Friday, January 31, 2014


Visionary writer and director Godfrey Reggio returns with another striking documentary that reunites him with composer Philip Glass and producer Lawrence Taub with whom he created the groundbreaking trilogy that began with Koyaanisqatsi more than three decades ago. This time Reggio turned the camera on the faces of human species of all ages, races and sexes to show how familiar and strange they look. The film opens and closes with the face of a gorilla which puts perspective to the film along with striking shots of the moon, buildings and nature to show that the human race is only a visitor to the planet. The film shot in stunning black and white and projected on 4K projection is a visual feast along the haunting score by Glass whose music provides the subtext to the images. 1001 Films' coverage of upcoming releases.


Chinese writer and director Mei Hu delivered an epic film about legendary Chinese philosopher Confucius. The rise and fall of Confucius who was a shrewed politician, philosopher and teacher in a crucial period of Chinese history who influence got him the attention of kings but caused his exile as well. Given Confucius stature in Asia, Hu and her talented cast and crew created a respectable film that's surprisingly sentimental than it needs to be and has a narrow focus on specific period. Chinese superstar Chow Yun-Fat stars with a commanding performance which gives the film the necessary gravitas despite its many shortcomings. Among the large ensemble, Zhou Xun makes the most impression as the only female character. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Fast & Furious 6

Taiwanese director Justin Lin returned to the franchise for the fourth time when he delivered the good in the fifth film. The gang is called upon to catch another gang for an offer they can't refuse which proves their biggest challenge yet. Lin tries to top his previous efforts with more action to the formula which is the main attraction for this kind of movie and he and his game cast and crew doesn't disappoint. Vin Diesel, Paul Walker and Dwayne Johnson return along with the rest of the gang which includes Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges, Jordana Brewster, Elsa Pataky and Gal Gadot amongst others. Luke Evans and Gina Carano are the new faces to the franchise. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


French director Patrice Leconte delivered a dazzling film with this period drama set before the French Revolution. A country nobleman goes to Paris to seek the help of the king, only to find a corrupt court where he only can use his wit to get the attention that will enable him to reach his goal with unexpected consequences. Leconte created an excellent period drama with all its lavish details set in a crucial period of French history shortly before it changed forever. Charles Berling stars with a terrific performance along a stellar supporting cast that includes Fanny Ardant, Jean Rochefort, Judith Godrèche, Bernard Giraudeau and Albert Delpy. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Waking the Dead

Director Keith Gordon delivered a powerful film with this drama that blends romance and drama seamlessly. A young politician is haunted by the memories of his activist lover which could derail his election as well as his sanity. Based on the novel by Scott Spencer and adapted by Robert Dillon, Gordon shows the formative power of love which can leave its mark in this well made drama that has a powerful message at its core. Billy Crudup stars and delivered his best performance along an equally terrific Jennifer Connelly. The solid supporting cast includes Hal Holbrook, Janet McTeer and Molly Parker amongst others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.  

Monday, January 27, 2014

We Are What We Are

Mexican writer and director Jorge Michel Grau made his feature debut with this original psychological thriller about a cannibalistic family. When the patriarch of a family passes away, it's up to the two teenage sons to continue the sinister tradition with the support of their sister and mother which proves more a challenge than they thought. Grau blends social commentary and horror elements into a seamless but layered genre film that marked the arrival of a promising talent. Francisco Barreiro and Alan Chávez star along with Paulina Gaitan and Carmen Beato with strong performances. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Sunday, January 26, 2014


Palestinian writer and director Hany Abu-Assad returns with another terrific film that puts a human face to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A young Palestinian man living under the Israeli occupation sees his life shattered when he's turned into an informer which questions his love and friendships with devastating consequences. Abu-Assad again refuses to deliver simple answer to a complex issue with a riveting story where characters are caught with choices that alters their fate which is heartbreaking and unforgettable at the same time. Adam Bakri makes his feature debut along with Iyad Hoorani, Samer Bisharat and Leem Lubany with terrific performances which marks the arrival of promising talents. The supporting cast includes Waleed Zuaiter with an excellent performance who also serves as a producer. 1001 Films' coverage of upcoming releases.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

GUILD AWARDS 3: Director's Guild (DGA)

PAUL GREENGRASS, Captain Phillips
STEVE McQUEEN, 12 Years A Slave
DAVID O. RUSSELL, American Hustle
MARTIN SCORSESE, The Wolf of Wall Street


ZACHARY HEINZERLING, Cutie and the Boxer
SARAH POLLEY, Stories We Tell
LUCY WALKER, The Crash Reel


For more info:


The first important festival of the year is the most important one in the US that has four competitions and almost all world premieres. The festival started to support the independent films and filmmakers but is now an integrated part of Hollywood.

