Screentakes

Character and Theme-focused Screenplay Analysis

Little Gems

All Is Lost . . . Or Is It?

Posted by jennine lanouette on Friday, January 3rd, 2014

About one minute into All Is Lost, I had a powerful urge to leave the theater. But that’s just me. I don’t like boats. That I stuck it out is a measure of my admiration for writer/director J.C. Chandor and his first film Margin Call. I decided to put my faith in him that he read the full article.

Margin Call

Posted by jennine lanouette on Saturday, February 11th, 2012

Here’s a film that’s so verbally sharp and culturally engaged, it could almost be a play. Come to think of it, it even has all the classical requirements of playwriting: it happens largely in one location, in close to a 24-hour time frame and it has a king in it. Or the current day equivalent read the full article.

In the Land of Blood and Honey

Posted by jennine lanouette on Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

I have to confess, I might have passed on seeing In the Land of Blood and Honey, under the influence of its many skewering critics, if it hadn’t been for my partner, Ed, who, unbeknownst to me, got us free tickets to a preview. Words like “predictable” “ludicrous” “sanctimonious” and “vanity project” had me bracing read the full article.

Once Upon a Time in Italy: The American

Posted by jennine lanouette on Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Yea! Hooray! Yippie-eyo-kay-yay! The spaghetti western is back! Well, not the spaghetti western exactly, but . . .  but what? The spaghetti spy thriller? The spaghetti assassin film? Whatever. I’m talking about . . . The American. Despite it’s title, The American is a distinctly un-American film. It has far more resemblance to a European read the full article.

Let’s Get Real: Winter’s Bone

Posted by jennine lanouette on Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Back in the late 80s and early 90s, I was a journalist in New York championing low-budget and no-budget films. I worked among a loosely organized community of independent film devotees in a cultural climate that was, from my perspective anyway, highly mission-driven. We were empowering films that forged a new aesthetic, put forth an read the full article.