Tag Archives: Paul Verhoeven

AFI FEST 2016’s Cultural Supporters in Pictures

Posted by Larry Gleeson

The 2016 AFI FEST presented by Audi showcased movies from 46 countries around the world, and many cultural supporters came to the festival to celebrate the filmmakers and their films. These guests included consul generals, cultural agency representatives and filmmakers representing 17 countries, proving that the love of world cinema can speak one language. Organizations and consulates from Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Switzerland and Turkey all contributed to the success of AFI FEST.

AFI FEST celebrated more than 25 Francophone films and co-productions with our Francophone Reception. Partners included the Consulate General of Belgium in Los Angeles, ELMA (European Languages Movies America), the Consulate General of France in Los Angeles, Lacoste, Québec Government Office in Los Angeles, Consulate of Switzerland in Los Angeles, Telefilm Canada, TV5MONDE, UniFrance and Wallonie Bruxelles Images.

(L to R) Paul Verhoeven; Isabelle Huppert; Consul General of France, Christophe Lemoine at the ELLE after-party (Getty Images for AFI/Gabriel Olson)

AFI FEST hosted a Tribute to Isabelle Huppert for her decades of work, accompanied by a conversation with the world-class actress and a showing of her film ELLE. The conversation discussed Huppert’s career and approach.

The Filmmaker Brunch, hosted by Christophe Lemoine, Consul General of France in Los Angeles, took place at the Résidence de France. This celebratory event was attended by Isabelle Huppert, several AFI FEST 2016 filmmakers, multiple cultural supporters, diplomats, industry representatives and press.

The festival welcomed Japan House Los Angeles, Japan Foundation Los Angeles and the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles in their support of the films HARMONIUM, MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI and THE RED TURTLE. MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI honors legendary Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune, who also posthumously received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

AFI FEST hosted a Screen Education program, where over 500 students from 12 schools attended a Special Screening of Disney’s MOANA. Jared Bush, the screenwriter of MOANA and Leo Matsuda, the director of INNER WORKINGS, engaged with the students in a visual presentation and Q&A. This experience was supported by the Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project, The Brotman Foundation of California and the Department of Cultural Affairs.

(L to R) Rafael Agustin (Executive Director, Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project); Jared Bush (screenwriter, MOANA); Leo Matsuda (director, INNER WORKINGS); Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Garth Burkhard (Walt Disney Animation Studios)
(L to R) Rafael Agustin (Executive Director, Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project); Jared Bush (screenwriter, MOANA); Leo Matsuda (director, INNER WORKINGS); Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Garth Burkhard (Walt Disney Animation Studios)

This year, the festival also celebrated new Iranian cinema in conjunction with the Farhang Foundation, with a reception following A DRAGON ARRIVES!, directed by Mani Haghighi. Dignitaries and filmmakers alike attended the private event to honor this world cinema artistry.

(L to R) Alireza Ardekani (Executive Director, Farhang Foundation) and with Ali C. Razi (Chairman of the Board, Farhang Foundation) attend their reception celebrating Iranian Cinema.
(L to R) Alireza Ardekani (Executive Director, Farhang Foundation) and with Ali C. Razi (Chairman of the Board, Farhang Foundation) attend their reception celebrating Iranian Cinema.

AFI FEST partnered with Luce Cinecittà, ITA (Italian Trade Agency), the Italian Consulate in Los Angeles and IIC (Istituto Italiano di Cultura Los Angeles) in presenting the World Cinema Masters in Conversation event at the Egyptian Theatre on the last night of the festival with Gianfranco Rosi, director of Italy’s official Academy Award® entry for Best Foreign Language Film, FIRE AT SEA.  As part of the inaugural World Cinema Masters in Conversation section at AFI FEST, renowned documentarian Rosi sat with Alberto Barbera, Director of the Venice Film Festival, for an in-depth conversation about one of the year’s most lauded documentaries.

