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Multicultural filmmaker Mira Nair known for making films that win both commercial and critical success might seem to have the best of both worlds, in every sense. For instance, Monsoon Wedding made her the first woman director to receive a Golden Lion at Venice in 2001 as well as raked up more than 30 million Usd at the box office. But her latest film-The Reluctant Fundamentalist-was realized through a long and arduous journey, full of ups and downs, just like any independent filmmaker in any part of the world would have it. Investors came and disappeared, budgets were slashed and the project fell apart several times.
“I have always managed to finance every film I want to make. It’s not easy each time but it’s not as tough as this. »
- Nandita Dutta
Mira Nair delivers a masterful film that rides high on the minimal expectations of the audiences and turns each scene into a cruel exercise of meeting as well as challenging these expectations, writes Shekhar Deshpande
The events of 9-11 have changed cinema. These changes have been far ranging, from narrative construction and movement to the aesthetics of urgency. The past before and since that day suddenly contracts to illuminate that fateful moment while images pace at the speed that intensifies the here-and-now which, incidentally, tends to be everywhere. It is now impossible to see Muslims and the Eastern cultures without the tinted lenses that all spectators have come to wear, where each gesture is ridden with risk until it has had a chance to prove otherwise. Any film that claims to have “fundamentalist” in its title is likely to invite a »
- Shekhar Deshpande
Film: "The Reluctant Fundamentalist"; Cast: Riz Ahmed, Shabana Azmi, Om Puri, Kate Hudson, Kiefer Sutherland, Liev Schreiber, Martin Donovan, Nelsan Ellis, Imaad Shah, Adil Hussain, Haluk Bilginer and Meesha Shafi; Director: Mira Nair; Rating: ** 1/2
The film, based on the acclaimed novel of the same name authored by Mohsin Hamid, is a typical Mira Nair film in terms of the cascade of colours, textures, frames and characters. Unlike the novel, the films is a blunt, slow and pretentious work of art.
It's about the meteoric rise and fall of a Pakistani migrant in the Us.
The film begins with an intimidating situation, where an American professor at Lahore University is kidnapped. The CIA with the help of Bobby. »
- Rahul Kapoor
Showtime is in the business of making problems disappear with their newest drama “Ray Donovan.” Liev Schreiber stars in his first television role as the titular character. The show follows a man who is the go-to fix-it guy for celebrities, athletes and other powerful people. But, every problem he fixes comes with a price, meaning drama isn’t far behind. “Set in the sprawling mecca of the rich and famous, Ray Donovan does the dirty work for La’s top power players. The new one-hour series stars Emmy and Golden Globe Award nominee Liev Schreiber in his first lead television role as the go-to-guy who makes the problems of the city’s celebrities, [ Read More ]
James Schamus has signed a new contract as CEO of Focus Features -- but now he has a co-ceo in Andrew Karpen, who has been promoted from his prior role as president. Karpen, who joined Focus in 2003 and became its president in 2006, will continue reporting to Schamus. While both men oversee all aspects of the company, Karpen oversees global business strategy and digital initiatives. In Cannes, Focus Features International will be selling Mike Leigh's next film, an Amy Winehouse documentary, Michael Cuesta's upcoming "Kill the Messenger" and "Black Sea" starring Jude Law. Another Ffi title, "The Last Days on Mars, starring Liev Schreiber and Olivia Williams, will premiere in the Directors' Fortnight. »
When the Next Generation cycle of Star Trek movies sputtered to an end in 2003, Nemesis closed out its run with a mediocre £4.8m in the UK, down from previous episode Insurrection's £7.7m. Paramount and Jj Abrams craftily reinvented the brand with the 2009 reboot, debuting with a tasty £5.95m (including £872,000 in previews), on its way to a total of £21.4m. Now comes the sequel, Into Darkness. Given the expanded fanbase established by the 2009 film, and the addition of Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch as the Star Fleet's formidable new foe, it's no big surprise to see numbers rise. Even so, Paramount will be more than happy with the achieved result: £8.43m including previews of £1.57m. That's a 42% rise on the debut last time around. Sequels do usually »
- Charles Gant
On June 30, Showtime viewers will start to say goodbye to Dexter... and hello to Ray Donovan.
Liev Schreiber anchors the new drama, which premieres at 10 p.m. and which stars the Emmy nominee as a fixer in Los Angeles, someone who does the dirty work for the city's most powerful players.
Marking Schreiber's first lead role on television, the series will also focus on Jon Voight as Ray's father, an ex-convict whose release from prison sets off a chain of dangerous events for Donovan and his family.
