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‘Let the Sunshine In’ Film Review: Juliette Binoche Looks for Love With All the Wrong Men

‘Let the Sunshine In’ Film Review: Juliette Binoche Looks for Love With All the Wrong Men
Claire Denis’ loopy, tongue-in-cheek romantic comedy “Let the Sunshine In” stars Juliette Binoche as Isabelle, a contemporary French artist who becomes nearly obsessed with her search for love. Or lust. Whichever is within reach.

Isabelle jumps from one lover’s arms to another’s like there’s hot lava on the floor, and they are her safehaven of dry land. And dry so many of them are. The first is Vincent (actor-filmmaker Xavier Beauvois), a married banker with a jealous streak who negs Isabelle like he took a weekend course from The Pickup Artist. In one scene at a bar, he fills her up with backhanded compliments about how great it is that she feels comfortable doing such frivolous things like making art, while he tasks the bartender with completing arbitrary requests, like setting down a bottle of Perrier in exactly the right way.

Luckily, Isabelle ditches this guy, but she’s not single for long. Another lover — also married — quickly gets under her skin when what begins as an artists’ work meeting turns very personal very quickly. The guy (Nicolas Duvauchelle, Denis’ “White Material”) is an actor and is consistently referred to as simply “L’acteur.” Over the course of a single beer, he delivers an unprompted and seemingly endless monologue about all of his violent fugue states and “bad-boy” tendencies as Isabelle just waits for her turn to talk.

Also Read: Majority of Cannes Critics' Week Competition Films Were Directed by Women

This multi-scene courtship is painful to watch, because both characters neurotically dance around their attraction to one another in a manner that manifests itself into hostility and anger, and so both won’t shut up, even though they’re not really saying anything at all, until they finally ravage one another, and Isabelle says what I was feeling myself: “God, I thought the talking would never end.”

But L’acteur is no good, either. Isabelle longs for something real but continually seeks out the fiction, the relationship that’s bound to blow up in her face. She’s got a perfectly good choice of a man in Francois (Laurent Grévill, Denis’ “Bastards”), with whom she has a child, but this is a woman whose enemy is perfection; she’s addicted to the beginning of a relationship but instinctively runs at the first sign of trouble, even if the trouble is something she’s manufactured herself. Isabelle is the friend you must convince that every happy couple endures hard times.

Also Read: Netflix Bails on Cannes Over Theatrical Release Mandate

The cracks begin to show in Isabelle’s pleasant façade when she accepts an invitation for a trip into the country. In one pivotal moment, she loses it on an hours-long property tour, screaming and howling for the inane conversation to stop, but nobody seems to care, as they all have a great time later at the bar. She’s mercurial, and this film is as much a statement about the temperament of artists as it is about love. An artist can fly off the handle in rage, and yet her friends think nothing of this emotion, which is sure to be as fleeting as her romances.

The only cardinal sin an artist can commit, according to Isabelle’s artist friends, is being with someone who is not also an artist, who would never understand this impetuous lifestyle. When Isabelle sleeps with a man who sweeps her off her feet at a bar and then has him move in with her, the artist community is in a panic: Has this guy even painted anything before?

See Photos: 17 Highest-Grossing Movies Directed by Women, From 'Mamma Mia!' to 'Wonder Woman'

And though Gérard Dépardieu only shows up for the finale of the film, as a psychic truth-teller, he’s the perfect tag to this story, this personal quest of Isabelle’s that shows absolutely no signs of ending anytime soon. Of course she goes to the psychic. Of course she wants him to give her an easy answer (one she will inevitably ignore or contradict after a while anyway), a way to predict the future and cut out the hard parts of learning and growing.

Binoche being in her 50s also brings more meaning to this film, which showcases the fact that the manic search for connection one feels in their 20s doesn’t just disappear with age. There’s no magical time when a person suddenly feels satisfied and does not wonder if possibly there is more to life and love than the day-in, day-out doldrums.

When films are made about straight men in this predicament, they’re often considered explorations of a “midlife crisis,” but Denis’ film poses the questions: What if crises aren’t limited to a certain age, and what if love itself is the crisis?

