Palme d’Or: La Vie d’Adele (Blue is the Warmest Color), Abdellatif Kechiche Grand Prix of the Jury: Inside Llewyn Davis, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen Prix de la Mise en Scene (Best Director): Amat Escalanti, Heli Prix du Scenario (Best Screenplay): Jia Zhangke, A Touch of Sin Camera d’Or (Best First Feature): Ilo Ilo, directed by (read…)

The story of my festival-going life tends to be that I miss the one film that winds up on everyone’s lips. It’s some kind of uncanny anti-radar that never fails. This time though, I managed to catch one that had everyone buzzing to the extent that people were turned away at the door of the (read…)

I don’t know when it happened exactly – maybe it was his non-performance hosting the Oscars – but the worm has definitely turned on the general enthusiasm for James Franco. For a while, everything he touched was a source of endless media fascination, but that’s pretty much over. No one I talked to here at (read…)

There’s something rotten at the heart of Claire Denis despairing Un Certain Regard entry The Bastards, and you just know whatever it is will eventually consume the film’s lead character, but you can’t help but root for him anyway.

Only God forgives and even He will be hard pressed to give the latest from Nicolas Winding Refn a pass. Those who discovered the Danish director following the crossover success of Drive are likely to be disappointed as well. Only God Forgives shares the previous film’s star Ryan Gosling and a strong sense of style, (read…)

Is “dark whimsy” an oxymoron? I guess it is, but I can’t think of a better way to describe the bone-dry, jet black humor delivered with an impish twinkle that has marked at least the last couple of pictures from Dutch writer/director Alex van Warmerdam whose latest, Borgman, debuted yesterday morning in competition at the (read…)

I’m going into each film here at the festival knowing as little in advance as I can possibly manage. I’m not even reading the official catalog entries so I wasn’t sure what exactly to expect from prolific Japanese director Takashi Miike. My only hope was that he’d help blow off a little mid-festival langueur and (read…)

Festival catalogue and blue press badge

I had hoped to take some time for regular updates about what the festival is like outside of the movies themselves, but between screenings, reviews, eating and sleep, I haven’t made the time for anything but a little bit of exploring and picture taking. So, by request, here’s a bunch of the photos I’ve snapped (read…)

A cat named Ulysses is a key figure in Inside Llewyn Davis and that reference is not the only thing that calls to mind an earlier film from Joel and Ethan Coen. The emphasis on music also very much put me in the mind of their O Brother Where Art Thou? And yet, tonally, the (read…)

You see a lot of movies and most of them are pretty ordinary. Once in a while you see one slightly above average and it’s a cause for celebration. On rare occasions you see something truly outstanding and you’re reminded why you love cinema in the first place. It’s the nourishment that keeps you going (read…)

The Bling Ring which premiered this afternoon in the Un Certain Regard section of the Cannes Film Festival is, contrary to the small sampling of negative early twitter buzz I happened across, another winner from Sofia Coppola. Less contemplative than her glacially paced (but wonderful) previous film Somewhere, Bling returns in a way to some (read…)

Believe me, I didn’t fly all the way to Cannes just to see The Great Gatsby which already opened in the States last Friday. I was actually going to skip it and instead pour as much of my energy as possible into films that haven’t been seen yet, but I hadn’t had time to see (read…)

One of the big successes at Sundance this year was Fruitvale which was snapped up by The Weinstein Company, renamed Fruitvale Station and instantly became “the Sundance film that’s going to cross over and make an Oscar run.” Following a similar trajectory to recent films like Precious and Beasts of the Southern Wild, it has (read…)

Barcelona-born, Mexico City-raised Amat Escalante is three for three with Cannes. His first two films, Sangre (2005) and Los Bastardos (2008) both played in the Un Certain Regard category and this year he’s graduated to the main competition with Heli, a confidently mounted but mostly unpleasant exercise in human cruelty. I didn’t see Sangre, but (read…)

  The Official Screening Guide for Cannes dropped today, glowing tantalizingly before me like the golden idol at the start of Raiders of the Lost Ark. There were no spiders or spears getting here, nor was I betrayed by the guy who would one day play Doctor Octopus, but there were definitely a series of (read…)

Oscar Isaac in Joel Coen and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis Well, that was worth waiting up for. My most highly anticipated movie of 2013, Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis, is making its World Premiere at my first Cannes Film Festival. Bring it. Opening night film: The Great Gatsby, dir Baz Luhrmann In (read…)

