Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

The Playlist

10 Notable Filmmakers Who Work In Both Documentary & Fiction

  • By The Playlist Staff
  • |
  • November 7, 2013 1:31 PM
  • |
  • 9 Comments
10 Filmmakers Who Work In Documentary And Fiction
Truth may or may not be stranger than fiction, but both impulses certainly exert a powerful pull on the filmmaking instinct. With so many established narrative directors over the years turning their hand to documentaries, whether it’s “making of,” band documentaries, or passion projects that they use to create greater awareness of the issues that are closest to their hearts, it’s a well-trodden path. And while they’re treading that path, they get to wave at the men and women coming in the opposite direction: documentarians make the crossover into narrative just as frequently. This week’s release of “How I Live Now” (our review is here) from Kevin Macdonald is another example of how, for some directors, the dividing line between fiction and non-fiction is one they can criss-cross time and again throughout their careers—it’s a fiction film, but Macdonald’s been alternating between the formats evenly for the last decade or so.

NYFF: Claire Denis Talks 'Bastards,' The Restriction Of Dialogue & More Plus Watch Full Festival Q&A

  • By Diana Drumm
  • |
  • October 7, 2013 3:05 PM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Claire Denis
"Bastards" is one of the most divisive films to his the festival circuit this year. Our own Jessica Kiang reviewed the film at Cannes and wrote that the Un Certain Regard film "has so far not so much divided as cleaved" audiences. We saw it on Friday at the New York Film Festival and would have to agree that it certainly will make you feel strongly one way or the other (and you won't look at a corncob the same way again). Whether you love it or leave the theater with distaste, there's no denying that Claire Denis is a filmmaker who can evoke very forceful emotions. Right after the screening, Denis sat down with Kent Jones and discussed the controversial film, the restriction of dialogue, the portrayal of women as victims, and much more.

Watch: 'Venezia 70 - Future Reloaded' Short Films By Claire Denis, James Franco, Paul Schrader & Many More

  • By Cain Rodriguez
  • |
  • September 24, 2013 10:45 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Not all of us have the luxury of being able to drop everything and head off to world’s most prestigious film festivals, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the fun. In celebration of its 70th anniversary, the Venice International Film Festival commissioned “Venezia 70 - Future Reloaded,” a series of seventy shorts from directors all over the world. Lucky for you, a sizable chunk of those shorts have landed online for your viewing pleasure.

Watch: 5 New Clips From Claire Denis' Divisive 'Bastards' Plus Listen To Full Score By Tindersticks

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
  • |
  • September 20, 2013 10:37 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
The Bastards, Claire Denis
For all of director Claire Denis' traditional fragmented narratives and elliptical editing techniques, her Cannes entry this year, “Bastards,” has unsettled audiences even further, causing a fest reaction that we wrote “not so much divided as cleaved” down the middle. Fashioning a tale of abuse, revenge, and guilt into a bizarre mixture of moods and influences, the film will finally make its way to U.S. theatres next month, and we've got a crop of five new clips to help us get a sense of Denis' latest rhythms.

20 Great Debut Films From Female Directors

  • By The Playlist Staff
  • |
  • August 29, 2013 3:44 PM
  • |
  • 21 Comments
20 great Debut/female directors
One of the less reported stories of this August’s film schedule is that the month not only saw three films released that were directed by women, but they were in fact three feature debuts — Lake Bell’s “In A World” opened to a rapturous reception (including ours) on the 9th, Jerusha Hess’ “Austenland” bowed the following week, and this Friday Jill Solloway’s “Afternoon Delight” begins its run (our review is here). One swallow, or even three, may not make a summer, but these green shoots must certainly be promising for those in favor of changing the current female:male ratio in the film directing profession (which runs at 1 to 15.24 in the U.S. according to a Sundance Institute report) to a number that isn’t so outrageously out of whack that you have to keep double checking it. Yep, it’s 1:15.24.

