The infamous, shadowy British graffiti street artist Banksy has literally left his mark on cities throughout the world. He comes in contact with Thierry Guetta, a Los Angeles-based Frenchman who videotapes various underground art escapades, and later is transformed into an art phenomenon dubbed "Mr. Brainwash." Rhys Ifans narrates an overlapping documentary where the line between what is real and what might be fake blurs, as modern art and celebrity are put under the microscope. [more inside]
Follow The Assassin through a forbidding world of tortured souls, decrepit bunkers, and wretched monstrosities forged from the most primordial horrors of the subconscious mind. Every set, creature, and effigy in this macabre masterpiece is hand-crafted and painstakingly animated using traditional stop-motion techniques. MAD GOD is a labor of love, a testament to the power of creative grit, and an homage to the timeless art of stop-motion animation. Ready your eyes. Ready your spirit. Prepare to meet your maker. [more inside]
Rizzoli has re-published Codex Seraphinianus in a very handsome new 40th anniversary edition. [more inside]
An Interpol agent tracks the world's most wanted art thief. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Voting Rights Season 8, Ep 24
This week.... Two hosts of The View test positive for COVID mid-show moments before Kamala Harris was due to appear. In Del Rio, Texas, Haitians attempting to cross the border were met with border patrol agents on horseback wielding makeshift whips. And Now: Local News Anchors Announce The Changing Of The Seasons The Only Way They Know How. ("It's Fall, y'all!") Main story (YouTube, 20 minutes): Voting rights, why they're under attack, and what should be done to protect them. And Now: The Utterly Spectacular Dramatic Pauses Of ESPN's Stephen A. Smith. Finally: duck stamps. They're not postage stamps, but kind of a hunting permit. But they're also collectable, and effective at raising money towards wetland preservation. There is much more to this than you'd expect there to be (see inside for more info). [more inside]
Fake or Fortune?: Back at the gallery, the plot thickens Season 0, Ep 0
True detective TV brimming with mystery, suspense, and art history. British art dealer and historian Philip Mould pairs with journalist and Antiques Roadshow presenter Fiona Bruce to examine the provenance and attribution of questioned works of art. [more inside]
In 2008, a few of the world's most distinguished Leonardo Da Vinci experts gathered around an easel at the National Gallery in London to examine a mysterious painting: an unassuming Salvator Mundi (Latin for Savior of the World), found in a shady New Orleans auction house, that a select few believed to be a long-forgotten masterwork by Leonardo Da Vinci. That day, Salvator Mundi was authenticated as being the creation of Da Vinci himself, and thus, one of the most beguiling and perplexing stories of the 21st century was set into motion. [more inside]
In 1990, two men dressed as cops con their way into a Boston museum and steal a fortune in art. Take a deep dive into this daring and notorious crime. [more inside]
A woman walks into a New York gallery with a cache of unknown masterworks. Thus begins a story of art world greed, willfulness and a high-stakes con. [more inside]
Taskmaster: Series 4 Season 4, Ep 0
Greg Davies is the Taskmaster. "Little" Alex Horne is the Taskmaster's assistant. Contestants are Hugh Dennis, Joe Lycett, Lolly Adefope, Mel Giedroyc and Noel Fielding. THAT'S RIGHT IT'S A BAKE-OFF SHOWDOWN. Also, the seasons are longer now: behold, 8 glorious episodes! Episodes are available in the USA on the Taskmaster YouTube channel (whole season playlist), and in the UK on the Channel 4 website. [more inside]
Benvenuto Cellini was a celebrated Renaissance sculptor and goldsmith - a passionate craftsman who was admired and resented by the most powerful political and artistic personalities in sixteenth-century Florence, Rome and Paris. He was also a murderer and a braggart, a shameless adventurer who at different times experienced both papal persecution and imprisonment, and the adulation of the royal court. Inn-keepers and prostitutes, kings and cardinals, artists and soldiers rub shoulders in the pages of his notorious autobiography: a vivid portrait of the manners and morals of both the rulers of the day and of their subjects. Written with supreme powers of invective and an irrepressible sense of humor, this is an unrivaled glimpse into the palaces and prisons of the Italy of Michelangelo and the Medici.
