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Pablo Larrain-produced film among San Sebastian New Director line-up

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Thirteen first and second films revealed.

The San Sebastian Film Festival has revealed 13 of the first and second films by European, Asian and Latin American filmmakers set to compete for the Kutxabank-New Directors Award.

Among the films are Chilean film Princess, produced by Juan de Dios, Pablo Larraín and Fernanda del Nido, and the first film by Marine Francen, former assistant to Michael Haneke and Olivier Assayas, starring Pauline Burlet (The Past) and Géraldine Pailhas (Young & Beautiful).

Princess is the second feature film by Marialy Rivas. The Chilean director debuted with Young & Wild (Joven & Alocada) selected for Films in Progress 20 at the San Sebastian Festival (2011) and a competitor in Horizontes Latinos after winning the World Cinema Screenwriting Award at Sundance in 2012.

The film, which was selected by Films in Progress 28, narrates the experience of a 12-year-old girl living in a sect.

The Sower (Le Semeur), the first film by Marine Francen, former assistant
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Pablo Larrain-produced movie among San Sebastian New Director lineup

  • ScreenDaily
Thirteen first and second films revealed.

The San Sebastian Film Festival has revealed thirteen of the first and second films by European, Asian and Latin American filmmakers set to compete for the Kutxabank-New Directors Award.

Among the films are Chilean movie Princess, produced by Juan de Dios, Pablo Larraín and Fernanda del Nido and the first film by Marine Francen, former assistant to Michael Haneke and Olivier Assayas, starring Pauline Burlet (The Past) and Géraldine Pailhas (Young & Beautiful).

Princess is the second feature film by Marialy Rivas. The Chilean director debuted with Young & Wild (Joven & Alocada) selected for Films in Progress 20 at the San Sebastian Festival (2011) and a competitor in Horizontes Latinos after winning the World Cinema Screenwriting Award at Sundance in 2012.

The film, which was selected by Films in Progress 28, narrates the experience of a 12 year-old girl living in a sect.

The Sower (Le Semeur), the first film by Marine Francen, former assistant
See full article at ScreenDaily »

The Road to Istanbul | 2016 Berlin Intl. Film Festival Review

Free Radicals: Bouchareb Explores a Mother’s Nightmare in Topical Treatment

French director Rachid Bouchareb is no stranger to exploring the actions radicalized children have on their bewildered parents, as evidenced in his eloquent 2008 feature, London River. Whereas his earlier film dealt with the aftermath of disastrous actions, Bouchareb returns to the topical issue of Western recruitment into contemporary terrorist cells, this time centered on drama as it unfolds in The Road to Istanbul. We’ve become accustomed to these types of narratives from the perspectives of perplexed loved ones, desperately searching for explanations as to why friends or family were coerced or brainwashed into such despicable acts of violence, both domestically and abroad. In many ways, this is another statistical composite of such grim realities, but features a performance perfectly administered by actress Astrid Whettnall, who succinctly captures the desperation of a woman caught up in an unexpected nightmare.
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Daily | Berlinale 2016 Diary #4

Reviewed in today's Berlinale Diary: Heiner Carow's The Journey to Sundevit; Ted Fendt's Short Stay with Meaghan Lydon, Marta Sicinksa and Mike Maccherone; André Téchiné's Being 17, co-written with Céline Sciamma and starring Sandrine Kiberlain, Kacey Mottet Klein, Corentin Fila and Alexis Loret; Ivo M. Ferreira's Letters from War with Miguel Nunes, Margarida Vila-Nova, Ricardo Pereira, João Pedro Vaz and João Pedro Mamede; Philip Scheffner's Havarie; Anne Zohra Berrached's 24 Weeks with Julia Jentsch, Bjarne Mädel, Johanna Gastdorf, Emilia Pieske and Maria Dragus; and Rachid Bouchareb's Road to Istanbul with Astrid Whettnall, Pauline Burlet, Patricia Ide and Abel Jafri. » - David Hudson
See full article at Keyframe »

Berlin Film Review: ‘Road to Istanbul’

Berlin Film Review: ‘Road to Istanbul’
After two meandering dramas (“Just Like a Woman” and “Two Men in Town”) featuring Muslim characters on New Mexico soil, the French-born Algerian director Rachid Bouchareb abruptly veers into topical territory with “Road to Istanbul,” a compellingly one-sided portrait of a Belgian woman desperately trying to find the daughter who ran away from home to join the Islamic State in Syria. Set at the juncture where Third World problems unexpectedly become First World concerns, the film follows the mother (strongly played by Astrid Whettnall) with a single-minded intensity that, for better and for worse, treats the child’s motivations as a largely offscreen mystery. While some of the final scenes are played with a bluntness that strains credulity, overall this swift-moving tale has a spareness and simplicity that feel welcome after Bouchareb’s more strained recent efforts; the sad timeliness of its premise should translate into solid festival play and modest arthouse potential.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Steve Coogan’s ‘Shepherds and Butchers’ to Play at Berlin Film Festival

Steve Coogan’s ‘Shepherds and Butchers’ to Play at Berlin Film Festival
London — The Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama section has completed its lineup, which includes the world premiere of Oliver Schmitz’s “Shepherds and Butchers,” starring Steve Coogan and Andrea Riseborough.

