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BBC Culture has this week unveiled a new list of the top 100 American films, as voted for by a pool of international film critics from across the globe. The format of the poll was that any film that would make the list had to have recieved funding from a Us source, and the directors of the films did not need to be from the USA, nor did the films voted for need to be filmed in the Us.
Critics were asked to submit their top 10 lists, which would try to find the top 100 American films that while “not necessarily the most important, but the greatest on an emotional level”. The list, as you may have guessed, is very different to the lists curated by say the BFI or AFI over the years, so there are certainly a few surprises on here, with Steve McQueen’s 12 Years A Slave (2013), Terrence Malick »
- Scott J. Davis
First off, let's make one thing clear. We're not scratching our heads at Spike Lee's "Do The Right Thing" making the BBC's 100 greatest American films. That movie, of which an image accompanies this post, not only made the list, but ranked appropriately at no. 25. It's the rest of the selections that have us scratching and, yes, shaking our heads in disbelief. A wonderful page view driver, these sorts of lists make great fodder for passionate movie fans no matter what their age or part of the world they hail from. There is nothing more entertaining than watching two critics from opposite ends of the globe try to debate whether "The Dark Knight" should have been nominated for best picture or make a list like this. Even in this age of short form content where Vines, Shapchats and Instagram videos have captured viewers attention, movies will continue to inspire because »
- Gregory Ellwood
Leave it to the Brits to compile a list of the best American films of all-time. BBC Culture has published a list of what it calls "The 100 Greatest American Films", as selected by 62 international film critics in order to "get a global perspective on American film." As BBC Culture notes, the critics polled represent a combination of broadcasters, book authors and reviewers at various newspapers and magazines across the world. As for what makes an American filmc "Any movie that received funding from a U.S. source," BBC Culture's publication states, which is to say the terminology was quite loose, but the list contains a majority of the staples you'd expect to see. Citizen Kane -- what elsec -- comes in at #1, and in typical fashion The Godfather follows at #2. Vertigo, which in 2012 topped Sight & Sound's list of the greatest films of all-time, comes in at #3 on BBC Culture's list. »
- Jordan Benesh
Every now and then a major publication or news organisation comes up with a top fifty or one hundred films of all time list - a list which always stirs up debate, discussion and often interesting arguments about the justifications of the list's inclusions, ordering and notable exclusions.
Today it's the turn of BBC Culture who consulted sixty-two international film critics including print reviews, bloggers, broadcasters and film academics to come up with what they consider the one-hundred greatest American films of all time. To qualify, the film had to be made by a U.S. studio or mostly funded by American money.
Usually when a list of this type is done it is by institutes or publications within the United States asking American critics their favourites. This time it's non-American critics born outside the culture what they think are the best representations of that culture. Specifically they were asked »
- Garth Franklin
A treasure trove of home movies is the main reason to see Stig Bjorkman’s loving documentary “Ingrid Bergman — In Her Own Words,” which mines excerpts from the Swedish-born star’s letters and diaries as well as archival interviews. Fans are unlikely to learn anything new, and the docu may disappoint others with its rather too-frequent focus on Bergman as mother rather than on Bergman’s craft as actor, suggesting a missed opportunity to explore a complex stage and screen presence. Still, the actress’s evergreen popularity means the film will be well traveled, though audiences catching the 58-minute small screen version may be equally satisfied.
The lack of any significant investigation into performance styles is acutely felt, particularly given the very different methods of her major directors: George Cukor, Alfred Hitchcock, Roberto Rossellini, Jean Renoir, Stanley Donen, Ingmar Bergman. There’s some light personality analysis — she was driven, she was shy, »
- Jay Weissberg
If you happened to attend this year’s Midnight Sun Film Festival in northern Finland — one of those bucket-list destinations for the handful of globe-trotting movie lovers who’ve heard of it — you might have allowed yourself to be hypnotized by all five-and-a-half hours of “From What Is Before,” Lav Diaz’s black-and-white historical epic about the collapse of a barrio in his native Philippines. Then again, you might have opted for the more manageable endurance test of “L’il Quinquin,” Bruno Dumont’s 197-minute comic miniseries about murder in a small French village, or perhaps sampled one of three two-hour installments of Portuguese auteur Miguel Gomes’ “Arabian Nights,” a recent critical sensation at Cannes.
