Tilda Swinton spearheads reinvention of Edinburgh film fest

Posted by · 3:54 pm · December 23rd, 2010

I wrote at the end of my coverage of the Edinburgh Film Festival, back in June, that this year’s fest had come in for a fair bit of media flak, with many journos complaining (not entirely fairly, I thought) of a tepid film programme and minimal atmosphere. Few were surprised, then, when the fest’s artistic […]

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‘Get Low,’ ‘Monsters,’ ‘Skeletons’ among Edinburgh winners

Posted by · 4:57 pm · June 27th, 2010

I have an irritating habit of missing key prizewinners at film festivals, so it was with some astonishment that I perused the list of films honored at the close of the Edinburgh Film Festival — only to find that I’d seen most of them. Considering the brevity of my visit, and my mostly random selection […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘Monsters,’ ‘The Dry Land,’ ‘Mouth of the Wolf’

Posted by · 4:25 am · June 27th, 2010

My brief trip to the Edinburgh Film Festival came to an end Friday evening, as I hopped on a bus to Glasgow for a weekend with friends — sadly, that means I missed Tilda Swinton’s flashmob dance event, but I’m waving my right hand in the air as I type. It’ll have to do. I […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘Get Low,’ ‘Restrepo,’ ‘Vacation!’

Posted by · 5:02 pm · June 24th, 2010

My third day in the ‘Burgh (shut up, I have legitimately heard people call it that) wasn’t as film-heavy as the previous one: social commitments and a certain football match between Slovenia and some other country got in the way. Under these circumstances, three screenings — taken together, as disparate a cross-section of the U.S. […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘The Extra Man,’ ‘Two Eyes Staring’ and others

Posted by · 11:52 am · June 23rd, 2010

My third afternoon at the festival finds me wandering around the premises boasting a still-expanding black eye – not, alas, from a macho fistfight with Patrick Wilson over yesterday’s evaluation of “Barry Munday,” but from an accidental collision with a handrail after sneaking late into a pitch-dark screening theater this morning. The more I try […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘Au Revoir, Taipei,’ ‘Barry Munday,’ ‘brilliantlove’

Posted by · 8:15 am · June 22nd, 2010

Arriving at a festival at the halfway mark is a little like turning up late to a party where the food has been eaten and the guests you know are already starting to leave – the night may not be over, but you’re going to have to work your way into it. So it was […]

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Edinburgh fest kicks off with ‘The Illusionist’

Posted by · 9:18 am · June 16th, 2010

Last year’s Edinburgh Film Festival served me rather well, giving me my first look at “Antichrist,” “The Hurt Locker,” “Fish Tank,” “35 Shots of Rum,” “Mary and Max” and “London River,” all of which wound up in my Top 20 of 2009. (It was also where a little film called “The Secret of Kells” made […]

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Sony Classics adopts ‘The Illusionist’

Posted by · 8:16 am · April 26th, 2010

Quelle surprise. “The Illusionist,” Sylvain Chomet’s long-gestating follow-up to the Oscar-nominated “The Triplets of Belleville,” has found the US distributor we all knew it eventually would. Sony Pictures Classics today announced their acquisition of the film, which they are readying for an end-of-year release — mirroring the strategy they took with “Belleville” back in 2003. […]

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WEEKLY WRAP: Academy expands, Malden passes

Posted by · 5:05 pm · July 3rd, 2009

• This week’s Off the Carpet column took a long, hard look at the ramifications of a 10-nominee Best Picture race. • As the popular game of expanding past fields to ten continued, we joined in the speculation. • Meanwhile, AMPAS added 134 members to its voting body, from Seth Rogen to Danny Boyle to […]

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‘Moon’ takes top prize at Edinburgh

Posted by · 11:44 am · June 28th, 2009

The Edinburgh International Film Festival closed today with an awards ceremony that culminated in Duncan Jones’s sci-fi debut feature “Moon” landing the fest’s most coveted prize, the Michael Powell Award for Best British Feature. The jury, headed by Joe Wright and including Oscar-nominee Frank Langella, said of the film: We award “Moon” for its singular […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘Humpday,’ ‘Adam’

Posted by · 9:49 am · June 26th, 2009

My last full day at the Edinburgh International Film Festival (which wraps up on Sunday) served up a pair of comparatively conspicuous U.S. titles. Both are comic ventures of a sort that made a splash (one via widespread critical and audience enthusiasm, the other via a high-profile pickup by Fox Searchlight) at the Sundance Film […]

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Aronofsky at Edinburgh

Posted by · 10:15 am · June 24th, 2009

As someone who prefers watching movies to listening to others talk about them, I probably haven’t attended as many of the In Person Q&A sessions at this year’s Edinburgh festival as I should have. Sam Mendes lost out in my priority scale to “The Red Shoes,” while the likes of Bill Forsyth and Brenda Blethyn […]

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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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EDINBURGH: ‘London River,’ ‘Spread’

Posted by · 11:06 am · June 23rd, 2009

The past day has presented me with two films that made their first appearances at high-profile festivals early in the year: Scottish auteur David Mackenzie’s first U.S. effort “Spread” — a “look ma, I can act” venture of sorts for Ashton Kutcher — played at Sundance in January, while Rachid Bouchareb’s “London River” was a […]

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REVIEW: “Antichrist” (***1/2)

Posted by · 10:01 am · June 23rd, 2009

Edinburgh International Film Festival “I am the greatest director in the world,” Lars von Trier declared in an already notorious Cannes press conference following the unveiling of “Antichrist” in May.  Unable to resist such shameless baiting, most critics either responded with affectionate exasperation (“Oh, Lars!”) or, as one suspects von Trier preferred, tomato-faced indignation. What […]

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EDINBURGH: “Modern Love is Automatic,” “Jerichow,” “White Lightnin'”

Posted by · 12:53 pm · June 20th, 2009

With over 100 new feature films appearing at the Edinburgh this week, and a chaotically overlapping schedule of press screenings to work with, the choice of what to see can be a bewildering one. With previous festival cred behind them, the likes of “The Hurt Locker” or “Fish Tank” hardly have to fight for your […]

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WEEKLY WRAP: ‘Enemies’ surfaces, Edinburgh launches

Posted by · 6:11 pm · June 19th, 2009

• Michael Mann’s much-awaited “Public Enemies” finally peeked out from behind the covers, generating much early discussion, if no permitted reviews. • A rumor circulated that Christopher Nolan might leave the Batman franchise, prompting heated speculation over a potential replacement. • Across the pond, we kicked off our coverage of the Edinburgh Film Festival, with […]

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REVIEW: “Fish Tank” (***1/2)

Posted by · 9:57 am · June 19th, 2009

Edinburgh International Film Festival There’s a slightly condescending tendency among many critics to brand almost any British film set on a working-class council estate as “miserablist” simply by virtue of the aesthetics of its setting, despite the fact that many thousands of people live functional, three-dimensional lives in precisely such conditions. Of course, it’s a […]

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