The New York Film Festival celebrates its 50th anniversary with a star-studded international lineup of 32 films including movies starring James Gandolfini, Denzel Washington, Bill Murray, Noomi Rapace and Rachel McAdams.
Kicking off the 17-day event is “Life of Pi,” the first 3D film to open NYFF. The epic fantasy, directed by Ang Lee, is based on the bestselling novel by Yann Martel about two survivors of a disaster at sea: a young man and a Bengal tiger. It was thought to be unfilmable as it spans three continents, two oceans and many years, but Lee employed breakthrough technology and his signature visual style to bring this unique story to the screen. Lee is a NYFF veteran whose “Ice Storm” opened the festival in 1997 and whose “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” closed it in 2000.
David Chase, creator of “The Sopranos,” makes his film debut with “Not Fade Away,” which serves as NYFF’s centerpiece. A tender, personal portrait of a group of kids in 1960s New Jersey with rock-and-roll dreams, “Not Fade Away” stars “Sopranos” star James Gandolfini as the disapproving father of the band’s gifted frontman, newcomer John Magaro.
And wrapping up the festival will be Robert Zemeckis’ “Flight,” starring Denzel Washington. The director’s first live-action outing since “Cast Away” 12 years ago, this mystery thriller stars Washington as a pilot who saves nearly all his passengers after a miraculous crash landing. John Goodman, Don Cheadle, Melissa Leo and Kelly Reilly costar.
- “Amour”—Writer-director Michael Haneke’s Palme d’Or winner is about an elderly couple coming to terms with old age starring Isabelle Huppert.
- “Frances Ha”—Indie it couple writer-director Noah Baumbach and cowriter-star Greta Gerwig, who worked together on “Greenberg,” reunite for this New York-set black-and-white love letter.
- “Ginger & Rosa”—Sally Potter (“Orlando”) directs Elle Fanning, Christina Hendricks and Annette Bening in this London, 1962-set coming-of-ager.
- “Hyde Park on Hudson”—Bill Murray plays FDR; Laura Linney, his cousin.
- “No”—Gael Garcia Bernal stars as a Chilean adman mounting a campaign to unset Pinochet.
- “Passion”—Noomi Rapace and Rachel McAdams star in Brian De Palma’s sexy thriller.
- “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet”—90-year-old auteur Alain Resnais is the only filmmaker with films at both the very first NYFF (“Muriel, or the Time of Return”) and the 50th installment.
For the complete NYFF main slate lineup, click here.
“Not Fade Away” and “Flight” photos courtesy Paramount Pictures.