Saturday, March 25, 2023

Style Icon Steve Spielberg


J. Crew's Preppy, Leisurely Uniform


New Yorker - "J. Crew and the Paradoxes of Prep"
By Hua Hsu

Quentin Tarantino's Cinema Speculation


Published November 1, 2022.

"The long-awaited first work of nonfiction from the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Once Upon a Time in Hollywood: a deliriously entertaining, wickedly intelligent cinema book as unique and creative as anything by Quentin Tarantino.

In addition to being among the most celebrated of contemporary filmmakers, Quentin Tarantino is possibly the most joyously infectious movie lover alive. For years he has touted in interviews his eventual turn to writing books about films. Now, with Cinema Speculation, the time has come, and the results are everything his passionate fans—and all movie lovers—could have hoped for. Organized around key American films from the 1970s, all of which he first saw as a young moviegoer at the time, this book is as intellectually rigorous and insightful as it is rollicking and entertaining. At once film criticism, film theory, a feat of reporting, and wonderful personal history, it is all written in the singular voice recognizable immediately as QT’s and with the rare perspective about cinema possible only from one of the greatest practitioners of the artform ever. "

Movies as chapters in the book:
Bullitt (1968)
Dirty Harry (1971)
Deliverance (1972)
The Getaway (1972)
The Outfit (1973)
Sisters (1973)
Daisy Miller (1974)
Taxi Driver (1976)
Rolling Tunder (1977)
Paradise Alley (1978)
Escape from Alcatraz (1979)
Hardcore (1979)
The Funhouse (1981)

Tavern Style Pizza


Eater - "Chicago Tavern-Style Pizza is Sweeping America"

"But why is Chicago thin-style trending right now?

Thin Chicago tavern-style can be seen as a foil to the thick heavy Detroit style square pizzas that have dominated over the last decade. People are ready for a lighter form of cheese and carbs; the pizza pendulum has swung the other way.

“I think it’s lighter to eat,” says Greg Baxtrom who recently started serving the thin pies at his restaurant and bakery Patti Ann’s in Prospect Heights, New York. “Nothing against doughier deep dish—they have their place. It’s just super heavy and super filling, and they don’t make great leftovers,” says Baxtrom, who grew up in a small town just outside of Chicago.

Another potential reason why Chicago tavern-style is trending is that it’s relatively easier to produce and execute culinarily compared to say a classic Neapolitan-style pizza, which requires building and maintaining a fire inside an expensive, large, often-imported oven.

What is more, tavern-style pizzas do not require stretching out the dough to order—they can be pre-stretched and simply topped and baked to order in an electric or gas-powered oven. “You can make it ahead of time, which always means I can ensure the consistency better," says Baxtrom. “It’s consistently being able to provide a good product.”"

New York Times - "Kenji López-Alt Spent 5 Months Studying Chicago Thin-Crust Pizza. Here’s What He Learned."
Axios - "This year's pizza trends: Fewer pineapples, more pickles"

Pokemon Reimagined as Traditional Japanese Artifacts


Sunday, March 19, 2023

Favorite Movies of 2022


Honorable Mentions:
Everything Everywhere All At Once
Avatar: The Way of the Water
You People


Ben Affleck on Air


The Hollywood Reporter - "Ben Affleck on ‘Air,’ New CEO Gig and Those Memes: “I Am Who I Am”"

"It’s been 25 years since Ben Affleck became the youngest person to win the Oscar for best original screenplay at age 25 for Good Will Hunting, which he wrote with Matt Damon; 16 years since he directed his critically acclaimed first feature, Gone Baby Gone; and a decade since he won best picture for Argo, a film Affleck directed, starred in and produced. His four features as a director — all thrillers and dramas instead of the kind of franchise films that drive the modern box office — have made nearly $450 million worldwide.

It’s an enviable filmmaking résumé, and one that pretty much nobody brings up when you say the name Ben Affleck. But while the world has been scrutinizing his marriage, his mood and his coffee order, Affleck has been quietly building a new production company, Artists Equity, with Damon, founded on the premise of profit-sharing among not only directors, producers and actors but also crewmembers such as cinematographers, editors and costume designers.


Their company’s first movie and Affleck’s latest as a director, is Air, the story of how Michael Jordan’s family and a group of executives at Nike revolutionized the business with one historic sneaker deal. Air, which Amazon will premiere at the South by Southwest film festival March 18 before releasing it wide theatrically April 5, stars Viola Davis as Jordan’s mother; Damon, Chris Tucker and Jason Bateman as execs at Nike; and Affleck as Nike co-founder and former CEO Phil Knight. Making Air was “an unbelievable experience that me and my husband and even my hair and makeup team still talk about to this day,” says Davis, whose husband, actor and producer Julius Tennon, plays Jordan’s father in the film. “Ben’s an auteur and so unbelievably kind and respectful. It was one of our top experiences of being treated the way we felt we deserved to be treated.”" 

World of Reel - "‘Air’ Screens to Positive Reviews at SXSW Film Festival"

"“Air” had been finished since last November and that Affleck was so high on the film that he pushed for Amazon to release the film in theaters in December and give it a last-minute Oscar push, sensing a weak Best Picture field. Amazon vetoed that, as the studio was planning a robust theatrical release given its high commercial hopes for Air — hopes that it didn’t want to see dashed by the December release of box office juggernaut Avatar: The Way of Water, which would surely have eaten it alive."

AIR (Feb. 2023)