11 items from 2017
Philosopher George Santayana said very famously that, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." Now, I am not sure if the present Us administration and other world leaders are having fuzzy memories, but we sure seem to be repeating something with North Korea and this whole nuclear arms deal. The fact that there is talk from both the Us and North Korea about actually dropping nuclear bombs on one another leads me to believe that World War 3 might actually be a possibility. So we better get prepared. And what better way to prepare for Doomsday than with some of the best movies ever made about the subject?
With IMDb serving as a comprehensive guide, we now turn and look at what some of those movies are and what they mean. Yes, these bastions of celluloid escapism that show us (usually) in 2 hours less, that people can, »
On paper it’s a western with everything — a major star, decent supporting players, a cult director and sideways references to the blacklisting years. But even with its ya-gotta-see-it-to-believe-it high noon showdown scene, Joseph H. Lewis’s last feature film is still a lower-tier United Artists effort. Sterling Hayden goes up against Sebastian Cabot and Nedrick Young, armed with a, with a . . . aw, you probably know already.
1958 / B&W / 1:85 widescreen / 80 min. / Street Date July 11, 2017 / Available from Arrow Video / 39.95
Cinematography: Ray Rennahan
Original Music: Gerald Fried
Produced by Frank N. Seltzer
Directed by Joseph H. Lewis
- Glenn Erickson
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit platforms. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
Christopher Guest has had an exceptionally strong ’00s with A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration, and it remains to be seen how his upcoming Mascots will be received, but his arguable peak is still the gloriously funny mockumentary Best in Show. Guest’s other films have lovingly skewered egotistical oddballs and the insanity of subjective or objective criticism, so Best in Show is »
- Jordan Raup
For his 41st and final feature film, Joseph H. Lewis was able to combine the two genres in which he had excelled. The man in the director’s chair for My Name is Julia Ross, Gun Crazy and The Big Combo, Lewis was one of the all-time greats in film noir. But he was also a fine director of Westerns, having made A Lawless Street, 7th Cavalry and The Halliday Brand, all of which – especially the last – remain underrated. Terror in a Texas Town would bring his noir sensibilities to the American West, resulting in one of his finest works.
- Tom Stockman
Photo by Beth Dubber. Courtesy of The Orchard ©
Sometimes one role can define an actor’s career. Sam Elliott plays such an actor in late life, facing his own mortality and coming to grips with his life and career, in the sometimes funny, sometimes touching drama The Hero. The Hero is an intimate personal drama that draws on universal human concerns in a story that is by turns comic, bittersweet or moving. Writer/director Brett Haley’s thoughtful film has the same feel of authenticity as his previous one, I’LL See You In My Dreams, in which Elliott co-starred with Blythe Danner. Like that film, The Hero is a life-affirming film that portrays older adults as fully rounded individuals living in this present world instead of two-dimensional types, human beings with brains, a sense of humor and romantic lives. »
- Cate Marquis
If the mark of a true cinephile is how accurately they quote a Stanley Kubrick film, it’s no surprise that Errol Morris takes the cake. The Oscar-winning documentarian behind “The Thin Blue Line” and “The Fog of War” has a new movie coming out: “The B-Side,” about large-format Polaroid portrait photographer Elsa Dorfman. Morris recently regaled The Daily Beast with with memories of interviewing Donald Trump 15 years ago, and recalled a certain scene from “Dr. Strangelove.”
Read More: Film Acquisition Rundown: Neon Picks Up Errol Morris’ ‘The B-Side,’ FilmRise Gets Two Sundance Premieres and More
“I mean, it’s hard not to be just utterly appalled by it all. And so, yes, I am utterly appalled by it all,” said Morris.
“I can’t even stand people trying to make sense out of it. There’s no point in trying. There’s a scene I’ve always loved in ‘Dr. Strangelove, »
- Jude Dry
Well, March is definitely “going out like a lamb” (as the old saying goes) when it comes to horror and sci-fi home entertainment releases, as there are only several different titles coming home this Tuesday.
