14 items from 2016
Author: Cai Ross
Christmastime is here. Presumably you already have chestnuts roasting on an open fire, a turkey and some mistletoe, and your first screaming argument about who’s cooking for who and where. ’Tis the season for such timeless traditions, and along with a collective craving for manifestly ill-judged food combinations and a moratorium on our disapproval of comedy knitwear, classic Christmas movies are now a vital part of the great yuletide experience.
But what precisely is a classic Christmas movie? Timeless vintage offerings like Holiday Inn and Miracle on 34th Street are stuffed from titles to credits with all things Christmassy, yet you’ll also find films like Casablanca and The Great Escape on many festive film lists, which have nothing more to do with Christmas than Cannibal Holocaust.
Even the single greatest ‘Christmas Movie’ of all time, It’s a Wonderful Life has a pretty tenuous connection with the Holiday Season, »
- Cai Ross
Liam Hoofe reviews the seventh episode of South Park season 20, ‘Oh, Jeez’…
To say things have changed in 2016 would be something of an understatement. Donald Trump’s surprise election victory over Hillary Clinton on Tuesday night left the world reeling and the next few years now look incredibly uncertain on both sides of The Atlantic. One thing that hasn’t changed however, is South Park‘s incredible ability to deliver hilarious and perfectly timed social commentary.
Trump’s election victory was a surprise to us all and whilst most of us are still unsure as to do what to do about it Trey Parker and Matt Stone performed the phenomenal feat of managing to change some of their episode to be relevant in the space of 24 hours. Originally titled ‘The Very First Gentleman’ the show yesterday changed it’s title to ‘Oh, Jeez’ in response to the result and went about quickly fitting the result, »
- Liam Hoofe
The red carpet sometimes turns into a venue of one-upmanship, because even celebrities struggle to be remembered when they’re all concentrated in one spot. At this weekend’s premiere of Keeping Up With The Joneses, for example, Gal Gadot called dibs on the stories from the set, telling The Hollywood Reporter that “[i]t was always who was going to make who laugh first, who is going to have the best punch line, who is going to break the take because they burst out laughing.” Her co-star Isla Fisher then humble bragged about living next door to Eric Idle, who once saw fit to dole out a Life Of Brian quote.
Jon Hamm, who plays the spy husband to Gadot’s secret-agent character, also told a story about one of his neighbors, whose life he just happened to save. Hamm recalled the time his 90-year-old neighbor fell from a ...
- Danette Chavez
Palin posts on Facebook about his friend of fifty years.
Jones, 74, who directed Monty Python’s Life Of Brian [pictured] and The Meaning Of Life, and co-directed Monty Python And The Holy Grail with Terry Gilliam, is suffering from primary progressive aphasia, a form of dementia, which affects his ability to communicate.
Palin and Jones have been friends and workmates for over fifty years. Palin said: “The progress of his dementia has been painful to watch and the news announced yesterday that he has a type of aphasia which is gradually depriving him of the ability to speak is about the cruellest thing that could befall someone to whom words, ideas, arguments, jokes and stories were once the stuff of life.”
Palin revealed »
Comedy is very subjective but a great comedy will stand the test of time and continue to make generation after generation laugh. Some people like their humor dry, while some like it shocking and offensive. Whatever your taste, good humor will always be out there. Here are 20 great comedies that will no doubt continue to be appreciated in the future.
20. Fargo: The Cohen Brothers funniest black comedy may not be for everyone's taste, because it is quite violent. However, underneath all that is a droll observation on the human condition, highlighted by a winning performance from Frances McDormand as a very likeable and very pregnant police chief. Her character police chief Marge Gunderson is kind, clever and compassionate. She’s a much more admirable role model than all the recent ‘badass female’ clichés we’ve been inundated with lately. Another standout here is William H. Macy as a two-bit schemer who's plan utterly backfires. »
- email@example.com (Rob Young)
A representative for Jones, whose most recent film work was as a co-writer on the 2105 picture “Absolutely Anything,” said the actor has primary progressive aphasia, a variant of frontotemporal dementia.
“This illness affects his ability to communicate and he is no longer able to give interviews,” the representative said.
Born in Wales, Jones is one of the five living members of iconic British comedy group Monty Python, whose first big success was the surreal and irreverent TV show “Monty Python’s Flying Circus,” which ran from 1969 to 1974.
The Pythons went on to make several films including “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” a farcical medieval romp based on the legend of King Arthur and his knights of the round table, and “Monty Python’s The Life of Brian,”a story »
- Will Thorne
Terry Jones, the Monty Python star and legendary director of classic comedies including “The Life Of Brian” and “The Meaning Of Life,” has been diagnosed with dementia, according to a statement from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. BAFTA is presenting the 74-year-old Jones with the Special Award for Outstanding Contribution to Film and Television at the 25th British Academy Cymru Awards on October 2.
“Terry has been diagnosed with Primary Progressive Aphasia, a variant of Frontotemporal Dementia,” one of Jones’ representatives said in the statement. “This illness affects his ability to communicate and he is no longer able to give interviews. Terry is proud and honoured to be recognised in this way and is looking forward to the celebrations.”
Jones is a Welsh comedian, screenwriter, actor, director, historian and author »
- Graham Winfrey
Two-time Academy Award nominee Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker, The Avengers, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and Rogue Nation) has signed on to voice the lead character (Swifty) in the epic 3D, CGI animated family film Arctic Justice: Thunder Squad from Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi's Ambi Group.
