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Thompson on Hollywood

Palm Springs Int'l Shortfest: Winners, Favorites & Trailers for Doc 'Battle of the Jazz Guitarist' and Oscar-Eligible 'Behind the Mirrors'

The 2012 Palm Springs International ShortFest received 3,000 submissions this year, and 324 lucky shorts were chosen to screen at the Camelot Theaters, a welcome respite from the oppressive heat where Palm Springs locals and out-of-towners delight in the films featured by the festival...
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 26, 2012 6:08 PM
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Palm Springs Int'l Shortfest: Gus Van Sant's Early Shorts & Set Stories; Robert Elswit's Cinematography Master Class

The Palm Springs Shortfest 2012 has come to a close. As a first timer at the fest, I was treated to some wonderful films, a Master Class with cinematographer Robert Elswit, a great Q & A with the Spirit of Short Film award winner Gus Van Sant and, of course, the great company...
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 26, 2012 3:52 PM
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Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna, XXVII Edizione - Day 2: Gary Cooper's 'Distant Drums,' 'Kalpana,' 'Point Blank,' Ruspoli & More

Meredith Brody follows a sleepless night in Bologna with a series of unplanned screenings, delicious sounding food and an accidental nap during a breezy outdoor screening of "Point Blank" at the Piazza Maggiore...
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • June 26, 2012 1:17 PM
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Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna, XXVI Edizione: Don't Cry Over Spilt Celluloid

To borrow a formulation from Proust: for a long time I wanted to go to what is perhaps the most cinephilic of all film festivals, Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • June 25, 2012 1:27 AM
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Moscow Junket Diary One: White Nights, Red Square and 'Two Days'

I am on a junket to Moscow. It's not the normal press junket, where Fox or Disney ships a cadre of TV and online scribes to London to interview Ridley Scott and Charlize Theron for "Prometheus," or Scotland for "Brave." This one is unusual.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 23, 2012 5:24 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Best of the Week: LA Film Fest Reviews, 'Girls' & 'Newsroom,' Plus Remembering Andrew Sarris

This week on TOH, we covered the heck out of the ongoing LA Film Festival, looked at the excellent Season 1 run of "Girls" while rounding up mixed reviews for the soon-to-start Season 1 of Aaron Sorkin's "The Newsroom," and culled early critics' reactions to "The Amazing Spider-Man" and "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter." All this and more below!
  • By TOH!
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  • June 22, 2012 5:27 PM
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LAFF: 'Middle of Nowhere' Gets Two Standing Ovations; DuVernay & Cast Talk Black Films Reaching Audiences In A Meaningful Way [New Teaser]

Ava DuVernay's "Middle of Nowhere" played to a full house and two standing ovations at its Gala screening at the LA Film Fest on June 20. The drama is honest and immersive, moving and sexy, funny and unexpected.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 22, 2012 3:39 PM
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  • 5 Comments

The Art of the Mystery Doc: Must-Sees 'Searching for Sugar Man' and 'The Imposter'

Festival faves "The Imposter" (Indomina, July 13) and "Searching for Sugar Man" (Sony Pictures Classics, July 27) are two hit Sundance docs that play like features. In other words, their directors manipulate their stories so that we are left in the dark, eagerly following clues, seeking the answer to mysteries that unfold in surprising ways.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 21, 2012 5:50 PM
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LAFF Mid-Fest Report: Reviews, Exclusive Clips and Ursula Meier Talks Oscar-Worthy 'Sister' (VIDEO)

Halfway through Film Independent's LA Film Fest, we've sampled a spectrum of films, among them a gala premiere ("Seeking a Friend for the End of the World"), an indie debut ("Pincus"), indie gems ("Beasts of the Southern Wild," "Gimme the Loot"), a foreign stunner ("Sister") and powerful docs ("The Invisible War," "Birth Story").
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 19, 2012 7:17 PM
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Academy Announces Summer Long 'Last 70mm Film Festival'

As the film industry prepares to say good-bye--despite the efforts of celluloid holdout Christoher Nolan-- not only to Kodak but to film stock itself, the Academy is celebrating 70mm films all summer long with "The Last 70mm Film Festival." It will kick off at its Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills on July 9 with "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" and a reunion of its cast (including Mickey Rooney, Carl Reiner, Jonathan Winters, Stan Freberg and casting director Lyn Stalmaster). Check out the lineup below. More details will be available here.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 19, 2012 5:00 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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