The Aesthetics of Cope with Chloe Lizotte, and a Happening interview
Talking about new film art during the pandemic, and some recent writing
Dear Last Thing I Saw fans,
As it turns out, it’s just about the second anniversary of The Last Thing I Saw. (Cue joyous kazoo solo tinged with the melancholy of time’s passage.) I started this podcast about two years ago in rather grim and scary circumstances. At the height of the pandemic I had been shut-in, working round the clock, before things ground to a halt, and naturally, I needed a distraction. I thought talking with friends about movies would be just the thing I needed.
Indeed it was! And I’ve happily kept on going, recording my 114th episode this week, chatting with brilliant critics and filmmakers, and covering festivals from Cannes to Venice to Sundance (from home when the pandemic demanded it). As I head to Cannes again, I can’t wait to share with you what I see next.
So, on this second anniversary, I thank everyone who’s listened to and supported The Last Thing I Saw. I hope it’s been as fun for you as it has for me, or at least informative, or barring that, an audible sound in your ears while running or cleaning the house. Long may The Last Thing I Saw roam!
On this week’s episode of the podcast, I talk with critic Chloe Lizotte about some of her wonderful writing, including a stimulating and wide-ranging essay called The Aesthetics of Cope. I throw in a recent movie of my own, related to a Song Pick from the last mailing (h/t to listener NT for the suggestion).
I’ve extended the Cannes special subscription offer. Your support allows me to devote the hours necessary to produce and edit the podcast, and to maintain the custom-tailored gold-thread jumpsuit which I don for recording each episode.
A very Happy Mother’s Day!
The Aesthetics of Cope, The Cathedral, Deepfakes, Slade in Flame with Chloe Lizotte (Episode 114)
Chloe Lizotte is a New York–based writer whose work has been featured in Reverse Shot, Film Comment, Guernica, and Screen Slate. She is contributing editor at Le Cinema Club.
Home When You Return (dir. Carl Elsaesser) is screening in Prismatic Ground.
For more information on the podcast’s opening and closing music by The Minarets (gratefully used with permission):
Follow the band on Instagram
For W Magazine, I interviewed Audrey Diwan, director of Happening, her French film about a university student in the 1960s who tries to get an abortion but faces laws against it and deceptive doctors. Diwan talks about getting inside her character’s head and the difficulties getting funding for the film.
I interviewed Diwan before the Supreme Court decision, but I did ask her opinion of the relentless campaigns against abortion rights in the United States. She said:
“I’m amazed because the question that seems to occur most is, why is it always the same story? How can I be making a movie about a story set in the ’60s in France and know it's going to be a [contemporary] story here?”
THIS CRITIC’S PICKS
Delectable selections for home viewing.
In the Mood for Love (HBO MAX)
The Hard Way (Criterion)
Force Majeure (MUBI)
Prismatic Ground - Last day for this combined virtual/in-person festival!
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me (HBO MAX)
On the Bowery (Criterion)
Chan Is Missing (Criterion)
Here I may end with a song.
Welcome to The Last Thing I Saw! I’m your host, Nicolas Rapold.
Besides hosting a podcast, I’m a writer and an editor. My features, interviews, festival dispatches, and reviews are published in The New York Times, Sight & Sound, Artforum, Filmmaker, and W Magazine (and appeared in dearly departed publications such as The Village Voice, Stop Smiling, The New York Sun, and The L Magazine).
I worked as editor-in-chief of Film Comment, where I was for 15 years. I assigned and edited both web and print editorial, hosted its podcast and talks and screenings, learned from brilliant writers, curated Film Comment Selects, and wrote a lot, including interviews with Spike Lee, Robert Pattinson, Juliette Binoche, and Frederick Wiseman. Film Comment was subsequently awarded the Film Heritage Award by the National Society of Film Critics (an honor historically awarded to the Museum of Modern Art and other institutions).
Feel free to get in touch re: writing, editing, moderating, programming, podcasting, etc.