Isabelle Huppert’s latest film, “Frankie” from director Ira Sachs, required the actress to be especially open and honest, trusting in the strength of the characters and the performers around her rather than a strict plot.
Huppert plays an internationally famous actress who learns she has a terminal illness and brings together friends and family at a resort in Portugal in order to find some closure and hope that her loved ones are taken care of after she’s gone. But as Huppert explains, that’s “only a small part of the film,” which examines deeper relationships between its entire ensemble.
“There’s a lot being said and a lot being unsaid, and that really runs all along the film all the time, and it’s really important to capture the spirit of the film,” Huppert told TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman at the Toronto International Film Festival. “It’s one of those films where you feel so much trust by the strength of the camera, which is able to have people talk, but you feel that a lot is going on underneath, and I think that’s really Ira Sachs’s skill.”
“Frankie” is Sachs’s ninth film, which premiered at Cannes and then played at TIFF. And it is yet another film of Sachs’s that uses complex characters above plot constraints to stage intimate dramas about family and love. He assembled an impressive cast that includes Marisa Tomei, Greg Kinnear, Brendan Gleeson and Jérémie Renier specifically because of how they could interact on screen together.
“They were a group of people who I had a sense when I cast them would work together as a family,” Sachs said. “It’s a common acting style, a way in which a group of people who are willing to be very open and vulnerable and human and present with the camera. The film is about presence, it’s about a simplicity of being.”
Huppert felt comforted by how Sachs let his actors feel real and said in many ways it didn’t feel like acting at all.
“For me, it’s also a movie about the power of cinema, because when we acted, it was more like a non-acting performance for all of us, and when I say non-acting, it’s the degree zero of acting,” Huppert said. “You just let the human beings exist. No plot, and nothing, irony, a little comment, just the pure presence and pure strength of what’s being said, and that’s all.”
Sony Pictures Classics is releasing “Frankie” in theaters Oct. 25. Watch TheWrap’s interview with Huppert and Sachs above.
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www.thewrap.com | 9/18/19
For the first time since 2015, ABC’s “The Bachelor” will kick off with a three-hour live premiere when the show returns for its 23rd season. The extra-long premiere will air on ABC, streaming and on-demand Monday, Jan. 7 from 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m EST.
Along with the introduction of the women vying for the heart of Bachelor Colton Underwood, the episode will also pop in on “Bachelor” viewing parties around the country.
The premiere will see 30 women competing for the final rose, with 23 making it to the next week. Throughout the season, the cast will travel to locations around the world including Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Portugal, and Denver, which happens to be Underwood’s hometown.
Highlights of the upcoming season will include guest appearances by Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman, Billy Eichner, Terry and Rebecca Crews’ “Bachelor Strongest Woman” competition, featuring color commentary by “Bachelor” host Chris Harrison and Fred Willard, plus performances by country stars Tenille Arts and Brett Young.
The show will also introduce new gameplay for fans taking part in the Official Bachelor Fantasy League; the new rules will be announced at the end of December.
Here’s the complete list of contestants for “The Bachelor” Season 23:
Alex B., 29, a dog rescuer from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Hannah B., 23, Miss Alabama 2018 from Tuscaloosa, Alabama
“The Bachelor” is produced by Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Unscripted & Alternative Television. Mike Fleiss, Martin Hilton, Nicole Woods, Bennett Graebner and Elan Gale are the executive producers.
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www.thewrap.com | 12/6/18
Between his guerrilla-style filmmaking, ironic sense of humor and explosive rhetoric, Michael Moore has come to be either a folk hero or a political pariah depending on where you sit. And yet hailing from Flint, Mich. has made him uniquely positioned to address a wide swath of America’s woes. You may not agree with any of his politics, but damn if Moore’s movies aren’t entertaining, and no one does agitprop better. This ranking of his theatrical, feature documentaries, including his latest “Fahrenheit 11/9,” will be polarizing, but then his movies are supposed to be.
10. “Slacker Uprising” (2007)
Merely a collection of footage from Michael Moore’s stadium tour ahead of the 2004 Kerry-Bush election, “Slacker Uprising” lacks much of a focus or even a strong thesis. But far worse is how Moore positions himself as a rock star, editing in endless applause breaks of his fans or even multiple introductions by actual rock stars like Eddie Vedder or Steve Earl. The only thing Moore did right with this film was release it for free online.
9. “Michael Moore in Trumpland” (2016)
Less of a documentary and quite literally a taping of his one-man stage show in Ohio, “Trumpland” plays like Moore’s half-hearted attempt at stand-up comedy. It’s filled with lots of uneasy clapping and stern looking white dudes crossing their arms as they silently boil over with rage. The film is not without insight, and Moore makes a good case that Hillary Clinton is secretly more progressive than she ever let on. But Moore made this appeal to Trump country in the hopes they would wake up and recognize their buyers’ remorse. How did that go?
8. Capitalism: A Love Story (2009)
“Capitalism: A Love Story” marries Moore’s best ideas and worst impulses. He was tackling the housing crisis and calling out the One Percent before most caught wind, even talking with Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders before they were cool. But in order to paint capitalism as the scourge of society, he blames it for a deadly plane crash, he stops short at actually explaining derivatives, he makes simplistic analogies comparing America to the Roman Empire, and he even briefly rehashes “Roger & Me” for a punch line. Fans of his films won’t find much to disagree with, but Moore looks like a parody of himself here.
