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“The Shape of Water” wins the Golden Lion at Venice

Over the weekend, the 2017 Venice Film Festival handed out their awards, with Guillermo del Toro’s ravenously received The Shape of Water taking the top prize. While the Golden Lion isn’t quite an Academy Award barometer, it’s nothing to sneeze at either. This marks an important point in the road, as things are heating up. We’re not yet at the precursor season, but any feather in your hat right now is a boon for a contender. As such, del Toro has to consider himself in a very nice place. The next few months will still be about getting the proverbial ducks in a row. The real fun is still to come. Obviously, the Golden Lion went to del Toro’s highly praised movie, as The Shape of Water got the first big awards season boost. It took home the top prize, while other highlighted winners include Charlie Plummer
See full article at Hollywoodnews.com »

The Secret Scripture review – a mawkish slog

Vanessa Redgrave is brilliant as a woman instutionalised for infanticide, but otherwise Jim Sheridan’s tearjerker is a merely an endurance test

It’s a testament to the unfeasible beauty of the cast of Jim Sheridan’s tearjerker that Poldark’s Aidan Turner, present in a supporting role, looks distinctly average by comparison. But all the smouldering gorgeousness of Rooney Mara, Theo James, Jack Reynor and Eric Bana can’t dress up this mawkish slog of a movie. Adapted from the book by Sebastian Barry, the story deals with subject matter that has already been tackled with more heartbreaking humour in Philomena and more biting fury in The Magdalene Sisters. Credit must go to Vanessa Redgrave, however, playing a woman who has been institutionalised since she was in her 20s and acting everyone else off the screen.

Continue reading...
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Faith, Hope, & Clarity: Hollywood Again Shows Respect in Films for Spiritual Ideas

Faith, Hope, & Clarity: Hollywood Again Shows Respect in Films for Spiritual Ideas
Like a prodigal son, Hollywood is again returning to religion.

Since the 1980s, Hollywood has been criticized (with justification) for depicting any religious believer as mindless, evil or both. Filmmakers this year treat them with respect.

Silence” and “Hacksaw Ridge” daringly center around devout Christians. Religious beliefs have a positive effect on the lead characters in other 2016 films, including “Fences,” “Hidden Figures,” “Jackie,” “Mr. Church,” even “The Conjuring 2.”

Studios have their own belief system, and it’s based on recent hits. Hollywood loves stories about an individual whose principles are challenged, but usually the protagonist is a superhero, cop or animated creature.

Silence” depicts the culture clash of Western Christians with Japanese. The long legacy of the “white savior” is turned upside down, and the film raises issues of faith, doubt, personal integrity, and the fine line between belief and stubborn pride. To its credit, “Silence” raises questions that audience members must answer.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Win Identicals on DVD

Director Simon Pummel's stunning new Sci-Fi film Identicals arrives on DVD and VOD from 15th August and we have 2 copies up for grabs! The dynamic film stars Lachlan Nieboer (Cross of Honour, The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman) and Nora-Jayne Noone (The Descent, The Magdalene Sisters, Savage) and follows organisation Brand New-u which identifies networks of Identicals people who walk like you, talk like you, but are walking through different, better lives.. Contest Ends on Friday, August 26, 2016
See full article at Horror Asylum »

Giveaway – Win sci-fi thriller Identicals on DVD

The sci-fi thriller Identicals is out in the UK this coming Monday, August 15th, and we’ve got two copies of the film to give away to our readers courtesy of Arrow Films; read on for a synopsis and details of how to enter…

The dynamic film stars Lachlan Nieboer (Cross of Honour, The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman) and Nora-Jayne Noone (The Descent, The Magdalene Sisters, Savage). The film follows an organization Brand New-u which identifies networks of Identicals – people who walk like you, talk like you, but are walking through different, better lives. Slater (Lachlan Nieboer) seems to have the perfect life, the perfect job and the perfect girlfriend. But when Slater’s girlfriend is abducted by Brand New-u, he is forced to become an Identical. As he moves through a series of parallel lives, he becomes more and more obsessed with finding his girlfriend, but what he
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Cannes: Mister Smith Opens ‘The Devil’s Doorway’ (Exclusive)

Cannes: Mister Smith Opens ‘The Devil’s Doorway’ (Exclusive)
London-based Mister Smith announced international sales rights on Directors’ Fortnight title “Mean Dreams.” Now word in the run-up to Cannes is that David Garrett’s four-year-old sales-financing company will be unveiling at least one more new title to Cannes, though it isn’t on its website and no trace of the title can be found on the Google: “The Devil’s Doorway.”

