September 6, 1998 |
This 1995 Iranian film offers a completely charming, unhurried slice of life. It is both slow and sure-handed as it follows a small but fearsomely determined little girl on her amusing search for just the right ceremonial goldfish for her family's new year's celebration. Director Jafar Panahi has not only done his film in real time, the hour and a half before the new year begins in modern Teheran but also has cast nonprofessionals in the key roles.
March 1, 2001
Singer Erykah Badu, who touches on hip-hop, jazz and R&B, performs March 9 and 10 at the Universal Amphitheatre, 100 Universal City Plaza, L.A. $33.50 to $58.50. (213) 480-3232. * "Yesterday Came Too Soon . . . The Dorothy Dandridge Story," Sloan Robinson's one-woman performance, opens at the Los Angeles Theatre Center, 514 S. Spring St. L.A., playing March 9 through April 9. $15. (213) 485-1681.
September 11, 2000 |
An Iranian film about the tough life women face in that Islamic country took the top prize at the Venice Film Festival on Saturday. "The Circle" (Dayereh), which won the Golden Lion award, was a popular favorite after it was screened at the festival, which began Aug. 30. It is 40-year-old director Jafar Panahi's third feature film. His 1995 "The White Balloon" (Badkonake Sefid) and 1997 "The Mirror" (Ayneh) have won several international awards.
December 13, 1996 |
The venerable yet unpredictable New York Film Critics Circle went its own way Thursday, selecting "Fargo," the Coen brothers' offbeat black comedy, as best film of 1996. Geoffrey Rush, who plays the shattered pianist David Helfgott in Scott Hicks' "Shine," was selected best actor. Emily Watson, the star of Danish director Lars von Trier's "Breaking the Waves," was chosen best actress, while Von Trier was chosen best director.
March 19, 1999 |
"The Mirror" marks a most welcome return of writer-director Jafar Panahi, whose 1995 "The White Balloon" became an international breakthrough for the Iranian cinema with its simple tale of how a little girl's errand to buy a goldfish to celebrate the New Year turns into a revealing odyssey. Panahi's new film is similar to "The White Balloon" yet even more illuminating of Islamic society.
February 6, 2004 |
The gritty urban drama "Crimson Gold" couldn't look more foreign or feel more familiar. Set in Tehran, this tough, bristling story about a working-class man pushed over the edge vividly brings to mind the great Hollywood social dramas of the 1930s, films that acknowledged it didn't take much for the desperate to cross the line.
February 13, 2013 |
BERLIN -- For his new film, “An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker,” premiering Wednesday at the Berlin Film Festival, Bosnian director Danis Tanovic ripped the story -- and its protagonists -- straight from the headlines. Tanovic's debut, “No Man's Land,” won multiple awards, including an Oscar and a Golden Globe in 2002 for foreign language film. The director found his new film when he read a newspaper story about a Roma woman who almost died after being repeatedly denied medical coverage following a miscarriage.
February 15, 2013 |
BERLIN -- Part road movie, part golden years romantic comedy, Emmanuelle Bercot's “On My Way,” premiering Friday at the Berlin International Film Festival, is also a love affair between director and actor. And not just any actor, but French national treasure Catherine Deneuve. Deneuve plays over-60 ex-beauty queen Bettie. Jilted by her lover, harangued by her busybody mother, and about to lose the family seafood restaurant, Bettie gets in the car for a drive and ends up on a grand adventure.
January 5, 2013 |
The National Society of Film Critics named "Amour," Michael Haneke's heartbreaking drama about an elderly couple, the best film of 2012 on Saturday. Haneke was named best director and Emmanuelle Riva was named best actress. "The Master" came in second place for best picture with "Zero Dark Thirty" third. Kathryn Bigelow ("Zero Dark Thirty) tied with Paul Thomas Anderson ("The Master") for runner-up in the director category. "Amour" was named best picture of 2012 by the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn.
January 11, 2004 |
If there is a common thread among films in the UCLA Film & Television Archive's 14th annual celebration of Iranian Cinema, it's probably anguish. "A lot of them are grim films," programmer David Pendleton concedes, "but they [explore] urban contemporary concerns that I think a lot of people can identify with.