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"Welcome to the regiment!" StudioCanal UK has debuted a trailer for the film '71, referring to the year 1971, when Belfast, Ireland was experiencing the Troubles with attacks from the IRA, UVF and UDA throughout Northern Ireland. The film stars Jack O'Connell (who is about to breakout into a huge movie star after this and Unbroken and Starred Up) as a soldier who gets lost in the chaos when he becomes seperated from his unit while patrolling the streets of Belfast. I first saw the film in Berlin and it's intense and captivating, keeping you on the edge of your seat the whole time. It's an impressive film that we do recommend looking into seeing, especially if it plays at a film festival near you sometime soon. Until then, don't miss the trailer.
"Sorry to insist..." Artificial Eye has debuted the first full UK trailer for the latest film from the Dardenne Brothers, called Two Days, One Night starring Marion Cotillard. You may have heard buzz about this film back in May when it premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and went on to open in France later that month. Cotillard plays a working-class woman desperately trying to keep her job as she must convince her co-workers to vote for keeping her in a company-wide decision. It's one of the best films I've seen all year so far, moving swiftly and yet maintaining an incredibly sharp focus on what they're saying and what they're accomplishing. Marion Cotillard looks much more disheveled than before but that's all part of her like look in the film, which plays even more into her character. Riveting to watch - I highly suggest catching this film.
"U didn't tell anyone right?" Paramount has unveiled the first trailer for Jason Reitman's latest film, Men, Women & Children, following up his tender adaptation of Labor Day. This one is another adaptation, but he tells an ensemble story about how the internet and modern technology connects, and disconnects, us in today's world. It presents a very apt and poignant look at how everything from text messages to email to Snapchat to Facebook fuels social issues like "video game culture, anorexia, infidelity, fame hunting, and the proliferation of illicit material." The ensemble cast includes Ansel Elgort, Adam Sandler, Judy Greer, Jennifer Garner, Kaitlyn Dever, Dennis Haysbert, J.K. Simmons and Rosemarie DeWitt. Looks damn good.
"A visit to a cinema is a little outing in itself. It breaks the monotony of an afternoon or evening; it gives a change from the surroundings of home, however pleasant..." [-Ivor Novello] Last week I stopped by the Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland, located in the lake-mountain town of Locarno on Lake Maggiore. The festival has been running since 1946, famous for its Piazza Grande outdoor venue, yellow & black color scheme, and leopard award/logo. In addition to my coverage of the films I saw at the fest, I wanted to share some of the images from my visit, as it was such a charming and gorgeous place to get immersed in cinema.
"As beautiful and imaginative as anything Ghibli has yet created!" Our friends at SlashFilm have unveiled a brand new 60-second teaser trailer for Studio Ghibli's The Tale of Princess Kaguya', from director Isao Takahata, which was originally released in Japan late 2013. The film is adapted from a 10th century Japanese folktale and is animated in the style of Chōjū-jinbutsu-giga scrolls - essentially it's unlike anything you've seen before, and this teaser plays up how gorgeous that animation looks. The trailer is for the dubbed US version with an English voice cast lead by Chloë Grace Moretz, James Caan, Mary Steenburgen, Darren Criss, Lucy Liu, Beau Bridges and James Marsden. This is a short, simple but stunning teaser - check it out.
"You can't just define yourself by the things you've lost." IFC Films has debuted the trailer for a cute, quirky little indie called Kelly & Cal, starring Juliette Lewis as a punk-rocker turned suburban mom. The film is the feature debut of both director Jen McGowan and writer Amy Lowe Starbin, telling a very earnest, heartfelt story about friends. The cast includes Alysia Reiner, Cybill Shepherd, Margaret Colin, Josh Hopkins and Jonny Weston as the kid in the wheelchair. You might also recognize Weston from the time travel film Project Almanac. This might be a bit too quirky for my tastes, but it doesn't look half bad at all.
"It's the essence of flirting." So how do you refresh and revitalize the romantic comedy genre? That's what I was hoping to find out from Canadian director Michael Dowse, the man behind the excellent film What If. I first saw this film at last year's TIFF 2013, and loved it, ranking it as one of my 5 favorite films of that festival. It was known as The F Word back then (and still is in Canada) but was retitled to What If for its US release, which is something I had to ask him about. What If stars Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan as a young couple perfect for each other–their chemistry was a topic, too. View the full video interview below.
