Festivals

Confessions of a Film Festival Junkie: Shape of Water, The Florida Project

I was in line for a French film when it was cancelled and this was its replacement. A fellow queuer said, it’s the new Sean Baker, and people love it. I’d seen Baker’s earlier MTV series “Greg the Bunny” and his L.A.-by-iPhone Tangerine but they didn’t prepare me for this: a documentary-like view of poor people who inhabit a residential motel in Orlando, only a few miles from Disney World.

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Cannes Review: KILLING OF A SACRED DEER

Humanity is exactly what’s on the chopping block in a Yorgos Lanthimos film.

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Cannes Reviews: REDOUBTABLE, 120 BPM

Beyond outlining just how much of an asshole Hazanavicius’ Godard is—including a stupid running joke that seems to suggest the man derives his snobbish power from his sunglasses, which he repeatedly breaks throughout the film—Redoubtable is little more than a series of regrettable decisions that began the moment Hazanavicius started his adaptation.

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Cannes Review: THE SQUARE

The Square is an equilateral triangle—a film with three sharp, pointed edges and a very long ending that’s too rigid for it to turn a corner and assume its final shape. But as the follow-up to a film about the social contract, as well and the bystander effect, Östlund has made something hilarious, frustrating and very clever.

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Cannes Reviews: Okja, Jupiter’s Moon

The yelling started as soon as Okja’s Netflix presentation card appeared, muddying the matter more. This attitude fuels the ongoing debate on the Croisette: Can Netflix films win Palmes d’Or? Should they? The argument being Cannes is a festival where cinema is sacred—that films should be seen on big screens, not on small ones

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Here’s The 2017 Sundance Film Guid

Here’s The 2017 Sundance Film Guide 47-page pdf And – The Printable Schedule

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Sundance 2017 Sets Premieres, Doc Premieres, Midnight

Sundance Institute announces the lineup for Premieres, Documentary Premieres, Midnight, Spotlight, Kids and Special Events. The Festival hosts screenings in Park City, Salt Lake City and at Sundance Mountain Resort January 19-29. Three projects announced today are part of The New Climate, the Festival’s new environmental program: Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman(Documentary Premieres), Look & See: A…

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Confessions of a Film Festival Junkie: Toronto Wrap

TIFF is a mess! Well, that’s not exactly true, but the anarchic element that is the Toronto International Film Festival is part of its charm and vitality.

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Confessions Of A Film Festival Junkie – Part 3

Toronto is one of the fastest growing cities in North America, increasing population by 200,000 a year on average in the past decade with no sign of letting up. The downtown core can’t cope with mounting traffic and new subway routes to alleviate congestio are unlikely. And for locals and visitors alike, it was tougher because six blocks of King Street West (where the TIFF Lightbox sits) were turned into a pedestrian mall with food trucks, vendors, live concerts and teeming crowds. They’ve been doing it for at least three years and there’s no question it adds to the general festival experience.

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Confessions Of A Film Festival Junkie: Day Two

The Toronto International Film Festival opening day announcement was all about the escalators not working at the Scotiabank Theaters. Film festivals are not all about the art of cinema. The Scotiabank complex, has 18 screens. The climb is the equivalent of four flights and the grade is as severe as the London Undergroun’sd. I wondered why they simply didn’t reverse the working escalator and discovered they couldn’t because the “up” escalator operates on two motors and the “down” only has a single motor. Even if this is resolved overnight, it still has to be approved by a city inspector and I’m told there’s an epidemic of broken escalators in the city.

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Confessions of A Film Festival Junkie: Toronto Day One

I’ve attended the Toronto International Film Festival since when it was still called The Festival of Festivals, a moniker discarded in 1994. There have other changes across the years, of course. It’s been a long time since TIFF could be shorthanded as a “plucky” or “upstart” festival.

