AFS Viewfinders

AFS Viewfinders is a film culture website with information, resources and opinions designed to deepen and broaden appreciation of film.

That’s Entertainment! Watch the Nicholas Brothers Defy Physics and Gravity in this 1943 Musical Number

This clips starts out well enough with Cab Calloway and his orchestra in their inimitable groove. This is Hall-Of-Fame entertaining here – masters who have honed their craft in front of exacting and demanding nightclub audiences. If all we got in this clip of the 1943 musical STORMY WEATHER was Cab and company, we would […]

Who Killed the Chauffeur? INHERENT VICE and the Tradition of the Impossibly Convoluted Detective Plot

Paul Thomas Anderson’s INHERENT VICE is in theaters now and it is weaving its spell of confusion on audiences everywhere. The labyrinthine convolutions in plot may rightly be seen as the trademark of the author of the original novel, Thomas Pynchon. But there are honorable cinematic antecedents as well. The straight detective movie makes the […]

Richard Linklater Talks Film, AFS & Thin Lizzy on Marc Maron’s Podcast

This week Marc Maron’s WTF podcast presents an hour and a half interview with Richard Linklater. It’s interesting stuff. Of course they talk about BOYHOOD a bunch, but there’s at least a detour through the other Linklater career chapters and a whole segment about Phil Lynott, Thin Lizzy, Captain Beefheart and other musical influences. There’s […]

Happy Birthday Nicolas Cage – Watch this Extended 2014 Career-Spanning Interview

Happy 51st birthday to an actor who is never less than hardworking and conscientious, and is often brilliant – one of the most inspired actors around, in fact. I was not at this Nicolas Cage SXSW panel last year and I have been dogged by regret ever since. Thankfully an audience member shot it and […]

Essential Cinema Guest Programmer Zachary Brailsford on the Films of Jacques Rivette

Here’s a special contribution from guest programmer Zachary Brailsford. The Essential Cinema series UPSIDE-DOWN AND INSIDE-OUT: FIVE ENCOUNTERS WITH JACQUES RIVETTE begins Thursday January 8. When considering the length of a film, one most often will find films ranging from roughly eighty minutes to one-hundred and twenty, something it seems most people agree on as […]

Chale Nafus Presents an Avant Cinema Primer: Walter Ruttmann’s Not-So-Silly Symphonies

AFS Director Of Programming Chale Nafus contributes this piece, a corollary to his ongoing Avant Cinema screening series: German avant-garde director Walter Ruttmann is today best known for BERLIN: SYMPHONY OF A GREAT CITY (1927). This was his entry into the “city symphony” genre, experimental documentaries depicting a day-in-the-life of major cities through hundreds of […]

Enjoy these Fire-breathing Jim Henson Commercials

Jim Henson was one of the great, visionary creators in the moving-image field. But before all the big projects and multimedia success, Henson and his crew paid the bills by making TV commercials. These commercials are witty, smart, funny and cool. You really get a sense of Henson’s varied and diverse skills here, and his […]

AFS Viewfinders Podcast Episode 2: Louis Black – Growing Up in Cinema-Mad New York in the ’60s

The new AFS Viewfinders podcast episode is up. You can listen to it here or search AFS Viewfinders in iTunes to listen to it there. In this installment we talk to Austin Chronicle editor, SXSW co-founder, AFS founding board member and Texas Film Awards Lifetime Achievement Award winner Louis Black. Louis Black, an unidentified Disney […]

MR. TURNER & NATIONAL GALLERY as seen by an art critic

This morning’s Times brought much delight with long-time art critic Roberta Smith’s take on her favorite new films about art, focusing specifically on MR. TURNER and NATIONAL GALLERY. She found that each of these films “says so much about the activity central to both making and experiencing art, which is simply the act of looking, […]

Hunter Thompson Goes to Hollywood 1978

“I don’t see how you could possibly make a true film. Because by bringing all this machinery in, you create a situation that’s unnatural anyway. It’s not you. It’s, I think, one of the problems with film.” – Hunter S. Thompson There have been a number of interesting films about gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson […]

Barbara Stanwyck: Behind The Scenes

Every time a movie was made during the classical Hollywood period, a large number of test photography was done. Sometimes there were filmed screen tests to look at different make-up, hair-styles and costumes, but more frequently this was done with still photographs. The star would get into the test makeup or the proposed costumes and […]

One Hundred Years Ago: LES VAMPIRES strike Paris

By 1915, the French writer/director Louis Feuillade had been making films for 9 whole years, in the earliest stages of the art form. His shorts had done well enough and satisfied audience demands for light comedies, but his 1913-14 FANTOMAS series had been a major sensation. At the same time, American serials, multi-part films extending […]

Thanks To Our Annual Sponsors