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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

1-20 of 88 items from 2017   « Prev | Next »


‘Nico, 1988,’ Biopic of Velvet Underground Singer, to Open Venice Horizons Section

19 July 2017 3:22 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Rome – Italian director Susanna Nicchiarelli’s biopic “Nico, 1988,” about the late German chanteuse who was among Andy Warhol’s muses and sang with the Velvet Underground, has been set as the opening film of the Venice Film Festival’s Horizons section dedicated to cutting-edge fare.

The hotly anticipated film will screen on August 30 in the Lido’s Sala Darsena.

Danish actress, singer and songwriter Trine Dyrholm, who won the 2016 Berlin Silver Bear for her role in Thomas Vinterberg’s “The Commune,” plays the title role in this biopic of sorts, which focuses on the years 1987 and 1988, the last two years of Nico’s life.

In the film Dyrholm brings “the artist-icon Nico back to life” playing the part “with her own voice and transforming herself physically,” according to a Venice statement.

“This is the story of Nico after Nico,” Nicchiarelli said in the statement.

“People usually talk about her only in relation to the men she was »

- Nick Vivarelli

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Alexander Payne's 'Downsizing' to open Venice

15 July 2017 4:58 AM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Kristen Wiig star in comedy from Sideways director.

Alexander Payne’s Downsizing will have its world premiere as the opening film of the 74th Venice Film Festival (Aug 30 – Sept 9).

Starring Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau and Kristen Wiig, the comedy follows a Us couple who undergo a controversial procedure, developed as a response to the world’s overpopulation crisis, that shrinks human beings to five inches tall.

Sideways and The Descendants director Payne co-wrote the screenplay with Jim Taylor, who also produced alongside Payne with Mark Johnson. Executive producers are Megan Ellison, Diana Pokorny, and Jim Burke.

Last year’s Venice opener was Damien Chazelle’s La La Land, which went on to win six Oscars. The slot has regularly been an early indicator for awards season success, having previously housed Birdman and Gravity. »

- tom.grater@screendaily.com (Tom Grater)

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Alexander Payne, Matt Damon open Venice Film Festival with quirky sci-fi film: Learn more about ‘Downsizing’

14 July 2017 5:30 PM, PDT | Gold Derby | See recent Gold Derby news »

Our sister site Variety has announced that the new Alexander Payne film, “Downsizing,” will open the Venice Film Festival, which runs from August 30 to September 9 and serves as the unofficial launch of the fall awards season. Getting to open the fest is a coveted slot that often goes to eventual Oscar contenders. Six […] »

- Daniel Montgomery

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Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ Starring Matt Damon To Open 2017 Venice Film Festival

14 July 2017 3:19 PM, PDT | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

We’re just over a month away from the beginning of the fall festival season, that traditionally kicks off with the opening of the Venice Film Festival. Venice tends to land some of the key awards season pictures releasing before the end of the year and the 2017 edition is already no exception.  It’s been revealed today that Alexander Payne‘s latest directorial effort, “Downsizing,” will open la Biennale on August 30th.

Continue reading Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ Starring Matt Damon To Open 2017 Venice Film Festival at The Playlist. »

- Gregory Ellwood

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'Downsizing,' Starring Matt Damon, to Open Venice Film Festival

14 July 2017 3:18 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Alexander Payne's Downsizing has been selected to open the Venice Film Festival, which runs from Aug. 30 to Sept. 9.

The satire, written by Payne and his frequent collaborator Jim Taylor, stars Matt Damon as a man who decides to shrink himself in order to find a better life. The cast also includes Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Laura Dern and Jason Sudeikis.

The Venice berth is a first for Payne, whose films have played Cannes, Telluride, Toronto and Sundance, but not the Italian fest, where Downsizing's opening-night slot should position it for high-profile awards-season bid.

