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It seems like only yesterday that the American Film Institute released their 100 Years...100 Movies  list. Actually though, it was over 10 years ago when we first got our look at that "definitive" list of the 100 best American movies. They then did a ten year anniversary of it in 2007 with only minor adjustments and both years Citizen Kane held the number one place as the best American movie. Of course, the problem with those lists is that they only list American films. While Hollywood might be considered the epicenter of film, the art form itself spans the globe, way beyond American borders. That's why the Toronto International Film Festival came up with their Essential 100 movies. Created by merging lists made by Toronto Film Festival supporters along with another made by their programmers, these are supposed to be the 100 essential movies every cinephile must see. And it starts off with a bang as Citizen Kane has been toppled. »
- Germain Lussier
Earlier this month we premiered the first part of the short film,"The Model," featuring the golden throated Brazilian charmer, Seu Jorge ("City of God," "Life Aquatic") as a character called Marcello. Along with the smoothest version of "Everybody Loves The Sunshine" ever recorded, Seu Jorge And Almaz's cover of Kraftwerk's "The Model" was teased at the end. Here, in chapter two we get treated to more of Jorge's hypnotic take on the song and how it fits into the recurring dreams of a mysterious woman that have come to consume him.
I corresponded with Jorge (born Jorge Mário da Silva) about the film and his related album "Seu Jorge and Almaz." When I asked him what film he would live in if he could choose any, he said he'd like to be "the little kid in 'Cinema Paradiso.'" Read the rest of our chat below where Jorge, »
- Brandon Kim
In the wake of The Social Network, and how it changed communication, and life as we know it, we decided to make this weeks list…
Top Ten Life Changing Films
Now, how do we do this? Everyone has a different idea of a life changing film. It’s a personal choice. Maybe it was the first film that you saw on the big screen, the movie you saw on your first date, a film that shattered you to the core… Either way, it changed the way you think. That is why this week, rather than taking a pole of our writers and calculating them together, we are listing their choices by Movie Geek. Enjoy guys!
10. Heavy Traffic
06. The Horror Of Dracula
04. The Iron Giant
02. Safety Last
01. Star Wars Episode Four : A New Hope
- Melissa Howland
Still most celebrated for his Oscar-winning Nuovo Cinema Paradiso, Tornatore returns to his native Sicily, setting for his best films, with a sentimental epic accompanied by a soupily commonplace Morricone score. With a vast cast, it's shot on a gigantic recreation of his home town of Bagheria (known to locals as Baaría) built across the Mediterranean in Tunisia. The movie covers some 50 or 60 years, from the late 1920s until the 1980s, in the lives of three generations of a peasant family: the spirited shepherd Ciccio, his son Peppino who becomes a Communist party stalwart and his grandson Pietro.
The movie is about love, marriage, growing up and growing old, poverty and exploitation, the Mafia, agrarian reform, the rise and fall of fascism, the conflict between communism and Catholicism, the weight of tradition and the slowness of social change. For foreign audiences at least, the film is poorly signposted, and who is doing what, »
- Philip French
In case anyone thought mucking around with animal genes then raising the resultant mutant as your own child was a good idea, here's a strong warning. Scientists Brody and Polley initially enthuse over their secret breakthrough/lovechild, but several "do you really think we should be doing this?" moments later, they're living out every parent's worst nightmare: that your child grows wings and a venomous tail and turns on you. It's not up to Cronenberg standards, but it's smarter, less predictable and much funnier than it sounds.
Toy Story 3 (U)
Plaything perils at the daycare centre become a lesson in mortality, comradeship, prison-breaking and waste management in this near-perfect sequel. As usual, it's packed with thrills and gags, but as with Pixar's Up, there are moments when grown-ups »
- The guide
There are certain elements of the process of finding and landing the gig that I really like. I may have a different view on this then other composers, but for myself, it’s part of what makes this whole film scoring business enjoyable. I find it interesting to search for prospective projects, whether at a networking events with filmmakers or through online networking like Facebook or Twitter. Making the connection, seeing if what I have to offer as a composer is what they would like and then, working with the a new filmmaker – it’s all great! Sometimes this takes weeks, months or maybe even years for something to develop, but it’s fascinating to set the wheels in motion and then see what unfolds. It’s also exciting when a new project comes in and it’s time to create the music.
Everyone has a different way »
- SCO Staff
There are those who can suck up two and a half hours of sentimental Sicilian tosh from director Giuseppe "Cinema Paradiso" Tornatore, but I'm not among them. After spending 150 minutes gazing into the rich ochre biscuity-sunset glow with which Tornatore swathes his movie, I think I might come down with something terrible, like people who spend too long on a tanning bed. It's a long, long, generational family picture about people who live out their lives in the small town of Bagheria, known in local dialect as Baarìa, near Palermo. Francesco Scianna plays Peppino, a boy who grows up to be a smoulderingly handsome youth, and then a career communist who spends a lot of time away from his home town. He is epically dull. It's a colossal Stella Artois ad. »
- Peter Bradshaw
Nolan pushes the mega-budget cerebral action thriller to its limits here, and possibly beyond, with a multilayered onslaught that could leave you exhilarated, exhausted, or possibly in need of a new brain. The fiendishly complex plot imagines a world where corporate spies can raid your dreams to steal, or plant, ideas. Thus, DiCaprio assembles his team and orchestrates a risky psychic heist involving dreams within dreams within dreams; something like Ocean's Eleven meets Synecdoche, New York, multiplied by James Bond. Even if it follows the logic of the Hollywood blockbuster more than an actual dream, this boldly goes where no blockbuster has gone before. And there's nothing your brain can do to stop it.
