The Sugarland Express
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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2005 | 2004

14 items from 2017


Canon Of Film: ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’

16 October 2017 11:51 PM, PDT | Age of the Nerd | See recent Age of the Nerd news »

In this edition of Canon Of Film, we take a look at Steven Spielberg‘s sci-fi classic, ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind‘ for it’s recent 40th anniversary. For the story behind the genesis of the Canon, you can click here.

Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (1977)

Director/Screenplay: Steven Spielberg

Close Encounters of the Third Kind‘ is an accomplishment is tension-building and then, pulling off an ending that actually matched the amount of tension we had. The first part of that, is tough, the second part is damn-near impossible. ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind,’ kinda unfairly gets ranked as that, other sci-fi film Steven Spielberg did after ‘E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial‘, and hell, I might rank it third and put ‘Minority Report‘ above both of them some days, but it doesn’t play like a sci-fi film. It plays more like a conspiracy theory thriller, an Altermanesque multi-narrative with divergent parts, »

- David Baruffi

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‘Spielberg’ Review: Star-Studded HBO Documentary Gets Personal, But You’ll Learn More From His Movies

6 October 2017 10:36 AM, PDT | Indiewire Television | See recent Indiewire Television news »

Steven Spielberg is a director who likes to push himself, but doesn’t like to be pushed. The Oscar-winning helmer says as much himself in Susan Lacy’s new documentary, “Spielberg.”

When discussing “The Color Purple,” Spielberg mentions how he “got in trouble” from film critics for not taking the romantic relationship between Celie (Whoopi Goldberg) and Shug (Margaret Avery) far enough. His explanation: “I might’ve done that had I made the move 10 years later. I was just timid,” he says. “I was a little embarrassed. I just wasn’t the right guy to do that.”

Later, while examining “Schindler’s List,” Steven’s sister Anne Spielberg said, “He had the book for over 10 years, and if anyone pushed him on it, he said, ‘I’ll know when it’s time.’ And then the time came.”

To be fair, he was right — he knew the right time to make »

- Ben Travers

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‘Spielberg’ Review: Star-Studded HBO Documentary Gets Personal, But You’ll Learn More From His Movies

6 October 2017 10:36 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Steven Spielberg is a director who likes to push himself, but doesn’t like to be pushed. The Oscar-winning helmer says as much himself in Susan Lacy’s new documentary, “Spielberg.”

When discussing “The Color Purple,” Spielberg mentions how he “got in trouble” from film critics for not taking the romantic relationship between Celie (Whoopi Goldberg) and Shug (Margaret Avery) far enough. His explanation: “I might’ve done that had I made the move 10 years later. I was just timid,” he says. “I was a little embarrassed. I just wasn’t the right guy to do that.”

Later, while examining “Schindler’s List,” Steven’s sister Anne Spielberg said, “He had the book for over 10 years, and if anyone pushed him on it, he said, ‘I’ll know when it’s time.’ And then the time came.”

To be fair, he was right — he knew the right time to make »

- Ben Travers

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10 Things We Learned From HBO's 'Spielberg' Documentary

6 October 2017 5:45 AM, PDT | Rollingstone.com | See recent Rolling Stone news »

Susan Lacy's documentary Spielberg debuts October 7th on HBO, trots out an all-star team of interviewees – from film critics to famous friends, the Toms (Cruise and Hanks) to God herself, a.k.a. Oprah Winfrey. The voices film buffs will undoubtedly want to hear from the most, however, belong to his fellow "movie brats": Francis Ford Coppola, Brian De Palma, George Lucas and Martin Scorsese, who all talk at length about their heady New Hollywood days alongside Spielberg in the early Seventies. All of them partied together, bounced »

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Star Struck: "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" at 40

9 September 2017 11:34 PM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

In the cinema of Steven Spielberg, to say nothing of the cinema of science fiction, of Hollywood, and of practical effects, Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) is a landmark, like the silhouette of a small mountain in the night skyline. Spielberg’s Duel (1971), carried over from television to movie theaters, was a wisp of a story elevated by its visual dynamism. His theatrical debut, The Sugarland Express (1974), was another 70s American road movie, notable today for the way it combines the appealing grit of the New Hollywood (and of Duel) with a much warmer, more charitable view of America and its culture. It contains the director’s first broken family unit—a key theme in his career—and was his first film scored by John Williams, even if it has almost none of the Williams trademarks. Jaws (1975) was the breakout smash, a lurid bucket-of-blood movie turned into a light day-at-the-beach movie, »

