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Entries in Francophile (105)

Sunday
Mar122017

Links: Sharp Objects, French Directors, Emmy Ladies

THR amazing casting news: the great Patricia Clarkson will play Amy Adams estranged mother in HBO's Sharp Objects. Both roles are so juicy. Filming starts soon but we're talking next summer's Emmy nomination's not 2017's. Speaking of...
Decider Joe Reid's already thinking of the Lead Actress in a Miniseries Emmy race: 10 women, only 6 slots
/Film original Ghost in the Shell actors will dub the new film for Japanese relates

 

Salon looks back at memorable Russian villains in movies and on TV
All Things Considered wonders if you can make a King Kong movie without perpetuating racial undertones
Variety winners for the Miami Film Festival: Family Life and Maria (and Everybody Else)
Awards Daily 77 films about women on the way. That sounds like a lot, so, yay!
The Sun a couple of more pictures from the set of Mary Poppins Returns. A polka dot bowtie on Mary!
Decider Girls found the line that HBO wouldnt cross for sex scenes 
/Film Edgar Wright's Baby Driver starring Ansel Elgort premiered at SXSW so here's the trailer 
W Mag classic Linda Evangelista photo. Love.

French Waves, Not New
The New Yorker has an article / theory on why France hasn't produced a great director in three decades. Interesting ideas but I disagree with the thesis. France may never be the critical hotspot in international cinema -- there's always some exciting country of the moment in international cinema and it changes every handful of years -- but they're consistently strong.

Thirty years ago was 1987. Directors who made their first feature films after 1987 include Claire Denis (1988), Arnaud Desplechin (1991), Jacques Audiard (1994). Does The New Yorker really exclude all of them from a list of great French directors? I admit France isn't turning out the greats as consistently as they once did and Brody is right that the new exciting directors dont seem to stay as exciting for as long as they should now (what happened to Christophe Honore, for example?) but let's be reasonable! I personally have high hopes for Celine Sciamma (Girlhood), Deniz Gamze Ergüven (Mustang) and Alice Winocour (Disorder) so maybe the future is female? 

"Complicit"
Did you see SNL's perfume ad of Ivanka Trump starring Scarlett Johansson? The Titanic joke is rich.

 

Tuesday
Mar072017

Second Take: François Ozon's Ravishing "Frantz"

Editor's Note: Nathaniel previously reviewed Frantz at TIFF. Now with its US release a week away, here's Eric with a second look.

Frantz, director François Ozon’s most recent picture, opens in limited release in one week and is also part of Lincoln Center’s current "Rendezvous with French Cinema" series.  Ozon is one of France’s most profilic filmmakers (he makes a film almost every year), and he’s given us many fine pictures, including the Charlotte Rampling chillers Swimming Pool and Under the Sand, the actressy 8 Women, and his deepest film, Time to Leave.  But Ozon has never made a film as ravishing and complete as Frantz.

This film, which was nominated for 11 César Awards and won the Cinematography prize at the ceremony, contains a simple story which keeps unfolding in complex and surprising ways....

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar012017

Interview: Céline Sciamma on "My Life as a Zucchini" and life after "Girlhood"

The past couple of years have featured many conversations about the need for fresh voices of all races and genders and sexual orientations in the movies. Consider it a healthy sign for the future that when this conversation comes up, there are dozens and dozens of young directors out there to champion. Certainly one of the most exciting newish female writer/directors working is Céline Sciamma in France. In the past ten years she's established herself as a revelatory voice in the genre of coming-of-age films, starting with her César nominated debut Water Lilies (2007) and reaching a new level of critical interest and popularity with Girlhood (2014). But, in something of a left turn -- which she says is no left turn at all -- she hasn't been behind the camera this past year but behind the screenplays of two acclaimed pictures.

