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The Playlist

Abbas Kiarostami Wants To Reteam With Juliette Binoche, Talks 'Like Someone In Love' & Working In New Locations

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • February 13, 2013 7:04 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Perennial Iranian director/legend Abbas Kiarostami’s second filmmaking-holiday (the first being the wonderful “Certified Copy”) finds him in Japan, observing two days in the life of an unlikely trio: a student moonlighting as a call girl, her aged, patriarchal client, and the woman’s hot-head boyfriend. “Like Someone In Love” contains many of the auteur’s persistent fascinations -- long car rides, lengthy conversation, numerous off camera actions and characters, leisurely pacing -- but has the unfortunate position of coming directly after a very unique, wonderful piece of cinema. Reactions have been quite mixed since its first festival appearance early this year (our man at Cannes was not as impressed while this writer thought it was lovely) but most can agree that it’s a visually stunning film with plenty of substance to ruminate on.

Interview: Director Pablo Larrain On The Unique Aesthetic Of 'No' & Working With Star Gael García Bernal

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 12, 2013 2:05 PM
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  • 1 Comment
We've had the usual rotten start to moviegoing in 2013, but this Friday brings the first truly great film of 2013 in the shape of Pablo Larrain's "No." The third film from Chilean director Pablo Larrain following the excellent "Tony Manero" and "Post Mortem," it again delves into the history of the country during the time when it was ruled by the dictator General Pinochet. But in something of a break from his previous work, the film is a warm and human comedy that follows an advertising executive (Gael García Bernal) who's enlisted to aid the campaign to vote 'No' in the 1988 referendum to keep Pinochet as leader.

Interview: 'Angels in Exile' Director Billy Raftery Talks The Street Kids Of Durban & How To Partner Social Activism With Documentary

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • February 9, 2013 12:27 PM
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Audiences were captivated by the visceral, intimate look into the lives of street kids in Durban, South Africa, captured by filmmaker Billy Raftery in his documentary “Angels in Exile,” which premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival last week (review here). However, one couldn’t help but also be drawn in to Billy’s story and the circumstances surrounding this film that was ten years in the making. We sat down with Raftery and his producer Adam Paul Smith to chat about the making of “Angels in Exile,” how he was able to gain access into this population of rogue street kids, and what the future holds for social activism documentary filmmaking.

Göteborg Interview: Tobias Lindholm On 'A Hijacking,' 'The Hunt,' The Psychology Of European Cinema & More

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • February 9, 2013 12:07 PM
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Director of the hotly buzzed “A Hijacking” (our glowing review here) that has been doing the festival rounds since Venice last year, Tobias Lindholm is, in his own words, about to “close up the circus and start working on the next thing.” But with his two breakthrough film projects “The Hunt,” which he co-wrote with director Thomas Vinterberg, and “A Hijacking” still awaiting U.S. releases (the latter is slated for second-quarter 2013 bow through Magnolia Pictures), it is tempting to cast him as being only "on the cusp" of major international success.

Interview: 'Blumenthal' Director Seth Fisher Talks The "Recipe" For Indie Filmmaking & The Fear Of Your Own Characters

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • February 9, 2013 11:25 AM
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Last week, at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, actor Seth Fisher premiered his debut feature film, “Blumenthal,” in which he takes a multi-hyphenate approach to independent filmmaking, as writer/director/star/editor/and more. “Blumenthal” tells the story of a New York City family reeling from the sudden death of famous playwright Harold Blumenthal (Brian Cox), who dies laughing at his own joke. Brother Saul (Mark Blum) feels that Harold stole his ideas, his wife Cheryl (Laila Robins), an aging actress is dealing with her own issues about her body and mortality, and Saul’s son Ethan (Fisher), is an OCD pharmaceutical rep with a few particular issues with women. Back when he only had a first draft of his script, Fisher launched the blog watchmemakeamovie.com, chronicling his process of independent filmmaking, and garnering fans along the way who contributed to his crowdfunding campaign to make “Blumenthal” a reality

Scott Z. Burns Talks Writing 'Side Effects,' Confirms Soderbergh Is Directing His Columbine Play 'The Library'

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • February 8, 2013 11:20 AM
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It was supposed to be so easy: Steven Soderbergh, for his last theatrical feature, was going to reteam with two of his favorite collaborators (handsome movie star George Clooney and his "Contagion" screenwriter Scott Z. Burns) for a big budget Hollywood spectacle, an adaptation of the television spy series "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." But, things slowly fell apart, first when an injury sidelined Clooney and then when Warner Bros, nervous about Soderbergh going with a potentially unproven star (and shaky about the budget and period setting), shuttered the project indefinitely. But, just as Soderbergh moved from "Moneyball" to "Haywire," so too did Burns and Soderbergh soldier on, this time turning to a project Burns had wanted to direct himself – a psychosexual thriller set in the pharmaceutical industry called "Side Effects."

Interview: Steven Soderbergh Talks 'Side Effects'; 'Behind The Candelabra' & Comparing 'Dragon Tattoo' Notes With David Fincher

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • February 7, 2013 12:04 PM
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Steven Soderbergh is almost out the door. Last week we rolled out part one of our interview with the filmmaker about his impending retirement from cinema, his process of filmmaking, the "tyranny of narrative," and his upcoming directorial efforts on the stage (including reviving an old film project, "Cleopatra"). Today, we deliver our final part of our lengthy chat with the director focusing on his Scott Z. Burns-penned pharma-thriller-caper, "Side Effects."

Jason Schwartzman Talks Working With Charlie Sheen & Martin Scorsese's Influence On 'A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charles Swan III'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • February 7, 2013 10:02 AM
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This Friday, theatrical audiences can take “A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charlies Swan III.” Starring Charlie Sheen as the titular self-destructive graphic designer, the film is a comedic fantasia about his various alcohol-fueled fantasies and dreams, but it also finds time to showcase best friend and standup comedian Kirby, as played by an acerbic Jason Schwartzman. And while Schwartzman is now a veteran of several movie sets, it’s hard to beat the amount of fun he had building Kirby for Roman Coppola’s second film.

Göteborg Interview: 'Something In The Air' Director Olivier Assayas On Rebellion, Memory & Godard Vs. Truffaut

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • February 6, 2013 4:05 PM
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  • 1 Comment
With “Something in the Air,” French director Olivier Assayas (“Carlos,” “Summer Hours,” “Irma Vep,” “Cold Water”) turned in his most autobiographical work to date. A coming-of-age tale set against a backdrop of radical student politics, sex and drugs in 1970s France, we reviewed the film out of Venice  and then caught up with the director at NYFF to talk about it. All of which meant when we recently got to meet him again, at the Göteborg International Film Festival, we could afford the luxury of letting the conversation range off-topic from the revolutionary politics of the film’s era to the idea of storytelling in film as an act of rebellion, to the problems in film criticism (Assayas himself wrote for Cahiers du Cinema) and even briefly to the Beatles vs the Stones.

Jude Law Talks His Journey In 'Side Effects,' Working With Soderbergh & Who's On His Wishlist To Work With

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • February 4, 2013 1:05 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Before his declared retirement, Steven Soderbergh is putting out films at a fast and furious rate. After 2012 brought us “Haywire” and “Magic Mike” (with a little second unit work on “The Hunger Games”), and before his Liberace biopic “Behind the Candelabra,” he’s reteamed with his “Contagion” and “The Informant!” screenwriter Scott Z. Burns for the psychological thriller “Side Effects” starring Jude Law as a psychiatrist who prescribes a new antidepressant to a troubled young woman played by Rooney Mara.

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