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Kes, Twilight's Last Gleaming and More Join Masters of Cinema

In the past few days our good friends at Eureka! Entertainment have announced a bevy of new titles, which they will be releasing in the coming months. Chief among these are new additions to their Masters of Cinema series, including Ken Loach’s seminal tale of working class adolescence in Northern England, Kes, which arrives on Blu-ray for the first time in the UK on 7 November. Before that, Robert Aldrich’s Twilight’s Last Gleaming, starring Burt Lancaster and Richard Widmark, gets a dual-format release on 17 October. These titles join the previously announced Fedora from Billy Wilder, starring William Holden, which also gets the dual-format treatment on 19 September, with Stanley Kubrick's Paths of Glory arriving on Blu-ray the same day, while another Aldrich classic, Flight...

[Read the whole post on screenanarchy.com...]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

The Strange Case Of Billy Wilder’S Buddy Buddy

Billy Wilder’s Buddy Buddy (1981) might be one of the most obvious go-to examples in the annals of conventional wisdom when it comes to the cinephile’s parlor game of pointing out a great director’s greatest foible. Upon release the movie was summarily dismissed by critics and ignored by audiences—it managed a paltry $7 million domestically, three million less than its production budget.

Roger Ebert, in his review, called Buddy Buddy “a comedy without laughs,” one apparently so vile that it could inspire not only audience indifference but also one of the revered reviewer’s laziest pieces of criticism. Ebert’s short piece quickly degenerates into name-calling-- “This movie is appalling” is the first sentence of the review, and the movie’s name goes unmentioned until the second paragraph—sans much in the way of actual insight. And unfortunately the critic’s disdain ends up functioning as a substitute
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Actress Marthe Keller Remembers Her First Big Hollywood Film

Actress Marthe Keller Remembers Her First Big Hollywood Film
U.S. film fans probably know actress Marthe Keller from such ’70s hits as “Marathon Man” and “Black Sunday,” or perhaps Claude Lelouch’s “And Now My Love.” True aficionados are likely to recall her Garbo-esque role in Billy Wilder’s “Fedora” or in Nikita Mikhalkov’s Oscar-nommed “Dark Eyes.” But European audiences have seen her work without a pause since, most recently in Barbet Schroeder’s “Amnesia,” which bowed in Cannes, and earned the Swiss-born actress some of the best notices of her career. Variety first spotted Keller in the Michael Caine spy thriller “Funeral in Berlin” in 1966.

Funeral in Berlin” was a big Hollywood film. How was the experience?

I was so young, I literally didn’t know what I was doing there. I came in one day and saw a beautiful woman getting made up and dressed for my character, so I thought, “This is it. I’ve been fired.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Notebook's 7th Writers Poll: Fantasy Double Features of 2014

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How would you program this year's newest, most interesting films into double features with movies of the past you saw in 2014?

Looking back over the year at what films moved and impressed us, it is clear that watching old films is a crucial part of making new films meaningful. Thus, the annual tradition of our end of year poll, which calls upon our writers to pick both a new and an old film: they were challenged to choose a new film they saw in 2014—in theatres or at a festival—and creatively pair it with an old film they also saw in 2014 to create a unique double feature.

All the contributors were given the option to write some text explaining their 2014 fantasy double feature. What's more, each writer was given the option to list more pairings, with or without explanation, as further imaginative film programming we'd be lucky to catch
See full article at MUBI »

The Stack: Canfield Talks Space Station 76, Animated Rick And Morty, Vintage William Castle, And More

Welcome back to The Stack. This is the final episode before I kick off our Holiday Gift Guide this Tuesday November 25. This is also the beginning of a new, shorter format. But The Stack is still packed with home entertainment goodness. A favorite release is Space Station 76 (2014), directed by Jack Plotnick, whom you might remember from Rubber (2010) and Wrong (2012). Olive Films releases Fedora (1978), which many consider to be Billy Wilder's late career followup to Sunset Boulevard (1950). I also take a look at one of their back catalog titles, the nearly forgotten William Castle science fiction spy thriller Project X (1968). Lastly and quite excitedly, I tease the gift guide coverage by revealing one of this year's great TV Blu-ray box...

[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Billy Wilder's Fedora is a Late, Frustrating Curio

Billy Wilder's Fedora is a Late, Frustrating Curio
When Louis B. Mayer saw Sunset Boulevard, he cursed Billy Wilder as a "man who bites the hand that feeds him." He was misguided, of course, about that cool, beautiful, piercing movie.

But 1978's Fedora, made by Wilder nearly 30 years later — again starring William Holden — does show evidence of the bitterness Meyer alluded to; it could have been made by Norma Desmond. Holden stars as an aging producer fallen on hard times who hopes to revisit his past by luring a reclusive former star, the supposedly fabulous Fedora (Marthe Keller) out of retirement.

