Trailers: Plimpton, Assange, and the Last of Lancaster

Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself (Now Playing!)
Writer/Director: Tom Bean and Luke Poling
Cast: George Plimpton, Ken Burns, James Lipton

After four years of research, conducting interviews and delving into a wealth of archival materials, Tom Bean and Luke Poling present the story of George Plimpton using Plimpton’s own voice narration.

Eddie Cockrell of Variety says, “A fond look back at a groundbreaking media celebrity and man of letters, Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself is an entertaining profile of the self-avowed participatory journalist and his tumultuous life and times. Stuffed to the gills with media types and literary lions from the middle of the past century, this is as much time capsule as film, and will appeal to anyone who subscribed —or still does — to Plimpton’s Paris Review, and harbors fond memories of his one-off stunts.”


We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks (Opens Friday!)
Writer/Director: Alex Gibney
Cast: Julian Assange, Adrian Lamo

Academy-Award Winning director Alex Gibney brings us the story of Julian Assange and Wikileaks, which facilitated the largest security breach in U.S. History.

David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter says “Alex Gibney's docu-portrait of WikiLeaks is both a juicy chronicle of recent history and a provocative reflection on the role of secrecy in an instant-access world … Unfolding like an espionage thriller but with a methodical journalistic skill at organizing a mountain of facts, the film raises stimulating questions about transparency and freedom of information in a world in which governments and corporations have plenty to hide.”

Family Film: Microcosmos (Family Films, Saturday and Sunday)
Writer/Director: Claude Nuridsany and Marie Pérennou
Cast: Jacques Perrin

This fascinating documentary takes you into the daily life of a variety of insects with close-up, slow motion, and brilliant time-lapse photography.

Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun-Times says, “The movie is a work of art and whimsy as much as one of science. It uses only a handful of words, but is generous with music and amplified sound effects, dramatizing the unremitting struggle of survival that goes on in a meadow in France. If a camera could somehow be transported to another planet, in order to photograph alien life forms, would the result be any more astonishing than these invasions into the private lives of snails and bees, mantises and beetles, spiders and flies?”

Elmer Gantry (Burt Lancaster, Thursday)
Writer/Director: Richard Brooks
Cast: Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy

An Oscar-winning performance from Lancaster as the eponymous bible-thumping con artist in Richard Brooks’ visually ravishing (it was shot by the great John Alton) and dynamic adaptation of Sinclair Lewis’ novel.

A.H. Weiler of The New York Times says, “The briskly paced drama of a religious opportunist, his colleagues and his times utilizes the tools of the motion picture in expert fashion.”

Atlantic City (Burt Lancaster, Thursday)
Director: Louis Malle
Writer: John Guare
Cast: Burt Lancaster, Susan Sarandon, Kate Reid

Burt Lancaster’s last great performance in a film beautifully directed by Louis Malle, and just as beautifully written by playwright John Guare.

Kevin Thomas of The Los Angeles Times says, “Atlantic City is a sophisticated fairy tale, beautifully acted and beautiful to behold; it is as funny as it is touching.”

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Cannes Daily Buzz: Hot Topics Roundtable #1

Daily Buzz sat down with Michael Philips of the Chicago Tribune, Logan Hill of the New York Times, and Adam Cook of Mubi for our first Hot Topics roundtable from Cannes. The three critics discussed their overall impressions, favorite films, and most striking movie moments from the first half of the festival.

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