Camp X-Ray, Peter Sattler
Cold in July, Jim Mickle
Dear White People, Justin Simien
Fishing Without Nets, Cutter Hodierne Directing Award
God's Pocket, John Slattery
Happy Christmas , Joe Swanberg
Hellion, Kat Candler
Infinitely Polar Bear, Maya Forbes
Jamie Marks Is Dead, Carter Smith
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter, David Zellner
Life After Beth, Jeff Baena
Low Down, Jeff Preiss Cinematography Award
The Skeleton Twins, Craig Johnson Screenwriting Award
The Sleepwalker, Mona Fastvold
Song One, Kate Barker-Froyland
Whiplash, Damien Chazelle Grand Jury Prize & Audience Award 

Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory, Michael Rossato-Bennett Audience Award 
All the Beautiful Things, John Harkrider
CAPTIVATED The Trials of Pamela Smart, Jeremiah Zagar
The Case Against 8, Ben Cotner & Ryan White Directing Award
Cesar's Last Fast, Richard Ray Perez & Lorena Parlee
Dinosaur 13, Todd Miller
E-TEAM, Katy Chevigny & Ross Kauffman Cinematography Award
Fed Up, Stephanie Soechtig
The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz, Brian Knappenberger
Ivory Tower, Andrew Rossi
Marmato, Mark Grieco
No No: A Dockumentary, Jeffrey Radice
The Overnighters, Jesse Moss
Private Violence, Cynthia Hill
Rich Hill, Andrew Droz Palermo & Tracy Droz Tragos Grand Jury Prize
Watchers of the Sky, Edet Belzberg
52 Tuesdays, Sophie Hyde Directing Award
Blind, Eskil Vogt Screenwriting Award
Difret, Zeresenay Berhane Mehari Audience Award
The Disobedient, Mina Djukic
God Help the Girl, Stuart Murdoch
Liar's Dice, Geetu Mohandas
Lilting, Hong Khaou Cinematography Award
Lock Charmer (El cerrajero), Natalia Smirnof
To Kill A ManAlejandro Fernández AlmendraGrand Jury Prize
Viktoria, Maya Vitkova
Wetlands , David Wnendt
Shadow, Noaz Deshe
20,000 Days on Earth, Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard Directing Award
Concerning Violence, Göran Hugo Olsson
The Green Prince, Nadav Schirman Audience Award
Happiness, Thomas Balmès Cinematography Award
Love Child , Valerie Veatch
Mr leos caraX, Tessa Louise-Salomé
My Prairie Home, Chelsea McMullan
The Notorious Mr. Bout, Tony Gerber & Maxim Pozdorovkin
Return to Homs, Talal Derki Grand Jury Prize
SEPIDEH – Reaching for the Stars, Berit Madsen
We Come as Friends, Hubert Sauper
Web Junkie, Shosh Shlam & Hilla Medalia
Appropriate Behavior, Desiree Akhavan
Drunktown's Finest, Sydney Freeland
The Foxy Merkins, Madeleine Olnek
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, Ana Lily Amirpour
Imperial Dreams, Malik Vitthal Audience Award
Land Ho!, Martha Stephens & Aaron Katz
Listen Up Philip, Alex Ross Perry
Memphis, Tim Sutton
Obvious Child, Gillian Robespierre
Ping Pong Summer, Michael Tully
War Story, Mark Jackson
For more info:

Thursday, January 23, 2014

We Are What We Are

Writer and director Jim Mickle's third feature is a remake of the Mexican film but with several major changes that improves upon the original. The deadly secret of a family with a sinister ritual is threatened to be exposed during a storm when the matriarch is killed forcing her young daughters to take over the family tradition. Mickle has a crafted a dense and atmospheric psychological thriller with a solid story and complex characters that makes for clever and accomplished film. Ambyr Childers and Julia Garner star with terrific performances along a fine supporting cast that includes Bill Sage, Michael Parks and Kelly McGillis. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

...And God Created Woman

French writer and director Roger Vadim made his feature debut with this drama that started his career as well as of his two main leads.  When a beautiful and free-spirited girl gets rejected by the man she wants, she marries his younger but naive brother which paves the way for trouble. Vadim made a film about a beautiful and sexy girl who drives the men crazy and the woman jealous which is what's the film is all about. Brigitte Bardot stars with star making performance which turned her into an international icon. The solid supporting cast includes Curd Jürgens, Christian Marquand and Jean-Louis Trintignant in his first major role. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Prince Avalanche