On an isolated island in Brittany at the end of the eighteenth century, a female painter is obliged to paint a wedding portrait of a young woman. [more inside]
"Slate’s voice never loses its capacity for strangeness, for finding it in the littlest, weirdest corners of its own psyche. It’s this mix of sweet and sadness, real stakes and dreamy prose, that gives this book its soft, sharp, and altogether overwhelming power. Like René Magritte crossed with Lana Del Rey, with strong notes of Patricia Lockwood. Like a carnival ride caught in a tornado, candy-colored shards of metal sparkling in the sky." - Teen Vogue
This documentary chronicles the life of Polish-American artist Stanislav Szukalski (1893-1987) from his early years in Chicago, to his time in Poland and Los Angeles, and his artistic and political contributions to the world.
In 1990, two thieves stole 13 irreplaceable artworks from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. We take a closer look at what happened that night. Last Seen is a joint production of WBUR and The Boston Globe. [more inside]
Elementary: The Adventure of the Ersatz Sobekneferu Season 6, Ep 10
Sherlock and his father attempt to repair their relationship upon learning of a death within their family; Holmes and Watson search for a killer who tried to mummify his victim.
A Velázquez painting is auctioned off in 2016. But the painting in question was one of many destroyed in a fire at the Alcázar de Madrid in 1734. Velázquez is given a mission: travel back in time with Irene to investigate the paradox. [more inside]
After being beaten into a brain-damaging coma by five men outside of a bar, Mark Hogancamp came back to the world traumatized and unable to remember much of his own past. To help process what happened to him, Hogancamp built “Marwencol”: a 1⁄6th scale World War II-era Belgian town populated by dolls representing himself, his friends, and family, and began creating photo-essays about the town. This documentary explores the attack, Hogancamp’s life and work, and his eventual discovery by the art world.
Based on the 1997 roman à clef of the same name, this funny, sexy, beautiful adaptation stars Kevin Bacon, Kathryn Hahn, and Griffin Dunne as the story's tragicomic love triangle broken over an epistolary artwork, all the while struggling to make sense of their desires, shame, and creative impulses. Well, maybe Dick isn't struggling. He's just Dick. Amazon's description: Adapted from the lauded feminist novel, I LOVE DICK is set in a colorful academic community in Marfa, Texas. It tells the story of a struggling married couple, Chris and Sylvere, and their obsession with a charismatic professor named Dick. Told in Rashomon-style shifts of POV, I LOVE DICK charts the unraveling of a marriage, the awakening of an artist and the deification of a reluctant messiah. [more inside]
In 17th-century France, Father Urbain Grandier seeks to protect the city of Loudun from the corrupt establishment of Cardinal Richelieu. Hysteria occurs within the city when he is accused of witchcraft by a sexually repressed nun. [more inside]
This movie looks absolutely insane, blasphemous, reprehensible, and devoid of all merit. In other words, it's a perfect fit for Strange Club. It's also been super unavailable and impossible to track down in uncut form, UNTIL NOW: it appeared on the streaming service Shudder yesterday in a 109-minute unrated cut - "the most complete version of the film in existence." Lots of people are justifiably freaking out. Let's watch it. [more inside]
A group of soldiers in a small town on the Mekong River in northern Thailand are struck with a bizarre sleeping illness.
A woman creates an alter ego in hopes of overcoming the trauma inflicted by men in her life. [more inside]
Hey all! So Strange Club was going well for a bit in 2015, and then dropped off the radar entirely in 2016. I'm feeling the itch to get it started back up again, though, after attending Fantastic Fest and having my love for inexplicable, visionary cinema rekindled. So let's get back in the saddle. [more inside]
In this deeply personal and heartfelt conversation the fashion therapist and Project Runway mentor, Tim Gunn, opens up about his struggles with learning to be comfortable in his own skin and using his talent, creativity and passion for the arts to inspire others.
