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    SFIFF 2014 - links and comments thread



    San Francisco International Film Festival 2014 April 24-May 8

    Filmleaf Festival Coverage thread for SFIFF 57, 2014 begins here.


    Links to the reviews:

    20,000 Days on Earth (Ian Forsyth, Jane Pollard 2014)
    Abuse of Weakness (Catherine Breillat 2013)
    Amazing Catfish, The/Los insólitos pesces gato (Claudia Sainte-Luce 2013)
    Bad Hair/Pelo malo (Mariana Rondón 2013)
    Child of God (James Franco 2013)

    Club Sandwich (Fernando Eimbcke 2013)
    Dear White People (Justin Simien 2014)
    Double, The (Richard Ayoade 3014)
    Dune, The/La dune (Yossi Aviram 2013)
    Eastern Boys (Robin Campillo 2014)

    Freedom Summer (Stanley Nelson 2014)
    Happiness (Thomas Balmès 2014)
    Harmony Lessons (Emir Baigazin 2013)
    Heaven Adores You (Nikolas Dylan Rossi 2014)
    History of Fear (Benjamin Naishat 2013)
    If You Don't, I Will (Sophie Fillières 2014)
    Last Weekend (Tom Dolby, Tom Williams 2014)
    Manos Sucias (Josef Wladyka 2014)
    Mary Is Happy, Mary Is Happy (Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit 2013)
    Norte, the End of History (Lav Diaz 2013)

    Obvious Child (Gillian Robbespiere 2014)
    Of Horses and Men (Benedict Erlingsson 2014)
    Our Sunhi (Hong Sang-soo 2013)
    Palo Alto (Gia Coppola 2013)
    Ping Pong Summer (Michael Tully 2014)
    Reconstruction, The/La reconstrucción (Juan Taratuto 2013)
    Return to Homs (Talal Derki 2013)

    Salvation Army (Abdellah Taïa 2013)
    School of Babel (Julie Bertucelli 2014)
    South Is Nothing/Il Sud è niente (Fabio Mollo 2013)
    Stop the Pounding Heart (Robert Minervini 2013)

    Stray Dogs (Tsing Ming-liang 2013)
    Tamako in Moratorium (Nobuhiro Yamashita 2013)
    Tangerines (Zaza Urshadze 2013)
    Tip Top (Serge Bozon 2013)
    Tonnerre (Guillaume Brac 2013)
    Trap Street (Vivian Qu 2013)
    We Are the Best! (Lucas Moodysson 2013)
    We Come As Friends (Hubert Sauper 2014)
    When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism (Corneliu Porumboiu 2013)
    White Shadow (Noaz Deshe 2013)
    Young and Beautiful (Francois Ozon 2013)
    The Dog (Allison Berg, Frank Keraudren) NYFF 2013 sidebar - saw but did not review


    Click on the logo above for info on the full program, which was announced Tues., 1 April 2014 at a press conference at the Fairmont Hotel in SF. You can download a PDF file of the festival catalog HERE.

    David Thompson will be honored. Richard Linklater will receive the founder's directing award. Opening night film: Hossein Amini’s 'The Two Faces of January' , closing night film: Chris Messina’s Directorial Debut 'Alex of Venice' . Gia Coppola's "Palo Alto," which arrives in theaters May 9, is the fest's centerpiece gala.
    3/26/2014

    From the press release:

    SFIFF 2014 by the Numbers:
    168 Films
    74 Narrative Features
    29 Documentary Features
    65 Shorts
    56 Countries Represented
    40 Languages
    3 World Premieres
    5 North American Premieres
    5 U.S. Premieres
    45 Women Directors
    200 Filmmakers and Industry Guests Expected
    "The SFIFF57 lineup features an unprecedented number of films supported by the San Francisco Film Society's Filmmaker360 program, including Kat Candler's Hellion (SFFS/KRF grant winner: $70,000 for postproduction), Sara Colangelo's Little Accidents (SFFS/KRF grant winner: $50,000 for postproduction), Josef Wladyka's Manos Sucias (two-time SFFS/KRF grant winner: $45,000 for production, $90,000 for postproduction), Gillian Robespierre's Obvious Child (Off the Page screenwriting workshop participant), Jesse Moss' The Overnighters (SFFS project development program) and Michael Tully's Ping Pong Summer (SFFS/KRF grant winner: $50,000 for postproduction)."

