Greta Gerwig, in ‘Greenberg’, moves beyond mumblecore:
Q. Do you give much thought to Hollywood, to what it might be like stepping into that whirlwind?
Greta Gerwiwg Yeah, I do. I honestly think I wouldn’t be doing this if it weren’t in some way seductive. There’s this collective cultural fantasy of what Hollywood means and I think it’s a real thing but I try not to give it power. I loved putting on a dress at the Berlin Film Festival and walking down the red carpet. There’s that balance of being in awe of it and knowing that this too will pass. Source: www.boston.com
“People are like, ‘Florence is such a pushover’, Gerwig says. “And I’m like, ‘No, she’s not. She believes in him.’ Baumbach, too, defends Greenberg. “For me, his behavior is so clearly borne out of insecurity,” he says. “Even when he takes it out on her, it’s so clearly about him. He’s his own worst enemy, and he’s lucky to have someone like Florence who has patience.”
Kristen Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg in "Adventureland" (2009).
"Eisenberg, best known from “The Squid and the Whale” is fantastic in the lead role. He has the wide-eyed innocence of Michael Cera without the frustrating lack of backbone. As James, he's congenial but not a pushover, and an unabashed virgin, though not for lack of passion. Expect big things from Eisenberg — this guy's got talent". Source: m.columbiatribune.com
Greta Gerwig and Ben Stiller attending "Greenberg" Premiere in Los Angeles on 18th March 2010.
"Ambivalently receptive to the clumsy advances of his brother's insecure twentysomething assistant Florence (Greta Gerwig), Roger asks her out on a few inevitable disaster dates, almost begrudgingly and as an afterthought. And while not quite over his obsession with a former girlfriend who has long since married (co-writer Jennifer Jason Leigh), Roger engages in woefully awkward sex with Florence, while complaining that her uncooperative bra is wrapped around her like a bandage". Source: newsblaze.com
"Next Donnie screws his courage to the sticking place and asks Gretchen to be his girlfriend in a scene of perfect awkward realism, and she accepts. The love story, and Donnie's otherwise reasonably normal teenage life, is counter-pointed by his increasingly disturbing interactions with Frank". Source: www.locusmag.com
Ben Stiller with "Greenberg" director Noah Baumbach.
"Socially awkward and so self-involved that other people's lives seem like an inconvenience to him, Roger Greenberg is everything most of us don't want to be.Yet as Stiller plays him he's both repellent and compelling, a wayward, untethered soul who's nonetheless so close to the shore that our impulse is to reach out and pull him in, not push him further away. That unsettling tension between wanting to flee and wanting to help -- or at least comprehend -- is the very center of "Greenberg", Baumbach's fifth movie and, possibly, his most open-hearted and raw". Source: www.salon.com
Jena Malone and Jake Gyllenhaal as Gretchen & Donnie in "Donnie Darko" (2001).
"Donnie Darko", the first feature by 26-year-old writer-director Richard Kelly, is a wondrous, moodily self-involved piece of work that employs X-Filesmagic realism to galvanize what might have been a routine tale of suburban teen angst — OK, borderline schizophrenia. Part comic book, part case study, this is certainly the most original and venturesome American indie I've seen this year". Source: www.villagevoice.com
Jake Gyllenhaal in "Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut" (2004) Production Diary.
"Donnie Darko, like every American teenager alive, is a legend in his own mind. (There's a wonderful little moment when two of his teachers look at each other in bemused astonishment and say his name -- a validation that this kid is something else ... even if the validation is all in his head.) Maybe that makes him schizophrenic or delusional or solipsistic or a victim of insanely grandiose ambitions, but not necessarily. We like Donnie, and we want things to work out for him". Source: rogerebert.suntimes.com
"The nanny/personal assistant/possible girlfriend Florence, one of "Greenberg's" few rays of light in Greta Gerwig's good hands, puts it best. In trying to explain away yet another injury to her psyche about midway through the film, she says, "Hurt people hurt people." The same could be said of Baumbach's relationship with his audience, with "Greenberg" his angriest, most conflicted and most painful movie yet. Stiller's Roger is just out of a New York psychiatric treatment center where he's been recovering from a breakdown. There's nothing to suggest he's made much headway"."In Roger, he's got his work cut out for him -- a character as alienated as he is alienating.Jeff Daniels and Jesse Eisenberg in "The Squid & The Whale".
