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50 years ago today Marnie (1964) hit movie theaters and, as quite a divisive picture in the Hitchock filmography, ended one of the most beloved perfect runs that any filmmaker has accomplished in the history of ever (1958-1962: North By Northwest, Vertigo, Psycho, The Birds).
So Marnie has a bad rep, posts about her don't get you riled up like other Hitchcock fests, and she's underseen today. Not to lovingly kick that crazy bitch while she's down but it occurred to me the other day when she popped into my head that Marnie's color phobia means she would never be able to see an Almodóvar picture. Her loss. And she would be absolutely terrified by Sara Goldfarb addictions in Requiem for a Dream. (I mean more terrified than the rest of us)
I like thinking about the red dress. And the television and your father."
I dedicate this following gallery of »
- NATHANIEL R
It may begin with a character racing across a desert with a small plane in hot pursuit, but “Heatstroke” is not, to put it gently, the second coming of “North by Northwest.” An underwhelming survival thriller about a fragile family unit beset by violent thugs while on a research expedition in South Africa, this first feature from writer-director Evelyn Maude Purcell in nearly 30 years (since her 1986 comedy, “Nobody’s Fool”) remains watchable largely due to its vivid location photography, providing a suitably scenic, dust-choked backdrop for the otherwise thoroughly generic proceedings. Low-key theatrical and VOD exposure awaits.
Stephen Dorff completists may be disappointed to learn (spoiler alert) that his character, a hyena specialist named Paul O’Malley, doesn’t stick around for long — a shame, too, since the perpetually underrated actor offers something for the viewer to latch onto amid the script’s initial pileup of domestic-angst cliches. Happily in »
- Justin Chang
When it comes to America, the values, the principles, and ideals that we strive for are great. Freedom, liberty, truth, justice, happiness and the right stand up against tyranny are ideas that we can all believe in... but what about the stuff? The tangible things that distinguish this great nation from others are worth taking note of as well. That’s why we’re taking a moment, in honor of our great nation, to say “Thanks” to the movies that celebrate uniquely American cultural artifacts.
Hot Dogs — Father of the Bride
Bread has been around for tens of thousands of years and sausage too has been around for a couple millenia, but it was only in America that a hot dog could be created. And only an American comedy legend like Steve Martin could bring to the big screen the hot dog conundrum that has perplexed us all.
Mount Rushmore »
- Mandy McAdoo
Errol Flynn, the swashbuckling Hollywood star and notorious ladies man, flouted convention all his life, but never more brazenly than in his last years when, swimming in vodka and unwilling to face his mortality, he undertook a liaison with an aspiring actress, Beverly Aadland.
The two had a high-flying affair that spanned the globe and was enabled by the girl’s fame-obsessed mother, Florence. It all came crashing to an end in October 1959, when events forced the relationship into the open, sparking an avalanche of publicity castigating Beverly and her mother – which only fed Florence’s need to stay in the spotlight. The Last Of Robin Hood is a story about the desire for fame and the price it exacts.
- Michelle McCue
With the 20th La Film Festival now underway (until June 19), Indiewire sent out questionnaires to filmmakers with films screening at Laff asking them a variety of questions as part of the How I Shot That series. Many of these filmmakers were eager to disclose some of the best and worst advice they have received in their careers. Check out some of the advice below. Best Advice: "If you reference something correctly in a documentary, you can use it for free under 'public domain.' Love that." -- Director Ravi Patel ("Meet the Patels") "Do the big scares first, make sure you got them right, and then move on to the rest of the movie." -- Director Seth Grossman ("Inner Demons") "The best advice came from (my cinematographer) Seamus Tierney and my production design professor at AFI, Robert Boyle ("North by Northwest," "The Birds," "In Cold Blood," "Cape Fear"). He had »
- Eric Eidelstein
Hey, all you Sci-Fi fans, this one’s for you — or better yet, these two are for you! The Redford Theatre is happy to present a Drive-in-style double feature with two of the best loved science fiction films from the 1950s: “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “War of the Worlds.” The night will include a vintage intermission program, complete with dancing hot dogs, a minutes-to-showtime countdown and 1950s movie trailers.
“War of the Worlds” stars Gene Barry (of "Bat Masterson” and "Burke’s Law” fame) and Ann Robinson in her only starring role for Paramount. (She also appeared on our screen two weeks ago in a small role as a showgirl in “Imitation of Life.") A few familiar names appeared here in small roles. Sir Cedric Hardwicke provided the voice for the commentary/narration. Les Tremayne (General Mann) was best known for his estimated 30,000 radio broadcasts. (He also appeared »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
I have a curious habit, maybe you have it too, if you are a real movie geek, film fan, cinema addict, what have you.
