Interview with writer and director Paul Maher Jr

 NOTE: This interview was first published on until the site ended on July 10, 2016. Kellie Haulotte is the author. 

Paul Maher Jr. is an author, photographer, and filmmaker. He published books on author Jack Kerouac, filmmaker Terence Malick and on many other different subjects. Below is a brief interview with him about movies and about his own books.

1. What was the first movie do you remember seeing as a child?

Not sure, I remember lots of Drive-In films, and especially Planet of the Apes series, Vanishing Point played a lot it seems at Drive-Ins .... even earlier perhaps was in Lowell, Massachusetts at the Strand Theatre downtown, and I saw one of those early Disney films with Johnny Whitacker.

2. You wrote a book called, ONE BIG SOUL: An Oral History of Terrence Malick, so why about Malick and what makes him so interesting to you?

I sensed a kindred spirit in him back in the days of The Thin Red Line, and there wasn't that big an audience, no books about him and little attention was paid to him other than he was a recluse and he hadn't made a film in twenty years. Beyond that media hype, there was a deeper experience that one could wallow in, to invest their time and energy, like reading a classic novel by Melville or Dostoevsky.

3. Do you believe that movies made in Hollywood aren't as good as they were during the Classic Hollywood Era?
No. I have had great experiences with all films.
4. Since Halloween is around the corner, what makes the best Halloween movies? Do you have that one that you watch every Halloween?
Not really. I do remember seeing the original Dawn of the dead at the drive-in. To me it looks dated now, very fake, but The Walking Dead takes up that slack. I will probably be running a marathon of Seasons 1 and 2.

5. Besides Malick, do you have any favorite directors that are working today?
Lars Von Trier; Nicolas Winding Refn, particularly his Pusher trilogy and Valhalla Rising; Werner Herzog. I don't really watch a whole of movies . . .
6. You have written some great works about Jack Kerouac and you know a lot about him, so do you know if he had any favorite movies?

He seemed to enjoy French cinema..

7. Let's talk a little bit about foreign cinema, what country or films in particular do you like?

I'm not a hardcore cinephile, but again it's Von Trier and Refn, those two I pay attention to anything they do.

8. What are your favorite classic movies and which ones inspired you if any?

I saw Jaws at the drive-in at 12 years old, so I was more of a Jaws kid than a Star Wars kid. I can only point to Malick as someone who continues to influence me with everything he does.

9. Are you a particular fan of silent cinema? I know that a lot people don't like them because of no sound and since 2012 movies have changed a lot since 1912.

I enjoy the early silent of Hunchback of Notre Dame and Abel Gance's Beethoven. The silent version of Les Miserables is another.

10. Last but not least, do you have any advice to any young aspiring writers or filmmakers out there?

These are the days when you can make your dreams happen, just find a way to budget a film yourself, by your own camera and a computer that can handle an editing suite and just make it. Don't look back!

If you would like to buy his book about filmmaker Terrence Malick, ONE BIG SOUL: An Oral History of Terrence Malick, you can buy it here at these two links, Malick, Amazon or Malick, Lulu.