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Chicago – It’s that time of year to figure it out, as 2014 leaks away, and the film year follows suit. Whittling down a list to ten films, after hours of entertainment and provoking of thought, is a fool’s challenge at best. Then who better to do it than Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com.
Best to change it up to first person voice, since I’m writing the actual article. So, I, Patrick McDonald, will attempt to break down the film year into the 10 Best, and my colleagues on HollywoodChicago.com will follow suit in the next several days.
The most difficult slot of any list like this is the 10th position, for it leaves out so many brilliant possibilities for 11th place and onward. At that position are the international films “Bright Days Ahead,” “Force Majeure” and “The Raid 2”; the horror/comic genius of “Dead Snow 2: Red vs. »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
It has been fifty years since the release of Stanley Kubrick’s dark look at the Cold War, 1964’s Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. In that time, we have inched no closer to world peace, but at the very least we emerged from the Cold War relatively unscathed. Still, even with the Cold War a thing of the past, cinematically destined to remain the topic of 80s nostalgia, the world is not threat-free. In fact, some may say with the world getting smaller and smaller thanks to technology (primarily via the internet and social media), global threats are as real as ever. Kubrick’s film examines the theoretical use of a doomsday device, which threatens to wipe out all life on the planet. Today, with ongoing overseas military conflicts, brutal terror attacks, and increasing patriotic paranoia, this got me wondering: Is the world in danger of annihilation from a »
- Kevin Carr
According to Open Culture, Stanley Kubrick commissioned a score from "A Streetcar Named Desire" and "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" composer Alex North, with whom he worked previously on his sword-and-sandals epic "Spartacus." But just as he would later do with Wendy Carlos' eerie "The Shining" score, Kubrick dropped it, saying in a interview with Michael Ciment, "Although [North] and I went over the picture very carefully, and he listened to these temporary tracks and agreed that they worked fine and would serve as a guide to the musical objectives of each sequence he, nevertheless, wrote and recorded a score which could not have been more alien to the music we had listened to, and much more serious than that, a score which, in my opinion, was completely inadequate for the film." Thus, Kubrick went for a now-iconic soundtrack featuring Strauss, Ligeti, Khatchaturian and more that mixes avant-garde and classical chamber music. »
- Ryan Lattanzio
How did we get to the stage where trailer launches seem like bigger events than the movies they're promoting? Hype and buzz rule all, but that said we'll admit we still get a giddy thrill out of seeing a good trailer. The 2-minute promo has become an art form in itself, and in 2014 Hollywood went to town when it came to selling the biggest and best films.
Digital Spy looks at 10 of the best trailers of the year below...
10. Gone Girl
David Fincher knows how to put a trailer together, and the tease for his adaptation of Gone Girl used Richard Butler's rendition of 'She' to gloriously unsettling effect. On first glance this looks like a fairly routine disappearance thriller, but in keeping Rosamund Pike's Amy Dunne in the background there's a sense that maybe Fincher and author/screenwriter Gillian Flynn are holding something back.
"A thief. »
On the face of it, 2014 has been a rather strange year for film, a step down from an annum of classics and simultaneously a slalom into the realms of adventure and discord. It is rather significant that now, more than halfway through December, most talk has turned to trailers and announced releases for next year, the long-term planning of industry giants and the hunt for the next super-franchise. It is simply continuing the trend; of the twenty highest grossing films of 2014 (so far), an eye-watering seventeen are sequels, adaptations (of source material or franchise brand), reworks, reboots or otherwise unoriginal content. Of the three left over, two were unheralded comedies. 2015 promises more of the same, with the arrival of Jurassic World, Terminator Genisys (sic), Mad Max: Fury Road as well as Avengers 2, The Hunger Games 4, Fast and Furious 7, Taken 3 and a Fantastic Four reboot. Oh yeah, and Fifty Shades of Sh Grey… »
- Scott Patterson
Watch this THR interview roundtable, and guess what? The one who comes off the best is the most likely to be nominated: American indie Linklater, whose "Boyhood" is clearly admired by the others in the group, especially Leigh, Tyldum and Nolan, who give him cred for having the balls to not only conceive but commit to this 12-year low-budget feat, which demanded that he abandon being in control or knowing the outcome. Brit Nolan and Norwegian outsider Tyldum come off as the most intense and demanding of the bunch. Jolie laughs as Nolan, who reveres Stanley Kubrick, Ridley Scott and George Lucas, recounts having a blast filming on a glacier in 100-mile-an-hour winds in Iceland as his crew complained bitterly. Tyldum describes his total commitment when he shoots--and the bizarre intimacy he has with his lead actor. It's not always the nice guys who finish first when it comes to directing. »
- Anne Thompson
There isn’t a thing that hasn’t been written about the films of Stanley Kubrick. His films have been celebrated and reviled; some originally reviled have been reassessed as masterpieces; reams of copy have been written on even his least-appreciated movies. And yet they pull us in time and again. His films feature richly developed concepts […]
The post The Films of Stanley Kubrick Ranked: Noir, War, and the Outer Reaches of Existence appeared first on /Film. »
- Russ Fischer
“What are we talking about? I’m lost,” says Paul Thomas Anderson midway through a lunch interview, as he runs a hand quizzically through his unkempt brown hair. It’s a reminder that a conversation with Anderson can be akin to one of his own movies: a jam-packed jostle of characters, ideas, exuberant digressions and narrative curlicues that somehow align to form an inimitable whole. Still picking through his appetizer course, Anderson has already held forth on his love for Lena Dunham, “The Hunger Games,” his inability to read books that friends give him as gifts, and his habit of walking on the outer edges of his feet. But mostly, we are talking about “Inherent Vice,” Anderson’s seventh feature film — the first-ever authorized screen adaptation of a novel by National Book Award-winning author Thomas Pynchon.
