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Idfa at 30: Nick Broomfield Says ‘Independent Feature Film Is Almost Extinct’ and Docs Are Filling That Space

Amsterdam — As Idfa turns 30, its organizers didn’t have to try too hard to pull in the big guns for a sidebar they called The Visual Voice. Made up of 14 films chosen by 16 filmmakers, the strand gave carte blanche to some of its most famous alumni, with picks by Pirjo Honkasalo, Kim Longinotto, Nick Broomfield, Jørgen Leth, The Yes Men, Maziar Bahari, Heddy Honigmann, John Appel, Hubert Sauper, D. A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus, Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady, Frederick Wiseman, Steve James, Victor Kossakovsky and Nishtha Jain.

Idfa veteran Nick Broomfield, who has returned to the festival many times since its launch in 1988, was only too happy to contribute – the festival, he contends, was a bold game-changer, and one that has since been vindicated for its beliefs.

“It was unusual when it started,” he says, “because it was a festival just for documentaries. Before that, most festivals had documentaries as a sort of an appendage to the
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Janus Metz shows first footage from 'Between Two Worlds' at Cph:dox

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Janus Metz shows first footage from 'Between Two Worlds' at Cph:dox
At Cph:Forum, Eurimages Award goes to Maria Back’s Psychosis in Stockholm; 31 projects pitched.

Cph:dox expanded its industry offerings this year by adding a Work-in-Progress session on the eve of its Cph:forum for six Nordic documentaries currently in production or post-production.

Short presentations including footage was shown for projects including:

The Acali Experiment (Swe/Den/Ger/Us), dir Marcus Lindeen, prod Erik Gandini

The story will examine what happened when Mexican anthropologist Santiago Genovés tried a unique experiment in 1973, putting 10 people on a raft for a 101-day voyage to study human behaviour. Lindeen brought the participants together for the first time in 43 years to talk about Genoves’ manipulative behaviour. “I wanted make a reunion and let them talk about their memories of what happened on the raft,” he said. “We let the subjects make a study of the scientist.” The team aims to deliver the film in the autumn.

Contact: gandini@fasad.se

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See full article at ScreenDaily »

Experimental trails by Rebecca Naughten

Cruz Piñón The 12th edition of Curtocircuíto - Santiago de Compostela International Short Film Festival (the third consecutive year with director Pela del Álamo in charge) took place October from 6-11 in Galicia's capital in north-west Spain. Within Spain’s thriving short film scene Curtocircuíto stands out by offering thoughtfully curated collections of experimental and innovative shorts, with thematic connections providing a through-line within an impressively eclectic line-up.

This year alongside sections dedicated to Jørgen Leth and Aki Kaurismäki, and a range of parallel programmes and cultural events, the 40 films in the competitive programme - including 17 Spanish premieres - encompassed international titles already garlanded with critical recognition (for example, the animation section included World Of Tomorrow (Don Hertzfeldt, 2015) and Waves '98 (Ely Dagher, 2015)) and the latest works by directors such as Ben Russell, Mark Rappaport, and local Lois Patiño.

Volontè Patiño is a key figure in the increasing...
See full article at eyeforfilm.co.uk »

Oscars: Denmark submits Tobias Lindholm's 'A War'

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Oscars: Denmark submits Tobias Lindholm's 'A War'
War drama to be submitted for the Best Foreign-Language Film category.

Denmark has selected Tobias Lindholm’s A War as its entry to the Best Foreign-Language Film Category at the 88thAcademy Awards.

The feature, which premiered at this year’s Venice Film Festival in the Horizons competition, is the story of a Danish military commander who is captured by the Taliban and accused of a war crime when he returns to Denmark.

The national selection commitee selected the film, which was released in Denmark on Sept 10 and is headed for festivals in Zurich and Reykjavik.

A War was picked from a shortlist of three which also included Anders Thomas Jensen’s Men & Chicken and Joshua Oppenheimer’s documentary The Look of Silence.

Henrik Bo Nielsen, CEO of the Danish Film Institute and chair of the committee, said the committee chose Lindholm’s drama as it believed the film “would have the greatest chance to seize the attention
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Blind Dates wins at Zagreb Film Festival

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Blind Dates wins at Zagreb Film Festival
Slovenian film Karpotrotter wins best documentary; No One’s Child gets audience awardScroll down for full list of winners

The 12th Zagreb Film Festival (Oct 19-26) ended with Georgian director Levan Koguashvili’s Blind Dates winning the main award of the festival, the Golden Pram and €4,000.

The Berlinale title, which also scooped prizes at Wiesbaden and Sofia, beat ten other first or second films by their directors.

