My complete run of the first seven years of Ciak magazine, Italy’s premiere movie magazine, was scrapped while I was serving in the Air Farce – my mother decided all that useless paper was just a waste of space, and she threw it out. Granted, by that time I had stopped following the magazine, because I did not like the editorial approach anymore, but it was still a colossal loss for me: through that magazine I had started to look at the movies in a different way.
One of the reasons why Ciak was not cutting it anymore was, of course, that by the mid-90s I had started reading foreign movie magazines – Empire, Premiere, a few odd copies of Film Studies and Midnight Marquee, a couple of Fangoria, even a few issues of Cahiers du Cinema. Those were spared the Great Motherly Purge, because they were stacked in boxes and did not look like a bunch of magazines on a shelf.
At the time there was a big International Newsstand in the center of Turin, about two blocks away from my university, and it was normal to pass by and see what was new . When the newsstand closed at the end of the 90s, my consumption of cinema magazines, national or foreign, dropped drastically – international subscriptions cost too much and the only time I tried, two issues out of three were stolen from my mailbox.
The coming of the Digital Age changed all that, and in the last few years I’ve been a supporter of the Film Noir Foundation, and I get regularly their excellent Noir City magazine.
And last week, in a moment of madness, I decided to splurge a small amount of my hard-earned money (basically, my share of the monetization revenue of the podcast I co-host, Paura & Delirio) on a new magazine – because I listened to their podcast and I checked their website, and I liked what I heard and saw. And so I bought a subscription to Film Stories, a British independent movie magazine put together by some of the individual that created the original Den of Geek website. And I was not a big fan of Den of Geek, but the magazine – the latest issue of which just landed digitally in my mailbox – is quite good.
(note the cover shown here is not the cover of the latest issue – but I like the Anna and the Apocalypse cover…)
The magazine focuses on the British film scene, and that’s good with me, and it hits the right balance between professional, “technical” feel writing and a more accessible, popular approach. There’s reviews, feature pieces (in this issue, an interesting bit about film criticism in the age of internet, and a big retrospective on the cinema of Clive Barker) and a few fun bits (I mean, a review of Inseminoid? Really?)
Given what I’ve seen so far, it was a good idea and a good investment. Also, the guys are running a subscription drive with some special offers and things – they ask in the mag to spread the news, and, why not?
Check out their online shop.
Who knows, maybe finally getting back to reading film magazines and all that means I’m slowly going back to a normal(-ish) life.
Yeah, I know… it won’t last.