Noah Baumbach’s latest solo effort since 2012’s Frances Ha, While We’re Young is a portrait of a middle aged couple stuck in a generational rut. Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts play a couple who befriend twentysomethings Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried in an attempt to recapture their youth.
Based on a novel by Marco Franzoso, Hungry Hearts is a riveting, relentless film. A psychological thriller that takes an unusual look at how the arrival of a child can tear a couple apart.
One of the most original short films I’ve seen in a long time. The Kármán Line takes a vivid image of a floating woman and creates a powerful story that explores loss, vulnerability and grief all in the space of twenty –five minutes. Olivia Colman is simply superb as a mother who is plagued by an illness that makes her levitate upwards, over the course of two weeks, into orbit. Director Oscar Sharp’s willingness to take a sensitive subject and turn it on its head has created a poignant and memorable piece of film.
The Muse is a deeply mesmeric venture into film for fashion photographer Tim, as he seamlessly blends the concept of the muse and the mythology of mermaids with a little help from the intriguing Ben Whishaw along the way.
Hal Hartley returns with the dramedy ‘Ned Rifle’ as the final installment in his trilogy that started in 1997 with ‘Henry’s Fool.’ Hartley’s distinctive story telling voice, accompanied by a stand out performance from a deadpan, sultry Aubrey Plaza make this his most accessible effort to date.
America’s most influential film critic is treated with great humility in this window into the final days of his life. His determination and love for film are felt whole-heartedly in this fitting tribute from Steve James who ensures Robert Ebert gets one last ‘Thumbs Up.’
In this interview the infamous New Yorker and director Woody Allen he discusses his hopes for the future legacy of his films, writing for different mediums, and why humour is the source of many of his great successes. Originally conducted in 1985 and then pieced together over several phone interviews at a later date, journalist Michiko Kakutani gets a great insight into the directors process for the Paris Review.
Director Damien Chazelle still isn’t 30 years old, and he’s written and directed the Sundance smash and Oscar contending feature Whiplash. After adapting the film from an initial short he made in 2013, Chazelle’s second feature brims with an electric all or nothing tension, where the stakes are high and failure is unthinkable. Chazelle owes more to films like Darren Aronofksy’s ‘Black Swan,’ or Kubrick’s ‘Full Metal Jacket’ then it does the musical themed film lineage, as it focuses on the intensity of it’s subject rather then the music itself.
The film is a sharp and electric tale of a young talented jazz drummer Andrew (Miles Teller), who studies at the best all male music school in the country “Shaffer Conservatory”. When he attracts the attention of Terence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons) and gets a spot in Fletcher’s prestigious jazz band, he thinks his potential has been recognised, and he is on the verge of greatness, but Simmons abuses his musical prodigies mercilessly in an attempt to bring out the genius.
In January 2013 Laura Poitras received an email that would change her life forever. The email was from an anonymous stranger who had taken note of Poitras latest film project on surveillance in the USA. He requested a secure link for which they could communicate through and insisted she had strong pass phrases, strong enough to withstand a brute-force attack by networked computers. “Assume that your adversary is capable of a trillion guesses per second,” the stranger wrote. That stranger would turn out to be the single greatest whistleblower in American history, Edward Snowden.
Richard Linklater talks about what it’s like to be a self-taught filmmaker and his long road to mainstream recognition. Linklater started out making 16mm films for over 9 years in Austin, Texas as largely experimental exercises. Listen to this great clip (via filmschoolcomments) and discover what inspired the ‘Boyhood’ director to keep plugging away at filmmaking.
By Will Harper.