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David Poland

By David Poland

Thankful '08

It has been a year of much turmoil in this country and in both industries of filmed entertainment and journalism. So much so that a list of my film pleasure thanks seems insanely indulgent. And unfortunately, in this year, far too limited. But it has been a tradition for a long time and one that gives me some perspective and no small amount of pleasure. And so

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7 Responses to “Thankful '08”

  1. IOIOIOI says:

    Good stuff as usual Pulsar, but you had to once again THROW TDK UNDER THE BUS! Oh you will see, sir. You will see. I am thankful for you still being in business though. Nice little corner of the world you made for yourself here.

  2. LexG says:

    I AM THANKFUL FOR KRISTEN STEWART, CHRISTINA RICCI, PARIS HILTON, Alicia Keys, Evan Rachel Wood, Jessica Simpson, Jessica Alba, Jessica Biel, David Poland not banning me, Defamer for pimping my shit, Jason Statham, Ridley Scott, vodka, beer, whiskey, metal, The Shield having a perfect last season, Viagra, and the scene in The Duchess where Hayley Hotwell macks on Keira’s neck, FUCK YEAH.

  3. IOIOIOI says:

    Never ever leave the woman off of that list who has no idea how to play a celibate woman. Nat Portman… A number 1! Also; you need Viagra? You got a heart condition Lex? Do you carry a rattler around with you?

  4. Not David Bordwell says:

    Hey, David, I’ve been meaning to thank you for Larry Gross and his 48 hrs. Diaries. Revelatory. Wife and I rented The Warriors one weekend and double-featured Streets of Fire with To Live and Die in LA. Walter Hill — amazing. Makes Friedkin look infantile and self-indulgent in comparison (the car chase, e.g., is interminable and absurd — this guy made French Connection?!?).
    Anyway, thanks for publishing that. Best thing I’ve read on MCN all year.

  5. LexG says:

    Maybe my all time favorite director; Quite possibly the only “mainstream” director as nihilistic and contemptuous of ALL HUMANITY as yours truly.
    In his movies, EVERYBODY GETS OWNED. How riveting is it when EVERY CHARACTER ON SCREEN IS AN ABSOLUTE MONSTER, *exactly* like in real life, where THE WORLD IS BULLSHIT and EVERYONE is an asshole?

  6. Not David Bordwell says:

    I see what you mean about Friedkin, Lex, but it’s hard to deny that the man who brought us Red Heat and the first episode of Deadwood OWNS in equal measure.
    Don’t make AHNULD rip off your wooden leg and beat you with it.

  7. Not David Bordwell says:

    As long as we’re being thankful, your system for defeating typepad frustration works like a charm.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon