Results for category "EIFF 2011"

Edinburgh Film Festival 2011/ Take 2

Day 2

CALVET ***

Director Dominic Allen/ 86 mins 

A cop, bodyguard, thief, fugitive, junkie and now an artist, Jean Marc Calvet has been through many life changing things. This documentary covers those years and also his search for his son, who he abandoned almost two decades ago.

The story is solely told by Calvet himself, who goes back to the different locations that have lead up to this point in his life. The man himself is an absolute machine who continually talks in a machine gun fashion with very little pause for breath.

Even though his story is fascinating, it appears strange that the filmmakers have not interviewed other people on their take on the artist. By doing this they have given a very one sided view. While the stories are probably 100% true, it would have been good to have another point of view.

 

Ghosted **

Director Craig Viveiros/ 98 mins 

Camera Operator Craig Viveiros makes his debut as director with this gritty tense British prison feature. 

 

Jack (John Lynch), is a prisoner who is near the end of his sentence. He keeps to himself and stays out of trouble. But, when a new inmate, Paul (Martin Compston) is threatened by psychotic Clay (Craig Parkinson), Jack takes it upon himself to take the nervous youngster under his wing. By doing this he may have put himself in danger and risked everything that has kept him from being involved the v surroundings.

 

The main problem with this film is that the script is unoriginal and cliched. There have been countless prison films that have done this kind of storyline before and to better effect, notably Prophet. Pacing also suffers with multiple story strands that are briskly mentioned then forgotten about with no resolution. The ending also feels rushed and quite predicable.

 

What makes the film really stand out are the performances especially by Lynch and Compston who bring a dramatic intensity to their roles, which are primarily the reluctant teacher and naive pupil.

 

Viverios has made a competent prison drama, but it just does not set itself apart from other films that have already made their mark in this territory.

 

Our Day Will Come ***

Director Romain Gavras/ 87 mins 

After making his name in music videos Director Roman Gavras follows in his father’s footsteps, by making the leap into film with this strange mismatched buddy road movie. 

 

A bullied redheaded teen Remy (Olivier Barthelemy) flees his home and is tracked down by a bitter guidance counsellor and redhead, Patrick (Vincent Cassel). Patrick sympathise with Remy and decides to toughen him up. In doing this Remy goes from a social outcast to a violent vigilante. He convinces Patrick that they will only place they will fit in is  in Ireland and together they embark on the journey to the Emerald Isle, but at what cost?

 

There is no set storyline within the premise. There are some strong themes and ideas going on here. But these are weighed down by a series of set-pieces that become increasing more violent as the unlikely pair descend more and more into madness. They are fun, but there is a sense that the overall messages that Gavras is trying to communicate are generally lost in translation.

 

The characters are well developed with both parties trying to understand each other. Dialogue is inventive witty and playful, Remy and Patrick continually mock not only the unlucky individuals who cross their path but also each other.

 

The performances like the action are over the top, but unforgettable. Cassel in particular seems to relish his role with spectacular relentless explosive energy.

 

An engaging powerful and amusing creative hybrid of a movie that almost succeeds in the crossover.

 

Reviews by Paul Logan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edinburgh Film Festival 2011/ Take 1

Day 1 

The Guard ****

Director John Michael McDonagh/ 96 mins 

The Film Festival could not have picked a better film to open with in this hilarious entertaining comedy. John Michael McDonagh (brother of Martin-In Bruges-McDonagh) follows in his sibling’s footsteps with another witty Irish based crime film starring Brendan Glesson.

Gleeson plays Sergeant Gerry Boyle a rural policeman who has a distinct personality, bends the rules, likes drugs and has a fondness for prostitutes. He is more interested in doing his own thing, than trying to assist FBI agent Wendell Everett (Don Cheadle) in trying to smash a drugs ring.

The drug smuggling plot and mismatched buddy storyline is unoriginal and at times feels like a comedy version of Bad Lieutenant. But the movie is driven by the clever dialogue and performances. The chemistry between Gleeson and Cheadle shines and it is throughly entertaining to watch them bicker like an old married couple. Even the cliched criminals (Liam Cunningham & Mark Strong) are memorable and have some of the best one liners in the movie.

The black humour is quite dark throughout with a mixture of innuendo and some racial insults, but nothing that will cause too much offence to an audience. Some of the subplots feel slightly undeveloped such as the dying mother.

