Articles from May 2010



Red Carpet and After Party

 

This is a short video of some of the night life at the  Cannes Film Festival 2010.  It’s great fun when the sun goes down in the Riviera but even while you’re having fun you should be working it!

You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger – Woody Allen?

In this video I show you a glimps of what goes on at the Cannes Film Festival 2010.

 

Review of “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger”
writen and directed by Woody Allen


by Shane Kester | Published: May 28, 2010

I had the wonderful privilege of acquiring an invitation to the new Woody Allen movie opening at the Cannes Film Festival 2010.  And since it’s not due out until late September I thought I’d give you a quick review of what I thought of “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger.”  And before I begin, I have to tell you that I am a Woody Allen fan and make no qualms about being biased.

The film speaks from a very pessimistic point of view on the longevity of marital relationships, because in “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger” relationships come cheap.  The story revolves around five couples (I had to take about 5 minutes to sketch a type of “cheating family tree” to come to that number.  It actually goes beyond that number but I think I’m safe to say that the story predominantly revolves around five couples and their interrelations) and of course one fortune teller who gets to say the title of the movie in her dialogue. 

Now let me see if I can get it straight for you:  Helena (Gemma Jones) has been dumped by her husband Alfie (Anthony Hopkins) after 40 years of marriage to persue a more meaningful lifestyle, complete with a new batchelor’s pad and sports car.  Their daughter Sally (Naomi Watts) sends her mother to a friend pretending to be a fortune teller to help her deal with the divorce.  Sally is married to a writter, Roy (Josh Brolin) with one sucessful novel to his name and has been rewriting his new book for years too unsure of himself to finish it.  He becomes infatuated by the beautiful young woman (Freida Pinto) living in the building directly across the street from him and through his creepy voyeurism happens to successfully seduce the woman into a relationship even though she is to be married in a couple of months time.  Roy’s wife Sally gives into the flirtacious invitations and becomes romantically drawn to her art gallery boss Greg (Antonio Banderas).  Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Sally’s mother and father both find new love.  Alfie finds himself a lovely blond bomshell prostitue named Charmaine (Lucy Punch) to loore into marriage with promises of a life of luxury that he cannot afford while Helena finds solis in a gentleman who’s wife has recently passed away and is into fortune telling, seances and the occult.  I think I’ll have to stop myself there because, trust me, I could keep going on about the guy in a coma and Sally’s best friend having an afair with the guy she wants to have affair with but I think that’s just going to confuse things more.

The actors were a tribute to their characters.  Gemma Jones, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Brolin, Naomi Watts, Antonio Benderas were tremendous as usual.  It was refreshing to watch and listen to Lucy Punch in her interview at Cannes and see that she isn’t anything like her stereotypical bimbo character at all. 

Freida Pinto (Slum Dog Millionaire) was beautiful as Dia, the woman across the street but her relationship with Josh Brolin’s character was a bit too much for me.  Freida Pinto is young, beautiful and dainty while Josh Brolin is not.  It was like watching someone handling a flower wearing a catcher’s mit.  Or I could just be jealous, who knows.

If you like Woody Allen flavored movies you will not be disappointed.  The story moves along at a good clip not leaving you much time to analyze the characters predicaments before they get into an even worse predicament.  The movie ends without a resolution in site for any of the characters leaving you exiting the theater thinking about how the fiasco will eventually work out.  It was a clever movie with a dark theme that was cheerfully executed… a Woody Allen movie for sure.

Marché du Film (Film Market) Cannes Film Festival 2010

In this video I take you inside the Marché du Film 2010 to give you a taste of what is going on.  Dozens and dozens of booths with thousands of movie rights changing hands (hopefully changing hands) and vying for attention.  The first time I walked this floor I felt a deep sense of futility.  I could see so much of why it’s so important to start the buzz about your film before you even start shooting.  Hopefully you will get the attention of one of these brokers and get them to market your film and sell it here at Cannes, Berlin or one of the US film markets.  But if they do take on your film you have to remember that they probably have dozens (maybe hundreds) of other films that were produced with a bigger budget and better known stars than yours to market.  Your film can so easily be lost in the mire but this is where your creativity, tenacity and schmoozing skills come into play to market your film.  Get to know people and impress them, help them if you can and get them to help you in some way to promote you and your film.

