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NYFF Review: Alain Resnais Makes A Delightful Final Film With 'You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet!'

  • By Peter Labuza
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  • October 2, 2012 11:04 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Alain Resnais is no stranger to the absurd. For over fifty years, his films—beginning with “Hiroshima, Mon Amour,” have asked questions through their oblique narratives about the way we think about story, performance, and cinema. But such a serious statement also obscures the pure delight it is to get lost in the filmmaker’s lush imagery and his pure sense of magic. Surrealism can spark at any moment, and never feels unnatural. And in “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet!,” the filmmaker’s purported last film, he’s gone to new wild imaginations of delight, a true send off from one generation of cinematic legends to the next.

NYFF Review: 'Barbara' A Fresh Look Into 1980s Germany, Focusing On Life & Love

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • October 1, 2012 12:58 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Though maybe a bit too stiff and straight-laced, "Barbara" is a frequently subtle, moderately interesting character study set in a grievous East Germany during the 1980s. What are especially nice are the painstaking ways that director Christian Petzold ("Jerichow," "Dreileben: Beats Being Dead") avoids obvious nods to the time period -- forget drenching the film in some kind of filter as a signifier (a la the once-abused-now-Instagram-friendly sepiatone), the filmmaker even refuses simple explanatory title cards and instead dresses the environment appropriately, offering hints of the current year in the background set pieces and radio programs. This kind of understated nature runs the entire feature; in fact, one of the most intriguing aspects of "Barbara" is the lack of narrative hand-holding, with the lead's main intent remaining a mystery for a good chunk of the movie. There are no twists to spoil, but admittedly, much of the film's pull anchors on its masterful use of low-key storytelling -- take a gander at the next paragraph at your own risk.

NYFF: Ang Lee, Suraj Sharma & Yann Martel Discuss The Necessity Of Faith In Making 'Life Of Pi'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • September 30, 2012 10:54 AM
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  • 0 Comments
As the opening night film for the New York Film Festival, all eyes were on “Life of Pi,” the big-budget studio adaptation of Yann Martel’s best-seller from A-List director Ang Lee. And while some were focused on the spectacle of the film, from the enormous cost and logistical issues of filming to the colorful 3D that frames this story of survival, the one element that drove the filmmakers was the idea of faith.

NYFF Review: 'Life Of Pi' Is An Inspiring & Visually Stunning Tale Of Faith, Hope & Self-Discovery

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • September 28, 2012 3:27 PM
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  • 11 Comments
Taiwanese-born American film director Ang Lee’s career is difficult to pin down. He’s constructed nuanced and well-crafted dramas of various milieus and textures (from “The Ice Storm,” and “Sense and Sensibility” to the more erotic “Lust/Caution” and “Brokeback Mountain”) and orchestrated films of more action-oriented visual pizzazz and flair as well ("Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," "Hulk"). Perhaps bridging all of his eclectic interests, Lee configures a lovely and winning formula for the dazzling and emotionally rich “Life Of Pi.”

NYFF Review: 'Roman Polanski: Odd Man Out' Depicts A Filmmaker In Crisis Mode Overshadowing Her Subject

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • September 28, 2012 9:57 AM
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  • 1 Comment
In “Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired,” filmmaker Marina Zenovich attempted to shine a light on the darker corners of the Polanski rape case that forced him to flee the country. Its affect was considerable in the public perception of his case, to the point where it was soon reopened by investigators. Unfortunately, that led to a legal reconsideration as well, bringing heat to a longstanding desire from law enforcement officials to bring Polanski to justice. There’s no room for compassionate reconsideration in the world of law enforcement, but Zenovich’s follow-up, “Roman Polanski: Odd Man Out,” suggests that there’s possibly room for deception and corruption.

Exclusive: New York Film Festival 50th Anniversary Trailer Highlights An Exciting 2012 Lineup

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 27, 2012 1:16 PM
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  • 1 Comment
2012 seems to be the golden year for some pretty big institutions with both James Bond and The Rolling Stones celebrating five decades of making history. But this week also marks another big occasion as the New York Film Festival rings in its 50th anniversary, with this year's slate of movies possibly being their biggest yet. And with the festival kicking off tomorrow, we've got an exclusive trailer that serves as a fantastic highlight of what's to come over the next few weeks.

NYFF: Cristian Mungiu On Social Control, Communism & Those Long Takes In 'Beyond The Hills'

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • September 24, 2012 10:56 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Though it took some time (and a stopover for an omnibus titled “Tales from the Golden Age”), Romanian auteur and Palm d’or recipient Cristian Mungiu has finally returned with a new full length film, “Beyond The Hills,” another penetrating, finespun narrative that took both Best Screenplay and Best Actress awards at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. Here, the director starts off with a true story: Voichiţa (Cosmina Stratan) and Alina (Cristina Flutur) spent their childhood together in an orphanage before the two went their separate ways, the former becoming a nun in rural Romania and the other working odd-jobs in Germany. After years apart, the two decide to meet and it’s soon revealed, very subtly, that they had more than just a close friendship. But Voichiţa is supremely dedicated to her faith, and when she refuses a plan to leave the convent for Germany, Alina does all that she can to prove to her friend that her way of life is wrong.

NYFF: Noah Baumbach Explains Why 'Frances Ha' Is Like A Paul McCartney Record & More From The Cast

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • September 21, 2012 2:05 PM
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  • 0 Comments
The Noah Baumbach Fanclub was likely pretty disheartened this year. "While We're Young" had casting rumors buzzing around it, but soon went quiet (to make matters worse, he states here that it likely won't go for awhile) and his pilot for Jonathan Franzen's "The Corrections" was ultimately not picked up by HBO.

NYFF: Marina Zenovich Talks About Her "Complicated" Relationship With Roman Polanski, Discusses Richard Pryor Doc

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • September 20, 2012 11:04 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Few could have predicted the after-effects of Marina Zenovich’s “Roman Polanski: Wanted And Desired.” Analyzing the circuitous legal route of Roman Polanski’s trial and subsequent departure from the United States, the picture actually featured evidence allowing lawyers to re-open the case. Giving momentum to the legal proceedings, the case’s reawakening began a chain of events that led to Swiss authorities nabbing the filmmaker as he touched down for the Zurich Film Festival, beginning a new battle in the courts.

NYFF Review: Barry Levinson's 'The Bay' Is A Frightening Eco-Horror 'Jaws' Riff

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 19, 2012 6:07 PM
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  • 5 Comments
Primarily known for his talky, small-scale comedic dramas, exemplified by his beloved "Diner," Vanity Fair recently made a compelling argument for this seminal Barry Levinson film influencing everything from "Seinfeld" and "Swingers" to Judd Apatow's comedy factory and feel-good Hollywood trifles like "The Natural." In light of this posit, this makes "The Bay," Levinson's new, highly squishy found footage horror movie more than just a career left turn; it's more like he veered onto oncoming traffic. The only thing more surprising than Levinson making "The Bay," though, is how effectively creepy it is.

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