- The Cinemateca Portuguesa needs your help: the institution is under threat unless the state steps in. There's a petition online where you can sign and voice your support.
"The Cinemateca Portuguesa in Lisbon runs the risk of closing 'if there is no injection of money' soon by the Secretary of State for Culture, the Cinemateca director, Maria João Seixas, announced today.
'We need to have a decision by the end of the month,' the director warned, stressing that what's at stake is the conservation of the heritage of Portuguese cinema, the archives in Bucelas (Loures), the salaries of 71 workers, the programming, and the other operations of the Museu do Cinema." (translation by David Phelps).
- Jumping to the top of our list of most anticipated films is Agnès Varda freshly announced five-part documentary From Here to Now, which will be released via VOD later this year. Here's a brief tease of the film's contents:
"Each of the five episodes is 45 minutes in length, totaling 225 minutes of glorious Varda documentary-making. The insatiable and indefatigable filmmaker and new Academy member, now 85, hits locales as diverse as Los Angeles and St. Petersburg, Lisbon and Mexico. She talks with Russian director Alexander Sokurov (Russian Ark), eats with sculptor Christian Boltanski and partner artist Annette Messager, and dances with Portuguese filmmaker Manoel de Oliveira (Eccentricities of a Blonde-haired Girl, The Strange Case of Angelica)."
- Above: our friends at Lumière will be presenting Gina Telaroli's Traveling Light around the world this Fall, with your help:
"If you want to organize a screening in your city let us know! All you need is a projector, some speakers, a screen (or wall), seats, and a public space--it doesn't need to be a fancy cinema, just a place people can gather and watch a movie. There's no need to wait for someone to bring the movie to you, bring it to yourself!"
- The Beijing Independent Film Festival has yet again been disrupted by authorities, though less subtly this go around:
"Immediately after the opening ceremony (pictured) in a Songzhuang cafe-cinema, which was attended by directors from as far afield as Iran and Sweden, the assembled crowd were informed that the planned screenings would not be taking place as scheduled.In a repeat of last year's event, the crowd dutifully filed over to the nearby Li Xianting Film Foundation, newly rebuilt with a three-storey screen, for what most assumed would be a private screening. Unfortunately, any plans for such an event were scuppered when police arrived with an official notice from on high and set up surveillance teams to quash any illicit viewing."
- Writing for FIPRESCI, Locarno juror Kiva Reardon expounds on the prize-winning favourite What Now? Remind Me by Joaquim Pinto:
"In short: this is no typical survivor tale, rejecting talking head experts, manipulative tear-jerking moments and celebratory swelling musical scores. Indeed, the forced positivism of feel-good cinema is undermined from the outset, as Pinto overlays an X-ray of his decaying teeth on the road he and his partner are driving down. "So", Pinto narrates, "I'm starting with a smile." The surreal image not only lays bare Pinto's candid and dark humour which infuses the film, but also neatly sets up the What now? Remind Me's focus: the intersection between the physical body (those rotting incisors) and the limits of expression (the ghoulish grin)."
- Above: we've made a point of expressing our Paul W.S. Anderson love in the past and we're not stopping now. The teaser for Pompeii only gives us a fleeting taste of the "Vulgar Auteur"'s new film, but his style is nevertheless immediately recognizable.
"Affable and relaxed though still an imposing figure, the khaki-clad Mr. De Palma sat down recently in the back of a Greenwich Village restaurant to watch and discuss sequences from his own oeuvre that informed Passion.
Originally invited to view classical films that influenced Passion, he responded playfully: 'I could only refer to my own films. Nobody does this but me.'
Thus began the ultimate De Palma experience: watching a master of cinematic voyeurism watch his own films."
From the archives.