1-20 of 38 items from 2017 « Prev | Next »
Opening on intricately hand-painted, colorful postcards featuring Los Angeles sights, the distinct eye of Michelle Morgan immediately emerges. Her directorial debut, which she also wrote and leads, takes inspiration from a variety of sources, from these Wes Anderson-esque opening credits to the Whit Stillman-styled dialogue, but as the film progresses and a comedic rhythm clicks into place, L.A. Times blazes its own distinct, disenchanted trail of romance in the modern age.
Annette (Morgan) couldn’t ask for a nicer boyfriend than Elliot (Jorma Taccone, flexing more than capable dramatic muscles alongside the comedy), a TV writer for a Game of Thrones rip-off who pays all their bills. However, as Annette looks at the seemingly happier couples in their friend cricle and begins to nitpick Elliot’s actions — limited to making her walk uphill, help with taking in the garbage cans, and inquiring about the acting gig of a »
- Jordan Raup
“Intentionally phony” is one of the hardest tones for a movie to pull off. Wes Anderson can do it, and Jim Jarmusch, Joel and Ethan Coen, and a handful of other filmmakers. Their characters and dialogue are rarely “realistic,” but they fit into a larger vision, and ultimately express something true, no matter how fake they may seem on the surface. Done well, overt artifice can be sublime.
- Kevin Jagernauth
If one were to judge “Lost in London” solely on the impressive technical feat of producing a live feature film in a single take over the course of two hours, “Lost in London” would be a resounding success. Unfortunately, that’s not how movies work. While Woody Harrelson’s directorial debut experiment went off largely without a hitch, it’s unclear if anyone would care about “Lost in London” if it weren’t filmed live. Despite its unique production, the script (written by Harrelson) suffers from a plot line that drags even as its star hustles to keep up, Hollywood insider jokes that fall flat despite being low-hanging fruit, and a culturally tone-deaf script that is not worth straining to hear over the canned background noise.
Inspired by the true events of one “wild night” Harrelson had in 2012 (celebrities are so crazy!), the movie begins with Harrelson, as himself, exiting »
- Jude Dry
Welcome to Remote Controlled, Variety’s podcast series featuring the best and brightest in television, both in front of and behind the camera.
This week’s episode features Variety executive editor of TV Debra Birnbaum and senior TV reporter Daniel Holloway in conversation with “Legion” star Dan Stevens about the show’s psychedelic take on the superhero genre — and its differences from his previous TV gig, “Downton Abbey.”
“Remarkably similar,” Stevens joked when asked how the two shows stack up against one another. He added, “They’re fundamentally different things. Although I am in a wheelchair in one of the early episodes.”
Stevens, who played charming aristocrat Matthew Crawley on “Downton Abbey,” stars on FX’s “Legion” as David Haller, a diagnosed schizophrenic who learns that what he’s been told his whole adult life are delusions are instead manifestations of a mutant superpower. The series, based on Marvel’s “X-Men” comic books, is »
- Daniel Holloway
Color is often the most memorable aspect of a movie: Think of La La Land’s bright Crayola shades, Steven Soderbergh saturating the screen with Traffic’s individual primary colors, or the moment when Dorothy walks into the wonderland of Oz. Film directors often work with their art directors and cinematographers to craft specific palettes for their own particular productions. But which are the most successful?
Gizmodo’s Casey Chan enthusiastically reports on CineFix’s new video that ranks what it considers to be the 10 best uses of color in film. And the selections may not be what you expect: None of the films above are mentioned, for example. CineFix gets specific about types of colors: not individual shades, but they way they are used. Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, for example, owns the “soft colors” category, while Hitchcock’s Vertigo is best at “complimentary” shades. Robert ...
- Gwen Ihnat
In 2000, Max Färberböck's Aimée & Jaguar star Maria Schrader was on the Berlin Film Festival jury with Andrzej Wajda, Gong Li, Walter Salles, and Marisa Paredes when Paul Thomas Anderson's Magnolia won the Golden Bear and the number of translators had an impact on her. In New York, the director of Stefan Zweig: Farewell To Europe and I discussed her creative team, including co-writer Jan Schomburg, cinematographer Wolfgang Thaler, and editor Hansjörg Weißbrich. We followed a Zweig trail from Terence Davies on Max Ophüls' Letter From An Unknown Woman to George Prochnik's influence on Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel to Varian Fry, Lion Feuchtwanger and Defying The Nazis: The Sharp's War, directed by Ken Burns and Artemis Joukowsky.
Maria Schrader: "I dedicated the movie to Denis Poncet. »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
Screen reports from the live event movie, which was filmed last night (Jan 20) in the UK capital.
