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Entries in Gaspard Ulliel (5)

Sunday
Nov252018

Showbiz History: Band-Aid and "Best Original Song" Behemoths

6 random things that happened on this day (Nov 25th) in showbiz history...

1932 Claudette Colbert infamously bathes in milk in Cecil B DeMille's The Sign of the Cross, new in theaters.

1947 The Hollywood Blacklist begins, denying employment to those with perceived Communist ties or sympathies. This period has haunted ever self-reflecting Hollywood since as witness in Trumbo, The Way We Were, Guilty by Suspicion, Good Night and Good Luck, and numerous other movies.

1984 Bob Geldolf's blockbuster charity single "Do They Know It's Christmas?" recorded in London...

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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 

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Monday
Jun132016

It’s only 'It’s Only the End of the World'

Josh here, reflecting on the backlash against Xavier Dolan now he’s seen It’s Only the End of the World at the Sydney Film Festival

In what must be a true sign of success, Xavier Dolan was booed and savaged by critics at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year when his latest film It’s Only the End of the World premiered. The reaction was swift not just against his film, but against the filmmaker himself. Dolan address this, and reacted strongly to The Playlist which remarked “It's simply impossible to believe that a story this stridently self-pitying could not refer, more or less explicitly, to writer/director Dolan himself… It suggests a level of martyred self-involvement on Dolan's part that is tantamount to a persecution complex”. This was just one of many vicious reactions online and especially on twitter, against the film but then, in turn, against Dolan for defending himself against criticism.

The apparent taboo of a filmmaker reading, and responding to a critic was a major sore point. As though a critic should get the final word. It’s hard here not to recall the brilliant monologue from Ratatouille...

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Sunday
May102015

Avengers... and Saint Laurent? Round Two

Don't judge but I went to see Age of Ultron again. I picked the earliest show of the day on a weekday in a neighborhood theater that is generally empty for early showings because I wanted to see it free of mass frenzy / noise and a seat far away from the screen - completely different than last time. But get this. I walk in to a jam-packed theater and I spy like one empty seat way back 'guess I'll sit there,' Only to be stopped by a woman who tells me that this is a field trip for the high school and ALL of these seats are taken.

A HIGH SCHOOL FIELD TRIP ... TO SEE A SUPERHERO MOVIE. Who do I call about where my NYC tax dollars are going? How is this educational unless this is a business school and the students are studying Marvel's world-domination tactics?  (The only movies I got to see on field trips in high school were French ones for French class.)

WIDE RELEASE BOX OFFICE
May 8-10 Weekend
01 Avengers: Age of Ultron $77 (cum. $312.5) Review & Marathon & Podcast
02 Hot Pursuit $13.3 NEW Review
03 Age of Adaline $5.6 (cum. $31.5)
04 Furious 7 $5.2 (cum. $338.4) Review
05 Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 $5.1 (cum. $58)
06 Ex-Machina $3.4 (cum. $15.7) Review
07 Home $3 (cum. $162.1) the rise and fall of Dreamworks
08 Woman in Gold $1.6 (cum. $26.9) 
09 Cinderella $1.5 (cum. $196.1) Review
10 Unfriended $1.4 (cum. $30.9) 

Five More New Releases
The D Train $.4 (1004 screens) Review
5 Flights Up $.2 (87 screens) 
Noble $.2 (175 screens)
Maggie $.1 (79 screens) Review
Saint Laurent $.03 (4 screens) Review

For what it's worth, despite a shitty seat and lots of noise and cel phone activity in the theater (argh) the movie was more enjoyable this time around after expectations had settled reasonably. Expectations are like that floating city, in this cumbersome analogy comin'atchawatch out!, in that the higher they rise the more billions of people die when they crash back down to earth unless Iron Man

... I lost the thread.

In fact, I was almost agog at how elegant Joss Whedon could make such a cumbersome thing. Which is to say that it's about as graceful as something this gangly and multi-limbed could hope to be on the day it's first learning to walk if you know what I mean. Should you ever see it again, clock how many disparate agendas the screenplay and direction is asked to address in virtually every scene and you suddenly won't be as bitchy about this "disappointment". The second time around the Scarlet Witch's arc is much stronger since the plot clutter dissipates but the Thor digression is still a f***ing mess and though the trip to Hawkeye's "safe house" is a much needed breather it's way too long, losing the action-packed momentum. And it doesn't help that the scene to rev you back up, the hijacking of "the cradle," is the weakest action setpiece.

Meanwhile in Limited Release
Saint Laurent, France's Oscar submission from last year, finally opened this weekend, too. It occurred to me the other day that in the rush of Oscar campaign madness last season (and two very fun trips to LA) I never shared the story about the time I went to that French party in Saint Laurent's honor.

Here I am speaking to Gaspard Ulliel, probably about his penis.

Well it does have a glorified star cameo in the movie!

He was actually quite chatty and for all my significant qualms about the movies length and its last half hour when we jump forward to Yves Saint Laurent as an old man (and lose Gaspard in the process), he's terrific in the movie and it's quite memorable (the movie I mean -- get your minds out of the gutter). I still remember certain brilliant sequences vividly. Anyway, I would have mentioned this much sooner but distributors like to strike when the iron is cool and it's just now hitting theaters. The highlight of this party was meeting Brenda Vaccaro and Jacqueline Bissett - they were freaking hilarious (which I was not expecting) and teasing each other about recently meeting Idris Elba (at a different event). My point is this: I'm now desperate to see them in a buddy comedy.

Sadly I lost my phone in LA and with it many notes about these tiny celebrity run-ins. *sniffle*

But let's get back to the present tense. I saw Age of Ultron and a few eppys of Grace and Frankie and otherwise I played with friends who were visiting from out of town.

What did you see this weekend?

Tuesday
Sep302014

NYFF: Saint Laurent is Über-Stylish but...

Our NYFF coverage continues with Nathaniel on France's Oscar submission Saint Laurent.

If you're going to make a biopic of one of the great fashion designers, it better damn well be stylish. Saint Laurent one of two new biopics tackling the iconic French designer Yves Saint Laurent assures you of its gifts in this area almost immediately. There's nary a frame, at least for the first two thirds of the film, that you couldn't frame and admire for aesthetic reasons: rich decadent colors, gorgeous actors as gorgeous people, carefully composed shots in elaborately decorated homes, dark exclusive clubs, and interiors of stores that that are so beautiful in their rigidity that they look more like institutional museums after hours, free of consumers but full of art. Even the daring full frontal nudity is stylish, whether it's employed for confrontational queer desire or for humor as in a memorable sequence late in the picture between a clothed woman and naked one. The scene plays like unintentional comedy for a moment until you discern that it's actual comedy, a meta joke about overdetermined STYLE and the fashion world's self mythologizing nature within a movie positively dripping with style and self-mythologizing.

The director Bertrand Bonello (House of Tolerance, The Pornographer) has chosen the right form for his movie -- at least in part, telling the story visually first and foremost, and lushly and creatively at that. Would that I had a photographic memory to recount the many fine choices but there are three that stuck with me, all from the first and second acts...

dangerous gay players & beautiful dress-up muses after the jump...

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