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Review: ‘Microbe and Gasoline’ Is Michel Gondry At His Least Whimsical

In 2008, the satirical website The Onion published a story entitled “Michel Gondry Entertained For Days By New Cardboard Box,” poking a bit of fun at the French filmmaker’s ability to find whimsy and imagination in the most unexpected of places. That Gondry’s movies revel in the fantastic and often eschew anything resembling the cynical is hardly news, but that he’s continued to invest himself in the creation of those kind of films (save for that brief foray into superhero fare with “The Green Hornet”) is certainly worth pointing out on a regular basis.

Read More: ‘Microbe and Gasoline’: Michel Gondry’s Latest Film Gets Whimsical And Inspiring New Trailer

His latest, “Microbe and Gasoline,” is another example of exactly that. Finally getting a release in the U.S. nearly a year after it opened in France (and ten months since it first played in the States,
See full article at Indiewire »

‘The Boy From Geita’ Helps Launch 108 Believe Film Label

‘The Boy From Geita’ Helps Launch 108 Believe Film Label
108 Media is launching 108 Believe as a specialty film label for socially conscious and inspirational films across traditional and new media platforms worldwide, Variety has learned exclusively.

The label launches its inaugural title with the Oct. 16 release of the documentary “The Boy From Geita,” which has been set for a special screening at the United Nations headquarters in New York on Oct. 15.

“108 Media has always championed intelligent, inspirational films that explore today’s most important social issues, including religion, politics and world affairs,” said 108 Media CEO Abhi Rastogi. “With the creation of 108 Believe, we hope to build a brand synonymous with high-quality films that can inspire audiences to action while also remaining entertaining and enjoyable.”

The Boy from Geita,” which premiered at the Hot Docs Film Festival last year, documents the experience of a 12-year-old Tanzanian boy with albinism and his unlikely friendship with Canadian businessman Peter Ash, who also has albinism.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Microbe and Gasoline review – Michel Gondry's touching tale of teenage friendship

In his most satisfying film since Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Gondry crafts an optimistic adolescent adventure from the mess of real life

It’s hard to know what we’ll end up calling this phase of Michel Gondry’s career, but it’s certainly been unpredictable. He’s made four non-Hollywood movies since 2011’s big budget disappointment The Green Hornet, the unlikely superhero entry starring Seth Rogen. There was a guerrilla-style experiment with non-actors on a New York City bus (The We and the I), an undiluted hit of love-drenched visual whimsy (Mood Indigo) and a hand-drawn animated rap session between himself and Noam Chomsky (Is the Man Who Is Tall Happy?). While each were innovative, these were peculiar and particular films. With the French-language Microbe and Gasoline, Gondry has made his most satisfying movie since his 2004 masterpiece Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

Consider it an anti-Superbad.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Film Review: ‘Microbe and Gasoline’

Film Review: ‘Microbe and Gasoline’
If Michel Gondry’s movies were books, they’d come with hand-stitched covers, fold-out pop-ups and a progression of flipbook-style doodles in the bottom corner of every page. No other working director brings quite the same lo-fi, do-it-yourself quality to his filmmaking, and yet, Gondry’s inventive charm has often proven to be his own worst enemy, overtaking and cutesifying stories that might play better without all the confetti and curlicues. With “Microbe and Gasoline,” the French writer-director has wisely restrained his usual flourishes, allowing the two teenage leads in his relatively calm summer-vacation coming-of-age comedy to assume center stage, imbuing them with creative agency, rather than forcing them to compete with the film’s own style. What emerges is an admittedly small, but wonderfully sincere portrait of two adolescent outsiders determined to pave their own way in the world.

