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3 items from 2017


Venice Film Review: George Clooney’s ‘Suburbicon’

2 September 2017 5:00 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The names Joel and Ethan Coen pop up on a lot of screenplays these days (“Bridge of Spies,” “Unbroken”), now that they’re getting credit for the kind of script-polishing they used to do anonymously. But “Suburbicon” marks the first time a script that could have been a full-blown Coen brothers film has been brought to the screen by someone else. The movie, directed by George Clooney, who along with his partner Grant Heslov re-wrote an old unproduced Coen brothers script (all four are now credited), stars Matt Damon as a dour, weaselly, amateur family-man criminal in the U.S. suburbs of 1959, and it’s clearly a close cousin to “Fargo.”

There are moments when you can taste the heightened comic spin that the Coens, as filmmakers, would have brought to the material. They would surely have made a bigger fetish of the Atomic Age trappings and decor (the way they did with the mid-’60s Midwestern »

- Owen Gleiberman

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Blu-ray Review – Barton Fink: Special Edition (1991)

22 August 2017 3:20 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Barton Fink, 1991.

Directed by Joel Coen.

Starring John Turturro, John Goodman, Judy Davis, Michael Lerner, John Mahoney, and Jon Polito.

Synopsis:

Barton Fink has been reissued by Kino Lorber in a new Blu-ray edition that doesn’t say “Special Edition” anywhere on the packaging but basically is one (hence the use of “(Special Edition)” on their site and here). The print has been improved a bit since the previous Universal release, and Kino commissioned some new interviews that are included here, along with eight deleted scenes.

“I thought it was a strange film,” actor John Turturro recalls in the new 14-minute interview on this Barton Fink (Special Edition) Blu-ray from Kino Lorber. As Coen brothers movies go, this one veers a bit into David Lynch territory as it tells the satirical story of a Broadway playwright seduced by Hollywood’s siren call during the 1940s.

Fink (Turturro) arrives in Los Angeles, »

- Brad Cook

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Drive-In Dust Offs: Strange Invaders (1983)

8 April 2017 8:53 AM, PDT | DailyDead | See recent DailyDead news »

Long live Michael Laughlin. Two years after he released one of my favorite early ‘80s oddities, Strange Behavior (I wrote about it here), he was back to unleash the next chapter in a proposed ‘Strange’ trilogy, Strange Invaders (1983). And while the former is a tribute to Mad Scientist films of the ‘50s via an updated Slasher take, the latter tips its fedora to the great Alien Invasion films of the same era. It may not reach the same dizzyingly weird heights, but Strange Invaders is an affectionate romp that captures the feel of those bygone drive-in classics and solidifies Laughlin’s unique voice.

A co-production between Emi Films and Lone Wolf McQuade Associates, Strange Invaders was released by Orion Pictures in mid September stateside to positive reviews and lackluster box office. Returning only a quarter of its $5 million plus budget, this was the Way of the Laughlin – everyone liked his movies, »

- Scott Drebit

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3 items from 2017


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