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“All That Jazz” is perhaps the best feel-good, feel-bad, semi-autobiographical musical about death you will ever see. It’s also probably the only one. Bob Fosse’s gleefully morbid musical takes on his own impending death, inspired by his real-life hospitalization due to the exhaustion he suffered while directing "Chicago" on stage and editing "Lenny" for the big screen. It's honest, brutal, daring, endlessly creative and a bona fide masterpiece from that golden age we call '70s Hollywood. Die-hard fans of "All That Jazz," this writer included, had a lot to be joyful about this year, since The Criterion Collection recently released a gorgeous Blu-ray transfer of the film, along with a treasure trove of documentaries. If that wasn’t enough, Criterion’s YouTube account also posted a visual essay on Fosse’s non-linear editing style from Rogerebert.com editor Matt Zoller Seitz. The essay was supposed to be included on the Blu-ray, »
- Oktay Ege Kozak
The Criterion Blu-ray edition of Bob Fosse’s iconic 1979 showbiz drama All That Jazz hit shelves recently, but for diehard fans, there's even more Fosse-related goodness that didn't make it onto the disc. Over on RogerEbert.com, Vulture’s Matt Zoller Seitz writes about how his video essay about the editing of the film was cut by Criterion over concerns about rights clearances. Though a legal challenge was unlikely, Seitz says the video was axed because "if one did happen, and if Criterion either went to court and lost or decided to fold before it came to that, they'd have to physically recall all the discs and reprint them with a reedited version of my piece (or without the piece). And that would be very expensive." Thanks to the power of the internet, you can watch "Fosse Time" in full right here. »
- Anna Silman
All That Jazz is a masterpiece. The film transcends genre, as it’s a perfect blend of musical, dark comedy, biopic and fantasy. It’s a self-portrait, really, of co-writer and director Bob Fosse, and it’s made all the more impressive by the fact that it marked the second to last feature film from the man who had already helmed films like Cabaret, Sweet Charity, and Damn Yankees—talk about going out with a bang. It’s a seminal piece of cinema that is both wildly entertaining and introspective, ruminating on life and death in unique fashion, and the film has now been given the grand Criterion Collection treatment. It’s an absolute must-own for any serious film fan. Read my full All That Jazz Criterion Blu-ray review after the jump. The Film All That Jazz is largely based on the life of Fosse himself, drawing inspiration from the »
- Adam Chitwood
By Anjelica Oswald
The Academy has a long and complex relationship with musicals, particularly with their ability to secure best picture nominations. The best picture nomination for Les Miserables (2012) at the 85th Academy Awards marked the first time since Chicago’s (2002) nomination and win that a musical was nominated in that category, and as of this moment, there aren’t many options that could break into the category this year.
Since premiering at Toronto, The Last 5 Years — the film adaption of the off-broadway musical written by Jason Robert Brown — has been receiving decent reviews but nothing that would propel it to best picture status. The Hollywood Reporter’s David Rooney said both Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan bring “confidence and depth of feeling” to their songs and “shift back and forth between rom-com breeziness and full-blown passion, be it the soaring highs or the heartsick lows” with ease, »
- Anjelica Oswald
The new issue of Cineaste is out, featuring interviews with Joaquim Pinto (What Now? Remind Me) and Andrew Rossi (Ivory Tower). Also in today's roundup of news and views: Henry K. Miller on 1963 as a watershed year for film criticism; an interview with Armond White; Michael Koresky on Terence Davies; David Bordwell looks back on the evolution of archives; Fabrice du Welz (Alleluia) revisits a moment in Stanley Kubrick's Barry Lyndon; R. Emmet Sweeney writes about Jacques Tourneur's Out of the Past; Bob Fosse on All That Jazz; a trailer for a David Lynch exhibition—and more. » - David Hudson »
Recently taking stock of his career, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu began to wonder if he might have gotten stuck in a creative rut of his own making.
