16 items from 2017
Using the proprietary powers of the Metascore, everyone’s favorite review aggregator (sorry, Rotten Tomatoes) has ranked the 25 best directors of the 21st century. The results were found by averaging the reviews of filmmakers who have released at least four movies since January 1, 2000, and thus represent more of a number crunch than a subjective list.
As the two lowest-ranked auteurs are tied with an average Metascore of 78.4, essentially anyone who’s released at least one movie that received middling reviews didn’t make the cut — meaning that everyone from Quentin Tarantino and Terrence Malick to Sofia Coppola and Wes Anderson won’t be found here.
Topping the list is Alfonso Cuarón, whose average score of 87.5 comes from four highly acclaimed movies: “Gravity” (96), “Y Tu Mamá También” (88), “Children of Men” (84), and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban »
- Michael Nordine
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Alfonso Cuarón taught a packed-out masterclass at Cannes yesterday, where the Mexican filmmaker spoke about his beginnings in film, his friendship with Guillermo del Toro and directing “Gravity” and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.” The conversation, led by French film critic Michel Ciment, was the second of two masterclasses offered at the festival, following the one given by Clint Eastwood last Sunday.
Read More: The 2017 IndieWire Cannes Bible: Every Review, Interview and News Item Posted During the Festival
The Academy Award winner spoke about how for him filmmaking started as just a means of survival. “I come from a middle-class family and I grew up at a time when the golden age of cinema was over in Mexico. Cinema was my survival instinct, I needed it. I wouldn’t recommend the path I took to anyone,” he said, according to the official Cannes site.
The writer-director also spoke »
- Yoselin Acevedo
In Cannes Wednesday. Alfonso Cuarón gave a Masterclass spanning his life and passions: Friendships and films, made in both Mexico and Hollywood.
As Cuarón gave the class, he said, proving humble throughout his interview with Michel Simon, that the “true masters” were elsewhere in the festival, hinting that he doesn’t count himself among them. He pointed out that his was “a journey filled with insecurities,” which he considers a catalyst for his friendship with fellow Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, who Cuarón called a fellow “blue collar” filmmaker.
The two met making TV when del Toro complimented the Steven King story which Cuarón had based one of his pieces on, commenting that, “The story is so good, so why did your short suck so bad?” Although the words surprised Cuarón he says del Toro was right, and since then the two have been fast friends.
Born in a neighborhood »
- Jamie Lang
In one of Spain’s biggest box office bets for 2018, Telecinco Cinema, the film production arm of broadcaster Mediaset España, has boarded Basque Country-set, Maribel Verdú-starrer black comedy “Crime Wave.”
Directed by Gracia Querejeta (“15 Years in One Day”), film is scheduled to roll Oct.-Nov. in flagship locations in the Basque Country’s Bilbao and Biscay province. It is also produced by Bilbao’s Historias del Tío Luis and Santiago Segura’s Bowfinger International Pictures.
In “Crime Wave,” Verdú, whose credits include ”Pan’s Labyrinth,” “And Your Mother Too” and “Snow White,” plays a wealthy divorced housewife living in Bilbao’s Neguri suburb who finds out that her teenager son has killed his father. Trying to protect him against all odds, she will cause a riotous crime wave in the city.
- Emiliano De Pablos
“Y Tu Mama tambien” producer Jorge Vergara, who co-founded Anhelo Prods. with Alfonso Cuaron, is boarding the drama “Bonded” from Aliwen Entertainment, the new Santa Monica-based shingle founded by Lucas Akoskin (“Nightingale,” “Captive,” “Desierto”) last year.
“Bonded” marks the return to film producing of Vergara who last backed the 2004 crime drama “The Assassination of Richard Nixon.”
Shooting this fall in Guadalajara, Mexico City and Los Angeles, “Bonded” is based on true events about the sweatshops of Los Angeles. Casting is underway for the mostly English-language drama about a Mexican teenager whose dreams of becoming a soccer star are disrupted when his mother dies. He’s smuggled across the border with the promise of a better life but is instead sold to a sweatshop in downtown La.
- Anna Marie de la Fuente
There are plenty of streaming services that give you a lot content, but leave you to weed through and find the gems. However, Tribeca Shortlist does things differently. Each month, the subscription movie service from Lionsgate and Tribeca Enterprises brings selections curated by actors, producers, writers, directors and others to the platform, which they then talk about on the service. It’s like getting a playlist from your favorite filmmakers and stars, and this month Cary Fukunaga (“Sin Nombre,” “Jane Eyre,” “Beasts Of No Nation,” “True Detective“) shares some of his favorites.
- Kevin Jagernauth
Now that Alfonso Cuarón has wrapped production on “Roma,” the Film Stage has put together a helpful primer on the film’s cinematographer. Emmanuel Lubezki had previously served as Dp on each of the director’s films save for “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”; their most recent collaboration, “Gravity,” earned them both Academy Awards. Now that Galo Olivares is stepping up, take a moment acquaint yourself with his prior work.
Cuarón shot “Roma” along with Olivares, who’s worked on a number of productions in Mexico over the last several years: “La Rabia de Clara,” “Australia,” “Hear Me Lord.”. “Returning to my country with this specific project was something very personal, because we made a film set in the ’70s, with many elements and experiences of my childhood,” said Cuarón of “Roma, »
- Michael Nordine
Director reveals title and plot details of his upcoming Mexico-set film.
