5 items from 2014
We can’t imagine what you do with your spare time and quite frankly it’s best we never find out, but the good folks over at The Seventh Art are often scouring the internet for hidden video gems. The stuff that they’re able to find is rarely disappointing and this video in particular is quite the find. They have uncovered a 1970s BBC documentary called “Signs of Vigorous Life” which explores the then-bourgeoning New German Cinema movement. The doc includes Werner Herzog, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Volker Schlöndorff, Wim Wenders, and Hans-Jürgen Syberberg. “Signs of Vigorous Life” captures this special time in cinema history just as it started to rise, right when each of these directors were in their prime. We’re talking before Herzog made “Stroszek” or Schlöndorff made “The Tin Drum.” Or, better yet, years before Fassbinder would embark on his Brd trilogy. These young German filmmakers »
- Ken Guidry
The time is August 1944, and as the Allies march toward Paris, the city’s artistic and architectural riches lie in danger of Nazi dynamiting. No, it isn’t “Return of the Monuments Men,” but rather Volker Schlondorff’s “Diplomacy,” another movie set at the same historical moment that may be far smaller in scale than George Clooney’s limp epic, but proves to be vastly more passionate, engaging and emotional in its depiction of the relationship between Dietrich von Cholitz, the German military governor of occupied Paris, and Swedish consul-general Raoul Nordling. A fine return to form for the veteran German helmer (“The Tin Drum”), adapted from French playwright Cyril Gely’s 2011 stage success, this classy drama of political manners should stir plenty of patriotic fervor in Gaul (where it opens March 5) and score brisk sales to offshore arthouse shingles.
In reality, there never was an all-night powwow between Nordling »
- Scott Foundas
A strikingly assured and ambitious feature debut for writer-director Maya Vitkova, at least to a point, “Viktoria” has a touch of “Garp” and “The Tin Drum,” as well as plenty of dryly absurdist Eastern European humor in its tale of a young woman whose first two decades of life are sharply divided by the fall of communism in Bulgaria. But the pic’s leisurely yet often bold and original progress abruptly reduces itself to a wearying chronicle of multi-character depression in its final third, dragging all emotional and metaphorical impact downhill with it. Ultimately disappointing results will nonetheless be of considerable interest to fest programmers; offshore commercial prospects are much less assured.
Absolutely fixated on an advertising-fueled dream of America, librarian Boryana (Irmena Chichikova) doesn’t want to bear children until she and doctor husband Ivan (Dimo Dimov) manage to flee Bulgaria — as well as her own humorless apparatchik mother »
- Dennis Harvey
London — Global Screen, which has five market premieres at the European Film Market in Berlin, has added “Auf das Leben!” (To Life!) to its sales slate.
Pic is a “Harold and Maude”-like story of two people who are very different yet give each other a reason to live. It is helmed by Uwe Janson, who was BAFTA nommed for miniseries “The Sinking of the Laconia,” and penned by Thorsten Wettcke.
The film, which shot late last year, centers on aging cabaret singer Ruth, played by Hannelore Elsner (“No Place to Go”). She is sarcastic yet warm-hearted, and, despite a traumatic childhood, stands with both feet planted firmly in the midst of life. It is only when her apartment is sold to finance a move to a senior citizens’ home that her flame begins to flicker.
- Leo Barraclough
London — The Berlin Film Festival has unveiled its Berlinale Special program, which contains 18 pics, including nine world premieres.
“A Long Way Down,” which toplines Pierce Brosnan and Toni Collette, starts with a chance encounter between several people who plan to commit suicide on New Year’s Eve. It is adapted from the novel by Nick Hornby, and produced by Finola Dwyer and Amanda Posey, who also produced “An Education.”
Also world premiering is World War II drama “Diplomacy” from director Volker Schlondorff, who won an Oscar with “The Tin Drum.” It centers on the efforts of Swedish diplomat Raoul Nordling, played by Andre Dussollier, to persuade German general Dietrich von Choltitz, played by Niels Arestrup, to ignore Adolf Hitler’s orders to destroy »
- Leo Barraclough
5 items from 2014
IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.See our NewsDesk partners