The film is described as a compilation of found footage attributed to two Irish priests who were sent by the Vatican to investigate a reported miracle of a weeping statue in a Magdalene laundry.

Opened from the eighteenth century onwards around the world – and portrayed memorably by actor-director Peter Mullen in “The Magdalene Sisters,” a 2002 Venice Golden Lion winner – the Magdalene Asylums were homes run by religious institutions for “fallen” women: Prostitutes, unwed mothers or women suspected of sexual promiscuity.

The footage of “The Devil’s Doorway” includes
See full article at Variety - Film News »

'Whisky Galore!' world premiere to close Edinburgh

'Whisky Galore!' world premiere to close Edinburgh
Remake of classic Scottish comedy set for world premiere as 2016 Edinburgh closing night gala.

The 70th edition of the Edinburgh Film Festival (Eiff) (June 15-26) will close with the world premiere of Scottish comedy remake Whisky Galore!.

A remake of Alexander Mackendrick’s 1949 feature of the same name, the story follows a group of Scottish islanders who enjoy a windfall of whiskey during the Second World War.

The original was based on Sir Compton Mackenzie’s novel of the same name, which was inspired by the shipwreck off the Scottish coast of a ship sailing for America with a cargo of export-only alcohol during World War II.

The home-grown production was filmed on location in Scotland and features Scottish actors including Gregor Fisher (Love Actually), James Cosmo (Braveheart), Kevin Guthrie (Sunset Song), Sean Biggerstaff (Harry Potter And The Chamber of Secrets), and Eddie Izzard (Valkyrie).

Gillies Mackinnon (Regeneration, Hideous Kinky) directed from Peter McDougall’s screenplay. Iain Maclean
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Peter Mullan Reconnects With His Past in First Trailer For ‘Hector’

From performances in Trainspotting, Top of the Lake, Tyrannosaur, Red Riding, War Horse, Boy A, Children of Men, and more to directorial work like Neds and The Magdalene Sisters, Peter Mullan has crafted out a distinct career with a distinct voice. As a fitting birthday present for the actor (who turns 56 today), we have the first trailer for his next feature, Hector.

The directorial debut of Jake Gavin, it follows Mullan’s character as a homeless man who embarks on a journey from Scotland to London and reconnects to those in his storied life along the way. While there’s no U.S. distribution set yet, it’ll arrive next month in the U.K. and looks to have another great performance from Mullan.

Check out the the trailer below (with a hat tip to Screen Relish) for the film also starring Sarah Solemani, Keith Allen, Stephen Tompkinson, Natalie Gavin and Sharon Rooney.
See full article at The Film Stage »

Venice Slates Euro-Centric Critics' Week Lineup

Venice Slates Euro-Centric Critics' Week Lineup
As the Venice Film Festival slate starts to unspool, its 30th annual Critics' Week lineup celebrating new directors has now been revealed. It's a nostalgic program this year, with a screening of Scottish director Peter Mullan's 1998 "Orphans" opening the sidebar, running September 2 through 12. The drama won a surfeit of prizes when it premiered on the Lido, and four years later Mullan won the Golden Lion for his chilling "The Magdalene Sisters" (2002). Read More: Venice Taps Two Auteurs to Head Juries Critics' Week will close with "Bagnoli Jungle" by Antonio Capuano, who won a Venice prize in 1991 for "Vito and the Others." The selection of mostly European titles screening in and out of competition is below. Eight of these are world premieres, and they're eligible for Venice's Golden Lion of the Future first feature prize. In Competition Ana yurdu (Motherland) by Senem Tuzen - Turkey, Greece 2015 / 98’ Banat (Il viaggio) ...
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Peter Mullan To Be Feted By Venice Film Festival Critics’ Week

Peter Mullan To Be Feted By Venice Film Festival Critics’ Week
Rome – The Venice Film Festival’s Critics’ Week will fete Scottish multihyphenate Peter Mullan with a special screening of “Orphans,” his 1998 directorial debut, selected as the best pic ever to screen at the independently run sidebar dedicated to first works, which celebrates its 30th edition this year.

Mullan is expected on the Lido September 3 to receive a nod and introduce a special screening of “Orphans,” which he also scripted.

The actor/director’s subsequent helming effort, “The Magdalene Sisters,” won the Venice Golden Lion in 2002.

“We are proud to be celebrating our 30th with Peter Mullan and his magnificent directorial debut ‘Orphans’,” enthused Venice Critics’ Week topper Francesco Di Pace in a statement.

“These have been thirty passionate years during which our section served as a launching pad for many auteurs who gained international acclaim.”