Read original story ‘Let the Sunshine In’ Film Review: Juliette Binoche Looks for Love With All the Wrong Men At TheWrap
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Berlin Film Review: ‘The Prayer’

If you don’t believe in God, but praying to him gives you comfort, does it count? If you do believe, but don’t express it, does your faith still protect you? Like Catholic variations on the old if-a-tree-falls-in-a-forest question, these and other theological uncertainties are intelligently woven into “The Prayer,” Cédric Kahn’s clear-eyed, open-minded study of a rural religious sanctuary for recovering addicts. Agnostically observant in its approach to spiritual matters, but more devout in its quiet celebration of human compassion, this film’s most complicated lines of inquiry largely play out on the young, unformed face of its protagonist Thomas — impressively played by breakthrough star Anthony Bajon — a shy former junkie whose push-pull battle between the ways of nature and grace gives this otherwise tranquil film a throughline of nervous tension.

Though this Berlin competition entry will likely be respectfully regarded on the festival circuit, its absence of both stars and narrative fireworks might curb
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Venice Prize Winner ‘Foxtrot’ Is One Of The Year’s Best [BFI London Film Fest Review]

Back in 2009, one of the most notable names to appear on the world film scene was Samuel Maoz. The then-47-year-old filmmaker, a former documentarian, made his feature debut with “Lebanon,” a gripping war drama set entirely within a tank during the 1982 conflict between Israel and Lebanon, a conflict which Maoz himself had fought in, in a similar role. Despite Maoz’s first-timer status, it landed in competition at the 2009 Venice Film Festival and, furthermore, took the top prize, the Golden Lion, beating out films including “White Material,” “A Single Man” and “The Road.”

Maoz seemed likely to break out to a much wider audience, and yet, in the last eight years, he has been largely absent.

Continue reading Venice Prize Winner ‘Foxtrot’ Is One Of The Year’s Best [BFI London Film Fest Review] at The Playlist.
See full article at The Playlist »

Juliette Binoche and Andre Benjamin join Robert Pattinson and Mia Goth in High Life

Variety is reporting that Juliette Binoche (The English Patient) and Andre Benjamin (Jimi: All Is By My Side) have joined Robert Pattinson (Good Time) and Mia Goth (A Cure For Wellness) in High Life, the English-language debut of director Claire Denis (White Material, 35 Shots of Rum).

The film follows a group of convicts who reduce their time behind bars in exchange for embarking on a dangerous mission to a black hole. Also featuring in the cast are Lars Eidinger (Clouds of Sils Maria), Agata Buzek (Redemption), Ewan Mitchell (The Last Kingdom), Jessie Ross (The Frankenstein Chronicles) and Claire Tran (Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets).

“It is a rare honor to work with Claire Denis,” said producer Andrew Lauren. “She has put together an incredible cast for what is not only her first English language feature but also her first sci-fi film after making 12 visionary films in French.
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Toronto: Juliette Binoche, André Benjamin Join Claire Denis’ ‘High Life’ (Exclusive)

Toronto: Juliette Binoche, André Benjamin Join Claire Denis’ ‘High Life’ (Exclusive)
Juliette Binoche and André Benjamin have joined the cast of Claire Denis’ “High Life,” Variety has learned.

The film revolves around convicts who reduce their time behind bars in exchange for embarking on a dangerous mission to a black hole. Robert Pattinson and Mia Goth were already announced as star rig in the film. In addition, Variety has learned that the cast has added Lars Eidinger (“Clouds of Sils Maria”), Agata Buzek (“Redemption”), Ewan Mitchell (“The Last Kingdom”), Jessie Ross (“The Frankenstein Chronicles”) and Claire Tran (“Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets”).

The picture is Denis’ English-language feature film debut. A favorite of cinephiles, she is best known for her films “White Material” and “35 Shots of Rum.”

Binoche, an Oscar-winner for “The English Patient” and a nominee for “Chocolat.” Along with Tran, she appeared in Denis’ “Let the Sun Shine,” which debuted at the Cannes Film Festival. Benjamin is best known for his music work
See full article at Variety - Film News »

New to Streaming: ‘Manifesto,’ ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,’ ‘Creepy,’ ‘A Woman’s Life,’ and More

With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit platforms. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.

After the Storm (Hirokazu Kore-eda)

Can our children pick and choose the personality traits they inherit, or are they doomed to obtain our lesser qualities? These are the hard questions being meditated on in After the Storm, a sobering, transcendent tale of a divorced man’s efforts to nudge back into his son’s life. Beautifully shot by regular cinematographer Yutaka Yamasaki, it marks a welcome and quite brilliant
See full article at The Film Stage »

All of the Films Joining FilmStruck’s Criterion Channel this August

Each month, the fine folks at FilmStruck and the Criterion Collection spend countless hours crafting their channels to highlight the many different types of films that they have in their streaming library. This August will feature an exciting assortment of films, as noted below.

