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The Playlist

Richard Linklater's 'Boyhood,' Christophe Gans' 'Beauty & The Beast' & More Added To Berlin Line-Up

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 15, 2014 7:55 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Beauty & The Beast
With the Sundance Film Festival kicking off tomorrow, it will be the first stop for many films on the 2014 festival circuit as they pick up steam before eventual awards season runs, theatrical releases or both. And as Park City gets ready to kick things off stateside, over at the Berlin Film Festival, they are gearing up to roll out the red carpet for international audiences next month.

Lars von Trier's Uncut 'Nymphomaniac Part 1' To Premiere At Berlin Film Festival

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 20, 2013 9:09 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Nymphomaniac Lars von Trier
The first reviews for Lars von Trier's theatrical cut of "Nymphomaniac" rolled in earlier this week, and as usual, the filmmaker has defied expectations. Yes, there is lot of flesh on screen but many of the reviews instead focused on the ideas contained therein. But still, one has to wonder about what von Trier has cooking in his 5 1/2 hour director's cut of the movie, which runs 90 minutes longer than the theatrical version and will be more sexually explicit. Well, we're about to find out.

George Clooney's 'Monuments Men' Heads To Berlin Film Festival For International Premiere

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • November 8, 2013 8:44 AM
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  • 0 Comments
While it won't be in the Oscar race this year, that doesn't mean "Monuments Men" won't be getting the red carpet treatment. George Clooney's latest writer/starring/directing vehicle is headed to the Berlin International Film Festival where the star-studded, true story tale a ragtag bunch of Americans tasked with recovering looted art from the Nazis will make its international premiere as part of the official progamme.

Wes Anderson's 'The Grand Budapest Hotel' Will Open 2014 Berlin Film Festival

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 5, 2013 6:54 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The Grand Budapest Hotel
While many of our colleagues number it among their favorite destinations in the calendar, the Berlin International Film Festival has sometimes struggled to compete against principal rivals Cannes and Venice, at least in terms of how high-profile its big movies have been. It's been the discovery point of some wonderful films, of course -- "A Separation," "Tabu" and "Gloria" are among those that premiered there in recent years. But its place in the calendar, in February, doesn't quite fit with the awards-season-obsession of Hollywood, and so its line-up is often less star-studded than its rivals, with its biggest premieres often coming from movies that screened in the U.S. months earlier.

Review: Matt Porterfield’s Empathetic, Observational ‘I Used To Be Darker’

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • October 2, 2013 7:01 PM
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  • 0 Comments
In between the big events that mark our lives—the births, the deaths, the falling-in-loves, the breaking-ups, the runnings-away, the reconciliations—there often exists a kind of pause moment. And it’s one such moment that Matt Porterfield’s Sundance-approved third feature, “I Used to be Darker,” deals with; a caesura that punctuates the Big Life Business that is going on in the disparate lives of one fragmented family. This a film that largely takes place either before or after the real dramas, so Porterfield sets himself a difficult task from the outset: how to dramatize that which is determinedly anti-dramatic? It’s an issue that the film, for all its small, well-observed pleasures, never really overcomes. It’s not helped by Porterfield taking his time with his largely non-professional or first-timer cast either; the film’s considered pacing takes a little getting used to. But by its end, the film had worked its way under our skin deeper than we expected, and through skilfully unobtrusive editing and camerawork, we felt we had a clear, honest picture of these lives. It is essentially an exercise in mining a very specific, particular situation for tiny but universal truths, and if you have the patience, the insights are there.

Karlovy Vary Review: Berlin Golden Bear Winner 'Child's Pose'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • July 6, 2013 1:15 PM
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  • 1 Comment
One of the great pleasures of the Karlovy Vary Film Festival, aside from its generally friendly atmosphere, and awesome local tipple Becherovka, is that its timing and the breadth of its selection gives us the chance to catch up with films we, for one reason or another, missed at festivals previously. And so it was with Calin Peter Netzer's "Child's Pose," a film that didn't make it onto our radar in advance at all, but then snuck up and took the Golden Bear at this year's Berlinale, while we were probably, statistically speaking, in the next theater over watching a James Franco movie.

Interview: Shane Carruth Reveals The Mysteries Of 'Upstream Color'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • April 8, 2013 3:02 PM
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  • 9 Comments
Upstream Color
In the hopes that some of you got to see "Upstream Color" over the weekend at one of its few, packed screenings, we're bringing you the concluding part of our interview with director Shane Carruth from the Berlin Film Festival, in which we spoke in a more minute way about the ins and outs of the film's plot, the motivations of some of its key characters, the thematic importance of the sound design and the metaphysics that underlies its ultimate meaning. Those who haven't yet had the singular pleasure of seeing it, we can only urge to go back and read parts one and two of the interview, or our review from Sundance, and then bookmark this one for later, as it's probably too close a reading of the film for anyone who hasn't yet become entangled in its enigmas.

Interview: Shane Carruth Talks Trying To Make The Perfect "Album Film" With 'Upstream Color'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • April 3, 2013 2:35 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
In Part One of our Shane Carruth interview, we brought you news of the "Primer" director's other projects -- the abortive "A Topiary," his work on Rian Johnson's "Looper" and the gestating "The Modern Ocean." But, of course, the real excitement is for "Upstream Color," which hits theaters this Friday, and it's a film that those Playlisters who've seen it have been profoundly impressed by. We can't wait for what will no doubt become a lively discourse because, much as we loved it, the film's willful impressionism has seen more than a few viewers, perhaps initially attracted by the genre trappings, leave the cinema (early) and frustrated. But as Carruth himself says, "People who are getting it are really getting it," and we humbly count ourselves among the latter group. During our extensive interview with the filmmaker at the Berlin International Film Festival, we got to talk in depth about his inspirations, his process and his hopes for the film's reception.

'Upstream Color' Director Shane Carruth Reveals Details On Next Project 'The Modern Ocean,' His Work On 'Looper' & More

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • April 1, 2013 4:02 PM
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  • 5 Comments
Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
Psychotropic, romantic and beautiful like a scary dream, Shane Carruth’s long-awaited follow-up to "Primer," the self-distributed "Upstream Color" comes to theaters this Friday. Though it will undoubtedly divide, it has already, in its way, conquered many who've seen it: our reviewer in Sundance was little short of enraptured by the film, and this writer wholeheartedly agrees after seeing it at the Berlin International Film Festival. There are very few films that have the power to stay with you, buzzing and humming below the surface of your consciousness, for days after you see them, but the strains of "Upstream Color" remain with us still.

Interview: Emma Stone Talks Comedy, 'The Croods' And Cameron Crowe; Scores Off The Charts On Likability

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • February 24, 2013 1:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Having enjoyed pretty much the definition of a meteoric rise to fame, you could maybe forgive Emma Stone for having lost the run of herself. But just as her big-screen persona is usually based on being the approachable, down-to-earth, girl-next-door type, in person she demonstrates many of those qualities too, along with an absolute refusal to take herself too seriously. It made for an entertaining interview at the Berlin Film Festival following the premiere of her animated film “The Croods” (our review here). And if some members of our small press group were not just eating out of her hand, but apparently longing to curl up in her lap and go to sleep there by the end of our time with her, in between the various "Why are you so awesome?"-style questions, Stone did fill us in quite a bit on her philosophy towards her career to date, her role models and what the future holds. And if she has been taught to be a little cagey in some areas, she admitted as much saying, “This is what ‘Spider-Man’ does to you I’m always like ‘I don’t know if I can tell you about that, you’ll have to wait and see.’ About everything. ‘Would you like some water?’ ‘I dunno, you’ll have to wait and see…’ ”

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