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Damien Chazelle: We’re Too Narrative-Focused When It Comes to Movies Interview

Damien Chazelle: We’re Too Narrative-Focused When It Comes to Movies

As we emerge on the other side of the long film festival season and move into awards season, Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash has been drumming up (sorry) so much good publicity that it isn’t crazy to think the 29-year-old filmmaker may be holding his first golden statue in a few months time. About an aspiring jazz drummer (Miles Teller) Read More
MVFF37 Days 10 & 11: After The Fall, Timbuktu, & Wild Film Festival

MVFF37 Days 10 & 11: After The Fall, Timbuktu, & Wild

Closing weekend of the Mill Valley Film Festival just proves the authority of this small festival. It’s rare for a film festival to have such a high percentage of excellent films. No wonder its gained a reputation as a finely curated festival with its tastes squarely in line with mass audience appeal, not to mention the Read More
Camp X-Ray Movie

Camp X-Ray

Camp X-Ray opens like a tense thriller, with the capture of Ali Amir (Peyman Moaadi) and his transportation to Guantanamo Bay, played out in quick, rapid cuts and an imposing soundtrack. The film may start with intensity but this isn’t the tone of the film overall. Camp X-Ray takes a gentler approach to conveying the horror of Read More
It Was You Charlie Movie

It Was You Charlie

The moment near the end of a film that puts everything you have just watched into perspective is a dicey proposition. It requires the closing payoff to be something worth waiting for–and more importantly, it demands deft storytelling. To purposefully omit something by writing around it, then carefully drive the story towards it later, takes Read More
MVFF37 Day 7: Charlie’s Country, Nightcrawler, Black and White Film Festival

MVFF37 Day 7: Charlie’s Country, Nightcrawler, Black and White

We’re at the midpoint of the Mill Valley Film Festival and this is where I jump in. Having made the trek from Los Angeles to join in our coverage of the festival, I’ve been immediately greeted with colorful fall trees and some compelling film viewing.  I was lucky enough to catch Whiplash, an intense and (literally) Read More
10,000 KM Movie

10,000 KM

In Carlos Marques-Marcet’s debut feature 10,000 KM, the title refers to the distance which now separates a couple after a job opportunity forces them to face the challenges of dating remotely. Marques-Marcet, who previously edited the equally subtle relationship film It Felt Like Love, proves that long distance relationships are just as difficult now as Read More
Hossein Amini: I Struggle So Much With Dialogue…I Find Silent Storytelling More Interesting Interview

Hossein Amini: I Struggle So Much With Dialogue…I Find Silent Storytelling More Interesting

Best known for writing Nicholas Winding Refn’s Drive, Hossein Amini makes his directorial debut with the ’60s noir-ish throwback, The Two Faces of January, based on the novel by Patricia Highsmith. Set in Greece in 1962, the film follows a vacationing American couple, Chester (Viggo Mortensen) and his wife Colette (Kirsten Dunst), who get intwined with a Read More
Imperial Dreams (MVFF Review) Movie

Imperial Dreams (MVFF Review)

“I got to get a job to pay child support, but to get a job I have to have a driver’s license. And to get a driver’s license, I still need to pay child support.” So says Bambi, the hero of filmmaker Malik Vitthal’s touching street tale Imperial Dreams. He’s explaining to a DMV worker the absurdity of his current, Read More
MVFF37 Day 3: Elle Fanning Receives Mill Valley Award For ‘Low Down’ Film Festival

MVFF37 Day 3: Elle Fanning Receives Mill Valley Award For ‘Low Down’

At just 16 years old, Elle Fanning has become the youngest recipient of the Mill Valley award in the festival’s 37-year history. Earning her the honor was her heartbreaking performance in Low Down, the feature debut of director Jeff Preiss in which she plays Amy-Jo Albany, the real life daughter of critically lauded, woefully drug-addicted jazz pianist Joe Read More