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In Robert Duvall’s latest western, Wild Horses, he stars as an old rancher who once kicked his son off his property for being gay and now finds himself at the center of a missing person investigation. In addition to starring, Duvall directed a cast that includes James Franco and Josh Hartnett.
While Duvall was in Austin at SXSW to promote the film, we had a chance to sit down with the Oscar-winner. We talked about why this project spoke to him, working on a small budget, and using actual Texas rangers in the production. Check out the full interview below!
What was it about this movie that made you want to direct it?
Duvall: Well, not a lot in the beginning. The script we got was pretty unshootable. We took it, I took the option. I wanted to do it because I wanted to have a lady ranger in »
- Alexander Lowe
When you’re offered the chance to sit down with Robert Duvall for almost twenty minutes, you clear your schedule. Which is exactly what I did at this year’s SXSW. Duvall was in Austin to promote his latest directorial effort, Wild Horses, which he also wrote. The film stars Duvall, James Franco, Josh Hartnett, Luciana Duvall, and Adriana Barraza and it’s about a Texas Ranger that puts her life in jeopardy when she tries to prove a powerful family's involvement in a boy's 15-year-old disappearance and murder. Here’s the official synopsis: Texas Ranger Samantha Payne reopens a 15-year-old missing person case, and uncovers evidence that suggests that the boy was likely murdered on a ranch belonging to wealthy family man, Scott Briggs. When Scott’s estranged son unexpectedly returns home during the investigation, Samantha becomes even more convinced that the Briggs family was involved, and will stop »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
There's a twinge of activism amid the threads of Robert Duvall's latest directorial effort Wild Horses. Although a traditional crime story, Duvall slightly subverts this simple approach, casting himself as a man confronted with a lifestyle he doesn't quite understand, exploring an ideological message rather unexpected for a film like this. It's an interesting choice and potentially effective one. Unfortunately, it's packaged in a middling, mediocre framework that's inert almost from the word "go". The film opens with Scott Briggs (Duvall), a ranch owner, finding his son, Ben (James Franco), fooling around with another man in their barn. He ultimately chases the kid off and we flash forward fifteen years to learn the young man Briggs chased off that night actually disappeared. The police never found a body or a suspect. Now, Samantha Payne (Luciana Duvall), a Texas ranger, has decided to reopen the case. She suspects the missing »
- Mike Shutt
See Also: Read our review of Cake here
Cake takes us into the darkly funny world of Claire Bennett (Jennifer Aniston) who initiates a dubious relationship with a widower (Sam Worthington) while confronting fantastical hallucinations of his dead wife (Anna Kendrick). With her feisty housekeeper-cum-caretaker (Adriana Barraza) ever at her side, Claire searches for human connection and self-forgiveness in this tale of personal redemption.
–The Many Layers of Cake: Learning to Live Again
–The Icing on the Cake: Meet the Cast
- Scott J. Davis
Jennifer Aniston nabbed Golden Globe Award, Critics' Choice Award, and Screen Actors Guild Award nominations in the Best Actress category for her work as a woman fighting to redeem herself in the Cinelou Films production, Cake. Fox Home Entertainment have revealed their plans to make Cake available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD, with the latter arriving on the scene earlier than its disc-based counterparts.
The Cake Digital release date is set for April 10, 2015. A couple weeks later is when the Cake Blu-ray, DVD and VOD release date falls, on April 21.
Cake's widest release was in 482 theaters during its opening weekend on January 23, 2015. It has since earned $1.95 million and continues to play in select locations. The film was directed by Daniel Barnz and co-stars Felicity Huffman, William H. Macy, Sam Worthington, Anna Kendrick and Adriana Barraza.
