17 items from 2014
Some movies, no matter how old they are, never age a day. Their situations and themes remain as relevant now as when they were first released. Watching them today, they reflect and comment on our present in ways they couldn’t possibly have anticipated. Every month we’re going to pick a movie from the past that does just that, and explore what it has to say about the here and now. There are creaky moments in High Fidelity. Any time you hear Rob (John Cusack) talk about making a mix tape, the movie groans with its pre-iPod era technology. And yet many of High Fidelity’s cultural sensibilities have become anything but antiquated. From a vinyl resurgence to pop culture snobbery, much of the movie has only ripened with relevance since it was released 14 years ago. 1. The Listiclization of Everything “Top 5 Musical Crimes Perpetrated by Stevie Wonder in the 80s and 90s” may be one of »
- Alexander Huls
This weekend marks the limited and VOD release of God Help the Girl, a musical from Stuart Murdoch, best known as the lead singer of Belle and Sebastian. God Help the Girl, which emerged out of a musical side project for Murdoch, follows three friends who start a band during a summer in Glasgow. It has, yes, been described as “twee,” a word now practically synonymous with Belle and Sebastian.
Belle and Sebastian’s music—cheery melodies paired with vivid, often melancholy lyrics—often feels cinematic, thanks to the band’s knack for weaving intricate mini-stories. In that way, it »
- Esther Zuckerman
Slouched in the front row of the labyrinth Theater Company's performance space in New York's West Village last May, Philip Seymour Hoffman was his typical focused, superdisciplined self. In the intimate 90-seat theater, Hoffman – always dressed in one or another of his seemingly interchangeable baggy pants and sweaters – was relentlessly pushing the cast and crew of the play he was directing, »
Sneak Peek battle footage from the set of director Justin Kurzel's "Macbeth", written by Jacob Koskoff and Todd Louiso, based on William Shakespeare's play of the same name, starring Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Sean Harris, Paddy Considine, Elizabeth Debicki and David Thewlis:
"...after being flattered by 'Three Witches' and his own wife, 'Macbeth' rationalizes that murdering his king and usurping the throne is the right thing to do.
"Ultimately, however, the prophecies of the witches prove misleading, and Macbeth alienates the nobility of Scotland, his wife commits suicide and he is defeated in battle by 'Prince Malcolm'. As the King's armies disintegrate he encounters 'Macduff', a refugee nobleman whose wife and children had earlier been murdered by Macbeth's death squads.
- Michael Stevens
Following a couple first look photos at the Shakespeare adaptation Macbeth from director Justin Kurzel, the period drama is showing off footage at the Cannes Film Market and looking for distributors. Now we have some bits of the hype machine overseas as two character teaser posters have surfaced online featuring stars Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard. The film has already turned heads enough to have Kurzel team up with Fassbender again for the video game adaptation Assassin's Creed, but it will probably be awhile before we see any footage. In the meantime, these posters, especially Fassbender's is great. Look! Here's the Cannes posters for Justin Kurzel's Macbeth from See Soundit (via The Playlist): Macbeth is directed by Justin Kurzel (The Turning, The Snowtown Murders) and written by Todd Louiso (Hello I Must Be Going, Love Liza, The Marc Pease Experience), based on William Shakespeare's classic play of the same name. »
- Ethan Anderton
Here’s the first look image of Michael Fassbender in the Justin Kurzel Directed movie adaptation of the Shakespeare play ‘Macbeth’. Fassbender plays the title character in an ensemble cast which includes Marion Cotillard as Lady Macbeth, Elizabeth Debicki as Lady Macduff, David Thewlis and Paddy Considine.
We’re loving this first look image of Fassbender. Give us your thoughts in the comments below.
Here’s the first poster of Marion Cotillard as Lady Macbeth courtesy of @Scannain
Fassbender Source: @Adlow76 on Twitter
- David Sztypuljak
Though we won't be seeing Australian director Justin Kurzel's "Macbeth" until 2015, a few still enticing new stills from the film have landed. This adaptation of Shakespeare's deliciously dark masterpiece of evil stars Michael Fassbender as the titular power-mongering general and Marion Cotillard as the scheming, hand-wringing Lady Macbeth. Justin Kurzel confidently made his directorial debut in 2011 with the powerful "Snowtown," which centered on the grizzly true story of a spate of cult murders in a dreary Australian suburb. With that film in mind, "Macbeth" feels like a natural progression, and another grim portrait of power gone horribly awry. "Macbeth" has been adapted time and again, most notably by director Roman Polanski in 1971 just after Sharon Tate's murder. But if it's anything like "Snowtown," Kurzel's new revamp, from a script by Jacob Koskoff and Todd Louiso, ought to be a visceral and disturbing experience. Count us excited for this one. »
- Ryan Lattanzio
I honestly think Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood is the only film adaptation of William Shakespeare's "Macbeth" that I've seen. I haven't seen Orson Welles' version, nor Roman Polanski's, but I'll surely check out Justin Kurzel's new adaptation once it arrives, and I have to suspect it will have its first official peek out in September in either Toronto or Venice. Today a couple of first look pictures from the film, featuring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard as Macbeth and "Lady M" have arrived courtesy of The Daily Mail's set visit report. My only concern is the language. Shakespeare's verse remains in the film, though it has apparently been "edited" according to The Daily Mail's Baz Bamigboye, quoting Fassbender who says, "There's a vibrancy and intelligence to the script." It's always tough to get the tone of a film right when it comes to Shakespeare's »
- Brad Brevet
While Natalie Portman was once slated to star alongside Michael Fassbender in the latest big screen adaptation of the classic William Shakespeare play Macbeth (or "that Scottish play" for all you theater folk), it's Marion Cotillard who ended up in the lead role as the lady of a Scottish lord who aspires to be king. Australian filmmaker Justin Kurzel, who directed a segment in the Aussie omnibus The Turning, is at the helm of this feature adaptation, and we have two first look photos that look gorgeous. One features Fassbender embracing Cotillard, while the other has General Macbeth clearly ready for battle. Look below! Here's the first look photos from Justin Kurzel's Macbeth from The Daily Mail: Macbeth is directed by Justin Kurzel (The Turning, The Snowtown Murders) and written by Todd Louiso (Hello I Must Be Going, Love Liza, The Marc Pease Experience), based on William Shakespeare's »
- Ethan Anderton
Director: Justin Kurzel
U.S. Distributor: The Weinstein Co.
We’re thankful that Cotillard stepped in to play Lady Macbeth after it was originally announced that the role would go to Natalie Portman (remember that delicious news a few years ago that a Lady Macbeth film was going to be made starring Tilda Swinton but never got made?) and we’re certain that Kurzel will give as an adaptation or incarnation we’ve not seen yet. While filming has essentially just began, we’re hoping for an end of year release.
Gist: Feature film adaptation of Shakespeare’s Scottish play about General Macbeth whose ambitious wife urges him to use wicked means in order to gain power of the throne over the sitting king, Duncan.
Release Date: We should hope to »
- Nicholas Bell
Today’s film is the 1995 short The Fifteen Minute Hamlet. The film is directed by Todd Louiso, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Michael Goldberg and Ethan Tucker, adapting it from the Tom Stoppard play, and stars Austin Pendleton, Paul Ben-Victor, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. After an illustrious career that included performances in films such as The Master, Synecdoche, New York, Capote, Almost Famous, and Magnolia, Hoffman was found dead last weekend. Sound on Sight’s weekend spotlight is on the performer, and the articles can be found here.
- Deepayan Sengupta
The rise of Michael Fassbender has been one of the best things to see in recent years, with his acclaimed performance in 12 Years a Slave earning him the Oscar nomination he was robbed of on Steve McQueen’s Shame. Now the actor is turning his sights to Shakespeare, in Justin Kurzel’s adaptation of the classic tragedy, Macbeth.
StudioCanal have announced that production on Macbeth is officially underway, with ScreenDaily revealing that the film is set to shoot for seven weeks in England and Scotland.
