August 30, 2008

Body of Lies poster

Pretty cool poster. Hope the movie is decent...

Some Casting News For a Certain Group of Bastards!

Variety tells us as such:
-"Inglorious Bastards" writer-director Quentin Tarantino has set thesps Diane Kruger, Christoph Waltz and Paul Rust in the Weinstein Co./Universal drama.
Pic begins production Oct. 13 in Germany.
The trio join Brad Pitt, Eli Roth, Mike Myers, Michael Fassbender, B.J. Novak and Samm Levine.
Kruger ("National Treasure") plays German actress Bridget Von Hammersmark, who figures prominently in a plot to sabotage the Nazis. It is a role for which Nastassja Kinski was first mentioned.
Waltz, who is best known in Germany for his television work, has landed the role of Col. Hans Landa, who is the primary antagonist in the drama.

The Secret Lives of Bees Trailer

August 28, 2008

The Lucky Ones Trailer!

Following up from the poster, now a trailer:

More Catwoman Chatter

Now here's a catwoman I would not mind. Has any other movie's casting been so intensely scrutinized? For the record, Marion Cotillard is incredibly hot, and a great actress, so perhaps Nolan is taking notes (presuming a Catwoman is even in the next film).

August 27, 2008

Poster for The Lucky Ones!

Good director and nice cast, but can this be more than another war themed failure?

August 26, 2008

A Snapshot from Revolutionary Road!

Will this be the big movie of the year?

An Eclectic Bunch of DVDs This Week!

Ahoy gang...this week we have a bunch of films out, none of which are amazing, but a whole lot of good ones. My choice for PICK OF THE WEEK is the best of the bunch though, and it's:
David Mamet wrote and directed this martial arts film that is far better than you expect it to be. Chiwetel Ejiofor is fantastic in this, which is well worth a look.
-Also out this week worth a look is Son of Rambow, a fantasy about the power or film and imagination, which is ok, but not great, the documentary Where in the World is Osama bin Laden, which has a bad title, but is pretty good otherwise, Chicago 10, an animated recreation of the famous trial with a lot of famous voices, and Purple Violets, the latest film from the underrated filmmaker Ed Burns.
-The other films released this week are nowhere near as good, but here they are anyway: August, the Josh Hartnett film about the internet boom and bust (he's good, the film isn't), What Happens in Vegas, which is about as average as they come, and the filth from Uwe Boll which is known as Postal.
-My DVD pick this week is Bobby, which is in honor of the Democratic National Convention this week. Watch this film to see how we used to have politicians that wanted real change, and then cross your fingers that we get a new one in November (cough, Obama, cough)
-What will you guys be watching this week?

August 25, 2008

Cruel Joke, eh?

I do believe in life after love, but I don't believe that Cher is in talks to play Catwoman. I am firmly convinced that this is a joke, but it's a cruel one that's not funny. Whoever decided to pull it, should be punished in the most severe way. Besides, I hope Nolan gives Halle Berry one more try. She was phenomenal in a great movie, and really had two things going for her in the film.

New York, I Love You Trailer!

The next in the series, looks like a great love letter to the city that I call home...

-doesn't hurt that it looks like a decent portion of it takes place 2 minutes from my home!

Che Poster


August 24, 2008

Knowing Trailer

Nicolas Cage led disaster/end of the world flick, hmmmm....

could be good....

007 Coming a week later!

Quantum of Solace, the new James Bond film, will be coming out at a slightly different time it seems, as per this article in Variety:
-Now that the next "Harry Potter" installment won't be opening at Thanksgiving, Sony and MGM have jumped on the chance to bow its Bond pic "Quantum of Solace" a week later than planned.
"Solace" will be released on Nov. 14 instead of Nov. 7.
Bond titles have traditionally opened the weekend before Thanksgiving, but Sony didn't want to open too close to Warner Bros.' "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," so it originally settled on Nov. 7.
But the landscape changed last week when Warners announced it was pushing back "Half-Blood Prince" from Nov. 21 to July. (Studio made the move to even out its slate considering the gargantuan success of "The Dark Knight.")
Summit Entertainment was the first to respond by moving Catherine Hardwicke's vampire pic "Twilight" to Nov. 21 (Daily Variety, Aug. 18). "We believe Nov. 14 is a great date that allows us to play straight through Thanksgiving and right into Christmas," said Jeff Blake, Sony chairman of worldwide marketing and distribution. "We believe this decision will give the public a wider opportunity to see the film over the holiday."
Within hours of the Bond pic's migration to Nov. 14, Universal decided to move R-rated comedy "Role Models" off of that date and open it instead on Nov. 7.
As it stands now, "Solace" goes up against 20th Century Fox's Nicole Kidman-Hugh Jackman epic "Australia," from director Baz Luhrmann, Overture's dramedy "Nothing Like the Holidays" and MGM comedy "Soul Men."

August 23, 2008

Elegy Trailer

A dark horse Oscar candidate?

-Between this and Vicky Christina Barcelona, this is looking like a very good year for Penelope Cruz!

High School Musical 3 Trailer

Is this going to be a big time hit?

August 22, 2008

Trailer for The Women

Doesn't look like anything special, but who knows:

August 21, 2008

Iron Man 2 Will Have A Swinger Directing It!