These are films that, if you give yourself over to their dense narratives and marathon running times, can dramatically alter how you experience the passage of time. As such, they made for ideal viewing at »
- Justin Chang
Since its 1943 publication, the novella “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint-Exupery has become a children’s classic the world over. The tale of a downed aviator who meets a small monarch who lives on an asteroid and fell in love with a rose is universally beloved, but the strange, semi-allegorical nature of the book means that a truly satisfying screen translation has never been made (Stanley Donen’s 1974 musical version is perhaps the best known). This new animated feature is intended to be the definitive film rendition. Made with French money by Canadian animators, directed by American helmer Mark Osborne (“Kung Fu Panda”), and featuring a glittering cast of voice actors, it's not quite successful enough to succeed on the that score, but it’s still a visually glorious, extremely moving film that proves that top-grade animated fare doesn’t just come from the U.S. or Japan. After »
- Oliver Lyttelton
Any animated feature screening in Cannes in the wake of Pixar’s universally adored “Inside Out” was bound to seem like an anticlimax. And when the movie in question happens to be an adaptation of one of the most beloved children’s novels of all time, the potential for disappointment looms especially large. But to the sure relief of armchair aviators everywhere, director Mark Osborne’s “The Little Prince” turns out to be a respectful, lovingly reimagined take on Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s classic 1943 tale, which adds all manner of narrative bells and whistles to the author’s slender, lyrical story of friendship between a pilot and a mysterious extraterrestrial voyager, but stays true to its timeless depiction of childhood wonderment at odds with grown-up disillusionment. Independently made (on a reported $80 million budget) by French producer Dimitri Rassam, “The Little Prince” may lack the fast pace and high-concept storytelling of »
- Scott Foundas
With all the aca-anticipation for Pitch Perfect 2 finally cresting with its wide release today, it's interesting to note the shift in popular cinema away from the big, challenging singing-and-dancing set-pieces that Stanley Donen and Vincente Minelli, amongst a slew of others in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, mastered in their salad days. These days, big musicals like Dreamgirls and Into the Woods are filmed more like tinny Oscar bait, all forced visual maturity with no antic, anxious energy in the filmmaking to match the loamy variety of vocals and unbound dance moves, though, frankly, The Raid 2 offers a more elegant and astonishing study of body movement than most major musicals of the last decade. To find the true offspring of Singin' in the Rain and The Band Wagon, one must search in the independent-movie corridors for what's been called "music movies," where love of music, dancing, musicianship, and technical know-how are swirled together. »
- Chris Cabin
Movies about movies are catnip for critics, turning the camera back on not only the faces behind it but also on us. Why do we love movies? What drives the perverse pleasure of watching them? Films like Michael Powell's 1960 "Peeping Tom" and David Lynch's "Mulholland Drive" attack the latter question most directly. So as Fellini's "8 1/2," the towering giant of the genre, returns to UK cinemas, Jonathan Romney posts a list of The 10 Best Films About Films in The Guardian. To name ten such films is a tall order for any meta-movie completist, but Romney's inventory leaves room for debate. His picks: "Behind the Screen" (Charlie Chaplin, 1916)"The Player" (Robert Altman, 1992)"Peeping Tom" (Michael Powell, 1960)"8 1/2" (Federico Fellini, 1963)"Contempt" (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963)"Singin' in the Rain" (Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen, 1952)"Wes Craven's New »
- Ryan Lattanzio
Anne Hathaway Red Dress at the 83rd Academy Awards Oscar host Anne Hathaway Wearing a blindingly bright red dress, Anne Hathaway, sporting a blindingly bright white smile, is pictured above at the 2011 Academy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 27, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Hathaway, a Best Actress nominee for Rachel Getting Married in early 2009, was this year's Oscar ceremony co-host alongside Best Actor nominee James Franco (127 Hours). More on that further below. Anne Hathaway movies Below is a partial list of Anne Hathaway films.* Her big-screen debut took place in 2001. Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass (2016). Director: James Bobin. Cast: Mia Wasikowska. Johnny Depp. Helena Bonham Carter. Sacha Baron Cohen. Anne Hathaway. The Interns (2015). Director: Nancy Meyers. Cast: Anne Hathaway. Robert De Niro. Interstellar (2014). Director: Christopher Nolan. Cast: Matthew McConaughey. Jessica Chastain. Anne Hathaway. Mackenzie Foy. Michael Caine. Matt Damon. Ellen Burstyn. Don Jon (2013). Les Misérables (2012). Director: Tom Hooper. »
- D. Zhea
“She batted them pretty little eyes at you, and you fell for it like an egg from a tall chicken!”