Charles Perrault's wife-slaying fairytale has been rich territory »
- The guide
By Roger Friedman
HollywoodNews.com: Reports are frantic that the bidding for Miramax is almost over. A group of investors, which doesn’t include Harvey and Bob Weinstein, seems eager to get the once great company. Now Colony Capital, the group that is also co owner of Michael Jackson’s Neverland, is said to be in the mix. The total price Disney wants: $675 million.
But Colony’s very astute Thomas Barrack should understand something essential: there is no Miramax without the Weinsteins. The name is too closely identified with the brothers who named the film company after their parents. In the five years since the Weinsteins left Miramax and started The Weinstein Company, Miramax has lost almost all of its name value.
What are Colony and friends buying really? A library of 50 really great movies including Best Picture winners: Shakespeare in Love, Chicago and The English Patient. There’s also The Cider House Rules, »
- Roger Friedman
There are many aspiring screenwriters who take this whole writing thing a bit seriously. Not that there's anything wrong with that. They know their Kurosawa, Hitchcock and Fellini. They can compare and contrast early Polanski, analyzing whether Knife in the Water was reflective of cinema verité or whether it was simply derivative. They can spend entire evenings discussing the meaning and metaphor of Truffaut's Jules and Jim. Serious writers wear black turtlenecks and write each day at an appointed time. They quote Flannery O'Connor or Ernest Hemingway; they wear elbow patches. They knit their collective brows when we ask if they saw Oprah yesterday. Op-rah? On tele-vision? Serious writers spend every day stooped over their Olivetti typewriters clack-clacking the next Cinema Paradiso and most evenings watching The Bicycle Thief while they sip expensive scotch and congratulate themselves on how veddy veddy »
- Julie Gray
I think we can all agree that Ennio Morricone is one of the greatest living film composers, if not the greatest. It boggles the mind to consider that he has composed nearly 500 (?) scores since the early 1960s; is there even that much music in the world? He was a pioneer of Spaghetti Westerns, cooking up bizarre combinations of twanging guitars, screeching choruses, whistling, bells and harmonicas. That would be enough to secure him some kind of place in history, but then he went on to make such heartbreakingly gorgeous scores for majestic films like Days of Heaven, The Mission and Cinema Paradiso, as well as uniquely haunting bits of music for The Thing and Mission to Mars.
- Jeffrey M. Anderson
The Italian Film Festival, Scotland
No gimmicks here – just the chance to see some world-class Italian films from directors old and new. From veteran Enzo Castellari, director of the original Inglourious Basterds, comes Eagles Over London, the film that invented the "macaroni combat" genre by dazzlingly recreating the Battle Of Britain. There's also a four-film tribute to legendary actor Vittorio Gassman – Il Mattatore, as he's affectionately known – with screenings of the little-seen swashbuckler For Love And Gold and the original Scent Of A Woman, which won Gassman the Best Actor award in Cannes. More recent titles include director Federico Bondi's Mar Nero, a touching tale of the relationship between an elderly lady and her youthful carer, and Cinema Paradiso director Giuseppe Tornatore's dark, modern thriller The Unknown Woman. And, for the more traditional, there's a screening of everyone's favourite Italian classic, La Dolce Vita.
Various venues, Fri 16 to »
- Andrea Hubert, Phelim O'Neill
Two new posters for epic tale Baaria have just released.
Giuseppe Tornatore (Cinema Paradiso, Everybody’s Fine, Malèna) directed this grand-scale portrait of life and love over several decades in a small town in Sicily. The Torrenuovas are a family of peasant shepherds who have lived and worked in Bagheria though many generations. In the years before the rise of Mussolini, the family often found themselves working for Don Giacinto (Lollo Franco), a local tycoon who often used his power and position to take advantage of others. Young Peppino Torrenuova senses a profound injustice in the way Don Giacinto treats his elders, and as the years pass the young man becomes a passionate advocate for social change.
Once he grows to be a man, Peppino (Francesco Scianna) falls in love with beautiful Mannina (Margareth Made) and they get married, starting a family of their own over the objections of Mannia’s parents, »
- Allan Ford
The Simpsons is still plenty capable of putting together a very entertaining half hour over two decades into its run, and this Sunday’s episode “Stealing First Base” was particularly suited for film geeks. First, the episode’s delightfully gruesome “Itchy & Scratchy” short serve as an extended parody of the Philip Glass-scored Koyaanisqatsi as well as a brief mocking of 3D. Later, a Bart kiss inspired a montage of famous romantic scenes in film history–including Spider-Man, Wall·E, Planet of the Apes, and Star Trek among others–which itself was a take on a reminiscent scene in Cinema Paradiso in borrowing Ennio Morricone’s beautiful “Love Theme” from the film.
