Noah Baumbach

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Matt
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Noah Baumbach

#1 Post by Matt » Thu Feb 07, 2013 4:09 pm

Image

Filmography (writer and director unless otherwise noted)

Kicking and Screaming, 1995 / Criterion Collection DVD
Mr. Jealousy, 1997
Highball (written pseudonymously as Jesse Carter, directed pseudonymously as Ernie Fusco), 1997
Conrad & Butler Take a Vacation (short), 2000 / Criterion Collection DVD
"Thirty" (writer, NBC TV pilot), 2000
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (co-writer), 2004 / Criterion Collection DVD
The Squid and the Whale, 2005
Margot at the Wedding, 2007
"Saturday Night Live" Digital Shorts: "Clearing the Air" and "New York Underground" (co-writer and director)
Fantastic Mr. Fox (co-writer), 2009
Greenberg, 2010
"The Corrections" (HBO TV pilot), 2012
Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (co-writer), 2012
Frances Ha, 2012
While We're Young, 2015
Mistress America, 2015

Web Resources

BOMB interview by Jonathan Lethem


Forum Discussion

349 Kicking and Screaming
300 The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
Margot At The Wedding (Noah Baumbach, 2007)
700 Fantastic Mr. Fox
Greenberg (Noah Baumbach, 2010)
681 Frances Ha

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Matt
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Re: Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach, 2012)

#2 Post by Matt » Sat Apr 06, 2013 12:48 pm

Nothing much to report from the Walker talk except that Baumbach starts shooting his next film this fall with Ben Stiller and that it will be "more like Greenberg than Frances Ha."

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Jeff
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Re: Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach, 2012)

#3 Post by Jeff » Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:27 pm

Matt wrote:Nothing much to report from the Walker talk except that Baumbach starts shooting his next film this fall with Ben Stiller and that it will be "more like Greenberg than Frances Ha."
The fall project with Ben Stiller turns out to be While We're Young, which he has been trying to get off the ground for a few years. He has also apparently just wrapped some other under-the-radar film that he won't talk about.

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med
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#4 Post by med » Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:26 pm

Profile of Baumbach in current New Yorker is available to read for free

Something for the Margot at the Wedding-on-Criterion speculators:
Late one night, in Berlin, Baumbach and Gerwig had drinks with Scott Foundas, a friend who is a film critic and a former programmer at the New York Film Festival. The conversation touched on “Margot at the Wedding” (2007), which starred Nicole Kidman and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Kidman, as Margot, visits Leigh, her sister, in a big house on an island somewhere in the Northeast, and takes her twelve-year-old son, whom she treats, at times, like a disappointing ex-lover. (“You used to be rounder, more graceful.”) The movie, though memorably fraught, is perhaps overfilled with ideas for smart short stories. It can feel like an application for membership in cinema’s first rank. Baumbach acknowledges his debt to Éric Rohmer, a director he loves, and to Ingmar Bergman’s “The Silence,” a film that also starts on a train, and involves two sisters, a boy, and strange things seen from a hotel window. Baumbach explained to Foundas, “I wanted the feeling of when you’re inside, and having a conversation, and the light starts to fade outside, and you don’t turn on the light. That’s what the whole movie looks like.” Earlier, Gerwig, thinking of that light, and of a shot of a child’s shoe dropped on a forest path, and of seemingly lurid goings on in the house next door, had joked, “I thought it was a horror movie.” Baumbach replied, “I thought I was making a comedy.”
The article doesn't mention this talk was being filmed, but Foundas has recorded interviews/conversations for Criterion in the past....

inneyp
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#5 Post by inneyp » Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:45 pm

On that other film. (From the New Yorker article)
Instead of “Action!,” Baumbach says, “Begin,” or “When you’re ready,” and then sits motionless but for a movement in his mouth, as if his tongue were searching for a missing tooth. Late one evening in March, he was on a sidewalk in the East Village, shooting a scene for the second film he has written with Gerwig. Still untitled, it will be released next year, in color, with Gerwig as a dauntless New York striver, and Lola Kirke—the twenty-two-year-old sister of Jemima Kirke, who plays Jessa on HBO’s “Girls”—as a Barnard undergraduate in awe of her. Baumbach compared the movie to “The Great Gatsby” and Jonathan Demme’s “Something Wild.”