Fassbender takes the lead as the titular general-turned-King of Scotland, with Marion Cotillard, Sean Harris, Paddy Considine, David Thewlis, Jack Reynor, and Elizabeth Debicki starring alongside him.
Cotillard of course takes the female lead as Lady Macbeth, with Harris taking on the role of Macduff and Considine playing Banquo.
Macbeth is the story of a fearless warrior and inspiring leader brought low by ambition and desire. »
- Kenji Lloyd
The Weinstein Company distributes in the U.S.
Helmed by Justin Kurzel (“Snowtown”), “Macbeth” co-stars Paddy Considine (“The Bourne Ultimatum”), David Thewlis (“Harry Potter”), Sean Harris (“Prometheus”), Jack Reynor (“What Richard Did”), and Elizabeth Debicki (“The Great Gatsby”). It will shoot for seven weeks in Scotland and England.
Though offering a partly classic interpretation of Shakespeare’s play – “Macbeth,” a fearless warrior, is brought low by ambition – Kurzel’s big-screen adapration offers at least two newer elements. Another of Macbeth’s fatal flaws in Kurzel’s movie – not explored by Shakespeare – is all-consuming passion.
- John Hopewell
The sudden death by apparent overdose of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman stunned Hollywood and left his family, friends, and colleagues shattered. In this week’s cover story, EW pays tribute to Hoffman, widely considered the greatest screen and stage actor of his generation.
Film critic Owen Gleiberman traces the arc of the Oscar-winning actor’s tragically curtailed career, exploring his ability, in role after role, to plumb his own depths to bring often deeply flawed characters to vivid life and to “lay bare the things that make people tick” — an emotionally wrenching process that clearly took a personal toll on the actor. »
- EW staff
I know that the Sundance Film Festival ended over a week ago, but in the six days I was at Sundance (and on screeners in the days before), I saw 25 movies. I wrote full reviews for 13 of them. My Full Sundance reviews: 'The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz' "The Overnighters" "Rudderless" "Fed Up" "Marmato" "Love Child" "Land Ho!" "The Voices" "Happy Valley" "My Prairie Home" "Life Itself" "Mitt" "Web Junkie" But that left 12 movies that I just didn't have the time to write my usual 1000-to-1750 words on. Since getting back from Park City, I've been slowly working my way through capsule reviews for those 12 movies. These are roughly the length of my Take Me To The Pilots entries, which means that in this format, people are going to complain about all of the text and the lack of paragraphs. Sorry. Because I'm just one part of HitFix's awesome Sundance team, »
- Daniel Fienberg
We all have predisposed notions about the infamous “romantic comedy.” As with other genres, there’s a large subsection of offerings, giving it a bad name. But, for every tired, cliché-driven comedy, there is another impressive offering that redefines the genre, garners plenty of laughs, and tells an honest story about love and relationships, however warped they may be. In the coming weeks, we’ll take a look at the fifty romantic comedy films that should be seen. These may not all be classic films, but they certainly put a stamp on the industry and the genre we affectionately call “rom-coms.”
#50. Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
Most of Wes Anderson’s films could be described as romantic comedies, but his 2012 effort stands out, as its central story focuses on young love and the need to find acceptance. In Anderson’s world, while quirks abound, true connections between characters are commonplace. With Moonrise Kingdom, »
- Joshua Gaul
We wake from our December holiday production break slumber for a production month of January that has some notable American indie productions, foreign films projects worth signaling out. Tracking Shot is sponsored by Production Weekly. German auteur Wim Wenders returns to Montreal for the winter portion of filming on Everything is Fine – the 3D drama stars James Franco, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Rachel McAdams and Marie-Josee Croze. After distinctly break-out indie offerings in Great World of Sound and Compliance, Craig Zobel is packing his bags for New Zealand. Adapted from the classic novel, Z for Zachariah sees Chris Pine, Amanda Seyfried and Chewitel Ejiofor jousting a little during the end of the world. A neighboring production can be found in Australia, David Mamet (his last theatrical release was 08′s Redbelt) is set to unload Blackbird – this is about a grieving granddaughter of a famous special effects artist in Hollywood discovers secrets (plot »
- Eric Lavallee
17 items from 2014
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