11 items from 2017
"We have forgotten to masturbate!"
So proclaims Pope Pius Xiii to the adoring throngs gathered in St. Peter's Square to hear the first homily of his papacy. Yet when it comes to the jaw-dropping moments in the premiere episode of The Young Pope, the Holy Father's ode to onanism barely even makes the Top 10.
Italian writer-director Paolo Sorrentino kicks off his highly anticipated series with the surreal dream-image of the new pope emerging from a literal mountain of dead and dying babies. He follows it up with not one but »
Do portrayals of celebrity culture and fan worship get more lacerating and acute than 1983’s masterpiece The King of Comedy? Martin Scorsese’s follow-up to Raging Bull is quite brilliantly perceptive, taking the hatchet to narcissistic wannabes in the form of Robert De Niro’s seminal Rupert Pupkin whilst also taking us behind the curtain and depicting the loneliness that comes with those who’ve made a success of themselves. The latter is personified by Jerry Lewis’ alienated comic star Jerry Langford, one who can barely leave his New York apartment without vitriolic ‘fans’ wishing he gets cancer. In Scorsese’s utterly damning depiction of fame, there are no winners: neither aspiring stars nor established A-listers come out of this one clean.
On the »
- Sean Wilson
The most surprising feature of Martin Scorsese’s Silence, a 161-minute religious picture about 17th-century Jesuit priests in Japan, is that it exists at all; the second most surprising feature may be its critical reception, much of which seems to approach the film at a kind of respectful distance. The tentativeness of reviews seems to reflect the ambiguity of the film’s religious and moral conclusions, as Alissa Wilkinson writes at Vox:It’s been remarkable to discover that Silence is a challenging film for many critics and early viewers, including those who aren’t interested in religion at all, or who don’t identify with a particular faith. The genius of Endō’s story and Scorsese’s adaptation is that it won’t characterize anyone as a saint, nor will it either fully condone or reject the colonialist impulses, the religious oppression, the apostasy, or the faltering faith of its characters. »
Jimmy Fallon‘s cold open at Sunday night’s Golden Globes is chasing all the lights that shine.
The host of this year’s 74th annual Golden Globes ceremony will parody the opening scene from hit musical La La Land, which led all features with seven total nominations including best musical or comedy motion picture.
- Lindsay Kimble
At a glance, it would be easy to mistake The Ardennes for a documentary about the Dardennes, Belgium’s most celebrated filmmakers. The enormous Ardennes forest is mostly located in Belgium (and Luxembourg), and is very likely the origin of brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne’s surname—indeed, this film’s original title is D’Ardennen. What’s more, The Ardennes features two brothers as its protagonists. There, however, all similarities end. Rather than a moral and spiritual inquiry, this routine crime drama merely offers yet another riff on the Mean Streets dynamic, as a thoughtful crook’s efforts to reform are forever undermined by his attachment—fraternal, in this case—to an emotionally volatile loser. First-time director Robin Pront serves up plenty of brooding atmosphere, but the screenplay, adapted from a stage play by Pront and Jeroen Perceval (who also plays the sensible Harvey Keitel role), never succeeds in »
- Mike D'Angelo
Top 10 performances directed by Martin ScorseseTop 10 performances directed by Martin ScorseseShane McNeil1/4/2017 11:30:00 Am
Based on the Japanese novel by Shûsaku Endô, Silence tells the story of two Jesuit priests who face torture and persecution after traveling to Japan to find their mentor and spread the word of Catholicism. It's bound to be a heavy handed film, and with Scorsese directing, we wouldn't be wrong to expect another masterpiece from the legendary filmmaker.