Paramount plans to »

- Gregg Kilday

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Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ To Open Venice Film Festival

14 July 2017 3:04 PM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Alexander Payne's Downsizing has been tapped to be the opening-night film, in competition, at the upcoming Venice Film Festival. Sources have confirmed the news about the pic, a social satire that stars Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Kristen Wiig, Jason Sudeikis, Alec Baldwin and Neil Patrick Harris. This year’s Venice fest, runs August 30-September 9 and is part of the key fall festival circuit that includes Telluride and Toronto. Downsizing will bow in U.S. theaters on… »

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Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing,’ Starring Matt Damon, Will Open Venice Film Festival

14 July 2017 2:48 PM, PDT | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Look for Matt Damon to turn up on the Lido this year on August 30. That’s because he stars in writer-director Alexander Payne’s comedy “Downsizing,” which will open the Venice International Film Festival, in competition. And Paramount is putting its money down that Payne’s latest will come out of the fall festival season as one of the top contenders in this year’s Oscars race. Payne also directed Oscar contenders “Sideways” and “Nebraska.”

Damon plays an ordinary suburbanite who convinces his wife (Kristen Wiig) to go small– and buy into a richer lifestyle. So they get shrunk. Laura Dern, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis costar.

Paramount may well decide to take Darren Aronofsky’s “Mother!” to Venice as well, if not Italy resident George Clooney’s “Suburbicon.” Venice is the first of the fall festivals to launch the official awards season, with Telluride and Toronto on its heels. »

- Anne Thompson

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Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing,’ Starring Matt Damon, Will Open Venice Film Festival

14 July 2017 2:48 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Look for Matt Damon to turn up on the Lido this year on August 30. That’s because he stars in writer-director Alexander Payne’s comedy “Downsizing,” which will open the Venice International Film Festival, in competition. And Paramount is putting its money down that Payne’s latest will come out of the fall festival season as one of the top contenders in this year’s Oscars race. Payne also directed Oscar contenders “Sideways” and “Nebraska.”

Damon plays an ordinary suburbanite who convinces his wife (Kristen Wiig) to go small– and buy into a richer lifestyle. So they get shrunk. Laura Dern, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis costar.

Paramount may well decide to take Darren Aronofsky’s “Mother!” to Venice as well, if not Italy resident George Clooney’s “Suburbicon.” Venice is the first of the fall festivals to launch the official awards season, with Telluride and Toronto on its heels. »

- Anne Thompson

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Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ to Open Venice Film Festival (Exclusive)

14 July 2017 2:22 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” will open this year’s Venice International Film Festival, Variety has learned. That coveted berth, on Aug. 30 against the unmistakable backdrop of Italy’s historic canals, puts the Paramount release at the top of this year’s buzziest offerings in the 2017 Oscars race.

The dark comedy centers on a man (played by Matt Damon) who wonders what his life would be like if he shrank himself. Laura Dern, Kirsten Wiig, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis round out the cast.

Venice has become a strong launching pad for awards season contenders. Last year, Damien Chazelle’s “La La Land” premiered there on its way to Telluride, Toronto and 14 Oscar nominations. And in the last five years, two other Academy Awards Best Picture favorites –“Birdman,” in 2014, and “Gravity,” in 2013 — bowed in Venice.

Payne is no stranger to the awards season circuit, as he’s made comedy-dramas “Nebraska,” “About Schmidt” and “Sideways,” all »

- Ramin Setoodeh

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Updated Oscar predictions for July

14 July 2017 6:03 AM, PDT | Hollywoodnews.com | See recent Hollywoodnews.com news »

As the weather gets hotter and hotter, thoughts of the Academy Awards begin percolating in my mind. It’s always there, of course, but now, officially in the second half of the year, it feels time to get down to business, as it were. Summer counter programming is out and hoping to catch the eye of voters as they enjoy the months before they get down to awards season business. All this is to say that predictions are in flux. There are always differences from month to month, but from here on out, there could be more than usual. That’s just the name of the game. As you’ll see below, there’s some definite movement in my predictions. The big question mark for me right now is Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk. Some have actually seen it, but no full reviews are out yet. That leads you to wonder »

- Joey Magidson

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2018 Oscar Predictions: Best Original Screenplay

11 July 2017 3:49 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

It’s early yet, but already some strong screenplays are rising to the front of the Oscar contender list.

The Sundance Film Festival broke out Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon’s “The Big Sick” (Amazon Studios/Lionsgate)), which is turning into the indie hit of the year, and “Wind River” (The Weinstein Co.), the directorial debut of Oscar-nominated writer Taylor Sheridan (“Hell or High Water”). Yorgos Lanthimos’ “The Killing of a Sacred Deer” (A24) and two Netflix titles, Bong Joon Ho’s political satire “Okja” and Noah Baumbach’s family dramedy “The Meyerowitz Stories: (New and Selected),” competed at Cannes.