Just in case anyone was worried that Jon Favreau was not going to helm the next Iron Man, the LA Times seems to confirm that he's in, from his mouth no less:
"We're working on it now," he said, "which hasn't been officially announced. It will be released in 2010."

World Soundtrack Award Nominees!

-Film Composer of the Year:
Alexandre Desplat, “The Golden Compass”
James Newton Howard, “Charlie Wilson’s War,” “Michael Clayton,” “I Am Legend”
Alberto Iglesias, “The Kite Runner”
Dario Marianelli, “Atonement”
John Powell, “The Bourne Ultimatum"
-Best Original Score of the Year:
“3:10 to Yuma” by Marco Beltrami
“Atonement” by Dario Marianelli
“The Kite Runner” by Alberto Iglesias
“There Will Be Blood” by Jonny Greenwood
“WALL-E” by Thomas Newman
-Best Original Song Written Directly for Film:
“Despdida” from “Love in the Time of Cholera,” music by Antonio Pinto and Shakira, lyrics by Shakira, performed by Shakira
“Down to Earth” from “WALL-E,” music by Thomas Newman and Peter Gabriel, lyrics by Peter Gabriel, performed by Peter Gabriel
“Do You Feel Me” from “American Gangster,” music and lyrics by Diane Warren, performed by Anthony Hamilton
“Guaranteed” from “Into the Wild,” music and lyrics by Eddie Vedder, performed by Eddie Vedder
“A Hero Comes Home” from “Beowulf,” music and lyrics by Glen Ballard and Alan Silvestri, performed by Robin Wright Penn / Idina Menzel
-Finally some love for Johnny Greenwood! (and go Eddie Vedder as well)

Frost/Nixon Trailer!

Nominations could be coming from across the board...take a look:

August 20, 2008

Flash of Genius Trailer!

Greg Kinnear FYC?

RockNRolla Trailer

Guy Ritchie directs....looks interesting

Todd Field to Direct Blood Meridian

Seems as though Field is taking over for Ridley Scott on this production, based on Cormac McCarthy's novel. As someone who has loved both of Field's films, this project just became a great deal more noteworthy.
-How about you? Is Field up to the task of this bleak novel?

August 19, 2008

This Week's DVD Picks!

Sorry for the lack of a catchy title this week (though if anyone can think of a permenant title for this particular piece I would greatly appreciate an email or a comment here with suggestions), but let's jump right in. The PICK OF THE WEEK this week is actually a movie made for HBO, but it's of such high quality that it deserves mention here. It is:
This retelling of the debacle in Florida between Bush and Gore is incredibly compelling. Anyone with an even small interest in politics and what happened 8 years ago in Florida will love this. The all-star cast led by Kevin Spacey doesn't hurt either.
-Another release that is quite good but somehow missed theaters is An American Crime. This ended up on Showtime, but if it had come out in theaters audiences would have taken notice of both Ellen Page and Catherine Keener here. This tale of the kidnapping and torture of a child by an insane woman is heartbraking and intense. Well worth discovering on dvd.
-Also out and of high quality this week is the old school style comedy romp Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day and the high school shooting drama The Life Before Her Eyes. Both could not be more different from each other, but both are very good films with excellent acting and are worth looking at.
-The rest of the major releases this week are the uneven cop drama Street Kings, which is decent till it all falls apart at the end, the sterilized and boring slasher flick Prom Night, and the concert flick Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds, which is great if you like her music but is pretty much torture otherwise.
-My vintage pick this week is an actual old film for a change. It's 12 Angry Men, and so many years later it still is a classic. Anyone who likes tense courtroom style films will love this.
What are you guys watching this week? (and be sure to suggest names for the article!)

August 17, 2008

Battle in Seattle Trailer

Looks interesting...

Max Payne Trailer

A video game adaptation that might not suck? We'll see....

2nd Best

It's official...The Dark Knight has made its way to the #2 all time slot at the box office. Though it most likely won't surpass Titanic (or end up winning this weekend either) this is still a rather big event. Congrats Batman!

August 16, 2008

New W. Poster!

This project will certainly be interesting, to say the least...

A Blog About A Blog

Just to get people a little more excited about Watchmen, on Kevin Smith's blog, he posted an entry saying (among other things) that he's seen Watchmen, and it has impressed him quite a bit, and he's a devout fan of the graphic novel. So rejoice Watchmen fans, next year things will be quite good for you!

A Return to Form for Mike Myers?

Looks like Mike Myers will be one of Tarantino's 'Bastards'.

As you know, Myers has been somewhat on a downward spiral with his films, so perhaps this film might resurrect his career. Myers now join Pitt, Eli Roth, and B.J. Novak in what looks to be a pretty darn good film.

August 15, 2008

Is This The Week That TDK Finally Falls From #1?

Can Ben Stiller and Iron Man dethrone the Dark Knight, or will that honor fall to George Lucas and his cartoon Clones? Or maybe even some killer mirrors? Or will Batman reign supreme?

August 14, 2008

No Harry Potter This Year!

