New Normal

This past Sunday night was the debut of Adam Curtis’ new BBC documentary, HyperNormalisation. Curtis is a flat-out genius and any new film from the master is an occasion for celebration… We live in a time of great uncertainty and confusion. Events keep happening that seem inexplicable and out of control. Donald Trump, Brexit, the [...]

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Kill and Make-Up

After I shared yesterday’s post about John Carpenter’s The Thing to my Facebook page my friend Brandon shouted out Rob Bottin, the boy genius who created The Thing‘s groundbreaking special effects make-up when he was only about 22 years old. If that film doesn’t convince you of Bottin’s flat out genius you need to see [...]

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Horror’s the Thing

Just opened up YouTube wondering out loud what kind of spooky, Halloween horror I should post for today’s blog before I saw the very first recommended video. Here’s the making of John Carpenter’s The Thing… Stay Awake! Please subscribe to my YouTube channel where I archive all of the videos I curate at Insomnia. Click here to check [...]

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Whiter Shade of Pale

The rise of Trump and issued spotlighted by Black Lives Matter can make it seem like mainstream racism is a virulent new creature on the American scene. The mainstreaming may be new, but unfortunately, this is a culture that has thrived in the states since the beginning of the country. The reason the BLM movement [...]

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Aliens at 30

This year we celebrate three decades since Aliens was released in 1986. Aliens is one of those unlikely sequels that manages to re-imagine the elements of an original film, and find another way to tell a similarly timeless story. The original Alien is a haunted house movie in space — a horror film featuring an [...]

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Death of Kane

Today we remember the death of the late, great Orson Welles who exited this stage on October 10, 1985. The date of Welles’ death makes October a great time for looking back at the genius, but an even better reason is his War of the Worlds broadcast from October 30, 1938 — probably the greatest [...]

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Made in USA

Observing John Coltrane’s birthday last week, I was reminded of this great documentary about one of the few Texans actually worthy of the Lone Star hype. If Coltrane is the Heavyweight Champion, Ornette Coleman is Bruce Lee. Here’s Ornette: Made in America directed by the late, great Shirley Clarke… OMIA from Saxology on Vimeo. Stay [...]

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Fear on Film

I’m back on my October horror kick today with this great panel discussion about the history of scary cinema with three of my favorite auteurs of the awful: John Landis, John Carpenter, and David Cronenberg. Landis is the director of the best werewolf film of all time, American Werewolf in London. Carpenter’s Halloween is the [...]

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I, Cronenberg

So it’s finally October and I’m looking forward to posting all sorts of bloody and terrible horrors to the blog this month. Let’s kick things off with one of my favorite film directors, and a number of screenings and events coming up in Nashville. David Cronenberg’s cinema is full of profoundly disturbing explorations of spirit [...]

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Banned in Russia

Growing up during the second half of the Cold War, when I was a child the Soviet Union was notable for two reasons: nuclear weapons and censorship. That’s about all I really knew: the Russians and citizens of their satellites can’t read or watch or print what they want. Also they have enough warheads to [...]

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