Coogan, who starred in, co-wrote and produced the Oscar-nominated “Philomena,” plays hot-shot lawyer John Weber in “Shepherds and Butchers.” Weber faces his biggest test when he agrees to defend a prison guard who has killed seven men. What ensues is a compelling charge against the death penalty itself.

The film is produced by Anant Singh and Brian Cox for Distant Horizon and Videovision Entertainment; WestEnd Films is handling international sales.

Two other Panorama films look at the issue of the death penalty: the Brazilian documentary “Curumim” and the previously announced “I, Olga Hepnarova,” which opens the main section of Panorama.

Fiction titles added to Panorama:

Antes o tempo não acabava (Time Was Endless) – Brazil/Germany

By Sérgio Andrade, Fábio Baldo

With Anderson Tikuna,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Berlin completes Panorama programme

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Berlin completes Panorama programme
Films include Shepherds and Butchers with Steve Coogan; Don’t Call Me Son from Anna Muylaert; and a documentary about a director and actress who were kidnapped by Kim Jong-il.

The Berlinale (Feb 11-21) has completed the selection for this year’s Panorama strand, comprising 51 films from 33 countries. A total of 34 fiction features comprise the main programme and Panorama Special while a further 17 titles will screen in Panorama Dokumente.

A total of 33 films are world premieres, nine are international premieres and nine European premieres. The 30th Teddy Award is also being celebrated with an anniversary series of 17 films.

Notable titles include Shepherds and Butchers from South Africa, which is set toward the end of Apartheid and stars Steve Coogan as a hotshot lawyer who faces his biggest test when he agrees to defend a white prison guard who has killed seven black men. What ensues is a charge against the death penalty itself, in a case
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Berlin completes Panorama programme; Steve Coogan's 'Shepherds and Butchers' among line-up

  • ScreenDaily
Berlin completes Panorama programme; Steve Coogan's 'Shepherds and Butchers' among line-up
Films include Shepherds and Butchers, starring Steve Coogan; Don’t Call Me Son from Anna Muylaert; and a documentary about a director and actress who were kidnapped by Kim Jong-il and forced to make films.

The Berlinale (Feb 11-21) has completed the selection for this year’s Panorama strand, comprising 51 films from 33 countries. A total of 34 fiction features comprise the main programme and Panorama Special while a further 17 titles will screen in Panorama Dokumente.

A total of 33 films are world premieres, nine are international premieres and nine European premieres. The 30th Teddy Award is also being celebrated with an anniversary series of 17 films.

Notable titles include Shepherds and Butchers from South Africa, which is set toward the end of Apartheid and stars Steve Coogan as a hotshot lawyer faces his biggest test when he agrees to defend a white prison guard who has killed seven black men. What ensues is a charge against the death penalty itself
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2016: #100. Rachid Bouchareb’s La route des lacs

La route des lacs (Road to Istanbul)

Director: Rachid Bouchareb

Writers: Rachid Bouchareb, Zoe Galeron, Yasmina Khadra, Olivier Lorelle

Franco-Algerian director Rachid Bouchareb continues a prolific shooting schedule with his latest project, La route des lacs (Road to Istanbul), which tackles an extremely topical scenario regarding terrorist recruits and Isis when a mother discovers her child has joined the dangerous organization. Recently, Bouchareb has been navigating the Us Pacific Southwest with English language items Just Like a Woman (2012) and his 2014 remake of Two Men in Town. For this latest, he pairs with regular co-writers Lorelle, Galeron, and Yasmina Khadra (who penned the exceptional 2012 film The Attack for Ziad Doueiri, which Bouchareb produced), and the film will be headlined by Belgian actress Astrid Whettnall and rising star Pauline Burlet (who appeared in La Vie En Rose as well as Asghar Farhadi’s The Past in 2013). Thus far, this sounds similar to Bouchareb’s 2008 film,
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Afm: Elle Driver signs films from Bouchareb, Grau, Cleven, Dana

