20 items from 2015
The Lobster is ostensibly inhabiting a similar off-kilter cinematic space to Richard Ayoade’s The Double or Spike Jonze’s Her. Yorgos Lanthimos’ English language debut is what can be best described as a skewed-surrealist sci-fi; a film has an an alt-modern setting where a traditionally emotional-driven element of society is treated as a cognitive one.
The general conceit is a world where not being in love is forbidden. Singletons and recent-divorcees are sent off to an authoritarian hotel where guests have forty-five days to find love among the inhabitants before they get turned into an animal (of their choice, at least). The metropolitan areas have security guards who check licences of people who walk about alone and in the woods a gang of loners live a simple life, albeit it hunted by hotel’s inmates.
It’s an idea with delicious social parallels ripe to be explored and, »
- Alex Leadbeater
The bright, brilliant fashion of the 1980s has often been captured on film – the over-the-top nature of the clothes lends itself beautifully to cinema, with some of the most iconic outfits of all time captured in this era. To celebrate the home entertainment release of A Most Violent Year, in which Jessica Chastain showcases an incredible array of 1980s-era Armani, we take a look at other films which demonstrate the fashion of the decade.
Richard Ayoade’s comedy drama stars Craig Roberts as 15 year-old Oliver Tate, who has two major ambitions – to lose his virginity to the beautiful Jordana (Yamin Paige), and to save his parents’ rocky relationship (a task made all the more difficult when his mother’s ex-lover reappears in their lives). Costume designer Charlotte Walters does a brilliant job of capturing the wonderfully quirky take on the classic coming-of-age tale, dressing the young cast in a wonderful array of duffle coats, »
- Jazmine Sky Bradley
Over the course of film history, we've seen plenty of long-time actors step behind the camera to take up their directorial ambitions. Clint Eastwood did it. Mel Gibson did it. George Clooney did it. What do these three have in commonc Well, for starters, they are all men, so there's that. Further, they are all white, but more on that later. More to the point of the article, these men all eased into their directorial careers by starring in their respective debuts, using their presence on screen to help market their talents off it. And with his feature directorial effort The Water Diviner, which hits limited theaters this week, Russell Crowe is just the most recent addition to a growing list of actors who have decided to try their hand behind the camera. Like Eastwood, Gibson, and Clooney before him, the Best Actor winner stars in his first feature as director, »
- Jordan Benesh
Richard Ayoade takes a trip in a hot air balloon in tonight's (April 20) episode of Travel Man.
Accompanied by actor and presenter Stephen Mangan on a trip in a hot air balloon in Marrakech, the pair are not sure what to make of their mode of transportation.
"How will we go where we wanna go?" Mangan asks as the balloon begins to inflate.
Ayoade simply replies: "Wind will govern us."
They both seem to appreciate the tranquility of the hot air balloon, but with the pilot joking (we hope) that it is his first go at the helm and Ayoade announcing he now suffers from vertigo, it is an interesting flight.
Travel Man sees the Gadget Man presenter spend 48 hours in a city with a celebrity companion, trying to do everything the location has to offer.
They also manage a camel ride and eat steamed sheep's head for dinner in tonight's episode. »
This month Alan Rickman's A Little Chaos, Ryan Gosling's Lost River and Russell Crowe's The Water Diviner see these performers make the dizzying leap from actor to director. But in which of their colleagues' footsteps might they follow?
We take a look at six different categories of actor-turned-directors.
Too handsome to be a supporting actor, and lacking the gravitas of a major star, Ben Affleck looked to be heading towards Kilmer-ville before he released Gone Baby Gone, a dark Dennis Lehane thriller he co-wrote and directed, with brother Casey taking the lead. Follow-up The Town proved solid, but his next effort, Argo, was a surprise Best Picture winner. The fact Affleck didn't receive a Director nomination suggests he's not yet been forgiven for the likes of Gigli, but the forthcoming Lehane adaptation Live By Night should fix that.
As an actor, Clint Eastwood's flinty »
"There are many stories in Twin Peaks - some of them are sad, some funny. Some of them are stories of madness, of violence. Some are ordinary. Yet they all have about them a sense of mystery - the mystery of life. Sometimes, the mystery of death."
A few introductory words from the Log Lady there, ta Maggie.
Should your rained-off barbeque/Diy plans for this UK Bank Holiday Monday take you within range of a functioning radio, may we suggest you tune in to this damn fine looking half-hour documentary on the legacy of Twin Peaks?
Richard Ayoade enters the world of Barcelona Fc in the first episode of Travel Man.
Accompanied by Kathy Burke, Ayoade takes a trip round the football club's museum - and while Burke is excited by the thought of having a photo taken with a green-screened Lionel Messi, the show's host isn't as keen.
Ignoring the photographer's advice to stick out his arm and pose, Ayoade is snapped by the camera while reading a book.
Travel Man sees the Gadget Man presenter spend 48 hours in a city with a celebrity companion, trying to do everything the location has to offer.