A trio of bonus features are included on all versions of Cake and »
Jennifer Aniston plays a Percocet-addicted antiheroine in this predictable piece of awards-bait
At first, this film certainly promises something difficult and challenging. But having struck variously angry or black-comic notes in its opening section, it morphs into a piece of indie-sentimental awards-bait for its producer-star Jennifer Aniston. She plays Claire, a Percocet addict who is in chronic pain, given to angry outbursts at her support group and left depressed and conflicted after the suicide of her counsellor, Nina (Anna Kendrick). Claire is drawn into a friendship with Nina’s widow, Roy (Sam Worthington), and remains impossibly difficult with her long-suffering maid and carer, Silvana (Adriana Barraza). Inevitably, the explanation for her condition is left for the third-act reveal, which we reach via the mandatory grieving, healing and self-forgiveness. The relationships and plot transitions feel forced, and the trope of the ironic hallucinatory ghost is glib and cliched (David Cronenberg carried »
- Peter Bradshaw
Director: Daniel Barnz; Screenwriter: Patrick Tobin; Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Adriana Barraza, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington, Felicity Huffman, Chris Messina; Running time: 102 mins; Certificate: 15
Cake is a wry indie drama that hides a gooey centre beneath a brittle leading turn and Jennifer Aniston just about cracks it as a sufferer of chronic pain. This is a grey cardigan-clad performance with harsh lighting and no make-up which, arguably, isn't just a cry for help but a plea for awards attention. The Hollywood Foreign Press kindly obliged with a Golden Globe nomination and if Oscar wasn't that impressed, it may be because the film as a whole feels disingenuous.
Bitter sarcasm is one of the coping mechanisms that Claire (Aniston) depends on in the aftermath of a road accident, along with a pick 'n' mix of painkillers. Her Mexican maid Silvana (Adriana Barraza of Amores Perros) is also on hand to cook, clean »
Director: Daniel Barnz
Running Time: 102 minutes
Synopsis: Claire (Aniston) is a sufferer of Chronic Pain Syndrome who becomes obsessed with the suicide of fellow support group member Nina (Kendrick), whilst still trying to come to terms with a tragedy of her own.
Claire is a bitter and angry depressive who has succumbed to her pain; heavily reliant on drugs and booze she medicates to keep herself numb which is hindering her rehabilitation and life progression in the process. Her only supporter is Silvana, her heavily put-upon housekeeper. After the death of a woman in her pain support group, Claire finds herself drawn to the family of the deceased and finds herself re-evaluating her perspective on life.
It’s unfortunate that Aniston didn’t receive an Oscar nomination for her turn in Cake as it really »
- Kat Smith
South by Southwest, the multi-faceted film, music and technology festival held annually in Austin, TX will feature such upcoming films as Paul Feig’s Spy, David Gordon Green’s Manglehorn, Alex Gibney’s documentary Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine, and Ondi Timoner’s Russell Brand profile Brand: A Second Coming as headliners in this year’s film festival lineup.
SXSW runs from March 13 to 21 in Austin and is now in its 22nd year. Variety has details of the 145 films and 100 world premieres bowing at this year’s festival. Brand, as previously reported, will be the festival’s opening night film.
Other notable titles on the list are the Will Ferrell/Kevin Hart comedy Get Hard, a rough cut of Judd Apatow’s Trainwreck, the directorial debut of 28 Days Later screenwriter Alex Garland, Ex Machina, and a new comedy by Michael Showalter, Hello, My Name is Doris.
On the small screen, »
- Brian Welk
While the specialty box office was dominated by Oscar nominees, a couple of snubbed films tried to make the best of the buzz that came with almost being nominated. First and foremost was Daniel Barnz's "Cake," which earned Jennifer Aniston Golden Globe and SAG nominations -- but missed out at the Oscars. The film -- which also stars Felicity Huffman, William H. Macy, Anna Kendrick and Adriana Barraza (all notably past Oscar nominees -- went with an aggressive release strategy, opening in 482 theaters. The result wasn't especially hopeful, as "Cake" grossed $1,003,000 for a so-so $2,081 average. By no means a disaster, but one has to wonder what that number would have been had Aniston ended up with an Oscar nomination. Also opening were two films snubbed in the Best Documentary Feature and Best Foreign Language Film categories, respectively. Sony Classics sent Gabe Polsky's doc "Red Army" -- which details »
- Peter Knegt
Chicago – It’s been a while since I walked out of a screening so affected and feeling that I just experienced a truly honest, important film.