Jordan Peele’s brainy genre-bender “Get Out” (Universal) is the surprise sleeper of the year. And the fall film festivals will bring a slew of name contenders, from Woody Allen and Darren Aronofsky to Alexander Payne.

Check out the (alphabetical) contenders below: No film will be deemed a frontrunner until I have seen it. »

- Anne Thompson

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The Last Word Review

6 July 2017 6:12 AM, PDT | HeyUGuys.co.uk | See recent HeyUGuys news »

Author: Richard Phippen

So you’re reaching the end of your life, you wonder how you’re going to be remembered, if at all. Then you realise, everyone hates you. Your legacy is so utterly negative that your best hope is to be forgotten. What do you do? In journeyman director Mark Pellington’s film, based of first-time writer Stuart Ross Fink’s script, the answer is to write your own obituary.

Or at least, that’s what retired and rich businesswoman Harriet Lauler (Shirley MacLaine) decides to do when she realises she doesn’t have much many miles left on her clock. Indeed, Harriet bullies local newspaper editor Ron (Tom Everett Scott) into sending his obits writer Anne (Amanda Seyfried) to meet Harriet at home, get to know her, talk to friends and family and focus a life story article on the good stuff. Sadly for Harriet, there’s »

- Richard Phippen

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The 17 Best Indie Movies of 2017 (So Far)

4 July 2017 6:45 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Yes, we know: It’s a little premature to assemble a list of the best movies of the year when there’s so much left of it. We have yet to see a lot of exciting new work from major auteurs like Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk”), Alexander Payne (“Downsizing”), and Guillermo del Toro (“The Shape of Water”), not to mention heavy-hitting studio-produced spectacles like “Blade Runner 2049” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” But those last two wouldn’t even qualify for this list of the best independent films of the year, anyway, and they’ll have plenty of time to hog the spotlight.

Fortunately, we’ve found plenty of movies from around the world to celebrate, and while they haven’t all been box office sensations, they provide overwhelming evidence that the art form is thriving well into the second decade of the new millennium, and shows no signs of slowing down. »

- Eric Kohn, David Ehrlich, Anne Thompson, Kate Erbland and Michael Nordine

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Film Review: ‘Ellipsis’

3 July 2017 7:50 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Before Sunrise” goes Down Under in the modest yet affecting “Ellipsis,” during which two strangers discover the wonders of nocturnal Sydney and a little bit about each other. This improvised, quickly shot drama reps the feature film debut of David Wenham, working with executive producer Robert Connolly, who gave the actor his first short directing assignment in 2013’s Tim Winton’s “The Turning.” Their reputations — Wenham was featured in “The Lord of the Rings” franchise and “300” — should get the film onto the festival circuit, though theatrical will likely prove elusive.

While crossing an intersection with their heads buried in their mobile phone screens in Sydney’s bustling Central Business District, Jasper (Benedict Samuel) literally careens into Viv (Emily Barclay). Her phone shatters and he offers to pay for the damage, though the shopkeeper they find can’t promise a fix until eight the next morning.

Cut to some time together between these likable strangers. Turns »

- Eddie Cockrell

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Midway Oscars Forecast: Studios Aim for Gold With Spectacle and Zeitgeist

30 June 2017 12:10 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

If the upcoming slate of indie Oscar hopefuls promises to be packed with the kind of risky mid-budgeted visions corporate cultures aren’t often eager to back, then the major studios are teeing up exactly what they’re capable of when they throw money at the right talent. Bold genre filmmaking and superhero yarns with actual meat on their bones dot the landscape, while a few of-the-moment dramas and comedies aim to get their licks in as well.

