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1-20 of 23 items from 2016   « Prev | Next »

Interview: Ric Addy, Owner of Chicago’s Shake, Rattle & Read, on Closing the Business

19 May 2016 7:35 PM, PDT | | See recent news »

Chicago – The term “throwback” is bantered about with such regularity these days that it loses its meaning. An authentic throwback, however, is the eclectic pop culture store “Shake, Rattle & Read,” which closes its doors at the end of business Saturday, May 21st, 2016. The outlet, an Uptown neighborhood mainstay, has been owned by the same family for 50 years. Current owner Ric Addy is ready to say goodbye to all that.

Ric Addy is a throwback retail hustler, riding the shock wave of the changes to the Uptown neighborhood since taking over the store from his sister in 1986. He began in the record store business, when the wax platter was the music delivery system of choice. After gaining experience from Rose Records downtown, and the Record Exchange in Evanston (Illinois, north of Chicago), he decided to take over the “Book Box” location his sister had run since 1966. For the last 30 years, through »

- (Adam Fendelman)

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Interview: Director Whit Stillman Celebrates ‘Love & Friendship’

17 May 2016 1:53 PM, PDT | | See recent news »

Chicago – Say the name Whit Stillman in certain cinema circles, and a rush of admiration soon follows. The director made a name for himself with his debut film “Metropolitan’ (1990), and followed with the same emotional pallette in “Barcelona” (1994). He is back with an adaptation of a Jane Austin novel, entitled “Love & Friendship.”

The title is taken from one of Jane Austin’s short stories, but the narrative is from her novel “Lady Susan,” published 60 years after her death. It involves the title character (portrayed in the film by Kate Beckinsale), a widow without fortune, who is looking to marry again to wealth, and wishes the same for her daughter. She visits the estate of her sister-in-law and brother-in-law – Charles and Catherine Vernon – in the hopes of making a match for her lovely child Frederica, or at least herself.

Chloë Sevigny and Kate Beckinsale in ‘Love & Friendship’

Photo credit: Roadside Attractions »

- (Adam Fendelman)

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Captain America: Civil War Wins Box Office Weekend #2 with $72.5M

15 May 2016 12:28 PM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

After any huge opening weekend, especially within the summer months, it's fairly common that any movie drops roughly 50% in its second weekend. After opening with a massive $179.1 million last weekend, Captain America: Civil War still won its second weekend with a landslide victory at the box office over new releases Money Monster and The Darkness with $72.5 million. This superhero adventure did drop 59.5% from its opening weekend, but even with this sizeable decrease, the first Marvel Phase 3 adventure is in good shape to cross $1 billion worldwide sometime this week.

Box Office Mojo reports that Captain America: Civil War has earned $295.8 million domestically and $645 million internationally for a worldwide total of $940.8 million, from a $250 million budget. After just two weeks in theaters, this superhero adventure has already become the seventh-highest domestic release within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and fourth highest worldwide release. The movie still has quite a ways to go if »

- MovieWeb

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Preview of Deadpool: Last Days of Magic #1

14 May 2016 4:20 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Ahead of its release on Wednesday, Marvel has debuted a preview of Deadpool: Last Days of Magic #1, which we have for you here…

From the pages of Doctor Strange…the Empirikul are waging a war on magic with the goal of wiping the fantastical from the pages of existence. This concerns Deadpool, because some of his best friends are magic. As the Empirikul forces batter the defenses of the Monster Metropolis ruled by his demonic wife, Deadpool wades into battle alongside his most spell-casting-est friends. And you know the old saying “Nothing ever goes wrong in a war.” That’s a saying, right?

Deadpool: Last Days of Magic #1 is out on May 18th, priced $4.99.


- Amie Cranswick

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Exclusive Video Interview: Kate Backinsale Talks Love & Friendship

12 May 2016 2:44 PM, PDT | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

Love & Friendship is definitely the funniest Jane Austen adaptation you’ll ever see. There’s still plenty of 18th-century sense and sensibility here – and great period costumes – but this new film from writer/director Whit Stillman will have you laughing out loud on many occasions.