Universal Studios is releasing J.A. Bayona’s heartbreaking modern fable, A Monster Calls, to both Blu-ray and DVD this week, and if you're a cult film fan, then you have a few fun movies to look forward to adding to your home collections: Witchtrap, Venom, and the four-film collection for Wishmaster, a new addition to the Vestron Video Collector’s Series.
Other notable releases for March 28th include Mortuary Massacre, The Abduction of Jennifer Grayson, Park Chan-Wook's The Handmaiden (which finally gets the Blu-ray treatment), and for the little monster fans, Monster High: Electrified.
- Heather Wixson
HBO Films is developing “Francis & the Godfather,” a scripted movie that chronicles the making of Francis Ford Coppola’s 1972 feature adaptation of the novel by Mario Puzo. The script hails from screenwriter Andrew Farotte, who is revising his original screenplay that appeared on the 2015 Black List.
Mike Marcus, Doug Mankoff, and Andrew Spaulding will serve as executive producers on the film. Peter Bart, who as an executive at Paramount first optioned Puzo’s novel and worked closely with Robert Evans and Coppola, will serve as a consultant. Echo Lake Entertainment is producing.
“Francis & the Godfather” tells the behind-the-scenes story of the film’s creation, from Coppola joining the project to the casting of Al Pacino and Marlon Brando to dealings with the real-life New York mafia.
Released in 1972, “The Godfather” is largely regarded as one of the greatest feature films in American history. In 1973, the film won Academy Awards for best picture, for »
- Daniel Holloway
The Criterion Collection 855
1988 / Color / 1:85 widescreen / 89 min. / Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios / available through The Criterion Collection / Street Date February 21, 2017 / 39.95
Starring Carmen Maura, Fernando Guillén, Antonio Banderas, Julieta Serrano, Rossy de Palma, María Barranco, Kiti Manver, Guillermo Montesinos, Chus Lampreave, Yayo Calvo, Loles León, Ángel de Andrés López, José Antonio Navarro.
Cinematography: José Luis Alcaine
Film Editor: José Salcedo
Original Music: Bernardo Bonezzi
Produced by: Augustin Almodóvar
Written and Directed by Pedro Almodóvar
Connected film festival attendees learned about Pedro Almodóvar before everybody else, especially if they had an understanding of new developments in Spanish cinema. Film school had shown us nothing but the very exceptional work of Luis Buñuel, most of which is really from Mexico and France. In the 1980s we Angelenos were just getting access to films by the old-school ‘traditional’ rebel Spaniards Carlos Saura and Juan Antonio Bardem. »
- Glenn Erickson
John Huston was one of the greatest mid-century (or ever) American directors. He directed The Maltese Falcon, The African Queen, Key Largo, Prizzi's Honor, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Annie, and The Misfits, among others. Huston had previously been an opera singer, and enjoyed a healthy acting career as well when he choose to venture to the other side of the camera, with stints in Chinatown, Battle for the Planet of the Apes, Wise Blood, and voice overs and narration for animated films such as The Black Cauldron and The Return of the King. And of course, he fathered actors Anjelica and Danny Huston. Today, we're going to delve into the Criterion Collection's recent blu-ray release of one of Huston's finest noirs, The Asphalt Jungle. Starring the manly Sterling Hayden, Jean Hagen (so good here), Louis...
[Read the whole post on screenanarchy.com...] »
There’s nothing fresh about the story of a movie star facing down the barrel of mortality, but it’s comfortable terrain for writer-director Brett Haley. The filmmaker’s tender 2015 drama “I’ll See You In My Dreams” found Blythe Danner playing an ex-singer looking back on her life in somber terms; now, Haley sets his sights on Sam Elliott — who played Danner’s suave romantic interest in “Dreams” — for another melancholic character study about the tribulations of getting old. “The Hero” finds Elliott in a deeply contemplative role, riffing on his own career and delivering a touching meditation on fading stardom. Haley may traffic in traditional sentiment, but again the actors elevate it.
As the perennial cowboy figure, it’s been many years since Elliott’s iconic roles in “Lifeguard” and “Tombstone;” for younger generations, his iconic drawl may be most familiar as the rambling voiceovers in “The Big Lebowski. »
- Eric Kohn
11 items from 2017
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