The movie, bowing Dec. 12 in limited release, and opening wide Jan. 9, returns Anderson to »
- Scott Foundas
For its fourth season, Epic Rap Battles of History did away with its biweekly release schedule in order to bring fans a new battle each week. That format succeeded in diminishing the wait between episodes, but it also caused Erb to exhaust its new episodes twice as fast. The extremely popular web series has concluded the first half of its fourth season with a free-for-all among five famous directors. The video is billed as a battle between Steven Spielberg and Alfred Hitchcock, played by Erb co-creators Peter Shukoff and Lloyd Ahlquist, respectively. In truth, the two-time Oscar winner and the master of suspense only get one verse apiece before ceding the microphone to three more accomplished directors: Quentin Tarantino (played by rapped Wax), Stanley Kubrick (played by an actor who is only credited as "The Ghost of Stanley Kubrick"), and Michael Bay (played by Shukoff). Bay may not have the directorial clout of his competitors, »
- Sam Gutelle
Update: The trailer for Knight Of Cups is now online. You can find the embed below. Terence Malick films are the closest thing we have to Stanley Kubrick movies these days. Every Malick film is unique and the secretive nature of the director makes it difficult to pin down just what to expect from his movies. That along with the sporadic nature of when his films gets released means that we could go decades before seeing another movie. But, over the last five years we have already seen »
- Alex Maidy
Nowadays your face is everything. An actor like Lon Chaney, “The Man Of A Thousand Faces”, was indispensable in the early days of Hollywood, making his way as a consistently credible actor who could nonetheless utterly transform himself using prosthetics, make-up and performance so as to render himself totally unrecognisable, being absorbed completely into any role he was cast in.
That’s not so much of a worry in the modern entertainment industry. In fact the opposite is true, with face rather than name recognition being the driving force behind getting people to go see films, to buy albums, to tune into TV shows, to shell out for perfume, cars, clothes, you name it. Selfies are the primary form of communication for a reason. It’s all about the face.
At a time when likenesses are at such a premium, the entertainment industry is naturally inclined to make »
- Tom Baker
Is that the sound of double-dipping? Oh right, it must be Warner Bros with another extraneous Blu-ray set. Having already released a terrific Stanley Kubrick collection in 2011, they now hit us with a bigger, sexier box set… with one fewer movie and several more documentaries to differentiate it from the old one. In and of itself, it’s an excellent collection, despite the absent film. But for those who bought the earlier set, it makes for an exasperating choice. Hit the jump for my Stanley Kubrick Masterpiece Collection Blu-ray review. Naturally no film lover’s Blu-ray collection is complete without a healthy sampling of Kubrick’s work. As one of the unquestioned masters of the medium, his canon helped define cinema as an art form, and Blu-ray makes an ideal format to appreciate it. The new Masterpiece Collection assembles his final eight movies: Lolita, Dr. Strangelove, 2001, A Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon, »
- Rob Vaux
A less publicly appreciated (and comparatively unknown) filmmaker, Saul Bass had no less enviable career than any widely recognized director. And he worked with a lot of them, too. Famous—in the film industry—for designing title sequences, Bass was a repeat collaborator to many legendary directors, including Alfred Hitchcock, Stanley Kubrick, and Martin Scorsese. He did the titles for such great films as “Vertigo,” “North By Northwest,” “Psycho," “Spartacus,” “Ocean’s 11” (the original), “Goodfellas,” “Casino,” and “Big.” And the list goes on. The guy was prolific and busy. He also designed some of the corporate world’s most famous logos. The Bell System bell in a circle? Him. The At&T globe? Ditto. Continental Airline’s Jetstream and United’s tulip in the '70s? Yup and yup. Bass even won an Academy Award for a short film he directed. Yes, the guy was an Oscar-winning director too. (The »
- Zach Hollwedel
Nicole Kidman is daring, to say the least.
In a new interview for Elle magazine's January issue, the Oscar-winning actress explains the reasoning behind marrying country superstar Keith Urban after only a month of dating.
