12 items from 2013
Written and directed by Orson Welles
Long before the likes of Brangelina dominated the Hollywood gossip columns, figures such as Hedda Hooper and Louella Parsons were the all-powerful industry matriarchs whose withering wit could make or break film careers. The tumultuous romance between Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth on the set of The Lady from Shanghai, which has received a BFI funded restoration for this year’s London Film Festival, was the fodder of scandal-drenched periodicals around the globe in those postwar years. The main difference between Shanghai and something like 2005′s Mr. & Mrs. Smith is that the former film endures as a curious classic beyond the fading celebrity chatter, with subsequent analysis identifying the movie as either Welles’ strychnine-poisoned valentine to Hayworth or a gloomy paean to a remorse-fueled marriage. Either way, it’s a curiously ambivalent and fractured piece that inverts and perverts the traditional trappings of noir, »
As a sparkling restoration of Orson Welles's delirious 1947 film noir is unveiled at the London film festival, Tony Paley explores the dramatic story behind its production
• More on the London film festival
Citizen Kane may no longer automatically called the greatest film ever made, but a year after Orson Welles's movie was knocked off the top of Sight & Sound's poll on the 50 greatest films of all time, the late director is back in the spotlight with two world premieres.
This week, Too Much Johnson (1938), a forerunner to Citizen Kane, was screened where the director's "lost" silent film was found – in the Italian town of Pordenone. It coincided with the opening night of the London film festival, where the sparkling new restoration of The Lady from Shanghai (1947) will be unveiled.
Welles screened The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920) for his cast and crew prior to shooting The Lady from Shanghai. »
- Tony Paley
With Venice underway and Toronto beginning this week, festival season is in full swing, and next month it's the turn of the UK capital for the 57th BFI London Film Festival. This morning the BFI's Clare Stewart announced the full line-up for the festival, which is set to include a total of 234 fiction and documentary features, including 22 World Premieres, 16 International Premieres, 29 European Premieres and 20 Archive films. Here's the press release in full....
Opening & Closing Night Galas
The Festival opens with the European Premiere of Paul Greengrass’ Captain Phillips a high-stakes thriller based on true story of the 2009 hijacking of the U.S. container ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates with Tom Hanks playing the eponymous lead role.
- Flickering Myth
This year’s London Film Festival (Oct 9-12) boasts an array of acclaimed and anticipated Us, international and UK features, many of which have already gone down a storm at other autumn festivals.
Among the big hitters newly announced today at the London launch are Gravity, Inside Llewyn Davis, 12 Years a Slave, Labor Day, The Invisible Woman, Blue is the Warmest Colour, Under the Skin and Night Moves.
A total of 13 films will compete in the official competition, including Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin, Richard Ayoade’s The Double, Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox, Peter Landesman’s Parkland, Clio Barnard’s The Selfish Giant, David Mackenzie’s Starred Up and John Curran’s Tracks.
In Pictures: Galas, Competition titles
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Andreas Wiseman)
The 57th BFI London Film Festival line-up has officially been revealed, and it is led by a slew of incredibly promising films, many of which have already been buzzing on the festival circuit, and a number of which will be making their debuts here in London.
As previously announced, Paul Greengrass’ Captain Phillips will open the festival next month, and John Lee Hancock’s Saving Mr. Banks will close it, book-ending the festival with Tom Hanks leading two highly prominent, Oscar-primed movies.
And leading the line-up alongside them this year will be some of the most Oscar-buzzed movies of 2013, including Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, Jason Reitman’s Labor Day, Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity (in 3D), Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis, Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem, »
- Kenji Lloyd
Our own Sam Carey has been nestled in the Odeon Leicester Square for the last hour and a half where the full line-up for the 57th BFI London Film Festival has been revealed (you can see his live tweets over at the @thncom twitter feed). We can now provide you with the line up for this years festival in its entirety via the press release below.
Key films screening at the festival include Paul Greengrass helmed Captain Phillips, the George Clooney/ Sandra Bullock space epic Gravity, Tome Hanks starrer Saving Mr Banks, Stephen Frears’ Philomena, 12 Years A Slave from Steve McQueen, the Coen Brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis, Jason Reitman’s literary adaptation Labor Day starring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin, Ralph Fiennes’ second directorial feature The Invisible Woman, Abdellatif Kechiche’s Blue Is The Warmest Colour, Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Don Jon, Alexander Payne’s road-trip Nebraska and Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive. »
- Paul Heath
Great “auteur” filmmakers are known for having a style that carries throughout their films: Hitchcock had his trademark suspense, Godard has his knowing self-reflexivity, Romero has his zombies. These preferences unite the works in their filmography, but even master directors are susceptible to making bad films.
Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull lacked the verve of his other efforts, Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood was a definite misfire, and Wim Wenders’s The Million Dollar Hotel is just boring. This list is not about bad movies by good directors, rather it is a compilation of great films by great filmmakers that (for whatever reason) have been generally overlooked.
Without further ado, here is the list…
When your first picture is widely considered to be the greatest film of all time seventy years after its release, it can be difficult »
- Bryan Hickman
The film career of legendary English actor Sir Christopher Lee began in 1948 and continues to the present day. Lee is best known for his roles in horror films, especially the string of seven Dracula movies he starred in for Hammer Studios between 1958 and 1974. Super-8 Christopher Lee Movie Madness will be a great way to celebrate the career of Lee, who recently celebrated his 91st birthday. Admission is only Three Dollars.
Super-8 Christopher Lee Movie Madness will take place at The Way Out Club on August 6th beginning at 8pm. Condensed versions (average length: 15 minutes) of these great Christopher Lee films will be screened on a big screen on Super-8 sound film: Dracula Prince Of Darkness, Taste The Blood Of Dracula, Scars Of Dracula, The Gorgon (with Peter Cushing), To The Devil A Daughter, Curse Of The Crimson Cult (with Boris Karloff), and Return To Witch Mountain.
The non- Christopher Lee »
- Tom Stockman
Simon Columb attends BFI Southbank's Rita Hayworth retrospective...
Two years after Citizen Kane, the genius Orson Welles married Rita Hayworth. This was her second marriage lasting three years before they separated – but not before a brief rekindling of their romance on the set of The Lady from Shanghai. It didn't last long and they divorced in 1948. In that regard, Hayworth and Welles' relationship is an important factor to consider when analysing this strange mess of a film. Detailed by James Steffen and Rob Nixon on Turner Classic Movies, a rough cut of the film was 155 minutes long and was chopped down by editor Viola Lawrence to a mere 87 minutes; David Benedict, introducing the film at the BFI Retrospective, was under no illusion about the distorted and clunky "short" film we were yet to watch. This is not Orson Welles at 100% - indeed, he is barely at 50% - but amongst the awkward accents, »
- Flickering Myth
Tehran's Hoax of Hollywood conference sets a precedent that other countries could follow. Let's start with Braveheart
Following the Iranian Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance's Hoax of Hollywood conference in Tehran this week, it has been reported that Iran may "sue Hollywood" over what it considers to be unrealistic portrayals of the country in several films. The most recent offender is Ben Affleck's Argo, based on the Iran hostage crisis of 1979-1981 and winner of this year's best picture Oscar. Others named include 300, The Wrestler and Not Without My Daughter.
The representation of Iran in Argo is certainly questionable but, as when the Kazakhstan foreign ministry threatened to sue over Borat, the prospect of a lawsuit doesn't seem entirely realistic. Do nations or governments have a right to accurate representation in fiction? In what jurisdiction could such a case be brought? Wouldn't there be some sort of statute of limitation on suing over, »
- Alex von Tunzelmann
Chicago – “The Man with the Iron Fists” is the most tedious picture in many a moon. How, you may ask, can wall-to-wall action possibly by tedious? Two reasons: 1.) The action is nonstop, and 2.) The characters are impossible to care about. The single take of Uma Thurman’s devastated outburst upon awakening from her coma is the emotional hook that keeps the audience engaged as she wreaks her path of vengeance through both volumes of “Kill Bill.”
RZA’s unfortunate directorial debut lacks that crucial moment designed to spur an audience’s emotional involvement. Instead, it hurls the viewer headfirst through an assortment of blood-spattered plot threads so needlessly complicated and breathlessly detailed that they are rendered quickly incoherent. The plot doesn’t matter anyway, since it serves solely as a clothesline for gratuitous action sequences recycled from older, vastly superior kung fu blockbusters—the kind that RZA and his pal »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Orson Welles Week! continues at Trailers from Hell with director and Tfh creator Joe Dante introducing Welles' "The Lady from Shanghai," drastically recut prior to its 1947 release by Columbia president Harry Cohn. Dante calls the film "a shell of what might have been a classic." What remains of Orson Welles' fourth Hollywood effort is dazzlingly inventive and narratively jumbled, due to Columbia prexy Harry Cohn cutting Welles' version by nearly an hour. Still considered a key film noir, Dave Kehr once called it "the weirdest great film ever made". The last few cards of most surviving versions of this trailer are replaced with a Columbia logo. »
- Trailers From Hell
12 items from 2013
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