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The most surprising moment in Fast & Furious 6 comes when someone mentions Moby Dick. The notion that anyone involved in this sequel has ever read a book, or even a BookRags synopsis of one, is quite earth-shattering.
But then there are numerous Melville-esque harpoonings in this whale of an annoyance directed by Justin Lin, a young man who exhibited promise early in his career (Better Luck Tomorrow) and has since gone on to directing SAG members who can't act or enunciate, delivering lines from screenplays that are incomprehensible hodgepodges of inane excuses to drive souped-up Tin Lizzies fast, and who beat up or get beaten up by villains who have as much personality as washing machine lint.
Another revelation is that Vin Diesel -- Hollywood's bemuscled cardboard take on the star of those Mr. Clean ads, any of which are more memorable than the offerings of this putrescent series -- shaves his underarms. »
- Brandon Judell
Forget your body clock: any time of day finds film fans watching Nicolas Winding Refn's tense, brutal thriller, Sorrentino's beguiling look at fading beauty or Soderbergh's tremendous Liberace biopic. Then there's the Coens' hoot of a movie and Carla Bruni's sister's comedy. But which will win the big prize?
At 7.30am on Cannes's main strip people wearing dinner jackets and cocktail dresses held handwritten signs that read "Only God Forgives", triple-underlined, and "Please! Only God Forgives!" They might have been members of a doomsday cult, one with an imperious dress code, but no: a Ryan Gosling film was about to premiere in the Grand Théâtre Lumière and this lot were ticketless, hoping by dressing smartly to pick up last-minute invites. They looked on while several hundred of us filed in for 90 minutes of early-morning ultra-violence.
Moviegoing at the festival runs round the clock. There are marquee screenings not »
- Tom Lamont, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy
James Gray's shapeless, stifling opera of sorrow is overlaid with a thick sepia of solemnity that can't obscure its lack of ideas
James Gray has come to Cannes with a gloomy and baffling period drama set in 1920s New York among the huddled masses yearning to be free in the new world. It begins promisingly enough. In the first half-hour, The Immigrant looks like a subdued, complex and intriguing drama with Marion Cotillard holding centre stage as Ewa, the scared young Polish woman, just off the boat, who must do what she can to survive.
But the movie becomes a bizarre tragi-melodrama on a single plaintive note of despair: sluggish, at times entirely implausible, and trapped in its own Stygian gloom as the sad-eyed Ewa gets involved with Bruno (Joaquin Phoenix), the Mc of a saucy burlesque show, and his cousin, the twinkly-eyed stage magician Orlando (Jeremy Renner).
In theory, »
- Peter Bradshaw
Chicago – Greta Gerwig is a gift to the type of film acting that dominates the screen. This beautiful, versatile actor gives poignant energy to her latest title character, “Frances Ha,” a collaboration with indie director Noah Baumbach (“Greenberg”).
Frances is a lovable live wire as an artist, lover and loyal friend. She is somewhat a victim of that liveliness, but has a tenacity that keeps her adventure going. Gerwig creates a character that is always vulnerable, but asserts that on-the-sleeve emotionalism as a strength. The film is a black-and-white tribute to the late 1970s/early ‘80s period of maestro Woody Allen, but maintains its own identity with modern takes on post millennial relationships and friends. “Frances Ha” is a celebration, whether you relate to her life in the moment or have an enjoyable revelation of ‘remember when.’
Frances (Gerwig) is a modern dance apprentice in a medium size company, »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Greetings from the apocalypse! This here is my twentieth weekend column, which seemed like as good a time as any to reach out to my fellow weekend road warriors to say if you have any suggestions for upcoming films/local weekend events to feature in future editions just write me on Twitter. Signed 8 x 10 glossies will be sent to fans at my secretary's discretion. But seriously, write away — give this wandering rōnin of the desert some feedback, yo.
Friday, May 24
Pow! In Theaters
I'm admittedly not a huge fan of the "Hangover" franchise — only in America and possibly France could such a thing spawn a franchise — so when I tell you "The Hangover Part III" has nary a laugh or even »
- Max Evry
The Hollywood heavyweight returns with a family farce this week. Here's a look at some of her most memorable on-screen moments.
Keaton's career began with a bang nearly 45 years ago when cast by Woody Allen in a play that marked the beginning of a long and successful relationship.
With her new film The Big Wedding released in the UK, we asked readers to look back and suggest some of the Hollywood giant's best cinema moments.
Here's our shortlist, featuring suggestions from @AfterDoubt, @MarkClarkMov, @AlecFPrice, @anniea89, @JuanMeyer2001. What have we missed? Let us know below.
Keaton and Allen get to know each other with banter and passive-aggressiveness in the classic Manhattan, before stopping to admire the Queensboro Bridge lit up at night.
