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Witness the ‘fifties transformation of the femme fatale, from scheming murderess to self-deluding social climber. Barbara Stanwyck redefines herself once again in Gerd Oswald’s best-directed picture, a searing portrayal of needs and anxieties in the nervous decade. With fine support from Raymond Burr, Virginia Grey and Royal Dano.
1957 / B&W / 1:85 widescreen / 84 min. / Street Date September 5, 2017 /
Cinematography: Joseph Lashelle
Art Direction: Leslie Thomas
Original Music: Paul Dunlap
Original Story and Screenplay by Jo Eisinger
Directed by Gerd Oswald
A key title in the development of the Film Noir, 1957’s Crime of Passion shows how much the style had departed from the dark romanticism and expressive visuals of the previous decade. The best mid-’50s noirs strike a marvelously cynical and existentially bleak attitude regarding crime and society. »
- Glenn Erickson
Fifty years ago, multiple Emmy Award winner George Stevens Jr. helped found the American Film Institute. The organization’s many activities include the annual AFI Fest and essential preservation efforts as well as televised salutes to top film creatives, which have earned Stevens Jr. two Emmy awards and 15 other nominations as a producer and writer. He came to AFI after growing up on sets where his father created cinematic masterpieces such as “A Place in the Sun,” “Shane” and “Giant.”
In 1961, Stevens Jr. went to Washington, D.C., at the behest of newsman Edward R. Murrow to supervise the film and TV output of the U.S. Information Agency. He later founded the Kennedy Center Honors. His career is filled with awards, including 17 Emmys (10 for his work on the “Kennedy Center Honors” telecasts), a 2013 Honorary Academy Award and eight Writers Guild trophies. He was first mentioned in Variety on Sept. 5, 1951, during »
- Steven Gaydos
Like a pub-rock cover band, “Suburbicon” can be bluntly effective when playing the old hits. Sure, it’s not the real deal, but if you get into the music, overlook a couple bum notes, and let the pints do their work, you can reasonably groove along. And that’s most certainly the case with George Clooney’s latest outing behind the camera, which finds the prominent actor/director/international megastar in full-on chameleon mode, aping the Coens, Hitchcock, and Billy Wilder to modestly satisfying effect.
The film gets a bit shakier when it lets its own voice crack through.
Clooney and writing partner Grant Heslov took a long-shelved Coen Brothers’ script and grafted it onto another project , the story of racial harassment in the ’50s model suburb of Levittown. The seams certainly show, as “Suburbicon” is basically two concurrent stories interwoven by the fact that both take place on the same block. »
- Ben Croll
Every week, IndieWire asks a select handful of film critics two questions and publishes the results on Monday. (The answer to the second, “What is the best film in theaters right now?”, can be found at the end of this post.)
A recent article (based on a very unscientific poll) argued that millennials don’t really care about old movies. Maybe that’s true, and maybe it isn’t, but the fact remains that many people disregard classic cinema on principle. These people are missing out, but it only takes one film — the right film — to change their minds and forever alter their viewing habits.
This week’s question: What is one classic film you would recommend to someone who doesn’t watch them?
Candice Frederick (@ReelTalker), Hello Beautiful, /Film, Thrillist, etc
“Rebel Without a Cause.” I’ll out myself by saying that I’ve only recently seen this film »
- David Ehrlich
On Monday, August 28, 2017, Turner Classic Movies will devote an entire day of their “Summer Under the Stars” series to the late, great Louis Burton Lindley Jr. If that name doesn’t sound familiar, well, then just picture the fella riding the bomb like a buckin’ bronco at the end of Dr. Strangelove…, or the racist taskmaster heading up the railroad gang in Blazing Saddles, or the doomed Sheriff Baker, who gets one of the loveliest, most heartbreaking sendoffs in movie history in Sam Peckinpah’s Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid.
Lindley joined the rodeo circuit when he was 13 and soon picked up the name that would follow him throughout the length of his professional career, in rodeo and in movies & TV. One of the rodeo vets got a look at the lank newcomer and told him, “Slim pickin’s. That’s all you’re gonna get in this rodeo. »
- Dennis Cozzalio
BBC Culture recently asked 253 film critics (118 women and 135 men) to identify their top 10 favorite comedies. “We urged the experts to go with their heart and pick personal favorites,” the source emphasized. “Films that are part of their lives.” After crunching the numbers and identifying the most popular selections, BBC Culture published a list called The 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time — and only four female-directed films made the cut.
