13 items from 2014
As a general rule, I’m a big believer in cinema moving forward. It’s vital for an artform to constantly renew and reinvigorate itself, in order to remain interesting and avoid stagnation. That’s why bold and visionary filmmakers are so important. To date, the writer and director of Reach Me – John Herzfeld – has been neither of those things (2 Days In The Valley, anyone?), but the new trailer for his latest movie suggests a move in a new, more intriguing direction.
The film is about a large collection of characters and their respective connections to a self-help book – titled ‘Reach Me’ – written by a reclusive author, played by Tom Berenger. Now, here’s the thing – it would seem that while this film represents the all-important forward motion for helmer Herzfeld, it may also prove to be the opposite for many in its cast – and that’s just fine. For »
- Sarah Myles
Given the who’s-who of collaborators and acolytes of the late Robert Altman assembled for this feature-length tribute, it would have been all too easy for director Ron Mann to let the film turn into a loose, digressive — indeed, Altmanesque — jamboree of war stories and portable wisdom. But to great, stirring effect, “Altman” charts a different course, drawing on a wealth of existing material to tell the filmmaker’s story largely in his own, brashly eloquent words, and through generous clips from his massive, admittedly uneven, always uncompromising filmography. The result captures Altman the artist and the man, the one inseparable from the other, about as well as any two-hour film could hope to do. The pic makes its broadcast debut on Epix Aug. 6, following its June 20 premiere as part of the UCLA Film and Television Archive’s ongoing Altman retrospective.
Working closely with Altman’s widow, Kathryn, and his frequent producer, »
- Scott Foundas
Sony Pictures Classics honchos Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have been feted up one side and down the other lately. The duo celebrated 20 years of Spc in 2012 and have received awards from the Museum of the Moving Image and the Gotham Awards as of late. Tonight they will receive the Los Angeles Film Festival's Spirit of Independence Award as the love keeps pouring in. Given that we recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of Fox Searchlight — another crucial entity in the indie film space — it seemed like we were over due for a similar appreciation of Sony Classics' 22 years of output. The interesting thing, though, is that unlike Searchlight, there isn't necessarily anything outwardly identifiable about Sony Classics films as, well, "Sony Classics films." They all have a strong whiff of good taste but they don't have the heavy marketing footprint of some of the studio's contemporaries. Barker and Bernard's cinephile passion is always evident, »
- Gregory Ellwood, Guy Lodge, Kristopher Tapley
Check out this short film by Darrell Lake titled "A Silent Whisper;" a well-made 2-character, 1-location piece and I definitely dug it. Darrell is a one-man unit here because, not only did he write, direct, produce and serve as production designer of the short, he also stars in it! And he does a good job, considering the many hats he wore in making the film. The short was a semi-finalist in NBC Universal's Short Cuts Film Festival. The synopsis is doesn't tell you much ("A young man decides to take matters in to his hands"), so you have to watch the film to see it all unfold: Watch all 12-minutes of it below: »
- Tambay A. Obenson
Award-winning director and screenwriter Michael Haneke is apparently about to begin production work on his next film, Flashmob. The two-time Palme d’Or recipient – who mounted the Cannes Film Festival podium for both The White Ribbon in 2009, and Amour in 2012 – will begin shooting the movie this summer, sparking expectations of a triumphant return to La Croisette in 2015.
While details are sketchy, it seems that Flashmob is a multi-character drama, featuring a story set partly in the Us and focusing on the “fragile relationship between media and reality.” The plot will apparently involve a variety of different people who connect on the internet, before their individual stories come together for the titular flashmob.
Those details certainly sound like a Short Cuts for the digital age, but this type of story is something Haneke has been exploring in different ways for decades. The distancing effect of the trappings of modern society are regular themes in his work, »
- Sarah Myles
Protagonist Pictures is selling international rights to the film in Cannes. CAA and Cinetic are handling the financing of the project, and representing North American rights.
Rachael Horovitz, who was Oscar nommed for “Moneyball,” shares producer credits with Damon Cardasis and Miller, via Miller and Cardasis’ Round Films, and Horovitz’s Specialty Films. Further cast will be announced nearer the start date.
- Leo Barraclough
The 61st Sydney Film Festival today announced 32 films to be featured in this year.s event (June 4-15) in advance of the full program launch on May 7.
The line-up includes the world premiere of The Redfern Story, 19 Australian premieres, 13 features, 11 documentaries and an eight-film retrospective on maverick American filmmaker Robert Altman. Altman.s son, filmmaker Michael Altman, will attend festival and introduce several of the Altman screenings.
