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The films that weren't even given a shot at winning best picture
• Charles Saatchi: my love affair with Orson Welles
Here, in no particular order, is Charles Saatchi's list of the post-1950 films that should have been nominated for a best film Oscar. Tell us your picks below.
What's Up Doc?
Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
2001: A Space Odyssey
Advise and Consent
King of Comedy
- Charles Saatchi
The Four Feathers Directed by: Zoltán Korda Written by: R. C. Sherriff Starring: John Clements, Ralph Richardson, C. Aubrey Smith, June Duprez Billed as a sort of adventure film, I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from The Four Feathers. Even though the tale has been told on film multiple times, I went in to it knowing nothing about the story and was pleasantly surprised. The film is set in the 1890's during the Mahdist War. I won't claim to have heard of this particular war previous to this film, nor will I act as any sort of expert on the background of this conflict (something to do with the British colonization of Africa). The lead character, Harry Faversham (played by John Clements) was brought up in a family rooted in military history. He's a member of the British Army but resigns on the eve of a massive deployment to Khartoum. »
- Jay C.
It's time to vote to vote for the Project of the Week! Go here to vote for this week's Project of the Week. The winning filmmaker will receive a digital distribution consultation from SnagFilms and will become a candidate for Project of the Month. That winner will be awarded with a consultation from the Sundance Institute. The four projects up for the prize: "God's Army," "Paths of Glory: Anatomy of a Film," "Brooklyn Castle" and "Zabaleen." Voting will end on Monday, December 12, at 11Am Eastern. »
Issur Danielovitch Demsky was to Russian-Jewish immigrant parents in Amsterdam, New York, on this day in 1916 and, to celebrate, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the Telegraph have posted photo galleries. Both are fine as these things go, but not nearly as much fun as Douglas's own official site, which greets you with a clip (you know which one) from Kubrick's Spartacus (1960).
It was while serving in the Us Navy during World War II that Izzy Demsky changed his name to Kirk Douglas, by which time he'd already made a name for himself as a champion wrestler and as a performer in plays at Saint Lawrence University in upstate New York. He'd attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in NYC, where he met Betty Joan Perske (later to become better known as Lauren Bacall), who'd eventually score him a screen test for his first film role in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers, »
Here's your daily dose of an indie film in progress; at the end of the week, you'll have the chance to vote for your favorite. In the meantime: Is this a movie you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments. "Paths of Glory: Anatomy of a Film" Tweetable Logline: A feature documentary about Stanley Kubrick's 1957 cinematic masterpiece, "Paths of Glory," and the craft and art of filmmaking. Elevator Pitch: In 1956, Stanley Kubrick traveled to Germany to shoot his first large-scale feature, Paths of Glory, showing that, at the age of 28, he had mastered Hollywood-style filmmaking and begun using groundbreaking techniques. The first commentary for a film was done for the original version of "King Kong" in 1984. Today, most films come with commentaries but they are rarely produced to their full potential. "Paths of Glory: Anatomy of a Film" is a docu-commentary that, »
Allegorical War Drama Highlights TCM.s Dec. 14 Salute
to The George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film
Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is set to make movie history this December when it presents the world television premiere of Fear and Desire (1953), the rarely seen debut film by legendary director Stanley Kubrick. Premiering Wednesday, Dec. 14, at 8 p.m. (Et), the allegorical war drama from the director of 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) and The Shining (1980) will be the centerpiece of an extraordinary 24-hour marathon honoring the preservation efforts of the Motion Picture Department at George Eastman House. TCM host Robert Osborne will be joined by Jared Case, Head of Cataloguing and Access at George Eastman House, to present 15 cinematic rarities from one of the country.s leading moving-image archives.
TCM.s Dec. 14 salute to the Motion Picture Collection at George Eastman House will begin at 6:15 a.m. (Et) with The Blue Bird »
- Michelle McCue
Despite the fact it’s based on a book from the ’40s, and set on the last day of the Second World War, the hero of Andrzej Wajda’s Ashes and Diamonds is, like the movie, a product of the 1950s. He’s an anti-hero, in actuality: cynical, jaded and nihilistic. He smiles quite a lot, but it’s a smile that says ‘Isn’t it funny how meaningless it all is?’ He is played by Zbigniew Cybulski, one of Poland’s most famous actors and about the closest thing the country had to James Dean. The similarity is not accidental: Wajda and Cybulski were influenced by Dean and Brando and the sneering youth of ‘50s American cinema.