He tracks her down to Corfu, where she lives in a musty-genteel mansion with a withered old countess (Hildegard Knef) and a quack doctor (José Ferrer). Fedora, who hasn't aged...
See full article at Village Voice »

The Germans Are Out In Force

Germany has a large number of films in Cannes this year both as coproducer and single producer. Three German co-productions are in the competition including Heli by Amat Escalante (Mexico/ Germany/ France/ Netherlands), the adaptation of the Heinrich von Kleist novella Michael Kohlhaas by Arnaud des Pallières (France, Germany) and Jim Jarmusch's Only Lovers Left Alive (Germany, U.K., France, Cyprus), which has always been supported by the German producer Karl Baumgartner of Pandora. U.S. gets bragging rights but has no actual credit in the film.

Screening in Un Certain Regard are Tore Tanzt, the debut feature film of German director Katrin Gebbe ♀ which is eligible for the Camera d'Or as are first films from all sections, the co-productions My Sweet Pepper Land by Hiner Saleem (France, Germany) and Bastards by Claire Denis (France, Germany).

A digitally remastered version of Fedora by Billy Wilder will be shown in Cannes Classics along with four more German co-productions.

The German short Come And Play by Daria Belova ♀ is in Semaine de la Critique which will also present the German co-production The Lunchbox by Ritesh Batra (India, Deutschland, France).

Directors Fortnight is screening The Congress by director Ari Folmann (Israel, Germany, Poland, Luxembourg, France, Belgium).

The debut feature Summer Outside by Friederike Jehn (Germany, Switzerland) will be shown in Ecrans Juniors / Cannes Cinephiles which is curated by Cannes Cinema during the festival. The Strange Little Cat by Ramon Zürcher (Dffb) will be presented in the L'Acid-series, a special program by the Association du Cinéma Indépendant pour sa Diffusion during the festival.

German Films will be presenting a total of 30 New German Films to professional visitors at Cannes' Marché du Film from 17 to 22 May. Furthermore, this will be the 13th time that German Films joins forces with Focus Germany, the amalgamation of the seven major regional film funds, to run the German Pavilion in the International Village of the Marché du Film. The German Pavilion has been a popular platform for many years for people to get know one another personally and to foster an exchange between the accredited festival delegates from the German and international film industries in Cannes.
See full article at Sydney's Buzz »

Cannes Classics 2013 to present Satyajit Ray’s “Charulata”

Cannes Classics 2013 to present Satyajit Ray’s “Charulata”
A still from “Charulata

Satyajit Ray’s Charulata (The Lonely Wife) is one among the twenty feature films to be presented at Cannes Classics, as part of the Official Selection.

Based on a story by Rabindranath Tagore about a lonely housewife, the film features Soumitra Chatterjee, Madhabi Mukherjee and Shailen Mukherjee. It won Satyajit Ray a Silver Bear for Best Director at Berlin international film festival in 1965.

Cannes Classics was created in 2004 to present old films and masterpieces from cinematographic history that have been carefully restored. It is also a way to pay tribute to the essential work being down by copyrightholders, film libraries, production companies and national archives throughout the world.

This year’s programme of Cannes Classics is made up of twenty feature-length films and three documentaries.

Restored Prints

Borom Sarret (1963, 20’) by Ousmane Sembène

Charulata (Charluta: The Lonely Wife) (1964, 1:57) by Satyajit Ray

Cleopatra (1963, 4:03) by Joseph L. Mankiewicz
See full article at DearCinema.com »

Cannes Classics Lineup Revealed; Bertolucci in 3-D, Films by Hitchcock, Cocteau, Resnais, Wilder (Clips)

Cannes Classics Lineup Revealed; Bertolucci in 3-D, Films by Hitchcock, Cocteau, Resnais, Wilder (Clips)
Cannes Classics, the festival's sidebar that screens new restorations of canonical films, has announced its lineup of twenty features films and three documentaries. Among the films selected are French arthouse favorites such as Jean Cocteau's black-and-white "Beauty and the Beast" (1946), Alain Resnais' "Hiroshima Mon Amour" (1959) and Jacques Demy's "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg" (1964). It's like a film studies refresher course without the homework! Plenty of American films will be featured as well, including Billy Wilder's late-career "Fedora" (1978) Joseph L. Mankiewicz's "Cleopatra" (1963) and Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" (1963), a new print of which just screened at the TCM Classic Film Festival. Cannes has chosen a perfectly creepy venue for "The Birds," which will screen on the beach as part of the festival's Cinema de la Plage sidebar. It was previously announced that Kim Novak will present a newly restored "Vertigo." One of the most highly anticipated events will be a 3-D.
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Cannes Unveils its Classics Slate

Cannes Unveils its Classics Slate
Paris — Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s “Cleopatra,” Billy Wilder’s “Fedora” and Hal Ashby’s “The Last Detail” are among 20 restored film gems and three documentaries in Cannes Classics, announced today in Paris.