Variety tells the tale:
-Harry Potter is climbing on his broom and flying into next year.
Warner Bros. has decided to bump the release of “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” from Nov. 21 to July 17. Shift puts it up against Universal’s bigscreen adaptation of “Land of the Lost,” starring Will Ferrell.
In response, Disney has moved its animated feature “Bolt” up a week into the open November slot.
Move comes as Warner Bros. is looking for ways to beef up its summer schedule, which had been light on major tentpoles -- a result attributed mostly to the writers strike, which kept the studio from developing big-budget pics.
Last-minute move comes as Daniel Radcliffe appears this week on the cover of Entertainment Weekly’s fall movie preview, published by Warners parent Time Warner.
Outside of “Terminator Salvation,” which it is distribbing for Halcyon, Warners had a summer lineup that featured mostly small comedies and genre fare like the Todd Phillips laffer “Hangover,” Robert Rodriguez’s “Shorts” and “Final Destination 4 3-D.”
“Like every other studio, we are still feeling the repercussions of the writers strike, which impacted the readiness of scripts for other films -- changing the competitive landscape for 2009 and offering new windows of opportunity that we wanted to take advantage of,” said Alan Horn, prexy and chief operating officer of Warner Bros.
Sixth installment of the “Harry Potter” franchise will open day-and-date internationally.
Last “Harry Potter” installment, “The Order of the Phoenix” earned $938 million worldwide during summer 2007. It also bowed in July.
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” based on the final book in the series, will not be affected by the latest release-date shuffle, and will still be split into two parts to bow in fall 2010 and summer 2011.

New Body of Lies Trailer

slightly better than the last one:

August 13, 2008

Valkyrie Coming Out This Year After All!

The film may end up not being anything near awards worthy, but good to see it getting a higher profile release date. Variety has this to say:
MGM has moved the film to open Dec. 26, instead of the Feb. 13 date that was previously announced.

The Brothers Bloom Poster

Looks like fun!

