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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
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
Heads will turn. Wild Bunch just announced their slate of films in the works for the Cannes marketplace, a portion of the Cannes Film Festival where producers, distributors and investors can take a peek at potential projects. Wild Bunch is packing new intense pieces including Paul Verhoeven's revenge thriller, a "Maniac Cop" remake, Gaspar Noe's latest, and the "Spring Breakers" sort-of sequel. We'll break it down for you: "Spring Breakers 2: The Second Coming": It sounds like a horror movie, but let's be honest: you really don't know what to expect. Wild Bunch co-chief Vincent Maraval told ScreenDaily, "It's not a direct sequel although there are allusions to some of the characters in the original," plus a mix of old and new cast members. What we do know is a team of bikini babes will do battle with a militant Christian converting sect, and "Filth" writer Irvine Welsh is on board. »
- Taylor Lindsay
Wild Bunch has unveiled its packed slate of films that it will be shopping around Cannes, with new films in store from great European filmmakers like Nicolas Winding Refn ("Drive," "Only God Forgives"), Paul Verhoeven (the original "Robocop" & "Total Recall"), Gaspar Noe ("Irreversible," "Enter the Void"), Abdellatif Kechiche ("Blue is the Warmest Color") and Jean-Francois Richet ("Mesrine").
Refn and William Lustig are set to produce a remake of the 1980s cult classic "Maniac Cop" about the hunt for a New York serial killer. Ed Brubaker ("Captain America: The Winter Soldier") penned the script, while the director will be announced at Cannes.
Untitled Paul Verhoeven Project
Paul Verhoeven's next is an adaptation of French writer Philippe Djian's 2012 novel "Oh!". The story revolves around a psychological game of cat-and-mouse between a businesswoman and a stalker who raped her, a crime for which she is seeking revenge.
- Garth Franklin
Paris-based sales and production powerhouse Wild Bunch has unveiled a packed Cannes slate, featuring future films from Paul Verhoeven, Gaspar Noé and Abdellatif Kechiche as well as Spring Breakers 2 and the remake of Maniac Cop.
The untitled Paul Verhoeven project is an adaptation of French writer Philippe Djian’s 2012 novel Oh!, revolving around a psychological game of cat-and-mouse between a businesswoman and a stalker who raped her, a crime for which she is seeking revenge.
“Casting is being finalised. It’s a very intelligent script but it’s also pure Verhoeven, extremely erotic and perverted, so the actress has to be prepared to take that on,” said Wild Bunch co-chief Vincent Maraval.
Welcome back to Cannes Check, In Contention's annual preview of the films in Competition at next month's Cannes Film Festival, which kicks off on May 14. Taking on different selections every day, we'll be examining what they're about, who's involved and what their chances are of snagging an award from Jane Campion's jury. Next up: the second of four French entries: Bertrand Bonello's "Saint Laurent." The director: Bertrand Bonello (French, 45 years old). Born in Nice and now based in Paris and Montreal, Bonello began his career as a classical musician -- a background that makes sense, given the stately refinement and sensory elevation of his filmmaking. (He still serves as his own composer.) Which is not to say his work is soft, testing as it does formal and erotic boundaries: scholars of contemporary French cinema tend to group him with the likes of Gaspar Noé in the bracket of New French Extremism. »
- Guy Lodge
Originally titled How to Catch a Monster, Ryan Gosling's directorial debut was just accepted into the Un Certain Regard selection at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival (see the lineup here) under the title Lost River and now we have our first look at two pictures from the upcoming fantasy, which Warner Bros. will release later this year. On top of directing, Gosling also wrote the screenplay, as for the actors, he's cast his Drive co-star Christina Hendricks in the lead role alongside his The Place Beyond the Pines co-stars Ben Mendelsohn and Eva Mendes and Saoirse Ronan, whom he would have starred with if he'd remained in Peter Jackson's The Lovely Bones. Described as a fantasy/thriller, the film centers on a single mother (Hendricks) who's swept into a dark underworld, while her teenage son discovers a road that leads him to a secret underwater town. These images alone »
- Brad Brevet
Guadalajara – Breakout art pics “Natural Sciences” and “Bad Hair” and Spanish comedy “Family United” clinched deals at the 29th Guadalajara Festival, which announced its prizes Saturday.
Led by the unveiling of L.A.-Mexico City based Alazraki Entertainment, fest was energized by the big, bold ambitions and announcements of a new breed of Mexican producers, often straddling Mexico and the U.S. and now cutting deals with Canada.
The big winner at 2014’s Guadalajara Festival, “Natural Sciences,” by first-time Argentine helmer Matias Lucchesi, also scored on the sales front.
Produced by Buenos Aires-based Juan-Pablo Miller (“Las Acacias,” “Lock Charmer,” now Paula Markovitch’s “Paintings in the Dark”), Luchessi’s relationship/road movie has been acquired by Alfonso Lopez’s Alfhaville Films for theatrical distribution in Mexico, by Louis Dussault’s K-Films for theatrical distribution in Canada, and by Ernesto Munoz de Cote at Fox International Channels, Latin America, for premium »
- John Hopewell and Anna Marie de la Fuente
The difficulty in counting down films so clearly influenced by Kubrick is that there are certain directors who are just tailor-made for it. So, you start to run into situations like this section of the list, where two directors have two films and two other directors had a film mentioned in the last section. But that’s the way it goes. Much of Kubrick’s style isn’t reflected in the work of, say, Todd Phillips. Or Todd Haynes, for that matter.
30. Inception (2010)
Directed by Christopher Nolan
What makes it Kubrickian? As directors go, few rival the sense of complete control over his films like Christopher Nolan, famous for his obsessive attention to detail, much like Kubrick. With Inception, Nolan dialed up the control, creating multiple worlds set within dream landscapes, painting incredibly stunning shots and moments. Focusing on Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his team of dream surveyors, Inception is »
- Joshua Gaul
Austin — To premiere at SXSW, Universal’s “Neighbors” decided to forgo the end credits, a final mix, and the aspect ratio correction, but the sold-out crowd at the Paramount Theater didn’t seem to mind. The Seth Rogen-produced raunchy comedy starring Zac Efron, Rose Byrne, Dave Franco and an often-shirtless Rogen debuted to an audience content to heartily laugh.
While the weather outside was both frightful and wet, inside Rogen half joked that the only person out of the near dozen onstage that attended college was producer James Weaver, who also doubled as the sole member of a fraternity.
The film follows the Radnor family (Rogen and Byrne), who, after having their first child experience the unfortunate circumstance of having a fraternity move in next door (its president is played by Efron). In an attempt to both give their daughter a peaceful environment and yet prove to themselves that »
- Alexandra Cheney
Non-Stop is the latest vehicle for Liam Neeson's renaissance as an action hero. Well the vehicle is actually a trans-Atlantic plane in the process of being hijacked. But don’t worry, undercover air Marshall Bill Marks is on-board and he’s played by Neeson. So everything will be fine right? Well, Bill Marks is a broken man put together with spit and wishes. He manages to straddle so many worn tropes - ex-cop, alcoholic, divorced - that it’s not so much noir as, oh noir'again mate.
But this being Neeson he makes the role work better than it deserves. Even when all his plans fail, all his ideas and fighting worthless, we have faith he'll come through, because it is Liam Neeson. Though it may be a foolish hope as we witness Marks throwing back whiskey minutes before boarding. Maybe they should have called this ‘Shakes on a »
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