The primary link among these suspense stories is that they all happen on or near a desolate stretch of desert road. (There’s also a minor connective thread in the audio-only form of Larry Fessenden channeling Wolfman Jack as a regional broadcast DJ.) In the Radio Silence troupe’s wraparound, “The Way Out/The Way In,” two
The line-up starts at 9pm on Thurs 25 Feb with the UK Premiere of The Forest starring Natalie Dormer searching for her twin sister in Japan’s most haunted location, the fabled Sea of Trees. The ‘Game of Thrones’ star is making her first appearance at Glasgow Film Festival and is thrilled to be headlining this gala event the
AFI Fest will take place November 5 – 12, 2015, in the heart of Hollywood. Screenings, Galas and events will be held at the historic Tcl Chinese Theatre, the Tcl Chinese 6 Theatres, Dolby Theatre, the Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian, the El Capitan Theatre and The Hollywood Roosevelt.
World Cinema showcases the most acclaimed international films of the year; Breakthrough highlights true discoveries of the programming process; Midnight selections will grip audiences with terror; and Cinema’s Legacy highlights classic movies and films about cinema. World Cinema and Breakthrough selections are among the films eligible for Audience Awards. Shorts selections are eligible for the Grand Jury Prize, which qualifies the winner for Academy Award®consideration. This year’s Shorts jury features filmmaker Janicza Bravo,
The festival includes 38 films directed/co-directed by women, 17 documentaries and 10 official foreign-language Oscar contenders, including Argentina’s entry “The Clan,” Hungary’s “Son of Saul” and Romania’s “Aferim!” along with Cannes Palme d’Or winner “Dheepan.” The screenings and events will take place at the Tcl Chinese Theatre, Tcl Chinese 6 Theatres, Dolby Theatre, Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian, El Capitan Theatre and Hollywood Roosevelt.
AFI has already announced a trio of world premieres: the opening night film, Angelina Pitt Jolie’s “By the Sea,” on Nov. 5; the Will Smith drama “Concussion” on Nov. 10; and the closing night film, Adam McKay’s “The Big Short” on Nov. 12. It’s also scheduled galas for Michael Moore’s documentary “Where to Invade Next” on Nov. 7 and the Chilean miners drama “The 33” on Nov.
Written by Roxanne Benjamin, Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, David Bruckner, Susan Burke, Dallas Hallam & Patrick Horvath
Directed by Roxanne Benjamin, David Bruckner, Patrick Horvath & Radio Silence
Heavily promoted as a film by the creators of V/H/S, Southbound is a horror anthology movie that eschews the found footage format in favor of applying a traditional cinematic narrative that recounts several interconnected tales. Southbound does a fantastic job taking advantage of the anthology format. The film successfully links all five of its stories together with creative tracking shots (Birdman style). The approach is slightly better than a novelty. Combining the various segments into a continuous timeline is a cool visual trick that carries the movie’s manic energy forward from story to story.
As is the case with anthologies, there isn’t much time to tell a story and each of Southbound’s protagonists gets dropped into their segment and really hits the ground running.
Hansel and Gretel and Texas Chainsaw, two pretty dire entries from earlier this year, just are not going to cut it against Argo and The Perks of Being a Wallflower regardless of who did what at the box office. Netflix seem to have the monopoly on quality catalogue titles this week with some little seen gems with Permanent Midnight and Orange County but this means nothing to the public and mostly registers with nerds like me.
This isn’t a suggestion that the company is in trouble at all but consider what
James Ponsoldt is currently enjoying the successful launch of his comedic drama Smashed, available now on Blu-ray, as well as the spectacular reception of his upcoming project, The Spectacular Now, at SXSW earlier in the month. We recently caught up with the director to talk about both of these projects, and the impact they've had on his career.
Smashed follows a young woman whose marriage is hinged on alcohol, and her attempts to sober up. The Spectacular Now follows a young man who is also reliant upon the pleasure and power of alcohol, and how it affects his relationship with a 'nice girl'. Neither movie is a PSA on the dangers of consumption. Instead, both of these critical darlings rely on humor and real emotional heart to get their messages across.
How does James Ponsoldt feel about his budding
That’s the key reason that “Smashed” works as well as it does — truth. Director James Ponsoldt is a true talent (and his new film, “The Spectacular Now,” will be playing the Chicago Critics Film Festival next month), finding honesty in what could have been cliched situations. It helps that he has an actress as fully committed as Winstead, playing a role that constantly threatens to segue into something Hollywood or predictable but never allowing her to do so.