Steven Universe: Beta Season 3, Ep 22
Steven and Amethyst visit Lapis and Peridot at the barn to get Amethyst's mind off of Jasper.
An Academy Award-winning biography of Mexican artist and revolutionary Frida Kahlo, who channeled the pain of a crippling injury and her tempestuous marriage to mentor and fellow artist Diego Rivera into her self-portraits. [more inside]
We have nothing in the Strange Club queue at the moment, but it makes sense to do one more movie to close out the year. For the selection, I'm seeking recommendations for strange cinema that has a holiday or Christmas element to it. Or just plain winter/snow/seasonal. The theme can be very loose. But it should be bizarre and/or cult and/or artsy. Please share your suggestions!
Ben, a young Irish boy, and his mute little sister Saoirse, who can turn into a seal, go on an adventure to free the faeries and save the spirit world in this visually stunning animated feature. [more inside]
Amid the Civil War in 17th-century England, a group of deserters flee from battle through an overgrown field. Captured by an alchemist, the men are forced to help him search to find a hidden treasure that he believes is buried in the field. [more inside]
On his deathbed, Uncle Boonmee recalls his many past lives. [more inside]
Hey everyone! I've been flirting with the idea of getting together a Strange Art Club on Fanfare. [more inside]
Daredevil: Speak of the Devil Season 1, Ep 9
Matt fights a ninja! Karen and Foggy's meddling has consequences! Matt goes shopping for something to brighten up the apartment! Matt and Foggy take it to the next level!
Steven Universe: Shirt Club Season 2, Ep 6
Steven and Buck Dewey make some t-shirts, with an unusual distribution strategy.
Justified: The Promise Season 6, Ep 13
The series finale. Lots of bullets, some dynamite, and ice cream in the park.
Justified: Collateral Season 6, Ep 12
Ava goes for a hike. Raylan and Boyd meet on a mountain. Duffy needs a truck. Bob captures Ava. Zachariah has something for Boyd. And Loretta makes Markham an offer he can't refuse.
Brian Droitcour is a professional art critic, and a Yelp user. In 2012 he started using the popular review site to post his reactions to galleries and museums, using a distinctly un-art world-y voice. This week, Brian sits down with TLDR to talk about art, online criticism, parties and his unusual project.
Justified: The Hunt Season 6, Ep 7
A visit from his baby daughter threatens to pull Raylan away from the hunt for a dangerous fugitive. Boyd takes Ava on a hunting trip where she spills the beans (no plate). And it's a bad day to be an EMT.
At some point in your life you've probably encountered a problem in the built world where the fix was obvious to you. Maybe a door that opened the wrong way, or poorly painted marker on the road.
Bob's Burgers: Midday Run Season 5, Ep 8
When Tina is up for a big hall monitor promotion, she is determined to do whatever it takes to nab the powerful job. So, she enlists the help of Gene and Louise. Meanwhile, back at the restaurant, Linda gets artsy and begins to decorate the walls with customer artwork...on napkins
A drama about the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane, her phenomenal success in the 1950s, and the subsequent legal difficulties she had with her husband, who claimed credit for her works in the 1960s. [more inside]
Lessons on outgrowing your business plan. [more inside]
Stars is a band from Toronto, who have been making music together since 2000. Their seventh album was released in October 2014. In this episode, they talk about the inspiration for the phrase No One Is Lost, which is the title of this song as well as the album. And you’ll hear the original version of the chorus: one that they wrote, recorded, mixed, and finished but then, ended up changing completely. [more inside]
Timothy Spall portrays the English painter J.M.W. Turner in Mike Leigh's film about the last twenty-five years of his life. [more inside]
The Prisoner: The Chimes of Big Ben Rewatch Season 1, Ep 2
A new prisoner, Number Eight, arrives in The Village. An arts and crafts exhibition is held. [more inside]