Cannes 2012

In Lawless, John Hillcoat has almost crafted the perfect modern Western, infusing more explicitly the gangster genre elements that always occur in the genre, but never quite so explicitly. The film follows the Bondurant brothers – Jack (Shia Labeouf), Forrest (Tom Hardy) and Howard (Jason Clarke) – rise as the most famous bootleggers in sun-dried Prohibition-era Virginia, and the government’s attempts to stop them. The government’s chief agent is Guy Pearce‘s Charlie Rakes, a flamboyant looking, but profoundly villainous Special Deputy, let off his leash when the Bondurants, lead by Hardy’s powerhouse Forrest refuse to pay a monthly toll on their illegal activities. While it may sound like an all guns-blazing, epic Prohibition-era Western, the story, adapted well from Matt Bondurant‘s historical novel by Nick Cave (who also once again offers a superlative score) focuses on human stories to add poignancy and depth to the more explosive sequences.

read more...

Opening this year’s Un Certain Regard programme, Mystery returns festival veteran Lou Ye to Cannes for the fourth time, having screened Purple Butterfly, Summer Palace and Spring Fever in the main competition in past years, and after being banned from filmmaking for five years by the Chinese government. Though he is on less provocative form here than previously, he does still sneak in a criticism of the Chinese justice system and the somewhat distasteful practice of private settlements overriding criminal prosecution. His story here focuses on Lu Jie (Hao Lei), a happy housewife whose life is shattered when she discovers that her husband (Hao Qin) is having an affair. The story isn’t quite that conventional however, as it is framed by an explosive event – the death of her husband’s mistress under the wheels of a young rich playboy’s car – and when murder is suggested, the film quickly sets about solving the mystery of her death, despite the almost nullifying influence of the police force, at the same time further unraveling Lu Jie’s own story and the complex deceits of her husband.

read more...

Those of you who read my review of Sleeping Beauty at last year’s festival might remember that I said the film was probably the least sexual film I had ever seen, despite its boob count. I would hereby like to categorically and unreservedly retract that statement in full. Because I have just seen Ulrich Seidl‘s Paradise: Love, a two-hour-long spectacle of supposedly renewed self-discovery through sex tourism that spends all together too much time fascinated with its exotic subjects (both European and African) and too little time asking any of the pressing questions it brings up. The film follows Anna Maria (Margarethe Tiesel), an Austrian single mother, the wrong side of fifty and in a miserable floundering rut that she uses as her excuse to take a solo trip to Kenya in search of good times – a concept those familiar with Seidl would be forgiven for thinking he wouldn’t have any concept of.

read more...

What is Cannes in 60 Seconds? If you say it with a pompous accent, it’s a hilarious pun on a classic Nic Cage/Angelina Jolie film that no one can rightfully claim is at all terrible. If you say it with a normal accent, it’s still a news and review round-up from the South of France. The biggest news comes from the mouths of critics after seeing the opening night flick – Wes Anderson‘s Moonrise Kingdom. It’s garnered high, near-universal praise. A smattering of reviews can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. But that’s not all that’s going on:

read more...

Roman Polanski has more than one story to tell. In a lifetime dedicated to storytelling, it is ironic that his own life experiences have been the stuff that good Hollywood films tend to made of. No doubt much will be made of the fact that the Memoir was filmed while Polanski was under house arrest in Switzerland, and indeed the film takes the controversial “American problems” as the director himself refers to them here as the starting point but the documentary is a good deal more than an opportunity to clear the director’s name. Instead it tells the story of his entire life, in which Samantha Geimer is merely one chapter, and – most enticingly for film fans – in Polanski’s own words (and occasionally those of “host” Andrew Braunsberg). Rather than opt for a narrative-type documentary, director Laurent Bouzereau opts instead for a feature length interview with his subject, presided over by Polanski’s friend and production colleague Braunsberg in the inquisitor’s seat, inter-lacing personal photographs with stock historical footage and sequences taken directly from Polanski’s films. In honesty, these visual ornaments are only brief distractions, and for the main part the film allows Polanski to merely tell his own story, which was a good decision given his story-telling abilities and his natural charm.

read more...

Simon has already weighed in on Moonrise Kingdom – his first Cannes film of 2012 – but we check in with him to see what 6 films he’s looking forward to the most. Plus, Movies.com’s Peter Hall faces off against Landon Palmer in the Movies News Pop Quiz, and we end up asking important questions about repertory screenings. Will the films of the future digitally last forever? Download Episode #134

read more...

