The Playlist

'The Great Beauty' Director Paolo Sorrentino Talks His Oscar Nominated Film & Desire To Make An L.A. Noir

  • By Drew Taylor
  • |
  • February 20, 2014 3:04 PM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
The Great Beauty, Paolo Sorrentino
There are a number of exceptional films nominated for this year's Foreign Language Oscar, but none swept us up quite like "The Great Beauty." The film, directed by Paolo Sorrentino, follows an aging journalist (played by Sorrentino regular Toni Servillo), as he makes his way through modern day Rome and deals with his own mortality. It's a giant, sumptuous, glittery delight, with party sequences that make the overblown excess of "The Great Gatsby" seem paltry by comparison, and has an unexpectedly melancholic and spiritual core. We were lucky enough to sit down with Sorrentino, on the eve of the Oscars, to talk about the film, how "La Dolce Vita" inspired the production, the music in his movies, why he wants to do an L.A.-set noir at some point and much more.

Richard Linklater Discusses His 12-Year Project 'Boyhood,' Chronology, Memory & A Movie That Occurs Offscreen

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 18, 2014 1:20 PM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Richard Linklater, Boyhood
Richard Linklater is a lot like a Richard Linklater movie. There’s a looseness, and an approachability that is engaging (and made for an enjoyably chatty Berlin Film Festival interview), but it’s also somewhat deceptive of the deeper currents of thoughtfulness and a kind of philosophical curiosity, that run beneath the laid-back, genial exterior. And both these sides of his personality are on full display in the wonderful “Boyhood” (our Sundance review is here) his twelve-years-in-the-making study of a young boy from ages six through eighteen, when he finally leaves home for college. It is both a simple, unpretentious portrait of a certain child coming of age, and a sprawling, ambitious, encompassing exploration of grand universal themes. It’s hard to think of another example where the operatic has been so unassumingly presented.

Interview: Jack O'Connell On '71,' 'Starred Up,' Working With Angelina Jolie & Getting Spray Tanned For '300' Sequel

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 12, 2014 1:04 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
'71 Jack O'Connell
It’s February 2014 and it’s more than likely that, if you live in America, you’d have a hard time picking Jack O’Connell out of a line-up. But by year’s end we’ll wager that will have changed as by then, if there’s any justice in the world both “Starred Up” the fantastic prison drama that we caught in Goteborg, and “‘71” which has proven one of the biggest hits of the Berlinale will have made it across the Atlantic, to be followed by “Unbroken” the Angelina Jolie-directed bestseller adaptation that has “prestige project” and “potential award magnet” writ large on it already. And that’s not even mentioning an abs-bearing, sword-brandishing role in the “300” sequel. Once all of this exposure hits, O’Connell may feel like an overnight sensation, but as the 23-year-old reminded us during our very enjoyable Berlinale interview, he’s been at this for nearly a decade now.

Wes Anderson Talks Romanticizing Bygone Eras, Nostalgia & The Imaginary World Of ‘Grand Budapest Hotel’

  • By Rodrigo Perez
  • |
  • February 7, 2014 12:20 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Berlin: Unless you’re in the genres of fantasy or sci-fi, one can argue no one makes grounded, but idiosyncratic fairy tale-like worlds quite like Wes Anderson. The director’s latest, “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” is set in the imaginary country of Zubrowka, an alpine Eastern European nation, and centers on a spa town whose main highlight is the legendary concierge, M. Gustave H, who works at the Grand Budapest Hotel.

Interview: Director Joanna Hogg On 'Exhibition,' Tom Hiddleston And The Challenges Of Staying “Indie”

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 5, 2014 7:07 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
Since her debut with 2007’s “Unrelated,” which is also regarded as the breakout for a certain Tom Hiddleston, British director Joanna Hogg has been quietly making a name for herself as a filmmaker of very distinctive and original style. Her third feature, “Exhibition,” which played at the Göteborg International Film Festival last week, sees her break somewhat with the previous two, both of which dealt more overtly with an analysis of the British middle-class family, to tell instead the story of a married, childless artist couple, H and D, who decide to move from their beloved, modernist home of 18 years. We had the pleasure of meeting Hogg in Göteborg, and having her talk us through “Exhibition” (which will be released stateside in March), and her creative outlook and process in general.