L to R) Courtney Love and Francesco Carrozzini (Director, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION) attend the screening of his documentary. Cultural Support provided by Luce Cinecittà; Italian Trade Agency; Consulate General of Italy; Istituto Italiano di Cultura
L to R) Courtney Love and Francesco Carrozzini (Director, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION) attend the screening of his documentary. Cultural Support provided by Luce Cinecittà; Italian Trade Agency; Consulate General of Italy; Istituto Italiano di Cultura

The partners also joined in the curation of a selection of Italian films playing at the festival, including the World Premiere screening of the 4k restoration of IL SORPASSO (DIR Dino Risi) in the Cinema’s Legacy section. The restoration work was supported by Luce Cinecittà, Cineteca di Bologna, Surf Film and Janus Films, the U.S. rights-holder. Additionally, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION, an incisive documentary by director Francesco Carrozzini in which he creates an intimate portrait of his mother — Franca Sozzani, the legendary editor-in-chief of Italian Vogue — screened at AFI FEST.

See more photos below.

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(L to R) Isabelle Huppert; Paul Verhoeven; Consul General of Switzerland, Emil Wyss; Pascal Ladreyt (Executive Director, ELMA); Elena Alexandra; Patrice Courtaban (COO, TV5MONDE USA); Arie Wyss; Aneta Campbell at ELLE after-party
(L to R) Guest; Daouda Coulibaly (Director, WÙLU); Severine Madinier (Executive Director, French Film &TV Office) at ELLE after-party
(L to R) Guest; Daouda Coulibaly (Director, WÙLU); Severine Madinier (Executive Director, French Film &TV Office) at ELLE after-party
(L to R) Sebastien Cauchon (UniFrance); Nicolas Schaller (Le Nouveau Obs); Romain Blondeau (Vanity Fair, France); Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Aude Hesbert (UniFrance) at ELLE after-party
(L to R) Sebastien Cauchon (UniFrance); Nicolas Schaller (Le Nouveau Obs); Romain Blondeau (Vanity Fair, France); Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Aude Hesbert (UniFrance) at ELLE after-party
(L to R) Xavier Dolan (Director, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Nancy Grant (Producer, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Gaspard Ulliel (Actor, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Xavier Dolan (Director, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Nancy Grant (Producer, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Gaspard Ulliel (Actor, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Gaspard Ulliel (Actor, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Jacqueline Bisset (Actress); Xavier Dolan (Director, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Houda Benyamina (Director, DIVINES) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Gaspard Ulliel (Actor, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Jacqueline Bisset (Actress); Xavier Dolan (Director, IT’S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD); Houda Benyamina (Director, DIVINES) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Deputy Consul General General of Belgium, Veronique Siklosi; Jacqueline Lyanga (AFI FEST); Consul General of Belgium, Henri Vantieghem at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Deputy Consul General General of Belgium, Veronique Siklosi; Jacqueline Lyanga (Director, AFI FEST); Consul General of Belgium, Henri Vantieghem at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) John Laing; Jacqueline Bisset; Martine Laing; Elena Alexandra; Patrice Courtaban (COO, TV5MONDE USA) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) John Laing; Jacqueline Bisset; Martine Laing; Elena Alexandra; Patrice Courtaban (COO, TV5MONDE USA) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Elizabeth MacKay (Québec Government Representative) and Pierre Leloup at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Elizabeth MacKay (Québec Government Representative) and Pierre Leloup at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Consul General of Switzerland, Emil Wyss; Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Consul General of France, Christophe Lemoine at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Consul General of Switzerland, Emil Wyss; Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST); Consul General of France, Christophe Lemoine at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) MJ Peckos (Dada Films) and Brigitte Hubmann (Telefilm Canada) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) MJ Peckos (Dada Films) and Brigitte Hubmann (Telefilm Canada) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) John Laing; Nancy Harris (COO, AFI); Jacqueline Bisset at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) John Laing; Nancy Harris (COO, AFI); Jacqueline Bisset at the Francophone Reception
Houda Benyamina (Director, DIVINES) at the Francophone Reception
