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Close-Up on Pere Portabella's "Nocturno 29"

Close-Up is a feature that spotlights films now playing on Mubi. Pere Portabella's Nocturno 29 (1968) is showing May 9 - June 8, 2018 in the many countries around the world as part of the series The Directors' Fortnight.Pere Portabella’s Nocturno 29 arrives at the beginning of his directorial career, the film being his first feature after the short No compteu amb els dits (1967). Together, these form the start of a filmography marked with the political charge and deliberate abstraction that were hallmarks of Spain’s so-called Barcelona School. There is a tendency among film writing to see films of the Barcelona School in light of ‘authorial intention’—that is, as a deposit of a social relationship brought about by a specific time and place. Yet one can also view the film individually as a collection of unique iconography pertaining to Spanish class consciousness in its own right.The film is, ostensibly, about
See full article at MUBI »

Milk Vomit and ‘Pac Man’: Joel Potrykus’ ‘Relaxer’ Is a Masterpiece of Depraved ’90s Nostalgia — SXSW 2018 Review

Milk Vomit and ‘Pac Man’: Joel Potrykus’ ‘Relaxer’ Is a Masterpiece of Depraved ’90s Nostalgia — SXSW 2018 Review
Great cinema is sometimes grand themes, dramatic camerawork, and sophisticated montage; or, it’s a guy playing “Pac Man” for 90 minutes. Joel Potrykus’ “Relaxer,” the latest wacky gambit from the Michigan-based provocateur, finds the “Buzzard” director reteaming with his perennial star Joshua Burge, again taking a cartoonish lowbrow approach to acerbic social critique. Set on the eve of Y2K, “Relaxer” exclusively takes place in the confines of a living room, where Burge’s character endures prolonged attempts to reach an impossible high score on the the aforementioned video game, while enduring hardships that include milk vomit, fecal matter, overheated cartridges, and rat poison. It’s a grotesque downward spiral, both hilarious and mesmerizing, but above all elevated by its insights into the depraved final gasp of the analog age.

Media scholar Neil Postman diagnosed the ills of entertainment media in his aptly titled 1985 tome “Amusing Ourselves to Death;” that
See full article at Indiewire »

Expecting the Unexpected: Four by Luis Buñuel

  • MUBI
Four late films by Luis Buñuel are showing from February 22 - March 28, 2018 in the United States in the retrospective Buñuel.“Chance governs all things.”—Luis Buñuel, My Last SighStriving for the surprising has always been a prevailing part of Luis Buñuel’s aesthetic practice. At first, this endeavor manifest itself in overtly incongruous visual terms, with the succession of shocking and often inexplicable images that dominate his earliest efforts, namely Un chien andalou (1929) and L'âge d'or (1930). After these two surrealist masterworks, though, both of which Buñuel made in collaboration with the movement’s eminent enforcer, Salvador Dalí, the director’s output went in a decidedly more systematic direction. The films Buñuel made in Mexico, twenty of them from the late 1940s into the early 1960s, could at times be just as provocative as anything else filling his filmography, but their formal and tonal constitution was comparatively tame and, dare one say it regarding Buñuel,
See full article at MUBI »

The Best Movies of 2017, According to IndieWire Critic Eric Kohn

The Best Movies of 2017, According to IndieWire Critic Eric Kohn
At a time when the world is changing at an unquantifiable pace, when menacing world powers threaten everything we hold dear, we often look to the movies to bring the chaos into focus. In 2017, even the best escapism came with a dose of harsh truths about struggles facing civilization today, and the best movies went to places woefully ignored by the culture at large. When the mood of the moment is #resist and the future often looks more like a fake-news frenzy than the audacity of hope, the resilience of this art form is in sync with the zeitgeist.