Sure, other ones have since, but back in 2007, “Once” especially made me feel that way long before the Oscars. I never would have expected it here and nor will you from this film you’ve probably heard little or nothing about, but a little engine that could called “Cake” has done that to me again. And you’d never guess who primarily made it possible: Jennifer Aniston in a visually unflattering, dramatic role.
While “Cake” as a film is receiving mixed reception, Aniston is being recognized for the career-growing range it’s proving for her beyond the “Friends” comedic stigma she’s trying to grow beyond. Though she tried with the dramatic romance “Love Happens” in 2009, it bombed. “Horrible Bosses” in 2011 and “Horrible Bosses 2 »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, January 16th. (Synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise.) Wide The Boy Next Door Director: Rob Cohen Cast: Jennifer Lopez, Ryan Guzman, John Corbett, Kristin Chenoweth Synopsis: "A psychological thriller that explores a forbidden attraction that goes too far." Cake Director: Daniel Barnz Cast: Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington, Jennifer Aniston, William H. Macy, Felicity Huffman, Adriana Barraza Synopsis: "While struggling with her own trauma, a woman in a chronic-pain support group begins to investigate the suicide of a fellow group member and develops an unexpected relationship with the woman’s husband." Criticwire Grade Average: B- (16 reviews) The Loft Director: Erik Van Looy Cast: Karl Urban, James Marsden, Wentworth Miller, Eric Stonestreet, Matthias Schoenaerts, Isabel Lucas, Rachael Taylor, Rhona Mitra Synopsis: "The story of five guys who »
- Steve Greene
Title: Cake Director: Daniel Barnz Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Adriana Barraza, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington, Felicity Huffman and Chris Messina Testing your emotional limitations as you strive to fully understand such diverse things as your motivations, reactions and interactions with the people who have the most powerful influence in your life can be a daunting experience for anyone. But that exploration can be even more unnerving as you become so disenchanted with the way your life turned out that you intentionally push the people who care the most about you away, which ultimately causes you more heartbreak and pain. Director Daniel Barnz’s new independent drama, ‘Cake,’ powerfully and entrancingly chronicles the [ Read More ]
The post Cake Movie Review appeared first on Shockya.com. »
- Karen Benardello
Let Them Have It: Barnz Banks on Adept Aniston
Grief is a prickly emotion to convey within the confines of the indie American melodrama, a place that audiences have come to expect a certain amount of imaginable tragedy causing rippling aftershocks for its protagonist that force him or her to grow once more into a healed, even enlightened being. Along the way, a checklist of unlikely supporting cast mates imbue these reflections on coping with a sense of wishful thinking—we want these heroes and heroines of life’s harsh blows to have access to magical members of disenfranchised, socio-economically compromised denizens to guide them through a series of growing pains so that it’s possible to get right back to where they started from. If this sounds familiar, then you’ll be able to plug into the familiarity of Cake from director Daniel Barnz, which unfortunately feels more like »
- Nicholas Bell
In Cake, Jennifer Aniston gets seriously unglamorous as Claire, a mouthy, druggy, non-practicing lawyer with a mysteriously scarred face who’s driven around Los Angeles by her Mexican housekeeper, Silvana (Adriana Barraza) — her Sancho Panza — with her seat tilted all the way back to give her only a view of trees and sky. Her morbid bluntness gets her bounced from a touchy-feely women’s therapy group; and her fascination with Nina, a group member who threw herself off a highway overpass, gets her haunted by Nina’s hostile ghost (Anna Kendrick). Said ghost becomes even more antagonistic when Claire shows up at the doorstep of Nina’s grieving, hunky spouse (Sam Worthington) and curly haired 5-year-old (Evan O’Toole), as if trying to replace what she lost — and also be a replacement. There are broad hints about the nature of the tragedy that deformed Claire’s body and soul, but »
- David Edelstein
Angry, depressed, self-pitying and desperate to lose herself in a pharmaceutical haze: no character is more relatable this awards season than Claire Bennett (Jennifer Aniston), a woman simply unable to cope after a semi-recent catastrophe leaves her with chronic pain and facial and bodily disfigurement.