Interview: Director David Mackenzie On The Cast And The Process Behind 'Starred Up' Plus Upcoming Projects

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 4, 2014 4:28 PM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
David Mackenzie, Starred Up
One of the highlights of the Göteborg International Film Festival, and indeed one of the highlights of our year so far, was catching up with David Mackenzie’s “Starred Up," which, if you missed our review first time out, you can read all about here. The unflinching but brutally human prison drama is based on a script by first-timer Jonathan Asser, a writer and poet by whose experiences inspired the film and the character of Oliver, the posh but dedicated volunteer inmate counselor.

Terry Gilliam: My Life In 8 Movies

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 4, 2014 3:27 PM
  • |
  • 3 Comments
Kicking off what may be a semi-regular series, the wonderful Terry Gilliam proved totally game for the challenge when we found we had a few minutes to spare at the end of our interview at the Göteborg International Film Festival (you can find the rest of it here). Essentially, the idea is that while we're interested in our favorite filmmakers’ films, we’re also interested in what they’re interested in, and we hope you might be too.

Interview: Writer & Director Steven Knight On 'Locke,' Tom Hardy & Future Projects Including 'Eastern Promises 2'

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • February 3, 2014 3:25 PM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
 Steven Knight On "Locke," Tom Hardy,
One of the chief pleasures of the Göteborg International Film Festival, aside from the charming Swedishness of it all (particularly fond of the helper whose novel take on the “switch off your f*cking phone” message was to implore us not to forget to turn our phones “back on, the second you leave”), is the quality time we get to spend with our interview subjects. One of or most enjoyable meetings this time out was with screenwriter Steven Knight, whose fascinating sophomore directorial outing “Locke,” (our review from Venice is here) played the festival. Here are the fruits of our wide-ranging conversation with the “Eastern Promises,” “Dirty Pretty Things” and “Peaky Blinders” writer (who also—random trivia—devised and originally pitched “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?”), including his thoughts on writing for TV vs. film, his crowded upcoming slate and lots about “Locke” ...so we should probably give a little background.

Interview: Lynn Shelton & Sam Rockwell On Working With Keira Knightley & Chloë Grace Moretz In ‘Laggies’

  • By Kristin McCracken
  • |
  • January 27, 2014 4:06 PM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Laggies
Since her breakout film “Humpday” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival five years ago, writer/director Lynn Shelton has been one of the hardest-working women in the business. In addition to her last two features—“Your Sister’s Sister” and “Touchy Feely”—she has also directed episodes of “New Girl” and “Mad Men.” Her films are complex and touching explorations of human relationships and, until now, they have mostly been improvisational works developed with talented ensembles of actors.

Interview: Jason Schwartzman & Alex Ross Perry Discuss Misanthrophy Of 'Listen Up Philip'

  • By Kristin McCracken
  • |
  • January 27, 2014 1:08 PM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
One of the most buzzed-about films at Sundance last week was Alex Ross Perry’s latest, “Listen Up Philip,” starring Jason Schwartzman as a misanthropic novelist without a filter in what’s being called “his best role since 'Rushmore' " (read our A-grade review here).The stellar cast is rounded out by Elisabeth Moss as Philip’s long-suffering girlfriend, Jonathan Pryce as his egotist-author role model (based, most likely, on Philip Roth), and a string of past and potential paramours (Dree Hemingway, Joséphine de La Baume, Kate Lyn Sheil). Even the peripheral acting by Krysten Ritter and Jess Weixler is first-rate, allowing Perry’s work to shine like it never has before.

Email Updates

Recent Comments