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Sunday, April 26, 2015

2015 Cannes Check #7 - The Asians


Asian directors also have significant presence among the 19 films in the main competition as three films come from that side of the world. Already talked about Jia Zhangke and now is time to review Hou Hsiao-Hsien and Kore-eda Hirokazu.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien

A leading figure of Taiwan's New Wave cinema movement that abandoned the melodrama and kung-fu action films for the realism in urban or rural Taiwan, promoting the narrative structure that progresses at the pace as it would in real life. His work engages themes of political, cultural, and personal transition, frequently through oblique narratives grounded upon generational conflicts. For these and many more reasons he is my favorite Taiwanese director of all times.

He was born in April 8, 1947 in Meixian, Guangdong province, China but in 1948 his family fled the Chinese Civil War to Taiwan where he was educated at the National Taiwan Academy of the Arts. After graduation in 1972, he worked briefly as a salesman. Later he began his film career as a scriptwriter and assistant director. His first cinema-related work dates back to 1973 when he was the script supervisor for Xin you qian qian jie. Took him almost a decade to finally do his first feature film, 1980 Jiushi liuliu de ta (Cute Girl) and almost two more decades for me to discover him.

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Day 9 - Cannes 2015




After today there are only three more films to go in the main competition; but more shocking, the Quinzaine des Réalisateurs and La Semaine de la Critique have their closing ceremony tomorrow, so believe it or not, tomorrow we will start to learn awards winners.

Oops! just realized that La Semaine de la Critique closing ceremony is TODAY!!! Oh gosh. Ceremony will be at 7pm local time.

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Monday, November 23, 2015

52nd Golden Horse Awards Winners


Last Saturday night was the 2015 Golden Horse Awards ceremony and as expected the big winner of the night was Hou Hsiao-Hsien's The Assassin that collected five awards, including Best Feature Film, Best Director, Best Cinematography and more. Following closely was Chang Tso-Chi's Thanatos, Drunk with four awards.

Worth mentioning is Jia Zhang-ke's Mountains May Depart winning Best Original Screenplay and Tharlo by Pema Tseden winning Best Adapted Screenplay.

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Kôhî Jikô (Café Lumière)


Yesterday I stopped by the very good video club near home and they had new titles so I picked up some (many) movies to watch during this weekend. Hate to wear my reading glasses –without them I cannot see a thing-, so I chose them by the cover. Go home, pick one and start watching. Café Lumière is the first one.

When I finished watching this movie my honest spontaneous reaction was, what a strange movie… but during its 135 (or so) minutes I could not get my eyes from the screen. By half the movie I said: where is the story? By the third quarter I said: there is no story; this is a slice of life. By the end I jumped and exclaimed fantastic! And strange. Little did I knew.

What I found mesmerizing are the many scenes that look like they were filmed in real time and show those meaningless moments of life in such a marvelous way. Loved the urban chaos and the serenity of indoor takes. And I could go on and on but lets get into business.

This film is co written and directed by famous Taiwanese Hsiao-hsien Hou, stars half Japanese and half Taiwanese Yo Hitoto –in her screen debut- and Japanese Tadanobu Asano. The film is shot in Tokyo and is a very Japanese story … and film. So we have a Taiwanese director/writer that does not speak Japanese nor lives in Japan, filming in Japanese and with a Japanese story?? Strange, isn’t?

Well, this film was commissioned by a Japanese studio to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great Japanese director Yosujiro Ozu! With one specific instruction, it had to be a true Japanese movie. According to the studio Hsiao-hsien Hou did a masterpiece that represents Japan today and the future.

With this knowledge the story started to appear in my mind. This is about a young woman, Yoko (played by Yo Hitoto) that after spending a few years in Taiwan teaching Japanese comes back to Tokyo pregnant and finds again her friend Hajime Takeuchi (played by Asano) that loves her, her father and wife that do not know how to communicate with her and continues her life. She is an independent and strong woman that does not want to marry the Taiwanese father of her child because he is too close to his mother. She wants to raise her child alone.

According to most marvelous French produced documentary I have seen recently, Ozu’s films were very popular in his time as they reflected Japanese society extremely well and is today when they are considered art cinema. The above story is a story that Ozu could never tell as it was impossible in the Japanese culture of the ‘50’s/’60s or earlier. The industrialization and economic growth has been changing Japanese society and today there are two extremely different generations living together. The role that probably has changed more is women role in society.

According to me, Hou did the same as Ozu but with today standards and he did it brilliantly!

