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7 Minutes, 2014.
Written and Directed by Jay Martin.
Three high school friends are forced to commit a brazen robbery which quickly goes horribly wrong.
Ok, get in the bank, take the money and be out of there in 7 minutes. No one gets hurt and only the bank loses the money. Simple?
Well, it wouldn’t be much of a movie if it were that easy. And in this new heist drama it certainly isn’t.
Following three high school friends as they attempt to cover the losses of a mistakenly flushed drug supply, the film takes an intriguingly circuitous route around the narrative, dropping back through the last 3 years examining just how the band became so desperate.
Sam (Luke Mitchell) appears to have it all made at the start of the story, »
- Robert W Monk
Those expecting anything approaching the magic conjured by the original Matthew McConaughey-Woody Harrelson pairing should immediately temper their enthusiasm for “True Detective’s” second season. Impeccably cast around its marquee stars, the new plot possesses the requisite noir-ish qualities, but feels like a by-the-numbers potboiler, punctuated by swooping aerial shots of L.A. courtesy of new director Justin Lin, whose intense close-ups bring to mind a Sergio Leone western. Although generally watchable, the inspiration that turned the first into an obsession for many seems to have drained out of writer Nic Pizzolatto’s prose, at least three hours into this eight-episode run.
Somehow, the first installment managed to take TV’s most venerable genre and put a fresh coat of paint on it, thanks to the intoxicating mix of McConaughey’s unorthodox, philosophizing cop, its grisly crime and the time-bending narrative. Here, Pizzolatto more straightforwardly plows ahead, featuring »
- Brian Lowry
Those cool Blu-ray distributors Arrow Films and Video have announced their line-up of releases for September 2015, and once again there are some real gems in the collection, including Milos Forman’s The Fireman’s Ball, the regular edition of Society (which has just had a steelbook collectors edition released this week) and Sean Connery’s space-opus Zardoz. All the details and artwork for the releases are below….
Closely Observed Trains – released September 27th
Shy teenage virgin Miloš gets his first job as a railway dispatcher and is suddenly forced to confront the realities of the adult world, not least the temptations of the opposite sex. But they in turn are more attracted to his more experienced colleague Hubi?ka and his distinctive way with an inkpad and rubber stamp…
This could easily have fuelled a light comedy, but Ji?í Menzel’s bittersweet feature debut is set during World War II in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia, »
- Scott J. Davis
A very happy birthday to Clint Eastwood, born on May 31, 1930 in San Francisco. "His persona as a laconic anti-establishment icon was cemented early in his career, through his starring roles in A Fistful of Dollars (Sergio Leone, 1964), For a Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good the Bad and the Ugly (1966)," wrote Deborah Allison for Senses of Cinema in 2003. "His position as one of America’s most respected directors was cemented by his receipt of an Oscar for directing Unforgiven (1992)." Our overview of the career features clips and clashing points of view. » - David Hudson »
Old Man Logan #1
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Andrea Sorrentino
Colors by Marcelo Maiolo
Published by Marvel Comics
The latest Secret Wars tie-in is set in the bloodiest, duskiest, and generally least inviting part of Battleworld: the Old Man Logan universe. Inspired by the seminal Clint Eastwood film Unforgiven, Old Man Logan was a Wolverine story written by Mark Millar (Secret Service) and drawn by Steve McNiven (Civil War) where the supervillains banded together and took control of the Marvel Universe. Mysterio manipulated Wolverine into killing all the X-Men so he took a vow never to pop his claws again and lived a quiet until the Hulk clan killed his wife and child. This led to him taking revenge on the Hulks and choosing to become a hero once again while taking care of the Hulk’s young son.
Old Man Logan #1 is set a few years after »
- Logan Dalton
1971 was an incredibly violent year for movies. That year saw, among others, Tom Laughlin’s Billy Jack, with its half-Indian hero karate-chopping rednecks; William Friedkin’s The French Connection, its dogged cops stymied by well-heeled drug runners; Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange, banned for the copycat crimes it reportedly inspired; and Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs, featuring the most controversial rape in cinema history. Every bloody shooting, sexual assault and death by penis statue reflected a world gone mad.
It seemed a reaction to America’s skyrocketing crime. Between 1963 and 1975, violent crimes tripled; riots, robberies and assassinations racked major cities. The antiwar and Civil Rights movements generated violent offshoots like the Weathermen and Black Panthers. Citizens blamed politicians like New York Mayor John Lindsay (the original “limousine liberal”), who proclaimed “Peace cannot be imposed on our cities by force of arms,” and Earl Warren’s Supreme Court, »
- Christopher Saunders
It's fitting that Clint Eastwood and John Wayne both have the same birthday week. (Wayne, who died in 1979, was born May 26, 1907, while Eastwood turns 85 on May 31). After all, these two all-American actors' careers span the history of that most American of movie genres, the western.
Both iconic actors were top box office draws for decades, both seldom stretched from their familiar personas, and both played macho, conservative cowboy heroes who let their firearms do most of the talking. Each represented one of two very different strains of western, the traditional and the revisionist.
As a birthday present to Hollywood's biggest heroes of the Wild West, here are the top 57 westerns you need to see.