Cannes Film Festival 2010 an Exclusive Event

The Cannes Film Festival is an unusual festival because “The Festival de Cannes is exclusively reserved to film industry professionals,” to quote the Festival-Cannes web site.  So how do you know if you’re accredited?

FILM PROFESSIONAL CLASSIFICATION

Because the Festival de Cannes is exclusively reserved for film industry professionals, if you do not belong to one of the categories below, your request will not be taken into consideration.

  • · Civil service, embassies
  • · Artistic Agent
  • · Press agent
  • · Writer, director, composer
  • · Lawyer, jurist
  • · Film library, archive, restoration
  • · Actor
  • · Film commission
  • · Distribution
  • · Film school
  • · Film music publishing
  • · Financial institution
  • · Exhibitor
  • · Film festival
  • · Technical industries
  • · Press/media: non journalists
  • · Press/media: journalists
  • · Production
  • · Film Publicist
  • · Film technician
  • · Video, DVD, VOD

Now don’t think that by telling them you are one of those things that they will let you in.  You have to prove your accreditation.  If you are a film student or film maker thee are ways for you to qualify for attendance.  Go to the Festival-Cannes web site for more information.

Winners of the Cannes Film Festival 2010

So the Cannes Film Festival comes to another successful conclusion.  The winner of the coveted The Palme d’Or was awarded to Lung Boonmee Raluek Chat (Uncle Boonmee who can Recall his Past Lives) “This Palme is very important for the history of Thailand and the Thai people.” He also credited, “the spirits and ghosts of Thailand,” as helping him to get where he is today.  Read the synopsis of his film and it will make more sense.

Film Synopsis

Suffering from acute kidney failure, Uncle Boonmee has chosen to spend his final days surrounded by his loved ones in the countryside. Surprisingly, the ghost of his deceased wife appears to care for him, and his long lost son returns home in a non-human form. Contemplating the reasons for his illness, Boonmee treks through the jungle with his family to a mysterious hilltop cave — the birthplace of his first life…

The Grand Prix was awarded to Des Hommes et des dieux (Of Gods and Men) directed by Xavier Beauvois. The director described his experience of shooting the film as a “moment of grace” and took the opportunity to pay tribute to the memory of the eight Christian monks from the Monastery of Tibhirine whose last days alive he depicts in his film.

Film Synopsis

A monastery high in the mountains of the Maghreb, some time in the 90s…
Eight French Christian monks live in harmony with their Muslim brothers.
But violence and terror are slowly taking hold of the region. Despite the ever-growing danger that surrounds them, the monks’ resolve to stay – whatever the cost – grows stronger day by day…

The Jury Prize went to A Screaming Man by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun. “I come from a country where there isn’t much of anything. In a kind of a desert, I learnt that you have to make films like you cook your favourite dishes for the people you love.”

Film Synopsis

Present-day Chad. Adam, sixty something, a former swimming champion, is pool attendant at a smart N’Djamena hotel. When the hotel gets taken over by new Chinese owners, he is forced to give up his job to his son Abdel. Terribly resentful, he feels socially humiliated.
The country is in the throes of a civil war. Rebel forces are attacking the government. The authorities demand that the population contribute to the “war effort”, giving money or volunteers old enough to fight off the assailants. The District Chief constantly harasses Adam for his contribution. But Adam is penniless; he only has his son….

Mathieu Amalric won the prize for Best Director for his film Tournée (On Tour). Durring his speech he called up his actresses to be with him and said, “This moves me very much, I have the impression of coming home.  I need all of you to be able to experience this moment. The direction was all them. Huge thanks.

There was a tie this year for Best Actor.  The awards went to Javier Bardem for Biutiful directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and to Elio Germano for La Nostra Vita (Our Life) directed by Daniele Luchetti.

The Best Actress Prize has been awarded to Juliette Binoche for her role in Copie conforme (Certified Copy) by Abbas Kiarostami. “How wonderful, how wonderful it was to work with you, Abbas! Your camera is the one that revealed me to my womanliness. There are almost no words, because in front of a camera that loves you, that is where the miracle is…

The Award for Best Screenplay went to Lee Chang-dong for Poetry which he also directed.  “I´d like to thank Mr Tim Burton and the other members of his Jury. I´d like to share this honour with all of the film´s actors and actresses.”