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Happiness means steering clear of “Hector and the Search for Happiness.” A supremely irritating marriage of picture-postcard exoticism and motivational uplift, this misguided comedy-drama tells the story of a British therapist who upends his comfortable lifestyle and travels the world looking for the secret to inner joy — like an “Eat Pray Love” remake for men with too much time, money and existential ennui on their hands. Trite, flat-footed, culturally insensitive, and sagging under the weight of more than 25 credited producers, Peter Chelsom’s film will need every ounce of charm and cachet it can wring from star Simon Pegg to achieve box office traction. Following an Aug. 15 U.K. release (in a version that runs six minutes longer, with negligible differences) and a North American launch at Toronto, it begins a Stateside platform release Sept. 19 through Relativity Media.
Attempting to reproduce the simple, childlike prose style of Francois Lelord’s popular source novel, »
- Justin Chang
Gustave Kervern and Catherine Deneuve in Pierre Salvadori's In The Courtyard The French Film Festival UK has unveiled its selection for its 22nd edition this November - with highlights featuring some of the brightest lights of French cinema, including Catherine Deneuve, Isabelle Huppert, Isabelle Carré, Jean Reno, Guillaume Canet, Mathieu Amalric, Albert Dupontel and Jean-Pierre Darroussin.
In locations across the country stretching from Inverness to London via Edinburgh and Glasgow, the event styles itself as “a celebration of Francophone cinema in all its guises.”
As well as an eclectic selection of contemporary titles from the past 12 months, the Festival will pay tribute to the late Alain Resnais who died earlier in the year, with screenings of a restored copy of his first feature Hiroshima Mon Amour with Oscar-nominated Emmanuelle Riva (from Amour) and Eiji Okadan, and the director’s last film Life of Riley (Aimer, boire, et chanter), his »
- Amber Wilkinson
Directed by Peter Chelsom
A psychiatrist searches the globe to find the secret of happiness.
It’s really hard to dislike Simon Pegg (unless you’re our own Rohan Morbey) and it’s even harder to dislike him when he is doing a movie that is trying its hardest to be positive. In a world with such a bleak outlook on life, we should be praising a movie like Hector and the Search for Happiness for at least trying to give us some levity. Make us take note of the things we have and why we should be pleased to have them. But sadly this is not the case. Because Simon Pegg is pretty unlikeable in this sanctimonious, forgettable and rather bland movie.
Pegg plays the titular Hector, »
- Luke Owen
Anglophile alert! One of my favorite unsung movies is Peter Chelsom's "Funny Bones," a portrait of comic performers at the British seaside resort Blackpool. It's a very specific, happy/sad movie with terrific performances from Oliver Platt, Jerry Lewis and especially Lee Evans, who channels Buster Keaton. It didn't make much of a splash back in 1995, but it's one of Chelsom's own favorites, and he makes a welcome return to that kind of witty British moviemaking with "Hector and the Search for Happiness," starring two of my other faves, Simon Pegg and Rosamund Pike. Based on a bestselling memoir by a real-life French psychiatrist, the anglicized movie follows stick-in-the-mud shrink Hector (Pegg) on a quest around the world for happiness. He leaves behind his fiance (Pike) to connect with strangers, from a wealthy businessman (Stellan Skarsgard) who shows him around Shanghai and a monk in Tibet to a dangerous »
- Anne Thompson
Factory 25 has acquired North American rights to the comedy Hellaware, Michael M Bilandic’s comedy inspired by the New York art scene and the band Insane Clown Posse. The story of a photographer who becomes seduced by success stars Keith Poulson and Sophia Takal and will open theatrically on September 26, three days after digital launch. »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
The cultest monster in Japanese cinema gets a blockbusting Hollywood makeover from the team behind Independence Day. Matthew Broderick is the scientist trying to stop the carnage when a huge mutant lizard rampages its way through New York. French secret service agent Jean Reno gives him some clues, but the military and his girlfriend's TV crew don't really help matters. »
Director: Peter Chelsom; Screenwriters: Maria von Heland, Peter Chelsom, Tinker Lindsay; Starring: Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike, Stellan Skarsgård, Toni Collette, Jean Reno, Christopher Plummer; Running time: 120 mins; Certificate: 15
Simon Pegg tackles the meaning of life as the eponymous wanderer and/or wonderer in an adaptation of a book by French psychiatrist François Lelord. Hector and the Search for Happiness is part fable, part self-help manual with echoes of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, but like that film, there's a considerable gap between its deeply profound objective and the soft handling.
Hector is subject to gentle teasing for taking life too seriously, but he isn't a purely comic character and that's unfortunate for Pegg who usually gets laughs playing pompous idiots. He's much less compelling being moody and teary-eyed, especially because he doesn't have much to complain about. Hector is a successful psychiatrist who lives in a plush London home with a lovely girlfriend, »
From the press release:
The feel-good comedy of the summer, Hector And The Search For Happiness is the uplifting story of one man’s global quest to find out whether happiness truly exists. Featuring stunning performances from an all-star cast including Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike, Toni Collette, Christopher Plummer, Stellan Skarsgard and Jean Reno, the hilarious, heart-warming film is set for release in cinemas nationwide from 15th August 2014, through Koch Media.
