8 items from 2013
A second trailer for Empires of the Deep has arrived, and let's just say it's just as... well... special as the first one was. Sea monsters and Olga Kurylenko? We can't go wrong with that formula, can we?
Empires of the Deep’s deeply troubled production began several years ago. The gist of it is that a very wealthy Chinese real estate tycoon wrote a script for an epic underwater sci-fi fantasy adventure flick and set about to co-finance the film. Monica Bellucci was announced to star in it. Catwoman director Pitof was hired to direct it. The late Empire Strikes Back director Irvin Kershner was brought aboard to produce it. All three very quickly bailed on the project. That was in 2009. Jonathan Laurence was then brought in to direct, and when he abruptly departed the project, he wasn’t quiet about his disdain for how bad the production was »
- Uncle Creepy
Terrible English title aside, “Being President” is a terrific documentary that follows Gaul’s current head of state, Francois Hollande, during his first eight months in office. Helmed by Patrick Rotman, this is a unique, almost all-access portrait, shot with pared-down elegance, that suggests what the day-to-day of a contempo French president is like — more meetings and speech rewriting than you can shake a stick at — as well as how Hollande in particular makes it his own. A film of observation rather than of juicy revelations, “Being” might be a tough sell theatrically, though docu fests and smallscreen buyers will be impressed.
A politically inclined documentary filmmaker (TV’s “Chirac,” “Mitterrand, le roman du pouvoir”) and screenwriter (the Sarkozy pic “The Conquest”), Rotman seems ideally suited to document the inner workings of the presidential Elysee Palace and the man at its head. (The helmer simultaneously directed “A l’Elysee,” a »
- Boyd van Hoeij
Director Marina De Van has had a curious career, emerging from the shadows of collaborator Francois Ozon. Her first two films were strongly indebted to a culture of Gaellic body horror that plumbed greater depths than the more commercial sadism expressed in films like "Martyrs" and "Inside," with her starring role in "In My Skin" providing stomach-turning sights as well as insightfully mapping the sadness of a person alone in her own suffering, addicted to self-mutilation. A similar prison awaited Sophie Marceau in "Don't Look Back" as she found herself morphing into Monica Bellucci, a fantasy conceit with very real consequences. In some ways, her latest film "Dark Touch" pulls back considerably, tackling a more commercial story of a telekinetic young girl. But in others, De Van is right at home exploring the disturbed side of an identity conflict, and the way our physical experiences shape us as human beings. »
- Gabe Toro
Those Who Love Me Can Catch the Train Wreck: Thompson’s Latest Flat, Overstuffed
Familial relationships and transportation, two favorite themes of writer/director Daniele Thompson, figure heavily in her latest feature, It Happened in Saint Tropez, a breezy situational comedy that suffers from a hokey forced charm, beginning with its misleading English title translation (the original title, Des gens qui s’embrassent should be something along the lines of People Who Embrace). A cousin in tone to something like Anne Fontaine’s 2009 bauble headed The Girl From Monaco, it unfortunately fails to match the effervescent enchantment of some of Thompson’s past titles, like her lovely 2006 film, Avenue Montaigne.
Noga (Lou de Laage) is a young cellist living in New York with her intense musician parents, Irene (Valerie Bonneton) and Zef (Eric Elmosnino). Familial drama rears its head in their isolated universe by the upcoming wedding of Zef’s »
- Nicholas Bell
Sneak Peek Italian actress Monica Bellucci in the March 2013 issue of fashion magazine, "Harper's Bazaar Ukraine".
Bellucci wears dresses from the 2013 spring/summer collection from Dolce & Gabbana.
In 1996 she was nominated for a 'César Award' for best supporting actress for her portrayal of 'Lisa' in "L'Appartement".
She has since played in numerous films including "Tears of the Sun" (2003), "The Matrix Reloaded" (2003), "The Brothers Grimm" (2005), "Le Deuxième souffle" (2007), "Don't Look Back" (2009), and "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" (2010).
Bellucci dubbed her own voice for the French and Italian releases of the film "Shoot 'Em Up" (2007), also voicing 'Kaileena' in the video game "Prince of Persia: Warrior Within" and the French voice of 'Cappy' for the French version of the 2005 animated feature "Robots".
- Michael Stevens
When she's on her own and suitably relaxed, you can hypnotise Rosario Dawson. Eighteen months ago she visited a woman who laid her down, wrapped a blanket up to her neck and started talking. Dawson's thoughts wandered, her temperature dropped and she drifted in and out of sleep: the sweet spot of a trance-like state.
The hypnotherapist looked for tells, taking notes of every spasm and twitch. She talked and watched and picked apart what Dawson thought she wanted to explore from what was really on her mind.
"She was reading where I was, subconsciously, from my feet," says Dawson, who went through this bout of therapeutic dozing in preparation for her role in the new psychological thriller Trance . "I was reading in this book, What Every Body is Saying [a body-language manual written by ex-fbi agent Joe Navarro] that your »
- Henry Barnes
Hollywood's annual French film festival, Col•Coa (City of Lights, City of Angels), has released the complete features lineup today as a follow-up to last week's reveal of the short films. The festival runs from April 15-22 and will include 38 features and 19 new shorts. The festival will open with "It Happened in Saint-Tropez", the new comedy directed by Danièle Thompson which was co-written by Thompson and Christopher Thompson. The film is centered on a family who have to host a funeral and marriage on the same day, brewing up domestic conflicts while opening the door for forgiveness and love. The film stars Kad Merad, Monica Bellucci, Lou de Laâge and Eric Elmosnino. Read below for the full feature lineup in alphabetical order: 11.6 / 11.6 Directed by: Philippe Godeau Written by: Philippe Godeau, Agnès De Sacy A Few Hours Of Spring / Quelques heures de printemps Directed by: Stéphane Brizé Written by: Stéphane Brizé, »
- Cristina A. Gonzalez
Feature Ryan Lambie Jan 7, 2013
After its trailer appeared last year, the $130 million fantasy film Empires Of The Deep went all quiet. Ryan wonders what happened...
Almost three years ago, a strange press conference took place in Beijing. On a stage bathed in flashing lights, women with low-body fat danced around on a stage, their dresses billowing. They wore strange, striped rubber appliances on their heads which looked a bit like shower caps. The guest of honour at the press conference was Olga Kurylenko, the actress who'd appeared in the Bond film Quantum Of Solace not long earlier.
The press conference was to promote the impending release of Empires Of The Deep - a $130 million special effects extravaganza which would mark China's triumphant entry into blockbuster filmmaking. Bankrolled by one Jon Jiang, a real estate magnate with very deep pockets, the film was billed as a Grecian fantasy movie under the sea, »
8 items from 2013
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