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#10. The Grand Budapest Hotel
Without a doubt, Anderson’s darkest film to date, this also has to be the richest and most complex of his films. A starry supporting cast whirls around the delectable Ralph Fiennes, treading throughout the director’s glorious off beat style. By now, many perhaps take Anderson’s visual mastery for granted, or even dismiss him, yet his work has only become more thrillingly accomplished.
A film completely set in a moving car with only the visage of Tom Hardy to interact with disembodied voices (one of which is Olivia Colman)? Abandon all fear of tediousness as you experience one of the most inventive and engaging experiments you’ll see this year. Hardy, if you’ve seen Bronson, obviously has no hard time sharing the screen with himself, and while it’s a more subdued performance here, this one’s not to miss.
#8. Burning Bush »
- Nicholas Bell
For this summer’s box office, the hits keep on coming—and not the good kind, the ones with $100 million opening weekends. No, the summer of 2014 has been one body-blow after another at the U.S. box office, as the collective slate of big Hollywood films has failed to keep up with last summer’s record pace. The most recent weekend, which witnessed Dawn of the Planet of the Apes repeat as the top movie, was trailing the same weekend last year by almost 25 percent. July is down more than 30 percent year-to-year, and the summer as a whole is down almost 19 percent from last year. »
- Jeff Labrecque
Let’s face it; the new Godzilla movie was abysmal. Far beyond a flat script, the direction was the main culprit. Even Bryan Cranston obviously had no guidance and ended up a stuttering, underdeveloped Walter White mess. The action scenes, so well advertised in the trailer, were nothing to write home about. Then again, the last incarnation of Godzilla wasn’t much to write home about either. Starring Matthew Broderick, Jean Reno, and Hank Azaria, with Roland Emmerich directing on the heels of the wildly successful Independence Day, 1998’s Godzilla was a dud. Fan boys are still waiting for a worthy realization of the King of the Monsters, and Fox’s animated series, released in ’98 as a continuation of the film, doesn’t do much to help.
- Kyle North
Chances are, if you hear the name Michael Bay, you will probably think of a combination of words including 'crap', 'explosions', 'lame' or 'silly hair'.
The big budget filmmaker has risen in the ranks over the past couple of decades to become one of the highest grossing director of all time (sitting alongside Steven Spielberg, James Cameron and company). Clearly, his films are hugely popular. So why all the hate?
Despite the continued box office success, Bay's films are more often than not critically panned, and it's not often that you'll hear people owning up to be a fan, but are his films as bad as everyone makes out?
Several critics, including Film Comment editor Scott Foundas, have labelled Bay as an auteur of his chosen art form. When you watch a Bay movie, you know you're watching a Bay movie. He has his own clear visual style, and that's »
The alien invasion scenario is a common one in cinema – and for good reason. If movies are a mirror, reflecting social anxieties and regrets, then the alien invasion trope is one of the most adaptable allegories imaginable. For decades, filmmakers have used it to discuss military policies, fear of technology and concern over environmental abuses. Our scientific progress as a species, in conflict with the moral progress of our conscience, and our natural fear of change, are all to be found in the alien invasion movie. There are three main types of cinematic alien invasion – each serving a different purpose – although variations and combinations do occasionally appear. These are Occupation, Infiltration and Raid.
The Occupation alien invasion movie addresses two main concerns about the human condition. First, are the films featuring aliens that want our planet, and are entirely disinterested in us. We are inconsequential, and serve no purpose. We »
- Sarah Myles
When Sony released a slew of Heisei and Millennium series Godzilla movies as double feature Blu-rays this May, there were several noticeably absent titles. Those three films and a trio of modern Mothra flicks are finally due on Blu.
SciFi Japan reports that Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will be releasing two more entries in its Toho Godzilla Collection this September and, as an added bonus (for the dozen or so people that enjoy them, kaiju completists, or mere gluttons for punishment), all three installments of the late 90s Rebirth of Mothra trilogy.
The one and only true King of the Monsters roared not only back to life following Roland Emmerich’s 1998 Hollywood reboot debacle but also back to multiplexes in the Us in Toho’s loopy relaunch Godzilla 2000. The Big G battles both the Japanese military, a UFO that looks suspiciously like a metallic bed pan, and a rubbersuit »
Everybody likes Independence Day, because Independence Day is a movie about Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum teaming up to save the world from alien destruction. Yes, what is essentially Roland Emmerich’s best and most ludicrously entertaining filmmaking venture has a sort of eternal appeal, despite being very dumb, very ’90s, and very, very ridiculous – it’s just too hard to hate on a premise as deliciously enticing as the one inherent to this flick, after all.
