Monday, May 27, 2013

The Cannes Film Fest Honors One of Their own – ‘La vie d'Adèle’

The 2013 Cannes Film Fest in Paris is now history, but some of the films have left their mark. Steven Spielberg, Nicole Kidman, Ang Lee (jury president) and Christopher Waltz were among the Cannes Film Fest Jury.

The local filmmakers and film lovers were cheering a hometown director and his cast for a movie with a French title that took the top award at the Finale (Sunday, May 26th) at the Cannes Film Fest.

Courtesy The Cannes Film Festival
"Blue Is the Warmest Color," or in French "La vie d'Adèle," earned the Palme d'Or on Sunday at one of the most talked about and prestigious film festivals as it wrapped up this weekend.  Film Director Abdellatif Kechiche and actors Léa Seydoux ("Midnight in Paris"; "Inglourious Basterds") and Adèle Exarchopoulos earned the Palme.

Abdellatif Kechiche
Kechiche's three-hour French flick is about a powerful romance between two young lesbians, one that many are saying has a lot of drama and a tear jerker at times.
The Grand Prix went to the Coen brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis."  Written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the movie is about a rising folk singer who goes by Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) as struggles through the folk music challenge in Greenwich Village during the 1960s. It stars John Goodman, Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan and Garrett Hedlund.
About the Cannes Film Festival:
The International Film Festival was created on the initiative of Jean Zay, Minister for Education and Fine Arts, who was keen to establish an international cultural event in France to rival the Venice Film Festival.
The first edition of the Festival was originally set to be held in Cannes in 1939 under the presidency of Louis Lumière. However, it was not until over a year after the war ended that it finally took place, on 20 September 1946. It was subsequently held every September – except in 1948 and 1950 – and then every May from 1952 onwards.

The Festival de Cannes, which is managed by a Board of Directors, was registered as an “Association loi de 1901” (or non-profit association in France) in 1972.

For updates and the rest of the winners and films featured visit:

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Saturday, May 11, 2013

‘LA's Dances With Films Fest" turns sweet 16 and adds 11 days to schedule

Last year's film festival
 Filmmakers and movie lovers will be treated to scores of films on this year's lineup of Dances With Films,” at Hollywood’s famed TCL Chinese Theatre. 
Dances With Filmsone of LA's most popular showcase of filmmakers, has unveiled its schedule 16th anniversary or billed as “Sweet 16 year,” which now goes for an additional 11 days from May 30-June 9. There will a Grand Jury Prize reception this year, too.
Festival organizers say there will be interesting panels of industry movers and shakers, who plan to discuss changes in the business to the latest trends and demand.
Scores of films on tap are West Coast premieres and award-winning producer/director, Ron Davis' child pageant documentary "Miss You Can Do It" scheduled for the opening night film premiere.  

(Courtesy Ron Davis, Director)
The 75 min. HBO Documentary Film’ Miss You Can Do It spotlights Abbey Curran, Miss Iowa USA 2008, the first woman with a disability to compete at the Miss USA Pageant, as well as eight girls and young women from around the country living with special needs, who take part in the Miss You Can Do It Pageant.
Created in 2004 by Curran, the pageant offers them and their families a chance to bond and take part in a special event where inner beauty and abilities reign. Debuts exclusively on HBO MONDAY, JUNE 24 (9:00 - 10:15PM ET/PT).
On the celebrity carpet and expected to attend the festival are celebs: Chris Rock, Melissa Etheridge, Kelly Lynch and Christopher Lloyd to name a few. Since 1998 Dancing with Films has been an innovator and leader in positioning raw and new talented directors and unusual films. 

Founder Leslee Scallon
This year Festival announced a new Grand Jury Prize for its lineup, where the winner receives a full distribution deal throught Distributor and Festival sponsor, Gravitas Ventures (Sound City, Hunky Dory).
Gravitas Ventures plans to release the winning film with a Video on Demand distribution deal with an expected reach of more than a 100 million households.
For more about Dances With Films and ticket info visit:

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Friday, May 3, 2013

Review: 'Iron Man 3' - an impressive first blockbuster summer movie that avenges critics

When Tony Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he takes on a journey with his iron suit to find those responsible. He shows he can survive with his own devices and instincts to protect those dearest to him.
Comic Book Hero Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), takes a turn for the better and look to himself to take on his biggest obstacle. In the first part of the franchise movie, he staved off the evil, overwhelming enemies in second film and tonight he feels the pain of is life as a superhero.
Robert Downey Jr. as Stark
 The Avengers activities left Stark suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and insomnia along with is sour love relationship with Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), which has gone awry. Stark’s Malibu pad is also under fire from “The Mandarin" (Ben Kingsley), a jihad, who has a knack and reputation for blowing up Americans. And there’s the threat of Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce), who is a cocky mad scientist, who seeks revenge from one of Stark’s pranks.
Billionaire industrialist, Stark spends less time in his computer-generated, Iron Man outfit.
The brilliant director, Shane Black, who co-wrote the script with Drew Pearce, takes Stark out of his comfort area. Instead of throwing money at every challenge, Stark has to function as a lone ranger. He's forced to put on his overalls and create gadgets from whatever he has on hand in the garage.  By the way, Black directed Downey in 2005, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which was another intense Hollywood detective roll. So he knows Downey's best characters have a sick feel, a mix overconfidence and inferior demeanor.

The movie begins with a back-the-future kind of story, where Stark explains how his terrible behavior produced the demons that would come back to haunt him. There's a conference, where he puts the make on a botanist played by Rebecca Hall and stands up handicapped, science geek, Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce). Killian never forgot.

Some ten years after, Stark makes the same mistakes, in the film's present day. After a shopping mall explosion, he sends an on-camera message to the terrorist, The Mandarin, responsible for the attack, blasting his home address to the world with a challenge to look him up. "I'll leave the door unlocked," he teases.

Taken from his love ones and out from his iron protection suit, Stark bonds with a young boy (Ty Simpkins), exchanges mildly teasing remarks with Colonel Rhodes (Don Cheadle) and then comes head-on with the twin evils intent on ruining his day.
Iron Man 3 is a good movie, but has a little challenge living up to the previous two movie and current expectations. There are plenty of twists and turns. The movie has some humorous scenes and it is a thrill ride of sorts, especially the skydive rescue. Watch for hints of Downey’s return for a 4th take on the film. It’s not a Batman movie, but it does avenge the critics.
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