1. A camp classic, like Showgirls remade by Roman Polanski.

    — Movie critic David Edelstein’s take on Black Swan

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    david edelstein

  1. Actor Vincent Cassel, on how movies change him: "Every movie, especially  when you get involved … takes something out of you. You learn  something, but you give something to the movie. And after the movie, if  the experience has been intense and a true experience, you’re a little  different afterward. The first important movie that I did, I shaved my  head for the movie. When the hair grew back, I had white hair for the  first time in my life. So I have a tendency to play it cool, and that  it’s easy and normal and no big deal [to take big steps], but I know it  really takes something away from you when you get involved with  something deeply." View in High-Res

    Actor Vincent Cassel, on how movies change him: "Every movie, especially when you get involved … takes something out of you. You learn something, but you give something to the movie. And after the movie, if the experience has been intense and a true experience, you’re a little different afterward. The first important movie that I did, I shaved my head for the movie. When the hair grew back, I had white hair for the first time in my life. So I have a tendency to play it cool, and that it’s easy and normal and no big deal [to take big steps], but I know it really takes something away from you when you get involved with something deeply."

  2. vincent cassel

    mesrine

    black swan

  1. Natalie Portman on ballet: "As a child, I idealized [ballet]  because, as a little girl, you just think of it as this pretty, light,  delicate and feminine thing. You see how much darker the world is when you’re immersed in it.” View in High-Res

    Natalie Portman on ballet: "As a child, I idealized [ballet] because, as a little girl, you just think of it as this pretty, light, delicate and feminine thing. You see how much darker the world is when you’re immersed in it.”

  2. natalie portman

    black swan

    ballet

  1. Fresh Air Producer Ann Marie Baldonado on Black Swan

    It’s been about an hour since the press screening of Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan ended, and my heartbeat is just getting back to normal.  (See a preview here on YouTube.) Black Swan tells the story of Nina (Natalie Portman), a tightly wound ballerina who has finally gotten her big break — the role of Queen in Swan Lake.  

    The ballet company’s director (Vincent Cassell) thinks she needs to let go, focus more on emotion and less on technique, if she really wants to embody both the pristine white swan part of the role — as well as the more seductive black swan part.

    With his close ups of knarled ballerina feet and a soundtrack filled with cracking knuckles and labored breath, Aronofsky shows us again that he is obsessed with how people mutilate their own bodies for their ‘craft.’  Is the pressure causing Nina to lose her mind?  Or is she going crazy because of her overprotective mom? (Barbara Hershey) Or is it because the new ballerina (Mila Kunis) is messing with her?  

    Is the bleeding and the violence in her head or for real?  And is Black Swan about what artists put themselves through to find perfection in their projects?  You can decide when this film hits theaters this December.

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    ann marie baldonado

    fresh air

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    toronto film festival

  1. Producer Ann Marie Baldonado at the Toronto Film Festival: Part One

    Fresh Air producer Ann Marie Baldonado is at the Toronto Film Festival again this year, checking out films for Fresh Air to cover in the coming months.  She will check in with us throughout the festival.


    After checking into my hotel room and checking it for bedbugs, I headed out to catch films during the festival’s first day.  Sure both the Venice and Telluride Film Festivals began last week. But the Toronto Film Festival seems to officially kick off the Fall movie season and by extension, the Oscar race. (Although making a splash here doesn’t necessarily lead to Oscar glory.  Last year’s Toronto favorite Up In the Air didn’t end up winning any big awards and Best Picture winner The Hurt Locker came out in June of 2009).

    Unfortunately, in the next 6 days, I can’t see all 40 of the films on my must see list.  But I will try to get to as many as possible  On Friday alone, I look forward to catching Black Swan, Darren Aronosky's follow up to The Wrestler, which was a big hit here two years ago.  Swan, about a ballerina competing for a lead role, stars Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis and Vincent Cassel.  There’s also The Illusionist by Sylvian Chomet who made The Triplets of Belleville and I’m Still Here, Casey Affleck's documentary about his brother-in-law Joaquin Phoenix.  That interesting (or-car-crash-of-a-movie) will already be playing in theaters in the US this weekend.

    Also playing at the festival and coming to theaters in the next few weeks are a few films you will hear more about soon on Fresh Air. First, there’s The Town, the second film directed quite well by Ben Affleck. It’s kind of like Good Will Hunting but about robbing banks.  Affleck plays a reluctant criminal wanting to get out of the family business.  Jon Hamm leaves the 60s ad game, grows some stubble, and puts on some khakis to play an FBI agent trying to track him down.

    And It’s Kind of Funny Story, starring Zach Galifianakis, is directed by Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden who directed Half Nelson and Sugar.  And then there’s Never Let Me Go, starring Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightly, and Andrew Garfield, the new Spiderman.  It’s based on the acclaimed novel by Kazuo Ishiguro.  That’s all for now.  Hope to post some photos soon.


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    toronto film festival

    fresh air

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    the illusionist

    i'm still here

    the town

    it's kind of a funny story

    movies

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