20 Films Added To The Toronto Film Festival

These are the 20:
-Aide-toi le ciel t'aideraFrançois Dupeyron, FranceWorld PremiereIn his latest film, François Dupeyron (Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran, TIFF 2003) again turns his attention to an underprivileged sector of society, creating a memorable figure of remarkable spirit and tenacity. Sonia (Félicité Wouassi, La Haine), the long-suffering matriarch of the Mousse family, finds her life spiraling out of control on her daughter's wedding day – her eldest son is dabbling with drugs while her husband has gambled away the money for the wedding reception. She is determined, however, that nothing will disrupt this special day.
-Un Barrage Contre le Pacifique Rithy PanhFrance/Cambodia/BelgiumWorld PremiereAdapted from the novel of the same name by Marguerite Duras, Un Barrage Contre le Pacifique is directed by Rithy Panh (S21, La Machine de mort Khmère Rouge, TIFF 2003), who has turned to a classic work French literature to make a film about his native country. The legendary Isabelle Huppert stars as the matriarch of a small land-owning family in 1930s French Indochina (now Cambodia) who try to survive by working on rice fields located dangerously close to the ocean. Driven to fight against both nature and corrupt bureaucrats, she devises an imaginative scheme to build a dam against the sea with the help of the villagers.
-The Brothers BloomRian Johnson, USAWorld PremiereThe brothers Bloom (Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo) are the best con men in the world, swindling millionaires with complex scenarios of lust and intrigue. Now they've decided to take on one last con – showing a beautiful and eccentric heiress (Rachel Weisz) the time of her life with a romantic adventure that carries them around the world. The Brothers Bloom also features Rinko Kikuchi, Maximilian Schell and Robbie Coltrane.
-Easy VirtueStephan Elliott, UK/USAWorld PremiereColin Firth, Jessica Biel, Kristin Scott Thomas and Ben Barnes star in an adaptation by Stephan Elliott (Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) of Noel Coward's wickedly witty play. A young Englishman (John Whittaker), falls madly in love with an older woman – Larita is sexy, glamorous and American. They marry impetuously. When they return to John's family home, his mother Veronica has an instant allergic reaction to her new daughter-in-law but Larita finds an unlikely ally in John's father.
-Faubourg 36Christophe BarratierFranceA dazzling musical from the director of Les Choristes (TIFF 2004), Faubourg 36 is set between December 1935 and July 1936 in a working-class neighbourhood on the northeastern edge of Paris. The springtime election of a left-wing government brings wild new hopes, yet also sees the rise of extremist ideas. Three unemployed stage workers decide to produce a "hit show "and occupy the music hall where they formally worked. The stage is set for a short-lived but wonderful adventure.
-GenovaMichael Winterbottom, United KingdomWorld PremiereSeeking a new life after the sudden death of his wife, Joe (Colin Firth) moves his family to the exotic Italian town of Genova, hoping for a fresh start for himself and his two daughters. His eldest daughter Kelly explores the sexy and dangerous underbelly of this mysterious city, leaving the younger Mary in a world of her own. A poignant tale of love and forgiveness, Genova is directed by Michael Winterbottom (Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story, TIFF 2005), and also stars Catherine Keener and Hope Davis.
-Is There Anybody There?John Crowley, United KingdomWorld PremiereFrom the director of Boy A, comes a wise and charming story of an unlikely friendship between a scruffy former magician and a little boy with a morbid streak. Ten year-old Edward (Bill Milner) has become increasingly obsessed with death and the afterlife since his parents turned their house into a retirement home. Edward's is a lonely and peculiar existence – until he meets Clarence (Michael Caine) who introduces him to wonders in the here-and-now.
-Last Stop 174Bruno Barreto, BrazilWorld PremiereDirector Bruno Barreto expands on the true event at the centre of José Padilha and Felipe Lacerda's hard-hitting documentary Bus 174 (TIFF 2003), telling the story of how a child grows up to become a hostage-taker. Young Sandro lives in the slums of Rio de Janeiro where corruption and violence are the norm. Orphaned, alienated and fearing for his life, Sandro falls into a life of crime from which he may find it impossible to escape.
-ManagementStephen Belber, USAWorld PremiereManagement is a romantic comedy that chronicles a chance meeting between Mike Cranshaw (Steve Zahn) and Sue Claussen (Jennifer Aniston). When Sue checks into the roadside motel owned by Mike's parents in Arizona, what starts with a bottle of wine "compliments of management" soon evolves into a multi-layered, cross-country journey of two people looking for a sense of purpose. Mike, an aimless dreamer, bets it all on a trip to Sue's workplace in Maryland – only to find that she has no place for him in her carefully ordered life. Buttoned down and obsessed with making a difference in the world, Sue goes back to her yogurt mogul ex-boyfriend Jango (Woody Harrelson), who promises her a chance to head his charity operations. But having found something worth fighting for, Mike pits his hopes against Sue's practicality, and the two embark on a twisted, bumpy, freeing journey to discover that their place in the world just might be together.
-Me and Orson WellesRichard Linklater, United KingdomWorld PremiereZac Efron, Claire Daines, Ben Chaplin and Christian McKay star in this entertaining ode to Orson Welles from the director of The School of Rock (TIFF 2003) and Before Sunrise. Seventeen-year-old Richard Samuels (Efron) spends his days dreaming of the bright lights of Broadway. He gets his big break when he happens upon Orson Welles (McKay) and his fledgling Mercury Theatre company. Richard impresses Welles with an impromptu audition and lands a bit part in the Mercury's forthcoming run of Julius Caesar. With Welles's womanizing taking priority over rehearsals, chaos and calamity mark the production from the start. Before long, opening night has arrived and Richard will discover the terrible secrets of show business.
-Slumdog MillionaireDanny Boyle, United KingdomWorld PremiereFrom acclaimed director Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, 28 Days Later) comes a story about a kid with nothing, who has everything to lose. Jamal Malik, an 18-year-old orphan from the slums of Mumbai, is just one question away from winning a staggering 20 million rupees on India's Who Wants to be A Millionaire? Arrested on suspicion of cheating, he tells the police the amazing tale of his life on the streets, and of the girl he loved and lost. But what is a kid with no interest in money doing on the show? And how does he know all the answers?
-A Woman in BerlinMax Färberböck, Germany/PolandWorld PremiereAdapted from the international bestseller based on a true story, A Woman in Berlin is directed by Golden Globe nominee Max Färberböck (Aimée & Jaguar). In April 1945, the Red Army invades Berlin; among the chaos, a group of women fall victim to rape in a half-destroyed house. One of them is a former journalist and photographer. In desperation, she decides to find an officer who can protect her. A relationship develops with a Russian officer; soon, what began as an act of self-preservation becomes a complicated and forbidden affair.
