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Adèle Exarchopoulos (‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’) and Cate Blanchett (‘Blue Jasmine’): Best Actress tie two years in a row at Los Angeles Film Critics Awards (photo: Léa Seydoux and Adèle Exarchopoulos in ‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’) (See previous post: "James Franco Tattoos, Gold Teeth: Lafca Winners." Another non-Hollywood Los Angeles Film Critics Association’s selection was Best Actress co-winner Adèle Exarchopoulos, cited for her performance as a young woman who falls in love with blue-haired Léa Seydoux in Abdellatif Kechiche’s controversial Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or winner Blue Is the Warmest Color. The lesbian romantic drama also took home the Lafca’s Best Foreign Language Film Award. Blue was also the luckiest color, at least in the Best Actress category: Cate Blanchett was Exarchopoulos’ co-winner, for her performance in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, in which she plays a character somewhat similar to A Streetcar Named Desire »
- Andre Soares
From Wes Anderson to Steven Soderbergh, contemporary filmmakers are often unambiguously influenced by the French New Wave. Through the 50s to 60s the French New Wave brought with it an explosive fountain of art and inspiration that became not merely a pioneering trend in French cinematic culture, but a major source of influence that continues to manifest itself in class and on set around the world. French New Wave classics such as Jean-Luc Godard's "Breathless" or Francois Truffaut's "Jules et Jim" are either central additions to a cinema studies curriculum if not the curriculum itself, and for good reason. They were among other films technically, structurally and thematically game-changing in their respective historical contexts. But while the French New Wave might reasonably have had its fair share of fans as well as critics at the time and to this day, as Martin Scorsese put it: "The New Wave »
- Ramzi De Coster
Think silent films reached a high point with The Artist? The pre-sound era produced some of the most beautiful, arresting films ever made. From City Lights to Metropolis, Guardian and Observer critics pick the 10 best
• Top 10 teen movies
• Top 10 superhero movies
• Top 10 westerns
• Top 10 documentaries
• Top 10 movie adaptations
• Top 10 animated movies
• More Guardian and Observer critics' top 10s
10. City Lights
City Lights was arguably the biggest risk of Charlie Chaplin's career: The Jazz Singer, released at the end of 1927, had seen sound take cinema by storm, but Chaplin resisted the change-up, preferring to continue in the silent tradition. In retrospect, this isn't so much the precious behaviour of a purist but the smart reaction of an experienced comedian; Chaplin's films rarely used intertitles anyway, and though it is technically "silent", City Lights is very mindful of it own self-composed score and keenly judged sound effects.
At its heart, »
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Feb. 25, 2014
Price: Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.95
Jean-Luc Godard (Weekend) burst onto the film scene in 1960 with this jazzy, free-form, and sexy crime drama, an homage to the American film genres that inspired him as a writer for the seminal French film magazine Cahiers du cinéma.
With its lack of polish, surplus of attitude, anything-goes crime narrative, and effervescent young stars Jean-Paul Belmondo (Leon Morin, Priest) as a gangster and Jean Seberg (Bonjour tristesse) as his American lady friend, Breathless helped launch the French New Wave and ensured that cinema would never be the same.
Criterion’s Blu-ray/DVD Combo release of the classic movie includes the following features:
• Restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by director of photography Raoul Coutard, with uncompressed monaural »
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Feb. 4, 2014
Price: Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.95
Hailed as one of the finest films ever made, the 1962 drama-romance Jules and Jim charts, over twenty-five years, the relationship between two friends and the object of their mutual obsession.
The legendary François Truffaut (The 400 Blows) directs, and Jeanne Moreau (La Notte) stars as the alluring and willful Catherine, whose enigmatic smile and passionate nature lure Jules (The Spy Who Came in from the Cold’s Oskar Werner) and Jim (The Fire Within’s Henri Serre) into one of cinema’s most captivating romantic triangles.
