19th Annual Philadelphia Film Festival Coverage - BLUE VALENTINE

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

#PFF18 Continues with BLUE VALENTINE Q&A

After the screening of Blue Valentine on Friday night, Producer Jamie Patricof gave us a little background on how long it has taken to get this film to the screen. He’s been on board for 9 of the 12 years Derek Cianfance (Brother Tide) was in the midst of both writing and directing this wonderfully heart-wrenching depiction of a couple learning each other, needing each other, and then needing different things. 

In the first incarnation of the screenplay Cianfrance had planned to cast an actress by the name of Shannon Plum, although she ultimately never got the role, she did land the director, Cianfrance and Plum are now married with two kids.

At one time the movie was to feature Rachel Weisz and Jeremy Renner, but it was before these two were who they are now and nobody was interested. Rachel McAdams wanted the role, and again, was nobody at the time – hard to get financing without a name star attached. He also said Michelle Williams early on fell in love with the script and was actually stalking Derek to get the part, but this was when she was just the girl from Dawson’s Creek and they weren’t interested.
Fast forward a couple of years, now they are interested in Michelle, are ready to start production and
Heath Ledger dies, which of course, understandably causes yet another delay.
And as if things weren’t delayed enough, Ryan Gosling wanted to shoot all the scenes when they meet and fall in love, and then wait five actual years later to start shooting the scenes when the relationship is falling apart.
ell, it would seem everyone involved got the timing right now. This movie is on everyone’s list of must sees, getting high praise for it’s honest depiction of a marriage. Both Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams are completely committed to these roles. But you also respond to the atmosphere of the movie, with scenes like the one shot in the odd blue light of the “romantic getaway” Future Room. The room is so much like their relationship, should be good, should be enjoyed, but instead it’s annoying and claustrophobic. I also love their argument reflected in the glass of the doctor’s office front desk partition; simultaneously we can see the co-workers facial expressions and reactions.

That’s the thin
g about this movie, afterward you bring your own experience and reactions, you want to discuss who’s right and who’s wrong in the relationship. My first reaction was that Cindy (Williams) should just take a chill pill; other than the receding hairline, mustache and extra weight, what happened to change her feelings towards Dean (Gosling) so much? Then I flipped and thought, well, he can be a bit obnoxious at times and too childlike, she really has out grown him.

I couldn’t
help but be reminded of the recent split between Courteney Cox-Arquette and David Arquette, “a deals a deal” (wedding rings inscription) until Courtney got sick of this deal that granted her an adopted son, rather than a husband.

As far as the NC-17 rating is concerned, I couldn’t figure out how Gosling going down on Williams is any more sexually explicit than Kunis going down on Portman in
Black Swan. Then a friend pointed out that the sex scenes in Blue Valentine do go on a bit in real time.

It’s not due out until around Christmas, hopefully, they’ll do some minor edits to receive the R rating. It would be wrong to have anything else get in the way of this film on the way to the Oscars!

The Film Festival Photographer is Lorraine Daley
click HERE for Flickr Film Fest Photo Album

Did you know that two films in The Philadelphia Film Festival are in a category of filmmaking called Omnibus? This was the topic of discussion yesterday at Cafe Cinema at Penn Book Store. Both Revolucion (plays again on Sun. 10/24 7:35pm Ritz Five E) and 11/4/08 (Wed. 10/20 7:30pm Prince) are films commission with a specific theme in mind, where several directors create a vignette around that theme or submit footage to create the whole of the film.

The discussion was lead by
Meta Mazaj a lecturer in Cinema Studies at Penn. She teaches various courses on film theory and history, transnational cinema, European & American Independent film. She’s also a contributing author to an anthology of film theory titled Critical Visions: Readings in Classical and Contemporary Film Theory. The discussion was co-lead by the Associate Director of Penn’s Cinema Studies Program, Nicola M. Gentili.

Please be sure not to miss the continuation of Cafe Cinema at Penn tomorrow (Wed. 10/20) 6pm and Friday, 10/22 5pm

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is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.

Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?

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