The Florida Project Book

At long last, my new book on Sean Baker’s indie film The Florida Project (2017) was published last week. It’s the 3rd book in a series entitled 21st Century Film Essentials from University of Texas Press, and the 4th filmRead More

Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict

Last week was Peggy Guggenheim’s birthday, which elicited numerous posts about her online. It prompted me to re-watch Lisa Immordino Vreeland’s fascinating documentary Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict (2015), which is available for viewing on Amazon Prime. The film benefits fromRead More

The Lost Leonardo

I saw the Danish filmmaker Andreas Koefoed’s new documentary The Lost Leonardo at the Tribeca Film Festival. It’s currently playing at Film Forum. Like the Netflix film, Made You Look: The Story About Fake Art, it documents an art worldRead More

I’ll Come Running

Posted on : by : jjmurphy

Although many indie filmmakers—Gus Van Sant, Matthew Porterfield and Joe Swanberg, among others—have used more minimal forms of scripts, such as outlines and treatments, Spencer Parsons and Line Langebek [Knudsen] have argued in favor of a more detailed and “overwritten”Read More


Posted on : by : jjmurphy

In Bob Byington’s comedy Harmony and Me (2010), Harmony (Justin Rice) complains to an acupuncturist about his ex-girlfriend, “She broke my heart, but she’s still at it. She hasn’t finished the job. She’s breaking my heart.” He continues, “My heartRead More

Tiny Furniture

Posted on : by : jjmurphy

A move toward the autobiographical has been one of the more interesting developments to surface in recent indie cinema. Azazel Jacobs’s Momma Man (2008) and Josh and Benny Safdie’s Daddy Longlegs (2010) can serve as reference points. Lena Dunham’s TinyRead More

The Box

Posted on : by : jjmurphy

As much as I admire Richard Kelly’s wildly eccentric indie debut Donnie Darko (2001), I confess that, like most people, his much anticipated second effort Southland Tales (2007) left me cold. When asked by an interviewer in Wired whether hisRead More

Ingmar Bergman RIP

Posted on : by : jjmurphy

When I was in college, I was already familiar with the major Bergman films – The Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries, The Virgin Spring, Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence – through various film society screenings. I spentRead More