Quietly released in France after being slighted by the festival circuit,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2015: #80. Michel Gondry’s Microbe et Gasoil

Microbe et Gasoil

Director: Michel Gondry // Writer: Michel Gondry

Though his last feature, 2013’s zany and effervescent Mood Indigo, had a tortured flight to the box office, the steadily busy Michel Gondry also released a documentary, Is the Man Who is Tall Happy?. Now, he’s reteaming with his Indigo star Audrey Tautou to headline a cast of newcomers with a roadtrip film that recounts the wild adventures of two teenagers who are somewhat marginalised: the tiny “Microbe” and the inventive “Gasoil”. As the summer holidays get ever nearer, the two friends have no intention of spending the two months with their families. So with the help of a lawnmower engine and various planks of wood, they decide to build their own “car” and set off on an adventurous road trip around France.

Cast: Audrey Tautou and a cast of first-time children actors.

Producers: StudioCanal, Partizan Films’ Georges Bermann (Dog Pound)

See full article at »

DVD Review: 'Mood Indigo'

  • CineVue
★☆☆☆☆After having his expressive wings clipped in exchange for genre formula with The Green Hornet (2011) and relinquishing his creative control to a group of Bronx school kids in his collaborative teen comedy The We and the I (2012), Michel Gondry returns to the land of the fantastical with comic drama Mood Indigo (2013). Pitting together two of contemporary French cinema’s most prominent actors – Audrey Tautou and Romain Duris, Gondry attempts to fashion a visual representation of the golden period that immediately follows falling in love, yet in abandoning rhyme or reason in his construction of such a vivid world Gondry has made something almost entirely incomprehensible.
See full article at CineVue »

Studiocanal Reteams Michel Gondry on ‘Microbe et Gasoil’

Paris– Studiocanal is set to reteam with Michel Gondry on “Microbe et Gasoil,” the French helmer’s follow-up to “Mood Indigo.”

Pic is a comedy turning on two left-of-field teenagers, Microbe and Gasoil, who, instead of spending their summer vacations with their parents, decide to build their own car and embark on a doomed yet colorful road trip across France.

A pair of newcomers will be cast in the lead roles. Audrey Tautou (“Amelie,” “Mood Indigo”) will also star.

Shooting will take place in Ile de France (Paris and its suburbs) and Bourgogne between August 4 and late October.

Pic is produced by Gondry’s longtime collaborator, Georges Bermann, at Paris-based Partizan. Studiocanal is co-producing, and will be distributing as well as handling international sales.

Studiocanal worked with Gondry on his latest feature film, “Mood Indigo,” a romantic fantasy pic based on Boris Vian’s “Froth on the Daydream.”

Gondry, whose
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Review: Mood Indigo (European Version) Exhilarates And Exhausts In Equal Measure

Michel Gondry is back. And he's going no holds barred. After slumming it as studio hired-gun and inner-city auteur (in 2011's The Green Hornet and 2012's The We and the I, respectively), the French director is back in small-batch surrealist mode with Mood Indigo (L'ecume des jours). The cult of Gondry can breathe a sigh of relief: with all its artisanal whimsy and handcrafted pizazz, this isn't just the movie you've been waiting for -- it's three of them. Now, if only Gondry had managed to make them add up to anything meaningful or affecting. I could offer some token plot summary here, but believe me when I say that it really, really doesn't matter. Adapting the 1947 Boris Vian novel L'ecume des jours, a...

[Read the whole post on]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Watch: When Romain Duris Met Andrey Tautou in Michel Gondry's 'Mood Indigo'

Watch: When Romain Duris Met Andrey Tautou in Michel Gondry's 'Mood Indigo'
A new clip for Michel Gondry's fantasy romance "Mood Indigo" has been released. Opening in select cinemas Friday July 18, the film was inspired by Boris Vian's cult novel and tells the story of a budding romance between Colin (Romain Duris) and Chloe (Audrey Tautou), which is tested when an unusual illness plagues Chloe; a flower begins to grow in her lungs. It is Gondry's seventh feature film after the likes of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," "The Science of Sleep," "Been Kind Rewind" and "The We and the I," and certainly seems to play to his love of the surreal and whimsical. The scene is sweet snippet, and displays all the charm of Gondry's work. Colin approaches Chloe for the first time and asks "Have you ever been played by Duke Ellington?" It's a perfect moment, except nothing hits the mark. Check it out below:
See full article at Indiewire »

Isa of the Day: Abhi Rastogi of 108 Media

Our International Sales Agent (Isa) of the Day coverage is back again for this year's Cannes Film Festival. We will feature successful, upcoming, innovative and trailblazing agents from around the world, and cover the latest trends in sales and distribution. Beyond the numbers and deals, this segment will also share inspirational and unique stories of how these individuals have evolved and paved their way in the industry, and what they envision for the new waves in global cinema.

