ENJOY THE SHOW
Last winter, we featured an international teaser trailer for the animated adaptation of the classic 1943 tale The Little Prince. The film hails from France as the most expensive animated feature every produced in the country ($80 million), and the combination of wonderful 3D computer animation and beautiful stop-motion animation makes for quite the magical pairing for this story of a curious, magical prince and his interplanetary adventures. In this version (dubbed with English), the story is framed by an aviator narrator (Jeff Bridges) telling the prince's tale to his neighbor's busy little girl (Mackenzie Foy). Watch!
"We must defend ourselves." Another foreign film that definitely seems worth checking out, especially if you're a fan of actor Gael García Bernal. Participant Media has debuted a US trailer for the upcoming summer release of Ardor, originally El Ardor, a film starring Bernal as a mysterious man who emerges from the Argentinean rainforest to rescue the kidnapped daughter of a poor farmer after mercenaries murder her father and take over his land. The film earned mostly positive reviews at festivals last year, like this one from THR, and looks like a solid action thriller described by another critic as a "machete Western". This actually looks pretty damn good, with solid action and cinematography, I'm interested in seeing it soon.
"A picture that goes beyond what men think about - because no man ever thought about it in quite this way!" The beloved classic is back! At least in the UK for now. BFI is re-releasing Federico Fellini's 8 1/2 (or 8½) later this summer utilizing a digital restoration put together by the Criterion Collection. Criterion also released a brand new Blu-ray of 8 1/2 a few years ago, and now BFI is bringing back the cinematic classic to show on the big screen again. "Cited (especially by filmmakers) as one of the greatest films ever made, Fellini's extravaganza – now restored – blends autobiography, fantasy, satire and self-critique." An abstract and mesmerizing look at the struggles of being a movie director, 8 1/2 is a must see for any & all cinephiles.
"You were right… music is all I understand." Another likely Cannes 2015 contender is Youth, also known as The Early Years, the new film from Italian filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino (The Great Beauty). The great Michael Caine stars along with Paul Dano, but this trailer gives the most time (and dialogue) to Caine as Fred, on vacation in an elegant hotel at the foot of the Alps. It's a very mesmerizing, alluring trailer with some weird stuff going on but I have to say I am definitely intrigued. We also get a few glimpses of Rachel Weisz in this, and some other peculiar moments, all worth a look. For those curious, the music in here is "Just (After the Song of Songs)" by David Lang. I really want to see this. Take a look + listen below.
This year's Cannes Film Festival has announced their opening night selection - a film by Frenchwoman Emmanuelle Bercot titled La Tête Haute which translates to Heads Up in English. It was revealed this morning, ahead of the rest of the line-up coming this week. It's not uncommon to see a French film selected as opener, but Thierry Frémaux says "the choice of this film may seem surprising, given the rules generally applied to the Festival de Cannes Opening Ceremony." The world première of La Tête Haute will be shown in the Grand Théâtre Lumière in the Palais des Festivals, and will be released in French cinemas the same day, on Wednesday, May 13th. The film tells the story of a juvenile delinquent, Malony, and his upbringing.
With a classic style and plenty of intensity, the full theatrical trailer for the French crime thriller The Connection has just arrived, and it's simply excellent. Touted as the European side to the American classic The French Connection, the foreign film was picked up by Drafthouse Films to get a limited release this summer, and once you see this trailer for the film starring Oscar winner Jean Dujardin, you'll see why the cinephile distribution house wanted to get as many people to see it as possible. This looks like the kind of crime thriller they don't make anymore, with a vibe that calls back to the 70s filmmaking. Watch below!
Five grandmasters hunted by a serial killer. This actually looks way better than it sounds, so give it a look. Well Go USA has released a trailer for Kung Fu Killer, a new film starring martial arts master Donnie Yen killer and a kung fu expert, who convinces the police to recruit him to track down a serial killer in return for his freedom. Sounds like the perfect kind of plot for a cheesy martial arts movie, but it seems to be a few notches above that. Charlie Yeung, Baoqiang Wang, Bing Bai, Deep Ng and Alex Fong also star in this martial arts thriller from Hong Kong. The big skeleton set piece looks cool, and all the action gets awesome in the second half of this trailer, so don't stop watching too early. I really want to see this! Enjoy.