Charade plays at The Hi-Pointe Theater ( 1005 McCausland Ave., St. Louis, Mo 63117) Saturday, May 9th at 10:30am as part of their Classic Film Series
It’s been said that Charade (1963) is the best Alfred Hitchcock movie not directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Despite a notable body count and a few suspenseful moments, Charade is really a romantic comedy. Despite its intricate plot of double crosses, fake identities and a mad search for some missing loot in a picture-postcard Paris, it is designed to amuse. It is Hitchcock-lite; as directed by Stanley Donen, a man best known for directing films like Singin’ In The Rain, the film also is constructed like a musical, stringing together a few remarkable set pieces with a silly plot and clever banter. But most of all, Charade »
- Tom Stockman
Delphine [Selles-Alvarez] has chosen the perfect movie to open the Haute Couture on Film series. Stanley Donen, who previously co-directed On The Town and Singin' In The Rain, both with Gene Kelly, is a specialist in connecting painted picture book backgrounds, still objects, colours, patterns, studio sets or actual city streets and making them come alive more vividly than any realism could accomplish. The power of fashion as moving art is a part of it. You remember what people are wearing in a Donen film.
- Anne-Katrin Titze
Spring in New York comes alive with Haute Couture on Film featuring the work of Hubert de Givenchy in Stanley Donen's Funny Face, starring Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire and Kay Thompson, presented by Eye For Film's Anne-Katrin Titze on April 7.
See creations by Pierre Cardin in Jacques Demy's Bay Of Angels (La Baie Des Anges) with Jeanne Moreau, Claude Mann, Paul Guers and Henri Nassiet. Emanuel Ungaro made the clothes for Gena Rowlands in John Cassavetes' Gloria with Julie Carmen and Buck Henry. Coco Chanel in Jean Renoir's The Rules Of The Game (La Règle Du Jeu) dressed Nora Gregor, Paulette Dubost, Mila Parély and Odette Talazac. Be dazzled by Christian Dior in Jean Negulesco's How To Marry A Millionaire with Marilyn Monroe, Betty Grable, and Lauren Bacall. Yves Saint Laurent's »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
The 2015 Tribeca Film Festival will fete Frank Sinatra’s centennial with “Sinatra at 100,” a programming series centered around a screening of the digital restoration of Sinatra movie-musical “On the Town” followed by performances by Tony Bennett, Savion Glover and other talent.
Charles Walters’ “High Society” (1956) and Vincente Minnelli’s “Some Came Running” (1958), two more movies starring Sinatra, will also get a showcase during the festival (both in screenings set for April 24), but the lynchpin of the Sinatra initiative is the April 21 screening of the restored “On the Town” (1949), the Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen-directed movie version of the musical that’s currently running on Broadway in a well-reviewed revival.
Bennett, tap master Glover (gearing up for a new Broadway outing of his own next season), Lea DeLaria (“Orange is the New Black”), musician Brandon Flowers of The Killers and others will perform following “On the Town.”
