Wednesday, November 21, 2007

"En tus ojos de luto comienza el país del sueño."
--P. Neruda

Saturday, September 08, 2007

64th Venice FF official awards

GOLDEN LION for Best Film:
Se, Jie (Lust, Caution) by Ang LEE

SILVER LION for Best Director to:
Brian De Palma for Redacted

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE to (ex aequo):
La Graine et le Mulet by Abdellatif Kechiche
I’m Not There by Todd Haynes

COPPA VOLPI for Best Actor:
Brad Pitt in the film The Assassination of Jesse James
By The Coward Robert Ford by Andrew Dominik

COPPA VOLPI for Best Actress:
Cate Blanchett in the film I’m Not There by Todd Haynes

MARCELLO MASTROIANNI AWARD for Best Young Actor or Actress:
Hafsia Herzi in the film La Graine et le Mulet by Abdellatif Kechiche

OSELLA for Best Cinematography to:
Rodrigo Prieto director of photography for the Se, Jie (Lust, Caution) by Ang Lee

OSELLA for Best Screenplay to:
Paul Laverty for the film It’s A Free World… by Ken Loach

SPECIAL LION for Overall Work to:

Nikita Mikhalkov

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Friday, August 03, 2007


"Love is the blackest of all plagues, and if one could die of it, there would be some pleasure in love. But you almost always get over it."
--Gunnar Björnstrand in The Seventh Seal (1957)
Photo © Bengt Wanselius from Face to Face


Monday, June 11, 2007

In love? What’s that?

Johnson: No, when I said I was falling in love with you
Natasha: In love? What’s that?
[Johnson walks around Natasha]
Johnson: This
Natasha: No, I know what that is: it’s sensuality
Johnson: No, sensuality flows from it
It cannot exist without love
Natasha: So what is love, then?
[Natasha’s voice:]
Your voice, your eyes...
...your hands, your lips...
Our silences, our words...
Light that goes...
...light that returns
A single smile between us both
In quest of knowledge...
...I watched night create day...
...while we seemed unchanged
O beloved of all, beloved of one alone...
...your mouth silently promised to be happy
Away, away, says hate; never, never, says love
A caress leads us from our childhood
Increasingly I see the human form... a lover’s dialogue
The heart has but one mouth
Everything ordered by chance
All words without aforethought
Sentiments adrift
Men roam the city
A glance, a word
Because I love you
Everything moves
To live, only advance!
Aim straight for those you love
I went towards you, endlessly towards the light
If you smile, it is to enfold me all the better
The rays of your arms pierce the mist

from Alphaville, JL Godard, 1965

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Women in Art

500 years of female portraits in Western art are morphed from one to the next in this 3-minute video.

artists inside:
Leonardo Da Vinci, Raphael, Titian, Botticelli , Boltraffio, Albrecht Durer, Lucas Cranach the Elder, Messina, Perugino, Hans Memling, El Greco, Hans Holbein, Rokotov, Peter Paul Rubens, Gobert, Caspar Netscher, Pierre Mignard, Jean-Marc Nattier, Vigee-Le Brun, Sir Joshua Reynolds, Winterhalter, Tyranov, Borovikovsky, Venetsianov, Gros, Kiprensky, Amalie, Corot, Edouard Manet, Flatour, Ingres, Wontner, Bouguereau, Comerre, Leighton, Blaas, Renoir, Millias, Duveneck, Cassatt, Weir, Zorn, Mucha, Paul Gaugan, Henri Matisse, Picabia, Gustav Klimt, Hawkins, Magritte, Salvador Dali, Malevich, Merrild, Modigliani, Pablo Picasso.

