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Hertzfeldt's Return to "World of Tomorrow"

6 hours ago

Chris here. Even the most niche of cinema is getting sequelized these days. Remember Don Hertzfeldt's masterwork animated short World of Tomorrow? Of course you do. The mini-major was an unforgettable science-fiction mix of rudimentary and complex visuals with equal bits silliness and profundity, and gained as much popularity as any short film in recent memory. Well we'll get to revisit Emily Prime for Hertzfeldt's follow-up, World of Tomorrow Episode Two: The Burden of Other People's Thoughts.

Hertzfeldt has been teasing the new short on Twitter for a few months and it played Fantastic Fest to equally high praise as its predecessor. Could this mean that Hertzfeldt could be back in the Oscar shorts race again after losing two years ago? The bigger question might actually be found in the film's not-so-short title: is Hertzfeldt planning an entire saga on Emily Prime or is "episode" simply a cheeky word choice? »

- Chris Feil

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Beauty vs Beast: Sisterly Sensibilities

12 hours ago

Jason from Mnpp here using this week's "Beauty vs Beast" to wish a happy birthday to one of our favorite directors, the great Ang Lee. In a strange coincidence I spent some of this weekend talking Ang on Twitter even though I hadn't realized it was about to be his birthday today, so I'd say Fate chose this week's contest. And because more than anything a battle between actresses livens you folks up, let's face down the Sisters Dashwood of Ang's 1995 classic Sense & Sensibility.

And no before anyone asks I don't think Kate Winslet or Emma Thompson to be beastly in any manner. But seeing as the film itself pits their two ways of existing at odds with one another for the majority of its run-time (only to eventually decide, with fine wisdom, that the sisters could clearly stand to learn a little from one another) it doesn't seem completely »

- JA

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Yes No Maybe So: "Phantom Thread"

15 hours ago

by Ben Miller

Paul Thomas Anderson's latest joint, Phantom Thread, has him collaborating for a second time Daniel Day-Lewis (who is reportedly retiring following this film). The Christmas release follows the true story of 1950s London fashion designer Reynolds Woodcock.  Tagging along are his muse Alma (Vicky Krieps) and his sister (Lesley Manville).

After a long long wait, the first poster and the trailer have arrived. See them after the jump as we nail down the Yes, No, and Maybe So of it all… »

- Ben Miller

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The Furniture: Camelot, a Silly and Furry Place

17 hours ago

"The Furniture," by Daniel Walber, is our weekly series on Production Design. You can click on the images to see them in magnified detail.

Back in August, I wrote about two dramatically different ways of portraying Arthurian Legend on screen. To recap: the bright silliness of Knights of the Round Table (1953) looks like psychedelic compared to the bland grit of King Arthur (2004) and the gruff, imperial fantasia of King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017). But even these at least share a mild interest in engaging with English historical design. Camelot (1967), on the other hand, is a flighty fantasy of utter nonsense.

Of course, this is why it’s such a delight to watch. It’s a furry, oversexed epic that sends its glamorous cast out into magical forests to sing Lerner and Loewe songs at the top of their extravagantly-adorned lungs. The film won Oscars for production designer John Truscott, »

- Daniel Walber

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Middleburg: Maggie Betts' "Novitiate"

20 hours ago

Continuing our Middleburg Film Festival adventures. Here's Lynn Lee

Middleburg is the kind of idyllic Virginia town that makes me wish I had enough independent means to spend regular fall weekends there lodging at a cushy spa, riding horses, visiting local wineries, and binging once a year on Oscar-baity films before they get released in theaters.  As it is, I was happy to get a taste of the latter on a press pass to this year’s festival.  On Day 3, I joined Nathaniel in town (albeit at different events) and took in Maggie BettsNovitiate, Todd HaynesWonderstruck, and Dee ReesMudbound.

Of the three, the one I knew the least about beforehand turned out to be the one I liked best.  Set at a convent in the 1960s around the time of Vatican II, Novitiate centers on the struggles and yearnings of young postulant Cathleen (Margaret Qualley of “The Leftovers »

- Lynn Lee

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Joan Fontaine Centennial: Jane Eyre (1943)

22 October 2017 5:50 PM, PDT

Part two of our Joan Fontaine celebration. Here's Tim Brayton...

Joan Fontaine's reign at the top of the Hollywood pyramid was short and intense: three out of four movies made in three out of four years netted her Oscar nominations, with a win for the second, Suspicion. We come now to the film made immediately after this golden run: the second talkie adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's 1847 classic Jane Eyre, released in the United Kingdom at the very end of 1943, but held back from the U.S. until February, 1944.

By the time the film arrived at 20th Century Fox, it had already passed through the hands of super-producer David O. Selznick, who had assembled all of the main components in an apparent bid to replicate his Oscar-winning Rebecca. Fontaine appears once again as a delicate, innocent ingénue dropped into a rambling Gothic mansion where a bullying man falls in love with her, »

- Tim Brayton

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