14th May2016

Cannes Film Festival (Film)

by timbaros

740f4da215cd9647789997805f7c8867Where will the film business movers and shakers be from May 11th – May 22nd? In Cannes at the annual 69th Cannes Film Festival. Anybody who is anybody in the film business will be spending at least one night in five star hotels, in limosines, and on the red carpets to the many premieres promoting their latest film. And this year, like all other years, the star wattage is turned on extra high. Offerings from Steven Spielberg, Woody Allen and George Clooney prove that this year’s festival is no Sundance – it’s better and bigger, warmer, and more expensive, with lots more sun and skin!

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The opening night film of the festival is Woody Allen’s 47th – ‘Café Society.’ It’s a romantic comedy-drama (of course) about a young man who arrives in 1930’s Hollywood and gets swept into the whole scene. Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart and Blake Lively star.

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‘BGF’ is Steven Spielberg’s first live-action 3D film. Starring Mark Rylance, who Spielberg directed to an Oscar for last year’s ‘Bridge of Spies,’ it’s about a Big Friendly Giant from a magical land. Expect lots of buzz for this fantasy movie.

Jodie Foster is back at Cannes, this time as director of ‘Money Monster.’ She directs an all-star cast about a broadcaster and producer who are held hostage in their own studio. Clooney, Julia Roberts and hot young star Jack O’Connell (’71’) star. The red carpet will be chock-a-block for this premiere.

Films in Competition include:

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‘Julieta’ – Pedro Almodovar is back with another film about a woman’s trials and tribulations.

Cannes darling, and wonderkid Xavier Dolan, is back to Cannes with his new film ‘It’s Only the End of the World.’ The 27-year old wrote and directed this movie about a terminally ill writer (Gaspard Ulliel) who returns home after a long absence to tell his family that he is dying. Dolan has won an amazing 6 Cannes film prizes for his last four films, expect more accolades for this one as well.

Sean Penn directs Charlize Theron and Javier Bardem in ‘The Last Face,’ about a director of an international aid agency in Africa who meets a doctor amidst the turmoil of war around them.

There are 19 films competing in the festival’s Un Certain Regard competition, including:

‘Captain Fantastic’ (USA) – Director Michael O’shea’s story of reclusive single father of six kids who have to leave for the outside world, forcing them to rethink their existence. Viggo Mortensen stars.

‘The Red Turtle – a dialogue-less animated film from The Netherlands follows the major life stages of a castaway on a deserted tropical island.

Another film that is showing out of competition is Shane Black’s ‘The Nice Guys.’ Out in the U.S. on May 20th, Ryan Gosling, Matt Boner, Russell Crowe and Kim Basinger star in this film about a private detective who investigates the apparent suicide of a fading porn star in 1970’s Los Angeles.

Director George Miller will be presiding over the jury this year, a jury that includes Kirsten Dunst, Donald Sutherland, and Vanessa Paradis (yes, Johnny Depp’s ex).

British Film Director Andrea Arnold is represented by the film ‘American Honey.’ Starring controversial actor Shia LaBeouf, it’s a road movie about a group of traveling magazine salespeople.

‘The Neon Demon,’ from Nicolas Rinding Refn (Drive), is a horror thriller about an aspiring model whose youth and beauty are devoured by a group of beauty-obsessed women who will use any means to get what she has.

The Full line up of the festival is below:

Competition
“Toni Erdman,” directed by Maren Ade
“Julieta,” directed by Pedro Almodovar
“Personal Shopper,” directed by Olivier Assayas
“American Honey,” directed by Andrea Arnold
“The Unknown Girl,” directed by Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne
“It’s Only the End of the World,” directed by Xavier Dolan
“Slack Bay,” directed by Bruno Dumont
“Paterson,” directed by Jim Jarmusch
“Rester Vertical,” directed by Alain Guiraudie
“Aquarius,” directed by Kleber Mendonca Filho
“From the Land of the Moon,” directed by Nicole Garcia
“I, Daniel Blake,” directed by Ken Loach
“Ma’Rosa,” directed by Brillante Mendoza
“Bacalaureat,” directed by Cristian Mungiu
“Loving,” directed by Jeff Nichols
“The Handmaiden,” directed by Park Chan-Wook
“The Last Face,” directed by Sean Penn
“Sieranevada,” directed by Cristi Puiu
“Elle,” directed by Paul Verhoeven
“The Neon Demon,” directed by Nicolas Winding Refn

