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You can't please everyone, but Rob Marshall's reinvention of the Stephen Sondheim fairytale-mashup musical is just what the doctor ordered if you seek late-December escapism: catchy songs, blandly reassuring plot points, decent visuals and Meryl Streep as a witch in a wig. It's no "Chicago," but "Into the Woods" should satisfy (or, at least, shouldn't piss off) Sondheim fans, who were spoiled by Tim Burton's "Sweeney Todd" in 2007. If we can all take off our Streep blinders for a moment, the rest of the musical-savvy cast is also strong. Emily Blunt is especially striking as the Baker's Wife, bringing bouncy comedy to this otherwise thankless role; Anna Kendrick is as overly earnest as ever as the ragamuffin Cinderella; and Johnny Depp as The Wolf gets in and out of the way before becoming annoying. While the trades have stamped the film with approval—it's likely to nab SAG »
- Ryan Lattanzio
Disney has released two new clips for their upcoming fairytale musical Into the Woods. The first clip features the Witch (Meryl Streep) telling the Baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) what they need to do in order to get their curse reversed. The second clip features the Baker and his wife exchanging the magic beans for Jack’s (Daniel Huttlestone) cow. The movie seems to be getting decent reviews, and I'm looking forward to taking my kids to go see it.
Into the Woods is a modern twist on the beloved Brothers Grimm fairy tales, intertwining the plots of a few choice stories and exploring the consequences of the characters’ wishes and quests. This humorous and heartfelt musical follows the classic tales of Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Rapunzel—all tied together by an original story involving a baker and his wife, their »
- Joey Paur
Director Rob Marshall has masterfully brought three Broadway musicals to the big screen, although he has done so by breaking a cardinal rule of adapting a stage production. In the transition to the big screen, many directors choose to space their songs and scenes in a different way from the stage blocking, so that the story’s theatrical roots evaporate. For instance, instead of showing the scenes in a wide shot, akin to how an audience member would view a sweeping musical, they use one of the cinema’s most distinctive features, the close-up. Instead of allowing the characters to remain static as they sing their soliloquies, the director often lets the character move around and interact with the world around them. These tricks are meant to sever any stage-bound influences.
Nevertheless, the success of Marshall’s blustery, big-screen versions of beloved plays – the Oscar-winning Chicago, the under-rated Nine and now, »
- Jordan Adler
Director: Rob Marshall; Screenwriters: James Lapine, Stephen Sondheim; Starring: Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Johnny Depp; Running time: 125 mins; Certificate: PG
If ever someone was guilty of not seeing the wood for the trees, it's Rob Marshall with this fairytale mash-up based on the Broadway musical. The Chicago director gets bogged down in a multi-strand narrative that unfolds in frustrating, circular motion as he tries to weave together several Brothers Grimm fairytales. Even the songs by Stephen Sondheim seem to blur into one.
Thank goodness for a constellation of stars who manage to rise above, particularly Meryl Streep whose wicked witch livens up many a scene. James Corden and Emily Blunt spark off each other well, too, as the humble baker and his wife who are childless thanks to one of the witch's spells and venture into the woods in an effort to break it. »
Mike Leigh's J.M.W. Turner biopic, "Mr. Turner," topped the nominations for the London Film Critics Circle. The film about the English Romantic landscape painter, water-colourist, and printmaker played by Timothy Spall received 7 nods followed by Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Birdman" with 6. We'll find out the winners on January 18.
Here's the complete list of London Film Critics Circle nominees:
Film of the Year
"The Grand Budapest Hotel"
Foreign Language Film of the Year
"Norte, The End of History"
"Two Days, One Night"
British Film of the Year
Documentary of the Year
"20,000 Days on Earth"
Actor of the Year
The path to the big screen for Stephen Sondheim’s fairytale mashup has been long and winding. A read-through was held more than 20 years ago, with Goldie Hawn and Robin Williams as the infertile baker and his wife, Cher as the witch who commissions them to fetch bits and bobs (cow, slipper, cape, hair etc) from the forest so she can break the spell, Danny DeVito as the giant, Steve Martin the big bad wolf and Roseanne Barr as Jack’s mother, fed up with her son’s bad haggling. A fresh cast – including Billy Crystal, Meg Ryan and Susan Sarandon – were cued up by Jim Henson in the late 90s, before the curtain fell on that, too. Then, after the success of rootin-tootin »
- Catherine Shoard
“Be careful what you wish for” warn the ads for “Into the Woods” — an apt summary of the movie’s theme, and also the mindset of many a Stephen Sondheim fan ever since it was announced that the composer’s popular 1987 Broadway musical was being turned into a film. But such fears are swiftly allayed by director Rob Marshall, who, um, marshals Sondheim’s cavalcade of fairy-tale all-stars on to the screen in a faithful, never particularly inspired, but supremely respectable version — one that outclasses Marshall’s prior “Chicago” and “Nine,” to say nothing of this season’s two-ton musical monstrosity, “Annie.” Strong reviews and family appeal should earn Disney much more than a bunch of magic beans at the holiday box office, with a long shelf life to follow.
