The Playlist

Alexander Ebert Talks Scoring 'All Is Lost,' Getting Robert Redford To Surrender & Almost Making A Musical With Heath Ledger

  • By Edward Davis
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  • December 12, 2013 3:07 PM
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  • 2 Comments
All Is Lost, Robert Redford
Of all the survival narratives this fall, and there are many, director J.C. Chandor's "All Is Lost" is perhaps the most beautifully counter intuitive. If "Gravity" is the maximalist thrill ride in space, then "All Is Lost," it its opposite, a minimalist, moody, near wordless meditation of a man (Robert Redford) lost at sea. It's one man in the middle of the Indian Ocean with a schooner that's slowly sinking thanks to man made debris.

David O. Russell Talks 'American Hustle,' Enchantment, Opera, Musicals, The Immersion of Christian Bale & More

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • December 12, 2013 2:11 PM
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  • 1 Comment
David O. Russell, American Hustle, Playlist exclusive
Filmmaker David O. Russell has energy and enthusiasm to burn. “The Silver Lining’s Playbook” director is three for three now in his new era that includes “The Fighter” and his latest picture, “American Hustle” (review here). Starring the spectacular all-star cast of Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, and Jeremy Renner on top of supporting turns by Robert De Niro, Louie C.K., Jack Huston, Elizabeth Rohm and many more, Russell’s latest is a colorful 1970s-set New York dramedy that centers on a con man (Bale), his partner (Adams), and the FBI agent who nabs them and puts them on the hook to cooperate in what becomes of the biggest conspiracy stings of that era that involved, mayors, senators and other government officials.

Evangeline Lilly Talks 'The Desolation Of Smaug,' Playing Tauriel & Saying No To Tank Top-Wearing, Tomboy Characters

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • December 12, 2013 11:02 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug Evangeline Lilly
Since playing Kate for six seasons on “Lost,” Evangeline Lilly has become a virtual standard-bearer for midriff-exposing tomboys. But that’s also the reason you haven’t seen her in as many roles since: she has a few stipulations that characters must meet in order for her to consider playing them, including no tank tops, and perhaps even more crucially, no love triangles. But as a massive fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s novels, Lilly thrilled at the chance to join the cast of Peter Jackson’s adaptations of “The Hobbit”—even if the character was completely original, and as she soon discovered, finds herself in a love triangle.

‘American Hustle’ Cast Talks Funny Hairdos, Masks, Sexual Power & “That Kiss” Between Jennifer Lawrence & Amy Adams

  • By Edward Davis
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  • December 11, 2013 3:24 PM
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  • 3 Comments
American Hustle
“I was broke, I was fearless and ... I had nothing to lose,” Amy Adams' Sydney Prosser declares during the opening stages of "American Hustle" (our review), and it's something of a statement of intent for many of the characters in the film. While the advertising has promised a vivacious, entertaining, period-soaked caper movie—which David O. Russell's film certainly is—"American Hustle" is also a surprisingly rich character piece, one in which good people try to do the right, but in the wrong way, in a morally gray world.

Interview: Mads Mikkelsen On 'Hannibal' Season 2, 'The Salvation' And The Scandinavian Filmmaking Rennaissance

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 11, 2013 2:21 PM
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  • 2 Comments
A star for many years in his native Denmark prior to crossing over with the villain role in the first relaunched Bond movie, “Casino Royale,” Mads Mikkelsen, attending the Marrakech Film Festival as part of the Tribute to Scandinavian Cinema, has for quite some time now been one of our very favorite working actors. From early collaborations with Nicolas Winding Refn (the ‘Pusher’ Trilogy, “Valhalla Rising”) and Susanne Bier ("After The Wedding," "Open Hearts") right through to supporting roles in Hollywood fare (“The Three Musketeers,” “Clash of the Titans”), Mikkelsen is often the best thing in his movies, even if he’s only in them briefly.