Writer and director David Gordon Green delivered his first remake with this existential comedy. Two different men working in an isolated area clash over their opposite views and bond in unexpected ways. Based on the film by Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson who also wrote it, Gordon Green adapted it which marks his return to his roots which is welcome turn. The film which is essentially a classic formula of an odd couple on the road delivers some unexpected delights with plenty of charm and humor thanks to the performances of its leads. Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch star with solid performances that's the core of the film. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Short Term 12

Writer and director Destin Cretton adapted and improves his short film into his second feature which is remarkable achievement. A young woman with a troubled past working in a facility for troubled teenagers finds her life unraveled with a new intake which sets in motion a series of revelations. Cretten and his talented cast and crew brings an unflinching and raw look into the world of troubled children and their caretakers which makes for a powerful and heart wrenching film without a false note. Brie Larson stars with a flawless performance that's the heart of this drama with a terrific ensemble which includes John Gallagher Jr., Kaitlyn Dever and Rami Malek amongst others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

GUILD AWARDS 2: Producer's Guild (PGA)

Feature Film
American Hustle  
Blue Jasmine 
Captain Phillips  
Dallas Buyers Club 
Saving Mr. Banks 
12 Years a Slave 
The Wolf of Wall Street

Animated Film
The Croods 
Despicable Me 2  
Monsters University 

Documentary Film
A Place at the Table
Far Out Isn't Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story
Life According to Sam  
We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks  
Which Way is the Front Line from Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington 


For more info:

Saturday, January 18, 2014

GUILD AWARDS 1: Screen Actors Guild (SAG)

Motion Picture Cast

12 Years a Slave
American Hustle
August: Osage County
Lee Daniels' The Butler
Dallas Buyers Club

Leading Actor
Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
Bruce Dern, Nebraska
Tom Hanks, Captain Phillips
Forest Whitaker, Lee Daniels' The Butler

Leading Actress
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock, Gravity
Meryl Streep, August: Osage County
Emma Thompson, Saving Mr. Banks
Judi Dench, Philomena

Supporting Actor
Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Daniel Brühl, Rush
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
James Gandolfini, Enough Said

Supporting Actress
Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years a Slave
Julia Roberts, August: Osage County
June Squibb, Nebraska
Oprah Winfrey,  Lee Daniels' The Butler


For more info:

Friday, January 17, 2014

The Wings of the Dove

British director Iain Softley delivered his best work with this dazzling adaptation of the classic Henry James novel. An impoverished woman forced to abandon her lover for a life of privilege sees an opportunity to solve her dilemma when she meets a wealthy but sick American heiress which has unexpected consequences. Softley and writer Hossein Amini captured the timeless themes of love, passion and greed in this lavish and captivating film. Helena Bonham Carter stars and delivered her best performance along with equally superb supporting cast that includes Linus Roache, Alison Elliott, Charlotte Rampling, Elizabeth McGovern and Michael Gambon. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Horseman on the Roof

French director Jean-Paul Rappeneau delivered a sweeping epic with this adventure drama. An Italian man on the run joins a beautiful French countess as they try to survive a cholera epidemic that has ravaged most of south of France. Based on the classic novel by Jean Giono, Rappeneau and writer Jean-Claude Carrière bring the turbulent times of 19 century Europe to the screen with great detail and breathtaking landscapes which makes for a thrilling adventure. The ravishing Juliette Binoche stars along with a dashing Olivier Martinez in the title role with terrific performances. The supporting cast includes Jean Yanne, Gérard Depardieu, François Cluzet and Pierre Arditi. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Gosford Park

Legendary director Robert Altman delivered his last masterpiece with this terrific ensemble drama. During a party at a lavish estate, the guests and servants are suspect when a murder threatens to expose their secret and lies. Altman and writer Julian Fellowes are inspired by Agatha Christie to show the lives in the upstairs and downstairs of the British class system which still fascinates the world. The terrific ensemble includes Maggie Smith, Helen Mirren, Michael Gambon, Kristin Scott-Thomas, Clive Owen, Emily Watson, Kelly McDonald, Alan Bates, Ryan Philippe and many others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Butler

