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In 1982, in the Hotel Martinez at the Cannes Film Festival, where Steven Spielberg’s E.T. was the closing night film, German auteur Wim Wenders set up a stationary 16mm camera in a room on the sixth floor and asked a succession of directors to film themselves answering a single question: “Is cinema becoming a dead language, an art which is already in the process of decline?” Respondents ranged from yes, Spielberg, to Jean-Luc Godard, Werner Herzog, Rainer Werner Fassbinder and Michelangelo Antonioni, and topics covered included film vs. television, the rise of blockbuster “sensation-oriented” cinema, and the evolving theatrical experience. [...]
Sun, Jan 07, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
A hotel left empty during wintertime, a stormy island and a lone caretaker are the poetic elements of Brian Bolster’s elegant Winter’s Watch, a short documentary screening on the Atlantic Selects. For 19 winters photographer Alexandra de Steiguer has worked as a caretaker of the Oceanic Hotel, an imposing structure located on Star Island, 10 miles off the New England Coast. The island’s lone inhabitant, she sinks into her solitude and makes images, although, it is clear that, in this instance, her artistic practice is a byproduct of her need to escape the noise of the mainland and exist, one-on-one, [...]
Thu, Jan 04, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
There’s a line in Bob Dylan’s “Brownsville Girl” that goes, “(It’s) strange how people who suffer together have stronger connections than people who are most content.” Suffering together connected director Guillermo del Toro and cinematographer Dan Laustsen on the set of 1997’s Mimic. The Miramax-produced giant insect creature feature marked the first American effort for del Toro and just the second studio gig for the Danish Laustsen. The experience was not a pleasant one. As del Toro put it during an on-stage interview at the BFI London Film Festival last October: “Two horrible things happened in the late ’90s: my father [...]
Thu, Jan 04, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
The incontestable highlight of last night’s NYFCC awards dinner was Tiffany Haddish’s acceptance speech for best supporting actress in Girls Trip. An 18-minute set in all but name, punctuated by strategic refueling sips, it was epically uncontained; the best historical record we have is this video from Buzzfeed’s Alison Willmore. [...]
Thu, Jan 04, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
Why not pair, rather than pit against one another, the great films of a given year? This was the question that led me to reconsider the year-end top-10 list in terms of double features. In 2016 and 2015 I ranked my favorite double features of the year on this very site. I love the double bill for its flexibility. You can pair films based on any connective tissue: style, setting, subject matter, theme, time period, director, star. Viewing and thinking about films this way urges you to consider them anew. What do we think of the suburban woes of Lady [...]
Wed, Jan 03, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
If the 25 films highlighted in David Ehrlich’s annual supercut review of the year in film aren’t enough for you, try this mash-up from Sam Barnett, featuring 304 titles from last year. For a full list of all the titles included, click here. [...]
Wed, Jan 03, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
Much has been written on the proliferation of film festivals over the last two decades or so. Tentacular events in whose midst commercial imperatives and nobler intentions (or alleged such) dialectically coexist, festivals can be many things, but rarely do they feel as vital and unprecedented as the first edition of the Pingyao Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon International Film Festival (PYIFF). Unprecedented indeed it was, for the festival founded by the Chinese director Jia Zhangke is the first ever in China to be approved by the authorities but operated by a private company. This organizational set-up allowed its founder and [...]
Tue, Jan 02, 2018
Source: Film News Category: Movies
Many might see 2017 as a tumultuous year for women in film, but it wasn’t. I see it as the year that women in the industry began the long journey towards ending the tumult, starting with the huge artistic risks they have taken in their work. Each film I chose for this list holds a purely individual voice, each voice starting a conversation about the future of not just women in film but the future of film as a whole. 2017 was only the beginning of hearing our stories, and we have a lot more to say. 10. Kiss and [...]
Fri, Dec 29, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
Rotterdam Film Festival The year started with my first visit to the Rotterdam Film Festival, which is once again being seen as a festival for experimental and challenging films under the auspices of Artistic Director Bero Beyer and which offers an eclectic mix of cinemas. The Willem Burger Complex — where I saw a number of films, including one-time Spike Lee cinematographer Ernest Dickerson’s Double Play, a playful but ultimately unsatisfactory adaptation of Frank Martinus Arion’s Curaçao-set novel — is a beautiful building designed for conferences, but the seats do make you feel like you’re in a lecture hall, befitting [...]
Fri, Dec 29, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
As always, we’re breaking our annual “most read Filmmaker posts” into two lists — 10 posts published in 2017 and 10 archival posts that are still registering large readerships. Throughout the 20, and particularly in the archival posts, there’s a strong current of practical advice conveyed by working filmmakers — the hallmark of this magazine. Here are our most popular posts of 2017. Published in 2017 1. The Visual Language of Oppression: Harvey Wasn’t Working in a Vaccum. Our top post in 2017 was filmmaker Nina Menkes’s preview of a presentation she’ll give at Sundance next month, one in which [...]
Thu, Dec 28, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
“The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.” opens William Gibson’s Neuromancer, set in Chiba, Japan (while generally accepted as a reference to the novelist’s home in Vancouver). A similar pall intermittently lingered over the northern Portuguese city of Porto during the city’s Porto/Post/Doc festival. The pallid grey and smoke were reminders of the devastating fires that have engulfed northern regions of the country since the summer, claiming many lives. The cinematic image of smokey cobblestone streets — with a knowledge of the real, if unseen forces behind them — provided a somber and [...]
Wed, Dec 27, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
Nabbing Best VR Story at Venice, Bloodless is veteran filmmaker Gina Kim’s (perhaps best known for 2007’s Vera Farmiga-starring Never Forever) 12-minute immersive stunner. The US-South Korea coproduction was also selected as part of this year’s IDFA DocLab Digital Storytelling program, which is where I experienced it, having gone into the VR Cinema without even bothering to read the synopsis. And because of my cluelessness, the story’s climax packed a punch I never saw coming — one that shook me to the core. This is another way of saying that if you plan on experiencing the project on a future [...]
Fri, Dec 22, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
If you were a director or producer coming up in the New York independent film scene of the early 1990s, you wanted to work with Thérèse DePrez. Right out of the gate as a production designer, DePrez, who had been diagnosed with cancer and passed away Tuesday in New York City, defined for herself an imaginative, boldly-colored and stylized approach that brought a high level of ambition and finesse to often meagerly-budgeted films. Not settling for generic indie naturalism — the gentle accenting of our everyday world that is the default approach on so many low-budget pictures — she cited [...]
Fri, Dec 22, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
NATALIE Portman reveals what she did to become arguably the most famous First Lady of them all in Jackie. [...]
Wed, Jan 11, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies
REVIEW: Natalie Portman’s mesmerising performance of Jackie Kennedy in the aftermath of her husband’s assassination is one for the books. [...]
Wed, Jan 11, 2017
Source: Film News Category: Movies