7. The Big One (1997)
Here’s another movie where Moore documents his own tour, this time to promote his book. But “The Big One” is both insightful and a lot of frivolous fun. His scrappy, guerrilla style is very much on display, swooping in on strikes and plant closings and speaking with everyone from ex-cons to the then CEO of Nike. There are even some hilarious moments where Moore hangs out at Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen’s house and uses Rick’s advice to prank his media escort.
6. Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004)
Not only is “Fahrenheit 9/11” the most successful documentary ever, it’s also among the most controversial. Now in the Trump era, George W. Bush’s actions look almost quaint, and Moore himself sounds like a conspiracy theorist asking open-ended questions and drawing tenuous connections between Bush and the bin Laden family. It even lacks some of Moore’s wit and visual intrigue. But “Fahrenheit 9/11” eventually evolves into a sobering portrait of the American military. Moore shines a terrifying light on predatory recruitment agents, on soldiers taking glee from killing and on a patriotic mother who realizes she’s lost her son in an unjust war. Moore didn’t ultimately swing the election for Kerry, but the importance of this movie in its time can’t be oversold.
5. Where to Invade Next (2015)
“Where to Invade Next” opens with a red herring. Six years removed from his previous film, Moore makes it seem like he’s now on a war path, saying America’s generals and top officials have “no idea what the f— we’re doing,” and only he can save the day. But the film is actually surprisingly optimistic for Moore, a world tour to see how the other half lives. American audiences will be genuinely surprised at what French kids have for school lunches, how Norway treats its most dangerous criminals or how Portugal is really cool towards drugs and is better for it. It’s not meant to criticize America but to champion and borrow the best ideas from abroad.
4. Sicko (2007)
Moore’s films are always emotional, but rarely are they this heartwarming. Rather than tell the story of those without insurance, he tells the countless, baffling horror stories of all those in America who do. Their stories are not just stunning but instantly relatable, and Moore taps into every angle of how insurance companies have screwed over sick people in need. And the film’s closing stunt may be his best, taking a boat of 9/11 first responders to Guantanamo Bay and Cuba to get better healthcare than would be available to them at home.
3. Bowling for Columbine (2002)
For the last 15 years, we’ve watched every late night show and news program basically remake portions of Moore’s “Bowling for Columbine.” The film was scarily ahead of the curve on the gun debate, and the raw surveillance footage of the Columbine attacks blended with 9-1-1 calls is harrowing filmmaking that Moore does more effectively than anyone. But for Moore, it’s not just the number of guns America has, he also questions the media, the NRA and our culture of violence. Between interviews with Marilyn Manson, Charlton Heston and friendly Canadians, Moore succeeds in making “Bowling for Columbine” a movie not just about guns, but about everything.
2. Fahrenheit 11/9 (2018)
There’s only so much even Michael Moore could say about Trump that hasn’t been endlessly repeated in the media since 2016. So amazingly, he doesn’t, going a full hour without mentioning Trump’s name. He returns to Flint to make a convincing argument that their water crisis is a preview for what Trump is capable of doing. He even points the finger at legacy Democrats and is heartbreakingly critical of President Obama. Moore isn’t hopeful that Robert Mueller will save the day or that things won’t get much worse, painting a scary parallel between how the media reacted to the rise of Hitler. But he is optimistic. Moore spends time with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Parkland students and the West Virginia teacher’s union to see how change is still possible, even if he wants you to leave with the idea that the American ideal never really existed.
1. Roger & Me (1989)
Moore’s first film is still his finest. No one had ever seen a guy so calmly persistent with the camera watching him waltz into these institutions of wealth and power. Those iconic shots have literally followed him his entire career, and his simple, sarcastic logic, devilish wit and nasally Midwestern accent helped make him an icon. To see the rundown Flint streets to the tune of The Beach Boys or hear a GM executive plainly talk up profits over people remains heartbreaking. But somewhere between human statues at a Great Gatsby party and a woman skinning alive a rabbit for meat, “Roger & Me” still feels like a timeless portrait of the class divide and the gobsmacking lengths Americans go through to get by.
www.thewrap.com | 9/20/18
The culture of Portugal is the result of a complex flow of different civilizations during the past Millennia. From prehistoric cultures, to its Pre-Roman civilizations, passing through its contacts with the Phoenician-Carthaginian world, the Roman period, the Germanic invasions and consequent settlement of the Suevi and Buri and the Visigoth, and, finally, the Moorish Umayyad invasion of Hispania and the subsequent Reconquista, all have made an imprint on the country's culture and history. The name of Portugal itself reveals much of the country's early history, stemming from the Roman name Portus Cale, a Latin name meaning "Port of Cale", later transformed into Portucale, and finally into Portugal, who emerged as a county of the Kingdom of León and became an independent kingdom in 1139. During the 15th and 16th centuries, Portugal was a major economic, political, and cultural power, its global empire stretching from Brazil to the Indies. Portugal, as a country with a long history, is home to several ancient architectural structures, as well as typical art, furniture and literary collections mirroring and chronicling the events that shaped the country and its peoples. It has a large number of cultural landmarks ranging from museums to ancient church buildings to medieval castles, which testify its rich national cultural heritage.