McDough’s impressive debut is almost as good as In Bruges, but not quite as well developed.

 

Jane’s Journey ****

Director Lorenz Knauer/ 107 mins 

The life of primatologist and ethnographer Dr Jane Goodall is chronicled in this interesting and thought provoking documentary.

The film documents everything that has happened in her life, from her animal conservation and humanitarian work to her personal life involving two marriages and raising her son in the wilds of Africa.

Her story is told through a mixture of archive footage, photographs and new interviews with not only herself, but also with people who have been inspired by her work from ordinary families to celebrities. Kofi Annan, Angelina Jolie and Pierce Brosnan appear to show support to the work she is doing.

 

The film is slightly to long towards the end, with too much focus on the conferences that she attends, rather than solely concentrating on her Roots and Shoots projects.

 

This is a fitting tribute to a truly inspirational individual that has made the world a better place to live.

 

Fast Romance **

Director Carter Ferguson/ 93 mins 

The festival has been marketing this romantic comedy as Scotland’s answer to Love Actually. Unfortunately the different story strands that link the relationships between the characters do not flow quite as well as Richard Curtis’ effort.

 

The plot revolves around Gordon Boyd (William Ruane), a postman who is attracted to cafe worker Nadine (Jo Freer). After discovering that she is going to a speed dating night, he decides to go along to in the hope of that she will fall for him. Gordon takes his boss (Derek Munn) with him, while Nadine has taken her two best friends a nervous copy-girl and a bride-to-be (Lesley Hart). Will they fall in love or will Nadine fall for someone else.

 

The main problem with this kind of film is that there are too many characters and confusing subplots to follow. In this particular case the audience is introduced to everyone from work colleagues to family members. There are even cameo appearances from Scottish comedy stars in roles that are really not necessary to the plot. A variety of different subjects including cancer to trust are thrown at the audience, but it is hard to feel any sympathy for any of the characters.

 

There are also random shots that rely too heavily on crash zoom and strobing effects, which really look odd in a romantic comedy. The performances are very hit and miss with only Munn and Hart showing any promise. The comedy also fails to hit the mark often enough with only a few smile inducing moments worth noting, usually mainly from Barbara Rafferty’s eccentric neighbour.

 

Fast Romance could have worked as a story for a few episodes of a soap opera, but not as a feature film.

 

Reviews by Paul Logan 

The Lion King 3-D to bring a roaring finish to EIFF

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Edinburgh International Film Festival has today announced the latest addition to its 2011 programme by bringing Disney’s epic masterpiece, The Lion King, in stunning Disney Digital 3D, to the closing weekend of the Festival. The Pride of Disney will be screened at Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre on Saturday 25 June at 2pm; tickets for this not to be missed premiere are on sale now at www.edfilmfest.org.uk or via the box office on 0131 228 2688.

 

For the first time, the jewel in Disney’s animated crown has been brought to life like never before and will debut to a new generation of fans, in dazzling 3D, at Edinburgh’s beautiful Festival Theatre, allowing the audience to enjoy this critically acclaimed and universally beloved classic like never before, ahead of its general release on 14th October.

 

An unforgettable story, breathtaking animation, beloved characters and award‐winning music set the stage for the adventures of Simba, the feisty lion cub who “just can’t wait to be king.” But his envious Uncle Scar has plans for his own ascent to the throne, and he forces Simba’s exile from the kingdom. Alone and adrift, Simba soon joins the escapades of a hilarious meerkat named Timon and his warm‐hearted warthog pal, Pumbaa. Adopting their carefree lifestyle of “Hakuna Matata,” Simba ignores his real responsibilities until he realises his destiny and returns to the Pride Lands to claim his place in the “Circle of Life.”

 

Featuring the all‐star vocal talents of Matthew Broderick, Nathan Lane, Whoopi Goldberg, James Earl Jones, Jeremy Irons, Ernie Sabella, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Robert Guillaume, Cheech Marin and Moira Kelly, The Lion King is a rip‐roaring comedy with an uplifting message of courage, loyalty and hope; a timeless tale for all ages.

