Listen to “‘The Panic in Needle Park’ with Harrison Blackman” on the ‘Film at Fifty’ podcast

It was great to be a guest once more on the Film at Fifty podcast, this time discussing the 1971 film The Panic in Needle Park, a performance which launched Al Pacino’s career and netted him the role of Michael Corleone in The Godfather.

You can listen to the podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts! Thanks for listening!

Read “Shariff Korver’s ‘Do Not Hesitate’ (2021)” in The Brooklyn Rail

Check out my review of Shariff Korver’s new film, Do Not Hesitate, as part of The Brooklyn Rail’s 2021 Tribeca Film Festival coverage.

The Dutch-language film explores the international dimensions of the War on Terror, particularly regarding the allied coalition in Afghanistan. The subject is especially relevant given the US military’s contemporary withdrawal from the nation.

Read the essay here to learn more about this war film that also serves as a psychological thriller and a complex character study that explores the trauma of Dutch soldiers given their tenuous relationship with the local population.

Read “The Snyder Cut’s homage to Jack Kirby’s ‘Fourth World’ mythos” on Medium

After a long hiatus, I’m bringing back my Medium movie blog. Join me each week as I try to keep up with HBO Max / Warner Bros. releases!

This week I spoke with literary scholar David Ting about the inspiration for “Zack Snyder’s Justice League,” which draws heavily from Jack Kirby’s “Fourth World” stories. You can find the article here.

Thanks for reading!

Listen to “THX 1138 and the Career of George Lucas” episode on the Film at Fifty podcast

50 years ago this week, the film career of George Lucas began with the visually dazzling sci-fi film THX-1138. Brian Rowe was generous enough to invite me back on his podcast to discuss THX-1138 and the influential career of George Lucas. I do also go out on a limb and suggest that The Phantom Menace is better than its reputation suggests? Maybe??

The podcast is available on the Film at Fifty podcast channel on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and wherever you get your podcasts. Thanks for listening!

Listen to “Mank and the Career of David Fincher” on the “Film at Fifty” podcast

This past week I had the privilege of discussing the new Netflix film, “Mank,” and the career of director David Fincher on the “Film at Fifty” podcast. “Mank” is the story of Herman Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman), the screenwriter of “Citizen Kane,” based on a script written by Jack Fincher, David Fincher’s late father.

This episode, a Patreon exclusive, is available on the Film at Fifty Patreon page and on YouTube (for free).

Thanks for listening!

“Film at Fifty” Podcast Episode: “I Never Sang for My Father”

I want to thank Brian Rowe for inviting me as a guest on his new cinema history podcast, “Film at Fifty,” which spotlights films which came out fifty years ago on the day.

This week we discussed “I Never Sang for My Father,” an obscure, Oscar-nominated Gene Hackman movie about death and aging (as well as the career of Gene Hackman). So, if that sounds fun for your virtual commute, we’ve got you covered.

The podcast is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, YouTube, and basically anywhere you get your podcasts.

Read “The Rise of Skywalker’s Story Problem” on Medium

Two years ago, I wrote The Last Jedi had a ‘snark problem,’ a critique that resonated with more than 10k readers and was featured as an audio story (!).

Well, this time The Rise of Skywalker has a ‘story problem’—a cavalier attitude toward storytelling that renders the movie into a series of cheap workarounds which discount the intelligence of its audience and bely its creators’ indifference to their own work, showcasing a greater problem in popular entertainment more generally.

Read my latest Star Wars review on Medium (spoiler alert). Thanks for reading!