Festival Circuit: Telluride and Venice – What we’ve seen.

Blue-is-the-warmest-colorFestival Circuit: Telluride and Venice – What we’ve seen.

The 2013 Palme d’Or winner “Blue is the Warmest Color,” made a reprise earlier this week, continuing it’s strring of positive reviews and momentum.

At this point, several films have been seen at Telluride and Venice and here are some of the key films that have been seen and initial reactions to them:
Raves and More Raves

Gravity – “Dazzling,” “visually sophisticated,” “intelligent.” These are just some of the raves that have come from Venice and Telluride where the film has made consecutive appearances. Alfonso Cuaron’s effect-heavy film was already an Oscar-contender out the gate; this just reaffirms its position in the race.

12 Years a Slave – Another surefire Oscar contender. Met with a slew of raves after the Telluride premiere along with a prolonged standing ovation. “12 Years a Slave” is said to unmask slavery in an unapologetically brutal way revealing its true horrors.

Inside Llewyn Davis – The film was greeted with universal praise with its premiere at Cannes and met with even more with its showing at Telluride. The Coen brothers may have a date with Oscar again.

Blue is the Warmest Color – The winner of the Palme d’Or at Cannes, continues to receive positive buzz out of Telluride. The french film won’t be competing for the ‘Foreign Film’ category for Oscars, but may join the American films in other categories.

All is Lost – Another film making its second appearance after Cannes. J.C. Chandor’s “All is Lost” has received strong raves with a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes with 10 reviews; mostly citing the strong performance of veteran actor Robert Redford.

Positive Buzz

The Wind Rises – Met with an overall positive reaction. “The Wind Rises” is said to be stunningly beautiful. The sad news out of Venice is that it’ll be Hayao Miyazaki’s last film.

Prisoners – Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Melissa Leo have strong performances in a film that is being compared to David Fincher’s ‘Zodiac.’ The word Oscar hasn’t approached the conversation for this film as much, but it is receiving overall a strong critical reaction.

Labor Day – Jason Reitman’s new film is being called “mature” and a “tearjerker.” With raves about Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin’s performances, and a few unfortunate comparisons to Nicholas Spark films.

Philomena – The mysterious Weinstein film has been met with mostly positive reviews. The performances of Judi Dench and Steve Coogan entering the Oscar conversation.

Nebraska – Another film once seen at Cannes, “Nebraska” is still receiving mostly positive reviews. Paramount’s plan to campaign Bruce Dern as a lead actor may hurt his chances.

Mixed Buzz

Joe – Strong, positive words describe Nicholas Cage’s performance in David Gordon Green’s new film “Joe.” The film itself warranted a mixed reaction.

Tracks – Mia Wasiwowska stars in this mysterious film that premiered at Venice to mostly positive reviews and some harsh reviews. The production quality being cited as its strongest quality.

Under the Skin – Scarlett Johannson stars as an alien in Jonathan Glazer’s “Under the Skin.” a film that received mostly negative reviews, but enough strong ones to warrant an overall mixed reaction.

The Invisible Woman – Ralph Fiennes directs and stars in a film where he steps into the shoes of Charles Dickens. More reactions for this film should come later, but so far its mostly mixed to positive.

Parkland – Almost placed alone in a ‘Negative Buzz’ section, this film just aired at Venice and was met with a good amount of negative reviews. More and more positive reviews have come in however.

So far nothing negative! We will keep you posted with more information out of Telluride and Venice (and soon Toronto.)

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