5 items from 2014
Rome – The Rome Film Festival, in its enth reconfiguration, has unveiled a decidedly disparate lineup for its ninth edition with a more marked populist accent comprising comedies and genre pics along with promising auteur fare – including 24 world preems – all in artistic director Marco Mueller’s self-described “suitably schizophrenic” signature style.
Contending with impediments dictated by Italian politics and the economy, Mueller in little over three months has assembled an attractive, if less abundant, mix of goods made of 51 pics innovatively divided in five sections: competition, out-of-competition, gala, mondo genre, and Italian perspectives.
The competition sees world bows of Russian auteur Aleksey Fedorchenko’s “Angels Of Revolution,” which had been announced; and also Italo helmer Claudio Noce’s Alps-set thriller “The Ice Forest,” (pictured) marking Emir Kusturica’s first lead thesping role; German helmer Christoph Hochhausler “The Lies of the Victors,” a thriller about the dark underbelly of contempo politics in »
- Nick Vivarelli
The Toronto International Film Festival is known for its Oscar bait prestige dramas, major Hollywood studio releases, a focus (appropriately) on Canadian film and, to a lesser extent, its Midnight Madness program. One thing it doesn't have a strong reputation for is documentaries. That's why it's no surprise that only six of the initial 15 documentaries announced for the 2014 festival this morning are world premieres. Even with a 25th anniversary screening of Michael Moore's "Roger & Me" on deck, this year's documentary slate appears weak. Joshua Oppenheimer will screen his Indonesian genocide doc "The Look of Silence," Ethan Hawke has his nonfiction directing debut "Seymour: An Introduction" and Cannes favorite "Red Army" will be on hand, but all of those films debuted or will debut somewhere else first. Intriguing new docs include "Tales of the Grim Sleeper," about a serial killer's 25-year run in Southern California; "Sunshine Superman," about Base jumping »
- Gregory Ellwood
This world is indeed a dangerous place and according to Tiff Doc programmer Thom Powers’ it might just be the docu filmmakers and subjects who are truly the “rebels, resisters and risk-takers” of the festival. While there might be a couple of more docu items in store along with a look back at Michael Moore’s Roger & Me, both Toronto, and Telluride auds will be in for treats with the Cannes invited Gabe Polsky’s Red Army and Venice Film Festival competing The Look of Silence (see pic above) from Joshua Oppenheimer (which is easily our most anticipated doc of the year) and Robert Kenner’s Merchants of Doubt — about the greediest folk there are: the spinsters (prediction: look for Kenner to be invited on Real Time with Bill Maher). Other hot commodities include World Premiere status latest from the Laura Nix & The Yes Men (The Yes Men Are Revolting »
- Eric Lavallee
Paris-based Rezo has picked up international sales on two Berlin Panorama players: Jonathan Nossiter’s eco-themed documentary “Natural Resistance” and Tinatin Kajrishvili’s Georgian romance drama “Brides.”
“Natural Resistance” follows four Italian winemakers who live in a 11th century monastery-cum-winery in Tuscany and rely on local traditions, battle policies set by the European Union and winegrowers’ associations. It’s produced by Les Films du Rat.
“I worked on Nossiter’s ‘Mondovino,’ which played at Cannes and sold very well,” said Rezo’s head of sales Sebastien Chesneau.
“Brides,” produced by Gemini, stars Mari Kitia and Giorgi Maskharashvili as an unusual Georgian couple whose relationship is strained as the man has been sentenced to several years in prison.
Rezo is hosting the market bows of two French romantic comedies: “Best in Bed,” by Delphine Le Vigan, and “Darling Trap,” helmed by Catherine Castel.
- Elsa Keslassy
London — The Berlin Film Festival has completed the lineup for the Panorama Dokumente section, which is devoted to documentaries. Sixteen films have been selected, including 10 world premieres.
Africa is also the setting for Swedish filmmaker Goran Hugo Olsson’s “Concerning Violence,” which examines the process of decolonization in Africa. Olsson presented “The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975,” about the African-American civil rights movement, in the Panorama section in 2011.
The history of photography is shown from an African-American perspective by Thomas Allen Harris in “Through a Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People.”
Panorama has a tradition of music films, »
- Leo Barraclough
5 items from 2014
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