Twentieth Century Fox has a trio of prestige plays in store. For the holidays, Hugh Jackman stars as P.T. Barnum in Michael Gracey’s “The Greatest Showman,” though that could register more as a family film than an awards juggernaut. Meanwhile, Kenneth Branagh aims to dust off an Agatha Christie classic with the star-studded “Murder on the Orient Express.” But if ever there was a project that, sight unseen, felt destined for gold baubles, it »

- Kristopher Tapley

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The Laura Dern-aissance: From Blacklisted After ‘Ellen’ to 2017 Scene-Stealer of ‘Big Little Lies’ and ‘Twin Peaks’

23 June 2017 8:25 AM, PDT | Entertainment Tonight | See recent Entertainment Tonight news »

A formidable actress, Laura Dern has been working in Hollywood since age 5. At 13 years old, the daughter of icons Diane Ladd and Bruce Dern became the youngest Miss Golden Globe and soon thereafter earned critical acclaim with her breakout role in Blue Velvet. The 1986 film also marked the first time Dern and director David Lynch would work together throughout her career, a pairing that continues with Twin Peaks’ celebrated return on Showtime.

Known for her highly emotive face, »

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Review: Wilson

22 June 2017 10:52 AM, PDT | Comicmix.com | See recent Comicmix news »

We all like to root for the underdog, especially if it is someone we, the audience, feel is being unjustly treated by a cruel, uncaring world. So, sitting down to Wilson, the film adaptation of Daniel Clowes’ graphic novel, we’re predisposed to cheer for the title character, especially as portrayed by Woody Harrelson.

Unfortunately, we get a soft, gooey portrayal of a misanthrope who brings much of the misery upon himself, surrounding himself with ill-defined characters. The 94 minute experience is at times uncomfortable and other times you shake your head at the missed opportunities.

The 2010 graphic novel is comprised of 70 single page gag strips about Wilson, inspired in part by his own father’s death as well as the relationship between Peanuts creator Charles Schulz and his father. Days and years pass in Wilson’s life between these vignettes forcing you to guess what has happened. In some ways, the film works in the same frustrating manner.

The film, out now from 20th Century Home Entertainment, focuses on Wilson, a down on his luck guy who loses his father to cancer then goes in search of his past by tracking his ex-wife where he learns the abortion that ended their marriage never happened. Instead, she gave away the child, now a teen, and they go in search of her.

Laura Dern looks appropriately strung out as Pippi, his ex, who is variously described as a crack whore and lunatic. She left Wilson, gave up her daughter, and tried to stay straight as a waitress. When Wilson finds her, she crumbles around whatever she originally found in him to love. As a result, she gives in all too readily and all too often, when he wants to love her or find their daughter and then pursue a relationship with her. Later, time passes and her situation changes with no real explanation, undercutting our appreciation for her struggles.

Harrelson gives the part his all, but is ill served by Clowes script. The story is fine but there’s little to like about Wilson, who is rude, arrogant, befuddled, and stressed out depending upon the scene. After being arrested for allegedly kidnapping Claire (Isabella Amara), he transitions to a three year stint at prison. There, he seems to find God or bond with every sub-culture in the prison population, softening his edges at last, so in the final act, he can find some solace. There’s a better story hidden under all this but Clowes won’t show us. His adaptations of Ghost World and Art School Confidential are far superior.

Had this been in the hands of a surer director, such as the originally-planned Alexander Payne, we might have been given that better movie. Instead, we get relative novice Craig Johnson, making just his third feature. Therefore, performances by Judy Greer, Cheryl Hines, and Margo Martindale are wasted.

We veer from slapstick to sentimental and the entire final portion of the film shifts tone into something sappy. The entire production lacks focus, direction, and even a point. As a portrait of a middle-aged man lost in the world, it has more promise than actual delivery.

Overall, the film looks and sounds fine on Blu-ray, coming as part of a Combo Pack that also includes a DVD and Digital HD code.

Given that the film was a box office and critical disappointment, it’s no surprise that there is a paucity of special features. We do get 15 Deleted Scenes, some of which would have helped the overall story but none are entirely missed. There are also a photo gallery and trailers. »

- Robert Greenberger

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Oscars at the Halfway Mark: ‘Logan,’ ‘Get Out’ and Women Directors

22 June 2017 7:00 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The year is half over and Oscar voters need to catch up on their homework. There have been many worthwhile films in the first six months of 2017, including “Get Out” from writer-director Jordan Peele (Universal, Blumhouse); “Logan,” the dark, tender neo-Western from director James Mangold (Fox); and the sumptuous mega-hit “Beauty and the Beast” (director Bill Condon, Disney).