Tribeca will bring »
- Gordon Cox
Above: French poster by Boris Grinsson for You’ll Never Get Rich (Sidney Lanfield, USA, 1941).In the new edition of Film Comment, out this week, I write about British airbrush artist Philip Castle and his iconic poster for Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange. The other man behind that poster, aside from Kubrick himself, was producer, director and writer Mike Kaplan who, at the time, was Kubrick’s marketing guru.Kaplan, who has been collecting movie posters, as well as art directing them, for 35 years, is a tireless proselytizer for the art form and his latest project is a labor of love and a pure delight. Gotta Dance! The Art of the Dance Movie Poster, a book he wrote and curated, was born out of a touring exhibition of his own personal collection that he has been exhibiting around the country for the past few years. Its latest stop is »
- Adrian Curry
The Musicals Collection Blu-ray set from Warner Home Video contains four Hollywood classics of the genre, at least two of them among the greatest of all time: Kiss Me Kate, Calamity Jane, The Band Wagon, and Singin’ in the Rain. And all except for Singin’ in the Rain are making their Blu-ray debut. While the films may not rank equal in terms of quality—those latter two titles are the all-time greats—each of the transfers are outstanding, the movies themselves are still nevertheless enjoyable, and the set is a terrific bargain.
Kiss Me, Kate
Written by Dorothy Kingsley
Directed by George Sidney
Kiss Me, Kate is offered in 2-D and 3-D versions. Though the 3-D is certainly not the best to grace a Blu-ray, it’s still the version to watch, even with the clichéd, though occasionally amusing gimmick of characters throwing things at the camera. However, it »
- Jeremy Carr
This article was originally published in February 2014. We are rerunning it with Valentine's Day coming up. Twenty-five years ago, When Harry Met Sally revolutionized the romantic comedy. Sure, this film genre had been around since the earliest days of cinema, and had once been the domain of giants like Billy Wilder and Ernst Lubitsch and Stanley Donen. But Rob Reiner and Nora Ephron’s 1989 hit, with its slick, highly quotable back-and-forth between Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan, as well as its oddly self-reflective quality, felt like something strange and new — the Star Wars of romantic comedies. It wasn’t just a romantic comedy, it was a rom-com. We’ve been living in its wake ever since, and Valentine's Day seemed like a good time to look at the 25 intervening years and pick our favorites.A couple of caveats: We focused only on American and British rom-coms. In part, this was »
- Bilge Ebiri,David Edelstein
The situation is as follows: A onetime movie idol, his career and confidence in ruins, makes a daring move into a new medium. His livelihood, his sense of value, maybe even his life are at stake. But nefarious forces within the entertainment industry, like snakes around his ankles, conspire to thwart his efforts on behalf of art and his own reinvention.
“Birdman”? No, “Singin’ in the Rain,” the 1952 Gene Kelly/Stanley Donen classic set on the cusp of silent film and sound, and a movie that’s a lot of things — an infectious musical, an affectionate romance, a well-cultivated cultural artifact. But hardly a documentary about showbiz. Few of the myriad movies about movies have been, of course, despite a catalog of self-referential fare that ranges from “Sullivan’s Travels” to “Boogie Nights,” from “Living in Oblivion” to “A Star Is Born,” from “Day for Night” to “Wes Craven’s New Nightmare. »
- John Anderson
Smart, stylish, insightful and brimming with technical inventiveness, Stanley Donen's Two For The Road is a wonderful examination of the modern marriage whose influence can still be felt in Hollywood cinema today, nearly 50 years after it was originally released.Inspired in part by his own marriage, screenwriter Frederic Raphael (Darling, Eyes Wide Shut) penned Two For The Road at the specific request of director Stanley Donen (Singing In The Rain, Charade), after seeing his earlier efforts in 1964's Nothing But The Best. According to Raphael, he deliberately wrote the script in random order, accentuating its episodic structure, as it revisits the various trips from London to the South of France by the same British couple.Mark Wallace (Albert Finney), a successful architect, and his wife Joanna...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
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