Friday, September 04, 2015
Today Venezia72 has its first major Hollywood star walking the streets near the Lido and later -still early when I'm writing this- will walk the Red Carpet ... yes, I'm talking about Johnny Depp that already has large crowds outside the Black Mass photocall and press conference events.
But while watching the hundreds of Depp photos at those sites with not-free photos I came to realize something quite especial, tell me: who could imagine that relatively newcomer Dakota Johnson was going to have two (2) films in La Mostra? Plus both films have major cinema stars like Depp but also Tilda Swinton and Ralph Fiennes. Intersting, isn't?
Besides film by great Golden Lion winner Alexander Sokurov there is not much that calls my attention today, so it's a fast and easy day to cover. Later tonight we will start to read the early press reactions to Equals a film that will bring another start to the Lido; already know that Nicholas Hoult is in Venice but no news yet from Stewart. Oh! yes, she's in Venice too.
The following happened, is happening and will happen today in Venice -it all depends on the time of the day I write (lol).
Francofonia by Aleksandr Sokurov
If I was considering downgrading my HIGH expectations when wrote about director in the series Venice Check, now after reading initial press reactions, I'm positive and will not touch my High Expectations. Best news come from Neil Young mentioning that no one has called film "documentary", which assures that film could not be related to that genre.
According to those in the first screening film got a standing ovation, the largest-noisiest up to this moment; which means that press -composed by mainly film critics- LIKED film. Well, to be honest no matter what happens in Venice, this film is absolutely must-be-seen for me.
-a mind-bending night at the museum ... the past, present and future of art collide beautifully in Russian master Alexander Sokurov’s uniquely strange new film. Robbie Collin-The Telegraph, UK
- A dense, enriching meditation on the Louvre, Paris and the role of art as an intrinsic part of the spirit of civilization. Jay Weissberg-Variety, USA
- Alexandr Sokurov's Francofonia is complex, sophisticated cine-prose poem - easily one of the best things at #Venezia72. Peter Bradshaw-The Guardian, UK
- Sokurov's 'Francofonia' is a fantastically indulgent and inspiring meditation / rumination on art, history and war. CineVue
- seven positive tweets from #Venezia72 critics who've seen Sokurov's FRANCOFONIA tonight and not one of them uses the word "documentary'. Neil Young.
- eerie look at the Louvre's vulnerable freight: Bold and confident film from Aleksandr Sokurov. Niskala Film.
Marguerite by Xavier Giannoli
Well, most press reactions seem to consider film as arty but the most relevant news are that the same story will be tell by Stephen Frears' Florence Foster Jenkins biopic starring none other than Meryl Streep in the lead role. So perhaps that's why some American critics are relegating Giannoli's film to art-house audiences.
Still film already has USA distribution via Cohen Media Group, so American audiences will watch a French dramedy as soon as next Sprint. Not rushing to watch this movie, think will wait until comes to my TV set via cable.
-Art house distributors would be crazy not to give this original, funny and touching confection a look. Lisa Nesselson-Screendaily, UK
-Cover your ears and open your hearts ... splendid satire. Peter Debruge-Variety, USA
Out of Competition
Black Mass by Scott Cooper
I was just hoping to find out that when I see film, I was going to be able to see a character in the screen and NOT Johnny Depp looking different ("funny); seems that perhaps I'll be lucky and due to director storytelling style plus great performances by cast (we) will be able to see the gangster and not the actor in disguise, sigh. Nevertheless most positive first reactions come from American press who behave like if they're wishing film and top actors will be going deep into the American awards season.
Will confess that still today I see everything with Johnny and yes, lately I have been very disappointed; so, the idea that this film could be at least acceptable mainstream entertainment makes me feel good but no, will not raise my expectations that are rather in the middle-down scale position. Alright also confess that I'm curious to see what Dakota Johnson does in this film.
