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This podcast focuses on Criterion’s Eclipse Series of DVDs. Hosts David Blakeslee and Trevor Berrett give an overview of each box and offer their perspectives on the unique treasures they find inside. In this episode, David and Trevor conclude their two-part discussion of Eclipse Series 39: Early Fassbinder.
About the films:
From the very beginning of his incandescent career, the New German Cinema enfant terrible Rainer Werner Fassbinder refused to play by the rules. His politically charged, experimental first films, made at an astonishingly rapid rate between 1969 and 1970, were influenced by the work of the Antiteater, an avant-garde stage troupe that he had helped found in Munich. Collected here are five of those fascinating and confrontational works. Whether a self- conscious meditation on American crime movies, a scathing indictment of xenophobia in contemporary Germany, or an off-the-wall look at the dysfunctional relationships on film sets, each is a startling »
- David Blakeslee
A new Spectre featurette has just been released from the production of the 24th James Bond adventure. The 2-minute promo features a behind-the-scenes look at the film, which is still shooting under the direction of Sam Mendes.
The Mexico set action sequence will have the country’s Day Of The Dead festival as a back drop, and will feature as the elaborate opening scene of the new movie, which opens in the UK and the Us in early November this year.
Sam Mendes said: “I wanted the audience to be dropped right into the middle of a very, very specific, very heady, rich environment. It’s the Day of the Dead, everywhere you look there’s colour and detail and life. »
- Paul Heath
We look at the films that slipped through Hollywood's net, from biblical epics to a time travelling Gladiator sequel...
This article contains a spoiler for Gladiator.
If you're one of those frustrated over the quality of many of the blockbusters that make it to the inside of a multiplex, then ponder the following. For each of these were supposed to be major projects, that for one reason or another, stalled on their way to the big screen. Some still may make it. But for many others, the journey is over. Here are the big blockbusters that never were...
The late Michael Crichton scored another residential on the bestseller list with his impressive thriller, Airframe. It was published in 1996, just after films of Crichton works such as Jurassic Park, Rising Sun, Disclosure and the immortal Congo had proven to be hits of various sizes.
So: a hit book, another techno thriller, »
France’s Lionel Uzan, a former Summit board member and architect of the build of the Snd-M6 Group in France, is joining Pascal Breton’s TV production-distribution house, the Paris and L.A.-based Federation Entertainment Group, in the newly created position of its managing director.
Reporting to Breton, and a partner in Federation Ent.,Uzan, the former acquisitions, productions and intl. distribution director at the Snd-M6 Group, the movie label of French broadcaster M6, takes up a central position overseeing the studio’s full production and distribution activities for France, Europe and the U.S.
Uzan’s appointment becomes effective June 1 at Federation Ent. a company which leapt to fame in August when it was commissioned to produce Netflix’s first French series “Marseille.” Federation Ent. Group officially launched in September with Ashley Stern heading up the L.A. office, and writer-director Eric Rochant on board to »
- John Hopewell
So today (Sunday, which is yesterday), Editor Mike sent me a link to a column on The Jewish Daily Forward’s website which asks the question “Do Marvel Movies Have An Anti-Semitic Problem?” – which also happens to be the dumbest article I’ve ever read on their site.
Granted, The Forward – which was born way back in 1867 as a Yiddish language daily newspaper published by dissidents from the Socialist Labor Party – is a left-leaning paper whose heart and soul is the Jewish-American experience, with strong ties to Israel, and its articles are purposely written with that audience as its primary target. And granted, The Forward has not been the only news media outlet that has noted and remarked upon the recent rebirth of overt and increasingly violent anti-Semitism around the globe, especially in Europe. And yes, The Forward should be praised in its unadulterated and unabridged journalism that consistently calls out the perpetrators. »
- Mindy Newell
Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Spielberg on the Oscars' Red Carpet Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Spielberg arrive at the 83rd Academy Awards, held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Spielberg has taken home two Best Director Oscars: Schindler's List (1993) and Saving Private Ryan (1998). Schindler's List also won Best Picture, but Saving Private Ryan lost to John Madden's Miramax-distributed Shakespeare in Love. There was quite a bit of animosity at the time, as some felt that Miramax, owned by brothers Bob and Harvey Weinstein, overdid its Oscar campaigning – while still managing to sway enough Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences members to vote for its film. Somewhat ironically, at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony Steven Spielberg presented the Best Picture Award to The King's Speech. Toplining Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter, Geoffrey Rush, Guy Pearce, and Claire Bloom, this British production was »
- D. Zhea
