20 items from 2013
Directed by Lewis Allen
Perception plays a spectacularly large role in how people behave and process information. Everything one does or chooses to do is at least partly a function of one’s perceived reality. Sometimes, one believes to be doing the right thing whereas they are doing the wrong thing and vice versa. It is but one of the many aspects to human cognition that makes life that much more complicated. It stands to reason that perception can influence how one watches a movie and accepts its terms. These nebulous ideas greatly influence many aspects of the 1947 romance thriller Desert Fury, from what the characters believe to be doing to how the viewer ultimately accepts or rejects the film as a whole.
Chuckawalla, Nevada is home to many people from different walks of life. There is the Haller family, »
- Edgar Chaput
A-list director Ridley Scott can round up his pick of top Hollywood talent, and did so with elegantly violent border thriller "The Counselor," which opens Friday. Unfortunately, the first screenplay written by novelist Cormac McCarthy tries to spice up a torrid fish-out-of-water crime thriller with the kind of cryptic existential literary language (read: pretentious) that is better read than spoken. Nothing rings true in this "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" tale, which hangs on the slender idea that a good man genuinely in love with a good woman can make a tragic mistake in the name of greed. One great scene between Bruno Ganz as a diamond dealer and a love-lorn lawyer (Michael Fassbender) who chooses a stunning 3.9 carat stone with which to propose to his beloved (Penelope Cruz), sinks under the weight of McCarthy's ponderous dialogue. The film's central problem: this lawyer is too confident and dense to »
- Anne Thompson
Humphrey Bogart movies: ‘The Maltese Falcon,’ ‘High Sierra’ (Image: Most famous Humphrey Bogart quote: ‘The stuff that dreams are made of’ from ‘The Maltese Falcon’) (See previous post: “Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall Movies.”) Besides 1948, 1941 was another great year for Humphrey Bogart — one also featuring a movie with the word “Sierra” in the title. Indeed, that was when Bogart became a major star thanks to Raoul Walsh’s High Sierra and John Huston’s The Maltese Falcon. In the former, Bogart plays an ex-con who falls in love with top-billed Ida Lupino — though both are outacted by ingénue-with-a-heart-of-tin Joan Leslie. In the latter, Bogart plays Dashiel Hammett’s private detective Sam Spade, trying to discover the fate of the titular object; along the way, he is outacted by just about every other cast member, from Mary Astor’s is-she-for-real dame-in-distress to Best Supporting Actor Academy Award nominee Sydney Greenstreet. John Huston »
- Andre Soares
Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall: From ‘To Have and Have Not’ to ‘Key Largo’ Humphrey Bogart (born on Christmas Day 1899, in New York City) is Turner Classic Movies’ first “Summer Under the Stars” star on Thursday, August 1, 2013. TCM will be showing several Bogart movies not made at Warner Bros., e.g., 20th Century Fox’s The Left Hand of God and Columbia’s In a Lonely Place, but nothing that the cable network hasn’t presented before. In other words, don’t expect anything along the lines of the 1934 crime drama Midnight or the 1931 Western A Holy Terror (assuming these two movies still exist). Now, the good news: No Casablanca — which was shown on Tuesday, as part of TCM’s Paul Henreid movie series. (See “Humphrey Bogart Movies — TCM schedule.) (Photo: Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall in To Have and Have Not.) Of TCM’s Humphrey Bogart movies I’ve seen, »
- Andre Soares
Have you seen Kubrick’s top 10?
In 1963, Stanley Kubrick created a list of the greatest films of all time. It has recently resurfaced, and is worth checking out:
I Vitelloni (dir. Federico Fellini, 1953) Wild Strawberries (dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1957) Citizen Kane (dir. Orson Welles, 1941) The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (dir. John Huston, 1948) City Lights (dir. Charlie Chaplin, 1931) Henry V (dir. Laurence Olivier, 1944) La Notte (dir. Michelangelo Antonioni, 1961) The Bank Dick (dir. Edward F. Cline, 1940) Roxie Hart (dir. William A. Wellman, 1942) Hell’s Angels (dir. Howard Hughes, 1930)
Find details, and links to more of the greatest movies of all time here. »
Any time a top ten list is made nowadays it is typically made by movie bloggers born in the late '70s / early '80s and therefore the span of time it covers is frequently limited to just a few years before their birth to modern day. As a result many great films are forgotten simply because it's damn near impossible to see everything. Thankfully, there are others out there to encourage us to see films before our time and expand our cinematic knowledge. Just yesterday I posted Spike Lee's list of 87 Essential Films (see that here) and I've always pointed out and referenced Roger Ebert's list of Great Movies, which you can see in its entirety right here. If you haven't seen these films, add them to a spreadsheet of your own and get to work as today I have ten more for you to consider. Born »
- Brad Brevet
A couple of years ago, there was talk of Michael Mann developing Gold, a tale of treasure-hunting and pan-handling in 1990s Indonesia. With Mann opting instead for his currently untitled Chris Hemsworth cyber-thriller however, Gold was up for grabs and has reportedly been snapped up by Spike Lee. He's the man, the man with the Midas touch. Or alternatively, he has the power to know he's indestructable.The saga actually begins with Paul Haggis, who showed Mann the Gold screenplay by Patrick Masset and John Zinman simply as a writing sample to help the pair score other gigs in the future. But Mann liked it so much he bought it, and got it percolating with his Forward Pass production company. His interest only lasted until March last year, however, which was when he moved on.What little is known about Gold so far indicates that it's looking to The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre »
