The Man Who Wasn’t There is a 2001 British-American neo-noir crime film written, produced and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. Billy Bob Thornton stars in the title role. Also featured are Tony Shalhoub, Scarlett Johansson, James Gandolfini, and Coen regulars Frances McDormand, Michael Badalucco, Richard Jenkins and Jon Polito.
The original soundtrack to The Man Who Wasn’t There consists of classical music, mainly piano sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven, interspersed with cues composed by Carter Burwell.
Jodorowsky’s Dune is a 2013 American-French documentary film directed by Frank Pavich. The film explores cult film director Alejandro Jodorowsky‘s unsuccessful attempt to adapt and film Frank Herbert‘s 1965 science fiction novel Dune in the mid-1970s.
Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gave Jodorowsky’s Dune a 98% “Certified Fresh” rating based on reviews from 108 critics. The site’s consensus states: “Part thoughtful tribute, part bittersweet reminder of a missed opportunity, Jodorowsky’s Dune offers a fascinating look at a lost sci-fi legend.”
spacetime coordinates: Mojave Desert, California 1998
Sam Was Here is a 2016 French-American mystery horror co-produced and directed by Christophe Deroo, making his feature debut, from a screenplay co-written with Clement Tuffreau. The film stars Rusty Joiner and Sigrid La Chapelle.
spacetime coordinates: 2011 Los Angeles
Drive is a 2011 American neo-noir crime film directed by Nicolas Winding Refn and written by Hossein Amini, based on the 2005 novel by James Sallis. It stars Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Christina Hendricks, Ron Perlman, Oscar Isaac and Albert Brooks.
Journalists and reviewers have called Drive a “classic Los Angeles heist-gone-wrong story”, a “tribute to the genre of car films” in the vein of movies like Bullitt (1968). As a character study, Drive examines themes of “loyalty, loneliness and the dark impulses that rise up even when we try our hardest to suppress them.” It combines comic gore, film noir and B-movie style and Hollywood spectacle, resulting in “a bizarre concoction…reminiscent of David Lynch‘s Mulholland Drive…Quentin Tarantino‘s Pulp Fiction, and [with] angst-laden love scenes that would not be out of place in a Scandinavian drama”. – read more about Style and inspiration –
the film contains abundant, evocative, intense images of Los Angeles. from the little seen back streets of downtown LA to the dry arid outposts on the peaks of the desert landscape surrounding it, LA is re-imagined all the way down to the rocky cliffs by the sea.
While Drive is set in the present day, it carries a heavy 1980s atmosphere that is cautiously set from beginning to end and is underlined not only by the vehicles or music and clothes, but also by its architecture. The parts of the city seen in the Valley and by downtown Los Angeles are cheap stucco and mirrored glass. Refn avoided certain areas to preserve the gloomy atmosphere often leaving out more contemporary buildings. Drab background settings include the Southern California commercial strip. As the Los Angeles Times pointed out, whenever gleaming buildings are shown, it is because they are being seen from a distance. Refn shot those scenes from a helicopter at night in Bunker Hill, Los Angeles.
spacetime coordinates: 1954 Arlington Heights, Illinois > San Bernardino, California
The Founder is a 2016 American biographical drama film directed by John Lee Hancock and written by Robert Siegel. The film stars Michael Keaton as businessman Ray Kroc, and portrays the story of his creation of the McDonald’s fast food chain. Nick Offerman and John Carroll Lynch co-star as McDonald’s founders Richard and Maurice McDonald.
Ravenous is a 1999 Czech-American black comedy horror-suspense film directed by Antonia Bird and starring Guy Pearce, Robert Carlyle, Jeffrey Jones and David Arquette. The film revolves around cannibalism in 1840s California and some elements bear similarities to the story of the Donner Party and that of Alferd Packer. Screenwriter Ted Griffin lists Packer’s story, as recounted in a couple of paragraphs of Dashiell Hammett‘s The Thin Man, as one of his inspirations for Carlyle’s character.
The film’s darkly humorous and ironic take on its gruesome subject matter have led some to label it simply as a black comedy or a satire. The film’s unique score by Michael Nyman and Damon Albarn generated a significant amount of attention.
the wendigo (Algonquian folklore)
spacetime coordinates: 1898 – 1911 – 1927 // Southern California
There Will Be Blood is a 2007 American epic historical drama film written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson and starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Dano. The film was inspired by Upton Sinclair‘s novel Oil! It tells the story of a silver miner-turned-oilman (Day-Lewis) on a ruthless quest for wealth during Southern California’s oil boom of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.