Cybulski plays Maciek, an assassin for the Polish Resistance. He seldom takes off his sunglasses. He killed Nazis before the war ended and seamlessly makes the transition to killing Communists. One tyranny is replaced by another, »
- Adam Whyte
"Like last month's Where Soldiers Come From, director Danfung Dennis's Hell and Back Again seeks to document the personal experience of war with extreme and sustained intimacy," writes Michelle Orange in the Voice. "The nightmare-vivid combat footage Dennis shot over the so-called Summer of Decision in 2009, while he was embedded with a Marine battalion behind enemy lines in southern Afghanistan, is only one part of that experience. Back on the home front, injured 25-year-old sergeant Nathan Harris becomes the nexus of an essential documentary that deploys a boldly cinematic arsenal to penetrate the indifference Dennis, a veteran of sorts himself after years spent as a photojournalist in Iraq and Afghanistan, believes most Americans feel toward the forever wars."
"The film cuts back and forth between Mr Dennis's visceral battlefront footage and Sergeant Harris's rehabilitation, to jolting effect," finds Neil Genzlinger in the New York Times. "You can feel just »
Doug Liman has had more hits (The Bourne Identity, Swingers) than misses (Jumper, and I would argue Mr. And Mrs. Smith), so it's really anyone's guess how his new project will turn out. Sony has him set to direct Everest, which is an adaptation of the book Paths of Glory which chronicles George Mallory's (pictured) three attempts to be the first man to climb Mount Everest in the 1920s. Deadline has a full description of his story below: The film is about Mallory’s burning »
- Paul Tassi
Joan Fontaine-Charles Boyer in Rare The Constant Nymph on TCM. [Photo: Miriam Jordan, Neil Hamilton in Two Heads on a Pillow.] Besides the Edmund Goulding-directed Joan Fontaine-Charles Boyer-Alexis Smith movie The Constant Nymph, other Library of Congress Film Archive entries on Turner Classic Movies tonight include Two Heads on a Pillow (1934), a B comedy directed by William Nigh, an important late silent-era director (Lon Chaney's Mr. Wu, Ramon Novarro's Across to Singapore) later stuck with second-rate fare. Apparently a sort of Adam's Rib predecessor, Two Heads on a Pillow features former silent-era leading man Neil Hamilton (Batman's Commissioner Gordon) and minor leading lady Miriam Jordan as once-married attorneys involved in a divorce case. It's probably worth watching even if only because of its cast, which also includes silent-era veterans Betty Blythe (the title role in the now-lost The Queen of Sheba) and Claire McDowell (Ramon Novarro's leprosy-stricken mom in Ben-Hur, »
Thanks to Criterion, Stanley Kubrick's The Seafarers is now the only film from the iconic director not available on Blu-ray. Criterion recently brought Kubrick's Paths of Glory to beautiful high-definition and now the director's 1956 heist feature, The Killing, arrives with a special inclusion, the helmer's 1955 feature Killer's Kiss. Releasing The Killing is one thing and should be enough to get you to buy this title, but the fact it also includes Killer's Kiss pretty much means any Kubrick fan simply has to buy it. I'm sorry, but those are the rules.
The screenplay was co-written by Kubrick with dialogue by pulp novelist Jim Thompson (though Thompson would later claim he wrote most of the film, a spat that almost ended their relationship), The Killing is based on "Clean Break" by Lionel White. The story is told using a fractured narrative, following the planning of a racetrack robbery. Throughout the film's brisk, »
- Brad Brevet
Kirk Douglas is Turner Classic Movies' Star of the Month of September. Though hardly a great film actor — or even a good one — Douglas has had one of the longest and most prestigious film careers anywhere in the world. That's probably because enough audience members loved how Douglas ferociously attacked his characters — instead of merely bringing them to life. [Kirk Douglas Movie Schedule.] The 94-year-old actor (who'll be turning 95 next December 9) starred or was featured in numerous major classics — and a number of minor ones — from the mid-'40s to the mid'-60s, nabbing three Best Actor Oscar nominations along the way. He has continued working since then, but for the most part his projects have been low-quality fare. The list of Kirk Douglas' movie classics, however, is quite long. It includes Jacques Tourneur's film noir Out of the Past (1947); Mark Robson's boxing melodrama Champion (1949), for which Douglas received his first »
- Andre Soares
And 10 Things Learned From The Criterion Collection's Release Of The Classic Film Noir Last week, the Criterion Collection released, "The Killing," Stanley Kubrick's ambitious 1956 classic film noir. While it was technically his third feature-length effort ("Fear and Desire" he disavowed as an amateur work and "Killer's Kiss" was so low-budget it was shot without sound and the actors dubbed in their lines later), "The Killing" was arguably Kubrick's first real picture with a budget and real cast. Produced by James B. Harris (he would also produce "Paths of Glory" and "Lolita"), "The Killing" was written by Kubrick and… »
The death of Stanley Kubrick in 1999 left many wondering what else the filmmaker would have done if there was more time. The thing is, that’s a tough question to answer, seeing as he had so many unfinished projects accumulate over the decades. From his film about Napoleon to A.I. — the latter of which was later directed by Steven Spielberg — reading his history of almost getting things made is nearly as fascinating as watching the ones that crossed the finish line.
