14 items from 2015
Close-Up is a column that spotlights films now playing on Mubi. The Law is playing on Mubi in the Us through January 21, 2016.For those who like nice touches, keep your eye on the bird. In Jules Dassin's The Law (1959), it's the first character we meet, where, in a town square under the hot Mediterranean sun, a group of men are watching a pigeon. The men are out of work and squarely at the bottom of the socioeconomic totem pole. The pigeon is an idiot, one man says—why would anything that could fly choose to stay here? Because sometimes people throw it crumbs, a man answers. And if you had any doubts what this all symbolizes, another of the men hastily adds: just like us. This is a film very much about hierarchy, and the forces or illusions that keep everyone in their place. The air is soon »
- Duncan Gray
'Trumbo' movie: Bryan Cranston as screenwriter Dalton Trumbo and Helen Mirren as gossip columnist Hedda Hopper. 'Trumbo' movie review: Highly entertaining 'history lesson' Full disclosure: on the wall in my study hangs a poster – the iconic photograph of blacklisted Hollywood screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, with black-horned rim glasses, handlebar mustache, a smoke dangling from the end of a dramatic cigarette holder. He's sitting – stark naked – in a tub surrounded by his particular writing apparatus. He's looking directly into the camera of the photographer, his daughter Mitzi. Dalton Trumbo's son, Christopher Trumbo, gave me the poster after my interview with him for the release of Peter Askin's 2007 documentary also titled Trumbo. That film combines archival footage, including family movies and photographs, with performances of the senior Trumbo's letters to his family during their many years of turmoil before and through the blacklist, including his time in prison. The letters are read by, »
- Tim Cogshell
Two series highlighting too-often overlooked actors, Robert Ryan and Gloria Grahame, open tomorrow in New York. More goings on: "The best of all heist movies" (the Voice's Alan Scherstuhl), Jules Dassin's Rififi (1955) returns to Film Forum. An exhibition devoted to the friendship between Walt Disney and Salvador Dalí is on view in San Francisco. Tsai Ming-liang's feature debut, Rebels of the Neon God, arrives in Nashville, along with Xavier Dolan's Tom at the Farm. And then there's the two-month-long retrospective in London: The Complete Films of John Waters (Every Goddam One of Them…). » - David Hudson »
Jules Dassin (1911 - 2008) began his filmmaking career in the early 1940s and is known for his hits Brute Force (1947), The Naked City (1948), and Thieves' Highway (1949). His career later took a hit when he was blacklisted for Communist activities during the McCarthy Era. Dassin's move to France helped revive his career and was the setting for the hit film Rififi that set his career in motion once again. After the film's successful French release, Dassin was awarded the directing prize at Cannes which allowed Rififi to be released in the U.S. where it enjoyed a successful art house run. Rififi is renowned for being one of the early 'heist' films and served as an inspiration for later films in the genre. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Right out of the gate I should say that Cemetery Without Crosses is notable for a number of reasons. First off, it's one of the only, if only, French westerns from the 60s and it was directed by Rififi actor Robert Hossein who also starred in the film. Hossein, a huge fan of Italian westerns (who can blame him?), dedicated the film to his friend, Sergio Leone who also makes an appearance in the film and directed one of its better scenes. The film's opening theme is sung by legendary British crooner Scott Walker, so there's that, but I struggle to recommend this Euro western to anyone other than the most die [Continued ...] »
Filmed during the height of the Euro Western craze of the late 60’s, Robert Hossein’s Cemetery Without Crosses is an obscure gem rejuvenated by Arrow Video. A French production, the title was actor/director Hossein’s first Western, obviously influenced by Sergio Leone, whom the film is dedicated to (Leone was in the midst of production on Once Upon a Time in the West when Hossein was underway with his feature). A simplistic and familiar narrative is enhanced by its inspired set designs and notable production value, featuring a winning score. Existing on the bleak end of the Spaghetti Western spectrum (or perhaps more aptly the ‘Baguette Western,” an Alex Cox coined term Ginette Vincendeau discusses in an included insert essay), it’s an entertaining bit of style over substance, and is an uncommon French entry in otherwise familiar climate. However, as much as Hossein pays homage to Leone, »
- Nicholas Bell
One of the most diverting new flourishes introduced to the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival for its 50th incarnation this week, is a brand new sidebar in which six international directors were invited to present their favorite films not from their own oeuvres. Dubbed "Six Close Encounters" it gave us Mark Cousins presenting underseen Iranian jewel "A Moment of Innocence"; Michael Roskam ("Bullhead," "The Drop") presenting Jules Dassin's anointed classic "Rififi"; Kim Ki-Duk presenting Lee Chang-dong's immaculate "Poetry"; Sergei Loznitsa ("Maidan") presenting raw Russian epic "The Asthenic Syndrome"; and, in an oddly apropos choice, Sion Sono ("Tokyo Tribe") presenting "Babe." The first one, not the weird dark second one. Rounding out the line-up, however, was George Romero, who introduced Powell & Pressburger's "The Tales of Hoffmann" in its pristine new 4K »
- Jessica Kiang
Arrow Films & Video have announced its line-up of new Blu-ray releases for October 2015, and once again there are some gems in the list. Chief amongst them are Clive Barker’s first three Hellraiser films in a limited-edition “Scarlet Box”, and a remastered box-set of films directed by acclaimed Japanese filmmaker Kiju Yoshida.