For his first film behind the camera, writer-director-star Woody Harrelson has taken a number of recent cinematic and broadcast innovations, most notably one-shot movies (Victoria and Russian Ark), real-time storytelling and live broadcasts, and rolled them into one extravagant event.
Lost In London was beamed live in 500 screens across America but just a single cinema in London on account of its 2am shoot. The film contained 24 locations, including a restaurant, a nightclub, a police cell and Waterloo Bridge (whose sudden closure almost derailed the show), and more than 30 actors.
The preamble to the London screening was filled with clips of well-known celebrities (including Daniel Radcliffe, Justin Timberlake and Jennifer Lawrence) teasing Harrelson for taking on what they jokingly referred to as a great folly. Harrelson’s script maintains this light-hearted tone as it recounts details of the worst night of his »
Wes Anderson is one of the world’s boldest filmmakers, but his specific style was born from a film education rooted in a love of diverse cinema from around the world.
Related stories'Isle of Dogs' Plot Details Revealed as Fox Searchlight Picks Up Wes Anderson's Film for 2018 ReleaseWes Anderson Officially Announces New Film 'Isle of Dogs,' Along with Cast and First Brief Clip -- WatchWhat If Wes Anderson Directed 'The Witch'? This Mash-Up Trailer Has The Hilarious Answer -- Watch »
- William Earl
Liam Hoofe reviews the first season of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events…
‘Look away, look away’ warns the ominous, and irritatingly catchy opening theme song of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events. Those who’ve had the pleasure of reading Daniel Handler’s delightfully wicked series of books, which often start with similarly discouraging remarks, however, will know that this piece of advise is best ignored.
A Series of Unfortunate Events, as a series of books, had a huge influence on me as a young child. I remember turning each page in both horror and awe at the impressionable age of 10. The books introduced me to themes I was not likely to find explored in such macabre detail in the literature of C.S. Lewis, or J.K. Rowling, for example.
They were also written with a flair that really caught my young imagination. Lemony Snicket’s »
- Liam Hoofe
I know what you’re thinking: Another comic-book show? From The CW’s crowded superhero stable to Netflix’s Daredevil/Jessica Jones/Luke Cage trio, it seems like every other TV drama these days springs from the panels of a comic book. And yet, thankfully, there’s still room for a fresh voice in there, because FX’s Legion is not just “another comic-book show.” Visually inventive and emotionally astute, it bursts out of the gate with the most exhilarating TV pilot I’ve seen since Mr. Robot.
Exploring the brightness of the dark children’s show.
Execrable is a word which here means “extremely bad or unpleasant.” It is a word which, although appropriately dour in tone, does not actually describe Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, which is actually an exceptional, thrilling adaptation of a series of thirteen children’s mystery books by Daniel Handler. The show’s freshman season covers the first four books of the series, and follows the unhappy lives of three recent orphans as they bounce from caretaker to caretaker, outwit nefarious plots to steal their parents’ fortune, and uncover countless secrets along the way. Its clunky title and avoidance of easy categorization (it’s billed as a very dark children’s show) may be turn-offs for the uninitiated, but, for many reasons, A Series of Unfortunate Events is actually a bright spot of television that shouldn’t be missed.
1. The ad campaign
Long before the series made »
- Valerie Ettenhofer
The artist Joseph Cornell took glass-fronted boxes and placed things such as birds, springs, ice cubes, and balls inside them, turning these everyday and otherwise benign objects into microcosms for something bigger than any of us can ever be. These boxes were referred to as “shadow boxes”, “memory boxes” and “poetic theaters,” and with each box the viewer is given an invitation to enter a new world. This world is not unknown to the individual viewer, but instead a collective and shared world in which memories exist. As the artist’s website states: “using things we can see, Cornell made boxes about things we cannot see: ideas, memories, fantasies, and dreams.” The boxes, both tragic and beautiful, present an artist trying as hard as they can to turn something intangible, something »
- Sinéad McCausland
Now well into its second decade, the Slamdance Film Festival is gearing up for its 2017 edition. Mostly taking place at the Treasure Mountain Inn at top of Park City, Utah’s busting Main Street, Slamdance is dedicated to presenting a festival and a community designed “for filmmakers by filmmakers.”
In previous years, projects from directors like Christopher Nolan, Marc Forster, Jared Hess, Oren Peli, Benh Zeitlin, Seth Gordon, Lynn Shelton and Lena Dunham have bowed at the festival, and it’s become a fertile — if offbeat — proving ground for fresh talents. This year looks to be yet another banner one for the fest, and as such, we’ve gone on a little trip through the Slamdance slate to dig up some prime possibilities for must-see films (shorts and features!).
