5 reasons I’m psyched for ‘Synecdoche, New York’

All this week! 5 movies I’m psyched for in October, and 5 reasons why. No. 1: Synecdoche, New York [opens limited October 24].
1. Gonzo screenwriter Charlie Kaufman makes his debut as a director, working from his own script. Will that make this even more deliciously bizarre than the movies he merely wrote — such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Adaptation, and Being John Malkovich — or merely just as precisely the same kind of deliciously bizarre?

2. The wonderful number of spectacular female actors all appearing onscreen in one place: Samantha Morton, Emily Watson, Hope Davis, etc. With movies only begrdugingly giving women even one intriguing role per movie, this is a veritable creative feast for the actresses as well as for audiences.

3. Philip Seymour Hoffman. He’s the Gene Hackman of our day: he’s good in everything.

4. The story, about a playwright struggling with his latest work, features parts for characters called such things as “Actress as Tammy as Hazel” and “Actor Playing Actor,” which suggests some twisty mindblowing will be in order.

5. Parts of this were shot in Woodlawn, my Bronx stomping grounds. Maybe that sounds a bit silly, but as far as I know, Woodlawn has not appeared on film (or TV) before, and it’s a distinctive little slice of New York City neighborhood that should be taken advantage of by more filmmakers. It has an aura all its own, and I can’t wait to see how it looks on the big screen.

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