7 items from 2017
Victoria & Abdul
Directed by Stephen Frears
There has been a lot of flak aimed at this enchanting film for its subversive look at colonial relationships.
For all those who refuse to take history’s lessons lightly, here is some unsolicited advice: get a laugh.
And I do mean, laugh. For, in spite of one very moving tearful moment, sunshine and smiles are the dominant forces in Stephen Frears’ look at the very strange yet extremely noble and dignified bonding between Queen Victoria and her young clerical Indian friend Kari,. who is sent to assuage her royal ego but is soon her closest confidante and only friend in a royal household teeming with opportunists and gold diggers.
This is not to say that Victoria & Abdul trivializes history or, as suggested by some revisionist reviewers, that it turns the relation between the conqueror and the conquered into a soppy soap opera. »
- Subhash K Jha
The city of Florence feted director-writer James Ivory this week with its Fiorino d’Oro prize and three days of celebrations for the 30th anniversary of “A Room With a View,” the triple-Oscar-winning film that proved to be a game-changer for Ivory and his longtime producer and partner in life, Ismail Merchant. “A Room With a View” paved the way for their work on Hollywood pics such as “The Remains of the Day,” and was groundbreaking in its depiction of male nudity – a topic about which Ivory, who wrote the screenplay for new gay coming-of-age film “Call Me by Your Name,” directed by Luca Guadagnino, has strong feelings.
Ivory, 89, spoke with Variety from Florence. Here are excerpts from the interview, edited for concision and clarity.
One of the things that’s been pointed out about “Room” is the nudity in the scene when three men strip naked, jump in a lake, and »
- Nick Vivarelli
Film producer and financier John Heyman, who founded influential British agency International Artists and the World Group Companies, died Friday in New York, his family told Variety via statement. He was 84.
“John Heyman passed away in his sleep today, Friday the 9th of June,” the statement read.
His son, David Heyman, is the producer of the Harry Potter films, among many others.
John Heyman produced films including “The Go-Between” (1971), family sci-fi film “D.A.R.Y.L.” (1985) and “The Jesus Film” (1979). He was also an uncredited executive producer on David Lean’s 1984 E.M. Forster adaptation “A Passage to India.”
Over the course of his career he arranged financing of more than $3 billion to co-finance films including “Awakenings” and “The Odessa File” (at Columbia), “Edward Scissorhands,” “Home Alone” and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” (Fox), “Victor/Victoria” and »
- Carmel Dagan
It’s hard to think of a musical that would benefit more from a Blu-ray boost than Ken Russell’s kaleidoscopic all dancing, all singing send-up of theatrical clichés on the music hall stage, circa 1925. We’re just happy that the adorable Twiggy got to be put in a film like this, to be enjoyed forever. The Russell crowd is all aboard, led by Glenda Jackson and Murray Melvin. Gosh!
1971 / Color / 2:40 widescreen / 136 min. / Street Date February 21, 2017 / available through the WBshop / 21.99
Starring: Twiggy, Christopher Gable, Max Adrian, Bryan Pringle, Murray Melvin, Moyra Fraser, Georgina Hale, Sally Bryant, Vladek Sheybal, Tommy Tune, Brian Murphy, Graham Armitage, Antonia Ellis, Caryl Little, Glenda Jackson.
Cinematography: David Watkin
Film Editor: Michael Bradsell
Production Design: Tony Walton
Costumes: Shirley Russell
Produced and Directed by: Ken Russell
- Glenn Erickson
During a recent appearance on The Graham Norton Show, Hiddleston revealed that he and Redmayne appeared together in a school play -- though Redmayne's role came with slightly more recognition.
"It was an all-boys school, and the great Eddie Redmayne, now Oscar-winning Eddie Redmayne, was playing the female lead. And in A Passage to India, there's an expedition to this cultural landmark called the Marabar Caves by elephant," he continued. "And I'm delighted to reveal that I played the front, right leg of »
Om Puri, the veteran of Indian cinema who died on Friday morning at age 66 of an unexpected heart attack, received two National Film Awards, the highest honor an actor can receive in India. The awards are not without their controversies, as one may suspect from awards that are doled out by the national government of India. They have sometimes been accused of favoring Hindi-language films at the expense of regional cinema. As far as Indian awards bodies go, though, the National Film Awards exhibit remarkably prudent taste more often than not. The first of Puri’s National Awards was for Arohan (The Ascending Scale, 1982), by director Shyam Benegal, while the second came for Govind Nihalani’s Ardh Satya (Half Truth, 1983). In the days since Puri’s death, there has been justified focus on his work in Ardh Satya. It gave Puri one of his most definitive roles, and the film »
I was an illustration major at university and one era we studied repeatedly was "The Golden Age". For illustrators that was roughly the 1900s through the 1940s. One of the the most sentimental traditions of this time was Jc Leyendecker's 'New Years Babies' covers. The babies were always white and cutesy but weren't always "happy" and sometimes politics entered the picture. Here is the 1917 painting to your left a full one hundred years ago wherein there's a scary hole where Europe should be. This diapered cherub is not at all sure he wants to arrive into this (World War I was raging and would not end for another 23 months.)
The New Year's Baby tradition reminds us that whatever may be ending or happening, there are always opportunities for fresh starts. 2016 was a shit show but maybe a whole lot of really cool human beings that will one day be giants of the arts, »
- NATHANIEL R
7 items from 2017
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