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18 items from 2009


Film Movement Finds Itself in 'Troubled Water'

12 December 2009 6:25 PM, PST | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

Don't worry, the Film Movement are still in the green - today they announced the pick-up of a Norwegian crime/dramatic thriller titled Troubled Water (not to be confused with Carl Deal and Tia Lessin's doc Trouble the Water) from the helmer behind Hawaii, Oslo. - Don't worry, the Film Movement are still in the green - today they announced the pick-up of a Norwegian crime/dramatic thriller titled Troubled Water (not to be confused with Carl Deal and Tia Lessin's doc Trouble the Water) from the helmer behind Hawaii, Oslo. Judging from the trailer (below), Erik Poppe's Troubled Water isn't anything close to his previous film in terms of narrative strategy, I'd categorize Ho as a "network narrative" structure a la Bordwell, but it appears to display a similar marriage between chaos theory and Poppe's flair for a visually appealing, in your face aesthetic. »

- Ioncinema.com Staff

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Home Movies

1 September 2009 1:48 AM, PDT | ifc.com | See recent IFC news »

The decades-old cliché goes, watching other people's home movies is hell frozen over. Strangely, this is true only if you know the people, and it's their vacation in Tahoe that you're forced to sit through after a few cocktails and a bellyful of spinach lasagna, as they narrate the landscapes and sigh at their own kids' antics and wistfully recall the best restaurant sea bass they've ever eaten. As Daffy Duck said, I demand that you shoot me now.

Removed from that cloying context, though, home movies are raw and beautiful cinema, mysterious, bewitching and filled with the melancholy for the passage of time, as anyone who has seen "Capturing the Friedmans" (I mean that heartbreaking 8mm footage of the roof-dancing girl, whose demise tipped the whole family into doom), or Ken Jacobs' "Urban Peasants" (family home movies, edited together without intervention) knows. In fact, the allure of old »

- Michael Atkinson

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'Battlestar Galactica' Alumni Link Up in 'The Green Chain'

21 August 2009 11:23 PM, PDT | CinemaSpy | See recent CinemaSpy news »

If you are a fan of Syfy's Battlestar Galactica, you probably know that some scenes of the series were filmed in and around the extensive forests of western British Columbia. What you may not realise, however, is that two of the show's stars - Tricia Helfer (Number Six) and Tahmoh Penikett ('Helo') - have lent their talents to a new indie docu-drama that is intended to raise awareness of issues associated with cutting down some of these forests.

The film, called The Green Chain, was written, directed and co-produced by Vancouver-born Mark Leiren-Young. His previous credits include scripts for episodes of the series The Collector, Blood Ties and Psi Factor. He has also written a book, 'Never Shoot a Stampede Queen', articles for 'Time Magazine', 'Maclean's' and 'The Utne Reader', and stage plays.

True to his roots, Leiren-Young focuses The Green Chain on the debate in British Columbia, but it »

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Trouble the Water DVD Review

11 August 2009 11:07 PM, PDT | FilmJunk | See recent FilmJunk news »

Trouble the Water Directed by: Carl Deal and Tia Lessin It's been 4 years now since Hurricane Katrina ravaged the Southeastern United States, and for most of us, it was a few weeks of tragedy and controversy that was sensationalized by the media, debated by celebrities and politicians, and then quickly discarded. But in New Orleans, where the failure of the levee system resulted in over 80% of the city being flooded, very real damage was done to the population and economy, and the after effects are still being felt today. Spike Lee covered nearly every facet of this disaster in his epic 4-hour documentary When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts, which came out one year after the storm. One might assume that there would be nothing left to say after such a comprehensive film by a well-respected filmmaker, but as Trouble The Water proves, this is clearly not the case. »

- Sean

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Craig Emanuel at Sundance Summit: 'Now is the time to act boldly and wisely' - indieWIRE

29 July 2009 3:47 PM, PDT | Sydney's Buzz | See recent Sydney's Buzz news »

Craig's speech was cute. But it offers no remedies for the future. As much as I like Craig Emanuel -- and I do very much. He is one of the leading good guy attorneys in the film business, a true film lover, and a real mensch -- this reminder of his 6% of separation from President Kennedy leaves me uninspired. I would rather have read the points of discussion among Liesl Copland (Wme), Micah Green (CAA), Winnie Lau (Fortissimo), Tia Lessin (Documentary Director/producer), Mary Jane Skalski (Producer) and Jonathan Sehring (IFC Entertainment)...Sydney

