Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Friday, October 3rd

Treeless Mountain (So Yong Kim, South Korea/USA)
From the program: "Six-year-old Jin and Bin are sisters. Their mother sends them to their aunt’s house in the countryside since she can’t afford to raise them. However, the alcoholic aunt cannot take care of the sisters, and they are sent to their grandmother again."

Il Divo (Paolo Sorrentino, Italy)
"Giulio Andreotti served as prime minister of Italy three times, and has been in politics for over sixty years. The Cannes Jury Prize winner scathingly chronicles a career of corruption, power, influence and mystery, and a man as grotesque Machiavellian caricature who left an indelible signature on Italy’s collective consciousness."

Wendy and Lucy (Kelly Reichardt, USA)
"En route to a lucrative job in Alaska but stranded in Oregon, Wendy is faced with some dire financial consequences and forced into some difficult decisions. Relying on the humanity found on the fringes of American society, she struggles to make things better for herself and her dog—Lucy."

Saturday, October 4th

Three Monkeys (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey)
"An ordinary family tries to hold itself together amidst lies and deceptions, told to cover up failings and appointments. Ignoring the truth in order to endure misery by neither seeing, hearing or speaking it, however, does not make it go away. Or does it?"

Rembrandt's J'Accuse (Peter Greenaway, UK)
"As a follow-up to his artistic mystery hinging on Rembrandt’s 'The Night Watch,' Peter Greenaway directs this dramatized documentary about the enigma at the heart of the murder. Theorizing on the anti-Rembrandt conspiracy and possible motives of the painted characters, Greenaway arrives at some unlikely but highly plausible conclusions." (I'm rushing this so there's no guarantee I'll get in.)

Lost Song (Rodrique Jean, Canada)
"Elisabeth and Pierre, a couple in their thirties, move into a cottage with their newborn for a summer. All is peaceful until feelings of isolation and the weight of motherhood bear down on Elisabeth. With no one fully comprehending the depth of her emotional tress, violence looms on the horizon."

Sunday, October 5th

Routine Holiday (Hongqi Li, China)
"National holidays are when most people go traveling or shopping. A young man who enjoys neither decides to spend the holiday at home lounging in front of the TV. A series of lonely friends drop by, and that’s when things really get out of control."

35 rhums (Claire Denis, France)
"After his wife commits suicide, Lionel raises his daughter, Josephine, on his own and cultivates such a tight bond with her that they begin to resemble a couple. When the time comes for him to teach her to live her own life, the unshakeable strength of their relationship interferes." (I'm rushing this so there's no guarantee I'll get in.)

Adoration (Atom Egoyan, Canada)
"French teacher Sabine assigns a translation exercise to her class based on a news item. It details a man’s plot to bomb a plane using his pregnant girlfriend’s baggage. Simon, one of her students, reinterprets and internalizes the story, and in doing so exposes the dangerous power of learned truths." (I'm rushing this so there's no guarantee I'll get in.)

Of Time and the City (Terence Davies, UK)
"Returning the Liverpool to the screen that made Davies a major force in world cinema, Of Time and The City is an ode to the city and simultaneously a eulogy. It is also an examination of memory and loss for a time of massive—and swift—urban change."

Monday, October 6th

Two Legged Horse (Samira Makhmalbaf, Iran)
"A boy wins the right to take care of another boy who can’t walk. In exchange for a dollar a day, the boy carries the disabled boy to school every day. But the hired boy doesn’t turn into a horse, as the disabled boy had wished.

Frozen River (Courtney Hunt, USA)
"Ray and Lila, two desperate women, transcend their differences and enter a dangerous game smuggling illegal immigrants into the United States across the frozen St. Lawrence River in an attempt to make some quick money. One last run brings them to the brink of aster and forces some hard choices." (I know, but there's nothing else playing. Why they didn't add an extra screening of Steve McQueen's Hunger is anyone's guess.)

Le Silence de Lorna (Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Belgium)
"Lorna, a young Albanian woman living in Belgium, becomes mired in two scams in order to become the owner of a café. With her citizenship and future hanging in the balance and armed with deadly information, Lorna must decide whether to stay silent or do what is right." (I'm rushing this so there's no guarantee I'll get in.)

Revanche (Gotz Spielmann, Austria)
"Robert and Susanne are the owners of a tranquil lakeside house. Alex and Tamara work in Vienna's sex trade. Their lives collide following a desperate bank robbery when the aftermath of a tragic death will have far-reaching and devastating consequences that none could have foreseen."

Tuesday, October 7th

Le Frontière de l'aube (Philippe Garrel, France)
"Garrel’s latest film is a romance of sorts, in which Carole enters into an affair with photographer François. But Carole is mentally unstable and drink all the time. After she set house on fire, she is sent to Rehabilitation. In contrast, François gets back together with his ex-girl friend."

Still Walking (Hirokazu Kore-eda, Japan)
"A typical dysfunctional family, bonded by love as well as resentments and secrets that start to unfold as they gather to commemorate the death of the eldest son who died in a terrible accident fifteen years ago."

Liverpool (Lisandro Alonso, Argentina)
"Farrel, a sailor for twenty years, goes ashore when the freighter he’s on reaches port. The location is Ushuaia on the southern tip of Argentina and it is the home he left long before. Checking in on his mother, he makes a covery about his family he didn’t expect."

Wednesday, October 8th

Francaise (Souad El-bouhati, France/Morocco)
"Sofia is a child living a happy life in suburban France with her North African-born parents. When her father starts feeling nostalgic, Sofia finds herself on a Moroccan farm. Feeling located, Sofia vows to return to France one day, but her plans—and her life—don’t quite go her way."

Night and Day (Hong Sang-soo, South Korea)
"Kim Sung-nam, an artist who flees to Paris, becomes attracted to You-jung, a young art student. Learning that his wife is pregnant, he returns to Seoul. Hong Sang-soo's eighth film unfolds another story of desire. This Hong Sang-soo adventure continues beyond Seoul to Paris."

Jerichow (Christian Petzold, German)
"Thomas, honorably charged from the military, Turkish businessman Ali, and his troubled wife Laura stumble into a fateful encounter that provides the security they all desire at a hefty personal cost. Jerichow is a complex love triangle drama where success equates with escape and betrayal."


  1. The only ones I am interested in as of now are 35 rhums and Le frontière de l'aub, but I always enjoy your coverage, so you can change that. Quick question however: can you shed some light on the controversy behind Garrel's new movie? I was reading in Film Comment about how everyone seems to be put off by it, and since I've only seen Les Amants réguliers by him, I'm not sure about it.

  2. I wasn't aware of any controversy except that the mainstream press generally despised the film when it premiered at Cannes last May. (In the New York Times, Manohla Dargis attributed this to the fact that the press screening was scheduled for eight in the morning and most reviewers were up half the night watching and debating Che.) There was some question as to why the film wasn't invited to Toronto when they've supported Garrel's work in the past, and it seems the reason is that Toronto--formerly the Festival of Festivals--is now in the business of world premieres, also shrugging off the latest by Hong Sang-soo which had its premiere at the Berlin Film Festival.

  3. That makes sense. I guess I had been under the impression it had to do with Garrel making another movie about Nico or including a character supposed to be a representing her, or course, I wouldn't know.