An exuberant and poignant meditation on freedom, loyalty, and the fortitude of love, the classic Jules and Jim was a worldwide smash a half-century ago and remains every bit as audacious and entrancing today.
Presented in French with English subtitles, Criterion’s Blu-ray/DVD Combo of Jules and Jim includes the following features:
• New 2K digital restoration, »
Criterion has announced their February 2014 titles and among them is the lone Wes Anderson film that was previously missing from the collection (edit: aside from Moonrise Kingdom and yes, this is Criterion's first animated film, post laserdisc era), Fantastic Mr. Fox, which was previously released by Fox Searchlight, but is now getting the full Criterion treatment. Here's a look at the features: New digital master, approved by director Wes Anderson, with 5.1 surround DTS-hd Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray Audio commentary featuring Anderson Storyboard animatics for the entire film Footage of the actors voicing their characters, puppet construction, stop-motion setups, and the recording of the score Interviews with cast and crew Puppet animation tests Photo gallery of puppets, props, and sets Animated awards acceptance speeches Audio recording of author Roald Dahl reading the book on which the film is based Gallery of Dahl's original manuscripts Discussion and analysis of the »
- Brad Brevet
It's 100 years since the first volume of À La Recherche du Temps Perdu was published, but a definitive cinematisation of Proust's epic novel has so far proved elusive
This year has been punctuated by a rash of anniversary-themed books and articles anticipating the first world war centenary, and indeed attempting snapshots of how Europe looked and felt in 1913, eerily poised on the precipice. The other centenary is similar in many ways: on 8 November 1913, Marcel Proust published the first volume of À La Recherche du Temps Perdu, his monumental novel about memory, mortality and art, the belle époque, and the leisured and aristocratic classes of Paris, a city crammed in Proust's pages with the most vivid and extraordinary personalities, destined to be swept away by the Great War.
- Peter Bradshaw
If it were the late '70s, and you were a wunderkind film artist a bit embarrassed about your zeal for space-opera kids' stuff, you went out and bagged yourself a great to class your movie up: Alec Guinness; François Truffaut; Max von Sydow done up like a disco gladiolus. That tradition is as good an explanation as any for the gorgeous, gloriously strange opening moments of 1979's The Visitor, a Euro-American science fiction horror clusterfuck too messy and weird to have hit back in the day but too inventive and accomplished to have been rotting for so long. (It's been given an HD transfer by Alamo Drafthouse.)
It opens with an alien desert under a great radiating blob of sun, as two robed, Jedi-like figures square off, space western style, one in Kenobi brown an »
As an auteurist, Best Director, maybe even more than Best Picture, is the Oscar category that most fascinates me. The interesting thing about the category is that it tends to simultaneously be both a point of pride and shame for the Academy Awards. On the one hand, the Directors branch has done a decent job of nominating directors who push and expand the boundaries of cinema, regardless of the genre they work in and from whichever country they hail from. Directors such as Alfred Hitchcock, Federico Fellini, Stanley Kubrick, Ingmar Bergman, John Cassavetes, Francois Truffaut, David Lynch, Akira Kurosawa, and Spike Jonze have all seen recognition in this category (some multiple times) for films that received very little attention from any other branches of the Academy.
