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Review: 'The Second Mother' Is A Gleaming Cinematic Treasure

28 August 2015 2:03 PM, PDT

Like a Brazilian version of domestic whack-a-mole, as soon as one figure scuffles out of a room in Anna Muylaert's "The Second Mother," there's another that scuffles in, carrying with them new baggage full of locked contempt. The one doing the whacking is Val (Regina Case), a live-in housemaid working for wealthy middle-class parents Barbara (Karine Teles) and Dr. Jose Carlos (Lourenço Mutarelli), and their fragile teenage son, Fabinho (Michel Joeisas). House dynamics get shaken up when Val's estranged daughter, Jessica (Camila Mardila) — the most stubborn of the four moles — comes to stay with her mom in Sao Paulo, and turns out to be less accommodating than expected. The unwritten rules of class distinction get stepped on and broken in ways that make "The Second Mother" charmingly immersive. Thanks to its gradual minimalist nature, a dynamite lead performance, and Muylaert's sharp screenplay and sedative direction, the film has the fun, »

- Nikola Grozdanovic

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Tiff & Venice Trailer: Pulse Pounding Teaser For Jerzy Skolimowski's '11 Minutes'

28 August 2015 1:19 PM, PDT

Jerzy Skolimowski knows how to rattle an audience. He's the co-writer behind Roman Polanski's "Knife In The Water," his last feature "Essential Killing" cast Vincent Gallo as an Afghan Pow, and now he's back on the festival circuit with "11 Minutes." And it looks like one that you can only dare to ignore. Starring Richard Dormer, Wojciech Mecwaldowski, Andrzej Chyra, Dawid Ogrodnik, and Paulina Chapko captures various slices of life in Warsaw all in eleven minute fragments, with everything pulling together for a grand finale. Sounds like a one that will be a lot of fun to see how it's pulled off. Here's the official synopsis:  After a seventeen-year break from filmmaking in the 1990s and 2000s, one of the major figures of Polish cinema returned to his native country and emerged with 2008's wonderful Four Nights with Anna, heralding the resurrection of a protean artist. Firmly ensconced back in Poland, »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Listen: 1.5 Hour Conversation With Peter Bogdanovich On Marc Maron's Wtf Podcast

28 August 2015 1:03 PM, PDT

A legendary raconteur who’s gift for gab rivals his cinematic output, Peter Bogdanovich is always a treat to watch or listen to. His career had many ups and downs—perhaps evinced in our recent feature, The Essentials: Peter Bogdanovich's 9 Best Films—but he not only earned the approval and friendship of the iconoclastic Orson Welles at a young age, but his early cinematic trifecta (“The Last Picture Show,” “What’s Up Doc?” and “Paper Moon”) is unassailable. Name one filmmaker who had their first three movies become classics? (“Targets” being a hybrid film he was left to clean up, arguably isn’t his true first movie). And so, Bogdanovich in an hour and a half chat on Marc Maron’s Wtf podcast is an absolute treat for your ears. Bogdanovich has a million stories and the 76 year old tells the comedian many epic tales. One of the »

- Edward Davis

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Review: 'Zipper' Starring Patrick Wilson, Lena Headey, Richard Dreyfuss, Ray Winstone, And Dianna Agron

28 August 2015 12:50 PM, PDT

Zipper” is a borderline unmarketable anomaly that exists right in the middle of two completely separate narrative approaches. Get rid of the swearing and the graphic sex scenes, add a Christian element to the protagonist, and you got yourself one of those faith-based morality tales about how much sex addiction and the man of the house cavorting with prostitutes can destroy lives and demolish the core concept of the nuclear family. Or, leave the moralizing behind; embrace the sleaze factor of the stylized story about a good-looking politician hooking up with a series of expensive escorts and we end up with one of those '90s-style erotic thrillers that straddle the fine line between classy erotica and soft-core porn. In this form, “Zipper” ends up as a competently executed but muddled experience, a cinematic oddity that wants to preach as much as it feels the need to titillate. “Zipper” tells »

- Oktay Ege Kozak

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Watch: 30-Minute Video Essay Explores The Cinematic History Of The Action Hero

28 August 2015 12:16 PM, PDT

There was a time when a train pulling into a station was a groundbreaking, edge-of-your-seat kind of moment in cinema. The Lumière Brothers 1896 film “Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat” created the earliest known action sequence. A few years later, after some other films like “The Great Train Robbery,” it was clear that despite these hair-raising feats, something was missing: the action star. How spoiled we’ve been with our “Mission: Impossible” films and our “Spider-Man” franchises — the Tom Cruises and Tobey Maguires (and, yes, the Andrew Garfields too) without taking the time to think of where they originated. Ethan Hunt would not be clutching onto planes and exploding fish tanks with bubblegum if it weren’t for the diseased, swashbuckling lothario Erroll Flynn or ex-Olympian Johnny Weissmuller. The action hero, though intentionally and oftentimes overtly masculine, has been affected by complicated worldviews and given us little guys a ray of hope for decades. »

