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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2001

18 items from 2017


The Pros and Cons of Looking Back: Close-Up on John Carpenter’s "Christine" and "Starman"

14 May 2017 3:27 PM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

Close-Up is a column that spotlights films now playing on Mubi. John Carpenter's Christine (1983) is showing May 4 - June 3 and Starman (1984) is showing May 5 - June 4, 2017 in the United Kingdom.ChristineWas it too dark? Too bleak? Too gory? Did it have the misfortune of opening when American moviegoers were flocking to E.T.? Either way, when John Carpenter's The Thing landed in the summer of 1982, with an apocalyptic cliffhanger and the most surreally grotesque, tactile, gooey monster effects you never realized could be put on film, it fizzled. "It was hated," Carpenter later recalled at a screening in Los Angeles. "Hated by fans. I lost a job. People hated me. They thought I was this horrible, violent—" He trailed off and joked, "And I was." The audience laughed, because by now The Thing's exalted place in movie geek culture is secure: an exquisitely paranoid horror classic and arguably the crown »

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How Jonathan Demme’s ‘Silence of the Lambs’ Broke Countless Oscar Conventions

26 April 2017 10:33 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The further I spin away from “Moonlight’s” best picture victory last February, which none of us really had the chance to unpack in all the chaos of the Oscars climax, the more stunned I am by its sheer unlikeliness. That exciting moment broke countless conventions.

So, too, did “The Silence of the Lambs” 25 years ago. With director Jonathan Demme’s untimely passing this morning, I’m reminded of just how many “rules” that film broke, and how it — like “Moonlight” — is a constant reminder: let convention be damned when it comes to the Oscar race.

To start, it was a horror film. Skew it to “thriller” if you want, but no movie as horrific as this had ever claimed the Academy’s top prize. And how could it? It’s difficult for genre filmmaking to translate broadly enough. Science-fiction is often the poster child for this, but horror faces an even steeper climb. »

- Kristopher Tapley

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Jonathan Demme, ‘Silence of the Lambs’ Director, Dies at 73

26 April 2017 8:10 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Oscar-winning director Jonathan Demme died Wednesday in New York of cancer complications, his publicist told Variety. He was 73 years old.

Demme is best known for directing “The Silence of the Lambs,” the 1991 horror-thriller that was a box office smash, a critical triumph, and introduced moviegoers to Anthony Hopkins’ Hannibal Lecter, a charismatic serial with a yen for Chianti, fava beans, and cannibalism. The story of a novice FBI analyst (Jodie Foster) on the trail of a murderer became only the third film in history to win Academy Awards in all the top five categories ( picture, actor, actress, director, and adapted screenplay), joining the ranks of “It Happened One Night” and “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”

Though he had his greatest success terrifying audiences, most of Demme’s work was looser and quirkier. In particular, he showed a great humanism and an empathy for outsiders in the likes of “Melvin and Howard, »

- Brent Lang and Carmel Dagan

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7 Netflix Original Movies That Are Worth Seeking Out

24 April 2017 9:09 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Last week, in response to the news that Netflix had finally cracked the Cannes competition lineup (a breakthrough that inspired the Federation of French Cinemas to question if a movie that skips theaters should even be considered “a cinematographic work”), I wrote about the streaming giant and how they’ve performed as a distributor. My conclusions were, uh, not super favorable. Criticizing the company’s penchant for pricing out the competition, hoarding the hottest indies on the festival circuit, and burying them on their site without the benefit of a proper release, I argued that Netflix isn’t a distributor so much as “a graveyard with unlimited viewing hours,” and that “it doesn’t release movies, it inters them.” It’s a problem that extends to the well-funded features that Netflix produces themselves, a problem that’s only going to get worse as those titles continue to get better.

See MoreNetflix Keeps Buying Great Movies, »

- David Ehrlich

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Netflix Keeps Buying Great Movies, So It’s a Shame They’re Getting Buried

17 April 2017 11:10 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Please allow a moment of silence for “Tramps,” Adam Leon’s warm and winsome follow-up to SXSW 2013 winner “Gimme the Loot.” Anchored by a ridiculously charismatic performance from actress Grace Van Patten, Leon’s sweltering, casually modern riff on classic Hollywood comedies like “It Happened One Night” tells the story of two kids who fall in love during a wild goose chase around the outer edges of New York City. It’s delightful stuff, diverting by design but told with the confidence of someone who can endow even the lightest fare with a real sense of weight. It was hardly the most significant thing I saw at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival, but watching it on a hot summer day with the lights off and the AC on full blast was one of the most purely enjoyable experiences I had there.

