Rough Cut Blog

Stumbling down Memory Lane

David Lynch’s memoir/autobiography Room to Dream and a message from an old acquaintance now living in Mexico have stirred up memories of my experiences with the filmmaker in the early ’80s, when I wrote about Eraserhead and worked on Dune.

The English-language invisibility of Alfred Döblin

Günter Lamprecht as Franz Biberkopf in Fassbinder's epic adaptation of Alfred Döblin's Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980)

Remarkably, despite the fame of Fassbinder’s adaptation of Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980), author Alfred Döblin remains little known among English-speaking readers, with few of his monumental novels translated. My brother Chris has made it his mission to change that situation with the launch of Beyond Alexanderplatz, a website devoted to his own on-going translation project.

The cinematic art of Cristian Mungiu

Voichita (Cosmina Stratan) has chosen an austere, almost Medieval life, in Cristian Mungiu's Beyond the Hills (2912)

Two recent Criterion releases, Cristian Mungiu’s Beyond the Hills (2012) and Graduation (2016), illustrate the richness of the Romanian New Wave; formally rich, morally complex, and dramatically powerful, they both look superb on Blu-ray and Criterion supplements them with substantial contextual material which reveal Mungiu to be one of the finest artists working in film today.