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Watch: Lovely Hand-Painted Short 'The Ballad of Holland Island House'

7 hours ago

"Lost house. Lost home. Lost island. Disappearing on the horizon." Another unique animated short film to feature this week. The Ballad of Holland Island House is a short film told from the perspective a home in the Chesapeake Bay, telling the true story of the last house on a sinking island. The animation technique is an innovative mix of claymation and traditional cel animation, utilizing a thin layer of oil-based clay that is painted/altered by hand to create the illusion of movement. It's beautiful to watch, and the story of the house being sung as a ballad makes this feel even more enchanting. This reminds me of the hand-painted film Loving Vincent, which is still due sometime this year. Very nice work from filmmaker Lynn Tomlinson. Thanks to Kottke for the tip on this short. Original description from Vimeo: "Animator Lynn Tomlinson tells the true story of the last »

- Alex Billington

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Ghibli Films Showing in Theaters Nationwide Over the Next 6 Months

11 hours ago

Take the kids! Take your friends! Take your whole family! Bring everyone you can to see these movies on the big screen. Fathom Events and GKids have announced a new screening series this summer. Starting in June, Fathom will screen one classic Studio Ghibli movie every month, for the next six months. Yay! They'll be showing six different Ghibli movies (the best of the best) in total, in both subtitled and dubbed versions, on screens all across the country (so you don't have to drive 6 hours away just to see them - or maybe you will anyway). The first movie will be Hayao Miyazaki's original animated classic My Neighbor Totoro (first released in 1988), which will be shown on Sunday, June 25th, and Monday, June 26th. More info below. For details and to find tickets/theaters, visit the official Studio Ghibli Fest page on Fathom Events' website. Fathom explains that, »

- Alex Billington

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Second Teaser for Pixar's 'Coco' is a Fun Short Titled 'Dante's Lunch'

11 hours ago

Adorable! Disney has revealed another lovely teaser trailer for Pixar's Coco, the first musical from Pixar, arriving in theaters later this year (see the first teaser here). This teaser trailer is a bit unique - it's actually a fun short film titled Dante's Lunch, focusing entirely on the dog from the movie. This reminds me of the Scrat short teaser videos that Blue Sky uses to tease their Ice Age movies. Dante is a breed of dog called the Xoloitzcuintle, or "Xolo", better known as the Mexican hairless dog, and he befriends the boy named Miguel in the movie following him to the land of the dead. I love that we're getting another Pixar movie that has a dog as one of the main characters, so I'm totally into this already, even if this isn't my favorite teaser. Enjoy. Here's the second teaser titled "Dante's Lunch" for Pixar's Coco, direct »

- Alex Billington

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First Trailer for Andrés Muschietti's New Take on Stephen King's 'It'

12 hours ago

"I saw something. There was this..." "Clown?" Warner Bros has unveiled the first trailer for the new take on the horror classic It, adapted from Stephen King's novel, about the sadistic, evil clown who haunts a town in Maine and takes their children. This new version of It stars Bill Skarsgård as the story's central villain, Pennywise. Also starring an ensemble of young actors including Jaeden Lieberher, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Wyatt Oleff, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer and Nicholas Hamilton. This updated take on It has been in development for years, with various directors attached, and now it's finally ready to haunt us again. From the footage in this tease, it seems like a stylish and thrilling update, but also still scary as all hell. I quite like this teaser, I'm happy that they didn't reveal him fully yet. Here's the first official trailer (+ poster) for Andrés Muschietti's It, »

- Alex Billington

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Official Trailer for 'Chasing Trane' Doc About Jazz Legend John Coltrane

12 hours ago

"John Coltrane's sound rearranges molecular structure." Abramorama has released an official Us trailer for the documentary titled Chasing Trane, an extensive look at the life of jazz legend John Coltrane. This doc first premiered at the Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals last year, and is a must-see for any die-hard jazz fans. It features tons of rare footage and photographs of Coltrane practicing and performing, including a never-before-seen studio tape found in a garage during the making of the film. Even if you're not that familiar with Coltrane, this doc spends plenty of time telling us who he is and why he was so passionate about music. The film is produced with the full participation of the Coltrane family and the support of the record labels that collectively own the Coltrane catalog. It's not the best doc, but it is a nice look at a legend. Here's the official »

- Alex Billington

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Must Watch: Second Trailer for Luc Besson's Epic New Sci-Fi 'Valerian'

