‘White Material’ gets the Criterion treatment

Posted by · 12:36 pm · January 18th, 2011

When you’ve been doggedly championing a film for the better part of 18 months, as I have with Claire Denis’s “White Material,” you do start to feel weirdly parental. So I was oddly touched by the raft of emails and tweets I got from assorted readers to inform me that the film has been revealed […]

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UK poster and trailer for ‘White Material’

Posted by · 5:08 am · June 4th, 2010

Yes, I’m still pimping this. The runaway best film of 2010 (or 2009, depending on when you saw it) finally drops in the UK on July 2 — I’m already itching for another look. The trailer, after the cut, is much the same as the French one I featured in March, with the addition of […]

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CANNES: All things being sequel

Posted by · 9:29 am · May 22nd, 2010

I began my final day in Cannes with some dutiful, and not greatly anticipated, ticking of boxes, taking in my last two Competition screenings back-to-back this morning. That brings my final tally to an elegantly symmetrical 14 and 1/4 films seen of the 19 selected. (That sneaky fraction represents my fatigue-induced walkout on the bookies’ […]

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García Bernal among names added to Cannes jury

Posted by · 9:16 am · April 7th, 2010

Just over a week away from the announcement of the official selection for this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and any festival-related news is received gratefully by the blogging community. Today, those who deemed Tim Burton too “Hollywood” a choice as this year’s jury president might be appeased by a host of more arthouse-leaning names lined […]

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French trailer for ‘White Material’

Posted by · 5:55 pm · February 23rd, 2010

Regular readers will know that Claire Denis’s “White Material” topped my list of last year’s best films, and would have placed high in my end-of-decade list were it not officially a 2010 release. If you’ve been wondering what I’m on about, there’s finally a trailer I can show you — subtitle-free, I’m afraid, but you’ll […]

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Sight & Sound names ‘A Prophet’ best of 2009

Posted by · 11:42 am · December 2nd, 2009

No annual Top 10 list carries more weight with me than that compiled by Sight & Sound, the UK’s premier film magazine. One of the most thorough and prestigious collectives out there, it’s collated from the individual lists of over 60 international critics, including the likes of Kenneth Turan, Mark Kermode, Amy Taubin, Armond White […]

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Just a friendly reminder…

Posted by · 9:41 am · September 18th, 2009

… to any American readers privileged with access to a good arthouse cinema, that Claire Denis’s wondrous “35 Shots of Rum” finally bows Stateside this weekend. I’ve been raving about the film — a sweetly melancholy, impeccably detailed study of a devoted Parisian father and daughter gradually separating their lives — since I saw it […]

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VENICE: ‘White Material,’ ‘Around a Small Mountain,’ ‘Lebanon’

Posted by · 12:58 pm · September 7th, 2009

Venice Film Festival The big deal on the Lido today was Oliver Stone rolling into town for his Hugo Chavez documentary “South of the Border” — I did my level best to catch the screening this afternoon, but demand greatly exceeded seat supply on this particular occasion. Tomorrow, perhaps. Otherwise, the search continues at the […]

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‘White’ diamond in Venice

Posted by · 4:02 am · September 6th, 2009

Good festival vibes are traveling through both sides of the Atlantic this weekend, it seems. Just as Kris lost his heart to a movie in Telluride yesterday, so, on this bright Venice morning, did I. It’s a beautiful thing when faith is rewarded. I had already pegged Claire Denis’s “White Material” as my most anticipated […]

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The five Venice titles I’m most curious to see

Posted by · 7:20 pm · September 1st, 2009

At the crack of dawn, I board a flight to Italy — so this time tomorrow, if all goes well, I’ll be writing to you from the water-riven city of Venice after having attended a festival screening of John Hillcoat’s “The Road.” It’s both my first visit to the city and my first taste of […]

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Venice lineup includes ‘The Road,’ ‘Capitalism: A Love Story’

Posted by · 8:01 am · July 30th, 2009

(UPDATE: For whatever reason, my initial source failed to mention that George A. Romero’s latest zombie opus, “Survival of the Dead,” is also in competition.) In years past, the Venice Film Festival has unveiled several titles that went on to figure significantly in the awards season ahead — “Brokeback Mountain,”The Queen,” “Far From Heaven” and […]

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Women on top

Posted by · 9:17 am · July 21st, 2009

It’s been a couple of months since I discussed the notion of 2009 being a watershed year for female filmmakers at the Oscars, and it’s a possibility that seems to be gaining traction. Sasha Stone recently responded to a post of mine by toying with the slogan “year of the woman,” while a new post […]

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EDINBURGH: “35 Shots of Rum,” “Séraphine,” “The Maid”

Posted by · 6:57 am · June 24th, 2009

Tuesday was a day of mellower pleasures at the Edinburgh Film Festival, from an idle sun-soaked writing break in the park, to a chance conversation with Paddy Considine and Shane Meadows (both as smart and affably bloke-ish as you’d expect) outside the theater, to, most importantly, a trio of quietly impressive, character-oriented foreign-language titles. Two […]

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Countdown to Venice: the future of festivals?

Posted by · 5:31 am · August 27th, 2008

So the Venice Film Festival kicks off tonight with its glossiest title, the out-of-competition “Burn After Reading.” Reviews ought to start trickling in tonight, though it’s worth bearing in mind that festival fever can often give the premature illusion of critical consensus. Screen International has a very handy rundown of the festival lineup – both […]

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