Craig Emanuel at Sundance Summit: 'Now is the time to act boldly and wisely' - indieWIRE: "For too long, agents have demanded too much money for their clients; financiers have charged egregious interest rates on loans; distributors have charged ridiculous distribution fees and not committed enough money to print and advertising costs; lawyers have bogged down the »

- Sydney@SydneysBuzz.com (Sydney)

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Movies that are made for forever

2 May 2009 4:38 PM, PDT | blogs.suntimes.com/ebert | See recent Roger Ebert's Blog news »

I have feelings more than ideas. I am tired, but very happy. My 11th annual film festival has just wrapped at the Virginia Theater in my home town, and what I can say is, it worked. There is no such thing as the best year or the worst year. But there is such a thing as a festival where every single film seemed to connect strongly with the audience. Sitting in the back row, seeing these films another time, sensing the audience response, I thought: Yes, these films are more than good, and this audience is a gathering of people who feel that.

Let me tell you about the last afternoon, the screening of a newly restored 70mm print of "Baraka." The 1,600 seats of the main floor and balcony were very nearly filled. The movie exists of about 96 minutes of images, music and sound. Nothing else. No narration. No subtitles. »

- Roger Ebert

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Katrina documentary 'Trouble the Water' airs on HBO April 23

1 April 2009 8:37 AM, PDT | Monsters and Critics | See recent Monsters and Critics news »

HBO will air an Academy Award-nominated documentary of Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath told from a New Orleans' resident's perspective in April. The day before Hurricane Katrina hit, 24-year-old Kimberly Rivers Roberts, a resident of New Orleans. 9th Ward, turned her new video camera on herself, declaring, .It.s going to be a day to remember.. With hardly any supplies and no way of leaving her hometown, Roberts taped her ordeal as Hurricane Katrina battered New Orleans and the levees failed. Directed and produced by Tia Lessin and Carl Deal, "Trouble the Water" opens with this unforgettable home video footage, then follows Kimberly and her husband Scott on a two-year odyssey. Lessin was a producer of the »

- April MacIntyre

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The best train set a boy could ever want

27 March 2009 12:43 PM, PDT | blogs.suntimes.com/ebert | See recent Roger Ebert's Blog news »

It's a good thing Ebertfest is no longer called the Overlooked Film Festival. One of my choices this year, "Frozen River," was in danger of being overlooked when I first invited it, but then it realized the dream of every indie film, found an audience and won two Oscar nominations. Yet even after the Oscar nods, it has grossed only about $2.5 million and has been unseen in theaters by most of the nation.

Those numbers underline the crisis in independent, foreign or documentary films--art films. More than ever, the monolithic U.S. distribution system freezes out films lacking big stars, big ad budgets, ready-made teenage audiences, or exploitable hooks. When an unconventional film like "Slumdog Millionaire" breaks out, it's the exception that proves the rule. While it was splendid, it was not as original or really as moving as the American indie "Chop Shop," made a year earlier. The difference is, »

- Roger Ebert

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What's Up Doc? - Cinema Eye Honors

24 March 2009 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- Many would say that at this year's Academy Awards got the documentary film category "right". The "right" doc film won and even the final nominees were worthy mentions. But all this doesn't make the Cinema Eye Honors mission less "important". Now in their second year and with eleven categories, a quirky film such as Guy Maddin's My Winnipeg receives a little bit more acknowledgement before disappearing on shelves, those who edit and photograph doc films have any evening reserved all to themselves and newbies to docu filmmaking world have a shot at getting some cred and mingle with the right crowd. The ceremonies take place on Sunday, we'll be reporting on who the winners are from the categories below. Make sure to check out their newly designed website.  Outstanding Achievement In Production Henry Kaiser - Encounters At The End Of The World Simon Chinn - Man On Wire »

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"Slumdog Millionaire" sweeps the Oscars. Penn, Ledger, Winslet and Cruz shine.

23 February 2009 | Upcoming-Movies.com | See recent Upcoming-Movies.com news »

Fox Searchlight Pictures' "Slumdog Millionaire" has almost completely swept the Oscars® with awards including Best Screenplay, Best Director, Best Picture and both original song and score music categories. Other notable wins included:   - Sean Penn who took home the Best Actor award, his second after 2004's "Mystic River."- Heath Ledger for his astounding performance in Warner Bros. Pictures' "The Dark Knight"- Kate Winslet - Once again for her work in "The Reader" after a two Golden Globe's earned for "Revolutionary Road" and "The Reader"- Penelope Cruz - In Woody Allen's "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" comedy   As announced, here are the winners (noted in bold) of the 2009 Academy Awards which were announced on Sunday, February 22nd. Performance by an actor in a leading role Richard Jenkins in “The Visitor” (Overture Films) Frank Langella in “Frost/Nixon” (Universal) Sean Penn in “Milk” (Focus Features) Brad Pitt in »

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And the 81st Annual Academy Award Winners Are ...

