Thursday, January 3, 2013

Paracinema 18 On Sale Now

Happy new year, lovers of film and/or chaw. Wanted to pass along some news regarding the new issue of an independently produced film magazine, Paracinema, in which your humble scribbler has a contribution.

For several years Paracinema has been covering a wide range of non-mainstream cinematic fare -- e.g., cult/indie titles, horror, sci-fi, exploitation, underground film and b-movies, and more. Rather than reviews, the magazine tends to focus on in-depth analyses and interviews (accompanied by cool full color photos, natch).

The newest issue -- No. 18 (December 2012) -- again features an diverse collection of essays. Here’s the line-up:

  • Speed Racer: The Art of Absurdity (Patrick Smith)
  • In a Lonely Place and the Shadow of Serial Crime (Samm Deighan)
  • Now Read the Movie: Chronicle as Young Adult Literature (C. Rachel Katz)
  • That Movie About the Giant Turtle and the Girl with Glowing Green Eyes (Todd Garbarini)
  • Norman Mailer’s Underground Trilogy (Brett Taylor)
  • The Goriest Film You Never Saw (Jose Cruz)
  • Lost Video Archive: Aerobicide & Death Spa (Seth Goodkind)
  • Marriage Bites: Lesbian Vampires and the Failure of Heterosexuality in Daughters of Darkness (Erin Wiegand)
  • “When Single Shines the Triple Sun”: Duality and Self Discovery in The Dark Crystal (Christine Makepeace)
  • Freedom in Filmmaking: Universal’s Indie Experiment (Martin Harris)
  • 3D’s Use and Potential in Today’s Cinematic Landscape (Caleb McCandless)
  • Last Words: ...And I Feel Fine. (S. Patrick Gallagher)

    My contribution on “Universal’s Indie Experiment” focuses on an interesting idea pursued by Universal during the early 1970s. In the wake of Easy Rider’s surprise box office success, the big studio began its own “youth division” -- kind of a boutique department, if you will -- from which they hoped to produce their own low budget quasi-“indie” films, and perhaps realize another commercial bonanza like Easy Rider on the cheap.

    They gave several relatively new and/or unproven directors budgets of $1 million or less and basically let them make their films freely without any fiddling from the studio. A number of interesting films resulted, though nearly all did especially poorly in terms of attracting audiences. In the article I focus on five of them -- Taking Off, The Hired Hand, The Last Movie, Silent Running, and American Graffiti -- only the last of which was commercially successful (and how!).

    Anyhow, that’s just my contribution -- as you can see from the contents, there’s a lot else of interest in Issue 18. You can find the magazine on newsstands throughout the U.S. It’s also available by mail order via the Paracinema website -- just seven bucks (with free shipping!).

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