Just yesterday I was hoping to learn more about Naruse, Ozu and Mizoguchi. My biggest surprise is to watch in that fabulous documentary many clips from Ozu films!! Today there are two Ozu’s movies I HAVE TO see Higanbana (Equinox Flower) 1958 and Sanma No Aji (An Autumn Afternoon or Le Goût du Sake) 1962.

I have to admit that after watching the dvd’s extras everything came into place and I understood why I just was hypnotized by this movie.

Last but not least, Yo Hitoto won her fist award as Newcomer of the Year in the 2005 Awards of the Japanese Academy and Hsiao-hsien Hou won the Golden Tulip at the 2005 Istambul International Film Festival and was nominated for the Golden Lion in the 2004 Venice Film Festival.

Do not miss this movie if the dvd is near you and please watch the documentary called Métro Lumière as well as the interviews with the two main actors and the director.

This is absolutely an art house cinema not for all audiences.

P.S. In the documentary Hsiao-hsien Hou mentions how difficult is to make a film about a culture that is so different to his and succeed, this make me think about My Blueberry Nights that is getting so-so reviews.

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Friday, March 18, 2016

10th Asian Film Awards Winners


Yesterday the Academy had their awards ceremony and as expected by many, Hou Hsiao-Hsien's The Assassin swept the night by winning eight awards out of the nine nominations it had, which is a fantastic ratio in any world awards.

But Hou Hsiao-Hsien film steak left not much for other films; still, among the few other awards left, Jia Zhang-ke collected Best Script for his Mountains May Depart.

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Thursday, October 22, 2015

9th Asia Pacific Screen Awards Nominations


APSA Chairman Michael Hawkins today announced the nominations for the 9th Asia Pacific Screen Awards, the region’s highest accolade in film, in the Best Feature Film category and five craft award achievements.

Leading the nominations is Taiwan's The Assassin nominated for Best Feature Film, Achievement in Directing for Hou Hsiao-hsien and Achievement in Cinematography for APSA Academy member Mark Lee Ping-Bing. Competing alongside The Assassin for Best Feature Film are Thailand’s Cemetery of Splendour, Japanese drama Journey to the Shore and the Korean features End of Winter and Alive.

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Saturday, August 02, 2008

Le Voyage du Ballon Rouge (The Flight of the Red Balloon)


The first Hou Hsiao Hsien film in the west and the second outside Taiwan (the first was the amazing Café Lumiére filmed in Japan) is a very-very special movie about what critics have called as life in a large city in the 21st century and I modify as life in a large western city nowadays where you can find chaos and also poetic visual beauty as perhaps extremes of a string of quotidian and mundane activities. And this last sentence resumes this visually amazing movie with the most interesting background story that I just learned.

The film is the first that the Musée d’Orsay commissioned to celebrate its 20th anniversary and the idea is to reunite contemporary artists with the treasures of the past and they have only one request: the museum has to appear at least in one scene. The museum project seems as interesting as this film that is a tribute (not inspired) to Albert Lamorisse acclaimed 1956 short Le Ballon Rouge (The Red Ballon). So, the film reunites one of the most acclaimed contemporary filmmakers with a treasure that if you haven’t seen it I suggest you do whenever you find it, as the short is truly a marvelous children fantasy.

Also extremely interesting is to find that the movie has a screenplay that has no dialogue. Each character is extremely well developed with a detailed background, but the dialogue had to be “found” by the actors. After learning this I have to say BIG CHAPEAU to Juliette Binoche as I would have never imagined that she could “find” so many words that totally fit her chaotic character.

The film follows three characters divorced Suzanne (Juliette Binoche), her son Simon (Simon Iteanu) and the newly hired nanny Song (Taiwanese non-actor Fang Song) that is getting to know the few people around the life of small family. But, Suzanne is loosing control of her very busy life as she’s preparing her new puppet show, has to deal with intrusive tenants that haven’t paid rent, Simon father is in Montreal, etc and she is left all alone to deal with everything, except Simon that now has Song. This is a story full of extreme contrasts and Suzanne is chaos, while Simon and Song are poetic bliss, but when Suzanne interacts with Simon or Song, she’s the extreme opposite when she becomes peaceful. Then in-between characters performances we have many quiet moments where we follow the red balloon that simply mesmerized me and took me to another dimension, especially because the red balloon travels through a not often seen in movies Paris. The only time we will see the always-beautiful Paris is in the lyrical finale.