- Samantha Vacca

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Quentin Tarantino's 'Jackie Brown' Soundtrack Getting Vinyl Reissue

28 August 2015 11:40 AM, PDT

There is a small group of people, myself among them, who argue that "Jackie Brown" is Quentin Tarantino's best film. While it's probably wise to put aside that debate for another day, most people can agree that the film's soundtrack is top shelf stuff. If you've lately found yourself part of the resurgent vinyl craze, or if you're long-time LP collector, you can soon cop the official soundtrack on brand new wax. Read More: Quentin Tarantino Teases Science Fiction Film Idea And Suggests One More Western To Come That's right, "Jackie Brown" is being freshly pressed on vinyl for release this fall. From Bobbie Womack to Johnny Cash to The Delfonics and more, as per usual, Tarantino's crate-digging provides some real sonic pleasure. For those of you for this kind of information really matters, yes, it will be pressed on 180 gram vinyl. "Jackie Brown" hits the street on October 8th. »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Watch: Trailer For Tiff Flick 'Born To Dance' Featuring Choreography By Parris Goebel

28 August 2015 11:15 AM, PDT

I'll be honest, I didn't quite expect the extent of the excitement in response to our exclusive clip from "Born To Dance," the New Zealand dance movie that's making its World Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. It seems there is some buzz brewing around the film, and here's another opportunity to check it out with the new trailer that just landed. Much of the chatter with the picture has to do with world-renowned choreographer Parris Goebel, who has worked with Jennifer Lopez, Nicki Minaj, and Cirque Du Soleil, among others, and put together all the hot moves on display in this film directed by Tammy Davis. The filmmaker enlists Tia-Taharoa Maipi, Stan Walker, and Kherington Payne to tell the story of Maori teen at a crossroads in his life. He decides to risk it all and pursue a career in dance, and faces resistance from his father, while »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Listen: 1-Hour Talk With David Fincher About 'The Social Network,' His Career, And Much More

28 August 2015 10:38 AM, PDT

Today, David Fincher turns 53, and he probably wishes his summer had gone a bit better. The director saw two projects fall apart at HBO — "Videosyncrazy" and "Utopia" — and it's unclear what his next move might be. So, let's take a trip back to a happier time in the filmmaker's life. Read More: 4-Minutes Supercut Takes You Through The Films Of David Fincher In honor of the director's birthday, Film Society Lincoln Center dug into the archives and posted an hour-long talk with the director from the New York Film Festival in 2010. It was there that Fincher premiered "The Social Network," and, of course, the talk centers around that film. But it also touches upon the craft of acting, his career, and much more. Needless to say, fans will want take a break this afternoon and give it a listen. So turn up the speakers and click play below. »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Listen: Exclusive Visual Soundtrack Preview Of Jóhann Jóhannsson's Score For 'Sicario'

28 August 2015 10:12 AM, PDT

While Jóhann Jóhannsson leaped to his widest recognition yet for his Academy Award-nominated and Golden Globe-winning score for last year's "The Theory Of Everything," those with a keener ear were already acutely aware of his immense talent. He provided the compositions for So Yong Kim's "For Ellen," as well as the terrifically moody sonic backdrop for Denis Villeneuve's "Prisoners." He has once again collaborated with the latter director on "Sicario," and today we have the exclusive visual preview of Jóhann Jóhannsson's score. Read More: Gunfire Is Unleashed In Latest Clip From Denis Villeneuve's 'Sicario' Starring Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin, and Benicio del Toro, "Sicario" follows an FBI agent who is invited to join an inter-agency task force. But when the group leaves their jurisdiction and crosses over into Juárez, the agent is given a wake up call about the reality of the war on. »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Watch: Jesus Is Resurrected In Trailer For Bible Movie 'Risen' From 'Waterworld' Director Kevin Reynolds

28 August 2015 9:42 AM, PDT

Next week, expect another slew of thinkpieces about faith-based audiences spending big bucks at the multiplex. Why? Well, micro-budget Christian movie "War Room," being distributed Sony's faith-film outlet Affirm Films, is on track to make a sneak attack at the box office this weekend. In fact, it beat Zac Efron's "We Are Your Friends" in receipts on Thursday night. And not wasting a moment, Sony is using the opportunity to promote their next movie for the holy. There's a metaphor in here somewhere about Jesus turning over the tables of the money changers in the church, but I digress... Read More: Joseph Fiennes Investigates The Resurrection Of Jesus In Trailer For 'Risen,' Which Is Apparently Like 'Chinatown' Anyway, Kevin Reynolds of "Waterworld," "Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves," and "Fandango" fame is behind the camera for this effort that stars Joseph Fiennes as a doubting Thomas (okay, not the biblical doubting Thomas) named. »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Interview: Alex Ross Perry Talks ‘Queen of Earth,’ ‘Winnie The Pooh,’ Unlikable Characters & More