Un Certain Regard
“Varoonegi,” directed by Behnam Behzadi
“Apprentice,” directed by Boo Junfeng
“Voir du Pays,” directed by Delphine Coulin and Muriel Coulin
“La Danseuse,” directed by Stephanie di Giusto
“Clash,” directed by Mohamed Diab
“La Tortue Rouge,” directed by Michael Dubok de Wit
“Fuchi Bi Tatsu,” directed by Fukada Koji
“Omar Shakhsiya,” directed by Maha Haj
“Me’Ever Laharim Vehagvaot,” directed by Eran Kolirin
“After The Storm,” directed by Kore-Eda Hirokazu
“Hymyileva Mies,” directed by Juho Kuosmanen
“La Large Noche de Francisco Sanctis,” directed by Francisco Marquez and Andrea Testa
“Caini,” directed by Bogdan Mirica
“Pericle Il Nero,” directed by Stefano Mordini
“Captain Fantastic,” directed by Matt Ross
“The Transfiguration,” directed by Michael O’Shea
“Uchenik,” directed by Kirill Serebrennikov

Out of Competition
“The BFG,” directed by Steven Spielberg
“Goksung,” directed by Na Hong-Jin
“Money Monster,” directed by Jodie Foster
“The Nice Guys,” directed by Shane Black

Special Screenings
‘L’ultima Spiaggia,” directed by Thanos Anastopoulous and Davide del Degan
“A Chad Tragedy,” directed by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun
“The Death of Louis XIV,” directed by Albert Serra
“Le Cancre,” directed by Paul Vecchiali

Midnight Screenings
“Gimme Danger,” directed by Jim Jarmusch
“The Train to Busan,” directed by Yeon Sang-Ho

Cannes will wrap up it’s last night with a highly exclusive awards ceremony, and then the next day the rich and famous will flock to Monte Carlo for the Grand Prix, leaving other people to clean up their messes in Cannes.

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16th Mar2016

BFI FLARE: LONDON LGBT FILM FESTIVAL 2016 (Film)

by timbaros

pass-02Flare turns 30 this year. And what is Flare you might ask? It is London’s LGBT Film Festival. It starts on Wednesday March 16 and continues up until Sunday March 27. That’s ten jam-packed days of films, seminars, parties, and just plain lots of fun!

Flare is one of the world’s longest running and largest LGBT Film Festival. There will be over 50 features and more than 100 shorts (by filmmakers from all over the world such as Israel to Spain to Australia), and a wide range of special events, guest appearances, discussions, workshops and club nights. It’s divided into three themed sections: Hears, Minds and Bodies.

The opening night gala is the world premiere of ‘The Pass.’ A debut by director Ben A Williams, ‘The Pass’ stars Russell Tovey as a closeted football player who’s secretly in love with a fellow player. It’s sure to continue the conversation going about if there are any gay football players in the sport nowadays.

The closing night gala is ‘Summertime,’ an acclaimed French romantic drama between two feminists in Paris in 1971.

Other movie highlights include:
‘Bare’ – A small town girl meets a rough and charming female pimp who challenges her to take charge of her own destiny. It stars Dianna Agron (Glee).
‘Coming Out’ – A young man’s video diary of his process of coming out to his friends and family.
‘Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures’ – documents the legendary photographers graphic work.
‘Naz & Maalik’ – a heartwarming story of about the love and romance between two gay teen muslim teens in Brooklyn.
‘Closet Monster’ – A coming-of-age drama about a young boy struggling to come to terms with his sexuality. It features the voice of Isabella Rossellini as a talking hamster!
‘Carmen Tropical’ – a trans woman is drawn back to her past after the murder of her friend in this Mexican thriller.
‘Inside the Chinese Closet’ – a documentary that explores how being gay in China’s homophobic society.
‘From Afar’ – A story between a middle-aged man and a 17-year old rent boy.
‘The Chambermaid Lynn’ – A former psychiatric patients becomes obsessed with guests at a hotel where she works.
‘Holding the Man’ – A 15-year old students falls in love with an older rugby player and face challenges that might tear them apart. Major stars Guy Pearce, Anthonly LaPaglia, and Geoffrey Rush feature in the movie.
‘Rebel Dykes’ – A 2016 documentary the pieces together the history of lesbian London in the 1980’s.
‘Nasty Baby’ – A young woman enlists her gay best friend to have a baby with. Starring Kristen Wiig.
There are also 12 programs of short films including ‘What Others Think’ which explores how others perceive the LGBT community.