As you can imagine Juliette Binoche performance is so powerful that is disturbing and will make you feel quite uncomfortable from the very first moment we enter her chaotic apartment even when in that scene she’s not there. Then you have Song that while seeming very busy with film school is Binoche’s character opposite and there you have balance between opposites. It’s truly a very simple story delivered in a very complex manner.

The film as a movie has the most outstanding cinematography with a succession of incredibly beautiful takes, many of them playing with reflections and there is one long take with Binoche talking with Simon father while seating inside a car that is absolutely mesmerizing as what is reflected in the windshield glass will just visually blow your mind. Somehow I find outstanding that Hou Hsiao Hsien is able to keep his particular filmmaking style and codes when he’s not telling a Chinese story; he did it with Tokyo in Café Lumiére and he does it with Paris in this movie, and in both cases he was not really familiar with the city and the culture, and he succeeded. This is truly outstanding especially after seeing that not all filmmakers succeed, just remember Wong Kar-wai’s My Blueberry Nights.

The film was the opening movie at the Un Certain Regard parallel section of the 2007 Cannes and has awards and accolades in festivals around the world. Then the film absolutely is not for all audiences, as on the surface it looks like not much is happening in the movie, you have to decipher symbols –as for example the red balloon-, has extremely slow pace at moments and other moments with agitated chaos, has silences, and scenes with a beautiful piano music only.

This movie can be the most accessible Hou Hsiao Hsien movie that I have seen as it has a clearer story, but I know that only those that admire his particular filmmaking style will enjoy this movie. I strongly recommend the movie to all serious cinema lovers.

Big Enjoy!!!

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

60th Film Festival Locarno


Here are the movies that were announced today.

INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION


Ai No Yokan (The Rebirth), Japan, Masahiro Kobayashi
Boys of Tomorrow, South Korea, Noh Dong-seok
Capitaine Achab (Captain Achab), France-Sweden, Philippe Ramos
Contre Toute Esperance, Canada, Bernard Emond
Extraordinary Rendition, UK, Jim Threapleton
Freigesprochen, Austria-Luxembourg, Peter Payer
Fruher Oder Spater (Sooner or Later), Germany, Ulrike von Ribbeck
Fuori dalle corde, Switzerland-Italy, Fulvio Bernasconi
Haiti Cherie, Italy, Claudio Del Punta
Joshua, USA, George Ratliff
Ladrones, Spain, Jaime Marques
Las Vidas Posibles, Argentina-Germany, Sandra Gugliotta
Lo Mejor de Mi, Spain, Roser Aguilar
La Maison Jaune, France-Algeria, Hakkar Amor
Memories, South Korea, Eugene Green, Pedro Costa, Harun Farocki
O Ca Pacete Dourado, Portugal, Jorge Cramez
Restule Tacere, Romania, Nae Caranfil
Slipstream, USA, Anthony Hopkins
Sous les toits de Paris, France, Hiner Saleem

Main competition jury are Swiss-French actress Irene Jacob, actor Bruno Todeschini, Chinese filmmaker Jia Zhang-ke, Brazilian filmmaker Walter Carvalho, German filmaker Romuald Karmakar and Italian filmmaker Saverio Costanzo.

PIAZZA GRANDE

The Bourne Ultimatum, USA, Paul Greengrass
Death at a Funeral, USA-Netherlands-Germany-UK, Frank Oz
The Drummer, Hong Kong-Taiwan-Germany, Kenneth Bi
Hairspray, USA, Adam Shankman
1 journee, Switzerland-France, Jacob Berger
Mio Fratello E Figlio Unico (My Brother Is an Only Child), Italy-France, Daniele Luchetti
Vexille, Japan, Fumihiko Sori - This is the Openning Film
Le Voyage du Ballon Rouge (Flight of the Red Balloon), France, Hou Hsiao-hsien
Waitress, USA, Adrienne Shelly
Winners and Losers, France-USA, Lech Kowalski - This is the Closing Film
Chicago 10, USA, Brett Morgen
Knocked Up, USA, Judd Apatow
Nichtsals Gespenseter (Nothing but Ghosts), Germany, Martin Gypkens
Planet Terror, USA, Robert Rodriguez
Vogliamo Anche le Rose, Italy, Alina Marazzi
1408, USA, Mikael Hafstrom

