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The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby is about a couple, but it isn’t necessarily a love story: Eleanor (Jessica Chastain) and Conor (James McAvoy) are happily married until a tragic event shakes them and separates them. It’s no Blue Valentine, but it’s no The Notebook either—the movie depicts two people united by marriage and trauma dealing with their grief in very different ways.
That plot alone might not sound entirely intriguing at first glance, but director Ned Benson created three separate films out of the story to create three different experiences. There’s Them, which opens Friday »
- Ariana Bacle
The 10th Zurich Film Festival (Sept 25 – Oct 5) has revealed its full line-up, which comprises 145 features – up from 122 last year – from 29 countries.
Co-director Nadja Schildknecht revealed a rise in budget for the festival as well as growth in anticipated guest numbers.
“This year, we expect some 500 guests (previous year 450) from around the world to accompany their films,” she said.
“And the budget has increased accordingly to CHF6.9m ($7.4m) (previous year CHF6.1m/$6.5m).”
The International Feature Film Competition includes 14 titles, some of which have received critical acclaim at previous festivals such as Yann Demange’s action thriller ‘71, which debuted at the »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Oscar-winning director Susanne Bier is to preside over the international feature film jury at the 10th Zurich Film Festival (Sept 25 - Oct 5).
The Danish filmmaker, who won her Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar for In A Better World in 2011, is currently on the festival circuit with A Second Chance and Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper drama Serena.
She will oversee a jury that includes Us actor Val Kilmer, best known for roles in Heat, Batman Forever and Top Gun, and Bosnian director Jasmila Žbanić, who won the Berlin Golden Bear in 2006 with Grbavica.
Also on the jury is Marie Masmonteil, the French producer of Party Girl, which picked up prizes at Cannes in May, and Jerusalem Film Festival winner Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem, currently playing »
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
A group of friends at a Jerusalem retirement home construct a machine for self-euthanasia in order to help a terminally ill pal in “The Farewell Party,” a poignant, provocative dramedy from Israeli helmers Sharon Maymon and Tal Granit. with dignity. Theatrical returns in Israel should be, er, out of this world, while offshore, positive word of mouth should smooth the way for this compassionate handling of inherently depressing material.
The opening scene cleverly riffs on the underlying theme of who has the right to play God, as retired inventor Yehezkel (Ze’ev Revah) phones an ailing nonagenarian, and speaking through a device that infuses his voice with a celestial grandeur, claims to be the Almighty and tells her not to give up on life. It’s typical of the kindly Yehezkel, who, with his inveterate tinkering, tries to come up with new and original ways to improve the lives of his neighbors and his pretty, »
- Alissa Simon
Bent Hamer’s “1001 Grams” is set to represent Norway in the foreign)language Academy Awards’ race.
Pic will play in the Masters sidebar at the Toronto film fest.
“1001 Grams stands out with a clear international profile – in Hamer’s unique way it depicts sorrow, love and the small and big challenges of life,” said Sindre Guldvog, who chairs the Norwegian Oscar Committee and runs the Norwegian Film Institute. “It is a compelling addition to Hamer’s impressive filmography that has previously represented Norway internationally.”
Pic marks Hamer’s third submission for the Oscars, following “Kitchen Stories” (“Salmer fra kjøkkenet) in 2003 and “O’Horten” in 2007.
Sold by Paris-based Les Films du Losange, “1001 Grams” stars Ane Dahl-Torp as a recently divorced, work-obsessed woman scientist in her late 30s, who travels to Paris to attend a seminar about the actual weight of the kilogram. While there, she falls in love with a French colleague. »
- Elsa Keslassy
Today I’ll be going back once again and looking at a recent Oscar lineup and explaining what my vote would have been in each of the big eight categories. I mentioned that potentially I could do this once a week with previous Academy Award ceremonies, and while I’m going to be doing that here and there, there’s a chance that this could turn into a long running thing. Again, if nothing else, this gives you an interesting look into my cinematic tastes. Over the course of the year you can sort of get a feel for what my current favorites are, but now we can look to the past a bit more. Alright, here goes nothing: Best Picture – Argo The nominees here for this ceremony were Amour, Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook, and Zero Dark Thirty. »
- Joey Magidson
The trickle of foreign film submission info has become and soon it will be a flood. Over the new few days I'll be filling out a lot more of the foreign language submission charts which are written by me and my multi-lingual friend A.D. who knows so much about foreign cinema in so many atypical places he sometimes makes my head spin. But before all that charty speculation a handful of actual news items.
Jhola from Nepal
New Official Submissions
Jhola is the official submission from Nepal. Nepal enjoyed one previous nomination in this category for Caravan (1999) but they haven't submitted regularly. Jhola is a period piece about the Nepali society custom of the wife having to set herself on fire when her husband dies and go with him. Horrific! Actress Kanchi Garima Panta is said to be very good in the lead role.
