14 items from 2014
..And talk about the old cinema tradition, the Intermission. This break in between lengthy films was born out of necessity not ambition. Back when everything was projected on film a reel on the projector could only hold so much. This required the projectionist to load the second reel, and this required time, hence the intermission. With digital projection it's a tap of the play button and the computer does it's thing, no intermissions needed. But an idea has arose: Just because we don't have to doesn't necessarily mean we shouldn't.
The 154 minute Exodus Gods and Kings left many movie goers burned out by the first hour and a half (some the first 20 minutes) and too beaten to care much for the coming hour. But would an intermission solve this epics exhaustion? Or would viewers take the opportunity to leave? Or, would they be disappointed that they had lost the films sense of immersion? »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Aaron Hunt)
Director Takuya Misawa is clearly a cinephile, and his directorial debut, “Chigasaki Story,” was a fine selection to follow the tribute to Japanese cinema at the Marrakech Film Festival, as the film’s title is a direct reference to the legendary Yasujiro Ozu’s “Tokyo Story.” There is even direct reference to the auteur, as the seaside resort where the film takes place is described as the location where Ozu would hole up to do his writing. And because it takes place in a hotel, it’s impossible to not draw comparison to Renoir’s “La Règle du Jeu,” and the associations don’t stop at the location: the film is rife with make ups, break ups, miscommunications and misunderstandings among the denizens. Risa (Natsuko Hori) has taken up temporary residence in the casual inn in order to prep for her wedding celebration (the groom is en route). Her work »
- Katie Walsh
40. Don’t Look Now (1973)
Directed by: Nicholas Roeg
A few films that could be defined as horror appear on this list, mostly because the best ones veer further into a psychological discussion on dealing with fear, death, and loss. Based on a short story by Daphne du Maurier, “Don’t Look Now” is a landmark of British-Italian cinema, thanks to its wonderfully developed characters and realistic depiction of grief. John and Laura Baxter (Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie) travel to Venice, still reeling after the accidental drowning of their daughter Christine. While there, Laura meets a psychic who claims that Christine is still trying to contact them, which she shares with John, who is skeptical. Slowly, John begins to experience supernatural moments and mysterious sightings, some of which appear to be a young girl in a red coat, similar to the one Christine was wearing when she died. While the »
- Joshua Gaul
Throughout the summer, an admin on the r/movies subreddit has been leading Reddit users in a poll of the best movies from every year for the last 100 years called 100 Years of Yearly Cinema. The poll concluded three days ago, and the list of every movie from 1914 to 2013 has been published today.
Users were asked to nominate films from a given year and up-vote their favorite nominees. The full list includes the outright winner along with the first two runners-up from each year. The list is mostly a predictable assortment of IMDb favorites and certified classics, but a few surprise gems have also risen to the top of the crust, including the early experimental documentary Man With a Movie Camera in 1929, Abel Gance’s J’Accuse! in 1919, the Fred Astaire film Top Hat over Alfred Hitchcock’s The 39 Steps in 1935, and Stanley Kubrick’s The Killing over John Ford’s »
- Brian Welk
Married Life: Sachs’ Latest a Subtle Portrayal of Love, Marriage, and Familial Bonds
Following on the heels of his 2012 film, Keep the Lights On, which documented a rather tumultuous and sometimes toxic relationship between two gay men over the course of a decade, director Ira Sachs delivers what is perhaps his most heartfelt and warmly observed film thus far. While many of the central relationships depicted in Sachs’ works are marked by melancholy and discord, whether that be the arresting loneliness of the superb Dina Korzun in Forty Shades of Blue (2005) or the dark comedy underpinning the extra-marital affair in Married Life (2007), here with Love is Strange, we are graced with a couple played by John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, partners of nearly forty years that have finally taken it upon themselves to exchange overdue marriage vows.
After thirty nine years of living together, Ben (John Lithgow) and George »
- Nicholas Bell
In the moviegoer’s hierarchy of needs, a PG-13 “Expendables” is about as essential as a Joel Schumacher remake of “Tokyo Story.” Or, to put it in terms more appropriate to its target audience: You need “The Expendables 3” like you need a kick in the crotch, and while this running-on-fumes sequel may not be quite as painful a thing to experience, it will waste considerably more of your time. From train-crashing start to back-slapping finish, Lionsgate’s latest and longest showcase for Sylvester Stallone and other aging slabs of B-movie beef — the marquee names this time around include Mel Gibson and Harrison Ford — smacks of desperation and teen-audience pandering, from the literally bloodless action to the introduction of a younger, hotter backup team of fighters (call them the Hip Replacements). It’s an obvious, half-hearted ploy to keep the beleaguered series going, when it would »
- Variety Staff
You know the hair. The glasses. The voice. The sheer talent. Richard Ayoade spoke to HeyUGuys about The Double, which is out now on DVD and Blu Ray. Other subjects included The It Crowd, a new book, Ingmar Bergman, and trying not to bore audiences.
I’d like to start by going back a little bit to your first feature, which was obviously Submarine. I think for many people, they didn’t realise that a comedy actor was also going to be a great director. So I was wondering, did you feel that was a liberating experience?
