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William Friedkin: The Thin Line Between Good and Evil

Cruising

Cruising is one of the most controversial films in American cinematic history. Protests fired up once word got out that it was being made, carried on through its initial theatrical release in 1980 and fired up all over again when it was revived in 1995. But this year it was met with a standing ovation in Cannes.

When director William Friedkin recently attended a special screening in San Francisco, Jeffrey M. Anderson sat down to talk with him about what's changed, about "the existence of good and evil in all of us, which is what all of my films are about," and about the connection between Cruising and The Exorcist.

 

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Francis Veber on "The Valet"

By Michelle Devereaux

Celebrated French auteur Francis Veber is nothing if not a gentleman-perhaps even to a fault. The writer and director of films like The Dinner Game, The Closet, and Le Jaguar (he also wrote the screenplay to La Cage Aux Folles) is so amenable, in fact, he'll even let you call him by the wrong name. In an interview the 69-year-old Veber gave to a radio station the same day he talked to GreenCine, a journalist kept calling him "Francois." But Veber didn't correct him once-and even referred to himself in a promo by using the incorrect name...

La doublure (The Valet) is now out on DVD.

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Andrea Arnold: The Path to The Red Road

Interviewed By Jonathan Marlow
[At the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival]

Her first short film was selected for International Critics Week at Cannes. She received an Academy Award for her third short. She was awarded the Jury Prize at Cannes for her first feature and later dominated the BAFTAs in Scotland (winning the Best Director, Film, Screenplay, Actress and Actor awards). Such a sequence of achievements is essentially unheard of, admittedly, but Andrea Arnold is not your average filmmaker.

Jonathan Marlow Spoke with Arnold about her films. Her first feature Red Road, is now out on DVD.

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Eastern Promises Contest Giveaway!

In Eastern Promises, David Cronenberg's highly anticipated new thriller which opens nationally this weekend, the director and star Viggo Mortensen once again explore the psyche, physicality and fortunes of a man whose true nature may never be revealed. "A rhapsodic movie directed with considerable formal intelligence and brooding power from an original screenplay by Steve Knight (Dirty Pretty Things), Eastern Promises is very much a companion to A History of Violence," writes J. Hoberman in the Village Voice. Adds Owen Glieberman (EW): "It's an academic meditation in underworld-thriller drag -- a movie that looks about as close to a straight-ahead, down-and-dirty genre entertainment as anything the director has made since his exploding-head horror days."

Now, thanks to the generosity of Focus Features, you can win Eastern Promises t-shirts and soundtrack CDs if you're one of the lucky winners of GreenCine's latest contest. Sending an email to contest@greencine.com, including your name, email address and, if you're a GreenCine member, your username in the email, and Eastern Promises in the subject header. Entries without all this information will not be considered. (You will not be added to a mailing list!) Winners will be selected at random from all valid entries. The deadline is Tuesday, September 18. Winners will be notified by e-mail and announced in future editions of the GreenCine Dispatch newsletter.

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New and Coming Releases: September 11, 2007

A lot of thoughtful films release this week - movies for men, women, and everyone in between! Well, anyway, while there's not much in the way of "big" splashy titles, there's a lot of quality here. Read on for more of the 9/11 DVDs, and those coming soon!

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Lav Diaz: "Digital is liberation theology."

Lav DiazThe last day of the Venice Film Festival sees the screening of surely one of the most unusual films in its lineup, Death in the Land of Encantos, by the Filipino filmmaker Lav Diaz. Unusual, even if only in terms of length. The film runs around ten hours.

Tilman Baumgäel asks Lav Diaz, widely recognized as one of the most important filmmakers working in the Philippines today, what has led to such a radical aesthetic and talks with him, too, about the unique blend of documentary and fiction in his latest work.

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Patricia Riggen: Love and Politics Under the Same Moon

Patricia RiggenLa Misma Luna (Under the Same Moon) [official site] was met with a rousing standing ovation when it premiered at Sundance earlier this year. Now this moving tale of a mother and son separated by the US-Mexico border is opening New York's Latinbeat series and screening at the Toronto International Film Festival before hitting theaters in March 2008.

James van Maanen grabbed a chance to talk with director Patricia Riggen.

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Barbet Schroeder: "This was the most dangerous movie for me to make."

Barbet Schroeder "There is plenty of violence and intrigue, but it seems likely that had Mr. Schroeder pitched the project to a Hollywood studio, the story would have been dismissed as crazily implausible," wrote AO Scott in the New York Times from Cannes back in May. He'd just seen Barbet Schroeder's Terror's Advocate, a documentary about one of the most controversial - and mysterious - lawyers of all time, Jacques Verges.

The film has just screened in Telluride, where David D'Arcy spoke with Schroeder, and is now on its way to Toronto.

Continue Reading Barbet Schroeder: "This was the most dangerous movie for me to make."

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Cinematic CD Giveaway!

Cinephiles are also often movie buffs, which means a good deal of you out there are probably also specifically interested in film scores. Still, a remix album of great orchestral film scores from the 20th century might seem like an odd idea – after all, a lot of this music is considered old-fashioned. But Six Degrees Records co-founder and executive producer Bob Duskis knew better: "A lot of electronica producers are huge fans of these film scores," he says. And for the new collection Cinematic, "I wanted producers who had a cinematic sense to their music anyway, or had done soundtracks themselves. We didn’t want DJs just adding beats to the orchestral tracks."

Mission accomplished. Cinematic is full of creative and often provocative arrangements of music by some of the greatest film composers ever – Nino Rota, Ennio Morricone, and Henry Mancini among them. Of course, this music was never satisfied with being accompaniment in the first place; like the best music in any style, these scores suggested their own stories and their own landscapes. No surprise then that they work so well apart from their films. What is surprising is how adaptable these classic scores are, at least when the right producers get hold of them.

Now you can win a copy of the Cinematic CD if you're one of the lucky winners of GreenCine's latest contest. Send us an email to contest@greencine.com, including your name, email address and, if you're a GreenCine member, your username in the email, and "Cinematic" in the subject header (this last step keeps it from getting spam-filtered). Ten winners will be selected at random from all valid entries. The deadline is Thursday, September 13. Winners will be notified by e-mail and announced in future editions of the GreenCine Dispatch newsletter.

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New and Coming Releases: September 4, 2007

A host of fine titles are out this week as we usher in September. Provocative features and hilarious TV shows are the highlights of a good week. Click on for more of this week's releases and some more coming soon!

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