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Monday, May 28, 2007

Cannes 2007 winners

Complete list of 60th Festival de Cannes winners:

Palme d'Or: 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days by Cristian Mungiu
Grand Prix: The Mourning Forest (Mogari No Mori) by Naomi Kawase
Prix de la Mise en Scene (Best Director): Julian Schnabel for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (Le Scaphandre et Le Papillon)
Prix du 60th Anniversaire: Gus Van Sant, director of Paranoid Park
Prix du Scenario (Best Screenplay Award): Fatih Akin for The Edge of Heaven (Auf Der Anderen Siete)
Camera d'Or (For best 1st feature): Meduzot (Jellyfish) by Etgar Keret and Shira Geffen
Camera d'Or Special Mention: Control by Anton Corbijn
Prix du Jury (Jury Prize): Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud; and "Stellet Licht" by Carlos Reygadas
Prix d'interpretation feminine (Best Actress): Jeon Do-yeon for Secret Sunshine
Prix d'interpretation masculine (Best Actor): Constantine Lavronenko for Izgnanie
Palme d'Or (short film): Ver Llover by Elisa Miller
Special Mention (short): Run by Mark Albiston
Special Mention (short): Ah Ma by Anthony Chen

Prix Un Certain Regard - Fondation Gan Pour le Cinema: California Dreamin' (Nesfarsit) by Christian Nemescu
Prix Special du Jury Un Certain Regard: Actresses by Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi
Jury Coup de Coeur: Bikur Hatizmoret (The Band's Visit) by Eran Kolirin

Premier Prix: Ahora Todos Parecen Contentos (Now Everybody Seems to Be Happy) by Gonzalo Tobal
Second Prize: Ru Dao (Way Out) by Chen Tao
Third Prize: A Reunion by Hong Sung-Hoon and Minus by Pavle Vuckovic

Prix Regards Jeunes (Young Eyes Prize): Control by Anton Corbijn
Prix Art et Essai: Garage by Lenny Abrahamson
Label Europa Cinema Prize: Control by Anton Corbijn
SACD Prize for Best Short Film: Meme pas Mort by Claudine Natkin

Grand Prize: XXY by Lucia Puenzo
The SACD French Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers Award: Meduzot by Etgar Keret & Shira Geffen
The Canal + Grand Prize - Best Short Film: Madame Tutli-Putli by Chris Lavis and Maciek Sczerbowski
FIPRESCI - Official Selection Prize: 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days by Cristian Mungiu
FIPRESCI - Critics' Week and Directors' Fortnight Prize: Elle s'appelle Sabine by Sandrine Bonnaire
Ecumenical Jury Prize: The Edge of Heaven by Fatih Akin
Youth Prize: Bikur Hatizmoret (The Band's Visit) by Eran Kolirin
French National Education Administration Prize: 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days by Cristian Mungiu
Prix France-Culture (career achievement): Rithy Panh


Sunday, April 22, 2007


So many documentaries in Cannes 60th:

* MAURICE PIALAT, L’AMOUR EXISTE (Anne-Marie Faux, Jean-Pierre Devillers)
* BRANDO (Mimi Freedman, Leslie Greif)
* THE WAR (Ken Burns, Lynn Novick)
* 11TH HOUR (Leila Conners Petersen, Nadia Conners)
* RETOUR EN NORMANDIE (Nicolas Philibert)
* HE FENGMING (Wang Bing)
* U2 3D (Catherine Owens, Mark Pellington)

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Burn, burn, burn

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars...”
--On The Road

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Yo no tengo soledad

Es la noche desamparo
de las sierras hasta el mar.
Pero yo, la que te mece,
¡yo no tengo soledad!

Es el cielo desamparo
pues la luna cae al mar.
Pero yo, la que te estrecha,
¡yo no tengo soledad!

Es el mundo desamparo.
Toda carne triste va.
Pero yo, la que te oprime,
¡yo no tengo soledad! *

--Gabriela Mistral


Monday, March 12, 2007

Say what again!

Pulp Fiction in typography: "What does Marsellus Wallace Look Like?"

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

J. Baudrillard (1929 - 2007)

Rest in peace...

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Free information!

Long Live Wikipedia...

February 16 is the 47th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. There are 318 days remaining (319 in leap years).

February 17 is the 48th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 317 days remaining (318 in leap years).

February 18 is the 49th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. There are 316 days remaining (317 in leap years).

and so on...

* However, it was nice to learn about that:
“February 16, 1568 - The entire population of the Netherlands - three million people - was sentenced to death by the Roman Catholic Church for heresy; see Eighty Years' War.”

