A Separation (2011) - News Poster

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Foreign Film Upheaval: Why Esoteric Cultures Outpace European Mainstays at the Box Office

  • Indiewire
Foreign Film Upheaval: Why Esoteric Cultures Outpace European Mainstays at the Box Office
In 2017, we’ve seen five specialized subtitled films gross over $1 million. But the languages aren’t French, or German, or from anywhere in western Europe: The winners are Turkish, Farsi, Yiddish, and Hebrew.

These films came from Turkey, Iran, Israel, and even the United States, and played at conventional “art house” theaters (as opposed to releases from India, China, Mexico, and elsewhere, which aim at ethnically similar audiences).

Once upon a time, $100 million and more (in adjusted grosses) was possible for films like “La Dolce Vita,” “Life Is Beautiful,” and “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”: more recently, “Amelie,” “Pan’s Labyrinth,” and “The Motorcycle Diaries” easily surpassed $20 million. However, over the last few decades we’ve seen the subtitled market shift from decline to near collapse.

Read More:Why French Cinema Faces an Uncertain Future in America

What happened this year shows some revival in the market, but with some twists.
See full article at Indiewire »

‘No Date, No Signature’ (‘Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza’): Film Review | Venice 2017

‘No Date, No Signature’ (‘Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza’): Film Review | Venice 2017
Iranian cinema continues to draw large audiences at festivals, and Vahid Jalilvand’s second feature No Date, No Signature (Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza) was much applauded at its Venice Horizons bow. In the tradition of Asghar Farhadi’s A Separation, its story zeroes in on the class conflict between the rich and the poor and plays, less than convincingly, on the guilty feelings of a powerful forensic pathologist who is involved in an accident that may or may not have caused a child’s death. Lensed with great sensitivity and style and superbly acted, it has one drawback for Western audiences in its perplexing...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Asghar Farhadi Begins Filming ‘Everybody Knows’ With Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz in Spain

Asghar Farhadi Begins Filming ‘Everybody Knows’ With Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz in Spain
Asghar Farhadi, the Oscar-winning Iranian director of “A Separation” and “The Salesman,” has kicked off principal photography on “Everybody Knows” (“Todos Lo Saben”), his psychological thriller starring Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and Ricardo Darin.

Budgeted at 10 million euros ($11.8 million), the Spanish-language film is being produced by Alexandre Mallet-Guy at Paris-based Memento Films Production and Alvaro Longoria at Spanish outfit Morena Films.

Written by Farhadi, “Everybody Knows” follows the journey of Carolina as she travels with her family from Buenos Aires to her hometown in Spain for a celebration. Meant to be a brief visit, the trip is disturbed by unforeseen events that will completely change the lives of Carolina and her family.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

New to Streaming: ‘Punch-Drunk Love,’ ‘Free Fire,’ ‘The Salesman,’ and More

With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit platforms. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.

Best in Show (Christopher Guest)

Christopher Guest has had an exceptionally strong ’00s with A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration, and it remains to be seen how his upcoming Mascots will be received, but his arguable peak is still the gloriously funny mockumentary Best in Show. Guest’s other films have lovingly skewered egotistical oddballs and the insanity of subjective or objective criticism, so Best in Show is
See full article at The Film Stage »

Emmy Preview: Stephen Colbert Will Bring Political Heat to Hosting Gig

Emmy Preview: Stephen Colbert Will Bring Political Heat to Hosting Gig
At the Primetime Emmy Awards last year, host Jimmy Kimmel put as fine a point on the Donald Trump phenomenon as he could. “Many have asked who is to blame for Donald Trump, and I’ll tell you who,” Kimmel said. “He’s sitting right there: Mark Burnett, the man who brought us ‘Celebrity Apprentice.’ Thanks to Mark, we don’t have to watch reality shows anymore because we’re living in one.”

It was mostly in good fun because at the time, no one thought Trump was on his way to becoming the 45th president of the United States. And in the midst of a highly combative election cycle, of course politics were going to find their way into the show.

