james franco short stories

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#TBT | Finn Wittrock as Max in Deadbeat - Season 2 Episode 11 “The Polaroid Flasher”. Season 2 was released on Hulu on this day in 2015.

Episode synopsis of “The Polaroid Flasher” (Which is the funniest thing you will ever watch, by the way):

Pac (Tyler Labine) encounters the ghost of a surly 1980s cop who’s obsessed with closing his last case

When he is jealous / James Franco

First Imagine ever!! Sorry everyone 

1820 words. A short fluffy story with James Franco. Enjoy <3


We were invited to a fancy dinner party somewhere in the upper east side. It was half past eleven and we were still waiting for the other guests to come. At the beginning it was just like the usual. We were talking together with friends of us. It was getting boring so I decided to look around to see who else was at the party. I turned my head around to get a better view of the entrance. Then I noticed that James put his arm around my chair. I looked at him and smiled a little bit. I couldn’t tell why but today he seemed to be silent. When we were driving to the party, he didn’t spoke a word to me. It was just unusual of him. There wasn’t a single day where he didn’t tease me about anything. This time he didn’t make a joke how I looked, no not a single word to my hair, my dress, my shoes nor my oversized coat. I tried to understand him, it could be the stress because of his new movie. If he is all quiet I can be quiet aswell. Just don’t let his mood destroy your evening. An half hour later Seth made finally his apperiance.
“Look look, who do we have here, the Lady in Red. What do you plan today?”
“Hi Seth , good to see you, thank you” I smiled at him.
“Hi man, you should watch out for her. Some people would want to take her home”
“Just sit down Seth, we are waiting for you the whole day.”
“Big people need more time, then some tiny people”
“Yeah you bear, how did you even fit in that suit?”
“I didn’t eat for 2 hours. But now I am starving. Where is the damn waitress”

I listened to them how they talked with eachother and then it hit me. He wasn’t gloomy, no his mean and cold attitude was meant for me. He talked and joked with the others but everytime I tried to speak with him he just answered in short cold answers. An half hour later the dinner came. I was glad because I hoped I could talk with the both of them. But all I could do is to asure Seth that there will be more food then salad. In that moment James excused himself and went out to pick up his phone.
Immediatly seth sat next to me
“Hey __ what’s wrong with you guys? The last time I saw you you couldn’t get your hands of eachother and now you are avoiding your eyes from eachother”
“Seth, I don’t know what’s up. You tell me. Since we left the house he is ignoring me. I don’t want him to be this silent. What should I do?”
“I really don’t know. Are you sure you two didn’t quarrel?”
“Yes I am sure. We didn’t fight or anything. I don’t want to fight with him all the time.
"Should I talk to him?”
“No no, really Seth. I will ask him later myself. Thank you.” I squeezed his hand and smiled.

“So __ I will try to find a dessert. What about you?”, he asked
“No thank you. Enjoy yourself” I explained to him.
“Okay, watch out for my seat”
“Seth I will be out for a few minutes”
“Excuse me, Hi Anne could you watch out for my seat till I come back?”

I glanced around to see if I can find James somewhere flirting with someone. I didn’t saw him inside of the house so I decided to look if he was on the terrace. There he was standing like a handsome statue. when I stepped outside a cold breeze cam towards me. I left my coat on my place and I didn’t had the intention to go back without confronting James first.
I walked up and stood behind him away a few steps.

“What are you doing here outside?” , I asked.
“I went out for a bit”, he said without turning around.
“For what?”, I asked curiously.
“Can’t you see I am smoking. I have to think”, he burst out.
“James, you know you can tell me whatever it is”, I added.
“It’s nothing that concerns you. Now go inside!”, he shot back. This time turning around and giving me a angry expression.

without another word I turned my heels around and walked away. No I didn’t walked inside. I did not what he wanted me to. I wanted to break his spell. I wanted to make my own decision. I was sure that made him much more angrier but I couldn’t find a good reason for him to be this mad.