Given that today is actually Independence Day, then, what better way to celebrate such an important and integral Us holiday than to take a look back at what really matters: Will Smith having a fist fight with an alien and then smoking a cigar to celebrate his victory. Here we’ve assembled 10 amazing easter eggs/slices of trivia/cool references from the wonder that is Independence Day – eggs that you might not have noticed on your eight, »
- Sam Hill
Independence Day was released in the Us 18 years ago today. Ryan looks at its ongoing impact on how summer movies are made and marketed...
In 1990, Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin were Hollywood outsiders. Devlin was a young New York-born actor who'd appeared in a few TV shows and movies, such as the 1985 comedy, Real Genius. Emmerich was a German filmmaker whose credits consisted of low-budget films such as The Noah's Ark Principle (1984), and Hollywood-Monster (1987). Emmerich's 1990 film, Moon 44, was about pilots defending mining colonies with space-faring helicopters, and featured a glum-looking Malcolm McDowell.
Dean Devlin was also among Moon 44's cast, and it was here that he forged a partnership with Emmerich: Devlin hated Moon 44's dialogue, so he went and wrote his own. Within two years, they'd made their first film together - Universal Soldier, written by Devlin, directed by Emmerich, and produced by Carolco. »
Two decades ago, director Roland Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin had planned out a trilogy of "Stargate" films with the first hitting cinemas in 1994. It performed well, but the subsequent TV series spin-off, which the pair weren't involved in, lead to the scrapping of further film entries.
Now, with the TV franchise long over, the original film is being rebooted with both Emmerich and Devlin back onboard. Speaking with the Portland Business Journal, Devlin confirms that the pair are actually moving forward with their originally envisioned plan from back in the 1990s rather than starting afresh. He says:
"We did the original Stargate as an independent movie. It was a surprise success. Shortly before the movie came out, the financiers who were frightened the movie might not do well sold the film to MGM. When the film came out, it was a hit and spawned TV shows.
Of all the projects I’ve ever done, »
- Garth Franklin
The countdown is on to my favourite festival! Sitges 2014 is on this October 3 - 12 on the sunny shores of the Mediterranean, and the first wave of amazing programing was announced this morning. Among a plethora of titles, is was announced that the festival's Grand Honourary Award will be given to Roland Emmerich (The Day After Tomorrow, Universal Soldier, Stargate).As previously announced, the festival will open with [Rec]4, the final installment of the amazing pseudo-zombie saga, directed by Jaume Balagueró. Among other great titles to be seen are Cold in July, Under the Skin, What We Do in the Shadows, Map to the Stars, Alleluia, Goodbye to Language (is this the first Godard to be at Sitges, I wonder?), and the latest from...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
Madrid – Announcing its first heavyweight creative presence at Spain’s Sitges Festival, L.A.-based scribe-helmer-producer Roland Emmerich, director of “Independence Day,” “2012” and “Stargate,” will receive the Grand Honorary Award.
The 47th Sitges Intl. Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia’s Spanish line-up – one of its key attractions since Spain burst onto the world’s genre scene in the late 1990s – includes Jaume Balaguero’s already-announced fest opener “[Rec] 4: Apocalypse,” the anticipated ’50 Spain-set “Shrew’s Nest” from Esteban Roel and Juan Fernando Andres and produced by Alex de la Iglesia and Sergi Caballero’s Rotterdam Fest competition player “The Distance.”
Also announced Tuesday, the Sitges Festival, Europe’s leading genre confab, will bow section Blood Window in a link-up with Buenos Aires’ Ventana Sur, as recognition of the burgeoning vibrancy of the Latin American genre production.
As film financing dwindles in Spain, Sitges will team with “The Impossible” producers Apaches Entertainment »
- John Hopewell
A pop-culture touchstone, a nearly all-purpose metaphor and one of the most beloved sci-fi franchises of the Seventies and beyond, the Planet of the Apes films do what all good what-if fantasies should do: hold up a mirror to humanity and reflect our own conflicts, issues and failings back to us through a wildly outrageous premise. The original 1968 movie mixes satire, social commentary, action and suspense, capped by a first-rate twist at the end. ("Damn you, damn you all to hell!")
