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Entries in Sebastian Lelio (8)

Tuesday
Apr242018

Tribeca 2018: Sebastián Lelio's "Disobedience"

by Jason Adams

Movies are hard on people who leave. Homecomings are where it's at - the triumphant reestablishment of the family unit over adversity. Those who go away were mistaken. They were selfish. They were only looking out for themselves. Disobedience is about a woman who leaves. And it's about her homecoming, but one fraught with error - one we'll see slowly unravel as a ruse; not at all what it seems. 

Ronit (Rachel Weisz) is a photographer in New York who gets a message that her father in London has died. She flies back for the burial, and as she does we see she comes from an Orthodox Jewish community and her father was a beloved Rabbi - slowly, the black hats close in around her. And from under them suddenly a friendly face - Dovid (Alessandro Nivola), and soon after his wife Esti (Rachel McAdams). These three clearly have history. These early scenes are thick with unspoken things - the trio move slowly through quiet spaces, sorting themselves into place...

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Monday
Apr022018

Mixed Media: "A Fantastic Woman" Dreams an Awakening 

by Ilich Mejía

Arguably the only drawback of watching a movie on the literal big screen is not being able to immediately rewind to catch a perfect moment again. Well, maybe you could if you were friends with the theater's staff, but some of us may have pissed off too many of those by asking them to turn the air conditioning up a few too many times. In Sebastián Lelio’s A Fantastic Woman, last year’s Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film, that perfect moment comes an hour into the film when its protagonist Marina (played by Daniela Vega, the trans actress that inspired the film) finds herself in a underground club hiding from the slew of problems the death of her partner has earned her. There, Lelio and his team use dance and music to have Marina confront the movie’s major themes of loss and acceptance in a way that shocks her as much as it moves the audience.

Shiny fringe and mild spoilers after the cut...

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Thursday
Feb012018

A First Trailer for "Disobedience" 

Chris here. If 2017 doesn't announce Sebastián Lelio as one of our patron saints of actressexuality, I don't know what will. This weekend sees the limited release of his Oscar-nominated A Fantastic Woman with Daniela Vega's breakthrough performance, and later this year Julianne Moore stars in the English language remake of his own Gloria. But audiences should also be getting excited for his gay religious romance Disobedience.

The film stars Rachel Weisz as a woman returning to her strictly conservative Jewish comunity after the death of her father...

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Wednesday
Jan032018

Interview: on the Ghostly Costume Design of "The Beguiled"

 by Nathaniel R

The costume designer Stacey Battat has, to date, worked mostly in female-oriented contemporary indies. That's quite a perfect niche to build a design career from. Or at least it is when the women who've visually helped define your early work are such stylish talented icons themselves. Battat first made her mark on two Parker Posey features in the late Aughts (Broken English, Happy Tears). Soon after she was deep in the Julianne Moore business (Still Alice, Freeheld, What Maisie Knew). Other credits include The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her and Him and Mozart in the Jungle but it's been her partnership with writer/director Sofia Coppola that's come to define her young career.

The two began working together on the LA dreamy Somewhere (2010). Battat proved invaluable to all the fashiongasms of Coppola's arguably most underrated feature The Bling Ring (2013). Then came an atypical challenge: a forgotten girls school deep in the Civil War era.

I spoke with Battat recently by phone to talk about one of the most visually striking films this past year, The Beguiled, and what she brought to it. Our interview, edited for clarity and length follows...

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Monday
Nov272017

"Gloria" and "Magdalene" First Looks!

Chris here, with first looks for two of our most beloved actresses. The first is far less dramatic than those fabulous smoking set photos, but comes with some dramatic backstory: Mary Magdalene. Here we see Rooney Mara's biblical woman gorgeous and windblown between smoke breaks...

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Thursday
Oct192017

Chile's Oscar Submission: "A Fantastic Woman"

Sean McGovern reporting from the London Film Festival

 

There’s a scene early on in Pedro Almodóvar’s All About My Mother, when a young man laments the Spanish translation of All About Eve, to Eva al Desnudo. English subtitles tell us it’s “Eve Unveiled”. It also translates to “Eve Naked”. “All About Eve should be “Todo Sobre Eva”,” he says. “But that sounds odd,” replies his mother.

Sometimes a title, or a translation of a title, can make a difference. A Fantastic Woman, in English, basically means an amazing or brilliant woman. The Spanish adjective fantastica has the connotation of something unreal or imaginary, and in this film, writer-director Sebastián Lelio has created a heroine who is indeed fantastical: angelic in the eyes of her man, a threat to his toxic family, and the object of her director's vision... 

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