If you’re on the Twitters or the Facebook, you might already know I’m going to the Cannes Film Festival this year, but I was waiting until all the ducks were in a row before making an official announcement here on the blog. Yes, as unlikely as it seems, the passport is ready, the press pass (read…)

Mohammed to Maya

Screening in competition tonight at the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles is Mohammed to Maya, a documentary chronicling a year in the life of a 42-year-old devout Muslim as she undergoes gender reassignment surgery.  Even in the relatively permissive West it’s difficult to imagine the difficulties of making such a transition, but it’s almost (read…)


Making its US debut April 13th at the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, Shahid is a fairly straight forward biographical film directed by Hansal Mehta about a man who probably isn’t a household name here in the West, but whose remarkable life has something to say to all of us.

Helen Mirren as “Alma Reville” and Anthony Hopkins as “Alfred Hitchcock" on the set of HITCHCOCK. Photo By Suzanne Tenner

“What if someone really good made a horror picture?” – Alfred Hitchcock in Sacha Gervasi’s Hitchcock Taken on its own as a movie about a famous director on a troubled production as he approaches the final leg of a long career, Hitchcock gets a pass. It entertains and if you don’t already know the Alfred (read…)

Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum in Steven Soderbergh's "Magic Miike"

Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum in Steven Soderbergh’s Magic Mike The Closing Night Film of the 2012 Los Angeles Film Festival Photo by Claudette Barius Steven Soderbergh’s last movie was an action flick centered on a woman. For his next trick, he’s turned the tables around once more and made a comic stripper movie where (read…)

All is Well

LA Film Fest Jury Winner: All is Well Press Release: WINNERS ANNOUNCED FOR 2012 LOS ANGELES FILM FESTIVAL Pocas Pascoal’s All is Well and Everardo González’s Drought Win Jury Awards Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild, Sara Lamm & Mary Wigmore’s Birth Story: Ina May Gaskin and The Farm Midwives and Malik Bendjelloul’s Searching (read…)

Breakfast with Curtis

Breakfast with Curtis – Jackson’s pick for the LA Film Festival’s Best Narrative Feature [Editor’s Note: As you know if you’ve been keeping up with Living in Cinema’s coverage of the 2012 Los Angeles Film Festival, Jackson Truax did a bulk of the heavy lifting this week. He managed to catch 52 films over the (read…)


Last night at LAFF: Neighboring Sounds Last night was a strange and dichotomous one at the Los Angeles Film Festival site at LA Live, at least when it came to the overall vibe surrounding the Regal theater and the screenings therein. Gone was the star-studded hoopla of the red carpet events that have taken place (read…)

It's a Disaster

Couples’ brunch takes a funny turn for the worse in Todd Berger’s It’s a Disaster [Note: Due to popular demand, there are two more LA Film Festival screenings of It’s a Disaster at 2:30 and 9:40 on Saturday 6/23. Needless to say I recommend you hit one if you’re in town.] Having made its world (read…)

About Face

About Face During my college days, the adage I heard repeated on a weekly basis was “Thursday is the new Friday.” That felt very true last night at the Los Angeles Film Festival, with enough going on down at LA Live to literally make your head spin, with all events drawing large and impassioned crowds. (read…)


P-047 In addition to the films and happenings that I’ve been covering at LA Live, the Los Angeles Film Festival boasts programming and events throughout downtown and Los Angeles as whole. Venues include the Bing Theater at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the REDCAT theater, and the Grammy Museum. Last night, a bunch (read…)

Oscar-nominated documentarian Kirby Dick has made a series of powerful documentaries, often implementing his signature style of peeling back iron curtains that few others would have the courage to peer beyond. Twist of Faith (for which Dick was nominated for Best Documentary Feature) followed a man confronting his past sexual abuse by a Catholic priest. (read…)

Steve Zissis and Jennifer Lafleur in Mark and Jay Duplass' "Do-Deca-Pentathlon"

Steve Zissis and Jennifer Lafleur in Mark and Jay Duplass’ Do-Deca-Pentathlon Last night was another robust one at the Los Angeles Film Festival site at LA Live. The big tickets events were the Summer Showcase of Searching for Sugar Man and the Gala screening of Brave. The festival also hosted a special screening of The Do-Deca-Pentathlon (read…)

Neil Young Journey's

Take a ride with Neil Young Journeys Electricity was literally and figuratively in the air last night at the Los Angeles Film Festival site at LA Live. Although the red carpet was all about Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, the longest audience lines and most excitement surrounded Neil Young Journeys. When (read…)

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