Sunday, August 02, 2015

88th Academy Awards Foreign Language Film Submissions


Today, June 11th, we have the first announcement of a submission to Oscars 2016 and even do film and country are no surprises, the big surprise is how early we will start the post that will be final by the end of September 2015.

The list begins with the first country to do their announcement and as in previous years in parenthesis will include the festival where film was screened plus the director's name will be in BLUE when director is female.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Venice Classics in Venezia72


Venice Classics is the section of the Venice Film Festival that since 2012 has presented, with growing success, a world premiere selection of restored classic films. The section brings back to light underestimated or neglected films of the past - restored over the past year by film archives, cultural institutions or production companies around the world. Venice Classics also presents a selection of documentaries about cinema and its auteurs.

For the first time at the Venice International Film Festival the recipient of the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement has been given “carte blanche” to select some rare, forgotten or underestimated films for the Venice Classics section.

French cinema auteur (and dedicated film critic) Bertrand Tavernier – Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 72nd Venice Film Festival– will introduce to the public before the screening four masterpieces he has personally chosen as Guest Director of the Venice Classics section: Pattes blanches (White Pawns) by Jean Grémillon, La Lupa (The Vixen) by Alberto Lattuada, Sonnenstrahl (Ray of Sunshine) by Pál Fejös, and A Matter Of Life and Death by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger.

72nd Venice Film Festival Lineup


The 72nd Venice International Film Festival, organized by la Biennale di Venezia, will be held on the Lido of Venice from September 2nd to September 12th, 2015. The Festival is officially recognized by the FIAPF (International Federation of Film Producers Associations).

The aim of the Festival is to raise awareness and promote the various aspects of international cinema in all its forms: as art, entertainment and as an industry, in a spirit of freedom and dialogue. In addition to the sections mentioned in the following paragraphs, the Festival also organises retrospectives and tributes to major figures as a contribution towards a better understanding of the history of cinema.

Monday, July 27, 2015

68th Festival del Film Locarno Lineup - Update


Recently was announced a new film for the International Competition and is none other that Chant d'hiver by Otar Iosseliani. This brings the total number of films in competition to 19, of which 15 are world premieres.

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7/15/15
A few hours ago organizers announced the festival full lineup for #Locarno68 with a competition selection that absolutely calls my attention as there are films by well-known directors plus other movies that from films stills look visually stunning -like for example, Cosmos by Andrzej Zulawski; so no surprise when I say that have to record the movies for future viewing.

Friday, July 24, 2015

12th Giornate Degli Autori - Venice Days Lineup


Today the #Venezia72 collateral section announced their lineup that includes some interesting figures: 20 films from 15 countries, 8 are first films, 18 are world premieres and 8 are made by women filmmakers.

Those numbers suggest an international provenance but seems this year the section is proud of their local heritage when they say the lineup "is doubtless the most varied, unpredictable, international, and at the same time most "Italian" of lineups in the history of this by now well-established cinematic event promoted by the Italian filmmakers' associations (ANAC and 100autori) in agreement with the Venice Biennale."

And continue to say some perhaps surprising (at least for me) statements like:
"Every year, ahead of the leading film festivals, the media have a field day arguing over the "national quotas" for each lineup: too many German films at the Berlinale, Cannes top-heavy with French auteurs, Venice playing favorites with its Italian directors. And we're proud to uphold the tradition this year: we'll be delighted if the three Italian films on Venice Days' competitive lineup hit the headlines. We're taking a well-pondered gamble on a debut filmmaker (Carlo Lavagna) whose fresh approach will do wonders for the image of Italy's emerging helmers; we're also betting on an important new film by Ascanio Celestini, back in Venice as an auteur filmmaker this time around; and welcoming Vincenzo Marra, a major, well-loved director who will present what is perhaps his most personal, passionate effort to date. In addition to this roster, we also will be turning our spotlight on experimental works that attest to a thriving, original film culture, thanks in no small part to our collaboration with SIAE, redoubling its efforts at Venice Days this year by supporting the "Venice Workshop The Seasons of Italian Cinema", a project in which Venice Days will be involved for the next three years."

2015 Lux Prize Finalists


Today, at the Venice Days press conference, the First Vice-President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, and the President of the Committee on Culture and Education, Silvia Costa, announced the three films selected to contend for the 2015 LUX Film Prize: Mediterranea by Jonas Carpignano, Mustang by Deniz Gamze Ergüven and Urok (The Lesson) by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov.

Once again, the three competing films will tour from Venice to all 28 EU member states between October and December. The program crosses geographical and language barriers to reach audiences across Europe, featuring subtitles in all 24 official EU languages at screenings in dozens of cities and festivals.

2015 Sebastiane Latino Award Winner


Recently was announced that the jury of the Third Sebastiane Latino awarded current year award to Mariposa by Marco Berger.

Jury Statement

The jury wishes to highlight the meticulous structure of the screenplay and editing used to tell a story via the two possible outcomes triggered by an initial decision.

It also wishes to reward Marco Berger for staying true to himself. For maintaining the features that have turned him into an exponent of Argentinean queer cinema. That have fashioned a creator of atmospheres where naturalism and fantasy entwine. That remind us how sexual tension, unspeakable desires and fears can exist in any reality. And all in Mariposa, where the leading part goes for the first time to a girl-boy couple.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

30th Venice International Film Critics' Week Lineup


One week before #Venezia72 announces this year festival lineup the collateral section from the Sindicato Nazionale Critici Cinematografici Italiani (SNCCI) announced their lineup with ten (10) films that include the seven (7) first feature films and three special events.