Ahead, check out 13 titles we’re »
- Chris O'Falt, David Ehrlich, Graham Winfrey, Jude Dry, Kate Erbland and Steve Greene
Close-Up is a column that spotlights films now playing on Mubi. Léa Fehner's Les ogres (2015) is playing January 17 - February 15, 2017 in most countries around the world.In my early twenties, I made the frankly bad decision of taking a night-class in writing a novel. That a class might not be required if one were someone who ought to be writing novels had not yet occurred to me; “writing school,” Fran Liebowitz has often said, “to me is as if there’s a ‘tall school.’” (Five foot two in my stockinged feet, it became clear I was not to be the next Nabokov.) At the class, another attendee told me in a debate about film that I did not care for Wes Anderson as, based on what he could see, I “did not have a soul.” This was not, in my estimation, unfair. Spiritually speaking, I have no idea if it’s accurate. »
Using 2D animation set against photographed backgrounds and also fragments of oil painted animation, gifted Paris-based animator-illustrator Sarah Van Den Boom’s “In Deep Waters,” which plays UniFrance’s 7th MyFrenchFilmFestival, is a recent example of France’s high animation standards.
It’s also another feather in the cap for her production company Papy3D whose“The Head Vanishes,” directed by Franck Dion, has made the 10-pic Oscar shortlist, as well as winning best short film at the Annecy International Animation Festival.
“Waters” turns on two babies who forge a close bond in the womb and the consequences this has for the adult life of one of them. An exploration of the Vanishing Twin Syndrome, the short format straddles both 2D and stop-motion techniques.
“My new short is about a 60-year-old woman farmer who realizes very late that she has sacrificed her life to conform to a model that does not fit her. »
- Emilio Mayorga
Production lot has previously housed international productions including Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Studio Babelsberg is returning to the development of in-house German-language production and co-productions with local producers.
To this end, the studios on the outskirts of Berlin have set up a joint production outfit, Traumfabrik Babelsberg GmbH (literally translated as Dream Factory Babelsberg) with producer Tom Zickler, who left Barefoot Films (which he co-founded with actor-filmmaker Til Schweiger) last summer after 12 years.
For Zickler, this new venture will be a form of homecoming. He worked on the studio lot in the mid-1980s when it was the East German state-run Defa Studios.
In addition, the Babelsberg studio lot was also the address for his first production company before he joined forces with Schweiger and actor André Hennicke in 1996 to »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Martin Blaney)
Manchester by the Sea is writer/director Kenneth Lonergan’s first film in five years – since the universally critically acclaimed Margaret – and he’s getting used to people asking him why it took him so long.
“It’s a lot of work, and it takes a lot of time to do, and a lot of time to plan. I’m also a playwright, so in the time between Margaret and this film, I wrote three plays and directed two of them. I do other kinds of work as well.”
Manchester by the Sea began when his friend Matt Damon asked Lonergan if he would consider writing the screenplay. They had worked together in 2002 in a West End production of Lonergan’s This Is Our Youth.
- Paul Heath
It seems like we haven’t talked this much about Mandy Moore since the early aughts when she was breaking our hearts in A Walk to Remember playing a (*15 Year Old Spoiler Alert*) high school student dying from Leukemia, and making us bust a move with pop sensations like “Candy.” But thanks to the new smash hit TV show This Is Us, Moore has made her return to the red carpet, most recently wowing at the Golden Globes in a very daring Naeem Khan gown with a deep, plunging neckline. And now she’s set to make another glamorous turn »
- Emily Kirkpatrick
We’re introduced to the protagonist of Son of Joseph as he silently observes the tortured of a trapped rat. Two of his schoolmates jab thin steel pins at the frightened rodent. “Try to poke one of its eyes out” one urges. “I can’t, he’s too clever,” the other replies. Our hero promptly leaves, finding himself to have more in common with the rat than his supposed friends.
If you’re unfamiliar with the work of Eugène Green you have a weird road ahead of you. He’s an American-born French filmmaker with a tendency towards brain numbingly glacial pacing, intentionally monotone performances, compositions static to the point of fossilization and characters who generally end scenes by gazing blankly into the lens. His style is definitely an acquired taste, catering for those with reservoirs of patience and the ability to tolerate some pretty artsy fartsy filmmaking.
Our lonely »
- David James
The feature film category is split into three sections: contemporary, period and fantasy, with Deborah Cook nominated for the stop-motion animation movie “Kubo and the Two Strings” in the fantasy category. The first animated movie to earn a Cdg nomination, “Kubo” is nominated for the puppet costumes made for the movie.
The other films nominated in the category are “Doctor Strange,” “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” and “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.” Costume designer Colleen Atwood earned nominations for both “Fantastic Beasts” and “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.”
The contemporary category nominations went to “Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, »
- Graham Winfrey
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