FILMMAKERS OF THE PRESENT COMPETITION

An Seh (Those Three), Iran, Naghi Nemati
Comme a Ostende, Belgium, Delphine Lehericey
Estrellas, Argentina, Federico Leon, Marcos Martinez
Guillaume et les Sortileges, France, Pierre Leon
Imatra, Italy, Corso Salani
Japan Japan, Israel, Lior Shamriz
Juizo, Brazil, Maria Augusta Ramos
Lo Bueno de Llorar, Spain, Matias Bize
Loren Cass, USA, Chris Fuller
Never Sleeps, France, Philippe Flechaire, Benoit Falize, Jeremy Boury
Nirakar Chhaya (Shadows Formless), India, Ashish Avikuntha
Nos Vies Privees," Canada, Denis Cote
Nuage, France, Sebastien Betbeder
Nu Te Supara, Dar... (Ne Te Fache Pas), Romania, Adina Pintilie
Phantom Love, USA, Nina Menkes
Tagliare le Parti in Grigio, Italy, Vittorio Rifranti
Tejut (Milky Way), Hungary, Benedek Fliegauf
Tussenstand, Netherlands, Mijke de Jong
Xia Wu gou Jiao (Mid-Afternoon Barks), China, Zhang Yuedong

ICI ET AILLEURS

La Capture, Canada-France, Carole Laure - fiction about violence against women
Crime and Punishment, China-France, Zhao Liang - documentary shot in the border between North Korea and China, follows young policemen on their daily rounds.
La Danse de l'Enchanteresse, France, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Brigitte Chataignier - ballet masters in Southern India
Dutti der Riese, Switzerland, Martin Witz - about the founder of the Swiss supermarket chain Migros
Io non sono un moderato, Italy, Andrea Nobile - follows Nobel Prize laureate Dario Fo as he campaigns in the Milan municipal elections.
Il pianto della statua, Italy, Elisabetta Sgarbi -forays into history
Morceaux de Conversations avec Jean-Luc Godard, France, Alain Fleischer
Preussisch Gangstar, Germany, Irma-Kinga Stelmach, Bartosz Werner - youth unemployement Le Retour des Cinephiles, France, Louis Skorecki - reflections about cinema
Sally Gross -The Pleasure of Stillness, USA, Albert Mysles - about a famous choreographer
Shake the Devil Off, Switzerland, Peter Entell - set in New Orleans after Katrina an Afro-American priest is fighting to prevent the closure of his Saint-Augustin parish.
UPA! Una pelicula Argentina, Argentina, Tamae Garateguy, Santiago Giralt, Camila Toker - a parody poking fun at Argentine cinema's New Wave.
Wierszalin, USA-Poland, Francesco Carrozzini - a Polish theater company with a charismatic director

The 2007 Leopard of Honor goes to veteran Taiwanese filmmaker Hou Hsiao-hsien, whose Flight of the Red Balloon, shot in Paris and starring Juliette Binoche, will be shown in the Piazza.

The Raimondo Rezzonico Prize goes to Argentine producer Lita Stantic. As a tribute to her, a special screening will be devoted to Lucrecia Martel's La Cienaga.

The Locarno Excellence Award goes to Michel Piccoli. A Variety Masterclass with Michel Piccoli will be held at the Forum.

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Day 12 - Cannes 2015


As far as I remember this is the first time that the day of the closing ceremony ALL films in competition have a final screen that seems is open to all audiences. That's a great idea that hope will be a norm for the future.

Maybe will tweet live the winners but for sure will update LIVE the post with the list of award winners and of course will watch live the red carpet hoping to see who is really in Cannes and who is not.  So expect me complaining or being happy via twitter (lol).

Before getting into more news or comments, let's talk about yesterday Un Certain Regard awards ceremony that I deeply regret was not stream live (not even by Cannes TV or Canal +) as this year I would have liked to see it because Isabella Rossellini was the head of the jury and as expected seems she did a good speech before the awards. But today there is an official video with the ceremony; this is the English version video, but there is also a video in French that doesn't have the not-nice voice over translation.

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Friday, September 04, 2015

Day 3 #Venezia72


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?

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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.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

L'Apollonide (Souvenirs de la maison close) (House of Tolerance)


Bertrand Bonello paints magnificent moving pictures that absolutely recall Ingres, Degas, Manet -and more- with those decadent scenes in a decadent house of tolerance that is about to disappear with the coming of the 20th century as story starts in the twilight of the 19th century in November 1899. With an unconventional story that probably will not be true in a real bordello, we are taken in a voyage that starts in the “normal” everyday life of the girls until one girl becomes careless with a regular and allows him to damage her for life. She becomes “the woman that laughs” and is like the invisible axis that holds the stories of the madam and a few of the girls.

