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Toronto Film Review: ‘The Death of Stalin’

Toronto Film Review: ‘The Death of Stalin’
Consistently ahead of his time, political satirist and “Veep” creator Armando Iannucci — who forecast a female President that was not to be — has been developing “The Death of Stalin” since long before the current swell of anti-Russian sentiment hit American shores. While it’s unclear whether the country’s recent election-meddling shenanigans will make this defiantly anti-commercial comedy any more appealing to viewers (it seems a stretch), Iannucci certainly deserves credit for even attempting to tackle a movie whose very existence sounds like a joke: If only the end result were as funny as the idea that anyone would undertake a film about the turmoil surrounding the Soviet despot’s demise.

Though sporadically brilliant, this too-often uneven send-up of Russian politics attempts to maintain the rapid-fire, semi-improvisational style of Iannucci’s earlier work — most notably his revolutionary 2009 feature “In the Loop,” still the most delightfully madcap comedy of the last decade — while situating such madness within an
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Better Call Saul Recap: Gus Plays Chicken, Jimmy Plays Dirty

Better Call Saul Recap: Gus Plays Chicken, Jimmy Plays Dirty
Need to catch up? Check out our previous Better Call Saul recap here.

A pair of turf wars heated up this week on Better Call Saul — and both Jimmy and Gus Fring are willing to bend the truth in order to gain ground.

RelatedBetter Call Saul Recap: Family Court

Mike sits in his car, watching Hector’s ice cream shop get raided by the DEA after last week’s sneaker-shooting frame job. Hector’s not too happy about it, either: He storms into Gus’ Los Pollos Hermanos with his goons and intimidates everyone in there, lighting up a cigar
See full article at TVLine.com »

The Early History of One Actor Playing A Shit Ton of Roles In A Single Film

Containing multitudes is a time-honored cinematic tradition.

Sure, featuring a single actor as more than one character in your movie smells a bit like a gimmick—but at the end of the day, it’s an efficient and often effective means of showcasing the versatility of a performer. And that can hardly be faulted. We caught a whiff of it with Split this year, though McAvoy might be disqualified for being a Legion of One rather than a cast with a shared face. Personally, I had no idea the trend cast such a wide-reaching historical net — I’d stupidly assumed it was something made possible by the advent of modern makeup and digital tech. Again, stupidly.

Be it gimmick or something more nuanced (or both!) — it’s particularly fascinating that it has such a long standing history as a marketing device. Film quality aside, the main draw is often the performative tour-de-force itself. Some
See full article at FilmSchoolRejects »

Appointment with Crime

Most British crime films of the '40s and '50s have been slow crossing the pond, but Olive Films has a winner here, a gloss on Yank gangster pix from an earlier era. Just clear of prison, a tough criminal vows to punish the gang that abandoned him, and carries it out a ruthless revenge. But I think it was a mistake for him to involve that dance hall girl... Appointment with Crime Blu-ray Olive Films 1946 / B&W / 1:37 flat Academy / 91 min. / Street Date June 21, 2016 / available through the Olive Films website / 29.98 Starring William Hartnell, Herbert Lom, Joyce Howard, Robert Beatty, Raymond Lovell, Alan Wheatley. Cinematography Gerald Moss, James Wilson Film Editor Monica Kimick Original Music George Melachrino Produced by Louis H. Jackson Written and Directed by John Harlow

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

Ask today's American film fan about old British crime films, and he'll probably not be able to
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter Stanley Mann Dies at 87

  • PEOPLE.com
Oscar-nominated screenwriter Stanley Mann has died. He was 87. Mann died almost two weeks ago in his Los Angeles home, his wife Joan confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter on Friday, saying he died after a long sickness. Mann was nominated for an Academy Award for his work on the 1965 film The Collector, a screenplay he co-wrote as an adaptation of John Fowles' novel of the same title. The film, which starred Terence Stamp as a man who kidnaps and holds a young woman (Samantha Eggaralso) hostage, earned him and screenwriter John Kohn a Golden Globe nomination. The Hollywood veteran also
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter Stanley Mann Dies at 87

  • PEOPLE.com
Oscar-nominated screenwriter Stanley Mann has died. He was 87. Mann died almost two weeks ago in his Los Angeles home, his wife Joan confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter on Friday, saying he died after a long sickness. Mann was nominated for an Academy Award for his work on the 1965 film The Collector, a screenplay he co-wrote as an adaptation of John Fowles' novel of the same title. The film, which starred Terence Stamp as a man who kidnaps and holds a young woman (Samantha Eggaralso) hostage, earned him and screenwriter John Kohn a Golden Globe nomination. The Hollywood veteran also
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

The Mask 3-D !