Renner will lead an ensemble voice cast for Arctic Justice that includes Alec Baldwin (The Departed, Blue Jasmine, Mission Impossible - Rogue Nation), Heidi Klum (The Devil Wears Prada, Project Runway), John Cleese (A Fish Called Wanda, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Life of Brian), James Franco (The Interview, 127 Hours, Spider-Man), Anjelica Huston (The Royal Tenenbaums, The Addams Family), and Omar Sy (Jurassic World, Inferno).
When the sinister Doc Walrus (voiced by John Cleese) hatches a secret plot to accelerate global warming and melt the arctic circle, a rag-tag group of inexperienced heroes (voiced by Renner, Franco, Baldwin, Huston, Klum and Sy »
“Homeland” star Rupert Friend has joined the cast of “Veep” creator Armando Iannucci’s movie “The Death of Stalin,” which toplines “Boardwalk Empire’s” Steve Buscemi, Simon Russell Beale (“Into the Woods,” “My Week with Marilyn”), and Paddy Considine (“Macbeth,” “The World’s End”). Pic is shooting in England and Ukraine.
Also in the ensemble cast are Jason Isaacs (“Fury,” “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”), Olga Kurylenko (“Oblivion,” “Quantum of Solace”), Michael Palin (“Life of Brian,” “A Fish Called Wanda”), Andrea Riseborough (“Birdman,” “Oblivion”), Paul Whitehouse (“Alice in Wonderland,” “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”) and Jeffrey Tambor (“Transparent,” “Arrested Development”) with Adrian McLoughlin (“Thunderpants”) as Stalin.
Iannucci said: “‘The Death of Stalin’ has everything: comedy, tragedy, truth, lies, life, death, bravery and cowardice. All under the shadow of Stalin’s Terror. So I’m really pleased we have an amazingly multifaceted cast who can give us all these things and more. »
- Leo Barraclough and Elsa Keslassy
Everybody and their uncle has played “Angry Birds.” Except some select members of the voice cast of The Angry Birds Movie. The birds-vs.-pigs mobile app and its various editions have been downloaded over 3 billion times, making it the most downloaded mobile game ever. At an Angry Birds Movie press event on Tuesday, Bill Hader, who voices the pig Leonard in the animated film, at first appeared to be a big fan of the popular app. When a reporter asked Hader and the panel of fellow Angry Birds Movie voice actors, did any of you “get particularly obsessed with the game?” the Saturday Night Live alum said, “I got obsessed with the game on a layover, stuck on a plane.” Later during the Q&A — which, all in all, was hilarious, with a panel of four comedic actors — another press member asked, “Which level of the game had you most stumped? »
- Emily Rome
Regular readers of Den Of Geek will well know that we're sizeable fans of the comedy Bill. It's available on DVD now, and we can't recommend it highly enough.
What wasn't so well known at the time of its release was that Bill went through a distributor change last year, which at one stage looked like it might derail a wide cinema release, and thus keep the movie away from many people's eyeballs. We thus spoke to director Richard Bracewell about the film, and the behind the scenes story of just what was going on...
Can we dig into the untold story underpinning Bill? In particular, the problems that most didn't see, about simply getting the film released? Can you take us through what happened? Because we »
Legendary comedian John Cleese has weighed in on the tumultuous controversy about how political correctness is spoiling comedy. He fears that oversensitivity could lead to an “Orwellian” society where ideas are not freely exchanged.
John Cleese was the co-creator of Monty Python, the greatest comedy ensemble of all time, as well as the mastermind behind Fawlty Towers, one of the funniest sitcoms ever made. He’s experienced his share of controversy, such as the backlash he received when he and his Python partners released The Life of Brian. Now he’s wading hip-deep into another controversy.
In an interview for the website Big Think, the 76 year old Cleese expressed his thoughts on the current state of entertainment and media where hyper-sensitive, easily offended people are ruining the party for everyone. He feels comedy is an important part of society because it points to the foibles of our culture and that »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Rob Young)
This week, Neil Calloway argues that far from increasing revenues in conservative countries, by allowing censored versions of their movies to be shown, Hollywood will ultimately lose out…
This week brought the news that transgender period drama The Danish Girl has been banned in Qatar. I doubt Working Title will be too upset that their film isn’t being shown in a small, conservative country of about two million people (roughly a quarter of the population of New York City or London), and if I made a film that had been banned due to its apparent “moral depravity” I’d put that quote on the poster, but as studios look to expand their international box office, you can expect this to increasingly become an issue with films.
Banning films in their entirety rarely happens in the West now, but the occasional film does get stopped from being released – in 2015, the »
- Neil Calloway
Let’s end the year with a celebration of the funniest comedy scripts ever written. The Writer’s Guild of America has chosen the 101 best laugh-getting screenplays. Keep in mind that this is all about the writing, not the cast or the director.
1.Annie Hall (1977)
2. Some Like it Hot (1959)
3. Groundhog Day (1993)
4. Airplane! (1980)
5. Tootsie (1982)
6. Young Frankenstein (1974)
8. Blazing Saddles (1974)
9. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
10. National Lampoon’s Animal House (1978)
11. This is Spinal Tap (1984)
12. The Producers (1967)
13. The Big Lebowski (1998)
14. Ghostbusters (1984)
15. When Harry Met Sally (1989)
16. Bridesmaids (2011)
17. Duck Soup (1933)
18. There’s Something About Mary (1998)
19. The Jerk (1979)
20. A Fish Called Wanda (1988)
21. His Girl Friday (1940)
22. The Princess Bride (1987)
23. Raising Arizona (1987)
24. Bringing Up Baby (1938)
25. Caddyshack (1980)
26. Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979)
27. The Graduate (1967)
28. The Apartment (1960)
30. The Hangover (2009)
31. The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
32. The Lady Eve »
- email@example.com (Rob Young)
14 items from 2016
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