Though director Michael Mann was once slated to direct Gold, a film based on a true story about the 1993 Bre-x Mineral Corporation mining scandal, the project has now fallen into the hands of Spike Lee. The script from Patrick Massett and John Zinman was crafted as a writing sample, but Paul Haggis (the director Crash and The Next Three Days) developed it as a project before getting Mann involved. But since it never gained traction, he fell away from the film. Now there's a chance it could be Lee's next film, following his work on the remake of Oldboy now, with production beginning before the end of the year. The film has been described as having flares of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, but just with a contemporary setting. The Wrap says the story follows a rough-around-the-edges prospector who stumbles onto one of the largest gold mines in the world in the Indonesian jungle. »
- Ethan Anderton
Michael Mann was previously attached to direct Gold, a contemporary thriller described as being in the vein of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, set around a ruthless search for the precious metal. The story is based on a true story about the 1993 Bre-x Mineral Corporation mining scandal Mann has apparently handed over directorial duties to Spike Lee, reports The Wrap. Paul Haggis was originally drawn to the script, about the prospectors and speculators on the hunt for gold, as a directing vehicle, but other projects shifted his attention, and he passed it onto Mann who loved it, and attached himself to it, with Haggis producing along with Michael »
- Tambay A. Obenson
Super-8 Movie Madness at the Way Out Club will be held on Tuesday May 7th from 8pm to Midnight. These are Super-8 Sound films condensed from features and will be projected on a large screen. Admission is only Three Dollars !!!!
There’s no theme this month but we are showing four films in the jumbo, 2-reel, 35-minute format. They are: The Empire Strikes Back, Humphrey Bogart in The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre, Charles Bronson and Steve McQueen in The Magnificent Seven, and Michael Caine in The Island.
The other films we’re showing (average length: 12 minutes) are: Bob Hope and Jane Russell in Paleface, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Hammer Horror Twins Of Evil, the Marx Brothers in Night At The Opera, Tarantula, Tura Satana in Astro Zombies, the skeleton battle from Jason And The Argonauts, and the Little Rascals short Hooky Spooky.
The Way Out Club is »
- Tom Stockman
I've mentioned before how several years ago I created a list using Roger Ebert's Great Movies, Oscar Best Picture winners, IMDb's Top 250, etc. and began going through them doing my best to see as many of the films on these lists that I had not seen as I possibly could to up my film I.Q. Well, someone has gone through the exhaustive effort to take all of the films Roger Ebert wrote about in his three "Great Movies" books, all of which are compiled on his website and added them to a Letterbxd list and I've added that list below. I'm not positive every movie on his list is here, but by my count there are 363 different titles listed (more if you count the trilogies, the Up docs and Decalogue) and of those 363, I have personally seen 229 and have added an * next to those I've seen. Clearly I have some work to do, »
- Brad Brevet
I've mentioned before how several years ago I created a list using Roger Ebert's Great Movies, Oscar Best Picture winners, IMDb's Top 250, etc. and began going through them doing my best to see as many of the films on these lists that I had not seen as I possibly could to up my film I.Q. Well, someone has gone through the exhaustive effort to take all of the films Roger Ebert wrote about in his three "Great Movies" books, all of which are compiled on his website and added them to a Letterbxd list and I've added that list below. I'm not positive every movie on his list is here, but by my count there are 362 different titles listed (more if you count the trilogies and Decalogue) and of those 362, I have personally seen 229 and have added an * next to those I've seen. Clearly I have some work to do, »
- Brad Brevet
If you’re any sort of Indiana Jones nerd, you’ve heard about the brainstorming sessions George Lucas and Steven Spielberg had with screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan as they were developing Raiders of the Lost Ark. Well, now, a transcript of the five-day spitballing conference is available to geek out over. From The New Yorker’s Culture Desk: Lucas walked into the meeting with an outline of the story, but he wanted to flesh it out with his writer and director. In the transcript, he begins by articulating a recipe for the contemporary blockbuster: the picture will consist of one big set piece after another. “And each cliffhanger is better than the one before,” Spielberg adds, warming to the idea. “What we’re doing here, really, is designing a ride at Disneyland.” The hero, Lucas explains, is a globe-trotting archaeologist, “a bounty hunter of antiquities.” He’s a professor, a Ph. »
- MaryAnn Johanson
The First Time Fest was created by Johanna Bennett and Mandy Ward as a way to showcase new upcoming filmmakers and their works, and to get them a head start in their industry. The festival occurred on March 1st to 4th at The Players Club in New York, which was a club started by some well-known writers and actors, including Edwin Booth (John Wilkes Booth’s brother), Mark Twain, and more.