It looks like a few of those are coming to the screen, however, with ThompsononHollywood reporting that three previously planned films of his are finally being adapted. The first of these is Lunatic at Large, which has been in various stages of development for what feels like a while. The original treatment was written by Jim Thompson, a novelist whom Kubrick had worked with twice before — the first time on The Killing, »
- email@example.com (thefilmstage.com)
"Often unfairly dismissed as a minor prelude to Stanley Kubrick's work from his attention-demanding antiwar indictment Paths of Glory onwards, 1956's The Killing finds the master imposing Big Direction on Small Ideas," argues Vadim Rizov at GreenCine Daily. "Instead of the headier themes associated with Kubrick — nuclear war, Vietnam, extraterrestrial monoliths — here is an 84-minute noir, adapted from a Lionel White novel by expert nihilist Jim Thompson, confined to the bare minimum of sets and a few street exteriors. The dialogue has Thompson's characteristic mean-spirited tone: when Sherry Peatty (Marie Windsor) tells her lover Val Cannon (Vince Edwards) about her meek husband George's (Elisha Cook Jr) upcoming involvement in a robbery, he scoffs. 'That meatball?' Sherry corrects him: 'A meatball with gravy.'"
"The first product of the reportedly strained, multi-film collaboration between Kubrick and Thompson, their incendiary script for The Killing remains cinematic legend, lightning trapped in »
When picking up the new Hobo With a Shotgun Blu-ray release, I had heard that a faux trailer was included, one that had won a contest much like Jason Eisner’s very own trailer did. And when sitting down to watch the special features, I decided to check out this trailer and dug it a lot. I liked the trailer for Van Gore so much that the small world of Twitter made it possible to give all of you a nice interview with one of the directors of that trailer, Keith Hodder. He took time out of his busy schedule to give all of our readers a little peek behind the method to their madness and various other tidbits. And of course I threw in a smidgeon of Criterion flavor to the mix as well.
What is your background when it comes to film making? How did you start? Any »
- James McCormick
(This show is long, longer than what we normally produce, but what can you do when you discuss such a talented filmmaker. I strongly suggest listening all the way to the very end, at which point we review what I think is Kubrick’s best film.)
Long, long after the folks at home started urging us to do so, we’re finally taking on the oeuvre of possibly the best-loved American director of all time, Mr. Stanley Kubrick. A Clockwork Orange turns 40 this year (!), so it was a natural choice, but we decided to go with a couple of slightly less obvious picks to accompany it: 1957′s anti-war flick Paths of Glory and 1975′s divisive three-hour period drama Barry Lyndon. Ricky, Justine and Simon are joined by special guest and general film-world veteran Bill Mesce, making this a truly epic roundtable befitting one of the most influential filmmakers ever. »
Directed by Craig McCall, Cameraman is a worshipful portrait of the late Academy Award-winning cinematographer Jack Cardiff, who died in 2009 at the age of 94 but not before cementing his legend with such films as Stairway to Heaven, The Red Shoes, Black Narcissus, The African Queen, Under Capricorn and even Rambo: First Blood Part II.
The feature-length movie is filled with clips, of course, and lots of interview footage of the man himself, a soft-spoken, charming British gentleman who comes off like the sweetest guy to ever wildly succeed in the notoriously ego-driven and Loud film industry. Also included is a solid mix of comments from such talking heads as filmmakers Martin Scorsese (Taxi Driver) and Alan Parker »
I recently had the privilege of attending a screening of Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece A Clockwork Orange in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the film and to mark the release of the Blu-ray box set ‘Stanley Kubrick: Visionary Filmmaker Collection.’ What made this particular screening special was an introductory Q&A session with the film’s star Malcolm McDowell, Kubrick’s widow Christiane and her brother, longtime Kubrick collaborator Jan Harlan.
Hosted by Warner Brothers and HMV at a plush but intimate screening room (about 40 seats) in the Soho Hotel, McDowell quipped, when first handed a microphone, “Why do I need a microphone, there are only 3 people here!?” Asked if it felt like 40 years since the release of the film, he replied “Honestly, it’s gone in the blink of an eye. Now, if I had been in a prison cell, I’m sure it would have been a very slow 40 years, »
- Ian Gilchrist
I stumbled upon a list of 41 of Woody Allen's favorite films over at This Recording, which were actually pulled from Allen's 2007 biography written by Eric Lax titled "Conversations with Woody Allen: His Films, the Movies, and Moviemaking" which you can buy from Amazon for $16.47.
Allen comments on the lists, of which he breaks up into different categories, saying, "My tastes seem to me unremarkable except in the area of talking plot comedies where I seem to have little tolerance for anything and certainly not my own films."
Unfortunately, he's pretty much right as I would bet most avid movie watchers will have seen the majority of the films he lists and then when he does get to talking plot comedies he waves a white flag in fear of looking foolish saying, "[My] taste is eccentric and there are any number of comedies I love that would make me seem foolish or should I say, »
- Brad Brevet
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