Archives for May 2012


CANNES FESTIVAL-“Beasts of the Southern Wild”

American filmmaker Benh Zeitlin makes grand debut

The reserve of goodwill directed at filmmaker Benh Zeitlin is considerable. He’s young (in his early twenties), he’s got a film to Cannes which he wrote and directed, and, in a gung-ho attempt at realism he chose an extremely difficult location to shoot his film “Beasts of the Southern Wild” in. “Beasts” was shown here at the Cannes Festival yesterday. The response, as far as I had time to ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL-“Paradise: Love” (directed by Ulrich Seidl)

Austria invades Kenya's beaches

There’s potential for vice in the leitmotif of Ulrich Seidl’s “Paradise: Love”: aging alone will make you do strange things. When Teresa (Margarethe Tiesel), an Austrian divorcée pushing sixty travels to Kenya, it’s to experience a duplicitous nirvana of sea, sand and the local sexual tourism. She seeks men and the carnal pleasures afforded by them on a continent she knows nothing ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL- John Hillcoat’s “Lawless”

The myths, the legends -- the Bondurants live

For the Bondurant gang, purveyors of apple brandy in the depression-era south, legend--their own, that is--is the stuff that makes the world turn; their illegal business thrives on it. That they are viewed as invincible by foes helps keep the deck stacked in their favor and keeps the moonshine dollar flowing in, the occasional shootout with a rival notwithstanding. When Forrest (Tom Hardy), the ... more >

REVIEW – “The Dictator”

"A dictator must adapt to succeed"
Sacha Baron Cohen, Ben Kingsley and Anna Faris
Directed by Larry Charles

Could there be a better week for Sacha Baron Cohen to release a film called “The Dictator”? A few days ago, Cohen parked a camel on the Croisette at the Cannes Festival, in what seemed like the first act of a cult of personality. Pairing a touch of showmanship, a frisky film, and the spotlight of the festival, the star of “Borat” all but declared himself the worldwide ruler of comedy. Like ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL – Un Certain Regard 2012 is born

Thierry Frémaux and jury president Tim Roth launch this year's program

The Un Certain Regard (U.C.R.) program was officially launched during a brief ceremony tonight in the Debussy theater. Festival programmer Thierry Frémaux, who as per Cannes’ tradition emcees the U.C.R. premieres, brought the members of the jury on stage tonight before a screening of Lou Ye’s film “Mystery.” Jury president Tim Roth, flanked by actress Leïla Bekhti (pictured), Tonie Marshall (a ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL (day 2) – “Rust and bone”

Finally, the nouveau Audiard is here

Judging from the line of people waiting to get into a still-closed Théâtre Lumière (seating capacity: 2,281) at 7:45 this morning the anticipation was high for Jacques Audiard’s return to the Croisette, “Rust and Bone.” It was in this same theatre that three years ago we discovered the history- and career-making “A Prophet,” one of the best films made in the last twenty years. One can’t help ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL (day 2) – “After the Battle”

Yousry Nasrallah borrows from earlier project "Women of Cairo"

There are a million stories to be told about post-revolutionary Egypt but they won’t be told by an Egyptian filmmaker. The narrative of Yousry Nasrallah’s “After the Battle” which he wrote himself and which premieres today in Cannes, held promise: as Egypt is still in the throes of revolutionary fervor an unlikely connection forms between two people from different ends of the social spectrum, ... more >