Time for a little variety here at The Movie Maestro! This is the first of what I call Maestro’s Picks: a sampling of different articles, videos, and other little tidbits of cinema and pop culture that I found entertaining, and would love to share with all of you! Without further ado, let’s jump in!
Do you love Don Bluth animated features? Ever wonder why his films can leave you a blubbering mess on your living room floor, wondering what kind of child-hating sicko would make a kid’s movie so depressing? Check out this article by Meg Shields of The Film School Rejects, “The Melancholy of Don Bluth,” for your answer. And now I need to watch The Land Before Time again.
As I posted yesterday, the next week will have a Kong theme running through to commemorate the release of Kong: Skull Island, so bone up on your Kong knowledge with a trio of articles: check out Turner Classic Movies’ page on the original Kong, which lists everything from trivia to a brief overview on the big ape’s impact on pop culture. Then swing by an archived Jump Cut article by David Rosen, an analysis of the racial and political attitudes of the time which probably contributed to the film’s wild success. Finally, prepare for the eventual clash that Skull Island will be setting up with this article from Birth, Movies, Death, taking a brief look back at the 1962 Japanese blockbuster King Kong vs Godzilla, a film which will be seeing a rebirth in Warner Brothers’ new “Monsterverse” in 2020.
Speaking of Godzilla, there’s a burgeoning YouTube account, barely a year old, known as “The Long Take.” Run by a user known as Rafa, The Long Take ventures to provide a series of video essays on cinema, focusing on critical and interpretive analysis. In this insightful video, his first, Rafa offers a comparative look at the original kaiju classic Gojira, and Gareth Edwards’ successful American reboot, 2014’s Godzilla. A great essay, A+ worthy, and I don’t just say that because I’m a biased tokusatsu-fanatic.
Another great YouTube series is the ever entertaining brain-food Cody’s Alternate History Hub. An entire channel dedicated to the ‘What If?”, the Alternate History Hub uses knowledge of geography, population and other historical facts to predict alternate outcomes that could have happened had things gone differently in history. Every once in a while, Cody will turn his analytical eye to the realm of pop culture, imagining the histories that gave rise to the worlds of, say, The Man in the High Castle or Red Dawn. In this newest video, Cody dips his hand into the current tumultuous political waters to serve up the dystopian world of 1984:
That’s all for today folks!