I stand by the credo that anyone who thinks this was a bad year for the movies simply hasn’t seen enough of them. As the years progress, my own year-end tallies continue to grow. I offered 16 highlights at the end of 2016; here are 17 for 2017. Watch them all, try to make
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Justice League’ Box Office: Why a $96-Million Opening Means Trouble

  • Indiewire
‘Justice League’ Box Office: Why a $96-Million Opening Means Trouble
DC Comics’ “Justice League” (Warner Bros.) opened to just shy of $100 million. That makes it the seventh best opening for 2017, just $7 million shy of DC’s “Wonder Woman,” which would seem a reasonable box-office launch.

But the movie marks a disappointment in relation to its $300-million production cost–before worldwide marketing expenses. Yet again, DC and Warners seem to be whiffing this crucial Batman/Superman/Wonder Woman franchise at bat against rival Disney/Marvel– which just delivered a home run with “Thor: Ragnarok.”

Nonetheless “Justice League” boosted the weekend — with help from a surprisingly strong showing for family heart-tugger “Wonder” (Lionsgate) — to more than $200 million total box office. That’s more than $40 million ahead of last year, when “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” debuted to $79 million.

Boasting a robust ensemble of familiar superheroes and fresh franchise entries including Aquaman, the epic was expected to reach $110 million or better.
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ and ‘Mudbound’ Vie Against Fall Box Office Hits

  • Indiewire
‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ and ‘Mudbound’ Vie Against Fall Box Office Hits
Leading fall Oscar contenders “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Fox Searchlight) and “Lady Bird” (A24) continue to pull crowds as they both expand after limited openings. They are the top performers by far among specialized films this weekend, including the platform debut of “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” (Sony).

The Denzel Washington legal drama had a modest debut in four New York/Los Angeles theaters before its wider release on Wednesday. The fate of Dee Rees’ acclaimed “Mudbound” (Netflix) is the compelling story of the weekend. The ’40s southern farm drama opened in a handful of big city theaters parallel to its home-viewing debut, with grosses unreported by Netflix. We are estimating its performance based on limited indications from several theaters.

Also getting strong reviews for its New York-Los Angeles debut, the Chilean Oscar submission “The Fantastic Woman” (Sony Pictures Classics) opened for a qualifying week with no grosses reported. It
See full article at Indiewire »

Present Laughter, Pokemon the Movie and Follies top our November Events list

  • Cineplex
Present Laughter, Pokemon the Movie and Follies top our November Events listPresent Laughter, Pokemon the Movie and Follies top our November Events listScott Goodyer11/1/2017 10:06:00 Am

November is here and this month's Event Cinema lineup is enough to keep the oncoming winter chill away! We've got a wide variety of different screenings, from ballet and Broadway to anime, to warm your hearts.

November 2nd: Present Laughter

The great actor Kevin Kline stars in the Broadway hit Present Laughter, which follows Garry Essendine, a self-indulgent actor who receives a visit from a young admirer, initiating a parade of intruders and interruptions, including his ex-wife, his manager and an aspiring playwright.

Watch the trailer below and for tickets - click here!

November 5th: Pokemon the Movie: I Choose You!

This special event explores Ash and Pikachu’s first meeting and their adventures as they search for the Legendary Pokémon Ho-Oh. The
See full article at Cineplex »

Hypnotic Chill! Monster Thrill!

This short article is in the spirit of the crowded ad-mat advertising blurbs that, once upon a time, would show up in the newspaper for horror related features. The particular composite above is a fantasy, but since all films back then were for General Audiences, a stack like it is entirely credible. Here, it’s an excuse for a trio of personal Savant anecdotes, vividly remembered from fifty-odd years ago.

Not Bad! Charlie Largent assembled this convincing triple bill ad paste-up,

customized for San Bernardino in 1964.