The sidebar will fete Joanne Woodward, who appears with husband Paul Newman on the Cannes Film Festival poster, with a screening of 2012 documentary “Shepard & Dark,” which she produced.

Helmed by Treva Wurmfeld, the doc follows the 50-year friendship of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and thesp Sam Shepard and Johnny Dark conducted via letters. Woodward’s presence in Cannes still has to be confirmed.

Bearing the imprimatur of delegate general Thierry Fremaux, Cannes Classics boasts a mix of pics by U.S. helmers — including a restored print of Ted Kotcheff’s “The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz” — plus a wide spread of big-name French and European auteurs.

Cannes Classics highlights will take in two Nouvelle Vague milestones, Alain Resnais’ 1959 “Hiroshima Mon Amour
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Cannes 2013: 'Cleopatra' Restored and 'The Last Emperor' in 3D to Play Cannes Classics

The 2013 Cannes Film Festival lineup continues to grow, today with the announcement of the films playing in the Cannes Classics selection as well as the titles playing on the beach at night as part of the Cinema de la Plage selection. It was already announced Kim Novak would be in attendance to present the restored version of Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, but the restorations that will be screening don't end there. In addition to Vertigo a restored print of Joseph L. Mankiewicz's Cleopatra will screen along with restorations of Billy Wilder's Fedora, Yasujir? Ozu's An Autumn Afternoon, Hal Ashby's The Last Detail starring Jack Nicholson and a 3-D conversion of Bernardo Bertolucci's The Last Emperor. Additional notable names include films from Alain Resnais, Marco Ferreri, Chris Marker and Rene Clement. In addition to those titles a special presentation of Jean Cocteau's La Belle et La Bete
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

Cannes Classics Lineup Announced; Highlights Include Bertolucci's 'Last Emperor 3D' and Billy Wilder's 'Fedora'

Cannes Classics Lineup Announced; Highlights Include Bertolucci's 'Last Emperor 3D' and Billy Wilder's 'Fedora'
The Cannes Film Festival today announced the 23 film screening in the tenth edition of its Cannes Classics sidebar, which screens restored films that the festival deems essential to the history of the medium. Highlights include Satyajit Ray's "Charulata: The Lonely Wife," Bernardo Bertolucci's "The Last Emperor 3D," and Billy Wilder's "Fedora." The festival previously announced that Kim Novak will present a new restoration of Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo." The full Cannes Classics lineup can be found below. Restored Prints Borom Sarret (1963, 20’) by Ousmane Sembène Charulata (Charluta: The Lonely Wife) (1964, 1:57) by Satyajit Ray Cleopatra (1963, 4:03) by Joseph L. Mankiewicz Fedora (1978, 1:50) by Billy Wilder Goha (1957, 1:18) by Jacques Baratier Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959, 1:32) by Alain Resnais Il Deserto Dei Tartari (The Desert Of Tartars) (1976, 2:20) by Valerio Zurlini La Grande Abbuffata (La Grande Bouffe) (1973, 2h05) de Marco Ferreri La Reine Margot (1994, 2:39)...
See full article at Indiewire »

10 Directors Who Have Never Made A Bad Movie

A film director can work for decades and never make anything approaching a good film. Often within the movie industry, wannabe directors can strive for years and years and never get close to making a feature film – that’s what makes the directors on this list so extraordinary. They have been extraordinarily consistent over a substantial amount of time, never allowing the quality of their art to shrink.

Some of the very greats have made poor films. Hitchcock made numerous clangers such as Family Plot, Topaz and Lifeboat amongst his formidable filmography. Francis Ford Coppola, director of the greatest film of all time (The Godfather Part II) has not made a good film for a while now and Billy Wilder did his best to taint his legacy with his late career output of Fedora and Buddy Buddy.

I decided a certain criteria was needed for a list like this, so put simply,

Exclusive: Director Ted Kotcheff Talks Bringing Wake in Fright Back to Life on Blu-ray

Exclusive: Director Ted Kotcheff Talks Bringing Wake in Fright Back to Life on Blu-ray
Director Ted Kotcheff Talks Wake in Fright, fully-restored and on Blu-ray now!

Alongside Mad Max and Walkabout, Wake in Fright is widely acknowledged as one of the seminal films in the development of modern Australian cinema. Directed by Ted Kotcheff and starring Donald Pleasence, this thriller tells the nightmarish story of a schoolteacher's (Gary Bond) descent into personal demoralization at the hands of drunken, deranged derelicts while stranded in a small town in outback Australia. Believed to be lost for decades and virtually unseen in America until now, Wake in Fright returns fully-restored in stunning HD in what the New York Observer says "may be the greatest Australian film ever made."

