14 items from 2014
An often capriciously mixed cocktail of war film and cross-cultural family melodrama, “The Water Diviner” marks an ambitious if emotionally manipulative directing debut for Russell Crowe. Playing the titular Australian farmer who journeys to Turkey four years after the Wwi battles at Gallipoli in search of his three missing soldier sons, he has crafted the film to play to his strengths of stoicism, determination and aw-shucks mateship at the expense of deeper truths about war and tolerance. Star and subject matter should combine for frothy grosses when the film is released domestically Dec. 26, though the glass might be less full Stateside for Warner Bros., which has announced an April 24 rollout.
This is a natural companion piece to Peter Weir’s revered 1981 drama, “Gallipoli,” which followed the fates of two young sprinters (including a young Mel Gibson) who find themselves in the thick of the failed offensive that has come to »
- Eddie Cockrell
This is the way “The Hobbit” ends: not with a whimper, but with an epic battle royale. True to its subtitle, “The Battle of the Five Armies” (revised from the initially more pacific “There and Back Again”), the final installment of Peter Jackson’s distended “Lord of the Rings” prequel offers more barbarians at the gate than you can shake an Elven sword at, each vying for control of mountainous Erebor. The result is at once the trilogy’s most engrossing episode, its most expeditious (at a comparatively lean 144 minutes) and also its darkest — both visually and in terms of the forces that stir in the hearts of men, dwarves and orcs alike. Only fans need apply, but judging from past precedent, there are more than enough of them to ensure that “Battle” walks off with the dragon’s share of the upcoming holiday-season box office.
“Third time pays for all, »
- Scott Foundas
Wellington, Nz. Perhaps it's the blustery winterish weather outside and the relative warmth and stillness inside the vast, canvas-covered tent/structure that give Sir Ian McKellen comfort. Maybe it's the lure of craft services dessert that give him cause to stay. Or maybe the venerable thespian is just in an introspective mood. Whatever the cause, as wind howls outside and various members of the "Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" crew scurry in and out of the door, accompanied by chilly gusts and intruding drizzle, McKellen holds court with a small group of reporters for nearly 45 minutes. Some of that time is spent on The State of Gandalf and the events that may or may not be on-tap for the third installment of Peter Jackson's second Tolkien-based trilogy, but far more of the interview is dedicated to deep reflection, delivered in the same authoritative and sonorous tone »
- Daniel Fienberg
As the Studio has done in the past with such epic film series as “Harry Potter” and “The Dark Knight,” Warner Bros. Pictures, in conjunction with New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), is once again treating über-fans to a movie marathon, this time in celebration of the highly anticipated finale of Peter Jackson’s blockbuster “The Hobbit” Trilogy.
On Marathon Monday, December 15—two days prior to the third and final film’s theatrical release—moviegoers in select theaters across North America can experience Middle-earth one last time, beginning with “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” followed by “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” and, a full 24 hours prior to its theatrical release, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.”
Tickets for Marathon Monday go on sale Friday, November 14 at 12:00 p.m. Est / 9:00 a.m. Pst, the same date and time as tickets for opening day of “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies »
- Michelle McCue
Warner Bros. Pictures has announced that it has acquired the U.S. distribution rights to Academy Award winner Russell Crowe’s (“Gladiator”) directorial debut, from RatPac Entertainment, The Water Diviner, which the Studio will release in select U.S. theaters on April 24, 2015.
Starring Russell Crowe (Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind) and Olga Kurylenko (Oblivion, Quantum Of Solace), The Water Diviner is an epic adventure set four years after the devastating battle of Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I.
Australian farmer Connor (Crowe) travels to Istanbul to discover the fate of his sons, reported missing in the action, where he forges a relationship with the beautiful Turkish woman (Kurylenko) who owns the hotel in which he stays. Holding on to hope, and with the help of a Turkish Officer, Connor embarks on a journey across the country to find the truth about the fate of his sons. The Water Diviner is an extraordinary tale of love, »
- Michelle McCue
Russell Crowe's directorial debut, The Water Diviner, will get a Boxing Day 2014 release in its home territory of Australia, distributor eOne confirmed as it debuted the film's official trailer on Wednesday. The trailer shows the film's broad sweep, with the fabulous Australian and Turkish landscapes shot by Andrew Lesnie (The Hobbit trilogy, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes). It primarily focuses on Crowe, who also stars in the film as Australian farmer Connor. In the film, he journeys from the Australian bush to Istanbul, Turkey, to discover the fate of his two sons, who were believed killed or
- Pip Bulbeck
Imagine you're one of the bosses at 20th Century Fox. Then imagine that you have a date set for a sequel to your surprise hit sci-fi sequel, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes. That date is less than two years away, and your current director doesn't think he can have the film ready in time. He promptly departs.
So with the director's chair now absent, who do you give the project to?