Rust and Bone could well have failed. In many other hands the story of a killer whale trainer who loses her legs but finds strength and her resurrection in an unlikely relationship with an underworld bare knuckle boxer with a good heart…well, it could have been a monstrous amalgamation of Rocky meets Free Willy with the contrived over-sentimentality of Steel Magnolias. But in the hands of Un Prophet‘s excellent helmer Jacques Audiard, the film swerves the “cancer story”/Oscar baiting stigma that some will accuse it of thanks to a simple but engaging central story and two award-worthy performances from its central actors. Marion Cotillard plays said whale trainer – Stephanie – who loses her legs after a performance accident, and who regresses rapidly to a self-destructive stagnating state, but who finds hope and the capacity for her own resurrection through a relationship with Matthias Schoenaerts‘ bare-knuckle boxer Ali, who lives hand to mouth by any means before his underworld fights offer him and his son some opportunities for a slightly better life. Having briefly met Stephanie before her accident, Alain helps her to find herself again not through pandering or pity, but simply by offering his help and his company, and you have to give credit to Audiard that his story never strays towards saccharine, made-for-TV style sentimentality.

read more...

Moonrise Kingdom appears to be a delicate fancy of a film – an assessment you suspect might entertain Wes Anderson – offering no more ground-breaking a story than young love, with the director’s traditional preoccupation with whimsy, and creating such artfully created landscapes and characters that they flirt outrageously with magic realism, though without explicit realisation of that concept. But there are weightier issues at hand, of parental neglect, of revolution (not just sexual but also anti-establishment), and it seems completely appropriate that Anderson chose to set it in as provocatively important a time as 1965. The film follows two young lovers – Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kara Hayward) – who escape their lives to run away together, and the ensuing chaos of their parents and the local authorities’ attempts to find them: no more than a gentle plot that suggests nothing of the drama and comedy that subsequently unfolds.

read more...

The first teaser we saw for David Cronenberg’s upcoming film Cosmopolis gave us a glimpse of a stylish, violent work that not only looked like a throwback to the disturbing genre pictures the director made his name on, but that also seemed to be taking a page out of the playbook of Gaspar Noé, a director of French films who made waves in the U.S. with a couple of mind-bendingly stylized films in Irreversible and Enter the Void. That was probably enough to get film fans to mark this one on their calendars already, but after the movie was announced as being a big part of this year’s Cannes lineup, anticipation for Cosmopolis has reached a fever pitch. Or, at least, that’s what its producers are hoping, because they’ve put some new trailers out to capitalize on the Cannes announcement. This one comes from French site Allocine, and it expands on the colorful visuals and cringe inducing violence of the teaser trailer by giving us a better idea of what the story of this film is going to be about. Cosmopolis seems to be a timely tale, taking advantage of the growing Occupy Movement and the mounting frustrations with the world’s richest 1%, as much of the violence we saw in the teaser has now been given the context of being the brutal results of a world rebelling against its ruling class. A ruling class that, in this film, is represented by Robert Pattinson.

read more...

After literally days of rampant speculation and fanciful rumor-spreading (on my part), this year’s official line-up for the Cannes 2012 Film Festival has officially been unveiled by officials in the South of France. Officially. Unsurprisingly, and as predicted, my own 13 film wishlist was largely completely wrong – but I did predict a massive four (including the absence, thankfully, of Terrence Malick), and in my defense, Michael Haneke’s Love was the 14th film on my list until I decided to oust it for timing reasons. Brad Pitt, Robert Pattinson and Tom Hardy will battle each other as Killing Them Softly (the awfully renamed adaptation of Cogan’s Trade), Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis and the other needlessly renamed flick, Lawless (why not just keep it as The Wettest County?) compete for the Palme d’Or.

read more...

Cannes! It’s upon us! At this stage last year, I offered my pre-festival wishlist for what films might screen at Cannes (and got six out of eighteen picks correct in the process), which was based on rumors and guesswork from around the net. This year, in the interest of embracing the spirit of imagination, the emphasis is on spurious gossip and pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking. Plucking films that might have an outside chance of screening on the Croisette this year (in some cases so far outside they won’t even be in France until months after the fest, probably), I’ve compiled my Ultimate Cannes 2012 Wishlist. The caveat to this of course is that probably very few of the bloody things will actually screen – at least not to the majority of the collected press – but what’s life without whimsy? Yes, the bent is firmly on American films, and English language ones, but in my defense, I don’t care. It says “wishlist” up there for a good reason. Realism aside, here are 13 movies I hope play at Cannes this May.

read more...

With this year’s Cannes Film Festival quickly coming round the bend, now’s as good a time as any to officially start the FSR pre-festival coverage, and as if by magic, perhaps sensing that I was about to do so, the good folks on the south coast of France have announced that Tim Roth will lead the jury of the festival’s secondary competition. The Un Certain Regard competition seeks to offer films with some intriguing hook or selling point, setting a different tone to the main competition and occasionally unearthing some genuine gems thanks to its agenda of championing new talents. It is that competition that the British actor, famed for such roles as Reservoir Dogs and lately Lie To Me, will preside over, perhaps bringing his own stamp to affairs. So, we can probably expect violence and facial intensity to play a big part – and if Roth’s own The War Zone is anything to go by, we can also expect another trip down the abuse avenue that featured so heavily in the films screened last year.

read more...
  PREVIOUS PAGE
Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Fantastic Fest 2014
6 Filmmaking Tips: James Gunn
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3