On the other hand, when it comes to actually crowning a Best Director (which is a job given to the Academy as a whole, »
- Christopher Lominac
Here's a fact of which not all awards-watchers are entirely aware: Michael Haneke hasn't won an Oscar. Neither has Francois Truffaut, nor Luis Bunuel. Pedro Almodovar has one for writing, but that's it. Ang Lee has two for directing, but nothing for “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.” And Ingmar Bergman, Federico Fellini and Akira Kurosawa each won honorary Oscars, but no competitive ones between them. At this point, some of you might be crying foul. You expressly remember Haneke accepting his Oscar only a few months ago. You've definitely seen Almodovar give two acceptance speeches. And you know your Oscar history: Fellini »
- Guy Lodge
Let me tell you about my book, The Wes Anderson Collection. These are some of the things I learned while reporting it. 1. Wes Anderson and "Wes Anderson" are not the same guy."Wes Anderson" is the nattily dressed impresario who relishes his public role as an artist and filmmaker. “Wes Anderson" appeared in an American Express ad as "himself," in a long tracking shot modeled on Day for Night, a film by his favorite director, Francois Truffaut. But the actual guy — whom I first met about twenty years ago in Dallas, when he was starting out as a filmmaker and I was starting out as a journalist — is more reticent. Odd as it might sound, given that his name appears above the title of his movies, he's not crazy about being the center of attention for very long. The Wes Anderson Collection was conceived in late summer of 2009, »
- Matt Zoller Seitz
The 15th Mumbai Film Festival (Mff) presented by Reliance Entertainment and organized by the Mumbai Academy of Moving Image (Mami) scheduled between 17th-24th October is all set to showcase the best of contemporary French cinema and welcome artists for the 6th edition of the Rendez-vous with French Cinema co-organized with The French Embassy in India, Institut Français en Inde and Unifrance films.
As part of the festival highlights, Costa Gavras will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award during the opening ceremony in the presence of His Excellency Mr François Richier, Ambassador of France to India who will grace us with his presence especially for this occasion. Among others, Nathalie Baye, jury member of the international section, Mahamat Saleh Haroun, director of the film “Grigris”, Guillaume Brac, director of the film “Tonnerre” (Competition) and Leos Carax, well known film maker who will be conducting a masters class.
The special section “Rendez-vous »
- Pooja Rao
Giving the Film London Production Finance Market (Pfm) keynote address, Barker pointed to the influence that these critics have on the audience that watches independent film.
This may be an era in which critics at newspapers and magazines in the Us and UK are being culled in big numbers but Barker believes they still have a place.
“It [film criticism] has great importance,” Barker declared. “It is devastating to independent film with all these great critics losing their jobs and not having a forum.”
Barker expressed his hope that social media may give back some of the critics their power. “[But] one of the problems with social media is that everyone has an opinion. You don’t know who is a real valued critic and who is a person on the street.”
Mike Leigh’s Turner »
- email@example.com (Geoffrey Macnab)
Two festivals that will be underway in just over a week have unveiled their programs: Doclisboa and the Viennale, both of which are highlighted by retrospectives: Alain Cavalier in Lisbon and Jerry Lewis in Vienna. Lola 4 is now available in its entirety and Girish Shambu has a guide to the issue for your convenience.
Above: the poster for Wes Anderson's forthcoming film, The Grand Budapest Hotel. Speaking of Anderson, Matt Zoller Seitz has kicked off a new video essay series on the director inspired by his new book, The Wes Anderson Collection. Head over to Gina Telaroli's brilliant Tumblr to see her image piece that combines a newscast about a drone crash in New York with Godard and Claire Denis. An absolute must read via The Festivalists: "A brief history of Chinese independent film with Tony Rayns". Above: from Tom Sutpen's "Hitch: Scenes from a Life" series. »
- Adam Cook
Stanley Kauffmann,who ladled out praise and pans as the New Republic’s film and theater critic for more than five decades, is dead. He was 97. The New Republic said he died of pneumonia at St. Luke’s Hospital on Wednesday morning. Kauffmann’s voice was intellectual and measured. He championed directors like Francois Truffaut, Ingmar Bergman and Sam Peckinpah without ever adopting the hectoring or evangelical tone favored by contemporaries like Pauline Kael or Andrew Sarris. He had the good fortune to sound off on popular culture at a time when films like “The Godfather” and “Mean Streets” raised the art form and. »
- Brent Lang
Who's that man posing with the Beatles? He's the Hollywood producer who signed the Fab Four to star in A Hard Day's Night before they touched down in America for the first time. He's also the guy who launched the James Bond movie franchise by giving the green light to make Dr. No, then saved it by luring Sean Connery back for one more movie. He also discovered the likes of Steve Martin and Woody Allen on the stand-up circuit and started their movie careers. Many movers and shakers in the entertainment industry are hidden in the fine print and not seen in the spotlight, and now legendary producer David Picker is stepping out with a new memoir – Musts, Maybes, and Nevers: A Book About the Movies – and sharing some Hollywood tales with ETonline.