Director and producer Lee Daniels' fourth feature gives a history lesson with this emotional drama. A butler serves eight presidents at the White House while the civil rights movement affects him and his family through the decades. Inspired by a true story, Daniels and writer Danny Strong dramatized to give perspective to the civil rights movement through the involvement of the presidents who made it happen. Forest Whitaker stars and leads a stellar supporting cast that includes Oprah Winfrey, David Oyelowo, Cuba Gooding Jr. amongst many others which is one of the delights of this emotional drama. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Una Noche

Writer and director Lucy Mulloy made her feature debut with this riveting drama. Three Cuban teenagers' lives are intertwined in the streets of Havana where they face sexual awakening, dreams of a better life while hustling their way until one of them gets in trouble and forces them of crossing the ocean with tragic consequences. Mulloy created a powerful film that shows a vibrant Havana with all its glory and flaws with fully developed characters despite minor flaws in the plot. The cast of mostly non-professional actors is terrific, specially the three leads which includes Dariel Arrechaga, Anailín de la Rúa de la Torre and Javier Núñez Florián. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

CRITICS AWARDS 5: Golden Globes

Best Film - Drama
12 Years a Slave 
Captain Phillips 
Best Actor - Drama
Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Idris Elba,  Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Tom Hanks, Captain Phillips 

Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
Robert Redford, All Is Lost

Best Actress - Drama

Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock, Gravity
Judi Dench, Philomena
Emma Thompson, Saving Mr. Banks
Kate Winslet,  Labor Day

Best Film - Musical or Comedy
American Hustle
Inside Llewyn Davis 
The Wolf of Wall Street

Best Actor - Musical or Comedy
Christian Bale, American Hustle
Bruce Dern, Nebraska 

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Wolf of Wall Street
Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
Joaquin Phoenix, Her

Best Actress - Musical or Comedy

Amy Adams, American Hustle 
Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
Greta Gerwig, Frances Ha
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Enough Said
Meryl Streep, August: Osage County

Best Supporting Actor 

Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Daniel Brühl, Rush
Bradley Cooper, American Hustle
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave

Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club

Best Supporting Actress
Sally Hawkins,  Blue Jasmine
Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years a Slave
Julia Roberts, August: Osage County
June Squibb, Nebraska

Best Director

Alfonso Cuarón, Gravity
Paul Greengrass, Captain Phillips
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
David O. Russell, American Hustle
Alexander Payne, Nebraska

Best Screenplay

12 Years a Slave, John Ridley
American Hustle, Eric Singer & David O. Russell

Her, Spike Jonze
Nebraska, Bob Nelson
Philomena, Steve Coogan, Jeff Pope

Best Original Score 

All Is Lost, Alex Ebert
The Book Thief, John Williams
Gravity, Steven Price
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, Alex Heffes
12 Years a Slave, Hans Zimmer

Best Animated Film

The Croods
Despicable Me 2

Best Foreign Language Film
Blue Is the Warmest Color, France
The Great Beauty, Italy
The Hunt, Denmark
The Past, Iran
The Wind Rises, Japan

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Queen Margot

French director Patrice Chéreau delivered his definitive masterpiece with this dazzling historical drama. France in the late 1600's is divided in a bitter war by Catholics and Protestants which forces a young princess to marry the enemy king which leads to massacre that has devastating consequences for the Royal family and their allies in their struggle for power. Based on the novel by Alexandre Dumas adapted by Danièle Thompson, Chéreau created a stunning and vibrant period drama that created a new standard for period films with a stellar cast and crew. The always astonishing Isabelle Adjani stars with another terrific performance with an equally terrific supporting cast that includes Virna Lisi, Daniel Auteuil, Jean-Hugues Anglade, Vincent Perez, Dominique Blanc, Pascal Greggory, Miguel Bosé, Asia Argento, Jean-Claude Brialy amongst many others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

I'm So Excited

Spanish master Pedro Almodóvar took a break from dramas and looked back at his early career with this comedy which has all of his signature elements that started his stellar career. The crew and passengers of a troubled plane let their inhibitions go with sex, drugs and alcohol when they think the end might be near with hilarious consequences. The ensemble includes Almodóvar's frequent collaborators who are in for the fun ride which includes Javier Cámara, Cecilia Roth, Lola Dueñas, Paz Vega, José Luis Torrijo, Blanca Suárez amongst others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Rear Window

Legendary director Alfred Hitchcock delivered another masterpiece with this suspense thriller. A wheelchair bound photographer spies on his neighbors where he suspects one of them guilty of murder which puts him and his girlfriend in danger. Hitchcock masterfully created another terrific suspenseful thriller set almost entirely in one location that turns voyeurism into cinematic experience and vice versa. James Stewart stars in his first collaboration with Hitchcock along with the stunning Grace Kelly and hilarious Thelma Ritter. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Act of Killing

