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The upcoming portmanteau piece “Rebel”, which features work from James Franco, Douglas Gordon, Damon McCarthy, Paul McCarthy, Terry Richardson, Ed Ruscha, Aaron Young and Harmony Korine premiered last year at the Venice Biennale. It has now been announced (via MOCA) that the film will finally return to screens.
While the piece is being screened from May 15 onwards, it has it’s opening on Sunday May 12 at 941 North Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90038.
Read below for more information or alternatively visit the MOCA website.
May 15–June 23, 2012
941 North Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90038
Opening event: Saturday, May 12, 2012, 7–10pm
MOCA presents Rebel, conceived by James Franco with Douglas Gordon, Harmony Korine, Damon McCarthy, Paul McCarthy, Terry Richardson, Ed Ruscha, and Aaron Young. Rebel will be on view from May 15 through June 23, 2012, at JF Chen, a newly emerging contemporary art and design space, located at 941 North Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90038.
Rebel is an interrogative ode to Nicholas Ray’s masterpiece Rebel Without A Cause (1955), conceived by Franco to embrace and mine the main themes and events in the original film. The exhibition reinterprets the film’s legends, the people involved, its place in Hollywood, film as a medium, and behind-the-scenes footage, in a new, fresh, and unconventional presentation of film, video installation, photography, painting, drawing, and sculpture, housed in and framed by iconic Hollywood structures.
“MOCA is excited to present Rebel,” said MOCA Director Jeffrey Deitch. “This exhibition, based on an iconic Los Angeles film by artists with strong ties to MOCA, represents a convergence of extraordinary talents and has a profound resonance with the Los Angeles art world and its relationship to Hollywood.”
In Rebel, the contributions of each artist are combined to capture the spirit of the original film through references to the auto and motorcycle culture of the 1950s, which James Dean was a part of; teenage angst and issues of identity back then, related to identity now; patrilineal exchange, and the relationships of father and son, and mentor and student; male and female sexuality; fiction and fact; and Hollywood and the art world. The Chateau Marmont is one of the central points in Rebel, and perhaps the single most significant reference and home to Hollywood behind the scenes life, acting as a linking structure to the exhibition, and to several of the works presented.
Interview Magazine recently caught up with Harmony Korine, aswell as other cast and crew members, with regards to his upcoming project “Spring Breakers”. They published some previously unseen photographs from the set, one of which you can see below. You can also read the article below, but head to the magazine’s website to view the official gallery.
Chances are good that if you have an Internet connection, you’re already aware of how Harmony Korine spent his spring break. Photos from the Florida set of Korine’s latest film, Spring Breakers—some taken by paparazzi, many shot by the cast and crew themselves—began appearing online in March, quickly invading Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and virtually every other image-sharing social-media channel, and instantly generating the kind of viral buzz that ought to be the envy of every big studio marketing department in the country. In fact, Spring Breakers hadn’t even wrapped shooting (and won’t be in theaters until later this year at the earliest) when images of the film’s principals—Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Benson clad in neon bikinis, and James Franco done up as a gun-toting vision of Kevin Federline by way of The Dude—passed into pop culture’s visual lexicon. “I liked the idea of the film as a social experiment,” says Korine. “It was like there were two movies—the actual movie, and then the one that the media, paparazzi, and the people tweeting photos were also creating.”
Spring Breakers stars Gomez, Hudgens, Benson, and Korine’s wife, Rachel Korine, as a quartet of college students who land in jail after robbing a restaurant to fund their spring break trip. The foursome is bailed out by Alien (Franco), a drug-dealer and gunrunner, who seduces the girls into his world. Drugs, sex, and violence ensue. (Gucci Mane, Glee‘s Heather Morris, and skateboarding weirdoes the ATL Twins also feature.) “When I wrote the script, I started thinking about girls in bikinis with guns, wearing ski masks,” Korine recalls. “I was like, ‘Where would you see that?’ And the idea of spring break came to me. I just started imagining girls on spring break robbing places.”