57. 'Meek's Cutoff' (2010)
Indie filmmaker Kelly Reichardt and her frequent leading lady, Michelle Williams, are the talents behind this sparse, docudrama about an 1845 wagon train whose Oregon Trail journey goes horribly awry. It's an intense »
- Gary Susman
Ana Lily Amirpour’s feature debut is a bloody triumph…
Iranian-American writer-director Ana Lily Amirpour describes her weirdly exhilarating feature debut, which premiered at Sundance last year, as the Iranian love-child of Sergio Leone and David Lynch, with Nosferatu as a babysitter. It is set in the fictional Iranian ghost town of Bad City (the name nods toward Frank Miller’s Sin City) and plays out like the missing link between Kathryn Bigelow’s first two features; the ultra-cool biker pastiche The Loveless and the latterday vampire flick Near Dark. It is steeped in the pop iconography of the past, yet its crystalline anamorphic black-and-white photography has an unmistakably contemporary edge. Cinematically, it exists in a twilight zone between nations (American locations, Iranian culture), between centuries (late 19th and early 21st), between languages (Persian dialogue, silent cinema gestures) and, most importantly, between genres.
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
Spoiler Warning, obviously...
So there's this theory floating around about Mad Max: Fury Road that I find compelling enough to share here. I guess what I'm saying is I buy it and I kind of like it - even if George Miller himself didn't intend it.
First, let's consider this: In a recent interview, Miller stated that the Mad Max films aren't necessarily "sequels" in the traditional sense, but “they’re kind of like standalones exploring the whole world – like Westerns.”
I think that's very true. The Mad Max films are a series in the same way that Clint Eastwood's Sergio Leone films are a series where the only throughline is "The Man with No Name". The films themselves don't have any major connections other than him.
So the theory g [Continued ...] »
The Grandmaster director Wong Kar Wai, as artistic director of China: Through The Looking Glass, magically merges film with fashion and the museum's collection. Michelangelo Antonioni's Chung Kuo - Cina, Jiang Wen's In the Heat Of The Sun, Yonggang Wu's The Goddess, Zhang Yimou's Hero, Ang Lee's Lust, Caution, Hou Hsiao-Hsien's Flowers Of Shanghai, D.W. Griffith's Broken Blossoms, Sergio Leone's Once Upon A Time In America, Richard Quine's The World Of Suzy Wong, Bernardo Bertolucci's The Last Emperor, Vincente Minnelli's Ziegfeld Follies and Wong's The Hand From Eros, are among the clips selected that tie in beautiful layers of meaning.
John Galliano for House of Dior Haute Couture yellow »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
The Max Max trilogy, which began with the eponymous 1979 film (the 20-year Guinness World Record holder for the most profitable movie ever made), continued with 1982’s Mad Max 2 — aka The Road Warrior — and concluded with Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome in 1985, is a series of films not only about the end of civilization, but also about its rebirth. The original film finds the world torn down. Lawlessness reigns supreme and the nuclear family — specifically Max’s family — is destroyed. In Mad Max 2 it’s all been laid to waste, a post-apocalyptic landscape ruled by freaks and marauders who take what they like and steal what they don’t. And while bands of survivors have formed their own camps and taken steps towards rebuilding, it’s not until Thunderdome that a new kind of society has sprung up in place of the old.
That new society, called Bartertown and run »
- Patrick Bromley
“In a short time, this will be a long time ago,” notes a character in “Slow West,” and that pretty much encapsulates the tone of this offbeat, minor-key Western. While the film tells a fairly straightforward tale of love and betrayal set against the big skies and sweeping vistas we’ve come to expect in this sort of movie (courtesy of its New Zealand locations), it also subverts and comments upon the stories we tell ourselves about the Old West. That sort of commentary has been going on for decades, at least as far back as Budd Boetticher and Sergio Leone in. »
- Alonso Duralde
To mark the release of Ana Lily Amirpour’s ultra stylish A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, in UK cinemas on May 22nd, we are giving one lucky winner the chance to win a copy of the beautiful new UK poster alongside a DVD bundle that includes Under The Skin, Pan’s Labyrinth, Byzantium and Blancanieves.
The first Iranian Vampire Western, Ana Lily Amirpour’s debut feature basks in the sheer pleasure of pulp. A joyful mash-up of genre, archetype and iconography, its prolific influences span spaghetti westerns, graphic novels, horror films, and the Iranian New Wave. Amped by a mix of Iranian rock, techno and Morricone inspired riffs, its airy, anamorphic, black-and-white aesthetic and artfully drawn-out scenes combine the simmering tension of Sergio Leone with the weird surrealism of David Lynch.
A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night is released in UK cinemas on May 22nd.
To be »
- Dan Bullock
Western Dreams: Maclean’s Accomplished, Stylized Debut
Scottish musician John Maclean makes a handsome directorial debut with Slow West, a period western set mainly in 19th century Colorado. But if Sergio Leone’s famed retro genre films earned the moniker ‘spaghetti western,’ than Mclean’s recapitulation and relocation is worthy of its own unique label, perhaps an Anzac (or kiwi?) western. Maclean’s pan-Euro flavoring is exactly what gives this familiar genre piece a high dose of unexpected flair, at times comedic and bloody, while maintaining a fatal romantic fixation for a societally primordial period.