Don't Wait!  Put on the mask, Now!   The legendary 1961 spook-show classic has been restored and adapted to a better 3-D system than used for its original release.  A psychiatrist possessed by a Mayan ritual mask is compelled to enter a fantastic hell zone each time he wears the scary thing.  Kino packs the deluxe disc with extras, including a 2014 3-D short subject with its own "Let's go to Hell" story concept. We see Hell, all right. But where are the trailers from it? The Mask 3-D Blu-ray Kino Classics 1961 / B&W /1:66 flat Academy / 83 min. / Street Date November 24, 2015 / available through Kino Lorber / 29.95 Starring Paul Stevens, Claudette Nevins, Bill Walker, Anne Collings, Martin Lavut, Leo Leyden, Norman Ettlinger. Cinematography Herbert S. Alpert Film Editor Stephen Timar Original Music Myron Schaeffer, Louis Applebaum Written by Frank Taubes, Sandy Haver, Franklin Delessert Produced by Julian Roffman, Nat Taylor Directed by Julian Roffman

Reviewed
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

25 great movie performances by actors in multiple roles

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From Thomas F Wilson in Back To The Future to Nicolas Cage and John Travolta in Face/Off - when actors play multiple roles...

The dramatic use of actors playing multiple characters is a bold and rather theatrical device that has its ups and downs. It goes at least as far back as Captain Hook being played by the same actor who plays the Darling children's father in stage productions of Peter Pan, a technique largely adopted in film adaptations of the story, too (hello to Jason Isaacs).

It's used a lot in cinema too. Done well, it's impressive, but when it's bad, it's Jack & Jill. Whether used in comedy or drama or outright horror, there are countless examples of actors delivering terrific performances in more than one role at once, and that's before we even get past Cloud Atlas. Still, we've had a go at totting up 25 of the best.
See full article at Den of Geek »

Toronto Film Review: ‘Our Brand Is Crisis’

Toronto Film Review: ‘Our Brand Is Crisis’
So, Hollywood, you say you want strong roles for women? How about an American campaign strategist who doesn’t hesitate to stand up to or stare down the candidate poised to become Bolivia’s next president? She’s not the next Erin Brockovich (it’s one thing to litigate carcinogens out of the local water supply and quite another to pump toxins into the system), but as played by Sandra Bullock, “Our Brand Is Crisis” political spin doctor Jane Bodine is easily one of the best female roles of the last 10 years — which makes it all the more satisfying to learn that it was originally written for “Gravity” co-star George Clooney. The movie itself is something more of a mess, though designedly so, fictionalizing the incursion of U.S. marketing tactics in the 2002 Bolivian election, first captured in Rachel Boynton’s documentary of the same name.

Ironically enough, the thing
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Oscar Nominated Moody Pt.2: From Fagin to Merlin - But No Harry Potter

Ron Moody as Fagin in 'Oliver!' based on Charles Dickens' 'Oliver Twist.' Ron Moody as Fagin in Dickens musical 'Oliver!': Box office and critical hit (See previous post: "Ron Moody: 'Oliver!' Actor, Academy Award Nominee Dead at 91.") Although British made, Oliver! turned out to be an elephantine release along the lines of – exclamation point or no – Gypsy, Star!, Hello Dolly!, and other Hollywood mega-musicals from the mid'-50s to the early '70s.[1] But however bloated and conventional the final result, and a cast whose best-known name was that of director Carol Reed's nephew, Oliver Reed, Oliver! found countless fans.[2] The mostly British production became a huge financial and critical success in the U.S. at a time when star-studded mega-musicals had become perilous – at times downright disastrous – ventures.[3] Upon the American release of Oliver! in Dec. 1968, frequently acerbic The
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Movie Poster of the Week: Jean Grémillon’s “Daïnah la métisse” and Christie’s Vintage Film Posters auction

