14 items from 2014
Laura Benanti is a Tony award-winning veteran of several Broadway shows, which means her transition to musical performer on the ABC drama Nashville wasn't that much of a stretch. Although she's extremely disciplined (thanks to a theatrical schedule of eight live shows a week), her introduction to viewers on the series this season hasn't been without its professional challenges. But as Sadie Stone, new Bff to country superstar Rayna Jaymes (Connie Britton), Benanti is making it look effortless.
"In some ways this is music boot camp," Benanti told Rolling Stone »
It's been more than 10 years since a revival of Fiddler on the Roof opened on Broadway, so tradition (get it?) foretells that it's time for another. A new production of the musical starring Danny Burstein as Tevye will start performances in November 2015. Bartlett Sher will direct, with music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick. Sher directed Burstein in the recent revivals of South Pacific and Golden Boy, for which Burstein was nominated for Tonys, and in the original production of Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. Five-time Tony nominee Burstein is currently appearing as Herr Schultz in Cabaret. »
- Esther Zuckerman
By Anjelica Oswald
Damian Szifron’s Wild Tales (Relatos Salvajes) has been met with rave reviews since its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival for its humorous stories and unconventional methods. The feature film consists of six thematically similar, yet unrelated shorts. Wild Tales is Argentina’s submission for best foreign-language film at the Oscars and is one of 83 films up for consideration. Nine films will make the shortlist in January, but only five will be nominated. Looking at films that have been nominated in the 21st century, comedies haven’t had much success at being submitted or nominated, but Wild Tales could be one of the exceptions.
Pedro Almodovar is one of the producers for Wild Tales, which may help the film find success at the Oscars. Almodovar’s twisted sense of humor has been appreciated by the Academy in past years. 1988’s Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown »
- Anjelica Oswald
Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart Blu-Ray Review
There are few movies that are as wild, original, and filled with soul as Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart, and the only problem with that is that it’s going to make you think someone else directed it. (He didn’t.)
Adapted by Mathias Malzieu from his own bestselling novel and the gold-selling album by his band Dionysos, Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart is a magical story that feels like a new breed of myth, and it comes to you through brilliant animation.
Born on the coldest day in the history of the Earth, Jack’s heart is frozen solid. To save his life, midwife Madeleine grafts a tiny cuckoo clock into his chest to take its place. Everything will be fine, she tells him, so long as he follows three rules in order to keep things running smooth – He can never touch the clock’s workings, »
- Marc Eastman
Lyon – Accepting the sixth Lumière Award at Lyon’s Lumiére Festival in France, Pedro Almodóvar spoke with his heart, as Quentin Tarantino had a year before, about what really drives his filmmaking career.
Reading his acceptance speech, translated by Juliette Binoche, he was accompanied on stage brother Agustín, his producer of nearly 30 years standing, and emblematic actresses from his films: Marisa Paredes (“High Heels,” “The Flower of My Secret”), Elena Anaya (“The Skin I Live In”) and Rossy de Palma (“Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown”).
In the audience were, Keanu Reeves and director John McTiernan, Michael Cimino, Paolo Sorrentino (“The Great Beauty”), Berenice Bejo (“The Artist”), Isabella Rossellini, Vanessa Paradis, Gaspard Ulliel (“Saint Laurent”), Italy’s Valeria Golino, Jaime Rosales, and, among industry figures Pathé’s Jerome Seydoux, Wild Bunch’s Vincent Maraval, Pierre Ange Le Pogam, Samuel Haddida plus Sony Pictures Classics’ Michael Barker.
“I was born in the ’50s, »
- John Hopewell
Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!
Written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar
No matter if his protagonists are deranged or distraught, happy or sad, or if his stories are light or dark, comedic or tragic, the films of Pedro Almodóvar are usually at the very least enjoyable. Even at their most disturbing, there is something inescapably jubilant about his lavish use of color, his vibrant characters, and his unceasing passion for life and filmmaking. And when he aims to make something purely amusing, the results can be astonishing. It is for all of these reasons that Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!, surprisingly the first Almodóvar film released by the Criterion Collection, is such a treat.
In this 1989 feature, made just after Almodóvar’s award-winning breakthrough Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, Victoria Abril stars as junkie porn star turned respectable leading lady Marina Osorio, the object »
- Jeremy Carr
The actress made her Broadway debut in the 1998 revival of “The Sound of Music” and has gone on to build a Rialto CV that also includes “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown,” “Nine” (opposite Antonio Banderas), “Swing!” and “Into the Woods.” In 2008 she won a Tony for her turn as Gypsy Rose Lee in the revival of “Gypsy” toplined by Patti LuPone.
Recently the thesp starred onstage in the Encores! production of “The Most Happy Fella,” and also has a role on the current season of “Nurse Jackie.”