Hector (Simon Pegg – Shaun of the Dead, The Worlds End, Paul) is an eccentric yet loveable psychiatrist who finds himself at a crossroads in life; his patients just aren’t getting any happier and his life is going nowhere. Feeling trapped between his mundane daily routine and his neurotic girlfriend, »
- Luke Owen
Served up by the smiling Jean Reno and the persnickety Michael Youn, Le Chef (originally, Comme un chef) is French comfort food in the traditional sense. It may not be particularly good for you, nutrition-wise, but it sure is tasty. Jacky Bonnot (Youn) is blessed -- and/or cursed, depending on your point of view -- with a perfect sense of taste, complemented by a perfect sense of smell, and accented by a refusal to accept anything less than perfection in the kitchen. His self-righteous judgment extends into the dining room, where he does not hesitate to inform hapless diners what it is that they should be eating and drinking. As might be imagined, this has led to a succession of jobs where he comes into...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
The son of scuba-diving instructors, Luc Besson came of age exploring the depths of the ocean floor and inventing stories out of the debris he would find along the shore. Some 50 years later, he is still playing with rocks in the sand — only now his shoreline is the river Seine and his castle a 667,000-square-foot film studio called Cite du Cinema (literally Cinema City). Built from the shell of a 1930s thermal power plant in the Paris suburb of Saint Denis, the sprawling complex — which includes nine soundstages, a 500-seat auditorium and a full-service restaurant — is headquarters for Besson’s prolific production and distribution outfit, EuropaCorp, plus a host of affiliated vendors and two film schools.
On a recent Friday afternoon, despite a bank-holiday weekend in France, Cite du Cinema was a hive of activity as editors, sound mixers and visual effects artists readied two new EuropaCorp productions for their »
- Scott Foundas
I consider myself to be a somewhat jaded, overly cynical filmgoer, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not always on the lookout for a film that might come close to expressing the ebullience and joy of life. While I’ve yet to see the film – and will have to wait a little longer to do so – I have to say that watching the latest preview for Hector and the Search for Happiness marked the first time I’ve actually laughed at a trailer in awhile.
Hector and the Search for Happiness features Simon Pegg as the titular Hector, a London psychiatrist who one day realize that his patients are just not getting happier. This prompts him to go on a journey across the world in pursuit of discovering what makes people happy. I think we can predict some moments of self-discovery for Hector, and perhaps some heartache too, »
- Lauren Humphries-Brooks
A clever penis joke. We’re sold. The latest trailer for Simon Pegg’s Hector And The Search For Happiness has joyfully flown into our inbox via digital carrier birdy. You can check it out below, but be warned, it’s got an awesome cast and may well make you feel all warm and sticky on the inside (more than usual anyway). While some of you may be thinking “Walter Mitty” I’d hope it’s got more depth to it than Ben Stillers, somewhat good, but overall bland mental outing of late. As great as Simon Pegg is playing off the likes of Tom Cruise and Chris Pine in big blockbusters, these “smaller” movies seem to really like the actor. Starring alongside Pegg are Toni Collette, Rosamund Pike, Stellan Skarsgård, Jean Reno and Christopher Plummer. Something like this is a welcome change of scenery from giant robots punching the »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Vic Barry)
“We should concern ourselves not so much with the pursuit of happiness, but with the happiness of the pursuit.” Professor Coreman (Christopher Plummer).
Here’s your first look at the heartwarming new trailer for Hector And The Search For Happiness. Based on the best-selling novel by Francois Lelord, Hector And The Search For Happiness is directed by Peter Chelsom and features an all star cast lead by Simon Pegg.
It was announced today that the film will be premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival on the evening of September 7th.
Check out the feel-good trailer of the week.
Hector (Simon Pegg) is a quirky psychiatrist who has become increasingly tired of his humdrum life. As he tells his girlfriend, Clara (Rosamund Pike), he feels like a fraud: he hasn’t really tasted life, and yet he’s offering advice to patients who are just not getting any happier. So »
- Michelle McCue
A new Hector and the Search for Happiness trailer has gone online. Based on the book of the same name by François Lelord, the film stars Simon Pegg as the titular Hector, an eccentric psychiatrist who’s going nowhere and whose patients aren’t getting any happier. One day, he musters up the courage to set out on a quest to find out if happiness really exists. I had actually never seen any of this film’s trailers before today, so I went and revisited the first and second trailers as well. And I think I prefer this brand new one the most. It sells the character’s need to go on this journey a bit more. Or maybe I’m just getting old and schmaltzy. The comedic elements of the first two trailers are still present, but now I get the restlessness of the character's life. Hit the jump »
- Evan Dickson
Hector and the Search for Happiness finds Simon Pegg setting off on a global journey to find internal peace. Starring as Hector, this well-respected psychiatrist has reached the midpoint of his meager existance, and despite having a beautiful girlfriend and a satisfactory job, he feels he hasn't quite lived life to the fullest. Watch as this one man sets off on the quest of a lifetime. Will Hector find his happiness? We also have a second alternative trailer that brings even more footage from this life-fulfilling adventure.