-Zack and Miri Make a PornoKevin Smith, USAWorld PremiereSeth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks star in this bawdy tale of love and friendship from Kevin Smith. Lifelong friends and roommates Zack (Rogen) and Miri (Banks) are facing hard times and a mountain of debt. When the electricity and plumbing get cut off, the two seize upon the idea of making a homegrown porno movie for some quick cash, enlisting the help of their friends. The two vow that having sex will not ruin their friendship; but as everyone starts "doing" everyone, what started out as a friendly business proposition turns into something much more.
-A Perfect DayFerzan Ozpetek, ItalyInternational PremiereOne year after their separation, the violence that defined Emma and Antonio's marriage returns with ferocious consequences. Meanwhile, Antonio's boss, MP Fioravanti, tries frantically to salvage his political career, unaware that he is destroying his personal life by pushing his young wife to desert him, having already alienated his only son. An adaptation of the novel by Melania Mazzucco, A Perfect Day juxtaposes competing stories of disintegration and personal ruin as a group of characters challenge the cards they have been dealt and try to regain control of their lives – even if it means performing an unspeakable act of betrayal against those they love the most.
More than one option
(Film) A Perfect Day
(Tv) A Perfect Day
-SéraphineMartin Provost, France/BelgiumInternational PremiereBased on a true story, Séraphine delves into the relationship between naive painter Séraphine Louis (1864–1942) and art collector Wilhelm Uhde. In a little town north of Paris, Séraphine works as a maid for Madame Duphot, who rents an apartment to German art critic and dealer Wilhelm Uhde, an enthusiastic advocate of modern and primitive artists. In her spare time, Séraphine paints, with anything she can find – wine, mud, a mixture of fruits and flowers. When Wilhelm comes across one of her paintings, he is instantly mesmerized and insists that Séraphine show him the rest of her work. So begins a nurturing relationship that will expose Séraphine's work to the world. But as Séraphine paints her most inspired canvas, the power of her work leads her into the realms of madness.
-35 RhumsClaire Denis, FranceNorth American PremiereThe celebrated French filmmaker Claire Denis returns with 35 Rhums, exploring the working underclass of French society. Lionel, a widower, has raised his daughter Josephine on his own. They lead a quiet, comfortable life together, devoted to one another. Their relationship, however, starts to change when Jo befriends a young man and Lionel entertains the attention of a middle-aged woman. Before long, father and daughter find themselves forced to reconcile the past.
-The Burning PlainGuillermo Arriaga, USANorth American PremiereCharlize Theron and Kim Basinger star in Academy Award-nominee Guillermo Arriaga's directorial debut, a romantic mystery about a one woman's emotional journey to uncover the secret of a past love. Theron plays Sylvia, a beautiful restaurant manager whose cool demeanor masks the sexually charged storm within. When a stranger confronts her with her mysterious past, Sylvia is launched into a journey through space and time that inextricably connects her to three disparate characters, all grappling with their own romantic destinies. Basinger stars as the housewife whose affair puts them all on a collision course with the explosive power of forbidden love.
-Che: Part OneStephen Soderbergh, USA/SpainNorth American PremiereOn November 26, 1956, Fidel Castro sails to Cuba with eighty rebels. One of those rebels is Ernesto "Che" Guevara, an Argentine doctor who shares a common goal with Fidel Castro – to overthrow the corrupt dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista. Che proves indispensable as a fighter, and quickly grasps the art of guerrilla warfare. As he throws himself into the struggle, Che is embraced by his comrades and the Cuban people. Che: Part One tracks Che's rise in the Cuban Revolution, from doctor to commander to revolutionary hero.
-Che: Part TwoStephen Soderbergh, USA/SpainNorth American PremiereAfter the Cuban Revolution, Che is at the height of his fame and power. Then he disappears, re-emerging incognito in Bolivia, where he organizes a small group of Cuban comrades and Bolivian recruits to start the great Latin American Revolution. The story of the Bolivian campaign is a tale of tenacity, sacrifice and idealism, and of guerrilla warfare that ultimately fails, bringing Che to his death. Che: Part Two explores how Che remains a symbol of idealism and heroism that lives in the hearts of people around the world.
-Inju, la bête dans l'ombreBarbet Schroeder, FranceNorth American PremiereBarbet Schroeder directs this thriller starring Benoît Magimel (La Pianiste) as Fayard, a successful crime novelist. Invited to Japan for the release of his latest book, he encounters Tamao, a geisha who confides to him that one of her former lovers is threatening to kill her. This former lover may well be Shundei Oe, a novelist known for his extremely violent and disturbing books, and whose work Alex has studied extensively. Agreeing to help Tamao, Alex finds himself pitted against a man bent on vengeance and before long, his business trip becomes a bloody quest in which fiction becomes indistinguishable from reality.
-Synecdoche, New YorkCharlie Kaufman, USANorth American PremiereWorried about the transience of his life, theatre director Caden Cotard (Philip Seymour Hoffman) leaves his home behind and sets out to construct a massive artistic enterprise. Gathering an ensemble cast into a warehouse in New York City, he hopes to create a work of brutal honesty. He directs them in a celebration of the mundane, instructing each to live out their constructed lives in a growing mockup of the city outside. The years rapidly fold into each other, and Caden buries himself deeper into his masterpiece but the textured tangle of real and theatrical relationships blurs the line between the world of the play and that of Caden's own deteriorating reality. Synecdoche also stars Jennifer Jason Leigh, Catherine Keener, Dianne Wiest, Samantha Morton, Michelle Williams, Emily Watson and Hope Davis.
-The WrestlerDarren Aronofsky, USANorth American PremiereBack in the late '80s, Randy "The Ram" Robinson (Mickey Rourke) was a headlining professional wrestler. Now, twenty years later, he ekes out a living performing for handfuls of die-hard wrestling fans in high-school gyms and community centres. Randy lives for the thrill of the show and the adoration of his fans; but when he suffers a heart attack after a match, he is forced into retirement. He begins to evaluate the state of his life but the allure of the spotlight and the passion for his sport threatens to pull him back inside the ring. Directed by Darren Aronofsky (The Fountain, TIFF 2006), The Wrestler also stars Evan Rachel Wood, Marisa Tomei, Judah Friedlander and the Necro Butcher.
More than one option
(Film) The Fountain
(Film) The Fountain
-Flash of GeniusMarc Abraham, USACanadian PremiereBased on the true story of college professor and part-time inventor Robert Kearns' (Greg Kinnear) long battle with the American automobile industry, Flash of Genius tells the tale of one man whose fight to receive recognition for his ingenuity would come at a heavy price. But this determined engineer refused to be silenced, and he took on the corporate titans in a battle that nobody thought he could win. And while paying the toll for refusing to compromise his dignity, this everyday David tried the unthinkable: to bring Goliath to his knees. Flash of Genius also stars Lauren Graham, Dermot Mulroney and Alan Alda.
More good news for The Wrestler, and as a huge Kevin Smith fan, a festival nod for Zack and Miri is good news indeed!