Flash forward nearly a year and here we are. Late-night talk-show hosts have moved from stride to gallop in dressing down the current administration. Such series as “Black-ish” have tackled the zeitgeist head-on while others
See full article at Variety - TV News »

’24 Frames’ Cannes Review: Abbas Kiarostami’s Final Film Is a Wry, Touching Farewell

’24 Frames’ Cannes Review: Abbas Kiarostami’s Final Film Is a Wry, Touching Farewell
A new film from the gifted Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami would be a treat at Cannes under any circumstances — but Kiarostami’s death last July at the age of 76 added a particular resonance and sense of loss to Tuesday’s screenings of “24 Frames,” the master’s final film. The circumstances turned the film, a series of exquisite miniatures that would have been a wry and lovely piece of work under any circumstances, into a truly poignant farewell from a master. Among Iranian filmmakers, Asghar Farhadi has received more international recognition in recent years, including Oscars for “A Separation” and “The Salesman,
See full article at The Wrap »

New to Streaming: ‘Things to Come,’ Jacques Rivette, ‘I Am Not Your Negro,’ ‘Blow Out,’ and More

With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit platforms. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.

Blow Out (Brian De Palma)

In a career fixated on the machinations of filmmaking presented through both a carnal and political eye, Brian De Palma’s fascinations converged idyllically with Blow Out. In his ode to the conceit of Blow UpMichelangelo Antonioni’s deeply influential English-language debut, released 15 years prior — as well as the aural intrigue of Francis Ford Coppola’s The Conversation, De Palma constructs a conspiracy
See full article at The Film Stage »

Giveaway: Win Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar Winner ‘The Salesman’ on Blu-ray

One of the best films of last year, Asghar Farhadi‘s Oscar-winning drama The Salesman, arrives on Blu-ray this week. We’ve teamed with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to give away five copies to our readers. See how to enter below and all entries must be received by 11:59 Pm Est on Monday, May 8th.

To enter, do the first three steps and then each additional one counts as another entry into the contest.

1. Like The Film Stage on Facebook

2. Follow The Film Stage on Twitter

Follow @TheFilmStage

3. Follow The Film Stage on Instagram

4. Comment in the box on Facebook with your favorite Best Foreign Film Oscar winner.

5. Retweet the following tweet:

We're giving away Asghar Farhadi's #TheSalesman on Blu-ray. Rt this + follow to enter. See details: https://t.co/1so4tInJn0 pic.twitter.com/S8ToaiuY7H

— The Film Stage
See full article at The Film Stage »

The Salesman | Blu-ray Review

Iranian auteur Asghar Farhadi’s The Salesman was his second film to win the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film (following 2012’s A Separation), which began receiving accolades immediately after its premiere at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, where it picked up awards for Best Actor and Best Screenplay. Purchased by The Cohen Media Group, the title racked up over two million at the domestic box office thanks to an awards and marketing campaign which received an additional relevancy from the political firestorm regarding a travel ban which inhibited Farhadi from attending the awards ceremony (a platform which ended up as the program’s only significant political acceptance speech from the director by proxy).

Notably, this is a return to Iran for Farhadi after his 2013 French language debut The Past, though this searing indictment on the bothersome realities of vengeance and unjustifiably gendered power ethics doesn’t reach the formidable and deliciously exacting dramatics of his 2012 Oscar and nominated Golden Berlin Bear winning A Separation. Still, Farhadi’s particular theatrics remain idiosyncratic to his interests in exploring culturally specific dynamics between men and women, and have successfully elevated the international awareness and platform of Iranian cinema, and his latest (which snagged a Best Screenplay and Best Actor win at Cannes 2016) is another strident chapter on human emotions shackled by social convention.

In the midst of rehearsing their soon to open stage production of the famous Arthur Miller play, in which they will be starring as Willy and Linda Loman, married couple Emad (Shahab Hosseini) and Rana Etesami (Taraneh Alidoosti) find themselves displaced from their newly purchased apartment when the entire complex begins to collapse. Thankfully, Babak (Babak Karimi), their co-star in the stage production, knows of a vacant apartment where the couple can immediately relocate temporarily as they await a reimbursement for their damaged apartment. Their lives suddenly in disarray, Rana mistakenly buzzes an interloper into the apartment one evening thinking it is Emad returning home, only to be physically and sexually assaulted by a man who had come to visit the previous displaced tenant, a prostitute who was greatly disliked by her socially pure neighbors. The culprit flees the scene following the indiscretion and leaves his truck behind. While Emad and Rana attempt to pick up the pieces, their emotional disconnect causes Emad to go to great lengths to solicit an eye for an eye without the interference of the law.