Hector is a quirky psychiatrist who has become increasingly tired of his humdrum life. As he tells his girlfriend, Clara, he feels like a fraud: he hasn't really tasted life, and yet he's offering advice to patients who are just not getting any happier. So Hector decides to break out of his deluded and routine driven life. Armed with buckets of courage and child-like curiosity, »
Relativity's Hector and the Search for Happiness was just announced as one of the Gala screenings at this year's Toronto Film Festival. The movie, directed by Peter Chelsom (Shall We Dancec) stars Simon Pegg in the title role and seems almost like something of a Brit version of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Based on the world-wide best-selling novel of the same name, the movie features Hector (Pegg), a quirky psychiatrist who has become increasingly tired of his humdrum life. As he tells his girlfriend, Clara (Rosamund Pike), he feels like a fraud: he hasn't really tasted life, and yet he's offering advice to patients who are just not getting any happier. So Hector decides to break out of his deluded and routine driven life. Armed with buckets of courage and child-like curiosity, he embarks on a global quest in hopes of uncovering the elusive secret formula for true happiness. »
- Brad Brevet
The 39th Toronto International Film Festival has announced its initial slate of galas and special presentations, which includes 37 world premieres and several films with Oscar ambitions. The Judge, which stars Robert Downey Jr. as a big-city lawyer who reluctantly returns home and ends up defending his revered father (Robert Duvall) against criminal charges, will have its world premiere in Toronto. His Avengers pal, Chris Evans, will unveil his own directorial debut in Toronto, titled Before We Go.
- Jeff Labrecque
The Toronto International Film Festival has announced over 40 titles — a mix of awards contenders, star-powered indies, and international art-house fare — screening in its Gala and Special Presentations program this September, including Denzel Washington’s “The Equalizer,” a pair of Reese Witherspoon projects and closing night film “A Little Chaos,” Alan Rickman’s period pic starring Kate Winslet as a landscape gardener assigned to construct the garden at Versailles.
World-preeming Galas announced this morning at the Tiff Bell Lightbox also include “Pawn Sacrifice,” Ed Zwick’s biopic on the legendary Cold War-era chess match between Bobby Fischer (Tobey Maguire) and Boris Spassky (Liev Schreiber), and “Black and White,” Mike Binder’s tale of a grieving widower (Kevin Costner) in a custody battle, as well as WB fall releases “The Judge” (Robert Downey Jr.) and Shawn Levy’s dysfunctional family comedy-drama “This Is Where I Leave You.”
International titles world-preeming on the »
- Jennie Punter
The Toronto International Film Festival announced its initial wave of 2014 premieres and galas this morning and it features some familiar awards titles, some big stars and some unexpected studio titles. Among the major studio films, David Dobkin's "The Judge" with Robert Downey Jr. and Antoine Fuqua's "The Equalizer" each received gala slots and should premiere over the festival's opening weekend. Other announced galas so far include Bennett Miller's acclaimed "Foxcatcher," which debuted at Cannes, and Mike Binder's "Black and White" starring Kevin Costner, Octavia Spencer and Anthony Mackie. Toronto has also scheduled special gala screenings for David Cronenberg's "Map to the Stars" with Julianne Moore and Robert Pattinson, François Ozon's "The New Girlfriend," Ed Zwick's "Pawn Sacrifice" with Tobey Maguire, Lone Scherfig's "The Riot Club," Jean-Marc Vallée's "Wild," Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano's "Samba" and Shawn Levy's "This is Where I Leave You »
- Gregory Ellwood
Chef Mate: Cohen’s Poke at the Restaurant World Written for Fast Food Mentality
Connoisseurs of world food porn will perhaps take keen interest in the Gallic trifle, Le Chef, a 2012 title finally unfurling stateside this summer. So wan and frothy with its generic little plot, even fans of Jean Reno will be slightly disappointed at the saccharine ambivalence evident in every aspect. Hardly as sophisticated as other recently released French food fare, like Catherine Frot headlined Haute Cuisine, or even similarly themed American titles like Jon Favreau’s Chef, director Daniel Cohen would seem inspired by a growing universal trend in the appeal of food themes, even though it technically was written and filmed before these. While it’s certainly not a terrible endeavor to experience (to its credit, the film is certainly better than Roger Gaul’s Tasting Menu) Cohen seems perfectly fine with resting in the gutter of floundering cliché, »
- Nicholas Bell
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