Variety listed the Venice films upcoming. A Lisa Cholodenko film called Olive Kittredge, playing out of competition, caught my eye immediately. It is not a feature, of course – do they make features like this anymore? But it does sound pretty great – an HBO mini series with Frances McDormand and Richard Jenkins, together again after playing Hard Bodies boss and employee in Burn After Reading. Not many US films in main competition, though Birdman is really the big get.


“The Cut,” Fatih Akin (Germany, France, Italy, Russia, Canada, Poland, Turkey)
“A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence,” Roy Andersson (Sweden, Germany, Norway, France)
“99 Homes,” Ramin Bahrani (U.S.)
“Tales,” Rakhshan Bani E’temad (Iran)
“La rancon de la gloire,” Xavier Beauvois (France)
“Hungry Hearts,” Saverio Costanzo (Italy)
“Le fernier coup de marteau,” Alix Delaporte (France)
“Manglehorn,” David Gordon Green (U.S.)
“Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)” Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu (U.S.) OPENER
“Three Hearts,” Benoit Jacquot (France)
“The Postman’s White Nights,” Andrei Konchalovsky (Russia)
“Il Giovane Favoloso,” Mario Martone (Italy)
“Sivas,” Kaan Mujdeci (Turkey)
“Anime Nere,” Francesco Munzi (Italy, France)
“Good Kill,” Andrew Niccol (U.S.)
“Loin des Hommes,” David Oelhoffen (France)
“The Look of Silence,” Joshua Oppenheimer (Denmark, Finland, Indonesia, Norway, U.K.)
“Nobi,” Shinya Tsukamoto (Japan)
“Red Amnesia,” Wang Xiaoshuai (China)

“Words with Gods,” Guillermo Arriaga, Emir Kusturica, Amos Gitai. Mira Nair, Warwick Thornton, Hector Babenco, Bahman Ghobadi, Hideo Nakata, Alex de la Iglesia (Mexico. U.S.)
“She’s Funny That Way,” Peter Bogdanovich (U.S.)
“Dearest,” Peter Ho-sun Chan (Hong Kong, China)
“Olive Kitteridge,” Lisa Cholodenko (U.S.)
“Burying the Ex,” Joe Dante (U.S.)
”Perez,” Edoardo De Angelis (Italy)
“La zuppa del demonio,” Davide Ferrario (Italy)
“Tsili,” Amos Gitai (Israel, Russia, Italy, France)
“La trattativa,” Sabina Guzzanti (Italy)
“The Golden Era,” Ann Hui (China, Hong Kong) CLOSER
“Make Up,” Im Kwontaek (South Korea)
“The Humbling,” Barry Levinson (U.S.)
“The Old Man of Belem,” Manoel de Oliveira (Portugal, France)
“Italy in a Day,” Gabriele Salvatores (Italy, U.K.)
“In the Basement,” Ulrich Seidl (Austria)
“The Boxtrolls,” Anthony Stacchi, Annable Graham (U.K)
“Nyphomanic Volume II (long version) Director’s Cut,” Lars Von Trier (Denmark, Germany, France, Belgium)

“Theeb,” Naji Abu Nowar (Jordan, U.A.E. Qatar, U.K.)
“Line of Credit,” Salome Alexi (Georgia, Germany, France)
“Cymbeline,” Michael Almereyda (U.S.)
“Senza Nessuna Pieta,” Michele Alhaique (Italy)
“Near Death Experience,” Benoit Delepine, Gustave Kervern (France)
“Le Vita Oscena,” Renato De Maria (Italy)
“Realite,” Quentin Dupieux (France, Belgium)
“I Spy/I Spy,” Veronika Franz, Severin Fiala (Austria)
“Hill of Freedom,” Hong Sangsoo (South Korea)
“Bypass,” Duane Hopkins (U.K.)
“The President,” Moshen Makhmalbaf (Georgia, France, U.K. Germany)
“Your Right Mind,” Ami Canaan Mann (U.S.)
“Belluscone, una storia siciliana,” Franco Maresco (Italy)
“Nabat,” Elchin Musaoglu (Azerbaijan)
“Heaven Knows What,” Josh Safdie, Ben Safdie (U.S., France)
“These Are the Rules,” Ognjen Svilicic,” (Croatia, France, Serbia, Macedonia)
“Court,” Chaitanya Tamhane (India)

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  • Kane

    WOWZA! David Gordon Green is just pumping out film after film! It’s as if once he sat on all his great scripts while making The Sitter and Your Highness. He was in Berlin and Venice last year for Prince Avalanche and Joe and back in Venice again this year. Mighty impressive.