Zeresenay Berhane Mehari’s Difret and Benedikt Erlingsson’s Of Horses And Men received special mentions from the jury comprised of producer Čedomir Kolar, director Konstantin Bojanov, and cinematographer Cesar Charlone.

The same jury also awarded Romania’s Andrei Creţulescu the Golden Pram for Best Short Film and €1,000 euro for his 18-minute Kowalski.

In the documentary competition, the jury made up of film theoretician Alice Bardan, and directors Željka Suková and Petra Seliškar, gave the Golden Pram for Best Documentary and €1,000 to Slovenian film-maker Matjaž Ivanišin’s Karpotrotter, a lyrical
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Danes shortlist three for Oscars

Danes shortlist three for Oscars
Includes films by Niels Arden Oplev, Pernille Fischer Christensen and Nils Malmros.

The Danish Oscar committee has shortlisted three films, one of which will be submitted as Denmark’s official entry for the 87th Academy Awards in the Best Foreign Language Film category.

They include Niels Arden Oplev’s Speed Walking, Pernille Fischer Christensen’s Someone to Love You and Nils Malmros’ Sorrow and Joy.

The films were chosen from a longlist of 18 features and four documentaries. The committee is expected to name the final candidate on Sept 18.

Denmark has had a strong showing at the Oscars in recent years, with two nominations and a win for Susanne Bier’s In A Better World in 2011.

The announcement of the five foreign films nominated for the Oscar will be made on Jan 15, 2015. The awards ceremony will be held on Feb 22, 2015 in the Dolby Theatre, Hollywood.

Speed Walking is set in 1970s Denmark and follows adolescent Martin, whose mother
See full article at ScreenDaily »

10 best cycling movies: Breaking Away, Pee-Wee's Big Adventure

10 best cycling movies: Breaking Away, Pee-Wee's Big Adventure
The cycling movie is an expansive genre, covering everything from sports documentaries like the recent Pantani: The Accidental Death of a Cyclist to quirky comedies such as Pee-Wee's Big Adventure and fondly remembered children's adventure movies, like the oh-so-1980s BMX Bandits.

Cycling as a professional sport is also well represented on screen, whether it's the Indiana University Little 500 race in classic comedy-drama Breaking Away, an animated Tour de France in Belleville Rendez-vous or the Paris–Roubaix in Jørgen Leth's stunning documentary A Sunday in Hell.

With the Tour de France about to enter its final week, Digital Spy takes a look at the ten best cycling movies.

1) Breaking Away (1979)

Peter Yates' wonderful small town comedy-drama won an Oscar for Best Screenplay and was nominated for four more, including Best Picture. Dennis Christopher stars as Dave Stoller, an Indiana teenager obsessed with the Italian cycling team, who gets
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Contest: Win Lars von Trier's 'The Five Obstructions' On DVD

Of the many provocations Lars von Trier has delivered over the years, "The Five Obstructions" might be his most satisfying. The 2003 documentary might not be his most well known title, but if you're a fan of the director, you'll want to catch up with it quick. The film dives into the creative process of filmmaking with a unique twist, as it follows Lars von Trier's opportunity to work with idol Jørgen Leth on a most unusual experiment: Leth will remake his celebrated 1967 film "The Perfect Human" five times, each time with a different challenge set forth by von Trier that will force Leth to approach it differently and find a whole new set of creative solutions to re-think how he will tell his story. It's a neat concept that's pretty entertaining all around and now we've got a way for you to check it out at home, with copies
See full article at The Playlist »

Controversial von Trier Offers His Latest 'Nugget of Genius': A Look at Nymphomaniac Vol. I

Nymphomaniac: Vol. I’ movie review: Lars von Trier offers his latest ‘little nugget of genius’ (photo: Stacy Martin in ‘Nymphomaniac: Vol. I’) It will be noted long after this review is filed deep in the bowels of some ancient digital archive of dead film critics that Lars von Trier was among the most controversial and brilliant filmmakers of the 20th and 21st centuries. This would not be a currently agreed-upon assessment of the filmmaker; nevertheless, Lars von Trier is an actual genius, as opposed to the myriad filmmakers called genius who are actually just clever. It should also be noted that I’ve been saying this about von Trier since the first of his Golden Heart films, Breaking the Waves, provoked audiences at Cannes nearly two decades ago. It’s a seminal von Trier movie that marked the initial international exposure of an artist whose work has been controversial for
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Nymphomaniac: Volume I Review

Acclaimed director and professional misanthrope Lars von Trier is at it again with Nymphomaniac, the first volume of which has been released On Demand today. The loveable/loathsome scamp behind such existential horror shows as Dancer in the Dark and Melancholia has built a career on pushing audience buttons, so the real question surrounding Nymphomaniac isn’t whether this 5-hour sexcapade should exist, but rather, why has it taken von Trier this long to make it? As expected, sex as the ultimate cinematic taboo provides the iconoclastic director all the ammunition he needs to make the 2-hour American cut of Nymphomaniac: Volume I a real treat for fans of transgressive cinema.

