversation. And the issue includes Part I of the provocatively titled “Pervert’s Guide to the Cinema,” which is not what you think — it is a kaleidoscopic illustrated lecture by Slovenian philosopher and psychoanalyst Slavoj Zizek, talking about films and what they mean. His passion for his theories and for the films he describes are so intense that he literally enters into them through meticulously re-created sets that place him in Norman Bates’ cellar, Neo’s chair opposite Morpheus, and the hotel bathroom from Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Conversation.” This issue, the DVD included, is bracingly engaged and engaging and a real treat for any cinephile.

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