Don’t listen to Gen X’ers or Millennials, kids: the Real era to be an adolescent moviegoer was in the 1950s and 1960s, when downtown movie palaces had regular Saturday kiddie matinees, just as seen in the nostalgic Joe Dante movie. Theaters in most towns functioned as ad hoc babysitters, with kids dropped off in clumps. In many cases the oldest squab in
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Pablo Trapero, Martina Gusmán, Bérénice Bejo, Wild Bunch Team for ‘La Quietud’ (Exclusive)

Pablo Trapero, Martina Gusmán, Bérénice Bejo, Wild Bunch Team for ‘La Quietud’ (Exclusive)
One of Latin America’s highest-profile filmmakers, Pablo Trapero, will direct Martina Gusmán (“Lion’s Den”) and Bérénice Bejo (“The Artist”) in “La Quietud,” an intimate family drama turning on two sisters’ reencounter and attempt at closure on a common troubled past.

Wild Bunch will handle international sales and looks set to introduce the new title to buyers at next week’s American Film Market.

Edgar Ramírez (“Carlos”) plays the older sister’s husband; Graciela Borges (“Chronicle of a Lady,” “The Swamp”), one of Argentina’s grand dames, is the sisters’ mother; Joaquín Furriel (“The Bronze Garden”) has also joined the cast.

Going into production in the week of Nov. 20, and shooting on a country estate in the province of Buenos Aires, “La Quietud” is set up at Trapero and Gusmán’s Buenos Aires production house Matanza Cine. Headed by Melita Toscan du Plantier and Marie-Jeanne Pascal, Paris-based Macassar Productions co-produces out of France. Viacom-owned free-to-air
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Mother!’: How Darren Aronofsky’s Team Turned a Victorian Mansion Into a House of Horrors

  • Indiewire
‘Mother!’: How Darren Aronofsky’s Team Turned a Victorian Mansion Into a House of Horrors
Despite the postmortems for Darren Aronofsky’s critically-polarizing and commercially disastrous “mother!,” there’s no denying the power of the extraordinary Victorian house at its center. It’s a pivotal character that pits Him (Javier Bardem) against Mother (Jennifer Lawrence) in the allegorical battle for the planet’s survival.

For production designer Philip Messina (“The Hunger Games”), creating the octagonal house offered the most unique experience in world building. “What was amazing to me was how, more than any other film, it was a symbiotic relationship between camera moves and set,” said Messina, who collaborated closely with Aronofsky’s long-time cinematographer Matthew Libatique.

“I’ve never done theater, but it reminded me how the staging of actors and sets worked,” Messina added. “This was all one environment and I knew what the camera would be doing.”

The Meaning of “mother!”

However, even though Aronofsky has been open with the press in describing “mother!
See full article at Indiewire »

Listen to Darren Aronofsky and William Friedkin Discuss ‘mother!’ in a 30-Minute Talk

While we’d begrudge you from going down the rabbit hole of explainer articles for mother!, the chance to listen to writer-director Darren Aronofsky discuss the film with his F CinemaScore brethren William Friedkin is something not to pass up. Recently gathering at the Director’s Guild of America following a screening of his divisive biblical horror film, their full 34-minute talk is now available to listen to.

They work through a number of topics, from Aronofsky’s initial inspiration of Luis Buñuel’s The Exterminating Angel, the main allegories of climate change and biblical tales (no word on the artist metaphor), writing the original script in five days, and how Paramount gave him the money (“It came down to the number and Jennifer Lawrence.”)

Being that this was at the DGA, he also touched on more technical aspects, including three months of rehearsal with the main cast, then he
See full article at The Film Stage »

‘mother!’ is the Smartest Comedy of 2017

‘mother!’ is the Smartest Comedy of 2017
Reviews for “mother!” have called it everything from “sickening” to “a berserk feast of filth,” but the most shocking thing about Darren Aronofsky’s wildly divisive new movie is that it’s hilarious. You wouldn’t expect to laugh so much during a movie that includes more disturbing Wtf moments than you can count, but “mother!” shatters expectations. As A.O. Scott puts in his review for the New York Times: “Don’t listen to anyone who natters on about how intense or disturbing it is; it’s a hoot!”