Have you seen Snowpiercer yet? If not, it's now available on VOD now - check it out sometime soon. If you have, then great! For those who (like me) are big fans of Korean director Bong Joon-ho, we have another project you might want to take a look at. It's called Haemoo, or Sea Fog, and is a Korean thriller about a fishing boat that is smuggling illegal immigrants. The cast includes Kim Yun-seok and Park Yu-Chun, and the film was already released in Korea this month. The full trailer has been floating around and I was inspired by our friends to feature it today, especially with its North American festival debut coming up soon. No subtitles yet, unfortunately, but this does look like an intense, dark, modern thriller. Take a look below!
Finally! Meet Doc Sportello - Joaquin Phoenix in Paul Thomas Anderson's new film Inherent Vice. Set in the 1970s, Doc is a marijuana-loving private eye and investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend in this "Cheech and Chong"-esque film from PTA - in theaters this winter. While we've featured one set photo previously, we've also been waiting patiently for an actual first look that isn't a set photo, and we finally have this: a shot from Entertainment Weekly, but it's something, as we get to see that impressive hairdo on Joaquin. I'm anxiously awaiting this mostly because it's PTA but it also sounds like so much fun.
There is a film festival, nestled in the mountains of Switzerland on the corner of Lake Maggiore near the Italian border, that boasts one of the best venues to watch films in the entire world. It's called the Locarno Film Festival, or Festival del film Locarno, now in its 67th year (only Venice, Cannes, Moscow have been around longer). The Piazza Grande is its famous venue, a plaza in the middle of town that is converted into a 8,000 seat open-air cinema every night, showing old and new films every evening during the week and a half the festival takes place in August. Having attended festivals like Cannes, Telluride and Sundance for years, I decided to make my first trip to Locarno this year, and it's truly as unforgettable as described.
If you love movie theaters as much as we do, you're going to love this place even more than before. Tim League's Alamo Drafthouse cinemas is re-opening a flagship location in Austin, Texas, and after a year of renovation, the theater is ready to be shown off. The Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar (Google Maps) is re-opening to the public on Saturday, August 16th this weekend, and a batch of photos of the location has been revealed. Featuring three brand new, additional auditoriums for a total of nine screens, as well as the infamous Highball bar and karaoke lounge, this place is a movie lover's mecca and it looks brand new again.
Now this is something very unique. Some may remember an indie sci-fi film from a few years back titled Ink, about a mysterious creature that steals children's souls featuring mesmerizing visuals. Well, the filmmaking team behind Ink, husband and wife Jamin Winans and Kiowa Winans, have returned with a new project called The Frame where they've "dug even deeper" this time. They've been quietly working on this for the last three years, and now the first trailer has debuted. It's very nicely edited, a bit trippy, captivating and still mysterious. No plot details are available yet, but you might want to give this trailer a look anyway.
Another year, another New York Film Festival with an outstanding line-up of indies and foreign films to dazzle New York City audiences. The 52nd New York Film Festival has revealed their full main slate line-up, featuring everything from the Dardennes to Godard to Bennett Miller's Foxcatcher (one of my favorite films from Cannes) to Cronenberg, Mike Leigh, Olivier Assayas, with Damien Chazelle's Sundance fave Whiplash tossed in there, too. Three other highly anticipated films have already been announced: Gone Girl, PTA's Inherent Vice, and Birdman to close the fest. But plenty of other great films will be showing.
Two of 2014's best art films focus on disabilities - Blind, directed by Eskil Vogt, an exceptional film about a woman going blind that I reviewed from Berlinale; and The Tribe, directed by Miroslav Slaboshpitsky, a brutal but incredible Ukrainian film about a group of deaf students. The Tribe first premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in the Critic's Week sidebar, winning multiple awards at the end of that fest. I caught the film at the Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland - it is disturbing but powerful. The film is presented entirely in sign language, without any subtitles or translation or dialogue. It's the beginning of sign language cinema.