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After half a century of making films, the director is back on form with The Salt of the Earth and shows no signs slowing down
Wim Wenders is responsible for some of the most profound films made about America – quite a feat considering he doesn’t have a drop of starred-and-striped blood in his body. Paris, Texas is the obvious example: a western in mood and iconography, no matter that it is set in 1980s Los Angeles. It won the Palme d’Or at Cannes in 1984 and remains the director’s masterpiece. In that film, and many others, he showed the world what America looked like, and helped America to see itself through foreign eyes. Even those pictures not set in the Us – such as the great 1970s road movies Alice in the Cities and Kings of the Road, which made Wenders an arthouse darling – explore the influence, the voodoo romanticism, »
- Ryan Gilbey
A New Yorker article purporting to set us right about 3-D suggests that bonafide artists are discovering its aesthetic potential, from Jean-Luc Godard to recent Cannes entrant Gasper Noe. As the commercial use of 3-D is widespread and fully a third of theaters are equipped with digital 3-D, the writer asks if a "new breed of uppity 3-D" is at hand. "Could this be the onset of a novel, highbrow age in 3-D cinema?" While the piece mentions Wim Wenders' "Pina" and Werner Herzog's "Cave of Forgotten Dreams," and makes passing reference to James Cameron's "Avatar," there is no discussion of two Hollywood master auteurs who have led the way in the use of groundbreaking and masterful 3-D: Martin Scorsese ("Hugo") and Ang Lee ("Life of Pi"). Which leads me to wonder if this writer has a clue what he is talking about. »
- Anne Thompson
The Salt Of The Earth and Pina director, Wim Wenders, has begun filming his first French-language film an hour northwest of Paris in the Vexin area. It is based on a Peter Handke text he calls "a summer dialogue" and the title of the film will be Les Beaux Jours d’Aranjuez (The Beautiful Days Of Aranjuez), which is the first line of Friedrich Schiller's play Don Carlos. Wim's description follows: "It’s a woman and a man talking to each other, for an indefinite amount of time (the whole summer?) about love, sex, time, nature, memory…"
The man is portrayed by Reda Kateb, who starred opposite Viggo Mortensen in David Oelhoffen's elegiac Loin Des Hommes (Far From Men) based on the Albert Camus short story L'Hôte, and the woman is Sophie Semin. »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
It was 1973 when German choreographer Pina Bausch became the artistic director of the Wuppertal Opera Ballet, where she would go on to transform the company with her radical approach to dance theater. One year prior, director Wim Wenders began making a name for himself stateside when his sophomore feature The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick played at MoMA’s New Directors/New Films. Twelve years later, their respective success was on the rise: in 1984 Bausch had her New York premiere at Bam (where she presented such seminalworks as Café Müller and The Rite of Spring), while Wenders won the coveted Palme d’Or for his masterpiece Paris, Texas. The following year, Wenders experienced Bausch’s work for himself—and when he did, he knew it would change his life.Wenders immediately arranged to meet Bausch for coffee and told her he wanted to collaborate. But it wasn’t until »
- Hillary Weston
Starting tomorrow, BAMcinématek in Brooklyn has curated a series celebrating the best of recent three dimensional cinema, "3D in the 21st Century":"The unprecedented resurgence of 3D in the last decade has expanded the visual and emotional possibilities of cinema in frequently wondrous—and sometimes divisive—new ways. At its best, the technology creates almost hallucinatory immersive landscapes and retina-dazzling surprises with an immediate visceral impact. From big-budget blockbusters to high-concept mind-benders by arthouse icons, this first-of-its-kind series surveys recent films that showcase the full range of stereoscopic cinema’s expressive potential."Running May 1 - 17, the series surveys an exciting and wide-ranging number of 3D films, from blockbusters like Avatar and Gravity, genre films like Step Up 3D and Resident Evil: Retribution, to such art-house hits as Goodbye to Language and Cave of Forgotten Dreams, as well experimental works by Jodie Mack, Ken Jacobs, Johann Lurf, and more. The »
BAMcinématek’s 3D in the 21st century series features James Cameron's Avatar, Jean-Luc Godard's Goodbye to Language, Paul W.S. Anderson's Resident Evil: Retribution, Martin Scorsese's Hugo, Wim Wenders's Pina, Werner Herzog's Cave of Forgotten Dreams, works by Ken Jacobs, Jodie Mack and more. More writing on more goings on: Bruce Labruce and Carolee Schneemann in New York, Federico Fellini’s 8½ and Orson Welles's Chimes at Midnight in London, Hou Hsiao-hsien's Flowers of Shanghai in Los Angeles and more. » - David Hudson »
AMC and Hulu have agreed on a multi-year deal that will allow the latter to exclusively stream the upcoming Fear The Walking Dead and other AMC programs following their TV debuts. Also featured in our latest round-up is a trailer for the Goners Volume 1: We All Fall Down trade paperback, as well as details on Melbourne-based theatre company The Laudanum Project's new show, The Grand Guignol Automaton.
