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Now On DVD: Artsploitation Explosion! Gandu, Lapland Odyssey, And Hard Romanticker!

10 February 2013 9:00 AM, PST

I'm a little late on these, but it is well worth catching up on a trio of recent releases from the upstart Artsploitation label on DVD. So, here are the initial releases, now on DVD:GanduWe love Gandu. Both Todd Brown and I praised the hell out of this film when it premiered at Saiff 2010, and I've continued to champion the project and the creative force behind it. Artsploitation took a big risk in its acquisition, since it is a bit of an odd film, but I'm willing to support those big chances. Since I feel a bit weird quoting from my own review, here's a little piece of Todd's:"Bold, energetic and by turns both deliberately vulgar and sharply incisive, Kolkata based director Q is...

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The Conspiracy Director Chris MacBride Tunes Up For Thriller Echo

10 February 2013 8:00 AM, PST

Canadian writer and director Christopher MacBride is set to see one of his projects, Echo, be developed into a feature film, produced by fellow Canadian Shawn Levy (Real SteelNight at the Museum) through his 21 Laps production company. Plot details are being kept under wraps for now, but we have been assured it sounds very cool from someone who has heard the pitch.  MacBride's debut film, The Conspiracy, made a real splash at Fantastic Fest last year. Our lord and master Todd is a very big fan of the flick. It made his year-end list of Best Domestic Films of 2012 and MacBride was named a New Talent to keep an eye on. With The Conspiracy, MacBride showcased himself as a remarkably intelligent craftsman willing and able to...

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First Production Photos From Insidious Chapter 2

10 February 2013 7:00 AM, PST

James Wan and Leigh Whannell have just kicked-off production of Insidious Chapter 2, the follow-up to their successfully scary 2010 flick. To give their fans a little tease of what is to come, they've both started posting photos from the set via their respective Twitter accounts. The house is the same one in which 1968 film Spider Baby was filmed. Curious parties can follow both Wan and Whannell's Twitter accounts as they continue to post updates throughout production over the next three weeks. Insidious Chapter 2 is due out in August....

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Review: Anybody Can Dance 3D is a Kickass Step Up Clone Worth Your Money!

10 February 2013 6:00 AM, PST

Remo D'Souza's Anybody Can Dance (Abcd) 3D could have been a monstrous disaster. Yes, the film stars India's most famous dance/choreographer-cum-big budget blockbuster director, Prabhu Deva, but is also co-stars a cast jam-packed with unknown performers. As heavily reliant as Bollywood films are on star power, Abcd seemed like a big gamble. Prabhu Deva may be a god amongst dancers, but he's not exactly a big box office draw. Thankfully it appears he and D'Souza did their research and mapped out every inch of recent dance films and adapted them beautifully for a new audience in India. Abcd is a lot of fun and a dance film that could reach beyond India given the right push. Let's hope I can help it a little.The plot...

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Nazi Zombies Return In Wirkola's Sequel Dead Snow: War Of The Dead

10 February 2013 5:00 AM, PST

Good news for fans of Tommy Wirkola's Nazi zombie flick Dead Snow. The director is returning to Norway to film the sequel to his 2009 horror flick, Dead Snow: War of the Dead. An army of the Nazi undead will rise again."The film will be shot in both English and Norwegian. In the sequel the story follows the sole survivor of a Nazi zombie attack who battles an even larger army of Zombies with the help of a professional gang of American zombie killers who call themselves the Zombie Squad. I am delighted to step back into the world of Nazi zombies yet again with Dead Snow: War Of The Dead, a world that is very close to my heart," said Wirkola."We have a script that...

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Full Trailer For Live Action Library Wars is Literally A War In A Library

10 February 2013 4:00 AM, PST

There is a small crop of sci-fi films that deal with a utilitarian society where book censorship is heavily enforced, while a small group resisting against this law, like Fahrenheit 451 and Equilibrium. But I think Library Wars (aka Toshokan Sensō) is the first to stage a full fledged assault from two military forces in an actual library of all places.  These librarians really take book preservation seriously.No stranger to live action film adaptations of popular manga, with Gantz and The Princess Blade already under his belt, director Sato Shinsuke tackles a Japanese light novel series by Hiro Arikawa that has also spawned a manga and animated series. The cast includes Okada Junichi as Atsushi Dojo, a high ranking instructor of Library Corps and Eikura Nana as Kasahara Iku, who enters recruitment training....

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Our Facebook Quiz Just Passed a New Milestone!

10 February 2013 3:00 AM, PST

Way back when Twitch had its own separate forum, the most-watched topic used to be the screenshot quiz. The rules were simple: someone would post a screenshot, and the person who guessed the movie won the right to post the Next screenshot. And this went on for seven years, until well over a thousand films had been guessed. Then times changed: the forum went dead as people moved discussions over to social media. When our site upgraded last September, we decided to relaunch a new forum on our Facebook page. And what was the first topic we put on it? The screenshot quiz of course!!! We decided to reboot it fresh, with slightly revised rules, and with a winners list added for bragging purposes. No...