Even for a guy whose last feature was the 2009 film Trash Humpers (in which trash is, indeed, humped), Spring Breakers represents a radical move. Korine admits that it might have the most commercial potential of any film he has directed. If so, he owes that largely to his cast: the girls are a major draw—Gomez, for one, has more than 29 million Facebook fans. And what would a weird spring-break crime film/media-art project that either is or isn’t an earnest attempt at creating mainstream fare be without Franco? “When Harmony told me who he was going to cast, I thought it was perfect for so many reasons,” Franco says. “The young actresses are so excited to do a movie like this with someone like Harmony. They were so eager and enthusiastic to be a part of it.”
For her part, Gomez agrees. “I was getting kind of repetitive in terms of the roles I was picking, and I really wanted to do something that was completely different,” she says. “It was a mark thing for me—like, ‘This is what I want to be doing.’ I want to be taking myself seriously as an actress, and this was definitely a stretch.” She adds: “I mean, I’d never smoked a cigarette before in my entire life. It was really funny—they had to show me how to do it.”
Benson, best known for her roles on the ABC Family seriesPretty Little Liars and the daytime soap Days of Our Lives, approached the opportunity to show a side of herself that’s not necessarily family-friendly with equal relish. “Harmony wanted to break us all out of the good-girl mold,” she says. “For Selena, Vanessa, and me, our audience is all in their teens or younger, so they’re not even going to be able to see this when it comes out—it’s not appropriate.”
Hewing to his raw, full-frontal aesthetic, Korine shot Spring Breakers in and around St. Petersburg during March and April, just as actual spring break was in full effect, and recruited as extras some 500 kids who just happened to be there partaking in bacchanalia. The realism extended to the details of the characters’ outfits. “I had to keep in mind where these girls are from: a small town in the South,” says the film’s costume designer, Heidi Bivens. “What they were wearing at school had to be stuff they could find where they were living. And then when they come to spring break, it changes, because they’re able to shop in St. Petersburg.” Some authentic-feeling elements proved harder to find. “The most challenging for me were the ski masks that the girls wear,” says Bivens. “They’re supposed to glow fluorescent, but there aren’t any ski masks I could find that were the color we needed in the daylight and that would glow under black light, so I had to start experimenting with dyes. I probably went through 20 different dyes to find the right one.”
Of course, Korine rose to acclaim after writing the script forKids, the 1995 parental nightmare directed by Larry Clark that introduced the world to Chloë Sevigny, Rosario Dawson, and the uncomfortable realities of a kind of teen life that Korine himself inhabited as a skater kid in downtown New York City. Spring Breakers is similarly fascinated by youth gone wild. “Everybody likes to have fun, and everybody imagines that somebody else is having more fun than they are because they’re willing to break all the rules-to the point of getting arrested,” says one the film’s producers, Chris Hanley. In a way, Korine says that Spring Breakers is his attempt to capture something that he’d missed the first time around. “I grew up in Nashville, but I was a skater, so I was skateboarding during spring break,” he says. “Everyone I knew would go to Daytona Beach and the Redneck Riviera and just fuck and get drunk—you know, as a rite of passage. I never went. I guess this is my way of going.”
Vice Films recently caught up with Harmony Korine, Val Kilmer and producer Eddy Morretti to discuss their newest venture “The Fourth Dimension”, you can read the interview below.
VICE: So apparently the impetus to make this film began with a “creative brief.” That’s pretty typical for the ad world, but I’ve never heard of it being used for a movie.
Eddy Moretti: The idea of the project was to do a couple of short films but to somehow tie them together. We went through a number of different ways of connecting them and then we just thought, “Let’s just send a set of instructions to people and let them pull elements from the instructions and put them together.”
Was the idea for Lotus Community Workshop kicking around for a while or was it created especially for The Fourth Dimension?
