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Hollywood's most high-falutin' varmint must be Tommy Lee Jones. As difficult and humorless as he's perceived to be (and sometimes said to actually be), he's gone and built a career on imbuing a certain curmudgeonly ease into whatever films he appears in, from Coal Miner's Daughter to Captain America, from Men in Black to Lincoln. This was somehow true even in his younger days, before he started racking up Oscar nominations and securing the occasional director gig. The Homesman is Jones' fourth directorial effort, if you count his two made for TV movies, The Sunset Limited (2011) and The Good Old Boys (1995). Although I can't vouch for those two, his previous theatrical helmer, 2005's The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, stands as one of the...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
As that classic media intro says, “return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear”, for this new release is set in the old West. This was a classic backdrop for so many films, going back over one hundred years to The Great Train Robbery, but the Western has become a rarity in the last decade or so. Recent attempts at big budget revivals like Cowboys & Aliens and last Summer’s reboot of The Lone Ranger were box office sinkholes. But happily, more modestly budgeted independent films have taken up the reins. One of the stars that seems quite at ease on horseback is Oscar-winner Tommy Lee Jones, so it was no great surprise that his feature film directing debut nine years ago was a modern-day Western, The Three Burials Of Melquiades Estrada. For his film making return Jones has gone back, nearly a century and a half, to »
- Jim Batts
The Homesman (2014)
Directed by Tommy Lee Jones
Ably independent yet desperate to nurture a family, Mary Bee Cuddy agrees to transport three women maddened by trauma across the country, enlisting the help of an aged, stubborn drifter along the way.
Despite what Tommy Lee Jones might want you to think, his new film, The Homesman, is definitely a western. And thank goodness, for the genre has been sorely lacking in reinforcements in recent years. It’s long been a favourite genre of mine, from Peckinpah to The Coen Brothers, Leone to Tarantino, but if you were to sieve through, say, the last ten years for decent entries (excluding hybrids like Cowboys & Aliens or an Aussie western like The Proposition), what have you got? True Grit? »
- Edward Gardiner
Heavy-hitting holdovers Foxcatcher, The Theory Of Everything and Birdman were robust in expansion in the specialty release side of the box office this weekend. Meanwhile, a pair of limited-release newcomers, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night and doc Monk With A Camera – both Kino Lorber releases – bowed with solid numbers.
A Girl, Ana Lily Amirpour’s self-described “Iranian vampire Western” that debuted at Sundance, opened in two theaters in New York and L.A., grossing $26K, for a $13K average.
Kino Lorber also opened Monk With A Camera, Guido Santi and Tina Mascara’s documentary, with an exclusive run at the Film Society of Lincoln Center in an 85-seat theater that had sell-out showings. The film grossed $10K Friday to Sunday.
- Brian Brooks
The Homesman, 2014.
Directed by Tommy Lee Jones.
Three women who have been driven mad by pioneer life are to be transported across the country by covered wagon by the pious, independent-minded Mary Bee Cuddy, who in turn employs low-life drifter George Briggs to assist her.
The old adage ‘they don’t make them like they used to’ could be applied to pretty much most genre film making depending on your outlook of American cinema in 2014, but never more so could that be said of a genre than the Western. Westerns, like too many films not based on established properties, have been pushed away and forgotten in favour of the easy sell and easy buck. Sure, there’s always a True Grit which shows a brief spike in audience »
- Gary Collinson
Chicago – In Tommy Lee Jones’ passion project “The Homesman,” the wild west provides a vivid setting for a battle in man’s endless war against women, as the film firmly occupying a genre strictly known for cowboys and pioneer machismo. It’s a sorrowful western from actor/writer/director Jones that often shines in its twilight, hoping to slightly reconcile the maltreatment unleashed on half of the world’s most powerful species.
Living outside standard domestic criteria of a developing America in the mid 1800s is Mary Bee Cuddy (Hilary Swank), a woman without a spouse or a child, who only takes care of herself and her giant farm. When three extremely psychologically-disturbed women are in need of transport to a hospital up north where they can receive help, Mary Bee volunteers to take on the journey, despite the town initially requiring that a man lead the expedition.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Fancy some misery? How about a big hefty dollop of it, complete with hangings, rape and one too many graphic baby deaths? Then, the fourth movie Tommy Lee Jones has directed in his illustrious career, is right up your alleyway. Based on the Glendon Swarthout novel, The Homesman follows three women who have been driven mad by their pioneer way of life. With various degrees of bat shit craziness between them, they are to be transported across the country by Mary Bee Cuddy (Hilary Swank) and George Briggs (Tommy Lee Jones). This journey is not without incident as in between bouts of howling, snarling and some brief (thankfully) flashbacks, our hapless, unlikely couple find themselves trading a horse to buy safe passage from a bunch of Indians and Briggs get’s drunk…twice. The Homesman is as bleak as the barren wasteland it’s set in, with little and nothing »
- email@example.com (Vic Barry)
Directed by Tommy Lee Jones
“That’s all there is, there ain’t no more.”