- Confident and nasty film with impressive performances from a starry cast. Peter Bradshaw-The Guardian, UK
- As Boston gangster Johnny Depp is better than he's been in years. But his co-stars are even better... Robbie Collin-Telegraph, UK
Depp shines in a solid gangster biopic. Todd McCarthy-THR, USA
- Johnny Depp does career-best work as notorious Boston gangster James 'Whitey' Bulger in Scott Cooper's taut, elegantly understated crime drama. Scott Foundas-Variety, USA
- Black Mass-ively disappointing. Johnny Depp is unrecognisable (again) in ho-hum gangster pic. CineVue
- I think Johnny Depp is good in BLACK MASS, though it's a case of one icy note being played consistently well. Not nearly career-best for me. Guy Lodge
In Jackson Heights by Frederick Wiseman
A three hours ten minutes documentary about the daily life and ethnic diversity of Jackson Heights in Queens, NY sounds/feels/looks as too-much for me. Wiseman is an extraordinary documentarian but prefer to see some of his previous works about Museums or re-watch great Crazy Horse. Sigh.
Tharlo by Pema Tseden
I'm curious about this film, as much as I' curious about ALL films than come from Tibet and/or with a Tibetan story. In social media viewers reactions are not many but the few tend to go to the positive side of the scale.
-Tibetan sheep-herding film may sound like a film festival cliche. But Tharlo was actually rather affecting. Wendy Ide
- Ingenuo pastore tibetano con tosse che canta Mao Zedong perdera' capelli, treccia, capre, amore e denaro. Andrea Curcione
Mountain by Yaeile Kayam
VERY curious about a film that tells the story of a young Orthodox woman who becomes involved in Jerusalem's under-world as she strolls in a cemetery; super-weird story that seems could blow my mind. Not much press coverage for this movie yet.
Not much to say about today screenings, except that if you like Hou Hsiao-Hsien and haven't seen film below, then you should especially now that film has been restored.
For the Love of a Man by Rinku Kalsy (documentary)
The Trial of Viviene Ware by William K. Howard, 1932
The Power and the Glory by William K. Howard, 1933
Fenggui Lai de Ren (The Boys from Feng-Kuei), Hou Hsiao-Hsien, 1983
Arianna by Carlo Lavagna
Have the impression that already learned a lot more than what I like about this movie that also is competing for the Queer Lion award and that used to believe that had some lesbian-interest but now I'm starting to doubt it and probably has more Trans than any other interest. But no matter the interest film has, I'm interesting in watching film at least as much as I like to watch LGTB films.
- Arianna trova nella forza del soggetto una delle sue maggiori risorse. Tra realismo lirico, thriller dell’anima e intimismo, una consueta opera prima italiana. Coraggiosa negli intenti, spesso timida nell’espressione. Massimiliano Schiavoni.
Special Event: Harry's Bar by Carlotta Cerquetti (documentary)
Special Project: Bangland by Lorenzo Berhella (animation)
Banat (Il Viaggio) by Adriano Valerio
Immigration in the "wrong" way, or better, in a very unusual way, as film tells about an Italian that migrates to Romania, add an unconventional love story and you have the debut feature-film by Valerio. As in any Critics' Week films tend to be very unconventional and not all please me, but story calls my attention so pehaps will give movie a try.
Biennale College - Cinema
The Fits by Anna Rose Holmer
Like THR David Rooney's says: Newcomer Anna Rose Holmer's debut is an original reflection on a young African American girl's path from childhood into the exotic social sphere of adolescence add the bottom line in his review A rough-diamond discovery and seems that there will be a new Indie director that could rock American Indie cinema. Unfortunately don't like much must of American Indie films, sigh.
Il Cinema nel Giardino
Vogliamo I Colonnelli by Mario Monticelli
Film already screened indoors, now is time to watch it in the garden.
-Tonight is the Chopard Party, so there most be pics tomorrow.
Can't find nice free photos.... so this is it until tomorrow.
Black Mass press conference (Johnny clowns a lot - yes announcer said Dakota Fanning when presenting Dakota Johnson -lol)
Nice fest presentation