Of course, you’re going to have »

- David Ehrlich

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The Films of Frank Capra III, Ranked

14 April 2017 5:51 AM, PDT | FilmSchoolRejects.com | See recent FilmSchoolRejects news »

As The Fate of The Furious enters theaters, a ranking of its 1st Assistant Director’s oeuvre.

Friday brings us the release of The Fate of the Furious, the eighth film in The Fast & The Furious series. Thus, there could be no better time to look back and rank the previous works of one of the films most notable craftsmen, a man whose name is legendary. I speak of course of First Assistant Director Frank Capra III.

Capra III is the grandson of director Frank Capra, a Hollywood legend whose work includes It Happened One Night, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and It’s a Wonderful Life. How did that pedigree fare two generations removed? This exhaustive look at Mr. Capra III’s 1st Ad career will tell the tale.

While the film’s director often gets the lion’s share of the credit, the First Ad is one of the most critical positions on set. In »

- The Bitter Script Reader

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The Forgotten: William Asher's "The 27th Day" (1957)

12 April 2017 12:08 PM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

Adapted by John Mantley from his own novel, The 27th Day is an ideas-driven sci-fi thriller conceived and executed by idiots. What's interesting is how close its plot comes to the genuinely intelligent Arrival. One could imagine Arrival being back-engineered by taking The 27th Day and reversing all its stupidities.Things start off with promise: five disparate stereotypes (American newspaperman, English girl in swimsuit, Chinese woman, German scientist, Russian soldier) are snatched from their lives by a UFO. But already there are problems apparent: the movie doesn't give any of these characters a compelling narrative to be interrupted by the main plot, except the Chinese woman, whose narrative is ending, as we'll see. In the novel, perhaps access to the characters' thoughts would have enlivened them, and this may be one reason authors don't usually get invited to adapt their books: faithfully reproducing the incidents onscreen doesn't necessarily give you the same effect. »

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"Tear Down the Fences": Watching Capra in the Age of Trump

4 April 2017 4:02 AM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

The retrospective Frank Capra, The American Dreamer is showing April 10 - May 31, 2017 in the United Kingdom.Frank CapraFrank Capra has fallen badly out of fashion in recent decades. While still well-known for the extraordinary Depression-era purple patch that produced It Happened One Night (1934), Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936) and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), the critics have rarely been kind. His work is routinely derided as “Capra-corn” for its perceived sentimentality and “fairy tale” idealism while the man himself is written off in favour of contemporaries Howard Hawks, Preston Sturges and Ernst Lubitsch.Elliot Stein, writing in Sight & Sound in 1972, attacked Capra’s “fantasies of good will, which at no point conflict with middle-class American status quo values”, arguing that his “shrewdly commercial manipulative tracts” consist of little more than “philistine-populist notions and greeting-card sentiments”. Pauline Kael found him “softheaded,” Derek Malcolm a huckster hawking “cosily absurd fables.” To an extent, »

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‘Five Came Back’: How the Story of Hollywood Directors In World War II Became a Great Netflix Series

2 April 2017 11:26 PM, PDT | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Entertainment journalist Mark Harris followed up his well-reviewed 2009 “Pictures at a Revolution” with an even better and more accessible book, the dramatic story of five top Hollywood directors and their roles in producing WWII propaganda films, told over 500 pages: “Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War. The first book was doomed not to become a movie due to prohibitive clip costs. But the urge to open up Harris’s exhaustive research on “Five Came Back” via dramatic documentary shorts shot in the global arena was irresistible — and they were free.

Read More: ‘Five Came Back’ Review: A Cinephile’s Dream Documentary Becomes Enthralling for Everyone on Netflix

There’s plenty of rich footage to choose from: Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight” propaganda, John Huston’s re-enacted “The Battle of San Pietro,” John Ford and William Wyler’s live footage of the D-Day invasion from sea and air, »

- Anne Thompson

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‘Five Came Back’: How the Story of Hollywood Directors In World War II Became a Great Netflix Series

2 April 2017 11:26 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Entertainment journalist Mark Harris followed up his well-reviewed 2009 “Pictures at a Revolution” with an even better and more accessible book, the dramatic story of five top Hollywood directors and their roles in producing WWII propaganda films, told over 500 pages: “Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War. The first book was doomed not to become a movie due to prohibitive clip costs. But the urge to open up Harris’s exhaustive research on “Five Came Back” via dramatic documentary shorts shot in the global arena was irresistible — and they were free.