Beloved Sisters was announced today to represent Germany. »
- NATHANIEL R
Main Street during The Telluride Film Festival
The Telluride Film Festival seemingly appears overnight against the gorgeous backdrop of rugged mountains. It lasts just four days but in fact it takes more than a month of intensive labor to transform the elementary school, high school, hockey rink, library, the park in the middle of town and a masonic temple into theaters. Now in its 41st year,up until recently this hallowed Labor Day weekend event has long been a quiet fixture on the festival circuit. As most of the festival world knows, the escalating word of mouth about the quality of Telluride’s unofficial premieres caused the Toronto International Film Festival to issue an ultimatum to those hoping to land choice spots in the fall line-up: if you choose to screen at Telluride first, your film will be pushed back on Tiff’s slate. Realistically- Toronto has little to fear from Telluride besides buzz. »
- Lane Scarberry
Gustave Kervern and Catherine Deneuve in Pierre Salvadori's In The Courtyard The French Film Festival UK has unveiled its selection for its 22nd edition this November - with highlights featuring some of the brightest lights of French cinema, including Catherine Deneuve, Isabelle Huppert, Isabelle Carré, Jean Reno, Guillaume Canet, Mathieu Amalric, Albert Dupontel and Jean-Pierre Darroussin.
In locations across the country stretching from Inverness to London via Edinburgh and Glasgow, the event styles itself as “a celebration of Francophone cinema in all its guises.”
As well as an eclectic selection of contemporary titles from the past 12 months, the Festival will pay tribute to the late Alain Resnais who died earlier in the year, with screenings of a restored copy of his first feature Hiroshima Mon Amour with Oscar-nominated Emmanuelle Riva (from Amour) and Eiji Okadan, and the director’s last film Life of Riley (Aimer, boire, et chanter), his »
- Amber Wilkinson
On paper, Brett Ratner sounds like such an improbable choice to direct a large-scale ancient Greek epic that, going into his “Hercules,” one could only hope for a less aggressively preposterous affair than Renny Harlin’s bargain-basement “The Legend of Hercules” from earlier this year. The happy surprise is that Ratner’s “Hercules” is more than a mere improvement on its predecessor. It’s a grandly staged, solidly entertaining, old-fashioned adventure movie that does something no other Hercules movie has quite done before: it cuts the mythical son of Zeus down to human size (or as human as you can get while still being played by Dwayne Johnson). The result is a far classier pic than Paramount’s frenetic trailer — and decision to hide the film from reviewers until the eleventh hour — foretold, albeit one that will struggle to find its sea legs at a crowded and underperforming summer box office. »
- Scott Foundas
Mr. Morgan’s Last Love, 2013
Directed by Sandra Nettelbeck
A look at the life-changing connection between a retired and widowed American philosophy professor and a young Parisian dance teacher.
Mr. Morgan’s Last Love is nice. Now when I say nice, what I am really saying is ‘suitable for daytime television scheduling’. In fact, if we’re honest, that is probably the best place for it. Inoffensive, occasionally charming, flimsy and a little bit too twee for its own good, this mostly harmless little tale about the life of widower, Matthew (Caine), living in Paris shortly after the death of his wife is a melancholy picture postcard for those that either wistfully yearn for an eternal love lost or have a romantic notion of Paris that has yet to be realised.
Following the death of his lifelong partner and apparent soul mate, »
- Steve Leadbetter
If you're interested in an anniversary conversation that really has some bearing on today's film industry, I highly recommend American Cinematographer's recent chat with "Collateral" Dp Dion Beebe. It's been nearly a decade (if you can believe it) since Beebe and Paul Cameron carved out a serious place for digital with that film, earning an American Society of Cinematographers (Asc) nomination in the process. It got me thinking about the history of the industry's acceptance of digital as reflected in the nominations handed out by both the Asc and Academy's cinematography branch over the last 10 years. Academy members were a bit slower on the uptake, as you might recall. Beebe and Cameron were snubbed by the branch despite the Asc nomination. Of course, that was still a dicey time for the technology. The first feature films shot digitally were Lars Von Trier's "The Idiots" and Thomas Vinterberg's "The Celebration, »
- Kristopher Tapley
It was just a few weeks ago that we talked about the fact that Michael Haneke is putting together a new film. Called Flashmob, the movie is one he conceptualized a few years ago, before setting it aside to make Amour. The concept has evolved a bit since then, but the basic core still seems […]
- Russ Fischer
We're now over two years since Michael Haneke took the Palme d'Or and won an Oscar for "Amour," and the director is taking his time getting back behind the camera. Earlier this year, it was reported that he was planning to shoot his next picture, "Flashmob," this summer. But it looks like those plans have shifted as the filmmaker seems to still be in the process of figuring out exactly how he wants to present his tale. Haneke was recently in Copenhagen, where he gave a masterclass, and Montages reports the director stated "Flashmob" would likely not shoot this summer. Part of the reason is that he's apparently waiting for a certain, unnamed actress to take a role in the film ("I'm waiting in line," he said) and the other is that he's still not decided on the visual/tonal aesthetic he wants to use. In short, it seems all very early at the moment. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
