I spent the bulk of last week talking with fellow blogger Bill Ryan about an 11-year-old movie in which we were hopefully able to regenerate some small sliver of interest. This week at SLIFR I’ve invited five of my favorite online film writers to join me for the second annual convening of the SLIFR Tree House, inside the walls of which we will commiserate, bitch, praise and chew over the entirety of the Year in Movies, Version 2011. On board for this year’s convention are Tree House veterans Sheila O’Malley, Jason Bellamy and Jim Emerson, and joining us for the fun will be two voices that may be new to the Tree House but are well known and respected everywhere else on the Web, voices belonging to Steven Boone and Simon Abrams.
All five are writers of the highest order and intelligence, as well as witty and fun people whose company, if you don’t know already, is a delight and a privilege to keep, even just in a virtual mode. (And Sheila I finally met in person this past year—she’s as purely delightful as advertised.) They are all people whose presence has been a huge influence on my development as a film blogger, either in a directly encouraging way or as examples of fine writing and inspiration at bargain Internet prices. We’ll hit on all the big topics—our favorites of the year, trends both encouraging and disturbing, awards contenders and whether or not we should care, the most compelling moments of the year, what we didn’t see (this will be a big category for me) and, of course, Clooney, Clooney, Clooney (that last one only if Simon gets his way). No subject will be too outré, too contrary, too mainstream or too trivial to toss out onto the tree house floor, and given that rather liberal lack of boundaries it should be interesting to see where this group takes the conversation.
Please consider this your personal invitation to peek inside the walls of the 2011 SLIFR Tree House and join us in the discussion. The first meeting convenes Tuesday, January 17, right here at Sergio Leone and the Infield Fly Rule. Shoes are not required, only a love and abiding interest in the movies. We’ll see you there.
P.S. The picture above is last year's tree house. Wait till you see this year's model. And we have a big-time filmmaker to thank for it. Stay tuned.
P.P.S. I just had to post this picture. It's not as good as the tree house I have coming on Tuesday, but the damn thing looked so much like a viewfinder on a movie camera stuck up in a bunch of skinny pines that I just couldn't resist...