Read More: ‘Five Came Back’ Review: A Cinephile’s Dream Documentary Becomes Enthralling for Everyone on Netflix

There’s plenty of rich footage to choose from: Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight” propaganda, John Huston’s re-enacted “The Battle of San Pietro,” John Ford and William Wyler’s live footage of the D-Day invasion from sea and air, »

- Anne Thompson

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‘Moonlight’ is the Most Frugal Best Picture Ever: See Analysis of the 10 Lowest-Budget Winners of all Time

1 March 2017 8:00 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

With a budget of $1.5 million, 2017 Best Picture winner “Moonlight” cost less than a 30-second ad during the Oscars (reported price: $2.2 million). And, among the category’s 89 winners, it stands as the lowest-budgeted film in the Academy Awards’ history.

To determine the 10 least expensive Best Picture winners, we looked back at each year, researched reported budgets, and then calculated them at 2017 dollar values. Although independent films have dominated the Oscars for the last decade, the only indie to make the cut from that period was “Crash.” Nor did Woody Allen’s “Annie Hall,” or some black-and-white studio classics like “Casablanca” or “The Lost Weekend.”

The 10 straddle almost every decade of the Oscars and come from either independent producers or smaller distributors (four of the 10 were released by United Artists).

For comparison, the most expensive film to win remains “Titanic;” its adjusted budget was $300 million more than “Moonlight.” That total dwarfs the »

- Tom Brueggemann

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‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ Trailer: BFI Re-Releasing the Best Picture Winner for Jack Nicholson’s 80th Birthday — Watch

24 February 2017 9:00 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

For the first time in more than 40 years, “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” has a new trailer. BFI is re-releasing the multiple Oscar winner to mark the occasion of Jack Nicholson’s 80th birthday, which the actor will celebrate on April 14. Watch the new trailer below.

Read More: Watch: 13 Minutes of Deleted Scenes From ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’

Miloš Forman’s adaptation of the best-selling novel by Ken Kesey belongs to an exclusive club: “Cuckoo’s Nest” is just one of three films to win the Academy Awards for Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress and Screenplay, the other two being “It Happened One Night” and “The Silence of the Lambs.” Made for $3 million, it grossed more than $100 million.

Read More: Watch: Exploring the Set-Ups in ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’

Louise Fletcher, Will Sampson, William Redfield, Brad Dourif, Christopher Lloyd and Danny DeVito co-star in the film. »

- Michael Nordine

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David Reviews Michael Curtiz’s Mildred Pierce [Criterion Collection Blu-Ray Review]

21 February 2017 5:00 AM, PST | CriterionCast | See recent CriterionCast news »

With the new release of Mildred Pierce, the Criterion Collection appears to be solidifying a trend over the past couple years of providing a showcase for some of the greatest female actors from Hollywood’s Golden Age. Since late 2014, stars like Claudette Colbert (It Happened One NightThe Palm Beach Story), Rita Hayworth (Gilda, Only Angels Have Wings) and Rosalind Russell (His Girl Friday) have made their first appearances in the Collection, in what can be considered career-defining roles. These additions seem to be addressing a notable blind spot for Criterion. As impressive as their reach has been in bringing many of the most iconic women from the past hundred years of world cinema to the forefront, the continuing absence of silver screen legends like Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Greta Garbo and Elizabeth Taylor, just to name a few, seems like a lingering oversight, a problem yet to be »

- David Blakeslee

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NYC Weekend Watch: Scorsese Docs, Leonard Cohen, Social Thrillers & More

17 February 2017 7:51 AM, PST | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

Since any New York City cinephile has a nearly suffocating wealth of theatrical options, we figured it’d be best to compile some of the more worthwhile repertory showings into one handy list. Displayed below are a few of the city’s most reliable theaters and links to screenings of their weekend offerings — films you’re not likely to see in a theater again anytime soon, and many of which are, also, on 35mm. If you have a chance to attend any of these, we’re of the mind that it’s time extremely well-spent.

Museum of the Moving Image

The Scorsese retrospective has a music-filled weekend with The Last Waltz, his George Harrison documentary, and more.

