14 items from 2013
War is hell, for sure, but war can make for undeniably brilliant movie-making. Here, the Guardian and Observer's critics pick the ten best
• Top 10 action movies
• Top 10 comedy movies
• Top 10 horror movies
• Top 10 sci-fi movies
• Top 10 crime movies
• Top 10 arthouse movies
• Top 10 family movies
As the second world war thriller became bogged down during the mid-60s in plodding epics like Operation Crossbow and The Heroes of Telemark, someone was needed to reintroduce a little sang-froid, some post-Le Carré espionage, and for heaven's sake, some proper macho thrills into the genre. Alistair Maclean stepped up, writing the screenplay and the novel of Where Eagles Dare simultaneously, and Brian G Hutton summoned up a better than usual cast headed by Richard Burton (Major Jonathan Smith), a still fresh-faced Clint Eastwood (Lieutenant Morris Schaffer), and the late Mary Ure (Mary Elison).
Parachuted into the German Alps, they have one »
I was slack-jawed and spellbound while watching Cormac McCarthy's first original screenplay unfold on screen. Diabolically unpredictable and wildly discursive, problematic yet bold, the story itself is not the thing: it's the characters and the words, and the twisted criminal universe in which they exist, standing apart from anything resembling a conventional legal thriller. A desert-washed noir, The Counselor is set in the modern day, in the twilight zone where Texan bravado and Mexican fatalism collide with a woman who is an ice-blooded, fever-dream fantasy figure straight out of Jim Thompson. Waking up on a lazy afternoon under the sheets with a lawyer and his lady, the facts of the case are laid out plainly. The counselor ignores warnings raised by associates, enters into a...
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Prose author Frank Bill makes his comic book debut with the help of artist Drew Moss (The Colonized) and Crow creator James O’Barr who illustrated the covers for The Crow: Pestilence which takes place in the lethal setting of Juarez, Mexico.
“I’ve never seen lead characters take more brutally inventive abuse than the kind Frank Bill heaped on his characters in Crimes and Donnybrook,” stated Chris Ryall, Idw’s Chief Creative Officer/Editor-in-Chief. “I’m excited to see Frank bring such a strong voice and visceral storytelling ability to comics, especially on something as well-suited to his skills as The Crow. It was great to find out that James O’Barr was equally intrigued by Frank’s work, comparing him to Jim Thompson and other literary greats.”
The Crow: Pestilence lands in stores for March 2014.
Two iconic Hasbro products will be crossing paths in a stand-alone series titled Transformers/G. »
The spirits of vengeance are back with brutal force in The Crow: Pestilence, a new miniseries coming from Idw Publishing in early 2014 written by Frank Bill with art by Drew Moss and covers by Crow creator James O'Barr.
From the Press Release:
This new series marks the comic book debut of prose author Frank Bill, who first debuted on the scene with the acclaimed and brutally poetic short story collection Crimes in Southern Indiana. Bill followed that book with his even more raw debut novel, Donnybrook. On Pestilence, Bill, a longtime Crow fan, will be joined by artist Drew Moss (The Colonized), with Crow creator and vocal Bill fan James O’Barr supplying covers for the series.
Debuting in the spring of 2014, The Crow: Pestilence transplants the spirit of vengeance to the Southwest, introducing a brand-new cast of characters and exploring the grim underbelly of greed and betrayal »
- Debi Moore
An intriguing teenage riff on Texas pulp noir that doesn’t quite reach the heights to which it aspires, We Gotta Get Out Of This Place is nevertheless a hardnosed, well-acted crime drama that effectively evokes locale and mood.
The film opens on Billy Joe (Logan Huffman) engineering a rip-off at his place of employment under cover of darkness. He uses the money to finance a big send-off in nearby Corpus Christi for his girlfriend Sue (Mackenzie Davis) and best friend Bobby (Jeremy Allen White), who are both off to college in a couple of weeks; in the grand tradition of noir, this is a very bad idea indeed. When they return to work at the cotton mill hung-over and broke, they are confronted by the sight of their furious boss Giff (Mark Pellegrino) beating the night watchman to within an inch of his life, convinced that the Mexican stole his money. »
- Ian Gilchrist
They say timing is everything, and somehow, I managed to have good timing with some of the clothes I chose to wear to Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas. (Bear with me and my nerdiness.) I had picked out an Epcot-specific T-shirt to wear to Day Two of Fantastic Fest, in some goofy way to tie into Escape from Tomorrow, which screened that morning. Of course, then I thought I wouldn’t be attending said screening; the machinations that went into place to secure me a spot, as mentioned in that Day Two report happened so immediately that I realized I was no longer ironically dressed for the occasion in Disney gear. But as it happens, I wore that shirt, with the design of The American Adventure, the centerpiece of Epcot’s World Showcase, to Day Four of the festival. And, as luck would have it, a shirt commemorating one aspect »
- Josh Spiegel
Toronto — A proto-noir from the country that gave us the term, Emile Zola's novel Therese Raquin offers lust and lies, murder and the bitter knowledge that the thing you want badly enough to kill for might be perfectly repulsive once it's yours. In a showy adaptation by first-time helmer Charlie Stratton, the story is more glum than seductive -- offering surprising sexual encounters, yes, but too little of the slow burn and psychological depth that might have made the Les Mis-meets-Jim Thompson concept get under one's skin. The cast and production values ensure a certain degree
- John DeFore
The feature debut from directorial siblings Simon and Zeke Hawkins is a tense and earthy film noir that wears its pulp influences proudly on its sleeve as it weaves a tale of love, betrayal and escape through the underbelly of the barren Texas wilderness.From its opening moments, We Gotta Get Out Of This Place - the first feature from the New York City-born Hawkins brothers - declares its love for hard-boiled crime writer Jim Thompson (the man responsible for such noir classics as The Getaway and After Dark, My Sweet). A young couple hanging out in a diner momentarily discuss the correct vernacular for traditional southern cooking, before turning their attentions to the merits of the acclaimed pulp fiction author himself.While they may appear to...
