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  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
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    Years of Refusal: Elia Suleiman's "The Time That Remains"

    Elia Suleiman’s deadpan finds its motivation in The Time That Remains. Structured in four parts, the self-identifying-Palestinian actor-director’s latest film, like his previous ones, straddles the line between sobriety and whimsy in its evocation of the absurdity of the contemporary Israel-Palestine reality—perhaps not without effort, but also not without a great degree of artistic success. For his third feature he once again mounts his film as a series of elegantly composed static frames, casting himself as a dead-eyed, immobile, silent punch line. His status as little more than prop is validated in the film’s beginning sequence, when he is the passenger in a stranded, rain-drenched taxi cab, sitting speechlessly, blurred in the back seat, barely noticeable in the frame at first. Yet that opening is instructive: Suleiman will here take a back seat to the narrative as well. Though he doesn’t forgo his well-honed, detached, super-realist style, Suleiman this time applies it to an expansive historical narrative, using his parents’ experiences (and specifically his father’s diaries) as the basis for a poignant evocation of decades of living as Arab minorities in Israel. The film begins in 1948, during the Arab-Israeli war and subsequent occupation, and traces across 1970 and 1980, finally landing in present day. And when the camera finally winds up trained again on Suleiman’s mordant, still visage, his overdetermined immobility, which in the past always seemed as though it were angling for Tati territory, feels earned, a tragic acquiescence. Read Michael Koresky's review of The Time That Remains.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Oscar Votes Due Friday, Packed Golden Globes Party Weekend

    Oscar Votes Due Friday, Packed Golden Globes Party Weekend

    My pals in the Academy are filling out their ballots. One costume designer has already sent hers in. Ira Deutchman, in New York, anxiously hopes that his mailed ballot gets to PricewaterhouseCoopers on time, by 5 PM Friday, January 14 (nominations will be announced January 25). Which raises the question: why doesn't the Academy have online Oscar voting? I voted for the Broadcast Critics Choice Awards easily and effortlessly via their website. Academy spokesperson Leslie Unger answered my query thus:The Academy has and continues to explore ways to allow our members to securely vote electronically some day. But there’s no timetable for that endeavor and I don’t know when it might come fruition.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Women in Film Names New President, Producer Cathy Schulman

    Cathy Schulman, the Oscar-winning producer (Crash, The Illusionist, Tears of the Sun), will replace Jane Fleming as president of non-profit org Women In Film. Schulman's three-year term officially began January 1. Fleming declares: "I can think of no one better to take the reins of Women In Film as the organization grows in scope and impact to meet the challenges of the 21st century.  She is a proven leader, producer and visionary as well as a committed teacher, philanthropist and mentor.  Moreover, her production experience in film and television, both scripted and documentary, gives her a unique insight into the diverse needs of the women the organization serves." Schulman is eager to work with new board members (listed below) and says:

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  • The Playlist
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    Justin Long, John Hawkes & Ryan Phillippe To Star In Indie Pic 'Chronicle'

    There’s not a lot of information yet, but a report about Justin Long’s new production company revealed that he would be starring in a new film, “Chronicle,” alongside John Hawkes and Ryan Philippe. According to the Gramery Park Pictures website, Mickey Rourke, Helena Bonham Carter, Kate Mara, Danny Masterson and Vincent D'Onofrio were in discussions to join the cast as of last month, but no word if they will be signing on or have simply moved on (our guess is probably the latter).

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  • The Lost Boys
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    Why Is Justin Timberlake An Honorary African-American?

    And why is "The Kids Are All Right" nominated for best picture over "Night Catches Us"? Because of the brief appearance of Mark Ruffalo's African-American girlfriend (a character I thought was actually questionable representation after Mia Wasikowska's friend makes those racist comments at dinner)?

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  • The Playlist
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    Awesome: Electronic Musician Dan Deacon Scoring Francis Ford Coppola's 'Twixt Now And Sunrise'

    Well, it's now a bonafide trend. With Daft Punk tuning up "Tron: Legacy," Basement Jaxx working on "Attack The Block" and now Dan Deacon scoring Francis Ford Coppola's "Twixt Now And Sunrise" it looks like electronic beatmakers are the new go-to musicians for ambitious soundtrack work. What's next? Girl Talk scoring a John Sayles film? (Actually, that would fucking rule).

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  • The Lost Boys
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    Does This Mean I Have To See "The Dilemma"?

    From Variety's review: "That leaves Ryder as the only thesp capable of really holding the screen opposite Vaughn: As written, Geneva is the sort of nasty, unrepentant tramp for whom the phrase 'bros before hos' was invented, but the script, to its credit, allows her to honestly voice her disappointment with the way her marriage has turned out. It's a problematic role to which Ryder (also getting down with her bad self in the recent "Black Swan") brings much more thorny emotion than it deserves."

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Hollywood's Creme de la Creme Memorialize Class-Act Agent Ed Limato

    Long-Time ICM agent Ed Limato--who forged the careers of Richard Gere, Mel Gibson, Denzel Washington and Michelle Pfeiffer--stood out among Hollywood's agent elite as a class act. He was old-school, yes, and he cared deeply about his clients. Agenting wasn't so much a business to him, although he was competitive: I remember him hanging late at a Twentieth Century Fox premiere party, hoping to catch a word with the recently agentless Kevin Costner. Limato looked after Robert Downey, Jr., for years, and Winona Ryder, too. He loved his exotic fish, and his white patent leather shoes. He was tickled pink when Vanity Fair did a photo shoot. Here's my obit.

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  • The Playlist
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    Poster & First Look At New Park Chan-Wook Short Shot On An iPhone 4; Hits Korean Cinemas On Jan. 27

    Park Chan-wook, South Korea’s best-known filmmaker and director of the revenge flick “Oldboy,” has joined forces with his young brother and media artist Park Chan-kyong and shot a 30-minute short on a small budget of 150 million won (around $133,000) using the world’s most popular gadget, Apple's iPhone 4.

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  • The Playlist
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    Brian May & Roger Taylor Say Freddie Mercury Biopic With Sacha Baron Cohen Aiming To Shoot In August

    'We Will Rock You' Feature Film Also In The WorksOne of the many, many projects linked to Sacha Baron Cohen over the past year or so was a biopic of legendary Queen singer Freddie Mercury. Boasting a script by Peter Morgan ("The Queen"), the project has the approval of the surviving members of the band who will act as producers on the film. The story will focus on the earlier years of Queen, leading up to the band's 1985 Live Aid concert -- one that salvaged their reputation after the band broke an anti-apartheid boycott and played gigs in South Africa. "I didn't want to write an AIDS movie, to be honest with you. And then, I just looked at the period — it's sort of where he rejects [the other members of Queen] and comes back to them. It's sort of like a family movie. It's sort of like I hate my family, I want to be independent, and then I come back," Morgan said about the script last year.

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