A few years ago, these would have been extreme longshots, at best. But there have been changes in Academy voters and their tastes. Recent winners including “Moonlight,” “Mad Max: Fury Road” and “Ex Machina” prove that voters are redefining what is considered “Oscar bait.” The blurred definition is a challenge to awards strategists, but good news for hopefuls.

Related

Oscars: 13 Deserving Contenders From 2017 So Far

The January-June period has seen many other films with Oscar potential in various categories; see the accompanying reminders by Variety colleagues Kris Tapley and Jenelle Riley. And, needless to say, other contenders will be covered a lot before the March 4, 2018, Oscar ceremony.

Diversity has been a key theme. This year, several films directed by women could be in the mix, including Sofia Coppola’s “The Beguiled” (Focus Features), Patty Jenkins’ “Wonder Woman” (Warner Bros.), and Aisling Walsh’s “Maudie” (Sony Pictures Classics). Still to come are works from Kathryn Bigelow (Annapurna’s much-buzzed “Detroit”), Dee Rees (Netflix’s “Mudbound”); Margaret Betts (Sony Classics’ “Novitiate”) and Angelina Jolie (Netflix’s “First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers”).

There are also upcoming works from international filmmakers like Sebastian Lelio, Alfonso Gomez-Rijon, Michael Gracey, Yorgos Lanthimos and Taika Waititi. They will join veterans including Guillermo del Toro, Alexander Payne, Stephen Frears, Richard Linklater, Steven Spielberg, George Clooney, Darren Aronofsky and Paul Thomas Anderson.

Here are month-by-month opening dates, followed by a list of films that made a splash at the year’s film festivals so far. And the upcoming festivals will also add a few twists to the Oscar race.

The director and stars are listed for purpose of jogging readers’ memories; it’s not a matter of handicapping, since it’s pointless to make predictions about films that have not been widely seen.

July: “War for the Planet of the Apes” (directed by Matt Reeves; starring Andy Serkis, Woody Harrelson; Fox)

August: “Detroit” (Kathryn Bigelow; John Boyega; Annapurna); “Logan Lucky” (Steven Soderbergh; Channing Tatum, Daniel Craig; Bleecker Street); “Patty Cake$” (Geremy Jasper; Danielle Macdonald; Searchlight); “Wind River” (Taylor Sheridan; Elizabeth Olsen; The Weinstein Co.).

September: “American Made” (Doug Liman; Tom Cruise; Universal); “Battle of the Sexes” (Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris; Emma Stone, Steve Carell; Fox Searchlight); “First They Killed My Father” (Angelina Jolie; Netflix); “Victoria and Abdul” (Stephen Frears; Judi Dench; Focus).

Related

The Best Films of 2017 (So Far)

October: “Blade Runner 2049” (Denis Villeneuve; Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford; WB); “Breathe” (Andy Serkis; Andrew Garfield; Bleecker Street, Participant); “Goodbye Christopher Robin” (Simon Curtis; Domhnall Gleeson, Margot Robbie; Searchlight); “Marshall” (Reginald Hudlin; with Chadwick Boseman as Thurgood Marshall; Open Road); “Mother!” (Darren Aronofsky; Jennifer Lawrence; Paramount); “The Mountain Between Us” (Hany Abu-Assad; Idris Elba, Kate Winslet; Fox); “Thank You for Your Service” (Jason Hall; Miles Teller; Universal)

November: “Darkest Hour” (Joe Wright; Gary Oldman; Focus); “Last Flag Flying” (Richard Linklater; Bryan Cranston; Amazon); “The Man Who Invented Christmas” (Bharat Nalluri; Dan Stevens; Bleecker Street); “Mary Magdalene” (Garth Davis; Rooney Mara, Joaquin Phoenix; TWC); “Murder on the Orient Express” (Kenneth Branagh; Johnny Depp; Fox); “Suburbicon” (George Clooney; Matt Damon; Paramount); “Thor: Ragnarok” (Taika Waititi; Chris Hemsworth; Disney, Marvel Studios); “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Martin McDonagh; Frances McDormand; Searchlight).