Daniel Frigo, Executive Vice President & General Manager, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures UK & EMEA, commented: “We are delighted to be able to present The Lion King, in Disney Digital 3D, for the first time at this year’s Edinburgh Film Festival. This iconic Disney classic is an enduring story of friendship and family which has been brought to life as never before, immersing fans both old and new in to the epic setting of Pride Rock, bringing them face‐to‐ face with these beloved characters in a new and unique way”.

 

EIFF Director, James Mullighan added: “The Lion King is a favourite amongst children and adults alike and we’re thrilled to be premiering The Lion King in 3D at EIFF. This year’s focus has been to offer something for everyone and our closing weekend including the Kings of Leon and the Lion King certainly achieves that.”

EIFF welcomes royalty as Kings of Leon come to Edinburgh

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Revolver Entertainment beaming highly anticipated film of band’s history across record 150 UK cinemas

Edinburgh International Film Festival and Revolver Entertainment have today (9 June) announced an exciting addition to the Festival programme with the European Premiere of ‘Talihina Sky’, on June 25 2011 at Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre with Kings Of Leon Live in attendance.

 

Following on from the film’s launch this year at the Tribeca Film Festival, where Talihina Sky played to packed audiences, received universal praise and critical acclaim ‐ has since been lauded as “One of the most compelling music documentaries you’ll ever see” by MTV.

 

Talihina Sky’s European premiere will mark the biggest one night only satellite screening event in the UK with the film and Live Q&A (with Kings Of Leon) beamed to over 150 cinemas nationwide.

 

Talihina Sky – Synopsis: As soon as I knew we were about to get a record deal, I never slept” – Caleb Followill. Talihina Sky: The Story of Kings of Leon is a unique insight into one of the biggest bands on the planet. Now a global phenomenon, the film charts their humble beginnings in the deep South, struggling with the grasp of God and the pleasures of the Devil through alcohol, recreational drugs and most importantly, the rock n’ roll that would make them superstars, to signing a record deal and selling out stadiums worldwide.

 

Featuring interviews with the full band – Caleb, Nathan, Jared, and Matthew Followill, plus exclusive footage of other family members and influential figures in the band’s lives and career, this is the first time their tremendous journey has been documented. Talihina Sky is the definitive story of the Kings of Leon, told in their own words.

 

EIFF Director, James Mullighan said: “We are hugely privileged to welcome Talihina Sky and the Kings of Leon to the EIFF, bringing together music fans and film lovers in what will be a first for the Festival, with the Q&A session transmitted across cinemas nationwide. Mitchell’s documentary gives a captivating insight into one of the world’s most admired bands and being able to have them as a late addition to our programme fits perfectly with our Sound Tracks strand, which explores the bigger picture around film and music.”

 

Edinburgh International Film Festival

15th – 26th June 2011

www.edfilmfest.org

EIFF brings Film Critics together for Project: New Cinephilia

                              

Thursday, 2 June 2011

The Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) has unveiled an innovative debate in cinematic discourse, Project: New Cinephilia, fronted by leading names in international film journalism.  Part of the soon-to-be revealed festival programme, the project, which culminates in a day-long event on June 16th, reinforces EIFF’s standing at the forefront of intellectual film discussion, aiming to ignite debate around film criticism and appreciation today.

 

Project: New Cinephilia will initially spark conversation with essays, thoughts and ideas from critics, writers, bloggers and film makers all challenging established modes of thinking on cinema. Remote contributors will publish work via a dedicated microsite, launching May 17th and co-presented by online cinematheque/social network MUBI, which will host comments and discussion around these commissioned materials in their Forums. Other contributors will participate in online roundtables chaired by Jigsaw Lounge founder Neil Young and Michael Koresky, editorial manager at The Criterion Collection and co-founding editor of Reverse Shot.

 

Koresky will join two other visiting journalists, freelance critic Eric Hynes (Village Voice, Time Out New York), and filmmaker/critic Jeff Reichert (Gerrymandering; co-founding editor of Reverse Shot) attending the event. Ideas and specially created exhibits will also be presented by EIFF from the project’s international contributors, who include:

 