22 February 2009 6:46 PM, PST | TheInsider.com | See recent The Insider news »

Did your favorite movies and stars win? Read on to find out! Performance by an actor in a leading role: Frank Langella in “Frost/Nixon” (Universal) Sean Penn in “Milk” (Focus Features) Brad Pitt in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” (Paramount and Warner Bros.) Mickey Rourke in “The Wrestler” (Fox Searchlight) Performance by an actor in a supporting role: Josh Brolin in “Milk” (Focus Features) Robert Downey Jr. in “Tropic Thunder” (DreamWorks, Distributed by DreamWorks/Paramount) Philip Seymour Hoffman in “Doubt” (Miramax) Heath Ledger in “The Dark Knight” (Warner Bros.) Michael Shannon in “Revolutionary Road” (DreamWorks, Distributed by Paramount Vantage) Performance by an actress in a leading role: Anne Hathaway in “Rachel Getting Married” (Sony Pictures Classics) Angelina Jolie in “Changeling” (Universal) Melissa Leo in “Frozen River” (Sony Pictures Classics) Meryl Streep in “Doubt” (Miramax) Kate Winslet in “The Reader” (The Weinstein Company) Performance by an actress in a »

- TheInsider

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Eye Of The Storm By Howard Feinstein

12 February 2009 6:27 AM, PST | Filmmaker Magazine_Web Exclusives | See recent Filmmaker Magazine_Web Exclusives news »

Leading up to the Oscars on Feb. 22, we will be highlighting the nominated films that have appeared in the magazine or on the Website in the last year. Howard Feinstein interviewed Trouble The Water directors Tia Lessin and Carl Deal for our Summer '08 issue as well as the film's subjects, Kim and Scott Rivers, in a sidebar to the piece. Trouble The Water is nominated for Best Documentary. Brooklynites Tia Lessin and Carl Deal had the near-perfect recipe for what I consider the near-perfect documentary: a unique situation, inimitable subjects, a strong but non-didactic political thrust and that most elusive of ingredients, serendipity. Shocked at the government’s inaction and ineptitude after Katrina, the filmmaking couple went »

- Jason Guerrasio

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Reactions from the Oscar nominees

22 January 2009 2:00 PM, PST | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Best actress nominee Angelina Jolie said of the recognition she earned for "Changeling": "Working with Clint Eastwood was a reward in itself that will last me a lifetime. To receive a nomination from the Academy on top of that is a privilege beyond any expectation. It has been an exceptional year for acting, and I am honored to be in the company of these talented actors whose performances all deserve this recognition. I am also happy that 'Kung Fu Panda' also was noticed by the Academy and proud to be a part of a film my entire family loves so much."

*****

Nominated for his supporting role as county supervisor Dan White in the Harvey Milk biopic "Milk," Josh Brolin -- who also played President Bush in the 2008 release "W." -- said he was pleased to be recognized for his work on the "important" film. " 'W.' was probably the most difficult job in film that I've ever done because you carry his age from a young age through (his presidency). 'Milk' was different," he said. "When I read it, I was so emotional and taken with the story that I just wanted to do this story. It's a timely story, and as timely as it can be with Prop. 8. So obviously, it's an important movie and a very visceral film at that." »

- By Gregg Kilday

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Full Oscar Nominations List!

22 January 2009 6:37 AM, PST | Manny the Movie Guy | See recent Manny the Movie Guy news »

Read my griping and complaining below.

But tally time -- "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" received 13 nominations, and "Milk" got 8! Yay!

Oh, and my lovely "Wall-e" received an Original Screenplay nomination! Woo Hoo!

Read the Complete List by clicking, Read More.

Performance by an actor in a leading role

* Richard Jenkins in .The Visitor. (Overture Films)

* Frank Langella in .Frost/Nixon. (Universal)

* Sean Penn in .Milk. (Focus Features)

* Brad Pitt in .The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. (Paramount and Warner Bros.)