Sixteen year old Jay Cavendish (Kodi Smit-McPhee) has fled his family’s privileged heritage in Scotland to pursue his love interest, Rose Ross (Caren Pistorius), a young woman of meager means who left for America with her father (Rory McCann). Alone and running out of money as he wanders through the woods of Colorado to find the Ross’ homestead, »
- Nicholas Bell
This weekend, the Austin Film Society is bringing She's Lost Control back to town. Caitlin caught the film on opening night at SXSW 2014. She reported: "An intense and dark slice of life, the film focuses on a woman who works as a sex surrogate while she finishes a Master's degree in psychology in New York City. Often hard-hitting and true but sometimes a little frustrating, I can't fully call this a "must-see" but I know this movie will definitely stick with me..." It plays tonight and again on Sunday afternoon at the Marchesa.
On Sunday evening, Afs will be presenting the work of two master animators. Don Hertzfeldt's award-winning short World Of Tomorrow is being paired with Cheatin', the most recent feature film from Bill Plympton. Richard Linklater's schedule last week didn't allow him to be in attendance for the Sid & Nancy screening, so another screening has been »
- Matt Shiverdecker
by Grace Fontaine
You gotta love indie horror. There is something so warm and comforting about genre entries that fly under the radar, it's like a fluffy duvet while sitting on a couch drinking hot cocoa on a cold winters' eve when the snow falls outside, the rain drives against the windowpane and the wind whirls outside.
It Follows despite being made in 2014 has only recently been released after swimming around the depths for a while trying to find a distributor and thankfully, RADiUS-twc took a chance on David Robert Mitchells' delicious bastard child of 1980s' supernatural horror with a taste of 1970s' grindhouse. In that could essentially be as PSA against unsafe sex and STDs. It Follows is a swift, loving piece of the throwback and an optimistic window into the future of potentially great horror fare and not a slap across the face with a mackrel. »
Sergio Leone's A Fistful of Dollars (1964) is at once dramatically different and very much the same as its inspiration, Akira Kurosawa's Yojimbo (1961). In the simplest of terms, the two follow a stranger into a corrupt town where they eventually play two rival gangs against one another, freeing the town in the end. Kurowsawa's film, in my opinion, is one of his best, mixing comedy, action and plenty of dramatic tension, boiled down to a brisk 110 minute feature I could sit down and absorb at a moment's notice. amz asin="B00HZN8TBC" size="small"Leone's A Fistful of Dollars is just as wonderful as the translation from samurai to lone gunman is almost a no-brainer, but what's truly amazing is how it doesn't feel like a remake, but merely a different adaptation of the same story. Leone made the film his own, the casting of Clint Eastwood as »
- Brad Brevet
Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson on the Oscars' Red Carpet Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson at the Academy Awards Eli Wallach and wife Anne Jackson are seen above arriving at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony, held on Sunday, Feb. 27, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. The 95-year-old Wallach had received an Honorary Oscar at the Governors Awards in November 2010. See also: "Doris Day Inexplicably Snubbed by Academy," "Maureen O'Hara Honorary Oscar," "Honorary Oscars: Mary Pickford, Greta Garbo Among Rare Women Recipients," and "Hayao Miyazaki Getting Honorary Oscar." Delayed film debut The Actors Studio-trained Eli Wallach was to have made his film debut in Fred Zinnemann's Academy Award-winning 1953 blockbuster From Here to Eternity. Ultimately, however, Frank Sinatra – then a has-been following a string of box office duds – was cast for a pittance, getting beaten to a pulp by a pre-stardom Ernest Borgnine. For his bloodied efforts, Sinatra went on »
- D. Zhea
“I read comic books when I was a kid; I don’t read them now,” said Eastwood during a question and answer session about his life and career at the Las Vegas exhibition trade show CinemaCon on Wednesday.
That means he won’t be appearing in a Marvel movie anytime soon. “I prefer adult-oriented pictures,” Eastwood said. “I mean that in the PG-13 or R sense, but that’s as far as it goes.”
Eastwood also revealed that even though he’s world famous, he still buys tickets to see movies on the bigscreen. He most recently made the trip to the multiplexes to see “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and plans to support his son Scott by paying full freight to see “The Longest Ride. »
- Brent Lang and Dave McNary
Over the course of film history, we've seen plenty of long-time actors step behind the camera to take up their directorial ambitions. Clint Eastwood did it. Mel Gibson did it. George Clooney did it. What do these three have in commonc Well, for starters, they are all men, so there's that. Further, they are all white, but more on that later. More to the point of the article, these men all eased into their directorial careers by starring in their respective debuts, using their presence on screen to help market their talents off it. And with his feature directorial effort The Water Diviner, which hits limited theaters this week, Russell Crowe is just the most recent addition to a growing list of actors who have decided to try their hand behind the camera. Like Eastwood, Gibson, and Clooney before him, the Best Actor winner stars in his first feature as director, »
- Jordan Benesh
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