Gérard vs. Juliette

Posted by · 7:50 am · August 26th, 2010

A couple of weeks ago, Emma Thompson ruffled a few feathers when she dismissed the talents of one Audrey Hepburn, so it’s apparently open season on knocking gamine screen beauties off their perch. Today serves up another actor-on-actor fight, this time between two living legends of French cinema. It may be a fairer fight — […]

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‘Certified Copy’ trailer

Posted by · 2:24 pm · July 28th, 2010

Those who followed my Cannes coverage will know that “Certified Copy,” Abbas Kiarostami’s first film shot outside his native Iran, was comfortably my favorite film of the festival — and one of my favorites of the year, period. The Guardian posted the British trailer yesterday; they’re claiming an “exclusive,” though it’s actually been in UK […]

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CANNES: Starfish and coffee

Posted by · 5:36 am · May 24th, 2010

“Hey, that’s no way to say goodbye,” you might have thought (or even sang, in gravelly Leonard Cohen tones) after my rushed response to yesterday’s Cannes winners. But having recharged overnight with a hearty curry and a good 13 hours’ sleep, it’s time to properly put a bow on Cannes 2010. Perhaps it was quite […]

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CANNES: What will win… and what should

Posted by · 8:47 am · May 23rd, 2010

Okay, so that took longer than I expected. I had hoped to get this post up last night, but instead got quite easily talked into a night on the tiles with a band of merry Film Dweebs led by James Rocchi — not the wisest idea with a morning flight to catch, but by the […]

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‘Another Year’ goes to Sony Pictures Classics

Posted by · 7:40 am · May 19th, 2010

Mike Leigh’s latest, easily the consensus critical darling of Cannes thus far, was never going to have trouble finding a U.S. distributor — the only question was whether it would be the equally plausible candidates Focus or Sony who got there first. As ScreenDaily reported earlier today, it’s the latter: Sony Pictures Classics has acquired North American […]

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CANNES: ‘Certified Copy’ and other adventures

Posted by · 4:24 am · May 18th, 2010

By the halfway-mark of the festival, Cannes can do irrational and frankly cruel things to your head. Having slunk back to my apartment at 3am after a merry night of wine and pizza some fellow bloggers — only to find myself locked out of said apartment in a cheap sitcom twist — I planned to […]

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A soupçon of ‘Certified Copy’

Posted by · 9:43 am · May 5th, 2010

I’ll begin a more in-depth Cannes preview tomorrow, but I’m happy to trail it with this vaguest of teasers for my own most anticipated film of the festival: Abbas Kiarostami’s “Certified Copy,” starring Juliette Binoche. (Thanks to AwardsDaily for the tip.)

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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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The Oscar show you didn’t see

Posted by · 4:22 am · November 15th, 2009

For those of us not important/famous/rich enough to have attended last night’s honorary Oscars presentation, the Governors’ Awards — tickets began at $350, apparently — Steve Pond has a comprehensive report of the proceedings, complete with pictures and some gossipy details. I’ve complained before about the Academy denying us Joe Public movie fans the chance […]

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The Great Performances: 2000

Posted by · 7:14 pm · November 13th, 2009

Michael Douglas was robbed. The already Oscar-christened actor gave a career-best performance in 2000 in Curtis Hanson’s “Wonder Boys,” but he got no love from the Academy. Worse, his performance was easily among the five best of the year and won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Best Actor prize. That having been said, I […]

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The Great Performances: 1996

Posted by · 10:15 am · October 16th, 2009

1996 was an odd year, a year when the independent cinema dominated the weak product emerging out of Hollywood. I am going to confess right off the top of this article (as I have numerous times before) that I was not a fan of “The English Patient,” which for me remains one of the most […]

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EDINBURGH: ‘Antichrist’ added to lineup, and first day jitters

Posted by · 1:25 pm · June 16th, 2009

After wrestling with dodgy wireless setups for the better part of the evening, I am happy to tell you that I’m comfortably installed in an Old Town coffee shop with an immaculate connection, so I can fill you in on the day’s doings. Outside, it’s one of those balmy Scottish summer evenings with woozy, disconcertingly […]

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‘Summer’ loving

Posted by · 4:57 pm · May 31st, 2009

As we head into June and the year’s midway point looms (I know, how did that happen?), my mind inevitably goes into cinematic stocktaking mode, reflecting on what 2009 has had to offer thus far — and at this stage, the reflections aren’t too pretty. In any given year, I usually like to earmark at […]

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Binoche and Kiarostami team up again

Posted by · 4:04 pm · April 1st, 2009

Ahead of last year’s Venice Film Festival, I got terribly excited about the projected collaboration between Juliette Binoche and Iranian master Abbas Kiarostami — well, what arthouse devotee wouldn’t? As it turned out, this was either a wrongfooting or a simple miscommunication, for the film that was being talked up — a romantic drama set […]

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INTERVIEW: Kristin Scott Thomas

Posted by · 1:03 pm · December 6th, 2008

When interviewing Kristin Scott Thomas, the woman who for many audiences represents the living portrait of English upper-crust serenity, Led Zeppelin isn’t exactly the first name you expect to crop up in the conversation. And yet, halfway through our Transatlantic chat, that is exactly what happens. “Seeing the guys, well into their sixties, just getting […]

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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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Venice puts cinema ahead of stars

Posted by · 10:24 am · July 30th, 2008

There are some major surprises in the competition lineup for next month’s Venice Film Festival, not the least of which are the global flavour and soberness of the lineup itself. In previous years, the Lido has proved a launchpad for starry, surefire awards vehicles (“Atonement” and “Michael Clayton” both made successful bows there last year, […]

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Remembering Anthony Minghella

Posted by · 3:11 pm · March 23rd, 2008

I’ve been tucked away on an island for the past week, stuck largely in a news vacuum and certainly free of the bindings of daily internet briefings. But it saddens me to return to the shocking news of Anthony Minghella’s passing. The Variety report indicates a brain hemorrhage as the cause of death, though Minghella’s […]

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