4 items from 2015
As the son of a Wwi vet, Ermanno Olmi has a personal connection to the “war to end all wars.” Perhaps that’s why his “Greenery Will Bloom Again” is so reverential — reverential to the point of being frozen. Beautifully lensed scenes in the snow-covered trenches of northern Italy testify to the master’s 55 years in the director’s chair, yet this unexpected return to feature filmmaking, set among a company of soldiers battered by Austrian shelling, lacks the fullness of vision that graced “The Profession of Arms.” Local play and reviews in November were respectable, but “Greenery” is unlikely to bloom outside scattered fests and retrospectives.
The film world has been distressingly sluggish in acknowledging Wwi’s centenary, so while it’s encouraging to have someone of Olmi’s stature address the horrors of the conflict, the result adds little to the list of superb pics — “The Big Parade, »
- Jay Weissberg
Italian pubcaster Rai’s sales arm Rai Com has taken world sales on veteran Italo auteur Ermanno Olmi’s World War I drama “The Meadows Will Bloom Again,” screening in Berlinale Special, and first-timer Lamberto Sanfelice’s “Chlorine,” in Berlin’s Generation section, following its Sundance bow.
“Meadows,” which stars Claudio Santamaria (pictured), is Olmi’s personal reflection on the futility of war, on the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I, filtered through memories passed on to him by his father and others of that generation. Produced by Luigi Musini’s Cinemaundici and Ipotesi Cinema in association with Rai Cinema, pic has been well-received in Italy where it’s grossed a respectable $1.6 million since its November release via Rai’s 01 Distribution arm. Olmi is best known internationally for 1978 Palme d’Or winner “The Tree of Wooden Clogs” and 1998 Venice Golden Lion winner “The Legend of the Holy Drinker. »
- Nick Vivarelli
The 65th Berlin International Film Festival (Feb 5-15) is to host the world premieres of Woman in Gold, starring Helen Mirren; Life, starring Robert Pattinson and Dane DeHaan; and Dagur Kári’s Virgin Mountain.
The films form part of the Berlinale Special Galas line-up, which will also include the international premiere of awards contender Selma and the European premiere of Bill Pohland’s Love & Mercy, starring John Cusack
Based on a true story, Woman In Gold is directed by Simon Curtis (My Week With Marilyn) and stars Mirren as Maria Altmann, an octogenarian Jewish refugee, who takes on the government to recover artwork she believes rightfully belongs to her family.
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
“Selma,” which stars David Oyelowo and Tom Wilkinson, makes its international premiere in Berlin. It was described by Variety‘s reviewer as a “razor-sharp portrait of the civil rights movement.” Pic has made faltering progress in the awards season, mainly due to the lack of screeners.
“Life,” which world premieres in Berlin, stars Robert Pattinson and Dane DeHaan. Pic is inspired by the true story of a friendship that developed between Magnum photographer Dennis Stock and actor James Dean when Stock was commissioned to photograph the actor for Life magazine in 1955. Corbijn’s previous pics are “Control” and “A Most Wanted Man.”
- Leo Barraclough
4 items from 2015
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