17 items from 2017
Fred Weintraub, producer of the Bruce Lee cult classic Enter the Dragon, has died. He was 88. His daughter Sandra confirmed that he died March 5 at his Pacific Palisades home of Parkinson's complications. In the early '60s, Weintraub opened the Bitter End coffee house in New York and helped launch the careers of notables such as Bob Dylan, Woody Allen, Barbara Streisand, Richard Pryor, Lily Tomlin, George Carlin, Neil Diamond, Stevie Wonder, Joni Mitchell, Joan Rivers… »
Weintraub began his career in the entertainment business in the late 1950s when he started a jazz club in Cuba shortly before Fidel Castro came to power. In the early 1960s, he opened the Bitter End coffee house in Greenwich Village and booked such notables as Bob Dylan, Richard Pryor, Neil Diamond, Woody Allen, Frank Zappa, Lily Tomlin, Stevie Wonder, Joni Mitchell, George Carlin, Barbara Streisand, Joan Rivers, and Cheech and Chong.
The goateed and pony-tailed Weintraub hosted a live weekly television show, “Live At The Bitter End,” with his St. Bernard dog at his feet.
Weintraub became the VP of Creative Services at Warner Bros. in the late 1960s and served on the studio’s board of directors. He was involved »
- Dave McNary
“Diamond Cartel,” directed by Salamat Mukhammed-Ali (“The Whole World at Our Feet”), preserves one final performance from one of Hollywood’s finest, Peter O’Toole. While it may seem sort of surreal to see Mr. O’Toole go from the wooing Katherine Hepburn to wielding a machine gun, it’s actually quite comedic.
In addition to the eight-time Oscar nominee, “Diamond Cartel” stars Emmy Award-winning actor Armand Assante and includes appearances by Michael Madsen. Pretty stacked. Additionally, the film showcases the talents of martial arts superstar Bolo Yeung (“Enter The Dragon”), Japanese TV and film veteran Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa and Japanese-American 11-time professional kickboxing world champion Don “The Dragon” Wilson. No, really stacked.
Read More: Watch: Rare Behind-the-Scenes Footage from ‘Lawrence of Arabia’
The film is set to have its theatrical release on March »
- Kerry Levielle
Stunt-man turned director Chad Stahelski has certainly had a good start to his burgeoning career as an action auteur. John Wick began what is now in the process of becoming a hugely successful franchise. Two films in, with a booming and expansive box office appeal. Next up for him is, all being well (as this project has long gestated and had directors come and go, year on year) is a remake of Highlander.
Now I should state two things now. Firstly, I love Highlander. The first film is an underrated piece of brilliance. From the visuals, to the music to the sheer style of it, Highlander is one of a kind. It then spawned four more films (none of which were good) and a TV show, as well as comics, anime and more. »
- Amie Cranswick
Moving into the 1990’s Golden Harvest would once again make an attempt for American success. Unfortunately their first American made film of the decade was the poor China O Brien (1990), an attempt by Golden Harvest to launch star Cynthia Rothrock as a star in her native country. Golden Harvest had previously worked well with Rothrock on the Hong Kong productions of Yes Madam (1985), Millionaires Express (1986), Above the Law (1986), Inspector Wears Skirts (1988) and The Blond Fury (1989). From a business stand point it makes sense why they would choose Rothrock to front China O Brien. The main issue is how director Robert Clouse chooses to shoot the action, showing that he hadn’t learned anything since his Enter the Dragon days, if...
[Read the whole post on screenanarchy.com...] »
John Wick: Chapter Two launches in cinemas today. The film continues the story started in John Wick and follows our eponymous hitman now that he is out of retirement. It really is a fantastic sequel, equal to, if not better than, the first.
We were lucky enough to speak to the director of the film Chad Stahelski and he gave us an incredible amount of insight into all stages of the production. Here he talks through everything you could possibly want to know about the production. Be warned, there are spoilers below:
On Getting the Right Guy…
- Kat Hughes
16 February 2017 11:12 AM, PST | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »
The future is indeed female in Genesis, a new sci-fi dramedy from Audrey Evans.