The movies are full of noble sufferers, but Claire refuses to be one of them. Being difficult (by being herself) is the only way she knows how to insist that she and her pain matter — and »
- Inkoo Kang
It’s not news that Jennifer Aniston is a good actress, but Cake does offer her a meatier, more serious role than she’s had in quite a while…and she delivers. What’s more, director Daniel Barnz has surrounded her with talented actors who bring out all the colors in Patrick Tobin’s dark, often sardonically funny screenplay. With all these ingredients it’s a shame that Cake overstays its welcome. Aniston plays a woman with chronic pain who is so hostile and abrasive that she’s asked to leave her support group. Her husband has left her, as well. The one person who is faithful to her, beyond all reason, is her Mexican housekeeper, played by the magnificent Adriana Barraza, whom you may ...
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- Leonard Maltin
Each year, screenwriters kill off enough offscreen children to fill a Chuck E. Cheese's. A dead son or daughter gives a movie the illusion of depth plus an easy explanation for whatever the script ladles on the surviving parents. Binge-drinking? Nymphomania? Sudden bouts of breakdancing? Blame the wee coffin.
In Daniel Barnz's Cake, divorced lawyer Claire's (Jennifer Aniston) dead-kid symptoms are twofold: Physically, she's in agony from the corpse-white scars swimming up her arms and legs and across her face after the car crash that killed her boy. Emotionally, she's an imperious bitch with the money to buy whatever apologies she owes. Her housekeeper Silvana (Adriana Barraza of Babel, fantastic) tolerates Claire's commands — Silvana is as much mother as mart »
Cake is a hard experience to stomach. That’s not because of Jennifer Aniston’s unflinching submersion into grief, not because filmmaker Daniel Barnz explores suicidal consequences through power, and not because we’re left quivering in an emotionally ravaged pile of marred feelings, but because Aniston’s character Claire Bennett deserves a brighter spotlight. Patrick Tobin’s screenplay attempts to blend darkly humorous encounters with a soul-searching dive into the deepest of deep ends, but there’s an invisible wall holding characters back from truly entering a realm of cinematic heartbreak.
Cake feels superficial – a flat story about exposing bottled emotions that never truly uncorks the essence of human spirituality – like buttercream-frosted discs of Styrofoam decoratively assembled to mimic something more succulent if bitten into. Barnz and Tobin only scratch the surface with their somber character piece, but watching Aniston embody a recovering victim provides a nice contrast to »
- Matt Donato
And the Oscar nominees are ... the whitest since 1998.
That's the truth as far as the acting categories are concerned. For the first time in 17 years, not a single person of colour stands to win an acting Oscar. [The Atlantic says the last entirely white Oscar nomination list was in 1995. We'll let them duke out which year it is.]
We here at Moviefone Canada looked at Oscar winners and nominees from the past decade to see how they stack up against the upcoming 2015 ceremony. We restricted ourselves to the acting, directing and screenwriting categories.
The definition of "people of colour," of course, varies widely. But when it comes to Oscar nominations, we largely considered people who don't come from an all-white heritage within the last couple of generations.
We plugged the numbers ... and 47 out of 350 nominees in the past 10 years went to people of colour.
That's 13 per cent ... and it's not enough. Especially when U.S. government statistics show that white people (excluding Hispanics or Latinos) make up only 62.6 per cent of the country's population. »
- Jesse Ferreras
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