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Empire of Light Review: Olivia Colman Shines in Sam Mendes’ Nostalgic Ode to the Power of Love and Cinema

September 9, 2022 | By
<i>Empire of Light</i> Review: Olivia Colman Shines in Sam Mendes’ Nostalgic Ode to the Power of Love and Cinema

Director Sam Mendes returns to the big screen with Empire of Light, which he described at the Telluride Film Festival world premiere as his most personal film yet. The film stars Oscar winner Olivia Colman as Hilary Small, who manages a local movie theater in a Southern English coastal town. Eventually, Hilary develops a... »

Indie Filmmaker Neil LaBute on His Return Behind the Camera With Thrillers House of Darkness & Out of the Blue

September 9, 2022 | By
Indie Filmmaker Neil LaBute on His Return Behind the Camera With Thrillers <I>House of Darkness</i> & <i>Out of the Blue</i>

It feels like we haven’t seen many movies from playwright-turned-filmmaker Neil LaBute in recent years. In fact, it’s been seven years since his last feature film, Dirty Weekend, which came after a fairly prolific run that began in 1997 with an adaptation of his own stage play, In the Company of Men. That was... »

Tár Review: A Brilliant Cate Blanchett Tackles Cancel Culture and Powerful Women With Help From Director Todd Field

September 8, 2022 | By
Tár Review: A Brilliant Cate Blanchett Tackles Cancel Culture and Powerful Women With Help From Director Todd Field

Two-thirds of the way through the 160-minute runtime of Cate Blanchett’s new festival vehicle Tár, the titular protagonist Lydia Tár is seen with her face bloodied, her eye swollen, and her nose broken. She is battered because of an excursion gone wrong, but that is beside the point — these broken features are emblematic... »

Barbarian Filmmaker Zach Cregger on How He Made One of the Year’s Craziest Horror Films With the Help of a Bulgarian Crew

September 8, 2022 | By
<i>Barbarian</i> Filmmaker Zach Cregger on How He Made One of the Year’s Craziest Horror Films With the Help of a Bulgarian Crew

Zach Cregger spent many years making the series The Whitest Kids U Know, writing and directing most of the episodes with the late Trevor Moore. The two of them also co-directed a few comedy features, but none of Cregger’s past work hinted at the horrors that lurk within his new movie Barbarian, which hits... »

The Accidental Turitz: Warner Bros. Learned the Hard Way Not to Give Zack Snyder’s Rabid Fans What They Want

September 7, 2022 | By
The Accidental Turitz: Warner Bros. Learned the Hard Way Not to Give Zack Snyder’s Rabid Fans What They Want

Some years back, I was involved in a film project that, in retrospect, was doomed from the start, but of course, I didn’t know that at the time. I hadn’t made anything in a while, so I got involved when I shouldn’t have and ignored repeated warning signs. To quote a line from the... »

Women Talking Review: Sarah Polley’s Exquisite Drama Shows No Fear in Taking on the Patriarchy

September 7, 2022 | By
<i>Women Talking</i> Review: Sarah Polley’s Exquisite Drama Shows No Fear in Taking on the Patriarchy

Canadian director Sarah Polley (Away With Her, Take This Waltz) has made her best film yet with Women Talking, the first feature she has directed in a decade. The movie had its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival last week, and it’s based on Miriam Toews‘ 2018 novel, which follows eight Mennonite women... »

Bardo Review: Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Deeply Personal Biopic Is Moving But Rambling 

September 7, 2022 | By
<i>Bardo</i> Review: Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Deeply Personal Biopic Is Moving But Rambling 

Kudos to director Alejandro González Iñárritu for bravely bucking the “90 minutes is too long to sit still” trend that defines our restless, unfocused generations. His new film Bardo (or False Chronicles of a Handful of Truths) — the title itself augurs length — screened this past week at both the Venice and Telluride... »

WGA Unveils Key Dates for 2023 Writers Guild Awards and Some Changes to Eligibility Criteria

September 7, 2022 | By
WGA Unveils Key Dates for 2023 Writers Guild Awards and Some Changes to Eligibility Criteria

The Writers Guild of America has announced that the 75th Annual Writers Guild Awards, which honor outstanding writing in film, television, new media, news, radio/audio, and promotional categories, will be presented on Sunday, March 5, 2023. Before we get to the key dates, it’s important to note that the Writers Guild of America West (WGAW)... »

Union Roundup: Production Incentives Experts Gather, Hoping Hollywood Can Bring Economic Recovery As We Learn to Live With Covid

September 5, 2022 | By
Union Roundup: Production Incentives Experts Gather, Hoping Hollywood Can Bring Economic Recovery As We Learn to Live With Covid

During the dog days of August, one of our excuses for staying in, where the air was cooler, was a Zoom seminar (remember those, in these suddenly, precipitously, unmasked times?) from Entertainment Partners, that offered an update on U.S. Production Incentives for 2022. The seminar focused on four states — Arizona, Florida, Illinois, and... »

Summering Director James Ponsoldt on the Challenge of Capturing Elusive Female Friendships Among Tweens

September 2, 2022 | By
<i>Summering</i> Director James Ponsoldt on the Challenge of Capturing Elusive Female Friendships Among Tweens

Filmmaker James Ponsoldt cut his teeth in the world of independent filmmaking with a number of highly-regarded movies that premiered either at Sundance or SXSW, beginning with his 2006 debut, Off the Black, and continuing through Smashed in 2012, The Spectacular Now in 2013, and The End of the Tour in 2015. (Ponsoldt’s 2017... »