Houda Benyamina (Director, DIVINES) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Daouda Coulibaly (Director, WÙLU) and Eric Neveux (Composer, WÙLU) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Daouda Coulibaly (Director, WÙLU) and Eric Neveux (Composer, WÙLU) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST) and Maria Elena Cabezut (Director of Cultural Affairs, Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Jasmine Jaisinghani (AFI FEST) and Maria Elena Cabezut (Director of Cultural Affairs, Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles) at the Francophone Reception
(L to R) Michael Barker (Sony Pictures Classics); Ingrid Bisu (actress, TONI ERDMANN); Sandra Hüller (actress, TONI ERDMANN); Peter Simonischek (actor, TONI ERDMANN); Janine Jackowski (producer, TONI ERDMANN). Cultural Support provided by German Films.
(L to R) Michael Barker (Sony Pictures Classics); Ingrid Bisu (actress, TONI ERDMANN); Sandra Hüller (actress, TONI ERDMANN); Peter Simonischek (actor, TONI ERDMANN); Janine Jackowski (producer, TONI ERDMANN). Cultural Support provided by German Films.
(L to R) Raoul Peck (Director, I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO) and Cameron Bailey (Artistic Director, Toronto International Film Festival) arrive for World Cinema Masters in Conversation. Cultural Support provided by Telefilm Canada.
(L to R) Raoul Peck (Director, I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO) and Cameron Bailey (Artistic Director, Toronto International Film Festival) arrive for World Cinema Masters in Conversation. Cultural Support provided by Telefilm Canada.
L to R) Yang Chao (Director, CROSSCURRENT) and Robert Chi (Programmer, China Onscreen Biennial). AFI FEST presented CROSSCURRENT in partnership with the China Onscreen Biennial, a curated showcase of Chinese film and media arts presented by a consortium of distinguished film and educational institutions.
AFI FEST’s Screen Education screening of Disney’s MOANA supported by Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project, The Brotman Foundation of California and the Department of Cultural Affairs. Over 500 students were in attendance from over 12 schools.
AFI FEST’s Screen Education screening of Disney’s MOANA supported by Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project, The Brotman Foundation of California and the Department of Cultural Affairs. Over 500 students were in attendance from over 12 schools.
Students in attendance, coordinated by the Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project with Jared Bush (screenwriter, MOANA); Leo Matsuda (director, INNER WORKINGS).
Students in attendance, coordinated by the Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project with Jared Bush (screenwriter, MOANA); Leo Matsuda (director, INNER WORKINGS).
(L to R) Rikiya Mifune, Shiro Mifune and family; Steven Okazaki (Director, MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI) attend Toshiro Mifune’s posthumous star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
(L to R) Rikiya Mifune, Shiro Mifune and family; Steven Okazaki (Director, MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI) attend Toshiro Mifune’s posthumous star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
(L to R) Sakiko Okada (Japan House Los Angeles); Yuko Kaifu (President, Japan House Los Angeles), Koji Fukada (Director, HARMONIUM); Mariko Ban (Japan House Los Angeles); Tomoko Beadle (Japan House Los Angeles); Lisa Nakanouchi (Japan House Los Angeles)
(L to R) Sakiko Okada (Japan House Los Angeles); Yuko Kaifu (President, Japan House Los Angeles), Koji Fukada (Director, HARMONIUM); Mariko Ban (Japan House Los Angeles); Tomoko Beadle (Japan House Los Angeles); Lisa Nakanouchi (Japan House Los Angeles)
(L to R) Camilla Cormanni (Luce Cinecittà) and Eleonora Pratelli attend FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION
(L to R) Camilla Cormanni (Luce Cinecittà) and Eleonora Pratelli attend FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION
(L to R) Angela Missoni and Francesco Carrozzini (Director, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION)
(L to R) Angela Missoni and Francesco Carrozzini (Director, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION)
(L to R) Mani Haghighi (Director, A DRAGON ARRIVES!) with festival guests
(L to R) Mani Haghighi (Director, A DRAGON ARRIVES!) with festival guests
(L to R) Roxane Mesquida (Actress, MALGRÉ LA NUIT) and Philippe Grandrieux (Director, MALGRÉ LA NUIT). Cultural Support provided by CalArts, UniFrance, TV5MONDE and the French Consulate.
(L to R) Tiia-Maria Taponen (Consulate of Finland) and Heidi Luukkonen Creative Industries & Communications Coordinator, Consulate General of Finland) attend the Filmmaker Welcome Party and Tech Showcase Preview.
(L to R) Tiia-Maria Taponen (Consulate of Finland) and Heidi Luukkonen Creative Industries & Communications Coordinator, Consulate General of Finland) attend the Filmmaker Welcome Party and Tech Showcase Preview.

*Featured image: Pictured at top: (L to R) Roberto Cicutto (President, Luce Cinecittà); Gianfranco Rosi (Director, FIRE AT SEA); Jacqueline Lyanga (Director, AFI FEST); Alberto Barbera (Director, Venice Film Festival)(Source:blog.afi.com)

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Paul Verhoeven Appointed Jury President of the Berlinale 2017

Posted  by Larry Gleeson

The Dutch director and screenwriter Paul Verhoeven will serve as jury president of the 67th Berlin International Film Festival.