Directed by: James Ponsoldt
Cast: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Aaron Paul, Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally, Octavia Spencer
Running Time: 1 hr 21 mins
Due Out: March 12, 2013
Plot: An alcoholic schoolteacher (Winstead) decides it’s time to sober up. Her quest for sobriety puts a strain on her life and marriage.
Who’S It For? Those who are looking for a good drama that balances a lighter side shouldn’t regret watching Smashed. Fans of Mary Elizabeth Winstead should walk away loving her more, and skeptics just might be won over.
Smashed is a very good second feature from James Ponsoldt. It’s not flawless, but my problems are mostly confined to the opening fifteen minutes. So, like the film, I want to get my issues out of the way first. That way I can spend most of my time delivering praise.
One thing I found a little
The hungover Kate gets wound up in front of her class and vomits beside the blackboard. She covers up by accepting a bright young pupil's conjecture that she's pregnant and gets stuck with the lie and the sympathy it provokes from the school's principal. A fellow teacher, now a recovering alcoholic, draws her into AA,
Cast: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Aaron Paul, Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally, Octavia Spencer
Running Time: 85 minutes
Synopsis: The life and times of a young couple in Los Angeles dealing with alcoholism and rehabilitation…
The term ‘Sundance indie hit’ has been so often used it brings a shudder to hardened film critics and casual viewers alike. Does the term simply mean yet another low budget rambling human drama?
Films about alcohol addiction are never ‘pleasurable’ viewing. Think Leaving Las Vegas or When A Man Love A Woman. Marriage, relationship breakdowns, wallowing emotions, criminal activity, death, are staples of such films.
But tonally, Smashed is closer to 1962’s Days Of Wine And Roses. Kate (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) is a fun loving primary school teacher. She is the soul of the party when she’s drunk, not adverse to a bout of karaoke singing belting out ‘Cruel to be Kind’. Her husband,
The film won the Special Jury Prize at the festival, and just last month, Winstead’s performance was recognised once more when the Independent Spirit Awards nominations were announced, nominating her for Best Actress.
It opened in a limited release in the Us back in October, and has been continuing its expansion over the weeks since then, and will now be released in the UK this Friday. Sony have released the UK variant of the trailer, and though it is essentially identical to the first trailer we saw in September, it’s nice to know for 100% certain that it has secured the UK release it deserves.
“Kate and Charlie like to have a good time. Their marriage thrives on a shared fondness for music,
One of the best recent films about addiction of any kind, Smashed serves as familiar material for director James Ponsoldt, whose previous film Off the Black piercingly examined the chronic alcoholism of an ageing baseball umpire. This time opting to observe the effects of alcohol addiction upon younger subjects, Ponsoldt mines co-writer Susan Burke’s own substance abuse issues to produce a riveting, affecting, superbly acted drama.
As much as it is about alcoholism, Smashed is first and foremost a love story; the opening scenes of the film in which we meet married couple Kate (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and Charlie (Aaron Paul), it is clear that their mutual love of alcohol only strengthens their bond and enhances their love for one another. Ponsoldt also plausibly demonstrates how they function – albeit scarcely – in their day-to-day lives; Charlie lives off his rich parents, while Kate teaches young schoolchildren,
I absolutely loved the film when it continued its festival circuit at Tiff, and with the film currently in limited release in the Us, Sony have finally announced that they’ll be releasing the film here in the UK on 14th December.
Winstead stars opposite Aaron Paul, with the leading duo playing a functioning alcoholic couple, and when the former realises what a mess her life has become, her path to sobriety is not an easy one.
“Kate and Charlie like to have a good time. Their marriage thrives on a shared fondness for music, laughter . . . and getting smashed. When Kate’s partying spirals into hard-core asocial behavior, compromising her job as an elementary schoolteacher, something’s got to give.
Written by James Ponsoldt and Susan Burke
Directed by James Ponsoldt
USA 2012 imdb
Simon Howell’s Tiff review
The reason to see Smashed is an amazing performance by Mary Elizabeth Winstead as an alcoholic 1st grade teacher, married to an equally alcoholic music critic. Winstead’s Kate is walking a tightrope made of broken bottles, teetering somewhere between comedy and tragedy like a drunken Hexadecimal. Kate and Charlie (Aaron Paul) are the life of the party, any party, every party. It is only when a hungover Kate throws up in front of her 1st grade class (after taking a few nips from the flask in her car to fortify her for the day) and her students come to the conclusion that she’s pregnant, that Kate begins to believe that she has a problem. For a teacher, Kate is a very slow learner and it takes even more disturbing
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