December: “The Greatest Showman” (Michael Gracey; Hugh Jackman; Fox); “The Current War” (Alfonso Gomez-Rijon; Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Shannon; TWC); “Downsizing” (Alexander Payne; Matt Damon, Laura Dern; Paramount); “The Papers” (Steven Spielberg; Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep; Fox, Amblin); “The Shape of Water” (Guillermo del Toro; Sally Hawkins, Octavia Spencer; Searchlight); “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” (Rian Johnson; Disney, Lucasfilm); “Phantom Thread” (Paul Thomas Anderson; Daniel Day-Lewis; Focus); “Wonder Wheel” (Woody Allen; James Belushi, Kate Winslet; Amazon).

And some of the festival hits so far this year:

Sundance: “The Big Sick,” (Michael Showalter; Kumail Nanjiani, Ray Romano, Holly Hunter; Amazon, Lionsgate); “Call Me By Your Name” (Luca Guadagnino; Armie Hammer (Sony Pictures Classics); “The Hero” (Brett Haley; Sam Elliott; The Orchard); Also: “Mudbound” and “Wind River.”

Berlin: “The Lost City of Z” (James Gray; Charlie Hunnam; Amazon, Bleecker Street); “Final Portrait” (Stanley Tucci; Geoffrey Rush; Sony Classics); “Maudie” (Aisling Walsh; Sally Hawkins; Sony Classics).

South by Southwest: “The Disaster Artist” (James Franco; A24).

Cannes: “Good Time” (Safdie brothers; Robert Pattinson; A24); “You Were Never Really Here” (Lynne Ramsay; Joaquin Phoenix; Amazon); “Okja” (Bong Joon Ho; Tilda Swinton, Jake Gyllenhaal; Netflix); “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected),” (Noah Baumbach; Adam Sandler, Dustin Hoffman, Ben Stiller; Netflix); “The Killing of a Sacred Deer” (Yorgos Lanthimos; Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell; A24); “The Florida Project” (Sean Baker; Willem Dafoe; A24); “Happy End” (Michael Haneke; Isabelle Huppert; Sony Classics); “Wonderstruck” (Todd Haynes; Julianne Moore; Amazon, Roadside Attractions).

There are also plenty of great documentaries, animated movies and foreign-language films, but those are for later columns.

Related stories'John Wick' Sequel Reignites Original on Disc Charts for LionsgateThe Best Films of 2017 (So Far)Jordan Peele, Norman Lear Discuss Search for 'Common Humanity' Through Race »

- Tim Gray

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Cannes Winning Best Actor and Lanthimos' Quirky 'Family' Thriller Academy Award Chances?

20 June 2017 7:38 PM, PDT | Alt Film Guide | See recent Alt Film Guide news »

'120 Beats per Minute' trailer: Robin Campillo's AIDS movie features plenty of drama and a clear sociopolitical message. AIDS drama makes Pedro Almodóvar cry – but will Academy members tear up? (See previous post re: Cannes-Oscar connection.) In case France submits it to the 2018 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, screenwriter-director Robin Campillo's AIDS drama 120 Beats per Minute / 120 battements par minute, about the Paris Act Up chapter in the early 1990s, could quite possibly land a nomination. The Grand Prix (Cannes' second prize), international film critics' Fipresci prize, and Queer Palm winner offers a couple of key ingredients that, despite its gay sex scenes, should please a not insignificant segment of the Academy membership: emotionalism and a clear sociopolitical message. When discussing the film after the presentation of the Palme d'Or, Pedro Almodóvar (and, reportedly, jury member Jessica Chastain) broke into tears. Some believed, in fact, that 120 Beats per Minute »

- Steph Mont.

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Telluride Film Festival Names Joshua Oppenheimer Guest Director

20 June 2017 9:39 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The Telluride Film Festival has selected documentary filmmaker Joshua Oppenheimer as its guest director for its 44th festival, running over Labor Day weekend on Sept. 1-4.

Oppenheimer received two Academy Award nominations for best documentary for his 2012 film “The Act of Killing” and 2014’s “The Look of Silence” — both which screened at Telluride. He will select a series of films to be presented at the festival.

“The guest director program is one of the most essential and wonderful parts of our festival,” said executive director Julie Huntsinger. “Joshua has been a part of the show with several of the incredible films he has made in the past, and now as our guest director. His rare combination of intelligence and down-to-earth understanding of humanity will make for a remarkable presentation of films our audience will not want to miss.”

The Look of Silence” premiered at the Venice Film Festival, where it »

- Dave McNary

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