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    Singing the Praises (and a few laments) at New Directors/New Films

    Here are the stars of this year's New Directors/New Films, an invaluable festival of mostly first or second features (the criteria have become rather elastic). I like the general edginess of the most inspired choices, even prefer these kinds of films, which are sometimes unpolished, but these gifted...

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    New Directors/New Films '10 | Producer Jeremiah Newton Aids in Uncovering "Candy Darling"

    Born James Slattery in Massapequa, Long Island, in 1944, Candy Darling transformed herself into a stunning blonde actress who in the mid-Sixties became an active player in New York’s “downtown” scene. In her passionate act of self-creation, Candy Darling mesmerized. A party fixture, she appeared in ...

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    ND/NF Shorts: Longer Is Better

    Short films should be short, especially when they play in front of features, right? The 2010 edition of New Directors/New Films breaks that cardinal rule by programming eleven shorts, the majority of which clock in at 20 minutes and over. This rule breaking pays off in spades as every single one o...

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    New Directors/New Films '10 | "The Red Chapel" Director Mads Brugger: "I am the evil white clown..."

    Denmark launches an all-out attack on North Korea in this has-to-be-seen-to-be-believed documentary that ventures into territory somewhere between Michael Moore and Borat. Bankrolled by Lars von Trier’s Zentropa production company, the aptly named Mads Brügger travels to Pyongyang on a feigned missi...

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    New Directors/New Films '10 | Director Dima El-Horr On Keeping it Real for "Every Day is a Holiday"

    A stunning first scene immediately establishes the highly charged atmosphere in Dima El-Horr’s carefully controlled first feature, filled with absurd moments and symbolic gestures. Three women (Hiam Abbass, Manal Khader, Raïa Haïdar) with very different motives board a bus on the Lebanese Day of Liberation to visit their husbands in jail. When the bus is stopped short by a stray bullet, the women are left to find their own way in the hot sun through mountains full of mines, amid sounds of muffled explosions, throngs of refugees, and rumors of massacres. Their perilous journey becomes an internal one towards liberation, as individual life and ...

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    "Extra Man," "Saturday Night" Lead Sarasota Lineup

    The 12th Annual Sarasota Film Festival's lineup has been announced, with 100 features and 68 shorts over ten days, April 9-18th. The festival takes place throughout downtown Sarasota, Florida, with the Hollywood 20 Cinemas serving as the event hub. In addition to the films, audiences will enjoy the festival's first-ever staged reading of director Steve Buscemi and writer Oren Moverman's work in progress "QUEER" as part of the The Lab; a tribute to filmmaker John Landis ("Animal House"); the "In Conversation With..." series; the "Outreach and Educations Programs; Cinema Diaspora: International Perspectives on Jewish Identity and Through Women...

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    New Directors/New Films '10 | Director Richard Press on Capturing the Elusive "Bill Cunningham"

    In a city of dedicated originals, New York Times photographer Bill Cunningham stands out as one who both knows how to capture the essence of the singular personality and clearly represents one himself. Entering his ninth decade, Cunningham still rides his Schwinn around Manhattan, putting miles betw...

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    Tribeca All Access Sets 24 Projects For Seventh Edition

    The Tribeca Film Institute (TFI) announced the 24 projects selected for Tribeca All Access (TAA). Now in its seventh year, the program was created to "cultivate relationships between filmmakers from traditionally underrepresented communities and film industry executives." Tribeca All Access will pr...

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    New Directors/New Films '10 | Helene Cattet and Bruno Forzani Explore Desire in "Amer"

    The title is the French word for “bitter” but this provocative and sensational debut is anything but. An oneiric, eroticized homage to 1970s Italian giallo horror movies reimagined as an avant-garde trance film, Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani’s pastiche tour de force plays out a delirious, enigmatic, almost wordless death-dance of fear and desire. Its three movements, each in a different style, correspond to the childhood, adolescence, and adulthood of its female protagonist—and that’s all you need to know. Drawing its stylized, hyperbolic gestures from the playbooks of Bava, Leone, Argento, and De Palma and taking them into a realm of near-...

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    Stephen Palgon on "Fantasyland": "I was instantly intrigued..." (Watch it Now, Free)

    Director Stephen Palgon's "Fantasyland" is the story of a season on baseball's lunatic fringe, a window on a world where marriages and jobs often run a distant second to fantasy baseball, and where competitors will make trades during childbirth, sex, and funerals.

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