Directors Joshua Oppenheimer and Christine Cynn delivered an astonishing film with this groundbreaking documentary which has to been seen to be believed. Indonesian war criminal Anwar Congo not only admits to his unimaginable crimes along with his collaborators of killing thousands of innocent people that were considered communists but brags about it and is willing to reenact scenes of torture, rape and murder in the style of Hollywood films from lavish musicals, western and gangster films amongst others which turns the film into a surreal nightmare. Oppenheimer and his crew, most of which remain anonymous have a created an unforgettable film that's shocking as it is riveting giving insight to the banality of evil. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Y Tu Mamá También

Mexican writer and director Alfonso Cuarón delivered his first masterpiece with this unflinching coming of age film that's one of milestones of the Mexican cinema's golden age. Two spoiled teenagers take an older woman on a road trip in order to seduce her, unaware it will be an unforgettable journey that will change their life and friendship forever. Cuarón delivered a vibrant look of contemporary Mexico with this erotic comedy with a subtle social commentary about the class divide between the rich and poor which is an astonishing accomplishment. The ravishing Maribel Verdú stars with a brave performances along with the young Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna who went to become super stars as well as accomplished writers and directors of their own. The film also marked the third collaboration between with Cuarón and regular cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

CRITICS AWARDS 4: National Society of Film Critics

Best Film

Best Director

Best Screenplay 
BEFORE MIDNIGHT, Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke

Best Actor 
Oscar Isaac, 

Best Actress
Cate Blanchett, BLUE JASMINE

Best Supporting Actor

Best Supporting Actress
Jennifer Lawrence, AMERICAN HUSTLE

Best Foreign Film 

Best Documentary 



For more info:

The Wolverine

Director James Mangold changed genres again with comic book adaptation that focuses on Wolverine alone. Logan/Wolverine is lured to Japan to meet an old acquaintance but is entangled in a family conflict that affects him as well as other foes including the Yakuza and Ninjas. Mangold has chosen well by focusing on Wolverine alone instead of too many mutant characters which serves the story and film well with this stylish and satisfying action film. Hugh Jackman stars and delivers his best performance as the character along with a fine cast that includes Rila Fukushima, Tao Okamoto, Hiroyuki Sanada, Svetlana Khodchenkova and Famke Janssen. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Friday, January 3, 2014

RIP: Saul Zaentz 1921 - 2013

2 Autumns, 3 Winters

French writer and director Sébastien Betbeder shows some promise with this romantic indie film. The trials and tribulations of three Parisians as they face love and existential crisis amongst others issues. Despite some contrived plotting and overuse of stylistic elements, the films succeeds with the charm of its talented cast. Vincent Macaigne, Maud Wyler and Bastien Bouillon star with solid performances that includes faux interviews to make give the film a reality TV feel. 1001 Films' coverage of French Cinema Now.

Thursday, January 2, 2014


Director Wayne Wang collaborated with novelist Paul Auster who made his feature debut for this heartwarming film. The owner of a smoke shop and a writer share their stories and encounters in their neighborhood with each other which gives a spectrum of the human condition. Wang and Auster show a glimpse of New York with real characters and stories that warms the heart and lifts the spirits which is a remarkable feat and gift from
this gem of a film. Harvey Keitel stars with with a terrific performance along with an equally astonishing ensemble that includes William Hurt, Stockard Channing, Forest Whitaker, Harold Perrineau, Giancarlo Esposito, Jared Harris and Ashley Judd amongst others. 1001 Films' coverage of films on DVD.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Wolf of Wall Street

Legendary director Martin Scorsese still goes strong with another terrific film that reunited him with Leonardo DiCaprio for the fifth time. The rise and fall of Jordan Belfort who after a brief stint on Wall Street went to Long Island to create a shady operation with other criminals to steal millions from unsuspected victims. This is a glamorized and glossy look of horrible people doing horrible things that Scorsese brings vibrantly to the screen to give a glimpse of American greed that plagued Main Street as well as Wall Street long before the financial crisis of 2008 which was done on a giant scale but committed by much smarter crooks who got away with the millions unlike Belfort and his con friends. Leonardo DiCaprio stars with another terrific performance along with a stellar supporting cast that includes Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie, Kyle Chandler, Jean Dujardin, Joanna Lumley, Jon Bernthal and directors Rob Reiner, Spike Jonze and Jon Favreau. 1001 Films' coverage of current releases.