108 Media is a new sales company out of Toronto. Founder Abhi Rastogi sees it as "a force that opposes the standards of the film industry, redefining boundaries of what is possible and achievable." 108 Media recently acquired the worldwide sales rights for The Insect King by Priscilla Cameron and will begin selling the picture at the Cannes Film Festival. 108 is also excited to bring titles like He Never Died, which stars Henry Rollins as a punk rocker cannibal and Camera Trap, a wildlife thriller about a film crew that pursues local sightings of a rare wildcat in Nepal.

Abhi Rastogi shares some of his history, sales and more about 108's Cannes lineup:

How did you start 108 Media?

I started the company two years ago. We looked at how sales and distribution was done for the last seven or eight years, and we looked at bringing something different to the independent marketplace. And so we've tried to stick to a certain model where you can expect not so regular things.

We are doing theatrical releases in North America. We've released seven films theatrically in the last one and a half years--some of the most high profile films being Midnight's Children, based on Salman Rushdie's book, The We And The I, based on Michel Gondry. We also act as a foreign sales company, so we're very excited to introduce new projects and new voices to the international market.

What's your background?

Prior to this, I was a managing director of a company called Cinesavvy. We produced films like Frankie & Alice, starring Halle Berry; I was an executive producer on the film. Lionsgate released it last month. Prior to that, I was a distribution manager at Cinemavault, which is a Toronto based sales company.

What will 108 bring to Cannes?

We're bringing first footage from the film He Never Died, which stars Henry Rollins as a punk rocker and a cannibal who never died. This was a film that I was introduced to in September. And as a sales agent, you also get involved with packaging a lot; we were able to package the film right after Tiff in record time. We shot the film in November, so we're bringing it to Cannes.

Then we're brining this amazing, stunning chiller that was made in Nepal called Camera Trap, produced by the very high profile Steve Christian of Pinewood Pictures from the UK. It was shot all on location in Nepal last year. It's about a crew that goes to look for a snow leopard and finds something else. What's amazing is that the filmmakers have done a lot of nature related visuals. The film is stunning, visually captivating, and very realistic.

How are sales?

The sales are doing very well, because we're realistic about what the market can bare. We want to bring exciting projects, but at the same time, we are very careful of what we are requesting from our buyers and what's needed on their parts to support these films. It's more about collaboration for us. We tend to do a lot of business with the same buyers.

Some territories are more challenging than others, but that's the nature of our business. Spain is challenging--there are fewer buyers that are chasing after much higher profile content. That's because there are just not enough outlets for independent films to be released there. France has been a bit more challenging because of the home video markets collapsing there.

At the same time, we're doing very well in Asia through our Tokyo office. We tend to sell well across the board, including Germany, the UK and Italy.

More about 108 Media:

Cannes Lineup:

Camera Trap



He Never Died

Case of Kyoto, Case of Schuichi

The Time Being


Fanie Fourie’s Lobola

Shame The Devil

The Rescuers

Tough Bond


108 is an agitator – a force that opposes the standards of the film industry, redefining boundaries of what is possible and achievable.

The media industry is not what it used to be, it is untraditional and media is consumed differently, in an ever changing and increasingly diversified forms of delivery and interaction. 108 Media is as unpredictable, leading edge and flexible as today's media demands – we’re targeted, we’re quick to execute, and we give the audience what they want, where they want it, and when they want it!

