15 items from 2015
Dreams! Visions! Madness!: Maddin & Johnson’s Extravagant Symphony of Silent Cinema Fantasia
Those familiar with the works of auteur Guy Maddin, sometimes referred to as the Canadian David Lynch, know to expect strange hybrids of silence film techniques mixed with zany weirdness that often reflect delightfully perverse and sometimes queer dynamics mixed in with its dashes of visual inventiveness and extreme narrative playfulness. While he still creates a healthy amount of short film projects and is involved with other installations in-between feature films, including several notable unions with actress Isabella Rossellini, who has starred in The Saddest Music in the World (2003), Keyhole (2011) and as narrator of the brilliant Brand Upon the Brain! (2006), his latest has been in gestation over a period of several years, at one point known as Seances and Spiritismes, and it was uncertain whether this would ever be a theatrical release. Known finally as The Forbidden Room, »
- Nicholas Bell
Guy Maddin’s silliest and (relatively speaking) starriest feature since “The Saddest Music in the World,” “The Forbidden Room” looks set to gain his widest audience since that 2003 opus as well. It’s not necessarily one of his best, however, as this project originally conceived for the internet still plays as the series of disconnected pranks and whimsies it began as, refusing to coalesce into any focused whole. As with “Music,” those hitherto unacquainted with the helmer’s unique sensibility should have no trouble getting the joke. But it’s also a repetitious, rather formless jest that will wear out its welcome for many viewers long before jerking to a halt at the two-hour mark. It opens its U.S. theatrical run on Oct. 7, and should slightly expand on Maddin’s prior niche b.o. in friendly arthouse markets.
“Room” is an offshoot of “Seances,” an interactive online menu of »
- Dennis Harvey
Directed by Abel Ferrara.
The final few days of Pasolini’s life, told through dreams and reconstruction.
He had plans. The last shot of Abel Ferrara’s Pasolini leaves us in no doubt toward the plans Pier Paolo Pasolini had for the future. On his passport, his profession is simply “writer”. A novelist, screenwriter, director and artist, Pasolini would express himself in whatever way he could access. Abel Ferrara’s film, screening at a limited number of cinemas across the country, depicts the final few days of Pasolini’s life before he was brutally murdered, his body left on the beach to be found in the morning. This tragic reality lingers throughout, as Pasolini discusses in interview and in conversation, his conflicts, challenges and desires.
The film opens on Salo or 120 Days of Sodom, his infamous final film, »
- Simon Columb
“Narrative art is dead – we are in a period of mourning”; “To scandalise is a right, to be scandalised a pleasure”; “Refusal must be great, absolute, absurd…” Abel Ferrara’s infatuated tribute to Pier Paolo Pasolini is littered with such gnomic bon mots, which could apply equally to either director. Like Pasolini, Ferrara has courted both outrage and admiration; he made his name with The Driller Killer, and remains most celebrated for Bad Lieutenant, a film drenched in equal parts with Catholic ideology and censor-baiting exploitation.
This handsomely oblique film focuses on the very end of Pasolini’s life, as he completes work on Salò, Or the 120 Days of Sodom and makes plans for Porno-Teo-Kolossal, the unmade magnum opus which is here reimagined by Ferrara in startling, elegiac fashion. Willem Dafoe »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
Yves Montmayeur, director of the penetrating documentary Michael H - Profession: Director on the career of Michael Haneke has won the Venezia Classici Award for Best Documentary on Cinema this evening at the 72nd Venice International Film Festival for his latest exploration looking into the man and the myth of another mysterious filmmaker, Guy Maddin, in The 1000 Eyes Of Dr Maddin.
