11 items from 2014
Fatih Akin blasted onto the public’s consciousness with the visceral Head-On in 2004. Since then he has consistently turned out high calibre films, from The Edge of Heaven to the more lighthearted Soul Kitchen and New York, I Love You. These films share themes of nationality, belonging and displacement. Akin takes these subjects to new levels in his look at the Armenian genocide in 1915, a term invented to describe the event although Turkey still refuses to accept it.
The eminently watchable Tahar Rahim is Nazaret Manoogian, an ironmonger from Mardin who lives a tranquil life with his wife, twin daughters and extended family. But the Ottomans are approaching and it is a question of time before they reach the town. The audience is given an inkling of what’s to come when Nazaret and the girls talk about a long journey the three of them will take across the ocean. »
- Jo-Ann Titmarsh
There have been a paltry few movies about the 1915 Armenian genocide, which has only increased expectations around Fatih Akin’s already buzzy “The Cut.” Budgeted at $21 million, this historical epic-cum-Western about a father looking across the globe for his missing twin daughters had all the makings of a majestic adventure pic, only something odd happened along the way: , notwithstanding impressive location work. Akin’s considerable body of fans will likely scratch their heads, and marketing will be problematic.
Presumably the idea of having all the Armenians speak accented English was to increase the pic’s Stateside chances, yet the lines are often so commonplace, and have been heard a thousand times before in so many historical adventures, that the arthouse crowd (Akin’s core) will question why they’re being treated like mainstream viewers. Euro play will prove more lucrative, though here, too, the director’s admirers will find themselves »
- Jay Weissberg
Earlier this month, a Turkish nationalist group issued an open threat to Fatih Akin, whose new film, The Cut, completes the Love, Death and the Devil trilogy begun by Head-On (2004) and The Edge of Heaven (2007), deals with events in Turkey nearly 100 years ago. Akin tells Stephen Heyman in the New York Times that he's "shown the film to people who deny the fact that 1915 was a genocide and to people who accept it and both groups had the same emotional impact. I hope the film could be seen as a bridge. For sure there are radical groups, fascist groups, who fear any kind of reconciliation. And the smaller they are, the louder they bark." And now, following the premiere in Venice, the first reviews are coming in. » - David Hudson »
When Turkish-German auteur Fatih Akin pulled “The Cut” from the Cannes slate citing “personal reasons,” the rumor mill went to work overtime. Certainly, Cannes would have seemed like the natural home for the filmmaker’s next opus, so if, as was suggested, he had not been guaranteed the competition slot that his profile surely demanded, what could the reason be? Politics? Pique? Some internecine beef we weren’t aware of? Within all that gossip however, there was one possible explanation that never really got much play: that the film would not be very good. Akin’s previous films, including such terrific, joltingly energetic, critically lauded and awarded titles as “Head-on” and “The Edge of Heaven” (the first two in a thematic trilogy that “The Cut” is mooted to complete), seemed to put that beyond the realm of possibility. And in truth, it’s not not very good. It’s close to a disaster. »
- Jessica Kiang
London — Filmfest Hamburg is to honor Hamburg-based director Fatih Akin with its Douglas Sirk Award, which is presented to a personality for outstanding achievements within film culture and the film industry.
Festival director Albert Wiederspiel said the award was in recognition of Akin’s work as both a director and a producer.
“His films, which are strongly rooted in Hamburg, have put the city on the world map of cinema,” Wiederspiel said. “He has set an example for a whole generation of filmmakers — both in Turkey and Germany.”
Wiederspiel added that Akin’s films were “a starting point for a movement of German filmmakers of Turkish origin.”
The award will be presented at the German premiere of Akin’s drama “The Cut.” The film completes Akin’s “Love, Death and the Devil” trilogy, which began in 2004 with “Gegen die Wand” (Head-On), and continued with “Auf der anderen Seite” (The Edge of Heaven) in 2007.