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Berlin 2013 Review: Sam Rockwell Breaks Age-Old Movie Rule in A Single Shot

9 February 2013 12:30 PM, PST

Briefcases full of money are bad news. Terrible news, even. If you see a briefcase full of money, run as far away from it as you can, and maybe stay inside for a few days just to be safe. You will not get to keep the money. Others will die because of you, and ultimately, you will die too, probably in a grisly fashion. After No Country for Old Men, A Simple Plan, Fargo and, thematically speaking, Treasure of the Sierra Madre, this advice really should not need repeating. In fact, for years, movies have hammered away at this theme more consistently and mercilessly than almost any other. And yet, here we go again. The hapless suitcase-full-of-money-finder in A Single Shot is John Moon, a...

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Ronny Yu's Epic Saving General Yang Gets an Epic New Trailer

9 February 2013 7:00 AM, PST

Based on a classic series of beloved books and plays, Ronny Yu's Saving General Yang is an old school wartime epic, starring veteran Hong Kong actor Adam Cheng as the titular General, and Ekin Cheng as the elest of his seven loyal sons who swear to rescue him.It looks to be a good year for Yu, who was recently named as the first choice to direct Silver Vase, Iron Knight, The Weinstein Company's sequel to Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. Before all that, however, he must deliver this large scale period drama, which will most likely debut at next month's Hong Kong International Film Festival. A new trailer has surfaced out of Taiwan, and while it is unsubtitled, readers should have no difficulty in gleaning a...

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Review: A Good Day To Die Hard is Dead on Arrival

9 February 2013 6:00 AM, PST

Bruce Willis revisits old school New York City cop John McClane for a fifth time, teaming up with his son in Moscow to battle some evil Russian terrorists, but the results are far from satisfying.It's a depressing time for old school Action Cinema in Hollywood right now, with comic book adaptations and superhero flicks scoring big at the box office, and no new generation of beefcake action stars making it into the A-list. Sylvester Stallone's Expendables franchise has only highlighted this point even further, that action stars who could open a film on their name alone - Schwarzenegger, Willis, Stallone himself - simply don't exist right now (with the possible exception of Jason Statham), meaning these old-timers still get the financing to dust off their...

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Win The Sessions On Blu-ray!

8 February 2013 1:00 PM, PST

John Hawkes, Helen Hunt, and William H. Macy star in the sensitive, wry, and romantic drama The Sessions, which hits DVD and Blu-ray next Tuesday, February 12. And you might be able to enjoy the film in the high definition splendor of Blu-ray -- for free! First, here is how our own Eric D. Snider began his review: "The Sessions tells a true story about a physically disabled man who enlists a professional sex surrogate to help him through the difficulties, both emotional and logistical, of losing his virginity. That may sound like shameless Oscar-bait -- a perception enhanced by the presence of John Hawkes, Helen Hunt, and William H. Macy -- but in truth the film is simpler than that, more small-scale, with a...

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Berlinale 2013 Review: The Fascinating Mysteries Of I'm Not Dead

8 February 2013 11:45 AM, PST

The opening credits to I'm Not Dead play over an intense string number that immediately calls to mind Hitchcock thrillers of yesteryear. While in many ways Mehdi Ben Attia's film is far more intimate and ambiguous (at least on the surface) than, say, Vertigo, the music choice is still fitting. Indeed, Attia has crafted an tense, thought-provoking examination of one of the suspense master's favorite themes: mistaken identity. Or in this case, a literally switched identity, which of course leads to mistakes. What differentiates Attia's version of this story from many others with similar content is the skillful way he develops both the characters and the situation and gently eases the audience into a "what-if" scenario that, when it reaches full speed, is absorbing and...

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Berlinale 2013: Wong Kar Wai And The Cast Share Insight Into The Grandmaster

8 February 2013 8:00 AM, PST

Wong Kar Wai's The Grandmaster, a sumptuous ode to martial arts and the people who practice them, was warmly received in China, but the critical reaction to the newly-cut version that opened Berlin has been decidedly mixed. Afterwards, Wong Kar Wai and his cast did not get into the changes that were made to the film, so those will have to remain a mystery until someone sees both versions. What they did say, though, reinforced my own initial feelings about the film, which basically amounted to unabashed love, despite whatever warts or hiccups the film does have. While several others have embraced The Grandmaster as well, numerous tweets and reviews have popped up complaining about the choppy fight scenes, the sprawling narrative and even about the...