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Why Elizabeth Banks's Inaccurate Comment About Steven Spielberg Majorly Backfired

16 June 2017 11:22 AM, PDT | POPSUGAR | See recent BuzzSugar news »

What was supposed to be an empowering speech about women in film ended up majorly backfiring for Elizabeth Banks. The Pitch Perfect 2 director was the recipient of the Excellence in Film Award at the annual Crystal + Lucy Awards in La on Tuesday, where she used her moment in the spotlight to discuss gender equality in Hollywood and criticize Steven Spielberg for always casting men as the leads in his films. "We can't do it by ourselves. We need dudes. We need the guys," she said. "It's our responsibility to bring the men along. I went to Indiana Jones and Jaws and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made, and by the way, he's never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don't mean to call your ass out, but it's true." Immediately actress Shari Belafonte, who was sitting in the audience, yelled out "The Color Purple!" Banks »

- Quinn Keaney

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Elizabeth Banks apologises for criticising Steven Spielberg

16 June 2017 4:32 AM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

“I messed up.”

Elizabeth Banks has apologised after she claimed in an awards speech that Steven Spielberg had never directed a film with a female lead.

While collecting the excellence in directing prize at the Woman in Film Crystal + Lucy Awards, Banks said: “I went to Indiana Jones and Jaws and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made… he’s never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don’t mean to call your ass out, but it’s true.”

Banks was criticised for the comments on social media, with many pointing out that several Spielberg films, including The Sugarland Express, The Colour Purple and The Bfg, had actresses in lead roles.

Later Banks posted an apology on Twitter. She wrote:

“I messed up. When referring to Steven Spielberg at the Woman in Film awards, I framed my comments inaccurately. I want to be clear from the start that I take full responsibility for what »

- orlando.parfitt@screendaily.com (Orlando Parfitt)

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Wif Crystal Award Winner Elizabeth Banks Apologizes For Calling Out Steven Spielberg Over Lack Of Female Leads

15 June 2017 4:15 PM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Updated, Thursday, 4:15 Pm: Elizabeth Banks, who called the legendary filmmaker Steven Spielberg out on Tuesday night before 900 people attending the Women in Film Crystal Awards for not directing films with female leads (he has with such films as The Color Purple and The Sugarland Express), has tweeted out an apology for her remarks this afternoon, saying she was wrong and she was sorry for the error. Deadline was first to report the remarks she made while accepting the… »

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Elizabeth Banks Puts Steven Spielberg On Blast For Lack of Female Lead Characters

15 June 2017 7:06 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Elizabeth Banks was in Hollywood last night at the Women in Film Crystal + Lucy Awards to receive an honor for excellence in feature directing, and she used her time on stage to put none other than Steven Spielberg on blast.

Criticizing the director for his lack of female characters in lead roles, Banks said, “I went to ‘Indiana Jones’ and ‘Jaws’ and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made…he’s never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don’t mean to call your ass out, but it’s true.”

Read More: Steven Spielberg Does What He Wants: 6 Things Every Fan Must Know About Hollywood’s Biggest Director

It’s important to note that Banks’ statement isn’t completely true. Spielberg’s theatrical feature debut “The Sugarland Express” features Goldie Hawn in the lead role, while other efforts like “The Color Purple” and “The Bfg” were also centered around lead actresses. »

- Zack Sharf

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Lovers on the Run

21 April 2017 2:01 PM, PDT | FilmSchoolRejects.com | See recent FilmSchoolRejects news »

An exclusive video traces from Bonnie and Clyde to Mickey and Mallory and all stops between.

One of the most tried and true tropes in all of movie history is that of lovers on the run. They can be petty thieves, master criminals, wrongfully-accused innocents, chance acquaintances, fleeing victims, or escaping wards, but whatever the impetus they are two lovers, usually young, who take to the open road to get away from whatever unforgiving lives they come from. Films about lovers on the run differ from other duos in similar situations because no matter how wicked said lovers are, the fact that they are in love always generates empathy from an audience, even if we can’t connect to the impulses or decision-making skills of the characters, we can understand their motivation to avoid capture and stay together no matter what: they’re in love. And yes, sometimes that love is an anchor and sometimes it’s »

- H. Perry Horton

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Goldie Hawn Retrospective to Screen at the Quad Cinema in NYC

11 April 2017 10:01 AM, PDT | Women and Hollywood | See recent Women and Hollywood news »

Goldie Hawn in “Private Benjamin

The upcoming mother-daughter comedy “Snatched” marks Goldie Hawn’s first film since 2002’s “The Banger Sisters.” To celebrate the end of Hawn’s 15-year sabbatical, the Quad will hold a retrospective of the Oscar winner’s films, a press release announced.