Based on a little-known novella called Lady Susan that Austen wrote when she was just 15, the story revolves around one Lady Susan Vernon (Kate Beckinsale), who clearly knows what she wants out of life and uses all of her wit, charm – and sharp tongue – to achieve just that.  As a widow, Lady Susan must rely on the kindness of her in-laws to take her in, while striving to find a match for her daughter (Morfydd Clark) and herself, of course.

Known for his satirical looks at society, Stillman finds a kindred spirit through Austen’s words and reunites with his Last Days of Disco stars Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny, »

- Kit Bowen

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‘Last Days in the Desert’ Review: Ewan McGregor Plays Jesus and Satan in Too-Polite Bible Tale

12 May 2016 1:43 PM, PDT | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

According to the New Testament, Jesus was led into the wilderness to be tempted by Satan for 40 days. During that time of fasting and prayer, Jesus sought the presence of God and sparred with the Prince of Darkness as preparation for ministry and an eventual sacrificial mission. Details related to this story, though significant — Jesus rebukes the Devil and makes it through, unscathed — are also fairly sparse. It’s that empty, speculative space that entices writer-director Rodrigo Garcia (“Nine Lives,” “Albert Nobbs’) to invent a new obstacle for Jesus (Ewan McGregor, called “Yeshua” here) in “Last Days in »

- Dave White

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Can Money Monster Defeat Civil War at the Box Office?

10 May 2016 10:40 AM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

As many expected, the first Marvel Phase 3 adventure Captain America: Civil War kicked off the summer movie season last weekend in a huge way, raking in $179.1 million. This was down slightly from the Sunday estimate of $181.7 million, but was still a landslide victory at the box office. The opening weekend was the third best in McU history, behind Avengers: Age of Ultron ($191.2 million) and The Avengers ($207.4 million). The superhero adventure looks to continue its dominance this weekend, and, most likely, throughout May, at least until X-Men: Apocalypse arrives on May 27. This weekend, Cap squares off against two newcomers, Sony's financial thriller Money Monster and High Top Releasing's horror-thriller The Darkness, but neither should come close to catching Cap and the rest of the Avengers.

Box Office Mojo reveals that Money Monster is slated to debut in approximately 3,000 theaters, with The Darkness arriving on roughly 1,500 screens. Both of those theater counts »

- MovieWeb

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Comic Book Review: Quick Marvel Comics Breakdown!

28 April 2016 9:10 PM, PDT | LatinoReview | See recent LatinoReview news »

International Iron Man #2

Story: Brian Michael Bendis Art: Alex Maleev


The mystery of Tony's real parents reveals some truths behind the history of the Marvel Universe that have been kept hidden for decades. Can Tony unravel the mystery before deadly history repeats itself?


More details are revealed about Tony’s relationship with Cassandra and how it might be the cause for all his current relationship problems. Also it’s hinted at in current times, Cassandra might know something about Tony’s real parents. A bit of a “filler” issue, but still some excellent art from Alex Maleev. Might be worth skipping and just getting a trade later on.

Score C+  The Ultimates #6

Story: Al Ewing Art: Christian Ward


Once he was the Devourer of Worlds -- but now, at long last, his endless hunger has been cured. But is there a hidden price? What does it mean »

- Jeremy Scully

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Preview of Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1

23 April 2016 10:25 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Ahead of its release this coming Wednesday, Marvel has debuted a preview of Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1, which you can see right here…

This companion to the “Last Days Of Magic” epic! The Empirikul, led by The Imperator, are destroying all magic and magic users in the Marvel Universe. Jason Aaron brings you Doctor Strange and Wong’s secret history and the ultimate sacrifice that Wong makes! Gerry Duggan shows Brother Voodoo’s stand against the evil magic-eaters. James Robinson introduces a new magic figure in the Marvel U just in time for her last stand!

Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1 is out on April 27th, priced $5.99.