Story is complex and layered with the most interesting ending that proposes that even do the houses of tolerance were banned in France a long time ago, today the setting might have change, but the everyday life and conditions under what the girls work may have remain the same.

Is a very beautiful to watch film with great performances by Hafsia Herzi, Adele Haenel, Jasmine Trinca, Céline Sallette, and especially Alice Barnole that plays Madeleine, the woman that laughs with makeup that is scary/awkward/pathetic as looks a lot like Batman’s the Joker in the latest version.

A film with a name that comes from Apollonie Sabatier the muse that inspired Baudelaire verses like: "Ange plein de gaîté, connaissez-vous l'angoisse/ La honte, les remords, les sanglots, les ennuis/Et les vagues terreurs de ces affreuses nuits/qui compriment le coeur comme un papier qu'on froisse ?/Ange plein de gaîté, connaissez-vous l'angoisse ?" (Réversibilité). Verses that also talk about this film.

This film made me think about another poetic bordello film Hai shang hua (Flowers of Shanghai) by Hsiao-hsien Hou and believe is the best reference when I say that if you enjoyed this film you will also highly enjoy Bonello film. But I know that film is not for all audiences as is a very French/European film that shows images of the body but actually is speaking about or reflecting the soul.

I highly enjoyed the film both visually as well as because the female story that while set in the past is so true nowadays. I do recommend film but be aware that film is not sexy, sexual or soft porn and there are much less sensual or erotic scenes than in other films or other Bonello’s films, so if you’re watching because anything similar you will be bored to death as many have been.

This is another outstanding film from Cannes 2011 in competition selection that confirms me that last year was an excellent year for world cinema and Cannes just showcased the best of the best. Great.

Enjoy!!!

Watch trailer @MOC

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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

68th Festival de Cannes Award Winners


And the BIG winner of the night is ... (drums) French cinema!!! Which is not a surprise as this year there is a huge list of what could be great French films and some made it to Cannes, some got great reviews and some won top awards.

But when you carefully look at the list below you can also find another winner, a cinema that had NO films in the main competition but managed to be present in several sections and ... (drums) won awards! I'm talking about Latin American cinema with movies from Colombia, Argentina and Chile. Then there was also a Mexican director winning a top award.

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Saturday, November 26, 2011

48th Golden Horse Awards Winners


Today the Academy had the awards ceremony and winners are in *RED.

--//--

10/4

Today the Academy, chaired by none other than Hou Hsiao-Hsien, announced the nominations for the yearly awards and here are for some categories.

Best Feature Film
Let the Bullets Fly, Wen Jiang, China and Hong Kong
Gang de qin (The Piano in A Factory), Zhang Meng and Jae-young Kwak, China
Return Ticket, Yung-Shing Teng, China and Taiwan
桃姐 Tao jie (A Simple Life), Ann Hui, Hong Kong
* 賽德克.巴萊 Saideke Balai (Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale), Wei Te-Sheng, Taiwan

Best Director
Wei Te-sheg for Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale
Jiang Wen for Let The Bullets Fly
*Ann Hui for A Simple Life
Zhang Meng for The Piano in a Factory

Best New Director
*Wuershan for The Butcher, The Chef and The Swordsman
Giddens for You Are the Apple of My Eye
Xu Haofeng for The Sword Identiy
Du Jia-yi for KORA

Best Leading Actress
Michelle Chen in You Are the Apple of My Eye
Shu Qi in A Beautiful Life
*Deanie IP in A Simple Life
Qin Hailu in The Piano in a Factory

Best Leading Actor
Eddie Peng in Jump!Ashin
Ge You in Let The Bullets Fly
*Andy Lau in A Simple Life
Wang Qian-yuan in The Piano in a Factory

The Outstanding Taiwanese Filmmaker of the Year
Hsiao-Tung Chen
Yang Li-chou
*Wong Wei-liu

To check nominees and winners in other categories go here. Awards ceremony will be held on November 26.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

#Cannes 2016 News


As expected news have started to come drop by drop -very nice strategy to keep our attention- and yesterday we learned that none other that great Japanese filmmaker and one of my favorite contemporary directors, Naomi Kawase, is the President of The Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury for the 69th edition of the Festival de Cannes.

Assume that all of you, who read the blog regularly know who she is; but in case you're not familiar with her and wish to meet her, my best suggestion is to start with 2007 Mogari no Mori (The Mourning Forest), then go back to her previous films, continue with her recent films up to An (Sweet Bean), which perhaps is her more easy-to-watch by general audiences, as broke Japan's box office records. If I have to explain her style in a few words will be, simple everyday life moments told with full poetic storytelling and awesome visuals.