This week’s new Blu-ray releases include one of the best films of 2014, Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut, a handful of Steven Spielberg’s films getting Blu-ray upgrades, a new 4K restoration of a Martin Scorsese masterpiece, and more. Click on the links below to purchase. Selma [Blu-ray] - $19.99 (50% off) Lost River (Blu-ray + Digital HD UltraViolet) - $14.94 (50% off) Mr. Turner [Blu-ray] - $24.99 (29% off) Goodfellas 25th Anniversary (Bd) [Blu-ray] - $26.49 (24% off) Munich [Blu-ray] - $15.49 (33% off) 1941 [Blu-ray] - $13.46 (33% off) Always [Blu-ray] - $13.47 (33% off) Mad Max (Collector’s Edition) [Blu-ray] - $12.96 (35% off) The Last Five Years [Blu-ray] - $12.97 (52% off) Black Sea (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD) - $22.98 (34% off) Black or White [Blu-ray] - $19.90 (50% off) Masters of Sex: Season 2 [Blu-ray] - $34.98 (47% off) Halt and Catch Fire: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray] - $24.99 (58% off)
- Adam Chitwood
'Munich' movie cover 'Munich' movie review: Steven Spielberg tackles political time-space continuum in wildly uneven but ultimately satisfying thriller Alternately intriguing and irritating, thought-provoking and banal, subtle and patronizing, the biggest surprise about Steven Spielberg's Munich is that it – however grudgingly – works. The film, which Spielberg himself has referred to as a "prayer for peace," follows five men contracted by the Israeli government to avenge the massacre of that country's athletes at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. Sizable chunks of this political thriller with a Message (capital "M") are simplistically written, clumsily acted, and handled with the director's notoriously heavy touch, but the old adage – blood begets blood – even if somewhat muddled, is too timely not to make an impact. Complex 'Munich' movie plot Based on George Jonas' 1984 book Vengeance: The True Story of an Israeli Counter-Terrorist Team, whose veracity has been questioned in some quarters, Munich begins as »
- Andre Soares
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Click here for a complete list of our essays. How to decide in the grand scheme of things which film year stands above all others? History gives us no clear methodology to unravel this thorny but extremely important question. Is it the year with the highest average score of movies? So a year that averages out to a B + might be the winner over a field strewn with B’s, despite a few A +’s. Or do a few masterpieces lift up a year so far that whatever else happened beyond those three or four films is of no consequence? Both measures are worthy, and the winner by either of those would certainly be a year not to be sneezed at. But I contend the only true measure of a year’s »
- Richard Rushfield
The production and sales outfit, which has offices in Paris and L.A., is set to host a screening of Finnish hospital drama “The Replacements” at the confab. Set in the near future, the series centers on a nurse who falls in love with a man without knowing that he’s a clone created by her father to save her from a terminal blood disease. Produced by Matti Halonen and Miikko Oikkonen’s Fisher King, the 12-episode series has already been picked up Finnish broadcaster Nelonen.
Modeled on the U.S.’ fully integrated studios, Breton created Federation Entertainment in partnership with experienced execs and creatives, notably Alex Berger, a former Canal Plus senior exec, and French helmer-writer Eric Rochant, who are behind “The Bureau, »
- Elsa Keslassy
Netflix announced Monday that it will release “Special Correspondents,” a new film from British comedian Ricky Gervais. Gervais wrote and directed the film, in addition to starring in it alongside Eric Bana (“Munich”). Bana plays a struggling New York-based radio journalist, whose arrogance and decadent lifestyle has hindered his career. With his job on the line, he fakes front line war reports from the comfort of his hideout above a Spanish restaurant in the heart of Manhattan. The film is a co-production between Bron Studios and Unanimous Entertainment. Ricky Gervais, Unanimous’ Chris Coen, Bron’s Aaron L. Gilbert, Manuel Munz and Larry Sanitsky will produce. »
- Joe Otterson
Paul Risker chats with Hostages star Ayelet Zurer…
In 2013 Ayelet Zurer was nominated for the Best Actress in a Drama Series category at the Israeli Television Academy Awards for both Shtisel and Bnei Aruba. The latter is more familiarly known to UK audiences as Hostages, which aired in BBC Four’s Saturday 9pm foreign drama prime time slot. It was for her performance as Dr. Yael Danon in Bnei Aruba/Hostages, a character only introduced to UK audiences in recent weeks that Zurer was awarded her second success at the Israeli Television Academy Awards; following on from her Best Actress award for BeTipul in 2005.
When Flickering Myth spoke with Zurer recently ahead of the series finale of Hostages and its UK home entertainment release she offered: “The more I grow up and mature into what I am supposed to be in this world I guess I understand that my interest »
- Gary Collinson
Nicolas Cage, Rhys Ifans and Joely Richardson (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) have all joined a cast led by Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene Woodley. Melissa Leo, Tom Wilkinson, Zachary Quinto, Scott Eastwood, Timothy Olyphant, Ben Schnetzer and Jaymes Butler also star. Cage will play a former U.S. intelligence official, while no details have been revealed about Ifans and Richardson’s roles.
Gordon-Levitt, of course, is taking on the role of Edward Snowden, the American-born whistleblower who exposed numerous global surveillance programs run by the Nsa and the Five Eyes before fleeing the United States in hopes of being granted sanctuary in Russia. Woodley plays his girlfriend Lindsey Mills; Leo portrays journalist and filmmaker Laura Poitras »
- Isaac Feldberg
Based on the George Jonas’ novel Vengeance, Steven Spielberg’s 2005 drama Munich centers on a covert hit squad that was commissioned by the Israeli government to assassinate the 11 individuals suspected of planning the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre.
