6 items from 2014
A belated festival premiere for Bennett Miller’s “Foxcatcher” and a powerhouse showing for British filmmakers including Mike Leigh and Ken Loach — plus appearances by other usual suspects such as David Cronenberg, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Nuri Bilge Ceylan and the Dardenne brothers — are among the strong possibilities hovering over the lineup of the 67th annual Cannes Film Festival.
In recent years, festival topper Thierry Fremaux and his selection committee have tended to push their final decisions to the very last minute under a nearly impenetrable veil of secrecy, defying the intense media scrutiny and endless speculation that always swirl around the Cannes lineup at this time of year. Although anything could change between now and April 17, when the official selection is unveiled — there are still enough hotly anticipated titles in the mix to warrant some educated guesswork about what is shaping up to be a promisingly diverse slate of auteurs. »
- Justin Chang and Elsa Keslassy
Director: Benoit Jacquot
Producers: Edouard Weil
U.S. Distributor: Rights Available
Though he’s been working steadily since the mid-70’s, director Benoit Jacquot’s films tend not to get much attention in the Us, even his growing handful of Isabelle Huppert starring titles (The School of Flesh; Keep It Quiet; False Servant; Villa Amalia) don’t get theatrical or DVD releases here. But the 2012 critical success of his 2012 film, Farewell My Queen seems to have snagged him some more international attention. While Lea Seydoux was originally slated to return for this latest film (scheduling conflicts have caused her to be replaced by Mastroianni), the presence of Deneuve and Gainsbourg should make this an undoubted item of interest.
Gist: One night, in the countryside. Marc misses his train to head back to Paris and meets Sylvie. »
- Nicholas Bell
As we’ve seen here in the first few weeks of 2014, the landscape of the horror genre is absolutely flooded with found footage movies, and we primarily have two movies to thank/blame for that; The Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity.
While 1999’s Blair Witch Project is often credited as the first horror movie made in the Pov found footage style, such a claim is actually quite untrue. Though Blair Witch is no doubt the movie that popularized the style, and Paranormal Activity the one that re-invented it and brought it into a new decade, there were actually a handful of found footage films that came out well before the horrifying tale of the witch in the woods.
Here are seven of those handheld horror movies, which all predate The Blair Witch Project!
Cannibal Holocaust (1980) - Theatrical Trailer
Cannibal Holocaust – 1980
What’s the very first found footage movie ever made? »
- John Squires
Paris – Bowing Jan.10 at the august Hotel Intercontinental Le Grand, abutting the Place de l’Opera, the 16th Unifrance Rendez-vous with French Cinema in Paris will be one of the biggest market-junkets ever for a national cinema.
Only France, which with the U.K. hosts one of Europe’s two biggest industries, could organize an event of this magnitude or allure.
110 French movies will screen, a Rendez-vous record, at three Gaumont cinema-theaters just across the Square,
Distributors will attend from 50 countries, principally from Europe, but also for the first time officially from Latin America as well.
In hallowed tradition, UniFrance uses its Rendez-vous to announce and analyze in admirable detail the previous year theatrical box office numbers for French films abroad. 2013’s total trawl looks set to be way down on 2012, an all time high when three juggernauts - “Taken 2” (Euros 265.8 million: $354.8 million), “The Intouchables” ($268.9 million) and “The Artist »
- John Hopewell and Elsa Keslassy
Paris – Planting its flag in the mid-ground between high-brow arthouse and popcorn fare – positioning increasing favored by top-echelon sales agents in France – Paris-based Films Distribution has acquired worldwide sales rights to “Not My Type,” “Scouting For Zebras” and Berlin animation player “Wolfy, the Incredible Secret.”
Accompanied by other new acquisitions – femme drama “Weekends in Normandy” and Emanuel Naccache’s espionage comedy “Kidon” – plus screenings of the now complete “The Crocodiles of Botswanga,” helmed by Fabrice Eboue and Lionel Steketee, and “Vandal” (both presented in promo reels at the Afm), the new pick-ups form part of one of the biggest sales slates of market premieres presented by any sales agent at the 16th Unifrance Rendez-vous With French Cinema in Paris, which runs Jan. 10 to Jan. 20.
- John Hopewell
Isabelle Huppert starrer “Paris Follies,” Fabrice du Welz’s noirish cop actioner “Colt 45” and “The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles,” an adaptation of Katherine Pancol’s runaway French bestseller, figure among 52 market premieres at 2014’s Unifrance Paris Rendez-vous.
Its higher-profile titles decidedly eclectic, the Rendez-vous lineup also features star vehicles: Heist caper “The Last Diamond” toplines Berenice Bejo; Pierre Salvadori’s “In the Courtyard” stars Catherine Deneuve; and two films feature Charlotte Gainsbourg: reincarnation thriller “His Wife” and Riad Sattouf’s femme-ruled dystopia satire “Jacky in the Kingdom of Women.”
Other noteworthy pics include post split-up drama “Gazelles” from Mona Achache (“Hedgehog”); love story “Une Rencontre” (Quantum Love), which Pathe Intl. picked up for world sales outside France, Belgium and Switzerland, from Lisa Azuelos (“Lol”); Helier Cisterne’s debut pic, teen drama “Vandal,” a Gallic critical hit; and a purported swan song: Jacques-Remy Girerd’s “Aunt Hilda!” from Folimage, »
- John Hopewell
6 items from 2014
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