The opening sequences of The Salesman provide the film with its overarching metaphor of an irreparable foundational disturbance, the unsecure building and subsequent evacuation resulting in a dramatic ripple effect. Just as the central couple in A Separation is (at least partially defined) by their parental roles, Rana and Emad’s predicament here is also born out of their childlessness. Devotees of the theater, (Miller’s tweaked text, including side jokes about the downplayed sexuality of the prostitute character Miss Francis is merely a backdrop and superficial subtext), it is inferred the Etesamis and their untraditional lives and interests are the potential cause for their current state of tragic duress. The power of suggestion is the significant thread connecting (and strangling) the major movements of The Salesman, which uses Miller not so much as a treatment of American vs. Iranian values, but as an experimental, doubling arena for the theatrical business of life.

The actress playing Miss Francis in the play assumes she is being demeaned by a male co-star because portraying a woman of easy virtue invites automatic disrespect; Babak becomes infuriated at Emad adlibbing incendiary lines during a performance; a woman in a taxi is convinced Emad aims to molest her because he sits with his legs open; and, ultimately, it is Rana’s fault she was raped because she didn’t bother to check who she opened the front door of her apartment to. Had Rana and Emad had children or more conventional professions, their own lackadaisically defined routines would have been in automatic check, or so the social circles around them in The Salesman seem to imply.

We sympathize more with Shahab Hosseini’s Emad, whose chronic frustration boils over into a Death and the Maiden style attempt at truth as vengeance. Because Farhadi, once again, only implies the trauma exacted upon Rana in her shower, it allows for us to be more estranged from her untoward behavior and subsequent victimhood and more celebratory of Emad’s impassioned attempt to rectify the situation by saving his pride (and, perhaps to a lesser degree, his wife’s reputation). Farhadi reunites with his About Elly (2008) cinematographer Hossein Jafarian to construct a careful examination of bodies in spaces, the suggested control and inherent power plays in blocking.

The final, intense third act returns us to the unsafe space of the crumbling façade, a touching metaphor for the grisly and unappealing outcome of Emad’s desperate ploy for closure and revenge. But as in previous works, Farhadi’s strength lies in his ability to cast adept performers able to convey the subtle complexities of his prose, and what Taraneh Alidoosti and Shahab Hosseini (both who have previously appeared in Farhadi’s films) achieve here is exciting as it is troubling for Farhadi forces us to ask why do we sympathize with Emad and not Rana? The audience, like the community and culture around Rana, become complicit in their inability to empathize with either females or victimhood. Until the magnificent finale, that is, when Emad and company (including a particularly arresting late staged supporting turn from Farid Sajjadhosseini) are taken to task, and satisfaction for anyone quickly dissipates into the realm of the impossible.

Disc Review:

For the film’s first availability on Blu-ray, this Sony release isn’t quite as persuasive as most of Cohen Media Group’s usual home entertainment releases. Presented in 1.85:1 with DTS-hd Master Audio, picture and sound quality are serviceably transferred in this high definition package. A lone extra feature begs for a more illustrious presentation for the lauded title, however.

A Conversation:

An interview with writer-director Asghar Farhadi on the origins and making of The Salesman is available as a bonus feature.

Final Thoughts:

In the same vein as Farhadi’s other tautly constructed social issue melodramas, The Salesman is another aggravating ripple effect of confounded displacement and fractured foundations.

Film Review: ★★★½/☆☆☆☆☆

Disc Review: ★★★/☆☆☆☆☆

The post The Salesman | Blu-ray Review appeared first on Ioncinema.com.
See full article at ioncinema »

5 Great Films New to Movies On Demand in May 2017, Including ‘Logan,’ ‘Get Out’ and ‘Raw’ — IndieWire on Demand

5 Great Films New to Movies On Demand in May 2017, Including ‘Logan,’ ‘Get Out’ and ‘Raw’ — IndieWire on Demand
[Editor’s Note: This post is presented in partnership with Movies on Demand. Catch up on the latest films On Demand here.]

Movies on Demand has another month of audience favorites in store, including some of the most popular titles of the year so far. Check out five of our favorite films from the upcoming month below, as well as the full list of great movies available throughout May.

1) “I Am Not Your Negro” (Available May 2)

Raoul Peck’s documentary about the life and work of James Baldwin is a stunning tribute to the writer’s vital work. Even thirty years after his death, Baldwin’s words still cut to the heart of issues confronting American society. With performances of Baldwin’s writing from narrator Samuel L. Jackson, Peck provides a deeply human gateway to understanding the achievements and contributions of a man who still has much to say about how our country understands race.