Maddin's The Forbidden Room, co-directed with Evan Johnson, is one of the highlights of the 53rd New York Film Festival. With an all-star cast that includes Mathieu Amalric, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Maria de Medeiros, Louis Negin, Udo Kier, André Wilms, Clara Furey, Roy Dupuis, Noel Burton with a contribution by John Ashbery, the stories told here may very well resemble one side of the Janus bust, auctioned off and desired by a man and his double. »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
Michael Almereyda's Experimenter stars Peter Sarsgaard and Winona Ryder with Jim Gaffigan, John Leguizamo, Lori Singer, Taryn Manning, Kellan Lutz, Anton Yelchin, Josh Hamilton, Dennis Haysbert and Ned Eisenberg supporting the research. Margherita Buy, Giulia Lazzarini, Beatrice Mancini and John Turturro in Nanni Moretti's Mia Madre (My Mother) explore private emotions and public movie work. Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson's The Forbidden Room will haunt your dreams and submarines with Louis Negin, Charlotte Rampling, Udo Kier, Roy Dupuis, André Wilms, Geraldine Chaplin, Adèle Haenel, Maria de Medeiros and Mathieu Amalric. Hou Hsiao-hsien's The Assassin (Nie Yin Niang) engages blow by blow with Shu Qi, Chang Chen, Sheu Fang-yi and Hsieh Hsin-ying.
Here are four early highlights of the 53rd New York Film Festival that dazzle with their superb ensemble casts. »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
One of the most distinctive 2015 Sundance premieres was Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson's "The Forbidden Room," which Kino Lorber is opening in New York on October 7 after screenings at Tiff and Nyff. The film has already had a healthy festival run. Co-directed by Johnson, Maddin's 11th feature-film foray into avant-weirdness stars a top-drawer cast including Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Maria de Medeiros, Jacques Nolot, Adèle Haenel, Amira Casar & Elina Löwensohn as a clown car of misfits, thieves and lovers. Read More: Kino Lorber Grabs Guy Maddin's Delightfully Demented 'Forbidden Room' Inspired in part by American modernist poet John Ashbery (who gets a writing credit) and structured like a Russian nesting doll, "Forbidden Room" is the highwire cinematic equivalent to LSD, giddily juggling multiple film stocks and kooky set pieces involving cavemen, wolf-hunters, »
- Ryan Lattanzio
To call Guy Maddin's films simply "experimental" would be a disservice. They are bold filmic adventures, playing with form, style, and genre, all adding up to an experience unlike anything from any other filmmaker. His latest, "The Forbidden Room" may feature bigger names than he's worked with in the past, but it continues his streak of bold works and today we're proud to unveil the exclusive, trippy teaser trailer for the movie. Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Maria de Medeiros, Charlotte Rampling, and Geraldine Chaplin are a just handful of the ensemble names that appear in the picture, one that we called "a cinephile’s delight" and beckoned you to "surrender yourself to its demented genius." Maddin's movies aren't easily encapsulated, but this synopsis will give you an idea of what to expect: As potbellied, satin robe-clad Marv opens The Forbidden Room, he instructs us on the history and significance of bathing. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Locarno— “The Love of Men” (“L’Amour des hommes”), a new project from Tunisian Mehdi Ben Attia, has been pitched the last several days days at Locarno’s co-production lab Open Doors.
Herzi took Venice’s Marcello Mastroianni Award and the most promising actress award at the Cesars in 2008 for “Grain.”
“Love” centers on a young woman. “She is a photographer and she makes portraits. The film’s form and content join together in this idea. ‘Love’ is a ‘film portrait’. I want to take advantage of cinema resources in order to observe human beings in depth,” Ben Attia said. »
- Emilio Mayorga
The Toronto International Film Festival, whose 40th edition will run from September 10 through 20, has announced a round of Canadian titles strewn across several programs. Highlights include Robert Budreau's Born to Be Blue with Ethan Hawke, Patricia Rozema's Into the Forest with Ellen Page and Evan Rachel Wood, a new short by Denis Côté, Bruce McDonald's Hellions and Evan Johnson and Guy Maddin's spectacular The Forbidden Room with Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Maria de Medeiros, Jacques Nolot, Adèle Haenel, Amira Casar and Elina Löwensohn. » - David Hudson »
After its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, Guy Maddin and co-director Evan Johnson's The Forbidden Room had its international debut in the Forum section of the Berlin International Film Festival. Together, they've made made a feverish collage of false extracts from old movies, a half forgotten, groggily recalled, dreamily regained experience of cinematic potential.
