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Berri's Son Honours Late Father At Golden Globes


Thomas Langmann Claude Berri

French filmmaker Thomas Langmann paid homage to his late father Claude Berri at the Golden Globes in Los Angeles on Sunday night (15Jan12), revealing the great director was too poor to attend the Oscars to accept his 1966 prize.

Berri, who made classic movies like Jean De Florette and Tess - for which he received an Academy Awards nomination, had to miss out on his moment of Hollywood glory when his film Le Poulet was named the Best Short Film over four decades ago, but his son honoured him while accepting the Globes Best Film prize for The Artist.

The producer said, "In 1965, a young French man directed and wrote and produced a short film and then prayed for a miracle to come and it came... (but) in those days he didn't have enough money to come to Hollywood, to pay the flight ticket, and receive this Oscar.

"This man was my father, named Claude Berri, so it is now almost three years (since) he passed away and it is such an honour... to receive this."

Continue reading: Berri's Son Honours Late Father At Golden Globes

Sarkozy Gives Nod To Late French Filmmaker Berri


Nicolas Sarkozy Claude Berri

French President Nicolas Sarkozy has led the tributes to late director and producer Claude Berri, praising him for his lasting influence in international cinema.


Berri died aged 74 following his hospitalisation at the Pitie-Salpetriere hospital in Paris at the weekend (begs10Jan09) for a serious neurological condition.


Announcing his passing on Monday (12Jan09) the office of President Nicolas Sarkozy said, "He could work in every register and make us laugh or cry, but above all, he made his public think and ask questions; he educated the viewer."


Berri's most popular works include international hit Jean de Florette and Manon des Sources, starring Gerard Depardieu, Yves Montand and Emmanuelle Beart.

Continue reading: Sarkozy Gives Nod To Late French Filmmaker Berri

French Filmmaker Berri Dead At 74


Claude Berri

Oscar-winning French director Claude Berri has died from a stroke at the age of 74.


The filmmaker, actor, screenwriter and producer was admitted to a Paris hospital on Saturday (10Jan09) night with a "very serious neurological condition" after suffering from a blood clot on the brain.


He spent the remainder of the weekend under observation in the intensive care unit, but was pronounced dead on Monday (12Jan09), his agent has confirmed.


A statement released by his publicist simply reads, "Claude Berri died this morning at La Salpétrière Hospital in Paris of a stroke."

Continue reading: French Filmmaker Berri Dead At 74

Oscar-winning Director Berri In Intensive Care


Claude Berri

French filmmaker Claude Berri was hospitalised on Saturday (10Jan08) with a "very serious neurological condition", according to medics in Paris.


The Oscar-winning director, best known for his producing role on Roman Polanski's award-winning film Tess, was admitted to the French capital's Salpetriere hospital's neurological centre after suffering from a blood clot on the brain.


Berri, who picked up his Academy Award for his short film Le Poulet in 1996, is under observation in an intensive care unit. He suffered a stroke several years ago.

Jean De Florette Review


Extraordinary
Very French, very melancholy, Jean de Florette tells the first half of the classic tale of the hunchback Jean (Depardieu), a city-dwelling tax collector who inherits a small farm in rural France. Unhappy that their attempt to buy the place failed (after killing the former owner, even!), Cesar and Ugolin (Montand and Auteuil) scheme to drive Jean away, primarily through plugging up the natural spring on the land, leaving it dry as Oklahoma. But when the poor Ugolin and Jean become friends, the deception turns out to be bittersweet.

Extremely well-made, Jean de Florette is director Claude Berri's finest work, a touching tale that is simple and succinct while not devolving into a confusing and minimalist mess. Depardieu and Auteuil are at their height as actors, and Berri's widescreen panoramas of the beautiful -- yet unforgiving -- French countryside are unforgettable.

Continue reading: Jean De Florette Review

Manon Of The Spring Review


Excellent
In the sequel to Jean de Florette, we find the tables turned on Ugolin and Papet as young Manon (now played by the lovely Emmanuelle Béart) has grown up, though she's slightly deranged and lives in the hills as a vagabond shepherdess. (Of course, she's a vagabond shepherdess that is very attentive to shaving her body hair and studiously applying makeup.)

Manon carries with her the knowledge that Ugolin and Papet indirectly killed her father by sealing off his spring, so when she discovers the mountainous source of the spring -- and the water for the nearby town -- she returns the favor in kind. Alas, poor Ugolin finds himself falling in love with the wispy wanderer, leaving him dying both from thirst and a broken heart.

Continue reading: Manon Of The Spring Review

Tess Review


OK
Hunkering down with any movie adaptation of a Thomas Hardy novel (Jude, The Claim) invariably means you're in for a long, depressing look at life. Tess stands as one of the longest and saddest of the lot -- this one offered up by Roman Polanski as one of a handful of adaptations of Tess of the d'Urbervilles, one of those famous high school assignments that you didn't get around to reading.

Tess Durbeyfield (Nastassja Kinski) is a naive English country girl sent to do good by her family. She's not two feet out of her cottage when she encounters the aristocratic Alec d'Urberville (Leigh Lawson). Legend has it the similarity in names is no coincidence -- the two families descended from the same royals centuries ago. Never mind the incest, though, here comes the lovin', and before you know it, Tess isn't just taking care of chickens at d'Urberville manor, she's pregnant to boot.

Continue reading: Tess Review

Manon Of The Spring Review


Excellent
In the sequel to Jean de Florette, we find the tables turned on Ugolin and Papet as young Manon (now played by the lovely Emmanuelle Béart) has grown up, though she's slightly deranged and lives in the hills as a vagabond shepherdess. (Of course, she's a vagabond shepherdess that is very attentive to shaving her body hair and studiously applying makeup.)

Manon carries with her the knowledge that Ugolin and Papet indirectly killed her father by sealing off his spring, so when she discovers the mountainous source of the spring -- and the water for the nearby town -- she returns the favor in kind. Alas, poor Ugolin finds himself falling in love with the wispy wanderer, leaving him dying both from thirst and a broken heart.

Continue reading: Manon Of The Spring Review

Jean De Florette Review


Extraordinary
Very French, very melancholy, Jean de Florette tells the first half of the classic tale of the hunchback Jean (Depardieu), a city-dwelling tax collector who inherits a small farm in rural France. Unhappy that their attempt to buy the place failed (after killing the former owner, even!), Cesar and Ugolin (Montand and Auteuil) scheme to drive Jean away, primarily through plugging up the natural spring on the land, leaving it dry as Oklahoma. But when the poor Ugolin and Jean become friends, the deception turns out to be bittersweet.

Extremely well-made, Jean de Florette is director Claude Berri's finest work, a touching tale that is simple and succinct while not devolving into a confusing and minimalist mess. Depardieu and Auteuil are at their height as actors, and Berri's widescreen panoramas of the beautiful -- yet unforgiving -- French countryside are unforgettable.

Continue reading: Jean De Florette Review

My Wife Is An Actress Review


OK
Is it weird when reality and fictional cinema intersect? For example: Kidman and Cruise in Eyes Wide Shut, Basinger and Baldwin in The Getaway, or The Blair Witch Project. Those movies are nothing compared to the abysmally titled My Wife Is an Actress, which totally blurs the line between what is real and what is not and crosses into a strange mélange of melodramatic kookiness and Method acting taken to the nth degree.

The movie is a personal exploration into the limitations and expectations of fidelity. The film is penned and directed by the notable French actor Yvan Attal (The Criminal), who is married to a famous French actress Charlotte Gainsbourg (The Cement Garden), and both star in the film.

Continue reading: My Wife Is An Actress Review

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