1-20 of 43 items from 2013 « Prev | Next »
Cinema has always liked telling a good life story, and all kinds of biography – from the humblest to the starriest – have been given a filmic going-over. The Guardian and Observer's critics pick the 10 best in a very crowded field
• Top 10 animated movies
• Top 10 silent movies
• Top 10 sports movies
• Top 10 film noir
• Top 10 musicals
• Top 10 martial arts movies
• More Guardian and Observer critics' top 10s
This is the most radical of all biopics. It does exactly what it promises, breaking the Canadian pianist's intense and troubled life into concentrated fragments. Reassembly is left to the viewer. When he began working on the screenplay with Don McKellar, the writer-director François Girard recognised the pitfalls of the genre. "There are many traps," he said. "The main temptation is to try to cram everything about a life into one film. What you need is a radical idea »
The Rome film Festival (November 8-17) is once again offering on-stage conversations ("Movie Talks") with an impressive list of actors and directors. This year Jonathan Demme, Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Spike Jonze, John Hurt, Álex de la Iglesia and Italian comedian Checco Zalone will meet the audience, and get the chance to talk about their relationships with cinema, commenting on their most significant film scenes and answering questions from the audience.Full schedule below.Saturday, November 9 - 4pm Sala PetrassiJohn Hurtmoderated by Sandra Hebron and Mario SestiJohn Hurt, amazing protagonist of four decades of cinema, has been directed by Alan Parker (Midnight Express, 1977), Ridley Scott (Alien, 1979), David Lynch (The Elephant Man, 1980), Michael Cimino (Heaven's Gate, 1980), Sam Peckinpah (Osterman Weekend, 1983), Gus Van Sant (Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, 1993), Robert Zemeckis (Contact, 1997). He also starred in big budget productions such as, Harry »
- Beth Hanna
Series 3 of the university drama comes to Channel 4 tonight. Episode one sees the gang (apart from Josie who has moved to Southampton) back in the house. Desperate to attract some more female attention, Jp and Howard set up a fake skiing society to see if that'll pull any 'hotties', as Jp calls them. As Kingsley pines after recently relocated Josie, the gang decide to go and visit her down in Southampton for a 'Traffic Light Party'.
MasterChef: The Professionals: 8.30pm, BBC1
MasterChef: The Professionals brings a whole new batch of cooks desperate to please judges Gregg Wallace, Michel Roux Jr and Monica Galetti. In tonight's first episode, we see the hopefuls having to make a dish using a variety of ingredients including quinoa, artichokes, mushrooms, chocolate and mascarpone. Who will impress and who will make a dog's dinner out of their first challenge? »
From Nosferatu to Twilight, gothic films have explored what frightens us – and why we are willing victims of our fear. A few days before Halloween, and as the BFI begins a nationwide season, Michael Newton is seduced by horror, sex and satanism
Beyond high castle walls, the wolves howl. The Count intones: "Listen to them! The children of the night! What music they make!" And those words usher you into a faintly ludicrous cosiness, the comfortable darkness of gothic. For gothic properties are altogether snug, as familiar as Halloween costumes – a Boris Karloff mask, the Bela Lugosi cape, an Elsa Lanchester wig. So it is that many of us first come to the form through its parodies; I knew Carry On Screaming! by heart before I saw my first Hammer film. And yet, within the homely restfulness, something genuinely disturbing lurks; an authentic dread. And watching these films again, we »
- Michael Newton
I’ve just finished a turn with Tiverton Dramatic Society in A Man For All Seasons, Robert Bolt’s classic play about the life and downfall of Sir Thomas More. In this production I played Richard Rich, the ambitious young man who ultimately betrays More, stepping into the shoes of John Hurt who had played him in the Oscar-winning film version. All of which got me thinking: out of all Hurt’s great performances, on how many Top 10 lists would Richard Rich make an appearance?
Over a career spanning more than 5 decades, John Hurt has become one of the most highly-regarded actors of his generation. He was recently honoured with a BAFTA Lifetime Achievement Award, and seems to work relentlessly on both stage and screen. We all remember the career-making chest-burster scene in Alien, or his transformation into John Merrick in The Elephant Man, but in a career so long and so revered, »
- Daniel Mumby
BBC One has confirmed the broadcast date of Ripper Street's second series premiere.
The period drama returns for its second run on Monday, October 28 at 9pm.
Taking place in the East End of London, the second series moves forward to 1890, and will feature the return of Matthew MacFadyen, Jerome Flynn and Adam Rothenberg as crime-solving trio Reid, Drake and Jackson.
The Elephant Man has also been confirmed to be making an appearance in the first two episodes of the series.