Director Roland Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin has some very big plans for the Stargate franchise. As we reported late last month, the two filmmakers are now working hard to reinvigorate the sci-fi series they created back in the mid-90s, bringing it back with a whole new trilogy of movies. What may surprise you, however, is that the plans they are moving forward with are the ones they originally envisioned back when the first film was being made. Speaking with the Portland Business Journal (via Giant Freakin Robot), Devlin revealed a few key details about his ideas for the future of Stargate, the most significant being that the new plans are actually the old plans. Discussing returning to the sci-fi genre after spending some time away, the producer discussed how the original Stargate was made very differently than blockbusters are today, and that progress on the small screen helped »
Fans of Scandal know Guillermo Díaz as torture-addicted Gladiator Huck, who’s been known to lick his colleague-turned-enemy-turned-lover Quinn (Katie Lowes) and do unspeakable things to her in parking garages. Nearly 20 years ago, though, Díaz was an emerging actor who’d just starred opposite Parker Posey in Party Girl and was looking for a breakout gig. Enter Stonewall.
Díaz booked his first leading role as La Miranda, a larger-than-life drag queen (and I’m not just talking about her hair), in Nigel Finch’s fictionalized account of the days leading up to the birth of the modern Lgbt rights movement »
- Lanford Beard
You gotta love a good disaster epic. Movies like The Towering Inferno and Twister offer thrilling adventures based on the merciless wrath of nature gone awry. We haven't had a really good natural disaster movie in a while now but Into The Storm hopes to change all that. The Hobbit's Richard Armitage and former Walking Dead star Sarah Wayne Callies star in this movie that looks to combine the storm chasing thrills of Twister with the insane pseudo-science of Roland Emmerich's The Day After »
- Alex Maidy
Hell Frozen Over: Joon-Ho’s Dystopic Thrill Ride an Arresting Examination of Cold Humanity
His first feature film since 2009’s Mother, as well as his English language debut, Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer, based on the French graphic novel series “Le Transperceneige,” has been hyped at fever pitch ever since storming the box office in his native South Korea last year. After a much publicized haggling between the director and the Weinstein’s’ wish to trim twenty minutes away for the American palette, it’s a glorious win for art over commerce with the release of the title as the director originally intended it. Not to mention it moves as slickly as the rattling train upon which its set, speeding through a running time that slightly curbs over two hours at a brilliant pace.
Simply, a post apocalyptic tale showcasing mankind’s innate need for degrading hierarchies even when facing extinction, »
- Nicholas Bell
Why would the duo reboot their own movie, rather than make sequels? Especially since the film spawned a number of popular television series ("Stargate Sg-1," "Stargate Atlantis," and "Stargate Universe")? And also in light of the fact that they are making actual sequels to their other mega-hit movie, "Independence Day"?
Now, we have the answer. As Devlin told the Portland Business Journal, he and Emmerich just wanted to start over. And they didn't want to have to deal with events from the TV series.
"We did the original 'Stargate' as an independent movie. It was a surprise success," he said.
"When the film came out, it was a hit and spawned TV shows. Of all the projects I've ever done, 'Stargate »
- Kelly Woo
Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich owned the 1990s when it came to big budget scifi with Stargate and Independence Day. Now, with both of those franchises getting sequels or reboots, Devlin is right back in every conversation as fans process the prospect of these new films. With Stargate already having spawned a number of television series spin-offs, it seemed odd to do away with all of that established continuity for a new trilogy of films. But, according to Devlin, the TV series are the »
- Alex Maidy
Directors who've made maybe one interesting, successful small film soon get snapped up by the system. But at what cost to the industry?
Director Marc Webb put together the guts of (500) Days Of Summer, his debut feature, in his house. He worked on it behind closed doors, and by the time he got to the point where he was filming it, he knew what he wanted, he'd made key decisions, and could get on with it. Interference was in short supply, and the result felt like a breath of fresh air in a very crowded genre.
Then there's Gareth Edwards. When he came to make his first film, Monsters, he sat in his bedroom and did the visual effects work on his own computer. He didn't have much budget to play with, but he had his brain, and nobody looking over his shoulder offering 'creative input'. We suspect his computer wasn't a bad one, »
Disney have just announced the release dates for Steven Spielberg’s next two motion pictures. Spielberg will produce the films through his very own Dreamworks but will be distributed by The House of Mouse. First we have an as yet untitled spy thriller starring Tom Hanks and written by the Coen Brothers. Based on a true story, it will see Hanks attempt to negotiate the release of a U-2 pilot shot down during the Cold War. It’s set for a 16th October 2015 release, which is the same day as Guillermo Del Toro’s upcoming horror Crimson Peak.
Next up is Spielberg’s fantasy family adventure The Bfg, based on Rolad Dahl’s classic book. That’s set for a summer release on 1st July 2016. Set in England, as a young girl and a big friendly giant join forces, it sees the duo trying to stop a group of children »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
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