Berlinale-“With Paul Verhoeven as jury president, we have a filmmaker who has worked in a variety of genres in Europe and Hollywood. His creative, multifaceted boldness and his willingness to experiment are reflected in the spectrum of his works,” says Dieter Kosslick, director of the Berlinale.

The Berlinale welcomed the acclaimed filmmaker in 2013 at the Berlinale Talent Campus (today’s Berlinale Talents). At the panel “Follow Your Instincts: Filmmaking According to Paul Verhoeven” he gave insight into his work methods and his perspective on production landscapes in the US and Europe.

Following studies in mathematics and physics, Paul Verhoeven turned his attention towards film in the mid-1960s, and began his directing career in 1969 with the successful Dutch television series Floris. After his feature film debut Business is Business in 1971, about two prostitutes who dream of a conventional middle-class life, came the erotic thriller Turkish Delight in 1973, a big hit in the Netherlands that also garnered a nomination for Best Foreign Language Film at the 1974 Academy Awards. Following his international breakthrough Soldier of Orange (1977) – which was nominated for a Golden Globe – and The Fourth Man (1983), Paul Verhoeven moved to Hollywood to focus on an evolution of style in his work.

Large productions featuring lots of action and special effects, like RoboCop (1987), and especially Total Recall (1990), were big box-office hits that revolutionized the science fiction film genre while maintaining credibility as author’s films.

The provocative, erotic thriller Basic Instinct (1992) saw Paul Verhoeven return to themes prevalent in his Dutch works. Basic Instinct shot Sharon Stone to stardom, and was nominated for two Academy Awards. In 1997 and 2000, he once again focused on science fiction with Starship Troopers and Hollow Man.

After nearly 20 years in Hollywood, Paul Verhoeven returned to the Netherlands in 2006 to film Black Book (2006), based on the story of a Dutch resistance fighter during World War II.

Starting in 2007, he moved his attention to writing. He returned to the cinema in 2016, celebrating his comeback with the French-German production Elle. In Elle, Paul Verhoeven continues his focus on familiar themes in a surprising new way. Isabelle Huppert plays a woman whose forays through the depths of sado-masochism help her transcend childhood trauma.

Elle, set to open in German cinemas on February 2, 2017, is nominated for the European Film Awards in three categories, as well as in two categories for the US Critics’ Choice Awards.
Press Office
December 9, 2016

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(Source:www.berlinale.de)

My Life as a Courgette, The Salesman: Films to watch out for at 18th Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival 2016

Posted by Larry Gleeson

By Mihir Fadnavis

If you are by any chance a film buff you’d be aware of your favourite time of the year – the 18th Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival. You’d also no doubt be really confused about what films to watch considering the sheer volume of amazing films put together by the lovely people of Jio MAMI.

Fret not. Listed below is a handy guide to make note of 15 films you should absolutely, under no circumstance, miss at the festival.

Under The Shadow

Director: Babak Anvari
Country: Iran

By far the most exciting film at the fest, Babak Anvari’s film contains a mysterious spooky entitypestering a mother and her daughter during the fag end of the Iran-Iraq war in 1988. The film has been gathering some serious buzz ever since it premiered in Sundance back in January. It’s also UIK’s official entry to the Oscars — which bodes well for fans of intelligent horror cinema.

The Lure

Director: Agnieszka Smoczynska
Country: Poland

Set in a Warsaw nightclub and full of weird lurid visuals, The Lure chronicles two mermaid sisters who arrive on land to explore the ‘human’ side of the world, and clash when they fall for the same human. Things get stranger when we discover the mermaids also have vampiric tendencies. The film created quite a buzz in Sundance where it won a Jury Prize.

Personal Shopper

Director: Oliver Assayas
Country: France

It seems like this year’s MAMI has turned into the Fantastic Fest (what could possibly be better than that) because this is the third acclaimed horror film to watch out for. Oliver Assayas who totally bowled us over two years ago with The Clouds of Sils Maria is back with a spooky story with an undercurrent of social commentary.

Assayas’ regular Kristen Stewart plays Maureen, an assistant to a fashion mogul in Paris who contacts a spirit of some sort. Festival darling Assayas picked up the Best Director award at Cannes earlier this year.

