Eccentricities of Wild Salt (Weekly Links)

Eccentricities of a Blond-Hair Spy

Reviews I wrote for the Herald this week.

Eccentricities of a Blond-Hair Girl (and Cropsey). “Utterly assured, soberly whimsical.”

Salt. “Angelina Jolie seems so unreal anyway, we can accept her in this indestructible role.”

Wild Grass. “An aura of frizzy blood-red hair.”

Agora. “Does not bode well for the rationalists.”

Ramona and Beezus. “Would not be entirely out of place in an episode of ‘Leave It to Beaver.'”

And on KUOW’s “Weekday,” I talk with Steve Scher about how what we know of actors’ (and directors’) offscreen lives affects our ability to watch their movies; listen here. The film bit kicks in at the 15-minute mark.

And new issues of Rotten (and the trade paperback of the first six issues) are about to hit the streets. The new stuff just got a rave from the Ain’t It Cool News crew, here.

Movie Diary 6/3/2010

Agora (Alejandro Amenabar, 2009). Rachel Weisz being smart as Hypatia, the ancient scholar, who met her fate at the hands of Alexandria’s Christian population. Like many historical epics of nowadays, its digitally-constructed world makes it seem wrapped in a layer of seamless, blemish-free polyurethane.

The Wildest Dream (Anthony Green, 2010). An IMAX feature shot on Mt. Everest, probably because it’s there. If it doesn’t live up to the astonishment one hopes for, that may have something to do with the bar being raised really, really high.  (full review 8/6)

Last Train Home (Lixin Fan, 2009). At times startling documentary about the annual migration of low-paid workers to and from their homes in China. Like the Mt. Everest doc, you marvel at how they got their cameras where they got their cameras.

Amer (Helene Cattet, Burno Forzani, 2009). The conventions of the Italian horror film are deftly rendered in this didn’t-miss-a-trick homage. And it gets better as it goes – rare for this kind of project.