The more classics on the big screen the better. Rialto Pictures, a specialty distributor who has re-released other films like Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless and Alain Resnais' Last Year at Marienbad, has announced that the next classic they will be re-releasing this year is Alain Resnais' Hiroshima Mon Amour starring Emmanuelle Riva (who was Oscar nominated for Amour) and Eiji Okada. First released in 1959, Rialto will be re-releasing the restored 4K version of the film, which originally debuted at the Cannes Film Festival and Locarno Film Festival last year. So while it has been showing, it's getting a theatrical release in October. Thanks to IndieWire for the news. Here are two early trailers for Alain Resnais' Hiroshima Mon Amour: Glad to see this getting re-released, just hoping it can build enough buzz to get some audiences in theaters. "Known as a major influence on the French New Wave movement, »
- Alex Billington
Known as a major influence on the French New Wave movement, Alain Resnais' 1959 drama "Hiroshima Mon Amour" captivated audiences upon its release. Now, almost 60 years later, Rialto Pictures have acquired the distribution rights to the film, which is scheduled for a U.S. release this October. "Hiroshima Mon Amour" stars Emmanuelle Riva, who was recently nominated for an Oscar after her work in 2012's "Amour," as a woman who enters a brief relationship with a Japanese architect only a couple of years after World War II ends. The film's use of flashback sequences, a non-linear style and voice-over narration was a huge influence on future filmmakers, particularly those associated with the French New Wave movement. "Hiroshima Mon Amour" has been restored as this new 4K format by Argos Films, Fondation Groupama Gan, Fondation Technicolor and Cineteca Bologna, with support from the Cnc. Rialto Pictures has previously released classics such as Jean-Luc. »
- Eric Eidelstein
Keith Urban's wife Nicole Kidman has a new director on her wish list - the stunning Aussie beauty wants to work with Michael Haneke. The 'Grace of Monaco' star was awestruck by the Austrian director's Oscar-winning drama, 'Amour', and says he is top of her wish list to work with in future. She added: ''I'm offered unusual roles and I'm usually offered things with interesting directors. At this stage in my career, I don't want to get safe.'' The 46-year-old actress' career has spanned over 30 years and she hopes to keep the momentum going until she's well into her old age. She said: ''You can give the greatest performances of your life in your 70s and 80s. If you manage to get to that age. They say, 'Oh, a woman in her 40s wont work', but that's not true. ''There may be fewer roles, »
Sony Pictures Classics honchos Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have been feted up one side and down the other lately. The duo celebrated 20 years of Spc in 2012 and have received awards from the Museum of the Moving Image and the Gotham Awards as of late. Tonight they will receive the Los Angeles Film Festival's Spirit of Independence Award as the love keeps pouring in. Given that we recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of Fox Searchlight — another crucial entity in the indie film space — it seemed like we were over due for a similar appreciation of Sony Classics' 22 years of output. The interesting thing, though, is that unlike Searchlight, there isn't necessarily anything outwardly identifiable about Sony Classics films as, well, "Sony Classics films." They all have a strong whiff of good taste but they don't have the heavy marketing footprint of some of the studio's contemporaries. Barker and Bernard's cinephile passion is always evident, »
- Gregory Ellwood, Guy Lodge, Kristopher Tapley
Quentin Tarantino, during his Cannes Film Festival press conference (watch it here), mentioned an email chain he was a part of where he and some friends discussed what they believed to be the ten most exciting directors working today. Among those listed he said only David Fincher and Richard Linklater where in everyone's top ten, he wasn't sure why Pedro Almodovar wasn't on everyone's list and he also qualified what he believed it meant for a director to be the "most exciting". Here's how he put it: "I think what that means is, you feel that their best work is still in front of them. That's what makes a filmmaker exciting, that's what makes you anticipate a new movie coming out. Because the new movie could be their best one. From this day on that will be the new barometer from which they're judged. We could be wrong, and their »
- Brad Brevet
After taking home the Palme d'Or and landing an Oscar nomination for his film Amour, director Michael Haneke is heading into some seemingly strange territory for his next project. The film is called Flashmob, and even anyone with fleeting use of the internet has come across this viral phenomenon of large groups of people planning public displays of dancing, cosplaying and more. Film Comment has the latest on the project which is supposed to begin production this summer with a story that Haneke says will explore "the fragile relationship between media and reality." The titular flashmob will bring various characters together. This easily sounds like it has the makings of a romantic comedy like Love Actually or Valentine's Day, but with a director like Haneke behind the camera, we're betting it's anything but that. The project seems to have been percolating since before Amour got off the ground, because in »
- Ethan Anderton
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