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Sundance Announces 2016 Juries

SUNDANCE INSTITUTE ANNOUNCES JURY MEMBERS FOR 2016 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL TAIKA WAITITI TO HOST LIVE-STREAMED AWARDS CEREMONY ON J Park City, UT — Sundance Institute has summoned 23 film, theatre, culture and science experts for jury duty to award 27 prizes at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival,January 21-31 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden…

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Pre-TIFF, South Korea’s Hong Sang-soo On How He Maximalizes The Minimalism

Pre-TIFF, South Korea’s Hong Sang-soo On How He Maximalizes The Minimalism

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Simon Houpt Surveys Canuck Kino Scene, Makes Crisp Points About The State Of North American Indie Cinema To Boot

“Nearly 50 homegrown features will make their debut at the Toronto International Film Festival–but most will disappear without a trace.” Simon Houpt Surveys Canuck Kino Scene, Makes Crisp Points About The State Of North American Indie Cinema To Boot

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Toronto Int’l Adds Truth, I Saw The Light, Our Brand Is Crisis, More

Toronto Int’l Adds Truth, I Saw The Light, Our Brand Is Crisis, Hardwicke, Reiner, Haigh, Szumowska, Moretti, Scafaria, Portman, Kawase, Tsangari, Muntean, Chris Doyle, Sono, Tsai, Loznitsa, Gomes, Akerman

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Toronto Int’l Gala Presentations Include New Helgeland, Mehta, Moorhouse, Sollett, Vallée

Toronto Int’l Gala Presentations Include New Delpy, Egoyan, Emmerich, Frears, Helgeland, Mehta, Moorhouse, Scott, Sollett, Vallée

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Confessions of a Film Festival Junkie: LAFF 2015

The Los Angeles Film Festival took a look at a festival topographical map and considered the needs of its core membership and made some sage decisions. The program is chock-a-block with films by members and other indies. Ideally there ought to be a prize somewhere in this box of crackerjack.

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Sundance Seen Part 1

The whispering of powder from a dull quiet sky. Snowflakes fall between the screenings. Then the sun is bright and powder dusts off the slopes.

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Sundance Reviews: The Wolfpack, Slow West

Unique ironies surround Crystal Moselle’s bewildering documentary, The Wolfpack, not the least of which is that the film opens with a group of brothers at home re-enacting Reservoir Dogs, a film that premiered at Sundance 23 years ago.

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Six Films To Watch At Sundance

Attending Sundance this year means personally jumping through a lot of difficult hoops to make it happen, but this festival is becoming legendary—2014’s iteration eclipsed both Cannes and TIFF combined—and I simply couldn’t skip this year.

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Festivals

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“Our business is complicated because intimacy is part and parcel of our profession; as actors we are paid to do very intimate things in public. That’s why someone can have the audacity to invite you to their home or hotel and you show up. Precisely because of this we must stay vigilant and ensure that the professional intimacy is not abused. I hope we are in a pivotal moment where a sisterhood — and brotherhood of allies — is being formed in our industry. I hope we can form a community where a woman can speak up about abuse and not suffer another abuse by not being believed and instead being ridiculed. That’s why we don’t speak up — for fear of suffering twice, and for fear of being labeled and characterized by our moment of powerlessness. Though we may have endured powerlessness at the hands of Harvey Weinstein, by speaking up, speaking out and speaking together, we regain that power. And we hopefully ensure that this kind of rampant predatory behavior as an accepted feature of our industry dies here and now. Now that we are speaking, let us never shut up about this kind of thing. I speak up to make certain that this is not the kind of misconduct that deserves a second chance. I speak up to contribute to the end of the conspiracy of silence.”
Lupita Nyong’o

“We all knew that we were working for a man with an infamous temper. We did not know we were working for a serial sexual predator. We knew that our boss could be manipulative. We did not know that he used his power to systematically assault and silence women. We had an idea that he was a womanizer who had extra-marital affairs. We did not know he was a violent aggressor and alleged rapist. But to say that we are shocked and surprised only makes us part of the problem. Our company was built on Harvey’s unbridled ambition – his aggressive deal making, his insatiable desire to win and get what he wanted, his unabashed love for celebrity – these traits were legendary, and the art they produced made an indelible mark on the entertainment industry. But we now know that behind closed doors, these were the same traits that made him a monster… We know that in writing this we are in open breach of the non-disclosure agreements in our contracts… We ask that the company let us out of our NDAs immediately – and do the same for all former Weinstein Company employees – so we may speak openly.”