12 items from 2016
Screwball comedy master Ernst Lubitsch took a rare stab at straight drama with 1932’s “Broken Lullaby,” the tense story of a soldier who attempts to make amends with the family of a man he killed in World War I. Preeminent French director François Ozon also wanders into unconventional territory with “Frantz,” his astonishingly beautiful and inquisitive remake of Lubitsch’s film, using it as a springboard for a profound look at alienation and grief.
Ozon captures much of the original movie’s strengths while broadening its themes, launching into richer territory with his most polished storytelling achievement since 2004’s “Swimming Pool.” While the entirety of “Frantz” holds less appeal than its gorgeous ingredients, it’s impossible to deny the sheer narrative sophistication that makes this gentle story much more than your average retread.
Largely set in the small German mountain town of Quedlingburg, the mostly black-and-white “Frantz” takes place in »
- Eric Kohn
There is exactly one great sequence in “Frantz,” the latest film from modern master François Ozon (“The New Girlfriend,” “8 Women”), and even though it’s a short scene, it creates an impact that suggests that it was the entire reason for the film’s existence. The rest of “Frantz,” unfortunately, is a mostly dreary and heavy-handed affair in which the director (who co-wrote with Philippe Piazzo, loosely adapting a play by Maurice Rostand) examines the damaging cost of nationalism and the toll that war takes on winners and losers, survivors and casualties alike. (Rostand’s play was previously the basis for Ernst. »
- Alonso Duralde
French filmmaker Francois Ozon likes to keep his audience on their toes, and his last three pictures are a good example of how he likes to switch things up each time around. 2012’s comedy/mystery “In The House” was followed by 2013’s provocative erotic drama “Young & Beautiful,” and 2014’s “The New Girlfriend” was a transgender […]
The post First Trailer For Francois Ozon’s Wwi Film ‘Frantz,’ Screening At Venice & Tiff appeared first on The Playlist. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
A mad extortionist is blowing up rollercoaster rides. Put-upon George Segal must stop him because we all know that the time, the tide and roller coasters wait for no man. Producer Jennings Lang's by-the-numbers suspense thriller is light on suspense and thrills, but the cast is good and the screenplay at least partly intelligent. And hey -- it's got a teenage Helen Hunt! Rollercoaster Blu-ray Shout! Factory 1977 / Color / 2:35 widescreen / 119 min. / Street Date June 21, 2016 / 19.99 Starring George Segal, Timothy Bottoms, Henry Fonda, Helen Hunt, Harry Guardino, Susan Strasberg, Craig Wasson, Robert Quarry, Quinn Redeker, Dick Wesson, Gary Franklin, Steve Guttenberg. Cinematography David M. Walsh Original Music Lalo Schifrin Written by Richard Levinson, William Link, Tommy Cook Produced by Jennings Lang Directed by James Goldstone
Reviewed by Glenn Erickson
Jaws inspired plenty of rip-off movies about sharks, bears, killer whales and monster octopi threatening beaches. Since it wasn't safe to go back to the water, »
- Glenn Erickson
Paris – Pyramide Intl., one of the doyens of European arthouse sales companies, has acquired world sales rights to “La Jeune fille sans mains” (The Girl Without Hands), the anticipated feature debut of renown French animated shorts writer- director Sebastien Laudenbach that was confirmed Tuesday for competition at June’s Annecy Intl. Animation Film Festival.
Pyramide’s first animation pick-up, “Girl” will world premiere at Cannes in its Association for Independent Distribution (Acid) sidebar, dedicated to French films. Shellac will handle distribution in France of “Girl,” one of the latest additions to France’s now distinguished cannon of family-targeting animation films of artistic ambition. It plans a late November/early December release.
Famed for shorts such as 2010’s Cannes Critics’ Week entry “Vasco,” a hand-drawn black crayon work demonstrating Laudenbach’s sense of line and poetry, at the beginning of his career, Laudenbach also directed “Journal,” which won a Clermont-Ferrand Fest »
- John Hopewell
Set in Poland in 1945, the inspiring drama tells the true story of French Red Cross doctor Madeleine Pauliac who was on a mission to help World War II survivors when she crossed paths with a nun who sought help. She was then brought to a convent where several pregnant sisters were concealed, the victims of the Soviet soldiers’ barbarities. Unable to reconcile their faith with their pregnancy, the nuns turned to the doctor who became their only hope.
- Elsa Keslassy
In this special episode of Off The Shelf, Ryan and Brian take a look at the new DVD and Blu-ray releases for Tuesday, January 26th 2016.