You can check out the full list of films and their special features below, as well as the release dates of the Blu-ray’s with some available in both the UK and Us.
Stephen King was once quoted as saying: “I have seen the future of horror… his name is Clive Barker.” That future became reality when, in 1987, Barker unleashed his directorial debut Hellraiser – launching a hit franchise and creating an instant horror icon in the formidable figure of Pinhead. Barker’s original Hellraiser, based on his novella The Hellbound Heart, follows Kirsty »
- Scott J. Davis
One of Our 25 All-Time Favorite Heist Movies and ranked on our 10 Best Cannes Film Festival Openers Ever, Jules Dassin's "Rififi" should not be regarded as a dusty classic only to be admired from afar. Sixty years from its original release in 1955, it's a film to be experienced, particularly on the big screen, and the good news is that opportunity is coming soon to a theater near you. Read More: 30 Films You Forgot Were Oscar Winners Today, we're excited to announce that Rialto Pictures will be bringing the first ever digital restoration of "Rififi" to theaters this fall, and we have the exclusive trailer below. While the film's setup may be standard —a crew of thieves plot one last job— the execution is anything but. The film's centerpiece heist sequence, running a half-hour long and presented in nearly complete silence, is still one for the ages and has arguably never been topped. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
London — The 50th edition of the Karlovy Vary Film Festival is to include a special section entitled Six Close Encounters, in which six directors who share a history with the festival will present one of their favorite films.
“It is extremely important to us that we maintain long-term relationships with filmmakers whose work we follow continuously, often from the beginning of their careers, which in many cases were launched at the festival,” artistic director Karel Och said.
With this in mind, the event asked six directors to select and personally present a favorite film that played a fundamental role in defining their own filmmaking styles.
- Leo Barraclough
Six selected directors include Michaël R. Roskam [pictured], Kim Ki-duk and Sion Sono.
Six international directors who share a history with the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (July 3-11) are to present one of their favourite films at the 50th edition of the festival in the Czech spa town.
Each will select and personally present a favourite film that played a fundamental role in defining their own styles on filmmaking.
“It is extremely important to us that we maintain long-term relationships with filmmakers whose work we follow continuously, often from the beginning of their careers, which in many cases were launched at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival,” says Kviff artistic director Karel Och.
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
Sound on Sight undertook a massive project, compiling ranked lists of the most influential, unforgettable, and exciting action scenes in all of cinema. There were hundreds of nominees spread across ten different categories and a multi-week voting process from 11 of our writers. The results: 100 essential set pieces, sequences, and scenes from blockbusters to cult classics to arthouse obscurities.
Hollywood has had a long love affair with the heist sub-genre. Dating as far back as the silent film era with 1928’s Alias Jimmy Valentine, and transcending various genres like westerns (The War Wagon), war (Kelly’s Heroes) and even animation (Toy Story 3), the heist has tantalized our fantasies and outsmarted our wits for decades. Whether it’s for the very last time before retirement, gathering the gang back together for a big payday or for the thrill of pulling off the perfect robbery, all heist films share one key element: commitment to a plan. »
- Shane Ramirez
Two of director Philippe de Broca’s earliest renowned titles get new restorations and are available for the first time on Blu-ray, That Man From Rio (1964) and Up to His Ears (1965), the first two titles from a loose James Bond spoof trilogy featuring Jean-Paul Belmondo. Certainly ahead of his time, de Broca’s amusing adventure films are much more than the kind of lowbrow entertainment that would come to typify the genre known as spoof, and this became a notable inspiration for Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones films, particularly 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Inspired by the adventures of Belgian cartoonist Herge’s Tintin adventures (which also provided the basis for a 2011 Steven Spielberg adaptation), a prized Amazonian statue is stolen from a Parisian museum. Three such statues left South American on an expedition that involved the late father of Agnes (Francoise Dorleac) and and two colleagues. Professor Catalan »
- Nicholas Bell
Qui aime les films français ?
If you do and you live in St. Louis, you’re in luck! The Seventh Annual Robert Classic French Film Festival — co-presented by Cinema St. Louis and the Webster University Film Series begins March 13th. The Classic French Film Festival celebrates St. Louis’ Gallic heritage and France’s cinematic legacy. The featured films span the decades from the 1930s through the early 1990s, offering a comprehensive overview of French cinema. The fest is annually highlighted by significant restorations.
This year features recent restorations of eight works, including an extended director’s cut of Patrice Chéreau’s historical epic Queen Margot a New York-set film noir (Two Men In Manhattan) by crime-film maestro Jean-Pierre Melville, who also co-stars; a short feature (“A Day in the Country”) by Jean Renoir, on a double bill with the 2006 restoration of his masterpiece, The Rules Of The Game, and the »
- Tom Stockman
14 items from 2015
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