Exclusive: Oscar-nominated Bouchareb explores plight of parents who lose children to Isis.Elle Driver has boarded Jorge Michael Grau’s earthquake drama 7.19 am and Rachid Bouchareb’s Road to Istanbul [pictured], about a mother who goes in pursuit of her Isis recruit daughter, ahead of the American Film Market (Afm). The company also start pre-sales on Audrey Dana’s comedy If I Were a Boy, in which she stars as a woman who wakes up with a penis, and Harry Cleven’s fantasy romance Angel. Franco-Algerian Bouchareb’s Road to Istanbul stars Belgian actress Astrid Whettnall as a single mother on a quest to find her 18-year-old daughter after she leaves Belgium to join the Islamic State with a Jihadist boyfriend. “My goal is to film the incomprehension of a mother totally caught off guard by the changes in her daughter on reaching legal age… Alone, divorced and abandoned by the authorities, she must try
See full article at ScreenDaily »

DVD Review – The Past (2013)

The Past (France: Le passé), 2013.

Written and Directed by Asghar Farhadi.

Starring Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim, Ali Mosaffa, Elyes Aguis and Pauline Burlet.

Synopsis:

An Iranian man deserts his French wife and her two children to return to his homeland. Meanwhile, his wife starts up a new relationship, a reality her husband confronts upon his wife’s request for a divorce.

After winning rave reviews (not to mention a Best Foreign Language Film Oscar) for 2011’s A Separation, any follow-up of Iranian director Asghar Farhadi’s threatened to offer a comedown. And The Past – his first foray into French-language cinema – may be admirably performed by its cast and never less than intriguing, but it’s only really ever above-average drama. A three-star movie, where everyone agreed Farhadi’s last film was a solid five.

Returning to Paris to finalise his divorce from estranged wife Marie (Berenice Bejo), Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Drafthouse takes La French for Us

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Cedric Jimenez’s crime-thriller starring Jean Dujardin impressed in Cannes.

Gaumont’s Jean Dujardin crime-thriller La French has pre-sold to Drafthouse Films for the Us.

Director Cedric Jimenez’s period crime-thriller was in-demand in Cannes after debuting on promo.

Dujardin stars as a French police magistrate who spends years trying to take down one of the country’s most powerful drug rings.

The deal was negotiated by Cecile Gaget and Yohann Comte from Gaumont International and James Shapiro and Tim League from Drafthouse Films.

Alain Goldman produces for Legende Films, while Dujardin’s co-stars include Gilles Lellouche (as mob boss Gaetan Zempa), Benoit Magimel, Celine Sallette and Pauline Burlet.

Cecile Gaget, head of Gaumont Intl., said: “We want to launch La French, a movie we consider to be a milestone in French genre cinema, with a director-friendly partner who understands how cool this movie is. We think Drafthouse Films is the perfect match.”

Director Jimenez
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Take A Trip Into "The Past"

The latest film by Asghar Farhadi, The Past, could have used the same title as his last film A Separation. Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa) returns to Paris to finalize his divorce with Marie (Berenice Bejo) after a four-year separation. But when he returns to his old home, he finds that a lot has changed.

Marie has taken up with a new man, Samir (Tahar Rahim), who comes with his own baggage. He has a wife, who is currently in a coma. And his presence creates tension in Marie’s relationship with her daughter Lucie (Pauline Burlet), who is not actually related to Ahmad (but to a derelict in Brussels). However, because Ahmad is the closest to a father figure in Lucie’s life, he attempts to reconcile the differences between Lucie and Marie. But he uncovers even more secrets in the process.

Read more...
See full article at JustPressPlay »

What to Watch: March 25-April 11, 2014

What to Watch is back in two-week form this time around, hitting the most important Blu-ray, DVD, and streaming offerings from both March 25th and April 1st. No April Fool’s Day jokes here. We’re above that. Sorta. What you will find is one of the best movies of last year, a fantastic comedy series, a foreign film you really should see, and further proof that John Cusack is merely slipping into straight-to-dvd oblivion like that damn horse in “The Neverending Story”. Pick one of the six. What the Hell, pick two.

The Wolf of Wall Street

Photo credit: Paramount

The Wolf of Wall Street

One of the best films of 2013 is here in a mildly disappointing Blu-ray given the rumors of four or even Six hour cuts reportedly in the works for release someday. Consequently, this practically movie-only release has the feel of a placeholder, something to put
See full article at HollywoodChicago.com »

The Past review: Bérénice Bejo leads Asghar Farhadi's brooding drama

The Past review: Bérénice Bejo leads Asghar Farhadi's brooding drama
Director: Asghar Farhadi; Screenwriter: Asghar Farhadi; Starring: Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim, Ali Mosaffa, Pauline Burlet, Elyes Aguis; Running time: 130 mins; Certificate: 12A

After picking up an Oscar in 2012 for A Separation, Iranian writer/director Asghar Farhadi returns to similar ground, exploring the domestic tensions in a household where traditional values are challenged. Here, the setting is France where Bérénice Bejo puts away the jazz hands that grabbed our attention in The Artist, as Marie, a single mother caught between two Arab men.

