Yep, bon cop bad cop is currently on Netflix. So that is that.
On Oct 15, 2017 8:18 PM, "Joel Johnson" <joel_johnson@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Our next meeting is on Thursday, October 19th. At present we do not have
a candidate for a screening, so I am hopeful that starting the meeting at
10:00 am will meet with everyone’s approval.
Some of you were unable to be at the meeting on October 9th. I will begin
by reviewing our progress at that meeting. Much of our time was devoted to
discussing the options for showing films from Quebec. Laurie, as you may
recall, had suggested some additional candidates prior to this meeting.
These came from a group of her friends who share an interest in
We decided at the meeting that “HOCHELAGA, LAND OF SOULS” and “THE ROCKET”
could be removed from our list. “HOCHELAGA” is a Foreign-language Oscar
submission which is likely to complicate and make more expensive any
attempt to show it as part of CINEMA EXPLORATIONS 2018. Currently, it does
not have US distribution and, in my opinion, is somewhat unlikely to
receive US distribution. However in that it does document the history of
Montreal and its existence both before and after the arrival of the French
led by explorer Jacques Cartier, this film should be of interest to anyone
interested in history and, especially, those with French-Canadian roots.
This may be an interesting film to look at next year. “THE ROCKET” is about
hockey great Maurice “The Rocket” Richard who played for the Montreal
Canadiens from the 1940’s to 1960. It’s a very good film with both sports
and political storylines. It showed at MIFF probably in 2007. It is
available on DVD and streaming through Amazon as well as some other online
These were the Quebec films we left on the list in consideration and on
which I have done some additional research:
“MON ONCLE ANTOINE” https://www.nfb.ca/film/mon_oncle_antoine/ We have
discussed this film as a possibility for the last three years (and I
believe everyone has seen it either as part of those earlier considerations
or at an earlier viewing—you can watch it online using this link if you
haven’t seen it) and usually not gotten beyond the confusion about the
apparently lapsed US theatrical rights. I now have a contact at the
National Film Board of Canada who is prepared to assist us in booking this
film. They have a DCP with English subtitles. This film would be a classic
film as well as a film from Quebec.
“KAMOURASKA” is a film, like “MON ONCLE ANTOINE,” by Claude Jutra. It is
based on a true story set in mid-19th century Kamouraska on the southern
shore of the St. Lawrence River downstream from Quebec City which was the
basis of a novel by Anne Hébert who then collaborated on the screenplay
adaptation with Jutra. Genevieve Bujold is the focal point of a love
triangle. She colludes with her lover who kills her abusive and mentally
unstable first husband. This plays out in reminiscences by Bujold’s
character who is maintaining a death vigil for her second husband. The film
has two versions. The original release was a little over two hours and one
reviewer described it as a “mutilation.” This showed in French Canada and
had a limited US release in the mid-1970’s. Several years later a
director’s cut was released on Canadian TV and on video. This was 174
minutes. There are very few critical reviews. Unfortunately, they’re not
particularly glowing. The film is available on some streaming platforms,
but it is the longer version. We might consider a slight alteration of our
start-time for the original 124 minute running time, but there’s just no
way to accommodate the longer running time. This combined with a murky US
rights situation and questionable quality makes the film perhaps much too
challenging to pursue with such an uncertain result.
“LES BONS DÉBARRAS” is considered one of Quebec’s best films. It showed at
Railroad Square in the early 1980’s. Quite a bit of background on the film
is told in this article: http://cinema-scope.com/
mankiewiczs-les-bons-debarras/ This film addresses small-town rural life,
but clearly shows a family struggling economically and to meet the
emotional needs of its members. The film is available on iTunes and on
Canadian streaming services. There was a US distributor, but it is not
clear who may hold the rights presently as that company does not appear to
be active. However, we could be catching a break as the film has been
digitally restored and will have a special screening in Toronto through
TIFF in November: http://www.tiff.net/films/les-bons-debarras/ and
by-claude-fournier-and-marie-jose-raymond/ This restoration could make
the film more easily available in future years even if we didn’t decide to
pursue it this year.