- Amie Cranswick

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Command And Control Review [Tribeca 2016]

17 April 2016 7:00 PM, PDT | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

On September 18, 1980, a mechanic accidentally dropped a socket while performing routine maintenance on a Titan II missile in Damascus, Arkansas. The resulting rupture in the fuel tank nearly resulted in the detonation of one of America’s most powerful nuclear warheads. This is the harrowing subject of Command and Control, which just premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival: a fascinating and terrifying documentary about the on-going effects of the Cold War arms race, and how close America came to nuclear catastrophe.

Coming from the producers and director of Food, Inc. and the executive producer of Last Days of Vietnam, Command and Control is based on the book of the same name by Eric Schlosser, who also acts as an occasional narrator of the film. Command and Control chronicles two historical events: the nuclear arms race and nuclear accidents in America, and their relationship to the near-catastrophe of the “Damascus Accident. »

- Lauren Humphries-Brooks

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Cannes 2016 Line-Up Includes ‘Personal Shopper,’ ‘Paterson,’ ‘The Neon Demon,’ and More

14 April 2016 3:06 AM, PDT | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

The competition line-up for our most-anticipated cinema-related event of the year has arrived. With a jury headed up by George Miller, early this morning, the 2016 Cannes Film Festival announced their slate. The competition line-up includes some of our most-anticipated films of the year, including the Dardennes‘ The Unknown Girl, Olivier AssayasPersonal Shopper, Andrea Arnold‘s American Honey, Jim Jarmusch‘s Paterson, Paul Verhoeven‘s Elle, Park Chan-wook‘s The Handmaiden, and many more.

Playing out of competition is the previously announced Cafe Society from Woody Allen, as well as Steven Spielberg‘s The Bfg, Jodie Foster‘s Money Monster, Shane Black‘s The Nice Guys, and Na Hong-jin‘s mystery thriller Goksung. Some notable titles in the Un Certain Regard section include the Studio Ghibli-backed Red Turtle and Hirokazu Kore-eda‘s  After the Storm.

Check out the full line-up below, along with new stills at the end of the post. »

- Jordan Raup

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Cannes 2016: Official Selection in full

14 April 2016 2:46 AM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

The line-up of the 69th Cannes Film Festival in full.

At a press conference this morning, Cannes chief Thierry Frémaux and president Pierre Lescure revealed 49 films selected for inclusion in this year’s festival, set to run May 11-22.

The annoncement was delayed by a peaceful protest at the Ugc Normandie movie theatre on the Champs-Elysees in Paris. A tweet from the festival said: “Due to an intervention of Entertaintement workers, the announcement of the Selection is slightly delayed. Stay with us!”

As previously announced, Woody Allen’s Café Society will open the festival on May 11.

Also previously announced, the competition jury will be presided over by Australian director George Miller, whose Oscar-winning Mad Max: Fury Road received its world premiere at Cannes last year.


Jury chair: George Miller

Toni Erdmann, Maren Ade (Germany)Julieta, Pedro Almodóvar (Spain)American Honey, Andrea Arnold (UK)Personal Shopper, Olivier Assayas (France)The Unknown Girl (La Fille Inconnue), Jean-Pierre Dardenne & [link »

- (Michael Rosser)

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First look preview of Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1

2 April 2016 9:30 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Ahead of its release later this month, Marvel has debuted a preview of Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1, which we have for you here…


This companion to the “Last Days Of Magic” epic! The Empirikul, led by The Imperator, are destroying all magic and magic users in the Marvel Universe. Jason Aaron brings you Doctor Strange and Wong’s secret history and the ultimate sacrifice that Wong makes! Gerry Duggan shows Brother Voodoo’s stand against the evil magic-eaters. James Robinson introduces a new magic figure in the Marvel U just in time for her last stand!

Doctor Strange: Last Days of Magic #1 is out on April 27th, priced $5.99.