The Why is the easy part, because it is required of a media company to do so or be left behind like print media. The How is the interesting part. 108 Media measures social, blog and web traffic and consumer patterns to fully understand its consumers' dynamics, location and tendencies, thereby building effective and timely strategies to maximize media exposure and consumption efficiency. Further, 108 Media controls the pipelines of delivery, creating a truly vertically integrated next-generation media company fully capable to producing, marketing, and distributing media to all major Digital VOD, Broadband VOD and Paid Cable platforms.

We cut the old mantras of advertising and media delivery and enable a truly cross-promotional and cross platform digital experience.
See full article at Sydney's Buzz »

Michel Gondry Reveals Details About His Next Film, Shooting Could Begin This Summer

While the films may not always work, the inventiveness and willingness to try new things, make us return again and again to the movies of Michel Gondry. And Gondry is particularly hard to pin down of late, delivering the lo-fi "The We And The I," the animated Noam Chomsky documentary "Is The Man Who Is Tall Happy?" and the wild fantasy "Mood Indigo." And for his next, it looks like Gondry again is striking into different territory. Noting he has a few projects going, Gondry told Cine Chronicle at the end of March, "I wrote the script for the next film about two teenagers on the run. The filming could start this summer." He then told La Provence this week that casting was underway. At any rate, it looks like Gondry is getting the wheels in motion on whatever he's doing next. Will it be another low budget lark, another
See full article at The Playlist »

How I Shot That: Filming Sundance Drama 'Fishing Without Nets' at Sea was like a Roller Coaster

  • Indiewire
How I Shot That: Filming Sundance Drama 'Fishing Without Nets' at Sea was like a Roller Coaster
Cinematographer Alex Disenhof spoke to Indiewire about shooting "Fishing Without Nets," a U.S. Dramatic entry that premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and was directed by Cutter Hodierne. "Fishing Without Nets" chronicles the life of a Somali husband and father forced into piracy in order to provide for his family. Disenhof previously worked on "The We and the I," "Funeral Kings" and "Emoticon." Which camera and lens did you use? We used the Red Epic and Red Scarlett cameras with Zeiss Super Speeds and Angenieux Optimo Dp 16-42mm, and 30-80mm zooms. What was the most difficult shot in your movie, and how did you pull it off? We had many difficult shots, as we often did ten minute long handheld takes looking 360 degrees. Possibly the most difficult of all was shooting handheld on a rickety wooden boat deep out at sea. I had to follow several 'pirates'
See full article at Indiewire »

Paladin Picks up ‘A Short History of Decay’ for Theatrical Release

Paladin Picks up ‘A Short History of Decay’ for Theatrical Release
Mark Urman’s New York-based distributor, Paladin, has acquired theatrical rights to “A Short History of Decay,” Michael Maren’s comedy-drama that bowed last fall as part of the Hamptons Intl. Film Festival.

The debut film written and directed by author-journo Maren, “Short History” stars Bryan Greenberg, Linda Lavin and Harris Yulin in a story about an aimless thirtysomething Brooklynite (Greenberg) who is summoned to Florida when his father (Yulin) is hospitalized, attended by his addled mother (Lavin). Kathleen Rose Perkins, Benjamin King and Emmanuelle Chriqui also appear in the pic.

Distribution was pacted by Urman with attorney Alfred Sapse, who also produced the movie. ”Short History” joins a Paladin roster of films that has included “Midnight’s Children,” “The We and the I” and “Mansome,” with “Short History” on tap for an April opening in theaters.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Paladin Acquires 'A Short History of Decay'

Paladin Pictures has acquired "A Short History of Decay", the directorial debut by author  journalist, and war correspondent Michael Maren ("The Road to Hell"). The film debuted last fall at the Hamptons International Film Festival. The film follows Nathan Fisher (Bryan Greenberg of "Prime" and "One Tree Hill"), a thirtysomething Brooklyn hipster whose ambitious girlfriend (Emmanuelle Chriqui) leaves him after his writing career stalls. Nathan soon gets a call from his brother in Florida that their father (Harris Yulin) has been hospitalized. Nathan arrives home to find his father recovering, if grouchy, and his mother (Linda Lavin) in a hazy state. While there, he meets his mother's manicurist (Kathleen Rose Perkins), the polar opposite of his girlfriend, but perhaps what he needs to recover. The acquisition was announced by the Paladin's president, Mark Urman. The company  previously released Michel Gondry's "The We and the I" and acquired last year's Sundance.
See full article at Indiewire »

