August 30, 2013 |
With the sleekly trashy misfire "Passion," Brian De Palma turns his gift for artfully decadent imitation into a kind of regrettably soulless greatest-hits packaging. Frenchman Alain Corneau's venal 2010 thriller "Love Crime" is the skeleton, its story only slightly reworked by the man behind "Dressed to Kill. " It's now Rachel McAdams as the cold-blooded corporate executive with manipulative boardroom and bedroom designs on her seemingly mousy creative underling, played here by Noomi Rapace.
June 27, 2013 |
The air of compelling melancholy that hangs over all of Jean-Pierre Melville's classic policiers is especially inescapable while watching his 1972 "Un Flic. " This was the last film the director finished before dying of a heart attack at age 55, and it has many of the traits that have made him a favorite for fans of crime films in general and the French variety in particular. Melville had a celebrated cameo in Jean-Luc Godard's "Breathless," playing the literary celebrity interviewed by Jean Seberg who says his ambition is "to become immortal and die," a state his 13 films, including such gems as "Le Samuraï," "Army of Shadows" and "Bob le Flambeur," have enabled him to achieve.
April 14, 2013 |
Springtime may bring thoughts of visiting Paris, but for Southern Californians without the time or means for a transatlantic getaway, there's the City of Lights, City of Angels film festival. Starting Monday, the 17th annual event at the Directors Guild of America will bring 38 French features to L.A., including the North American premiere of Danièle Thompson's new romantic comedy, "It Happened in Saint-Tropez. " Starring Monica Bellucci and Kad Merad in a romp about two cousins who fall in love with the same man, "It Happened in Saint-Tropez" will open in Paris just five days before kicking off the L.A. festival.
March 26, 2013 |
The 17th City of Lights, City of Angels French film festival announced its most ambitious slate to date Tuesday with 38 feature films and 19 shorts. Of the 38 features, three are international premieres, 11 are North American or U.S. premieres and 16 are West Coast premieres. The festival runs April 15 to 22 at the Directors Guild Theater. Opening night will see the North American premiere of the romantic comedy "It Happened in Saint-Tropez," from director and co-writer Daniele Thompson (“Avenue Montaigne”)
March 7, 2013 |
It's no wonder that Luis Buñuel wanted to turn "The Monk" into a movie. Once banned, now merely cherished, the 1796 novel is a lurid amalgam of religious devotion and sin, earthly temptations and supernatural doings. Buñuel never made his movie, but there have been numerous adaptations. The latest, from French director Dominik Moll, is a work whose elegant atmospherics ultimately overwhelm the story, even with the terrific Vincent Cassel in the title role. Moll's version, arriving stateside almost two years after it opened in France, is a decided change of pace for the director of "With a Friend Like Harry" and new territory as well for Cassel.
March 3, 2013 |
As its title suggests, the seminal French film "Chronicle of a Summer" is a time capsule of a particular moment: Paris in 1960, the Algerian War entering its sixth year, the Holocaust still a recent wound, popular and consumer culture on the rise, and, especially among the younger population, clear signs of the discontent and frustration that would define the tumultuous decade to come. A collaboration between the anthropologist-filmmaker Jean Rouch and the sociologist Edgar Morin, "Chronicle" takes shape as a panoramic, state-of-the-nation survey.