“MY INTERNSHIP IN CANADA” (2015). This is about a young Haitian who
accepts an internship with a Quebec politician and becomes exposed to the
needs of the rural district while at the same time his boss becomes a
pivotal vote in a controversial political battle. It does not yet have US
distribution. World-wide rights are owned by Films Distribution/Playtime
and the film’s additional details link goes to:
“OUR LOVED ONES” This film is about a family coping with a suicide that
was covered up and withheld from some of them. How do they heal and move
on. World-wide rights seem to be owned by https://www.widemanagement.
com/our-loved-ones Canadian rights belong to Les Films Séville (AKA
Entertainment One) https://www.filmsseville.com/
“HENRI HENRI” bears some resemblance to the French film “AMELIE.” Alas,
the film does not feature Audrey Tautou. It apparently had a relatively
short life on the festival circuit though it did show at a couple of fairly
prominent film festivals in Seattle and Palm Springs. It does not have a US
distributor. It looks like all rights are retained by Seville
International: http://www.sevilleinternational.com/film/ This was the
webpage on which “HENRI HENRI” appeared, but if it doesn’t directly go to
that film be sure to query for it.
“BON COP, BAD COP” is a mismatched buddy picture pairing a Quebec cop and
an Ontario cop together. The set-up is somewhat similar to the television
series “The Bridge” versions in Scandinavia and on the US-Mexico border as
well as British-French version (“The Tunnel”), but this film predates those
television programs. However, comedy appears to play a fairly big role in
the film. Netflix is a distributor for the film, though it is not clear if
they only own the streaming and/or DVD rights to the film. It is also not
clear when it has been available through Netflix since Netflix rotates
films regularly. Otherwise, the rights are probably with Seville
We did have some discussion on some of our other films:
Mike informed us that “MAYA DARDEL” will be coming to Railroad Square so
we removed that film from consideration.
We decided to remove “WHOSE STREETS?” from the list. We felt its message
might be too confrontational or heavy-handed. There does seem to be quite a
disparity between how audiences (3.8 on IMDb) and critics view the film (81
on Metacritic). It is or will be available on DVD and streaming through
Amazon and other streaming services before our series will begin.
We decided to remove “BRIMSTONE & GLORY” from consideration thinking that
a Mexican documentary on fireworks in Spanish might not be a subject that
our audience might find attractive though its potential to keep our
audience awake might be higher than some other films.
With the obvious exception of “MAYA NARDEL,” the films that we have
“removed from consideration” could be resurrected if someone wants to
advocate for a particular film.
Films that have garnered favorable conversation from the group at meetings
and in e-mails are “FACES PLACES,” “OTHER SIDE OF HOPE,” “KILLS ON WHEELS,”
“LIBERATION DAY,” “BOMBSHELL: THE HEDY LEMARR STORY,” “ON THE BEACH AT
NIGHT ALONE,” “THROUGH THE REPELLANT FENCE,” and the “INDIVISIBLE”
documentary. This should not be considered an exhaustive list since I may
have overlooked someone’s comments nor have we really addressed more than a
handful of films on the list.
There was some expression of irritation about “WASTED! THE STORY OF FOOD
WASTE” because of Anthony Bourdain’s involvement with the film. He is an
executive producer of the film and is one of the chef’s and other
commentators involved in the film. It does have a fairly powerful story to
tell that might be bigger than one may tend to expect of a story about
wasted food (see trailer on IMDb). On the other hand, it’s US release was
10/13/17 and it is already available through Amazon Video.
I was asked at our last meeting about films on the list that I think may
deserve more attention from the group than they have heretofore received in
our discussions. These films piqued my interest, but by no means are they
especially more suitable than many of the other films on the list and some
of you may have other films that you find compelling. At the meeting I
mentioned drama “1945” from Hungary and the documentary “AIDA’S SECRET.”
These are both Holocaust-related films. I think “1945” has similarities to
Oscar-winner “IDA” from Poland in that it’s focus is not solely on what the
Nazis did, but on how some people took advantage of what they were doing.