Fear The Walking Dead: Press Release -- "New York, NY (April 29, 2015) – Hulu has closed a landmark, multi-year deal with AMC Networks Inc. for the exclusive subscription video on demand (Svod) rights to new and upcoming primetime scripted drama and comedy series from AMC, IFC, BBC America, SundanceTV and We tv. The new agreement will make Hulu the exclusive streaming home to the highly anticipated The Walking Dead companion series, Fear the Walking Dead, and future scripted series from across all five networks. »
- Derek Anderson
Wim Wenders has been entranced with 3-D — which he calls the new language of cinema — ever since Pina, his great film tribute to Pina Bausch. He's a man on a mission, searching for a topic that might work as well as dance (and movement). To that end, he became an executive producer for six fairly short films about architecture, and directed one himself. But in instances where visual layers are not abundant, or a building is not multifaceted or -functional, architects themselves become the films' topics. Is this a bit of a cheat? Well, the directors' names are stellar enough, and the buildings famous.
Cathedrals of Culture posits that buildings have a spirit, a genius loci of atmosphere attached to place. If you buy into that, it follows that they »
Subtitled “a 3D film project about the soul of buildings,” "Cathedrals of Culture" is a program of six films by noted filmmakers that first premiered in Berlin in 2014 to raptures of acclaim. “An idealistic, high-minded meditation on architecture, the public space and the life of the mind," wrote The Guardian. “One of the most fervent hymns to architecture ever sung," said THR. "Cathedrals of Culture" finally gets its stateside release on May 1, exclusively at the IFC Center in two parts. Select screenings will include Q&As with architects and experts in the field. Originally conceived by Wim Wenders, who directed a vignette on the uber-modern Berlin Philharmonic, "Cathedrals" also profiles a science center, the world's "most humane" prison and other cultural institutions. Since "Pina" (2011), Wenders has continued to push into 3D, with "Cathedrals" and his 2015 Berlinale redemption drama "Every »
- Ryan Lattanzio
There’s a perceptible reverence for Sebastião Salgado and his work as a social issues photographer in the Oscar-nominated documentary The Salt of the Earth, out this Friday in New York and Los Angeles. Considering the filmmakers’ relationship with their subject, it isn’t hard to figure out why. Three time Oscar nominee and The Salt of the Earth co-director, Wim Wenders (Buena Vista Social Club, Pina) bought one of Sebastião’s photos when he first discovered him, and immediately became enchanted with both the photography and the man. Wenders’ co-director is Juliano Salgado, Sebastião’s son who first began filming his father when Sebastião asked Juliano to accompany him on a trip to photograph the reclusive Amazonian Zo’é tribe.