Film festival-goes will also have a chance to watch previously released LGBT films including Xavier Dolan’s first film ‘I Killed My Mother,’ ‘Grandma’ with Lily Tomlin, the recent award-winning ‘Carol,’ and the highly-acclaimed film about two Los Angeles transgender prostitutes in ‘Tangerine.’

The festival will also shine a spotlight on transgender issues with ‘Transform,’ a series of events on trans acting on screen. Attending will be Silas Howard, a trans director on the award-winning hit show ‘Transparent.’ There will also be a live event called ‘XO LGBTQ Pitch’ where LGBT creative media professionals live pitch ideas for new interactive and games projects with LGBTQ content to commissioners. In addition, industry delegates will have access to a range of special talks and events. The BFI Flare LGBT Filmmakers’ Mentorship Programme, delivered by BAFTA with funding from Creative Skillset helps talented LGBT identified filmmakers build professional skills and networks. LGBT film gets an International spotlight with the return of fiveFilm4freedom. This ground-breaking project developed in association with the British Council sees five LGBT short films from BFI Flare available online for free throughout the Festival. And on the festival’s last day, Easter Sunday, all film are just £8.

To buy tickets, and learn more about the festival, please click here:
http://www.bfi.org.uk/flare

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19th Jul2015

Elephant Song (DVD)

by timbaros

000211 Michael-1At only 26 years old, French Canadian Xavier Dolan already has five films under his directorial belt, all of which have been well received and critically acclaimed. In addition, he’s acted in 12 films, including the just released Elephant Song.

In 2009, Dolan directed, produced, starred and wrote J’ai tué ma mére (I Killed My Mother), a semi-autobiographical story about him as a young gay man at odds with his mother, and wrote the script when he was at the tender age of 17. It won 3 awards at the Cannes Film Festival. The next year he wrote, directed, produced and starred (again) in Les Amours Imaginaires (Heartbeats), a story about three close friends who are involved in a love triangle. In 2012 Dolan continued his string of emotional and heartfelt films by writing and directing Laurence Anyways. At 168 minutes, it was an ambitious project for the young director to do, it was about the struggle of a straight man who, over the course of ten years, transitions from male to female, and how it affects the relationship with his lover (with amazing performances by Melvil Poupajd and Suzanne Clément). Laurence Anyways won many awards, including two Cannes Film Festival Awards (the Queer Palm Award and Best Actress for Clément). Lawrence Anyways was also nominated for ten Canadian Screen Awards (winning two), and more importantly, at the Toronto International Film Festival it won Best Canadian Feature film. Not bad for a local boy.

2013 is when Dolan wore multiple hats in a film. In Tom á la Ferme (Tom at the Farm), Dolan, who wrote, produced, directed and starred, plays Tom, a young man who works in an advertising agency and travels to the Canadian countryside for the funeral of his 25 year old boyfriend. The problem is that the grieving mother did not know that her son was gay, so she accepts Tom as his friend in the hopes that he can tell her all about her dead son’s life. Meanwhile, the deceased’s brother, 30 year old Francis (an amazing Pierre-Yves Cardinal), knew that his brother gay but could never really accept it. Conflict, anguish, thought provoking moments, anger, love, and acceptance follow. More acclaim followed Dolan when Mommy was released in 2015. It stars French Canadian actress Anne Dorval who is a widowed mother overwhelmed by her teenage son (Antoine Olivier Pilon – a relevation) and his attention deficit disorder. Dolan wrote, produced and directed Mommy, and it won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, and won nine Canadian Screen Awards, including Best Motion Picture.

