Karlovy Vary To Fete Zaentz, Douglas; Many Retrospectives
by Mark Rabinowitz
The 33rd International Film Festival Karlovy Vary kicks off on July 3rd
with a lineup that features many of the independent films that have been
circling the globe at festivals over the past few months, as well as a
large selection of Eastern European films largly unseen in the West. Also
on tap are tributes to producer Saul Zaentz ("Amadeus", "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's
Nest," "The English Patient") and actor/producer Michael Douglas, as
well as several sidebars including a focus on New York-based production
company cum distributor The Shooting Gallery, which has prduced such
films as Billy Bob Thornton's "Sling Blade," Nick Gomez's "Laws of
Gravity" and Bob Gosse's "Niagara, Niagara." Zaentz, Douglas, Gomez and
The Shooting Gallery's Larry Meistrich and Gosse are all expected to
take part in the festival.
Retrospectives at this, one of the longest-running film festivals in the
world, include the films of Japanese superstar Takeshi Kitano ("Hana
Bi," "Sonatine," "Kids Return," "Violent Cop"), 6 films by alternative
stalwart and Warhol Factory member Paul Morrissey ("Heat," "Trash,"
"Flesh," "Blood For Dracula") and a lineup of recent Spanish Cinema,
including "The Tit and the Moon" (directed by Bigas Luna).
Among the recent festival films screening at Karlovy Vary are 1998
Sundance award-winner "Pi" (directed by Darren Aronofsky), mutiple festival
prize winner "Hands on a Hardbody" by S.R. Bindler, 1998 LAIFF winner
"Broken Vessels" (directed by Scott Ziehl), 1997 Slamdance winner "The Bible
and Gun Club" (directed by Daniel J. Harris), "Off the Menu: The Last Days Of
Chasen's" (directed by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini) and "Smoke
Signals" (directed by Chris Eyre). Aronofsky, Ziehl, Springer Berman and
Pulcini, and Harris are all scheduled to attend the fest. Several films
that screened to high praise at the recently concluded Cannes Film
Festival are also screening, including Shohei Imamura's "Unagi" and Lars
von Trier's "Idiots."
Other notable guests scheduled to attend include actor/director John
Turturro; actor Matt Day; writer/director Michael Steinberg, whose film
"Wicked" is screening in the fest; actress Ornella Muti; actor Henry
Thomas ("E.T.," "Niagara, Niagara"); Michael Moore, attending with "The
Big One" & "Roger and Me"; director Carrie Ansell attending with
"Flushed," and Tom DiCillo who is attending with "The Real Blonde."
[The festival's website can be reached at: www.iffkv.cz]