Originating from the Seances project, these self-described fragments are more like truncated (or over-extended) skits riffing from the conventions, memories and suggestions of Maddin's most beloved of periods in film history, the end of silence and beginning of sound: the queasy, delirious, awkward, voluptuous late 1920s and early 30s. The skits, some starring recognizable actors as grotesques (Udo Kier and Mathieu Amalric) or as Golden Era gods and goddesses (Maria de Medeiros as a woman "born to be a widow," Roy Dupuis as »
- Daniel Kasman
I absolutely find that my ideas develop as I'm writing rather than before. In fact, this is what inspired me to start writing about film over ten years ago: in the moment, spoken out loud, I still haven't fully processed my thoughts and feelings. Or, perhaps more precisely, I can't find the words until I'm writing. What I fear—in fact I know—is that despite being able to write better than I speak about film, I think even the writings, the words, don't quite capture the thought or sensation. It stands for something close, but not quite.
With that in mind, there's no better film to begin the festival with, no more evocative way to inaugurate 11 days of movies than with The Forbidden Room. Canadian director Guy Maddin and co-director Evan Johnson have made a feverish collage of false extracts from old movies, a half forgotten, groggily recalled, »
- Daniel Kasman
Kino Lorber has announced the acquisition of all Us rights to Guy Maddin’s (My Winnipeg, The Saddest Music in the World) The Forbidden Room (2015), following the film’s world premiere at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.
The Forbidden Room was produced by Phi Films, Buffalo Gal Pictures and the National Film Board of Canada (Nfb), with the participation of Telefilm Canada and with the financial investment of Manitoba Film & Music and Sodec.
“I feel fantastic about Richard Lorber and his team handling The Forbidden Room,” wrote director Guy Maddin. “When we first met, before he saw the movie, I felt that rare pleasure of tastes synching up every second moment, but immediately after the screening we connected with wondrous electrified crackles! It was like we were giddily letting this film finish each other’s sentences for us! Our movie instantly galvanized a shared experience. It’s only right, and extremely thrilling, »
- Michelle McCue
Kino Lorber has acquired all Us rights to Guy Maddin's "The Forbidden Room," planning a Fall theatrical release for the Sundance premiere, which heads to Berlin this week and more fests throughout 2015. Co-directed by Evan Johnson, Maddin's 11th feature-film foray into avant-weirdness stars a top-drawer cast including Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Maria de Medeiros, Jacques Nolot, Adèle Haenel, Amira Casar & Elina Löwensohn as a clown car of misfits, thieves and lovers. Inspired in part by American modernist poet John Ashbery and structured like a Russian nesting doll, "Forbidden Room" is the highwire cinematic equivalent to LSD, giddily juggling multiple film stocks and kooky set pieces involving cavemen, wolf-hunters, skeletons, bloodsucking bananas, damsels in distress and the memories of a dead man's mustache. To name a few. The film was produced by Phi Films, Buffalo »
- Ryan Lattanzio
One of our most anticipated Sundance 2015 titles is Guy Maddin's latest foray into avant-weirdness, a cinematic hybrid project the Canadian auteur's been cooking up since his docu-fantasia "My Winnipeg" bowed in 2007. The director's 11th film, "The Forbidden Room" stars a top-drawer Euro cast including Mathieu Amalric, Udo Kier, Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin, Roy Dupuis, Clara Furey, Louis Negin, Maria de Medeiros, Jacques Nolot, Adèle Haenel, Amira Casar & Elina Löwensohn as "a cavalcade of misfits, thieves and lovers, all joined in the joyful delirium of the kaleidoscopic viewing experience," per the press release of this elusive new movie. Made with the help of American poet John Ashbery, who aided in defining modern poetry in the mid-20th century, "Forbidden Room" premieres at Sundance next week before heading to Berlin in February. Below, check out the "living poster" for the film, which apparently »
- Ryan Lattanzio
15 items from 2015
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