Aronofsky is the farthest thing from a comedic filmmaker. Take one look at “Requiem for a Dream” or “Black Swan” and you’re more likely to recoil from shock and discomfort than crack up. “mother!’s” grand statements on the history of humanity and its relationship to the Earth make it a successor to “The Fountain” and “Noah,” but Aronofsky’s
See full article at Indiewire »

Darren Aronofsky on 'mother!' Inspirations, Unnamed Characters

Darren Aronofsky on 'mother!' Inspirations, Unnamed Characters
Writer-director Darren Aronofsky has said that the screenplay for mother! poured out of him, penning it in just a few days, faster than his usual pace.

But despite its free-flowing creation, the script still has some concrete inspirations.  

"There were a lot of influences. The Giving Tree was a big influence, actually. The film is kind of a horror version of The Giving Tree," he told The Hollywood Reporter at mother!'s U.S. premiere in New York earlier this week. "There was Luis Bunuel's The Exterminating Angel, where he basically took a slice of society and made...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

'Time to Die' ('Tiempo de Morir'): Film Review

'Time to Die' ('Tiempo de Morir'): Film Review
An elemental Western about inherited sins and the difference between honor and pride, Arturo Ripstein's Time to Die follows a man who, having served 18 years in jail to pay for killing a man, finds the victim's sons now believe he owes his life as well. Said to be the first produced screenplay by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who wrote it with Carlos Fuentes, it was also the directing debut of Ripstein, who had just helped his father Alfredo Ripstein produce Luis Buñuel's The Exterminating Angel. Finally seeing American release and beautifully restored, the involving picture is no museum piece; it...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Mother! review – no gob left unsmacked in Jennifer Lawrence's anxiety dream of horror and dismay

Lawrence and Javier Bardem play a husband and wife whose isolated house is invaded by another married couple in Darren Aronofsky’s black-comic nightmare

It’s a powerful enough word at the best of times, but the exclamation mark gives it that edge of delirium and melodrama and despair – just the way Norman Bates yells it at the end of Psycho. Or maybe we’re supposed to hear a second, brutal two-syllable word immediately afterwards. Darren Aronofsky’s toweringly outrageous film leaves no gob unsmacked. It is an event-movie detonation, a phantasmagorical horror and black-comic nightmare that jams the narcosis needle right into your abdomen. Mother! escalates the anxiety and ups the ante of dismay with every scene, every act, every trimester, taking us in short order from Wtf to Wtaf to Swtaf and beyond.

It’s a very bad dream of very bad things: influenced perhaps by Polanski’s
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Darren Aronofsky, Jennifer Lawrence Talk ‘mother!’ Which Divides Venice

Darren Aronofsky, Jennifer Lawrence Talk ‘mother!’ Which Divides Venice
Venice, Italy — Darren Aronofsky on Tuesday surprised the Venice Film Festival press corps who reacted with a mix of cheers and boos to his bold horror tale “mother!” which is centred on a creepy submissive, and explosive, dynamic between Jennifer Lawrence, who plays the title character, and her poet husband called Him, played by Javier Bardem.

The film certainly marks a novelty for the edgy U.S. director who is a Lido aficionado. His “The Wrestler” won the 2008 Golden Lion, “Black Swan” also premiered in Venice, as did “The Fountain.” And Aronofsky headed the festival’s main jury in 2011.

“It was a a strange experience: most of my films take many many years to come to life — ‘Black Swan’ was 10 years, ‘Noah’ was 20 years — and this film happened in five days,” he said.

“It came out of living on this planet and sort of seeing what’s happening around us and not being able to do anything
See full article at Variety - Film News »

The 100 Greatest Comedies of All-Time, According to BBC’s Critics Poll

After polling critics from around the world for the greatest American films of all-time, BBC has now forged ahead in the attempt to get a consensus on the best comedies of all-time. After polling 253 film critics, including 118 women and 135 men, from 52 countries and six continents a simple, the list of the 100 greatest is now here.