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In the newly released Elephant Song, Dolan, who co-stars along with Bruce Greenwood and Catherine Keneer, plays Michael, a pychologically unwell young man in a mental institution who may or may not have had something to do with the disappearance of his psychiatrist. So it’s up to Greenwood’s Dr. Greene to interview Michael to try to get to the bottom of his colleague’s disappearance. During the interrogation, Michael plays mind games with Dr. Greene, alluding to the fact that he knows where his pyschiatrist is, but is not quite yet ready to tell. Michael is clearly a very disturbed young man, his very famous opera singer mother all but ignored him, and the one time he spent with his father was when he took him elephant hunting, with the boy Michael crying over his father’s killing of an elephant. And Michael alludes to a sexual relationship that he is having with his psychiatrist, so it’s up to Dr. Greene to take what Michael is saying with a grain of salt. Even the head nurse, Susan Peterson (Keneer), warns Dr. Greene to keep his distance from Michael. It’s a film that at it’s centerpiece is Dolan, who is perfect as Michael, very goodlooking yet very mischevious, you don’t know whether you want to hug him or to run away from him. And the film revisits the themes of homosexuality and the lack of acceptance so common in Dolan’s films.

What’s next for Dolan besides conquering the world? He just finished shooting ‘It’s Only the End of the World,’ about a young man who returns home after 12 years to announce his impending death to his family. It stars Marion Cotillard and Vincent Cassel. Dolan will also be shooting his first film in the United States, to be titled The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, in 2016. It’s a fictional story about an actor who is famous for playing a Marvel-style superhero whose life and career are turned upside-down when his private correspondence with an 11-year-old fan is exposed and made to look indecent by a villainous gossip columnist. This one stars Hollywood heavyweights Kit Harrington, Jessica Chastain, and Susan Sarandon. If his previous films are anything to go by, these new films (and his future films) will be eagerly anticipated and will be must sees.

ELEPHANT SONG is released in the UK 1st July.
It is available exclusively through Alarm Pictures on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Blinkbox.

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19th Jul2015

Mommy (DVD)

by timbaros

ADorval_AOPilon1-1Wonderkind Director Xavier Dolan’s films all have some sort of a mother theme. His latest film, Mommy, is no exception.

It’s a craft full and clever told story, told in Dolan style (slow motions and all), about a frustrated mother of a son who has ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). The mother, Diane, is played by French Canadian actress Anne Dorval, in a tour de force performance. The son, Steve, is played by 17-year old French Canadian Antoine Olivier Pilon, who also gives a tour de force performance.

Steve’s father died when he was very young, and he’s been a handul for Diane, so much so that she had put him in a institution for most of his life. But one day he’s tossed out of a state facility for setting a fire, so she has to take him out and to their new home. Steve is young, is playful, looks very innocent, and acts much much younger than the age he actually is. He can be sweet, charming, adorable, with the face of an angel, but then suddenly he can become angry and very volatile, and Diane has no choice but to put up with his behaviour. One day he presents to her a necklace with the word ‘mommy’ on it, she accuses him of stealing it – he turns from a gift-giving young man to a furniture smashing very angry young man, enough so that Diane has to hide in a closet to escape from him. It’s not easy for her, taking care of him while trying to make ends meet on a meager salary.

Eventually Steve and Diane befriend their neighbor Kyla from across the street, (Suzanne Clement – who was superb in Dolan’s 2012 film Lawrence Anyways). Kyla is very shy, even mute at times, due to some vague personal trauma. When she initially meets Steve and Diane she stutters very bad. But over time, all three of them get along very well and grow closer and closer to each other. Diane leaves Steve in the care of Kyla at times and Steve becomes a gentle soul when’s he with Kyla – her reserved quietness in a way calms Steve. Kyla even tutors him. But Steve still has episodes where he erupts and threatens to cause harm not only to Diane but to Kyla as well. And over time Diane simply cannot take care of Steve for the rest of his life so she has to make a decision that will affect all three of them to the very core of their relationship.

Writer and Director Dolan shot this film in a tightened 1:1 aspect ratio (meaning the screen is the size of a large square postage stamp) giving the film a real close, tight and claustrophobic feeling, used very effectively when Steve goes on one of his rants. Dolan delivers yet another very good film that is in French with English subtitles. Dolan, at the tender age of 25, has an impressive list of films under his belt, and Mommy joins the ranks of them, having won the Jury Prize last year in Cannes as well as having won nine Canadian Screen Awards. Dolan has a knack for getting great performances from his actors, and in Dorval he’s given her a role that is her best performance yet. Pilon is a real find, he’s a young boy in a man’s body and he sure can act. And Clement is quiet yet peaceful and demure in her role. Mommy is a triumph not just for Dolan but for entire cast and crew, and for French Canadian filmmaking. Dolan has said that there is just one subject he knows more about than any other, one that unconditionally inspires him, and that he loves above all, that subject would be his mother. Dolan’s next film – called The Death and Life of John F. Donovan -stars Jessica Chastain, Kit Harrington, and Oscar winner Susan Sarandon, and is about an American movie star whose correspondence with an 11-year old is exposed and will have repercussions for his career.