“It was like I was on a ladder, and I was getting a little too comfortable,” says the 51-year-old filmmaker as he holds out two clenched fists, miming the grip on that ladder. “I was just doing my work. It was a habit. I was stuck, half out of fear and half out of safety. And I said to myself, ‘I’m going to let go of the ladder.’ ”
For Inarritu, letting go meant taking a stab at his first full-fledged comedy, albeit one with a strong undercurrent of existential despair. In the director’s self-reflexive “Birdman,” Michael Keaton stars as an actor once famous for playing a superhero, now trying to save his »
- Scott Foundas
This week’s new Blu-ray releases include the latest season of one of the most popular shows on TV, a musical classic on Criterion, one of the year’s underseen dark comedies, and more. Check them out below: The Walking Dead: Season 4 [Blu-ray] - $29.99 (63% off) The Walking Dead: Season 4 Limited Edition [Blu-ray] - $79.99 (38% off) The Double [Blu-ray] - $12.26 (59% off) All That Jazz (Blu-ray + DVD) - $35.96 (10% off) Normal Heart [Blu-ray] - $21.24 (15% off) Sons of Anarchy: Season 6 [Blu-ray] - $29.99 (57% off) Blended (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet Combo Pack) - $22.99 (36% off) Belle [Blu-ray] - $19.99 (29% off) Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return [Blu-ray] - $15.00 (50% off)
- Adam Chitwood
All That Jazz (Criterion Collection) I've only seen Bob Fosse's All That Jazz once and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it a lot for its excellent photography, but I'm not sure I feel any need to purchase it. I didn't even ask for a review copy, but I will say were it to come on television I'm pretty sure it would be an easy movie to sink back into. One thing I will add, however, is Roy Scheider crushes this performance; a stand out, dripping with intensity performance that's certainly worth seeing. This new Criterion release comes loaded to the gills, here are the features: New 4K digital restoration, with 3.0 surround DTS-hd Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray Audio commentary featuring editor Alan Heim Selected-scene audio commentary by actor Roy Scheider New interviews with Heim and Fosse biographer Sam Wasson New conversation between actors Ann Reinking and Erzsebet Foldi »
- Brad Brevet
With Venice opening tomorrow, Telluride this weekend and, beginning September 4, Toronto, the "But seriously, folks" fall festival season is finally underway. New York, too, has announced the lineup for its Nyff Convergence program (September 27 and 28). Also in today's roundup of news and views: David Bordwell argues that reading movies as reflections of a presumed zeitgeist is limiting at best; Adrian Martin delves into Alfred Hitchcock's Notorious (1946); Cinema Guild's picked up Lisandro Alonso's Jauja; Hilton Als celebrates Bob Fosse's All That Jazz (1979); Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) is writing a screenplay for a 3D remake of The Shaolin Temple, the 1982 martial arts classic starring Jet Li, for Jason Lin to direct; and more. » - David Hudson »
This week: Sandler and Barrymore go for the hat trick, The Walking Dead and Sons of Anarchy serve up some pain, and an awesome new All That Jazz. ► Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore reunite with their ‘The Wedding Singer’ director Frank Coraci for the indescribably bland Blended. It’s not even awful in an offensive way, just a limp, uninspired way you’ll find difficult to hate because »
- John Law
Moviefone's Top DVD of the Week
What's It About? This 18th century English romance is about Dido Belle (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), a biracial woman raised by her aristocratic great uncle and aunt, Lord and Lady Mansfield. She grows up alongside her cousin Elizabeth (Sarah Gadon) as equals and best friends, but as they come of age, their differences become all too apparent -- to each other and to their would-be suitors. Meanwhile, Lord Mansfield (Tom Wilkinson) is facing a trial as Lord Chief Justice of England that could change the future of slavery. Will Dido find love on her own terms?
Why We're In: It's an elegant period piece perfect for Jane Austen fans, and it's a subtle but effective examination of the intersection of class and race in 18th century England. Mbatha-Raw is fantastic, and director Amma Asante has an excellent eye for detail.
Moviefone's Top Blu-ray of the »
- Jenni Miller
As one person put it to me, "It's nice to have a trade covering, you know, the trades, because we haven't really had that in some time." Indeed, it's fantastic to see our colleagues at Variety dig in and represent the industry as they are with the newly branded "Artisans" initiative, and it's a long, long time coming. It is and has been an underreported element of the business, but I've happily seen that slowly shift in the decade we've been diligently, sometimes obsessively, covering below-the-line here at In Contention. From the word go, we made these artists a priority around here. They have an insight into the process that is always preferable to the soundbyte-prone "stars" of the circuit, and as someone who has always come at this work from that perspective, those chats are typically the most fulfilling to me. As we've forged ahead, we've witnessed other outlets »
- Kristopher Tapley
For a while, Lady Gaga was one of the most fascinating music stars that had come in a while, primarily because of her unapologetic bombast. Too often, though, she may have been written off as “weird”, from her odd fashion decisions, her performance art appearances on TV, and, of course, her music videos. Gaga, née Stefani Germanotta, through her strange videos presents a vision, often of powerful women and the subversion of fame, through each of her music videos. Sometimes straddling the line between film and music video, Lady Gaga, though not always the director of these videos, is always the auteur behind them.