After two hours of going out of eachothers way and secretly stealing glances of eachother. The Party was going to the end. A few people were going home already. I couldn’t decide to stay or to go home. My head was confused and tired at the same time. Sitting on the stairs outside on the rooftop.
I was breathing the cold breeze into my lungs hoping to get distraced. The current Situation of James and me disturbed me more then I wanted. Since months I have waited for this event and now this. I spend hours to find the maching shoes for this sinful expensive dress. I smiled, remembering how he surprised me with this dress a few weeks ago. Unfortunately I hadn’t much fun today as I hoped. I closed my eyes to rethink about everything what happened today. I was hurt this evening. This time it was not Seth no. it was James. The Man who confuses me where we are standing. I still don’t know what I am to him. This is so annoying. I wished I was at home with my girls talking and watching old movies. As tears started to come, I tried to blink them away. I closed my eyes and told myself that this will be over in one hour.
When I was in deep toughts, I felt that a presence sat next to me. His scent was too strong to ignore. I knew exactly who’s scent it was. it was James’s.
At first I didn’t open my eyes, maybe it was my imagination playing a joke on me. Until I heard a smoosh sound and felt  a wet spot on my bare shoulder. I opened slowly my eyes and I was welcomed by a handsome man named James Franco, leaning to my shoulder and kissing the same spot again but this time looking into my eyes. The man that promised that this night would be precious. Indeed it was distant and cold. I didn’t want to talk, so I turned my head around the the other side, not facing him.

“___ let’s talk”, he pleaded, while leaving soft kisses on my shoulder. He put his arms around my waist and pulled me closer to him. I tried to stay calm but I stiffened and couldn’t make a move. I was not scared or anything. No I was mad and angry at the same time. How could he act like nothing happened at all.
“Are you still not talking to me?”, he murmured. This time kissing me cheek.
“Stop it James!”, I responded, trying to sit apart.
“I can’t”, he exclaimed, sneeking another kiss.
Where was the cold James Franco a hour ago. What’s the meaning of this, I asked myself.
“You have to!”, I said much more powerful, then expectet. I was furious.
“But I don’t want to”, whispered James looking into my eyes teasingly.
“Oh really James. What is it what you want?”, I asked him.
“I want us”, he replied in a simple way. He said that like it was the easiest thing to say. We waited for any reaction. But we both knew what he meant. When I saw the pleading look on his face. I gave in. I couldn’t stop myself from leaning in. Then I remembered why I was so mad.
“You are Unbelievable! You always get what you want. This is so typical of you!”, I pointed out.
“What did I get. Did I get you?”, he asked in a low voice.
“That’s not what I meant. James, it annoys me so much, that you were cold the whole evening. Not to others you were cold and distant just to me. First you push me away and then you come and want to cuddle. I am not a cat James! You always do that”, I scoffed. Finally I had my tongue back. I could fight back.
“I am sorry”, he began. I looked at him and my gaze softend. I couldn’t be mad at him. Not when he looks so good. not in that suit.
“Don’t be mad. I don’t want to argue with my cat. You know that.”, he continued, with his sincere apology.
“Then tell me, tell me whats up on your mind”, I whispered. I leaned my head on his chest and we were making us comfortable.
“Sorry, Kitty. I can’t”, he explained.
“Okay that’s enough I am going”, I proclaimed and stood up.
“Wait __!” he took my hand and guided me to sit down.
“Spit it out James”, I threatend.
“Well it’s not something usual. Men doesn’t tell this to women but..”, he grabbed my hand and interwined our fingers. I looked at him in the eyes and waited.
“I’ve got really mad today. Well it’s because it’s this party and all the men here looking at you like that. Just the thought that someone would do something to you. It’s the dress that drives me mad. A few weeks ago I thought it was a good idea to get this dress but now I hate that dress. When we are at home I will burn this piece of red. It doesn’t suits you at all”, he pointed out.
I looked down at myself and I got confused. Everyone complimented me this evening, except for him. Afterall it was a beautiful dress. It was a beautiful red and it was a little bit to much open at the back but after all it was just a dress. He was the one who picked out the dress and now he is regreting it.
“Wait, are you jealous of the people here?”, I proclaimed
“No, I never said that”, he whispeder, looking everywhere but me.
“That’s enough, I don’t even know why I still talk to a 5 year old boy, who is certainly jealous over a dress”, I scolded. I stood up and folded my arms infront of me. Signalising him to shut up.
“Then let’s not talk. Let’s just get home. We can drink wine and just not talk.”, he stood up aswell and holding my hands in his.
“Jerk, just accept that you were jealous”, I took his hands and dragged him inside to the party.

