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Berlin 2016: Kate Plays Christine

17 Feb, 2016 Posted in: Berlin, Documentaries, Festivals, Opinion, Review

Catherine Bray is gripped by a blend of documentary and fiction exploring an anchorwoman’s on-air suicide in 1974…

Kate Plays Christine

Boy, is this a film that could have gone very wrong indeed. A risky subject matter (suicide), combined with a formally risky approach (half-fictional, half-documentary, all high wire act), combine in writer-director Robert Greene’s exploration of the 1974 on-air suicide of anchorwoman Christine Chubbuck, via the device of an actor, Kate Lyn Sheil, preparing to play her in a cinematic …

Berlin 2016: Homo Sapiens

13 Feb, 2016 Posted in: Berlin, Festivals, Uncategorized

We’re now three days into the Berlin Film Festival, and despite fierce competition from some hotly-tipped heavy hitters (including world premieres of Jeff Nichols’ Midnight Special & Mia Hansen-Løve’s Things To Come, to name but two), the film that has made the biggest impression, and continues to stick with me, was one I saw on opening night: Nikolaus Geyrhalter’s Homo Sapiens.

Homo Sapiens is the perfect festival film. It is dialogue-free, and consists of a series of static camera shots from …

Berlin 2016: Hail, Caesar!

12 Feb, 2016 Posted in: Berlin, Festivals

Film4 Site Editor Michael Leader reports on the Berlinale’s opening film, written and directed by Joel & Ethan Coen…

Since it follows the Coen Brothers’ essayistic dive into 1960s Greenwich Village, Inside Llewyn Davis, by three years, there’s a temptation to expect Hail, Caesar! to be a similar exploration of a community on the cusp of change. Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin), a character based on a fearsome fixer and architect behind numerous notorious cover-ups during his time as an MGM executive, …

Channel 4 announces major increase to Film4 funding

09 Feb, 2016 Productions Posted in:

Film4 funding has increased to a record £25m in 2016, with major new deals announced with Fox Searchlight and FP Films. Film4 will be backing new work from Lenny Abrahamson, Yorgos Lanthimos, Andrew Haigh, Steve McQueen, Clio Barnard, Bart Layton, Mike Leigh and Chris Morris.

Channel 4 Chief Executive David Abraham and Director of Film4 David Kosse today announced a major boost to the corporation’s commitment to film, increasing the funding budget of Film4 from £15m to £25m in 2016 …

The 36th London Film Critics Circle Awards

18 Jan, 2016 Posted in: Actors and Actresses, Awards

The Film4-backed 45 Years takes Best Actor, Best Actress and Best British Film at the 36th London Critics’ Circle Film Awards

Other prizes for Film4-backed films included Breakthrough Filmmaker for director John Maclean for Slow West, Best Documentary for Amy and a gong for cinematography for Carol’s director of photography Ed Lachman.

Tom Courtenay wins Best Actor

At a black-tie ceremony hosted by comedian Robin Ince, Film4-backed films went home with a total of six prizes. Andrew Haigh’s tender drama 45 Years …