This video is making the rounds — what’s funny about it, of course, is that Matt Damon isn’t the type to go nuts on anyone. And it’s Entourage-esque anyway.
Hat tip, JJ.
Speaking of Entourage, it has gotten off to a better start recently, after sputtering a bit at the beginning.
Those are a few of the names on the Petition for Roman Polanski, spotlighting the precise reason this incident is important to the international film community:
By their extraterritorial nature, film festivals the world over have always permitted works to be shown and for filmmakers to present them freely and safely, even when certain States opposed this.
The arrest of Roman Polanski in a neutral country, where he assumed he could travel without hindrance, undermines this tradition: it opens the way for actions of which no-one can know the effects.
Roman Polanski is a French citizen, a renown and international artist now facing extradition. This extradition, if it takes place, will be heavy in consequences and will take away his freedom.
The petition ends with this appeal:
On September 16th, 2009, Mr. Charles Rivkin, the US Ambassador to France, received French artists and intellectuals at the embassy. He presented to them the new Minister Counselor for Public Affairs at the embassy, Ms Judith Baroody. In perfect French she lauded the Franco-American friendship and recommended the development of cultural relations between our two countries.
If only in the name of this friendship between our two countries, we demand the immediate release of Roman Polanski.
Full text of the petition, after the cut, along with the names of dozens of other filmmakers who have signed it.
Final word (as if) goes to the victim, Samantha Geimer, herself:
“I know there is a price to pay for running. But who wouldn’t think about running when facing a 50-year sentence from a judge who was clearly more interested in his own reputation than a fair judgment or even the well-being of the victim?
“My attitude surprises many people. That’s because they didn’t go through it all; they don’t know everything that I know. People don’t understand that the judge went back on his word. They don’t know how unfairly we were all treated by the press. Talk about feeling violated! The media made that year a living hell, and I’ve been trying to put it behind me ever since.” LA Times
I was sorry to see this all dredged back up again. This site fell into the same trap back when Polanski’s The Pianist was up for Oscars. Many of those hellbent on punishing Polanski did not want to see him win any awards. They were here then and, it appears, they are here now. I now would like to put the whole thing to rest. This because of a particularly ugly email I received, which you can read after the cut.
Let’s just agree to disagree. But I have to ask one more question of you who believe Polanski “raped a child” – if he is given a sentence and serves it, what then?¬† Do you really believe that his punishment will absolve him of guilt? Or do you believe that someone who did something like this can never be reformed or forgiven, despite the kind of suffering they endured in their life? Will you still say his films are worthless and he, as a human being is worthless?
Review: That Evening Sun (2009)
by Jennifer Boulden
If we all, as Thoreau wrote, live lives of quiet desperation, there are times in any life when the desperation comes to a head and ceases any pretense of quietude.
The events in the small film That Evening Sun transpire at just such a time on a rural Tennessee farm gone to seed. Melodrama does not necessarily translate into a good film, but thanks to the solid ensemble of actors working at their peak in That Evening Sun, not only are the drama and tension heightened throughout, so is the fun of watching this riveting story climb to its transcendent climax.
First-time feature writer/director Scott Teems adapted William Gay‚Äôs classic Southern gothic short story ‚ÄúI Hate to See That Evening Sun Go Down.‚Äù The story follows widowed farmer Abner Meecham (Hal Holbrook), who escapes his nursing home with the intent of living out his remaining days more authentically on his old homestead, only to discover his son has rented his home to a local ne‚Äôer-do-well‚Äôs family, the Choats. Played with slow-burning menace yet uncanny empathy by Ray McKinnon, the skeevy Lonzo Choat wastes no time in telling the landowner he is not welcome on the farm and has no legal right to be there. The Choats have never had any land, and have been given a chance to buy the farm outright. When Abner refuses to leave, the two men find themselves in an untenable d√©tente.
From this simple land conflict between generations and classes, Teems fleshes out the spare short story. The result is a lean screenplay that never falters in bringing the two charismatic leads into increasingly heated conflict. Combining humor and hubris, That Evening Sun is a case study in economic storytelling, almost classic Greek in its sensibilities. There is nary a moment that does not inform, enhance and propel the sense of character and setting that makes this taut film so powerful.
Debra Winger, Jury member for the Zurich Film Fest had this to say:
The American thesp criticized Swiss authorities for their “philistine collusion” in arresting the helmer at Zurich Airport on Saturday on behalf of U.S. justice authorities, just before the festival was to honor him for lifetime achievement.
