Author — Johnny Crawford

Author Archive: Johnny Crawford

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06/10/11

Tom McCarthy’s third film Win Win begins with protagonist Mike Flaherty (Paul Giamatti) jogging. It then cuts to an exchange between his wife and daughter. The six year old asks her mother (Amy Ryan) “Where’s Dad?” to which she replies “Running.” The little girl then inquires “From what?” This dialogue is emblematic of the way [...]

05/09/11

It is the year 2199. The Earth, a planet so lush and green in the 2170s, has been reduced to a ball of dry rock. This desolation has been caused—of course—by “radiation”. Earth’s only hope lies in the revered Japanese space programme—specifically the sexy crew of the Space Battleship Yamato. The world is counting on [...]

08/08/11

Nick Cave begins one of the greatest love songs ever written by claiming “I don’t believe in an interventionist God.” Terrence Malick’s beautiful agnostic prayer, The Tree of Life, opens with similar concerns. With the death of a child, his mother cannot begin to comprehend what kind of God could let this happen. Over two [...]

25/07/11

Small, furry and infectiously outgoing, Sesame Street’s Elmo is one of the most instantly-recognisable and lovable of Jim Henson’s stable of puppets. Less well-known is Kevin Clash. Much larger and more shy than his Muppet alter-ego, Clash and Elmo nonetheless share a childlike enthusiasm and, it seems, a nearly endless supply of goodness. Being Elmo [...]

30/05/11

Extreme poverty kills cultural specificity. The international success of Kiwi masterpiece Once Were Warriors is partly due to the fact that it could have been set in a similarly destitute place worldwide without having to tweak much of the narrative. In the same way, Pedro Costa’s 1997 breakthrough film Ossos could have been set in [...]

16/05/11

Marvel Studios’ films have been a mixed bag so far. While the first Iron Man film was a pleasant surprise, its sequel and The Incredible Hulk were less successful. Although neither were bad enough to derail proceedings, it is nonetheless with bated breath that fanboys have been waiting to see whether 2011’s double offering from [...]

02/05/11

One of the most versatile directors working today, Steven Soderbergh’s chameleon-like nature makes it difficult to define a ‘Steven Soderbergh Film’ even if he retains a relatively high level of artistic control and quality across his body of work. Despite being directed by Soderbergh, And Everything is Going Fine cannot reasonably be called a Steven [...]

11/04/11

Hillbillies have had it pretty hard in film. Between The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Deliverance and The Hills Have Eyes there hasn’t been much room for progressive portrayals of rural, working class white people, especially in the horror genre. Eli Craig’s debut film, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, attempts to address this disparity by parodying the [...]

11/04/11

Greg Mottola has earned a lot of brownie points in my book for directing both Johnny Crawford at Age 17: The Movie (Superbad) and Johnny Crawford at Age 20: The Movie (Adventureland), so I’d happily overlook a misstep in his career, no matter how atrocious. His most recent film, Paul, is far from being that [...]