Welcome to Nostalgic Cinema Magazine! As you may already know, for the first issue of the magazine, we’ll be focusing on the movie “Palo Alto” directed by Gia Coppola.   

The problem with a lot of “teen” movies is that there’s no sense of understanding of what it’s actually like to be a teenager. It’s not all about hanging out with friends and having the best time of your life. There’s heartbreak, toxic relationships, and the stress of figuring out what you want to do for the rest of your life. I think I can safely say “Palo Alto” is a depressingly true visage of what it’s like being a teenager. It’s the type of movie where you have flashbacks of moments that never occurred, where you remember how hard it was to be a young adult.

To be completely honest, I shed a tear a couple times during the film. It’s just that powerful. Gia Coppola, first-time feature film director, did an incredible job telling the story using such intense, raw emotion, with a high degree of visual sophistication. The characters seemed “real” in the way teenagers are supposed to be and flawlessly expressed distinct personalities. Teddy (played by newcomer, Jack Kilmer) is the sensitive skateboarder and artist who wants to be “good” but is stuck with the wrong crowd. Fred is what he calls himself “a wild monkey” and resorts to destructive methods in order to feel alive. April’s the introverted girl that’s bombarded by complicated issues that she handles with uncertainty. And finally there’s Emily, the sweet girl who only wants to be loved, but instead is always taken advantage of. It’s the attention to detail in the character development and plot that makes Palo Alto so memorable.

The setting of the movie takes place in Palo Alto, California as evidenced in the actual title of the film. It’s the ideal location to portray the hardships of adolescence and not only because James Franco, who wrote the short stories that inspired the movie, lived there. When googling Palo Alto, there are dozens of articles that try to figure out why teenagers are killing themselves. Growing up in million-dollar ranch homes with no parents are what a lot of kids are exposed to. In the movie, parents are essentially non-existent. April’s mother talks to more people on the phone than to her actual daughter. Fred’s creepy father, excellently portrayed by Chris Messina, somewhat reveals why Fred acts the way he does. There are no role models that the teenagers can look up to. They seek danger because they’re bored or perhaps they just want some attention from their parents. The only time Teddy’s mother comes on screen is when he gets arrested. The lack of role models depicted in the movie is a bit of a culture shock. I came to a realization that this doesn’t only happen in Palo Alto, this happens around the world. Teenagers may find parents annoying but without them and without their guidance, we can become lost. This movie is powerful in the way it explores a variety of different matters.          

Love and lust come into play a lot during the movie. Emily, known by her classmates as a “slut”, performs sexual acts on boys in exchange for a simple phone call, an earnest attempt to actually matter to someone. Making love with boys that show her a little bit of attention is not the point. The point is that she puts herself in uncomfortable situations and always watches the boys leave. They use her for their own advantage and never stay long enough to tell her that she’s special and worthy of love. Fred, who she develops a crush on, pushes her down onto her knees at one point and says, “Tell me you love me.” She’s so willing to prove her love for others but no one’s ever prepared to love her back. After all, she’s known as the “slut”, right?

Then there’s the inexperienced April, who acquires the interest of her teacher/soccer coach, Mr.B. Apart from playing soccer on his team, April constantly babysits his son. Mr. B tries to woo her by saying things like, “I just want to be with you. Just be with me,” like any other predatory older male would say in order to take advantage of the younger female. The unfortunate part is that although for most of the movie she resists, she finally gives in near the end. First sex is ideal only in legends. In reality it’s full of gropings, fumblings and pain to what was only an hour ago a platonic ideal. Palo Alto proves that, for the most part, the only reason that older males would want to associate with young females is for sex, so they can gain confidence in their masculinity again.           

