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This close to the Bates Motel season 3 finale, it still doesn't feel as if anything much is actually happening on the show...
This review contains spoilers.
One unqualified success of Bates Motel is how good it is at the shipping game. No Psycho prequel should be able to make me scream ‘Kiss’ multiples times during any given episode, yet with the juggling of the Dylan/Emma and Norma/Romero pairings, the show is overloading on sexual chemistry right now, in a way that could be frustrating, but kind of works. However, the success of the show’s romantic entanglements throws sharp relief on a major problem that has plagued most of Bates Motel’s third season; there just isn’t that much going on.
For a penultimate episode, Crazy just didn’t feel all that different to anything else this season. Caleb and Chick had some tension, Dylan and Emma were cute, »
Paramount Pictures/Universal Studios
Known as the master of suspense, Hitchcock’s career spanned 60 years, during which he was involved in the making of 50 films. To the misery of all his fans, he’s now dead and buried, never to make another amazing suspense film again. But didn’t you ever wonder what inspired him to make his films just that little bit too creepy in the first place?
Hitchcock’s childhood was a lonely one, and he was harshly treated; his strict Catholic father once sent him to a local police station with a note asking the officer to lock him away for 10 minutes as punishment for behaving badly. His mother, equally as Catholic and strict, used to force him to stand at »
- Rachel Bailey
There was a brief stir in January when composer Harry Gregson-Williams publicly expressed, via Facebook, his surprise at hearing music he didn’t recognize at the premiere of Michael Mann’s thriller “Blackhat” — and at not hearing a lot of score he did write.
The composer says his Facebook post has been blown out of proportion, but admits it was disappointing to see music he toiled over dropped (or replaced) in the final cut. But, he stresses, that’s just part of the game.
“You win some, you lose some,” he says, relaying his early mentor Hans Zimmer’s comment that you haven’t made it as a film composer until you’ve had a score rejected.
Gregson-Williams is simply the latest in a long line of composers who’ve watched scores tossed out and replaced whole-cloth, partially substituted by pre-existing tracks, or mangled beyond recognition. Mann is notorious for »
- Tim Greiving
The Simpsons has a long history of peppering its stories with pop culture references, and some of the show’s finest gags stem from the world of cinema. These have ranged from the briefest of quotes, to full on shot-for-shot parodies and extended episode-long homages.
Most striking in trying to put this list together was the sheer volume of movie references there are to choose from. In pretty much any given episode of The Simpsons, there are at least a couple, with nods to James Bond, 2001: A Space Odyssey and the work of Alfred Hitchcock proving three of the most regular candidates. The tributes to numerous great horror movies in the show’s Treehouse Of Horror episodes could have been used to fill this list all on their own. »
These days, we're used to the marketing hype for a major film building up about two years ahead of release. Visitors to Comic-Con got a preview of Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice, for example, more than two years ahead of its due date. Our collective hunger for a first look at major forthcoming films is such that, it seems, studios are keen to show off their work-in-progress earlier and earlier.
But there are ways of teasing a forthcoming movie without showing a frame of the finished product, which is where the following list comes in. They're all examples of promos that manage to get across the flavour of a future film without going into story details. Some of them were made before a foot of celluloid was exposed, »
This review contains spoilers.
3.7 The Last Supper
A title like The Last Supper is pretty damn ominous. Knowing it going in to the episode creates certain expectations, and in the build-up to the final dinner scene the tension just kept mounting. But as the makeshift family at the heart of the show sit and eat together it became clear that the title was a promise; but not for this episode. Because even without any explicit set-up for the chaos to come, the feeling that this may be the last moment of peace for these characters weighed heavily over the final minutes. And as Norman enters his mother’s room and caressed her as she slept, I started to think that maybe this was a chance for us to breathe before whatever comes next.
All that »
Above: a theater advertising Billy Wilder’s Ace in the Hole (1951).If there’s one thing I love almost as much as movie posters (at least as far as the world of movie advertising goes) it is the movie theater marquee. I am particularly attracted to marquees in their more elaborately designed and outlandish incarnations, but I am also fond of photographs of marquees simply as a record of a moment in time when a particular film was out in the world. (One of my personal favorite Movie Poster of the Week posts was this examination of a 1930 photo of Times Square theater signs.)Over the past few years on Tumblr I have been collecting some of the best images of movie theater signage through the ages and today I am launching Movie Poster of the Day’s sister blog Movie Marquees. In Maggie Valentine’s The Show Starts on »
- Adrian Curry
The Shout! Factory video company has launched an excellent new streaming site, www.shoutfactorytv.com that features dozens of classic TV episodes and cult movies every month. Best of all, you can view them for free! This month we recommend the 1970 Amicus horror flick "The House That Dripped Blood", a 1970 anthology of terror tales by Robert Bloch, author of "Psycho" and starring Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Ingrid Pitt and John Pertwee. Click here to view. »
- email@example.com (Cinema Retro)
Occasionally, a movie villain will pause for a moment to deliver a brief story or anecdote. And often, these apparently incidental tales tell us a lot about an antagonist's state of mind, experiences or warped worldview.