The first episode of the series sees Ayoade and Burke also take part in a guided tricycle tour and cava tasting.
Travel Man: 48 Hours in Barcelona airs tonight (March 30) on Channel 4 at 8.30pm. »
While the superhero trifecta are taking up all the headlines ahead of the release of Zack Snyder’s Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warner Bros.’ hotly-anticipated flick boasts an array of colorful characters and cameos, not least in the form of Jesse Eisenberg’s villainous Lex Luthor. And thanks to Entertainment Weekly, we’ve now been given our first look at the Now You See Me star in character as the megalomaniac Alexander, which you can check out below.
Granted, it’s not one to stop the presses, but it still gives us a stark indication of Eisenberg’s rendition. Throughout the course of his short yet impressive career, the 31-year-old has proven himself as an intense and indeed intelligent screen presence through roles in The Social Network and Richard Ayoade’s excellent drama, The Double. Now, he’s getting his shot at the big time for Dawn of Justice, »
- Michael Briers
Michael Palin Cbe has achieved that rare feat of being not only a man of multiple trades - actor, comedian, writer, presenter and political campaigner - but a master of them all.
Best known for being one sixth of iconic comedy group Monty Python, Palin has carved a hugely successful and varied career in showbusiness.
His achievements range from winning the BAFTA for Best Supporting Actor in 1989 for his role in A Fish Called Wanda, to travelling across the world in 80 days, to reuniting with his fellow Pythons for a hugely anticipated series of live Monty Python shows last year.
In the name of getting to know one of Britain's most famous men a little better, we headed to BAFTA HQ on Tuesday night (March 17) for the latest in BAFTA's live strand A Life in Television. Host David Walliams certainly extracted a host of fascinating facts about Palin's life (and »
Some actors wait years before trying their hand at directing, accumulating on set experience with as many filmmakers as possible, but not so for Craig Roberts. Just five years after breaking out in Richard Ayoade's "Submarine," he has written, directed, and co-starred in his first feature, "Just Jim." Emile Hirsch joins Roberts to lead the movie about the friendship that forms between a lonely teenager and the older American who moves in next door. Here's the official synopsis: This is the story of a loner. Jim, 16, has no friends and is a bit weird. His childhood friend, Michael, has left him for the cooler crowd and Jim is pushed to the edge when his dog dies. Jim’s life changes dramatically when Dean moves next door. Dean is older, American and on the run. He has movie star good looks and is everything Jim would like to be. Dean offers Jim friendship, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Originally published two years ago, we re-present our look back at Nathan Barley to mark its 10-year anniversary
Brimming with up-and-coming talent like Brooker (Dead Set), Julian Barratt (The Mighty Boosh), and fellow Booshers Noel Fielding and Richard Ayoade, as well as some blink-and-you'll-miss-'em cameos from Stephen Mangan (Episodes), Mat Horne (Gavin & Stacey) and Sherlock's Benedict Cumberbatch, we think it's time Nathan Barley was given the praise it deserved.
If BAFTA could hand out an award for oddest movie, it would surely be won by The Boxtrolls, which is the latest animated offering from Laika, producers of Coraline and Paranorman. This tale of a society dictated by cheese and overrun by cardboard-wearing creatures was in the running for Best Animated Film.
We spoke to directors Anthony Stacchi and Graham Annable to chew the fat, or at least the rind, over what went into the making of this eccentric chapter in the history of stop motion animation. I’m a huge fan of the medium – my Dad used to be such an animator back in the day – and I was interested to hear what the pair had to say about the project, which appears defiantly old-fashioned in this age of CGI…
Thn: There’s a British flavour to the film, coming from the source novel (Here Be Monsters by Alan »
- Steve Palace
A jaundiced sense of unease hangs over director Denis Villeneuve’s Enemy like a fog, and that’s before the first spider’s crept into the frame. From its noir-ish opening to startling end, it’s a riddle wrapped up in an eerie enigma.
Jake Gyllenhaal, who put in an engagingly twitchy performance in Villeneuve’s previous feature Prisoners, takes on a dual role here. First, he plays Adam, a bearded, unremarkable history teacher who shuffles through life with the slightly pained expression of a chronic migraine sufferer. Adam becomes obsessed with Anthony, a jobbing actor whom he spots in some sort of breezy romantic comedy called Where There's A Will There's A Way. Disturbingly, Anthony looks exactly like Adam (because he’s also played by Gyllenhaal) and, like Adam, lives in Toronto. »
Stars: Isaac Hempstead Wright, Ben Kingsley, Elle Fanning, Jared Harris, Nick Frost, Richard Ayoade, Tracy Morgan, Dee Bradley Baker, Steve Blum, Nika Futterman, Maurice Lamarche | Written by Irena Brignull, Adam Pava | Directed by Graham Annable, Anthony Stacchi
Below the streets of Cheesebridge live the Boxtrolls, a community of cave-dwelling and cardboard box-wearing creatures, who are believed to pose a threat to the citizens of the town and their children. However, in truth, they really pose no such threat and have even raised an orphaned boy, Eggs (voice of Isaac Hempstead Wright), as one of their own. Archibald Snatcher (Ben Kingsley), a local pest exterminator, hatches a plan to get rid of the Boxtrolls for good as a means of securing his place within the town’s cheese-loving elite. When the Boxtrolls hear of Archibald’s plan it then falls to Eggs to save the day, since he is the only »
- Phil Wheat
Arts critics tend to get a rough time of it in the movies. Even looking at this year's awards season hopefuls, Birdman casts a wonderfully scabrous Lindsay Duncan as a theatre critic who is determined to kill the hero's play, and Mr. Turner presents John Ruskin as a lisping, pretentious fop, a representation that has led some to take mild umbrage.
