Archives for June 2013


I’m So Excited

As irreverently fun as a bathroom foam fight
Antonio Banderas, Penelope Cruz and Antonio de la Torre
Directed by Pedro Almodovar

Pedro Almodovar’s “I’m So Excited” received a largely underwhelming response earlier this year in the director’s native Spain, as well as a few cranky complaints here; IndieWire, for instance, called it his worst film. Notably absent are the standard Almodovar themes of a sexual predator preying on the powerless (“Talk to Her,” “The Skin I Live In”), or murderous sexual jealousy playing itself out ... more >

Some Girls

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Neil Labute

New York playwright and filmmaker opens up about "Some Girls"

A Neil LaBute play or film isn’t complete, typically, unless one of its central characters turns out to be outlandishly evil (and they weren’t that nice to begin with). Think of Aaron Eckhart as the oily corporate ladder-climber in “In the Company of Men,” who convinces his weaselly co-worker to take revenge on the jilting females of the world by cruelly deceiving a vulnerable deaf woman. Or Jason ... more >

Man of Steel

The superhero genre gets the Nolan treatment again
Henry Cavill and Amy Adams
Directed by Zack Snyder

I think we can all agree that whoever says blockbuster doesn't necessarily mean subtlety and intelligence. That's a fact. On the other hand, he who speaks "Christopher Nolan" speaks resurection, restoration and myth reinvented. "The Dark Knight" trilogy behind him, Nolan has been re-emerging as producer and screenwriter, on "Man of Steel," which to have added some zest and some pep. And who better ... more >

Oh Boy

A first film and promise, lots of it
Tom Schilling and Alexander Altomirianos
Directed by Jan Ole Gerster

At a time when filmmakers are getting lost in a fog of 3-D conversions and assorted digital shenanigans there’s a resistance forming: small DIYers, emerging poets of the film negative, those who make their voices heard through simple yet effective movies. Jan Ole Gerster is such a filmmaker. "Oh boy" recounts the absurd, touching and melancholy wanderings of a young German through a Berlin that ... more >

“Desert of the Tartars,” in full restored glory

This year's Cannes Classics revival

About the restored “Desert of the Tartars” (“Tartar Steppe” in the English title) screened at the last Cannes Film Festival as part of Cannes Classics, Beatrice de Mondenard quotes in the “Cannes Festival Daily” Angelo Cosimano of Digimage Classics, the company that carried out the restoration: "From the first tests, the richness of the content on the negatives deeply astonished us, almost ... more >

A hijacking

Pilou Asbæk, Søren Malling and Dar Salim
Directed by Tobias Lindholm

Having begun his career as a TV scribe Tobias Lindholm got co-writing duties on Thomas Vinterberg's "Submarino" (2010) and "The Hunt" (2012). He collaborated with Michael Noer ("Northwest") on scripting and directing in 2010. These efforts seem to have naturally led Lindholm to direct "Hijacking," his first solo effort. Danish cargo ship M.V. Rosen is hijacked in the middle of the Indian Ocean ... more >