2) “The Salesman” (Available May 2)

Somewhat lost in the weeks of Oscars aftermath is the recognition of director Asghar Farhadi’s latest film,
See full article at Indiewire »

Recommended Discs & Deals: ‘I Am Not Your Negro,’ ‘The Salesman,’ ‘Right Now, Wrong Then’ & More

Every week we dive into the cream of the crop when it comes to home releases, including Blu-ray and DVDs, as well as recommended deals of the week. Check out our rundown below and return every Tuesday for the best (or most interesting) films one can take home. Note that if you’re looking to support the site, every purchase you make through the links below helps us and is greatly appreciated.

The Age of Shadows (Kim Ji-woon)

Eyebrows were raised when it was announced that South Korea will submit the as-yet-unreleased espionage thriller The Age of Shadows for Oscar consideration instead of Cannes hits The Handmaiden and The Wailing. Premiering out of competition at the 73rd Venice Film Festival, writer/director Jee-woon Kim’s return to Korean-language cinema after a brief stint in Hollywood with the Schwarzenegger-starrer The Last Stand turns out to be a worthy choice that makes
See full article at The Film Stage »

The Salesman

This Iranian import made news when its director found himself on the wrong side of the recent travel ban. It’s well worth the bother. Asghar Farhadi’s suspense story can’t be topped for maturity, insight or honest emotions about social stress: after an assault in a new apartment, the strain affects everything that a wife and husband do — driving a wedge through their marriage. Is it all built on a shaky foundation, like the crumbling apartment building they had to evacuate?

The Salesman

Blu-ray

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

2016 / Color / 1:85 widescreen / 124 min. / Forushande / Street Date May 2, 2017 / 34.99

Starring: Taraneh Alidoosti, Shahab Hosseini, Babak Karimi, Mina Sadati, Farid Sajjadi Hosseini, Mojtaba Pirzadeh, Maral Bani Adam, Emad Emami, Sam Valipour, Ehteram Boroumand, Mehdi Koushki, Shirin Aghakashi, Sahra Asadollahe.

Cinematography: Hossein Jafarian

Film Editor: Hayedeh Safiyari

Original Music: Sattar Oraki

Produced by Asghar Farhadi, Alexandre Mallet-Guy

Written and Directed by Asghar Farhadi
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke in talks to helm remake of Miss Bala

  • HeyUGuys
Author: Zehra Phelan

Twilight and Miss You Already director Catherine Hardwicke is currently in talks to take the helm on the Sony Pictures remake of the Mexican film, Miss Bala. The 2011 crime drama centred around a Beauty Pageant contestant who accidentally becomes embroiled with a vicious gang after witnessing a number of brutal murders.

Related: Catherine Hardwicke interview on Miss You Already

It has also been reported that Sony have also singled out Jane the Virgin star, Gina Rodriquez, as the frontrunner as the lead protagonist in a race against time to keep Hardwicke firmly attached to the venture. The director is also currently being linked to TriStar production The Phantom Booth meaning Sony are under pressure to secure the services of a star for Miss Bala to stop Hardwicke going elsewhere.

Back in 2011, the year in which the original was released, Miss Bala premiered at Un Certain Regard section
See full article at HeyUGuys »

The Salesman review – Oscar-winning excellence

This Iranian domestic drama from the director of A Separation lays its symbolism on with a trowel – but it works

Asghar Farhadi is not a director who hides his symbolic subtext. The imagery in this engrossing drama, about a couple of actors whose marriage is tested when she is violently assaulted in their new home, is so overt, Farhadi might as well be sounding a klaxon. There’s the choice of the play within the film – a Persian translation of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman. Willy Loman’s impotence and frustration permeate the film like cheap aftershave. And there’s the reason that Rana (Taraneh Alidoosti) and Emad (Shahab Hosseini) have to move house in the first place – their original apartment building is collapsing. The cracks in their home life are literal as well as figurative.

With a writer-director less skilled than Farhadi, this occasional lack of subtlety might be a problem.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

The Salesman review: Dir. Asghar Farhadi (2017)

The Salesman review: Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar-winner finally makes it to British soil, but will you buy into it?

The Salesman review by Paul Heath, March 2017.