Elaine May’s “A New Leaf” came in at number 90. The 1971 film follows a newly poor playboy (Walter Matthau) who decides to marry and murder a rich woman (May) to regain his wealth. At number 89 is Vera Chytilová’s 1966 film “Daisies,” about two teen pranksters (Jitka Cerhová and Ivana Karbanová).
Maren Ade’s award-winning “Toni Erdmann” placed at number 59. Last year’s hit traces the strained but loving relationship between an ambitious career woman (Sandra Hüller) and her practical joker father (Peter Simonischek). Finally, Amy Heckerling’s “Clueless” came in at number 34. The 1995 Beverly Hills-set film stars Alicia Silverstone as a rich queen bee trying to use her “popularity for a good cause.”
None of those films cracked the top 30 and only “Toni Erdmann” was released in the past 20 years. The severe lack of women is even more frustrating since many of the male directors — like Billy Wilder, Howard Hawks, Rob Reiner, and Wes Anderson — hold multiple spots on the list.
While BBC Culture didn’t provide specific criteria for what constitutes a comedy — they left that up to the critics to determine — it would have been nice to see a classic like Penny Marshall’s “Big” be included. The 1988 body swap comedy not only stars Tom Hanks in an Oscar-nominated performance, it serves as inspiration for everything from “13 Going on 30” to episodes of shows like “The Mindy Project.”
It also would have been great to see comedies that present oft-ignored stories be recognized. Nancy Meyers’ “Something’s Gotta Give” is a sexually frank rom-com about people over 50. Rachel Tunnard’s “Adult Life Skills” is about a young woman who isn’t really interested in anything but making movies that star her thumbs. Gillian Robespierre’s “Obvious Child” presents abortion as just one small part of a struggling comedian’s life. And Gurinder Chadha’s “Bend It Like Beckham” sees its heroine stuck in a culture clash between her Sikh family and her love of sports.
The inclusion of only four women in The 100 Greatest Comedies points to the (historic and present) lack of opportunity for female directors. An Mdsc Initiative study from earlier this year evaluated the 1,114 directors on the last decade’s top-grossing films and found that only four percent were female (Four really seems to be the not-so-magic number). The report concluded that there had been “no meaningful change in the prevalence of female directors” on top films. The 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time list makes that lack of progress very clear.
Just 4 Women-Directed Films Included in BBC’s 100 Greatest Comedies List was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Rachel Montpelier
Twin Peaks Recap is a weekly column by Keith Uhlich covering David Lynch and Mark Frost's limited, 18-episode continuation of the Twin Peaks television series.The best things come to those who wait, and Big Ed Hurley (Everett McGill) has long been dreaming of the moment that opens Part 15 of Mark Frost and David Lynch's Twin Peaks revival. "I've been a selfish bitch to you all these years," says his one-eyed wife Nadine (Wendy Robie), who's walked a long way—a Dr. Jacoby/Dr. Amp gold, shit-digging shovel slung over her shoulder—to the cash-only Gas Farm that Ed has run for most of his life. She states the obvious: Ed is in love with Rr Diner propietor Norma Jennings (Peggy Lipton), and she, Nadine, has always stood in his way. Those days are finally over. Ed is reluctant to think of this as anything beyond another of his spouse's manic episodes. »
Last year, the BBC polled nearly 200 critics in an attempt to determine the 100 Greatest Films of the 21st Century. This year, they’ve assembled another cinema poll, one that is bound to spark just as many debates, as they tried to pin down the 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time. Billy Wilder’s classic Some […]
The post ‘Some Like It Hot’ Tops BBC’s List of the 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time appeared first on /Film. »
- Ethan Anderton
“Well, nobody’s perfect,” may be the last line of “Some Like It Hot,” but BBC Culture’s newest list of the 100 greatest comedies of all time comes pretty darn close. Billy Wilder’s cross-dressing buddy comedy earned the most votes, but the rest of the list is as robust and varied as one would hope, containing slam dunk smash hits as well as lesser known hidden gems.