Erm, I don’t know. I’d directed TV before – I directed a show called Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace, and music videos and things, so the main thing at the time [was I] felt the writing of something that was much longer than anything I’d done, and the structure of doing a film that has ninety minutes to it. »
- Gary Green
In the moviegoer’s hierarchy of needs, a PG-13 “Expendables” is about as essential as a Joel Schumacher remake of “Tokyo Story.” Or, to put it in terms more appropriate to its target audience: You need “The Expendables 3” like you need a kick in the crotch, and while this running-on-fumes sequel may not be quite as painful a thing to experience, it will waste considerably more of your time. From train-crashing start to back-slapping finish, Lionsgate’s latest and longest showcase for Sylvester Stallone and other aging slabs of B-movie beef — the marquee names this time around include Mel Gibson and Harrison Ford — smacks of desperation and teen-audience pandering, from the literally bloodless action to the introduction of a younger, hotter backup team of fighters (call them the Hip Replacements). It’s an obvious, half-hearted ploy to keep the beleaguered series going, when it would be far wiser to »
- Justin Chang
Written and directed by Jacques Demy
Jacques Demy’s The Young Girls of Rochefort is the Oscar-nominated follow-up to his immensely popular and successful The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964), which with all of its dialogue sung was something of a reinvention of the movie musical, an almost experiential musical. Young Girls, on the other hand, is simply a great musical. To be sure, Umbrellas is an excellent film as well (see my take on it here), but while it surely resonates with its tale of love unhappily ever after, and it radiates in attractive Eastmancolor, it’s in some ways hampered by its own novelty. There is of course more to it than merely the fact that everyone sings everything, but to many it’s probably best known as the movie where everyone sings everything. Young Girls is more traditional in that it has dialogue »
- Jeremy Carr
In the summer of 1999 I was a 17-year-old floorboy at a suburban multiplex showing Eyes Wide Shut. There were other movies that caught my attention that summer—Limbo, Election, Summer of Sam, The Blair Witch Project, South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut—but Kubrick’s was the only one of any import. I saw it four times in a week, defended it against my peers’ scorn, and had Jonathan Rosenbaum’s Chicago Reader review practically memorized. For my generation, seeing a Stanley Kubrick film in its original run was a novelty. Sadly, the experience would also be unrepeatable.
1999 was a hard year to be a cinephile. Kubrick vanished in March, and by the time December rolled around the news came in that Robert Bresson had also passed away. I was obsessed with both filmmakers. The previous year I already felt anguished learning about Akira Kurosawa’s death. Looking back, the »
- Gabe Klinger
20th Century Fox is rumored to currently be seeking writers for Die Hard 6, which, according to Latino Review's El Mayimbe, will reunite Bruce Willis as John McClane with his Die Hard: With a Vengeance co-star Samuel L. Jackson as Zeus Carver.
— elmayimbe (@elmayimbe) April 14, 2014
@BrianWCollins@_RyanTurek All I know is that writers are being asked to come up with a take that involves bringing back Zeus.
— elmayimbe (@elmayimbe) April 14, 2014
Back in October 2010, we reported that Bruce Willis plans to retire his iconic John McClane character after Die Hard 6. Then in February 2013, just before A Good Day to Die Hard was released, the actor confirmed that the project is still moving forward. The last we heard about the sequel was in April 2013, when little-known writer Ben Trebilcook »
Writer/director/John Woo junkie Gareth Evans assembled action genre euphoria with The Raid: Redemption, a film that made an artform out of ass-kicking, while utilizing filmmaking that laid hundreds of shakicam movies to shame. In front of the camera, the hero was Rama, a Swat member played by Iko Uwais, who had to fight his way to the top of an apartment complex filled with adversaries. With that film’s well-deserved success, Evans and his Indonesian star Uwais (who also writes the choreography) now return with The Raid 2: Berandal, which was originally intended to be made before The Raid: Redemption.
Uwais has only appeared in four films including The Raid: Berandal. He was discovered by Evans when the filmmaker was making a documentary in Indonesia in 2007. Two years later, the duo c/ollaborated for the first time on Merantau, »
- Nick Allen
The Off animation block was full of great contenders of various animation styles. Snowdysseus played like a stop-motion, nightmare-fueled version of Gravity featuring an astronaut trapped in a land plagued with skeletons; the crowd-pleasing, mannequin-starring Baby Chicken sported a short adventure of a deadly breakfast; the French animated short The Little Blond Boy with a White Sheep favored the use of imagination and frolicking with farm animals to standardized tests; and even a computer-rendered children’s film narrated by George Takei, The Missing Scarf. Yet, of all the shorts presented, the atmospheric A Tangled Tale has managed to make the most lasting impression, mixing mediums of what looks like chalk and watercolor and allowing the music and sound design to tell the story, any visuals being abstract, yet powerful. Rough outlines of color against a black background reveal hints of a body of water, »
- Zach Lewis
Truth springs from the title and trickles down into every pore of “Love Is Strange,” an uncompromising yet accessible slice-of-life expression from Ira Sachs, one of the most perceptive and personal directors working in American cinema. Here, the helmer branches out beyond his own lived experience to imagine a same-sex relationship 39 years strong as it is tested immediately following the couple’s long-overdue marriage. This beautifully observed ensembler shines on the strength of its two leads, John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, who conjure four decades together as they enter the “for better, for worse” phase of their union.
Keenly aware that it is the “sexual” part of homosexuality that seems to offend the family-values crowd, Sachs has shrewdly focused on an example where hearts lead the way — so much so that the couple’s progressive New York family look to their old gay uncles as role models in romance. That »
- Peter Debruge
14 items from 2014
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