While it might sound like I’m trying to meme-ify one of the world’s most provocative filmmakers, it’s hard not to feel like thay excitement for Nymphomaniac owes as much to its explicit content and epic
See full article at We Got This Covered »

Mikkel Norgaard, “Klown”

Long considered one of the funniest shows in Scandinavia, the television series Klown features Danish comedians Casper Christensen and Frank Hvam playing Curb Your Enthusiasm-style variations on themselves, getting into hysterically awkward encounters with friends and strangers, loved ones and frenemies, including other Danish celebrities such as actress Iben Hjejle (High Fidelity, The Boss of It All) and Jørgen Leth (the co-director, with Lars von Trier, of The Five Obstructions). Running for six seasons, it propelled the comic duo to the heights of Danish celebrity and mainstream popularity. Now there is a film version of Klown directed by Mikkel Nørgaard, who conceived and directed much of the series with Christensen and Hvam, an uproarious and vulgar and sneakily sentimental comedy, playing like an odd riff on the significantly inferior The Hangover series. Whether it is a canoe trip from hell or the single most unforgettable masturbation joke/set piece you’ll likely ever see,
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

Blu-ray Review: Man on a Ledge

Man On A Ledge

Stars: Sam Worthington, Elizabeth Banks, Ed Harris, Jamie Bell, Genesis Rodriguez, Kyra Sedgwick, Anthony Mackie, Edward Burns | Written by Pablo F. Fenjves | Directed by Asger Leth

Man on a Ledge’s director, Asger Leth, has few other credits to his name; the only other of note being his assistant director and co-writing role onThe Five Obstructions, Lars von Trier’s experimental documentary in which he challenged the filmmaker Jørgen Leth (Asger’s father) to remake his 1967 film, The Perfect Human in five different ways. What then, could we expect from Man on a Ledge? Surprisingly, it’s fairly slick and mainstream American thriller.

The plot is relatively simple – a man stands on a ledge of a building in New York, but rather than being suicidal, he is distracting attention from the diamond heist his co-conspirators are undertaking in the opposite building. Of course, there’s a
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Review: Man on a Ledge

Man On A Ledge

Stars: Sam Worthington, Elizabeth Banks, Ed Harris, Jamie Bell, Genesis Rodriguez, Kyra Sedgwick, Anthony Mackie, Edward Burns | Written by Pablo F. Fenjves | Directed by Asger Leth

Man on a Ledge’s director, Asger Leth, has few other credits to his name; the only other of note being his assistant director and co-writing role on The Five Obstructions, Lars von Trier’s experimental documentary in which he challenged the filmmaker Jørgen Leth (Asger’s father) to remake his 1967 film, The Perfect Human in five different ways. What then, could we expect from Man on a Ledge? Surprisingly, it’s fairly slick and mainstream American thriller.

The plot is relatively simple – a man stands on a ledge of a building in New York, but rather than being suicidal, he is distracting attention from the diamond heist his co-conspirators are undertaking in the opposite building. Of course, there’s
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

The Power of Limits in The Five Obstructions

How are you doing with your new year’s resolutions? Did you start this month with enthusiasm and optimism? We seem to enjoy this annual ritual of creating restrictions for ourselves. Some restrictions which seem to complement each other (like exercising and eating less chocolate) in fact serve to double the challenge (burning more calories while taking in fewer). Others (like working harder and maintaining good posture at the computer) really work against each other. Still, most of us make new year’s resolutions every year, and enjoy setting challenges for ourselves, and dreaming of success.

Creatively, challenges can work wonders. In 1960s Czechoslovakia, there was a temporary liberalisation of culture, but censorship remained in place, forcing the young Czech New Wave directors to find creative ways around these restrictions. Much contemporary experimentation comes as a way of dealing with restricted funding. But in some cases, directors can benefit from imposing restrictions on themselves.
See full article at The Moving Arts Journal »

Cinema’s 9 Circles of Hell

The cinema: paradise, at times, but many are the sins that writers, directors, cinema owners and fellow audience members can commit to bring the whole experience swiftly down to the ground. Dante came up with nine different levels of torture in his vision of Inferno, so allow me to lead you through cinema’s lower depths, from bad to worse.