Besides “Orphans,” the five first works most voted as the section’s best by Italo
See full article at Variety - Film News »

What's New on Netflix, TV, Digital, and DVD/Blu-ray This Week: June 1-7

At a loss for what to watch this week? From new DVDs and Blu-rays, to what's streaming on Netflix, we've got you covered.

New on DVD and Blu-ray

"Focus"

Will Smith and Margot Robbie are now filming the highly anticipated "Suicide Squad" movie, but watch them as con artists in this crime drama, which is available June 2. The "Focus" Blu-ray/DVD combo includes the special features "Masters of Misdirection: The Players in a Con, "Will Smith: Gentleman Thief," "Margot Robbie: Stealing Hearts," deleted scenes, and an alternate opening.

"McFarland USA"

Kevin Costner stars in Disney's inspirational sports drama about a successful high school cross country team in McFarland, California. The Digital HD, Blu-ray, and DVD all come with special features including "Juntos" music video and a featurette called "Inspiring McFarland."

"Jupiter Ascending"

This was pretty much demolished by critics, but it still has some defenders and a great
See full article at Moviefone »

Here’s What’s New to Netflix in June: Marvel, Scorsese, and More

School’s out for summer, and the monthly changeover at Netflix is about to ensure that you’ll have plenty of different content to watch next month. A number of films will become available to stream in June, including the magnificent Nightcrawler, Martin Scorsese’s somewhat underrated The Aviator, Jon Stewart’s directorial debut Rosewater, and one of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s final films, A Most Wanted Man. Additionally, last year’s critically hailed but way underseen Beyond the Lights will be available to stream, as will Transformers: Age of Extinction if you enjoy having your senses assaulted. On the TV side, Season 2 of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Scandal Season 4 will become available, as will the third season of the Netflix Original Series Orange Is the New Black and the first season of Sense8, from creators Lana and Andy Wachowski. Check out the full list of new to Netflix titles below.
See full article at Collider.com »

New on Netflix: June 2015

New on Netflix this June: "Sense8," the new sci-fi drama from Andy and Lana Wachowski ("The Matrix" trilogy) and "Babylon 5" creator J. Michael Straczynski, in which eight strangers suddenly find themselves mysteriously connected. Also, look for the return of Netflix original series "Orange Is the New Black" on June 12.

As for movies, you won't want to miss Jake Gyllenhaal's terrifyingly great turn in "Nightcrawler." Also new: "Life of Crime" and "Cake" with Jennifer Aniston; Philip Seymour Hoffman's last completed film, the spy thriller "A Most Wanted Man"; Gina Prince-Bythewood's acclaimed film "Beyond the Lights" starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw as a rising singer; not to mention the critically panned "Grace of Monaco," starring Nicole Kidman as Princess Grace.

Below is a full rundown of what's new on Netflix in June 2015, provided by Netflix. As always, all titles and dates are subject to change. We've also go you covered
See full article at Moviefone »

Miss Marple Actress Geraldine McEwan Dies at the Age of 82

Miss Marple Actress Geraldine McEwan Dies at the Age of 82
London — Actress Geraldine McEwan, best known for her role as Agatha Christie’s amateur detective Miss Marple, has died at the age of 82, her family have told the BBC.

She died on Jan. 30 following a stroke in late October, her family said.

McEwan won the BAFTA TV award in 1991 for best actress for her role in “Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit.” She also won awards for her theater work, taking Evening Standard best actress awards for “The Rivals” in 1983 and for “The Way of the World” in 1995.

She was nominated for a Tony Award for the 1998 production of Ionesco’s “The Chairs.”

McEwan appeared as Miss Marple in 12 episodes of the ITV television series “Agatha Christie’s Marple” from 2004 to 2009.

She also featured in 1991 Hollywood movie “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves” as evil witch Mortianna, and in indie films like Kenneth Branagh’s “Love’s Labour’s Lost” and “Henry V,
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Geraldine McEwan dies by Jennie Kermode - 2015-02-01 11:41:45

Geraldine McEwan in The Magdalene Sisters

Geraldine McEwan, best known for playing Agatha Christie's Miss Marple in a long-running television series, has died at the age of 82. In her 57 year career the much-admired character actress also appeared in films as diverse as Henry V, The Magdalene Sisters and Vanity Fair. She provided the voice of Miss Thipp in Wallace and Grommit film The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit and also appeared alongside Kevin Costner and Sean Conner in Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves.