She cowrote Andre Techine's well received LGBT film Being 17 and this past weekend her latest film, her first to win an Oscar nomination, My Life as a Zucchini, opened in US theaters. You should definitely go see it. She adapted the screenplay for this charming melancholy story about orphans hoping to find a home from a novel by Gilles Paris. Our interview is after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb262017

"Elle" Wins the César 

Huppert's trophy haul from ELLE is getting crazy!This post title was originally "Elle triumphs" but that would be too emphatic a statement. Paul Verhoeven's provocative black comedy about an infamous woman who reacts strangely to a rape did win the top category, oui. But Isabelle Huppert's awards magnet fascinating star turn was its only other win in Best Actress. For the 42nd annual Césars, then, it was a spread the wealth year. Xavier Dolan's all star ensemble It's Only the End of the World, the debut feature Divines, and the acclaimed toon My Life as a Zucchini also won multiple prizes.

The winners and George Clooney's Honorary César acceptance speech are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan302017

Review: "Paris 05:59: Théo & Hugo"

This review was originally published in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad

You've seen the moment many times. Two future lovers see each other in a crowd, and something clicks. In West Side Story that moment prompts a blur on the edges of the frame, with only the lovers in focus. In La La Land, it takes the form of a camera push-in with all the lights, but for a spotlight, going out. The moment is so familiar in fantasies (and desired in reality) that there's even an old showtune about it.

Some enchanted evening, you will meet a stranger
You will meet a stranger across a crowded room.
And somehow you know, you know even then...

The last place you might expect to see it deployed is in a new French film which begins with 18 minutes of explicit activity in a sex club...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jan252017

César Nominations: Elle, Frantz, and More

France's César Awards announced their nominations this morning. As expected Elle and Divines (currently streaming on Netflix) have much reason to celebrate. Other hits with César including François Ozon's gorgeous black and white feature about Post-War relations and guilt called Frantz (which opens in the US in March), The Innocents (an arthouse hit in the US this year) and My Life as a Zucchini which was just nominated for the Animated Feature Oscar and receives 3 nominations here. 

Their foreign film category also has two Oscar players Manchester by the Sea and Toni Erdmann.

Best Film
DIVINES (on Netflix)
ELLE (now playing)
FRANTZ (opening in US in March)
LES INNOCENTES (available on blu-ray)
MA LOUTE
FROM THE LAND OF THE MOON
VICTORIA 

Ma Loute is from Bruno Dumont and is called Slack Bay in some markets. From the Land of the Moon stars Marion Cotillard among others.

Best Actress
JUDITH CHEMLA dans A WOMAN'S LIFE
MARION COTILLARD dans FROM THE LAND OF THE MOON
VIRGINIE EFIRA dans VICTORIA 
MARINA FOÏS dans IRRÉPROCHABLE
ISABELLE HUPPERTdans ELLE 
SIDSE BABETT KNUDSEN dans LA FILLE DE 
BREST SOKO dans LA DANSEUSE 

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Nov292016

The Top Tens Begin... Neon Demon?

Everyone will have to have their say about which films are the "best" of the year and that starts, bizarrely, right now even though it's still November. First up is the famed Cahiers du Cinema, which is the oldest film publication still running stretching back to the early 1950s. 

Since they're in France, they have a different timetable on releases so TFE's primary 2015 obsession factors in -- Why Carol, it's so good to see you again! But because they are Cahiers du Cinema and generally choose at least one polarizing but largely hated picture, Neon Demon is up near the top. 

Their Top Ten List
1 Toni Erdmann (Maren Ade)
2 Elle (Paul Verhoeven)
3 The Neon Demon (Nicolas Winding Refn)
4 Aquarius (Kleber Mendonça Filho)
5 Slack Bay (Bruno Dumont)
6 Julieta (Pedro Almodóvar)
7 Staying Vertical (Alain Guiraudie)
8 La Loi de la jungle (Antonin Peretjatko)
9 Carol (Todd Haynes)
10 Le bois dont les rêves sont faits (Claire Simon)

What do you make of the list? The two I wasn't familiar with are both French and haven't played much elsewhere. Les bois... is a 2 hour plus documentary about people in the woods, cruising for sex, living there if homeless people, etcetera. Jungle is a comedy set in French Guiana which is in South America.