Old Stone

Director: Johnny Ma
Country: China

We know China can be a weird place, and debut director Johnny Ma explores yet another bizarre quirk of the country: if you help someone in a car accident and take him to the hospital, you are liable to pay their rehabilitation fees for the rest of their life. The protagonist of the film, a cab driver finds himself in such a scenario in a film that bagged Ma the award for the best debut film at the Toronto International Film Fest earlier this year.

Graduation

Director: Cristian Mungiu
Country: Romania

Graduation puts 4 Months 3 Weeks 2 Days director Mungiu back to his roots – in the underbelly of Cluj. The film follows a surgeon who for some reason is a target by unknown pranksters, and whose daughter is mugged and assaulted on her way to her exams.

With handheld cameras, bleak blue tones, and the exploration of grassroots corruption, Mungiu’s latest has been heralded as a return to form for a filmmaker whose previous film Beyond the Hills was criticized for being too self indulgent. Mungiu bagged the Directors trophy at Cannes for this film.

Things To Come

Director: Mia Hansen Love
Country:France

Fast emerging as one of the most exciting filmmakers of this generation, Hansen Love’s new film follows a 50 year old woman who needs to come to terms with dealing with life after a divorce. Hansen Love bagged the Silver Bear for Best Director in Berlin, but her amazing work in her previous film Eden is enough reason to be excited for this one.

My Life As A Courgette

Director: Claude Barras
Country: Switzerland

Celine Sciamma who earlier wrote the magnificent Girlhood teams up with director Barras for a stop motion animation about a 9-year-old boy who is put in an orphanage after his alcoholic mother dies — for which he may or may not be responsible.

Elle

Director: Paul Verhoeven
Country: France

The filmmaker behind some of the most nihilistic films of all time like Robocop, Total Recall and Starship Troopers returns after years with Elle, another nasty takedown of the society we live in. This time the story follows a rich video game honcho named Michelle (Isabelle Huppert) who is attacked by a masked man at her Parisian home.

Like all Verhoeven’s previous films, Elle is supposed to present moral dilemmas with a satirical bite and a layer of icily dark commentary on sex, violence and, in this case, video games. It’s France official entry to the Oscars.

Sand Storm

Director: Elite Zexer
Country: Israel

Winning the Grand Jury prize at Sundance, Elite Zexer’s film which is set in Southern Israel follows a Bedouin woman dealing with everyday sexism and not so casual misogyny of the region after her husband is about to be married to a second, much younger woman. That should be an interesting watch because it’s a topic that folks in India can unfortunately relate to all too well.

Hounds Of Love

Director: Ben Young
Country: Australia

In case you’re looking for a serial killer movie, debut filmmaker Ben Young presents a highly intriguing one with Hounds of Love, which introduces us to a serial killer couple whose latest kidnapping victim realizes that the only way to escape is by getting the two psychos to turn against each other.

One other little aspect to convince you to see this film is that the many audience members at the Venice Film Festival walked out because they couldn’t stomach what was happening on the screen.

The War Show

Director: Andreas Dalsgaard, Obaidah Zytoon
Country: Syria – Denmark

The War Show is supposed to be a blistering account of the Arab Spring seen through the eyes of radio host Obaidah Zytoon who began filming the state of things during and after the protests.

The Lovers And The Despot

Director: Rob Cannan and Ross Adam
Country: Britain

It’s pretty obvious how demented and scary North Korea is, and it seems there’s no dearth of bizarre stories to come out of the country. This documentary brings us the real life story of a filmmaker couple who was kidnapped by Kim Jong II and were forced to make films in the country because the great dictator was a film buff.

Lantouri

Director: Reza Dormishian
Country: Iran

Yet another fascinating film from Iran, we’re taken through three intertwining stories: one which follows a gang of thugs that attacks and kidnaps young children from families that gained their wealth through financial wrongdoings, another which chronicles a journalist who is not allowed to voice his opinion and the third which follows a prostitute who turns into a thug.

Clash

Director: Mohamed Diab
Country: Egypt

After garnering acclaim for his film Cairo 678, Egyptian filmmaker Mohamed Diab is back with another interesting story that puts various characters in a single location – a police riot car during the raging bloody streets of Cairo when the Muslim brotherhood president Morsi was overthrown and the country went nuts.