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Iffr 2013 Review: Nairobi Half Life Entertains At High Speed

8 February 2013 7:00 AM, PST

(Crime doesn't pay... but it can further your acting career!) In 2010 the International Film Festival Rotterdam dedicated an entire programme section to films from Africa, and there has been a strong African presence at the festival ever since. This year, the Iffr caught the submission from Kenya to the Oscar for Best Foreign Film: Nairobi Half Life, which tells the story of a young car thief who leads a secret double life as a stage actor. During its screenings in Rotterdam, the film turned out to be a big crowdpleaser, becoming one of the most popular titles this year. Rightfully so? Read on! The Story: Young Mwas is crazy about films, quoting them ad verbatim whenever possible. One day he follows his dreams and...

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Hey, Australia! Win Tickets To See Donnie Yen's Together

8 February 2013 6:30 AM, PST

Thanks to our friends at Dream Movie Australia, we have Five double passes for Together to give away to our Australian readers! The romance film is directed by Clarence Fok (Naked Killer) and the cast includes Donnie Yen, Angelababy and Chrissie Chau, as well as Michelle Chen and Kai Ko from You Are The Apple of My Eye.  How to win: It's really simple. All you have to do is email your name and postal address to me at: hugo@twitchfilm.net. The competition will close at 3pm on Tuesday February 12, 2013.Good luck!...

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TV Review: Community S4E01, History 101 (Or, Dan Harmon Has Left The Building, And Yes There Is A Void, But All Is Not Lost)

8 February 2013 6:00 AM, PST

And so it was on February 7th, after many months of delays, that the first episode of Community without creator Dan Harmon as showrunner aired. As the clock struck 8pm, fans across North America held a collected breath in the hope that the show would at least be good (i.e. better than most shows currently on TV). As we held that breath we all knew that upon the firing of Harmon last May, the Community that we came to love over three seasons was effectively over. Whatever would make it to air this night would not be the same show. We tempered our expectations and hoped for the best... or something.  Welcome to the David Guarascio/ Moses Port era of Community. Now why is it...

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Pegg, Frost, and Ayoade Among Voice Cast Of The Boxtrolls From Paranorman Creators

8 February 2013 5:00 AM, PST

Laika and Focus Features, the studios that brought animated standouts Coraline and ParaNorman into being, are at it again. This time they are teaming up to adapt Here Be Monsters!, a young readers fantasy novel written and illustrated by Alan Snow, originally published in the U.K. in 2005.The pedigree of the filmmakers is impressive. Co-directing the feature will be Anthony Stacchi, a  co-director of Open Season, and Graham Annable, a story artist on Coraline and ParaNorman. Equally impressive is the voice cast. Ben Kingsley is joined by Toni Collette, Elle Fanning, Isaac Hempstead-Wright (Bran Stark on Game of Thrones), Jared Harris (Fringe) and Tracy Morgan. And then it gets kind of fun because Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Richard Ayoade are also cast in the film. I get that same warm and fuzzy...

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Review: A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charles Swan III Offers Only Fleeting Pleasures

7 February 2013 9:02 PM, PST

Any film with a title as obnoxious as A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III seems resolutely unconcerned with actually getting wide audience acceptance. I've watched the film, and even interviewed the director, and still have a hell of a time keeping the title straight. That said, it does give you a sense of the film, a warped, manic, sometimes offensive and sometimes surprisingly effective tale of a resolute prick coming to terms with the breakup of his relationship with a younger, more attractive girl. The Swan in question is played by a real life Charlie, this being Charlie Sheen's first big-screen role since his infamous "winning" phase and very public meltdown. The script and direction is handled by the Coppola scion Roman, whose...

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Review: Side Effects May Include Whiplash From Jarring Change In Tone

7 February 2013 8:00 PM, PST

The important thing to know about Side Effects -- which Steven Soderbergh says will be his last theatrical film for a while, maybe forever -- is that whatever you're thinking it's going to be, it probably is not that. Pardon my vagueness as I avoid ruining any surprises, but what begins as a shrewd, piercing story about the pharmaceutical industry turns into something else, a different kind of story altogether. That's Soderbergh: always keeping us on our toes, even in "ordinary" genre films. We begin with bloody footprints (an ominous sign), then jump back three months. High-finance guy Martin Taylor (Channing Tatum) is just being paroled after doing time for insider trading, and is glad to be reunited with his wife, Emily (Rooney Mara), who...

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Iffr 2013 Review: Lore Finds The Awful Truth In Pretty Pictures

7 February 2013 7:00 PM, PST

After her well-received debut feature Summersault (2004), a small indie film about a young woman's sexual awakening that launched the careers of Abbie Cornish and Sam Worthington, directing a WWII drama in Germany with all German cast is a curious choice for Aussie director Cate Shortland. But It's Shortland's knack for portraying a budding female's physical and mental struggle that connects the two films. Newcomer Saskia Rosendahl plays the red-lipped perfect Nazi youth whose world is shaken after finding out her parents' roles in the death of millions.It's 1945. Hitler's dead. Hannalore (Rosendahl) and her four young siblings are left to fend for themselves after their Nazi parents are imprisoned. Having been informed that there is a relative living in Hamburg, the children set out...

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