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★★☆☆☆ Agnès B is a created idea from the imagination of Agnès Andrée Marguerite Troublé. Known to the world as a fashion designer she has always held a candle for what the French call the Seventh Art. After embracing cinema and its more errant enfant terrible auteurs, she has made the final leap and created her own feature film: My Name Is Hmmm (2013). She has long been associated with cinema, from an early tee-shirt that read: "J'aime le cinema" to the use of her clothing in films such as Tarantino's Pulp Fiction (1994), where Uma Thurman's character Mia Wallace is seen wearing an iconic Agnès B white shirt. Co-founder of Harmony Korine's production company O'Salvation, the cinematic world has known and loved her for her support of visionary filmmakers like Claire Denis and Gaspar Noé.
- CineVue UK
For some, movies are occasionally too violent, vulgar or plain boring to sit through. Ryan recalls some memorable cinema walk-outs...
For better or worse, there’s nothing quite like watching a movie in the cinema. There’s the sense that you’re all sharing a new experience. The feeling of expectancy when a movie the whole audience has been looking forward to seeing unfolds on the screen. The enjoyment of laughing in unison at a golden comic moment.
On the flip side, there’s the uniquely unpleasant sensation of a person behind you kicking the back of your seat. Or the horrendous human being who can’t resist checking his phone for the duration of a movie, meaning you end up having to ignore an eerie blue glow emanating from the corner of your eye for about 120 minutes.
Memories like these, whether good or bad, are all part of the cinema-going experience, »
Back in 2011, The Playlist ran a Halloween-inspired feature on must-see foreign language horror films. This writer fought hard for the inclusion of “Calvaire (The Ordeal)” from burgeoning Belgian genre filmmaker Fabrice Du Welz. The film achieved a very specific kind of notoriety in being lumped in with the New French Extremity, a term coined by Artforum critic James Quandt. He used the name as a pejorative to describe what appeared to be a new wave of highly transgressive works by French directors—Gaspar Noé, Alexandre Aja, and Catherine Breillat, to name only a few—starting in the late 90s and bleeding profusely into the aughts. Despite not being French, Du Welz made the team, so to speak, and “Calvaire” officially put the then 31-year-old stalwart genre aficionado on the map for fans of a certain kind of upsetting and, well, extreme cinematic experience. Yet time passed, as it does, and after his eventual 2008 follow-up, »
- Erik McClanahan
Top brass at the festival, set to run from September 24-October 8, have announced the selections in Focus Mexico.
The films are as follows:
The Obscure Spring (Las Oscuras Primaveras)
Manuela Jankovic’s War (La Guerra De Manuela Jankovic)
The Absent (Los Ausentes)
The Well (Manto Acuífero)
The Amazing Catfish (Los Insólitos Peces Gato)
The Empty Hours (Las Horas Muertas)
Words With Gods (Palabras Con Dioses)
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy Kay)
Each week HeyUGuys will take a primary focus on the site. This could be a genre of movie, an aspect of the industry, a specific person or part of the movie making process we want to explore further. This week our focus is the divisive issue of film censorship. We began yesterday with a debate of the necessity of the BBFC, and today Beth Webb explains the censorial milestones we have passed. Tomorrow Cai Ross lists the scenes which caused the censors a headache and on Friday we’ll be looking forward to the future of film censorship.
Since 1912 the British Board of Film Censors has been standardising films for its audiences, sifting through the obscene, the violent and the suggestive to ensure that movies receive the classification seen fit. Today, as part of our Film Censorship week, take a look at some of the landmarks in both the British »
- Beth Webb
The Universal Soldier films are a strange case of life imitating art. Much like how series protagonist Luc Deveraux is killed in action then resurrected into something post-human, Universal was a pretty standard 90s action film which crashed and burned when it came to sequels, but became something unique and beautiful when it was reanimated for the straight to DVD market.
It’s a hushed secret among genre fans, but Universal Solder 3 and 4 (or possibly 5 and 6, it’s complicated) are some of the most remarkable action sci-fi films of the 21st century so far. Yes, really. I actually watched the series backwards when I first saw them, after being blown away by Universal Solder Day Of Reckoning and deciding to work my way back, and Roland Emmerich’s perfectly acceptable 1992 blockbuster »
Like artful movie posters, opening title sequences have been largely cast aside by an increasingly stats-obsessed studio system that cares little for the long and storied cinematic tradition. Sure, there are a few that still practice and revere the art —hello David Fincher and Edgar Wright— but if a credit sequence is made at all, it’s bumped to the end, as is the case with most blockbusters. A short documentary, “The Film Before The Film,” has been making the rounds online and it serves as both an introduction to and a welcome reminder of the power of opening credits. At just under twelve minutes, the short by Nora Thös and Damian Pérez takes the viewer from Thomas Edison‘s utilitarian use of a text board in 1897 to show his company’s name and copyright note through to Saul Bass’ iconic work and finally ending with Gaspar Noe’s infamous »
- Cain Rodriguez
As obsessed with bodily fluids as it is with social awkwardness, The Inbetweeners, be it on TV or the big screen, determinedly sets out to make viewers laugh until a bit of lung comes out. And with The Inbetweeners 2 now taking the boys, ahem, down under for more sexual shenanigans in Australia, the gross-out levels are set to soar (or plummet, depending on your viewpoint).
