Claire Denis' New Movie Is On The Way, And This Should Get Marvel-Level Attention, Please

Although the 2022 Berlin International Film Festival doesn't officially kick off until the February 10, the first major deal of the fest has already been struck: According to Variety, IFC Films has secured the distribution rights to "Fire," aka "Both Sides of the Blade," the latest film from celebrated director Claire Denis. "Fire" stars Juliette Binoche as a woman who is living with her husband (Vincent Lindon from "Titane"), when he is reunited with an old friend (Grégoire Colin) who also her old boyfriend. The three relationships become more strained from there. 

Denis, a director known for her masterful obfuscation and use of non-linear storytelling will likely mete out details very carefully, assuring that audiences won't understand the whole picture until late in the film. 

IFC Films has long been dedicated to finding and distributing important international films in the United States, having previously distributed other Binoche films like Olivier Assayas' films "The Clouds of Sils Maria" and "Non-Fiction," Abbas Kiarostami's "Certified Copy," and the Binoche/Denis collaborations "Let the Sunshine In" and "White Material." "Fire," written by Denis and Christine Angot, will be the first Claire Denis film since 2018's "High Life," which was put out by A24. The current plan is to release "Fire" in the summer of 2022.

"Fire" also stars Mati Diop, Bulle Ogier, Issa Perica, and Hana Magimel, and was shot by Eric Gautier.

The Golden Bear

The Berlin International Film Festival, AKA Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin, AKA Berlinale, began in 1951 and became an annual event in 1978. Along with the festivals in Cannes and Venice, it is one of the highest-profile and most prestigious international film events on the globe, and its top award is The Golden Bear. In 2021, the Bear went to Romania's "Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn," a stirring and infuriating drama about a teacher having to defend herself from a group of racist parents who have discovered a leaked sex tape of hers. The films that win the Golden Bear don't necessarily secure widespread distribution in the United States, however, and many of the Berlinale winners remain unavailable in this country. Although American films do sometimes win. 

The last French film to with The Golden Bear was an Israeli co-production called "Synonyms" in 2019. Before that, France took home the honor in 2001 for the Patrice Chéreau film "Intimacy."

Incidentally, the last American film to win The Golden Bear was Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia" in 2000, which marked a string of American wins that included "The Thin Red Line," "The People vs. Larry Flynt," and "Sense and Sensibility." 

Claire Denis has not been nominated for awards at Berlinale since 2000, when her film "Beau Travail" — based loosely on the Herman Melville novel "Billy Budd — was awarded the Reader Jury of the "Berliner Zeitung," Special Mention award.

Encouraged by this author: Look up the films to have won the Golden Bear, and seek them out. Many of them are available on your local streaming services, and most are worth your attention.