The music feels like a necessary part of the mood of the film. Palo Alto’s soundtrack, scored by Devonte Hynes, beautifully captures the mood of high school and is as dreamy as the film itself. There’s also a sense of naivety interweaved throughout the beginning of the soundtrack. Songs like “Soccer Field”, sound touchingly innocent when the audience is just introduced to some of the characters. However, as the movie progresses, the songs achieve a more melancholy sound and in the final scene, true heartbreak ensues and the somber piano sound that plays in the background really adds to that effect.

There are hundreds of movies directed towards teenagers but “Palo Alto” is in there with the good ones. It is dark and engaging and meaningful, the characterization is strong, the cinematography is stunning, and the actors put on stellar performances. On the surface it may seem as if Coppola created a film about teenagers going to parties and smoking weed but it’s far beyond that. “I wish I didn’t care about anything,” April says to Teddy. “But I do care. I care about everything too much.” Palo Alto perfectly reveals that teenagers, just like everyone else in the world, are on a personal search for happiness, struggling to express themselves, and trying to survive.


Written by EMA BRAZDEIKYTE (@emabraz)

Photo edit by ANNA SANDBERG (@hirxeth)

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Halloween, 1993 (x)

Based on the short story ‘Halloween’ by James Franco

gifset by murder-a-la-mod

Bungalow 89 – A Short Story by James Franco About Not Sleeping with Lindsay Lohan

I was in Bungalow 89 of the Chateau Marmont, the old hotel where the stars stay. The hotel is tucked behind a wall, off Sunset Boulevard, just west of Laurel Canyon, right in the heart of Hollywood. Bungalow 89 is in the cottage area, apart from the main building, where the pool is. It was dusk.

Bungalow 89 is not famous like Bungalow 3 (Belushi) or Bungalow 2 (Rebel Without a Cause). It is only famous in my own mind, because it’s where I first met Gus Van Sant, and because I have been living in it for the past nine months while they do repairs on my house. When I met Gus here, he sat in the comfy chair in the living room and played a little red guitar and talked to me. It was back when he was casting the supporting roles for his film about Kurt Cobain’s last days alive. The role he liked me for eventually went to Lukas Haas, the kid from Witness, with Harrison Ford. Haas was one of the original members of the Pussy Posse, the group centered on the young Leo DiCaprio, back in the 90s, post-Titanic and pre-Scorsese.

Lukas Haas had a gay sex scene in Gus’s film. It was with Scott Green, the guy who talks about having to fuck a guy with a big cock in the Chinese-café scene in My Own Private Idaho. His monologue was probably based on at least some reality; he had helped River Phoenix do research for his young-hustler role in the same film. Which reminds me of a story Gus later told me about River in Portland, during preproduction. River was pulled over by the cops for wearing jeans with a hole in the front so big that his dick hung out.

***

There was a Hollywood girl staying at Chateau Marmont. She had gotten a key to my room from the manager. I heard her put the key into my front door and turn it, but I had slid the dead bolt and that thing—I don’t know what you call it; it’s like a chain but made of two bars—that kept the door from opening.

She said, “James, open the door.”

Across the room was a picture of a boy dressed as a sailor with a red sailor cap, and except for his blondish hair (closer to my brother’s color) he looked like me.

She said, “Open the door, you bookworm punk blogger faggot.”

Continue

Film Review: Palo Alto

Dir. Gia Coppola
Score: 6.3


Let me tell you something: James Franco simply does not care. He doesn’t care that you’re tired of seeing his leering visage on books, magazines and movie screens. He doesn’t care that you’ve grown exponentially weary of hearing about his latest interests, be they directing, painting, earning a PhD. in multiple disciplines, writing fiction, or attempting to pick up underage girls via Instagram. He likely doesn’t care that you are largely unimpressed with his ever-growing body of work, including his most recent film roles, in which he’s stretched his artistic limits in both unfortunate, would-be blockbusters (Oz The Great and Powerful) or sad-sack indie showcases (As I Lay Dying, which he also directed), or that he currently has no fewer than a dozen upcoming films in post-production at the moment. He probably also doesn’t care that you actually thought he was really good in Spring Breakers, playing a cornrowed white-boy drug baron who lives to impress the nubile ladies of his harem. 