Speaking about series two, MacFadyen recently said: "It's fantastic to be reunited with much of the wonderful cast and crew from last year. »
While Whovians have been buzzing with excitement about Peter Capaldi being named as the new Doctor, at the end of last season people were just as excited to see esteemed actor John Hurt ("The Elephant Man," "Nineteen Eighty-Four") on deck as, ominously, the last Doctor. While these new images from the 50th anniversary special are more fun than revealing (though we can Matt Smith and David Tennant are on deck, as is Jemma Redgrave as the new Unit boss along with Jenna-Louise Coleman, who plays "The Impossible Girl" Clara), they are awfully exciting, aren't they? "The Day of the Doctor" airs Nov. 23 »
- Liane Bonin Starr
There are so many excellent movie duos out there. Magneto and Charles. Neal and Del. Harry and Lloyd. Susan and David. Norman and Norma. Jules and Vincent. Vincent and Max. Thelma and Louise. Damiel and Marion. Jay and Silent Bob. Joel and Clementine. Clarice and Hannibal. Celie and Nettie. Bruce and Alfred. Dad and Junior. Mason and Goodspeed. Young-goon and Il-sun. Threepio and R2. Blade and Whistler. Rachel and Frank. Wayne and Garth. Lieberman and Mengele. Riggs and Murtaugh. Harold and Maude. Raph and Casey. Faye and Cop 663. Marty and Doc. Doc and Clara. Cliff and Peevy. Martin and Clifford. John and Tars. Powell and Caulder.
Like ensembles, quartets, or trios, duos can be truly epic in their own ways. There’s nothing like watching two characters develop through one another.
There also seem to be almost just as many great movie duos based on real life. I don’t »
- Ian Boucher
In this extract from his forthcoming book, the Observer's new film critic, Mark Kermode, examines how the internet has changed the role of the professional reviewer. When everyone has an opinion, what value does the critic retain?
"Forrest Gump on a tractor." Those five words are probably my favourite film review ever. More importantly, they constitute the most damaging hatchet job I ever encountered, managing to do something I had often argued was impossible – to kill a movie stone dead. I didn't read them in a newspaper or on a blog, I didn't hear them on the radio or television; rather, they were whispered in my ear by a trusted friend and colleague, David Cox, as the house lights went down on a screening of David Lynch's The Straight Story.
I'd been really looking forward to that movie. I've been a huge Lynch fan ever since being blindsided by »
- Mark Kermode
Hammer and Horror Film Day!
Saturday November the 9th ( 10am – 5pm )
Central Hall Westminster.
Storey’s Gate, Westminster, London SW1H 9Nh
UK’s longest running film fair and convention.
Now in it’s 40th year!
The Convention presents dealers from all over the UK, Europe, Us ,
Canada and South America.
Specialising in rare original film memorabilia and collectables.
Taking place six times a year these are truly unique events for anyone with an interest in films!
With actors and director’s signings, illustrated talks, retrospectives and film screenings taking place through out the day.
Items covering the history of cinema can be found. From the silents to the present.
From rare items of the 1920’s to new releases and the latest heart throb.
Among the many different field of cinema covered at the show is – Classic Hollywood, horror films, sci-fi, the best of British and European cinema as we as cult tv! »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
I suspect many of you weren't alive in 1980 but do you think of it fondly? To give you a little context, since we're discussing it in the Supporting Actress Smackdown: Jimmy Carter was having a rough last year as Potus with the ongoing Iran Hostage Crisis and America was about to enter a neo-conservative phase; John Lennon was murdered; "Call Me" by Blondie spent the most weeks as the number one single; "Who Shot J.R.?" was insanely popular via Dallas, DC debuted the awesome 80s comic "New Teen Titans" to compete with Marvel's huge hit "Uncanny X-Men", while Marvel kept it young by adding Kitty Pryde and the disco-leftover superhero Dazzler; Sweeney Todd closed on Broadway and Evita debuted illustrating the shift in the musical theater landscape from the awesome challenging prolific 70s Stephen Sondheim era to the sing-along bombast of British mega musicals of the 80s epitomized by »
- NATHANIEL R
During my years at McGill, I decided to stray from studying the sciences and take my love of cinema more seriously: I turned my mind towards Cultural Studies and spent my early twenties relishing in Canadian cinema, slasher films, the French New Wave, Godard’s wonderfully bizarre oeuvre, and the philosophy of film.
It’s been three years since I decided to take my career down a different path, turning towards my other major in anthropology. Right after obtaining my fancy arts degree and wanting nothing to do with, well, anything anymore, I began looking for alternatives to my film studies courses and Bazin quoting peer community. I was looking to re-ignite my passion for the screen; from the cerebral to the heart and back.