After The Storm

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda
Country: Japan

Like Father Like Son filmmaker Koreeda returns with another film with similar themes of isolation in the Japanese society. The film follows a writer struggling to live up to the success of his first novel and dealing with vices such as gambling and ego. While researching his next book he begins to spy on his ex wife who is now seeing another man. Reality hits him when he discovers that their son, in the custody of his mother is perfectly happy without him. The film has naturally received glowing reviews everywhere it’s screened.

The Salesman

Director: Asghar Farhadi
Country: Iran

It’s Farhadi’s new film — that’s all you need to know.

Other Notable Mentions:

Swiss Army Man: A delightful tale of a suicidal man whose life is saved by a farting corpse.

The Wailing: Yet another engrossing watch from Korean maestro Hong Jin Na about a Korean village going through a turmoil after a Japanese man encroaches their territory.

Neruda: The new film from Pablo Larrain which has been garnering some terrific buzz.

Madly: A short anthology featuring directorial works fromAnurag Kashyap,Gael Garcia Bernal, Mia Wasikowska, Natasha Khan, Sion Sono and Sebastian Silva.

Death in Sarajevo: Danis Tanovic’s new film.

I, Daniel Blake: Festival darling Ken Loach’s latest which is sure to have insanely long lines – make sure you get to the screening hall early.

(Source: http://www.firstpost.com)

85 countries vie for foreign language film Oscar

LOS ANGELES, Oct 13 — Yemen is competing for an Academy Award for best foreign language film for the first time, one of 85 countries submitting entries including Paul Verhoeven’s Elle and Pedro Almodovar’s Julieta, organisers announced Tuesday.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which presents the Oscars, will consider Yemeni director Khadija al-Salami’s I Am Nojoom, Age 10 and Divorced — which explores the culture of child brides — it said in a statement.

The entries for Best Foreign Language Film also include Dutch director Verhoeven’s Elle, a transgressive thriller starring French actress Isabelle Huppert, and Afterimage, by the legendary Polish director Andrzej Wajda, who died Sunday.

Wajda portrayed the last years of avant-garde painter Wladyslaw Strzeminski, who battled Stalinist orthodoxy, in a film some see as a metaphor for present-day Poland under the conservative Law and Justice Party.

Mexico’s Jonas Cuaron, son of star director Alfonso Cuaron, directed his country’s entry, the thriller Desierto, while Spain entered Almodovar’s Julieta, a vibrant portrait of a woman confronting crisis.

Switzerland submitted the animated My Life as a Zucchini, by Claude Barras, and Italy sent Gianfranco Rosi’s Fire at Sea, a documentary about migrants’ lives, focusing on the Italian island of Lampedusa.

The academy will make a preliminary cut later this year before announcing five finalists in January.

The 89th Oscars ceremony is set for February 26, 2017.

Hungary’s Son of Saul, by director Laszlo Nemes, won the prestigious award this year. — AFP

(Source: http://www.themalaymailonline.com)

Isabelle Huppert to be Honored at AFI FEST 2016

AFI FEST 2016 presented by Audi will honor acclaimed actress Isabelle Huppert with a Tribute and a Gala screening at the festival. The Tribute will celebrate her storied career and will include a conversation with the actress, followed by a Gala screening of Sony Pictures Classics’ ELLE (directed by Paul Verhoeven) on Sunday, November 13.

In ELLE, Isabelle Huppert plays Michèle, who seems indestructible, bringing the same ruthless attitude to her love life as she does to her business as head of a leading video game company. But her life changes forever after an unknown assailant attacks her in her home. When she resolutely tracks the man down, they are both drawn into a curious and thrilling game — a game that may, at any moment, spiral out of control.

Among international film’s most seasoned actresses, Isabelle Huppert has countless awards to her credit — with 15 César Award nominations, the most for any actress, and a win for LA CÉRÉMONIE (1995). Her other films include VIOLETTE (1978), STORY OF WOMEN (1988), MADAME BOVARY (1991), THE PIANO TEACHER (2001), I HEART HUCKABEES (2004), WHITE MATERIAL (2009), AMOUR (2012) and THINGS TO COME (2016). She has twice won Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival, and is an Officer of both the National Order of Merit and the Legion of Honour.