The Duchess Trailer

FYC Keira Knightley:

August 12, 2008

New York Film Festival Has a Taste of Cannes This Year!

Here's the slate:
-Opening Night "The Class" (Entre les murs)Laurent Cantet, France, 2008; 128mA tough, lively and altogether revelatory look inside a high school classroom, enacted by real teachers and students.
-Centerpiece "Changeling"Clint Eastwood, USA, 2008; 140mAngelina Jolie is a single mother whose troubles are just beginning when her son goes missing in Clint Eastwood's majestic fact-based period drama.
-Closing Night "The Wrestler"Darren Aronofsky, USA, 2008; 109mMickey Rourke gives the performance of a lifetime in Darren Aronofsky's raw and raucous new movie.
-"24 City" (Er shi si cheng ji)Jia Zhangke, China/Hong Kong/Japan, 2008; 112mThe rise and fall of a Chinese factory town is chronicled in this film, straddling the border between fiction and documentary.
-"Afterschool"Antonio Campos, USA, 2008; 122mWhen two students at a posh prep school accidentally overdose, a student filmmaker struggles to create an appropriate tribute for them.
-"Ashes of Time Redux"Wong Kar Wai, Hong Kong, 2008; 93mThe final, definitive version of Wong Kar Wai's modernist take on the classic Chinese martial arts tale.
-"Bullet in the Head" (Trio en la cabeza)Jaime Rosales, Spain/France, 2008; 85mA powerful, engrossing meditation on politics and the contemporary cult of surveillance.
-"Che"Steven Soderbergh, France/Spain, 2008; 268mSteven Soderbergh's two-part Spanish-language epic about Che Guevara's revolutionary military campaigns in Cuba and Bolivia features a brilliant lead performance by Benicio del Toro.
-"Chouga" (Shuga)Darezhan Omirbaev, France/Kazakhstan, 2007; 91mA Kazakh, minimalist adaptation of Anna Karenina.
-"A Christmas Tale" (Un conte de Noel)Arnaud Desplechin, France, 2008; 150mArnaud Desplechin's grand banquet of a movie brims with life, as Catherine Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Devos and the other members of a marvelous ensemble cast come home for Christmas.
-"Four Nights with Anna" (Cztery noce z Anna)Jerzy Skolimowski, Poland/France, 2008; 87mThis visually mesmerizing tale of a shy man and his obsession with the woman across the way marks the triumphant return of Polish maestro Jerzy Skolimowski.
-"Gomorrah" (Gomorra)Matteo Garrone, Italy, 2008; 137mA blistering version of Roberto Saviano's modern true crime classic about the modern-day Neapolitan mafia.
-"Happy-Go-Lucky"Mike Leigh, UK, 2008; 118mAn affectionate portrait of an unattached, 30-something London schoolteacher coming to terms with the fact that she's no longer young.
-"The Headless Woman" (La mujer sin cabeza)Lucrecia Martel, Argentina/France/Italy/Spain, 2008; 87mArgentine filmmaker Lucrecia Martel's powerful third feature takes us into an altered perceptual state with a woman who hits something with her car.
-"Hunger"Steve McQueen, UK, 2008; 96mBritish visual artist Steve McQueen's feature film debut is an uncompromising look at the hunger strike led by IRA prisoner Bobby Sands in 1974.
-"I'm Going to Explode" (Voy a explotar)Gerardo Naranjo, Mexico, 2008; 103mTwo Mexican teenagers go into hiding to see the reactions their disappearance will get from relatives and friends.
-"Let It Rain" (Parlez-moi de la pluie)Agnes Jaoui, France, 2008; 110mA portrait of a rising feminist politician may be the ticket to fame and jobs for two aspiring filmmakers.
-"Lola Montes"Max Ophuls, France/West Germany, 1955; 115mThe life of the legendary courtesan and circus performer--lover of kings, knaves and Franz Liszt--is presented in its definitive, restored version.
-"Night and Day" (Bam guan nat)Hong Sang-soo, South Korea, 2008; 144mWhen his life in Seoul becomes too complicated, an artist hightails it to Paris--but things don't get any easier.
-"The Northern Land" (A Corte do Norte)Joao Botelho, Portugal, 2008; 101mA woman searches for the truth about her life in the stories of ancestors and the distant manor house they inhabited.
-"Serbis"Brillante Mendoza, Philippines/France, 2008; 90mA family tries to quell the tensions tearing it apart while it struggles to keep the family business--a porn movie theater--afloat
-"Summer Hours" (L'heure d'ete)Olivier Assayas, France, 2008; 103mJuliette Binoche is one of three siblings brought face-to-face with time and mortality by the sudden death of her mother in this moving new film from Olivier Assayas.
-"Tokyo Sonata"Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Japan/Netherlands, 2008; 85mA Japanese family struggles to re-define itself after the father loses his corporate job.
-"Tony Manero"Pablo Larrain, Chile/Brazil, 2008; 98mIn the dark days of the Pinochet dictatorship, a John Travolta wannabe blazes a murderous trail through the back alleys of Chile.
-"Tulpan"Sergey Dvortsevoy, Germany/Kazakhstan/Poland/Russia/Switzerland, 2008; 100mWinner of the Un Certain Regard Prize at this year's Cannes Film Festival, Tulpan charts an aspiring herdsman's efforts to win the attention of his intended.
-"Waltz with Bashir" (Vals in Bashir)Ari Folman, Israel/Germany/France, 2008; 90mIsraeli filmmaker Ari Folman's haunting autobiographical memory piece about his experiences as a soldier during the 1982 war in Lebanon are given a hyper-real spin by state-of-the-art animation.
-"Wendy and Lucy"Kelly Reichardt, USA, 2008; 80mIn Kelly Reichardt's follow-up to her acclaimed Old Joy, Wendy (Michelle Williams) searches for her dog Lucy. The troubled spirit of modern America is beautifully evoked along the way.
-"The Windmill Movie"Alexander Olch, USA, 2008; 80mFilmmaker Alexander Olch, using material left by the late filmmaker Richard Rogers for a never completed film autobiography, attempts to make sense of the life of his former teacher and friend.
+Call me crazy, but the one that has my interest the most is The Wrestler. It might be the surprise of the year, but more on that later...

