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Helen Mirren Gives Foul-mouthed Speech At European Film Awards

Helen Mirren Jeanne Moreau

Dame Helen Mirren turned the air blue at the European Film Awards on Saturday (01Dec12) in a foul-mouthed tribute to veteran French actress Jeanne Moreau.

The Queen star took to the stage at the event in Malta to accept a prize for her contribution to world cinema and she used the opportunity to reference Moreau in her acceptance speech, telling the audience, "Thank you for the great honour of recognising that I too am a f**king w**re - and I am very very proud of it."

Mirren's outburst mirrored a speech by Moreau, who won a similar honour at the 2007 event and proclaimed: "We are the f**king wonderful w**res of European cinema."

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The 2008 Cannes Film Festival - Day 4 - 'Vicky Cristina Barcelona' - Premiere

Jeanne Moreau - Saturday 17th May 2008 at Cannes Film Festival Cannes, France

Jeanne Moreau
Jeanne Moreau
Jeanne Moreau


Very Good

It's clear from the opening minutes of "Elevator to the Gallows" why this 1957 film -- with it's ahead-of-its-time sense of style, its haunting-yet-cool score improvised by Miles Davis and its ironic, post-modern take on film noir -- became the progenitor of a whole New Wave in French cinema.

The uncomplicated yet ingeniously knotted plot takes a classic noir murder -- a man killing his lover's husband so they can be together -- strips away the genre clichés and infuses the film with the introspective moodiness, dynamic camerawork, unadorned location shots, and stylized but emotionally naked performances that would become a hallmark of the New Wave pictures that followed by Francois Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard, Claude Chabrol, Jacques Rivette, Eric Rohmer and Malle himself.

To put it in backwards-thinking terms, the 24-year-old Malle was the Quentin Tarantino of his day, giving French cinema a creative, instantly influential shot in the arm that spawned imitators and opened new horizons in directorial thinking.

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Time To Leave Review

Leave it to fascinating French writer/director François Ozon to take one of the most tired movie cliches of all time -- "I'm sorry, but you only have a few months to live." -- and turn into to a totally fresh look at what it truly means to live. Time to Leave shows how the final months of handsome 31-year-old gay fashion photographer Romain (Melvil Poupaud) turn out to be both the worst and the best of his life.

Handed his death sentence by his doctor, Romain chooses to let his cancer kill him rather than suffer through the indignities of debilitating treatment that even the doctor admits has only a five percent chance of working. But now what? Romain's first instinct is to push everyone away in order to protect them from the pain of watching him die. Always prickly with his family, who have struggled with his homosexuality, a family dinner he attends turns positively toxic when Romain insults his fragile mother (Marie Rivière) and father (Daniel Duval) and calls his sister (Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi) a bad mother. When his father drives him home, Romain asks him, "Do I frighten you?" Dad replies, "Yes, sometimes." Through all this, Romain has forgotten to tell them his big news.

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Elevator To The Gallows Review

How Louis Malle got such a wide swath of talent for this first narrative feature I'll never know. But I'm not complaining: Elevator to the Gallows is unlike any film Malle would make in subsequent years: A taut, black and white thriller that speaks to the treachery and hopelessness of mankind, a far cry from his later, optimistic thought pieces.

Gallows gives us a familiar setup: Woman (Jeanne Moreau) wants rich husband dead. Her lover Julien (Maurice Roget), who works for the man, murders him and makes it look like a suicide. But Julien leaves his rope outside his penthouse office window. With all his gear in the car, Julien heads back to retrieve the evidence, but security guards shut off the power in the elevator on the way down. Meanwhile, the car is stolen, the young couple who take it pretend they're Julien and wife, and subsequently kill a pair of German tourists. Julien is unknowingly framed for that crime, all while trying to escape the elevator he's stuck in.

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Turner To Quit Hollywood

Kathleen Turner Paris Hilton Lindsay Lohan Jeanne Moreau Catherine Deneuve Sophia Loren

Kathleen Turner is preparing to dump Hollywood in favour of Europe, because she hates America's ageist attitudes and fascination with teen icons.

The 51-year-old star is disgusted by the rise of young stars like Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan and wants to move to Rome, Italy, and enjoy the same European success as veteran stars Jeanne Moreau, Catherine Deneuve and Sophia Loren.

She says, "Once my daughter Rachel (18) starts university, I'm going to Europe because I think women of my experience and my body of work are so much more respected there.

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Beyond The Clouds Review

Michelangelo Antonioni obsesses on the naked bodies of a good half-dozen Euro-stars in this wandering tour of western European sexual relations in various combinations. Based on a collection of his own short stories, Antonioni connects four such tales (infidelity, happenstance, old-fashioned horniness, etc.) with the narrative of a film director (John Malkovich) who's looking for a story to base his next movie on. We find we're lucky enough if we can just get one story out of this two-hour ordeal, which wanders aimlessly in art-house hell as often as it enchants.

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The Last Tycoon Review

The Last Tycoon, based on F. Scott Fitzgerald's unfinished final novel, packs a pile of talent into its two hours but comes up a bit short in the end.

A shockingly lithe Robert De Niro stars as Monroe Stahr, a 1930s studio executive based on Irving Thalberg (a prolific producer who died at the age of 37, presumably from overwork). Stahr has lost loves in the past and a crushing chip on his shoulder in the present. He's a workhorse, but he wants something more out of life.

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Going Places (1974) Review

Talk about aimless: These two hooligans (Gérard Depardieu and Patrick Dewaere) wander across the whole of France, simply looking for trouble. Namely that includes stealing cars and bedding women (usually in a three-way), then running away from whatever trouble they find themselves in -- whether they end up with a gruesome suicide on their hands or nurse from a lactating woman's breast on a train. And oh, it's a comedy. Quite funny, with a strangely perverted sensibility you aren't likely to find in many other films.

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Bay Of Angels Review

Hardly one of Demy's (The Umbrellas of Cherbourg) great works, this wisp of a film finds a mild-mannered banker (Claude Mann) becoming obsessed with roulette. (Why is it that all French gambling films revolve around roulette?) Along the way, he also becomes obsessed with an aloof platinum blonde (Jeanne Moreau) who also lives at the roulette wheel. She returns his attentions until revealing that it was all a ruse, brought on simply because she thought he brought her good luck.

A nearly identical story is done a bit more effectively in 1984's Tricheurs, but Jacques Demy's early film has some compelling moments, most notably a sudden and powerful ending that is wholly unexpected but is surprisingly satisfying. Bay of Angels ought to be a film school lesson in how to end a movie.

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Les Liaisons Dangereuses Review

Very Good
Roger Vadim, who showed a remarkable lack of self-restraint in films like Barbarella and Don Juan (or If Don Juan Were a Woman), was far more muted in his jazz-infused updating of Dangerous Liaisons, set in then-modern-day Paris but keeping the guts of the story nearly intact.

In Vadim's rendition, Valmont (Gérard Philipe) is married to Juliette de Merteuil (Jeanne Moreau), and together they get their kicks by preying on the weaknesses of other high-society types. Juliette sets her sights on Cecile (Jeanne Valérie), soon to be married to someone who has crossed her in the past, and sets Vamont onto turning the innocent (but naive and manipulatable) girl into a sexpot-in-training. Meanwhile, Valmont falls in love with the genuinely virtuous Marianne (Annette Vadim), and a love-quadrangle soons spins out of control.

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Movie Review

It's clear from the opening minutes of "Elevator to the Gallows" why this 1957 film...

Time to Leave Movie Review

Time to Leave Movie Review

Leave it to fascinating French writer/director François Ozon to take one of the most tired...

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