Michel Gondry's Surreal Romance Mood Indigo Picked Up By Drafthouse Films

It.s been far too many years since audiences have gotten to see director Michel Gondry.s imagination make it to the screen in unfettered form, as last year.s The We and the I was centered in reality and The Green Hornet before that was not the kind of fantasy film Gondry fans want to see. Luckily, his next film Mood Indigo looks like his most visually ambitious effort yet, and U.S. audiences will soon be able to see it now that Drafthouse Films has acquired the rights. To celebrate the occasion, they also released a new still from the film, seen above, which unfortunately doesn.t involve miniature musicians or swaths of flowers. Mood Indigo is based on the 1947 novel L.Écume des Jours from French author Boris Vian. It centers on the blossoming romance that forms between Colin (Romain Duris) and Chloé (Audrey Tautou), resulting in
See full article at Cinema Blend »

Michel Gondry Discusses His Affinity For Noam Chomsky And the Relationship Between His New Documentary And Music Videos

Michel Gondry Discusses His Affinity For Noam Chomsky And the Relationship Between His New Documentary And Music Videos
Michel Gondry is no stranger to experimentation. In the past five years, he has made a big studio adaptation of "The Green Hornet," a documentary about his aunt called "The Thorn in the Heart," the real time story of some Queens high schoolers on the bus "The We and the I," and the fantasy drama "Mood Indigo." Even so, his latest completed project is unique: Solely consisting of a conversation between the filmmaker and noted linguist Noam Chomsky, "Is the Man Who Is Tall Happy?" relies on Gondry's hand drawn animations and voiceover to explore Chomsky's rich theories of language. The movie, which closes the Doc NYC festival this week, will be released by IFC Films on Friday. Gondry spoke to Indiewire about his experience with the project and how it compares to both his recent work as well as his earlier music videos. In the movie, you state a
See full article at Indiewire »

Toronto 2013: How Did Last Year’s Films Do?

  • Deadline
As the Toronto Film Festival acquisitions market gets cracking, I find it helpful to see how some of last year’s titles fared at the box office. It’s an instructive way to keep things in perspective. Titles below reflect theatrical grosses, but remember, multi-platform business is not reflected and in some cases has turned films into profitable winners. Related: Toronto 2013: Will Deals Take Back Seat? Toronto Film Festival 2012 Acquisitions at the Domestic B.O. Title (distributor) Domestic B.O. (in millions except where noted) The Place Beyond the Pines (Focus Features) $21.4 Spring Breakers (A24) $14.1 Much Ado About Nothing (Roadside Attractions) $4.27 Frances Ha (IFC) $4.05 Emperor (Roadside Attractions) $3.35 Stories We Tell (Roadside Attractions) $1.59 Girl Most Likely (Roadside Attractions) $1.38 The Lords of Salem (Anchor Bay) $1.17 What Maisie Knew (Millennium Ent.) $1.07 Still Mine (Samuel Goldwyn) $587K The Reluctant Fundamentalist (IFC) $529K Arthur Newman (Cinedigm) $208K No Place on Earth (Magnolia) $200K John Dies at the End
See full article at Deadline »

September DVD Release Dates Set For 'The We & The I,' 'My Brother, The Devil,' & '1/2 Revolution'

Virgil Films & Entertainment has announced the home video (DVD/Blu-ray) releases of 3 S&A-covered titles: Michel Gondry's The We And The I, British/Egyptian drama My Brother The Devil, and Egyptian revolution documentary, 1/2 Revolution. Michel Gondry's Bronx tale The We and The I made its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, last year (2012). The film stars Michael Brodie, Teresa Lynn, Laidychen Carrasco, Raymond Delgado, Jonathan Ortiz, Jonathan Worrell and Alex Barrios, and is described as follows: The We and the I is the heartfelt and comical story of the final bus ride home for a group of young high school students and...
See full article at ShadowAndAct »