Not Much To Speak Of On The DVD Front

A pretty barron week for DVD this week, as the PICK OF THE WEEK wins by default, though it also happens to be a pretty good film:
Smart People
This film has me at Ellen Page, but the entire cast is top notch and this film is well worth a view for those who like humorous character studies
-Also out are movies like the prison film Felon, American Mall, and How The Garcia Girls Spent Their Summer, and none are really worth anyone's time.
-My vintage pick this week will be a double dish, mainly since so little else is out there. First, if you like bizarre cartoons, pick up the 5 seasons of Aqua Teen Hunger Force. It's not for everyone, but those who like it, love it. Also, for the less risky among us, I'm throwing out there the completely unseen and essentially direct to DVD Matthew Perry film Numb. It's a really good character study, so if you see it in stores, pick it up (or rent it).
-Anything you guys want to watch this week?

August 11, 2008

Isaac Hayes Dies...

Another icon passes.....from Variety:

Isaac Hayes, who penned songs that would provide the backbone of Memphis soul and as a performer reached millions through his award-winning "Theme From Shaft," was found dead at his home in Memphis on Sunday. He was 65, just a week shy of his next birthday.
The Associated Press reported that a family member found Hayes unresponsive near a treadmill, according to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office report. He was pronounced dead about an hour later at Baptist East Hospital in Memphis. The cause of death was not immediately known.
Hayes denied rumors that he suffered a stroke in early 2006, although he had been hospitalized for treatment of high blood pressure. He was well enough to make appearances in 2006 and ’07 in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the founding of Stax Records, the Southern soul label where he was an inhouse songwriter and producer in the 1960s.
From the mid-’60s through the mid-’70s, few artists had as great an impact on black American music as Hayes: He wrote era-defining hits such as "Soul Man" and "Hold on, I’m Comin’"; he was an active session keyboardist; his solo albums were the biggest-sellers in Stax’s history; and his score for "Shaft," which won two Grammys and the Oscar for song, opened the doors for black songwriters in Hollywood.
Born in Covington, Tenn., in 1942, his first session at Stax was as a baritone saxophonist in 1963. Stax owner Jim Stewart hired Hayes to fill in on keyboards for Booker T. Jones, who was away at college.
A husky baritone, Hayes had been reluctant to move out front as a headliner, but an odd business deal in 1969 required several of Stax session musicians to make solo albums as the label generated 27 albums simultaneously to make up for the back catalog that was sold to Atlantic Records.
"Hot-Buttered Soul" was Hayes’ work. Radical for its day, it only included four songs, among them an 18-minute version of "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" and a 12-minute "Walk on By," lengths that had not been explored in R&B.
According to Rob Bowman’s liner notes to "Ultimate Isaac Hayes: Can You Dig It?," the album received airplay in Detroit and was so popular that record shops in the Motor City were burglarized and the only thing missing would be copies of "Hot Buttered Soul." The album had a unique success, reaching high on four different charts — jazz, pop, R&B and easy listening. Two years after its release, it was still in the jazz top 10, along with two of Hayes’ other albums.
On the heels of that success, Hayes was commissioned to write the score for one of the first blaxploitation films, Gordon Parks’ "Shaft." Two of the theme’s sonic signatures came from two abandoned ideas: Hayes had tried to use the hi-hat sound on Otis Redding’s "Try a Little Tenderness" and the wah-wah part was a riff Hayes and Charles "Skip" Pitts had recorded and discarded.
The "Shaft" album went to No. 1 on pop and R&B charts and remained on the pop charts for 14 months. The single hit No. 1 pop and No. 2 R&B.
Within a couple of years, Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye, Bobby Womack, James Brown and other black stars had been tapped to compose and record for film.
Bald and bearded, Hayes was an imposing figure and his appearance onstage in chains only added to his mystique. He earned the nickname Black Moses, which he would use as the title to his follow-up to "Shaft."
Stax’s financial problems led the label to cut ties with Hayes, who then signed with ABC Records, which created the Hot Buttered Soul label for him. Between 1975 and 1977, he released five albums and had some minor R&B hits.
He recorded only once in the 1980s and made a pair of albums in 1995, putting more effort into developing an acting career.
He appeared in the films "Escape From New York," "I’m Gonna Git You Sucka," "Hustle & Flow," "Robin Hood: Men in Tights" and "Johnny Mnemonic."
On TV, he appeared in "The A-Team," "Miami Vice" and "The Rockford Files," but he was best known as the voice of school cafeteria cook and ladies’ man Chef on the animated "South Park." He left the show in late 2005 after the program attacked Scientology, the religious movement of which he was a member.
Hayes was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.
He was married four times and has 12 children.

