Slowing down, in the Buddhist way,
is all about opening oneself up to the cacophony of life. Audiences should keep this notion in mind during screenings of The Sessions,
the new film from writer-director Ben Lewin, featuring John
Hawkes in one of those quietly human performances.
I’m not certain when the feeling set in for me, but at some point during the Flight
screening I attended, I was overcome with the sense of observing the
dark days of Stevie Ray Vaughan, the virtuoso Texas guitarist who died
in the early 1990s after years of working as a sideman (most notably
with David Bowie on his 1980s classic Let’s Dance) and taking
center stage with his own band.
I had to catch myself in Toronto during the festival press screening of Cloud Atlas,
the new film from Tom Tykwer and the Wachowskis (Andy and Lana), and
carefully consider what it would mean to define their adaptation of
David Mitchell’s book as “novelistic.”
The year 2012 bears the burden of
apocalyptic Mayan calendar predictions and a curious onscreen
fascination with speculative science fiction dramas but, apparently seeking to top things off, writer Dinesh D’Souza
teams up with John Sullivan to speculate about the true intentions of
President Barack Obama in 2016: Obama’s America.
In what should be an iconic image, we see
Sixto Diaz Rodriguez, a Folk singer who recorded his first single “I’ll
Slip Away” back in 1967, strolling along with his guitar case strapped
across his back. His long dark hair billows in halo-like fashion around
his head; his eyes hidden behind dark shades.
For the couch-bound adrenaline seekers, the American Express/Tribeca Film series offers up Sleepless Night, a French production from Frederic Jardin (of the 2002 comic drama Cravate club) that mines similar territory.
This year’s seventh annual Downtown Dayton LGBT Film Festival lineup definitely addresses a new honest reality, this striving for a sense of urgent
authenticity, both through the films and the celebratory events.
Our first few moments in the presence of Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix) capture the extraordinary power and the isolation of the character. What Paul Thomas Anderson, the director of The Master, and the mercurial Phoenix have created here is a portrait of an old god, maybe the last of his kind to walk the Earth.
This year marks my fourth sojourn to the
Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and I
have been able to add a few extra days to my usual long weekend mad dash
through an impossibly overbooked itinerary that leaves me feeling like a
camera-toting tourist snapping pictures of all the officially
Now in its third year, the Cincinnati
Film Festival is committed to helping filmmakers project their visions,
as more than 80 works of various lengths and styles will grace venues in
Clifton, Downtown and Over-the-Rhine Sept. 6-14.
Best friends forever is a clichéd phrase
that gets bandied about between people closely linked for a time,
through a particular patch of life, but few of these relationships truly
last. Only a precious few bond on the deepest levels and fewer still
cross the gender divide.
Unlike the action junkies
chopping up the battles to pile on more frames helter-skelter, Tony Scott
would actually slow the moments down, to let us see the beauty of
stillness before the clash. He gave us a chance to breathe and steady
Sometimes a story taps into a primal
human desire, a need so intrinsic that it makes belief come to life.
Screenwriter (and director) Peter Hedges, working from a story conceived
by Frank Zappa’s son, Ahmet, dares to make audiences hope and believe
in something so real with The Odd Life of Timothy Green.
For Ruby Sparks, Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris (Little Miss Sunshine)
tag team with first-time screenwriter and co-star Zoe Kazan to tell the
incredible story of Calvin Weir-Fields (Paul Dano), a young author who
finds himself struggling to complete the follow-up to the debut novel
that made him one of the brightest literary stars of the late 20th
Film, as a medium, provides writers and directors the opportunity to tell great stories. But sometimes, as is the case with Jonathan Demme's latest effort, Neil Young Journeys, film simply goes along for the ride with an even greater storyteller as he does his thing.