The Golden Goldies retrospective will see beloved Hawn films like “Private Benjamin,” “Swing Shift,” “Death Becomes Her,” and “The First Wives Club” screen on 35mm.

“No Hollywood actress in recent memory has come closer than Goldie Hawn to capturing the ebullience and whip-smart comic timing of the great screen comediennes of the ’30s and ’40s, a modern Joan Blondell or Carole Lombard,” the release states. “Though she won an Academy Award for one of her first roles (in 1969’s ‘Cactus Flower’), critics have tended to underestimate the depths of [Hawn’s] talent. The forthcoming film ‘Snatched’ marks her long-awaited return to the screen after a 15-year absence, and we’re celebrating the occasion with a greatest-hits retrospective, a veritable masterclass in the delicate art of cinematic comedy.”

It’s great that Hawn’s contributions to cinema are being recognized. However, while researching the Golden Goldies films as well as Hawn’s entire filmography, we noticed the actress has never worked with a female film director. From what we can tell, she has only collaborated with a woman director once, on a 2013 episode of the kids show “Phineas and Ferb.” Sue Perrotto co-directed the ep.

This is disappointing, but not a complete surprise. Last year Cosmopolitan published a story detailing how many big-name actors have never worked with a woman film director. Among them are Sean Connery, Sylvester Stallone, Ben Stiller, Matt Damon, Tom Cruise, and Tobey Maguire. And to be fair to them and Hawn, there are plenty of actresses who have never appeared in a woman-helmed film. Shailene Woodley, for example, has not appeared in a feature film directed by a woman

Still. We wish both male and female power players would follow Jessica Chastain’s lead. “I’m looking to work with a female filmmaker every year,” she told Variety. “That’s my goal. They’re not given the same opportunities so if I have any influence in choosing a film or a script or finding a director I’m absolutely going to make a difference. That doesn’t mean I’m excluding men — it means I need some balance in my life.”

And she’s achieving it; Chastain has worked with female directors like Kathryn Bigelow, Liv Ullmann, and Susanna White. Her most recent collaboration with a woman director is Niki Caro’s “The Zookeeper’s Wife.”

The Golden Goldies retrospective will be May 6–11 at the Quad in New York City. The featured films and their synopses are below, courtesy of Quad Cinema.

“Death Becomes Her”

Robert Zemeckis, 1992, 104m, U.S., 35mm

Sun May 7 & Mon May 8

When glamorous narcissist Meryl Streep steals her fiancé Bruce Willis, Hawn finds revenge in an elixir of youth (and immortality) supplied by a seductively devilish Isabella Rossellini. Rivalry escalates to murder as Hawn and Streep battle it out in the land of the undead in this cult black comedy about all-consuming vanity.

The First Wives Club

Hugh Wilson, 1996, U.S., 103m, 35mm

Mon May 8

Spite never sleeps in this gleefully vindictive comedy about getting even and the bonds of sisterhood. Hawn stars opposite Bette Midler and Diane Keaton as a once-acclaimed actress plagued by ageism and out for revenge against her ex-husband and his perky new muse. But acrimony eventually gives way to a new sense of liberation, culminating in an ever-endearing rendition of Lesley Gore’s anthem of female independence.

Overboard

Garry Marshall, 1987, U.S., 106m, 35mm

Wed May 10

Wertmüller’s “Swept Away” reimagined as big studio farce, with Hawn’s shrill heiress mistreating blue-collar carpenter Kurt Russell, who then proceeds to enact romantic revenge after she’s afflicted with amnesia. Despite the retrograde sexual politics, the chemistry is palpable and the comic timing immaculate.

Private Benjamin

Howard Zieff, 1980, U.S., 109m, 35mm

Wed May 6 & Thur May 11

After husband Albert Brooks dies on their wedding night, spoiled rich girl Hawn is convinced by military recruiter Harry Dean Stanton to join the U.S. Army, where she comes up against a tough-as-nails C.O. Eileen Brennan. Both Hawn and Brennan were nominated for Academy Awards in this beloved box-office hit.