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wigwam
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#6 Post by wigwam » Fri Apr 26, 2013 3:51 pm

Gerwig
“Something Wild.”
my skin is crawling

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Matt
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#7 Post by Matt » Mon May 20, 2013 5:35 pm

The video from Baumbach's visit to the Walker Art Center has been posted.

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Black Hat
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#8 Post by Black Hat » Mon May 20, 2013 7:07 pm

Damn him & Gerwig have been everywhere promoting this movie. He must have started using her publicist.

LavaLamp
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#9 Post by LavaLamp » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:35 pm

I've been re-visiting some NB films recently, and just re-watched The Squid and the Whale (2005). This is one of those films that I was luke-warm about on the first viewing, but this time I felt it was extremely well-done. I never went through a parents' divorce so couldn't relate to that part of the film, but I could empathize with the characters....

I initially didn't like The Bernard or Walt characters....Bernard reminded me of some of my college professors who thought that they were smarter than anyone else just because they had advanced degrees. However, IMHO his genuine attempts to try to get back together with his wife & his later heart attack really humanized him, so that by the end I almost felt sorry for him....

And, though I felt that Walt was an arrogant punk throughout much of the film, the ending scene when he admitted to his mother that he regretted breaking up with Greta (too late) somewhat humbled him as well...

Also really enjoyed the ending, when Walt ran from his father & went to the museum to see the Squid & the Whale - you got the impression he wanted to revisit his past & see something that had calmed him when he was a child....

However, even though I really liked the film, a couple aspects didn't quite gel for me:

1) I grew up during the '80's and was roughly Walt's age in '86, the year the film took place. And, during that time Pink Floyd was very popular among high school kids, especially The Wall (the album was released in late 1979, and the late '70's were still relatively recent in the mid '80's) - I was very familiar with Hey You, as I'm sure many other people were - and, it had been around for 7 years in '86. So, I'm surprised that the judges during the talent contest didn't recognize the song, and still awarded him the prize money. Sure, Ivan & Lili recognized it & the school eventually realized his plagiarism, but I'm surprised it took as long as it did. This was especially strange since the film was taking place in NYC, which I'm sure would have had a lot of PF fans; it wasn't like it took place in a small town....Granted, the older judges may not have all been necessarily familiar with the song, but IMHO this is still somewhat far fetched...

2) Also, I was quite grossed out by Frank's behavior, i.e. his putting peanuts in his nose & his other sickening activities in the school - truly vile, and I'm not sure why Baumbach put this in the film - I know the movie was partially autobiographical & these incidents may have been based on something he witnessed, but I'm sure there could have been another way to show Frank's anger at his parents' divorce...

Switching gears, a question to other forum members: Are Baumbach's late '90's films Mr. Jealousy & Highball worth seeing? I don't think I've seen either one & they would be tough to track down (if either film was on DVD, I'm sure they're both OOP at this point). Kicking & Screaming is one of my favorite '90's films, partially since I could relate to the characters somewhat, but not sure about these other two - I haven't heard much about them on these forums, but that doesn't necessarily mean anything...
Last edited by LavaLamp on Tue Feb 04, 2014 9:44 am, edited 14 times in total.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#10 Post by domino harvey » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:40 pm

Mr Jealousy is wonderful, the best Woody Allen film he never made. Both titles were released on DVD, no idea if they're still in print

LavaLamp
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#11 Post by LavaLamp » Sat Feb 01, 2014 12:04 pm

domino harvey wrote:Mr Jealousy is wonderful, the best Woody Allen film he never made. Both titles were released on DVD, no idea if they're still in print
Good to know - Thanks very much.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#12 Post by knives » Sat Feb 01, 2014 10:27 pm

I believe Showtime ondemand also has it available right now.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#13 Post by domino harvey » Sun Feb 02, 2014 12:38 am