A certain number of movies that I have seen and loved with all my heart were losers at the box office or were mercilessly slammed by critics, usually both. This doesn’t happen all the time, mind you. I know a bad movie when I see one. But several times I have seen a movie on opening day and loved it so much I was sure it would be a big hit and be loved by critics and film goers, nope, not all the time.
Here then is my own personal and highly eccentric top ten list, with some honorable mentions, of movies that lost out, yet I love them still, many of them desperately, hysterically, madly do I love these films, well anyway… let me tell you about it. »
- Sam Moffitt
Six years after their last attempt, Empire Magazine has conducted a poll of over 250,000 film fans to come up with a list of the 301 greatest movies ever made. It's the 1980 classic "The Empire Strikes Back" which took the top spot, beating out the 2008 winner "The Godfather" which slipped down to second place. The Top 50 of the list are:
The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring
2001: A Space Odyssey
Terminator 2: Judgement Day
- Garth Franklin
Nothing could make Mathieu Amalric's The Blue Room, a sleekly clouded, petit adaptation of Georges Simenon in Un Certain Regard, stand out at Cannes more than it being shown back to back with Atom Egoyan's ponderous, crippled genre film in Competition, The Captive.
As usual a half-thesis, half-melodrama on trauma spawned from and mediated by technology, Egoyan's child kidnapping picture does stand out with the idea behind its thriller mechanics: the Internet and surveillance technology create a cycle of perverse, sub-Mabusian manipulation, where children are kidnapped and after being abused are broadcast to capture more victims, and the "stories" told by closed circuit television and other audiovisual records are used to swaddle and coax victims and inspire captors to continue their reprehensible spree. The film ignores the actual horrors of kidnapping, pedophilia, and the other crimes it purports to focus on, »
- Daniel Kasman
After admitting the laudable Stephen Toblowsky and much-missed Jt Walsh, we now see whether The Overlooked Hotel can make room for the delightful and versatile Michelle Monaghan.
A recent film magazine review queried why Michelle Monaghan had not hit it big (or at least bigger) off the back of her charming, star-making turn in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. It was and is a pertinent question and it is hard to know why she has not become a more established star. Although she has a varied CV, it is hard to pick too many turkeys (Made of Honour and The Heartbreak Kid were pretty middling efforts, but hardly part of a broad trend), nor has she gone so left field as to disassociate herself from more mainstream opportunities.
Monaghan had been knocking around in a variety of TV gigs and supporting turns on the big screen, before catching a break as »
- Dave Roper
Filmmaker Geoff Todd's Twitter account, @OnePerfectShot, is our new No.1 destination for a daily fix of movie geekiness.
The account's mission is to "honour cinema's past and (hopefully) inspire a new generation of perfect shots" and features stunning stills from classic movies. And Pee-Wee's Big Adventure.
Here are our personal 14 favourite shots:
— Perfect Shots (@OnePerfectShot) May 5, 2014
— Perfect Shots (@OnePerfectShot) May 4, 2014
— Perfect Shots (@OnePerfectShot) May 4, 2014
— Perfect Shots (@OnePerfectShot) May 2, 2014
By Mark Pinkert
Alfred Hitchcock‘s North by Northwest (1959) is his most famous rendering of the innocent-man-on-the-run thriller, but The 39 Steps (1935) is the original, and while the former is colored, cohesive, and so in a form for longevity, the latter is more eccentric, stylized, and perhaps more oddly compelling. But The 39 Steps hasn’t survived in popular memory because it is in black-and-white and is often difficult to understand (mumbling British accents and underdeveloped sound-mixing). Modern film viewers will have seen at least Psycho (1960),Vertigo (1958), and Rear Window (1954), or some combination of the Hitchcock essentials, but only the true enthusiasts–fewer and fewer they remain–will see The 39 Steps. My suggestion is to see it, regardless.
Read the rest of this entry…
- Mark Pinkert
An overwrought pastiche of Hitchcock that makes less sense and renders its protagonist far less plausible the longer it goes on. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing
I’m “biast” (con): haven’t been a fan of Xavier Dolan’s work so far
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
Tom is at the farm, in the countryside outside Quebec, for the funeral of his boyfriend. Except his lover’s mother, Agathe (Lise Roy), has no idea her dead son was gay, so she believes Tom is simply his friend from the ad agency where they work(ed), and laments that “that whore” whom she believes to be her son’s girlfriend — thanks to the machinations of her other son, Francis (Pierre-Yves Cardinal), who has been “protecting” Mom from the truth by inventing stories — hasn’t shown up.
