Perry On Pakula

“I just don't think any of his movies for me go below a B, and some of them are an A+. And I think that's a pretty admirable range for someone who worked over so many decades and so many changing paradigms of the industry he was working in.”

This month, ARP talks AJP as indie filmmaker Alex Ross Perry joins us to go deep on why he loves the films of Alan J Pakula. You never knew you needed to hear the director of Queen of Earth professing his love for the director of All the President's Men, but now you know such a thing exists, how can you resist?

Before that, Alex talks to us about the ways in which filmmakers can get their films in front of audiences in a world where no distribution model seems like a sure thing. He covers streaming vs cinema, casting methods, and working for Disney in a fairly wide-ranging conversation.

And before that, Rochelle and Lee look at some of the key films of the month, including heist spin-off Ocean's 8, sci-fi action flick Upgrade, Israeli drama Foxtrot, and animated superhero sequel Incredibles 2. And we promise, the films were not chosen due to their pleasingly uniform red poster aesthetic. Some things just work out that way.

If you're unfamiliar with Pakula's work, then that's what this show is for. If you're unfamiliar with Alex's work, start by checking out trailers for Listen Up Philip, Queen of Earth, Golden Exits and Christopher Robin.

Further reading:

  • Lee's not really remaking the most recent Carry On film. He's making fun of some nerds who aren't really remaking the most recent Star Wars films. If you don't know the story, take a big dose of there-but-for-the-grace-of-God-go-I and dive into the saddest thing you'll see this week. Aside from all the bad things happening literally everywhere in the world.
  • If you've got a ScreenHub login, check out Rochelle's piece on how Upgrade was made on the microbudget genre model. And if you don't have a ScreenHub login, a friendly billionaire will probably offer to implant one in your spine.
  • Was Upgrade's ethically-compromised doctor Ming-Zhu Hii really on Hyphenates? Yes, and it was only two months ago, so you should really be all over it. Have a listen to her episode here.
  • Once upon a time there was a man called Paul who hosted Hell Is For Hyphenates. But he wanted to make feature films, and the making of feature films doesn't leave much time for film reviewing. Or does it? Last week we heard Paul giving his own take on Foxtrot (alongside Hi4H alum Emma Westwood) on RRR's Plato's Cave, which you can listen back to here.
  • If you want to know why Lee was ranting about the Wreck It Ralph 2 trailer, you can watch it here and either agree with him or yell abuse the contrary.
  • That copy of Pakula's 1987 drama Orphans that was so hard to track down was eventually located at Picture Search Video at 139 Swan Street, Richmond, for all you Victorians on the hunt for obscure titles. After days of hunting, they had it for only four bucks, so we felt compelled to give them an appreciative shout-out.

Outro music: score from All the President's Men, composed by David Shire

The latest episode of Hell Is For Hyphenates, featuring Alex Ross Perry talking the films of Alan J Pakula, can be heard on Stitcher Smart Radio, subscribed to on iTunes, or downloaded/streamed directly from our website.

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