Wake in Fright is now available on Blu-ray and DVD. To celebrate this home release, we caught up with director Ted Kotcheff to chat about the film's revival and its near destruction. Ted is a luminary in the field of action cinema,
See full article at MovieWeb »

Reel: THR’s Director Roundtable

Quentin Tarantino Says Death Proof Is the “Worst” Film He’s Ever Made; Watch Full Directors Roundtable Interview

THR‘s roundtable interviews are always entertaining and this year’s director’s roundtable is one of the best. It’s a one-hour conversation that involves Quentin Tarantino, Ben Affleck, Ang Lee, Tom Hooper, David O. Russell, and Gus Van Sant. There are a few highlights but the Internet is buzzing with Tarantino’s comments about retiring and his film Death Proof.

“I’m really well versed on a lot of directors’ careers, you know, and when you look at those last five films when they were past it, when they were too old, and they’re really out of touch with the times, whether it be William Wyler and ‘The Liberation of L.B. Jones’ or Billy Wilder with ‘Fedora’ and then ‘Buddy Buddy’ or whatever the hell. To me, it’s all about my filmography,
See full article at City of Films »

Quentin Tarantino Says Death Proof Is the “Worst” Film He’s Ever Made; Watch Full Directors Roundtable Interview

If you hadn’t already noticed, we’re knee-deep in Oscar season now. Though many are put off by the awards race in general, one of the highlights of the year is always THR’s roundtable interviews with "the contenders." This year’s directors roundtable is really something, as the one-hour conversation involves Quentin Tarantino, Ben Affleck, Ang Lee, Tom Hooper, David O. Russell, and Gus Van Sant. Though the entire interview is well worth watching, we figured our readers would be interested in a particular nugget from Tarantino in which he describes Death Proof as the “worst” film he’s ever made. Hit the jump for more on that comment and to watch the full roundtable interview. During the course of the wide-ranging THR conversation, Tarantino began talking a bit about his long-planned “retirement” from making films. When defending his decision to stop making movies before he gets to old age,
See full article at Collider.com »

Billy Wilder, still less than meets the eye

John Patterson: He's made some classics and is seen as the godfather of modern Hollywood but the world is still not wild about Billy Wilder

I've never quite forgiven the critic Andrew Sarris for backing down on his famously negative assessment of Billy Wilder's movies in his 1968 auteur-based survey The American Cinema. Far from placing Wilder in his pantheon of the greatest directors, Sarris quarantined him within his starkly named Less Than Meets The Eye section, alongside other figures of contestable quality such as John Huston, Lewis Milestone and Fred Zinnemann. The book contains dozens of imperishable phrases and judgments, but few stick in the mind like the opening of his Wilder demolition: "Billy Wilder is too cynical to believe even his own cynicism." Oof. And still true.

Sarris later conceded most of his ground, possibly because even bad 60s Wilder (the shriller stuff that was in the
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Daily Briefing. Marilyn, DVD/Blu-ray, Mark Dery

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James Wolcott's right on this one: "Even if, like me, you thought you never needed or wanted to read another votive offering to Marilyn Monroe, lay aside thy doubts and reservations and attend to Jacqueline Rose's essay in the London Review of Books, 'A Rumbling of Things Unknown,' a full-course meal of a meditation." He quotes a couple of passages, but the gist is this: "It is something of a truism for psychoanalysis that one member of a family can carry the unconscious secrets of a whole family, can fall sick, as it were, on their behalf. My question is: for whom or what in 1950s and early 1960s America was Marilyn Monroe carrying the can?"

More reading. Sean O'Hagan interviews William Klein for the Guardian.

DVD/Blu-ray. Dave Kehr reviews three releases for the New York Times this week, the first from Olive Films: "Often overlooked
See full article at MUBI »

The Films Of Billy Wilder: A Retrospective

"I want to thank three persons,” said Michel Hazanavicius, accepting the 2012 Best Picture Oscar for “The Artist.” “I want to thank Billy Wilder, I want to thank Billy Wilder and I want to thank Billy Wilder.” He wasn’t the first director to namecheck Wilder in an acceptance speech. In 1994, Fernando Trueba, accepting the Foreign Language Film Oscar for "Belle Epoque" quipped, "I would like to believe in God in order to thank him. But I just believe in Billy Wilder... so, thank you Mr. Wilder." Wilder reportedly called the next day "Fernando? It's God."

So just what exactly was it that inspired these men to expend some of the most valuable seconds of speechifying airtime they'll ever know, to tip their hats to Wilder? And can we bottle it?

Born in a region of Austria/Hungary that is now part of Poland, Wilder's story feels like an archetype of
See full article at The Playlist »
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