We've compiled a selection of 20 here. Some of them are blackly funny. Many are disturbing. One or two are even moving. The first one's very strange. All of them bring something unique to each particular film in which they appear, and all of them are laced with a delicious hint of menace.
20. Xander - Enemies Closer (2013)
"When I was a little boy at my grandmama's place, she had a lovely goose. I named her Edith, after the French singer Edith Piaf..."
We begin with a delightfully weird story from Peter Hyams' 2013 thriller, »
This review contains spoilers.
3.6 Norma Louise
Bates Motel has always been a tricky show to judge. Is it meant to be campy horror in the vein of the original films or twisted family psychodrama? Sometimes it succeeds at both, other times it fails miserably and that hit-and-miss nature makes it hard to tell which of the show’s split personalities is the important one. This week’s episode, however, was a huge success on both fronts and reminded me that on this show, for every Arcanum Club there’s a moment like the one that ended Norma Louise.
Caleb has always been fascinating because of Bates Motel’s history of clumsy, one-note villains (still very much in effect with Bob Paris). I really hoped there would be some deeper complexity to Caleb, »
Thanks to the lacklustre Arcanum Club plot, somewhat aptly, Bates Motel is appearing more and more schizophrenic in season 3...
This review contains spoilers.
3.5 The Deal
Bates Motel often feels like two separate shows existing in tandem within the same hour. On the one hand we have the affecting, beautifully acted Psycho prequel that focuses on the relationships of the deeply fractured Bates family. On the other hand, we have the Twin Peaks-evoking horror/thriller centring on the hellhole that is White Pine Bay. One of those shows is great, the other not so much; and possibly one of the biggest problems with Bates Motel is that it has never convincingly made the two feel like they comfortably belong together.
Roughly at the point this week where sinister gang member #237 ran Norma off the road and started spouting crap about how Romero ‘Can’t save you; he can’t even »
No matter how you feel about “Gone Girl,” there’s no denying that Gillian Flynn’s second bigscreen adaptation is a relative disappointment. While the raw ingredients — thick with serial killings, satanic cults, true-crime obsessives and twisted family secrets — certainly make “Dark Places” deserving of its title, the mystery itself can’t hold a candle to the much higher-profile David Fincher pic that sparked the town’s wave of Flynn-terest (though rights were sold as far back as 2010, the greenlight waited till “Girl” went). On the bright side, with Charlize Theron as its damaged-goods heroine, this more routine Kansas-set chiller should still rake in some decent cash for the U.S. distrib duo of A24 and DirecTV, which still haven’t dated the release.
Despite whatever forces have delayed “Dark Places” on the domestic front, where such “gritty” R-rated offerings once earned between $60 million and $120 million starring the likes of »
- Peter Debruge
Creating cool fight scenes has never been easier in the current age of filmmaking. Special effects have evolved to the point where the eye can rarely discriminate between what is real and what isn’t, while choreography is much more sophisticated than it was in the past, and there’s no shortage of cash to throw at action films to get everything done just right. So with all of these advances going in modern film’s favor, why aren’t more fight scenes memorable?
Rumors swirled around the Toronto International Film Festival as Eastern Promises debuted in 2007, with word that director David Cronenberg had introduced perhaps the most perplexing fight scene into the collective consciousness of movie fans everywhere. No, I’m not referencing the opening to the film, where a graphic throat-slashing takes place, but a brutal knife fight that takes place later on. A film ostensibly about the »
- Colin Biggs
You can't choose your neighbors in an apartment complex, and sometimes you get stuck next to a noisy, mean-spirited soul who makes you want to look in the classified ads before you even finish unpacking. Alison Parker has some rowdy neighbors around her new Brooklyn apartment, but what disturbs her the most is that nobody else lives on her floor. And that's only one of many creepy elements to be found in 1977's The Sentinel, and fans of the cult classic fright film should be excited to hear that Scream Factory has announced they will release The Sentinel on Blu-ray this summer.
From Scream Factory: "We are beyond thrilled today to report that we will be bringing the 1977 cult classic chiller The Sentinel to Blu-ray for the first time in the U.S. and Canada!
Planned release is for August. This often underrated, overlooked and shocking film from Director Michael Winner »
- Derek Anderson
Helen Mirren is perhaps the only actress of her generation who can come close to matching Meryl Streep in terms of still finding quality film roles and delivering spellbinding performances. This week, she takes on the role of a real-life Austrian immigrant, seeking justice for her family by reclaiming a lost piece of art stolen during WWII, in the drama Woman in Gold (2015). Early reviews have been mixed, yet Mirren, as usual, has been showered with praise for another stunning portrayal from the Oscar winner.