It certainly took Hollywood long enough to see the forest for the trees where “Into the Woods” was concerned. A »
- Scott Foundas
Director: Rob Marshall.
Cast: James Corden, Emily Blunt, Meryl Streep, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Mackenzie Mauzy, Lilla Crawford, Billy Magnussen, Daniel Huttlestone, Lucy Punch, Christine Baranski, Tammy Blanchard, Tracey Ullman.
Running Time: 124 minutes
Synopsis: A childless baker (Corden) and his wife (Blunt), must collect a series of items for a witch (Streep) in order to lift the family curse.
Johnny Depp. Disney. A Stephen Sondheim musical. You’d be forgiven for thinking you were stepping into a Tim Burton movie with Rob Marshall’s latest. With the plethora of fairy tale twists also coming out of Disney at the moment, you’d also be forgiven for thinking this was just another unimaginative money grab. To an extent you’d be right. After all, the stage show may have been around since 1987, but it’s taken this long to come around, and the success of Disney’s Once Upon A Time, »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
There was a baby boom in Hollywood this year, and those babies' mothers had a lot to say. ETonline breaks down the greatest new mother quotes of 2014!
1. Eva Mendes on vomit and the struggles of being a baby:
"I've learned that it's way harder to be a baby. Everything is a struggle for her. For instance, I haven't thrown up since the '90s and she's thrown up twice since we started this interview. Motherhood is cake compared to what it's like to be a baby." – The Violet Files
Mendes welcomed baby Esmerelda with Ryan Gosling on Sept. 12.
2. Olivia Wilde on the selflessness of motherhood:
"The amazing thing about becoming a parent is that you will never again be your own first priority. The gift of motherhood is the selflessness that it introduces you to, and I think that's really freeing... I think it allows you to put yourself in other people's shoes...the empathy »
Disney has released a new scene from Into the Woods that puts yesterday's clip into context. The previous video showed The Baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) trading young Jack (Daniel Huttlestone) some "magic beans" for his cow. Today's scene shows Meryl Streep's The Witch revealing to this couple that four things need to be obtained in order for her to create a potion that will "reverse the curse." The first item is the "cow as white as milk," followed by the "cape as red as blood," "the hair as yellow as corn" and "the slipper as pure as gold." The cow naturally belongs to Jack from Jack and the Beanstalk, with the cape surely a reference to Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford), the hair belonging to Rapunzel (Mackenzie Mauzy) and the glass slipper of Cinderella (Anna Kendrick).
Into the Woods is a modern twist on »
Yemeni filmmaker Khadija Al-Salami won the top prize at the Dubai International Film Festival for her powerful I Am Nujoom, Age 10 And Divorced, about Yemeni child brides. Adapted from the book of the same name, the film won a rave review from Jury President Lee Daniels. “I love this film so much,” he commented at the fest’s awards ceremony.
The award marks a spectacular redemptive arc for Al-Salami, who was herself a child bride in her native Yemen before escaping the abusive relationship.
Now in its 11th year, Dubai has cemented its position as one of the premier platforms for Arab cinema in the world. While its host city is synonymous with glittering high rises and seven star hotels, the festival has etched out a place as a much-needed serious-minded and thoughtful meeting place for the region’s filmmakers.
The best non-fiction film went to local Emirati director Nujoom Al Ghanem for Nearby Sky, »
- Ali Jaafar
The funniest part of John Krasinski's Jimmy Kimmel prank on Monday came when the actor busted a move in a Santa suit. As part of the pair's annual prank tradition, John teamed up with his wife, Emily Blunt, to scheme against the late-night host, but what really took the spotlight was John's dancing. The hilarious moves are a holiday gift to us all, so enjoy these lovely GIFs, then check out all the times John Krasinski was just so damn adorable. »
And the battle continues! Emily Blunt stopped by "Jimmy Kimmel Live" on Monday, where she revealed this year's prank between her hubby John Krasinski and Jimmy. Blunt and Kransinski live right next door to the late night host, and the group of friends have had one hilarious ongoing prank war for the last few years. Every year around the holidays, Kimmel, Blunt and Kransinski try to one up each other with the best holiday-themed prank. Last year, Jimmy had the "Office" alum and the "Into the Woods" star's house covered head-to-toe in wrapping paper ... and the year before, he dropped off a giant inflatable reindeer and "reindeer poop" on their front lawn. But, we think the actors might have taken the win this time. Check out the video above to see John and Emily's hilarious (and expensive) prank! After John seemingly totaled Kimmel's car outside of the studio, Blunt told »
- tooFab Staff
The London Film Critics’ Circle has announced the nominations for the 35th annual awards ceremony, with Mike Leigh’s Mr Turner leading the field with seven nominations in total, including Film of the Year and British Film of the Year.