Set during the pioneer era, The Homesman subverts the usual trajectory of westerns set in this time by instead focusing on a journey from what will eventually become Nebraska territory in the West to more Eastern Iowa, wherein defeat via the frontier is a primary concern, whether it be a defeat of the mind, body, soul, or all together. Director Tommy Lee Jones’s last theatrically released film was The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada (2005), a contemporary neo-western with shades of Sam Peckinpah in its flavour. The Homesman may have the set dressing of a more traditional, old-school genre entry, but this film, adapted from Glendon Swarthout’s 1988 novel, is much more offbeat than one might expect. »
- Josh Slater-Williams
Peter Bradshaw and Catherine Shoard join Xan Brooks to fight with the underdogs and take arms against this week's turkeys. In battle today: the penultimate part of the Hunger Games franchise, which sees Jennifer Lawrence becoming a revolutionary figurehead; The Homesman, in which Tommy Lee Jones and Hilary Swank escort three mentally ill women across the midwest; James Brown biopic Get On Up and Winter Sleep, a three-and-a-quarter hour Turkish drama acclaimed at Cannes Continue reading »
- Xan Brooks, Peter Bradshaw, Catherine Shoard, Henry Barnes and Mona Mahmood
Gotham’s most famous schizophrenic makes his entrance……
Nicholas D’Agosto is a whole bag of crazy. Clean cut image, catalogue model looks and a smile so superficial you know something sinister lies beneath. In political terms Bill Hicks once said that ‘anyone that far to the right is hiding a deep dark secret’, but to what extent Dent could be considered Republican is debateable. However the issue here is not about ideology nor D’Agosto’s interpretation but his screen time.
To name check your show with a landmark character then spend thirty minutes or more ignoring him is a cardinal sin. In lieu of this wasted opportunity we get character development elsewhere, sub plots which end up distracting not entertaining and an introduction that feels like an afterthought. There is no doubt that D’Agosto has potential and his moments of psychosis are effective, »
- Gary Collinson
Learning to hold a brush like Britain’s most revered landscape artist could be considered the easiest way to embody the role of J.M.W. Turner. But for Timothy Spall, who stars as the titular “Mr. Turner,” perfecting the artist’s signature grip was merely the first step in his quest to paint like a master.
“The job really was to get as much knowledge about the practicalities of the painter, try and understand what he was doing,” Spall says. “Basically, we were trying to make it look like I was familiar with a brush, like it was something that grew organically out of my whole being.”
The actor trained with watercolorist Tim Wright off and on for two years before he began shooting Mike Leigh’s look at the last 25 years of Turner’s life and prolific career. After a rigorous examination of the basics, Spall punctuated his »
- Christy Grosz
Most people never step inside a casino until they’ve reached adulthood. When they do, they typically approach them with expectations of smartly dressed punters, towers of chips exchanging hands around a poker table, and hundreds of flashing, buzzing slots contraptions with waterfalls of coins pouting out. The reason for these particular images? Hollywood. Casinos have starred in the movies for decades. Bright, exotic and ever-so-slightly decadent, they make a perfect setting for every kind of story. From drama to comedy films, casinos have provided audiences with thrills and laughs in equal measures, and in this article we review five top movies that are based on gambling.
The Hustler (1961)
Credit: 20th Century Fox
Director: Robert Rossen
Running time: 134 min
Hilary Swank is heartbreakingly good in The Homesman, where she plays Mary Bee Cuddy, a plain but forthright frontierswoman imbued with an almost shocking amount of decency. Certainly, she’s got more moral fortitude than just about anyone else in her small Nebraska town: When three local men write off their troubled wives as hysterics (all too easy to do in the mid-1800s) and determine that they should be taken far away to a refuge in Iowa, Mary Bee is the only one brave and compassionate enough to lead those women on their long trek. Soon she meets an irascible criminal (played by Tommy Lee Jones, who also directed the film) who can help her navigate the trail, but he, too, may be helped by Mary Bee’s moral fortitude. Swank recently sat down with Vulture to discuss the movie’s powerful themes of decency and feminism.Mary Bee is so immediately relatable, »
- Kyle Buchanan
Hilary Swank has said that male actors earn "ten times" more than their female colleagues.
The Boys Don't Cry actress attacked the disparity in Hollywood pay at the Loyola Marymount University School of Film and TV.
"My male counterpart will get paid ten times more than me - ten times," she said (via The Hollywood Reporter).
