9 items from 2013
Top box office movies of 2013: If you make original, quality films… (photo: Sandra Bullock has two movies among the top 15 box office hits of 2013; Bullock is seen here in ‘The Heat,’ with Melissa McCarthy) (See previous post: “2013 Box Office Record? History is Remade If a Few ‘Minor Details’ Ignored.”) As further evidence that moviegoers want original, quality entertainment, below you’ll find a list of the top 15 movies at the domestic box office in 2013 — nine of which are sequels or reboots (ten if you include Oz the Great and Powerful), and more than half of which are 3D releases. Disney and Warner Bros. were the two top studios in 2013. Disney has five movies among the top 15; Warners has three. With the exception of the sleeper blockbuster Gravity, which, however dumbed down, targeted a more mature audience, every single one of the titles below were aimed either at teenagers/very, »
- Zac Gille
Charlie Hunnam: ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ gets its Christian Grey (photo: shirtless Charlie Hunnam in ‘Pacific Rim’) In the last couple of weeks, the world has been rocked by several revelations that have left earthlings — depending on their particular expectations, prejudices, and mental health — infuriated, terrified, shocked, thrilled. Am I referring to the reported chemical attacks in Syria and the Obama administration’s determination that the U.S. should get involved in that country’s bloody civil war? Syrius Chemical Civil War? Is Obama endorsing a new video game? Is it in 3D? Nope, that’s not what I’m talking about. Nor am I referring to the ivory trade and the relentless poaching of African elephants, which will quite possibly lead to their extinction in the very, very near future. Or to the nearly 1,000 manatees and dolphins that have met with slow and agonizing deaths in Florida’s grossly polluted waterways. »
- Andre Soares
A critical digest of the week’s latest U.S. theatrical releases. Where applicable, links to longer reviews have been provided.
Distributor: The Weinstein Co.
The director of “Precious” and “The Paperboy” plays things relatively straight in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” a sprawling, highly fictional biopic of longtime White House butler Eugene Allen that also positions itself as a panoramic snapshot of the African-American experience across nine decades. But if Daniels has tamped down the kinky sexuality and outre stylistic flourishes for his first PG-13 outing, his handprints can still be found in the film’s volatile mix of acting styles, gratuitous sentimentality cut with moments of real emotional power, and a tone that seesaws between serious social melodrama and outsized chitlin’-circuit theatrical. At its root the kind of starry, old-fashioned prestige pic the studios used to make, this stealthy late-summer release from the Weinstein Co. »
- Variety Staff
Gregory Peck from ‘Duel in the Sun’ to ‘How the West Was Won’: TCM schedule (Pt) on August 15 (photo: Gregory Peck in ‘Duel in the Sun’) See previous post: “Gregory Peck Movies: Memorable Miscasting Tonight on Turner Classic Movies.” 3:00 Am Days Of Glory (1944). Director: Jacques Tourneur. Cast: Gregory Peck, Lowell Gilmore, Maria Palmer. Bw-86 mins. 4:30 Am Pork Chop Hill (1959). Director: Lewis Milestone. Cast: Gregory Peck, Harry Guardino, Rip Torn. Bw-98 mins. Letterbox Format. 6:15 Am The Valley Of Decision (1945). Director: Tay Garnett. Cast: Greer Garson, Gregory Peck, Donald Crisp. Bw-119 mins. 8:15 Am Spellbound (1945). Director: Alfred Hitchcock. Cast: Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Michael Chekhov, Leo G. Carroll, Rhonda Fleming, Bill Goodwin, Norman Lloyd, Steve Geray, John Emery, Donald Curtis, Art Baker, Wallace Ford, Regis Toomey, Paul Harvey, Jean Acker, Irving Bacon, Jacqueline deWit, Edward Fielding, Matt Moore, Addison Richards, Erskine Sanford, Constance Purdy. Bw-111 mins. 10:15 Am Designing Woman (1957). Director: Vincente Minnelli. »
- Andre Soares