Air Scoring Norwegian Thriller 'Pioneer,' Mychael Danna Tuning Up 'Queen Of The Night' & Claire Denis' 'Bastards' Gets Soundtrack Release

  • By Drew Taylor
  • |
  • July 30, 2013 7:28 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
Queen Of The Night Ryan Reynolds
Mychael Danna, who has scored all of Canadian director Atom Egoyan's features for the last twenty years (including the as-yet-unreleased "Devil's Knot," starring Colin Firth and Reese Witherspoon), will, unsurprisingly, contribute music to Egoyan's new film, "Queen of the Night." The thriller, starring Ryan Reynolds (mercifully away from any kind of comic book adaptation), Bruce Greenwood, Scott Speedman and Rosario Dawson, is about the search for a missing child and, like every other movie in the known universe, will be premiering at this fall's Toronto International Film Festival. Read on for more about new scores from Air and soundtrack details for Claire Denis' controversial "Bastards."

Watch: Career-Spanning, 1 Hour 45 Minute Conversation With 'White Material' & '35 Shots Of Rum' Director Claire Denis

  • By Ben Brock
  • |
  • July 16, 2013 12:16 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
Claire Denis
There is a film called “Chocolat,” released in 2000, about how a new chocolatier in a small French town brings a little sweetness – and even a little love – into the lives of everyone it touches. Lots of people saw it, mostly on dates, and it was nominated for some Oscars, and Johnny Depp was in it. There is a film called “Chocolat”, released in 1988, that you probably don't want to confuse with the other “Chocolat”; it's about race and sex and love and hatred, and is set in Cameroon, in that country's French colonial period. Not that many people saw it, and it didn't get nominated for any Oscars (though it was nominated for the Palme d'Or at Cannes), and it's not a good date movie, but it is a good movie, and it launched the career of its French director, Claire Denis.

Watch: French Trailer For Claire Denis' Disturbing Thriller 'The Bastards'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
  • |
  • June 28, 2013 10:20 AM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
The Bastards, Claire Denis
Leaving the beautiful, long-take photography characteristic of her past celebrated films for crudely edited, cheap-looking digital video and jumping headlong into the revenge thriller drama, Claire Denis' "The Bastards" was eye opener when it hit Cannes last month in more ways than one. And it's been hard to describe for those who haven't seen it, but now a new French trailer is here to give fans of the filmmaker a taste of the direction she's gone in.

Watch: Cannes Clips Including 'Zulu' With Orlando Bloom & Forest Whitaker, Claire Denis' 'Bastards,' Jia Zhangke's 'A Touch of Sin' & More

  • By Edward Davis
  • |
  • May 23, 2013 6:31 PM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Zulu, Orlando Bloom
To the outsider, the Cannes Film Festival can be a nebulous thing. Even if you know the filmmaker or the cast, sometimes you need more context than a review to give you a sort of firmer grasp of the shape, texture and tone of a movie. Clips from the festival are landing left and right, so we thought we'd grab a smattering and ground you a little deeper than some of the reviews and pictures your may or may not have seen. So here we go.

Cannes Review: Claire Denis Destined To Divide With Disturbing, Salacious 'The Bastards'

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • May 21, 2013 11:59 AM
  • |
  • 7 Comments
The Bastards, Claire Denis
If all art is only ever about sex and death, Claire Denis’ Un Certain Regard film “The Bastards” may be the most "artistic" one we’ve seen in Cannes to date, as it rolls around positively shamelessly in the musk of both. Or it may be a grubby little exercise in exploitation, depending on who you talk to. Whichever magnetic pole your opinion is drawn to (and it seems likely even this early on that very few of the responses to the film will share our relative middle ground -- it's a film that has so far not so much divided as cleaved), what’s for certain is that while in its elliptical, fragmentary, non-linear storytelling it bears the hallmarks of a Claire Denis film, in it the filmmaker strays into territory we’d never normally have associated her with, with peculiar and deeply unsettling effect. Fans of her dreamier, long-take, composed photography will be shocked by the choppy, disorienting close-ups we get here (slow opening scene aside), while those expecting any hint of her recurring post-colonialist themes and extraordinary sense of place will be disappointed by a film that eschews all wider politics and geography in favor of an almost generic psycho-sexual thriller plot, which of course ends up anything but generic in Denis’ hands.

Email Updates

Recent Comments