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Chicago – “Jack Reacher” doesn’t work as an action movie. However, if you approach the mannered dialogue and dark storytelling as a noir, which is what I believe the writer and director (if not the marketing team at Paramount) intended, then there’s a lot to like here. It’s a stylized, slick, well-made ride with some crackling dialogue, charismatic performances, and heavy doses of style. Was Cruise miscast? Perhaps. But Rosamund Pike, Werner Herzog, and Richard Jenkins sure as hell were not and what does work about “Reacher” off-sets everything that arguably does not. Quit griping about Cruise’s height. It’s an easy, obvious criticism and isn’t really that essential to the success here. I do think a grittier actor might have made for a better film but Cruise certainly isn’t bad. It’s a solid rental and I hope enough people see it make another one. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
The 66th Locarno Film Festival will honor Werner Herzog with its Pardo d’Onore Swisscom award dedicated to contempo cinema masters, the first laurel announced by new artistic topper Carlo Chatrian. Herzog, he said, embodies his vision for the fest.
“Herzog is a very versatile director, whose work spans no-budget to big-budget, narrative cinema and documentaries, classic and cutting-edge cinema, but always with a distinctive identity,” said Chatrian. “Prizes for me are signals. The range present in Herzog’s work is what I would like to have in each of the festival’s sections.”
Herzog’s next project is “Queen of the Desert,” about explorer, writer and archeologist Gertrude Bell, starring Naomi Watts. Nick Raslan will produce through his Palmyra Films with Cassian Elwes and Michael Benaroya.
The Locarno tribute will include a mini-retro of Herzog’s work.
Chatrian took the reins from former Locarno topper Olivier Pere in November. »
- Nick Vivarelli
Above: Via blogger John Sisson at Dreams of Space, the daily science publication io9 has unearthed a hilarious comic strip adaptation of Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey from, of all things, a 1968 Howard Johnson's children's menu.
"Coppola's films, like those of Brian de Palma or some of Spielberg's, are the mannerist side of American cinema. How can one define this mannerism? Nothing happens to human beings, everything happens to images - to Images. Images become characters with pathos, pawns in the game. We tremble for them, we want them to be kindly treated, they are no longer just produced by the camera, but manufactured outside it, and its 'pre-visualization,' thanks to video, is the object »
Director Sarah Polley takes her personal exploration as a filmmaker inward to her family tree with Stories We Tell, a thoroughly delightful documentary about a secret buried by time. Using her own family members as subjects, Polley uses the contradicting stories of her relatives to uncover a bigger truth about storytelling, and the unbreakable bond of family despite life’s many surprises.
This is Polley’s first documentary, as she has previously directed narrative features the extremely good Take This Waltz last year with Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen, and Luke Kirby, and also Away From Her, with Julie Christie and Gordon Pinsent. She has more credits in front of the camera, with an acting filmography that includes Splice, Dawn of the Dead, Go, eXistenZ, and The Sweet Hereafter.
I sat down with Polley to talk about her film, in an exclusive interview that she described as “a whole bunch of weird-ass questions, »
- Nick Allen
German director and voiceover enthusiast Werner Herzog will receive this year's Locarno International Film Festival's Pardo d'onore, the festival announced Wednesday. Herzog, an eclectic director, writer, producer and actor, is best known for his many documentaries, including "My Best Fiend," "Grizzly Man" and "Encounters at the End of the World," which was nominated for an Oscar in 2009. His documentary films often feature a steady stream of meditative and sometimes tangential narration recorded by the director himself. In a press release, the festival's artistic director, Carlo Chatrian, praised Herzog's versatility of genre and production value: "Over the course of his long career, Herzog has proved adept at moving between fiction and documentary, low-budget productions and films featuring major stars but without ever losing a clear sense of identity. If awards are not only recognitions but also a way of signaling the future, I think that Werner Herzog is the most appropriate. »
- Jacob Combs
The album won't be coming out for around two weeks, but you can now stream the entire album online for free! The whole thing can be found on iTunes. I really love this album. It reminds me of some of their lighter work on Discovery ("Something About Us" and "Verdis Quo") while combining some of the heavier electronic prowess found on Alive 2007. Be warned: those of you who are expecting a full out Tron inspired electronica explosion, you're going to be disappointed -- listening to the band's other work you shouldn't have expected that.