Review: Michel Gondry's Mood Indigo Exhilarates, Exhausts

Michel Gondry is back. And he's going no holds barred.After slumming it as studio hired-gun and inner-city auteur (in 2011's The Green Hornet and 2012's The We and the I, respectively), the French director is back in small-batch surrealist mode with Mood Indigo (L'ecume des jours). The cult of Gondry can breathe a sigh of relief: with all its artisanal whimsy and handcrafted pizazz, this isn't just the movie you've been waiting for - it's three of them. Now, if only Gondry had managed to make them add up to anything meaningful or affecting. I could offer some token plot summary here, but believe me when I say that it really, really doesn't matter. Adapting the 1947 Boris Vian novel L'ecume des jours, a linguistically playful romance that's about as universally...

[Read the whole post on]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Paladin / 108 Media Acquire Sundance Winner "Metro Manila"

Mark Urman of Paladin, 108 Media's U.S. Distribution arm has acquired Sean Ellis’ Sundance Audience Award Winner Metro Manila for No. America. Urman and 108 CEO Abhi Rastog negotiated the deal with Abigail Walsh, Head of Sales at Independent, who are handling international sales on the film, and Jessica Lacy, on behalf of ICM partners, who represent Ellis.

The North American deal on Metro Manila follows a number of other major sales, including France (Haut et Court), Spain (Festival Films), Scandinavia (NonStop), Japan (New Selects), Middle East (Front Row), Latin America (HBO), Hungary (Vertigo), Greece (Seven Group), Ex Yugoslavia (Cinemania), Singapore (indies Entertainment), and the Philippines (Captive).

Urman characterizes Metro Manila as "a smashing thriller--as smart and stylish as it is suspenseful—that I found impossible to shake-off. We look forward to working with Sean on its release and, even more so, to sharing it with audiences.” Rastogi adds, “this is undoubtedly one of the most exciting films to have emerged on the festival circuit this year, and we are confident that moviegoers and media alike will be blown away by it.”

Ellis produced, directed, photographed, and co-wrote the screenplay of Metro Manila, with Frank E. Flowers, based on his original story. Mathilde Charpentier also produced, and Ellis, Celine Lopez, and Enrique Y. Gonzalez served as executive producers.

Metro Manila centers around Oscar Ramirez, a poor rice farmer from the Northern Philippine mountains, who moves his family to the capital mega-city of Metro Manila in search of a better life. The sweltering capital’s bustling intensity soon overwhelms the Ramirezes, and they fall prey to the manipulations of hardened locals. Left penniless, Oscar gets a lucky break when he is offered steady work at an armored truck company and is taken under the wing of its friendly senior officer, Ong. Grateful for the job, Oscar doesn’t realize how dangerous it is; after all, Manila is a city where machine gun-wielding security guards are seen in every shop, from banks and jewelry stores to Starbucks, and where armed robbery has become a daily occurrence. Driving a cash-laden armored truck makes Oscar a moving target, but robbery isn’t the only danger he faces: when it becomes apparent that Ong was lying in wait for someone just like Oscar for some time, and that his motives for hiring him were far from altruistic, Oscar finds himself ensnared in a web of intrigue far more perilous than anything he faces on the mean streets of Manila

About 108 Media and Paladin:

108 Media is a Toronto-based international sales and distribution company that announced its partnership with Paladin at last year’s Toronto Film Festival. Together Rastogi and Urman have acquired such titles as Michel Gondry’s “The We And The I” and the Deepa Mehta/Salman Rushdie collaboration, “Midnight’s Children,” both currently in release. Also on-screen now are the award-winning British drama, “My Brother The Devil” and the Canadian comedy “And Now A Word From Our Sponsor,” starring Bruce Greenwood and Parker Posey, which was released last week both in select theaters and on cable VOD.
See full article at Sydney's Buzz »
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