The Toronto International Film Festival is continuing to roll out an impressive (and massive) lineup of films, this time for its Masters and Wavelengths sections, including a mysterious 12-minute "portrait of feverish slumber" by Apichatpong Weerasethakul, entitled Blue, the international premiere of Naomi Kawase's Vision, about a woman's search for a Japanese medicinal plant in a strange forest, and the North American premiere of Jia Zhangke's gangster film Ash is Purest White.
With fall festival season upon us, a slew of new trailers has arrived: Firstly, Gaspar Noé is back with what is destined, based on reviews from Cannes, to be yet another contentious film. Lawrence Garcia wrote about the "virtuosic, infernal" film for Notebook. Here's the U.S. trailer.
A sublime, oneiric first trailer for Naomi Kawase's aforementioned TIFF-bound Vision, starring Juliette Binoche and Masatoshi Nagase.
A secretive yet beguiling trailer for Son of Saul director László Nemes's latest, Sunset. We're not sure what precisely it is about, but remain curious about its elaborate formal rhythms and 35mm texture displayed.
We're similarly curious about this new family drama from Federico Veiroj (who we've interviewed not once but twice before) which looks to investigate single fatherhood with witty, lively, and sensitive filmmaking.
It's been four years since the much underrated Dumb and Dumber To, and Peter Farrelly, one of half of the comedic directing duo of brothers, is back with what appears to be a near inversion of that film: a mostly serious, respectable drama starring Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali.
The "virtual studio" Kinet Media has released their 9th program of youthful experimental films, now available to watch for free at their website.
For Kinoscope's coverage of this year's Japan Cuts, Notebook contributor Jaime Grijalba draws a connection between three films by Nobuhiko Obayashi, Kazuo Hara, and Takeshi Kitano, and "Old Man’s cinema": "Because of their age and the slow rate of their output, [...] these works also feel like fitting farewells."
An enlightening interview with cinematographer Ashley Connor (The Miseducation of Cameron Post, Madeline's Madeline) by Nylon's Jinnie Lee contextualizes the DP's work within a larger tradition of women in filmmaking. "Women move up much slower in the world," Connor tells Nylon. "And it’s a problem."
On the occasion of Film Society of Lincoln Center's series, Flat is Beautiful: The Strange Case of Pixelvision, Film Society programmer Thomas Beard has shared a "quasi conversation" between Yvonne Rainer and Cecilia Dougherty, who together explore the meaning behind the bodies of performers, the limits of narrative, and video versus film ("the unwieldy leviathan").
Village Voice critic Kristen Yoonsoo Kim reviews Diane Kurys's coming-of-age tale Peppermint Soda to mark the release of its fortieth-anniversary 2K restoration. Unlike Bo Burnham's digital-era tween flick Eighth Grade, Peppermint Soda "feels timeless and relatable while also specific to its era." That specificity is captured in an interview with Steve McFarlane for Hyperallergic. Kurys explains: "I spent my childhood thinking, just, 'One day someone will know.' 'One day I am going to tell this story.'"
For the New York Times, Penelope Green profiles Andie MacDowell, best known for her role in Sex, Lies, and Videotapes. Now 60, MacDowell speaks of her love for Kelly Reichardt's Certain Women, Pauline Kael, and video artist Joan Jonas. On solitude and aging: “I do know from experience what’s it like to be alone, but I am good at it. And I do know sadness. You can’t get to my age without having felt some kind of intense pain."
RECENTLY ON THE NOTEBOOK
Continuing our coverage of the Locarno Film Festival, contributor Christopher Small interviews Jodie Mack, detailing the improvisational construction of her latest The Grand Bizarre: "The only truth I know is a balance of opposites, not an issue of facts."
Festival programmer Eric Allen Hatch kicks off his new column, Infinite Fest, by advocating for the vitality of keeping "smaller films" alive at film festivals, and digging for emerging voices and work you might not be able to access elsewhere.
Regarding Film Society's Flat is Beautiful: The Strange Case of Pixelvision, Kelley Dong examines the potential of the Pixelvision camcorder to "[transform] on-camera introspection into a game, intertwining make-believe and show-and-tell."
Contributor Willow Catelyn Maclay reviews Josephine Decker's Madeline's Madeline through the prism of Helena Howard, the "prodigy" who plays the titular character with "all the complexities of a 1970s Robert De Niro-esque control of her emotional follow-through when violent climax is necessary."
EXTRAS & RE-DISCOVERIES
Do you perhaps recall the multi-film (but soon abandoned) adaptation of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged from several years ago? Neither did we—that is until Twitter user @NoChorus revived the productions desperate attempt at a crowdsourced DVD extra that culminated in a bizarre array of videos which, depending on your stance on Ayn Rand and objectivism, may or may not be worth your time.
When the first Atlas Shrugged film came out they asked for fans to say "I am john galt" to add to a dvd extra. The results are some of the best, most strange youtube videos you'll ever see pic.twitter.com/lVoSSSyQ0h
The 25 second, documentary sequel to Kathryn Bigelow's Point Break...?
Brazilian surfer Rodrigo Koxa broke the world record for the highest wave ever surfed, during a session in Nazare, Portugal, according to the World Surf League. The São Paulo native set the new record riding an 80-foot (24,38m) wave in November 2017 https://t.co/lMUkJm8bBlpic.twitter.com/PYL7qscNd6
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