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Foreign Films

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    NYFF: Pedro Almodóvar Told Antonio Banderas To Watch Cary Grant Movies To Prep For 'Skin I Live In'

    The Director Reveals He's Not Doing A Biopic On Mina; Tension, Twists & More From The Team Behind The FilmPedro Almodóvar crafts a creepy Frankenstein-esque tale of rape, revenge, and survival in "The Skin I Live In" – a polarizing film which is one of his most ambitious yet. Because the movie features an unexpected twist halfway through the film, discussing it becomes difficult – how do you debate the themes, the issues and the meaning without giving it all away? We leave that task to the esteemed director and his cast that includes Antonio Banderas and Elena Anaya, who hit NYFF this week to present this latest concoction, a tale unlike anyt...

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    VIFF '11: Johnnie To's 'Life Without Principle' An Uneven, All Too Familiar Financial Crisis Drama

    While movies are primarily considered a form of entertainment, they do have the ability to inform, especially to a mass audience. But that’s a slippery slope. All too easily, the audience can be taken right out of the story if things get too didactic. We at the secret Playlist headquarters (which is...

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    Béla Tarr Confirms At NYFF That He's Retired From Filmmaking

    We can't claim to be massive fans of everything that Béla Tarr's made; his work can be fascinating, but somewhat trying. But when he's firing on all cylinders, as in "Werckmeister Harmonies," the Hungarian director is an incredibly vital voice in cinema, and even when he's not, his films find a way ...

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    NYFF '11 Review: Bela Tarr's Swan Song 'The Turin Horse' Is Despairing But Unforgettable

    If the name Béla Tarr rings any sort of bell in your head, chances are you've already formed an unwavering opinion of his work. He hasn't exactly shaken up his approach since 1988's "Damnation" (that said, this writer -- probably like most -- isn't familiar with his crop of '90s short films), and if...

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    NYFF '11 Review: 'Sleeping Sickness' A Morality Tale That Doesn't Fulfill Its Promise

    Poor Ulrich Köhler. His first feature "Bungalow" was a quiet, very reserved tale about a young soldier going AWOL. Instead of finishing his service, he gives into lethargy, laying around and doing nothing while hoping the military doesn't catch up with him. Once he's introduced to his brother's sweetheart, he finally finds his purpose: get in her pants at all costs. No, it wasn't terribly ambitious, but it was a relatively solid debut and was interesting enough to make those who actually saw it keep an eye on the new German filmmaker. Four years passed and finally his sophomore picture "Windows On Monday" was unleashed with a whimper. This fi...

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    NYFF '11 Review: 'Once Upon A Time In Anatolia' A Masterful, Slow-Burn Epic

    Minimalist art filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan spent a long time crafting very personal and breathtakingly photographed tales. His work has never been big on plot, nor have they ever been anything other than glacially paced. Indeed, his general aesthetic isn't very welcoming to the impatient, though those willing to give their attention are always struck by something special. His black and white debut "The Town" is a real toughie, containing less of a story and more of a collection of moments -- but without the presence of a narrative, Ceylan is free to discover and exhibit universal beauty that isn't dependent on deep characters or drama. A "sce...

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    VIFF '11 Review: 'I Wish' The Rare Example Of A Great Kids Film That Actually Understands Kids

    The frustrating thing about most modern "kids films" is that many filmmakers seem like lost balls in tall grass when it comes to portraying what makes children tick. Perhaps it's tougher than we imagine to capture the youth/kid experience, but is it just us or does it seem like nearly all child characters in movies exist in some bizarro world where they're smarter than the all the adults, know just the right thing to say at every moment and hardly ever act like, you know, kids? (See every American indie and Hollywood rom-com from the last 10 years for examples of this annoying, ridiculous trend). That's why, when a thoughtful, intelligent dir...

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    Bernardo Bertolucci Ditches 3D For His New Movie ‘Io e Te’ Saying It's "Vulgarly Commercial"

    With everyone and their Mom rushing to 3D including old school dudes like Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, for a moment there, it seemed like legendary director Bernardo Bertolucci was going to follow his colleagues over the proverbial cliff. Earlier this spring it was announced the filmmak...

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    'Pitbull' Was The Original Title Of 'The Kid With A Bike' But Distributors Turned It Down

    The Dardenne Brothers Hit NYFF '11 And Talk Casting, Scoring & MoreAre there any filmmakers as consistent as our favorite Belgian siblings the Dardenne Brothers? While they won't break any box office records, every instalment of the arthouse duo's output (though as per request and general lack of ac...

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    Watch: This Is What Luc Besson's Oscar Bait Looks Like, The Trailer For 'The Lady'

    It looks like at the age of 52, director Luc Besson is ready to move on from his testosteron- fueled action pics and crayon-outlined children's entertainment. He's ready to get a hug from the folks who give out golden statues, and to try and make that happen, he's delivering "The Lady."

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