24 Frames

Movies: Past, present and future

Category: Gus Van Sant

Release picture clears up for Gus Van Sant's 'Restless'

March 31, 2011 |  4:21 pm


It was pulled from January and the Sundance schedule, but Gus Van Sant’s “Restless” won’t stay hidden for much longer. Sony Pictures Classics on Thursday confirmed this Indiewire story from December that it will release the movie.

"Restless" was made by SPC parent Sony Pictures, but the company decided to scotch the Jan. 28, 2011 release date and the Sundance premiere that would have preceded it.

The film is considered a potential candidate for the upcoming Cannes Film Festival, and could also make the rounds at the fall film festivals. SPC did not disclose a commercial release date for the picture, though a spokeswoman did confirm a fall release.

Van Sant had his biggest hit in a decade with his last movie, the 2008 gay-rights biopic “Milk.” His new movie stars Mia Wasikowska as a girl who is diagnosed with a serious illness and follows the relationship she then develops with another teen (Henry Hopper, son of Dennis). The movie is a next-generation effort in another way, too: It marks  the producing debut of actress Bryce Dallas Howard, daughter of Hollywood heavyweight Ron Howard.

--Steven Zeitchik


Photo: Mia Wasikowska and Henry Hopper in "Restless." Credit: Sony Pictures Classics

Who's the best choice to direct 'Breaking Dawn'? An appraisal

March 17, 2010 |  3:47 pm

As startling as it would first seem, the scuttlebutt that three Oscar-winners -- Bill Condon, Gus Van Sant and Sofia Coppola -- have been approached to direct "Breaking Dawn" shouldn't really surprise.

Dawn First, the key is approached. Big directors are approached all the time, the same way you might approach the edge of a cliff but never actually go over it. It still seems far-fetched that the auteur who gave us "My Own Private Idaho" would return to the Pacific Northwest to track Quileutes and Volturi.

But we live in an era when the greatest filmmakers take on Batman and Robert Ludlum properties. And if nothing else, the selection of one of these auteurs could induce some tweens to become suddenly familiar with the early work of River Phoenix. (We suspect "Kinsey" could be a little tougher.) Look at it as directing as demo-expansion.

With that in mind, here's a quick assessment of both the virtues and problems of giving the "Breaking Dawn" assignment to each of the directors on the reputed shortlist.

1) Bill Condon
Pro: He knows how to hit the high notes, literal and figurative, in his love stories. And movies such as "Dreamgirls" adroitly tell of misunderstood and underestimated women, descriptors that certainly fit Bella Swan.
Con: The guy does prestige dramas like "Kinsey." And musicals. Musicals. You know, those movies in which people belt out their thoughts, not whisper tortured nothings to their paramours in-between flying chase scenes. Tonally, we don't see it.

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