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Sunday, February 14, 2016

2016 BAFTA Awards Winners


Watching stream of award ceremony here.  Will wait until show is over but yes, I have a violent depression because my favorite movie, Carol,  got 9 nominations and zero awards.... grrrr.  Why? When is such a beautiful movie in many ways... sigh.

Most noticeable is the absence of awards to another extraordinary film, The Danish Girl, which is quite surprising and have to comment that is disturbing to think that the LGBT stories had something to do with the absence of honors.  Sigh.

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Thursday, November 26, 2015

9th Asia Pacific Screen Awards Winners


A few minutes ago the awards ceremony closed with the announcement of the big winner of the night and to my surprise the top award goes to Cementery of Splendour and NOT to what I was expecting, The Assassin. Sigh. Nevertheless I'm sure that Apichatpong Weerasethakul movie most be a dreamy trip into great cinematography and storytelling. Great.

Still considering the nominees, winners tend to be on the unexpected side as most not honored films have collected major awards in the festival circuit, which I believe only means that this year jury had bold or unconventional choices, sigh.

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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

2015 FIPRESCI Grand Prix Winner


Today FIPRESCI announced the annual Grand Prix - Best Film of the Year award winner and to my HUGE surprise Mad Max: Fury Road is the winner! Yes, my spontaneous initial reaction was tinted with the unexpected as never imagined that this movie could share honors with films by Michael Haneke, Paul Thomas Anderson, Nuri Bilge Ceylan and more.

But when the surprise settles down the George Miller's film appears as a movie that absolutely deserves the award as film has all the markers for well-traveling between great cinema and entertainment movie, which makes film quite outstanding indeed.

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Tuesday, May 05, 2015

68th Festival de Cannes Official Selection Update 4


A few minutes ago organizers released the Screening Guide for all films in the official Selection. Go down to check the guide.

---///----
5/5/15
Today the Camera d'Or jury was announced with Sabine Azéma as the jury president. The Caméra d’Or, created in 1978, is awarded to the best first film presented in the Official Selection (In Competition, Out of Competition and Un Certain Regard), during La Semaine de la Critique or the Directors’ Fortnight, which represents a total of 26 films in 2015.

She will be accompanied by the director Delphine Gleize, the actor Melvil Poupaud, Claude Garnier representing the AFC (French Association for Cinematographers), Didier Huck, representing the FICAM (Federation of Cinema, Audiovisual and Multimedia Industries), Yann Gonzalez, representing the SRF (Society of Film Directors) and Bernard Payen, representing the SFCC (French Union of Cinema Critique.

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Saturday, April 18, 2015

2015 Cannes Check #1 - Todd Haynes


Series Intro

As was done last year, today feel like starting the short series about the directors and their films in the Cannes 2015 Official Selection main competition, that up-to-this-moment there are 17 films announced and soon there will be more to fill the up-to-twenty usual lineup.

Let's check some facts for the 17 films we know are In Competition.

- There are two (2) Palme d'Or winners: Nanni Moretti with La Stanza del Figlio in 2001 and Gus Van Sant with Elephant in 2003.
- There are three (3) Grand Prix winners: Matteo Garrone with Gomorra in 2008, Jacques Audiard with A Prophet in 2009 and Matteo Garrone with Reality in 2012.
-There are four (4) Jury Prize winners: Hou Hsiao-Hsien with The Puppetmaster in 1993, Paolo Sorrentino with Il Divo in 2008, Maïwenn with Polisse in 2011 and Kore-eda with Like Father, Like Son in 2013.
-There are two (2) Best Director winners and most remarkably they are the two Palme d'Or winners; but truly outstanding is that one director won in the same year with the same film two top awards! The winners are Nanni Moretti with Caro Diario in 1994 and Gus van Sant with Elephant in 2003.
-There are two (2) Best Screenplay winners: Jacques Audiard with Un heros tres discret in 1996 and Jia Zhangke with A Touch of Sin in 2013
-There are four (4) directors that won other awards
60th Anniversary Prize: Gus van Sant with Paranoid Park in 2007
Best Artistic Contribution: Todd Haynes with Velvet Goldmine in 1998
Un Certain Regard Award: Yorgos Lanthimos with Dogtooth in 2009
Short Film Grand Prix at La Semaine de la Critique: Denis Villeneuve with Next Floor in 2008

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