Mommy is raw and breathtaking, and a must see.

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21st Mar2015

Mommy (Film)

by timbaros

ADorval_AOPilon1Wonderkind Director Xavier Dolan’s films all have some sort of a mother theme. His latest film, Mommy, is no exception.

It’s a craft full and clever told story, told in Dolan style (slow motions and all), about a frustrated mother of a son who has ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). The mother, Diane, is played by French Canadian actress Anne Dorval, in a tour de force performance. The son, Steve, is played by 17-year old French Canadian Antoine Olivier Pilon, who also gives a tour de force performance.

Steve’s father died when he was very young, and he’s been a handul for Diane, so much so that she had put him in a institution for most of his life. But one day he’s tossed out of a state facility for setting a fire, so she has to take him out and to their new home. Steve is young, is playful, looks very innocent, and acts much much younger than the age he actually is. He can be sweet, charming, adorable, with the face of an angel, but then suddenly he can become angry and very volatile, and Diane has no choice but to put up with his behaviour. One day he presents to her a necklace with the word ‘mommy’ on it, she accuses him of stealing it – he turns from a gift-giving young man to a furniture smashing very angry young man, enough so that Diane has to hide in a closet to escape from him. It’s not easy for her, taking care of him while trying to make ends meet on a meager salary.

Eventually Steve and Diane befriend their neighbor Kyla from across the street, (Suzanne Clement – who was superb in Dolan’s 2012 film Lawrence Anyways). Kyla is very shy, even mute at times, due to some vague personal trauma. When she initially meets Steve and Diane she stutters very bad. But over time, all three of them get along very well and grow closer and closer to each other. Diane leaves Steve in the care of Kyla at times and Steve becomes a gentle soul when’s he with Kyla – her reserved quietness in a way calms Steve. Kyla even tutors him. But Steve still has episodes where he erupts and threatens to cause harm not only to Diane but to Kyla as well. And over time Diane simply cannot take care of Steve for the rest of his life so she has to make a decision that will affect all three of them to the very core of their relationship.

Writer and Director Dolan shot this film in a tightened 1:1 aspect ratio (meaning the screen is the size of a large square postage stamp) giving the film a real close, tight and claustrophobic feeling, used very effectively when Steve goes on one of his rants. Dolan delivers yet another very good film that is in French with English subtitles. Dolan, at the tender age of 25, has an impressive list of films under his belt, and Mommy joins the ranks of them, having won the Jury Prize last year in Cannes as well as having won nine Canadian Screen Awards. Dolan has a knack for getting great performances from his actors, and in Dorval he’s given her a role that is her best performance yet. Pilon is a real find, he’s a young boy in a man’s body and he sure can act. And Clement is quiet yet peaceful and demure in her role. Mommy is a triumph not just for Dolan but for entire cast and crew, and for French Canadian filmmaking. Dolan has said that there is just one subject he knows more about than any other, one that unconditionally inspires him, and that he loves above all, that subject would be his mother. Dolan’s next film – called The Death and Life of John F. Donovan -stars Jessica Chastain, Kit Harrington, and Oscar winner Susan Sarandon, and is about an American movie star whose correspondence with an 11-year old is exposed and will have repercussions for his career.

Mommy is raw and breathtaking, and a must see.

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07th Oct2014

2014 London Film Festival – Film

by timbaros

The 58th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express® starts today and promises big movies and even bigger stars.

Last year’s BFI London Film Festival was a rip-roaring success, with such high-profile premieres as Gravity, Philomena, Captain Phillips and Saving Mr. Banks. All films went on to box office success and many Oscars.
This year’s festival could possibly top last year’s festival. Here is a quick snapshot of what’s on:

Opening Night Gala:

The Imitation Game
Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Alan Turing, who created a machine during WWII that cracked the German Enigma Code and whose inventions would become the prototype of the modern computer. He was also arrested and convicted in 1952 for the criminal offense of homosexuality. Keira Knightley also stars.

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Closing Night Gala:

Fury
Brad Pitt’s new film has him playing a battle-hardened sergeant. Set during WWII when the allies were making their final push into Germany, Pitt commands a Sherman tank, called Fury, that is on a mission behind enemy lines. Also stars Shia LaBeouf.

