FESTIVALS

ELLE-4-SCREENCOMMENT

“Elle,” fiction about survival and bourgeois boredom, closes CANNES FESTIVAL

Paul Verhoeven's first French-language film

“Elle,” last to be shown in competition, isn’t the best or the most accomplished film. It made sense to show it last in the festival for several reasons, however: the storied career of Paul Verhoeven, its director (at 77, Verhoeven is the oldest filmmaker among this year’s competition directors and has two major hits under his belt, “Basic Instinct,” 1992 and “Starship Troopers,” 1997), the cast, ... more >

nicholas-winding-refn-screencomment-cannes

CANNES FESTIVAL | All about Nicholas’s mother

Undercover mothering
"The Neon Demon" is in the running for a Palme D'Or this year

The press conference for the new Nicholas Winding Refn film “The Neon Demon” was held this morning here at the Palais, following a smashing premiere screening last night (the film was fantastic, take my word for it). One of my friends, Gatien Monloyer, is one of the cameramen who have a permanent spot at the back of the room on the audiovisual bridge. Over lunch today he explains that, the ... more >

the-last-face-screencomment-1

THE LAST FACE at the CANNES FESTIVAL

Film was written by Erin Dignam
The score was composed by Hans Zimmer
Produced by Bill Gerber and directed by Sean Penn

"The Last Face," starring Charlize Theron, Javier Bardem and Adèle Exarchopoulos and directed by Sean Penn, premiered in Cannes this morning. In this romance drama juxtaposed with a humanitarian action story Theron plays the director of an international aid agency who meets a Doctors Without Borders doctor (Bardem), as an armed conflict in Liberia drifts into full-on civil war. The topic of a ... more >

CANNES DAYS 8 and 9 | “La fille inconnue,” “Personal Shopper,” “Inversion” and “Juste la fin du monde”

More misses than hits in fest's second half

The second part of the Cannes Festival is turning out to be harder to love than the first one, an enlightened epoch when “Ma Loute” and “Mal de Pierres,” an off-kilter comedy and a love drama respectively, were easy to stamp as good cinema. Week two isn’t all gems. Yesterday, the Dardenne Brothers’s “La fille inconnue” (“The Unknown Girl”) received a lukewarm response. In it a young woman ... more >

jonathan-littell-screencomment

An anthropologist of violence | INTERVIEW WITH JONATHAN LITTELL

Discussing his film "Wrong Elements" and the geopolitics of human conflict in Africa
Film is being distributed by French outfit Le Pacte

Before he wrote a novel and directed a film Jonathan Littell was, for a time, an international aid worker. He managed big-scale logistical operations in Africa and attended to war fronts from Bosnia to Syria as part of humanitarian relief teams. Littell, who doesn’t consider himself an optimist, is predictably not a stranger to the savagery of man. That he should be persuasive when writing or ... more >

juleta-5-screencomment

Almodovar’s “Julieta” at the Cannes Festival | REVIEW

A compelling drama on human loss
Adriana Ugarte and Emma Suarez
Directed by Pedro Almodovar

Like in many of his previous films every scene of “Julieta,” the new Almodovar that premiered in Cannes today, is visually perfect: flawless lighting, pristine combinations of color, evocative sculptures, colorful fabrics that stand in as metaphors for love, aging, masculinity, all of which are a part of the rich ecosystem of symbols that propel Almodovar’s films. The venerable, La Mancha-born ... more >

personal-shopper-screencomment

“PERSONAL SHOPPER” at the Cannes Festival

Film got negative reception at press screening
Kristen Stewart and Lars Eidinger
Directed by Olivier Assayas

“Personal Shopper” by Olivier Assayas is a movie about ghosts, the ghost that Maureen (played by Kristen Stewart) works for as personal shopper and that of her dead brother Lewis, whom she is trying to reconnect with. Kyra Gellman (Nora von Waldstätten) is an international socialite who needs her wardrobe constantly augmented, so she hired Maureen to regularly visit the best clothiers and ... more >