- Amie Cranswick

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Trailer Watch: Whit Stillman’s Love & Friendship

23 March 2016 10:37 AM, PDT | Filmmaker Magazine - Blog | See recent Filmmaker Magazine news »

Following its well received world premiere at Sundance 2016, Love & Friendship, Whit Stillman’s latest comedy of manners, gets its first trailer. Stillman reunites his Last Days of Disco co-stars Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny for this adaptation of Jane Austen’s novella Lady Susan. Beckinsale plays the titular Lady Susan Vernon, “the most accomplished flirt in all England,” who visits the estate of her in-laws where she schemes to marry off her daughter and perhaps find her own husband. Sevigny plays her visiting American friend. Xavier Samuel, Stephen Fry, Tom Bennett, Jemma Redgrave, James Fleet, Justin Edwards and Emma Greenwell round out the cast. As Filmmaker‘s Vadim Rizov notes […] »

- Paula Bernstein

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Kate Beckinsale’s ‘Love & Friendship’ to Open San Francisco Film Festival

22 March 2016 12:09 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The 59th San Francisco International Film Festival will open with Whit Stillman’s “Love & Friendship,” starring Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny, on April 21 at the Castro Theatre.

“Love & Friendship,” an adaptation of a Jane Austen novella, centers on Beckinsale’s character trying to finagle out of a scandal and gain matrimonial advantage for herself and her daughter. It’s set in the 1790s as it peers into the affairs of the privileged and those who aspire to be.

Amazon and Roadside Attractions acquired the domestic rights to the film at Sundance this year. The comedy of manners reunites Stillman with “Last Days of Disco” stars Beckinsale and Sevigny. Xavier Samuel, Stephen Fry and Emma Greenwell round out the cast.

Stillman and Beckinsale are expected to attend the San Francisco screening.

The festival also set James Schamus’ directorial debut “Indignation,” starring Logan Lerman, as its centerpiece event on April 30 at the Victoria Theatre. »

- Dave McNary

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For the Audience's Consideration: An Interview with Ted Fendt

19 March 2016 7:25 AM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

A friend and a contributor to the Notebook has taken a deep breath of air and expanded his droll short films—which we’ve featured on Mubi—into a modest feature that received a decidedly impressive premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in February and will next show at the New Directors/New Films collaboration between New York's Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Museum of Modern Art.Short Stay does not feel like a bigger film than director Ted Fendt's charmingly ill-fitting shorts, but rather is more robust, fuller in passing detail and commonplace incident. In other words: unassuming, but charged. This new movie very much resembles Fendt’s wonderful shorts, which feature young people of unenunciated dissatisfaction and nearly inscrutable psychology living small scale lives full of long-time acquaintances, a few friendships, over-visited family homes, and well-trod suburban and small town strolls. Fendt is also »

- Daniel Kasman

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2016's Tentative Calendar

7 March 2016 3:07 PM, PST | FilmExperience | See recent FilmExperience news »

We'll begin awardable speculations all over again starting April 1st as we do. Don't hate us because we're Ocd. So I'm prepping a cheat sheet list of releases that could factor in in ways very minor or major. Let me know if I've missed any juicy titles you're awaiting after the jump.

January through April

Which ones will people still care about in 10 months when top ten lists / awards season begins

10 Cloverfield Lane, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, The Boss, Demolition, Everybody Wants Some, Hail Caesar!, Hello My Name is Doris, A Hologram for the King, The Huntsman: Winter's War, Krisha, The Meddler, Midnight Special, Miles Ahead, Sing Street, Tale of Tales, The Witch, and Zootopia

Popcorn Season (May-August)

Some Oscar nominees always emerge in the summer. But the question is in which categories?

Alice Through the Looking Glass, Ben-Hur, The Bfg, A Bigger Splash, Captain America: Civil War, »


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Berlin 2016: Middle East and North Africa at the Berlinale

6 March 2016 10:54 AM, PST | Sydney's Buzz | See recent Sydney's Buzz news »

This year we are seeing many films from Mena, that is an acronym for the Middle East and North Africa. More commonly called “Arab” cinema, (though the term is inaccurate because several countries in the region are not actually “Arab”) the films of this region are winning many awards and garnering much interest worldwide.

