Putney Swope
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3 items from 2016


Robert Downey Jr.: How Iron Man Started His Career By Playing a Dog

4 April 2016 12:01 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Captain America: Civil War” opens on May 6, marking Robert Downey Jr.’s sixth appearance as Tony Stark/Iron Man. The character has been good to Downey (who celebrates his 51st birthday on Monday). Last August, Forbes announced that he had earned an estimated $80 million that year, his third consecutive year as the world’s highest-paid actor.

Audiences love success stories, but Downey’s saga seems too far-fetched, even by Hollywood standards. He went from being a promising young actor to an unemployable outcast. But then he rebounded to become a mega-star, respected by the same peers who once shunned him. It’s a tale of redemption and financial rewards, but it’s also a tale of artistry. Because even at the lowest ebb, nobody doubted his talent.

At age 5, he made his film debut, billed as Bob Downey in the 1970 “Pound,” directed by his father, Robert Downey Sr., who was »

- Tim Gray

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Movie Poster of the Week: “The American Dreamer” and Jay Shaw’s Top Ten American Posters

19 February 2016 5:27 AM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

All this month, Mubi is presenting the exclusive worldwide online debut of L.M. Kit Carson and Lawrence Schiller’s 1971 documentary The American Dreamer, a fascinating and revelatory portrait of Dennis Hopper during the making of his legendary folly The Last Movie.For the film’s theatrical screenings at the Alamo Drafthouse in San Francisco and Austin, Mondo creative director Jay Shaw designed a new poster for the film:When we were asked to create a poster for The American Dreamer I was instantly overwhelmed. I’ve seen the film several times and absolutely love it. It’s a candid and endearing portrait of Dennis Hopper’s maniacal creative process. Lawrence Schiller, the film’s [co-] director and acclaimed photojournalist, sent a collection of photographs he’d taken during production back in 1971. When I saw these wonderful photos I realized there was nothing we’d be able to illustrate that would capture the »

- Adrian Curry

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The Greatest Kidnapping Comedies of All-Time

4 February 2016 11:39 AM, PST | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

When asked about their inclination for kidnapping comedies, Joel Coen recently told Variety, “I’m not sure why. They are all very different. We should probably give that a rest.” He and Ethan Coen are responsible for three of the finest kidnapping comedies ever made, and are perhaps adding a fourth to their résumé this weekend.

The addition of comedy into a crime story is hardly a new prospect, but the kidnapping comedy is a wonderfully specific little nook in this often darkly funny cinematic world. The Coens practically own this genre — if you can call it a genre –having covered and re-covered it in such uniquely different ways.

Their fourth kidnapping comedy (although I doubt they would refer to any of these films as such), Hail, Caesar!, follows a Hollywood studio fixer (Josh Brolin) whose work life begins to unravel after the kidnapping of one of his biggest stars, »

- Tony Hinds

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3 items from 2016


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