“Imagine an individual cloning herself — it’s sort of an immaculate conception, if you will,” explains Meredith Baxter in a clip of the dramedy, which explores the extinction of the male species and the promise of an all-female society.
Robert Romanus, Suzanne Westenhoefer and Dana Goldberg are also set to star in the film, which is described as “a B movie with style” and “Orange is the New Black meets Pulp Fiction meets Enter the Dragon.” It is currently raising funds on Indiegogo.
Evans — a seasoned editor who »
- Ashley Lee
John Wick: Chapter 2, 2017.
Directed by Chad Stahelski.
Starring Keanu Reeves, Riccardo Scamarcio, Ruby Rose, Common, Claudia Gerini, Lance Reddick, Tobias Segal, Ian McShane, Bridget Moynahan, John Leguizamo, Peter Stormare, Laurence Fishburne, and Franco Nero.
After returning to the criminal underworld to repay a debt, John Wick discovers that a large bounty has been put on his life.
Action cinema is in a sort of dirge at the moment where geriatric superstars – Liam Neeson, Denzel Washington, Kevin Costner – fight valiantly against disposable henchman while being cut to shreds in the edit room because to truly believe them as dangerous would be to take too big a leap of faith. Enter real life Dorian Grey, Keanu Reeves, appearing once more as he did with Neo way back in 1999 with John Wick, a character in a similar mold to those mentioned – vengeance induced by death (of his dog) – who was brought »
- Amie Cranswick
I left John Wick: Chapter 2 with a bloody nose and a limp that refuses to be shaken off. It’s a ballet of bullets, a grand opera of all things “fu.” Alongside a few others, I had the pleasure of talking with director and veteran stunt man Chad Stahelski about Keanu, Chan and forcing friends to fall downstairs.
See Also: Read our review of John Wick: Chapter 2
Was That The Most Difficult Scene (an opening sequence involving a “gang bang of cars” as Wick attempts to steal back his own) To Coordinate?
Actually no, it was pretty easy. When you come from that background-one of my best friends Darren Prescott, our stunt coordinator for that-we started doing stunt work way back in 1992 and he did a lot of the Bourne films. »
- Amie Cranswick
John Wick: Chapter 2 begins a short time after the events of the first film, with John (Keanu Reeves) now retrieving his car that was stolen at the outset. This is merely an excuse for us to see John destroy nameless thugs, and that he does. One could argue that this entire film is exactly that, and one would be right. But John Wick is so much more than just a living weapon of few words — he’s a tragic figure who has suffered deeply and can’t escape his past, with pain and frustration behind his eyes. All that he has is all that he is now, a lost soul with no purpose. After the first film, it would seem that he may be able to find a little peace now, but to quote Westworld (or Romeo and Juliet): these violent delights have violent ends. Peace is nowhere »
- Mike Hassler
John Wick is a movie that seemingly came out of nowhere in 2014 and took everyone by surprise. It had been a long time since anyone had seen an action movie of that caliber grace the big screen and there were a lot of elements that made it work. For one, it had been years since audiences saw Keanu Reeves do anything like this, and it is very clear that this is right in his wheelhouse. But perhaps the real thing that makes John Wick, and the upcoming John Wick: Chapter 2 so great is director Chad Stahelski.
As a man who has been working as a second-unit director and stuntman in the industry for more than two decades, he understands action and how to execute it. That is why Lionsgate's John Wick was the perfect vehicle for him to jump into the world of directing and why John Wick: Chapter 2 »
Ryan Lambie Feb 8, 2017
Released in 1999, Pokemon: The First Movie was a global hit, but its meaning changed radically on its journey from Japan to the Us...
What's the all-time highest-grossing anime movie at the American box-office? Hayao Miyazaki's acclaimed Spirited Away? Nope. Unsettling cyberpunk masterpiece Ghost In The Shell? Not even close. Katsuhiro Otomo's seminal Akira? It didn't even crack the top 20.
