Tag Archives: Cannes

Haneke’s ‘White Ribbon’ and Park’s vamp-centric ‘Thirst’ among the winners at Cannes ’09

25 May
Chan-Wook Park's vampire film Thirst ties for Cannes Jury Prize

Chan-Wook Park's vampire film Thirst ties for Cannes Jury Prize

 May 25th, 2009-

The Cannes Film Festival drew to a close yesterday, and the results for films competing in the offficial competition have been announced. Among them are Oldboy director Chan Wook-Park’s film ‘Thirst’, about a Korean priest who becomes a vampire in the wake of a failed medical experiment and Michael Haneke’s new film ‘White Ribbon’, a black and white drama taking place in a german village on the eve of the first World War. ‘Ribbon’ won  the big prize of the Palme d’ Or and Thirst shared the Jury prize with Andrea Arnold’s ‘Fish-Tank’. You can read the whole story over at Variety HERE.

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Gilliam’s Parnassus enchants at Cannes and the reviews are coming in!

22 May
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Christopher Plummer as the titular character in Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus

 Terry Gilliam is one of the most unique directors working today. Alas, just because he has been working today, doesn’t mean there has been much fruit as of late. Mostly, it’s not his fault. The infamous The Man Who Killed Don Quixote with Jean Rochefort and Johnny Depp crumbled under events outside of his control. His follow-up film The Brothers Grimm was entertaining enough but it was hacked and hampered by the Weinstein Bros and his next venture, Tideland, felt like the artist in meltdown mode. He was cramming every irreverant idea he had into a thin little whisp of a movie and without any sort of constraints it exploded into delirious, over-cooked pieces.

Then, he began work on The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, an all-out folk fantasy with a great cast; Christopher Plummer, Heath Ledger, and Tom Waits. It sounded like the kind of great stuff that had made me fall in love with the man’s work originally. I still consider his trilogy of Time Bandits, Brazil and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen to be some of the finest examples of fantasy filmmaking ever concieved.

When Ledger died, it seemed like the curse of Gilliam had struck again. But, remarkably, Parnassus was raised from the ashes like a Pheonix when Depp, Law and Farrell came alongside Gilliam and allowed him to finish making the movie by playing different facets of Ledger’s character, and donating all of their salary to Heath’s family in the process.

So this week, the amazing happened. A new Gilliam film premiered at Cannes. And so far, the word is great. Right now the idea of a great new Gilliam movie is a bit overwhelming. All of the current reviews, including ones written prior to Cannes, are available below. I’ll keep updating as they come in.

Variety’s Todd McCarthy gives Gilliam his due HERE.

Kenneth Turan applauds Parnassus and Gilliam’s gumption HERE.

Aint It Cool News’ Harry Knowles cheerfully slobbers over it HERE.

Another AICN alumn, Quint, calls Parnassus “unadulterated Gilliam” HERE.

Reviews come in from Tarantino’s Inglorious Cannes screening

20 May

inglorious-basterds1

May 20th, 2009-

This Wednesday morning at 8:30 a.m.  Quentin Tarantino, the rabid dog of extravagant, pop-indulgence himself, presented his  Inglorious Basterds to the Cannes audience. The new film stars Brad Pitt and follows a militia of Jewish soldiers sent out to strike fear and collect scalps among the Third Reicht, with the  finale taking place in a movie theater with Hitler himself in attendance. The trailer made it look like more of the wacky same from Tarantino, who I personally find to be frustratingly inconsistent. His original Pulp Fiction, which won him the Palme D’ or at Cannes back in 1994, is an original and energetic work and I’m quite fond of Kill Bill but most everything else that Tarantino has done has fallen short for me, especially the tedious and overblown Death Proof.

As for this one, I’m not sure. Tarantino will most certainly be drawing from war pics and sphagetti westerns and if he conjures as much fun as he did with Bill’s martial arts influences then count me in. For now though, the most compelling part of the film’s trailer is Pitt’s  crazy line: “I want my scalps!” Heres are some links to the early reviews and three clips from the film:

Variety review is up HERE.

Roger Ebert offers some thoughts HERE.

Michael Philips gives a somewhat mixed review HERE.

The Guardian is appalled HERE.

See 3 new clips from Inglorious Basterds HERE.