Mr Turner will contest the Film of the Year award against Birdman, Boyhood, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Ida, Leviathan, Nightcrawler, The Theory of Everything, Under the Skin and Whiplish, with The Imitation Game, Pride, The Theory of Everything and Under the Skin are also up for British Film of the Year.
Here’s the full list of nominations for the awards…
Film Of The Year
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Foreign Language Film Of The Year
Norte, The End of History
Two Days, One Night
British Film Of The Year
- Gary Collinson
Mr Turner leads the nominations for the 35th London Critics' Circle Film Awards.
Spall, Eddie Redmayne and Benedict Cumberbatch all have nominations for British Actor of the Year, as Emily Blunt, Keira Knightley and Rosamund Pike feature in the British Actress of the Year category.
The ceremony will take place on Sunday, January 18 at the May Fair hotel.
A full list of nominations is below:
Film of the Year
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Foreign-language Film of the Year
Norte, The End of History
Two Days, »
'Tis the season for John Krasinski and Jimmy Kimmel's annual prank tradition, and this year, John and his wife, Emily Blunt, really brought their pranking game to a new level. Last year, Jimmy was behind an elaborate seven-hour prank that transformed John and Emily's house into Santa's village, and on Monday, the couple retaliated with a clever scheme of their own. When the late-night host went to hop into his car, he had a little surprise, and later, John rocked a Santa suit to bust some silly moves and prank him again. Watch the hilarious clip above, and then take a look at 35 times John Krasinski was just so damn adorable. »
Jennifer Aniston poses topless, gushes over fiancé Justin Theroux, and talks hair care in a spread for Allure. [Allure] Kim Kardashian says she cropped North out of her Instagram photo because her eyes were closed.
Her eyes were closed and I was feeling my look! Can I live?!?!
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) December 15, 2014
Wait is this really news that I posted a selfie & cropped my daughter out? Lol
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) December 15, 2014
Eight years later, Bill and Giuliana Rancic are still so in love. The couple shares the secret to their successful marriage in an interview with ABC. [ABC] Emily Blunt and John Krasinski engage in a series of Christmastime pranks with Jimmy Kimmel. Scarlett Johansson doesn’t think her body is “particularly remarkable. »
- Alexa Tietjen
Mike Leigh’s biopic Mr Turner earned seven London Critics’ Circle Film Awards nominations this afternoon to lead the pack of a mix of UK, U.S. and foreign language titles. Mr Turner picked up nods for Film of the Year and British Film of the Year, as well as gaining recognition in the acting, directing and technical races. Alejandro G Iñárritu’s Birdman follows with six nominations including Film of the Year, Director of the Year and Actor of the Year for Michael Keaton.
Rounding out the Film of the Year nods are Boyhood, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Under The Skin, The Theory Of Everything, Nightcrawler, Whiplash, Ida and Leviathan. Alongside Mr Turner in the Best British Film class are The Imitation Game, Under The Skin, The Theory Of Everything and Pride.
There are also a series of double acting nominees with Julianne Moore earning two Actress of the »
- Nancy Tartaglione
Julianne Moore scores double nominations for Actress of the Year.
The London Film Critics’ Circle has announced the nominations for its 35th annual awards ceremony, with Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner leading the pack with seven nominations, including Film of the Year and British Film of the Year.
Birdman followed closely behind with six nomination including Film of the Year, Director of the Year and Actor of the Year (Michael Keaton). Five nominations each went to Boyhood, The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything, and Under The Skin. Four each went to ‘71, Nightcrawler and Whiplash.
Also landing double nominations were Timothy Spall (Mr Turner), Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything) and Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game), in both Actor of the Year and British Actor of the »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Wendy Mitchell)
London — Mike Leigh’s “Mr. Turner” leads the field for the 35th London Film Critics’ Circle Awards: The painterly biopic received nominations in seven categories, including Film of the Year, Director of the Year and Actor of the Year for Timothy Spall.
While the total for Leigh’s film was boosted by two citations in the group’s separate British-only categories, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarittu’s “Birdman” scored six nods, with five apiece for Richard Linklater’s “Boyhood,” Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” Jonathan Glazer’s “Under the Skin” and James Marsh’s “The Theory of Everything.” All are among the 10 pics shortlisted for Film of the Year, alongside Dan Gilroy’s “Nightcrawler,” Damien Chazelle’s “Whiplash” and a pair of foreign-language titles, Pawel Pawlikowski’s “Ida” and Andrey Zvyagintsev’s “Leviathan.”
- Guy Lodge
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