Sep. 5 correction: After thinking about it more, I realize this year’s Venice Competition is no more star-heavy than most years. It just seems that way because the lineup is less appealing for hardcore cinephiles than usual. (They do have Lav Diaz. Escalante sort of counts. Larraín doesn’t really because his film is a Hollywood biopic.) The masters of world cinema are less well represented than in 2015 (Sokurov, Skolimowski, Bellocchio), 2013 (Tsai, Miyazaki, Garrel) or 2012 (Bellocchio, Seidl, Assayas).
We are now in the thick of Venice (Index, Rankings). Am I wrong or is their Competition this year more star-heavy than usual? It feels like the Competition this time exists as a launching pad for Oscar campaigns with Lav Diaz thrown in to maintain some semblance of hardcore cinephile cred.
Your Film of the Week is José Luis Guerín’s The Academy of Muses.
The Academy of Muses (José Luis Guerín)
Rotten Tomatoes: N/A • 4 reviews
Metacritic: 82 • 5 reviews
Critics Round Up: 94 • 18 reviews
The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger (Bartek Dziadosz, Colin MacCabe, Christopher Roth and Tilda Swinton)
Rotten Tomatoes: 60 • 10 reviews
Metacritic: 56 • 7 reviews
Critics Round Up: 78 • 8 reviews
Garbage Time is an irregular section of this stats column that looks at movies that, for multiple reasons starting with the mostly negative reviews, were deemed unsuitable for the homepage but nevertheless might still be of some interest to cinephiles.
The Light Between Oceans (Derek Cianfrance)
Rotten Tomatoes: 61 • 108 reviews
Metacritic: 61 • 42 reviews
Critics Round Up: 58 • 6 reviews
Yoga Hosers (Kevin Smith)
Rotten Tomatoes: 22 • 41 reviews
Metacritic: 23 • 17 reviews
Critics Round Up: 40 • 5 reviews