THE LISTS: My top 10 perennial must-watch Christmas movies

Posted by · 9:18 am · December 23rd, 2008

Tis the season, no? I found it rather perplexing that, with In Contention being on the scene for three Christmas seasons already, we’ve never set about putting together the obligatory “best Christmas films” list.  Well, I’m setting out to amend that oversight this holiday week with such a collective, but I don’t have the heart […]

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S&S names ‘Hunger’ best of 2008

Posted by · 9:07 am · December 1st, 2008

Sight & Sound’s annual Top Ten is, for my money, one of the most intelligent and respectable of all critics’ lists, and this year’s is no exception. Revealed in the magazine’s just-out January 2009 issue, the list is drawn from a poll of 50 international critics, including such heavyweights as Kenneth Turan, Amy Taubin, Armond […]

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‘The Class’ heads Louis Delluc shortlist

Posted by · 5:39 am · November 12th, 2008

The Cesar may be the most internationally recognised award for French cinema, but the Louis Delluc Prize is arguably the most prestigious. Now in its 73rd year, the prize is awarded annually to a single film deemed by a select jury to represent the year’s finest achievement in French filmmaking. Previous winners include Cocteau’s “Beauty […]

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Italy leads the charge at European Film Awards

Posted by · 6:12 pm · November 8th, 2008

Proof positive that 2008 is a banner year for Italian cinema: Matteo Garrone’s “Gomorrah” and Paolo Sorrentino’s “Il Divo,” both masterpieces of a very different stylistic ilk, lead all nominees for the European Film Awards, with five nominations apiece. Joing them in the hunt for Best European Film are “The Class” and “Happy-Go-Lucky,” which makes […]

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LONDON: Gongs for ‘Mice,’ ‘Tulpan’ … and my own awards

Posted by · 9:30 am · October 31st, 2008

My last post on the London Film Festival brings some happy news, as one of my favourite festival titles was justly rewarded last night. The festival is not a competion-based one, but three prestigious awards are still handed out before the final screening. One of these is the global festival staple, the FIPRESCI International Critics’ […]

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LONDON: ‘Incendiary,’ ‘A Christmas Tale,’ ‘Blind Loves’

Posted by · 6:24 pm · October 21st, 2008

I’ve been swamped with screenings at the London Film Festival, so between watching the films, maintaining some semblance of a day job and occasionally remembering to sleep and eat, my review updates have got a bit behind track. Hopefully, I can make up some of the distance tomorrow, when I have a lighter screening schedule, […]

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‘Che,’ ‘W.’ among films announced to play London fest

Posted by · 10:14 am · September 10th, 2008

Looking down the list of titles in the newly-revealed lineup for next month’s London Film Festival lineup, my initial reaction was one of mild disappointment. Plenty of exciting titles, for sure, but it doesn’t quite match last year’s feast that included everything from “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” to “The Assassination of Jesse James” […]

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Cannes: uneducated guesses

Posted by · 1:54 am · May 25th, 2008

Well, it’s almost over. The competition films have all been screened, picked over and digested by the world’s critics, and now all that’s left to do is that finicky business of handing out some prizes. Sean Penn and his formidable jury (Marjane Satrapi, Alfonso Cuaron and Natalie Portman are just some of those involved) will […]

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