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The Playlist

The Films Of Sidney Lumet: A Retrospective

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 9, 2012 11:00 AM
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  • 13 Comments
Lumet was never fancy. He never needed to be, as a master of blocking, economic camera movements and framing that empowered the emotion and or exact punctuation of a particular scene. First and foremost, as you’ve likely heard ad nauseum -- but hell, it’s true -- Lumet was a storyteller, and one that preferred his beloved New York to soundstages (though let's not romanticize it too much, he did his fair share of work on studio film sets too as most TV journeyman and early studio filmmakers did).

The Essentials: The Films Of Claude Chabrol

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • September 22, 2011 5:04 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Claude Chabrol
Looking at the core French New Wave movement in broad strokes, you essentially get five Cahiers Du Cinéma critics-turned-filmmakers: Jean-Luc Godard, the all-you-need-is-a-gun-and-a-woman, pop-cinema deconstructionist turned oblique radical; François Truffaut, the humanist with an affinity for childhood; Eric Rohmer, the genial comedic moralist; opaque experimentalist Jacques Rivette; and then, over in the corner, Claude Chabrol. Considered by many to be the most mainstream of the group, with his sinister, provocative, Hitchockian impulses, the filmmaker was also appraised as a distant, sometimes aloof formalist, given his objectivist proclivity for eye-of-god morality tales that generally end in tragedy.

Oscilloscope Pulls A Criterion, Pick Up Rights To Nicholas Ray's Final Film 'We Can't Go Home Again'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 31, 2011 5:50 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Also Release New Documentary Don't Expect Too Much'We gotta hand it to Oscilloscope Laboratories. Founded by Beastie Boys member Adam Yauch, it could so easily have become a vanity DVD label without much influence or clout, but it has quickly risen to be strong independent player both theatrically and on home video. Their roster has accomodated a wide variety of strong films from "Bellflower," "Meek's Cutoff," "The Messenger," "Exit Through The Giftshop," "Dear Zachary" and much more. They have accommodated the arthouse and foreign films equally, and now are making a big stride into tackling classic films and directors.

Stanley Kubrick & Jim Thompson Almost Fell Out Over Screenwriting Credits To 'The Killing'

  • By The Playlist
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  • August 23, 2011 5:46 AM
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  • 5 Comments
And 10 Things Learned From The Criterion Collection's Release Of The Classic Film NoirLast week, the Criterion Collection released, "The Killing," Stanley Kubrick's ambitious 1956 classic film noir. While it was technically his third feature-length effort ("Fear and Desire" he disavowed as an amateur work and "Killer's Kiss" was so low-budget it was shot without sound and the actors dubbed in their lines later), "The Killing" was arguably Kubrick's first real picture with a budget and real cast. Produced by James B. Harris (he would also produce "Paths of Glory" and "Lolita"), "The Killing" was written by Kubrick and pulp crime author Jim Thompson ("The Killer Inside Me") and based on the novel "Clean Break" by American crime novelist Lionel White ("Obsession" was also adapted by Jean-Luc Godard as the basis for 1965's, "Pierrot le fou").

Oh Great, Someone Just Got The Remake Rights To 69 Kurosawa Movies, Including 19 Unmade Scripts

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 23, 2011 1:38 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Well, if this is proof of anything, it's that the remake/reboot phenomenon knows absolutely no boundaries.

Financing Nears On 'Lunatic At Large'; 2 More Unmade Kubrick Projects Continue Toward Production

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 22, 2011 2:23 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Almost as legendary as the films Stanley Kubrick did complete in his lifetime are the numerous projects that went unmade, but a few of those are getting a new lease on life. As you might recall, last spring, word surfaced that "Lunatic At Large" was headed toward the big screen with Scarlett Johansson and Sam Rockwell attached to star and Chris Palmer to direct. Not long after, "Downslope" and "God Fearing Man" joined 'Lunatic' on the production slate and then...nothing else was heard since.

30 Minutes Of Lost Alfred Hitchcock-Penned Film 'The White Shadow' Unearthed In New Zealand

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 3, 2011 1:37 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Any kind of discovery of a lost film is something of a victory for movie lovers, but particularly so when one of the 17 or so silent-era films that the master Alfred Hitchcock was involved in -- something of a Holy Grail for film restorers -- are dug up, and good news has arrived today courtesy of the LA Times. The paper reports that The National Film Preservation Foundation has announced that three reels, totaling about 30 minutes, of "The White Shadow," a 1923 film on which Hitchcock was the writer, assistant director, editor and production designer, have been discovered, and will be premiered at the Academy on September 22nd.

The Films Of Rainer Werner Fassbinder: A Retrospective

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • July 29, 2011 5:39 AM
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  • 12 Comments
"I'd like to be for cinema what Shakespeare was for theatre, Marx for politics and Freud for psychology: someone after whom nothing is as it used to be,” German director Rainer Werner Fassbinder once declared, likely half-seriously, half facetiously.

When Celebrated Directors Lose The Plot: Interesting Left Turns And Failures In An Auteur's Oeuvre

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • July 21, 2011 6:55 AM
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  • 86 Comments
Even the greatest of auteurs in cinema generally take one or two big missteps in their careers, either early on -- as happened to a lot of the Easy Riders/Raging Bulls generation of American filmmakers, bringing their hirsute hubris down to earth with a bump -- or later, when poor judgement and a degree of fossilisation can cloud a director’s vision -- see Quentin Tarantino’s remarks, for example, about not wanting to be a "geriatric" filmmaker, making films deep into his old age because this is when filmmakers generally lose their mojo, or Steven Soderbergh’s early retirement plans, which he hopes will see him exit filmmaking at the top of his game.

Orson Welles' 'Chimes At Midnight' Is Restored & Will Screen Next Month At The Screen Arts Festival

  • By Benjamin Wright
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  • July 14, 2011 10:37 AM
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  • 3 Comments
The body of work that enigmatic genius Orson Welles produced in his time on Earth is probably more than most of today’s best filmmakers will ever produce in their lives. While that may be a bit of an overstatement, there is no denying that there’s a reason Welles’ work is still preached in film schools around the world. For a man who did so much, it’s also a shame that some of his best work hasn’t been seen in a such a long time. Back in January we reported that his unfinished film “The Other Side of the Wind,” which features an insane ensemble that includes names like John Huston and Dennis Hopper, would finally see the light of day, but little has come of that. Now, another of Welles’ films is being unearthed, and this release seems a whole lot more promising (and not to mention definite).

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