Posts Tagged ‘Kevin Spacey’

Berlin 2010 Preview: Panorama Main/Special, Part One

February 5, 2010

According to the program notes, Berlin’s Panorama section is meant to present “an overview of trends in art-house world cinema.” That’s shorthand for “this is where we put stuff we like, but which is unlikely to attract the attention of a Competition film.” The films found in the Main and Special programs highlight international and independent productions in need of wider distribution. This year’s batch includes India’s first legally gay film, a Brazilian action film and Kevin Spacey moving in with his daughter. Read to the end, because there’s a trick in this line-up’s tail. Click on the titles to see trailers.

Read the first part of our Berlin Competition preview.
Read the second part of our Berlin Competition preview.

Arekti Premer Golpo (Just Another Love Story)

A gay director and his bisexual cameraman learn that it’s hard to make a documentary in Calcutta. Star Rituparno Ghosh is better known as a director, having won the National Film Award for Unishe April. According to director Kaushik Ganguly, this is the first gay picture to be shot in India after the decriminalization of homosexuality.

Amphetamine

A straight fitness trainer named Kafka and a gay businessman have a fraught affair. This is the second film in a stylish autobiographical trilogy by Hong Kong IT-whiz-turned-filmmaker Scud (Permanent Residence), which also starred model Byron Pang.

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Moon: You Caught Me Standing Alone

January 22, 2010

Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) works on the dark side of the moon. He’s approaching the end of a three-year stint monitoring the mining of helium-3, a mineral whose solarized properties have provided a solution to our energy crisis. Bell has the beard of a Robinson Crusoe and a Friday companion in the form of a computer named Gerty. Gerty is voiced by Kevin Spacey, doing his best paranoid android. In one of the film’s many smart touches, the computer’s face is a stiffly animated emoticon. In spite of the company, Bell is going a little stir crazy. He creates dialogues for his plants and works on building a matchstick model of his hometown that he can’t remember starting.

The first part of director Duncan Jones’s debut feature has an eerie quality. The strange nature of satellite time is created using temporal ellipses, strangely placed fades and sound bridges. These early scenes sometimes end too early or go on too long, which makes sense. Bell is a one-man show where there’s no audience and no one to play off. He watches video messages left for him by his wife Tess (the very attractive Dominique McElligott), but we’re not sure if he’s watching them in chronological order. He can’t communicate earth directly due to faulty mechanics.

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Trailerama: Moon

April 10, 2009

Sam Rockwell is one of those buried treasures. He does consistently good work in movies that are underseen (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) and which sometimes don’t even deserve to be seen (Choke). Even when he’s not the main attraction, as in The Assassination of Jesse James …, he’s able to sketch a character or help hoist a scene into life in ways that lesser actors aren’t capable of. Decades from now, people will look back at his films and go, “Why wasn’t this guy huge?”

One of the answers may lie in the upcoming Moon, which is an insane project for anyone to take on. His astronaut has spent three years operating a moon quarry on his own. Plenty of opportunities, then, to go stir crazy. His principal interactions are with GERTY, a computer voiced by Kevin Spacey. He also speaks to his family via a video-phone. Then, just as his tenure is about to come to a close, Rockwell’s spaceman makes a discovery that suggests he’s not alone. Or is he?

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The Slate: Inception Issues, MIB Goes for 3

April 2, 2009

marion-cotillard2

  • Christopher Nolan‘s Inception is hatching itself a cast and even has a homeskillet to throw the yolk on. Leonardo DiCaprio will be toplining the “contemporary sci-fi actioner” as a business exec, with Marion Cotillard as his wife (miam-miam!) and Ellen Page as his no doubt tart-tongued sidekick. Cillian Murphy will be there, too, although no one’s sure what’ll be doing. The story is supposed to involve “the architecture of the mind,” although it could just as well involve “rumors spread on the Internet about upcoming movies.” (Variety/Cinematical)
  • Sony announced at this year’s ShoWest shindig for exhibitors and their wifes/partners/mistresses that they’re working on a Men in Black 3. We decided not to post this yesterday, thinking it was an April Fool’s joke. Guess not. Sony don’t have a cast lined up, but expect an announcement as soon as they can unfreeze Tommy Lee Jones‘ forehead. (Entertainment Weekly)
  • Speaking of Men in Black … Franchise director Barry Sonnenfeld has made some mistakes in his time. You might think that RV is one of them. But the Coen Bros. DP-turned-director has a unique eye, so we’re rooting for his latest project, The Spellman Files. The first of Lisa Lutz’s Izzy Spellman mysteries introduces us to a dysfunctional PI couple’s daughter who wants out of the family business. They agree, providing she solves one last case. Booklist notes “bit after comic bit does not a mystery novel make,” but that hasn’t stopped Sonnenfeld in the past. (Variety)
  • Jonathan Levine turned heads at Sundance with The Wackness, although audiences outside Park Slope’s environs had stiffer necks. Now the director tapping into the neglected babysitter genre for The Sitter. A college student is suspended for the semester and spends his spare time babysitting the wacky neighborhood kids. Maybe he’ll introduce them to blunts and Wu-Tang. (Hollywood Reporter)
  • Sure, he’s been in stuff like 21 and will be in stuff like Men Who Stare at Goats. But it feels like Kevin Spacey has retired since moving to London to head up the Old Vic. Will Father of Invention be his comeback vehicle? The Oscar-winner is producing and starring as an inventor whose success leads to egomania, breakdown, a prison sentence and possible redemption. Sounds like Spacey’s career in a nut-shell. Trent Cooper (Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector) will direct the indie comedy, co-written with … did we just type the words “Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector”? Sigh. Never mind. (Variety)