Reading on mobile? Watch the clip on YouTube
2. Annie Hall
The lobster scene perfectly sums up the unscripted chemistry between Woody and Diane:
Reading on mobile? Watch the »
- Paul Frankl
The Garden State star has explained how he instructed the veteran director in the ways of the crowd-funding platform – to reportedly great effect
In an email to Braff, Allen's assistant reportedly revealed that the 77-year-old film-maker "won't stop talking" about the fundraising platform and was "riveted" by Braff's explanation. Braff recounted details of the meeting in an interview on the SiriusXM show Unmasked.
Braff turned to Kickstarter to bankroll his latest project, Wish I Was Here, which he will direct and will star himself, Kate Hudson and Anna Kendrick. The film will go into production later this year after the $3m required was raised, but Braff met with criticism from some who felt that established stars should steer clear of the platform.
- Paul Frankl
Directed by: Noah Baumbach
Running Time: 1 hr 26 mins
Release Date: May 24, 2013 (Chicago)
Plot: Frances (Gerwig) tries to make something of herself in New York City.
Who’S It For? If you’ve ever felt aloof in your twenties, or re-tweeted Lena Dunham, you might want to take a look at this one.
In this era when a New York twenty-something girl can’t make a screenplay out of her journal without it being compared to “Girls,” I am not reminded of Lena Dunham’s popular boob toob program, but of Lola Versus, a Haagen Dazs date from last year you might have experienced and soon forgot. Directed by Daryl Wein and co-written with Zoe Lister Jones, Lola Versus was a film that also starred Frances Ha lead Greta Gerwig as the title character, »
- Nick Allen
Directed by Noah Baumbach
By now, young people scratching and clawing their way towards adulthood is a quintessential, clichéd story. The wide-eyed dreamer trying to make it in the big city is one of the hoariest tricks in the book, but Frances Ha is a welcome new variation on this theme, a striking and beautiful ode to youth and its many flaws. Headlined by Great Gerwig, Frances Ha is nothing short of a triumph, an endearing, unforced, and honest story of failures and frustrations.
Gerwig plays Frances, an apprentice in a New York ballet company who hopes to break into the main group of dancers soon. Her life begins to spiral out of control when her best friend Sophie (Mickey Sumner) moves out of their small apartment and quickly becomes serious with a boyfriend and moves out of the country for work reasons. »
- Josh Spiegel
New York — The world premiere of Ethan Coen's first full-length stage play, a revival of "The Threepenny Opera" and a new play by Stephen Adly Guirgis will highlight the Atlantic Theater Company's upcoming season.
The company unveiled its slate of 2013-14 offerings Thursday, which also includes a stage adaptation of Alan Sillitoe's beloved short story "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner" adapted by British playwright Roy Williams.
Coen, half of the prolific filmmaking Coen brothers, offers his "Women or Nothing," about two women desperate to have a child. It will be directed by David Cromer and begin performances Aug. 28.
The Atlantic also produced Coen's "Happy Hour," a collection of three short dark comedies. He also wrote one-third of "Relatively Speaking," three one-acts on Broadway in 2011 that also included works by Woody Allen and Elaine May.
As Soderbergh's Liberace biopic hits our screens, why is it that homosexual love stories now work so much better than hetero?
We might have been able to guess that Soderbergh's take on the kitsch-addicted superstar would turn out to be "mesmeric, riskily incorrect, outrageously watchable and simply outrageous" (The Guardian). Or that Michael Douglas would be "shrewd, rude, wickedly funny" (Indiewire) in the central role. What is interesting is that the film, which was made for HBO because it was "too gay" for mainstream cinematic release, has turned out to be "both hilarious and heartrending" (The Playlist), an "intimate love story" (Thompson on Hollywood) and Soderbergh's "most emotional and touching work" to date (Hollywood Elsewhere »
- Tom Shone
Zach Braff, who launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to get his upcoming film off the ground, says he explained crowd-funding to none other than Woody Allen. Braff has become an evangelist of sorts for the financing platform, on which he recently raised millions in four days for his passion project Wish I Was Here. The former Scrubs actor will direct and also star in the movie alongside Kate Hudson, Mandy Patinkin and Jim Parsons. In an interview on the SiriusXM show Unmasked, Braff told host Ron Bennington of a recent meeting with Allen that happened when his Kickstarter to create a follow-up to
- Erin Carlson
Reaction to Zach Braff's use of Kickstarter to fund his next indie film has been mixed, to say the least. But according to the "Scrubs" star, Woody Allen is "riveted" by it. During an interview on SiriusXM talk show "Unmasked," Braff said that the Oscar-winning "Annie Hall" director had no idea what crowdfunding was before meeting with him to discuss a project. Also read: Are Hollywood Millionaires Ruining Kickstarter? Let's Ask the Internet "By the way, I'm the one who explained crowdfunding to Woody Allen," Braff said. "He's one of my heroes and I »
- Greg Gilman