To look even further back, at Ratatouille's sneering Anton Ego, or Lady In The Water's film-savvy 'straw critic', or Theatre Of Blood's gleefully murderous tract, there's not a whole lot of love for critics in film. Any of this might give way to the preconception that critics, especially film critics, don't actually like films and that they're out of touch with both the filmmakers whose works they »
Beneath the slick-wet streets of gothic London, a community of unusual creatures have abducted a child and decided to raise him as one of their own. What could have been the premise of a sick and twisted horror film instead fuels the imaginative stop-motion adventure The Boxtrolls, which is available on Blu-ray combo pack beginning today, January 20. To get you excited for the new release, we have this exclusive clip. Give it a spin: The best part of the above clip? It comes with commentary! Co-director Anthony Stacchi talks about the creative process that went in to the development of the villain of the film . Lord Portley .Rind (Jared Harris) and his henchmen, Pickles (Richard Ayoade) and Trout (Nick Frost). In addition, the clip boasts behind-the-scenes footage of the actors giving voice to their animated characters . something I always love watching . and shows us how the stop-motion animators built this »
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes in the family event movie The Boxtrolls. Starring, in voice performance, Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley, Isaac Hempstead Wright (Game of Thrones), andElle Fanning (Maleficent), the new movie from animation studio Laika, the makers of the Academy Award®-nominated Coraline andParaNorman, comes to Blu-ray™ 3D and Blu-ray™ Combo Pack including Blu-ray, DVD & Digital HD with UltraViolet on January 20, 2015 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.
Quirky, mischievous and good-hearted, the Boxtrolls are unique creatures who have lovingly raised a human boy named Eggs in a fantastical charming cavern below the bustling streets of Cheesebridge. But when the evil Archibald Snatcher schemes to capture Eggs’ family, it’s up to Eggs and his feisty new friend Winnie to save the Boxtrolls!
- Movie Geeks
A new year of films may beckon, but there are lots of movies from 2014 you may have missed. Here's a list of 2014's most underappreciated...
There was no shortage of magnificent films in 2014 of every kind, from the expensive and explosive to the low-key and experimental. But it's a sad fact of life that not all movies do as well as they should, either because of poor distribution or simply because they'd been released at the same time as something much bigger and more star-laden.
While the list below is by no means an exhaustive one - there are plenty of great films from 2014 that we're still getting around to seeing - it's our attempt to highlight a few fine pieces of work that didn't get quite as much love as they deserved.
So without further ado - and in no particular order - we'll start with a stunning »
Directed by Denis Villeneuve.
A university lecturer seeks out his exact double after seeing him in a movie.
Taking its cue from a José Saramago novel, Enemy is a film that further displays evidence of Denis Villeneuve’s extraordinary ability to tackle essential psychological and philosophical concepts in compelling and provocative fashion. Following the flawed but ambitious first English language feature Prisoners and the incredible political/fantastic mind-map of Incendies, this film should confirm the Québec born Villeneuve’s status as one of cinema’s most in-demand directors…
Telling the richly metaphoric and symbolic journey of university lecturer Adam (Gyllenhaal) as he feels the pressures of a failing relationship with Mary (Laurent) and a studious but uneventful life, in many ways Enemy shows us a look beyond the mirror. Recommended a movie rental by a work colleague, Adam »
- Robert W Monk
Jake Gyllenhaal and Denis Villeneuve teamed up to good effect in the tense thriller Prisoners, but before that they made the arty character study Enemy. Based on José Saramago's novel The Double, it sees Gyllenhaal play a college professor whose life gets flipped when he spots his doppelgänger as a background extra in an old movie.
Disinterested in his work and even more so in his long-suffering girlfriend (Mélanie Laurent), Gyllenhaal's Adam pursues his lookalike and discovers he's an actor called Daniel Saint Claire (now known as Anthony). This outgoing, charismatic alter ego lies in sharp contrast to the meek, internal Adam. The two lives eventually intertwine amid tarantulas, matching scars and swapped identities.
It all feels like a dark, surreal twist on a Twilight Zone segment - a sort »
20 items from 2015
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