28 August 2015 9:21 AM, PDT

31 year old Alex Ross Perry is in an enviable position for a young filmmaker. After just four films, two of which not many audiences have seen outside of hardcore cineastes, the director has been minted by the critical intelligentsia of cinema. His most recent films, “Listen Up Philip” and “Queen Of Earth” have made world premieres at Sundance and the Berlin Film Festival respectively and recently, the Museum Of The Moving Image feted his four-film long career with a retrospective of all his works in 35mm — that’s got to be some kind of age and oeuvre record. Read More: Review: Alex Ross Perry's Chilling, Intense 'Queen Of Earth' Starring Elisabeth Moss & Katherine Waterston Precocious, smart and quick-witted, all signs point to Perry earning this distinction thus far. He’s one of the most exciting young American filmmakers and his work has drawn favorable comparisons to Woody Allen, »

- Rodrigo Perez

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'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story' Might Be Shot In Panavision 70

28 August 2015 8:26 AM, PDT

When you own a brand called "Star Wars," you can pretty much make anybody do what you want. And so when a new teaser for "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" dropped on Instagram yesterday, many noticed that the photo sharing service's usually boxy presentation had gone widescreen. Indeed, the 'The Force Awakens' teaser also acted as the first example of Instagram's new "landscape orientation" feature. And one has to wonder how much of that change was prompted by the desire to earn that "Star Wars" traffic. At any rate, it'll put Instagram in a good position to get more involved in movie promotion, and they'll also be ready to eventually help promote "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" which is apparently embracing an old school, widescreen format. Read More: Gareth Edwards Talks Tone Of 'Rogue One'; Kathleen Kennedy Wasn't Sold On ‘Star Wars’ Anthology Films At First Reports are circulating »


- Kevin Jagernauth

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Watch: Revisit 'Jurassic World' With These 8 Blu-ray Featurettes

28 August 2015 8:05 AM, PDT

Despite the online controversy over the footwear of Bryce Dallas Howard’s character, “Jurassic World” remains the biggest winner of the summer blockbuster season. As the film heads back onto IMAX screens today for a weeklong engagement and ahead of its home video release in October, Universal has released a slew of featurettes for fans to explore. Read More: The Good, The Bad & The Weird Of 'Jurassic World' With a worldwide take of $1.6 billion at the box office and the honor of becoming the third highest grossing movie of all time, the studio hasn’t skimped on the blu-ray release of the Colin Trevorrow-directed film. Despite eight featurettes being released online for free (via ComicBookMovie), it’s only scratching the surface of what will be available come October. For now, fans can whet their appetites with a brief look behind the scenes of the New Orleans shoot, »

- Cain Rodriguez

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Matt Damon Talks "Post-Snowden World" Of 'Bourne 5'

28 August 2015 7:52 AM, PDT

Never say never. While Paul Greengrass and Matt Damon long resisted the idea of doing another Bourne outing following "The Bourne Ultimatum," the duo never completely ruled it out, always saying that if the right idea came along, they'd entertain the notion of returning to the franchise. And with a release date set for next summer of the still untitled "Bourne 5," Matt Damon has shared with Buzzfeed what sparked the blockbuster reunion. “We always looked at those movies as really about the Bush presidency, and so we kind of had to wait for the world to change,” the actor said of the initial trilogy of 'Bourne' flicks.  Read More: 10th Anniversary: 5 Things You Might Not Know About 'The Bourne Identity' “Without giving too much of it away, it’s Bourne through an austerity-riddled Europe and in a post-Snowden world,” he explained about the new film. “It seems like enough has changed, »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Venice & Tiff Trailer: Sergei Loznitsa's Found Footage Documentary 'The Event'

28 August 2015 7:00 AM, PDT

Arthouse heads and world cinema buffs likely know the name Sergei Loznitsa for films like "My Joy" and "In The Fog," but even they are likely having trouble keeping up with the director's prolific output. Last year he delivered the documentary "Maidan," and this year he's back with another, albeit one with a bit of a twist. Read More: Watch: Trailer For Sergei Loznitsa's Cannes Documentary About Ukrainian Protests 'Maidan' "The Event" finds Loznitsa using archival material to put together a found footage documentary about an attempted coup d'etat in Russia in August 1991. The trailer looks like a stirring assemblage of video, and a fascinating snapshot of a historical moment. Here's the full synopsis:  In August 1991, a failed coup d'état in Moscow by a group of communist reactionaries expedited the demise of the ailing Soviet Union. As the hammer and sickle that flew over the Kremlin was »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Watch: New Trailer For Tower Records Documentary 'All Things Must Pass'