Wenders and the younger Salgado spent several years assembling a documentary that combines intimate behind-the-scenes moments alongside Sebastião as he makes progress on his “Genesis” collection with reflective examinations »
- Zachary Shevich
In the late 1970s and '80s, if you were into serious cinema, you had to be into Wim Wenders. The German director of Paris, Texas, Alice in the Cities, and Wings of Desire was the international poster-child for artful ennui and existential despair. But his films were also remarkable for the way they mixed a very continental brooding with a love of pop culture, usually American. That’s what made his films so brilliant, in a way — they were serious, but accessible. As evidenced by his triumphant recent MoMA retrospective, which screened brand-new restorations of his films, Wenders has proven to be a remarkably resilient and adaptable filmmaker over the years. He still makes narrative films, but he is now known as much for documentaries like The Buena Vista Social Club and Pina as he is for his earlier classics. This week sees the release of the Oscar-nominated Salt of the Earth, »
- Bilge Ebiri
You've seen Sebastião Salgado's photographs, even if you did not know who shot them. The Brazilian photographer has been wandering the globe, seeking out some of the most benighted places on earth and finding hideous beauty there. Even more than some war photographers, he has seen the worst of humanity. And after decades he did burn out on The Horror and had to go home to the plantation where he grew up to find renewal. Read More: "Watch: Provocative New Clips from Wim Wenders doc 'The Salt of the Earth'" German filmmaker Wim Wenders, who has been experiencing his own artistic renewal via documentaries that serve to showcase other people's art, such as 3D masterpiece "Pina," joined forces with Salgado's filmmaker son Juliano on "The Salt of the Earth," which debuted at Cannes and went on to play the fall festivals to much acclaim. Juliano shot much of the »
- Anne Thompson
German filmmaker Wim Wenders has really done it all. From narrative to documentaries, including 3D arthouse dramas (the upcoming “Every Thing Will Be Fine”), 3D documentaries (“Pina”), music videos (U2, Talking Heads), live concert films, and almost every kind of movie imaginable in between — Wenders’ work has been restlessly eclectic. The filmmaker has been an early adopter of new technology throughout his career, shooting on video in the mid ‘90s (“Until the End of the World”), and his embrace of 3D technology began even earlier than is suggested on paper (he began shooting “Pina” even before James Cameron’s “Avatar” was released in theaters). He’s also received a ton of accolades over the years, winning the Palme d’Or in 1984 at Cannes (“Paris, Texas”), Best Director at Cannes in 1987 (“Wings Of Desire”) and he’s been nominated for three Academy Awards for the documentaries “Buena Vista Social Club,” the »
- Rodrigo Perez
Over the course of four decades, German filmmaker Wim Wenders has directed more than 30 feature-length films of all different types. There’s the Palme d'Or-winning “Paris, Texas,” the Criterion-minted “Wings of Desire,” and he's a three-time Oscar nominee for the documentaries “Buena Vista Social Club,” the visually striking 3D “Pina,” and his upcoming film, “The Salt of the Earth,” about Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado, which opens this weekend (our review from Telluride). Overshadowed to some degree by Werner Herzog, as they came of cinematic age during the 1970s German New Wave movement, Wenders has been getting his due recently thanks to a gigantic retrospective of his work at Moma that just finished. Underappreciated gems getting a second look there were "The American Friend" starring Dennis Hopper, the director's long form cut of "Until The End Of The World," and the documentary about dying filmmaker Nicholas Ray, “Lightning »
- Rodrigo Perez
James Franco plays a novelist haunted by a fatal car accident in Wenders’ brooding, emotional drama, which at least has sincerity going for it
Wim Wenders wasn’t the first director to liberate 3D from blockbusters and animation (his countryman Werner Herzog beat him to it with Cave of Forgotten Dreams) but his 2011 dance documentary Pina remains one of the most sensual experiments in that format. His reasons for sticking with it in Every Thing Will Be Fine, however, are not immediately apparent.
This is an intimate drama where the action takes place in living rooms, offices, cafes and cars. When there is an explosive incident, it tends to be shunted off-screen. The closest that the use of 3D comes to the spectacular is the shot of a kitchen curtain fluttering in the foreground, revealing autumnal fields stretching into the distance as far as the earth will allow.
