14 items from 2014
Nathan Lane never turns off his sense of humor, one of many reasons that he is this year’s recipient of the Peter Ustinov Comedy Award at the Banff World Media Festival. “I’m always thrilled when anyone wants to give me an award,” Lane says. “Although I somehow think there’s been a horrible mistake.”
Lane, who began his career as a stand-up comedian but has since worked in TV, film and theater, has a longstanding passion for life on the stage. Musicals and plays, such as “The Odd Couple,” have given the Tony Award winner an opportunity to play deeper, grittier characters as he has on CBS’ “The Good Wife.”
“It’s reminded people that I do more than comedy,” Lane says. “No one’s offering me anything of that kind of depth or complexity in film … which is certainly one of the reasons I love the theater so much. »
- Francesca Bacardi
When you think of Disney films, you usually think of the amazing songs, lovable heroes and heartwarming romantic tales.
But no Disney classic would be complete without an incredible villain to scare the bejeezus out of your inner 5-year-old.
In tribute to the release of Disney's Maleficent, we've picked out our favourite Disney villains of all time.
He may have been pink and smelled like strawberries, but there was nothing even slightly cuddly about Lotso. The villains in the previous Toy Story movies were pretty nasty - Sid, Al McWhiggin, Stinky Pete - but Lotso wins the prize for being the most dastardly of the lot. And don't even get us started on his scary baby sidekick!
His worst crime? Even after he is saved by our gang of plastic heroes, who are willing to forget his Sunnyside misdemeanours, he still turns on them again. »
Today on Trailers from Hell, Dan Ireland takes on the first of the seven "Pink Panther" films, from 1964, starring Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau. A chameleon by nature, Peter Sellers had been turning in inspired comic performances since the early fifties - but it took the role of the habitually hapless Inspector Clouseau (originally intended for Peter Ustinov) in this first of seven "Pink Panther" comedies to catapult him to superstar status. Though director Blake Edwards' screenplay placed the bumbling detective at the center of a comic ensemble that included David Niven (who signed on expecting his role to be the lead), Capucine and Robert Wagner, Sellers would have free reign over the film's even funnier sequel, "A Shot in the Dark." Henry Mancini contributed the ultra-lounge score along with the memorable theme song. A lamentable animated cartoon series helped kill off theatrical cartoons. »
- Trailers From Hell
A chameleon by nature, Peter Sellers had been turning in inspired comic performances since the early fifties – but it took the role of the habitually hapless Inspector Clouseau (originally intended for Peter Ustinov) in this first of seven The Pink Panther comedies to catapult him to superstar status. Though director Blake Edwards’ screenplay placed the bumbling detective at the center of a comic ensemble that included David Niven (who signed on expecting his role to be the lead), Capucine and Robert Wagner, Sellers would have free reign over the film’s even funnier sequel, A Shot in the Dark. Henry Mancini contributed the ultra-lounge score along with the memorable theme song. A lamentable animated cartoon series helped kill off theatrical cartoons.
The post The Pink Panther appeared first on Trailers From Hell.
- TFH Team
There are few auteurs as instantly recognizable and divisive as Stanley Kubrick, few filmmakers as idiosyncratic or groundbreaking. His work spans the entirety of life itself–sometimes in the same film–and has inspired almost as much derision as hosannas. There is no easy consensus on Kubrick’s films–though you may not be terribly surprised by our writers’ choice for his best, it’s hard to imagine that your ranking of his work will line up wholly with ours–nor on the messages imparted within. Is The Shining secretly about the moon landing? Is 2001? What is he really saying about violence in society in A Clockwork Orange? And so on. Closing out (some weeks late, granted) our monthly theme on his works, here is Sound on Sight’s ranking of the films of Stanley Kubrick. Enjoy. Share. Debate. We know you’ll want to debate.
1. 2001: A Space Odyssey »
- Josh Spiegel
Nick Nolte and an Oscar-nominated Susan Sarandon play the couple fighting to save their young son from a rare, degenerative brain disease in this fact-based drama. Peter Ustinov is among the many doctors who say there's no cure for Lorenzo, but that doesn't stop his parents from trying to find one. After Mad Max and The Witches of Eastwick, director George Miller shows his versatility with a heartfelt but clear-eyed telling of an extraordinary true tale. »
A match for any of Disney's more widely proclaimed animated adventures, this take on the legend sees vulpine hero Robin Hood out to outfox thumb-sucking tyrant Prince John (voiced by Peter Ustinov) while winning the heart of Maid Marian and, naturally, ensuring the poor don't go away empty handed. With Phil Harris (The Jungle Book's Baloo) as Little John, musician Roger Miller providing narration as cockerel-cool minstrel Allan-a-Dale, and perennial British cad Terry-Thomas perfectly casssst as Prince John's hench-snake Sir Hiss, there's more colour to the denizens of this Sherwood Forest than mere Lincoln green. »
BBC2's first world war drama 37 Days was a march over very familiar territory. Spoiler alert: negotiations didn't work
37 Days (BBC2) | iPlayer
Line of Duty (BBC2) | iPlayer
Mind the Gap: London vs the Rest (BBC2) | iPlayer
As Russia's forces gathered on its western border last week, we were reminded once again that history repeats itself. First as tragedy, then as a three-part BBC series.