Franco doesn’t care because, for all his irritating industriousness, he’s not about success, at least in the strictly critical/financial sense. He’s too busy removing the creative filters and blockages that plague the rest of us and pursuing any damn thing he can conceive of, which, frankly, is exactly what any of us should be doing if we were ever lucky enough to be in his position of fame and opportunity. 

Given that, we can at least be mollified by the fact that he didn’t actually direct the film of his own collection of short stories from 2011, thankfully, that job went to Gia Coppola, who has composed an interesting if somewhat flawed teen lament. 

It’s a familiar tableau: A well-to-do community, comprised of fractured families, whose children are disaffected, damaged and, in some cases, downright dangerous. In short order we meet April (Emma Roberts), a sweet-faced girl whose hunky soccer coach (Franco, ironically the least convincing of the actors) begins to romance, not entirely against her wishes. April is good friends with Teddy (Jack Kilmer, sporting River Phoenix’ unhinged locks), an amiable stoner, who nevertheless gets himself into trouble when he hangs around Fred (Nat Wolff), the aforementioned dangerous kid, so filled with pompousness and egocentrism, he puts everyone around him at risk. There’s also unfortunate Emily (Zoe Levin), a sad girl given to finding love by any means necessary, often at the cost of her own self-worth, sliding between bathroom doors and servicing boys like the hateful Fred at his whim. 

The film skips around the lives of its myriad characters, looking in on them as they make fateful decisions and attempt to live with the results– April hooks up with her coach, only to find she’s not the only young player he’s had his eye on; Teddy gets in a car accident while wasted and has to do community service as a result; Fred goes further into self-destructive madness, a result, we are given to suspect, that comes from his father’s sexual abuse; Emily finally seems to disavow Fred, perhaps to move onto bigger and better things. 

The thing is, for all the (largely deserved) grief Franco takes for being such an artistic gadabout, there’s actually a lot to chew on here. In that, Franco’s work is aided greatly by the surprisingly assured debut of writer/director Coppola, Francis Ford’s granddaughter. The 27-year-old proves skilled in the family business, getting strong performances out of her young leads and getting the right pitch for her scenes. In a sex scene between despondent, lost Emily and the irascible Fred in her childhood bedroom, Coppola has her camera focus instead on the ceramic figurines, dried flowers, and mossy stuffed animals that still surround Emily’s bed: a painful call-back to a time when she was shrouded in hope and innocence instead of the gangly arms of a puerile emotional predator. It’s a note the film gently hits throughout, the happy innocence of the characters’ younger siblings (or, in April’s case, her coach’s son, whom she routinely babysits) in direct contrast to the lost, jaded adolescent souls they will eventually become.

But rather than continually soak her audience in the briny flush of total nihilism, Coppola is wise enough to find a range of notes in her characters. Teddy, for one, can be every bit as aggravatingly callous and irresponsible as his bud Fred (one appreciates his mother warning her son to stay away from that terrible influence), but in the same breath – as when he draws an endearing portrait of an elderly woman at the rest home he’s been assigned – he still shows signs of a residual sweetness. In teen-dirge tone we’re somewhere between the pitiless grit of Larry Clark and the sunny sweetness of Amy Heckerling. 

Coppola has also culled an interesting cast – calling in some family favors, one suspects – including a fey Val Kilmer as April’s writerly stepfather and Talia Shire as April’s guidance counselor – amongst her young charges. If Franco is indeed the cast’s weak link, she smartly steers clear of him as anything other than a basic plot device for April. Like the other adults in the film, he lies far out on the periphery of the teens’ lives, a distant narrative provocateur with little direct sway in their lives. 

The teens swerve around from house party after house party (implied: not a great deal of fully invested parents protecting their precious children from themselves), drink great gulps of booze, do whatever drugs they can get their hands on and fool around indiscriminately with one-another, but there are still enough signs of hope – at least for everyone other than Fred – to keep from total despair. 

So disparage Franco all you want, roll your eyes at whatever new scheme he’s concocted (a documentary!), and tweet about it unmercifully. Just understand that in this he couldn’t care less about your opinion: What he does, he does for reasons other than our validation, which is annoyingly commendable.