Gregory Peck movies: Memorable miscasting in David O. Selznick’s Western Gregory Peck is Turner Classic Movies’ "Summer Under the Stars" star today, August 15, 2013. TCM is currently showing Raoul Walsh’s good-looking but not too exciting Captain Horatio Hornblower (1951), with Peck in the title role and Virginia Mayo as his leading lady. (See “Gregory Peck in ‘Duel in the Sun’: TCM movie schedule.”) (Photo: Gregory Peck ca. 1950.) Next in line is Zoltan Korda’s crime melodrama The Macomber Affair (1947), based on a story by Ernest Hemingway about a troubled married couple and their safari guide. This is another good-looking film — black-and-white cinematography by veteran Karl Struss, whose credits ranged from the 1920 Gloria Swanson melo Something to Think About to Charles Chaplin’s The Great Dictator. Unfortunately, the psychology, the romance, and some of the acting found in The Macomber Affair is — at best — superficial. Joan Bennett and Gregory Peck look great, »
- Andre Soares
Doris Day movies: TCM’s ‘Summer Under the Stars 2013′ lineup continues (photo: Doris Day in ‘Calamity Jane’ publicity shot) Doris Day, who turned 89 last April 3, is Turner Classic Movies’ 2013 “Summer Under the Stars” star on Friday, August 2. (Doris Day, by the way, still looks great. Check out "Doris Day Today.") Doris Day movies, of course, are frequently shown on TCM. Why? Well, TCM is owned by the megaconglomerate Time Warner, which also happens to own (among myriad other things) the Warner Bros. film library, which includes not only the Doris Day movies made at Warners from 1948 to 1955, but also Day’s MGM films as well (and the overwhelming majority of MGM releases up to 1986). My point: Don’t expect any Doris Day movie rarity on Friday — in fact, I don’t think such a thing exists. Doris Day is ‘Calamity Jane’ If you haven’t watched David Butler’s musical »
- Andre Soares
Like Night of the Hunter, Tod Browning’s Freaks or Leonard Kastle’s The Honeymoon Killers, The Road to Yesterday can be ranked among the UFOs of cinema. It’s place in the heart of Cecil B. DeMille’s work proves to be in itself very distinctive. We know that, during his entire life, DeMille had virtually only one producer—Paramount (the former Famous Players Lasky)—just like Minnelli was MGM’s man and Corman American International’s. Sixty-three of his films (out of seventy) were produced at Paramount. And, oddly enough, it is among the seven outsiders, situated within a brief period from 1925 to 1931, that his best activity is to be found (I’m thinking of Madam Satan, The Godless Girl, and The Road to Yesterday)–his most audacious undertakings. To top it off, for this uncontested king of the box office, his best films were his biggest commercial failures. »
- Luc Moullet
Unlike broadcaster's epic 1972 dramatisation, new adaptation by Pride and Prejudice screenwriter will be in six parts
More than 40 years after its epic 20-part dramatisation starring Anthony Hopkins, the BBC is to return to Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace in a new adaptation by Pride and Prejudice screenwriter Andrew Davies.
One of the most widely admired – and longest – works of world literature, the new version will be six parts long, rather shorter than its 1972 forerunner.
Davies, whose other TV adaptations include Middlemarch and Sense and Sensibility, as well as the big screen versions of the Bridget Jones books, said the novel's Natasha Rostova pipped Pride and Prejudice's Elizabeth Bennett as literature's most loveable heroine.
"Not just a great novel, it's a wonderful read and it'll make a wonderful serial. A thrilling, funny and heartbreaking story of love, war and family life," said Davies.
"The characters are so natural and »
- John Plunkett
Pedro Almodóvar I’m So Excited trailer, with Miguel Ángel Silvestre Pedro Almodóvar’s upcoming movie, I’m So Excited / Los amantes pasajeros (literally, "passing lovers" and/or "passenger lovers") has a new and full trailer. That’s the good news. The not-so-good news (for non-Spanish speakers): it’s in Spanish, without subtitles. (Please scroll down to check out the I’m So Excited trailer.) [Photo: Miguel Ángel Silvestre in Pedro Almodóvar's I'm So Excited.] But don’t feel bad if you don’t speak Spanish. After all, even Spanish speakers will likely have to pay close attention to the one-gazillion-words-a-minute dialogue — which would put James Cagney, Joan Blondell, Una Merkel, et al. to shame. I’m So Excited plot I’m So Excited is set on an airplane flying from Spain to Mexico City. If the trailer is any indication, the plane in question has many more staff members than passengers. Perhaps not such a bad thing, considering »
- Andre Soares
9 items from 2013
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