Leading the group is Avner Kaufmann (Eric Bana), a Mossad agent named handpicked by Israel Minister Golda Meir (Lynn Cohen) to lead the team. The diverse group includes a driven South African mercenary named Steve (Daniel Craig); Robert (Mathieu Kassovitz), a Belgian toy maker who also makes bombs, an expert forger named Hans (Hanns Zischler) and Carl (Ciaran Hinds), the person responsible for making sure the targets are clean and collateral damage will not become an issue. Despite the denial of their existence by the Israeli government, Avner occasionally reports to a hard line official named Ephraim (Geoffrey Rush).
For a while, the mission is a success as one by one, the targets are found and taken out. »
Film scores are pretty ephemeral to a large chunk of the movie-going populace, where music isn’t noticeable unless a triumphant fanfare or sweeping ballad draws enough attention to itself. So if scoring is already the film industry’s unappreciated middle child, how silly is a list about ones that haven’t been released yet? Very silly. Oftentimes, composers don’t even sign with a project until well into production, so speculating on the best film music of 2015, like any year, forces one to work with what’s known. Sound on Sight will offer more in-depth analysis on the most buzzed about music as the year rolls on but for now, here are the ten movie scores I’m most excited to hear in 2015.
Alan Silvestri’s last great score was for a TV show, and his last great film score was for one of the more forgettable Marvel entries. »
- David Klein
The halls are starting to hum softly here in Berlin as the European Film Market swings into gear. The first deals were announced yesterday before the event officially opened, with The Weinstein Co notably boarding Im Global’s The Man Who Made It Snow. This morning, FilmNation unveiled a series of offshore output deals for titles from Open Road, which will kick off with the Jamie Foxx/Michelle Monaghan-starrer Sleepless Nights.
Though it’s not likely to be a frenzy, and with currency concerns in the market internationally, Berlin should see more action in the coming days. Distributors are looking for product for 2016 and beyond, and some memorable buys have emerged here in recent years. In 2014, The Weinstein Company made a record-setting $7M deal for The Imitation Game which has now made about $140M worldwide and has an armful of Oscar nominations to boot.
Much of the pre-buy buzz »
- Nancy Tartaglione
Stumbling across that list of best-edited films yesterday had me assuming that there might be other nuggets like that out there, and sure enough, there is American Cinematographer's poll of the American Society of Cinematographers membership for the best-shot films ever, which I do recall hearing about at the time. But they did things a little differently. Basically, in 1998, cinematographers were asked for their top picks in two eras: films from 1894-1949 (or the dawn of cinema through the classic era), and then 1950-1997, for a top 50 in each case. Then they followed up 10 years later with another poll focused on the films between 1998 and 2008. Unlike the editors' list, though, ties run absolutely rampant here and allow for way more than 50 films in each era to be cited. I'd love to see what these lists would look like combined, however. I imagine "Citizen Kane," which was on top of the 1894-1949 list, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Jonathan Rhys Meyers (The Tudors, Mission: Impossible III) is set to take the lead in spy thriller Damascus Cover, producers said Monday. Production starts this week in Morocco. Rhys Meyers was announced alongside fellow castmembers Olivia Thirlby (Juno, No Strings Attached), John Hurt (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Alien), Igal Naor (Green Zone, Munich) and Navid Negahban (Homeland). The film is being produced by U.K.-based Big Book Media, while Carnaby International will launch global sales in Berlin. Read more Roland Emmerich Gay-Rights Drama 'Stonewall' Gets International Sales Firm Directed by Daniel Berk, whose previous outing as director was
- Alex Ritman
While "Unbroken" failed to take off as an awards season machine, Angelina Jolie remains undefeated. She's already got the drama, "By The Sea," with her husband Brad Pitt, in the can, and now it looks like they'll be reteaming. The latter has joined Jolie's previously announced project, "Africa." Penned by Eric Roth ("Ali," "Munich," "The Good Shepherd"), the film is a biopic about Kenyan Richard Leakey, who came from a line of archaeologists, but turned his attentions to paleontology and most famously to anti-poaching efforts. Roger Deakins will lens the Jolie-directed movie and production aims to start this summer. [The Wrap] Matthew McConaughey is "Born To Run." The actor will star in an adaptation of Christopher McDougall's book, scripted by Matthew Michael Carnahan, about "how an award-winning journalist and often-injured runner headed for Mexico’s isolated, deadly Copper Canyons to »
- Kevin Jagernauth
The 65th Berlin International Film Festival (Feb 5-15) has unveiled its full Competition line-up.
Some 21 of the 23 titles will be world premieres, and 19 features from across Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia will compete for Golden and Silver Bears.
New additions include Wim Wenders’ Every Thing Will Be Fine, which will play out of competition. The film, shot in 3D, stars James Franco as a writer who accidentally hits and kills a child while out driving. Co-stars include Charlotte Gainsbourg and Rachel McAdams.
As previously announced, Wenders will be awarded an Honorary Golden Bear for lifetime achievement and will have ten of his films screened as part of the Homage strand.
Also playing out of competition will be the world premiere of Elser (13 Minutes) from Oliver Hirschbiegel, the German »
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
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