  • Kane

    Oppenheimer’s documentary sounds really, really great. Also Bahrani and Niccol too. I hope Good Kill is great. I miss old Niccol…

  • Igor Sousa

    What’s wrong with “Not many US films in main competition”?!

    Does it make the festival less compelling for you guys?!

  • JPNS Viewer

    Oh maan . . . .
    Sade dit moi . . . .
    France rules the In Competition category: La rancon, Le fernier, Three Hearts, and Loin des Hommes — all four films from the solo-artist France (the same Kudostorm goes for US with four different movies “in competition” as well). And then, the band-member France: The Cut, A Pigeon, and Anime Nere — all three films that France co-represents with other respective countries.
    Viva la France: More likely #not to go home empty-handed, eh, mon ami? : )

    Meanwhile, while basking in the French splendor, . . . Japan’s [or rather, the Japanese producers themselves, I guess] sent Shinya TSUKAMOTO-directed Nobi . . . . [here’s your sign].
    Once upon a time, Japan was in her glory, with great films for which peoples in all over the world were clamoring such as Tokyo Story (A), High and Low (A), Twilight Samurai (A-), etc.

  • Bryce Forestieri

    Man, I was hoping QUEEN OF THE DESERT would turn up here. Do they have a history, like Cannes, of subsequently adding a couple of titles?

    Biggest highlight is hands down the new Roy Andersson. How long has this been gestating? I’m certain the wait has been worthwhile.

    Otherwise really pumped about 99 HOMES. I’ve been a fan of everything by this man, including the torridly sexy, reflexive melodrama AT ANY PRICE. Also curious to see what composer Antony Partos brings to a non-Michôd project.

    I am usually had-core director oriented, but well beyond the helmer, what I find most enticing about PASOLINI is Willem Dafoe in the title role. I hope he’s assisted by an in-form Ferrara.

    I want to get excited about MANGLEHORN now that we know about the alluring premise, but much like JOE, I don’t expect to see it until spring ’15, so right now it’s like whatever.

  • Kane

    Igor Sousa, I believe that is more of an observation than a complaint. The editors here don’t bitch about stuff like that so I wouldn’t jump down their throats so quickly.

  • Igor Sousa

    Kane, Yeah. You might be right.

    I’m intrigued on what such a crazy guy as Abel Ferrara can do with the Pasolini’s name. I thought Roy Anderson and Xavier Beauvois could be in Cannes, but I’m expecting a lot those too. I thought PT Anderson’s Inherent Vice would be there. Too bad.

    What scares me the most is James Franco Sound and Fury based on one of the greatest and most revolutionary books ever.

  • Kane

    Gotta wonder if Franco ever takes a moment to breathe! Inherent Vice went to the NYFF and is the centerpiece I believe. It is an interesting lineup to say the least though. I wish I could go to one of these big name festivals!

  • Joao Mattos

    1 – Go Roy Andersson (f…awsemome director), Go!

    2 – Very, very, disapointed to see my most awaited filme of the year (“The Humbling”) out of competition. 🙁

    3 – It’s sad to see Amos Gitai out of competition, since, IMO, probably there is no curret filmmaker more due to get an award from one of the major festivals, than him. He competes a million of times in Cannes and Venice (5 times, including last year with “Anna Arabia”), and showed a gazillion of his films out of competitions in those festivals and other like Berlin, etc. But aside from a Special Golden Leopard at Locarno, he never gets some love.

  • Sam

    No “Knight of Cups”! Unbelievable… I heard it wad finished mid-June. So why is it taking so long? On the other hand the Italian distributor said it will have its ( I assume limited) screenings in U.S this year so I guess maybe Telluride? Other than that I’m really happy there’s a film -“Tales”- from my country in the main competition and Ramin Bahrani is Iranian-American and Mohsen Makhmalbaf is also Iranian, I think he made his new film “The President” without any buzz or previous news and apparently he got the budget from those countries that are listed. The title is very interesting.

  • Kane

    Sam, are you saying Knight Of Cups finished editing in mid-June or filming in mid-June? Malick has been known to take a long time to edit his work…sadly…

  • Sam


    I meant the editing. The filming was finished long before that (The Untitled’s filming is also finished and it’s in editing process). My guess is that they didn’t even submit it for Venice or maybe they want to submit it for Berlin and the Untitled-music project for Cannes or Venice 2015. I don’t think Venice “rejected” KoC because the worst possible situation would be to put it Horizons or Out of Competition… The Tree of Life’s editing took 18 months if I remember correctly but I don’t think KoC would take as long as The Tree of Life because it probably wont have all those visual effects etc. What we know is that KoC is about the industry in LA and Christian Bale’s character is apparently a writer or director and according to Malick’s editor it’s not as experimental as To The Wonder. In April Emmanuel Lubezki said that he’s almost done with DI/color timing and they were sending the cast their pictures for copyright or whatever it was so I don’t know… . To The Wonder was finished 6 weeks before Cannes 2012 submission deadline ends but it ended up in Venice

  • DaneM

    Igor, even if the Eds DID find Venice less compelling due to the lack of US entries, that would be their prerogative, being that they run a website that basically revolves around the US-based Awards circuit. If foreign films had fair representation in such awards shows, it might not matter. But since they don’t, I’ll go ahead and say it: Venice is less compelling that New York (as well as the only partially announced TIFF).

