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an honorary for David Lynch 

"All Lynch [movies] are sacred to me. I still remember going to the theater not long after I first moved to Los Angeles to see this, wondering who this unknown actress was in the lead, and coming out dazed and amazed.- Jordan

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Entries in Happy End (5)

Sunday
Oct082017

Nick's Foreign Film Take, Pt 1: Sheikh Jackson, First They Killed My Father...

by Nick Davis

There’s niche-marketing, and then there’s micro-targeting, and then there’s saying to your friend Nathaniel, “I hope you’ll still keep an eye out for Shahrbanoo Sadat’s Wolf and Sheep, even though Afghanistan didn’t select it as their Oscar submission.” We really do live in a weird bubble, but that is why one is grateful for The Film Experience, where folks are all the same kind of different as you. And as we all know, this site has been a longtime devotee of the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar in all stages of curation and competition. So, seizing the opportunity of a sympathetic audience, and amidst a season where many of the 84 movies put forward by their home countries as Academy Award contenders are floating around at festivals—big and small, rural and urban, American and elsewhere—I thought I’d weigh in on the titles I’ve caught.

Argentina, Zama
It’s an amazing vote of artistic confidence for Argentina to choose Lucrecia Martel’s deeply demanding, deeply rewarding colonialist-bughouse period drama as their contender. They passed over all three of her previous features as their submission, and as always, they had plenty of viable possibilities this year, including Santiago Mitre’s The Summit, an absorbing drama of North and South American political machinations. That movie’s somewhat televisual style might have made it palatable to some voters. Zama, by contrast, is as cinematic as they come. In fact, “they” don’t really come like this: a movie almost without establishing shots or hand-holding narrative cues, aggressive with its weird ambient sounds and literally eccentric frames. The movie telegraphs the protagonist’s escalating madness but without letting him go Full Aguirre and without entering the kind of outsized, Lynchian vortex that unmistakably makes the point: it’s easy to watch and think that you, not Zama, are failing to keep up. This seems like a Shortlist prospect with Oscar at the very best, but it’s also guaranteed to be among the year’s most extraordinary movies. Talk about a summit!
My grade:

Austria's Happy End, Cambodia's First They Killed My Father, and Egypt's Sheikh Jackson are after the jump...

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Friday
Sep082017

TIFF: Haneke & Huppert Return with "Happy End"

by Chris Feil

Michael Haneke is back to satirizing the upper class for Happy End, a bitter comedy on conscious distraction and privilege in the digital age. The film opens with ominous Snapchat footage and is peppered with live time Facebook chat and email screenshots that feel strangely right at home in the auteur’s aesthetic. But this isn’t Haneke’s treatise against internet platforms - in his eye, these are just other ways to reveal our disaffected, sometimes wicked selves...

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Wednesday
May032017

Michael Haneke's "Happy End" Gives An Unhappy First Glance

With just about two weeks to go before its seaside premiere at the 70th annual Cannes Film Festival, the first image for Michael Haneke’s Happy End – his latest cold dose of cruel reality – has landed as hard as the realization that one day we will all die, and most likely alone. Of course, Haneke returns to Cannes this year a reigning champ, double-fisting Palmes d’Or after his last films to grace the Competition – The White Ribbon and Amour – emerged victorious. The question on many minds going into this year’s festival is whether he’ll win the top prize for a third time and break the all-time record he holds alongside fellow international auteurs Alf Sjöberg, Francis Ford Coppola, Bille August, Emir Kusturica, Shohei Imamura, the Dardennes brothers, and last year’s surprise winner Ken Loach.

Happy End reunites Haneke with two performers who have arguably given career-best performances under his clinician’s gaze: Isabelle Huppert, The Piano Teacher herself, and Amour’s Jean-Louis Trintignant; familiar faces Toby Jones and Mathieu Kassovitz round out the cast alongside fellow first-timers Franz Rogowski and Fantine Harduin. While little is known of the plot’s particulars, we do know that Happy End focuses on a French bourgeois family living comfortably in the port town of Calais as the European refugee crisis washes ashore in their midst, considerably less comfortably. The image above shows our main cast dining al fresco around a white-on-white-on-white table in the fashionably casual spring wear you’d expect from the seaside privileged, a breeze surely blowing somewhere in the air. Meanwhile, you can tell by their gazes of curious dispassion that you’re unmistakably inside a Michael Haneke film. Of all of his frown-triggering films to debut at Cannes in the main Competition – Funny Games (’97), Code Unknown, The Piano Teacher, Caché, The White Ribbon, and Amour – which sends your soul spiraling the deepest and darkest, and why?

Thursday
Mar162017

Happy Birthday, Isabelle Huppert!

by Daniel Crooke

Known most recently from her starring role as "Visiting European Dignitary Whose Queenliness Clearly Outshines Her Present Yankee Company" from the taut, twisty thriller Angels in Awards Season in America, lauded subversive, all-around transgressor, and actressexual heartthrob Isabelle Huppert celebrates her 64th birthday today by doing what we all hope to be doing at sixty-four years of age: still absolutely slaying the game.

Now that she's wrapped up months of feigning surprise on stage while gleefully clutching golden trinkets she has never not deserved, Madame Huppert is back to work...

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Sunday
Jan222017

"We Can't Wait" Pt 1: Most Anticipated of 2017

Before the Oscar nominations on Tuesday help put on a cap on 2016, we here at Team Experience are looking to the year ahead. Yes, fresh off of our Team Experience Awards, our most anticipated films of 2017 with this installment of We Can't Wait!

In this list you'll find upcoming films from favorite auteurs and favorite actress, and some promising films giving us both in the same package. Forgive us if your favorite superhero doesn't make the cut - our superheroes are the actressy sort, though we will be keeping an eye on Wonder Woman. Some films that almost made the list: Pulitzer-winning adaptation Marjorie Prime, the starry remake Murder on The Orient Express, and a Short Term 12 reunion for Destin Cretton and Brie Larson with The Glass Castle.

After the jump our 17 most anticipated films of 2017...

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