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The last words of the pigeon

Turkish-Armenian journalist-writer and activist Hrant Dink's last interview he granted to Ellen Rudnitsky and Mirko Schwanitz, International Organization of Journalists, two days before he was murdered:

"I have the right to die in the country I was born in"


Q. Could you leave this country?
A. You, of all people, saying that? My friends keep telling me the same thing. Enough of that. I want to carry on my cause here. It is not my own personal cause. It concerns everyone who wants to see Turkey a democratic country. If I surrender and emigrate, the shame will be on us all. This is the land of my ancestors. I have my roots here, and I have the right to die in the country I was born in.

And some stills from his funeral:

Friday, January 26, 2007

La Alegria

An impressive music video, La Alegria by Yasmin Levy who was introduced to Ladino singing and culture from a very young age. Her father was the leading figure in the world of research into and preservation of the Judeo-Spanish culture, dating back to the 15th century in Spain. Today, it remains one of the most moving and romantic musical traditions of all times. In her deep, spiritual and moving style of singing, Yasmin preserves and revives the most beautiful songs from the Ladino/Judeo-Spanish heritage, mixing it with Andalusian Flamenco. Her new album La Juderia, featuring Ladino and Flamenco music in her unique emotive style has been recently released in Europe.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Sad sad news

Helen Hill, an experimental-animation filmmaker has been shot dead yesterday morning in front door of her house in New Orleans. Her husband Paul has also shot but survived, so did their 2 year old son.
Their home was badly flooded during the Katarina hurricane, and after the disaster she spent most of her time in recovering her film prints.
Madame Winger Makes a Film: A Survival Guide for the 21st Century is one of her well-known short animations. She also published a book titled Recipes for Disaster: A Handcrafted Film Cookbook which is a collection of ideas she's gathered over time from other filmmakers who have shared their best filmmaking tips. >>

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

365 shorts by Mekas

Jonas Mekas is releasing a short film a day during 2007. Formatted for the video iPod, those films can be downloaded for free at the very same day only.
Go to, click "enter", click "365 films", click on the thumbnail image on the calender, click "buy", then click "checkout"... After seeing "The following movies are available for immediate electronic delivery" message, click on the title to download.
Each film will be available until the next day, but note that you have to register first.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Symbiopsychotaxiplasm - the trailer

Monday, December 25, 2006

Cat chat...

'Your majesty shouldn't purr so loud,' Alice said, rubbing her eyes, and addressing the kitten, respectfully, yet with some severity. 'You woke me out of oh! such a nice dream! And you've been along with me, Kitty -- all through the Looking-Glass world. Did you know it, dear?'
It is a very inconvenient habit of kittens (Alice had once made the remark) that, whatever you say to them, they Always purr. `If them would only purr for "yes" and mew for "no," or any rule of that sort,' she had said, `so that one could keep up a conversation! But how CAN you talk with a person if they always say the same thing?'

-- Lewis Carroll, Alice Through the Looking Glass


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

On the art of literature

Here you can find the English version of Orhan Pamuk's Nobel lecture titled "My Father's Suitcase"...

Monday, December 18, 2006

Israel boycott may be the way to peace

“There is a fragile ceasefire in Lebanon, albeit daily violated by Israeli overflights. Meanwhile the day-to-day brutality of the Israeli army in Gaza and the West Bank continues. Ten Palestinians are killed for every Israeli death; more than 200, many of them children, have been killed since the summer. UN resolutions are flouted, human rights violated as Palestinian land is stolen, houses demolished and crops destroyed. For archbishop Desmond Tutu, as for the Jewish former ANC military commander now South African minister of security, Ronnie Kasrils, the situation of the Palestinians is worse than that of black South Africans under apartheid.

Meanwhile, western governments refer to Israel's legitimate right of self-defence, and continue to supply weaponry. The challenge of apartheid was fought better. The non-violent international response to apartheid was a campaign of boycott, divestment and UN-imposed sanctions which enabled the regime to change without bloodshed.

Today, Palestinians teachers, writers, film-makers and non-governmental organisations have called for a comparable academic and cultural boycott of Israel as offering another path to a just peace. This call has been endorsed internationally by university teachers in many European countries, by film-makers and architects, and by some brave Israeli dissidents. It is now time for others to join the campaign - as Primo Levi asked: "If not now, when?" We call on creative writers and artists to support our Palestinian and Israeli colleagues by endorsing the boycott call. Read the Palestinian call”

John Berger, Brian Eno, Sophie Fiennes, Eduardo Galeano, Reem Kelani, Leon Rosselson, Steven Rose, Arundhati Roy, Ahdaf Soueif, Elia Suleiman and 85 others

The Guardian, Friday December 15, 2006

Sunday, November 05, 2006

My November Guest

My Sorrow, when she's here with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walked the sodden pasture lane.