More than 10 Arab films participated in the Berlinale’s Forum and Forum Expanded programs this year, in addition to the ones which participated in the Official Competition (“Inhebek Hedi”/ “Hedi” from Tunisia and “A Dragon Arrives!” by Mani Haghighi from Iran). This makes an especially remarkable year for Arab cinema’s presence in Berlin.

The Forum focus on Arab cinema, represented with films from Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria and Saudi Arabia highlights mostly young directors whose works explore both the past and present of their homelands.

The films included: “A Magical Substance Flows into Me” by artist Jumana Manna (Palestine), “Akher ayam el madina”/ “In the Last Days of the City” (Egypt) by Tamer El Said (international sales by Still Moving), documentary “Makhdoumin”/ “A Maid for Each” (Lebanon) by Maher Abi Samra (Isa: Docs & Film), “Barakah yoqabil Barakah”/ “Barakah Meets Barakah” (Saudi Arabia) by Mahmoud Sabbagh and Manazil (Isa: Mpm), “Bela abwab”/ “Houses without Doors” by Syrian-Armenian director Avo Kaprealian. Of course the 46th Berlinale Forum also screens films from European, Latin American and Asian directors.

The Tunisian film in Competition “Inhebek Hedi”/ “Hedi” by Mohamed Ben Attia, won the Best First Feature Award and its leading man, Majd Mastoura, received the prestigious Silver Bear for Best Actor for his role as Hedi. Attia’s debut feature film is a thoughtful love story about identity and independence in Tunisian society. It is being sold internationally by Luxbox.

Palestinian director Mahdi Fleifel won the Silver Bear Jury Prize for Short Film for “ A Man Returned”, a 30-minute portrayal of a young refugee struggling to make a life for himself in Lebanon’s Ain El-Helweh camp, being sold internationally by 3.14 Collectif. He previously made an award-winning documentary about his own experience as a refugee. The short film was also selected as the Berlin Short Film Nominee for the European Film Awards.

The Ecumenical Jury awarded the Forum Prize to Saudi filmmaker Mahmoud Sabbagh for his well-received romantic comedy “Barakah Yoqabil Barakah”/ “Barakah Meets Barakah”, a social commentary on the lives of young people in Saudi Arabia. It shared the prize with Danish production “Les Sauteurs”/ “Those Who Jump” – a film that also highlights the plight of Europe-bound refugees.

Egyptian filmmaker Tamer El-Said’s feature film “Akher Ayam El-Madina”/ “In the Last Days of the City” won the Caligari Film Prize. The film looks at a young filmmaker’s struggle to complete a film about Cairo. It was the only Egyptian film to participate in the 2016 Berlinale Forum.

Lebanese filmmaker Maher Abi Samra’s documentary “Makhdoumin”/ “A Maid for Each”, a look at the legal system that controls the lives of Lebanon’s foreign domestic workers, won the Peace Film Prize.

Zinzana”/ “Rattle the Cage” director, Majid al Ansari, from the Arab Emirates, was honored with Variety’s Mid-East Filmmaker of the Year Award at the Berlinale. The film is the first genre movie of its kind produced in the UAE. It was financed and produced by Abu Dhabi’s ImageNation. It is repped for Us by Cinetic and international sales are by Im Global.

Projects “Mawlana”, based on Ibrahim Issa’s best-selling novel and shortlisted for the Arabic Booker Prize and director’s Mohamed Yassein’s “Wedding Song” based on Naguib Mahfouz’s novel, the Nobel Prize Winner for Literature were being promoted at the Arab Cinema Center at the Market. Reflecting a decadent Egypt from the 1970s, “Wedding Song” is one of the largest TV productions in the Arab World in 2016.

“Theeb”, a Jordanian Epic about Bedouins, is the Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. It played in Venice. International sales agent Fortissimo has licensed it to Film Movement for U.S., ABC for Benelux, New Wave for U.K., As Fidalgo for Norway, Jiff for Australia, trigon-film for Switzerland. Mad Solutions is handling the Middle East. “Ave Maria” a 14-minute Palestine satirical short is the Academy Award nomination for Best Short Fiction and is being sold internationally by Ouat Media. “ The Idol” (Palestine) played Tiff 2015 and other top fests and has sold widely throughout the world through Canada-based international sales agent Seville. Not since Elia Suleiman won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival for “Divine Intervention” has a Palestinian film director made as much of an impact as “The Idol” director Hany Abu-Assad whose “Paradise Now” and “Omar” both went to the Academy Awards.

