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Cannes Film News

Posted by: Matthew Turner 22/05/2009 @ 13:29
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 149
Films seen last week: The Hangover, Birdwatching, The Taking of Pelham 123, Blind Loves, Mark of an Angel, Terminator: Salvation, Drag Me To Hell, The First Day of the Rest of Your Life

A Few Snippets of Film News
1. Cannes film news
It's quite difficult to keep track of Cannes film news and reviews and avoid massive spoilers at the same time, but I've been pleased to note that Tarantino's /films/quentin-tarantino-film-director-655.html Inglourious Basterds (spelling still annoys me) has been getting mixed but broadly positive reviews and that Lars von Trier appears to have excelled himself once again with Anti-Christ. I'm also slightly disappointed that Almodovar's latest doesn't appear to be up to the standard of Volver, but I suppose you can't have everything.

2. Superhero casting news
I believe I'm already on record as saying that I don't think the Thor movie is going to work – for one thing, the costume is too silly and for another, I don't think the Norse God stuff will translate – but at least casting a relative unknown is a step in the right direction. It was announced last week that Chris Hemsworth (aka Kirk's dad in Star Trekis going to be playing Thor, while British actor Tom Hiddlestone has been cast as Thor's evil brother, Loki. Still no word on who's playing Captain America or the rest of the Avengers though.

3. Woody Allen wins $5m settlement in lawsuit
This week, Woody Allen accepted a $5m settlement in his lawsuit against fashion outlet American Apparel for unauthorised use of a still from Annie Hall with Allen dressed as a rabbi. The question is, what will he spend it on? He usually makes his films fairly cheaply, so I wonder how many Woody Allen movies you can get for $5m? Or maybe he'll blow it all on an expensive A-lister?

Films I'm Looking Forward To: Surrogates
After the whole 'good trailer, terrible movie' thing with Push (Forgotten it already? Lucky you), I'm vaguely wary of cool looking trailers, but, let's face it, who doesn't want to see Bruce Willis back doing weird looking sci-fi movies? I know I do. Luckily, his next film is exactly that, though I'm damned if I can figure out the plot from the trailer. Something about surrogate robot bodies so that you live a virtual reality, no-risk version of your own life? And then there are some murders and then it all goes horribly wrong? Anyway, the trailer features a couple of amusing touches, such as surrogate Bruce's comedy hairdo and Rosamund Pike's robot face falling off, but the bit that most intrigues me is the moment towards the end where the system apparently shuts down and everyone falls to the ground. I also have faith in director Jonathan Mostow – Breakdown was a brilliant suspense thriller and I'm one of the very few people to have actually liked Terminator 3. Unfortunately, Surrogates doesn't open here until September 25th, but it looks like it'll be worth the wait.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):
Only two new entries this week, with just French drama Mark of an Angel and deeply moving Slovak documentary Blind Loves making it into the top ten. For what it's worth, of this week's releases, I also enjoyed British teen horror flick Tormented, though it doesn't quite make it into the top 10. However, if you're so inclined, you can read our exclusive interview with some of the cast here.

1. Sounds Like Teen Spirit
2. Star Trek
3. Synecdoche, New York
4. Let the Right One In
5. Coraline (3D)
6. I Love You, Man
7. Blind Loves
8. Encounters at the End of the World
9. Mark of an Angel
10. Blue Eyelids

DVD of the Week: Frost/Nixon (out now, RRP £19.99)
This week's DVD of the Week is Frost/Nixon, the Oscar-nominated film based on the play by Peter Morgan, which, in turn, was based on the real life 1977 interviews between David Frost and Richard Nixon. Featuring another note-perfect impersonation by Michael Sheen as Frost and an Oscar-nominated turn from Frank Langella as Nixon, this is a hugely enjoyable, superbly written drama that is by turns suspenseful, funny and emotionally engaging. It's also Ron Howard's best film for quite some time. Extras include: 20 minutes of deleted scenes, a feature commentary by Ron Howard, a Making Of featurette (including interviews with cast and crew), a featurette on The Nixon Library and The Real Interview, which unfortunately turns out to be a few clips of the real interview interspersed with people talking about it, rather than the full length interview itself. Bit of a missed opportunity there, I think, plus calling the featurette The Real Interview is a tiny bit misleading.


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