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$17,304 pledged of $75,000 goal
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By Rob Garver (deleted)
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About this project

THE FILM

Pauline Kael was a farmer's daughter. A Californian. A one-time struggling single mother. Friend to many. Lover of the arts. Mistress of the movies. Pauline Kael was an artist in her own right and the most influential critic of the second half of the 20th century. 

Pauline was a performer on the page. She felt and understood movies deeply, and had the gift to be able to express her personal experience of a movie imaginatively and incisively, while also having fun with it. She was unpretentious, instinctual, witty, persuasive, and completely American. She called motion pictures “movies,” and rejected academics. Often, her reviews were far more entertaining and insightful than the films she was covering. 

What She Said is a sort of “character study,” and a way to give life to Pauline’s inimitable voice, pairing it with scenes from the movies she wrote about, and hearing from the filmmakers and actors who knew her, were inspired by her, or were at the pointed end of her pen. This movie is a portrait of the artist and her influence on filmmakers and films today.

THE PARTICIPANTS

Interviews have been shot with over 40 writers, film artists, and friends of Kael, including Quentin Tarantino, David O. Russell, Paul Schrader, Robert Towne, Greil Marcus, Francis Ford Coppola, David Edelstein, Molly Haskell and Alec Baldwin.

Quentin Tarantino
Quentin Tarantino
Robert Towne
Robert Towne

WHY WE WANT YOU TO PARTICIPATE

Pauline gave a lot of herself in what she wrote.  This might be the perfect way to express your appreciation for that, and for the enjoyable (or frustrating!) hours you might have spent reading Pauline Kael's books.  Pauline would have probably liked the idea of crowdfunding -- she wrote a lot about the challenge of independent filmmakers to make the films they wanted to, while working in a system that gave the most attention to studio-funded movies.  So a successful Kickstarter campaign could -- who knows?  -- ignite a resurgence of interest in her work.  That wouldn't be too terrible, would it?    

Original-design t-shirt offered as a Kickstarter reward
Original-design t-shirt offered as a Kickstarter reward
Felipe Muhr-designed poster offered as Kickstarter reward
Felipe Muhr-designed poster offered as Kickstarter reward

HOW WE INTEND TO USE THE FUNDS

We've shot the film and we already have interest from several European distributors and from PBS. They are waiting to see the finished film. So we need funds for post-production:

  • Editing
  • Composer & Original Soundtrack
  • Licensing Footage, Photographs, Recordings
  • Film Graphics 
  • Color Correction
  • Audio Mix 

THE FILMMAKERS

Rob Garver (producer - director - writer) has written, produced, and directed several short films that have been screened in local New York cinemas, and aired on cable television. Films include: “Comic Belief,” a documentary profile of cartoonist Dan Piraro; “The Man in the Yellow Cap,” and “Two Roads From Belfast, Maine,” a short narrative that has aired on the Classic Arts Showcase cable network.

Vincent Ellis (director of photography) is an award-winning Director of Photography with over twenty-five years of experience in film and television. He was the DP on the top-rated crime series “Forensic Files,” with over 300 episodes to his credit. He has also lensed documentaries and specials for Investigative Discovery and The Sci-Fi Channel, as well as numerous commercial and ad agency campaigns.

Rich Remsberg (archival researcher) is an Emmy Award-winning archival researcher/archival producer with more than 100 production credits. Remsberg is one of the country’s top researchers for documentary films, TV programs, and museum exhibits.

Want More Pauline Kael?

Follow/Like us on social media:

Twitter    II    Facebook    

Risks and challenges

We'll meet the challenges to come as we have met them so far -- head-on, with hard work, perseverance and maybe a little charm. :-) I didn't know any of the participants in the film when I started, and after 43 interviews, we've managed to film some of the best creative and critical minds around. But that's not due to me so much as Pauline, I think -- her name has opened doors.

And it's great to see how people are still fascinated, inspired, or upset by the mention of her name. The biggest challenge going into editing will be to make an honest film about Pauline. I want to make a movie that is as honest about who she was as she was about the movies she wrote about.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    GOING STEADY

    We want to thank you for helping bring Pauline Kael back to the forefront. Your name will be featured on our website's new 'Supporters' page.

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    5001 NIGHTS AT THE MOVIES

    Access to the original outline for the film (put together by the film's producer), to be delivered in a PDF. Plus, the above.

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    REELING

    Receive a digital download of What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael when it's available.

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    HOOKED

    Artist Felipe Muhr created this limited edition shirt exclusively for our campaign! (See photo of t-shirt under "Why We Want You To Participate" on home page)

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    WHAT SHE SAID: THE ART OF PAULINE KAEL DVD signed by the filmmaker.

    Winter/Spring 2016 delivery

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    KISS KISS BANG BANG

    A signed copy of Pauline's popular second collection of reviews and essays, from 1968. Producer-Director Rob Garver signs.

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    TRASH, ART AND THE MOVIES

    Add this Pauline Kael poster designed by Felipe Muhr to your collection. (See photo of poster under "Why We Want You To Participate" on home page)

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    WHAT SHE SAID: THE ART OF PAULINE KAEL DVD and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang book signed by the filmmaker.

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    DEEPER INTO MOVIES

    Curious which of Kael's reviews our participants like best? Go 'Deeper Into Movies' with this curated digital prose of 10-15 participants' thoughts on their favorite reviews. Plus, t-shirt and digital download.

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    WHEN THE LIGHTS GO DOWN

    Celebrate the film's release with tickets to the "What She Said" premiere in NYC! You also get a WSS t-shirt and Kael's 'Kiss Kiss Bang Bang' book signed by the filmmaker.

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    TAKING IT ALL IN

    Celebrate the film's release with tickets to the "What She Said" premiere in NYC and the after party with participants. You will also get a t-shirt and Kael's 'Kiss Kiss Bang Bang' book signed by the filmmaker.

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    FOR KEEPS

    Quentin Tarantino signs three copies of the anthology of Pauline's writing from 2011, "The Age of Movies." Plus film release party and WSS t-shirt.

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    STATE OF THE ART

    Have lunch in New York City with film participant Paul Schrader! Spend an enjoyable meal in New York City with the writer and director whose credits include "Taxi Driver," "American Gigolo." and the upcoming "Dog Eat Dog." He was also a longtime friend of Pauline. Lunch included.

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    STATE OF THE ART

    Have lunch in New York City with film participant James Toback! This writer and director -- "The Gambler," "Tyson," and the recent "Seduced and Abandoned" -- will break bread and share conversation with you. Longtime friend of PK. Lunch included.

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    MOVIE LOVE

    Come join the film team for two hours in the editing facility, and watch the process of the film being finished. Plus premiere, party, and poster.

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    WHY ARE THE MOVIES SO BAD? OR THE NUMBERS

    Become part of the "What She Said" team. You will receive a credit as an Associate Producer in the film.

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Funding period

- (30 days)