10 items from 2015
Michael Caine's upcoming slate includes Vin Diesel's The Last Witch Hunter and the sequel to Now You See Me, but while he's keeping busy in elder-statesman roles, it looked as if 2009's Harry Brown was his final film as the lead. Happily that turned out not to be the case, since he couldn't resist Paolo Sorrentino's Youth. You can get a taste of the results in this just-released new trailer."I've retired about 30 times," Caine told Empire recently. "I always retire and then someone comes along with an offer you can't refuse. I wasn't going to play any more leading roles. I don't like it because you've got to get up early in the morning for eight weeks. But I just had to do Youth. It was wonderful." Sorrentino (This Must Be The Place, The Great Beauty) wrote and directed the film, which involves Caine's retired orchestra »
Cannes — Italian filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino has already dipped his toe into the familiar genre of characters of a certain age reminiscing about the good old days with 2013's "The Great Beauty." He even won an Oscar for it. Two years later he returns to the Cannes Film Festival with "Youth," a follow-up that stands besides "Great Beauty" thematically while also presenting a decidedly different point of view. “Youth” starts off with The Retrosettes Sister Band performing a cover of “You Got the Love," interpreted in a retro style and a twist on the old adage “everything old is new again.” In this case, everything new is old again, a theme that may or may not apply to the central characters in Sorrentino’s cinematic opera. The movie centers on Fred Ballinger (Michael Caine), a legendary British composer and conductor, and Mick Boyle (Harvey Keitel), a famous American film director. Friends for 60 years, »
- Gregory Ellwood
In “The Great Beauty,” there’s a flashback in which a young Jep Gambardella recalls the promise of love — its loss, with the betrayal of youthful ideals, leads to Jep’s crushing self-contempt. It’s a tender moment in a film of deep cynicism, and now Paolo Sorrentino, with “Youth,” delivers his most tender film to date, an emotionally rich contemplation of life’s wisdom gained, lost and remembered — with cynicism harping from the sidelines, but as a wearied chord rather than a major motif. Set in a Swiss spa with two old friends — one a retired composer-conductor, the other an active helmer— “Youth” is less flashy than Sorrentino’s recent pics but no less beautiful. Shot in English, with leads Michael Caine and Harvey Keitel bringing lifetimes of depth to their roles, the film, which Fox Searchlight is releasing Stateside, could become Sorrentino’s biggest box office hit yet. »
- Jay Weissberg
#1. "Heaven Knows What" (May 29) (Film Page) Directors: Ben Safie and Joshua Safdie Cast: Ron Bruanstein, Eleonore Hendricks, Arielle Holmes, Caleb Landry Jones, Yuri Pleskun Criticwire Average: B+ Why is it a "Must See"? Indiewire's review of "Heaven Knows What" dubbed it a must-watch, with chief film critic Eric Kohn calling it, "A bold attempt to explore drug addiction through behavior." The film comes from Joshua and Benny Sadfie ("Daddy Longlegs"), whose visions of New York City are as strange as they are inspired, and it was awarded the International Confederation of Art Cinemas prize at last year's Venice Film Festival. #2. "Slow West" (May 15) (Film Page) Director: John Maclean Cast: Michael Fassbender, Ben Mendelsohn, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Rory McCann, Alex Macqueen, Brooke Williams Criticwire Average: B+ Why is it a "Must See"? John Maclean's beautifully lensed and powerfully acted modern western took »
When audio company Big Finish obtained a licence to produce original audio plays featuring the classic Doctors, few could have imagined that they’d still be doing it today, with the BBC just announcing the extension of that licence until at least 2020. What started as a labour of love has now become a popular and critical success with all five surviving classic era Doctors lending their vocal talents as well as a plethora of past companions from the show.
However, the company has added to the myth too, creating a number of successful creations of their own. Alongside the Daleks and Cybermen, the Doctor has also fought Big Finish foes the Eminence and the Viyrans and battled an audio only version of the Master, brought to vivid life by Alex Macqueen. Meanwhile, companions who were barely one-dimensional on TV, such as Leela, Steven and Melanie Bush, have been expanded upon, »
- Terry Warner
Before Michael Fassbender reprises his role as the mutant Magneto in X-Men: Apocalypse, the actor takes a trip to the frontier in the first trailer for the upcoming indie Western Slow West. The latest from A24 Films will debut on DirecTV starting April 16 before it arrives on VOD, iTunes and in theaters starting May 15. The film will also be hitting the festival circuit next month, screening at the Tribeca Film Festival, Ashland Independent Film Festival, Hawaii International Film Festival and the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Film Festival. If you're in those areas, you can clickHere to purchase tickets.
Set at the end of the 19th Century, Slow West is an American western filtered through the eyes of European filmmaking. The story centers on 17-year-old Jay Cavendish (Kodi Smit-McPhee) who has travelled from Scotland to Colorado to be reunited with the woman with whom he is infatuated. He is quickly confronted »
Disappointing audiences and a critical bashing have made Pompidou look like a failure. But this difficult, admirable experiment deserves better
Little Britain star Matt Lucas has returned – with a big gamble that for many critics has not paid off. But that’s to miss the point. In Pompidou, he plays Pompidou P Pompidou, a brassic aristo who lives in a filthy caravan with his butler, Hove (Alex MacQueen, against type), and a bookish, bespectacled Afghan hound. Every week they try to get food or money and fail, in a world where nobody speaks intelligible English; instead, humans gabble and rhubarb gibberish. It’s a comedy pointedly unlike any other currently on TV.
Because it doesn’t have lines, Pompidou is immediately comparable to Mr Bean, Laurel & Hardy and Jacques Tati, yet the show’s funniest moments highlight Pompidou’s uniqueness. Taking away verbal sense but retaining sound means Lucas’s »
- Jack Seale
Chicago – In the years since “Shrek,” the fractured fairy tale has become Hollywood’s default approach. We’ve been treated to so many irreverent and increasingly labored treatments of storybook characters, that Disney’s new live-action “Cinderella” comes off as relatively fresh by comparison.
There’s just enough overblown CGI special effects to keep young audiences entertained, especially once the fairy godmother (Helena Bonham Carter) shows up, but not so much that they overshadow the story at the center of things. This is a straight-forward adaptation of the classic fairy tale that treats it as more than just kids stuff. It’s undoubtedly for kids, but director Kenneth Branagh and screenwriter Chris Weitz highlight the sort of aristocratic skirmishes you might find on Downton Abbey – and they’ve raided the prestigious British drama for some of its cast too.
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Each week sees the duo faced with a new challenge, such as getting their hands on a priceless bowl and performing surgery.
The show was inspired by Lucas's love for classic silent comedy such as Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy and Mr Bean.
The British Comedy Award winner first aired as an eight-part series in 2012 and will now receive a further two-hour special episode.
The period drama/dark comedy - written by and starring Davis - will continue where it left off three years ago, with the isolated rural parish of Hunderby still trying to recover from the dramatic events of the series finale.
Helene (Alexandra Roach) is hoping to begin a new chapter of her life with her new baby and the handsome Dr Foggerty (Rufus Jones). However she finds herself the target of unpleasant intervention from housekeeper Dorothy (Davis) and Foggerty's jealous sister/wife Crippled Hester (Rosie Cavaliero).
The town will also see »
10 items from 2015
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