"Not double, but ten times for the same job. We only have this much left for the female actress.
"I mean, there's two genders on this earth. Both are compelling, interesting, diverse, wonderful in all their own separate ways. And yet there's an influx of male roles and there's just not for women."
It is currently screening in the Us and will open in the UK on November 21. »
Director: Tommy Lee Jones.
Running Time: 122 minutes.
Synopsis: Accompanied by the gruff George Briggs (Jones), Mary Bee Cuddy (Swank) agrees to transport three women who have lost their minds in the wild west, back to Iowa.
Tommy Lee Jones returns to the director’s saddle after his amazing The Three Burials Of Melquiadas Estrada way back in 2005. Once again he’s taking us on a journey through the brutal west, and once again he is giving it a unique spin. Based on the novel by Glendon Swarthout, The Homesman is a film devoid of traditional heroes or glorified outlaws, and instead focuses on very real people in a very inhospitable time and place.
Hilary Swank is once again on top of her »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
Director: Tommy Lee Jones; Screenwriters: Tommy Lee Jones, Kieran Fitzgerald, Wesley A Oliver; Starring: Tommy Lee Jones, Hilary Swank, Grace Gummer, Miranda Otto, Sonja Richter, William Fichtner; Running time: 123 mins; Certificate: 15
Tommy Lee Jones directs and stars in a far-out western, taking a radically different view on the macho politics of expansion with Hilary Swank co-starring as one of many unsung female pioneers. In one sense, it's a western in reverse as they're both headed back east with a wagon-load of women who have become unhinged by life in the dustbowl. But there's an eerie, haunting feel to the action that leaves a question mark hanging over what Jones is really trying to say about the female condition.
Roadside Attractions president Howard Cohen says he does not think that September's online leak of a Blu-ray quality copy of Tommy Lee Jones' acclaimed western drama "The Homesman" will have much impact on the film's potential box-office.
Variety reports that illegal copies of the film have been online for almost two months and piracy tracking firm Excipio claims the film has been pirated roughly 1.2 million times since.
Despite that, the film opened in limited release last weekend and managed a robust $48,000 from just four theaters. It is expected to continue expanding into more cinemas in the coming weeks.
Cohen says: "I seriously doubt there was an effect on 'The Homesman'. The audience is significantly on the older side." Saban Films president Bill Bromiley adds: "We were very concerned about it. You just try to do as best you can to get copies down. Does it effect you? Absolutely. But how much, »
- Garth Franklin
I had a chance to have tea with two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank at the Hamptons International Film Festival in the lobby of the Maidstone Hotel. We discussed her scrubbed down, soulful role as Mary Bee Cuddy in Tommy Lee Jones's "The Homesman," one of my favorite movies of 2014. The Nebraska native, 40, addressed the challenges of playing a single Nebraska homesteader on the Western frontier and how that woman's struggle remains relevant today. -Break- You play a virtuous woman in a dangerous time: does that still resonate? Hs: Mary Bee lived in a time where manners and morals were virtues. We are in a day and age where we've lost touch with that for a lot of other reasons. For me, she does the right thing because she believes in doing the right thing. She'll say right to your face how she feels. The world would be a better »
Margaret here, reporting from the La festival beat with short takes on some would-be Oscar contenders.
Screenwriter William Monahan (The Departed), director Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), and star Mark Wahlberg joined forces on this remake of the 1974 James Caan movie of the same name, and the result is certainly stylish. It's well-shot, coolly assured, and smartly paced. Wahlberg leads the movie capably as Jim Bennett, a man from a rich family with a solid career who has nonetheless dug himself to rock bottom with extravagant compulsive gambling.
The film is at its best when it engages with the question of why someone whose life is granted so much privilege so systematically pisses it all away. John Goodman, typically scene-stealing as a dangerous loan shark, makes many salient points about Jim's decisions, which are either self-destructive or indefensibly stupid. To its detriment, the film »
- Margaret de Larios
"Dumb and Dumber To," starring Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, took first place at the domestic box office with $38 million, making it Carrey's biggest live-action debut since "Bruce Almighty" ($70 million) more than a decade ago, as well as Daniels' biggest ever. Twenty years ago, the original film opened to $16 million and went on to earn almost $250 million worldwide on a budget of only $17 million. The sequel cost $40 million and has a good chance of becoming a big hit. It has a 27% fresh rating on RottenTomatoes. Marvel's animated "Big Hero 6" settled for second place with $36 million, bringing its worldwide total to $148 million, which is still short of the $165 million budget. Christopher Nolan's "Interstellar" took third place with $29.2 million. Its total is now $322 million, almost double its $165 million budget. The other new wide release of the weekend was "Beyond the Lights" romance drama, which landed in fourth place with $6.5 million. »
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