  • MUBI
This week, Christie’s, the world’s largest fine arts auction house, is hosting an inaugural online-only sale of what are billed as Vintage Film Posters, though it is an eclectic collection of old and new. There are plenty of familiar faces, like Reynold Brown’s Attack of the 50Ft. Woman, Saul Bass’s The Man With the Golden Arm, Giorgio Olivetti’s La Dolce Vita, Bob Peak’s My Fair Lady, and Philip Castle’s Clockwork Orange, but what is interesting in terms of the auction market is the inclusion of a number of recent Mondo posters by Tyler Stout, Todd Slater and Laurent Durieux. The auction also includes La Boca’s already-classic, four-year-old set of silkscreen teasers for Black Swan.

The poster that really caught my eye, however, and one I’d never seen before, is this stunning Deco design by one Ram Richman for Jean Grémillon’s
See full article at MUBI »

Trailers from Hell Chases 'The Mouse That Roared,' Starring Peter Sellers Times-Three

This week on Trailers from Hell, the articulate Brian Trenchard-Smith revisits Jack Arnold's 1959 comedy "The Mouse That Roared," starring Peter Sellers, in three roles, and Jean Seberg. The nearly bankrupt country of Grand Fenwick declares war on the United States in order to receive the financial aid that would be awarded the tiny country after their inevitable defeat. Unfortunately, they win. Peter Sellers stars (in three different roles) alongside Jean Seberg in this 1959 British cold-war farce written by Roger MacDougall (The Man In The White Suit) and directed by sojourning American Jack Arnold (Arnold went on to shoot an unsold TV pilot based on Mouse with Sid Caesar inheriting the roles played by Sellers). Grand Fenwick and its hapless citizenry returned in 1963's The Mouse On The Moon, directed by Richard Lester.
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

The Mouse that Roared

The nearly bankrupt country of Grand Fenwick declares war on the United States in order to receive the financial aid that would be awarded the tiny country after their inevitable defeat. Unfortunately, they win. Peter Sellers stars (in three different roles) alongside Jean Seberg in this 1959 British cold-war farce written by Roger MacDougall (The Man In The White Suit) and directed by sojourning American Jack Arnold (Arnold went on to shoot an unsold TV pilot based on Mouse with Sid Caesar inheriting the roles played by Sellers). Grand Fenwick and its hapless citizenry returned in 1963′s The Mouse On The Moon, directed by Richard Lester.

The post The Mouse that Roared appeared first on Trailers From Hell.
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Doctor Who: the film careers of William Hartnell & Jon Pertwee

Feature Alex Westthorp 28 Mar 2014 - 07:00

In a new series, Alex talks us through the film roles of the actors who've played the Doctor. First up, William Hartnell and Jon Pertwee...

We know them best as the twelve very different incarnations of the Doctor. But all the actors who've been the star of Doctor Who, being such good all-rounders in the first place, have also had film careers. Admittedly, some CVs are more impressive than others, but this retrospective attempts to pick out some of the many worthwhile films which have starred, featured or seen a fleeting cameo by the actors who would become (or had been) the Doctor.

William Hartnell was, above all else, a film star. He is by far the most prolific film actor of the main twelve to play the Time Lord. With over 70 films to his name, summarising Hartnell's film career is difficult at best.
See full article at Den of Geek »

Call the Midwife star relishes a special delivery for Christmas

Helen George's character Trixie Franklin will be at the centre of a dramatic storyline about her difficult childhood

Not every young actress dreams of being a Christmas fixture like the fairy on the tree, but Helen George, who plays fun-loving Trixie Franklin in Call the Midwife, can relish her status this year as her character will be sounding some of the darker notes in a dramatic storyline. Woven into a Christmas special will be a poignant revelation about the shadows that shaped her difficult childhood.

The hugely successful BBC drama is to entertain families across the country on Christmas Day for the second year running and Trixie is at the heart of the action around Nonnatus House, the midwives' home in Poplar, east London.