So far we've only seen one first look photo from The Water Diviner, a period drama that will mark the directorial debut of Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe. But we finally get our look at the first footage from the film in a 7-minute featurette, narrated by Crowe himself (who also stars in the film), as he discusses the project, cast and more. There's some truly magnificent footage here, shot by Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit cinematographer Andrew Lesnie, showing off a unique film that just might put Crowe in the same league with actors turned directors like Clint Eastwood, Ben Affleck, Sean Penn and more. Watch! Here's the first footage from Russell Crowe's The Water Diviner in a featurette from the film's YouTube: The Water Diviner is directed by Russell Crowe (star of Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind, The Insider), making his directorial debut from a screenplay by »
- Ethan Anderton
Warner Bros. Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures and New Line Cinema jointly announced on Friday that the much-anticipated final film in Peter Jackson’s trilogy adaptation of the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, has now been titled The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies.
The film, previously titled “The Hobbit: There and Back Again,” will be released worldwide December 17, 2014, with select international territories releasing on December 10, 2014.
Peter Jackson stated, “Our journey to make ‘The Hobbit’ Trilogy has been in some ways like Bilbo’s own, with hidden paths revealing their secrets to us as we’ve gone along. ‘There and Back Again’ felt like the right name for the second of a two-film telling of the quest to reclaim Erebor, when Bilbo’s arrival there, and departure, were both contained within the second film. But with three movies, it suddenly felt misplaced — after all, Bilbo has already arrived »
- Michelle McCue
We posted a motion poster for you last week that gave some of the details of the Blu-ray/DVD release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, but now, thanks to the lovely folks at Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, we have the full deets for you, including info on the very cool limited collector’s edition packaging, and some enticing clips to remind you of the awesomeness of the movie:
Trailer: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – Available April 8
Clip: The Hobbit: the Desolation of Smaug – You Have No Right: Available April 8
Clip: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – It Is Our Fight: Available April 8
Clip: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – Your World Will Burn: Available April 8
Clip: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – I Found Something: Available April 8
Clip: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – Into the Barrels: Available April 8
Continue The Epic Adventure When “The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug, »
- Erin Willard
It’s common knowledge that while the Oscar often tout rewarding the best in film, that the notion of what’s best is entirely subjective, depending on the voter. So when trying to make informed Oscar decisions, one has to look past subjective thoughts and search for the trends. One of the major trends that has been appearing has been the success of films with heavy visual effects or 3D in the cinematography category. With Emmanuel Lubezki all but on stage to accept the Oscar in cinematography, it was worth taking a look at the category’s evolution.
There have always been epic films or movies that have had some visual effects that have competed in, and won cinematography Oscars. Yet after Titanic won 11 Oscars, including Cinematography, there seems to have been a wave of films that have relied on visual effects to tell their tale succeeding in this category. »
- Terence Johnson
Director Craig Monahan.s first film in 10 years is an intelligent and satisfying drama.
That.s according to the first reviews for Healing, which is screening at the European Film Market in Berlin.
Don Hany, Hugo Weaving, Xavier Samuel and Anthony Hayes star in the film scripted by Monahan (who last directed Peaches in 2004) and Alison Nisselle, inspired by a real-life alliance between the Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary and Prisons Victoria.
.A group of conflicted men, prisoners and inmates discover the majesty of great birds . and through them, the cleansing power of redemption . in the deeply felt outdoor drama Healing,. said Variety's Eddie Cockrell.
.The first film in a decade from director and co-writer Craig Monahan, whose 1998 psychological thriller The Interview remains an uncommonly smart genre piece, this equally intelligent and satisfying item will prove therapeutic to distribs on the hunt for quality fare..
Hany plays Viktor, a crim of Iranian »
- Don Groves
A group of conflicted men, prisoners and inmates discover the majesty of great birds — and through them, the cleansing power of redemption — in the deeply felt outdoor drama “Healing.” The first film in a decade from director and co-writer Craig Monahan, whose 1998 psychological thriller “The Interview” remains an uncommonly smart genre piece, this equally intelligent and satisfying item will prove therapeutic to distribs on the hunt for quality fare.
The film is inspired by the formation of the real-life alliance between the Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary in the outback, northwest of Melbourne, and the state-run penal system Prisons Victoria. This partnership took the form of the Raptor Rehabilitation Program, in which inmates transitioning from lockup to life cared for wounded eagles and other big birds in a minimum-security prison farm that looks like nothing so much as a country motel.
Into this facility comes Viktor Khadem (Don Hany, extraordinary), who, after 18 years behind bars for murder, »
- Eddie Cockrell
London — The first image has been released from the set of Russell Crowe’s feature helming debut, “The Water Diviner,” which is shooting in Australia before moving on to Turkey. Mister Smith Entertainment is handling international sales on the epic adventure pic, which stars Crowe and Olga Kurylenko (“Oblivion,” “Quantum of Solace”).
The film is set four years after the devastating battle of Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I. Australian farmer Connor (Crowe) travels to Istanbul to discover the fate of his sons, reported missing in action, where he forges a relationship with the beautiful Turkish woman (Kurylenko) who owns the hotel in which he stays. Holding on to hope, and with the help of a Turkish officer, Connor embarks on a journey across the country to find the truth about the fate of his sons.
The supporting cast including leading Turkish actors Yilmaz Erdogan (“Once Upon a Time »
- Leo Barraclough
14 items from 2014
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