TELLURIDE: Michael Fassbender and a tale of two movies

Posted by · 11:54 pm · September 4th, 2011

Today’s screening of “Shame” was the big note of anticipation for me at this year’s Telluride fest. After bowing in Venice earlier this morning to generally positive praise, my hopes were still high that Steve McQueen made good on the promise of “Hunger” three years ago. And did he ever. I’m tired, at the end […]

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TELLURIDE: Sony Classics, IFC and Searchlight party into the night

Posted by · 12:47 am · September 4th, 2011

I opted out of tonight’s screening of “Butter” largely because — sorry to say — the Galaxy theater is just too cramped and uncomfortable and hot to fully enjoy a film experience. For me, anyway. I tend to be a furnace regardless, but they need to pump some AC into that joint. By some accounts, […]

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REVIEW: “A Dangerous Method” (**1/2)

Posted by · 8:50 am · September 2nd, 2011

Venice Film Festival “Do you think they know we’re on our way, bringing them the plague?” So asks Viggo Mortensen’s Sigmund Freud of his younger colleague Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender), as the two approach New York City to gift the untreated denizens of America with their equally grueling brands of psychoanalysis, in the closing stretch […]

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‘White Ribbon,’ Bertolucci win BBC World Cinema Awards

Posted by · 2:49 pm · October 11th, 2010

Fear not, you haven’t entered a very somber Tardis and woken up in December 2009. The BBC World Cinema Award is a small but creditable gong dished out annually to honor the best in foreign-language film — but due to a significant change in the show’s calendar, this year’s award effectively spanned the last two […]

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‘Seagull’ film going ahead with Mulligan and Scott Thomas

Posted by · 4:49 pm · October 8th, 2009

In Carey Mulligan’s entry on Tuesday’s “best actors under 30” list, I mentioned her stunning turn on stage in the recent revival of Chekhov’s “The Seagull,” writing that “if/when anyone commits that to film, Mulligan will be unbeatable for Best Supporting Actress.” What I didn’t know is that “if” has definitely become a “when” in […]

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Mendes and Oprah unite on ‘Netherland’

Posted by · 4:55 pm · September 17th, 2009

I’m glad Sam Mendes seems determined to up the languid one-film-every-three-years work rate he started out with, even if I think “Away We Go” would have benefitted from having a bit more time (and a lot more rewrites) lavished on it. He’s not the first director I thought of to helm an adaptation of Joseph […]

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REVIEW: “Chéri” (***)

Posted by · 11:12 am · May 9th, 2009

My first thought on leaving the theatre after watching Stephen Frears’ crisp, elegantly turned new effort is that it is, in many ways, a consummate Frears film. My second thought, however, ran counter to the first: it has, over the years, become increasingly difficult to define what “a Stephen Frears film” might be. We are […]

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PAGE TO SCREEN: “Chéri” by Colette

Posted by · 8:52 am · May 6th, 2009

Merely casual acquaintances of French literature will likely associate the name Colette with her short story “Gigi” – or rather, the flouncy musical film adaptation thereof that swept the board at the 1958 Academy Awards. A sunny, sanitized interpretation of an intricate study in sexual politics, it captured the author’s sensibility in its lavish set-dressing, […]

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A promising start for ‘Chéri’

Posted by · 6:18 am · February 11th, 2009

If it isn’t quite the unanimous chorus of approval one might have hoped for, there’s still enough praise for Stephen Frears’ latest film “Chéri,” which premiered in Berlin last night, to mark it as a potential 2009 contender in several areas — among them, Best Actress for Michelle Pfeiffer’s much-anticipated return to dramatic roles. (Thanks, […]

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Frears’ ‘Chéri’ to premiere at Berlin

Posted by · 4:07 am · January 16th, 2009

New works from Costa-Gavras, Bertrand Tavernier and Andrzej Wajda are among the 14 titles that have just been added to the Competition programme at next month’s Berlinale, meaning 25 of the 26 slots have been confirmed. The most high-profile inclusion, however, is Stephen Frears’ period romance “Chéri,” which was at one point mooted as a […]

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Warner ventures into the arthouse with ‘Chanel’

Posted by · 7:59 am · August 27th, 2008

Well, if nothing else, 2009’s Best Costume Design award is forespoken. Screen Daily reports that Warner Brothers is beginning production next month on “Coco Before Chanel,” a French-language biopic of the iconic fashion designer. Warner will distribute the film internationally next year. Audrey Tautou will play Chanel (presumably after flipping a coin with Marion Cotillard), […]

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