To sign up for a free two-week trial here.

Tuesday, August 1

Tuesday’s Short + Feature: These Boots and Mystery Train

Music is at the heart of this program, which pairs a zany music video by Finnish master Aki Kaurismäki with a tune-filled career highlight from American independent-film pioneer Jim Jarmusch. In the 1993 These Boots, Kaurismäki’s band of pompadoured “Finnish Elvis” rockers, the Leningrad Cowboys, cover a Nancy Sinatra classic in their signature deadpan style. It’s the perfect prelude to Jarmusch’s 1989 Mystery Train, a homage to the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll and the musical legacy of Memphis, featuring appearances by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Joe Strummer.
See full article at CriterionCast »

Curzon adds Cannes quartet including 'I Am Not A Witch'

  • ScreenDaily
Curzon adds Cannes quartet including 'I Am Not A Witch'
Exclusive: Claire Denis comedy and Léonor Serraille’s Camera d’Or winner also among haul.

UK art-house kingpin Curzon Artificial Eye has locked up a further four Cannes titles bringing its current haul from the festival to a mighty 10 movies.

New to the slate are Claire Denis’ Let The Sunshine In (Un Beau Soleil Interieur), joint winner of the Sacd award in Directors’ Fortnight, Laurent Cantet’s well-received The Workshop (L’Atelier), Léonor Serraille’s Camera d’Or winner Young Woman (Jeune Femme) and Rungano Nyoni’s striking Directors’ Fortnight entry I Am Not A Witch.

As previously announced the distributor has acquired Palme d’Or winner The Square, Grand Prix winner 120 Beats Per Minute, best screenplay winner The Killing Of A Sacred Deer, Fatih Akin’s Competition drama In The Fade (Aus Dem Nichts), for which Diane Kruger won the best actress prize, Michael Haneke’s Happy End and Francois Ozon’s L’Amant Double.

See full article at ScreenDaily »

Cannes Review: ‘Let the Sunshine In’ is a Perceptive Romantic Comedy from Claire Denis

Claire Denis may not be the first Francophone auteur expected to turn in a romantic comedy, and her latest will disappoint those expecting Nancy Meyers a Paris. However, Let the Sunshine In (Un Beau Soleil Interieur) is a sophisticated, idiosyncratic, thoroughly modern interpretation of a French romantic farce, perceptive if not laugh-out-loud funny, featuring a top-form Juliette Binoche as a middle-aged divorcée wading through a series of exasperatingly self-centered men in search not just for love, but a partner with whom she can be herself.

Inspired by French critic and philosopher Roland Barthes’ A Lovers Discourse: Fragments, a work of agonizing self-reflexion on the nature of romantic relationships, Denis and novelist co-writer Christine Angot concoct a deadpan, occasionally very funny affair with touches of the self-examination of Woody Allen. Binoche plays Isabelle, an artist who lives in hope that she’ll find love again but continues, in her words, “running into a wall.
See full article at The Film Stage »

'Let the Sunshine In' ('Un beau soleil interieur'): Film Review | Cannes 2017

'Let the Sunshine In' ('Un beau soleil interieur'): Film Review | Cannes 2017
Like a Judd Apatow thriller or a Michael Haneke kids flick, the concept of a Claire Denis comedy at first sounds like a contradiction in terms. After all, the 71-year-old French auteur, whose film Beau Travail remains one of the great works of the last few decades, has taken an especially grim turn as of late, with movies like Bastards, White Material and The Intruder exploring some of the darker sides of contemporary humanity.

