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Auteur for the Underclass

Auteur for the Underclass

BY STEVE ERICKSON | A PSA used to air on New York cable stations showing a child witnessing domestic violence and ending with the words, “If this were a movie, you wouldn’t let them watch it.” This came back to mind while seeing Sean Baker’s “The Florida Project,” a film essentially told from a poor six-year-old girl’s […]

Hollywood MIA at Lincoln Center

Hollywood MIA at Lincoln Center

BY STEVE ERICKSON | There’s something new about the 55th edition of the New York Film Festival that may not be apparent at first glance. There’s basically no participation from conventional Hollywood studios. The festival has not given up on showing mainstream cinema, such as the opening night film (Richard Linklater’s “Last Flag Flying”; Sep. 28, 6 […]

An Outsider Look at Outsiders

An Outsider Look at Outsiders

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Low-cost video technology has always carried the promise of democratizing and demystifying filmmaking. The people who have benefited from it, however, are generally the kind of people who would become directors anyway. This is true in the US, at least. In Nigeria and other parts of Africa, digital video has led to […]

The Inimitable Soph

The Inimitable Soph

BY DAVID NOH | From birth to age 18, a girl needs good parents. From 18 to 35, she needs good looks. From 35 to 55, she needs a good personality. From 55 on, she needs good cash.” There were show biz originals, and then there was Sophie Tucker (1887-1966). Porcine-faced and decidedly stout, Tucker was, […]

Aiming for Realness on LA’s Gritty Streets  

Aiming for Realness on LA’s Gritty Streets  

BY GARY M. KRAMER | Tangerine,” Sean Baker’s funky little comedy — shot entirely on an iPhone — is full of dram-ah as motor-mouthed transgender sex worker Sin-dee (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez) finds out from her BFF Alexandra (Mya Taylor) that her boyfriend Chester (James Ransone) has been cheating on her while she’s been in jail. As […]