Interview: Juliette Binoche On 'Sils Maria,' The Career/Life Balance & Finally Going Hollywood In 'Godzilla'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 11, 2013 10:33 AM
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  • 0 Comments
A Thousand Times Good Night
When revered Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami cancelled his attendance at the Marrakech Film Festival due to ill health, the organizers could have had a further problem on their hands as he was meant, in addition to giving a masterclass, to be handing out the award at one of the “Hommages”—the tributes given to a filmmaker or actor in recognition of their body of work. However, that one headache didn’t occur here because the recipient was Juliette Binoche, practically the busiest actress on the planet, and Bruno Dumont, her director in this year’s “Camille Claudel” and himself the subject of a Marrakech masterclass, stepped into the breach instead. It’s a mark of just how constantly she is shooting, and with what calibre of filmmaker, that, throw a stone at a festival like this, and you’ll hit two or three people who have worked with Binoche, and probably recently.

Marrakech Interview: Terry Gilliam On 'The Zero Theorem,' Re-Mounting 'Don Quixote' & The Return Of Monty Python

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 10, 2013 12:06 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Terry Gilliam
Something in the Moroccan air agrees with Terry Gilliam. When we met him here last, two years ago, he was in fine, jocular form and again this time he laughed and joked his way through his Marrakech Film Festival duties as a returning guest. This is despite the fact that a lot of what he had to say was essentially pessimistic, often shaded with that dark humor that characterizes so much of Gilliam's best output.

Marrakech Interview: Tomas Alfredson On "Slow Cooking," The 'Tinker Tailor' Sequel And Staying In Sweden

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 10, 2013 11:04 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Tomas Alfredson Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
A little like being told not to think of an elephant, when the small group of press who got to meet Tomas Alfredson at the Marrakech Film Festival was asked in advance not to ask about his next project, it was pretty much all any of us could think about. The “Let the Right One In” and “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” director has long been attached to an adaptation of “The Brothers Lionheart,” a children’s fantasy story by beloved Swedish author Astrid Lindgren (who also created Pippi Longstocking), and the version of the film that he was putting together was at one point rumored to have the highest ever budget for a Scandinavian film. Which is perhaps why Alfredson is a little gunshy about talking about it—in fact he told us that he doesn’t like to speak about projects before they are 100% financed and set in stone, so perhaps there’s still a question mark hovering there?

Marrakech Interview: Nicolas Winding Refn On Disliking Vikings, Realism & What He Learned From 'Fear X'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 9, 2013 2:12 PM
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  • 1 Comment
It’s telling, and maybe also a little paradoxical, that of the huge array of Nordic talent assembled onstage at the Scandinavian tribute last week at the Marrakech Film Festival, the honor itself was accepted (on the delegation’s behalf) by Nicolas Winding Refn. Telling, because it shows just how sky-high the director’s profile is, despite, or maybe because of, the mixed reaction to this year’s “Only God Forgives,” the follow-up to his Cannes-busting “Drive.” A little paradoxical, because it really feels that Refn can be less and less associated with the region of his birth these days: his last truly Danish film was 2005’s “Pusher 3” and his ongoing association with Ryan Gosling, along with his interest in non-European settings and cultures, makes him feel more international-with-maybe-an-independent-American-edge than anything else.

Marrakech Q&A: Martin Scorsese The Desire To Make Films, Suggests He Only Has A Few Left & Hopes ‘Silence’ Is Next

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 9, 2013 1:08 PM
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  • 17 Comments
The Wolf Of Wall Street, Scorsese
Over the weekend at the Marrakech Film Festival, as a final treat before the red carpet got rolled up for another year, 2013 Jury President Martin Scorsese did a brief Q&A at the local film school, to which he is apparently a returning guest. Scorsese has filmed twice in the area ("The Last Temptation of Christ" and "Kundun" both made extensive use of the arid desertland around the nearby Ouarzazarte studios) and so has filmmaking ties to the region that led to the students referring to him, endearingly, as their "godfather."

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