Watch the first extended trailer now:
Ray Donovan Promo »
- email@example.com (Matt Richenthal)
The trailer boasts a large cast and already has many pegging Oprah Winfrey for her second Oscar nomination and with that buzz, The Weinstein Co. has dated Lee Daniels' The Butler for an August 16 release date. The move gives it a prime, early position in this year's Oscar race and likely means it will enjoy a Toronto premiere, which is where the Weinsteins kicked things off with Silver Linings Playbook last year. The Butler stars Forest Whitaker as Eugene Allen, the White House butler whose career started with Harry Truman in 1952 and ended in 1986 with Ronald Reagan. The film is based on a Washington Post report by Wil Haygood. As I already mentioned, the film co-stars Oprah Winfrey as Gloria Gaines and she's joined by David Oyelowo as Louis Gaines, Alan Rickman as Ronald Reagan, Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan, James Marsden as John F. Kennedy, John Cusack as Richard Nixon, »
- Brad Brevet
The Butler has changed its theatrical release date.
The biopic drama will now arrive at Us theaters on August 16, reports Deadline. It was previously slated to open on October 18.
The Butler tells the life of Cecil Gaines (Forest Whitaker) who worked as a White House butler during eight Us presidential terms from 1952 to 1986, serving presidents such as President Dwight D Eisenhower and President John F Kennedy.
Directed by Lee Daniels, the film also stars Oprah Winfrey, Robin Williams, Vanessa Redgrave, John Cusack, James Marsden, Terrence Howard, Melissa Leo, Liev Schreiber, Jane Fonda, Alan Rickman, Lenny Kravitz, Minka Kelly and Alex Pettyfer.
No UK cinema release date has been announced.
Watch the trailer for The Butler below: »
Star Trek Into Darkness (12A)
Those cinemagoers won over by Abrams's first Star Trek movie (even if they can barely remember it now) won't be disappointed with this finely tuned follow-up, which deftly balances action crises, sci-fi repartee and the ongoing Kirk/Spock bromance, but adds enough surprises to keep things interesting, largely by way of Cumberbatch's shifty supervillain.
Another distinctive, beguiling southern parable from Nichols, this time tracking the friendship between two boys and the mysterious fugitive they find down by the river. It's like a mix of Stand By Me, Night Of The Hunter and Terrence Malick. »
- Steve Rose
What a fantastic week for new movie trailers - we've seen Oprah Winfrey come back to acting in The Butler, George Clooney and Sandra Bullock get lost in space for Gravity, and an all-star British cast reunite for The World's End.
Digital Spy looks at the top five trailers from the past week below...
This is the first trailer released from The World's End, the final instalment in the Three Flavours Cornetto series and long-awaited reunion between Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright. The film follows five mates trying to complete a pub crawl they couldn't finish 20 years ago - 12 pints each in 12 pubs. The movie also stars Rosamund Pike, Martin Freeman and Rafe Spall, and will be released on July 19.
American TV icon Oprah Winfrey »
Charismatic Brit Riz Ahmed is perfectly cast as Changez Khan, a Princeton-educated Pakistani who had Wall Street in his hand before 9/11 soured his American dream. Now a lecturer back in Lahore, Changez finds himself telling his story to a Us journalist (Liev Schreiber) while under suspicion for the recent kidnapping of a foreign professor. Tension and alienation fed by fear and mistrust: the 9/11 effect is deftly encapsulated in this absorbing adaptation of the novel by Moshin Hamid, enhanced by Mira Nair's level-headed direction and interesting support from Kate Hudson and Keifer Sutherland. »
Directed by Mira Nair
At this point, it’s fairly trite if accurate to acknowledge how drastically the world has shifted since the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. An equally cliched argument is how the United States has, since that ill-fated day, alienated the rest of the world with its quickly rising paranoia and single-minded obsession with taking down a presumed Other. The Reluctant Fundamentalist represents a missed opportunity to offer a more three-dimensional presentation of the struggles of a Middle Eastern citizen whose ambitions rival those of his American brothers. The ingredients are present, but the combination doesn’t amount to much.
The inciting event occurs during the opening credits, as an American professor is abducted in Pakistan and one of his colleagues is implicated as being involved. An American agent (Liev Schrieber) reaches out to that colleague, »
- Josh Spiegel
Review by Barbara Snitzer
The most surprising detail I noticed while watching this movie is that Kate Hudson gets top billing. Fortunately, her locks and silliness are somehow tamed by her being brunette.
An even more surprising post-viewing detail I learned was that while the movie globe-trots, the book takes place in only one location, that of the café in Lahore, Pakistan where Changez (Riz Ahmed) meets with American journalist Bobby (Liev Schreiber). At the beginning of their meeting in the café, Changez insists that Bobby listen to Changez’ story in its entirety lest he fail to understand why Changez’ fundamentalist activities are indeed, reluctant.