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Follow-Up Depatie-Freleng Supplements News Arrow Video: Cult Cinema sold out directly (Available from Amazon UK), BFI: Napoleon Criterion Collection: In A Lonely Place Disney: Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Blu-ray 4/5 Flicker Alley: Blu-ray Mod, film noirs John Carpenter Lost Themes II Kino: Tijuana Toads, Roland and Rattfink, Beware! The Blob, Eleni, Fuzz, Absolution, Masters of Cinema: April announcements tomorrow Olive Films: April titles Second Run: teaming up with Arrow Video Shout! Scream: Manhunter cover, MST3K Vol 2, NightHawks, I Saw What You Did / You’ll Like My Mother Thunderbean: Flip the Frog and Cubby Bear Twilight Time: New February titles available for pre-order on Wednesday February 3rd: Where The Sidewalk Ends, Cowboy, The Big Heat, »
- Ryan Gallagher
After premiering at the 2014 Toronto Film Festival in the Galas Program, via Cohen Media, the double 40th César Award nominated The New Girlfriend received a limited theatrical release a year later for a meager box-office take just under one hundred and fifty thousand. Based on a novel by Ruth Rendell, Francois Ozon’s playful subversion of gender dynamics hinges on camp, recalling a legion of vintage queer classics from decades ago (as well as Ozon’s own darker, challenging early filmography when the auteur was referred to as a terrible enfant). As politically correct agendas continue to be applied to queer characters, engulfing deliberations of appropriate representation, items such as Ozon’s film have become a rarity in the English language market. But there’s a perverse mixture of dark comedy and psychological unrest portrayed here, and Ozon gleefully captures a neglected energy of queer cinema once again relegated to the periphery of good taste. »
- Nicholas Bell
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
The Assassin (Hou Hsiao-Hsien)
If the meditative stylings of Russian auteur Andrei Tarkovsky were applied to the martial arts genre, the end result would likely resemble Hou Hsiao-hsien’s rapturous tone poem The Assassin. As much concerned with the essence of nature as it is the essence of humanity, this endlessly beautiful film is equal parts enigmatic storytelling as it is purely enthralling cinema. Though »
- TFS Staff
We promised a grand total of 15 "Best of "2015" Lists (apart from the awards -- yeah, we're overplanning crazy) so here's the second to last. Diversity is the hot topic of the week and regardless of any one particularity (like an Oscar nominee list) thing are getting better on television (obviously) and at the movies, too, though you have to look a little bit harder. Still, if you go to a lot of movies and attempt to draw up lists like this you'll find you're spoilt for choice. There are so many more films these days directed by women, for gay audiences, for people of the color and the like. You just have to look beyond Big Hollywood and keep your eyes open for intriguing surprises if you do regularly hit the all wide releases multiplex.
Since 15 is a finite number (damn you math) not every film with an Lgbt character can make the list. »
- NATHANIEL R
Director: François Ozon
Writer: François Ozon
Ex-terrible enfant is a perennial favorite on the festival circuit (2015 was only the third year in the past fifteen years of filmmaking where François Ozon didn’t unveil a new title). His prolific output sees him unveiling at a variety of prestigious festivals, having competed twice at Cannes (2003, 2013), four times in Berlin, and twice in Venice. His latest was 2014’s The New Girlfriend, a playful if rather anachronistic narrative featuring outmoded psychological presentations of gender identity (it premiered in Toronto, another platform Ozon has been known to premiere at). In time for 2016, Ozon has been working on a historical drama, the German co-production Franz, headlined by recent Cesar winner Pierre Niney (Yves Saint Laurent). As usual, confirmations of the exact narrative have been kept under wraps by Ozon.
Production Co./Producers: Mandarin’s Eric and Nicolas Altmayer, »
- Nicholas Bell
Snd has come on board Nicolas Boukhrief’s WWII-set romance drama “The Confession,” the helmer’s follow-up to gritty contempo thriller “Made in France,” and Pascal Bourdiaux’s comedy adventure “Family Heist,” with Jean Reno (“The Da Vinci Code,” “The Squad”).
Now in production, “The Confession” toplines Romain Duris (“The New Girlfriend,” “The Beat That My Heart Skipped”) and Marina Vacth (“Young and Beautiful”). The period drama turns on a young woman who confesses, while lying on her deathbed, that she fell in love with a priest in Occupied France during the Second World War.
Boukhrief’s latest film, “Made in France,” follows a journalist who infiltrates a jihadist cell in Paris. Pic, which was shot before the Charlie Hebdo and recent Paris terror attacks, will soon by released in France. “The Confession” marks a departure for Boukhrief who is known for directing high-voltage, bold genre films such as “Off Limits” and “Cash Truck. »
- Elsa Keslassy and John Hopewell
12 items from 2016
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