Harmony Korine: Well, the strange length of the movie makes it too long for a short, but not long enough for a feature. And I didn’t really know, so I just started thinking, I should make something that just works on its own logic and its own time. I started thinking about more of a monologue, and I started imagining that if I could get anybody to say these lines, who would it be? And it was Val.
Lots of reviewers have been saying Val’s monologue is improvisational. Is that true? It sounded like at least some of it came out of Harmony’s brain.
Val: It’s always nice to hear, because people can’t tell. But it’s a compliment to your writing and the acting, but I would say that it’s almost 100 percent scripted.
Eddy: I was amazed, actually, by how close it was to the script.
Harmony: My only role in writing is to react, to make it real, to make it entertaining.
Have any of you guys ever paid to see a motivational speaker?
Harmony: I took a “Stop Smoking” course at work.
Eddy: You did? It worked?
Harmony: It worked!
Where was it shot?
Harmony: We shot it in Nashville, at the Brentwood Skate Rink. I grew up there. Like, breakdancing there when I was a kid.
Val: I was concerned about the low-ceilings, because when you think “motivational speaker,” you want your audience to think all these obvious thoughts. Of course, it didn’t do anything remotely like a usual motivational speaker. One of the ideas, which there’s only one brief cut at the end, was that we would see him being filmed, and that would be part of the story. But the thing that made it so suddenly poetic and fantastic, which must have been in [Harmony’s] mind—I go down on my knees to tell the story of the Mothership [a non sequitur alien spaceship randomly mentioned by Val in the film] because otherwise there’s just no size to this story, and the ground is reflected. So these ridiculous lights become lights of the ship on the ground. It looks like there’s a Mothership above us, as if it was a big master plan.
Does that tie into the whole space-time, fourth dimension stuff?
Harmony: Yeah, I guess so.
Eddy: I never even asked you if you’ve ever really saw a spaceship.
Harmony: I’ve never seen one.
Val: I have.
Where’d you see one?
Val: New Mexico. The epicenter.
Harmony: That’s true. That’s where they all are.
Val: I think the birthplace of the bomb had something to do with it. This big flash went out into the cosmos…
Eddy: And it attracted some attention.
Val: And they said, “Let’s go check that spot out.”
Harmony: That makes sense.
What’s up with the name Lotus Community Workshop?
Harmony: I was just trying to imagine what it would be called.
That seems about right. It seems like it’s something real, like in Williamsburg or something.
Harmony: Williamsburg? Oh Jesus.
Or in San Francisco.
Harmony: San Francisco.
It’s not national, to me.
Val: And you guys had a friend who was like, our moderator, kind of?
Harmony: Oh yeah! Troy Duff.
Harmony: The black guy with the dreads [who introduces Val to the crowd in the film].
He’s just a guy you’ve known?
Harmony: He like, spray paints underwear and stuff and sells it on eBay. It’s called “Duff’s Stuff.”
Val: Is he not the guy in the iPod ad?
Harmony: Yeah, he’s also the dude in the iPod ad.
Val: The very first guy that came out.
Harmony: The silhouette that starts, you know, with his hair…
Val: So did you do that ad or he just got that gig?
Harmony: No. Yeah, he just got that.
Were a lot of the other audience members just dudes from around town?
Harmony: Yeah. Hard-luck cases.
Eddy: Wasn’t there some guy at a bus shelter, when we were driving around and you were like, “This is the guy that was in Gummo.”
Harmony: Oh you’re talking about the black dwarf. Little Bryan.
Eddy: And you wanted to invite him to the set.
Eddy: Yeah. He never made it.
Have you seen the completed film?
Harmony: I just saw it on Friday, yeah.
And what did you think about how the other two shorts connected with yours?
I liked that it wasn’t too literal in terms of connection, but it’s definitely evocative.
Eddy: It’s just, like, to create a mood—being playful, trying to distract people from making simple connections.