Here he directs stars Andrew Garfield, Adam Driver and Liam Neeson, the three of which look to be Oscar contenders for their performances. While none of them have been nominated by the Golden Globes or the Screen Actors Guild, there's a good chance the very late in the year release of Silence (it plays just in time in New York and Los »
- Shane McNeil
Spiritual Journey: Interview with Andrew Garfield as he talks Silence, Spider-Man and moreSpiritual Journey: Interview with Andrew Garfield as he talks Silence, Spider-Man and moreBob Strauss - Cineplex Magazine1/4/2017 10:01:00 Am
Bringing Shusaku Endo’s historical novel Silence to the big screen has long been a passion project for Martin Scorsese, and it’s easy to see why. Endo’s fictionalized but fundamentally fact-based tale of two 17th-century Portuguese Jesuits sent to Japan to investigate their mentor, only to discover horrific repression of the island nation’s Christian minority, bears a strong thematic relationship to the director’s more overtly religious movies, The Last Temptation of Christ and Kundun. Plus, the story is so infused with violence, torments of the soul and flesh, and Catholic angst that Silence should fit comfortably on the shelf next to such Scorsese urban classics as Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Goodfellas and The Departed. »
- Bob Strauss - Cineplex Magazine
Silence Opens In St. Louis On January 13.
Silence tells the story of two Christian missionaries (Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver) who face the ultimate test of faith when they travel to Japan in search of their missing mentor (Liam Neeson) – at a time when Christianity was outlawed and their presence forbidden. The celebrated director’s 28-year journey to bring Shusaku Endo’s 1966 acclaimed novel to life will be in theaters this Christmas.
Wamg invites you to enter for the chance to win Two (2) seats to the advance screening of Silence on Tuesday, January 10 at 7Pm in the St. Louis area.
Answer the following:
- Movie Geeks
Since scooping up the Camera d’Or in Cannes with her directorial debut “Divines,” Houda Benyamina, the ambitious 36-year-old French-Moroccan – one of France’s rare Arab female filmmakers of North African origin — has become one of the country’s hottest emerging directors.
“Divines,” which was picked up by Netflix off of Cannes’ Directors Fortnight, will vie for a foreign-language Golden Globe on Jan. 8, alongside Paul Verhoeven’s “Elle.” Benyamina has just signed up with Wme agent Jerome Duboz, whose wide-ranging client list includes South Korean film master Park Chan-wook (“The Handmaiden”), up-and-coming Indian helmer Ritesh Batra (“The Lunchbox”), and multi-hyphenate film vet Wim Wenders (“Submergence”).
Benyamina, whose acceptance speech in Cannes gave a taste of her acerbic, bold personality and ruffled the feathers of some high-profile French industry figures, hasn’t been blinded by the spotlight.
“Since Cannes, I have been approached by many American agents, but I immediately clicked with Jerome Duboz, »
- Elsa Keslassy
The legendary director’s latest religious epic is beautiful to look at but boringly devout
Related: The most exciting films of 2017: returning auteurs
We all know how it is with Scorsese. At the core of his work is the solid-gold De Niro material with one foot in Marty’s Italian-American upbringing: Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, King Of Comedy and Goodfellas/Casino. Then a second rank of DiCaprio collaborations, offering a lower rate of return: The Departed, Shutter Island, Wolf Of Wall Street. Then there are the oddities – New York New York, Cape Fear and Hugo – where he feels miscast or lost as a director. Then there’s this final category – movies on the subject of religious devotion that gestated in Scorsese’s mind over years or decades: The Last Temptation Of Christ, Kundun and now Silence. These tend to be the Scorsese movies I only ever see once, »
- John Patterson
This drama about two Christian priests’ quest to find their mentor in 17th-century Japan is sometimes hard work, but is full of conviction
After the debauchery of The Wolf of Wall Street, Martin Scorsese turns to the asceticism of Shūsaku Endō’s 1966 historical novel about the persecution of Christians in 17th-century Japan. Portuguese priests Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Garupe (Adam Driver) are “an army of two”, embarking upon a Conradian mission to “the ends of the Earth” where Christians are forced to renounce their faith on pain of torture and death. “We find our original nature in Japan,” declares Ferreira (Liam Neeson), a Jesuit missionary who has reportedly gone native, turning his back on the cross and living as a Japanese with wife and family to match. Yet the young padres, proud and impetuous, refuse to believe that their former mentor has abandoned their God, or that Christianity cannot take »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
11 items from 2017
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