14 hours ago

"After centuries of peace and prosperity, an unknown force wants to destroy all we have created..." EuropaCorp has debuted the second official trailer for Luc Besson's new sci-fi adaptation, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, or just Valerian for short. This new trailer is much better than the first, with some promising VFX-filled footage and exciting action scenes. Based on the graphic novel series, the movie stars Dane DeHaan as Valerian, and Cara Delevingne as Laureline, special operatives for the government of the human territories charged with maintaining order throughout the universe. They must travel to an intergalactic city full of different species called Alpha on a mission. The full cast includes Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Rutger Hauer, Mathieu Kassovitz, Sam Spruell, Kris Wu, Alain Chabat and others. I'm still crazy excited for this, I love seeing Besson go big with space sci-fi. Can't wait. Second »

- Alex Billington

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First Teaser Trailer for Hazanavicius' 'Redoubtable' Introduces Godard

14 hours ago

Time for a nice Cannes tease. French filmmaker Michel Hazanavicius (of The Artist, The Search) has premiered the first teaser trailer for his next film, titled Redoubtable, telling a story about the 1960s love affair between filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard and 17-year-old actress Anne Wiazemsky. The film takes place during the making of and release of Godard's film La Chinoise, from 1967 to 1968. Featuring Louis Garrel as Godard and Stacy Martin (from Lars von Trier's Nymphomaniac) as Wiazemsky. The cast includes Louis Garrel, Bérénice Bejo, and Grégory Gadebois. This is likely going to show up at Cannes, which is why there's so much hype around it already. This is just a quick first look, but I'm intrigued to see more. Here's the first teaser trailer for Michel Hazanavicius' Redoubtable, found on Facebook (via Tfs): C'est mon anniversaire aujourd'hui, ça me fait plaisir de poster le premier teaser de mon prochain film Le Redoutable. »

- Alex Billington

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Claudia Cardinale Dances on Poster for the 70th Cannes Film Festival

18 hours ago

She dances, she laughs, she lives! This year marks the 70th year of the annual Cannes Film Festival in the South of France. With less than two months until the film festival kicks off, Cannes has revealed the official poster for this year and it's another stunner. I'm always excited that they put this much focus on the poster, mostly because it's a reminder that the festival is coming soon. "Full of joy, freedom and daring, just like Claudia Cardinale dancing on its official poster, the 70th Festival de Cannes (17-28 May), promises a celebration in passionate red and sparkling gold." The poster is a Photoshopped version of a photo of actress Claudia Cardinale dancing on a roof - we've embedded a tweet fading between the real photo and the poster. Here's a look at the Cannes 2017 poster made by Bronx agency in Paris + graphic designer Philippe Savoir: #Cannes2017 L'affiche avec Claudia Cardinale pic. »

- Alex Billington

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First Trailer for Al Gore's Doc 'An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power'

28 March 2017 6:17 PM, PDT

"Send a message of truth to power." Paramount and Participant Media have debuted the first official trailer for the highly anticipated (right?) sequel to Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, titled An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. You've no doubt already heard about this, as the film premiered opening night at the Sundance Film Festival in January to mostly positive reviews. Al Gore returns, a decade after the original film, to tell us all about how things have only gotten worse and that we must do something now. An Inconvenient Sequel features a clearly angry Al Gore speaking even louder, with more impatience, about the truly worrisome issue of climate change and the man-made pollution causing it. I much prefer the other doc Chasing Coral, but this one is still worth watching. More than anything I hope it helps makes a difference. Here's the first trailer for Bonni Cohen & Jon Shenk's doc An Inconvenient Sequel, »

- Alex Billington

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Teresa Palmer in Official Us Trailer for Indie Thriller 'Berlin Syndrome'

28 March 2017 3:38 PM, PDT

"There's nowhere for me to go..." Vertical Entertainment has premiered an official Us trailer for the indie thriller Berlin Syndrome, which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January. The film is a dramatic thriller about an Australian woman visiting Berlin who ends up locked in an apartment unable to get out after she hooks up with a German guy she meets in the city. Max Riemelt stars, along with the talented Australian actress Teresa Palmer. The cast includes Lucie Aron, and Matthias Habich. The premise is kind of a metaphor for relationships and being emotionally trapped, but it's also a nerve-wracking thriller that is sometimes uncomfortable to watch. No one wants to be locked anywhere, but this is especially scary. Here's the official Us trailer (+ intl. poster) for Cate Shortland's Berlin Syndrome, direct from YouTube: While holidaying in Berlin, Australian photojournalist, Clare meets Andi, a charismatic local man »

- Alex Billington

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First Teaser Trailer for HaZ's New Wormhole Sci-Fi Film 'The Beyond'

