1-20 of 662 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
Chicago – Set during the precarious moment following Obama’s election and prior to the Green Wave, Maryam Keshavarz’s Iran-set feature debut is one of the most provocative cinematic treasures of 2011. It’s an elegantly lensed tale of star-crossed lovers that delivers a real erotic charge, while providing an excellent showcase for beguiling newcomers Nikohl Boosheri and Sarah Kazemy.
Since any public expression of passion is forbidden between Keshavarz’s two teenage protagonists, it brings a whole other level of tension and dread to their shared attraction. Atafeh (Boosheri) has the resources and security provided by her wealthy family that allows her to live a double life with her friend and eventual lover, Shireen (Kazemy). In order to fully explore their feelings, the young women escape into their fantasies of living in a more enlightened land. For them, Dubai is tantamount to Oz.
DVD Rating: 4.5/5.0
There’s a fleeting but unforgettable moment when Atafeh, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Academy Award-nominated actor Ryan Gosling has probably had the best year of anybody in the movie industry this year. He kicked things off at the very end of 2010/start of 2011 with Blue Valentine, and then had a flawless final third of the year with Crazy, Stupid, Love., Drive, and The Ides of March all tremendously well received in the past few months.
Drive, in particular, found rapturous praise amongst critics and cinemagoers alike – and with very good reason – and Gosling is hotly tipped as an Oscar contender for his roles both in that and George Clooney’s The Ides of March.
Having had such a terrific end to 2011, things are already looking brilliant for 2012, and The Playlist report that the outlook may have got even better with the possibility emerging that Gosling might be joining the Bret Easton Ellis-penned The Golden Suicides.
The Golden Suicides is based on the »
- Kenji Lloyd
ow bad was 2011? Well, it wasn't god awful, but the HitFix editorial team had no problem coming up with 20 films that deserved the honor of being on a "worst films of the year" list. In fact, some notable clunkers didn't make the cut. How about "The Sitter," "Priest," "The Three Musketeers," "Dream House," "The Caller," "The Thing" and Gus Van Sant's ridiculous "Restless"? And, shoot, "The Darkest Hour" wasn't screened for critics by deadline (we're guessing that could easily make the list). On second thought, perhaps we should have expanded the list to 30 »
- HitFix Staff
If you happen to be in the market for Fritz Lang Christmas ornaments, they do exist, though they don't come cheaply. At any rate, much of the third issue of Movie: A Journal of Film Criticism (the successor to Movie, the print journal Ian Cameron edited from 1962 to 2000) is given to the second part of its Fritz Lang dossier featuring — and I should mention before you start clicking that these are PDFs — Stella Bruzzi on Fury (1936), Vf Perkins on You Only Live Once (1937), Edward Gallafent on The Return of Frank James (1940), Adrian Martin on Scarlet Street (1945), Peter William Evans on The Big Heat (1953), Deborah Thomas on Human Desire (1954) and Peter Benson on Moonfleet (1955).
Is there a chance that current Hollywood it boy Ryan Gosling could be working with super weird Argentine director Gaspar Noé (Irréversible, Enter the Void) on his next project? If you listen to author Bret Easton Ellis (“American Psycho”), there is. Here’s the story so far: Ellis has been working on a screenplay for a while, it’s called The Golden Suicides, and it’s about the true story of artist couple Jeremy Blake and Theresa Duncan, who killed themselves back in 2007, allegedly after harassment from the Church of Scientology. Originally Gus Van Sant was meeting to come on and direct Ellis’s screenplay, but that fell apart for one reason or another, so eventually the job went to Noé. Now that there is a director in the bag, it’s time to find a leading actor, and Ellis seems to have his sights on Gosling. Recently he’s been taking to his Twitter account to »
- Nathan Adams
Over two years ago, we learned that American Psycho author and The Informers screenwriter Bret Easton Ellis was working with Good Will Hunting director Gus Van Sant to adapt The Golden Suicides, a Nancy Jo Sales article from Vanity Fair, about the 2007 double suicide of the artist and socialite couple Theresa Duncan and Jeremy Blake. However, Van Sant decided not to sit in the director's chair for the film allowing Enter the Void director Gaspar Noe to step up and helm the feature. Now, according to some recent Twitter activity from Ellis, there's a chance that Ryan Gosling could end up starring in the film. Read on. Before getting into the meat of this casting story, here's a refresher on the demise of this socialite couple: "Duncan and Blake formed a popular couple on the downtown New York and Venice, California, art scenes. She was one of the first videogame »
- Ethan Anderton
We can't say we were aware of the fact before, but it turns out that Bret Easton Ellis is quite the movie fan. His Twitter followers have, of late, been treated to streams of updates on the author's opinions of all the latest releases, with a little Oscar prognostication thrown in for good measure. We can't say we agree with all his opinions entirely, but it's certainly been entertaining, and we hope it continues. But Ellis' Twitter feed provided something more of a surprise overnight, with the writer revealing that one of the hottest stars of the moment is in talks to star in a script that he's written. Ellis has, for a few years now, been working on "The Golden Suicides" which tells the story of artists Jeremy Blake and Theresa Duncan, who killed themselves in 2007, allegedly after harassment from Scientologists. Gus Van Sant consulted on the project initially, »
The Bourne trilogy and Good Will Hunting star Matt Damon is set to make his debut in the director’s chair. After developing an idea with author Dave Eggers, he co-wrote the project with actor John Krasinski, who is famous for his roles in The Office and It’S Complicated. It has now been announced that Burn After Reading star Frances McDormand has joined Damon and Krasinski in the cast of the upcoming untitled film, about a salesman who arrives in a small town only to have his whole life called into question.