Continue reading. »
- Ryan Gilbey
It seems as if James Franco is in everything these days, working with so many different filmmakers from all over the world (Boyle, Gondry, Gordon Green, Korine, Raimi, Coppola, Haggis, Herzog). One of his latest appearances is in the film Every Thing Will Be Fine, the latest dramatic work from legendary German filmmaker Wim Wenders, which just premiered at the Berlin Film Festival. This deeply contemplative and compelling film is an extensive look at grief, and how that powerful emotion affects people over many years. There's a very chilling, almost Fincher-esque feel to it that makes this play almost more like a thriller than a drama. Oh, and it's shot in 3D, as Wenders has been exploring 3D ever since his vibrant 3D dance doc Pina. "A winter's evening. A country road. It is snowing, visibility is poor. Out of nowhere, a sledge glides down a hill. Brakes are slammed on, »
- Alex Billington
“We can only try to believe that there’s meaning to this,” murmurs Charlotte Gainsbourg midway through “Every Thing Will Be Fine” — voicing viewers’ thoughts for the first and only time in Wim Wenders’ labored, lumbering melodrama. An inglorious return to narrative filmmaking for the German master, this protracted study in grief and forgiveness does little to suggest his time hasn’t been better spent making documentaries for the past seven years. Imprisoning James Franco in the role of an emotionally constipated writer taking 10 years to process a fatal car accident, “Fine” is unlikely to arouse much empathy from auds, who may instead spend most of the running time wondering why Wenders chose to dramatize these dingy proceedings in advanced 3D. Despite this arthouse novelty and a name cast, the conviction of the title will not be echoed by’s conviction.
Coming from many other veteran auteurs, a film as »
- Guy Lodge
From photography to warfare, conservation to whistleblowing, this year’s five Oscar nominated documentaries are united by overlapping themes and topics of interest, but remain uniformly distinct in their approach.
Leading the quintet is Laura Poitras’ “Citizenfour,” the highest-grossing and highest-profile nominee. The verite-style portrait of Nsa whistleblower Edward Snowden gives audiences a voyeuristic peek inside Snowden’s week in Hong Kong when the information he leaked started going public, and shows the human side of a man who the media nearly turned into a myth.
The pic has cleaned up in Oscar precursors, garnering best doc wins from the Gotham and Intl. Documentary Assn. awards, the four top critics groups (New York, Los Angeles, London and National Society) and nominations from BAFTA and the Spirits. It also marks Poitras’ second Oscar nom. She was in contention in 2007 for “My Country, My Country” but lost to heavyweight “An Inconvenient Truth. »
- Geoff Berkshire
Variety has expanded its internationally respected “10 to Watch” franchise with our new “10 Europeans to Watch” list. The group, which consists of exciting new talents across various disciplines, will be honored Feb. 7 at a reception hosted by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg during the Berlin Intl. Film Festival.
The 10 Europeans to Watch:
Yann Demange, director
The Londoner’s film “’71,” above, stars Jack O’Connell and was a prize-winner at the 2014 Berlinale and is rolling out in the U.S. this month via Roadside Attractions.
Cara Delevingne, actress
Mara Eibl-Eibesfeldt, director-writer
With “Spiderwebhouse,” the German filmmaker makes her debut; pic plays in Berlin’s German Film Perspective.
Ginevra Elkann, producer
- Variety Staff
The film will follow Cunningham from his early days as a struggling dancer in New York to his eventual emergence as one of the most influential choreographers of the Twentieth Century.
“It is one of those very ambitious projects about modern artists that has a lot of technology,” Girard said of a film that, inevitably, has been compared to Wim Wenders’ 3D Pina Bausch film, Pina (2011).
The project has already secured support from the Cnc in France and from the Rockefeller Foundation. Around a third of the €3.4m budget will come from the Us but Girard is in Rotterdam looking for European partners as well »
- email@example.com (Geoffrey Macnab)
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