All in all, this album is worth the hype. I truly enjoyed it front to back. If you want one track that sums up the album really well, I suggest listening to "Giorgio By Morodor". It's a fantastic song to set the tone and includes a cameo by none other than Werner Herzog! Check out an »
- Mick Joest
Dencik Sails For Science and Existentialism
At first glance, Danish director Daniel Dencik’s Expedition to the End of the World seems a blatant ripoff of Werner Herzog’s graceful examination of modern Antarctica in Encounters at the End of the World, sharing not only terms in titles, but the idea of venturing off into the frozen unknown to uncover more about human nature than the wild they seek to explore. Fortunately from there, concepts part ways in nearly every imaginable way. Dencik’s adventure is staged aboard a vintage wooden schooner set to brave a labyrinth of flowing ice just off the unexplored coast of Northeastern Greenland. As a multifarious group of scientists, artists, anthropologists, biologists, geographers and philosophers, the crew sets out to traverse the unknown before the fjords freeze once more. Through the brilliance of human intellect and the ridiculousness of its arrogance, their treacherous voyage renders humanity just an inconsequential, »
- Jordan M. Smith
Robert Pattinson Mission: Blacklist movie: Filming in August? Mission: Blacklist is not the upcoming fifth installment in the Mission: Impossible franchise starring Tom Cruise. For the time being, that’s concisely called Mission: Impossible 5. So, what’s Mission: Blacklist? Well, as every ardent Robert Pattinson fan will tell you, that’s a Pattinson movie project initially announced in early May 2012. Pattinson is attached to this Embankment Films-financed (or to-be-financed) production based on Eric Maddox and Davin Seay’s book Mission: Black List #1 - The Inside Story of the Search for Saddam Hussein - As Told by the Soldier Who Masterminded His Capture. The title of Maddox and Seay’s book says it all. But just in case, here’s the brief Mission: Blacklist synopsis found on the Embankment Films website: Unlike other Interrogators fresh out of training, Eric Maddox (Robert Pattinson) has a brilliant and beautiful mind. He has »
- Andre Soares
Paramount released the action-thriller Jack Reacher on Blu-ray and DVD this week, director Christopher McQuarrie's action-thriller starring Tom Cruise. To celebrate this release, we have a very special giveaway, where one lucky fan can win a copy of the Blu-ray, signed by Tom Cruise himself. We are also giving away non-signed copies of the Blu-ray. Hurry and enter, before someone else wins your prize!
Grand Prize Winner Receives:
First Prize Winners Receive:
Jack Reacher Blu-ray
Here's How To Win!
Just "Like" (fan) the MovieWeb Facebook page (below) and then leave a comment below telling us why these prizes must be yours!
If you already "Like" MovieWeb, just leave a comment below telling us why these prizes must be yours!
Tom Cruise tackles the title role with the brute force his character is known for and his "tightly controlled performance holds our attention »
The 1992 original was an oddball affair, that largely featured Harvey Keitel walking around naked, high on crack and crying a lot. So who better than to overact his little heart out in Werner Herzog's intriguing remake than Nic Cage, with his overzealous face muscles and excessive acting style. This time the drug-addicted Lieutenant must investigate the deaths of five immigrant workers on the docks of New Orleans. »
Having already screened to receptive audiences at last year's London Film Festival, Sarah Gavron's Village at the End of the World (2012) hits UK cinemas this week, and celebrates the hardy inhabitants of Niaqornat - a tiny community located in the furthest reaches of Northern Greenland. Faced with long winters and cool, bracing summers, the people of Niaqornat face a daily struggle to thrive so close to the Arctic Circle, with a dwindling population a sign of just how difficult life has become for those who remain. Yet, whilst Gavron rightly lauds such heroics, there is a sense that we're merely observing, rather than scrutinising, the issues at hand.
Concentrating on several villagers - ranging from bored, hormonal teenage shopkeeper Lars to Niaqornat's charming oldest resident, Annie - Gavron's film focuses firmly on the human narrative of life in the freezer. Divided into seasonal chapters, Village at the End of »
- CineVue UK
Director Christopher McQuarrie returns to the big screen with the hard-hitting action thriller Jack Reacher, starring the always dependable Tom Cruise. Jack Reacher may not reinvent the genre with its basic plot, simple action and general light tone, but it’s all of these things in the hands of McQuarrie and Cruise that make Jack Reacher a highly effective piece of action that’s very reminiscent of the 80s/90s.
Jack Reacher (Tom Cruise) is a former Military Police Major now turned ghost. He can’t be found unless he wants to be and he can’t be bribed or reasoned with unless it’s in the good name of law and order. Reacher is asked for personally by a man that has possibly killed several people by way of his own sniper rifle. The man claims that he’s innocent and tells the cops to get one man and that man is Jack Reacher. »
- Jeremy Lebens
Check out what's new to rent and own this week on the various streaming services such as cable On Demand, Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, and, of course, Netflix. Cable On Demand: Same-day-as-disc releases, older titles and pre-theatrical exclusives for rent, priced from $3-$10, in 24- or 48-hour periods Jack Reacher (action; Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Werner Herzog, Jai Courtney; rated PG-13) Mama (Guillermo del Toro-produced horror; Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau; PG-13) Safe Haven (romance adapted from Nicholas Sparks novel; Julianne Hough, Josh Duhamel; PG-13) The Oranges (comedy; Hugh Laurie, Catherine Keener; rated R) Stand Up Guys (comedy; Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, Alan Arkin; rated R) Upstream Color (experimental sci-fi drama; Shane Carruth, Amy...