A Dark Surprise...

Looks like the Dark Knight is No. 1 in the Box Office for the 4th consecutive week, beating out the pot obsessed Pineapple Express, the terrible Mummy movie, and the chick flick, Sisterhood.

I guess I was wrong...This movie is unstoppable!

August 9, 2008

Happy-Go-Lucky Trailer

The new film from Mike Leigh:

R.I.P. Bernie Mac

From Variety:

Bernie Mac, the actor and comedian who teamed up in the casino heist caper "Ocean's Eleven" and gained a prestigious Peabody Award for his sitcom "The Bernie Mac Show," died Saturday at age 50.
"Actor/comedian Bernie Mac passed away this morning from complications due to pneumonia in a Chicago area hospital," his publicist, Danica Smith, said in a statement from Los Angeles.
She said no other details were available and asked that his family's privacy be respected.
The comedian suffered from sarcoidosis, an inflammatory lung disease that produces tiny lumps of cells in the body's organs, but had said the condition went into remission in 2005. He recently was hospitalized and treated for pneumonia, which his publicist said was not related to the disease.
Recently, Mac's brand of comedy caught him flack when he was heckled during a surprise appearance at a July fundraiser for Democratic presidential candidate and fellow Chicagoan Barack Obama.
Toward the end of a 10-minute standup routine, Mac joked about menopause, sexual infidelity and promiscuity, and used occasional crude language. The performance earned him a rebuke from Obama's campaign.
But despite controversy or difficulties, in his words, Mac was always a performer.
"Wherever I am, I have to play," he said in 2002. "I have to put on a good show."
Mac worked his way to Hollywood success from an impoverished upbringing on Chicago's South Side. He began doing standup as a child, and his film career started with a small role as a club doorman in the Damon Wayans comedy "Mo' Money" in 1992. In 1996, he appeared in the Spike Lee drama "Get on the Bus."
He was one of "The Original Kings of Comedy" in the 2000 documentary of that title that brought a new generation of black standup comedy stars to a wider audience.
"The majority of his core fan base will remember that when they paid their money to see Bernie Mac ... he gave them their money's worth," Steve Harvey, one of his co-stars in "Original Kings," told CNN on Saturday.
Mac went on to star in the hugely popular "Ocean's Eleven" franchise with Brad Pitt and George Clooney.
His turn with Ashton Kutcher in 2005's "Guess Who" topped the box office. It was a comedy remake of the classic Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn drama "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?" — with Mac as the black dad who's shocked that his daughter is marrying a white man.
Mac also had starring roles in "Bad Santa," "Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle" and "Transformers."
In the late 1990s, he had a recurring role in "Moesha," the UPN network comedy starring pop star Brandy.
The comedian drew critical and popular acclaim with his Fox television series "The Bernie Mac Show," which aired more than 100 episodes from 2001 to 2006.
The series about a man's adventures raising his sister's three children, won a Peabody Award in 2002. At the time, judges wrote they chose the sitcom for transcending "race and class while lifting viewers with laughter, compassion — and cool."
The show garnered Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for Mac.
"But television handcuffs you, man," he said in a 2001 Associated Press interview. "Now everyone telling me what I CAN'T do, what I CAN say, what I SHOULD do, and asking, `Are blacks gonna be mad at you? Are whites gonna accept you?'"
He also was nominated for a Grammy award for best comedy album in 2001 along with his "The Original Kings of Comedy" co-stars, Harvey, D.L. Hughley and Cedric The Entertainer.
Chicago music producer Carolyn Albritton said she was Bernie Mac's first manager, having met him in 1991 at Chicago's Cotton Club where she hosted an open-mike night. He was an immediate hit, Albritton said Saturday, and he asked her to help guide his career.
"From very early on I thought he was destined for success," Albritton said. "He never lost track of where he came from, and he'd often use real life experiences, his family, his friends, in his routine. After he made it, he stayed a very humble man. His family was the most important thing in the world to him."
In 2007, Mac told David Letterman on CBS' "Late Show" that he planned to retire soon.
"I'm going to still do my producing, my films, but I want to enjoy my life a little bit," Mac told Letterman. "I missed a lot of things, you know. I was a street performer for two years. I went into clubs in 1977."
Mac was born Bernard Jeffrey McCullough on Oct. 5, 1957, in Chicago. He grew up on the city's South Side, living with his mother and grandparents. His grandfather was the deacon of a Baptist church.
In his 2004 memoir, "Maybe You Never Cry Again," Mac wrote about having a poor childhood — eating bologna for dinner — and a strict, no-nonsense upbringing.
"I came from a place where there wasn't a lot of joy," Mac told the AP in 2001. "I decided to try to make other people laugh when there wasn't a lot of things to laugh about."
Mac's mother died of cancer when he was 16. In his book, Mac said she was a support for him and told him he would surprise everyone when he grew up.
"Woman believed in me," he wrote. "She believed in me long before I believed."

-Rest in Peace Sir