* Mickey Rourke in .The Wrestler. (Fox Searchlight)

Performance by an actor in a supporting role

* Josh Brolin in .Milk. (Focus Features)

* Robert Downey Jr. in .Tropic Thunder. (DreamWorks, Distributed by DreamWorks/Paramount)

* Philip Seymour Hoffman in .Doubt. (Miramax)

* Heath Ledger in .The Dark Knight. (Warner Bros.)

* Michael Shannon in .Revolutionary Road. (DreamWorks, Distributed by Paramount Vantage)

Performance by »

- Manny

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81st Academy Awards Nominees Announced. "Benjamin Button" leads.

22 January 2009 2:28 AM, PST | Upcoming-Movies.com | See recent Upcoming-Movies.com news »

Nominations for the 81st Academy Awards were announced Thursday morning at Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences (A.M.P.A.S.) in Beverly Hills by Sid Ganis and Forest Whitaker. Paramount Pictures' "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" edged ahead of competitors in the number of awards nominated for this years offering of films with a total of thirteen nominations. These included, among others Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress. Other contenders in the Best Picture category included Focus Features’ “Milk,” Universal’s “Frost/Nixon,”  the Weinstein Co.’s “The Reader” and Fox Searchlight’s “Slumdog Millionaire.” "Aint nothin' but a thang" - Robert Downey Jr. secured an Oscar® nomination for his hilarious supporting role in Ben Stiller's "Tropic Thunder." As announced by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, here are the nominees: Performance by an actor in a leading role Richard Jenkins »

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Another Big Win for "Slumdog Millionaire"

6 January 2009 11:39 PM, PST | Manny the Movie Guy | See recent Manny the Movie Guy news »

"Slumdog Millionaire" is the one to beat this Oscar season! This time, the Alliance of Women Film Journalists awarded the movie its highest honor -- Best Picture of their Eda (Excellent Dynamic Activism) Awards.

Sean Penn also scored a Best Actor win for "Milk."

But my favorite categories of the Eda Awards? Their Special Mention Awards with fun categories like the Hall Of Shame Award ("27 Dresses") or Actress Most in Need Of A New Agent Award (gasp, Kate Hudson).

The Alliance of Women Film Journalists is a great organization with members who are "highly qualified professional female movie critics, reporters and feature writers working in print, broadcast and online media."

Check their site here.

And to see the full list of winners, click read more.

Eda Annual Achievement Awards

Best Film

Slumdog Millionaire

Best Direction

Danny Boyle - Slumdog Millionaire

Best Screenplay Original

Wall-e - Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter, Jim Reardon »

- Manny

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Producers Guild of America Announces Nominations

5 January 2009 2:52 PM, PST | Manny the Movie Guy | See recent Manny the Movie Guy news »

The Producers Guild of America announced their nominations! If you bet on the Oscars, take note! More than likely, these nominees will be the same ones that will be chosen for Best Picture Oscar.

The winner will be announced Jan. 24 at the Hollywood Palladium.

Here are the nominees:

*** The Darryl F. Zanuck Producer of the Year Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures

"The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button," Kathleen Kennedy & Frank Marshall, Cean Chaffin

"The Dark Knight," Christopher Nolan, Charles Roven, Emma Thomas

"Frost/Nixon," Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Eric Fellner

"Milk," Dan Jinks & Bruce Cohen

"Slumdog Millionaire," Christian Colson

*** The Producers Guild of America Producer of the Year Award in Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures

"Man On A Wire," Simon Chinn

"Standard Operating Procedure," Julie Bilson Ahlberg, Errol Morris

"Trouble The Water," Carl Deal, Tia Lessin

*** The Producers Guild of America Producer of the Year Award in Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures

"Bolt, »

- Manny

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'Waltz With Bashir' draws critics' praise

3 January 2009 12:00 PM, PST | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

The National Society of Film Critics hailed the animated documentary "Waltz With Bashir" as the best picture of 2008 on Saturday.

The last of the major critics groups to weigh in with a selection of the year's best, the National Society's choice confirmed the rising status of animated films. Last month, the Los Angeles Film Critics' Assn. singled out "Wall-E" as its best picture of the year. And "Wall-E" also tied with the British comedy "Happy-Go-Lucky" for runner-up status in the National Society's best picture voting.

Directed by Ari Forman and released by Sony Pictures Classics, "Bashir" centers on the Israeli war with Lebanon in 1982.

"Happy-Go-Lucky," a Miramax release, walked off with the most awards, though. Mike Leigh's portrait of a blithe spirit and the effects she has on those around her earned Leigh both best director and best screenplay honors. Sally Hawkins, as its upbeat central character, was named best actress, »

- By Gregg Kilday

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18 items from 2009


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