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Over the past 50 years, a handful of hard-hitting dramas have pricked the nation’s conscience on subjects ranging from Bloody Sunday to Hillsborough. Would the BBC be wise to provoke the government in a similar way today?
Even in a time of escalating catch-up possibilities, most TV rapidly vanishes. So it’s impressive that a single play screened almost 50 years ago still has enough name- recognition to feature in a front-page headline in this paper this week, when the film director Ken Loach suggested that the position of the poorest in Britain may be worse than when, in 1966, he directed Cathy Come Home, Jeremy Sandford’s BBC drama about unemployment and homelessness.
The social and political impact of Cathy Come Home has become somewhat exaggerated in the popular imagination, with the common suggestion that the housing charity Shelter, which started shortly afterwards, was a direct consequence of transmission.
Related: 'Conscious »
- Mark Lawson
‘Hunger is being used as a weapon,’ says veteran director, calling for public rage over situation he says is worse than when he made Cathy Come Home in 1966
Ken Loach has said there needs to be more public outrage around benefit sanctions and the reliance on food banks, with the situation much worse for working people than when he made his seminal film Cathy Come Home, in 1966.
The veteran film-maker rarely speaks while developing a project but is so deeply concerned about government policy on benefits and the sanctions regime that he gave an interview to the Guardian on the set of his latest film.
Continue reading »
- Diane Taylor
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
Having continually proven that they can repackage the same general structure and archetypes into their cinematic universe for increasing box-office returns, Marvel’s impetus to think completely outside the box is not strong. With varying creative results, Guardians of the Galaxy proved that the right ingredients in the formula can result in an entertaining ride, while the over-stuffed Age of Ultron did little more then exhaust. »
- TFS Staff
Read More: Cannes Review: 'Footloose' In Ireland? With 'Jimmy's Hall,' Ken Loach Matches History With Entertainment Ken Loach's latest and possibly final film "Jimmy's Hall" premiered at the Cannes Film Festival this year. The film is set in Ireland in the 1930s, the unsteady years after the War of Independence a decade earlier. The titular Jimmy (Barry Ward) is based on Jimmy Gralton, who departed his native Ireland for New York in the years leading up to the war. The film centers around his opening of the Pearse-Connolly Hall, a community center that encouraged education in dance, art and history that the church saw as an aggressive act. In this exclusive deleted scene, Jimmy grapples with the potential backlash from opening his hall. He knows his project is important, but that it will not be without consequence, as he risks being driven out of his home by the powerful church. »
- Wil Barlow
Doused in luscious color and comedy, Sean Baker’s Tangerine dares to do a handful of things, but its greatest feat is how unradical its radicalism is. At the heart of the screwball antics of Mya Taylor and Kiki Rodriguez is simplicity: friendship, broken hearts, and aspirations towards comfort, accepted identity, and social mobility.
That it’s filmed on iPhones isn’t some mere gimmick, but crucial to its examination of self-identity in a world where exploration of such is a luxury for the privileged. We talked to Sean Baker about working with his two stars, the American Dream, and self-actualization through selfies.
The Film Stage: One of the things I noticed about Tangerine was that the stars, Kiki Rodriguez and Mya Taylor, really seem to dictate where the camera goes. The camera is fascinated by and in adoration of these characters.
Sean Baker: Yeah, when we settled on »
- TFS Staff
Shortly before news broke of British auteur Ken Loach’s latest production (a surprise since his 2014 title Jimmy’s Hall was intended to be his last film) his 1990 film Hidden Agenda received a Blu-ray release. An interesting footnote in Loach’s extensive filmography, the film is a definite departure from a director whose work is usually invested in portraits of British Socialist realism. Sandwiched between 1986’s Fatherland (a co-production with West Germany, also seeing a Blu-ray release this November courtesy of Twilight Time) and 1991’s Riff-Raff, Loach tried his hand at a political thriller based on actual events. It took home the Jury Prize at that year’s Cannes Film Festival (of the many times Loach has competed for the Palme d’Or, he’s won this particular distinction three times, and the Palme itself in 2006) and caused a significant furor in the UK thanks to its blunt references to »
- Nicholas Bell
UK filmmakers have made a (deserved) reputation for films that delve into social realism, particularly ones that deal with the lives of the poor and working classes (see Kenneth Loach, Mike Leigh, and Andrea Arnold, to name a few). The latest comes out of Wales, which is seeing a lot of great cinema lately (Gareth Evans to name one), and is titled Cruel Summer.Danny (Richard Pawulski), a teenager with autism, escapes the inner city for the beautiful countryside as part of his Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. Little does he know, that bitter Nicholas (Danny Miller from Emmerdale Farm) is hunting him, stemming form a lie created by the enamoured and envious Julia (Natalie Martins) and Calvin (Reece Douglas). As the three close in on Danny,...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
It’s been a couple months since the last edition of What’s Up Doc? placed Michael Moore’s surprise world premiere of Where To Invade Next at the top of this list and in the meantime much shuffling has taken place and much time has been spent on various new endeavors (namely my Buffalo-based film series, Cultivate Cinema Circle). Finally taking its rightful place at the top, D.A. Pennebaker and Chris Hagedus’ Unlocking the Cage is in the midst of being scored by composer James Lavino, according to Lavino’s own personal site. Though the project has been taking shape at its own leisurely pace, I’d expect to see the film making its festival debut in early 2016.
