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6 items from 2011

Quick Shooter: A Clint Eastwood Profile (Part 5)

22 October 2011 9:52 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Trevor Hogg profiles the career of Hollywood icon Clint Eastwood in the fifth of a five part feature (read parts one, two, three and four)...

“Maybe the title of Space Cowboys [2000] is a bit misleading because it is mostly about the pioneers of space,” stated Clint Eastwood when discussing the story about four former test pilots from the 1950s who decades later get an opportunity to go into outer space. “We were not really cowboys, but these men who did all the pioneering in the 1950s were going to the frontier of space in planes they were not sure could make it. They were being rocketed along on the ground faster than the speed of sound to see if the human body could take it, so I would say that the film is something of a homage to those gentlemen.” The action thriller with a production budget of $65 million stars Clint Eastwood, »

- flickeringmyth

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This week's new films

24 June 2011 4:08 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Bridesmaids (15)

(Paul Feig, 2011, Us) Kristen Wiig, Rose Byrne, Maya Rudolph, Jon Hamm, 125 mins.

Having recovered from the shocking revelation that women can be funny, rude, and entertaining in the absence of men, we can at last put the debates and Hangover comparisons this movie has prompted behind us now and just enjoy a satisfying prenuptial comedy. Led by Wiig's anxious maid of honour, it certainly matches male equivalents in the grossness stakes at times, but it also finds deeper, smarter ways to make us laugh.

Incendies (15)

(Denis Villeneuve, 2010, Can/Fra) Lubna Azabal, Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin, Maxim Gaudette. 131 mins.

A mother's death sets her two children on an investigation into their personal and political history in this powerful mystery, set in an unnamed Middle Eastern country.

Countdown To Zero (Nc)

(Lucy Walker, 2010, Us) 89 mins.

Not got enough things to worry about? That's because you forgot about the threat of nuclear annihilation that still hangs over us. »

- Steve Rose

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The First Grader Movie Review

13 May 2011 9:08 PM, PDT | ShockYa | See recent ShockYa news »

Title: The First Grader Director: Justin Chadwick Starring: Naomie Harris, Oliver Litondo, Tony Kgoroge, Nick Reding, Vusi Kunene, John Sibi-Okumu How will hardcore birthers (I’m looking in your direction Orly Taitz, though wincing to do so) read dark and sinister intent into the uplifting true story of The First Grader, given that it’s set in Kenya, contains the words “birth certificate” and even, in its closing, winkingly evokes the possibility of someone like Barack Obama, whose ancestors call the country home, rising to the presidency of the United States? Who knows, though I’m sure it may spawn a particularly warped conspiracy theory on some Internet message board somewhere. For the sane among »

- bsimon

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Exclusive: Naomie Harris and Justin Chadwick Talk The First Grader

10 May 2011 4:09 PM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

This true-life story of an 84 year-old Kenyan villager and freedom fighter who enrolls in school for the first time arrives in select theaters this Friday

Justin Chadwick directs Naomie Harris in National Geographic's true-life drama The First Grader, which recounts the journey of 84 year-old Maruge (Oliver Litondo), a Kenyan villager and Mau Mau war veteran who once fought for liberation, and now wants to take advantage of the education he was so long denied and fought so hard to achieve.

We recently caught up with both director Justin Chadwick and Naomie Harris, who plays Maruge's teacher in the movie, to chat about the challenges of bringing Maruge's life to the big screen. Here is our conversation.

You guys actually shot this on location, where Maruge sought his education...

Naomie Harris: Yes, we shot in Kenya. I can't remember how long the shoot was. It was maybe a six or seven week shoot. »

- MovieWeb

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On DVD – Review Of “Skin” (Starring Sophie Okonedo)

19 March 2011 3:07 PM, PDT | ShadowAndAct | See recent ShadowAndAct news »

Based on a true story Skin looks at the life of Sandra Laing who, according to the Skin movie website synopsis was the embodiment of a phenomenon I’m sure that most white South Africans at the time (and maybe even now) would like to deny existed: “…a black child born in the 1950s to white Afrikaners, unaware of their black ancestry. Her parents are rural shopkeepers serving the local black community, who lovingly bring her up as their ‘white’ little girl. But at the age of ten, Sandra is driven out of white society. The film follows Sandra’s thirty-year journey from rejection to acceptance, betrayal to reconciliation, as she struggles to define her place in a changing world – and triumphs against all odds.”

Before I go any further I’d just like to negate any suggestion that it was about a cheating wife trying to pass of another »


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DVD Review: Sophie Okonedo Gives Glow to Fact-Based Drama ‘Skin’

15 February 2011 7:43 AM, PST | | See recent news »

Chicago – It’s difficult to think of a more appropriate film to be released on the first day of Black History Month 2011 than Anthony Fabian’s under-appreciated gem, “Skin.” First screened on the festival circuit in 2008 before being rolled out for a super-limited theatrical run in Fall 2009, this moving and important fact-based drama never got the exposure it so richly deserved.

The reason why Clint Eastwood’s “Invictus” failed to move many younger viewers was the fact that it never allowed audiences to feel the decades of struggle in South Africa that preceded the miraculous moment of unity explored by its story. The film never even bothered to explain the meaning of the word, ‘apartheid.’ “Skin” may in fact be the perfect companion piece to Eastwood’s film, since it literally puts a human face on the period of legalized racism enforced by the country’s ruling white minority for nearly a half-century. »

- (Adam Fendelman)

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