See related How Pokemon survived 90s Pokemania Pokemon: how the Us version changed the first film's meaning Pokemon Go: 25 tips for success in the mobile app
As you've probably gathered from the headline above, Japan's most financially successful animated export was Pokemon: The First Movie, released in 1999 to a huge opening weekend. Yet unlike Spirited Away, Ghost In The Shell, Akira or most of the other cross-over anime success stories from the far east, the Pokemon movie was hardly met with critical acclaim; most writers dismissed »
It took decades, but Bruce Lee if finally getting some respect in high brow circles. The Museum of Modern Art in New York City is presenting "Eternal Bruce Lee", a retrospective of his major films January 27-February 4. Lee died in 1973 at age 32 just after completing filming on his greatest success, "Enter the Dragon", the production of which is chronicled in Cinema Retro issue #35. Click here for details. »
- email@example.com (Cinema Retro)
The Apex Gallery in Bury Saint Edmunds England, is hosting a special showing of photographs honoring the life and work of legendary martial arts master, Bruce Lee. The show is scheduled to run from January 26 to March 25, 2017. The gallery will feature memorabilia from his final film, “Enter the Dragon,” and photographic memories from “The Little Dragon.”
On February 13, 2017, there will also be a special, exclusive showing of “Enter the Dragon,” which includes a special showing of memorabilia not included during the rest of the instalment. The event begins at 6:00Pm, with the screening scheduled to begin at 7:30. Prices of tickets are £12.50 and you must be at least 18 years old to attend the event. You can purchase tickets here!
Admission to the event is free and the gallery is open from 10Am-4Pm Mondays through Saturdays. You can find out more information about the event here!
(Source: The Apex »
- Lydia Spanier
Trailer compilations have, in recent year, become big business, they have also become increasingly important in terms of keeping trailers alive. In this time of streaming and digital downloads, where films come sans trailers and extras, there’s no real way – beyond these types of compilations – of seeing interesting trailers for obscure films you may not be aware of.
Titles such as Trailer War, Trailers from Hell, the UK’s very own Grindhouse Trailer Classics, Drive-In Delirium, Attack of the 80s, and 42nd Street Forever have not only kept the trailers alive in a physical format, but also allowed new audiences to discover new (old) films. Keeping up this tradition is Full Moon, who have released a number of trailer compilations already as part of the Grindhouse line – mainly focussing on the sleazier end of genre cinema like »
- Phil Wheat
Warner Bros. soon got onboard with the company, entering into a co-financing partnership, with RatPac that replaced Legendary as Warner’s key investor. RatPac operates as a production company and financing entity, and has a $450 million deal that covers 75 pictures with Warner Bros. over four years.
“Warner Brothers is the greatest partner anyone could ever have,” Ratner says. “It’s truly a family business there, and I know that sounds weird, because they’re a massive corporation, but you get that vibe with them, starting with Kevin Tsujihara. Warner’s has always been like that, and they still operate like that. It’s a very friendly, encouraging place to make movies. I’m hoping to direct my next picture there.”
And the feeling is mutual. “We’ve known and worked with Brett for years, »
- Nick Clement
Brett Ratner loves cinema. When speaking with the 47-year-old filmmaker, it’s abundantly clear that movies are unspooling through his veins, and if our discussions felt more like two movie buffs just enjoying great conversation, it’s because of his general enthusiasm for the medium.
“It was always my dream to direct movies,” he says, rarely pausing for a breath. “I always knew I’d do it. I had the drive and the desire. I was determined. But I never knew I’d be making movies of this size, stuff like the ‘Rush Hour’ films and ‘X-Men’ and ‘Red Dragon.’ When I was in film school, I knew I wanted to make entertaining movies. But I don’t think I could have prepared for how fast my rise would be. I was 26 when I got my first film.”
But it was before he’d set foot on a movie set »
- Nick Clement
17 items from 2017
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