Featuring canonical classics such as Some Like It Hot, Dr. Strangelove, Annie Hall, Duck Soup, Playtime, and more in the top 10, there’s some interesting observations looking at the rest of the list. Toni Erdmann is the most recent inclusion, while the highest Wes Anderson pick is The Royal Tenenbaums. There’s also a healthy dose of Chaplin and Lubitsch with four films each, and the recently departed Jerry Lewis has a pair of inclusions.

Check out the list below (and my ballot) and see more on their official site.

100. (tie) The King of Comedy (Martin Scorsese,
See full article at The Film Stage »

Chile’s Growing Film Festival Scene: Sanfic Announces Lineup

Chile’s Growing Film Festival Scene: Sanfic Announces Lineup
The thirteenth edition of Santiago International Film Festival, Sanfic (August 20–27, 2017), the largest film festival in Chile, will present more than 100 international and Chilean films, including productions shown and awarded in festivals such as Cannes, Berlin and Venice. Among the feature films will be 7 world and 14 Latin American premieres.

Sanfic (Santiago International Film Festival) is opening the festival to international press this year with Variety Dailies and important international guests for their Sanfic Industry section. Guest attending include Kim Yutani (Sundance programmer), Javier Martin (Berlinale delegate), Molly O ́Keefe (Tribeca Film Institute — fiction features) and Estrella Araiza (Industry director of Guadalajara Iff), to name a few. Matt Dillon is its special guest along with the renowned director of photography Rainer Klausmann.

The Summit starring Ricardo Darín, Dolores Fonzi and Erica Rivas, with an appearance of Christian Slater and renowned Chilean actors Paulina Garcia and Alfredo Castro

The opening film of the
See full article at SydneysBuzz »

Volcano is Fearless Finney Showcase: L.A. Screening with Bisset in Attendance

Volcano is Fearless Finney Showcase: L.A. Screening with Bisset in Attendance
'Under the Volcano' screening: John Huston's 'quality' comeback featuring daring Albert Finney tour de force As part of its John Huston film series, the UCLA Film & Television Archive will be presenting the 1984 drama Under the Volcano, starring Albert Finney, Jacqueline Bisset, and Anthony Andrews, on July 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Billy Wilder Theater in the Los Angeles suburb of Westwood. Jacqueline Bisset is expected to be in attendance. Huston was 77, and suffering from emphysema for several years, when he returned to Mexico – the setting of both The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and The Night of the Iguana – to direct 28-year-old newcomer Guy Gallo's adaptation of English poet and novelist Malcolm Lowry's 1947 semi-autobiographical novel Under the Volcano, which until then had reportedly defied the screenwriting abilities of numerous professionals. Appropriately set on the Day of the Dead – 1938 – in the fictitious Mexican town of Quauhnahuac (the fact that it sounds like Cuernavaca
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Criterion Now – Episode 24 – Ghost World, Crumb, Barnes & Noble Sale

Aaron, Travis and Tim Leggoe dig into the world of Terry Zwigoff, the Barnes & Noble Sale, predictions and wish lists for October Criterion releases, reactions to the Sean Baker episode, and plenty more. We also have announced a contest so listen carefully.

Episode Notes

8:00 – Sean Baker Reactions

19:00 – Barnes & Noble

30:00 – October Predictions

47:00 – Ghost World

1:10 – Short Takes (The Exterminating Angel, Summer Interlude, Crumb)

1:21:30 – FilmStruck

Episode Links Barnes & Noble Criterion Sale Thora Birch: How Hollywood’s Darling Disappeared Janus Films – The Human Condition Tweet Criterion Close-Up 23: Breaker Morant and Mister Johnson Episode Credits Aaron West: Twitter | Website | Letterboxd Tim Leggoe: Blog | Letterboxd | Twitter Travis Trudell: Twitter | Instagram Criterion Now: Twitter | Facebook Group Criterion Cast: Facebook | Twitter

Music for the show is from Fatboy Roberts’ Geek Remixed project.
See full article at CriterionCast »
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