Darlene Johnson.s The Redfern Story chronicles the volatile birth of the first all-Indigenous theatre company, the National Black Theatre. It features interviews with indigenous media pioneer Lester Bostock, writer Gerry Bostock, actor Lillian Crombie, activist-academic Gary Foley, academic Marcia Langton, actors Rachael Maza, Bryan Brown and Bindi Williams. .We are pleased to present this sneak preview of 32 of the 180-plus films in this year.s program,. said Festival Director Nashen Moodley. .We have gathered a selection of the best films from the »
- Staff writer
Guadalajara –Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Carlos Reygadas, Vincent Gallo, Gaspar Noe and Dorris Dorrie feature among 31 directors from four continents signed up for “Short Plays,” a soccer-themed omnibus production shot around the world and created by Mexican director Daniel Gruener (“All of Them Witches”).
Helmers also include Colombia’s Carlos Moreno, Mexico’s Fernando Eimbcke, Ecuador’s Sebastian Cordero, Brit Duane Hopkins, South Korea’s Yang Ik-june, Pablo Fendrik from Argentina, Uruguay’s Pablo Stoll, Chile’s Matias Cruz, Moroccan Faouzi Bensaidi, Italy’s Luca Lucini and Portugal’s Pedro Amorim.
“Short Plays” helmers have been set a few simple rules of engagement: Films should be three-to-five minutes long and largely dialogue free, offer an analogy to some aspect of soccer, but feature ordinary people from the director’s own country.
Repping Croatia, theater director Bobo Jelcic’s wedding-set short has the bride staging a jersey swop with the groom after the ceremony. »
- John Hopewell
The Toronto International Film Festival is starting a new programme for international shorts, Shorts Cuts International.
The new spotlight, in five curated programmes, will kick off at Tiff in September 2014, and then will be continued as a series of monthly screenings year round at Bell Lightbox.
Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of Tiff, said: “With new technologies and a constant influx of new talent, short filmmaking is flourishing. As Tiff expands its global reach, we want to bring some of the world’s finest short films to the audience, industry and media that gather in Toronto every year.”
Selected international shorts will screen in five curated programmes this September. The Festival’s Short Cuts International screenings will kick off a new monthly shorts programme that will run year-round at Tiff Bell Lightbox.
Festival submissions »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Wendy Mitchell)
[Press Release] Berlin — Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival, today announced Short Cuts International, a programme of international short films that will premiere at the 2014 Festival. “With new technologies and a constant influx of new talent, short filmmaking is flourishing,” said Bailey. “As Tiff expands its global reach, we want to bring some of the world's finest short films to the audience, industry and media that gather in Toronto every year.” Selected international shorts will screen in five curated programmes this September. The Festival’s Short Cuts International screenings will kick off a new monthly shorts programme that will run year-round at Tiff Bell Lightbox. Shane Smith, Tiff’s Director of Special Projects, will oversee Short »
- Pietro Filipponi
Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival, today announced Short Cuts International, a programme of international short films that will premiere at the 2014 Festival.
Toronto International Film Festival (Tiff) earlier only accepted Canadian short films.
“With new technologies and a constant influx of new talent, short filmmaking is flourishing,” said Bailey. “As Tiff expands its global reach, we want to bring some of the world’s finest short films to the audience, industry and media that gather in Toronto every year.”
Selected international shorts will screen in five curated programmes this September. The Festival’s Short Cuts International screenings will kick off a new monthly shorts programme that will run year-round at Tiff Bell Lightbox. Shane Smith, Tiff’s Director of Special Projects, will oversee Short Cuts International. Programmers will be announced in the coming months.
The Festival will begin accepting film submissions for all film programmes on Wednesday, »
With its interlocking nonlinear narratives and obliquely recurring characters, Australian author Tim Winton’s 2005 short-story collection “The Turning” is already something of an artistic tangram; brought to the screen by 18 different filmmakers who scatter its unifying literary voice to the winds, it’s even harder to parse. Commendably ambitious and clocking in at three hours, this unwieldy portmanteau pic boasts a handful of standout contributions — none more striking than the writing-directing debut of actress Mia Wasikowska — amid a surfeit of gauchely literal ones in a composite meditation on forgiveness, family, firearms and the persistence of memory. Nothing if not a conversation piece, speckled with such famous faces as Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving and Rose Byrne, “The Turning” has been successfully marketed Down Under as a full-scale cultural event; away from home, it’s destined more for isolated repertory screenings, while its patchwork format is ideally suited to ancillary.
In a short space of time, »
- Guy Lodge
Feature Simon Brew 17 Jan 2014 - 06:32
Gravity was a massive hit, both at the box office and with critics. And thus, the backlash has begun...
The past month has seen the usual avalanche of end-of-year top ten lists, as the movie industry moves firmly into awards season. We've now had Oscar nominations too, and Gravity has been ensconced in both critics' lists, and award nominations line-ups as well.
As is par for the course with a big successful film though, the backlash has also begun. Yet there seems something particularly disappointing about the amount of ire being aimed in the direction of Alfonso Cuaron's film. That it's become a kicking horse of sorts. To be fair, some weren't impressed with Gravity from the off. It's hard to quarrel with that: if someone doesn't like something, they don't like it.
But not for the first time, it feels as though »
13 items from 2014
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