Among all the carols and babies are some powerful moments, both explosive and romantic, although there is no jolly Christmas lunch shared between the nurses and nuns.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Downton Abbey recap: series four, episode eight

It's over. But even after a truly exhausting series finale, we still have so many questions. Blink, and you may miss the answers

I said he would kill again. And he has. But what an anti-climax! And what a waste of mini-Den. I have calculated that they contracted him for 7.4 minutes of screen time for this entire series. Ah well, at least he made a big splash before he got pushed under the charabanc.

So what's the story from now on? Who is Lady Mary going to marry? Do we even care? Did Bates definitely kill and will he tell Anna? Has Alfred's mother really gone to live in Crewe? And is the suddenly important, potential future aristo-baby-owning pig man all he seems?

This episode was straight in with more random explanations of Mr Levenson (Cora's brother) and his complicated, unexplained business affairs. And two seconds later … Branson: "But what are my politics nowadays?
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

California Auditions at a Glance - Oct. 11-31

The following "Auditions at a Glance" calendar conveniently organizes projects by the date and day-of-the-week that the projects' auditions are taking place, to help you schedule your plans. Click on any of the following links to see the casting and job notices related to the dates and project titles highlighted below. Thu. Oct. 11 • Disney's 'Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular' • 'Priscilla Queen of the Desert', Singers • 'Riley Rewind' Fri. Oct. 12 • Nyfa, 'Delirious' • 'X-mas - The Trial' Sat. Oct. 13 Legoland Holiday Season 2012 • Nyfa, 'Delirious' • 'Priscilla Queen of the Desert', Dancers • 'Sweeney Todd • Universal Studios Hollywood, Santa Doll Dancers & Mrs. Claus • ''X-mas - The Trial' Sun. Oct. 14 • 'Extraordinary Chambers' • 'God of Carnage' Mon. Oct. 15 • '9 to 5', Dancers • '9 to 5' • 'God of Carnage' • 'Plaid Tidings' • 'Wise Up!' Tue. Oct. 16 • '9 to 5' • 'The Palm Springs Voice' • 'Plaid Tidings' • 'The Mouse That Roared'Wed. Oct. 17 • Click here to search for auditions.
See full article at Backstage »

Demi Lovato -- Disney Pulls Eating Disorder Joke After Demi's Twitter Attack

  • TMZ
Demi Lovato went on a Twitter rampage last night against her former bosses at Disney over an eating disorder joke on one of their shows -- and guess what??? Disney folded and promised to pull the joke from the show. Lovato, who left the Disney show "Sonny With a Chance" to battle her own problems with food, took offense to a line from the show,"Shake It Up" -- "I could just eat you up,
See full article at TMZ »

The importance of title sequences in the movies

As The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo reminds us, a powerful title sequence can have a huge impact. Here’s Ryan’s celebration of a resurgent art form…

David Fincher’s version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo opens with a booming, teacup-rattling title sequence, in which hideous forms – some technological, others biological – ooze in and out of black oil and fire. Cut to the howls and thunderous riff of Trent Reznor and Karen O’s cover of The Immigrant Song by Led Zeppelin, it’s an aggressive statement of intent, as though Fincher’s violently stamping his authority on a property that was only adapted for the screen two years ago.

Fincher’s no stranger to opening his films with a dazzling display of sound and imagery. Images of pain and suffering are compiled by nimble, evil fingers to the music of Nine Inch Nails at the beginning of Seven.
See full article at Den of Geek »

Indian project on Gulabi gang receives Sundance Documentary Grant

Gulabi (India / Norway) to be directed by Nishtha Jain has received a $25,000 grant from the Sundance Documentary Film Program. The documentary traces Sampat Pal and the fiery women of her Gulabi Gang who take up the fight against gender violence, caste oppression and widespread corruption in Bundelkhand.

Gulabi is one among the 29 feature-length documentary films that will receive the grant.

The Documentary Film Program celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2012 and since its inception has awarded grants to more than 300 documentary filmmakers in 61 countries.

Complete list:

Development

The Bill (U.S. / Philippines)

Director: Ramona Diaz

A political firestorm hits the Philippines when “The Bill,” a reproductive health bill that could legalize birth control in the world’s 12th most populous nation, pits tradition against reform and brings the culture war into the streets and churches.

Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield (U.S.)

Director: Richard Rowley

Reporting from the battlefields of the war on terror,
See full article at DearCinema.com »
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