This might be the first time a great movie made me not want to read the book. »
- Movie Geeks
Lee Daniels' latest, "The Butler," serves as a sweeping look at the Civil Rights movement in the United States as seen through the eyes of a White House butler. The first trailer for the movie has arrived, and its many, many cameos seem like they'll be the project's major selling point.
Forest Whitaker plays the movie's titular butler, a real-life person named Cecil Gaines. Oprah Winfrey portrays his wife, while David Oyelowo plays their son. Rounding out the cast are Robin Williams and Melissa Leo as Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower, James Marsden and Minka Kelly as John F. and Jackie Kennedy, John Cusack as Richard Nixon, Alan Rickman and Jane Fonda as Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Liev Schreiber as Lyndon B. Johnson and Mariah Carey as Hattie Pearl -- and that's just scratching the surface of the people involved.
"The Butler" is due in theaters on Oct. 18. It will »
The Weinstein Company has released the first trailer for the Lee Daniels-directed film The Butler, which stars Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, David Oyelowo, Liam Neeson, John Cusack, Alan Rickman, Jane Fonda, Robin Williams, James Marsden, Aml Ameen, and Liev Schreiber.
The film was "inspired by Wil Haygood’s Washington Post article about an African-American man who served as a butler (Whitaker) to eight Presidents in the White House for over thirty years. From this unique vantage point, the film traces the dramatic changes that swept American society, from the civil rights movement to Vietnam and beyond, and how those changes affected this man’s life and family."
The Butler comes out on October 18th, 2013, and it looks like a great film that tells an inspiring story.
Source: Yahoo! (http://movies.yahoo.com/video/butler-trailer-1-230112502.html) »
- Joey Paur
In The Butler, Forest Whitaker plays Cecil Gaines, who proudly serves tea at the White House to seven U.S. presidents, Democratic and Republican, while the segregated country he grew up in shudders with inevitable — and often violent — progress. Directed by Lee Daniels (Precious) and co-starring Oprah Winfrey as Gaines’ beloved wife, The Butler is based on the true story of Eugene Allen, who came to the White House in 1952 and became a favorite of many of the first families who called 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue home.
The film is loaded with famous faces, and the historical icons they’re playing makes »
- Jeff Labrecque
It's only May, but the trailer for Lee Daniels's The Butler already has me thinking about award season. The drama stars Forest Whitaker as Cecil Gaines, a butler who serves eight Us presidents over the course of his three decades at the White House. Working through particularly volatile moments in the country's history, he gains a unique perspective on the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, the Watergate scandal, and more. Oprah Winfrey plays Cecil's wife, marking the first time she's been on screen playing a character other than herself since 1998's Beloved. Whitaker and Winfrey aren't the only big names in the movie. The laundry list of stars playing presidents is fascinating: Robin Williams is Dwight Eisenhower, James Marsden is John F. Kennedy (with Minka Kelly as Jackie Kennedy!), Liev Schreiber is Lyndon Johnson, John Cusack is Richard Nixon, and Alan Rickman is Ronald Reagan. Not all the actors resemble their presidential counterparts, »
- Maggie Pehanick
It's never too early to start beating the Oscar drum, is it? The Weinstein Company has released the first trailer for Lee Daniels's "The Butler," a star-studded affair inspired by a true story. Forest Whitaker stars as Cecil Gaines, the eponymous butler who worked at the White House for over 30 years and under eight different presidents, including Dwight Eisenhower (Robin Williams), JFK (James Marsden), Lbj (Liev Schreiber), Richard Nixon (John Cusack), and Ronald Reagan (Alan Rickman). Oscar-winner Melissa Leo plays Mamie Eisenhower, and fist-pumping liberal Jane Fonda is on board as Nancy Reagan. As a silent servant, his unique vantage point -- and sworn secrecy -- gave him an insight to the changes afoot in politics and race that we can only imagine. Oprah Winfrey stars as Cecil's wife, and David Oyelowo plays their increasingly radical son Louis. You know "The Butler" must be something special to get one »
- Jenni Miller
★★☆☆☆ Indian filmmaker Mira Nair first burst onto the world cinema scene with Monsoon Wedding, a beguiling and insightful look at life in modern New Delhi that went on to become an award winner at the 2001 Venice Film Festival. The year 2001 also proves pivotal in her latest release, the 'War on Terror'-inflected The Reluctant Fundamentalist (2013). This time around the focus is on Pakistan and the reluctant fundamentalist in question is the young Changez (Riz Ahmed). Changez is initially seen in Lahore in traditional garb, viewed by the CIA as a possible terrorist involved in the kidnapping of a prominent American professor.
American journalist Bobby (Liev Schreiber) sets out to discover just how much his mark knows about the prof's whereabouts. Changez agrees to an interview with the hack, but on one condition: that Bobby listen to his story from start to finish. Thus begins the tale of an impoverished young man »
- CineVue UK
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