Filmmaker, Ben Shapiro, shot Brief Encounters for over a decade - the same decade that photographer, Gregory Crewdson filled with creating Beneath the Roses - an extensive series of pictures shot in and around the hilltowns of Massachusetts. As a result, we are privy to an amazingly detailed glimpse of the artist at work.
The opening night film of this year's Berkshire International Film Festival is Ethel - it's screening at The Mahaiwe on Thursday, May 31st at 7:30pm. Ethel is a feature length documentary about the remarkable life of Ethel Kennedy, told by those who know her best: her family. Directed by her Emmy-Award winning daughter, Rory Kennedy, the film features candid interviews with Ethel and seven of her children.
There is a movie, currently in release, which tells the story of a young man who finds himself in a life-threatening situation. All that sustains him is the found photo of a beautiful woman, whom he has never met. He survives but finds himself lost and frazzled, and unable to function in the everyday world. So he sets out to find this woman-- and make her real.
Lately, I’ve been seeing and savoring quite a few foreign language films: titles that have not enjoyed across-the-board theatrical releases in the U.S. This lack of theatrical exposure is not because these films are lacking in quality. They are in fact engrossing and provocative.
BULLY, a new documentary whose title tells you all you need to know about its subject matter, has been earning reams of publicity– and deservedly so. For one thing, the Motion Picture Association of America, the organization charged with rating movies, originally slapped BULLY with an “R” rating. This designation would prevent countless young people who need to be educated about the effects of bullying from seeing this important film. (Happily, the MPAA has indeed changed the film’s rating to “PG-13.”)
HOUSE OF PLEASURES, which was shown on the film festival circuit under the more appropriate and less commercially exploitable title HOUSE OF TOLERANCE, is a stinging mood piece which explores the plight of a group of prostitutes in a high-end Parisian bordello at the turn of the 20th–century.