Lady Gaga’s early music videos are nothing if not promotional material, with “LoveGame” and “Poker Face” being, for the most part, entirely generic within the context of her career. It was not perhaps until she employed the use of music video director Jonas Åkerlund that »
- Kyle Turner
James Garner movies on TCM: ‘Grand Prix,’ ‘Victor Victoria’ among highlights (photo: James Garner ca. 1960) James Garner, whose film and television career spanned more than five decades, died of "natural causes" at age 86 on July 19, 2014, in the Los Angeles suburb of Brentwood. On Monday, July 28, Turner Classic Movies will present an all-day marathon of James Garner movies (see below) as a tribute to the Oscar-nominated star of Murphy’s Romance and Emmy-winning star of the television series The Rockford Files. Among the highlights in TCM’s James Garner film lineup is John Frankenheimer’s Monaco-set Grand Prix (1966), an all-star, race-car drama featuring Garner as a Formula One driver who has an affair with the wife (Jessica Walter) of his former teammate (Brian Bedford). Among the other Grand Prix drivers facing their own personal issues are Yves Montand and Antonio Sabato, while Akira Kurosawa’s (male) muse Toshiro Mifune plays a »
- Andre Soares
"All That Jazz," director Bob Fosse’s ode to Bob Fosse, is one of the most kinetic, technically dazzling movie musicals ever made. The film, a thinly-veiled autobiography of Fosse himself, might be remembered as an ego-driven series of Felliniesque set pieces were it not for the shrewd casting of affable, streetwise Roy Scheider as Joe Gideon, the jaded, pill-popping Lothario at the center of the film. Scheider’s innate good humor alleviates his character’s darker inclinations adding up to a memorable portrait of a charismatic megalomaniac. »
- Trailers From Hell
All That Jazz, director Bob Fosse’s ode to Bob Fosse, is one of the most kinetic, technically dazzling movie musicals ever made. The film, a thinly-veiled autobiography of Fosse himself, might be remembered as an ego-driven series of Felliniesque set pieces were it not for the shrewd casting of affable, streetwise Roy Scheider as Joe Gideon, the jaded, pill-popping Lothario at the center of the film. Scheider’s innate good humor alleviates his character’s darker inclinations adding up to a memorable portrait of a charismatic megalomaniac.
The post All That Jazz appeared first on Trailers From Hell.
- TFH Team
It's been so long since we had a link roundup! You were all partying over the long weekend anyway. But we're back to normal. Please to enjoy these fine, discussable or just fun posts around the web...
Leigh Alexander on internet sexism - the dos and don'ts
WSJ Taylor Swift fancies herself a journalist suddenly and writes about the future of fandom, music careers and record sales
Av Club on that potato salad kickstarter
Deadline on new controversial strict rules for documentary eligibility at the Oscars. I understand the arguments against the new ruling but I would also like to caution documentarians to think about what they're asking for. »
- NATHANIEL R
Most people today would likely be shocked to think that in 1972, The Godfather went into the Oscars anything but a sure bet for Best Picture. Aside from Casablanca and Citizen Kane it is recognized as the greatest American film of all time and in hind sight most people forget that not only was it tied for nominations in 1972, but Coppola lost Best Director.
Because hindsight is anything but 20/20 when popular consensus takes over, the narrative of the Hollywood Renaissance is one of Scorsese, Spielberg and Lucas getting snubbed for Taxi Driver, Jaws, Close Encounters, and Star Wars. But looking at the 1970s and the race for Best Director, what you see instead is two directors fighting it out for director of the decade, each earning three nominations.
- Mynt Marsellus
‘Jersey Boys’ movie review: Great music fails to save Clint Eastwood-directed film version of the 2005 Broadway musical (photo: John Lloyd Young as Frankie Valli of the Four Seasons in ‘Jersey Boys’) Clint Eastwood’s semi-historically accurate biopic of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Jersey Boys, is based on the hit 2005 Broadway musical — and it is a crushing bore. But we shall start with the positive: In Eastwood’s film, the music and the performances of the music (which are not the same thing) are great. That is to be expected, as the Jersey Boys movie cast is mostly composed from cast members of the stage show, including Tony winner John Lloyd Young, who happens to look a lot like Frankie Valli and who has a four-plus octave range. Lucky boy. Lloyd Young is also a serviceable actor with a number of (mostly stage) credits that did not require a piercing falsetto. »
- Tim Cogshell
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Aug. 26, 2014
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.95
Roy Scheider (Jaws, Sorcerer) gives the performance of his career as Joe Gideon, whose exhausting work schedule—mounting a Broadway production by day and editing his latest movie at night—and routine of amphetamines, booze, and sex are putting his health at serious risk. Fosse burrows into Gideon’s (and his own) mind, rendering his interior world as phantasmagoric spectacle.
Assembled with visionary editing that makes dance come alive on-screen as never before, and overflowing with sublime footwork by the likes of Ben Vereen (Mama, I Want to Sing), Leland Palmer, Sandahl Bergman (Conan the Barbarian) and the awesomely leggy Ann Reinking, All That Jazz »
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