But making audiences squint, wince and fight their gag reflexes has always been a part of cinema. Sometimes it's done for belly laughs (Cameron Diaz styling her hair with Ben Stiller's homemade gel in There's Something About Mary), sometimes to elicit feelings of shock or revulsion (Ray Liotta forced to dine on his own brain in Hannibal). And sometimes it does all of the above at once (an army of zombies being cut to dripping ribbons with a lawnmower in Peter Jackson's splatstick horror »
The Chilean film Hidden in the Woods gained a bit of noteriaty upon its release a couple years back. It was described as "The bastard child of a Ruggero Deodato/Sam Peckinpah/Gaspar Noé pile-up gestated in the loins of Roberta Findlay" and "a deranged frenzy". An English language remake was quickly put into the works, actually being announced a few weeks prior to the original’s North American premiere at Fantasia Fest 2012. That film was produced by Michael Biehn and Jennifer Blanc, with Biehn also taking a lead role. Following in the footsteps of such directors as Michael Haneke and Takashi Shimizu, Patricio Valladares once again took the director’s chair.
The plot has remained unchanged. Hidden in the Woods tells the story of Two sisters, who have been raised in isolation, subjected to the torment of their abusive, drug dealing father. When they finally decide to report him to the police, »
- Chris Connors
Distributors in the Us, UK and Germany have bought Drown, an Australian drama which its director Dean Francis describes as confronting and controversial. Adapted from Stephen Davis. play which prompted walk outs when it was staged by the Queensland Theatre Company, the film centres on three surf lifesavers whose big night out is marred by jealousy, homophobic fears, unrequited lust and violence.
The night culminates in a tragic, booze-fuelled episode of bullying. There is a graphic gay sex scene, says Francis, who does not want to speculate on the likely film classification.
The international sales agent, London-based High Point Films & TV, showed a work-in-progress to potential buyers at the Cannes Film Market.
German distributor Salzgeber quickly signed a deal and is planning a national cinema release. Subsequently Strand Releasing bought the rights for the Us, where it will have a niche theatrical release, and Peccadillo Pictures, which specialises in art house, »
- Don Groves
As an Oscar-nominated A-lister, Ryan Gosling pretty much had carte blanche to make anything he wanted for his first feature, and for all its flaws, Lost River has a go-for-broke swagger about it as the writer/director cobbles together an ode to some of his favorite filmmakers. The works of Nicolas Winding Refn (whose Drive and Only God Forgives he previously starred in), Gaspar Noé and David Lynch all inevitably come to mind over the course of his grimy urban fable, and silly though the story may be, there’s little denying the florid style on display. Set in a never-dingier Detroit, River tracks Bones (Gosling lookalike Iain De Caestecker) as he scours the abandoned homes in his neighborhood for copper to strip and sell, occasionally running afoul of the tyrannical Bully (Matt Smith, mostly loud) in his efforts to help single mom Billy (Christina Hendricks) support him and his brother. It »
- William Goss
As a celebration of the unprecedented number of Canadian films that competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2014 Cannes International Film Festival, Moviefone Canada is highlighting each of these works.
When Nicholas Winding Refn's "Drive" hit theatres, it startled many moviegoers that had pegged Ryan Gosling as just another in a long line of pretty-boy actors -- sympathetic with clearly defined abs, but a performer who picked relatively safe projects to delve into.
For those paying a closer attention, it was his compelling turn in "Lars And The Real Girl," a tale of a man that falls in love with an anatomically accurate doll, that showed the slightly off-kilter direction that he was heading in.
His previous film with Refn, "Only God Forgives," bowed last Cannes and split the opinion of critics; some lauded it as a masterpiece, some saw it as an indulgent if pretty-to-look-at mess.
Critics were equally split with "Lost River, »
- Jason Gorber
The reviews that are trickling in from la Croisette of Ryan Gosling's directorial debut, "Lost River," are ... mixed, to say the least. But getting your first film booed at Cannes is a rite of passage. It's the cinematic equivalent of a bar or bat mitzvah, you know? So, mazel tov to Ryan Gosling, for now you are a man in the eyes of the film industry!
The official synopsis of "Lost River" sounds pretty bonkers, and is full of tantalizingly overwrought phrases like "the surreal dreamscape of a vanishing city" (read: Detroit) and "a macabre and dark fantasy underworld." There's even an underwater world thrown in for good measure. Plus, if you really want to nerd out about it, the director of photography is Benoît Debie, whose dizzying work can be seen in Gaspar Noé unforgettable movies "Irreversible" and "Enter the Void," and Harmony Korine's "Spring Breakers." We're already reaching for the Benadryl. »
- Jenni Miller
Cannes — After launching a fund for distributors with Fondation Gan, Critics Week is now teaming with TorinoFilmLab to bow Next Step, a program dedicated to helping the directors of the 10 shorts playing in the sidebar to make their feature debut.