While the festival does support new filmmakers in their journey, it also awards previous filmmakers who have made names for themselves. Being that this is the first year of the festival, the first ever John Huston Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema went to Darren Aronofsky. The award is named in honor of John Huston as he was a esteemed member of The Players Club, as well as considered to be one of the most influential writer, actor, director and producers of all times. »
- Catherina Gioino
The Friday Noir column has been tugging along at a steady pace for well over a year at this point. After being privy to so many double-crosses, back stabbings, bleak outlooks and cynical one-liners, it feels like the right time to shine some proverbial light on the sinister world of film noir. What follows is a list of five previously movies reviewed that best exemplify many of the alluring qualities of this fondly remembered and frequently emulated genre.
Some pertinent details details about the list below need be shared with the readers in the hopes of anticipating and preventing any head scratching. First, the list is comprised strictly of films from the classic noir era, thus limiting the candidates to such films made and released in the mid 1940s up until the late 1950s. Neonoirs, and there are excellent ones, make no mistake about it, are therefore ineligible. The list »
- Edgar Chaput
This week’s movie poster I present for no better reason than that I came across it this week and fell in love with it. Not that I have any great love for motorbikes or CHiPS-style shenanigans, and I’d never heard of the film before, nor its director William Nigh. But I love its blazing color, its windswept momentum, its faultless typography, and of course its romantic French title, Agent Cyclone (though its German title, Achtung - Überfallkommando!, is even better). The only thing I don't like is the over-large Universal Film title in its blackletter font, something that works much better on French horror movie posters than it does here.
Made in 1936, Crash Donovan runs just over an hour and weaves a series of chases and stunts around a love triangle consisting of carnival stuntman Michael “Crash” Donovan, California Highway Patrolman Johnnie Allen and Doris Tennyson, daughter of the chief of the Patrol. »
- Adrian Curry
Cowboys who gallop and ride
Know how to take things in stride
They always have their pride
Cowboys who gallop and ride
Atrocious! Add your own melody and hold your nose. I made up that ditty, or one close to it, years ago and I don’t know why. (To provide a contrast to good verse? To avoid thinking about something I should have been thinking about?) Shrug. But it’s in my head today, maybe, is because last night on what we refer to around here as “the cowboy channel” had a “six gun salute” to Tim Holt, who was one of my favorite actors when I was six or seven. Five old movies: I watched two and recorded the other three for watching late at night when I’m not ready for the trek to the bedroom but should be. He was a favorite of my childhood, was ol’ Tim, »
- Dennis O'Neil
1.) Albert Brooks is returning to voice Nemo's father, Marlin, in Finding Nemo 2. Ellen DeGeneres is also expected to return as the forgetful Dory with Andrew Stanton set to direct. At this point there are no plot details, though a 2016 release date is expected. Deadline 2.) Safe House director Daniel Espinosa is attached to direct an adaptation of John Grisham's "The Racketeer" for Fox and New Regency. The book sees a federal judge murdered at a lakeside cabin and the contents of his safe emptied. The only man who knows the whos and whys is a former attorney serving time in federal prison who hopes to parlay that into getting revenge on the people who put him there. THR 3.) More Twilight fan fiction is targeting a big screen adaptation while Universal tries to figure out what they're going to do with Fifty Shades of Grey. Constantin Film has acquired movie »
- Brad Brevet
By Joey Magidson
For a filmmaker, it’s rare to make a real impact with your debut feature. Most of the time, you begin your career with a calling-card movie or a work that doesn’t fully express your true talent. There are, however, certain instances when a director is able to wow audiences and leave his or her mark on the film world right from the get-go.
This year, we’ve seen Benh Zeitlin make his debut with a film that many absolutely love in Beasts of the Southern Wild. Zeitlin’s freshman feature has been mentioned as one of the top debuts by a filmmaker in some time, so that got me thinking: What are the 10 best of all time?
Of course, there’s some level of subjectivity to this kind of a list. If I were strictly going off of my personal favorite debuts, people such as Judd Apatow, »
- Joey Magidson
Odd List Ryan Lambie Jan 8, 2013
It takes a certain kind of actor to bring a truly great villain to life. They need to be able to reach into the darkest recesses of their psyche, certainly, but they also need to bring a touch of something extra, too. They need to convince us not only that they're cruel, but that they're also human beings - after all, the best movie villains are often seductive and magnetic as well as unspeakably amoral.
While the finest antagonists are usually played by actors, there have been occasions where directors have stepped in front of the camera to indulge their inner demon. The list that follows attempts to deal exclusively with performances from people known primarily as directors first, »
20 items from 2013
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