As an actor, Damon has been able to work with some of the finest directing talent, including the likes of Gus Van Sant, Steven Soderbergh and Steven Spielberg, which has thought the talented actor a lot about the filmmaking process. In a recent interview, Damon explained how Anthony Minghella, who directed him in The Talented Mr. Ripley, »
- Tina Baraga
Since breaking out with Good Will Hunting, Matt Damon has gone from huge franchises (Bourne, Ocean’s films) to smaller independent projects (Margaret, Gerry) to prestige films (The Departed, Syriana) to bigger gambles like this year’s The Adjustment Bureau, all while having some fun (Stuck On You, Dogma). He will now be taking his career to the next level (as his pal Ben Affleck has done with success in The Town and Gone Baby Gone), by directing his first feature.
This fall we got some new details on the untitled drama developed by author Dave Eggers (Where the Wild Things Are) and co-written with The Office‘s John Krasinski. They will both star in the film that follows “a salesman who arrives in a small town only to have his whole life called into question.” We finally have some more insight into the project, as Damon stopped by Kcrw »
- email@example.com (thefilmstage.com)
Yesterday, we reported Clive Owen may be replacing Colin Firth the lead villain in Spike Lee‘s Oldboy remake, which would be his second antagonist role in a Lee film after 2006′s Inside Man. More rumours about the upcoming revenge thriller are now circling with Twitch reporting that rising star Mia Wasikowska has been offered the female lead role of Marie, after it was initially offered to Rooney Mara. Again, this is not a definitive confirmation, but should she choose to accept, she would be appearing in a remake of Park Chan-Wook‘s 2003 film in addition to starring in his upcoming English language debut, the highly anticipated Stoker.
At just 22 years of age, Wasikowska has already starred in films by directors such as Tim Burton and Gus Van Sant, as well as appearing in the Oscar nominated The Kids Are All Right. She broke onto the scene with her sublime »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (thefilmstage.com)
David Lynch, Meg Ryan and Jim Jarmusch all have one thing in common--for some reason, coffee has been a recurring set piece over the course of their careers. The ubiquitous caffeinated beverage's power to stimulate the brain and draw people together over conversation has propelled storylines in many of their films, and they are not alone.
For a while back in 2006, it even looked like Tom Hanks and Gus van Sant might make a movie about the international coffee peddler Starbucks' ability save down-and-out families. We have yet to see the "How Starbucks Changed My Life" film go into production, but countless other actors and directors have slipped in sips of java to keep scenes percolating.
Here are ten of the most memorable examples.
10. Agent Kujan makes a mess, "The Usual Suspects" (1995)
Nothing punctuates a moment of surprise in a movie quite like a coffee cup shattering on the floor -- except, »
- Brian Warmoth
[Warning: The following interview with Boardwalk Empire costar Michael Pitt contains spoilers about Sunday night's second season finale.].
The brooding, ambitious Jimmy Darmody is no more. But the actor who played him, Michael Pitt, says he respected producers’ stunning decision to kill off his pivotal Boardwalk Empire character in the show’s second season finale Sunday night.
“I like it,” wrote the often press-shy Pitt, responding to questions from EW via e-mail about the finale. “As much as I will miss working with everyone on this incredible project, I thought that it would be very shocking, and I’m always drawn to that.”
- James Hibberd
"The Sitter" hits theaters today, featuring Jonah Hill as an inept, aimless slacker who agrees to babysit a neighbor's kids only to end up having a wild night involving high-speed car chases, an insane drug dealer, and more explosions than a Michael Bay film.
"Pineapple Express" and "Your Highness" director David Gordon Green was the man behind the camera for "The Sitter," and he recently explained to IFC why the film is yet another ode to '80s cinema, and why he considers it a "family movie" despite its "R" rating.
IFC: When we were talking about the trailer for "The Sitter," you mentioned that it was the product of your love for 1980s comedies. What was it about those films that you tried to capture with "The Sitter"?