“The Cut, »
- Leo Barraclough
Fatih Akin raised eyebrows this year when he pulled his new film, "The Cut," from the Cannes lineup just days before it was due to premiere. He did so "for personal reasons," the German director said, but Jeffrey Wells reports a nugget of gossip that Akin had done so because Cannes director Thierry Frémaux wouldn't offer him a definite spot in the competition lineup. "The Cut" is the conclusion to Akin's Love Death, and the Devil trilogy, which includes "Head-On" and "The Edge of Heaven," and stars French actor Tahar Rahim ("A Prophet," "The Past"). Akin has described Rahim's wordless character as "a bit like Charlie Chaplain" and also "a typical western character, like Sergio Leone." "The Cut" should be ready in time to make the fall festival circuit. Below, take a look at the film's poster--the first official glimpse so far at Akin's new project. »
- Jacob Combs
When a film widely seen as a dead cert to make the Cannes lineup doesn't ultimately appear, there can be any number of routine explanations, from shooting and editing overruns to inter-festival politics to the aesthetic whims of the selection panel – but it's unusual for a filmmaker to withdraw his own work for “personal reasons.” That's what's happened, however, with German-Turkish auteur Fatih Akin, whose first narrative feature in five years, “The Cut,” was on most Competition prediction lists. Akin has offered no further explanation for his decision to pull the film, which stars Tahar Rahim and is the belated final instalment in Akin's “Love, Death and the Devil” trilogy, with started with 2004's “Head-On” (a Berlinale Golden Bear winner) and continued with 2007's “The Edge of Heaven.” The latter premiered at Cannes and won the Best Screenplay award, so Akin has a history with the festival; two years ago, »
- Guy Lodge
In our Cannes Film Festival predictions, we were feeling pretty good about Fatih Akin's "The Cut" making the lineup. He's already a fave at the fest, winning the screenplay prize in 2007 for “The Edge of Heaven,” and just last year he was on the ground with his documentary “Polluting Paradise.” And it certainly seemed like everything was gearing up for his latest to bring him back to the south of France, but it seems there was a hiccup somewhere along the way. Cineuropa reports that Akin has pulled "The Cut" from Cannes citing "personal reasons," and that's about all the explanation that's available right now. The film, the final chapter in his “Love, Death and the Devil” trilogy, stars Tahar Rahim and plot details have been scarce. But the director did reveal a rather interesting tidbit at the beginning of the year teasing, "Tahar doesn’t say a word »
- Kevin Jagernauth
A belated festival premiere for Bennett Miller’s “Foxcatcher” and a powerhouse showing for British filmmakers including Mike Leigh and Ken Loach — plus appearances by other usual suspects such as David Cronenberg, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Nuri Bilge Ceylan and the Dardenne brothers — are among the strong possibilities hovering over the lineup of the 67th annual Cannes Film Festival.
In recent years, festival topper Thierry Fremaux and his selection committee have tended to push their final decisions to the very last minute under a nearly impenetrable veil of secrecy, defying the intense media scrutiny and endless speculation that always swirl around the Cannes lineup at this time of year. Although anything could change between now and April 17, when the official selection is unveiled — there are still enough hotly anticipated titles in the mix to warrant some educated guesswork about what is shaping up to be a promisingly diverse slate of auteurs. »
- Justin Chang and Elsa Keslassy
Director: Fatih Akin
Writer: Fatih Akin
U.S. Distributor: Rights Available
It’s when he worked within his working trilogy that Fatih Akin has provided us with his deepest, thematically most daring material to date. With the promise of a Tahar Rahim embodying the spirit of a muted, Sergio Leone character type, there are more than enough reasons to believe that The Cut will make us forget about his messy, 2009 comedy Soul Kitchen.
Gist: Final installment in his Love, Death and the Devil trilogy, will focus on the devil — that is, the evil inherent in mankind.
Release Date: Following in the shoes of The Edge of Heaven, this could find itself in the Main Comp at the Cannes Film Festival.
More Top 200 Most Anticipated Films of 2014 Top 200 Most Anticipated Films for 2014: »
- Eric Lavallee
Nearly a year ago, word first dropped that director Fatih Akin would be teaming up with Tahar Rahim for "The Cut." There weren't many details at the time, except that the film would cap off the filmmaker's "love, death and the devil" trilogy started with "Head-On" and followed by "The Edge Of Heaven" (he took a break from the trilogy to helm the frothy comedy "Soul Kitchen" in 2009 and has also done some documentaries in between as well). But some fascinating new word on the project once again has us curious about the movie. Taking with Cineuropa, Akin reveals that filming on "The Cut" is complete with editing underway, but most fascinatingly, he reveals the silent nature of his lead character. "Tahar doesn’t say a word throughout the film and he is a bit like Charlie Chaplin, but at the same time, he is a typical western character, like Sergio Leone, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
11 items from 2014
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