Monday, August 31, 2015

Talking Tributes / The Echo Chamber / Pre-TFF #42 Assessment / What a Lineup! / Couple of Odds and Ends

It's the Monday before Telluride.  We start a week that'll go too slowly at the beginning and go too fast at the end.  Four days until SHOW!


So...who DO YOU THINK gets a tribute this year?  Last year's set was unusual from the perspective of the "Apocalypse Now" 35th anniversary tribute since it wasn't for a specific person though you could, of course point to Coppola.  (By the way...I still think we might see FFC show up this year with the "Distant Vision" experiment that he conducted here in my home state of Oklahoma. Wouldn't surprise me a bit).

TO remind...the other tributes last year were for actor Hilary Swank and director Volker Schlondorff.  In 2013 we saw the Coen Brothers with T. Bone Burnett, Robert Redford and Mohammad Rasoulof.

As I begin my serious casting about for possibilities I start with the list of possible guests that I posted a week ago (Monday, Aug. 24)...

It seems to me that among the directors that I listed that Guggenheim, Boyle and Haynes might all be possible candidates and maybe even writer Aaron Sorkin.

Among the acting types that are possible guests the best shots, to me anyway, would be Kate Winslet, Johnny Depp, Tom Courtenay (his "45 Years" co-star Charlotte Rampling was a 2005 Tributee), Michael Keaton and Mark Ruffalo.  I thought Keaton was a possibility last year with "Birdman". Cate Blanchett seems like a no-brainer for a tribute but is doing a play in Sydney, Australia so isn't a likely T-ride participant.

I also think a Quentin Tarantino tribute could take place with some scenes from "The Hateful Eight" being screened.

The truth is that I'm relatively sure that I have named two of the tributes in the lists above.  I have been sniffing around for the third and frankly I've heard one rumor that seems really surprising.  We'll see how that shakes out.

What are your best guesses?  Shoot me a Tweet, FB message, email and I'll pass some of those along over the next couple of days.


Jeff Wells/Hollywood Elsewhere was up with apiece over the weekend talking about the travails of plying his trade during the short window of the four day festival.  In the post Wells also runs through a number of films he suggest will be playing.  That list should look very familiar to readers of MTFB.

Wells names "Suffragette", "Steve Jobs", "Black Mass", "Spotlight", "Son of Saul", "Beasts of No Nation", "Carol", "Amazing Grace", "Marguerite", "Room" and "Hitchcock/Truffaut" as "presumably" (i.e. not confirmed) playing the fest.  He also lists "Anomalisa" as "probably" and "He Named Me Malala" as "maybe".

As I wrote above, sounds familiar doesn't it as every one of those films was on last week's "Ten Bets" (Plus Five) list.

We've reached that point where the pre-fest naval gazing seems to have become self-referential.  Still, it's always good to see some of the national press types saying the same things that I'm saying.

Wells complete article is here:


Sasha Stone at Awards Daily has posted a reflection on the upcoming awards season which gets underway this week with the double dose of Venice and Telluride.  She also might allude to a certain set of "bets" made at someone's blog.

Take a look at what she has to say here:

Meanwhile, David Poland and Movie City News have their first Gurus of Gold up for the Best Picture race and it is divided into three sections based on what's been seen, what's going to be seen in the run of Festivals and other films expected to make noise outside the festival run.

What I notice from these first takes is that we have a lot to look forward to this week if I'm anywhere close to right about what's going to play:

On Gurus list #1 (what's been seen) are "Carol" at #1, "Son of Saul" and "45 Years" get a mention.  From the fest list: "Steve Jobs", "Spotlight" and "Black Mass" at the #2, #3 and #4 spots respectively and "Suffragette" at #6.  Also making some noise on this list was "Room".

Of course the third Gurus list by definition excludes any probable or even possible TFF films though you know that "The Revenant" would play if were ready and I still think there's an outside shot at some footage of  "The Hateful Eight".  Also included in the "also receiving votes" category here are "The 33" and "Burnt" which might still raise their heads this week.

Check the entire lists here:


As many of you know, I will be compiling your film ratings from this year's festival.  As always, please send those along using a 1-5 scale.  I'll compile them and publish after the fest is all over.

I also ask some friends and acquaintances to share their ratings during the fest as well as The Professionals.  This year the list of folks who have a greed is outstanding and, I believe, the largest collection of "pros" that have ever agreed to share their ratings.  As I write on this Monday, the following have agreed to share (in alphabetical order by last name):

Nick Allen/Chicago Film Critics Assn. member/
Alex Billington/
David Ehrlich/Time Out New York
Greg Ellwood/HitFix
Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter
Eric Kohn/Indiewire
Tomris Laffly/Movie Mezzanine/Film Journal
Christopher Schiller/
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/Variety/InContention
Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood

I have to say, that's one fine group of human beings who know film and who have agreed to share with us.  Also, a shout out to David Ehrlich and Nick Allen who join the Merry Band for the first time.  I'd also like to tip my cap to Kris Tapley and Alex Billington who are doing this for me for the fourth consecutive year.


Reports this week that Justin Kurzel's "Macbeth" will have a limited release on Dec. 4.

Also, Guatemala announced that "Ixcanul" will be its choice for the Best Foreign Language Oscar. We think it might be a possible entrant for Telluride.

Peter Bogdonavich is on record this week saying Orson Welles' final unfinished film "The Other Side of the Wind", which caused quite a bit of response in this space a couple of weeks ago will be edited beginning next month.  Let us hope.

And finally, at the end of the week last week this form Vanity Fair, that I found hilarious..."10 Best Pickup Lines at the Telluride Film Festival":

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