Anthology Film Archives

The late, great Leonard Cohen is paid tribute with a small retrospective that includes Fassbinder’s Beware of a Holy Whore and McCabe and Mrs. Miller.

Jean Vigo’s masterpiece L’Atalante has showings. »

- Nick Newman

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Great Job, Internet!: How When Harry Met Sally breaks from the rom-com standard

16 February 2017 12:51 PM, PST | avclub.com | See recent The AV Club news »

When Harry Met Sally, written by Nora Ephron and directed by Rob Reiner, is generally acknowledged as one of the greats of the rom-com form. But a close look by filmmaker Michael Tucker of Lessons From The Screenplay shows that the 1989 romantic comedy is actually groundbreaking as well.

According to Tucker, When Harry Met Sally succeeds by turning around standard rom-com standards. For example, in many such movies, the intended couple can’t stand each other at first, then fall in love over the course of the film as they spend more time together (as in It Happened One Night, among others). In Whms, the couple doesn’t get along when they first meet, and then separates for five years. Then they don’t get along again, and leave for five more years. When they finally meet again, instead of falling in love, they become friends. This, Tucker opines ...

»

- Gwen Ihnat

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NYC Weekend Watch: Valentine’s Day Massacre, Andrzej Wajda, ‘Make Way for Tomorrow’ & More

9 February 2017 8:15 PM, PST | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

Since any New York City cinephile has a nearly suffocating wealth of theatrical options, we figured it’d be best to compile some of the more worthwhile repertory showings into one handy list. Displayed below are a few of the city’s most reliable theaters and links to screenings of their weekend offerings — films you’re not likely to see in a theater again anytime soon, and many of which are, also, on 35mm. If you have a chance to attend any of these, we’re of the mind that it’s time extremely well-spent.

Anthology Film Archives

The annual “Valentine’s Day Massacre” offers films by Pialat, Elaine May, Albert Brooks, and Zulawski.

Dziga Vertov features screen.

Film Society of Lincoln Center

An Andrzej Wajda series begins running this weekend.

BAMcinématek

The very bracing double bill of Make Way for Tomorrow and Tokyo Story screens throughout the weekend.

The »

- Nick Newman

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An American story by Anne-Katrin Titze

17 January 2017 6:10 AM, PST | eyeforfilm.co.uk | See recent eyeforfilm.co.uk news »

Ma director Celia Rowlson-Hall with Anne-Katrin Titze, editor Iva Radivojevic and Dp Ian Bloom at IFC Center Photo: Ed Bahlman

A quintet comprised of Lena Dunham, Hailey Benton Gates, Durga Chew-Bose, Siobhan Burke, and myself moderated the post-screening discussions for Celia Rowlson-Hall's American fairy tale Ma on its opening weekend in New York.

Ma stars Rowlson-Hall with a terrific speechless supporting cast including Andrew Pastides, Amy Seimetz, Jason Kittelberger, Neal Bledsoe, Matt Lauria, Kentucker Audley, Peter Vack, William Connell, George McArthur, and Bobbi Jene Smith. In the tradition of Claudette Colbert in Frank Capra's It Happened One Night or Uma Thurman thumbing a ride in Gus Van Sant's Even Cowgirls Get The Blues, a modern-day Virgin Mary hitchhikes across the Southwest, ultimately arriving in Las Vegas where she meets Nevada showgirls and a tiny singing Queen Victoria lookalike.

Celia Rowlson-Hall: "I really wanted to tell an American story. »

- Anne-Katrin Titze

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La La Land Breaks Golden Globes Record with 7 Wins

8 January 2017 10:51 PM, PST | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

Going into the 2017 Golden Globes, La La Land had the most nominations of any other film with seven, followed by Moonlight with six nominations and Manchester-by-the-Sea with five nominations. At the end of the night, La La Land made history by winning all seven of the awards it was nominated for, taking the most wins for any film in Golden Globes history. It was also the first movie to win every major Golden Globe it was nominated for since One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest in 1976, which could set it up for a big night on Oscar Sunday next month.

Deadline reports that La La Land ran the table tonight, winning Best Picture Comedy or Musical, filmmaker Damien Chazelle winning Best Director and Best Screenplay, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone for Best Actor and Best Actress, Best Original Score by Justin Hurwitz and Best Original Song for "City of Stars. »

- MovieWeb

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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2001

18 items from 2017


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