8 items from 2014
San Diego - Oscar-winner Melissa Leo is such a convincing actress that for a brief moment on the "Wayward Pines" press line at San Diego Comic-Con, she had me doubting whether I even knew where I really was. "I think the show is full of, like a lot of [M.] Night ]Shyamalan]'s work, you think who know you're talking to, but do you know who you're talking to?" said Leo ominously. "Do you even really know where you are?" Cue existential crisis. Thankfully, I recovered just enough to continue posing questions to Leo and her co-star Toby Jones about the upcoming Fox "event series," including whether shooting the filmmaker-driven show - which in addition to executive-producer Shyamalan features episodes helmed by such big-screen directors as Nimrod Antal ("Predators," "Metallica Through the Never") and Zal Batmanglij ("The East") - feels at times more like shooting a movie than a TV seris "In some ways yes, »
- Chris Eggertsen
2011, the year of actress Brit Marling, also introduced the world of cinema to two promising filmmakers: “The Sound Of My Voice” director Zal Batmanglij and “Another Earth” filmmaker Mike Cahill. Marling starred and co-wrote both heady and high concept indie efforts and her rocket soon took off. Fox Searchlight picked up both films and Batmanglij was soon making his intriguing follow-up “The East.” Skeptics were a little less convinced about “Another Earth,” which featured an admittedly excellent concept but was sometimes limited by its budget and presentation in execution. However, those that sensed great promise should be thrilled to see it fulfilled in “I Origins,” Cahill’s powerful follow-up. As the proverb goes, “the eyes are the window to the soul,” and that phrase feels like the blowtorch that sets “I Origins” alight for Cahill to investigate notions of spirituality vs. science, coincidence, chance and the unexplained subconscious working behind the curtain of. »
- Rodrigo Perez
What struck me about Mike Cahill's "I Origins" when I saw it at Sundance was how clearly it was the work of the same director who made "Another Earth." One of the challenges for many rising filmmakers as they navigate from their first feature to their second is what compromises they are willing to make as they seek outside funding and bigger budgets. The story of how "I Origins" got made is instructive. "Another Earth" and a second film, "The Sound of My Voice," made by Cahill's Georgetown buddies Brit Marling (who produced, co-wrote and starred in "Another Earth") and director Zal Batmanglij, were both released by Fox Searchlight, who were investing in their next films as well. As Cahill struggled to find the right story, Marling and Batmanglij moved ahead with eco-terrorist story "The East," which turned into one of those 'tweeners, too glossy to be a gritty indie, »
- Anne Thompson
Directed by: William Eubank
Running Time: 1 hr 35 mins
Release Date: June 13, 2014 (Chicago)
Plot: Three young adults (Thwaites, Knapp, Cooke) are captured by a strange government agency when trying to locate a hacker who has been trolling them.
Who’S It For? Viewers who like watching conspiracy films with only the illusion of high intelligence.
As hungry indie filmmakers clash for a fleeting part in the multiplex they yearn to someday star in, some put a feature film’s worth of effort into what is unofficially titled the Calling Card Movie. A concept (not a categorization), the Ccm is not to be associated with every debut or bigger break for directors trying to create public careers from their craft. These are the independent projects that take creative freedoms hostage, at the sake of a distinct filmmaking attitude or style, »
- Nick Allen
Rookie undercover agent Sarah (Brit Marling) is employed by an elite private intelligence firm to infiltrate an anarchist eco-terrorist group known for covert attacks on major corporations. However, she finds her priorities changing as she befriends the rebels and develops romantic feelings for its leader (Alexander Skarsgard). Marling and writer-director Zal Batmanglij (The Sound of My Voice) craft a tantalising spy yarn which relies on rich characterisation and an intriguing plot to carry its subversive power. »
“Reserved, even by Kelly Reichardt’s standards.” That was the line I used to describe this Portland director’s latest, Night Moves, after its screening at Tribeca. Having premiered at last year’s Venice Film Festival, it’s understandable that it didn’t make all that much noise in the intermediate months given it’s such a quiet, guarded film despite its eco-thriller roots and name cast that includes Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning and Peter Sarsgaard. Like all of Reichardt’s films, however, it is that very low-key ingredient that makes it memorable. While it doesn’t soar to the breathtaking heights of Meek’s Cutoff, which just like Night Moves took a genre prone to testosterone-filled violence and twisted it into a elegant mood piece, her latest is a surprisingly thrilling experience even when its »
- Glenn Dunks
As we are full-on in the Lent season, our definitive list will focus on films about religion or some aspect of it. The #1 qualification to be on this list is to deliberately focus on religion, a religious figure, or have the presence of a religion/faith as an integral plot point. For example, most of Luis Bunuel’s films can be viewed as attacks on the church, but they aren’t literally about Christianity; therefore, they won’t be included. So, on this list, we’ll look at as many different faiths as possible (though, there are obviously a lot more movies about Christianity than any other religion). We’ll even dabble into cults and sects that don’t really exist. Final rule: no documentaries. We’re keeping this fictional.
courtesy of salon.com
50. Sound of My Voice (2011)
Directed by Zal Batmanglij
- Joshua Gaul
Faith can be viewed judgmentally from those not associated with religion, but for those practicing, it’s as normal as anything else they do throughout the day. Belief in a higher power, from whatever religious foundation one may claim, requires a large amount of blind faith. Though there are some religious groups that claim healing powers and the ability to perform miracles all meant to propose visual validation of faith.
Holy Ghost People, directed by one half of the Butcher Brothers, Mitchell Altieri, explores the more extreme approaches of faith with a film focused on a young girl looking for her sister she believes has been kidnapped by a snake handling religious group. Altieri, assisted by some convincing performances, crafts a thriller that is blemished by structural issues within the narrative though still surprisingly feels wholly authentic.
Charlotte (Emma Greenwell) is in search of her drug-addicted sister who joined a »
- Monte Yazzie
8 items from 2014
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