Hit the jump to check out the clip and a list of the movies referenced. [via Upcoming Pixar]
In order, these are the films and television series included in the kiss montage:
-From Here to Eternity: the famous beach »
- Brendan Bettinger
Pedro Almodovar has a knack for creating visceral films all the more powerful for appealing to the viewer's simpler capabilities. Talk to Her offered a story about the incredible power of speech and how it can connect people while driving others apart. In a similar method, Broken Embraces defines a man by his sight, taking note of the dichotomy between who he was and who he became before and after he lost the ability to see. Told in a mixture of past and present timelines, former filmmaker Mateo recounts the once-in-a-lifetime affair that ended his career as a legendary director, wherein he adopted the name Harry Caine. It's a twisted love story told through stunning cinematography and excellent performances by an incredible cast; about what you'd expect from an Almodovar film.
- Lex Walker
Interview by Kayley Thomas
Sean Patrick Flanery – When I told Heidi I’d set up an interview with him for Pretty/Scary, I think her heart might have stopped momentarily. Mine may have skipped a beat too. There’s a lot to love. He had that cute and creepy thing going for him in Powder. He was simply adorable (I mean, very manly) as Young Indiana Jones. He had the honor of getting ganked by Christopher Walken in Suicide Kings. He’s brought us some serious (and not-so serious) scares in Demon Hunter, The Masters of Horror’s The Damned Thing, Kaw, and The Insatiable, as well as episodes of Charmed, The Outer Limits, The Twilight Zone, and more recently, The Dead Zone. And he’s got some more sf/f and horror in the works: Deadly Impact hits DVD this April with Mongolian Death Worms and Scavengers slated for later in 2010. Plus, »
The comma spliced title of the film kept me intrigued for quite some time. The nitpicker in me hit the books to find a reason as to why the words 'road' and 'movie' are separated by a comma? Here's what I found out: It has to do with a train. Train of thought. "You're looking good, let's go have some coffee" doesn't necessarily mean "you're looking good so let's go and have some coffee". The readers are free to make their own connections between the two fragments/ideas, separated by the comma, in the first example. While in the other the connection is made more than apparent. This kind of construction of sentences - paratactic syntax - is usually employed by poets to juxtapose different kinds of imagery to fire up the readers' imagination. Cutting short this aside in linguistics, I think it's a brilliant and a promising title, »
- Faiz Ullah
Vue founder Tim Richards swapped Hollywood a decade ago for a pokey London office. Now his brainchild, Vue, has opened its 69th cinema – a £12.5m complex in Westfield, London – with more to come
As the rain fell like the grumble of a malcontent across west London this week, Tim Richards, chief executive of the Vue cinema chain, must have cast a backward glance at his former life in Hollywood, where he was a Warner Bros executive with an open invitation to starry parties.
But in 1999 Richards, an affable Canadian, gave that life up to start his own business in Britain. The early days were spent in his garage, his dining room and then in an insalubrious rented office above a Greek restaurant in Chiswick. A little over a decade later, Vue is among the largest chains in the market, with 69 cinemas across the country.
Richards was in Shepherd's Bush to show off Vue's latest addition, »
- David Teather
Bigstar.tv, a global online film networking community and digital distribution platform for independent cinema, will award a grand prize of $50,000 cash through their first film festival. The Bigstar Online Film Festival (Boff) has opened its global competition to short films of any genre that are five minutes or less. Boff will present the grand prize cash award to the best film of the festival, chosen by a jury of industry professionals and celebrities. Bigstar.tv will also present awards of merit for other outstanding submissions.
"Bigstar.tv was developed to showcase the work of independent filmmakers to mass audiences, assist them in developing future projects and gain recognition for their films. Boff is one of the ways we intend to foster this commitment,” commented Xavi Dalmau, President and CEO of Bigstar.tv.
Bigstar.tv has aligned with Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival (Fliff) to assemble two panels of judges for the competition. »
Zoe Saldana, Sam Worthington in James Cameron’s Avatar Actors with faces but without voices can’t be nominated for Oscars. Actors with voices but without faces can, but don’t get nominated for Oscars. Ingrid Thulin couldn’t have been nominated for The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse because she was dubbed by Angela Lansbury. The same goes for the widely praised Philippe Noiret, dubbed into Italian in Cinema Paradiso, or Mel Gibson, dubbed into American English in Mad Max. Robin Williams could have been nominated for his Genie in Disney’s animated 1992 Aladdin, but wasn’t. Nor was Meryl Streep or George Clooney nominated for their work in Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox. The rationale seems to be that if you have [...] »
- Andre Soares
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