An Immodest Proposal: Artist Jill Magid on Luis Barragán and Her First Feature Film

Barragan vs Barragán. The former: copyrighted by the Vitra Foundation in Switzerland, overseen by Federica Zanco. The latter: the way that Mexico’s most acclaimed architect—Luis Barragán—spelled his name till his death in 1988. That the accent mark makes such a difference is at the crux of The Proposal, conceptual artist Jill Magid’s debut feature and documentary about her attempts to access the architect’s professional archive.

Part suspense film, part eccentric romance, The Proposal chronicles Magid’s written correspondence with Federica Zanco, culminating in a brazen proposition to move the Barragán archive back to Mexico—a “proposal” as inventive and unorthodox as the architect himself.   

Magid and I spoke on the phone following the debut of The Proposal at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival. Her film opens in New York Friday, May 24th, at the IFC Center.

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‘Aladdin’ Flies Below Even the Lowest of Expectations

If you’ve seen the original 1992 Aladdin, which is probably most of the people who are reading this, then you know that this new remake has some big shoes to fill. Most likely, we all have the same exact reason why— the late Robin Williams simply makes Aladdin what it is. I rewatched the original just the other day, and I was only mildly enjoying it until Genie lit up the screen with his big, blue energetic personality, taking in the ‘Friend Like Me’ number in all its technicolor glory,  I fully remembered why the 2D-animated film was so cherished. Though, even in its original form, there’s a lot that is problematic with Disney’s take on Aladdin, from the ethnic hodgepodge of cultural tourism to the pop culture references that keep it from transcending the early 90s release date. But, one special quality that made the film stand out from a well-established canon of fairytales, was Williams as Genie, and his raw sincerity.

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And how could this remake ever recapture that spirit? Well, it simply doesn’t. I don’t think anyone truly expected it would. We know the story of Aladdin, the titular underdog street rat with a heart of gold, who learns the importance of staying true to oneself as he wishes on a magic lamp for a more extravagant life with Princess Jasmine. I’ll save the spiel. Although, I wish Walt Disney Studios would also give us the same amount of faith in our intelligence. Instead, we’re presented with a passionless retelling of the original Aladdin, the same, general, basic plot beats with only minor alterations (hold on, Genie fucks?!) that don’t seem to add anything besides runtime. Director Guy Ritchie does make sense for a more action/adventure based Disney story, but his directorial influence is only hinted at in small sequences of spectacle. So, we’re left with a question often raised whenever a new one of these remakes release, but seriously, what’s the point?

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Podcast Game of Thrones Special #6

The end of an era is here and we’re celebrating with a special podcast! For the last season of Game of Thrones, we’re going to have a podcast after each episode.

Dilara Elbir and Lucy May reflect on the last eight years of their life as they discuss the last episode of Game of Thrones: The Iron Throne. Was it worth it? What were the best moments, and the worst? Where do we go from here?

Spoilers lie ahead, so beware! Listen now on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Stitcher, and anywhere else you can find your podcasts!

 

On our Patreon page, we set a goal of $75 to start working on our podcast and four months ago we hit that goal, thanks to your help! Every time we gain a new Patron, we come one step closer to saving enough money to pay to our writers. You can help us with as little as $1.

See you next week for our last episode on Game of Thrones- featuring Hannah Woodhead!

Why Lisa McGee’s ‘Derry Girls’ Should Be Our State of Mind Too

Lisa McGee’s Derry Girls does everything right by teenage girls. More importantly, it fills our screens with the sheer abundance of life itself – unbridled optimism, the courage to regret, all while cognisant of the violence which defined 1990s Ireland. Set in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, Derry Girls focalises its evocative, and starkly honest portrayal of this era through the lives of five working class Catholic school girls (including James). Continue reading “Why Lisa McGee’s ‘Derry Girls’ Should Be Our State of Mind Too”

VIDEO: Game of Thrones, A Farewell

It’s the end of an era. Game of Thrones ended this week, and while the finale didn’t live up to our expectations, it’s still sad to see it go. To honor this show and everything it has made us feel in this last decade, Lucy (@iconicaesthetic) commemorated the show with an amazing supercut that will remind you why you’ve loved visiting Westeros every weekend it in the first place.

Follow us on @muchadocinema on twitter for more content like this!

Interview: ‘The Ranger’ Director Jenn Wexler Talks Punk Rock, Final Girls, and Posers

Jenn Wexler’s feature film debut, The Ranger, is a punk rock slasher that pits city-slicker punks against a nature-loving park ranger with a taste for blood. It is a film that emanates beautiful chaos, set to a screaming soundtrack that makes the film feel both timeless and so quintessentially 80s. It is unlike any slasher you’ve seen (read our review). Wexler took the time to speak with me about her first feature film, growing up in the punk rock community, and translating that experience into a horror movie.

The interview has been edited for clarity.

Much Ado About Cinema: Why did you want to make a slasher about punk and punk rock?

Jenn Wexler: So the idea of these punks that go up against this park ranger was originally the idea of my co-writer. We were in college together, we majored in screenwriting, and this was his senior screenplay. We didn’t know what to do with it at the time. But we workshopped all of our ideas in class and I became so attracted to the idea of punks vs a park ranger because just within that there was so much about rebellion versus authority. There’s so much you can do visually with that. Also, when I was a teenager, I used to go to a lot of punk shows. I grew up in this suburban town and I didn’t feel like I fit in at school, but I did feel like I fit in when I went to these shows. I already had this history with that world, so there was always something about this idea that I was attracted to.

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How the Most Popular Show on Television Preys on Ignorance: “The Big Bang Theory” and Me

I think it’s pretty indisputable that the language surrounding “nerds” has drastically changed in the last decade or so, at least in the United States. Looking back at dated nostalgia pieces, the rhetoric surrounding “geeks,” “dweebs,” and “nerds” gets pretty scary and antagonistic. As our country has matured (in some ways) we have seen a slight shift in this language, where scholastic achievement is being valued alongside physical and social. However, I know many people who have been repeatedly demeaned and shamed for their interests and intellectual tendencies. I am one of those stories, having had schoolmates, adults, and anonymous internet personas ridicule, tease and make me feel worse about myself because my interests didn’t align with theirs. This was confusing to me, as I thought that I was supposed to be supported for wanting to learn and grow. I felt like I needed some examples of how to be a nerd in the world, as I couldn’t find it in my own environment.

Continue reading “How the Most Popular Show on Television Preys on Ignorance: “The Big Bang Theory” and Me”