28 March 2017 2:12 PM, PDT

"What is on the other side of the void?" You might want to check this out, especially if you're big into sci-fi. We've been following (and featuring) filmmaker Hasraf "HaZ" Dulull's work for years. His short film Project Kronos (made with mostly Nasa stock footage) helped him get a foot in the door in Hollywood, and he has already directed another sci-fi feature called Origin Unknown (though the release date is also unknown). One of HaZ's other projects is a sci-fi thriller titled The Beyond, a low-budget sci-fi somewhat based on the idea first introduced in Project Kronos - first contact. The plot involves astronauts going through a wormhole to another part of the universe, only to return early, and now everyone wants to know what they found on the other side. This teaser doesn't give away anything, but does introduce lots of big ideas. Dive in. Here's the first »

- Alex Billington

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Watch: Mind-Boggling Animated Short Film 'Wednesday with Goddard'

28 March 2017 11:30 AM, PDT

"Hello. I'm looking for God. Is this where he lives?" This wonderfully whimsical animated short will most definitely boggle your mind, or at least make you question everything. Wednesday with Goddard is a short film made by Canadian artist/filmmaker Nicolas Ménard. It's hard to describe this film, because it's a very abstract and yet thoroughly entertaining little short featuring lovely pencil drawings and charming animation. But it's also best to just watch and try and make sense of it yourself. I'm also pretty sure the "Goddard" in the title is not a reference to filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard. Even if it is confusing, the moment I watched this I was in love with it and wanted to share it with everyone else, so dive right in. Enjoy this short. Thanks to Vice's Creators for the tip on this short. Original description from Vimeo: "A personal quest for spiritual enlightenment leads to romance and despair. »

- Alex Billington

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First Trailer for Animated Film 'Ferdinand' About a Flower-Loving Bull

28 March 2017 10:11 AM, PDT

"It seems like from the moment you're born, people think they got you all figured out." 20th Century Fox has debuted the first teaser trailer for the new animated film from Blue Sky Studios, titled Ferdinand. The story is about a bull from Spain named Ferdinand, who would rather smell flowers than fight in bullfights is in the middle of the bull ring. In what might turn out to be perfect casting, John Cena voices Ferdinand the bull. The rest of the voice cast includes Kate McKinnon, Gina Rodriguez, Daveed Diggs, Gabriel Iglesias, Bobby Cannavale, David Tennant, Anthony Anderson, Flula Borg, Jerrod Carmichael, Boris Kodjoe, and Raúl Esparza. This might be better than expected, that intro about being different than what people see really got me. As goofy as the character design looks, I've got a good feeling about this. Here's the first official trailer (+ poster) for Carlos Saldanha's Ferdinand, »

- Alex Billington

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Second Trailer for 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' Starring Tom Holland

28 March 2017 9:15 AM, PDT

"If you're nothing without this suit, then you shouldn't have it." Sony has revealed the second official trailer for the new Spider-Man: Homecoming movie, bringing back the friendly neighborhood web-slinger for another solo adventure in New York City. Tom Holland stars as (the new) Peter Parker, who was first introduced in Marvel's Captain America: Civil War. This story continues with Parker returning from the events in that movie, still trying to figure out his place as a teenager in NYC. The full cast includes Marisa Tomei as Aunt May, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Michael Keaton as The Vulture, as well as Donald Glover, Robert Downey Jr., Martin Starr, Logan Marshall-Green, Angourie Rice, Hannibal Buress, and Zendaya. This actually looks great, and has plenty of Spidey action to offer. Fire it up below. Here's the second trailer (+ posters) for Jon Watts' Spider-Man: Homecoming, from Sony's YouTube: You can still »

- Alex Billington

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Must Watch: First Trailer for David Lowery's 'A Ghost Story' from A24

28 March 2017 8:28 AM, PDT

"We do what we can to endure." A24 has debuted the first official trailer for David Lowery's indie drama A Ghost Story, which premiered to rave reviews at the Sundance Film Festival. This was filmed quietly down in Texas after Lowery finished work on Pete's Dragon. Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara star as a couple in the film. Affleck turns into a "ghost", wearing a white sheet with holes for eyes, who returns to his home and watches over. This film is much more deep and much more profound than you're probably expecting, which is exactly what this trailer hints. Described as "an unforgettable meditation on love and grief, A Ghost Story emerges ecstatic and surreal—a wholly-unique experience that lingers long after the credits roll." The song used in this comes directly from the film, and it's a lovely first introduction to this one-of-a-kind film. Here's the first »