The Salesman review

After competing in-competition for the prestigious Palme d’Or at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, and walking away with the award for Best Screenplay and Best Actor for the formidable performance of Shahab Hosseini, The Salesman‘s success has grown and grown, culminating in Oscar triumph in the Best Foreign Language Film category at last month’s ceremony.

Asghar Farhadi‘s film comes to UK screens nearly a year after its high-profile debut, British audiences waiting with baited breath to see what all of the fuss is about. The Salesman opens with groups of people seen fleeing a crumbling apartment block; cracks starting to appear all around them as chaos unfolds. Amongst them is the aforementioned Hosseini playing the lead as Emad Etesami,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Asghar Farhadi sets Penelope Cruz, Javier Bardem drama for September

  • ScreenDaily
Asghar Farhadi sets Penelope Cruz, Javier Bardem drama for September
Oscar-winning director reveals more details about his upcoming Spanish-language project.

Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, the two-time Oscar-winning director of The Salesman and A Separation, has confirmed his next film will start shooting in Spain in September, with a cast including Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem. It should be ready for next year.

However Farhadi revealed the high-profile, real-life couple will “not necessarily” play an on-screen couple in the Spanish-language feature.

“Once again there are different couples in my film, not only one,” Farhadi told Screen, of what is a recurring theme of his work.

“The film is again about family and family relationships. But there are also some new aspects in it. Yes [Cruz and Bardem] are in the film but they are not necessarily a couple in the film.”

The non-Spanish speaker said he has written the script for the new film in Farsi and it has been translated into Spanish. “I don’t speak Spanish,” he explained
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Asghar Farhadi Breaks Silence on Oscar Victory, Talks Movie He’s Making in Spain

Asghar Farhadi Breaks Silence on Oscar Victory, Talks Movie He’s Making in Spain
Iranian director Asghar Farhadi gave a master class Tuesday at the Doha Film Institute’s Qumra event and subsequently also spoke to a small group of journalists, all via Skype from Madrid where he is in pre-production on his untitled next project toplining Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem. In his first interview since recently winning his second Academy Award for best foreign language film for “The Salesman,” the auteur spoke about his Oscar victory; his new Spanish-language film which will feature no Iranian actors; and his desire to make a comedy in Iran. Excerpts from the interview.

How do you feel about winning your second Oscar?

I had already won an Oscar for “A Separation,” but it was a little different this time. I have a different distributor, Amazon [and Cohen Media Group], and I had less reason to go to the U.S. to do promotion there. The film was already well known,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

U.S. State Department Tweets, Then Deletes Congratulations for Iran Oscar Win

U.S. State Department Tweets, Then Deletes Congratulations for Iran Oscar Win
The U.S. State Department on Monday sent out and then deleted a tweet congratulating an Oscar win by director Asghar Farhadi, who criticized President Trump’s travel ban as “inhumane.”

The state department’s official Farsi-language Twitter account, @USAdarFarsi, posted the congratulatory tweet to the Iranian people and Farhadi, director of “The Salesman,” after the movie won an Oscar for foreign-language film on Sunday.

Related Content Iran Cheers ‘The Salesman’s’ Oscar, But Politics Risks Diminishing Asghar Farhadi’s Art

Farhadi boycotted the Oscars ceremony to protest Trump’s January executive order that temporarily banned entry to the United States by Iranians and citizens of six other predominately Muslim countries, and released a statement criticizing the order. Though the ban was blocked by federal courts, the administration is currently working on a new order.

Though Farhadi wasn’t at Sunday’s ceremony, the filmmaker still made a political statement,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Why Director Asghar Farhadi Wasn't at the Oscars to Accept His Award

A few weeks ago, acclaimed Iranian director Asghar Farhadi released a statement via The New York Times saying he had decided not to attend this year's Oscars. Farhadi, whose film The Salesman graced the nominations list as a candidate - and went on to win best foreign film on Sunday - offered quite a few strong words for President Donald Trump's ban on refugees. The director explained how he had originally planned to attend the ceremony and use the opportunity to talk to the press about the current state of affairs, but in light of the ban, there's a noted uncertainty attached to that. While it's imperative to read the full length of the statement, this excerpt is perhaps the sentiment that resonates the loudest: It now seems that the possibility of this presence is being accompanied by ifs and buts, which are in no way acceptable to me
See full article at BuzzSugar »
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