- Gordon Cox
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Aug. 19, 2014
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.95
The rambunctious 1990 dark comedy Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! is Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar’s (Broken Embraces) colorful and controversial tribute to the pleasures and perils of Stockholm syndrome.
The film stars Antonio Banderas (Haywire) as an unbalanced but alluring former mental patient and Victoria Abril (Walking Vengeance) as the B-movie and porn star he takes prisoner in the hopes of convincing her to marry him.
A highly unconventional romance that came on the spike heels of Almodóvar’s international sensation Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, this is a splashy, sexy central work in the career of one of the international cinema’s most beloved and provocative auteurs, radiantly shot by the director’s great cinematographer José Luis Alcaine »
The titles are produced by film production company El Deseo, operated by Almodovar and brother Agustin Almodovar.
“We have a long lasting relationship with El Deseo which we value tremendously and we are delighted to strengthen it with these new amazing productions “ said TF1 International CEO Daniel Prejlocaj.
El Deseo is supervising a restoration of Almodovar films including “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown,” “Kika,” “Talk to Her” and “Volver,”along with production of exclusive material for home video editions. »
- Dave McNary
Art of the Title has an amazing 3-part retrospective / interview with title designer Pablo Ferro. His work includes: Bullitt, Married to the Mob, Dr Strangelove, Beetlejuice, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown and so many other greats
The New Yorker "why Mean Girls is a classic" even esteemed publications got into the 10th anniversary frenzy. Good piece from Richard Brody
The Dissolve Joaquin Phoenix will headline the next Woody Allen film, the one after Magic in the Moonlight. The prolific auteur isn't slowing down his one-a-year pac. Phoenix isn't slowing down either; remember how just a few short years ago, people thought Phoenix's career was over? The joke was on us.)
Paper Mag 5 Most Swintessential Moments from Tilda Swinton's career. Love this though none are her actual acting & filmography which is tops.
- NATHANIEL R
Miami - Being the director of any film festival requires a dauntingly broad skill set: the best in the business are at once discerning cinephiles, persuasive businesspeople, savvy media monitors and charismatic public figures. Their own expert appreciation of the artform can't interfere with their intuitive popular touch; they must interact with industry, journalists and paying audiences with equal care and cordiality, usually at the same time. A film festival lasts less than a fortnight; building and running it is a year-round job. Canadian-born Jaie Laplante, director of the Miami International Film Festival since 2011, ticks all these boxes, fully aware of the role that sheer force of personality can play in building a smaller festival's brand. Over the nine-day event, you'd be forgiven for wondering if he's had some success in the field of human cloning: present at a daily panoply of screenings, Q&As, parties and junkets – seemingly with a fresh, »
- Guy Lodge
Jessica Marais (Magic City) and Spanish actress Carmen Maura (Women On The Verge of A Nervous Breakdown) will star in British director Jim Loach’s new untitled feature which will be shot in South Australia in March. The film, from a script by seasoned Australian screenwriter, Judy Morris (Babe, Happy Feet 2), is set within a multigenerational Spanish family and tells the story of a 12-year-old boy who realizes he must escape his passionate yet dysfunctional family to effect change. An ensemble of Spanish stars are heading down under for the shoot including Paz Vega (Grace of Monaco), Antonio
- Pip Bulbeck
Spanish stars Paz Vega, Carmen Maura and Antonio de la Torre together with Edward James Olmos and Love Child.s Jessica Marais head the cast of Jim Loach.s movie which starts shooting in South Australia on March 3.
Scripted by Judy Morris (Happy Feet 2, The Eye of the Storm), the plot revolves around a multi-generational, dysfunctional Spanish family and a 12-year-old boy, Savino, who realises he has to escape to effect change. Sydney newcomer Michael Crisafulli will play Savino with Jarin Towney (Two Little Boys, Underbelly) as his buddy Skeet.
It.s the first film from Timothy White (Son of a Gun, The Boys are Back) and Anna Vincent.s Southern Light Alliance, an unofficial co-production with Stewart le Maréchal and Anna Mohr-Pietsch of the UK.s Met Film.
Vincent tells If that White was introduced to the project from an international contact, she then met the UK producers in »
- Don Groves
This text examines the work of Pedro Almodovar, the Spanish director whose nine features to date include the comedy, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988), the S & M melodrama, Tie me up! Tie me down! (1990) and the family romance, High Heels (1991). This study argues not only that Almodovar is a highly skilled manipulator of cinematic form, but also that his films raise important questions—of gender, nationality and sexuality—which demand a serious response from their audience. Desire Unlimited offers analyses derived from recent feminist, gay and postmodern theory. Desire Unlimited: The Cinema of Pedro Almodovar Author: Paul Julian Smith Edition: Paperback, 288 pages Release Date: April 12th, 2014 Price: $26.95 Publisher: Verso »
- Pietro Filipponi
14 items from 2014
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