For our June issue, we’re looking at stories where an alluring surface masks surprising depths—for better or for worse.
That could mean stories of femme fatales and seductions—from Double Indemnity to Basic Instinct, desire can come at a deadly cost.
But it could also mean stories where the audience pays to see a frothy pleasure and instead receives a story with surprising depths—from Magic Mike to Showgirls, what looks like a guilty pleasure can often be deceptively provocative.
There are even those rare cases where a movie about a thirst trap proves itself to be a thirst trap—when you heard that Scarlett Johansson was playing a shapeshifting alien seductress, you probably weren’t expecting anything as avant-garde as Under the Skin.
But we’re not only looking for stories of the erotic. Sometimes what looks like a goofy comedy can surprise you with its heart and soul (how many of us went to Superbad looking for raunchy laughs and left with a new perspective on the intimacy of friendship?) Sometimes what looks like a typical slasher can pull the rug out from under you with subversive satire (who could predict the pitch-black comedy of American Psycho from just a poster?) Sometimes what looks like a mindless good time can have a surprisingly audacious filmmaking style (think of The Beach Bum, and Spring Breakers before it).
From the sexy to the sublime, we want to celebrate cinematic thirst traps and all the ways they can ensnare, shock, and delight us.
As always, we’re looking for thoughtful analysis and wholehearted engagement, as opposed to standard reviews, clickbait, or hot takes. We publish interviews, profiles, formal analysis, cultural criticism, personal essays, and humor pieces. We're looking for writing that is savvy and insightful about filmmaking, but that also grapples in some way with the business of being alive.
We tend to publish critical essays between 1800-3000 words, though we’ve certainly been known to publish pieces in other, longer formats. Creative approaches are always encouraged.
We pay $50 per essay upon publication.
In order to be considered for the issue we’ll need to receive a first draft of your essay by April 30, 2019.
If you haven’t written for us before and want to know more about the submission process, or if you have a few different ideas and aren’t sure which one to pursue, please feel free to email the editorial team (firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to the submission deadline with any pitches or questions. Also, before submitting, please check our archives to make sure we haven't covered the film you hope to write about within the last calendar year (we even have an alphabetized database of every film we've covered under the "Films" tab for extra convenience).
For additional information, visit our Submissions page: http://brightwalldarkroom.com/submissions/.