So it comes as quite a surprise that Let the Sunshine In (Un beau soleil interieur), which stars a moody and moving Juliette Binoche as a...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Review: An Auteur's First Heroine—Werner Herzog's "Queen of the Desert"

  • MUBI
What does it say about the current appeal of Werner Herzog's fiction films when his star-studded 2015 period adventure, Queen of the Desert, hasn't been released until now? Between its premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival and its appearance in U.S. cinemas, the German director has released two documentaries—both stellar—and shown yet another fiction drama on the festival circuit, the truly bizarre Salt and Fire. Now in theatres, Herzog's first fictional feature film since his two-shot salvo of The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans and My Son, My Son, What Have You Done? in 2009 is certainly his most expansive drama for decades. With a cast of James Franco, Robert Pattinson, and Damian Lewis, all led by Nicole Kidman, Queen of the Desert adapts the true saga of Gertrude Bell, an utterly unique woman who at the turn of the last century plunged into the
See full article at MUBI »

International Women's Day: "White Material"

by Robert Balkovich

Today is International Women's Day. To honor this day, a look back at a great female directed film that was critically lauded at the time but tends to not get the legacy attention it deserves: Claire Denis' "White Material."

Set in an unnamed former French colony in Africa on the brink of violent civil war, White Material is not new territory for Denis – a French national who grew up in Cameroon, Burinka Faso, Somalia and Senegal – but it does represent a more searing look at the ways in which colonialism has completely uprooted the continent.

Our hero of the story is no hero at all...
See full article at FilmExperience »

Isabelle Who…ppert? A Beginner’s Guide to the Oscar-Nominated ‘Elle’ Actress

Isabelle Who…ppert? A Beginner’s Guide to the Oscar-Nominated ‘Elle’ Actress
“Isabelle who…?” It’s a question I’ve gotten more times than I’d care to count this Oscar season, as audiences discover the fearless star of Paul Verhoeven’s subversive French thriller “Elle” — who just added an Independent Spirit Award to the collection of accolades the role has earned. Still, it’s nothing to be ashamed of, if you count yourself among the cinephiles who are only now learning Mme Huppert’s name (pronounced “Hoo-pair”).

Just yesterday, the French film academy honored Huppert with her second César award — but even her compatriots are late to the party. She’s been nominated 16 times, but France takes the provocative — and extremely prolific — actress for granted. After all, she’s never not acting, whether it’s on stage (from “Medea” to “The Maids”) or screen (at a rate of two or three movies a year). When French audiences see “Elle,” in which
See full article at Variety - Film News »

5 Reasons Why French Legend Isabelle Huppert Deserves to Win the Oscar for Best Actress

5 Reasons Why French Legend Isabelle Huppert Deserves to Win the Oscar for Best Actress
With final Academy Award voting coming to an end on Tuesday February 21st, it seems like a good time to champion what has been the most honored performance of the year, and which, if voters are looking in the right place, should be crowned on Oscar Sunday. The race for the Best Actress statuette has been fierce this awards season, but the one actress that has come out on top in more occasions than any other is Isabelle Huppert. For her role in Paul Verhoeven’s “Elle,” the revered French icon has earned her first-ever Oscar nomination, and there is no one that deserves to win more than she does. In case there is any doubt that Huppert is at the top of her craft and should be recognized, here are five reasons why “the greatest actress working today” should take home the coveted statuette.

She Gave the Best Performance
See full article at SydneysBuzz »

Juliette Binoche and Gérard Depardieu to Lead Claire Denis’ Next Film ‘Dark Glasses’

2017 just got a whole lot better. The last few years we’ve heard a handful of updates on what was thought to be Claire Denis‘ next film, High Life, an ambitious sci-fi drama starring Robert Pattinson. With shooting expecting to begin sometime this year, it looks like the project has been pushed back to make room for a smaller-scale feature from the White Material director, and one that’s just as enticing.

Juliette Binoche, Gérard Depardieu, and Xavier Beauvois will be leading the cast of Denis’ Les lunettes noir (translated to Dark Glasses), which kicks off a seven-week shoot in Paris and Guéret this month. Adapted from Roland Barthes‘ A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments, which deconstructs the language of love, the drama is expected to be completed in time for a fall premiere. [France 3/JulietteBinoche.net]

It’s still unclear in what form exactly Denis will adapt the material, which has already been
See full article at The Film Stage »

Honours for Isabelle by Anne-Katrin Titze

Isabelle Huppert on Elle: "I never worked with a trained cat before." Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze

Guillaume Nicloux's Valley Of Love, Mia Hansen-Løve's Things To Come (L’Avenir), and Paul Verhoeven's Elle have one thing in common - Isabelle Huppert. Metrograph in New York honoured Huppert by programming Catherine Breillat's Abuse Of Weakness (Abus De faiblesse); Claire Denis' White Material; Ursula Meier's Home; Hal Hartley's Amateur; Michael Haneke's The Piano Teacher and Hong Sang-soo's In Another Country.