· Chris Fujiwara – Author of books on Otto Preminger, Jerry Lewis, and

Jacques Tourneur and editor of Undercurrent

· Girish Shambu – Widely read film blogger and cinephile

· Leah Churner – Film/video archivist and guest curator at Museum of the

Moving Image and Anthology Film Archives

· Gabriele Caroti –   Film programmer/DJ airing a musical mash-up of

soundtracks

· Marcellus Hall – Illustrator exhibiting some of his film-related artwork

from The New Yorker, newly annotated for P:NC

· Michael Azerrad – Author, biographer, and music critic (Our Band Could Be

Your Life; Come As You Are) exhibiting clips/short commentary on rock

musicians in film

· Mark Cousins – EIFF artistic advisor who will present a series of short video

“provocations”

· Roundtable participants: Kent Jones, Melissa Anderson, Genevieve Yue, Daniel Cockburn, Mike Everleth, Frances Morgan, Mathieu Ravier

 

Project: New Cinephilia will culminate in a day-long symposium at EIFF 2011, comprising of six interactive sessions which are open to audiences, press, bloggers and film lovers.  Topics include new critical approaches to reading film; discussions on how film is consumed in the 21st century and the role of cinema in our daily lives; and a masterclass in how to start your own fanzine, blog or film journal. The day will come to close with a playful 140-character Film Critic Deathmatch, a “battle to the best review” using the social networking site Twitter.

 

EIFF Director James Mullighan commented: “EIFF is the proud home of intellectual discussion around film in all its forms; this year more than ever we are stepping outside traditional models to inspire audiences with innovative approaches to presenting and exploring film. Project: New Cinephilia has been lovingly sculpted from ideas, musings and thoughts around cinephilia’s role in enriching film culture – we can’t wait to see what ideas our curators and contributors debate.”

 

Project: New Cinephilia is co-curated by Kate Taylor, a freelance programmer and magazine contributor, previously running the London Short Film Festival and Abandon Normal Devices, Liverpool, and New York–based film journalist Damon Smith, editor of Michael Winterbottom: Interviews and currently Head of Curation/Story R&D for Thought Engine Media Group. The event takes place inthe University of Edinburgh’s Inspace Gallery on Thursday 16th June. For further information visit www.edfilmfest.org

 

Ends

 

Edinburgh International Film Festival

15th – 26th June 2011

www.edfilmfest.org

Ewan McGregor set to attend European Premiere of Perfect Sense

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

The Edinburgh International Film Festival has announced that the European Premiere of David Mackenzie’s ‘Perfect Sense’ will move from The Cameo to the larger, 1500 seater Edinburgh Festival Theatre venue due to a sell out of advance tickets. The screening, which will take place on Saturday 18th June, will also have star Ewan McGregor in attendance.

 

The Glasgow-set drama sees a reteaming of the Young Adam director and star and tells the tale of a chef, Michael (McGregor) and a scientist, Susan (Eva Green) who fall in love just as the world begins to fall apart.

 

Produced by the hugely successful Sigma Films, the team behind Hallam Foe and Young Adam, this haunting and moving sci-fi drama, also stars Connie Nielsen, Denis Lawson, Stephen Dillane and Ewen Bremner. Green’s character is a scientist researching for important answers, so important that she’s given up on other things, including love, until she meets Michael, a talented chef and then suddenly everything starts to change.

 

Speaking about the film and its Premiere at EIFF 2011, Ewan McGregor commented: ‘I’m delighted to be able to come to Edinburgh to support the Film Festival and the European Premiere of Perfect Sense and look forward to seeing the film in such an amazing venue.’

 

James Mullighan, Director of Edinburgh International Film Festival said: ‘I am delighted that we are staging the European Premiere of Perfect Sense at this year’s Festival, and collaborating with Sigma and Distributor Arrow Films in celebrating another fine production. It’s encouraging to see the enthusiasm of film fans who have already snapped up tickets for the premiere and we’re delighted to be able to move the screening to the glorious Edinburgh Festival Theatre venue – one of the finest movie going experiences in the UK.  We look forward to welcoming Ewan and other members of the film’s cast and production where audiences can enjoy a first screening of this gripping new feature.’

 

The 65th Edinburgh International Film Festival will take place at venues across the city from 15th-26th June, offering a ‘film for all’ remit and over 100 screenings for audiences to enjoy. As well as a mix of groundbreaking global film, cutting-edge documentaries and shorts, this year will see some exciting changes to the festival format with a lively programme of new events, collaborations and innovative film experiences for the city – plus the EIFF’s new headquarters, Festivalhouse@Teviot in the heart of the city’s historic Old Town.