“AIDA’S SECRET” is about a family mystery that unfolds decades after the
Holocaust about how people coped with what was happening and what they did
for survival. I didn’t mention these at the meeting, but there are a few
others for which I have a soft spot. I am curious about “THE LONG NIGHT OF
FRANCISCO SANCTIS.” This is an Argentine film that addresses the time in
the 1970’s and 1980’s when that country was ruled by a military junta and
suspected political dissidents “disappeared.” The film presents us with the
moral dilemma of how would we respond if we had the opportunity to
intervene. This is one (http://variety.com/2016/film/
) of several reviews that you can reach from the film’s IMDb webpage. Many
of them are in foreign languages. While I find this film intriguing, I
don’t know that addressing Argentine injustice from 40 years ago would be
especially alluring for our potential audience. Aside from two or three
Quebec films, the only classic film on the list is “HEAT AND DUST” (1983).
It is a Merchant-Ivory film—an imprimatur that graced Railroad Square
Cinema multiple times in the 1980’s and 1990’s—and I remember really liking
it (Could the fact that the film features Julie Christie and Greta Scacchi
in the two time-periods addressed by the film have been a factor?). It does
exceed the two-hour window we impose on most of our films at 133 minutes.
If we have a particularly attractive or important film, we might be
justified in adjusting our start time to show it since Ken is adamant that
he wants to be able to start all the regular films at noon to maximize the
exposure of the many Oscar contenders showing at the time our series runs.
A change in start time will, no doubt, create some confusion and reticence
in a segment of our audience. I am quite interested in the documentary
“INTENT TO DESTROY.” The Armenian genocide during World War I is a
historical event for which there continues to be a cover-up by the
government of Turkey. The documentary addresses the effect of the
continuing cover-up on filmmakers who have tried to bring the story of the
Armenian genocide to the screen. In this case the cover-up is probably not
worse than the original crimes, but the two-pronged approach makes the film
more interesting to me than a straight history of the genocide.
I have previously forwarded to you several film distributor websites. Many
of these are the distributors for the films on our list and have things
like trailers, press quotes, press kits, etc. that may be helpful. However,
some of these distributors are also distributing other films that did not
fall into the New York Times Fall Movie Release Schedule officially coming
out earlier or perhaps not yet. There are some films that I am looking
forward to seeing, but in general there were not any that I felt would
likely be especially attractive to our audience. If you think there are, it
would probably be helpful to put these out on the table for consideration.
I did, however, come across two documentaries from a small distributor
called Vitagraph Films (http://vitagraphfilms.com/ ). I had apparently
overlooked the film “FOR AHKEEM” on the Fall Movie Release Schedule. It is
about a black teenaged girl coming of age in St. Louis. The filming
overlaps the time of the Michael Brown shooting in nearby Ferguson, but the
focus is on one young girl and her navigating life in her community. It
likely touches on some of the issues in “WHOSE STREETS?”, but hopefully in
a less direct and heavy-handed way. Vitagraph is also distributing a
documentary called “LETTERS FROM BAGHDAD” about Gertrude Bell. She spent
much of her life in the Middle East and had her own ideas about the region
that was carved up by Britain and France at the conclusion of World War I.
What happened then sowed the seeds for what has happened since and we—the
United States—have become very involved as a result in dealing with that
part of the world. You may recall that Nicole Kidman starred as Gertrude
Bell in a film called “QUEEN OF THE DESERT” by director Werner Herzog.
Unfortunately, the film did not get good reviews and fairly quickly
disappeared from theaters. Gertrude Bell was a very liberated woman during
a time when most women definitely weren’t liberated. The film is a
documentary, but the film has used actors to speak as Bell and her
contemporaries while also using archive footage from the early 20th
With the two films that I just added and the others that were removed, we
have 54 films on the CINEMA EXPLORATION 2018 list on IMDb (
http://www.imdb.com/list/ls020109024/ ). I have also updated the Thematic
Grid for those films and that is attached. I don’t know to what extent we
are ready to make decisions to book particular films, but we do have some
films for which we would seem to be or could be close to taking that step.
We may also have some films that we may quickly reach some consensus as to
how they do not fit or are problematic. Decisions to book would allow us to
exclude the other films in that category. Excluding some films on the basis
of less appealing subject matter, excessive length, or being a current
Oscar submission could eliminate several films and possibly more.