Foxcatcher
This film comes with the lots of good buzz (and talk of Oscar nominations). An unrecognizable Steve Carrell plays a very wealthy, and crazy, benefactor to wrestlers and brothers Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo. Based on the true story of American millionaire John du Pont and his fascination with brothers Dave and Mark Shultz. Directed by Bennett Miller who gave us Capote and Moneyball. Also stars Vanessa Redgrave and Sienna Miller.

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Mr. Turner
Timothy Spall is said to be excellent in Director Mike Leigh’s movie about British painter J.M. William Turner. Mr. Turner is a character study of the last 25 years in the life of the painter, and the relationships he has with several women, including with his children.

Wild
Reese Witherspoon stars in this true story of a young woman attempting to walk the gruelling 1,100-mile hike across the Pacific Crest Trail in the early 1990’s. Directed by Jean-Marc Vallée, who last brought us Dallas Buyers Club.

Mommy
Wunderkind Director Xavier Dolan, a festival favorite, is back with Mommy. His fifth feature in as many years (and he’s only 25) has Anne Dorval as a single mother who takes back into her home her son who is a troublemaker, suffers from ADHD, and has been expelled from a juvenile facility.

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Bjork: Biophilia Live
This is being described as a multidimensional, multimedia project that explores the creative nexus between music, nature, and technology. And Bjork will be attending the festival as well to explain what it all means.

The New Girlfriend
Another film festival favorite – Francois Ozon brings us his latest film about a woman who is devastated by the death of her best friend and makes a promise to watch over her best friend’s husband and newborn child. This has the earmarks of Ozon written all over it – melodramatic and twisty.

Son of a Gun
Ewan McGregor stars in this heist thriller which is all about mobster living: fast cars and firearms. McGregor plays a father figure to a younger man who is just out of the slammer and is trying to take the right path.

’71
Jack O’Connell, excellent in the recent Starred Up, plays a British soldier trapped on the streets of Belfast in 1971 after his army crew accidentally leaves him behind. He struggles to hide, and survive, while being chased by provisional militia and reliant on the mercy of loyalist allies. This one is a must see, just for O’Connell’s performance alone.

Serena
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence are on screen again (after Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle) about a logging magnate and his ruthless brilliant wife set against the backdrop of the hills of North Carolina.

Camp X-Ray
Kristen Stewart plays against type as a soldier in the U.S. army who is tasked to guard over prisoners in Guatanamo Bay. She gets emotionally attached to one of the inmates while at the same time comes up against sexism within her ranks.

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Pasolini
Willem Dafoe could either be perfect, or disastrous, by playing Italian Director Paolo Pasolini who’s films courted controversy for their shocking images of nudity and his homosexual lifestyle. Pasolini the movie is told in the hours leading up to his 1975 murder.

Also on offer are documentaries galore, including ones on artist David Hockney and film Director Robert Altman, as well as a documentary that deals with the Holocaust – titled German Concentration Camps Factual Survey – showing actual footage of the liberation of the concentration camps.

The Festival will screen a total of 245 fiction and documentary features, including 16 World Premieres, 9 International Premieres, 38 European Premieres and 19 Archive films including 2 Restoration World Premiere’s.1 There will also be screenings of 148 live action and animated shorts. A stellar line-up of directors, cast and crew are expected to take part in career interviews, master classes, Q&As and other special events. The 58th BFI London Film Festival will run
Wednesday 8 – Sunday 19 October 2014.

Tickets for the festival can be purchased at:

Telephone Bookings: 020 7928 3232 between 09:30–20:30
Online: www.bfi.org.uk/lff
In person: BFI Southbank Office: 11:30–20:30
Last minute tickets are available to be purchased on the day about 30 minutes prior to the screening at Festival venues