- Jordan M. Smith
Sleep With Me screens Saturday November 7th at 9:15pm at The Plaza Frontenac Theater as part of this year’s St. Louis International Film Festival. Director Brian Juna will be in attendance. Ticket information can be found Here
Writer/Director Brian Jun’s Sleep With Me is a dark suburban drama focusing on Paul (Cliff Chamberlain) and Gabi (Danielle Camastra), a young couple unsuccessfully striving to start a family. Paul lives in the shadow of his overbearing father (played by veteran character actor Raymond J. Barry), and Gabi copes by engaging in risky activities that threaten to break up their marriage. Helmed by acclaimed regional filmmaker Brian Jun — whose previous features include “Joint Body” and Sundance competition film “Steel City” — this ensemble drama explores themes of sex, infidelity, and black-market drug use.
Brian Jun took the time to answer some questions about his film for We Are Movie Geeks »
- Tom Stockman
Colin Welland passed away yesterday (November 2), aged 81.
The Oscar-winning Chariots of Fire writer died after suffering from Alzheimer's disease.
Welland won the Oscar in 1982 for Best Original Screenplay, and gave his famous "the British are coming" acceptance speech.
His family said in a statement: "Colin will be desperately missed by his family and friends.
"Alzheimer's is a cruel illness and there have been difficult times but in the end Colin died peacefully in his sleep.
"We are proud of Colin's many achievements during his life but most of all he will be missed as a loving and generous friend, husband, father and granddad." »
Colin Welland, who famously proclaimed, “The British are coming!” in his Academy Award acceptance speech for Chariots Of Fire, has died at the age of 81 following a long battle with Alzheimer’s. The actor and writer, who appeared in the TV show Z Cars and also acted in Ken Loach’s Kes and Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs, also wrote the Gene Hackman-starrer Twice In A Lifetime and the Marlon Brando Apartheid drama A Dry White Season. A statement released by his family via… »
After trying out the world of Hollywood with his English-language debut Stoker, Park Chan-wook has returned to South Korea for his follow-up. Adapting Sarah Waters‘ novel Fingersmith, the period crime drama was initially set in Victorian London and follows young female thieves (aka fingersmiths), but the Oldboy director switched the location to his native country (as well as Japan).
Today now brings the first image, as well as the reveal of the title The Handmaid, courtesy of Twitch. Above one can see the main cast of Ha Jung-woo, Kim Min-hee, Jo Jin-woong and Kim Tae-ri in their 1930’s garb. Although no release date has been set, we can likely expect a premiere on the festival circuit next year for one of our most-anticipated projects.
- Leonard Pearce
A couple of years back, legendary director Ken Loach's long-time producer Rebecca O'Brien announced that after "Jimmy's Hall," the filmmaker would be retiring from features. "This is probably the last narrative feature for Ken," she said. "There are a few documentary ideas kicking around, and that will probably be the way to go, but this is a serious period-drama with a lot of moving parts, so it's a big thing to put together. I think we should go out while we're on top." It would appear now that Loach did not agree. Read More: Review: Ken Loach's 'Jimmy's Hall' Is Paint-By-Numbers Political Filmmaking Cineuropa reveals that cameras are now rolling on Loach's next feature film "I, Daniel Blake," and the first image has arrived. Paul Laverty penned the script for a movie that stars Dave Johns and Hayley Squires and follows a 50-something carpenter and »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Martin Scorsese has signed onto a Leonard Bernstein biopic, another film with Leonardo DiCaprio and The Irishman, featuring Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Al Pacino. More projects in the works: Walter Hill will direct Sigourney Weaver and Michelle Rodriguez in the "crime noir thriller" A Revenger's Tale. Olivier Assayas has begun shooting Personal Shopper with Kristen Stewart and Lars Eidinger. Ken Loach has begun shooting I Daniel Blake. Rooney Mara and Nicholas Hoult are lined up for Charlie McDowell's The Discovery. And Patti Smith may well appear in Terrence Malick's Weightless. » - David Hudson »
New drama set for release in 2016.
