Dr. Leigh and the women

Posted by · 6:50 pm · November 1st, 2010

I often hear Mike Leigh described as a great “women’s director,” though that’s really only half the truth. Vivid, probing male characters abound in Leigh films, often as vital counterpoints to female star turns (see Eddie Marsan in “Happy-Go-Lucky” or Timothy Spall in “Secrets and Lies”) but sometimes in center stage too: in “Naked,” David […]

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TELLURIDE: ‘The Illusionist,’ ‘Another Year’

Posted by · 11:00 am · September 6th, 2010

The final trio of films I caught at this year’s Telluride fest, which is slowly winding down this holiday, were a bit of Cannes catch-up.  The first, Alejandro González Iñárritu’s “Biutiful,” I responded to yesterday.  The other two come from Sony Pictures Classics, which has a whopping five films in play here, and will have […]

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The Great Performances: 2004

Posted by · 6:35 pm · December 11th, 2009

In Alexander Payne’s “Sideways,” Paul Giamatti gave the best performance by an actor in 2004, so said the New York Film Critics Circle, and how right they were.  So why, why, why was the actor denied an Oscar nomination?  Granted, it was a strong year, but his work was at the top of that heap […]

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Focus backs Mike Leigh’s latest

Posted by · 4:15 pm · April 30th, 2009

Here’s something to brighten the day. It would seem that a new Mike Leigh joint (sorry, I couldn’t resist) is on its way sooner rather than later — great news considering the four-year gap between “Vera Drake” and “Happy-Go-Lucky.” Screen International reports that Focus Features International has secured worldwide rights to the still-untitled project, and […]

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