Three days into September and the awards season is already heating up, as some of the year’s most anticipated films have been revealed in Venice.
George Clooney’s The Ides of March, a political thriller starring Ryan Gosling, opened the Venice fest on Wednesday to favorable, if somewhat middling, reviews. Most of the praise for the film went to leading man Ryan Gosling and the rest of the ensemble, which includes Evan Rachel Wood, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, Marisa Tomei, and of course Clooney himself. The cinematography by Phedon Papamichael and Alexandre Desplat’s score have also been singled out as products of admiration, though the film itself didn’t turn out to gain quite the level of enthusiasm as expected.
Roman Polanski’s adaptation of Yasmina Reza’s play God of Carnage – under the shortened title of just Carnage – didn’t manage to sweep away the critics, either. Though the film had its share of admirers, and plenty of praise was given to Christoph Waltz’s performance, the consensus seemed to be that Polanski felt somewhat absent as a filmmaker and that the final product had difficulty shaking off its theatrical roots. I’m still dying to see it myself, though. Continue reading