- Alex Billington

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Teaser Trailer for 'The Beach Boys: Making Pet Sounds' Documentary

27 March 2017 3:21 PM, PDT

"It's totally different to anything that was going on at that time. It was the leader, and everybody followed that." Showtime has debuted a teaser trailer for their new documentary The Beach Boys: Making Pet Sounds, telling the story of The Beach Boys iconic album. The film features exclusive interviews with Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston, and David Marks, and will explore "the story of the creation of the record that cemented The Beach Boys reputation as a leading force to rival The Beatles." The Beach Boys' Pet Sounds was released in May of 1966, and the film chronicles their time in and out of the studio creating the songs. This first aired on BBC, but Showtime has added new footage for the Us premiere. This might be a good companion to the Brian Wilson film Love & Mercy from a few years ago. Take a look/listen. »

- Alex Billington

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Watch: Comedy Short 'Check Please' About a Dinner Proposal Mistake

27 March 2017 12:02 PM, PDT

"This is our night, please sit down!" Kick off the week with a fun short film that is sure to make you laugh. What happens when a marriage proposal ring ends up going to the wrong table at a restaurant? That's the premise behind this amusing short film titled Check Please, from writer/director Daniel Sorochkin. It's a simple, but enjoyable short, with great performances from the cast and some sleek cinematography. This is a great example of how short films just need a strong script, but nothing too complex or ambitious, with one good idea at the middle of it all. I'm looking forward to seeing more from Sorochkin after this. Watch below. Description from Vimeo: "In a fancy restaurant, Ben plans to propose to his long time girlfriend, Laura, only to find out that his ring was mistakenly sent to the wrong table." Check Please is written and »

- Alex Billington

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Wyatt Russell & Alex Karpovsky in Trailer for 'Folk Hero & Funny Guy'

27 March 2017 11:37 AM, PDT

"She gets it. I told her this about getting your mojo back." Gravitas Ventures has debuted the trailer for the indie comedy titled Folk Hero & Funny Guy, about "a folk hero and a funny guy", as played by Wyatt Russell and Alex Karpovsky (respectively). The story is about a struggling comedian named Paul, played by Karpovsky, who is talked into being the opening act of his folk-music friend Jason's solo acoustic tour of the east coast. Everything seems to be going well, until Jason reveals an ulterior motive behind the tour. The cast includes Meredith Hagner, Melanie Lynskey, Hannah Simone, Michael Ian Black, Heather Morris and David Cross. This looks funny and heartfelt, and it's always good to see Alex Karpovsky with a key role in a film. Though, as one of the quotes points out, this seems to be about the entire ensemble cast. Here's the official trailer (+ poster »

- Alex Billington

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Official Trailer for 'Fight for Space' - A Documentary on the Space Race

27 March 2017 11:12 AM, PDT

"When I look at the present direction of our space program, I feel kind of disappointed." Gravitas Ventures has unveiled a trailer for an inspiring new documentary titled Fight for Space, about the Space Race and how things have changed since the 1960s. The doc spends time exploring the "Space Race" of the 1960s/70s that drove us to put a man on the moon, then jumps into modern times and asks tough questions: why did we stop, we aren't we trying again, and what is preventing us from exploring even further? As expected, the doc explains that the "Space Race" was fueled by American's desire to beat the Russians, along with JFK's insistence on making it the moon. I wish we had a space program as active as we did back then, and the only way we can ramp things up is to keep bringing attention to the importance of Nasa and space exploration. »

- Alex Billington

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One Final Trailer for 'Ghost in the Shell' Invites Us into Another World

27 March 2017 10:43 AM, PDT

"It won't stop until they control everyone." Opening in theaters everywhere worldwide this weekend is the live-action Ghost in the Shell movie, based on the popular manga/anime, starring Scarlett Johansson as the human-cyborg Major. To give the movie one final push, Paramount has released this final trailer, featuring tons of VFX-polished futuristic footage. The sci-fi action movie also stars Michael Pitt, Juliette Binoche, Michael Wincott, Rila Fukushima, Chin Han, plus Takeshi Kitano, Joseph Naufahu, with Pilou Asbæk as Batou. I'm glad to hear the original music in this trailer, and see new footage of her fighting the tank robot. I'm planning to watch this movie this week, still hopeful it's actually good after all. Here's the final official trailer (+ posters) for Rupert Sanders' Ghost in the Shell, direct from YouTube: You can still see the first trailer or second trailer for Ghost in the Shell, plus the Mamoru Oshii featurette. »

- Alex Billington

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