Here's how John Patterson opens a terrific piece in the LA Weekly: "A priceless cinematic time capsule of the African-American experience in post-Watts Los Angeles; a kaleidoscope of the multiple mindsets of a community in profound flux; a sustained rebuke and a consciously developed alternative to the plantation economics and racist narratives of the then-current 'blaxploitation' boom; exemplary first steps along a filmmaking road finally not taken — (but oh, the possibilities glimpsed herein!): L.A. Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema is all of these and more. This collection of the highlights of the legendary but only partially understood African-American film explosion at UCLA in the 70s and early 80s is a priceless work of excavation and restoration, and as an LA-specific filmic event it's unlikely to be surpassed in the near future." Part of Pacific Standard Time, the series opens today and runs through December 17.
"Now in its fifth year, the International Black Film Festival of Nashville has emerged as a destination for high-profile films and industry seminars," writes Ron Wynn. Also in the Scene, Sean L Maloney talks with Ray Zate about his film, Building the Highway 2 Mars, "a remarkably stirring documentary about local rapper Stix Izza and the making of his album Highway 2 Mars." The festival's on through Sunday.
With eleven nominations, Wei Te-sheng's 4½-hour Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale is the front-runner in the race for this year's Golden Horse Awards, followed by Jiang Wen's Let the Bullets Fly with nine, The Piano in a Factory with seven and, with six each, Anne Hui's A Simple Life and Peter Chan's Wu Xia.
Girish Shambu shares "a few impressions from Toronto."
"Oscar-nominated Australian actress Diane Cilento, who was once married to James Bond actor Sean Connery, has died in northern Australia," reports the AP. She was 78. "The Queensland-born actress rose to fame in the 1950s and 1960s, starring alongside screen legends such as Charlton Heston and Paul Newman. In 1956, she was nominated for a Tony Award for her portrayal of Helen of Troy in the play Tiger at the Gates. She received an Academy Award nomination in 1963 for best supporting actress for her work in the movie Tom Jones." Update: Ronald Bergan has a full obit in the Guardian.