We Need to Talk About Kevin

Aptly, one of the most talked-about movies of Cannes 2011 was We Need to Talk About Kevin, which had a stronger impact on our reviewer than Tree of Life did. The film from director Lynne Ramsay stars Tilda Swinton as the mother of a son who commits a grand atrocity. Through alinear storytelling, more and more of her life is shared as she copes with motherhood, aftermath, and responsibility. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Oscilloscope head Adam Yauch was one of the audience members affected, and the group has bought rights to distribute the film in North America. Great news for movie fans hoping to see this in a theater near them. It’s also generally good news for anyone who loves seeing that Oscilloscope logo and assuming they’re about to see a science fiction B-movie from 1954. It’s no surprise that the goal is a winter release. Be on the lookout for plenty of awards season push for this one alongside Best Actress prediction headlines entitled “We Need To Talk About Tilda Swinton.”

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It is an odd coincidence to note that Scottish director Lynne Ramsay‘s We Need To Talk About Kevin screened immediately before Gus Van Sant’s Restless today, since the subject matter positions this irresistibly dangerous film an almost sequel to Van Sant’s equally controversial Elephant, which itself walked away with the Palme d’Or in 2003. But this is a far different affair entirely, because, at its heart We Need To Talk About Kevin is both a situational horror and a domestic/maternal horror story. Tilda Swinton, who must surely be a contender for many, many Best Actress gongs in the coming year, plays Eva, a mother whose son has committed the atrocious crime of attacking and killing a number of his schoolmates in a Columbine style shooting. We don’t actually learn about this until the end of the film, but since the marketing material references it heavily, and since there is a far more affecting twist in this tale, it’s fine to say it here. Ramsay successfully employs an alinear structure, jumping back and forth in time to reveal jigsaw pieces that flesh out characters and events in a perfectly captivating manner, and ultimately converge with astonishingly affecting results – but really the film is quite restrained in its focus. The film’s focus is far more on the relationship between Eva and Kevin as the boy grows up, and the difficult position Eva is left in after he is imprisoned, rather than on the actual flashpoint that the story blossoms out from. In that respect, the story becomes more that maternal […]

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With a little less than a week to go until I land at Nice Airport and get the hugely unglamorous Hack Bus into Cannes along with my boys from ObsessedWithFilm.com to begin FSR’s official Cannes film festival 2011 coverage, now is surely a prudent time to offer my thoughts on the biggest and brightest films showing on the Croisette this year. You already know what films are showing, so I won’t exhaustively trawl back through the list, but I wanted to take the opportunity to announce what I am particularly excited about. This also gives me the opportunity post-festival to look back at happier, simpler times when my optimism at seeing four films a day wasn’t yet destroyed by watching three incredibly boring flicks in a row, followed by a blockbuster during which I fell asleep (as happened in 2009). Anyway, lesson learned, and this year I’ll be packing as many natural amphetamines as possible. If you’re heading out there look for me, I’ll be the guy with the grinding jaw, the sallow eyes and the notepad full of doodles/plans to change the future of cinema. So anyway, here’s what I’m looking forward to most.

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So, we now know most of which films will screen in the two major competitions at Cannes this year, and a few out of competition titles as well (including one huge shock for me). Here’s the list in full — great to see The Beaver, and a host of huge-name directors in competition like Von Trier, Almodovar and Miike — and you can expect my commentary to follow soon. Opening Film Midnight In Paris (dir. Woody Allen) Out of Competition The Beaver (dir. Foster) La Conquete (dir. Xavier Durringer) The Artist (dir. Hazanavicius) Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (dir. Rob Marshall)

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Holy Hollywood, the selections for this year’s Cannes Film Festival (both confirmed and mostly-confirmed) are a star-studded bunch so far, if the rumormongers are to be believed, anyway. The news is coming pretty quick-fire at the minute, so I’ll run down the latest… First off, yesterday French site Le Figaro announced that Pirates of the Caribbean 4: On Stranger Tides will play on the Croisette out of competition on Saturday May 14th, before it opens to French cinemas on May 18th and in the US on the 20th. This is one I was half-expecting, given the coincidental release dates, and the fact that there are traditionally a couple of mainstream releases showing out of competition at the fest. The third out of competition (joining Pirates and Terrence Malick’s already announced Tree of Life) looks likely to be Kung Fu Panda 2, according to Thompson on Hollywood, who say the 3D Dreamworks sequel starring Jack Black will follow Jeff Katzenberg’s tradition of bringing a DreamWorks project to Cannes to take advantage of a “worldwide marketing blitz.”

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It’s been a pretty big day on the Internet for Jonny Greenwood. First it was announced that Radiohead’s next album ‘The King of Limbs’ has gone up for digital pre-order and will be able to be downloaded on February 19. And now it has been reported that Greenwood will score director Lynne Ramsay’s (Ratcatcher) next film We Need to Talk About Kevin. This is important news because Greenwood’s score for There Will Be Blood was completely awesome and more stuff from people who are awesome is always a positive.

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published: 12.19.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
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published: 12.17.2014
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published: 12.15.2014
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