Another unique thing about the movie is that Grolsch helped fund it. Is that something that you find brands are more willing to do right now?
Eddy: Some of them are.
It’s kind of risky though.
Eddy: It’s very risky. And these two guys, Thomas and Ronald, ended up being really cool guys. We spent a lot of time talking about what they should do, and at first it wasn’t even apparent what they wanted to do, and then I suggested that we make a film together and they said, “That could be fun.”
And it’s not like people are drinking Grolsch stuff.
Eddy: It’s not about that. They go around and sponsor film festivals and they came to us and said, “What else can we do? Is that all we get to do, just put our logo on a film festival brochure?” And I said, “No, you can actually be a part of the film community and support some interesting film projects.” So, that’s what they wanted. They wanted to be recognized for supporting. Look, all these fucking brands have a lot of money. And what do they generally do with their money? They make 30 second spots. And that’s it. There’s a whole other world of things they could be doing with that money, it gets kind of pissed away in fees.
Val: Well, it’s an interesting statistic of how ineffective conventional advertising is. It almost all the time fails. But everybody goes around hoping that this one time it will work.
Eddy: That’s what maybe makes Mad Men so popular right now, because that’s where people are creatively. They’re still in a 50s, 60s kind of place. It’s fucking retarded. Advertising has reached a point of ultimate, maximum retardation—so something else has to happen. And these guys were cool enough to say “fuck it.”
What are you working on next?
Harmony: Just editing a movie called Spring Breakers.
Oh, with the ATL twins and Selena Gomez?
Val: The twins? You stuck them in there!
How about you, Val?
Val: I’m dong my one-man show. I’m also getting a doctorate next week.
Eddy: Are you?
Val: Yeah… [laughs] “Are you?!”
Eddy: Well they do those, they have honorary doctorates.
Val: Yeah. And now I have one.
Eddy: I could see you at the College of New Mexico.
Twitch Film, Culture Blues and FilmBalaya have each posted up reviews for the new collaboration film, which features a piece by Harmony Korine, “The Fourth Dimension”. The film premiered this week at the Tribeca Film Festival. You can read extracts below:
Overall, THE FOURTH DIMENSION makes for an interesting little shorts program. I dig the variety of the segments and their tenuous connection. I wouldn’t call it mainstream, but none of the films are so weird/boring/pretentious as to be off-putting to the general movie-going public. That being said, it isn’t summer tent pole fare, either. What it is is a great little festival film that deserves an audience beyond the localized festival environment. (TwitchFilm)
Kilmer’s spewing of ridiculous and meaningless slogans is funny, but it feels like an audition for a bit part in a Will Ferrell movie. There’s just no meat there. The roller skating rink does prove to be a visually interesting setting, and the scenes with his girlfriend effectively capture the feeling of a lazy post-work wind down. Overall, it’s inessential but enjoyable. (CultureBlues)
Dazed Digital recently caught up with Harmony Korine over the phone to talk about The Fourth Dimension which recently had it’s premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. Korine speaks on his inspiration for his contribution to the film “Lotus Community Workshop” and he also speaks very briefly on next year’s film Spring Breakers. You can read the interview below the picture of Korine and Val Kilmer on the set of the film.
Val Kilmer has never looked worse. Overweight, long straggly hair peeking out underneath a baseball cap, wearing a loud Hawaiian shirt tucked into baggy shorts, he’s a far cry from the devilish heartthrob whom women swooned over in ‘Heat’ and ‘Batman’. With a daring lack of vanity, he plays a motivational speaker (also named Val Kilmer) doling out advice in a Nashville skating rink in the new short film from the idiosyncratic indie-film director, Harmony Korine. The film forms part of a collaboration with two other directors, Alexey Fedorchenko and Jan Kwiecinski made under the brief of ‘The 4th Dimension’. Dazed got on the phone with Korine to find out what it was all about.