29th Aug2014

Tom at the Farm (Xavier Dolan) – DVD

by timbaros

images-236At only 24 years old, French Canadian Xavier Dolan already has four films under his belt, all of which have been well received and critically acclaimed. In 2009, Dolan directed, produced, starred and wrote J’ai tué ma mére (I Killed My Mother), a semi-autobiographical story about Dolan as a young gay man at odds with his mother, writing the script when he was the tender age of 17. It won 3 awards at the Cannes Film Festival. The next year he wrote, directed, produced and starred (again) in Les Amours Imaginaires (Heartbeats), a story about three close friends who are involved in a love triangle. It was in 2012 that Javier continued his string of emotional and heartfelt films by writing and directing Laurence Anyways. At 168 minutes, it was a bold choice for the young director to make a film as ambitious as this, one about the struggles of a straight man who, over the course of ten years, transitions from male to female and how it affects the relationship with his lover (with amazing performances by Melvil Poupajd and Suzanne Clément). Laurence Anyways won many awards, including two Cannes Film Festival Awards (the Queer Palm Award and Best Actress for Clément). Lawrence Anyways was also nominated for ten Canadian Screen Awards (winning two), and more importantly, at the Toronto International Film Festival it won Best Canadian Feature film. Not bad for a local boy. 

2014 sees Dolan’s most bold work yet. It is a film called Tom á la Ferme (Tom at the Farm), and the Tom in the title of the film is Dolan. For his fourth feature film, Dolan puts himself in the lead in a film that he also wrote, produced and directed. Looking so unlike his usual self, with long blond shaggy hair, Dolan again revisits the themes of homosexuality and the lack of acceptance. Tom, who works in an advertising agency, travels to the Canadian countryside for a funeral. It is not just anybody’s funeral, it is the funeral of his 25 year old boyfriend (Guillaume). The problem is that his grieving mother did not know that he was gay, so she accepts Tom as his friend in the hopes that he can tell her all about his life, as he had not been in contact with her for a long time. This is not the only problem Tom faces. Guillaume’s brother, 30 year old Francis (an amazing Pierre-Yves Cardinal), knew that he was gay and never really could accept it. In fact, nine years prior he had beaten up a man who had been dancing with his brother, and his violent nature and temper has him banned from most places in town. He still lives with their mother, on a farm, that he hopes to one day inherit after his mother passes away (he tells Tom in a highly charged scene that shows them dancing with each other in the barn) as there is no one else left in the family. Francis plays psychological games with Tom, at times beating him up and then at other times charming him. He has some kind of hold on Tom. With mesmerizing good looks and an athletic body, Cardinal commands the screen in every scene he is in. So it’s no surprise that Tom has a crush on him. The mother, Agathe (Lise Roy), is a bit crazy, maternal madness, having lost her husband years ago and now her youngest son that she barely knew. She is introduced to a woman who she is led to believe her dead son was dating, a woman who is a friend of Tom’s where he asks her to visit the grieving mother and pretend that she was his girlfriend. And Francis sets his lecherous ways on her. Dolan has set the soundtrack of Tom at the Farm to Hitchcockian music (by Gabriel Yared), with stunning visual images in the film (as he did in Laurence Anyways) of long shots of a highway, the middle of cornfields, and facial images that will last long after you see the film. 
 
After creating a trilogy of the subject of impossible love (Dolan’s words), he has now changed direction to create a suspenseful film that, while still stays on the subject of homosexuality, is very dramatic and is another amazing creation by a young man who has yet to turn 25. 
 
Dolan got the idea of Tom at The Farm after seeing a play in Montreal with the same name by Michel Marc Bouchard. He had a six month window of time between his next project, and the play and its theme really interested him, so he decided to shoot it as a film. Tom at the Farm screened in the main competition section of the 70th Venice International Film Festival, winning the FIPRESCI Prize (Fédération Internationale de la Presse Cinématographique), and was also shown at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. 
 
What’s next for Dolan, besides conquering the world? He has mentioned that he wants to make a film in the United States, to be titled The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, which will be about an American celebrity who maintained a correspondence before his success with an 11-year old boy in Britain, causing a scandal once it became known. If his previous films are anything to go by, the new film (and his future films) will be eagerly anticipated and will be must sees. 

 



Tom at the Farm [DVD] (DVD)

Director: Xavier Dolan
Starring: Xavier Dolan, Pierre-Yves Cardinal, Lise Roy, Evelyne Brochu, Manuel Tadros
Rating: Suitable for 15 years and over

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: French ( Dolby Digital 5.1 ), French ( Dolby Digital Stereo ), English ( Subtitles ), WIDESCREEN (2.35:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Interactive Menu, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: The story of Tom, who is in the grip of grief and depression following the death of his lover. When he meets the family of the deceased, it is revealed the mother was not aware of her son's sexual orientation, or his relationship with Tom either, for that matter. ...Tom at the Farm (2013) ( Tom à la ferme )
New From: £4.34 GBP In Stock
Used from: £3.77 GBP In Stock

