Saturday, September 01, 2012

Let's Talk Telluride 2012

On Labor weekend every year what I consider to be the best festival in USA takes place. You have to buy your passes before knowing what films you'll be able to see, as the festival lineup is a secret (very well kept) that's unveiled a few hours before the festival starts. But fest has so much prestige that passes are sold out days before the opening day.

Then every major USA critics has to go and they do, I follow in twitter some of them and today's news where about Ben Affleck's Argo, with many considering film as good Oscar contender. Good is to mention that none included Argo in their predictions before Telluride. Festival gives many the opportunity to see films they haven't seen and allows them to generate buzz about films that were not considered before. So know that more tweets will come that will tells us about other possible Oscar contenders as if something Telluride truly has is: very good movies.

Most films come from Cannes, Berlin and even Venice festivals but there are a few American movies that suddenly appear in the lineup that none of us have paid much attention. So let's take a look at how the lineup looks for this year.

The Show

The Act of Killing, Joshua Oppenheimer, Denmark (documentary)
Amour (Love), Michael Haneke, Austria, France and Germany
At Any Price, Ramin Bahrani, USA
The Attack, Ziad Doueiri, Lebanon, France, Qatar, Belgium
Barbara, Christian Petzold, Germany
The Central Park Five, Ken Burns, Sarah Burns and David McMahon, USA (documentary)
De rouille et d'os (Rust & Bone), Jacques Audiard, France and Belgium
En kongelig affære (A Royal Affair), Nikolaj Arcel, Denmark, Sweden and Czech Republic
Everyday, Michael Winterbottom, UK
Frances Ha, Noah Baumbach, USA
The Gatekeepers, Dror Moreh, Israel, France, Germany, Belgium (documentary)
Ginger & Rosa, Sally Potter, UK
Hyde Park on Hudson, Roger Michell, UK
Jagten (The Hunt), Thomas Vinterberg, Denmark
The Iceman, Ariel Vromen, USA
Love, Marilyn, Liz Garbus, USA (documentary)
Midnight's Children, Deepa Mehta, Canada and UK
No, Pablo Larraín, Chile, France and USA
Paradies: Liebe (Paradise: Love), Ulrich Seidl, Austria, Germany and France
Romanzo di una Strange (Piazza Fontana), Marco Tullio Giordana, Italy and France
The Sapphires, Wayne Blair, Australia
Stories We Tell, Sarah Polley, Canada (documentary)
Superstar, Xavier Giannoli, France and Belgium
Wadja, Haifaa Al-Mansour, Saudi Arabia and Germany
What is this Film Called Love?, Mark Cousins, UK, Mexico, USA, Canada and Germany (documentary)

But there is more, as one Sneak Preview has been already screened: Argo, Ben Affleck, USA. Additional Sneak Previews may play outside the main program and will be announced on the website over the course of the four-day weekend, so fest attendees have to check the site to see what's up.

As you can notice we know about many films in above list, more if you follow Movie On facebook page; but still there are a few that I had no idea they were around and yes, will check them as soon as possible. From the ones I was unaware all are documentaries, worth noting that the last film in the list was shot over three days and on a budget of 10 English Pounds.

Known since a few days ago, Guest Director is Geoff Dyer who will present six films that span from 1974 to 2007. One of the six films in this program is none other than Stalker by Andrei Tarkovsky. The film list continues with more films in different sections plus a short films program. Go here if you wish to read about them.

The 2012 Silver Medallion Awards, given to recognize an artist’s significant contribution to the world of cinema, go to director and producer Roger Corman, Academy Award-winning actress Marion Cotillard and Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen.

One of the critics I follow said in a tweet "Love listening to people in line at #telluride; they're the target art house audience. Smart sharp cinephiles from all over the country". The brief tweet gives us an idea of who the "other" festival audience it is; but also, after reading the above list again makes me realize that for me there are not many "art house" movies up there, as matter of fact, none are. The list has very good movies, many must be seen for me, but "art house"? I believe that not all foreign language films are "art house", much less the English language films and as I said, before watching any of them, none of those films seem to be "art". Then maybe some can be labeled Auteur Films. Indeed, I'm describing the problem with labels but, what do you think? In the list and even if you haven't seen the films, do you find possible "art house" films?

The 39th Telluride Film Festival started yesterday, August 31st, today is in full swing mode and for two more days, until September 3, the great films party will continue. The good news is that next year instead of the usual four-days festival and to celebrate the 40th anniversary the fest will add one more day, making room for a five-day bounty of special programming and festivities. If you wish to attend you will have to hurry as passes fly, but at least passes purchases will begin in March 2013, almost 6 months before the festival starts on August 29, 2013.


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