Mr Jealousy is going for a decent price new on Amazon Marketplace. I have the DVD and it's widescreen but non-anamorphic but unfortunately I can't imagine we'll ever see this again! I rewatched it a couple years ago and it still holds up-- it's far more in the spirit of the early comedy of Kicking and Screaming rather than the turn he made with Squid and the Whale, and as I've said, it's really a pretty obvious Woody Allen love letter, but it's the best fake Woody Allen movie I've seen (and unfortunately, like anyone else watching independent film in the 90s, I've seen my share!) and all filtered through the "I will be as funny as I want to be" mentality of Kicking and Screaming that he abandoned pretty quickly. I still have Highball in reserve until I breakdown and watch it some rainy day

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#14 Post by albucat » Sun Feb 02, 2014 3:39 am

I'm actually a pretty big fan of Highball, too. It doesn't really work, but it's fun and unique and in some ways more interesting than anything he's done since. I wish Baumbach hadn't completely disowned his period of work between Kicking and Squid.

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Black Hat
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#15 Post by Black Hat » Sun Feb 02, 2014 5:21 pm

Highball is hilarious and I've never understood why Baumbach hates it. Felix is one of the funnier characters he's come up with.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#16 Post by Numero Trois » Mon Feb 03, 2014 3:12 am

LavaLamp wrote:However, even though I really liked the film, a couple aspects didn't quite gel for me:

1) I grew up during the '80's and was roughly Walt's age in '86, the year the film took place. And, during that time Pink Floyd was very popular among high school kids
It depends on the particular neighborhood, school and town. I was a teenager during roughly the same time period; Pink Floyd was never one of the main bands. Like a lot of places, it was a lot of Van Halen, Led Zepellin, AC/DC, Ozzy, Def Leppard. The period details in the movie seemed just right to me when I saw it many years back.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#17 Post by knives » Mon Feb 03, 2014 3:48 am

Also apparently this was based on a real incident though with The Who who as far as I know were much more popular at the time given the success of The Tommy.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#18 Post by Roger Ryan » Mon Feb 03, 2014 9:54 am

knives wrote:Also apparently this was based on a real incident though with The Who who as far as I know were much more popular at the time given the success of The Tommy.
Right, Baumbach reportedly performed "Behind Blue Eyes" circa early 80s and claimed it was his own song! The scene bothered me as well for the same reason. Perhaps this is an example where it would have made better dramatic sense if the song selected was more obscure, even if it deviated from the truth of the actual inspiration. All the same, this was the least of the things that bothered me about the film which seemed to be trying too hard throughout.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#19 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Mon Feb 03, 2014 10:03 am

Given the scene in question I can't help but find "The Tommy" a little appropriate and funny.

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knives
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Re: Noah Baumbach

#20 Post by knives » Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:03 pm

I have the flu. It makes me excessively use the word the.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#21 Post by domino harvey » Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:44 pm

Lake Bell to direct Baumbach-penned the Emperor's Children -- I didn't like In a World... anywhere near as much as some here, but she's still enough of a fresh talent on Childrens Hospital that I have faith she can deliver the goods with this

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#22 Post by FerdinandGriffon » Thu Aug 28, 2014 10:14 pm

They'll both struggle with the mediocrity of the source material though.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#23 Post by beamish13 » Fri Aug 29, 2014 5:15 pm

Anyone know if Baumbach/Gerwig's Berkeley Breathed adaptation FLAWED DOGS is still in development at Dreamworks? That company has taken some big hits, and it wouldn't surprise me if they canned it.

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Re: Noah Baumbach

#24 Post by domino harvey » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:44 am

domino harvey wrote:I still have Highball in reserve until I breakdown and watch it some rainy day
It finally rained. Good lord this movie is a piece of shit. A few errant chuckles here and there, but this looks like every awful late 90s indie film no one remembers that used to air on IFC in 2004 at 2 AM, except probably worse. I'm sure this is a big hit with people who find Bongwater too cinematic.

Only inspired moment was
SpoilerShow
Bogdanovich trying to hit on a girl by doing a Jimmy Stewart impression, only for her to not only not get it, but ask him repeatedly to stop doing it. The timing and execution in this scene are the only things here that signal the great Baumbach rhythms he exhibits in spades elsewhere. The scant few other party jokes and rando gags that work could be from anyone.

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