› Score: Music Documentary
› Andrei Tarkovsky's Stalker
› Jon Bernthal in Pilgrimage
› Desplechin's Ismael's Ghosts
› Elsa Dorfman's The B-Side
› S. Coppola's The Beguiled
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› James Mangold Dir. of Logan
› La La Land's Damien Chazelle
› Emma Stone from La La Land
› Blair Witch's Wingard/Barrett
› Writer & Director Matt Ross
› Mia Hansen-Løve at Berlinale
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First Teaser Trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi is Here:
It's difficult to say which is sharper in Ben Wheatley's latest film, Free Fire: the bullets being fired by the nefarious characters found within or the witty jabs those characters tend to fling at one another between the continual barrage of deadly gunplay. One may kill you, but the other may actually hurt your feelings. As with his previous films, Wheatley presents Free Fire with a gleefully dark sense of humor, the ridiculousness of events playing out made all the more senseless when you take into account where everyone's mindset is at. That sense of humor – not to mention the aberrantly comical characters – washes the onslaught of violence down all the easier, though, and, with Free Fire, Wheatley once again proves to be a unique voice
"A vision of pure magic." How many of you have ever seen this film? If you haven't, maybe now is a good time to get into Tarkovsky. The Film Society of Lincoln Center has debuted a brand new trailer for the digitally restored re-release of Andrei Tarkovsky's 1979 sci-fi film Stalker. While this was first released in Russia in 1979, it premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 1980, and didn't hit US theaters until two years later. This 2k digitally restored version was commissioned by the Criterion Collection for a new release, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. And if you live in NYC, you have the lucky chance to catch it on the big screen in early May. Many critics consider this Tarkovsky's masterpiece, for good reason.
"You will see the safe delivery of our holiest relic to Rome. Go with God." RLJ Entertainment has debuted a trailer for an indie action thriller titled Pilgrimage, set in the religious times of 13th century Ireland. The film is about to premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival this month, hence the release of the trailer to build extra buzz. The story follows a group of monks who must escort a sacred relic across the "Irish landscape fraught with peril". There's plenty of gnarly violence in this. Starring Richard Armitage, Tom Holland, John Lynch, Stanley Weber, Lochlann O'Mearáin, Hugh O'Conor, Eric Godon, plus the badass Jon Bernthal as a character named "The Mute". This actually looks pretty cool, consider me interested.
"C'est moi!" Another teaser for the Cannes Film Festival! Kicking off the 70th edition of the festival this May is this film, Ismael's Ghost (or Les fantômes d'Ismaël), from French director Arnaud Desplechin (of My Golden Days). The film stars Mathieu Amalric as a filmmaker named Ismael, who is just about to begin shooting his next feature. However, his long lost former lover suddenly shows up out of nowhere, freaking him out, sending him into a metnal "tailspin". Marion Cotillard plays his former lover, and Charlotte Gainsbourg plays his current lover, who also freaks out. The rest of the cast includes Louis Garrel, Alba Rohrwacher, Hippolyte Girardot, & Samir Guesmi. This looks really good, I'm very curious about it.
"Dorfman is uniquely fascinating… spending the entirety of a film with her is a rare pleasure." Neon has released an official trailer for the documentary The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman's Portrait Photography, the latest from veteran documentarian Errol Morris. The feature doc profiles the life of Elsa Dorfman, a "nice Jewish girl" photographer who fell in love with large scale portrait photography in the 1980s. She used to photograph all kinds of different people, including famous rock stars and poets, using a Polaroid Land 20×24 camera. Morris' film is a trip into her workplace (and life) to examine what it was like to work with this kind of "analog" medium. The title of "The B-Side" is a reference to the way Dorfman always took two pictures of her clients and kept the rejected one, which she refers to as the "B-Side". This looks wonderful.
"In the beginning there was faith that the egg was the start of all life. Then came reason that the egg must have come from a great chicken." So what came first: the chicken or the egg? The eternal, unanswerable question finally gets addressed in this amusing, wacky short film titled Time Chicken. This claymation short was written, directed and animated by Nick Black, who made it over two years using Canon DSLRs and handmade sets from various objects he found. It's a totally wacky but incredibly enjoyable short film, that does have touches of "Robot Chicken", but still feels like something original. You just need to watch and enjoy because while it might seem odd, it's so much fun and will make you laugh. Plus it's under 6 minutes.
"He seems to be a sensitive person." "Does he?" Focus Features has debuted a new full-length trailer for Sofia Coppola's latest film, titled The Beguiled, adapted from Thomas Cullinan's Southern Gothic novel. Set during the Civil War, an injured Union soldier ends up being nursed back to life at an all-girls' boarding school in the Confederate south. Soon the girls begin to turn on him, making this into more than it seems at first glance. Colin Farrell plays the soldier, and the cast includes Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning, and Oona Laurence. This looks like a rather twisted, wicked, seductive film from Coppola. The Beguiled will premiere at the Cannes Film Festival this May. Expect to hear plenty of buzz about this soon.
"I want you to suffer the way I'm suffering now!" Imagination Worldwide has debuted an official trailer for an indie drama titled Paint it Black, the feature directorial debut of actress Amber Tamblyn, who also co-wrote the script, adapting Janet Fitch's book of the same name. The film stars Alia Shawkat, Alfred Molina, Janet McTeer, Emily Rios, Annabelle Attanasio, John Roberts, and Rhys Wakefield. The story follows Shawkat as Josie, who learns that her boyfriend has died, and she struggles with both grief and his intense, cruel mother, played by McTeer. Tamblyn says: "My hope was to make a movie that was as visually intoxicating as it is psychologically — a true and twisted look at the violent, terrifying, and beautiful subconscious lives of women in the throws of major life changes." This definitely looks stylish. Take a look.
"Think about what's best for your son." A24 has debuted an official trailer for the acclaimed indie drama titled Menashe, a very unique film set entirely within Brooklyn's ultra-orthodox Jewish community. The film tells the story of a widowed father of a young son, struggling to make ends meet and stay in his kid's life. His Rabbi has required that his son live with his strict uncle's family, but Menashe is given one more week to prove he's a capable parent. Starring Menashe Lustig as Menashe, and Ruben Nyborg. This was filmed in secret in the neighborhood, and is one of the few films that is entirely in Yiddish, preserving the integrity of the culture it's portraying. This is a good gem to seek out, and has a tender, charming side to it.
"It's not about us. The dilemma is our children." Grasshopper Films has unveiled an official trailer for the acclaimed, award-winning documentary Last Men in Aleppo, taking us deep inside the war in Syria. The film profiles and follows three different founding members of the humanitarian group known as "The White Helmets" (official website), who have stayed behind in Aleppo while the city is still under siege in an effort to save lives. This trailer cuts right down to it, and is a heartrending, harrowing look at how bad the war in Syria has become, and what it's doing to that country. I missed this at Sundance, where it won the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize, but I'm planning to catch it as soon as it's released. This should be on your radar.