CINEMA NEWS

"Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn" had been revealed as the winner of the Berlin Film Festival. News, 16th June 2021  
tobias schwartz/reuters
The winner of the Golden Bear for best film, Romanian director Radu Jude for Bad Luck Banging Or Loony Porn, was among the international filmmakers who traveled to Berlin to receive their award at the Berlin International Film Festival's award ceremony held on Sunday. - DW

The Silver Bear awards in various categories, along with the Berlinale Documentary Award, the GWFF Best First Feature Award and prizes for films in other sections of the festival, were also handed out on June 13.

A few German works were among the Silver Bear winners. Mr. Bachmann and His Class, a documentary by Maria Speth, won the Silver Bear Jury Prize. 

The festival awarded its first ever gender-neutral acting prize — where both male and female actor compete in the same category — to Maren Eggert for her performance in Maria Schrader's I'm Your Man.

The event took place outdoors, on Berlin's Museum Island, where the red carpet is being rolled out for the Berlinale Summer Special, which presents 126 films from its selection in open-air cinemas for the public from June 9-20.

The Berlinale's pandemic shake-up
Normally, the Berlin International Film Festival's awards ceremony is an event filled with suspense for critics and film fans who closely follow the competition, as they hope that their own favorites will be crowned with the Golden Bear, or at least obtain one of the Silver Bears.

However, things were different this year. In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the festival's organizers divided the Berlinale into two separate events.

The prizewinners were revealed during the first part of the festival in March, an online program restricted to film industry professionals.

The announcement was a very low-key event, with the members of the jury reading their statements from separate hotel rooms, and the winners tuning in through a video link to react to the news.

The prizes are now being handed out three months later during the second part of the festival, the Berlinale Summer Special. 

The festival will conclude with the announcement of an additional Berlinale Competition Audience Award on June 20.

Provocative Golden Bear censored in Russia
The Golden Bear winning film, Bad Luck Banging Or Loony Porn, is a sexually-explicit dark comedy about a school teacher who risks losing her job when a personal sex tape starts circulating online and in her school.

The jury said in March that they had picked the film because it "captures on screen the very content and essence, the mind and body, the values and the raw flesh of our present moment in time. Of this very moment of human existence."

Set in real-world Bucharest, it was the only competition film set during the COVID-19 pandemic, with all characters wearing masks.

The film also comments on the Church, antisemitism and far-right politics.

Even though the work found a Russian distributor, Russia's Ministry of Culture announced on June 11 that it would not issue a distribution license for Bad Luck Banging Or Loony Porn, according to reports in Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.  

The ministry said that the Golden Bear-winning work violates Russian laws on pornography.

Lot 448: the dark side of auction houses. News, 10 September 2021
Lot 448 follows Lynda Albertson, one of the world's foremost art detectives, on her quest to stop the auction of a rare Etruscan antefix, believed to be looted from a Roman archaeological site by one of Europe's most infamous trafficking rings. 

As a young child, Albertson craved relics that represented her father's Native American heritage, which ignited her passion to protect humanity's most important art and cultural antiquities. The film follows her in a race against time as she gathers evidence to stop the auction and return the antefix to Italy, its rightful home.
'Nomadland' is big winner, Anthony Hopkins wins best actor. News,  April 2021
Copyright  AP Photo/Chris Pizzello
Chloe Zhao's "Nomadland," a wistful portrait of itinerant lives on open roads across the American West, won best picture Sunday at the 93rd Academy Awards, where the China-born Zhao also became just the second woman to win best director, and the first woman of color. - EURONEWS.

The "Nomadland" victory, while widely expected, nevertheless capped the extraordinary rise of Zhao, a lyrical filmmaker whose winning film is just her third, and which — with a budget less than $5 million (€4.1 million) and featuring a cast populated by non-professional actors — ranks as one of the most modest-sized movies to win Hollywood's top honour. Zhao's next film, Marvel's "Eternals," has a budget approximately 40 times that of "Nomadland." Only Kathryn Bigelow, 11 years ago for "The Hurt Locker," had previously won best director.