Baumbach has woven in strains of Jeff Daniels' father in "Squid" the condescension dripping, with a few echoes of Nicole Kidman's self-satisfied sister in "Margot at the Wedding."
"Ben Stiller stars as the titular, dysfunctional protagonist, “Greenberg”—following in the footsteps of “Squid’s” Bernard Berkman and “Wedding’s” Margot, characters too full of themselves to notice their own self-sabotaging ways. Critics have used words like “repellent”, “demonic narcissist” and “pathetic” to describe such protagonists—not the type of pull-quotes you might see on video boxes.
Anna Paquin and Jeff Daniels, Lili & Bernard in "The Squid & The Whale" (2005).
“I really feel these characters are a lot like people in the world,” defends Baumbach. “They’re only ‘difficult’ compared to conventional movie characters. I don’t think they’re difficult compared to real human beings. I’m surprised how people react so strongly. Their argument is, ‘Who is like this?’ But they don’t realize they’re using other movies as comparison rather than using their own parents or themselves.”
The Los Angeles setting for “Greenberg” for example, wavers between realistic depictions of upscale West Hollywood homes and a strange sense of alienation". Source: www.indiewire.com
Let's examine again the Troll of The Week: DrunkenStepfather, who has spread a malicious rumour against Jake Gyllenhaal. Talk about emotional spamming, which flies around without being punished. It's remarkable this time most of reactions by internauts and readers have been of repulsion towards the gossiper more than vicarious reading. Here is an acute analysis with good reasoning courtesy by www.examiner.com
“I just don’t know why we’re breeding a generation of hate and criticism right now. Nikki Reed - Patrick Fraser photoshoot.
The only thing that seems to be getting hits is controversial,” she continued. “It’s now ‘Who’s fat, who’s ugly and what can I say that’s mean about someone?’ and I just think it’s really sad.” -Nikki Reed. Source: uk.eonline.com
DrunkenStepfather is not the only one who loves to create a good Internet feud. Needless to say, this another feud I'm going to talk about belongs to a very different league than DrunkenStepfather's, Perez Hilton's ilk (it'd be almost impossible to stoop any lower than those), let's move to a more intellectual sphere and we'll stumble upon Armond White, a charismatic but abrasive critic who writes for The New York Press and who has developed a widely publicized disliking to filmmaker Noah Baumbach and his movies. White recently accused Baumbach, his publicist, and other columnists of nepotism, censure and of banning him of access to a private screening of "Greenberg".
White is Recipient of a Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University's School of the Arts, he won the ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award for Music Criticism in 1996. He was recently re-elected as Chairman of the New York Film Critics Circle. In August 2009, Roger Ebert wrote a blog "In defense of Armond White" commenting on White's negative review of District 9. However, after further familiarizing himself with the writings of White he concluded that "White is, as charged, a troll; A smart and knowing one, but a troll." blogs.suntimes.com
Also, White looks down on bloggers and amateur movie critics; well, in my opinion, he doesn't fare much better than most of aggressive polemicists stirring up in the net arena rentlessly.
His taste is dubious at best, choosing B-flicks as challenging and despising well praised films: a list of Best/Worst films
Maurice Bloch points out: "The transmission of culture is not a matter of passing on 'bits of culture', rather, a communication link is established which then requires an act of recreation on the part of the receiver". -The Rehabilitatioon of Human Nature (2005).
Read some of his ultra paranoid and mostly demagogic articles about elitism and narcissism mirrored in cinema (particularly Baumbach's "The Squid & The Whale" or "Greenberg) as exemplary of the decline of free journalism in: "Greenberg" Review and Smugness
Judge by yourselves!