An awkward child who found refuge in the theatre and quickly made an impression with her acting talents, the versatile McEwan had no formal training but soon progressed through Stratford and Broadway before finding her way into film. She was an avowed left-winger and was rumoured to have turned down the offer of being made a dame. She died peacefully following a stroke and is survived by her two.
See full article at eyeforfilm.co.uk »

Irish Producer Ed Guiney to Receive European Co-Production Award

Irish Producer Ed Guiney to Receive European Co-Production Award
Bydgoszcz, Poland — The European Co-Production Award — Prix Eurimages, which honors an individual working in the vanguard of European movie co-productions, will go to Irish producer Ed Guiney.

The award will be presented during the European Film Awards ceremony in Riga, Latvia on Dec. 13.

Guiney co-founded Element Pictures with Andrew Lowe in 2001. Today, Element has offices in Dublin and London, working across production, distribution, and exhibition.

Element has been involved in the production and distribution of more than 30 feature films. Current and upcoming Element productions include Yorgos Lanthimos’ first English-language film, “The Lobster,” starting Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, John C. Reilly, Lea Seydoux and Ben Whishaw, “Room,” an adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s novel, directed by Lenny Abrahamson and starring Brie Larson, Joan Allen and William H. Macy, Gerard Barrett’s “Glassland,” starring Jack Reynor, Toni Colette and Will Poulter, and Jerzy Skolimowski’s “11 Minutes.”

Recently completed Element productions include Abrahamson’s “Frank,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Film4’s New Chief David Kosse Speaks to Variety About Challenges of Role

London — U.K. broadcaster Channel 4 revealed today that the new chief of its filmmaking division, Film4 — which has backed Oscar-winning pics like Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” and Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire” — would be David Kosse, who is president, international, at Universal Pictures. Variety spoke to Kosse about his new role.

Kosse, who joins Film4 on Nov. 1, said it was a bit early to speak about specific plans for Film4, but added that he had no intention of changing the “creative remit” of the production unit. “There continues to be a focus on emerging filmmakers, young talent and creative risk-taking,” he said.

Recent pics from emerging U.K. talent backed by Film4 include Yann Demange’s feature debut “’71,” which premiered in Berlin competition, and Daniel Wolfe’s first film “Catch Me Daddy,” which bowed in Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight.

See Also: David Kosse Named Chief of Channel 4
See full article at Variety - Film News »

David Kosse Named Chief of Channel 4’s Movie Production Arm Film4

London — David Kosse has been appointed as director of Channel 4’s feature filmmaking division Film4.

Kosse joins from Universal Pictures where he is president, international, and will take up his new post on Nov. 1.

Kosse will oversee the development, financing and green-lighting of all feature films, and support for the production and distribution of all Film4-backed releases both in the U.K. and internationally.

Kosse replaces Tessa Ross, who announced her departure in March to become chief executive of the National Theatre. Kosse will report directly to Channel 4 chief executive David Abraham.

See Also: Film4’s New Chief David Kosse Speaks to Variety About Challenges of Role

Recent films backed by Film4 include Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave,” Mike Leigh’s “Mr. Turner,” Ken Loach’s “Jimmy Hall” and Jonathan Glazer’s “Under the Skin.”

Upcoming pics include Lone Scherfig’s drama about a boisterous Oxford student dining club,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Philomena | Blu-ray Review

Just when you thought that Stephen Frears’ latest film, Philomena, would be yet another questionable exercise from the once generally revered auteur, (judging from a recent string of misfires that resulted in his career worst with 2012’s unfathomably awful Lay the Favorite), he switches it up with his best work since The Queen. Presented at the Toronto Int. FIlm Festival, the Academy Award and BAFTA award-nominated crowd pleaser, to be sure, but despite its unavoidable pretense as an awards darling (of which there are bound to be several), a disavowal to wallow in chintzy schmaltz at least makes it deserving of praise in that it’s intelligently written (and based on a true story! Oh my!) and genuinely performed, even if the film is rather visually banal.

The Lost Child of Philomena Lee, a 2009 book by BBC correspondent Martin Sixsmith, here portrayed by Steve Coogan, provides the basis for Stephen Frears’ treatment,
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Why film producers are relieved when the Oscars are over

Head of BBC Films Christine Langan explains why the end of the awards season is a good thing, and how she 'nurtures' winners like The Queen and Philomena

The Oscars inspire various emotions in film producers: suspense, elation, deflation … and relief. Whatever the outcome, award season is finally over. "They are very exciting, but it's got to the point where they take up a big chunk of the year," observes Christine Langan, head of BBC Films. "You're barely through the summer when the pundits are coming up with a programme of what to watch."

Still, she grants, for those outside the major studios, gongs can be a film's best friend. "Working in the independent sector, you're in the lunatic gang anyway, hoping for some magic – a really unusual story or a really knockout performance – so of course awards are important. They can prolong the life of your film, get it noticed,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »
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