But "Nomadland," as a plain-spoken meditation on solitude, grief and grit, stuck a chord in a pandemic-ravaged year. It made for an unlikely Oscar champ: A film about people who gravitate to the margins took center stage.

"I have always found goodness in the people I've met everywhere I went in the world," said Zhao when accepting best director. "This is for anyone who has the faith and the courage to hold on to the goodness in themselves and to hold on the goodness in other no matter how difficult it is to do that."

With a howl, "Nomadland" star Frances McDormand implored people to seek out her film and others on the big screen. Released by the Disney-owned Searchlight Pictures, "Nomadland" premiered at a drive-in and debuted in theaters, but found its largest audience on Hulu.

"Please watch our movie on the largest screen possible and one day very, very soon, take everyone you know into a theater, shoulder to shoulder in that dark space, and watch every film that's represented here tonight," McDormand said.

Soon after, McDormand won best actress, too. The win puts McDormand (previously a winner for "Fargo" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri") in rare company as a three-time acting winner. Only Katherine Hepburn (a four-time winner) has won best actress more times.

In the night's biggest surprise, best actor went to Anthony Hopkins for the dementia drama "The Father." The award had been widely expected to go to Chadwick Boseman for his final performance in "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom." Hopkins was not in attendance.

The most ambitious award show held during the pandemic, the Oscars rolled out a red carpet and restored some glamour to the nearly century-old movie institution, but with a much-transformed — and in some ways downsized — telecast. It was a year when, to paraphrase Norma Desmond, the pictures got smaller, were overwhelmingly seen in the home, not on the big screen, during a pandemic year that forced theaters close and prompted radical change in Hollywood.

It was also perhaps the diverse Academy Awards ever, with more women and more actors of colour nominated than ever before — and Sunday brought a litany of records and firsts across many categories, spanning everything from hairstyling to composing to acting. It was, some observers said, a sea change for an award harshly criticised as "OscarsSoWhite" in recent years, leading the film academy to greatly expand membership.

Golden Globes 2021: See the full list of nomineesNews, 5th February 2021
THE RECKONING. © Cinemundo Lda
The 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards were announced Wednesday.

See the list of the nominees on this special edition made by USIA Review.

Oscar nominators and nominee schedules announced. News, 12th March 2021
Actress and producer Priyanka Chopra Jonas (The White Tiger) and singer, actor and composer Nick Jonas (Kingdom) will announce nominations for the 23 categories of the 93rd edition of the Oscars, during a presentation that will take place in two parts, on Monday, March 15.

The event will be broadcast live on the digital platforms of the American Film Academy, on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, at the link included below.
The first nine categories begin to be revealed at 1:19 pm (Lisbon time).

The remaining 14, starting at 1:31 pm (Lisbon time).  

The winners will be announced on April 25, in a ceremony whose final format is not yet known. On the table are alternatives that may include the presence, or not, of guests, the hybrid format between virtual and face-to-face that is being used by other cinema awards, or even the move to another location that allows greater physical distance between people (a American publication made it known that the central train station in Los Angeles is a hypothesis).

A Life Ahead, a movie with the actress Sophia Loren on netflix. News, 25th November 2020

Sophia Loren photographed at home by her son Edoardo Ponti, who helmed her new movie.Credit...Edoardo Ponti
With 86 years old, Sophia Loren was looking for a personal connection to a script. Then along came her director son and the Netflix drama “The Life Ahead.” 

The Life Ahead is a 2020 drama film directed by Edoardo Ponti, from a screenplay by Ponti and Ugo Chiti, based upon the novel The Life Before Us by Romain Gary. It stars Sophia Loren, Ibrahima Gueye and Abril Zamora.

It was released in a limited release on November 6, 2020, followed by digital streaming on Netflix November 13, 2020.

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