Read More:The 25 Best Comedies of the 21st Century, Ranked
The survey included responses from 253 film critics internationally, with freelancers writing in from Syria, Azerbaijan, and Montenegro. For a deeper dive into your favorite critics’ comedic tastes, each individual top ten list is also available for perusal. IndieWire’s Eric Kohn, David Ehrlich, and Kate Erbland participated; their number one picks were “City Lights,” “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” and “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” respectively.
Read More:Jerry Lewis, King of Comedy, Dies at 91
“Dr. Strangelove, »
- Jude Dry
After polling critics from around the world for the greatest American films of all-time, BBC has now forged ahead in the attempt to get a consensus on the best comedies of all-time. After polling 253 film critics, including 118 women and 135 men, from 52 countries and six continents a simple, the list of the 100 greatest is now here.
Featuring canonical classics such as Some Like It Hot, Dr. Strangelove, Annie Hall, Duck Soup, Playtime, and more in the top 10, there’s some interesting observations looking at the rest of the list. Toni Erdmann is the most recent inclusion, while the highest Wes Anderson pick is The Royal Tenenbaums. There’s also a healthy dose of Chaplin and Lubitsch with four films each, and the recently departed Jerry Lewis has a pair of inclusions.
Check out the list below (and my ballot) and see more on their official site.
- Jordan Raup
Twin Peaks is a show about respect. This, perhaps, is a strange thing to say about a series that routinely violates time, space, sanity and basic human decency. And that's to say nothing of the relatively run-of-the mill mockery it makes of its many lovable goofballs, from Dr. Jacoby to Dougie Jones. But this week's episode demonstrates the tremendous reverence and compassion with which co-creators David Lynch and Mark Frost depict people at their most defenseless.
Let's start with the unexpectedly happy ending the show serves up to Big Ed Hurley and Norma Jennings, »
A Bittersweet Life: Michael B. Jordan (Creed, above) will star in A Bittersweet Life. It's a remake of a Korean action thriller about a gangster whose loyalties are tested when he is ordered to kill a woman he's fallen for. Jennifer Yuh Nelson (Kung Fu Panda 2; Kung Fu Panda 3) will direct. [Deadline] Sunset Boulevard: Glenn Close is in "advanced talks" to star in a big-screen musical version of Sunset Boulevard. Close originated the role on stage in 1994 and recently starred again in a revival of the musical (above). It's inspired by Billy Wilder's 1950 classic drama about a faded silent film star who develops a strange relationship with a young screenwriter. [The Wrap] Mary, Queen of Scots: Our first look at Saoirse Ronan in...
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- Peter Martin
“All the films in this book share an air of disreputability… I have tried to avoid using the word art about the movies in this book, not just because I didn’t want to inflate my claims for them, but because the word is used far too often to shut down discussion rather than open it up. If something has been acclaimed as art, it’s not just beyond criticism but often seen as above the mere mortals for whom its presumably been made. It’s a sealed artifact that offers no way in. It is as much a lie to claim we can be moved only by what has been given the imprimatur of art as it would be to deny that there are, in these scruffy movies, the very things we expect from art: avenues into human emotion and psychology, or into the character and texture of the time the films were made, »
- Dennis Cozzalio
The Cooler gang dives into the classic 1950 film Sunset Boulevard for the first chapter in the on-going Our Favorite Movies series. This week at the Water Cooler, we discuss the »
- Clarence Moye
1985 / 1:85 / Street Date July 25, 2017
Cinematography: Eric Saarinen
Film Editor: David Finfer
Music: Arthur B. Rubinstein
Directed by Albert Brooks
According to a Newsweek cover story published that same year, 1984 was “The Year of the Yuppie”, referring to those ferociously materialistic young professionals whose numbers blossomed during the Reagan administration. The following year director Albert Brooks and his co-writer Monica Johnson delivered Lost In America, an acerbic road movie detailing what happens when one of those upwardly mobile hot-shots decides to get back to nature and “touch Indians”.