    24 or 25 of the lineup are already reviewed here from NYFF 2013, ND/NF 2014, or Rendez-Vous 2014. Also saw The Dog (Allison Berg, Frank Keraudren) (NYFF 2013 sidebar) but did not review.

    New ones I'd like to see:

    Boyhood (Richard Linklater)
    Chinese Puzzle (Cédric Klapisch)
    We Are the Best! (Lucas Moodyson)


    Other possibilities:

    The Dune (Yossi Aviram) theme sounds iffy but looks like it has Nierls Arestrup in it and Jay Weissberg of VARIETY loved it
    Hellion (Kat Candler), troubled teenager, breakout for young actor Josh Wiggins, Sundance hit
    Intruders (Noh Young-seok) Korean, about a screenwriter (Hong Sang-soo-ish?)
    Night Moves (Kelly Reichardt) has a Metacritic 82 though Mike D'Angelo at Toronto was disappointed
    Ping Pong Summer (Michael Tully) because it's set in Ocean City, Maryland.
    Queen Margot, The Director's Cut (1994, Patruce Chéreau) as a homage to the late director
    The Reconstruction (Juan Taraturo) because I like anything set in Patagonia
    The Sacrament (Ti West) about fanaticism, starring Joe Swanberg
    The Skeleton Twins (Craig Johnson) this was praised at Sundance; with Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig
    South Is Nothing (Fabio Mollo) Mafia girl, Italian debut
    The Trip to Italy (Michael Winterbottom) not great reviews, but I like this format with Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon
    Yves Saint Laurent (Jalil Lespert) biopic, fallback item, but I like Pierre Niney, who plays Saint Laurent, the youngest actor in the Comédie Francaise, or was

    Also: there are press screenings of Palo Alto (Gia Coppola) and of Last Weekend (Tom Dolby, Tom Williams) back-to-back, so hope to see these.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 08-28-2014 at 09:12 PM.

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    Back to back distrib rep screenings are offered in a week or so of

    Last Weekend (Tom Dolby)
    Palo Alto (Gib Coppola) (centerpiece film)

    I have The Dune (Yossi Aviram) (actual DVD) and Ping Pong Summer (Vimeo). Were I in NYC I could watch a screening of Chinese Puzzle (Cédric Klapisch) in a couple days. Filmleafers are encouraged to look at the screener list and make recommendations. It is here. Note that I have already seen and reviewed 12 of these on Filmleaf already, narrowing the choice.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 04-07-2014 at 07:14 PM.

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    Michael Tully: Ping Pong Summer (2014)

    A sweet Ocean City, Maryland summer vacation coming-of-ager set in 1985 that doesn't try anything tricky but succeeds at what it so mildly does. If it has a unique feature it may be making a ping pong match climactic and exciting. Wow! The protag Rad Miracle (Marcello Conte) is certainly eye candy but Matt Dillon, Rob Lowe &Co. are unchallenged. This was a Sundance film that certainly would probably NOT be likely to have made the edgier roster of the FSLC's New Directors/New Films, and it didn't.

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    Cool that David Thompson and Richard Linklater are being honored. I dig them both.
    It's good that you've seen a chunk of these movies already. That must help.

    Ping Pong as exciting? As climactic? Without playing it yourself? That may be impressive.
    Very cool about the grants and supports for post-production. Very nice! Congrats to those films and their makers!
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

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    This is the area by the way that SFIFF beats the NYFF. The NYFF is prestigious, elite, classy, great watching, but the Film Society of Lincoln Center attracts too many oldsters and not enough young people and does not have all these programs like the San Francisco Film Society and Sundance. Yes David Thompson and Linklater are good choices for people to honor I agree.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 04-08-2014 at 01:56 AM.

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    Yossi Aviram: The Dune/La dune (2013

    Those Israelis continue to impress. Aviram, a former cinematographer, has produced a delicate, subtle, and exceptionally well acted directorial debut, set mostly in France and in French with an initial segment in Israel and Hebrew and an Israeli tie-in. A tale of paths that cross and connections long lost, this is a study of memory and mood and a bit of a mystery story about an officer of the French bureau of missing persons and a mysterious man found in the country, mute, unsought, with no identification. Distinguished performances by the always superb Niels Arestrup, as the police investigator, with Guy Marchand as his longtime lover, and a strong Lior Ashkenazi as the lost man; it's a pleasure just to see Arestrup and Matthieu Amalric, in a key cameo, in the same room, two of the best French film actors of recent times.

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