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Weekly Rushes. 24 February 2016

Apichatpong’s installation, great cinematographers pass, our festival coverage, “Leo’s Red Carpet Rampage,” Bergman’s letter to the Academy.
Rushes collects news, articles, images, videos and more for a weekly roundup of essential items from the world of film.

  • Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul, whose brilliant Cemetery of Splendor will be released in the US this spring, has revealed a new installation work, Home Movie, made for Sydney's 2016 Biennale. According to his website, "an exhibition space hosts a cave-like ritual where people gather to simply take in the light":
"In this home-cave, the heat is both comfortable and threatening. A fireball is an organic-like machine with phantom fans to blow away the heat and, at the same time, rouse the fire, which is impossible to put out even in dreams."
  • This season seems to be one of cinema masters passing. In addition to the directors who've died over the last month, we've lost two great cinematographers this week. First, Douglas Slocombe, who shot the first three Indian Jones films, and such classic comedies for the Ealing Studios as Kind Hearts and Coronets, The Man in the White Suit, and The Lavender Hill Mob. (Above, he's on the set for the latter film, with Audrey Hepburn.) And now we've lost the French director of photography Jean Rabier, best known for his brilliant work with Claude Chabrol, ranging from early 1960s French New Wave work to 1991's Madame Bovary, as well as such gorgeous visions as Jacques Demy's The Umbrellas of Cherbourg and Agnès Varda's Cléo from 5 to 7.
  • In case you missed it, the Notebook was at the International Film Festival Rotterdam and the Berlin International Film Festival. We've rounded up our coverage for the IFFR and Berlinale (whose awards, including the Golden Bear for Gianfranco Rosi's Fire at Sea, can be found here), with new interviews to be published soon.
  • The lineup for the annual Museum of Modern Art x Film Society of Lincoln Center collaboration New Directors / New Films has been announced, and it includes many of our favorite films from this and last year, including The Apostate, Happy Hour, Neon Bull, Short Stay, and Thithi.
  • We're tremendously grateful for Brooklyn's BAMcinématek sharing a video of a discussion between director Michael Mann and critic Bilge Ebiri during their recent retrospective on the filmmaker.
  • Speaking of Apichatpong Weerasethakul's Cemetery Splendor, its US distributor Strand Releasing has put out an appropriately dreamy and mysterious trailer for one of last year's—and now this year's—best films.
  • One of our favorite video essayists, kogonada, has made a wonderful video for the Criterion Collection about Jean-Luc Godard's iconic 1960s work.
  • With the announcement of freshly minted US distributor Grasshopper Films is the news that it will be releasing A Separation director Asghar Farhadi's 2006 film, Fireworks Wednesday. Watch the trailer above.
  • London's A Nos Amours has generously shared a video of a talk by French author Jacques Rancière on Robert Bresson's Mouchette.
 Wang Hongwei (left) and director Jia Zhangke (right) on the set of Xiao Wu. Photo via Arsenal.
  • The Berlinale's Forum section this year has launched a terrific new publication organized around the Forum's 2016 selection as well as its aesthetic and political thrust. One of several great pieces included is Jacob Wong's interview with Chinese director Jia Zhangke, whose feature debut Xiao Wu premiered at the Forum in 1998, and who in 2016 produced Life After Life, which showed in the same section:
"...certain independent films have been getting shown on the big screen, yet at the same time the censors have put the squeeze on film festivals that specialise in independent cinema. The two practices appear contradictory, but in reality they are not. We’re talking about two offices here: one that governs censorship, and the other that governs management. And film festivals fall under management. An independent film festival is a gathering, and for certain governmental departments gatherings might be a cause for concern. But regarding censorship alone, I would argue that in the past couple of years, some quality independent films did manage to enter general circulation and the market. And that’s not an insignificant change."
Jacques Rivette's Duelle
  • If you've been following our coverage of the Berlin International Film Festival, you'll know Terence Davies's Emily Dickinson biopic A Quiet Passion was one of our very favorites. The New Yorker's Richard Brody was also in Berlin, and has waxed effusive on this beauty:
"Great acting usually coincides with great direction, and, while the entire cast moves and speaks with a sense of inner purpose, Nixon’s performance is special. (If she’s not nominated for an Oscar in whichever year this movie is released, I’ll eat the pixels.) Her incarnation of Dickinson seems to rise outward from the bone; she seems frozenly poised with, yes, a quiet passion that’s all the more impassioned for its unplanned quietness."
  • Segueing into this weekend's Academy Awards, The Village Voice's Melissa Anderson has penned a terrific, comic and personal ode to the not-so-secret gayness of the ceremony over the years:
 "I grew up during the 1970s and '80s, transfixed every year from my childhood through my post-adolescence by the televised derangement endorsed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences — viewing that unquestionably led to my becoming a practitioner of the sapphic arts. "
  • And in another kind of homage to the Academy Awards, it's time to fight for Leonardo DiCaprio's Oscar chances in Leo's Red Carpet Rampage.
  • And speaking of the Oscars, above via the Ingmar Bergman Foundation is a curt and cutting letter from the Swedish master to the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.
Something leads me to believe that no matter how curt and cutting he was, Ingmar Bergman did not send an email to anybody in 1960.
He was always ahead of his time! Thanks for the correction, Zachary.

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