Tahar Rahim, who commanded the screen in A Prophet (less so in big budget drama Black Gold) is on typically brooding form as Marie's live-in lover Samir. However, they're beyond the honeymoon phase. She has trouble disciplining his little boy Fouad (Elyes Aguis) and her eldest daughter of two, Lucie (Pauline Burlet) mooches around the house disapprovingly. Added to this mix is Marie's soon-to-be ex-husband Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

The Past review: they are family

A remarkably grounded French-Iranian drama about a broken family trying to mend; unexpectedly riveting, thanks in part to one of 2013’s best ensembles. I’m “biast” (pro): loved A Separation, adore Tahar Rahim

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

A woman meets a man at an airport. Their greeting is familiar but not romantic… or maybe what we’re seeing is strained romance? Who are they to each other? As she drives him to her home and gets him settled in for a stay, we gradually come to appreciate that they were once a couple, but he — Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa) — ran back home to Iran and left her — Marie (Bérénice Bejo: Populaire, The Artist) — in the lurch, and now she has asked him for a divorce, which is why he has returned, for the legal proceedings. She wants to
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

'Wolf of Wall Street', 'Persona', 'The Past', 'King of Comedy' and More on DVD & Blu-ray This Week

Persona (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray/DVD) I have watched all of Criterion's new Blu-ray for Ingmar Bergman's absolute classic, Persona, and will have a more in-depth look at the film tomorrow, but for now let me just say I consider this an essential title for film fans interested in collecting the best cinema has had to offer over the course of its rich history. I only saw Persona for the first time a little over three years ago and was absolutely floored. It's one of those films you don't need to "get" to understand, which I know is confusing. Put, hopefully, more simply, this is a film that's meant to confuse and confound, but it does it in such a way that you never feel you're missing something. Yet, by the end you'll be left enthralled by the images you've witnessed, the story (or lack thereof) you've witnessed, the performances,
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

The Past – The Review

More prevalent now, than perhaps anytime in history, is the combined or “blended family” when a single parent with kids weds or begins a household with another parent with kids. It’s been the staple of gentle comedy like “The Brady Bunch” TV series and feature films and both versions of Yours, Mine, And Ours. The biggest conflicts in those earlier shows usually involved sharing bathrooms and noisy dinners. But those families’ heads were nearly always widows and widowers without ex-spouses showing up to further complicate matters. These more untidy splits are often the source of drama instead of mirth in many serious examinations of this type of family structure. And this isn’t something native to the USA. Overseas these new families must more often deal with different languages and cultures. Writer/director Asghar Farhadi follows up his Oscar-winning family drama A Separation with this new tale of family
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Variety Critics Pick Their Oscar Nominees

Variety Critics Pick Their Oscar Nominees
Film critics, we’re often told, don’t vote for the Oscars — but if they did, here’s what at least three of their nomination ballots might look like. We listed our top five choices for best director, actor/actress, supporting actor/actress, original/adapted screenplay and cinematography. For best picture, we allowed ourselves 10 choices, based on the unlikely but theoretically possible outcome of 10 nominees in that category.

Peter Debruge

Peter Debruge

@askdebruge

Best Picture

“12 Years a Slave”

Dallas Buyers Club

Her

Inside Llewyn Davis

“Our Children”

“The Past”

Rush

Short Term 12

Stories We Tell

“Wadjda”

Best Director

Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis

Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity

Spike Jonze, “Her

Joachim Lafosse, “Our Children”

Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”

Best Actor

Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”

Oscar Isaac, “Inside Llewyn Davis

Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club

Tahar Rahim, “The Past”

Miles Teller, “The Spectacular Now

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Film Review: Asghar Farhadi’s ‘The Past’ Finds Resonance Through Subtlety of Human Interaction

Filmgoers may bash the January to October movie fare for being boisterous, obnoxious, directed by Michael Bay, etc. However, even during the supposedly tasteful sanctuary that is the award season of November to January, those films themselves can be lumped together to sponsor their own lack of subtlety.

That is not to say these films aren’t as good as they are, but only that after seeing numerous movies which could be weaseled into sarcastic “Tropic Thunder” previews (looking at you, “Saving Mr. Banks”), the yearly accusation of certain films “trying too hard” to become “Oscar bait” proves to be a “Transformers”-like inundation in itself.

Rating: 4.0/5.0

In the second big weekend of 2014 arrives “The Past,” a leftover from last year but one just opening on Friday in Chicago. For those who are looking for something that doesn’t “try too hard,” but with an even bigger pay-off on a more humbled scale,
See full article at HollywoodChicago.com »
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