Kudos for much of the success of Arab cinema go to Mad Solutions, the Cairo, Abu Dhabi and New York based marketing and distribution company for its marketing and social media strategies as well as its release of “Theeb”, “Zinzana” and “Ave Maria”. It also helped create the Arab Cinema Center which was launched last year at the Berlinale and Efm.

In all, 20 Mena films played in the Festival and Market this year.

And what of that other small country in the region called Israel (and/ or Palestine) which is not included in the term Mena? While Israeli films that showed in Berlin received international praise, they will never show in any of the Arab countries and are sometimes boycotted by international film festivals who succumb to censorship tactics.

Most of the larger Israeli features go to Cannes, Venice and Toronto; “Afterthought” went to Cannes, “Mountain” to Venice, “Barash” to San Sebastian”, “Wedding Doll” to London and “A.K.A. Nadia” to Talinn Black Nights Film Festival. In Berlin many are screened as German Premieres.

What Israeli films have won acclaim lately? Is it possible that our hero, Katriel Schory, head of the Israel Film Fund, whose stand for true art has earned him Israeli government censure at home (A prophet is never honored in his own land) and fame abroad with new countries striving to create national cinema, is being eclipsed by the growth of “Arab” cinema?

“Sandstorm” directed by Elite Zexer (international sales by Beta) made its way to Panorama from its world premiere in Sundance where it won the Best Actress Award for Palestinian actress Lamis Ammar’s portrayal of a young Bedouin woman forced to choose between modern freedom or traditional societal strictures within an arranged marriage.

Panorama also screened “Junction 48” (international sales by The Match Factory) which received international praise and audience acclaim. The Israeli-Palestinian hip-hop movie by Israeli-American filmmaker, Udi Aloni, was supported by the Israel-based Rabinovich Foundation. The story is about Kareem who lives in a mixed Jewish-Arab crime-ridden ghetto outside Tel Aviv. He deals drugs and lives dangerously until he discovers hip-hop and decides to express his life as a Palestinian youth along with young singer Manar. Palestinian and Israeli musicians drive this music movie and for Aloni, just seeing the film made, and then shown at the Berlin Film Festival proves its success.

“Suddenly a group of people just choose to make a film and the film is extremely professional. It’s very important that this bi-national energy can create high quality stuff, the high quality is almost the symbol of the resistance. We should not even have to tell the story about the issue. The fact that we could create it is amazing,” Aloni told Euronews.

Thirty-seven-year-old Arab-Israeli rapper Tamer Nafar plays the lead role, and has known the 56-year-old Aloni for some time. “We have been on the same demonstrations, in the parties since 2000, so we live in each other’s world. He has been to my concerts many times, he directed a video clip, I was in his movies as a producer a few times. It’s not about an old generation and new generation, it’s just about creating the right generation,” he said. “He has that gift of being a good story teller and director but he gives us the stage, no, he doesn’t give us a stage, we are building a stage together… he has his own perspective but we are all on the same level,” said actress Samar Qupty. The struggle for equal rights for Palestinians or Arab Israelis inside Israel is at its crux.

Panorama Documents screened “Who’s Gonna Love Me Now?” directed by Tomer Haymann and Barak Heymann co-directed by Alexander Bodin Saphir and being sold by Austria’s Autlook. Forum showed “ Inertia” by Idan Haguel being sold by Oration Films’ Timothy O’Brian of the U.S., and “Between Fences” by Avi Mograbi, being sold by Docs & Film’s Daniela Elstner of France. Culinary Cinema showed “Café Nagler” by Mor Kaplansky and Yariv Barel is being sold internationally by Go2Films.