28 August 2015 6:25 AM, PDT

It's a bit unfortunate that the generation being raised on streaming will never know the pure joy of stepping into a record store, flipping through the stacks, and discovering something amazing you never knew about. In this age of data driven curation, the sensation of finding something truly your own has been lost. However, Colin Hanks brings back that feeling in his upcoming documentary "All Things Must Pass" about the legendary, and at one time omnipresent music chain, Tower Records. Now the first trailer is here. Read More: SXSW Review: Colin Hanks' Insightful Tower Records Documentary 'All Things Must Pass' Featuring folks like Dave Grohl, Elton John, and Bruce Springsteen, along with key Tower workers and executives, the documentary is a nostalgic, informative and interesting look at the company that for many was the home of their first musical loves. While Tower became a global behemoth, their »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Make It Happen Weinsteins: David Robert Mitchell Wants To Have Beer With Quentin Tarantino And Talk 'It Follows'

28 August 2015 6:05 AM, PDT

During Quentin Tarantino's recent interview of many juicy quotes, he tossed a soft stinger toward David Robert Mitchell's horror hit "It Follows," explaining why the movie missed out on being truly great. "It was the best premise I’ve seen in a horror film in a long, long, long time. It’s one of those movies that’s so good you get mad at it for not being great," Tarantino said, going on to elaborate why the movie didn't make the grade: "He could have kept his mythology straight. He broke his mythology left, right, and center." Well, Mitchell has responded. Hitting Twitter, the filmmaker quipped he'd like to sit down with Tarantino because "I have a few notes of my own for you," but later said his tweet "was meant to be humorous and not disrespectful." But you know what? Someone really should get Mitchell and Tarantino in a room together, »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Review: Alex Ross Perry's Chilling, Intense 'Queen Of Earth' Starring Elisabeth Moss & Katherine Waterston

27 August 2015 3:34 PM, PDT

A striking 180 degree turn that demonstrates a sharp versatility and impressive command of multiple forms, filmmaker Alex Ross Perry’s latest effort, “Queen Of Earth,” is a mysterious and moody examination of complex personal dynamics, co-dependency, poisoned perceptions, and the fragile, thin line between friendship and hateship. A marked departure from his last effort, the talky, caustically funny “Listen Up Philip,” Perry’s fourth feature-length effort is a chilly and claustrophobic chamber drama akin to works of Ingmar Bergman, but with paranoid psychodrama notes worthy of Roman Polanski. It’s like Woody Allen following up the amusing “Annie Hall” with the cold and distancing “Interiors.” But the movie’s emotional turbulence, resentful hostilities, and considerations of privilege, self-absorption, and narcissism are also pure Alex Ross Perry. Set completely within the confines of an idyllic lake house upstate, the film centers on the quickly curdling friendship between two »

- Rodrigo Perez

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Watch: Catherine Hardwicke, Nicole Holofcener & More Women Can’t Direct An Action Movie In Hilarious Funny Or Die Video

27 August 2015 2:05 PM, PDT

In the last week or so, director Colin Trevorrow controversially addressed the topic of the lack of women directing large-scale tentpole films in Hollywood. As he perceives it, women seemingly “lack the desire” to do so, preferring their own stories. Of course, his comments are only anecdotal to his experience, but it's safe to say there are plenty of female filmmakers who would jump at the opportunity to direct a CGI-heavy action spectacle. But they'd have to break through some very thick barriers. In a new video clip from “Funny or Die,” we get a glimpse at what a pitch meeting might feel like were the studio heads looking to solicit the talents of female directors rather than male ones. The results, it must be said, are more revealing than you’d think. Read More: Watch First Trailer For Catherin Hardwicke's 'Miss You Already' Starring Drew Barrymore And »

- Nicholas Laskin

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Watch: Claire Danes Can't Run From The Past In New Trailer For 'Homeland' Season 5

27 August 2015 1:32 PM, PDT

On the list of shows-i-haven't-watched-yet-because-life-is-busy is Showtime's "Homeland." Some people tell me season four dropped off in quality, while others say that it was just as solid as the others. At any rate, it seems everyone wants to know what happens next in season five, and a meaty new trailer for the next batch of episodes is here.  Read More: New Teaser For 'Homeland' Season 5 Shows Carrie Mathison Adrift Clearly, I don't watch the show, but here basically all you need to know is the classic line from "The Godfather Part III": "Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in." Indeed, former CIA operative Carrie Mathison's (Claire Danes) attempt to live as a private citizen don't go so well as she's once again embroiled in a web of geo-politics, which involves hackers and getting tossed into a van among other things. But it looks pretty intense, »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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