For all the nuance that Mirren no doubt brings to Woman in Gold, it surely won’t be able to hold a candle to her finest post-Queen role, as the wife of the master of suspense in Hitchcock (2012). Based on the book by Stephen Rebello, Hitchcock chronicles Alfred Hitchcock’s (Anthony Hopkins) long journey in bringing the now-classic Psycho (1960) to the screen. The film depicts »
- Frank Calvillo
Article by Jim Batts, Dana Jung, and Tom Stockman
The Birds screens at Schlafly Bottleworks (7260 Southwest Ave.- at Manchester – Maplewood, Mo 63143) Thursday, April 2nd at 7pm. It is a benefit for Helping Kids Together (more details about this event can be found Here)
This gives us a perfect excuse to re-run this top ten list from March of 2012. Alfred Hitchcock directed 54 feature films between 1925 and 1976, and here, according to We Are Movie Geeks, are his ten best:
Frenzy, Hitchcock’s next to last feature film from 1972, represented a homecoming of sorts since it was the first film completely shot in his native England since his silents and early ” talkies ” in the 1930’s. By dipping into the then somewhat new territory of serial killers, he took full advantage of the new cinema freedoms and truly earned his ‘ R ‘ MPAA rating. Perhaps ole’ ” Hitch ” wanted to give those young up-and-coming »
- Movie Geeks
For the sixth consecutive year, thousands of movie lovers from around the globe descended upon Hollywood for the TCM Classic Film Festival. The 2015 festival took take place Thursday, March 26 – Sunday, March 29, 2015 and no matter your favorite genre, attendees were treated to an extensive lineup of great movies, appearances by legendary stars and filmmakers, fascinating presentations and panel discussions, special events and more.
Friday night’s screening of Apollo 13 was definitely one of the most exciting events of the festival. Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Ron Howard’s impressive telling of the nearly doomed mission of the 3 astronauts aboard Apollo 13 looked as spectacular as the first time audiences saw it 20 years ago.
Host and long-time Nasa enthusiast Alex Trebek was on hand to introduce the film, as well as introduce fans in attendance to the real Captain Jim Lovell (played in the film by Tom Hanks). Also joining them on »
- Melissa Thompson
Read More: Watch: Title Sequences: The Leap from Alfred Hitchcock to David Fincher Filmmakers looking to strengthen their visual language skills should definitely take notes while watching the first season of BorgusFilms' "Hitch20," now streaming in its entirety on Youtube. Given the abundance of critical analysis that exists around the Master of Suspense's lengthy filmography, "Hitch20" takes a new and exciting approach to breaking down the movie icon's visual style -- by focusing exclusively on the twenty episodes of television Hitchcock personally directed. Most filmmakers are familiar with the visual compositions that makeup the shower scene in "Psycho" or the crop-duster chase in "North by Northwest," but what about the moments in various episodes of "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" that also detail Hitchcock's filmic language? Luckily "Hitch20" and its various special guests, including William C. Martell (screenwriter »
- Zack Sharf
1. The Shining (1980)
Back in 1980 legendary director Stanley Kubrick unleashed his iconic horror effort ‘The Shining’. Based on the novel by Stephen King, with plenty of artistic license being taken, the movie was yet another fine example of this director’s absolute mastery in being able to work and direct movies from different genres. Full of terrifying iconic imagery and sequences such as the twins in the hallway, the hag in the bath, the blood-letting elevators and of course the axe-wielding Jack Nicholson’s much parodied entrance through the bathroom door.
2. Psycho (1960)
Alfred Hitchcock’s classic slasher movie ‘Psycho’ is arguably one of the most influential horrors of all time. Another literary adaptation the movie was as shocking as it was successful especially considering its release 55 years ago. The movie was particularly highlighted by the surprising early demise of the apparent leading lady in the iconic shower scene and the even more unexpected finale. »
- Phil Wheat
“Can I bring the lovebirds, Mitch? they haven’t harmed anyone”
The Birds screens at Schlafly Bottleworks (7260 Southwest Ave.- at Manchester – Maplewood, Mo 63143) next Thursday, April 2nd at 7pm. It is a benefit for Helping Kids Together
Someone recently asked me why the birds in Hitchcock’s The Birds suddenly decide to attack people. Why indeed? That’s what everyone wants to know. Is there some connection to the middling soap opera we see played out over the first hour of the 1963 film and their attacks? Is it because they are fed up with all the pollution and people shooting at them all the time? Or is it just because they can?
Maybe Hitchcock just wanted to make a scary movie. He might ask you to imagine yourself in the restaurant and suddenly a bloodied man staggers in and says “The birds are attacking and we don’t know why! »
- Tom Stockman
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