Wednesday, February 13, 2013

2013 Berlinale: Day 6 Report

Recap of day 6 of the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival (Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin), which runs until February 17.

Closed Curtain - The fifth collaboration between Iranian directors Jafar Panahi and Kambuzia Partovi. More importantly, it was film made in secret, as Panahi is currently serving a 20 year ban from filmmaking and was not allowed to leave Iran to attend the festival. The story is about two people who commited illicit acts and are now hiding out in a villa.

Side Effects - Reported to be Steven Soderbergh's last film as a director, a provocative thriller about a New York couple whose world unravels after the psychotropic drugs the woman is prescribed leads to blackouts.

Camille Claudel 1915 - The seventh feature from French director Bruno Dumont, one of the most interesting filmmakers working today, who for the first time has cast a well known star in the lead role, Silver Bear winning actress Juliette Binoche (The English Patient). The film chronicles a brief period in the tragic life of the famous French sculptor who was locked up in a psychiatric ward by her own family.

  • Day 6 - Tuesday, February 12

  • Competition Film
    Pardé • Closed Curtain
    directed by Jafar Panahi, Kamboziya Partovi
    Quotes from the press conference:

    Co-director Kambuzia Partovi: "It's difficult to work, but not being able to work is even more difficult. It's very difficult for him to just sit at home. We don't know what this will lead to, but we are happy that Jafar was able to come through with this project."

    On the potential for repercussions: "Nothing has happened yet, but we don't know what the future holds in store for us."

    Actress Maryam Moqadam on her character: "She is a young woman like many others in my country. A symbol of a many women. She also represents the dark side of the director's mind. The part that doesn't hope anymore and wants to give up."

    Critical response:
    "Ultimately results in a somewhat flat examination of alienation and creative suppression that only truly serves to makes you more concerned for Panahi's artistically inhibiting situation." - Patrick Gamble (CineVue)

    "More Ionesco than Pirandello at this point, with a dose of Hitchcock in the mix, the story holds us despite the odd theatrical touch." - Lee Marshall (Screen Daily)

    "Less satisfying than his previous pic, yet still a bold, melancholy statement." - Jay Weissberg (Variety)

    "It’s not an easy film to relate to – in fact it deliberately short-circuits any emotional response from the audience." - Deborah Young (The Hollywood Reporter)

    Maryam Moghadam
    (Source: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images Europe)

    Competition Film
    Side Effects
    directed by Steven Soderbergh

    Critical response:
    "Soderbergh’s trying to have his cake and eat it, too, and for the most part he successfully stitches his portrait of a shattered couple together with his examination of medicated America." - Andrew Crump (A Constant Visual Feast)

    "If the film is to be Steven Soderbergh’s final feature-length film, at least he comes out with a winner." - Steven Flores (Surrender to the Void)

    "This is one of his best-shot films in quite a while, and we can see his flair is just as bright as it ever was." - Bill Graham (Go See Talk)

    "This type of thriller has been made many times before, but that doesn’t stop it from being entertaining." - Sean Kelly (Sean Kelly on Movies)

    Jude Law, Scott Z Burns, Rooney Mara, Steven Soderbergh
    (Source: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images Europe)

    Competition Film
    Camille Claudel 1915
    directed by Bruno Dumont

    Quotes from the press conference:

    Director Bruno Dumont on working with Binoche: "I was surprised by Juliette's call. I had to think for a long time about what kind of project I could do with her."

    On why he specifically chose the year 1915: "I wanted a time close to Juliette's actual age. If you take Juliette as she is today and transpose her to Camille Claudel's life it would be 1915."

    Juliette Binoche on why she wanted to work with Dumont: "Sadly Tarkovsky and Bresson are no longer with us. But we're fortunate to have a director like Bruno Dumont in France, so I took the risk of calling him up."

    Critical response:
    "A measured, moving account of a brief period in the later life of the troubled sculptress, could hardly be the work of anyone else, with its sparseness of technique and persistent spiritual curiosity." - Guy Lodge (Variety)

    "The key to Binoche’s performance is not her emoting, so much as her being a very powerful physical presence in front of the camera." - Jonathan Romney (Screen Daily)

    "Juliette Binoche’s portrayal of the ill-fated artist is a study of restraint peppered with brief outbursts of emotion -- a riveting performance in an imposing, at times off-putting micro-biopic." - Jordan Mintzer (The Hollywood Reporter)

    "The movie's concision displays an exactitude worthy of Robert Bresson." - Eric Kohn (IndieWire)

    Bruno Dumont, Juliette Binoche
    (Source: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images Europe)

Our other coverage of the 63rd Berlinale:


d_4 said...

Aside from Closed Curtain, this sounds real nice. I think I'm just not in the mood for something too depressing, I'd probably still watch it.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

I think all three here are must sees. Closed Curtain, because of the political story behind the filmmaker; Side Effects because it is supposedly Soderbergh's final film, even if I've never been much of a fan of his; and Camille Claudel 1915, because Dumont is one of my favorite working directors, and Binoche is one of the greatest actresses of all time.

Post a Comment