Dazed Digital: How did you get involved with Grolsch Films and Vice?
Harmony Korine: I’ve known Vice for a long time. Eddie Moretti (producer) is a friend of mine. We’ve always talked about doing a project together. Then he came to me and said he had this thing with Vice where they were going to finance this film and there were going to be these rules. It sounded like fun and that you could play around and experiment with it and it was a chance to work with these guys.
You previously made Julien Donkey Boy under the structure of Dogme95 – did you find it liberating to work under strict rules again?
This is a different thing. Dogme95 is more like church. There was a big difference but I always enjoy rules.
What was the starting point for this film?
Well for me, a 30 minute piece is an awkward amount of time – it’s too long to be a short film and too short to be a regular movie so I started to conceptualise something that worked to its own logic in length which is when I came up with a monologue piece. And then I thought who would I want to be speaking the piece and I thought of Val Kilmer…
What was the thinking behind casting him as a motivational speaker called Val Kilmer?
I dunno, because he always seemed like a motivational speaker! I think he’s a great actor and a misunderstood character. I think he’s a real talent and eccentric. I’d seen pictures of him wearing a beret and a ponytail with a safari shirt and I started imagining him giving advice to hard luck cases and that’s how it happened.
And was he a composite of people you knew or did it come out of your imagination?
Yeah most of it came out of my imagination. I had a librarian who died in a sky diving accident whom a lot of it is based on. He was a bastard – he used to censor the books we read at school.
He seems like a trickster…but the scenes with him riding around with his girlfriend seem to show a softer, more genuine side to him. What draws you to create these characters?
I thought it would be funny seeing him ride this BMX around town, playing violent video games and giving terrible advice. I don’t know where these characters come from – I just invent them because I want to see them.
You’ve talked in the past about how your films are like mistakist art – accidents fill in the form. Were there any such accidents making this film?
Lots of it. I always said mistakism is like throwing a bomb and then documenting the explosion. It felt like that a lot of times. Having Val’s character just ride around and meet these people. The scene where he sees these guys on the side of the road – one of them had just escaped from robbing a bank on a BMX and the other is a murderer. The older guy had 17 kids and Val took a liking to him and helped reunite this guy with his kids.
Your next film ‘Spring Breakers’ casts these Disney actresses like Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens alongside James Franco in cornrows. What can you tell us about it?
I can’t say too much – I’m still making it. This one is very special though. It’s going to surprise a lot of people. This is going to blow some people’s minds.
Are you comfortable with this enfant terrible status?
I honestly don’t even think about stuff like that. It’s all meant to be as it is. I just live it and I love it. I just light it up and suck it down. I live away from everything so I don’t really have a concept of self in that way. I just do what I do.
When you saw the finished film with the other short films, did you see how it all fit together?
It was weird – it was like putting on two pairs of mismatched socks but somehow it fit together. It felt good. It felt like old socks.
What’s your idea of the 4th dimension?
Val Kilmer! (laughs)
‘The 4th Dimension’ screens at Tribeca Film Festival this week.
Cinema Scope Magazine recently issued their 50th issue and to commemorate they’ve done a piece entitled “50 Best Filmmakers Under 50”. Harmony is one of the 50 and you can read what they had to say about the director below. To view the rest just click here.