This magnificent Norwegian film ended up as one of my Top 10 of 2014, even though it still has yet to find a distributor in the US. The film is called Blind, from writer/director Eskil Vogt, and it tells the story of a few different unique individuals but mainly focuses on Ingrid, played by Ellen Dorrit Petersen, a woman who has recently gone blind and is struggling with the realities of losing her vision. It's really a wonderful film that is unlike anything you've ever seen before (my Berlinale review), which is exactly the kind of film the director wanted to make, something entirely original that will surprise even the most avid cinephiles. This UK trailer is just a tease but hopefully you like what you see and will give this film a closer look. Enjoy.
"As soon as the tangerines are sold, I will leave." No, not Georgia the state. This film is from the country Georgia, next to Turkey and Armenia. Samuel Goldwyn has debuted their own trailer for a Georgian film called Tangerines, which was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Oscar this year (though it lost to Ida, of course). Starring Lembit Ulfsak as Ivo, the film takes place in 1992 during the conflict between Georgia and Abkhazian separatists. Ivo has stayed behind to harvest his crops of tangerines, but encounters two injured soldiers of opposite sides who he takes in. It also stars Elmo Nüganen, Giorgi Nakashidze and Misha Meskhi. This looks solid and got great buzz (a few reviews), so it might be worth checking out.
Last year, we were teased with a trailer for the crime thriller La French, or The Connection as it's come to be called in the United States. Following a premiere at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, the film starring Jean Dujardin (The Artist) was picked up by Drafthouse Films for a release in the US this year. And now the European flipside to William Friedkin's classic The French Connection has just unveiled a red band teaser trailer. It's a stylish 70s set crime thriller following the exploits of real-life Marseilles magistrate Pierre Michel (Dujardin) as he tries to dismantle the drug smuggling ring called The French Connection.
After playing Sundance, Cannes, Telluride and Toronto, the Argentinian film Wild Tales from producer Pedro Almodovar and director Damián Szifrón was nominated for Best Foreign Film at the 87th Academy Awards. Now the film is poised to hit the United States this month, at least in New York and Los Angeles, the same weekend of the Oscar ceremony, and the first trailer has arrived. Within the film are six short stories of revenge in various situations, from road rage to romance. This looks like a dark, twisted collection of tales full of suspense, comedy and drama, so it's not hard to see why it's an Oscar nominee.
Hot on the heels of Boyhood winning the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Drama, another festival favorite is releasing a timely domestic trailer. Bande de Filles is a French film that is being called Girlhood in the United States (though the title translates to Group of Girls) and it follows a young girl living in the suburbs of Paris who ends up getting involved with a tight-knit group of girlfriends whose peer-pressure ends up leading to her life of dangerous drug-dealing. The film played to Cannes and has gotten some pretty great reviews, and now the US trailer has arrived to hype the coming of age tale. Watch!
The awards continue marching on, and the latest development comes straight from The Academy. They have announced (via Variety) the nine official films shortlisted for the Best Foreign Language Film. That means these nine make the cut, and will proceed forward into the next round of voting before being eliminated again down to five films for the official nominations annoncement on January 15th. On one hand, one of my favorite films of the year, Force Majeure, made the cut along with Pawel Pawlikowski's Ida. However, my other favorites, Xavier Dolan's Mommy and the Dardennes‘ Two Days, One Night, did not make the cut - quite surprisingly since they're both such great films that deserve to be considered. See the full list below.
"No one under 100 will be admitted!" Dang this looks crazy. Drafthouse Films has debuted their official US trailer for Hitoshi Matsumoto's R100, a funky, wacky Japanese thriller about a man (Nao Ohmori of Ichi the Killer) who joins an S&M club and gets into some crazy shit when dominatrices appear and kick his ass anytime of the day. The title R100 is a riff on the Japanese movie rating system, whose equivalent to NC-17 is R18, and this is playing on the idea that it's not okay for anyone under 100. Ha. The new poster is a bit too much, aiming to sell it purely on the sex/S&M angle, but the trailer hints at the absurdity of the film in so many other ways. This definitely isn't for everyone, but it's not just for S&M fans either, I think. Have fun.