Isabelle Huppert with Metrograph's Aliza Ma Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze

Isabelle spoke with Aliza Ma at Metrograph, following the screening of In Another Country about what two of her latest films have in common:

Isabelle Huppert: In both films there is a cat. In Things To Come it's a very, very big cat. Very heavy like an elephant. In Elle [France's Foreign Language Oscar submission] is a very different cat.
See full article at eyeforfilm.co.uk »

Isabelle Huppert’s ‘Elle’ Set for Tribute at AFI Fest

Isabelle Huppert’s ‘Elle’ Set for Tribute at AFI Fest
The American Film Institute has set a Nov. 13 tribute and gala for Isabelle Huppert’s psychological thriller “Elle” at the Tcl Chinese Theatre.

The tribute will celebrate Huppert’s career and include a conversation with the actress.

Isabelle Huppert is a masterful actress,” said Jacqueline Lyanga, AFI Fest Director. “Her fearlessness and precision shine in Elle, and we are thrilled to honor her illustrious career at the 30th edition of AFI Fest, as she exemplifies the best of world cinema.”

Huppert has received 15 César Award nominations, the most for any actress, and won the award for 1995’s “La Ceremonie.” Her other films include “Violette,” “Story of Women,” “Madame Bovary,” “I Heart Huckabees,” “White Material,” “Amour” and “Things to Come.”

She has twice won Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival for “Violette” and “The Piano Teacher.” She is an Officer of both the National Order of Merit and the Legion of Honour.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Things to Come review – Isabelle Huppert is note-perfect

Huppert’s warm, wry performance as an academic facing a crisis at home powers Mia Hansen-Løve’s intimate, intellectual film

Is there a more commanding screen presence than Isabelle Huppert? From the spiralling American madness of Michael Cimino’s Heaven’s Gate to the diverse demands of Claire Denis’s African-set colonial parable White Material and Brillante Mendoza’s Philippines hostage drama Captive, Huppert has proved ready to rise to any challenge. Claude Chabrol famously cast her as a teenage murderer in 1978’s Violette Nozière and a covert poisoner in 2000’s Merci pour le chocolat, while Chris Honoré called upon her to tackle the taboo subject of incest in Ma mère. Most famously, in Michael Haneke’s unflinching The Piano Teacher, she took cinemagoers to the very edge of a masochistic abyss, with harrowing results.

Hansen-Løve serves up unapologetic discussions of Rousseau, radicalism and revolution

Continue reading...
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Mulholland Drive Tops BBC's 100 Best Movies of the 21st Century List

Mulholland Drive Tops BBC's 100 Best Movies of the 21st Century List
The modern movie landscape can make some people feel like the best days of film are behind us. With remakes, reboots and adaptations very abundant, and original movies seemingly not raking it in at the box office, that is an understandable sentiment. But the BBC felt like there are a lot of recent movies worth celebrating, and that is why they set out to make a list of the 100 greatest movies of the 21st century. The list they came up with is nothing if not interesting, and it is definitely a reminder that there are a lot of great movies that have been made in the last 16 years.

BBC published the list on Tuesday morning, after taking months to put it all together. In order to come up with this list, they used nearly 200 critics from both print and online publications, as well as academics and curators. The contributors that were used spanned the globe,
See full article at MovieWeb »

The 100 Greatest Films of the 21st Century: BBC Polls Critics From Around The Globe

The 100 Greatest Films of the 21st Century: BBC Polls Critics From Around The Globe
Last year, the BBC polled a bunch of critics to determine the 100 greatest American films of all time and only six films released after 2000 placed at all. This year, the BBC decided to determine the “new classics,” films from the past 16 years that will likely stand the test of time, so they polled critics from around the globe for their picks of the 100 greatest films of the 21st Century so far. David Lynch’s “Mulholland Dr.” tops the list, Wong Kar-Wai’s “In The Mood For Love” places second, and Paul Thomas Anderson and the Coen Brothers both have 2 films in the top 25. See the full results below.

Read More: The Best Movies of the 21st Century, According to IndieWire’s Film Critics

Though the list itself is fascinating, what’s also compelling are the statistics about the actual list. According to the the BBC, they polled 177 film critics from every continent except Antarctica.
See full article at Indiewire »
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