Her pleasure will not let me stay.
She talks and I am fain to list:
She's glad the birds are gone away,
She's glad her simple worsted gray
Is silver now with clinging mist.

The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.

Not yesterday I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.

--Robert Frost

Monday, October 30, 2006

Reporter and documentary filmmaker assassinated

Independent journalist Brad Will was shot and killed on Friday in Oaxaca, along with striking school teacher Emilio Alfonso Fabian and Oaxaca resident Esteban Zurrita, while covering the grassroots popular movement there. The Mexican government is reacting not by cracking down on the violent paramilitaries who have been launching regular attacks on the people of Oaxaca, but by sending federal police to put down the popular uprising.

related links:
Brad Will, New York Documentary Filmmaker and Indymedia Reporter, Assassinated by Pro-Government Gunshot in Oaxaca While Reporting the Story >>

NYC Indymedia Journalist Brad Will Shot Dead by Government Forces in Oaxaca

The Hardest Story to Write >>

Last Communique from NYC Indymedia Journalist Brad Will >>

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The House In The Middle

Mannaka No Ie (The House In The Middle)
by André Werner, 7 min 50s, 2006

"The crying swallow flies at dawn"
Pure japanese poetry, entirely filmed in the deserts of Nevada.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Danièle Huillet dies

Danièle Huillet, one of the most uncompromising filmmakers of our time, member of the New German Cinema and long-term companion of Jean-Marie Straub, has passed away on October 9th.

"Danièle Huillet, 70, Creator of Challenging Films, Dies" >>
For some nice pictures and notes on Huillet >>

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Just in case anyone may care

This summer has been a bit chaotic around here.
I was not only quite busy but also dizzy.
Will be back blogging soon - hopefully!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Live from Lebanon & Palestine

War diaries...
Beirut photo: Kevork Djansezian/AP

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

One picture is worth a thousand words

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

In Dark Times

"Even in the darkest of times we have the right to expect some illumination, and that such illumination may well come less from theories and concepts than from the uncertain, flickering, and often weak light that some men and women, in their lives and their works, will kindle under almost all circumstances and shed over the time span that was given them on earth."
--Hannah Arendt (From: Men in Dark Times)
Thanks Maya...

Friday, June 23, 2006

The Wind Will Take Us

In my small night, ah
the wind has a date with the leaves of the trees
in my small night there is agony of destruction
do you hear the darkness blowing?
I look upon this bliss as a strangerI am addicted to my despair.

listen do you hear the darkness blowing?
something is passing in the night
the moon is restless and red
and over this rooftop
where crumbling is a constant fear
clouds, like a procession of mourners
seem to be waiting for the moment of rain.

A moment
and then nothing
night shudders beyond this window
and the earth winds to a halt
beyond this window

something unknown is watching you and me.

O green from head to foot
place your hands like a burning memory
in my loving hands
give your lips to the caresses
of my loving lips
like the warm perception of being
the wind will take usthe wind will take us.

Forugh Farrokhzad
(Translated by Ahmad Karimi Hakkak)

Listen to the poem in Farsi from Niki Karimi

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Documentary banned in Malaysia

The Last Communist is a semi-musical documentary about the life and legacy of Chin Peng, exiled leader of the banned Communist Party of Malaysia. The film premiered at the Berlin Film Festival in February. It features interviews with people in the towns Chin Peng lived in, interspersed with songs that were composed in the mould of old-fashioned propaganda films.
According to director Amir Muhammad, the Malaysian ambassador who attended the Berlin screening enjoyed the film. In March, the film got through the National Film Censorship Board of Malaysia without any cuts. But on May 5th, Home Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Radzi Sheikh Ahmad suddenly retracted the censors' approval.


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Hope for the best
Expect the worst
You could be Tolstoy
Or Fannie Hurst
--Mel Brooks

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Happy bday song for Bob

Today is Bob Dylan’s 65th birthday. Let’s toast for him while listening to this beautiful song which he was not eager to sing for the score of Easy Rider – Hopper recalls that because Dylan did not like the pessimistic end! However, Roger McGuinn’s version was great as well: It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)...
Happy birthday to

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Books I read, places I miss

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

No place to go!