  • Eric P.

    Scenes from “The Humbling” were filmed at the theater that I work at called The St. George Theatre. In fact, my first day of work, they had been shooting in our lobby and I stood about 20 feet from Pacino as a filmed a scene. Also, I smoked a cigarette with Diane Wiest (although I couldn’t work up the nerve to talk to her).

  • Igor Sousa


    you’re dumb and if you’re American, you’re also a horrific English speaker

  • UBourgeois


    It was only six months ago that two Venice premieres were counted among the Best Picture nominees (Gravity and Philomena, of course), with one nearly winning the big prize. Venice has also recently been a starting point for the likes of Black Swan and The Hurt Locker. That’s four nominees with one winner in the past five years. Granted, NYFF and Toronto have had six BP nominee premieres apiece in the same span (with one winner from Toronto in Argo), so I suppose Venice might be a bit less compelling, but far from irrelevant to the Oscar race.

  • Al Robinson

    I have to admit I’m not familiar with any of these entries. I’m just wondering if any of these will end up being as great as famous foreign films like City of God, Amelie, Y Tu Mama Tambien, and The Lives of Others.

  • steve50

    Filmmakers from 39 countries are participating in Venice, with the most from:
    Italy: 25
    France: 19
    US: 17
    UK: 7
    Germany: 6
    Belgium: 4
    China: 4
    Russia: 3
    It’s probably one of the last diverse film festivals that isn’t entranced by Oscar’s dick (or lack thereof)

  • Kane

    Al, you just set the bar almost impossibly high with those 4 titles. But I guess there are a few diamonds in the rough every year 🙂

    Steve50, 39 represented countries is pretty great and I agree about its diversity. It makes me remember that at the Oscars we aren’t always seeing the “best” of the year. Just the “best” that the American people, or voters, have been exposed to.

    Let’s not get too territorial over which festival is better than the others, or at least let’s not take complaints about other festivals to heart. I mean…fuck…us film lovers are spoiled rotten with all the great festivals out there! It doesn’t matter which festival is on the top of the totem poll, it matters that the totem poll is really, really big.

  • DaneM

    UBourgeois – My statement was meant only to be applied to this year’s Venice lineup with respect to the Oscar race. As you have mentioned, they have had a slew of Oscar darlings in their lineup in recent years. It doesn’t appear to be shaping up that way this year.

    Igor – My post had one typo (that=than). It’s hard to type mistake-free with this site’s mobile app on an iPhone. So sue me. I stand by my statement, which you brought no evidence against. Instead, you appear to be lowering the bar for what constitutes discourse on this forum with your apparently anti-American sentiment.

  • joe

    Manglehorn and birdman I definitely want to see.

  • Igor

    DaneM, I’m not anti-American. It’s just that your statement sounded arrogant and dumb. That’s all.

    You don’t seem to want to discuss about cinema but only about prizes. And then the last 5 Best Picture winners were, at best, OK!

    I’m tired of it. The Oscar are 6 months ahead and all you see is a poll about who might be the winner. This is not good. There is no room for talking about cinema and its artists. Well, I think it’s best to shut up.

  • DaneM

    If you are tired of talking about awards, what the fuck are you doing on a site called “Awards Daily”? The Internet is teeming with websites for discussing fine cinema. We can do here in the context of the Awards races because this is a niche website devoted to just such a thing. I’m not not the one who is dumb here.

  • Lars

    The opener is of course exciting, but I’m more intrigued by the closer 🙂
    Always been a huge fan of Ann Hui, and I have been waiting so long for her next film after “A Simple Life”!

  • Lars

    I complete get what you are saying about Japanese cinema nowadays. I am thoroughly disappointed by “The Great Passage” from Japan last year, and I’m still surprised “Like Father, Like Son” was not submitted by the Japanese officials for Oscar consideration. Kore-Eda to me is an underrated modern master, but occasionally, I’m still surprised by some new work. I saw “小さいおうち” on the plane and it is emotionally nuanced and powerful, much more absorbing for me than “Tokyo Family”.

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