Archives for March 2019


WHEN LESS IS MORE: Talking with John Lee Hancock, director of “THE HIGHWAYMEN”

The Texas-born filmmaker previously directed "The Blind Side" (2009), "The Rookie" (2002) and "Saving Mr. Banks" (2013)
"The Highwaymen" stars Kevin Costner, Woody Harrelson and Kathy Bates

We all remember the slow-motion ballet of bullets that closed Arthur Penn’s 1967 “Bonnie and Clyde,” with Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway’s gangster-lovers meeting their violent demise on a rural Louisiana highway. It remains one of the most grippingly awful endings to a film, and as you watch it, it feels like it goes on forever. In reality it was just sixteen seconds. More than a ... more >

Agnès Varda leaves us, she was 90

French cinema, the movie world, we've lost big

Agnès Varda, gone? Is this even possible? Wasn’t she the one renewing herself with every decade, with every year, always growing new skin, always morphing into a new language, another mode of expression, breaking barriers, making art forms flow into each other? Wasn’t she the little lady with the funny hair who started out as a photographer, commissioned by no less a luminary than Jean Vilar to ... more >

COUNTERPOINT: “Hotel Mumbai” (and interview with filmmaker Anthony Maras)

"They decided en masse, without any organization, to remain to protect one another"
Armie Hammer and Nazanin Boniadi
Directed by Anthony Maras

In November 2008, ten devotees of the extremist group Lashkar-e-Taiba staged a dozen terror attacks across Mumbai, resulting in over a hundred deaths. The final and most dramatic stage of the assault took place as the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, where several of the terrorists held the hotel under siege for three days, killing dozens in the process with automatic weapons and explosives while being ... more >

With “The Brink,” Stephen K. Bannon, death star of the alt-right movement, gets his day in the sun

Produced by AliKlay Productions, Claverie Films and RYOT Films
Directed by Alison Klayman

By the end of Alison Klayman’s Stephen K. Bannon documentary “The Brink” even the most liberal viewer may find themselves rooting for the alt-right agitprop mastermind. In “The Brink,” which opens Friday, Klayman presents a cinema vérité year in the life of Bannon, from the time of his firing from the Trump White House and culminating in the 2018 midterm elections, which saw the Democrats ... more >

Korean cinema : paradox, ideology and cultural exceptionalism

Korea emancipates itself from the Hollywood-imposed orthodoxy to produce vital, first-rate cinema: overview

Korean cinema was born at a time when the peninsula was still under Japanese control (since 1910). It immediately became a tool of resistance, with communists, especially, seizing on this opportunity. Na Un-gyu directed, in 1926, the first known (but since lost) film, “Arirang.” And yet, cinema as we know it today was borne of the civil war (1950-1953), a conflict that resulted in the country ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL: Nadine Labaki to head jury of non-competition section

Labaki rising. Last year she won the Jury Prize at Cannes, and went on to get nominations at the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes for "Capharnaum." This year, Lebanese filmmaker Nadine Labaki will be taking over from actor Benicio Del Toro (he held the job in 2018) as President of the Un Certain Regard Jury, for the 72nd edition of the festival. Labaki's three feature films have gained ... more >

INDIA CINEMA NEWS: Biopic about India’s PM Narendra Modi, played by Vivek Oberoi, to roll out in India’s theaters in the first week of April

Produced by Legend Studios
Vivek Oberoi, Boman Irani and Barkha Bisht
Directed by Omung Kumar

Narendra Modi now has his own biopic. It will come out early next month. Modi is played by actor Vivek Oberoi, with Rajendra Gupta, Prashant Narayanan, Zarina Wahab, Barkha Bisht Sengupta, Boman Irani, Darshan Kumar and Yatin Karyekar, among others, in the supporting roles. This biopic was directed by Omung Kumar, who has earlier helmed films such "Mary Kom," "Sarbjit and Bhoomi," two of which ... more >