- Robert B. DeSalvo
As we all know, James Franco likes to keep busy. He's currently shooting on Rupert Goold's drama True Story, his adaptation of As I Lay Dying is set to premiere at Cannes, he'll be seen in the summer comedy This Is the End, he might co-star in Werner Herzog's Queen of the Desert, and he'll be directing and starring in The Garden of Last Days. Now he's got another project on the way by signing on to Wim Wenders' 3D film, Every Thing Will Be Fine. According to Deadline, "Franco will play Tomas, a writer who accidentally causes the death of a child. The story examines the twelve years following the accident and its impact on Tomas, and the child’s mother." According to The Film Stage, Sarah Polley is attached to co-star. Wenders tells Deadline the movie was written with 3D in mind because he's "convinced »
- Matt Goldberg
I remember thinking that there was no way Tom Cruise could best Werner Herzog in fisticuffs. I still feel that way. Herzog has survived gunshots, saving Joaquin Phoenix from a car accident and a friendship with Klaus Kinski. Casting Herzog as the villain in this would've been more than enough to sell the overall plot, but adding Jai Courtney as his primary henchman and sniper is a brilliant touch. Courtney, who would later go on to play the younger McClane in A Good Day To Die Hard, is suitably menacing without being over-the-top. I'm fine with the dude taking over the Die Hard franchise, as he's a solid action star in his own right. He also works well as the blunt instrument Herzog's character, The Zec, uses in exacting vengeance on those who are getting in the way of the villainous machinations. Courtney is a believable counter to Cruise's Reacher. »
- Robert Ottone
Jack Reacher - Paramount - Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD Director: Christopher McQuarrie Cast: Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Robert Duvall, Werner Herzog, Richard Jenkins. Full cast + crew Here's a plea I rarely make when it comes to big-budget Hollywood movies starring one of the most famous faces on the plnaet: please watch Jack Reacher. Please rent it On Demand or pick it up on Blu-ray. Please keep a good word of mouth going for it, because damn would it be a shame if we never got any sequels. This is an excellent thriller that feels ripped right out of the '90s, a time when audiences respected whodunit-type investigation films. Christopher McQuarrie has an impeccable feel for tone and character, going ballsy and dangerous (good luck...
- Peter Hall
Werner Herzog sharing a director credit with Dmitry Vasyukov? That immediately raises the question: who did what? Our own Jim Tudor saw Happy People - A Year in the Taiga during its U.S. theatrical run earlier this year. He began his review by recapping the inherent appeal of the material: A snowmobile struggles over one frozen bump then another, his trusty dog keeping pace alongside without a problem. For as far as the eye can see, the terrain is snowcapped, wild, yet tranquil. The scraggly driver is a Russian trapper - a survivalist of the purest order, hailing from an existence devoid of electronic connectivity and indoor climate control. As the film points out, his snowmobile and his chainsaw are among the only modern conveniences...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
This week: Tom Cruise proves naysayers wrong yet again in the above-average thriller "Jack Reacher," which was shot entirely in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is based on Lee Child's 2005 mystery novel, "One Shot."
Also new this week is the horror hit "Mama" with Jessica Chastain, the Nicholas Sparks adaptation "Safe Haven" with Josh Duhamel and Julianne Hough and the Blu-ray 3D conversion of "Gamer" with Gerard Butler.
Box Office: $80 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 61% Fresh
Storyline: After five people are shot to death along a riverside Pittsburgh trail, a man is arrested and writes only one message: "Get Jack Reacher." Tom Cruise plays Reacher, an ex-military investigator who lives off the grid and ascertains that the accused has been framed. Reacher teams up with the accused's defense attorney (Rosamund Pike) to figure out who is really behind the shootings on the North Shore Trail and whether or not »
- Robert DeSalvo
This week boasts some big Blu-ray and DVD releases, but none is quite as thrilling as Jack Reacher, an action-filled thriller about an ex-military cop persuing a killer and finding trouble he doesn't anticipate. The action comedy did well at the box office and is headed to Blu-ray tomorrow in a set that comes chock-full of bonus features. To celebrate, Paramount Home Entertainment is graciously giving away a Blu-ray copy of the film that has been signed by Tom Cruise himself. You can check out that beauty, below. If you haven.t caught the film, it stars Cruise, along with an all-star but random cast that includes former Bond girl Rosamund Pike and Werner Herzog. When the film takes a step away from the action it is often busy exploring relationships of different sorts and overall, this makes Reacher both a fun and satisfying film, and one worth owning, especially »
Few things can beat an emotionally satisfying ending to a film, though too often, filmmakers think they’re shooting for something resonant, when in fact all they’ve done is deliver an unconvincingly cloying finale to a film that was otherwise pretty good. More so than downbeat endings, a good happy ending has to be earned; if we don’t feel the characters struggle through dire circumstances, then their salvation at the end isn’t nearly as rewarding.
These 10 films, however, sort of went the other way; so dire were the circumstances against the characters that a happy ending seemed completely out of reach, before arriving totally out of nowhere and surprising us all. Though in a few instances the intent was to be jarring, for the most part these are happy endings that don’t seem to fit what has become before; we had been building ourselves up for misery, »
- Shaun Munro
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