10th Apr2014

Tom at the Farm/Xavier Dolan – Film

by timbaros

images-148At only 24 years old, French Canadian Xavier Dolan already has four films under his belt, all of which have been well received and critically acclaimed. In 2009, Dolan directed, produced, starred and wrote J’ai tué ma mére (I Killed My Mother), a semi-autobiographical story about Dolan as a young gay man at odds with his mother, writing the script when he was the tender age of 17. It won 3 awards at the Cannes Film Festival. The next year he wrote, directed, produced and starred (again) in Les Amours Imaginaires (Heartbeats), a story about three close friends who are involved in a love triangle. It was in 2012 that Javier continued his string of emotional and heartfelt films by writing and directing Laurence Anyways. At 168 minutes, it was a bold choice for the young director to make a film as ambitious as this, one about the struggles of a straight man who, over the course of ten years, transitions from male to female and how it affects the relationship with his lover (with amazing performances by Melvil Poupajd and Suzanne Clément). Laurence Anyways won many awards, including two Cannes Film Festival Awards (the Queer Palm Award and Best Actress for Clément). Lawrence Anyways was also nominated for ten Canadian Screen Awards (winning two), and more importantly, at the Toronto International Film Festival it won Best Canadian Feature film. Not bad for a local boy.

 
2014 sees Dolan’s most bold work yet. It is a film called Tom á la Ferme (Tom at the Farm), and the Tom in the title of the film is Dolan. For his fourth feature film, Dolan puts himself in the lead in a film that he also wrote, produced and directed. Looking so unlike his usual self, with long blond shaggy hair, Dolan again revisits the themes of homosexuality and the lack of acceptance. Tom, who works in an advertising agency, travels to the Canadian countryside for a funeral. It is not just anybody’s funeral, it is the funeral of his 25 year old boyfriend (Guillaume). The problem is that his grieving mother did not know that he was gay, so she accepts Tom as his friend in the hopes that he can tell her all about his life, as he had not been in contact with her for a long time. This is not the only problem Tom faces. Guillaume’s brother, 30 year old Francis (an amazing Pierre-Yves Cardinal), knew that he was gay and never really could accept it. In fact, nine years prior he had beaten up a man who had been dancing with his brother, and his violent nature and temper has him banned from most places in town. He still lives with their mother, on a farm, that he hopes to one day inherit after his mother passes away (he tells Tom in a highly charged scene that shows them dancing with each other in the barn) as there is no one else left in the family. Francis plays psychological games with Tom, at times beating him up and then at other times charming him. He has some kind of hold on Tom. With mesmerizing good looks and an athletic body, Cardinal commands the screen in every scene he is in. So it’s no surprise that Tom has a crush on him. The mother, Agathe (Lise Roy), is a bit crazy, maternal madness, having lost her husband years ago and now her youngest son that she barely knew. She is introduced to a woman who she is led to believe her dead son was dating, a woman who is a friend of Tom’s where he asks her to visit the grieving mother and pretend that she was his girlfriend. And Francis sets his lecherous ways on her. Dolan has set the soundtrack of Tom at the Farm to Hitchcockian music (by Gabriel Yared), with stunning visual images in the film (as he did in Laurence Anyways) of long shots of a highway, the middle of cornfields, and facial images that will last long after you see the film. 
 
After creating a trilogy of the subject of impossible love (Dolan’s words), he has now changed direction to create a suspenseful film that, while still stays on the subject of homosexuality, is very dramatic and is another amazing creation by a young man who has yet to turn 25. 
 
Dolan got the idea of Tom at The Farm after seeing a play in Montreal with the same name by Michel Marc Bouchard. He had a six month window of time between his next project, and the play and its theme really interested him, so he decided to shoot it as a film. Tom at the Farm screened in the main competition section of the 70th Venice International Film Festival, winning the FIPRESCI Prize (Fédération Internationale de la Presse Cinématographique), and was also shown at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. 
 
What’s next for Dolan, besides conquering the world? He has mentioned that he wants to make a film in the United States, to be titled The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, which will be about an American celebrity who maintained a correspondence before his success with an 11-year old boy in Britain, causing a scandal once it became known. If his previous films are anything to go by, the new film (and his future films) will be eagerly anticipated and will be must sees.