British auteur Ken Loach has begun shooting his new production, I Daniel Blake, in the North-East of England.
Paul Laverty, who has penned several of Loach’s features including Palme d’Or winner The Wind That Shakes The Barley, has written the screenplay and it will be produced by Rebecca O’Brien of Sixteen Films.
Principal photography began on Oct 20 and will shoot for six weeks in Newcastle and the surrounding area. It will be released in the UK and Ireland in 2016 by Entertainment One.
The story centres on Daniel Blake, 59, who has worked as a joiner most of his life in the North East of England and needs help from the State for the first time ever following an illness.
He crosses paths with a single mother Katie and her two young children, Daisy »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Film critic Philip French has died at the age of 82.
The writer, who worked at The Observer for half a century, suffered a heart attack this morning (October 27).
He is survived by his wife Kersti and his sons Sean, Patrick and Karl.
Sean told The Guardian: "He was extremely moral about his work. He didn't see it in any frivolous way.
"One of the most shocking things to him was the idea of leaving a screening before the credits had rolled. It was one of the worst signs of decadence."
Patrick added: "I think he'd be very happy to be remembered as a film critic. He thought it was useful. Right up to day he died he did what he loved."
V sad news: the Obs's peerless former film critic Philip French, who worked here for 50 years, has died, aged 82. pic.twitter.com/5OCZmw6Jjr
— Observer New Review (@ObsNewReview) October »
As a grizzled, sad-eyed homeless man making his annual journey from Scotland to London for the Christmas holiday, Peter Mullan brings warmth and soul to the modest British weepie “Hector,” and the film doesn’t require — or offer — much more than that. In his debut as writer-director, Jake Gavin, a former photojournalist, casts a sympathetic eye toward society’s most invisible members and the quietly heroic people who work in shelters and medical clinics. His screenplay, however, is markedly less assured, making the near-fatal mistake of withholding a key piece of information until the third act. On balance, “Hector” reps a sweet and accessible first effort, anchored to a Mullan performance that should punch its ticket to territories outside the U.K.
Taking cues from Ken Loach in more than just the casting department, Gavin cares more about establishing friendship and community among the underclass than manufacturing conflict. The day-to-day »
- Scott Tobias
Morelia – Laurelled with big prizes at Berlin, Cannes and Venice – Mexico’s Lucia Films, co-founded by Michel Franco (“After Lucia,” “Chronic”), is in talks with Tim Roth for at least two films as Lucia also eyes its entry into TV production.
Rolling off the Franco-directed “Chronic,” a Cannes best screenplay winner, and Gabriel Franco’s Berlin Best First Feature winner “600 Miles,” both starring Roth, the alliance would see Roth boarding as a producer Franco’s next movie as a director, which is scheduled to roll in May. Ripstein, who produced “Chronic,” and Venezuela’s Lorenzo Vigas, whose “From Afar” took this year’s Venice Golden Lion, would also be involved in a production capacity, Franco said at Mexico’s Morelia Fest, where “Chronic” received its Mexico premiere.
Franco’s would then produce an upcoming movie directed by Roth, which Roth said he was keen to shoot in Mexico.
Given the »
- John Hopewell
By Alex Simon
A century has passed since the suffrage movement swept the U.S. and the U.K. in a heated, often violent battle waged by women who were fed up with being second-class citizens, symbolized and crystalized by their being refused the right to vote. Director Sarah Gavron, whose acclaimed first feature Brick Lane (2007) also dealt with feminist issues, brings the story to life with her latest film, Suffragette. Set in 1912, the film follows Maud Watts (Carey Mulligan), a working class woman employed in a laundry along with her husband (Ben Whishaw). Maud becomes fed up with the way she and the other women in the laundry are treated, and soon finds herself on the front lines of the suffrage movement: picketing, striking and going to greater, more violent extremes, to make their voices heard. The film co-stars Brendan Gleeson, Helena Bonham-Carter, Anne-Marie Duff and Meryl Streep, »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
This year’s Screen Awards Exhibition Achievement Award winner also called for more women in top jobs.
Clare Binns, director of programming and acquisitions for Picturehouse Cinemas and Picturehouse Entertainment, issued a rallying cry for greater diversity and gender equality in the film industry at the Screen Awards last night.
“We live in a country where the audience is diverse and we don’t properly reflect that, either behind the camera, in distribution or exhibition,” she said to applause from the guests at the awards in London.
“This needs to change not by saying the words but by doing the deeds.”
Women in top jobs
Binns, who started out as an usher and projectionist at Brixton’s Ritzy cinema and is now one of the most influential and respected figures in the UK film industry, continued: “We also, of course, need a lot more women in top jobs.
“It’s pretty criminal that after 40 years it’s still »
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
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