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Last night Simon and Zeke Hawkins premiered their debut feature at the Toronto International Film Festival. With nods to the legendary pulp crime novelist Jim Thompson, We Gotta Get Out of This Place is a tense nouveau noir that follows three Texan teens who fall into debt with the wrong people.
We Gotta Get Out of This Place stars veteran character actor Mark Pellegrino ("Supernatural," "Lost," "Being Human") and Mackenzie Davis, who is also in town this week with stars Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan for the premiere of the The F Word. Before the premiere of We Gotta Get Out of This Place on Saturday night, we were able to speak to the Hawkins brothers about Texas gangsters and guns. »
- Sasha James
★★★★☆ Playing in competition at the 70th Venice Film Festival, David Gordon Green's rural noir Joe (2013) - based on Larry Brown's grit-lit novel - stars Nicolas Cage as Joe Ransom, a man who, in the words of Johnny Cash, "Won't back down". Joe leads a work crew clearing trees so the land can be cultivated, and spends his evenings slumped on his sofa, at local dice games or at the whorehouse. Along the way he befriends Gary (Tye Sheridan, previously seen in The Tree of Life and Jeff Nichols' Mud), a homeless stray who washes up at a derelict house with his sister, mother and abusive father, Wade (Gary Poulter).
The boy works hard, earns money and looks up to Joe as a real man - the father he always wanted. However, Joe has what might be labelled anger and authority issues. He tussles with a local tough and »
- CineVue UK
Kirk Douglas movies: The Theater of Larger Than Life Performances Kirk Douglas, a three-time Best Actor Academy Award nominee and one of the top Hollywood stars of the ’50s, is Turner Classic Movies’ "Summer Under the Stars" featured star today, August 30, 2013. Although an undeniably strong screen presence, no one could ever accuse Douglas of having been a subtle, believable actor. In fact, even if you were to place side by side all of the widescreen formats ever created, they couldn’t possibly be wide enough to contain his larger-than-life theatrical emoting. (Photo: Kirk Douglas ca. 1950.) Right now, TCM is showing Andrew V. McLaglen’s 1967 Western The Way West, a routine tale about settlers in the Old American Northwest that remains of interest solely due to its name cast. Besides Douglas, The Way West features Robert Mitchum, Richard Widmark, Lola Albright, and 21-year-old Sally Field in her The Flying Nun days. »
- Andre Soares
-- Liam Neeson has some atoning to do.
Not because of his hell bent pursuit of vengeance in "Taken" and its sequel, but for the lamentable cottage industry of cheap, imitation thrills those films hath wrought. "Taken" was by no means a groundbreaking achievement. But it was sturdy genre moviemaking, aided by the veteran weight of Neeson.
Hawke plays former race car driver Brent Manga, a name that even a cartoon character would be ashamed of, and that translates literally as Brent Great. In our first introduction to Brent, he's motoring furiously through a European capital in a manic car chase.
It brings up an intriguing existential question: Is it still a car chase if we don't yet know the fleer, »
Every once in a while, a film will choose to take the path less traveled and use unique poster art that eschews Photoshop and goes for aesthetic beauty instead. Here we have the Tiff promo poster for Simon Hawkins and Zeke Hawkins' We Gotta Get Out of This Place, a twisted Texas-set crime drama about three teens (Mackenzie Davis, Jeremy Allen White and Logan Huffman) hoping to make a break for it and escape their dead-end existence in their cotton-mill town. The poster features hand-painted artwork by Eisner Award winning artist Sean Phillips that's just gorgeous. This film is now on our festival radar thanks to this art. Here's the first promo poster for We Gotta Get Out of This Place debuted by Indiewire just in time for Tiff: From Tiff: Tipping its hat from the start to the classic novels of pulp crime master Jim Thompson, We Gotta »
- Alex Billington
Cinema is a kind of uber-art form that’s made up of a multitude of other forms of art including writing, directing, acting, drawing, design, photography and fashion. As such, film is, as all cinema aficionados know, a highly collaborative venture.
One of the most consistently fascinating collaborations in cinema is that of the director and actor.
This article will examine some of the great director & actor teams. It’s important to note that this piece is not intended as a film history survey detailing all the generally revered collaborations.
There is a wealth of information and study available on such duos as John Ford & John Wayne, Howard Hawks & John Wayne, Elia Kazan & Marlon Brando, Akira Kurosawa & Toshiro Mifune, Alfred Hitchcock & James Stewart, Ingmar Bergman & Max Von Sydow, Federico Fellini & Giulietta Masina/Marcello Mastroianni, Billy Wilder & Jack Lemmon, Francis Ford Coppola & Al Pacino, Woody Allen & Diane Keaton, Martin Scorsese & Robert DeNiro »
- Terek Puckett
14 items from 2013
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