Friday, 4 April 2014

REMEMBERING KURT COBAIN: 8 Must-See Grunge Films


This April 5th marks the 20th anniversary of the death of Nirvana legendary frontman and grunge king, Kurt Cobain.
Long after Generation Xers grew up, grunge continues to define a globally pervasive era of film, music, and pop culture. Who knew? 

As any self-respecting hipster sporting a second-hand flannel and combat boots knows, the best trends never disappear—they just come back harder. Featuring uber-hot casts, iconic fashion statements and epic soundtracks, these are my top 8 big-screen grunge offerings of all time. 




Saturday, 1 February 2014

NYMPHOMANIAC: STACY MARTIN & SOPHIE KENNEDY CLARK



Are you ready to be a part of the sexual revolution?” actresses Stacy Martin and Sophie Kennedy Clark were asked by the photographer when they shot the controversial poster campaign for Lars von Trier’s latest cinematic revelation, Nymphomaniac.To promote the four-hour epic, in which Charlotte Gainsbourg recounts her life’s erotic adventures to aging bachelor Stellan Skarsgård, each cast member – from Uma Thurman to Shia LaBeouf – was required to give their best orgasm face. 
The graphic film was a baptism of fire for both 22-year-old French newcomer and current face of Rag & Bone Martin and Scottish 23-year-old Clark, marking their feature debuts. I met the talented pair in London to discuss female sexuality and power politics – and to get a peek into what it was really like working with von Trier.

More here.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Michael Cera Trips Out in CRYSTAL FAIRY



Michael Cera sheds his "funny guy" geek act to play troubled drug tourist Jamie in Sebastian Silva’s Sundance award-winning Crystal Fairy & the Magical Cactus. While trekking through Chile in search of a fabled hallucinogen, Jamie finds himself accompanied by a merry band of modern pranksters, including hippie queen Crystal Fairy (the dead-sincere and often nude Gaby Hoffman, sporting unaffectedly bushy pubes). 

Cinematic drug-fuelled roadtrips have been well-immortalised by the likes of Fear & LoathingOn the Road, etc. But never before by such a ragtag young crew, and for such uncertain reasons. Then again, never before has it been so easy and popular for western backpackers to travel abroad in order to access more "exotic" psychedelic brews, like Ayahuasca in Peru, whether for spiritual growth, expansion of consciousness or just a huge mental mindfuck.


Check out my interview with Michael here

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

THE F-WORD



Who says modern day feminism is dead? 

Naomi Wolf singlehandedly launched third-wave feminism with her bestselling book The Beauty Myth (1991), written at just 28. 
Now 51, the political activist and social critic is still stirring up controversy, most recently by exploring the connection between the vagina and the female brain in Vagina: A New Biography. Meanwhile, young British/Australian author Evie Wyld followed up her multi-award-winning debut novel, After The Fire, a Still Small Voice, with the haunting All the Birds, Singing last year. Featuring an isolated female protagonist attempting to escape her past on a windswept British isle, 
it landed her on Granta’s prestigious “Best of Young British Novelists”. 


I spoke to Naomi and Evie about their favourite female icons and pornography in the post-digital age for Dazed's special GIRLS RULE February issue... 




Thursday, 16 January 2014

INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS: CHATTING W/ STAR OSCAR ISAAC



Winner of the Cannes Jury Prize 2013 and nominated for two Academy Awards, critics are universally hailing Inside Llewyn Davis as the Coen brothers’s latest triumph. But before you get too carried away, Oscar Isaac—who stars as the eponymous, down-at-the-heels folk singer of 1961—would like to set the record straight. As tempting it might be to liken Inside Llewyn Davis to Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist As a Young Man or wax rhapsodic about what Ulysses the cat symbolizes in the film, Isaac affirms that the Coens just “don’t talk about that shit.”

Llewyn’s looping, nightmarish plot is tempered by heartfelt and gorgeously-executed songs arranged and performed by Isaac himself, who prepped for the starring role by performing in NYC Village cafes and bars. Isaac will be the first to admit that the starring role was a dream come true, not only for him as a die-hard Coens fan and actor, but as a musician of some twenty years. Plagued by what he describes as “a mixture of self-destructiveness and really shitty luck,” Llewyn’s journey isn’t just a homage to the unsung struggling folk artists of America, but inevitably reminds you of a defiantly anti-heroic, counter-culture answer to On The Road. (Garrett Hedlund even pops up in a cameo appearance as a struggling Beat poet chauffeuring around a dying jazz junkie, portrayed by John Goodman.)

Isaac elaborated on why he wasn’t at all concerned with Llewyn being a “likeable” character, what it was like working with Carey Mulligan again, and how—by an easy twist of fate—Llewyn’s story could have been his own.


Read on HERE.








Monday, 6 January 2014

COMFORT WOMEN WANTED!


Chang-Jin Lee’s "COMFORT WOMEN WANTED” series explores the largest case of human trafficking in the 20th century. Her bold red and black propaganda posters proclaim the systematic exploitation of over 200,000 young girls forced into sex slavery by the Japanese army during WWII—a human rights violation that remains unrecognized by the Japanese government today. 
Since 2008, the NY-based artist has based her multimedia exhibition on interviews with Korean, Chinese, Taiwanese, Indonesian, Filipino, and Dutch “comfort women” survivors, as well as a former Japanese soldier. Lee traveled to all these countries because she wanted people to understand the “comfort women” issue—“not as a Korean or an Asian-only issue, but as an important international human rights issue.”
More here.




















Thursday, 19 December 2013

KILL THEM ALL: A Clockwork Orange





















Today in 1971, Stanley Kubrick unleashed his dazzling, demented “ultra-violent” masterpiece, A Clockwork Orange, unto the world. Or rather, the US. Accused of being a "bad pornographer" and glorifying violence, Kubrick’s paen to a dystopian future Britain ignited so much controversy that it was censored before its release in the UK for the next 27 years – the irony of which was probably not entirely lost to the director of scathing socio-political satires like Dr. Strangelove

After a series of copycat acts of violence allegedly inspired by his film, Kubrick was forced to withdraw it. In March 1972, during the trial of a fourteen-year-old male accused of the manslaughter of a classmate, the prosecutor suggested that Clockwork had a sinister relevance to the case. The film was also linked to the murder of an elderly vagrant by a 16 year old boy in Bletchley, Buckinghamshire, who pleaded guilty after telling police that friends had told him of Clockwork "and the beating up of an old boy like this one". The UK press also managed to blame Kubrick’s work for a rape in which the attackers also sang "Singin’ in the Rain".

More here.