Seems Like Old Times

Jay Sandrich, 1980, USA, 100m, 35mm

Tue May 10 & Thu May 11

Hawn hits her comedic stride in this irresistible Neil Simon farce as a characteristically zany public defender torn between district attorney husband Charles Grodin and her ex, Chevy Chase, a writer charged with bank robbery. Things escalate towards a fever pitch when she decides to represent him in court.

Shampoo

Hal Ashby, 1975, U.S., 110m, Dcp

Mon May 8 & Wed May 11

The dream team of Ashby, screenwriter Robert Towne, and actor-producer Warren Beatty set their biting farce and undisputed ’70s classic on the eve of Nixon’s 1968 electoral landslide, with over-sexed, in-demand, and increasingly vexed hairdresser Beatty juggling frustrated girlfriend Hawn, taxing client Lee Grant, ex-girlfriend Julie Christie, and potential business partner Jack Warden as America lurches to the right.

The Sugarland Express

Steven Spielberg, 1974, U.S., 110m, 35mm

Sat May 6 & Mon May 8

After losing their baby son to the state, small-time crooks Hawn and William Atherton snatch him right back and go on the run, with seemingly every law enforcement officer in Texas in hot pursuit. Spielberg’s first feature refines the technical mastery of Duel, but Hawn’s performance as an exasperated, manically determined mother gives this picture a more resonant pathos.

Swing Shift

Jonathan Demme, 1984, U.S., 100m, 35mm

Sun May 7 & Thur May 10

When hubby Ed Harris ships off to fight WWII, housewife Hawn finds herself via a factory job — and a fling with hunky trumpet player Kurt Russell. Despite her contentious relationship with her director, Hawn displays her greatest emotional range here, and Demme’s deft touch for humanist comedy shines through. Featuring Christine Lahti, Fred Ward, and Holly Hunter.

Goldie Hawn Retrospective to Screen at the Quad Cinema in NYC was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »

- Rachel Montpelier

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Someone to Watch Over Me: Spielberg and Surveillance

15 March 2017 2:02 PM, PDT | FilmSchoolRejects.com | See recent FilmSchoolRejects news »

Exploring the director’s fascination with spying.

The cinema of Steven Spielberg is one that’s built around fascination and a need to understand. As a director he is an explorer, but not one interested in unearthing grand artifacts, rather one in search of intimate treasures, an explorer of explorers, so to speak, someone to whom the process of discovery is much more interesting than the discoveries themselves.

As such, his films are rife with surveillance, characters spying on or otherwise surreptitiously watching other characters, tracking their behavior, their actions, their being, for the purposes of gathering information, good and bad. Think of the Nazis on the trail of Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark peering over newspapers, or the future crime detectives in Minority Report scanning time for illegalities, or the government scientists after E.T. creeping about suburbia.

Spielberg is constantly exploring surveillance and the various mindsets behind it, and »

- H. Perry Horton

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Cool Stuff: The Ultimate Collection of John Williams Music from Steven Spielberg’s Films

17 February 2017 5:00 AM, PST | Slash Film | See recent Slash Film news »

You’d be hard pressed to find such an iconic pairing of director and composer as Steven Spielberg and John Williams. The two enormous talents have been working together for 42 years now, starting all the way back with The Sugarland Express in 1974 and stretching up through The Bfg last year. The only two Spielberg […]

The post Cool Stuff: The Ultimate Collection of John Williams Music from Steven Spielberg’s Films appeared first on /Film. »

- Ethan Anderton

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Steven Spielberg’s Strange History With ‘Cruising’

15 February 2017 11:26 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Back in the early 1970s, while George Lucas was immortalizing the “cruising” culture of teens and their cars in “American Graffiti,” his future frequent collaborator Steven Spielberg was exploring a different kind. Nearly a decade before director William Friedkin created a scandal with the Al Pacino-starring “Cruising” (released 37 years ago today), the wunderkind filmmaker—who has won over generations of audiences by evoking a childlike sense of wonder—almost made his leap from TV to features with the most adult-themed project imaginable.

It all started with producer Philip D’Antoni, who had won an Oscar for the 1971 drug-bust saga “The French Connection” and was looking for a filmmaker to helm another New York City-set crime project. He had just bought the rights to the novel “Cruising,” written by The New York Times feature writer Gerald Walker, in which an undercover cop descends into the leather bars of Greenwich Village as he tracks a homosexual murderer. »

- Michael Gingold

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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2005 | 2004

14 items from 2017


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