The project saw the director return to his native Mexico for a 1970s-set drama about a year in the life of a middle-class family.
“Movies are like a cereal box - at the bottom there is the promise of a toy,” he told reporters.
”Gravity was that cereal box and I got that little toy, which usually leads to a bigger film with more production, with more stars. But I decided to return to Mexico City to make this movie with the resources I had always dreamed about.”
He added: “I can live abroad, but my head »
- email@example.com (Orlando Parfitt)
One of my great joys, as a fan of world cinema, is when I start watching a film that I have no expectations for, and am completely blown away. I immediately want to recommend it to anyone I know that might also enjoy it. It feels like I found a secret, even if it’s only new to me. This film fits completely into this category. I know very little about the history of Mexican cinema, and Latin American films are hardly well represented in the collection. To learn a little bit more was such a treat, and just whets my appetite for more of the great films from this era.
The film is based on a true story, and all the details of that story are revealed in the first minute of the film, so there are no spoilers here. In 1968, two weeks before the Tlatelolco massacre of student protesters in Mexico City, »
- Arik Devens
Alfonso Cuarón is back! The filmmaker has remained relatively quiet since winning Best Director at the Oscars three years ago for “Gravity,” but at a press conference (via Filmeweb) in Mexico earlier today, he confirmed he has finished production on his next movie, a family drama titled “Roma.” This is the first time the title has been revealed.
News broke last September that Cuarón would be directing a new movie set in Mexico, his first since “Y Tu Mamá También” made him a star on the international film circuit. At the time, the only details around the project were that it would be set in the 1970s and follow the year in the life of a middle-class family. The director is remaining tight-lipped on plot details for now, but he did reveal just how important it »
- Zack Sharf
Yesterday, we learned that there will be a live action Nightwing film that will be directed by Chris McKay! So who is Chris McKay and why is this huge news? Outside of Robot Chicken, Morel Orel (funny if you remember the '80ish Sunday morning Christian show), and -- wait -- that is about it, right? So what has he done? Oh yeah. The Lego Batman Movie. He was able to combine all of the "negative & dark" elements of Batman and make him into a character that you originally love to hate, but finally are totally on-board with. Many are saying that The Lego Batman is the best Batman ever featured on the big screen, including Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.
- Drew Carlton
(Courtesy: Kimberley French/20th Century Fox)
By: Carson Blackwelder
One of the jobs that the general public doesn’t pay that much attention to — but probably should — is that of the cinematographer. If you think a film looks gorgeous and you’re able to get swept away by what you’re seeing on the screen, that’s all thanks to this man or woman’s work behind the scenes. Turns out, though, you can even see these folks showcase their talent on social media.
Since the role of cinematographer is often referred to as the director of photography — shortened to Dp or Dop — it only makes sense that we hone in Instagram as that’s one popular online platform dedicated specifically to photos. Let’s take a look at 16 of the cinematographers who are utilizing Instagram to showcase more of their work and giving us a glimpse of »
- Carson Blackwelder
The 67th Berlin Film Festival has revealed its jury, homage subject and Golden Camera recipients.
Joining jury president, Paul Verhoeven, will be actors Maggie Gyllenhaal, Diego Luna, and Julia Jentsch, producer Dora Bouchoucha Fourati, artist Olafur Eliasson and director-screenwriter Wang Quan’an.
Eighteen films are vying in this year’s competition for the Golden Bear. The winners will be announced at the Berlinale Palast on February 18.
Gyllenhaal is best known for her Oscar-nominated role in Crazy Heart, breakthrough performances in Donnie Darko and Secretary, The Dark Knight and TV series The Honourable Woman, for which she garnered a Golden Globe Award and an Emmy nomination.
The full international jury for this year’s Berlin Film Festival has been announced.
It was previously announced that Paul Verhoeven would head up the jury this year, and now the organizers have released the rest of the jury to judge the films in-competition. They are producer Dora Bouchoucha Fourati (Tunisia), artist Olafur Eliasson (Iceland), actress Maggie Gyllenhaal (USA), actress Julia Jentsch (Germany), actor and director Diego Luna (Mexico), and director and screenwriter Wang Quan’an (People’s Republic of China).
This year’s Berlinale, the Berlin Film Festical, kicks off in Germany on February 9th through to the 19th. Keep it Thn for full coverage.
Paul Verhoeven, Jury President, Director, Screenwriter (The Netherlands)
The Dutch director and screenwriter Paul Verhoeven began his directing career in 1969 with the successful Dutch television series Floris. After his feature film debut Business is Business in 1971, came the erotic thriller Turkish Delight in 1973, a »
- Paul Heath
‘Toni Erdmann’ (Courtesy: Tiff)
By: Carson Blackwelder
It’s not too often that foreign-language films get recognized for anything at the Oscars beyond the best foreign-language film category — but it does happen. And, believe it or not, it happens more for best original screenplay and best adapted screenplay than many other categories. A prime example of that is Toni Erdmann, Germany’s submission this year that is proving to be a cross-category threat, which could score a nomination — or a win — for its writing.
The story of Toni Erdmann — which has a solid Rotten Tomatoes score of 91% — follows a father who is trying to reconnect with his adult daughter after the death of his dog. It sounds simple enough but, of course, the two couldn’t be more unalike. The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016 and where it won the Fipresci Prize. Since then, it »
- Carson Blackwelder
16 items from 2017
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