1) Ads, trailers and anti-piracy policing

Remember the days when they’d show a short film before the main feature? Me neither, unfortunately. The same talented people who would have made short films in the old days are now employed to make commercials. Ads can be entertaining, even beautiful. But most are conformist, trying to convince us that products create happiness. What’s worse, regular cinema-goers are subjected to the same ads for months. Next come the trailers, which typically give away all the best parts of upcoming new releases. So
See full article at The Moving Arts Journal »

Watch: Sam Worthington Steps Out In 'Man On A Ledge' Trailer

Not to be confused with the other man standing on the edge of a building movie "The Ledge" that opened earlier this year starring Charlie Hunnam, Terrence Howard and Liv Tyler, "Man On A Ledge" takes a similar premise but drops the religious angle and goes strictly for B-movie thrills. Directed by Danish filmmaker Asger Leth (who made the heralded 2006 documentary about Haiti, “Ghosts of Cité Soleil,” and is the son of Jørgen Leth), and starring Sam Worthington, Jamie Bell, Anthony Mackie, Elizabeth Banks, Ed Harris and a frequently underdressed Genesis Rodriguez, the story centers on an ex-cop turned…
See full article at The Playlist »

Lars Von Trier Can't Stop Talking About Nazis; Isn't Sure 'The Five Obstructions' Will Happen

Lars Von Trier Can't Stop Talking About Nazis; Isn't Sure 'The Five Obstructions' Will Happen
Before Lars Von Trier left Cannes this spring, banned from ever attending again due to his unfortunate comments during the "Melancholia" press conference, the director made waves for a much more positive reason. It was announced that he was teaming with Martin Scorsese to do another version of "The Five Obstructions" with reports indicating it would shoot in early 2012. The 2003 original involved Von Trier challenging his mentor, filmmaker Jørgen Leth, to remake his 1967 picture “The Perfect Human,” a favorite of the younger director, five times, with different conditions, or "obstructions" each time: in Cuba, with no shot…
See full article at The Playlist »

Cannes 2011: Magnolia and Madman Pre-buy The Five Obstructions: Scorsese Vs Trier

Can't wait to see Von Trier treat Scorsese like his little bitch in The Five Obstructions: Scorses vs Trier? Neither can we and neither can Magnolia and Madman. Both companies have already pre-bought the North American and New Zealand/Australian rights for the film. The first time Von Trier made a Five Obstructions film was back in 2003 with his mentor Jørgen Leth. You can read more about that project by following the link below. In the film Von Trier challenged Leth to remake his 1967 short film The Perfect Human but with certain stipulations or rules dictated by Von Trier. He is going to do the same to Scorsese, as was revealed earlier this week at Cannes. Magnolia Pictures and Madman Pre-BuyTHE Five Obstructions: Scorsese Vs Trier...
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Lars Von Trier Bonanza: ‘Melancholia’ Buzz; Nazi Controversy; ‘The Five Obstructions’ Goes to Magnolia

Lars Von Trier Bonanza: ‘Melancholia’ Buzz; Nazi Controversy; ‘The Five Obstructions’ Goes to Magnolia
You can say this for Lars Von Trier: he doesn't believe in treading lightly. If today wasn't so busy I'd spend a few hours digging up the director's old comments from Cannes press conferences and correlating their level of pseudo-outrage to the quality of the film he's promoting. His latest movie, Melancholia, premiered at Cannes today and the reviews are (perhaps predictably) mixed, with some of the most telling comments coming in the form of negative reviews from normally sympathetic fans. (There are also some significant raves.) 'Sympathetic' is the byword for Lvt today, as the press conference for Melancholia featured the director baiting the press with statements about feeling that he understands Hitler and being a Nazi. Depending on how you look at it, press-baiting may not even have been his goal -- it is more like the Nazi comments grew out of an attempt at a joke that,
See full article at Slash Film »

Magnolia and Madman Pre-Buy The Five Obstructions and A Royal Affair

Magnolia Pictures and Madman Pre-Buy

The Five Obstructions: Scorsese Vs Trier and

A Royal Affair in North America and Australia/New Zealand

The Wagner/Cuban Company’s Magnolia Pictures and Madman announced today they have respectively pre-bought North American and Australia/New Zealand rights to two high profile films from TrustNordisk and Zentropa Entertainment: the just announced and hugely anticipated Lars von Trier and Martin Scorsese collaboration, The Five Obstructions: Scorsese Vs Trier, and the sweeping historical drama, A Royal Affair.

Martin Scorsese subjecting himself to Lars Von Trier.s challenge was one of the biggest announcements out of Cannes this year. The Five Obstructions: Scorsese Vs Trier follows in the footsteps of The Five Obstructions, Trier.s landmark 2003 documentary collaboration with Jørgen Leth, wherein von Trier challenged Leth to remake his 1967 short film The Perfect Human five times, with an increasingly difficult set of strict rules, or obstructions, that he had to follow.
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »
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