Pics: Hollywood's Hottest Movie Posters
"I've been a very lucky guy," says Picker. "I wound up in a situation where I was able »
Shubhashish Bhutiani at Venice Film Festival
S hubhashish Bhutiani has every reason to celebrate. His diploma film at the School of Visual Arts in New York won the Orizzonti award for Best Short Film at the prestigious Venice Film Festival this year. It was the only film to represent India besides Venice veterans Amit Dutta and Shekhar Kapoor who were invited to make a 1-minute short film on the festival’s 70th anniversary.
Bhutiani talks to DearCinema about his film Kush.
What is Kush about?
Kush is inspired by a true story. In 1984, Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her two Sikh bodyguards, causing anti-Sikh riots to erupt throughout the country. A teacher travelling back from a field trip with her class of 10-year-old students struggles to protect Kush, the only Sikh student in the class, from the growing violence around him.
What inspired you to make a »
- Nandita Dutta
September has been an incredibly busy month for the Twitch collective, with many of our writers travelling the Earth seeking out cinematic delights in as far-reaching corners as Venice, Toronto and Austin. As a result, this month's Full Disclosure is a little light on the ground, but that is no reason not to savour the responses of our most dedicated as they encounter some classics of world cinema for the very first time. This month is incredibly Western-heavy, with John Ford's The Searchers, Sam Peckinpah's The Wild Bunch and Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate also coming under careful scrutiny, as well as offerings from Steven Spielberg and Francois Truffaut and much more besides. Enjoy!...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
Catherine Deneuve: 2013 European Film Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Catherine Deneuve has been named the recipient of the the European Film Academy’s 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award for her "outstanding body of work." And outstanding it is. Yesterday, I posted an article about Dirk Bogarde (Victim, Death in Venice, Despair), one of the rare performers anywhere on the planet to have consistently worked with world-class international filmmakers. The Paris-born Catherine Deneuve, who turns 70 next October 22, is another one of those lucky actors. (Photo: Catherine Deneuve at the Potiche premiere at the 2010 Venice Film Festival.) Deneuve’s directors have included an eclectic and prestigious list of filmmakers from various countries. Those include Belle de Jour and Tristana‘s Luis Buñuel; Le Sauvage and La Vie de Château‘s Jean-Paul Rappenau; The Hunger‘s Tony Scott; Un Flic‘s Jean-Pierre Melville; The Mississippi Mermaid and The Last Metro‘s François Truffaut »
- Andre Soares
The European Film Academy will honor international screen icon Catherine Deneuve with a lifetime achievement award for her outstanding body of work. The ice-cool French beauty, now 69, has played everything from a bourgeois housewife turned prostitute to a bisexual vampire, and worked with a formidable roster of auteurs throughout her career: Luis Bunuel ("Belle de Jour," "Tristana"), Roman Polanski ("Repulsion"), Jacques Demy ("The Umbrellas of Cherbourg"), Jean-Pierre Melville ("Un Flic"), Francois Truffaut ("The Last Metro"), Andre Techine ("Ma Maison Preferee," "Les Voleurs") and Arnaud Desplechin ("A Christmas Tale") -- and this is just naming a few. She has starred in over 100 films. Deneuve will be an honorary guest at the upcoming European Film Awards, along with director and fellow honoree Pedro Almodovar. The ceremony is set to take place December 7 in Berlin. »
- Beth Hanna
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