Writer, director, and star (he plays Tom) Xaviar Dolan »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Every week Amazon rotates a number of their DVD/Blu-ray deals and I’ve grabbed the highlights and linked them below. If you're a Star Trek: Tng fan, these are some of the best prices yet on the remastered seasons on Blu-ray. Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 1 [Blu-ray] - $31.49 (59% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 2 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 3 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 4 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 5 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection (Limited Edition) [Blu-ray] - $105.49 (65% off). Includes 15 iconic films from the acclaimed director’s illustrious career including Psycho, The Birds, Rear Window, Vertigo, North by Northwest and many more. Starring Hollywood favorites such as James Stewart, Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, Paul Newman, Janet Leigh, Anthony Perkins, Tippi Hedren, Sean Connery and Kim Novak. Each film has been digitally restored. »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
Every Sunday Amazon rotates a number of their DVD/Blu-ray deals and I’ve grabbed the highlights and linked them below. Some of these deals won’t last, so if you see something you like don’t wait too long. Also, if you're a Star Trek: Tng fan, these are some of the best prices yet on the fantastic remastered seasons on Blu-ray. Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 1 [Blu-ray] - $31.49 (59% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 2 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 3 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 4 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 5 [Blu-ray] - $45.99 (65% off) Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection (Limited Edition) [Blu-ray] - $105.49 (65% off). Includes 15 iconic films from the acclaimed director’s illustrious career including Psycho, The Birds, Rear Window, Vertigo, North by Northwest and many more. Starring Hollywood favorites such as James Stewart, Cary Grant, »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
News Simon Brew 13 Mar 2014 - 12:10
This one's direct in from our 'you can't make this shit up department'. It was marked urgent, but it's still taken us a week or two to get around to writing it up. We hope you understand.
So: you know the Alfred Hitchcock masterpiece The Birds? The 1963 thriller with Tippi Hedren in the lead role? Well, firstly there's a remake coming (which has been chatted about for a while). Secondly, Michael Bay is producing the remake.
We'll give you a minute.
Shocking twists, suspenseful music, and unbearable anticipation are trademarks of mystery movies, keeping you on the edge of your seat wondering "whodunnit?"
And while movies love toying with the audiences' emotions (and we love them for it!), the real mystery is how filmmakers could make such blatant mistakes.
In case you missed them, here are seven mystery-movie blunders, from classics like "North by Northwest" and "The Usual Suspects." As usual, all photos are courtesy of MovieMistakes.com.
Photo Courtesy of Everett Collection / MGM »
- Jonny Black
True Detective wrapped its celebrated, intensely parsed first season last night with a finale that has invited a wide variety of reactions. Your opinion might hinge on whether or not you found the revelation of The Yellow King — Errol Childress, aka The Lawnmower Man — and his evil to be interesting and a surprisingly uplifting, optimistic ending for Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) and Marty Hart (Woody Harrelson) to be the correct call for the series. The man behind the madness stands behind his choices, although the writer (best known before this for the crime novel Galveston) sounds a bit relieved that »
- Jeff Jensen
Earlier tonight, "True Detective" concluded its first season — and, with it, the stories of Rust Cohle and Marty Hart. I reviewed the finale here, and as a bookend to a conversation we had before the season started, I spoke with the show's creator, Nic Pizzolatto, about the finale and the season as a whole (along with a vague but intriguing hint about season 2, which hasn't been officially ordered yet, but only because I suspect HBO is waiting until they've signed the actors they want before announcing). That's coming up just as soon as I strike you as more of a talker than a doer... The structure of the series means you could have done anything with the ending, up to and including killing the two leads, because you get a clean slate with the next season. Why did you choose this particular way to end the story? Nic Pizzolatto: »
- Alan Sepinwall
A review of tonight's "True Detective" season finale coming up just as soon as I ask you what "scented meat" is... "Once, there was only dark. If you ask me, the light's winning." -Cohle When I interviewed "True Detective" creator Nic Pizzolatto before this season began, I asked him about how he expected to distinguish this show from the abundance of other serial killer dramas filling (or polluting, if you'd rather) primetime at the moment. We've seen by now that even though "True Detective" has many superficial elements and character types and plot devices in common with a lot of those shows (and other crime-adjacent dramas, like an early scene here that evoked the last episode of "Breaking Bad"), it is very much its own thing, and could not easily be compared to the others. "True Detective" and "Hannibal" both featured killers who displayed their victims' bodies with antlers, for instance, »
- Alan Sepinwall
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