Ralph Fiennes

The impossibility of getting away from it all, rendered beautifully

Dinner is never just dinner in Luca Guadagnino's newest film.

Dinner is never just dinner in Luca Guadagnino’s newest film.

Sometimes you want to go to the movies and see four actors doing amazing work in a wonderful film. That’s what you’re going to get when you see Luca Guadagnino’s A Bigger Splash.  This is a movie with layers of meaning, with people saying things when they shouldn’t, and not saying things when they should. It’s a bit contrived, but very real. Let’s try to convince you to see it so we can talk about it later. Here’s my best shot.

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Spinning Platters film critics present their top 10 films of 2014

Spinning Platters film critics Carrie Kahn and Chad Liffmann each share their ten favorite films of 2014. Here is Carrie’s list, presented in alphabetical order. And you can see Chad’s list here.

1.) Boyhood

Patricia Arquette and Ellar Coltrane are outstanding as a mother and son who grow and change together.

Filmed intermittently over 12 years, Richard Linklater’s film chronicling a boy named Mason (Ellar Coltrane) from ages six to 18 in real time is both a technical marvel and a cinematic masterpiece. There has been nothing like it before on screen, and there will no doubt be nothing like it again. Utterly unique in scope and vision, the film lets us watch a life develop in front of our very eyes, with all of its attendant hopes, dreams, achievements, and disappointments. Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke play Mason’s parents, changing and growing right alongside him and his older sister (Lorelei Linklater). An absolutely dazzling achievement that will leave you breathless and awed, Linklater’s picture is sure to be the one to beat for Best Picture come Oscar time. (You can also read Gordon’s full-length review here).

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Anderson’s old fashioned adventure tale captivates, delights

Ralph Fiennes as Gustave H. and Tony Revolori as the Lobby Boy Zero contemplate their options in The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Ralph Fiennes as Gustave H. and Tony Revolori as the Lobby Boy Zero contemplate their options in The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Wes Anderson is one of those polarizing filmmakers whose films are either loved or hated. His legions of fans delight in his highly stylized artistry, whimsical storytelling, and quirky characters, while his detractors deride his pictures as pretentious at worst and lightweight at best. Anderson’s newest offering, The Grand Budapest Hotel, however, should satisfy his fans and critics alike, as it melds his trademark fairy tale sensibility with an undercurrent of melancholy and solemnity that keep the picture from being too cloying or precious. [read the whole post]

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Daniel Craig as James Bond in Skyfall.

Starring: Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris and Judi Dench

Written by: Neal Purvis & Robert Wade and John Logan

Directed by: Sam Mendes

MPAA: Rated PG-13 for intense violent sequences throughout, some sexuality, language and smoking

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Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, and Vanessa Redgrave in CORIOLANUS

starring: Ralph Fiennes, Gerard Butler, Vanessa Redgrave, Brian Cox, Jessica Chastain, James Nesbitt, Paul Jesson

written by: John Logan

directed by: Ralph Fiennes

MPAA: Rated R for some bloody violence

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Michelle Williams as Marilyn Monroe in MY WEEK WITH MARILYN, which is having its Bay Area premiere during the Mill Valley Film Festival.

The Mill Valley Film Festival, one of the Bay Area’s most esteemed and prestigious film events, is returning for its 34th installment October 6-16. The MVFF has come to represent the first opportunity for Bay Area film buffs to check out festival favorites from the likes of Toronto, Venice, and Telluride before their theatrical releases, not to mention a chance to mingle with the talent; expected guests this year include Glenn Close, Martin Donovan, Luc Besson, Michelle Yeoh, Anton Yelchin, Felicity Jones, Elizabeth Olsen, John Hawkes, and Ezra Miller. Last year’s festival featured the likes of 127 Hours, Blue Valentine, and eventual Best Picture winner The King’s Speech. Look after the jump for the top 12 films to check out this year.

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