Clytie’s Recommended Entertainment Articles (June 21-27, 2019)

Morning, my dearies! This week I have stuff on struggling artists, silent film star controversies and a princess movie! On with the articles…

On the 22nd, Chris O’Falt of IndieWire, asked filmmakers about their day jobs:
“This week the team at BAMcinemaFest has given a platform to an incredible collection of innovative films from around the world. But what do these short, documentary and scripted narrative directors do when they aren’t showcasing their films at a festival? How do they make a living when they aren’t busy making personal films? IndieWire asked the 2019 BAMcinemaFest directors that exact question.”

David Walsh, a comrade at the World Socialist Web Site, discussed protests over Bowling Green State University’s decision to remove the names of Lillian and Dorothy Gish from its film theater, on the 25th:
“Lillian Gish is only the latest in a series of artistic and political figures, past and present, to come under fire for alleged breaches of contemporary gender or racial and ethnic norms. Have the attacks on Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Ernest Hemingway, Jack London and Philip Roth, much less Thomas Jefferson and George Washington and countless others, with all the accompanying hand-wringing and sensationalism, contributed in any way to social awareness or progress? Or have they served primarily to bury the immense, objectively significant contributions of these men and women—and buttress the demands for special privileges by the affluent sections of the striving petty bourgeoisie launching them?”

Also on the 25th, Natalia Keogan talked to Roe Bressan and Jenni Olson about Gay USA, over at Filmmaker:
“Many of Bressan’s films outlined the political reality of being gay in the US—even the adult films which he dedicated much of his filmmaking career to. These films weren’t just about getting off; there was love, a story arc, and maybe even heartbreak. This was a deeply political statement in a time where gay sex was criminalized, and positive portrayals of blatantly gay relationships were scant in mainstream media.”

Sarah Jaffe talked about the oft-ignored racism and classism of Judge Judy for Slate, on the 26th:
“Sheindlin’s books give a startling look into how her mind works, and what they reveal is disturbing. They traffic in two major stereotypes that have been rightfully maligned as racist, as well as untrue. The first is the 1990s bogeyman, the superpredator, a species of (usually black) juvenile delinquents—she literally describes them as a ‘new breed’—so fundamentally without conscience that they needed to be locked up rather than make any attempt at reform. In writing about them, she reduces them to numbers, her contempt practically oozing: ‘First up is Elmo, fifteen, who weighs 160 pounds and has an IQ of 90.’ What we’re supposed to make of his fairly average weight and IQ, I’m not sure, but it’s clear that she thinks both render him somehow subhuman.”

Finally, also on the 26th Cat Smith celebrated the criminally underrated Princess Caraboo over at 25 Years Later:
“You know those quirky little films that come along from time to time? They don’t do particularly well commercially, but somehow you get the feeling they were never really supposed to. Despite having a cast list of character actors as long as your arm, they fade into obscurity fairly quickly. That’s what Princess Caraboo was like. I remember seeing commercials for it back in 1994, but then I blinked and the ad campaign seemed to be over. I hunted it down and saw it anyway. It and I have had a quiet little love affair ever since.”