“This fledgling festival has been unfairly exploited and whenever this happens the whole art world suffers,” Winger said in a statement to journalists on Monday, standing together with the other four international jury members in announcing they had decided to continue at the festival that is honoring Polanski.
“We hope today this latest (arrest) order will be dropped. It is based on a three-decades-old case that is dead but for minor technicalities. We stand by him and await his release and his next masterpiece.”
Winger added: “We came to Zurich to honor Roman Polanski as a great artist but under these sad and arcane circumstances we can only think of him today as a human being uncertain of the year ahead. His life has always informed his art and it always will.”
Protesters outside the festival’s main theater on Sunday, where he was honored despite being in jail, held up banners demanding his release and criticizing Swiss authorities for arresting him.
We don’t often do this sort of thing here, but our friend and reader from the Philippines wrote and asked for help and aid. This is from a Google page set up to aid rescue efforts and gather donations and help – here you can find out how to help with money, etc.:
On September 26, 2009, Typhoon Ondoy brought a month’s worth of rainfall to Metro Manila and nearby areas in just a few hours, causing severe flooding which resulted in the loss of many lives and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people. This site compiles relevant information about the disaster, including a volunteer-maintained map of persons needing rescue and a list of relief organizations accepting donations, so that more help can be provided where it is needed.
Three words explain why this trailer is worth a look: Jackie Earl Haley. These kinds of movies stopped being scary to me ages ago, and it’s not because I outgrew them. This looks pretty dang creepy and stylish. Also interesting to note the beboot was written by Wesley Strick — who wrote the adaptation for Scorsese’s Cape Fear.
Like all the other exceptional marketing we’ve seen for Where the Wild Things Are, the latest batch of TV spots are just splendid. There’s an extended promo running on Sundance Channel this week, but I haven’t been able to find a get a copy to embed yet. In the meantime, enjoy the 30-second spot above and 2 more after the cut. (How much do we love that Tony Soprano’s karma allows him to come back as such a gentle nurturing creature? Gotta love the second-chances of cinematic Buddhism.)
Slow crime day in Zurich?
Academy-Award winning director Roman Polanski was taken into custody in Switzerland Saturday on a 31-year-old U.S. arrest warrant stemming from Polanski’s alleged unlawful sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old girl, organizers of the Zurich Film Festival said early Sunday morning.
Polanski, who won a Best Director Oscar for “The Pianist” in 2002, fled to France from the United States in 1978 after he was arrested in Los Angeles and pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor.
The Polish director, 76, was in Zurich to receive a lifetime achievement award for his work as a director, the Zurich Film Festival organizers said Sunday. The film festival officials said Polanski’s arrest caused “shock and dismay” but wouldn’t derail plans to continue with Sunday’s planned retrospective of his work.
How is this case any of Switzerland’s business? Is this really the best use they can find for their cops and judges? Sorry, but this is the most out-of-sync Swiss Miss since Swiss men finally gave women the right to vote — in 1971. Apologies to our readers in Switzerland, but can anybody name their favorite Swiss film? Didn’t think so. I’ll give the last word to Harry Lime:
In Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace‚Äîand what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.
Background details for anyone unfamiliar with the case, after the cut.
AMC has made a serious miscalculation in offering its newest dramatic series, the Revolutionary War spy drama Turn, in the increasingly competitive Sunday night line-up. The intent, I suspect, is to wed it to their flagship show, Mad Men, to boost the ratings out of the gate. But let’s be honest, it airs in the same time slot as HBO’s Game of Thrones. If your show airs and no one watches it, then does it make a sound? Which is a shame, really, given the skill, craftsmanship, and eventual...
[Ed. Please welcome the first of what will hopefully be many contributions from Clarence Moye (@chmoye). There's no new girls tonight, but it's a perfect time to look back at how this season went.] “Guys, we’re so disconnected now. I thought that this would be a good opportunity to have fun together and prove to everyone via Instagram that we can still have fun as a group.” – Marnie Michaels That quote is from the “Beach House” episode of HBO’s Girls, Season Three. The ...
Million Dollar Baby takes down Sideways and The Aviator. Probably the only film that really resonates from this year was Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which just gets better with each viewing, as does Sideways. Okay, fine, so do the Aviator and Million Dollar Baby. Ultimately it was not the best year for film but not bad overall. Have a listen....
We probably spend too much time talking about Lost in Translation and not enough time talking about Return of the King. But it was an important film, a beautiful film and the sum total of Peter Jackson’s vision to bring the books to the big screen. It was a pretty good year with Mystic River and Lost in Translation. Of all of them, the Coppola film has really grown in esteem as time has gone by and is as relevant and vital today as it was back in 2003. Have a listen....