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1999 Stories by J. Hoberman

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  • Heroic Comrades, Meet the Common Man

    published November 23, 1999

    The presiding deities that greet you upon entering the ICP's high-concept show—"Propaganda and Dreams: Photographing the 1930s in the USSR... More >>

  • Heads or Tails

    published November 23, 1999

    Tim Burton has yet to tackle an "adult" theme but there isn't a bankable Hollywood director with a flintier sense of aesthetic integrity. More... More >>

  • The Parent Trap

    published November 16, 1999

    Long-established, if not altogether consistent, pillars of the European art film, the Spaniard Pedro Almodóvar and the Frenchman Jacques... More >>

  • Redeeming Features

    published November 9, 1999

    Dogma, as you may have heard, is an armageddon caper with a cast of characters that includes a pro-choice world savior, a divine messenger... More >>

  • Lifetime Achievement

    published November 2, 1999

    One of the most talented of Hollywood blacklistees, Bronx-born writer-director Abe Polonsky died last week in Los Angeles. Friends tell me he was... More >>

  • Crisis Modes

    published November 2, 1999

    Lights, camera, agitation: Two current portraits of left-wing heroism and victimhood-the scrappy Belgian import Rosetta and Hollywood's... More >>

  • Metaphysical Therapy

    published October 26, 1999

    Directed by MTV whiz Spike Jonze from Charlie Kaufman's highly original script, Being John Malkovich is the sort of prize head-scratcher... More >>

  • City Limits

    published October 19, 1999

    Let us triangulate. David Fincher's Fight Club is not a brainless mosh pit. Nor is it a transgressive masterpiece. As provocations go, this... More >>

  • Time Regained

    published October 12, 1999

    No one ever said it was going to be easy. Robert Bresson and Michelangelo Antonioni still live, but for my money, the world's greatest working... More >>

  • Young Blood

    published October 5, 1999

    A jaggedly impressionistic reverie, Steven Soderbergh's The Limey works best as a brutal yet delicate gloss on the Orpheus myth. A man... More >>

  • Use Your Illusion

    published September 28, 1999

    Good-looking stranger moves to a small town, changing lives while harboring a secret past. Mumford and Boys Don't Cry— two hits... More >>

  • Northern Exposure

    published September 21, 1999

    It's customary by now to introduce any report on the Toronto International Film Festival with ritual acknowledgment of its ever-escalating... More >>

  • Boomer Bust

    published September 14, 1999

    Talkin' 'bout that generation, September brings two richly metaphoric songs of male Boomer pathos: the midlife-crisis dark comedy American... More >>

  • Night of the Living Ed

    published September 7, 1999

    He's not quite Van Gogh, but Ed Wood Jr., declared the "world's worst filmmaker" barely two years after his ignominious death in a dive off the... More >>

  • Chaos Theories

    published September 7, 1999

    Rollicking ensemble comedies both, the Yugoslav Black Cat, White Cat and the Japanese Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald partake of the... More >>

  • Altered Fates

    published August 24, 1999

    The Muse is light summer fare about a middle-aged Hollywood screenwriter so desperate to brainstorm a light summer fare he hires a Greek goddess... More >>

  • Finding Their Religion

    published August 17, 1999

    In the religion of the movies, Sergio Leone is a prime candidate for beatitude. Among his miracles, the Italian director—who is getting his... More >>

  • Directors on the Verge

    published August 10, 1999

    Bowfinger, the character Steve Martin plays in the new comedy of the same name, is a particularly contemporary figure—the ridiculously... More >>

  • Mything in Action

    published August 3, 1999

    History lodges itself in popular memory as mythic saga; myth becomes moralizing as compact fairy tale. The Kennedy administration morphs into... More >>

  • Chills and Spills

    published July 27, 1999

    Inspired amateurism and shoestring ingenuity may not be to every taste, but anyone who thinks The Blair Witch Project has been oversold... More >>

  • I Wake Up Dreaming

    published July 20, 1999

    The best thing about Eyes Wide Shut may be its title, but anyone planning to see Stanley Kubrick's long-awaited, posthumously released swan... More >>

  • Screaming & Kicking

    published July 13, 1999

    Most horror films are spectacles of excess, based on special effects and gross-out gore. An anachronistic few subscribe to the countertradition of... More >>

  • Before the Fall

    published July 6, 1999

    Will the current craze for filmed Shakespeare and the ongoing one for genteel adaptations of 19th-century novels vault the great miniaturist Eric... More >>

  • Fireworks

    published June 29, 1999

    Quick thinking as he is, Spike Lee rarely shoots a boring scene or makes an entirely coherent movie. The details are worked out; the structure is... More >>

  • Borderlines: Paul Robeson and Film

    published June 22, 1999

    Paul Robeson was far more than a movie star, and most of the movies in which the awesomely gifted singer- athlete­political activist appeared... More >>

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