When Zach Braff announced he was going to fund his next film via Kickstarter, he was met with some cheers, some boos, and some choos. One of the folks who got behind it was none other than Woody Allen. Braff revealed on Sirius Xm's "Unmasked with Ron Bennington" that he schooled the man himself about crowd-funding. Apparently, Braff was in Allen's office, talking about working on a project together (they have worked together in the past, when Braff played Allen's son in Manhattan Murder Mystery), on the day the Wish I Was Here campaign started. Allen wanted to know what all the fuss was about, so Braff discussed it with him for ten minutes or so. And now, apparently, Allen is all abuzz about it. Braff explained, "A couple of days ago, his assistant e-mailed me about something, and I said to her, 'Ps: I’ll always remember that I »
- Jesse David Fox
Though he’s produced a few projects since making 2007’s I’m Not There, we haven’t seen a film directed by Todd Haynes for a while. But according to Screen Daily, he’s back with Carol, and he’s bringing Cate Blanchett and Mia Wasikowska with him.Empire Videblogisode regular Stephen Woolley is producing the new film, which adapts Patricia Highsmith’s novel The Price Of Salt.Carol will chart a relationship between two women in 1950s New York: a girl in her 20s slogging through a job in a department store (Wasikowska) and a wife trapped in a loveless, unfulfilling, but wealthy marriage (Blanchett).Phyllis Nagy is at work writing the script, which has producer Elizabeth Karlsen excited. “Todd is without a doubt one of the most talented directors working today," she says in a statement. "His attachment to direct this script and cast is a dream come true. »
Gordon Willis is regarded by all of his peers as one of the greatest cinematographers in the history of film, and for many as the greatest of all time, period. Meeting with him only served to have him rise in our esteem. Without wanting to use hyperbole, between lensing "The Godfather' trilogy, many of Woody Allen's best films (including "Annie Hall," "Manhattan," "Stardust Memories," "Interiors" and others) and several master thrillers for Alan J. Pakula ("All the President's Men," "Klute," "The Parallax View," "The Devil's Own" and others), Gordon Willis practically »
- Jeff Glickman
We’ve got a few new posters to share today. Briefly: Ender’s Game – A new promo poster for the adaptation puts Asa Butterfield and Harrison Ford’s characters front and center, as we see Butterfield’s titular Ender in his space suit. The film opens on November 1st. Blue Jasmine – The first poster for Woody Allen’s latest is unsurprisingly simple, but it does look like Cate Blanchett’s character will be the film’s central focus. The pic opens in limited release on July 26th. Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom – The debut poster for the biopic gives us our first look at Idris Elba as Nelson Mandela, which hopefully means a debut trailer is on its way. The film opens on November 29th. The Internship – A new poster for director Shawn Levy’s comedy sells the reunion of Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn. The film opens on June 7th. »
- Adam Chitwood
It's summer again, which means it's time for another Woody Allen film. The director has been churning out a new original film every single year for a long time now, and this year is no exception. Last year's To Rome with Love wasn't exactly a home run, but there was some sharp writing and great performances as usual. This year, Allen's film is Blue Jasmine, but as has become standard with everyone of his films, the plot details are still kept under wraps. Anyway, it's the cast that should draw audiences including Cate Blanchett (featured on the first poster below) Alec Baldwin, Louis C.K., Bobby Cannavale and Andrew Dice Clay. And that's not even the whole cast. Hopefully we'll get a trailer soon. Poster below! Here's the first poster for Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine from Imp Awards: Blue Jasmine is written and directed by Academy Award winning filmmaker Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris, »
- Ethan Anderton
This week brings the closing chapters of one of the rarest things in cinema -- a consistently strong trilogy -- in the shape of the latest installment of one of the most beloved series in recent memory. Not "The Hangover," but "Before Midnight," the closing (?) chapter to Richard Linklater's tale of romance. While it's bittersweet, we're also hopeful that one other perfect trilogy will be coming along before summer's out, in the shape of Edgar Wright & Simon Pegg's Cornetto trilogy, begun with "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz." A new trailer for the third installment "The World's End" is coming tomorrow, but just arriving before that is a new British quad poster, which highlights some of the supporting cast, including Rosamund Pike, Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman and Eddie Marsan. Check it out above. In other poster news, there's a new one for Woody Allen's fourty-ninth movie, »
- Ben Brock
After being one of the most beloved writer/directors of the 1970s and 80s, Woody Allen continued his success in the 90’s where five of his ten films received some form of Academy Award nomination. However, by this point critics had started to question his process of writing and directing a film every year and suggested it was beginning to take a toll on the quality of the end product.
Popular consensus on the quality of his work also declined as the millennium turned. It took until 2011’s ‘Midnight in Paris’ for one of his films to be universally regarded as a return to form. Not least because it also saw Allen himself win Best Original Screenplay at the Academy Awards for the first time since ‘Hannah and Her Sisters’ in 1987. In financial terms, it became his most successful picture to date, showing that the cinema-going public loved it too. »
- Terry Hearn
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