Teddy 30 (the retrospective of Teddy Award winners over the past 30 years) honored Dan Wolman’s 1979 film “Hide and Seek”/ “Machboim”. Berlinale Shorts screened Rotem Murat’s “Winds Junction” from Sapir College which also holds international rights; Generation 14 Plus screened “Mushkie” by Aleeza Chanowitz from the Jerusalem San Spiegel Film School, being sold by Cinephil. Seven other films were sold in the market by various sales agents.

One of the very special events I attended at the Berlinale this year was the Shabbat Dinner, held the first Friday in the Festival and hosted by Nicola Galliner, Founder and Force of the Berlin Jewish Film Festival. There was a table full of Jews: the new Director of the Jerusalem Film Festival, Noa Regev, PhD; Jay Rosenblatt, Program Director of San Francisco’sJewish Film Institute and its former Director, Peter Stein, now the Senior Programmer of Frameline, San Francisco’s Lgbtq Film Festival; Judy Ironside, the Founder and President of UK Jewish Film and of the sixth edition of the Geneva and Zurich Jewish Film Festivals, the new young director of the Boston Jewish Film Festival, Ariana Cohen-Halberstam who recently moved from the New York Jcc to Boston, the prolific Israeli director, filmmaker Dan Wolman whose new film will soon be out and whose 1979 film “Hide and Seek”/ “Machboim” was part of the Teddy 30th Anniversary Retrospective held by the Berlinale Panorama.

Talk was about films, about politics including gender politics, about our concerns, (we Jews are better worriers than warriors) and just plain gossip.

Now if my readers will excuse my interjecting myself into this article:

It is my opinion that the region of the world called the Middle East, and the three major monotheistic religions of the world whose origin is there had better learn to do more than merely co-exist peacefully if we are to see peaceful and fruitful consequences which will set the world back upon its proper axis.

Art breaks down borders; it is subversive rather than observant of the exigencies of ever changing governments. It creates new perspectives and breaks down old ways of seeing. What I call “Cinema” is Art. Other movies may simply entertain and not aspire to more or they may propagate dogmas, but Art serves no master; it is not tethered; it is freedom of expression which should be honored with freedom to travel. »

- Sydney Levine

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Berlin Film Review: ‘In the Last Days of the City’

14 February 2016 10:00 AM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

As the title suggests, “In the Last Days of the City” is an elegy, a melancholic love-hate poem to Cairo and the role of filmmakers in any city in pain. A long-gestating project that was initially shot in 2009, the film represents a self-reflexive expression, by debuting features helmer Tamer El Said, of profound weight and intricate sadness, grappling with loss in myriad forms through separation, death, politics and ineluctable decay. Largely fiction with nonfiction elements, “Last Days” benefits from time: Most instant responses to the Revolution now seem hopelessly dated, but Said’s work, lensed before the uprising, takes full, intelligent advantage of hindsight. It’s a natural fest item, with chances for targeted arthouse play.

Filmmaker Khalid (Khalid Abdalla) may be the lead role, but the real protag is Cairo itself, specifically Downtown, a district lived on the streets. It’s an area of faded splendor caked with a century of dust and sand, »

- Jay Weissberg

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Sundance Film Review: ‘Love & Friendship’

24 January 2016 2:13 AM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

“He’s very silly, but he has a charm of a kind.” “He’s lively; he brings a new angle to things.” The man being described thusly is an extremely foolish if conveniently wealthy 18th-century gentleman by the name of Sir James Martin, but the kind words might just as well apply — without a hint of euphemism, and with far more honest approbation — to the director of “Love & Friendship,” a supremely elegant and delicately filigreed adaptation of Jane Austen’s epistolary novella “Lady Susan.” With his love of fine clothes and finer diction, Whit Stillman proves an unsurprisingly intuitive fit for Austen, but he also knows just how to give her pointed social satire an extra stab of wink-wink postmodern drollery without breaking the spell. Starring Kate Beckinsale as Lady Susan, the most irresistibly devious of Austen protagonists, this inspired marriage of two distinctive stylists should become a delectable arthouse »

- Justin Chang

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