The film focuses on Daniel McGowan, the son of a Brooklyn cop who experiences a “sense of mourning” once he becomes aware of mankind’s many environmental sins. He participates in multiple acts of arson as ELF cells launch a freelance sabotage campaign against lumber mills, logging equipment, horse corrals, meat-packing plants, genetics labs, tree farms, even ski resorts. Hovering over the film is a question: Are these activists terrorists, as the government would have us believe, or are they avenging angels performing a vital service, as they themselves believe? Curry, to his credit, refuses to offer a tidy answer.
“Writing a book is the most complete experience I’ve ever had,” said Lauren Bacall, who passed away on Tuesday. She wrote three memoirs over 30 years – By Myself, Now and By Myself and Then Some.
The puritan impulse teaches us that every eccentricity is a weapon that threatens the state and that threatens oneself. [John] Waters’s oeuvre up to this point teaches that every eccentricity is absolutely a weapon that threatens the state but also a means of ennobling and even saving oneself.
“’Hitchhiking is always an adventure,’ [John] Waters says. ‘It’s always a little bit sexual, it’s always a little bit scary, and always you’re going to meet somebody, and it’s a fair trade of trust, I think, to get in someone’s car you don’t know and for them to let you in. I believe in the goodness of people. The hitchhiker in the [Texas] Chainsaw Massacre with a birthmark, I thought he was cute. I don’t have normal taste. I’d pick him up in a second.’”
"Greatness and beauty. Sorrentino — a Naples-born university drop-out who made his first feature film when he was 31, and who at 43 won last year’s Best Foreign Film Oscar — is himself obsessed with these two driving forces of life: his most recent film is in fact called The Great Beauty. And, as Lang’s words imply, Sorrentino is interested in churning up the strange and unexpected ways that beauty and greatness are achieved, discovered, expressed. His films are filled, for example, with close-ups of faces—sagging, leathery faces, often caked on with makeup and lit brightly — aging, lumpy bodies, baldness and bifocals, bad teeth and stubby hands.”
Sonya Chung, “Paolo Sorrentino: Old is Young, and Late is Late”