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(Source: http://www.bolg.afi.com)

Your Guide to 8 of the Most Exciting Movies at the New York Film Festival

Posted by Larry Gleeson

By Kevin LIncoln and Kyle Buchanan

While it doesn’t have the glitz of Venice, the breadth of Toronto, or the Cannesiness of Cannes, the New York Film Festival is still a heavy-hitting stop in the fall-prestige cycle. In addition to a few major fall releases that have already screened in the United States — including Kenneth Lonergan’s Manchester by the Sea, Kelly Reichardt’s Certain Women, and Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight — the slate includes the U.S. premieres of some big-time movies, as well as two major worldwide debuts. Here are the highlights.

13th
Ava DuVernay’s new documentary is named for the 13th Amendment, which contains the clause that seems to presage mass incarceration in the United States: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States.” If there’s anyone who can take on a topic as weighty and complex as the prison system in modern America, it’s DuVernay, whose clear-eyed and humanizing approach seems like the ideal fit for a subject this inhumane.

20th Century Women
If you responded to Mills’s heartfelt and funny Beginners, which won Christopher Plummer a well-deserved Oscar, you’re likely to spark to this one, where Annette Bening stars as a witty, fretful single mother who enlists lodger Greta Gerwig and neighbor Elle Fanning to help raise her 15-year-old son. And if you respond to throwback attire, you’re definitely going to spark to every single jumpsuit, vintage tee, and denim jacket worn in this 1979-set film. 

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk
Besides being an Ang Lee film that’s likely going to be part of the Best Picture race, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk is also sure to generate conversation for its technical ambition. Lee shot the movie, which adapts Ben Fountain’s novel about an Iraq War hero who returns home, at 120 frames per second versus the standard 24, with the intent of creating one of the most realistic and hypervisceral depictions of war ever to be shown on a movie screen. Regardless of how Billy Lynn turns out — and hopes are high — the 4K 3-D showing at NYFF should be a notable experience in and of itself.

Elle
A comedy about — wait for it — a woman brazenly overcoming her own rape, director Paul Verhoeven’s first film in French was one of the most talked-about films at Cannes. It’s also one of two acclaimed movies coming out this fall featuring the French actress Isabelle Huppert, whose Things to Come, directed by up-and-comer Mia Hansen-Løve, is also showing at NYFF. While Huppert’s two-pronged Oscar push could be a major awards-season narrative, Elle is worth seeing in its own right: Verhoeven is many things, but he’s never boring.

Jackie
Natalie Portman gives a brave, ballsy performance as Jackie Kennedy in this Pablo Larrain–directed biopic, which shrugs off the stodginess so often endemic to this genre in pursuit of something even bigger than real. Portman’s Jackie is no shrinking violet, though the men around her would love it if she played the dutiful, porcelain-faced wife even after the tragic assassination of her husband. How she, in turn, manipulates the image-crafters around her in one last bid for agency gives Jackie its startling kick.

Paterson
In an industry defined by big, loud, expensive superhero movies, Jim Jarmusch exists as the ultimate outlier. His movies are quiet, cool, and indie to the core, and new one Paterson sounds no different: Adam Driver plays a bus driver in Paterson, New Jersey, whose name is also Paterson, and who writes poems, and who hangs out with his wife and dog, and … that’s pretty much it. But that’s enough, and after raves out of Cannes, this should be the kind of film that gives a certain kind of moviegoer hope.

Personal Shopper
Personal Shopper
director Olivier Assayas recently stated, in no uncertain terms, that Kristen Stewart is the best actress of her generation. If this comes as an unusual suggestion to you, then you haven’t been paying close-enough attention, because KStew has, truly, become a must-see performer — including in Assayas’s most recent movie, Clouds of Sils Maria, for which she won a César Award, something no American actress has ever done before. With a strange premise — Stewart’s character is a personal shopper and, also, a medium, meaning there are fancy clothes AND a ghost — and a famously divisive reception at Cannes, this gives the best actress of her generation one of the most anticipated films of the fall.

The Lost City of Z
James Gray’s last film The Immigrant was under-seen and under-heralded, as James Gray films tend to be. But his new one, The Lost City of Z, gives him an unusually sexy topic: The British explorer Percy Fawcett’s search for a city in the Amazon rain forest, based on the book of the same name by the virtuoso New Yorker writer David Grann. Hopefully, it can bring Gray the wide audience he deserves; at the very least, audiences in the know can savor a new film from one of the most thoughtful contemporary American directors.

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(Source: http://www.vulture.com)