The particular section of history dramatised in 37 Days has been repeating itself of late like a pub bore on a baked bean diet. We may have our educational lacunae in this country, but surely most viewers could now gain an Oxford history first on the causes of the first world war.
Written by Mark Hayhurst, who scripted 2011's The Man Who Crossed Hitler, 37 Days covered the period between the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on 28 June 1914 and Britain's declaration of war against Germany on 4 August. »
- Andrew Anthony
An appealing odd-couple relationship is at the heart of this heartfelt study of sex addiction with few of the director's usual provocations
To recap: Lars von Trier makes an explicit film called Nymphomaniac; he orchestrates some traditional tongue-in-cheek Trier publicity about "hardcore" and "softcore" versions; he even induces excitable critics in Denmark and elsewhere to pull a gallery of orgasm faces in homage to the naughty poster campaign – like a Victorian medical textbook about congenital idiocy. Yet his new film is his most inoffensive, which is to say its offensiveness is deliberate; it's the first Von Trier film that is not a tiresome practical joke on the audience. It is about the most tender, platonic relationship imaginable: a depressed and exhausted woman and an elderly, vulnerable man, played superbly by Charlotte Gainsbourg and Stellan Skarsgård.
Skarsgård is Seligman, a lonely old bachelor who discovers Joe (Gainsbourg) lying bruised, bleeding and semi-conscious near his apartment building. »
- Peter Bradshaw
Mention the name Hercule Poirot and chances are that the first thing that pops into your mind is David Suchet’s moustachioed visage. Suchet, of course, portrayed Agatha Christie’s famous Belgian export for 24 years, from 1989 to 2013, during which time he starred in every major Poirot story that the author wrote. As great as these televisual treats were, though, I have very fond memories of the trio of Poirot movies that are included in this new Blu-ray collection.
Though I never saw them at the cinema, Murder On The Orient Express (1974), Death On The Nile (1978) and Evil Under The Sun (1982) always seemed to crop up on television whenever there was a Bank Holiday (on rotation with The Great Escape (1963) among others) and guaranteed that we as a family would sit together, glued to the screen, no matter how many times we’d seen them.
The first of these three movies, »
Maximilian Schell dead at 83: Best Actor Oscar winner for ‘Judgment at Nuremberg’ (photo: Maximilian Schell ca. 1960) Actor and filmmaker Maximilian Schell, best known for his Oscar-winning performance as the defense attorney in Stanley Kramer’s 1961 political drama Judgment at Nuremberg died at a hospital in Innsbruck, Austria, on February 1, 2014. According to his agent, Patricia Baumbauer, Schell died overnight following a "sudden and serious illness." Maximilian Schell was 83. Born on December 8, 1930, in Vienna, Maximilian Schell was the younger brother of future actor Carl Schell and Maria Schell, who would become an international film star in the 1950s (The Last Bridge, Gervaise, The Hanging Tree). Immy Schell, who would be featured in several television and film productions from the mid-’50s to the early ’90s, was born in 1935. Following Nazi Germany’s annexation of Austria in 1938, Schell’s parents, Swiss playwright Hermann Ferdinand Schell and Austrian stage actress Margarete Schell Noé, »
- Andre Soares
From Ealing to Poirot by way of The Wicker Man, the Studiocanal back catalogue is filled to the brim with classic films that serve our home entertainment adventures of discovery and rediscovery. Now with the release of The Poirot Collection that brings together the three feature films of Murder on the Orient Express, Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun, a glorious Blu-Ray warmth is offered to the crime aficionado during these winter months.
One of the icons of detective literature and television, Hercule Poirot first emerged from the imagination of the English writer Agatha Christie, before Albert Finney, Peter Ustinov and David Suchet introduced her creation to the screen. Between them they have imbued Poirot with a Shakespearean presence; each interpretation an individual joy to watch, »
- Gary Collinson
★★★☆☆Hercule Poirot has been a mainstay on British television screens over the past quarter of a century thanks to David Suchet's definitive portrayal of the portly Belgian sleuth. Courtesy of UK distributors StudioCanal, three of the great detective's most widely watched feature-length cases are now available on Blu-ray in a new box set - entitled The Poirot Collection - featuring Albert Finney's Academy Award-nominated turn in Murder on the Orient Express (1974) and two of Peter Ustinov's appearances as Agatha Christie's flatfoot in which he encounters Death on the Nile (1978) and Evil Under the Sun (1982).
- CineVue UK
To mark the release of the Poirot Collection on 20th January, we’ve been given 3 copies to give away on Blu-ray.
The collection brings to life three of Agatha Christie’s best-known novels, with Albert Finney marking the beginning of Poirot’s on screen journey along with Ingrid Bergman (Casablanca) who gives an Oscar® winning performance in Murder on the Orient Express. Death on the Nile sees Peter Ustinov step into Finney’s shoes to great acclaim. Four years later, Ustinov reprises the role alongside some of Britain’s best-loved actresses Jane Birkin, Dame Maggie Smith and Diana Rigg in Evil Under the Sun.
Please note: This competition is open to UK residents only
a Rafflecopter giveaway
The Small Print
Open to UK residents only The competition will close 22nd January at 23.59 GMT The winner will be picked at random from entries received No cash alternative is available
The usual »
14 items from 2014
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