Born in 1973 in California but raised in Nashville, Tennessee, where he lives, Harmony Korine has made at least three indisputable masterpieces of modern American cinema. The precocious scriptwriter for Larry Clark’s 1995 film Kids (with whom Korine worked again in 2002, scripting Ken Park), in 1997 Korine made a stunning directorial début with Gummo. In a world devastated by poverty and natural disasters, in a derelict small town in Ohio, a group of teenagers try to combat boredom by inventing their own rituals. Dereliction, survival, rituals are at the heart of Korine’s films, and two years later Julien Donkey-Boy established him as an artist whose sense of visual composition is on a par with the recent digital work of Godard and Sokurov. This portrait of a murderous young schizophrenic, who is in love with his sister, is one of the most overwhelming emotional and aesthetic experiences contemporary cinema has given us. The film has no more than a superficial marketing relationship with Lars von Trier’s Dogma, whose diktats Korine subverts, notably in his magnificent use of visual super-impositions to Italian opera. Korine continues to show his fascination with characters living on the edge and the disabled, and has Werner Herzog, an inspirational figure for the young filmmaker, play a demented patriarch, a role that is both hilarious and terrifying. Alongside is the magnificent Chloë Sevigny, who was Harmony Korine’s muse and girlfriend for a long time, and Ewen Bremner as Julien, a character based on Korine’s own schizophrenic uncle; his performance achieves a degree of realism rarely achieved on film. After a somewhat disenchanted interlude, comprised of a deafening silence and a film as unbalanced as it was unsatisfying (Mister Lonely, 2007), Korine returned—brilliantly—to form, and the film made a strong impression in 2009.
Trash Humpers, the final installment in a loose trilogy comprising Gummo and Julien Donkey-Boy, might be a film—although one could almost question this description, given the messiness of its visuals, deliberately and aggressively damaged VHS tapes—but it is above all a lifestyle, an artistic, liberating release, a communal and joyously punk experience. The brilliantly destructive undertaking that is Trash Humpers may be understood as an arty version of Jackass, in which cinema’s enfant terrible and his friends, dressed up as lecherous old men, run wild in Nashville. It is also the last major American film of the new century’s first decade, an arrogant and stimulating piece of trash, grounded in Erskine Caldwell’s stories, Tobacco Road, and the hillbilly culture of which Korine is the ultimate troubadour.
“The Fourth Dimension” is the new collaboration film directed by Harmony Korine, Alexey Fedorchenko and Jan Kwiecinski. The film is produced by Grolsch Film Works (yes, the same company who produces beer) and they have taken the liberty to interview the three directors ahead of it’s premiere at the San Francisco Film Festival on April 20. Korine’s interview can be read below. You can view the other interviews and more including the trailer here at GrolschFilmWorks.com
Grolsch: Why did you decide to take part in the first film from Grolsch Film Works?
Korine: I was really excited to make a film with Grolsch Film Works. It was a great chance to experiment and make something amazing. The idea of these three films working together under one central idea is great. I think it’s turned out really nice.
What is your fourth dimension”?
A place where humans and dogs have children. Everyone just barks at each other and everyone has a leash around their necks with a telephone number to call in case they’re lost. In the fourth dimension everyone is man’s best friend.
Grolsch is a brand who is taking film seriously. What do you think about commercial companies taking the role of studios?
I think it’s a great. It’s a new world where beautiful images are constantly falling from the sky. Grolsch is doing a good thing with this. It’s great any time anyone helps make a movie. I see nothing but good in this. It’s my first experience and it’s been a great one so far.
What was your source of inspiration when writing the script for the U.S. chapter of this film?
A guy I knew who used to have arguments with his shoe. He was amazing. He was always trying to give his shoe good advice. Once he fell asleep on the train and someone stole his shoes off his feet. He was never the same after that.
This film has a long monologue. Why is that? Was it hard to write?
No, it was easy to write. He is a motivational speaker. I always thought that would be a great job. The advice given in the mono- logue is pure and wonderful. If you follow it, then many great things will happen. This was all advice my father had given me.
Are there any little hints and nuances in the background of the film we should look out for?
Cotton candy. Look out for the cotton candy. It’s very easy to get stuck in it.
What advice would you give budding independent filmmakers?
Love it all. Light it up. Never quit.
In addition to Ashley Benson posting a picture of herself with Gucci Mane online, Rachel Korine uploaded an image of her with the rap star to her Instagram @bellekorn taken from the set of the movie Spring Breakers.
No word yet on Gucci’s role in the movie.