Monday, September 04, 2006

Venice, Still in Full Effect

One of the most exciting parts of TIFF for me is always watching as buzz develops and films that were unknown quantities a few days earlier suddenly become absolute must-sees for practically everyone or become, like Tideland last year, seemingly universal objects of scorn. Certainly, this year's pre-fest buzz champion is Gabriel Range's D.O.A.P., which I intended to see at Toronto, but found myself shut out of once the word got out on the street. Maybe I'll get a ticket, and maybe not, but it goes to show how powerful word of mouth becomes in the TIFFmosphere.

Even though TIFF is just around the corner, many of the most anticipated films at the festival are going to be showing at Venice first over the next few days. I'm always eager to see which films in Venice competition claim prizes, since that announcement comes once TIFF is in full-swing. In any case, here's the remaining Venice slate:

I Don't Want to Sleep Alone (Tsai Ming-Liang)
The Fountain (Darren Aronofsky) [Initial buzz is pretty deadly!]
Falling (Barbara Albert)

Sept 5
Dong (Jia Zhang Ke)
Opera Jawa (Garin Nugroho)
The Untouchable (Benoit Jacquot)
The Missing Star (Gianni Amelio)
Bobby (Emilio Estevez)

Sept 6
Rain Dogs (Ho Yuhang)
Inland Empire (David Lynch) -- Unfortunately not at TIFF, but at NYFF next month.
Exiled (Johnny To)
Suprise Chinese Film - I'm not quite sure what to expect here.

Sept 7
Quei Loro Incontri (Jean-Marie Straub, Danielle Huillet) -- Not at TIFF either, but surely intriguing for cinephiles.
Nue Propriete (Joachim Lafosse)
The Magic Flute (Kenneth Branagh)

Sept 8
Belle Toujours (Manoel de Oliveira)
Golden Door (Emanuele Crialese)
Bugmaster (Katsuhiro Otomo)


Anonymous said...

A lot of people seem pleased with the Toronto line-up (and there's certainly lots to like), but I can't help bemoaning the absence of a number of NYFF and Venice movies -- like "The Queen", "Inland Empire", "Children of Men", "The Black Dahlia", "Fur" and others.

And word on the street is that the "surprise" Venice contender is a new feature from Jia Zhangke, with the English title of "Decent People of the Three Gorges".

Jeremy Heilman said...

My general rule when going to TIFF is to see as little as possible that has US distribution in place... Since I'll be able to see every film that you mentioned in a commercial run by the end of the year, with the exception of Inland Empire (playing @ NYFF), those omissions scarcely bother me at all. They really only mean that this year's Gala slate at TIFF is weaker than the norm, which is obviously the case...

Way, way more distressing, imo, are films like Brisseau's Exterminating Angels, Matthias Glasner's The Free Will and the Cannes cut of Southland Tales. I'm not sure when I'll ever get a chance to see any of those.

Martin Degrell said...

So, how did the proposed schedule work out? Any luck at the lottery?

Jeremy Heilman said...

Sure enough, the Jia Zhangke film was the mystery film, though it's now going by the english title of Still Life.

That's kind of funny... I had done some pre-TIFF research and came across mention of a fiction film by Jia about the Three Gorges called Still Life, and assumed, when Jia's doc Dong surfaced, that that was the new title of the film (since it's about the same region).

I guess it turns out that both films were near completion. It's a shame Still Life is not likely to show up over here any time soon.

Jeremy Heilman said...

For the record, I was in one of the last boxes of the lottery, and didn't get tickets to a few things, but nothing I can't live without. I'll post up my full schedule a bit later...

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