Ella Taylor http://wwno.org en 'The Last Sentence': A Man Making History, But Made By It As Well http://wwno.org/post/last-sentence-man-making-history-made-it-well Like his magnificent 1996 film <em>Hamsun</em>, Swedish director Jan Troell's latest bio-pic is a richly detailed portrait of a great man riddled with flaws and undone by adulation.<p>On the face of it, Torgny Segerstedt seems the very inverse of Knut Hamsun, the Norwegian writer revered, then reviled during World War II for his Nazi sympathies. Fri, 18 Jul 2014 21:23:05 +0000 Ella Taylor 64882 at http://wwno.org 'Burning Bush' Finds The Fuel For A Desperate Act http://wwno.org/post/burning-bush-finds-fuel-desperate-act I was a college sophomore in London when Jan Palach, a shy young Czech student, set himself on fire in Prague's Wenceslas Square in January 1969. Fri, 18 Jul 2014 12:55:53 +0000 Ella Taylor 64751 at http://wwno.org Bringing A Book Phenomenon To The Screen, With Sadly Ordinary Results http://wwno.org/post/bringing-book-phenomenon-screen-sadly-ordinary-results Josh Boone's <em>The Fault in Our Stars</em> is the kind of careful, listless adaptation that makes a critic want to rave at length about the wonderful novel on which it's based.<p>Not that John Green's 2012 YA novel, a runaway best-seller about two cancer-ridden suburban teens in love, needs much of an introduction. Millions of parents read over their avid kids' shoulders about the brief encounter between teenagers Hazel, who has stage 4 thyroid cancer ("with mets to the lungs, but I'm okay") and Augustus, who lost his leg to bone disease. Fri, 04 Jul 2014 19:33:32 +0000 Ella Taylor 63909 at http://wwno.org 'Maleficent' Tells The Fairy Tale From The Wicked One's Perspective http://wwno.org/post/maleficent-tells-fairy-tale-wicked-ones-perspective Of all Disney heroines, Aurora, aka Sleeping Beauty, was the least inspiring. Not her fault: How much spark can you wring from a Forever Nap, especially one that's cut off by a kiss from a prince named after the Duke of Edinburgh?<p>Which may be why my 16-year-old, who's going through one of those inexplicable regressions into Disney toddler fare that seem to hit girls in their teens and beyond, made it through all of five minutes of the 1959 <em>Sleeping Beauty, </em>then went back to binge-watching <em>Buffy the Vampire Slayer</em>. Thu, 26 Jun 2014 17:32:42 +0000 Ella Taylor 63339 at http://wwno.org Love Blooms In Midlife, But Halfheartedly http://wwno.org/post/love-blooms-midlife-halfheartedly No fewer than three comedies about finding love in midlife open this week, all of them shiny with major stars. Is it time to stop whining about the dearth of romantic comedy for mature audiences? Only if you prefer quantity to quality.<p>I haven't seen <em>Blended,</em> a Warner Bros. picture featuring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore (talk about milestones, Gertie's turning 40!) as failed blind-daters marooned in a recreation park with their respective kids. Mon, 16 Jun 2014 22:14:30 +0000 Ella Taylor 62706 at http://wwno.org From The Traditions Of Melodrama, A Woman Of Resolve http://wwno.org/post/traditions-melodrama-woman-resolve I teach in a film school, and if there's one genre I find it hard to get students on board for, it's classic melodrama. Perhaps because they've been reared on distancing irony and the suspension of belief, they misread the symphonies of pent-up emotion, the passionate address to questions of good and evil, of class, gender and race as phony. Sun, 25 May 2014 21:41:47 +0000 Ella Taylor 61419 at http://wwno.org 'Walking With The Enemy': An Occupation Poorly Rendered http://wwno.org/post/walking-enemy-occupation-poorly-rendered By the time the Nazis got around to taking Hungary in 1944, the country was already fatally compromised by its economic alliance with Fascist Germany and Italy on the one hand, and a shaky pact with Stalin on the other. Imagining that its loyalty to a protective leader, Regent Horthy, would save them from the fate suffered by other European Jews, Hungary's highly assimilated Jewish community fell prey (along with the Regent himself) to the extreme right-wing Arrow Cross party. Tue, 29 Apr 2014 21:55:44 +0000 Ella Taylor 59648 at http://wwno.org 'Vivian Maier' Brings Nanny-Photographer's Life Into Focus http://wwno.org/post/vivian-maier-brings-nanny-photographers-life-focus Is an artist's life relevant to her reputation as an artist? Thu, 27 Mar 2014 22:52:00 +0000 Ella Taylor 57184 at http://wwno.org A Teen On The Hunt, And Maybe In Over Her Head http://wwno.org/post/teen-hunt-and-maybe-over-her-head Feared and feared for in equal measure, today's teenagers are prisoners of pop and punditry. Branded as bad seeds or delicate flowers, they take shape in the public mind as either neglected or overprotected by their parents, abused by or abusive of the Internet, oversexed or terrified of sex. Is coming of age the pits, or what?<p>Filmmaker Eliza Hittman doesn't shy away from such labels, or from the extremity of the teen years. But she wants to get inside the subjective particularities of the experience, as felt by a fragile 14-year-old. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 22:53:10 +0000 Ella Taylor 56672 at http://wwno.org It's Either Art Or A Fire Hose, And We're Calling It The Latter http://wwno.org/post/its-either-art-or-fire-hose-and-were-calling-it-latter <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuOfpsz9MoM</p> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 22:46:01 +0000 Ella Taylor 56670 at http://wwno.org