I don't know where to go.
Neither do I. Let's go together.
--Ignazio Silone

I had nowhere to go.
--Jonas Mekas

Sunday, April 23, 2006

An legendary animator called Ryan Larkin

Syrinx (1965) by Ryan Larkin

During Thessaloniki DF, in his workshop Peter Wintonick has showed us a short film titled "Ryan" by Chris Landreth. That's how I heard about this wonderful animator. Then I got the chance to view two of his works thanks to Flickhead.
If you want to know more about Larkin, read Ryan Larkin and the addictive allure of illusions or/and The Wonderfully Fucked Up World of Ryan Larkin...

Friday, April 07, 2006

"I had a monumental idea this morning, but I didn’t like it."
--Samuel Goldwyn

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Docos from Thessaloniki

Greatest films we saw in 8th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival (10-19 March 06):

Svyato by Victor Kossakovsky
We Feed the World by Erwin Wagenhofer
The Girl From Auschwitz by Stefan Jarl
An Ordinary Family by Fredrik Gertten
Ordinary Lives by Sheetal S. Agarwal
Pilgrimage by Bahman Kiarostami
Children of Beslan by Ewa Ewart, Leslie Woodhead
The Devil's Miner by R. Ladkani, K. Davidson

Abdullah Ibrahim – A Strugle For Love by Ciro Cappellari
Almost all of Kim Longinotto's films...

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

“I wonder how people remember things who don't film, don't photograph, don't tape? How has mankind managed to remember? I know - the Bible. The new bible will be the eternal magnetic tape of a time that will have to re-read itself constantly just to know it existed." --Chris Marker (Sans Soleil)

Sunday, February 19, 2006


Jafar Panahi has got a Silver Bear (The Jury Grand Prize) for his film "Offside" in Berlinale 2006.

And another Silver Bear (Best Director) award went to Michael Winterbottom together with Mat Whitecross for their film titled "The Road To Guantanamo".
Congrats to all of them...

What else the filmmakers could say from their part?

Just like what it says in the core of this beautiful Persian carpet: No war on Iran!

Filmbuffs are everywhere...

A rickshaw from streets of Dhaka, Bangladesh (January 2006).

Friday, February 03, 2006

Nam June Paik passed away

"Nam June Paik, an avant-garde composer, performer and artist widely considered the inventor of video art, died Sunday (January 29th, 2006) at his winter home in Miami Beach." NYT

"Paik's work would have a profound and sustained impact on the media culture of the late twentieth century; his remarkable career witnessed and influenced the redefinition of broadcast television and transformation of video into an artist's medium." --John Hanhardt

There are many memorial services going on throughout the world. One of those titled "Requiem for Nam June Paik" will be held in Tokyo, Museum of Contemporary Art, at February 26-March 8.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Adequate images

Quote of the day:
"Give us adequate images. We lack adequate images. Our civilization does not have adequate images. And I think a civilization is doomed or is going to die out like dinosaurs if it doesn't develop an adequate language for adequate images."
--Werner Herzog

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

On documentary

"In feature films the director is God; in documentary
films God is the director."
--Alfred Hitchcock

Festival addict!

Films not to be missed - I

Darwin's Nightmare by Hubert Sauper
Grizzly Man by Werner Herzog
The Fall of Fujimori by Ellen Perry
Frozen Angels by Eric Black & Frauke Sandig
Sisters in Law by Kim Longinotto & Florence Ayisi
Estamira by Marcos Prado
Inside Deep Throat by Fenton Bailey & Randy Barbato
Mad Hot Ballroom by Marilyn Agrelo

The Story of the Weeping Camel by L. Falorni & B. Davaa

Films not to be missed - II

The Mirror by Andrei Tarkovsky
Zabriskie Point by M. Antonioni
Gadjo Dilo by Tony Gatlif
Pather Panchali by Satyajit Ray
Chidambaram by G. Aravindan
Walkabout by Nicolas Roeg
Russian Ark by Alexander Sokurov

O Amor Natural by Heddy Honigmann
I Loved You by Viktor Kosakovsky