"I'm spontaneous. I jump in," she tells the magazine about the bold decision. "I kind of like getting married and then getting to know each other; I know that it sounds incredibly strange, but to me, it's a more natural process."
Incredibly strange, indeed, but seems to have worked out just fine. Nicole and Keith tied the knot in June 2006, and are still going strong eight years later.
The 47-year-old actress, who has four kids -- Isabella, 22, and Connor, 19, with ex-husband Tom Cruise, and daughters Sunday Rose, 6, and Faith, 4, with Keith -- reveals she's still hoping to have another child with the American Idol judge.
"Every month, I'm »
Legendary actor Kirk Douglas is celebrating his 98th birthday Dec. 9, with a book of poems called “Life Could Be Verse” (Hci Books). His storied career began on the Broadway stage, where he says, “I got a few bit parts, and absolutely no press notice” — that is, until “The Wind Is Ninety.”
Do you remember your first mention in Variety?
In June 1945, I opened in a drama called “The Wind Is Ninety,” playing the ghost of a World War I soldier who takes the ghost of a World War II pilot back to his family to watch them receive news of his death. Although the critic gave it a mixed review — he mostly summarized a plot he found confusing — it was the first time I saw my name in Variety. Miraculously, the play was a hit. In January of 1946, the producers bought an ad in Variety quoting other critics about my »
- Shalini Dore
Nicole Kidman has no hard feelings towards Tom Cruise! The "Grace of Monaco" star covers the January issue of Elle magazine where she opens up about her very famous ex and her current marriage with country superstar, Keith Urban. Nicole and Tom famously starred together in Stanley Kubrick's "Eyes Wide Shut," and the movie is still something Kidman cherishes to this day! "He [Kubrick] would always say, ‘You’re a character actress, Nicole. Don’t play leading ladies. Go and find the character roles,’" she tells the mag. Nicole enjoyed working on the movie with Kubrick and Cruise so much so that she didn't even mind the infamous two-year shoot. "We loved it. Everyone thought that was when our marriage started to break down -- not at all. That movie was a great part of our life together, and I’m glad we have it," she confesses. Kidman on Cruise »
- tooFab Staff
Christmas is fast approaching, and the Digital Spy movies team has scoured high and low to find some cool gifts for those who love everything silver screen-related.
All prices are current as of December 10, but may change between now and Christmas Day.
1. Stanley Kubrick: 8-Film Masterpiece Collection - £92.30
Here's a box set for true cinephiles. Like a toppled Monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey, this collection includes eight of Stanley Kubrick's very best films from a career spanning more than forty years. From the jet-black comedy of Dr Strangelove to the erotica of Eyes Wide Shut, this dips in to let you re-live the legendary filmmaker's best work.
2. Interstellar: Beyond Time And Space - £20.39
Space. The final frontier. Also: so hot right now! This year, Christopher Nolan's Interstellar and James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy—to say nothing of the teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens—continued feeding audiences' appetites for all things extraterrestrial, picking up where the Oscar-winning Gravity and rebooted Star Trek series left off. There are sequels coming for Star Trek, Prometheus, and Guardians, Marvel will keep expanding its cosmic universe in Captain Marvel, and, on the small screen, Syfy is planning a rebooted version of the grandaddy of all space operas, Arthur C. Clarke's »
- Darren Franich
There are few movies this awards season as breathtakingly beautiful as Mike Leigh's "Mr. Turner," the biopic that takes us into the visionary mind of eccentric 19th century British painter J.M.W. Turner (brilliantly played by Timothy Spall). It certainly represents the best work of the director's longtime cinematographer Dick Pope, who's chasing his first Oscar. What's unique is how they evoke the magnificent landscapes and seascapes that Turner witnessed and how he studied light like a scientist and selected and mixed his paints like a chemist, and then painted down and dirty like a charmed magician. "We talked about it as a dream for many years," Pope recalls. "We shared ideas about making it Sometimes we'd be in a dark and dingy place and he'd say, 'Don't worry, we'll get Turner in the end.'" They watched Stanley Kubrick's "Barry Lyndon" for the tableau filmmaking. "So many shots of every in. »
- Bill Desowitz
Stanley Kubrick has never really been one of my favorite directors, and that’s probably no where more evident than in my preference of Eyes Wide Shut as the best of his films. In my defense I’d only seen five of Kubrick’s movies up until recently, but I also just really love the atmosphere, relationship commentary and black humor of the film. Warner Bros. has just released a new Blu-ray collection called Stanley Kubrick: The Masterpiece Collection, and it features eight of his films along with a handful of documentaries on his work and life including a brand new one, Kubrick Remembered. The eight films featured are his final eight (so his first five, Fear and Desire through Spartacus, are not included), but it serves well as a fantastic introduction to his acclaimed and eclectic career. The set also includes a hardcover book filled with thoughts and photos, but »
- Rob Hunter
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