Founded by Lino Micciché in 1984, the Venice International Film Critics’ Week has been from the beginning committed to finding, promoting and consolidating new voices and emerging talents of world cinema. This year’s program is richer than ever and includes some celebrative moments that refer to our history: a Special Award to the best Debut over the last 30 years, conferred through a referendum by Italian Film Critics’ to director and actor Peter Mullan, that in 1998 revealed his talent within the Critics’ Week program with his film Orphans, for then to win a Golden Lion with Magdalene four years later. Orphans will be screened in the opening day of Critics’ Week, with the presence of the author.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

63rd San Sebastian Festival Posters


No major film festival has a graphic identity competition like what San Sebastian fest has been doing for last four years. Used to cover the poster competition but had a hiatus that today comes to an end with the sharing of the winning posters for each of the festival sections. Can't say that winning graphic designs represent what I like but no doubt that some look/feel original while others -like the official selection poster- recall famous painters of recent eras, some Spaniards while others not. Sigh.

The new image for the 63rd edition of the San Sebastian Festival was unveiled at an event in the Newton Auditorium of San Sebastian’s Eureka! Zientzia Museoa. An announcement was also made at the gathering as to the winning proposals of the poster competition called by the Festival for the Official, New Directors, Horizontes Latinos, Pearls, Zabaltegi and Culinary Zinema sections.

Open to graphic designers around the world, this fourth edition saw the highest participation yet, with 1,726 proposals from 415 authors.

Monday, July 13, 2015

50th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival Award Winners


Every year I follow what's going on with this Czech film festival but not always write about it; this year feel that there are some good films that I need to recall and hopefully try to watch eventually. Besides the festival had this year a milestone anniversary with a half a century in existence, which has to be celebrated under any circumstances and especially now that festivals have a trend that suggest that some could disappear sooner than later.

Surprisingly an American movie won the top award, which is not common to the festival; but if I was surprised with winner, the director of Bob and the Trees, Diego Ongaro was also surprised, check what he said about winning a very relevant world film award with his debut feature film: “This really is a surprise. We had virtually no money to shoot the film so I had to invest my and my wife’s money, and I would like to thank everybody involved in making the film”.

Monday, July 06, 2015

72nd Venice Film Festival Poster


Today La Mostra organizers released the 2015 festival poster that according to poster designer has an image that plays with a François Truffaut film (background) and a Wim Wenders film (foreground).

Dedicated to art-house cinema, with the images of Antoine Doinel/Jean-Pierre Léaud and -in the foreground- of Nastassja Kinski, the poster for the 72nd Venice International Film Festival has been conceived and drawn for the fourth consecutive year by Simone Massi.

The poster for the 72nd Venice Film Festival 2015 has been created in continuity, from a figurative and narrative point of view, with the three earlier posters (2012-2014). In the foreground stands a female figure with features reminiscent of an icon of art-house films in the 1980s, Nastassja Kinski. This time, the film might be Paris, Texas by Wim Wenders. In the background is the star of last year’s poster, inspired by the final frame of The Four Hundred Blows by François Truffaut and the main character of the film, Antoine Doinel/Jean-Pierre Léaud. When observed one after the other, the four images generate a mise en abyme effect, appearing before the eyes of the beholder as parts of a mini-story that may be interpreted at will, allowing himself to be guided by the impressions evoked by the references to, and quotes from, various films.

2015 Lux Prize Official Selection


The ravages of time in a normal life, the misfortunes of humanitarian aid, the traditional connection to nature, the struggle to make a decent life in spite of economical crisis, the odyssey of finding a new and welcoming place to live in, the clash between freedom and religious and social constraints, the horror of one of the most unspeakable events in History, the perplexing gap between childhood and real life, the fight against social and moral contradictions, and a love story through the wounds of Europe. The 2015 LUX Prize Official Selection is nothing less than all of this put together. Given out each year by the European Parliament to cast a spotlight on the diversity of European cinema and its importance in building social and cultural values, the award's 2015 edition has kicked off today at the 50th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival with the unveiling of the ten selected films

Saturday, June 27, 2015

2015 Nastri d'Argento Awards Winners


Today organizers announced the award winners and to the surprise of many three movies get each three awards to lead the pack of winners this year.

Anime Nere by Francesco Munzi, Tales of Tales by Matteo Garrone and Youth by Paolo Sorrentino are the three movies that each collected three awards.

Friday, June 19, 2015

2015 German Films Award Winners


... and the BIG winner of the night is (drums) none other than Victoria by Sebastian Schipper, the thriller shot in a single, unedited take won six (6) Lolas including best film, best director and the top acting honors.

No, this year didn't watched live the award ceremony but I'm please that Victoria won even when I know since 2015 Berlinale that will be a hard-to-watch movie.

To read winners at official site go here (pdf file in German).  Below is the list with ALL award winners; winners are in *BLUE.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

59th David di Donatello Awards Winners




Last night the big winner was undoubtedly Anime Nere that collected nine awards but what has generated more English media buzz was Quentin Tarrantino attending in person to collect past awards for Pulp Fiction and Django Unchained.  The awards were handled by Ennio Morricone and surprisingly both announced that Morricone has agreed to compose music for next Tarantino movie, upcoming The Hateful Eight -which many are expecting will premiere in Venice fest.

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