Thirty-five years. That’s how long fans of Ridley Scott’s 1982 neo-noir classic Blade Runner have mulled over the question of whether or not Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) is a replicant. Today, they might finally get their answer — or simply find themselves further entrenched in the long debate for another few decades, despite Ridley Scott having voiced his own authoritative opinions on the matter. Regardless, for fans of the ’82 film, Blade Runner 2049 is going to be something special. A trip down memory lane with some intriguing new twists and turns that delve deeper into the original’s themes of human consciousness and identity. For the uninitiated, however, things might get a little ugly.
We at Florida International University’s Film Studies Program, in cooperation with the English Honors Society (Sigma Tau Delta) and The Film Initiative Underground, are proud to announce the first annual Panther Film Festival (PFF). The creation of this festival marks an exciting moment in our program’s history as we seek to provide you, the students that make up our wonderfully diverse community, a platform to share your ideas and stories. Learn more here.
Nicola Gavioli is a Professor of the Portuguese and Brazilian Studies Program at FIU, with great passion for his work. Born and raised in Italy, he pursued a language completely foreign to him and made it his own. His rapid embrace led him to treasure not only the language but also the literature and cultural history, moving him to transmit the same passion to his students in the courses he teaches. Currently he teaches two film courses: Brazilian Cinema (POW 4390) and Brazilian Cinema and Human Rights (POW 4391) among a variety of other courses.
Few films ‘based on true events’ feel as ridiculously over the top as Doug Liman’s American Made (2017). Based on the life of pilot Barry Seal (Tom Cruise), the film follows Barry as he becomes a CIA informant taking photographs of communist rebellion groups in Central America, starts smuggling cocaine for Pablo Escobar’s Medellín Cartel, and subsequently smuggles Russian guns to the Nicaraguan Contras on behalf of the United States Government. Let’s not forget that most of Barry’s bizarre smuggling career took place during then-President Ronald Reagan’s infamous “War on Drugs”. It sounds too comical to be true, and yet the story told by the film is closer to fact than it is to fiction.
Aspiring screenwriter, Kimberly Morles, was an intern for the Film Studies Program at FIU this past summer term. With a passion for cinema and writing, she has published various articles and presented valuable input, reflected in her active participation in the Film Studies Program’s biweekly newsletter. Kimberly’s time spent as an intern allowed her to gain invaluable hands-on experience that she would to share with you, our readers and hopeful future interns.
We at FIU’s Film Studies Program hope that you, the members of our community, have managed to get back on track after the chaos brought upon us by Hurricane Irma. As we move towards establishing a sense of normalcy again, there are few things in this world that help as much as watching a movie among friends. That said, we hope you’ll be as excited as we are to hear that starting this Friday, September 22, O Cinema will begin a week-long celebration of one of the most prolific and revered directors in the history of cinema: Stanley Kubrick.
When one decides to remake or re-adapt a narrative for the screen, there’s always a question of whether or not the new product will match or surpass the story many hold dear. In the case of Andy Muschietti’s It (2017), not only is the film a worthy successor to the 1990 TV miniseries adaptation of the eponymous Stephen King novel, but it’s an exceptionally good horror film overall. Muschietti, whose only other major film release was 2013’s Mama, manages to distill the primary themes of the first half of Stephen King’s monstrously long narrative on childhood trauma, and present it as a movie which manages to deliver some genuine scares.