Heaven Is for Real
Faith-based film tries reaching past its audience, but falls back on preaching to its own choir way too much.
Michał Oleszczyk is a film critic and scholar based in Poland. In 2012, he has been named the Critic of the Year by the Polish Film Institute.
His work has appeared in numerous Polish outlets, as well as on American websites such as “Fandor”, “The House Next Door” and “Hammer to Nail."
Oleszczyk wrote the first Polish book on the films of Terence Davies and has published a translation of J. Hoberman and Jonathan Rosenbaum’s “Midnight Movies." After having defended a Ph.D. thesis on the work of Pauline Kael, he has taught film at Polish universities, as well as worked as a programmer for Off Plus Camera International Film Festival.
James Toback discusses his new documentary, "Seduced and Abandoned," which traces the life of a failed movie project. He also discusses the ultimate fate of humanity. Seriously.
The competition film "A Castle in Italy," a lightweight comedy, seems strangely out of place.
Billy Wilder's under-appreciated 1978 "Fedora" returns to Cannes to remind us that some things, like the fear of aging among celebrities, never change.
Michał Oleszczyk falls for offbeat gay thriller "Stranger by the Lake" and gloriously eccentric essay-film "A Story of Children and Film."
Michał Oleszczyk catches up with two takes on troubled youth: François Ozon's "Young & Beautiful" and Sofia Coppola's "The Bling Ring."
Michał Oleszczyk contrasts the opulent excess of opening night film "The Great Gatsy" with the grimmer realities of Amat Escalante's "Heli."
Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman's "Lovelace" tells the story of the eponymous porn star who stunned the world with her sexual talents in "Deep Throat" (1972), only to pay a dear price for her brief flash of celebrity. Linda Lovelace, as played by Amanda Seyfried, was a love-hungry, innocent young girl led astray by Chuck Traynor, a manipulative pimp of a husband, whose affection quickly turned into exploitation.
The Disney mystique is a secular religion so global, powerful and self-contained -- not to mention litigious -- that it practically courts desecration. Randy Moore's "Escape from Tomorrow," which just premiered at Sundance and is unlikely to come to a theater near you any time soon, is the boldest act of cinematic violation at least since the "Mickey Mouse Club" finale of Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket" (in which scores of American soldiers in Vietnam adopted the show's anthem as a deranged battle cry).
The goodies are in! After a slow start, Sundance Film Festival 2013 has begun to offer real discoveries, even if the wait for that elusive game-changing masterpiece is by no means over. Still, there's stuff to enjoy in Park City and appetites seem pleasantly whetted.