David Gordon Green: I like movies about guys who have poor decision-making skills. Movies like that provide a lot of comic opportunity. »
- Rick Marshall
Opening titles sequences can indeed be viewed as an afterthought, but they are in fact extremely important to a show’s success. The opening title sequence of a television series can easily attract or repel viewers, and effect their decision as to whether or not it will be worth their time to invest and watch, or instead change the channel. Most television series don’t last very long, and the higher the ratings in those first few episodes, the better chance the show has of sticking around. Titles serve as a first impression, and as we all know, first impressions are important, especially in this day and age when there are so many other television shows to choose from. The title sequence thus fulfills the role of outlining the showrunner’s intentions and sets up the expectations of those watching. The sequence should also reflect the tone of the show, »
There have been a few true no-nos in cinematic history. Gus Van Sant's Psycho remake comes to mind, although it's not nearly as terrible as you might think. Ishtar, Howard the Duck, and Battlefield Earth are other examples, but we're not here to talk about the history of terrible filmmaking. We're here to discuss the re-awakening of Moe, Larry and Curly for a generation that doesn't want it. Not to mention the three other generations who have been repulsed by this brand-new trailer: Written and directed by The Farrelly brothers (There's Something About Mary feels like it came out 1,000 years ago), this "new" version of The Three Stooges stars Chris Diamantopoulos as Moe, Sean Hayes as Larry, and Will Sasso as Curly. The...
- Scott Weinberg
Well, according to James Franco's latest blog for The Paris Review, sex, motherhood, and a skewed take on family values.
As Franco notes, these movies are not exactly going for the same audience:
Undoubtedly one is making a play for an Oscar. Undoubtedly the other will dominate every MTV award category, including best kiss, best dude moment, best male shirtless scene, and whatever else the network that produces the Jersey Shore celebrates. The movies are in many ways very different. But both use sex as a submerged theme while on the surface promoting a wholesome idea of family values; both seem to devalue motherhood; and both deal with characters who are so financially secure that they are almost impossible to identify with.
Earlier this year, Franco wrote about Gus Van Sant, »
- Amy Lee
There have been a few true no-nos in cinematic history. Gus Van Sant's Psycho remake comes to mind, although it's not nearly as terrible as you might think. Ishtar, Howard the Duck, and Battlefield Earth are other examples, but we're not here to talk about the history of terrible filmmaking. We're here to discuss the re-awakening of Moe, Larry and Curly for a generation that doesn't want it. Not to mention the three other generations who have been repulsed by this brand-new trailer: Written and directed by The Farrelly brothers (There's Something About Mary feels like it came out 1,000 years ago), this "new" version of The Three Stooges stars Chris Diamantopoulos as Moe, Sean Hayes as Larry, and Will Sasso as Curly. The actors look like they're capable of a...
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Gomez, who will star alongside James Franco, Emma Roberts and Vanessa Hudgens in the Gummo director's new film, compared the role to her past work by saying it was "raw and more about acting". "It's a different kind of vibe than people are used to seeing me in," she told MTV.com. The 19-year-old actor, who has also developed a music career with her pop band Selena Gomez & the Scene, came to prominence after starring in the Disney Channel's Wizards of Waverly Place. She has previously stuck to wholesome family films like Monte Carlo and 2010's Ramona and Beezus, based on the popular children's book. »
- Henry Barnes
"The German documentary Under Control depicts a world where every precaution requires a set of additional precautions," writes Benjamin Mercer in the L. "In detailing the impossibly elaborate (but still not infallible) safety measures put in place in the shadow of Germany and Austria's atomic cooling towers — and in its slow pans of the plants' mechanical daily operations — Volker Sattel's superlative film highlights the permanent lockdown at several nuclear colonies."
"There's something truly terrifying about elaborate systems of precaution," writes Eric Hynes in Time Out New York. "Danger lurks in the shadows of safety…. In lieu of a traditional narrative arc and talking-head explication — there are, in fact, few words spoken throughout the film — Sattel constructs a tone poem via impeccably composed pictures that toe the line between beauty and banality, revelation and tedium."
Joseph Jon Lanthier in Slant: "The film's mechanical dreaminess recalls the work of unsubtle, sci-fi »
We take time for granted and it’s odd how a year can completely change your life.
Ben Affleck was struggling to get his acting career off the ground with only bit parts in relatively ignored films bar, in what would become a recurring role with Kevin Smith, Mallrats and Chasing Amy. It has been said that it all it takes is a good idea and that’s where Ben Affleck and Matt Damon come in with their Oscar-winning film, Good Will Hunting.
It may have been the film that started their careers, that accelerated them to stardom but it doesn’t mean it was all simple and handed to them on a platter. In fact, their script was rejected multiple times especially from one studio who kept suggesting that they change things without reading it. In fact, they knew it wasn’t being read because they unnecessarily added a »
- Ashley Norris
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