Author Archives: Locke Peterseim

Interview: Upgrade Writer-director Leigh Whannell

Writer-director Leigh Whannell (co-creator of the Saw and Insidious series) takes a side step from the torture and supernatural horror genres with his latest film, Upgrade–an homage to the gritty sci-fi action films of the ’80s the filmmaker grew up on in Australia. Upgrade follows Grey (Logan Marshall-Green), a hands-on DIY guy living uncomfortably in […]

Interview: Hailiee Steinfeld, Star of The Edge of Seventeen

In 2010, 13-year-old Hailee Steinfeld made a strong first impression (and nabbed an Oscar nomination) for her work in the Coen Brother’s True Grit remake. Six years later, the young actress, model, and singer has a dozen more feature films on her resume–including Pitch Perfect 2, which also served as a launching pad for a very […]

Interview: Whit Stillman, Writer-director of Jane Austen’s Love & Friendship (Lady Susan)

From his first feature film, 1990’s Metropolitan, through Barcelona (1994), The Last Days of Disco (1998) and even 2011’s Damsels in Distress, Jane Austen’s influence on writer-director Whit Stillman has been obvious. His films’ fascination with the manners, aspirations, and behaviors of hermetic social circles; his characters’ tendency to constantly explain and justify their motivations; […]

Interview: Touched with Fire Writer-director Paul Dalio and Star Luke Kirby

Writer-director Paul Dalio’s first feature film draws directly from his personal experience with being both bipolar and a creative individual. Touched with Fire takes its title and thematic inspiration from Kay Redfield Jamison’s 1996 study Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament, in which the psychologist examines how the works of many artists, musicians, and writers–including […]

Interview: The Big Short Writer-director Adam McKay

The Big Short sneaked up on me. On us all. When awards season began, it wasn’t really in the conversation. After all, here was Adam McKay, the filmmaker behind (admittedly awesome) Will Ferrell comedies like Anchorman, Talladega Nights, and The Other Guys, and co-creator of the Funny or Die website co-writing and directing an adaptation of […]

What We Talk About When We Talk About Star Wars

“Star Wars, nothing but Star Wars, Give me those Star Wars, don’t let them end. Star Wars, if they should bar wars, please let these Star Wars stay.”   The return of Star Wars this past month to theaters, social media, box-office record books, the pop-culture landscape, every advertising tie-in imaginable, and seemingly many of our […]

Interview: Nasty Baby Director Sebastián Silva

After a while watching mainstream, independent, and art-house films, one of the most pleasant things is being genuinely surprised by a film when it turns out to be more than you expected in ways you didn’t see coming. Without spoiling that sense of discovery for others, Chilean writer-director Sebastián Silva’s latest film Nasty Baby offers […]

Interview: The 33 Director Patricia Riggen

Mexican director Patricia Riggen’s drama The 33 tells the story of the 33 men trapped 2,300 feet underground for 69 days in 2010 following a cave-in at the gold mine they were working in the Atacama Desert near Copiapó, Chile. The men survived for 17 days on nearly non-existent food rations before being found by […]

The Great Lie at the Peak of Everest

In recent years I’ve often used the term “spectacle” as a critical slur when it comes to CGI scenery over substance. But there’s reason I get on my soapbox about moviegoers’ increasing addiction to grand cinematic (usually CGI) imagery, and it’s not just because a growing number of popular films spend so much time and […]

The Hollow Weight of Black Mass

We’re all familiar with the Big Pivot the Cinematic Industrial Complex makes over Labor Day, when suddenly the theaters are no longer stuffed with superheroes and exploding action vehicles (starring Good Actors Paying for New Homes in Southern Europe), but instead begin to fill with Important Meaningful films about things (starring Good Actors Doing Serious […]

“While all the other arts were born naked, [film], the youngest, has been born fully-clothed. It can say everything before it has anything to say. It is as if the savage tribe, instead of finding two bars of iron to play with, had found scattering the seashore fiddles, flutes, saxophones, trumpets, grand pianos by Erhard and Bechstein, and had begun with incredible energy, but without knowing a note of music, to hammer and thump upon them all at the same time.”

--Virginia Woolf