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Entries in Umbrellas of Cherbourg (6)

Monday
Jan 28 2019

Michel Legrand (1932-2019)

by Eric Blume

Michel Legrand in 1981French film composer Michel Legrand passed away this past weekend after six decades of work in the industry.He was truly one of the greats. Chief among his accomplishments was the sung-through score for the masterpieceThe Umbrellas of Cherbourg(1964),delivering music that soared and perfectly caught the melancholy tone of director Jacques Demy's pastel/sad view of the world.The Legrand-Demy collaboration was deliriously French and remains a pristine achievement over a half century later...

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Friday
Jan 06 2017

La La Demy Land

Now thatLa La Landis in wide release word of mouth from regular moviegoers (rather than critics) keeps expanding.As expected with Best Picture frontrunners,not all of it is kind.This unique and ravishing film has begun to suffer from the inevitable backlash.  Some of my musical theater friends are balking that neither star is a great singer,the songs aren't sophisticated,and it doesn't honor Hollywood musicals in the way they'd expected.


To harp on these issues misses the point of what director Damien Chazelle has created.  It's true that neither Emma Stone nor Ryan Gosling have Broadway-caliber singing voices,and it's also true that future composers of musical theater are likelier to study Sondheim than Justin Hurwitz.  But Chazelle isn't making a Broadway show,he's crafting a wholly-original tone for a film,stealing bits and pieces from a wide variety of sources,and doesn't seem interested in making a purely traditional Hollywood musical.

Chazelle has spoken in interviews about how the single greatest influence onLa La Landwere the two musical films of French director Jacques Demy:The Umbrellas of Cherbourg,andThe Young Girls of Rochefort...

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Monday
Oct 24 2016

Middleburg Finale: "Loving"& "La La Land"

Lynn Leehere stepping in for Nathaniel,on his way back to NYC,for the final day of the Middleburg Film Festival which was Sunday.As a D.C.area resident,I've been observing the rising profile of this local-ish film festival over the past few years with great interest.  Festival founder Sheila Johnson seems bent on making Middleburg a lower-altitude Telluride of the East,and she certainly has the Hollywood heavy-hitter connections to do it!  This year's lineup was easily the most impressive so far in the festival's short history;it's as if the program was constructed specifically to highlight likely Oscar contenders.

The Lovings in the beloved Virginia.

In both that ambition and its picturesque Virginia setting,there was no more fitting film to cap the festival thanLoving...

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Monday
Jul 21 2014

Linkpiercer

GuardianTim Robey has a lovely tribute to TV & film star James Garner (RIP) who I'll always remember best forMurphy's RomanceandVictor/Victoriain the 1980s
PajibaI'm more of a cat person but this gallery of big celebrities with tiny dogs is adorable
Criterion Collectionon the painstaking restoration ofThe Umbrellas of Cherbourg
Thompson on Hollywoodhas an in depth look at the VOD decisions involvingSnowpiercerfrom the mouth of Harvey Weinstein (so yes it's very one-sided...but interesting nonetheless)

The Dissolve'when images match ideas' onSnowpiercerandDawn of the Planet of the Apes
Pajibahas the talk with Marvel about the Edgar Wright Divorce
TowleroadAndrew Rannells starts soon asHedwig.(I'm excited.The role is big enough for multiple interpretations)
Theater ManiaMichelle Williams wants to keep singing at the Kit Kat Club longer than expected.She's staying withCabaretall the way through November 9th now (I guess she doesn't have to start promotingSuite Françaisefor awhile still)
Detailsinterviews Wentworth Miller,formerPrison Breakhunk andStokerwriter,on his career after coming out

And,finally,are you excited for Festival Season yet?

I'm trying to remain calm as I make plans but NYFF isn't making staying calm any easier what with their Opening Night Film (Gone Girl's world premiere) Centerpiece (Inherent Vice) and Closing Night (Birdmanwhich is scheduled for Venice as well).Tomorrow TIFF holds their opening news conference and we'll hear more about their plans as well.Here's some speculation from a Toronto news sitewhich suggests that Reese Witherspoon is going to be a major presence and you can probably safely assume that Maps to the Stars will also be there given TIFF's love of Cronenberg.

Saturday
May 10 2014

Team Top Ten: The Best Cannes Winners of All Time

Amir here,to bring you this month's edition of Team Top Ten,a monthly poll by all of our contributing team at The Film Experience.亚博主页Cinephiles all around the world turn their attention to the south of France in May as the most prestigious film festival in the world gets underway in Cannes.

The festival's history is a rich one,full of interesting cinematic and political narratives.It's an event that has celebrated the best in cinema and operated as a launching pad for emerging artists as much as it has played games of politics and festival world favouritism.Still,when all is said and done,the list of Palme d'Or winners can rival any list of the best films ever made.

With this year's edition of the festival just about to begin,we thought it would be a good time to revisit the past and choose ourTop Ten Favourite Cannes Winners of All Time.For this poll,we've excluded the first two editions of the festival (1939,retroactively awarded to Union Pacific,and 1946,when the top prize was shared between 11 films.)

There is really no easy way to select the cream of the crop here,because these films are already...well,the cream of the crop.Consider the eight films that finished behind our top dozen:Pulp Fiction;Dancer in the Dark;Viridiana;4 Months,3 Weeks and 2 Days;Farewell My Concubine;Secrets & Lies;The Tree of Life;The Pianist.Not to mention masterpieces likeBlack Orpheus,Wages of FearandRosettathat placed outside the top 20.The point is that this is the highest echelon of films awards so the standards are high and margins are slim.Some of you will surely disagree with our ranking,but we welcome that.Let us know what you think in the comments.

THE BEST CANNES WINNERS OF ALL TIME
a non-definitive poll which begins with a three-way tie for tenth

10=La Dolce Vita(Fellini,1960)

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Tuesday
Sep 18 2012

Foreign Oscar Updates.Will France Finally Win Again?

With France's official announcement that the blockbusterThe Intouchableswill be theirOfficial Oscar submission for Best Foreign Film,is the race already over?Its global tally currently rests atan astounding $364 million dollars,most of that from overseas bank.The film hasn't been ignored in American arthouse theaters exactly but it's $9 million gross and mainstream appeal (it's even in the IMDb top 100) qualifies it as a major arthouse hit but no crossover slam dunk;roughly speaking it's a hit the way last year's foreign film winner,the instant classicA Separation,was or the wayBeasts of the Southern Wildis.

French cinema has had a complex intermittently passionate long-distance relationship with Hollywood since cinema began and that is reflected in their Oscar success over the years both in this category and others.France leads all countries in most Foreign Film nominations by a wide margin (36 nominees to Italy's 26) but surprisingly they have not won since the Catherine Deneuve dramaIndochinerocked US arthouses twenty years ago.Will this Gallic sort-of variation onDriving Miss Daisy(is that too dismissive?) be a lock for Oscar love or will last year's swerve towards critically prestigious international cinema signal a sea change to new glory days for the category?(Yes,I still have impromptu ecstatic flashbacks toA Separation's win)

OFFICIAL SUBMISSION CHARTS 2012 -- everything in one place as we do: posters,trailers,info.Pass it on.

Current Predictions- Australia,Austria,Denmark,France and Romania
Albania through Iran- 15 official submissions (thus far...updates in progress)
Italy through Venezuala- 16 official submissions (thus far...updates in progress)

Amelie netflix illustration by Tim Hodge (click for original source)A collection of France's biggest Oscar hits if you'd like to catch up with a movie marathon at home...after the jump

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