The result is one of the great American comedies, a mile-a-minute talk fest worthy of writer-directors like Billy Wilder, Woody Allen and in particular Preston Sturges, whose The Palm Beach Story told a similar tale about two young-marrieds who find »
- Charlie Largent
'Under the Volcano' screening: John Huston's 'quality' comeback featuring daring Albert Finney tour de force As part of its John Huston film series, the UCLA Film & Television Archive will be presenting the 1984 drama Under the Volcano, starring Albert Finney, Jacqueline Bisset, and Anthony Andrews, on July 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Billy Wilder Theater in the Los Angeles suburb of Westwood. Jacqueline Bisset is expected to be in attendance. Huston was 77, and suffering from emphysema for several years, when he returned to Mexico – the setting of both The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and The Night of the Iguana – to direct 28-year-old newcomer Guy Gallo's adaptation of English poet and novelist Malcolm Lowry's 1947 semi-autobiographical novel Under the Volcano, which until then had reportedly defied the screenwriting abilities of numerous professionals. Appropriately set on the Day of the Dead – 1938 – in the fictitious Mexican town of Quauhnahuac (the fact that it sounds like Cuernavaca »
- Andre Soares
Hey, Ib Melchoir’s Opus Mars-us is back, in a not-bad new scan and color-grading job. If the nostalgia bug has bitten you deep enough to appreciate a fairly maladroit but frequently arresting space exploration melodrama, this may be the disc for you. Let’s be honest: Nobody can resist the allure of the fabulous Bat-Rat-Spider-Crab, and in glorious Cinemagic, no less.
1960 / Color / 1:85 widescreen / 83 min. / Street Date June 27, 2017 / 17.28
Cinematography: Stanley Cortez
Film Editor: Ivan J. Hoffman
Original Music: Paul Dunlap
Directed by Ib Melchior
Unjust though it may be, not all Savant reviews make the national news feed, but my old 2001 coverage of the pretty miserable MGM DVD of The Angry Red Planet got quoted all over the place, »
- Glenn Erickson
The United States is “my country, right or wrong,” of course, and I consider myself a patriotic person, but I’ve never felt that patriotism meant blind fealty to the idea of America’s rightful dominance over global politics or culture, and certainly not to its alleged preferred status on God’s short list of favored nations, or that allegiance to said country was a license to justify or rationalize every instance of misguided, foolish, narrow-minded domestic or foreign policy.
In 2012, when this piece was first posted, it seemed like a good moment to throw the country’s history and contradictions into some sort of quick relief, and the most expedient way of doing that for me was to look at the way the United States (and the philosophies at its core) were reflected in the movies, and not just the ones which approached the country head-on as a subject. »
- Dennis Cozzalio
30 June 2017 2:07 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »
As its title suggests, Some Like It Veiled — or Cherchez la femme in French — takes the cross-dressing conceit of the Billy Wilder classic and updates it to the age of Islamic fundamentalism. It’s either a brilliant idea or a recipe for disaster, and in the hands of writer-director Sou Abadi, the film falls somewhere in between. Neither ridiculous nor particularly hilarious, it tackles a hot-button subject (burqas have been publicly banned in France since 2011) with enough caution to avoid seeming too offensive, professing in the end that love and family will always beat out religion.
Rising talent »
- Jordan Mintzer
Colombia’s fledgling Bogota indie film festival, IndieBo, has scored a coup with Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation in a pact that will have the festival screening a selection of 10 restored classics from the foundation’s library starting this year.
Among the titles in the selection are Marlon Brando’s 1961 Western “One-Eyed Jacks,” Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s “All About Eve,” Elia Kazan’s “On the Waterfront,” Frank Capra’s “It Happened One Night,” Nicholas Ray’s “Rebel Without a Cause” and Billy Wilder’s “Witness for the Prosecution.”
“This will be an annual event; some of these titles have never screened in Colombia,” said IndieBo artistic director/programmer Juan Carvajal, who cobbled the agreement with the foundation in New York.
He added: “After seeing ‘One Eyed Jacks’ and [Andrei Tarkovsky’s 1979 sci-fi epic] “Stalker” in New York, I felt that Colombia had to live this marvelous and unique experience, too, and that’s what drove me to pursue this agreement.” The »
- Anna Marie de la Fuente
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