The five-day program, backed by the National film board Cnc, will welcome the 10 short film directors, along with select industry professionals — screenwriters, directors and producers — for a workshop in the fall.
“The goal of this program is to mentor and advise the directors that we’ve discovered in developing their feature debuts,” said Remi Bonhomme, Critics’ Week’s program manager. “It’s increasingly difficult for directors to make their first film because the marketplace is getting more and more competitive and audiences’ tastes are constantly evolving.”
- Elsa Keslassy
His dark fantasy Lost River - starring Matt Smith, Christina Hendricks and Iain De Caestecker - was unveiled at the Cannes Film Festival today, but the early reviews have not been too kind. We round up the initial reaction below...
Mark Adams, Screen Daily
"It may well be strong on evocative imagery and a vibrant sense danger and moodiness but Ryan Gosling's much-hyped directorial debut turns out to be an over-cooked affair that lacks a much needed wit and humour to go alongside its self-aware art intentions."
Eric Kohn, Indiewire
"Some actors turn to directing in an attempt to find a separate groove behind the camera. That could be the case on some level with this snazzy but forgettable vanity project, »
Based on the inspirational poem by early 20th century, Lebanese writer Kahlil Gibran, the high profile adaptation is currently in post-production.
Hayek will present a work-in-progress in Cannes’ Official Selection on May 17. The actress also features in the voice cast alongside Liam Neeson, John Krasinski, Frank Langella, Alfred Molina and Quvenzhané Wallis.
The animated, portmanteau picture features the work of Roger Allers, Tomm Moore, Tichal Socha, Joan Gratz, Nina Paley, Joann Sfar, Bill Plympton, Mohammed Harib, and Paul and Gaetan Brizzi, who will all also be present at the event.
The film kicks »
Director Nicholas Stoller has steadily been rising in the ranks, having worked for many years under Judd Apatow on everything from “Undeclared” to a string of successful studio comedies, including “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and 2012’s “The Five-Year Engagement.” (He was also involved with both of Disney’s recent Muppets movies.) But Stoller is about to break into the big leagues with this weekend’s gut-busting “Neighbors” (review here), a film that pits Seth Rogen’s new dad against Zac Efron’s rowdy frat leader in a war for suburban supremacy. We recently sat down with Stoller and chatted about the five biggest influences on his new film, most of which will be very surprising (especially for those that have already seen the film).When “Neighbors” premiered at South by Southwest, Stoller openly admitted that one of the biggest influences for the movie was “Enter the Void,” Gaspar Noe’s neon-lit »
- Drew Taylor
It’s Cannes time, which means the marketplace is opening in France, and producers, sales agents, distributors, and other money-traders are converging to make deals to produce and exhibit new films. Two of the first big filmmakers who will be selling their new projects at the festival are Paul Verhoeven and Gaspar Noé. We’ve got what […]
- Russ Fischer
Sometimes little delicious little nuggets of news are hidden in dry industry press releases, which is exactly the case with "Spring Breakers 2." Talk about burying the lede!
Wild Bunch, a distribution and production company, is bringing a whole mess of films to Cannes that sound downright bananas, a remake of "Maniac Cop" that everyone's been clamoring for since the '80s (#nope), a new Paul Verhoeven rape revenge thriller (#nope), a sexy love triangle from Gaspard Noé (#hellno), and "Spring Breakers: The Second Coming" (#What).
Get those nunchucks ready for a battle between good and evil as the party people of spring break go to war with "an extreme militant Christian sect that attempts to convert them." Novelist Irvine Welsh has already written the script, and given the topics of his previous novels like "Trainspotting," "Ecstasy," "Filth," and "Porno," we cannot wait to see what he's cooking up. Welsh and »
- Jenni Miller
Look at my shee-yit... again. Yep, what started as iffy-sounding, blog-based rumor a couple of months ago seems now to have become a real thing: Harmony Korine's girls-gone-wild provocation "Spring Breakers" is getting a sequel. French sales and production company Wild Bunch this morning revealed an intriguing slate of titles that they'll be hawking this month at the Cannes market -- the parallel universe of low-profile and/or unproduced projects that runs busily alongside the film festival itself. Among them were a number of exciting-sounding ventures from name directors, including Gaspar Noé, Paul Verhoeven, Arnaud Desplechin and reigning Palme d'Or winner Abdellatif Kechiche. Naturally, however, the project that has grabbed all the headlines is "Spring Breakers: The Second Coming." A follow-up that will reportedly feature a mix of old and new cast members -- don't count on Selena Gomez returning, at least -- it will follow the original Breakers »
- Guy Lodge
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