Thus, I began volunteering for film festivals, but found myself wanting and in need of more starch in my film diet. Since I’d turned »
- Pamela Fillion
Cinematographer Wally Pfister, in the midst of filming his feature directorial debut, “Transcendence,” enjoys some distinct advantages in his new role: One of his executive producers is Christopher Nolan, with whom he has collaborated exclusively, dating back to the director’s breakthrough film “Memento”; the star of his sci-fi movie is worldwide box office magnet Johnny Depp; Pfister’s picture will be released by Hollywood’s biggest studio, Warner Bros., and he was empowered with the kind of budget — approximately $100 million — few first-timers are afforded.
But those advantages are freighted with the expectations and pressures that come with such a large-scale endeavor. Besides, remarkably few directors of photography have successfully made a longterm transition to helming features. Among those, a mere handful — George Stevens, Barry Sonnenfeld and Jan de Bont among them — have enjoyed critical and commercial success. And only one, Nicolas Roeg, could be seen as a unique stylist whose creative stamp is unmistakable. »
- Steve Chagollan
Well if this doesn’t look staggering. Set from 1841, via upstate New York to the cotton fields of Louisiana, 12 Years a Slave is the true story of Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man kidnapped and sold into slavery. As the title suggests, he remains in this Hell for 12 long years. It’s an agonising subject, especially when not satirised like in Quentin Tarantino’s recent Django Unchained.
What jumps out of this trailer are the fabrics…so many beautiful fabrics. Just look at the shirts worn by the plantation slaves: linen, tunic style (as they were), cut full with sleeves blooming from the elbows. The film will be particularly fascinating to contrast between those at the top of society’s rungs and those at the bottom. A time when dress codes were vitally important, men and women could be identified in terms of wealth and status entirely by what they wore. »
- Chris Laverty
Perhaps Werner Herzog's captivating study of a mysterious innocent has added relevance in the era of the Fritzl case
Werner Herzog's captivating The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, now on re-release, has the elegance and simplicity of a woodcut. It is based on the true story of a 16-year-old youth who appeared out of nowhere in a German square in 1828 like an unwanted pet; having apparently been imprisoned and beaten as a child, he is all but savage, but nonetheless is taught to speak and reason by kindly townsfolk and briefly taken up by fashionable society. Remarkably played by Bruno S, a former mental-hospital inmate, Herzog's Kaspar Hauser is arguably a figure to compare with, say, Greystoke or The Elephant Man: a test case for finding nobility and perfectibility in any human being, or more importantly in the human society in which he finds himself. But perhaps now »
- Peter Bradshaw
I probably could have waited to post the following graphic on Monday and had more takers, but I never intended to post it in the first place as it merely came out of the result of me working on a new feature for the site. That said, many of you still got in the game and I had a lot of fun on Twitter last night with people guessing some of the more difficult titles. As it turns out, it was numbers 13, 19, 22 and 23 that gave people the most trouble, 13 proving to be the hardest of the lot as only Andre Marques got that right in the comments (as of 9 Am Pst this morning) and one person on Twitter last night finally guessed it after several hints and attempts. I applaud all of you for your efforts! I was astonished how many people got #33 correct and quite honestly, surprised any of you got #22. That said, »
- Brad Brevet
The Doctor! Guillermo del Toro! Vampire pilot for FX! Who Wouldn’T be all over this story? We’ve actually already told you a little about the del Toro vampire pilot The Strain, based on the trilogy of books he co-authored with Chuck Hogan (Prince of Thieves). If picked up, the showrunner would be our beloved Carlton Cuse (Lost, Bates Motel).
So, as the headline blares, the newest cast member is (one of) the Doctor(s). This particular Doctor is the newest to us, though I suspect he’s one of the oldest. It’s John Hurt, reuniting with his Hellboy director del Toro. Hurt’s castmates in include Corey Stoll (The Bourne Legacy, Midnight in Paris), Mia Maestro (Nadia in Alias) and Kevin Durand (Keamy in Lost). Here’s the press release, which includes a synopsis of the show:
- Erin Willard
Joining a previously announced cast that includes Corey Stoll, Kevin Durand and Mia Maestro, John Hurt will portray Professor Abraham Setrakian in the pilot, based on the best-selling vampire novel trilogy by del Toro and Chuck Hogan. The professor is described as a holocaust survivor who immigrated to the U.S. after World War II and now runs a pawn shop in Spanish Harlem. As a mysterious viral outbreak with hallmarks of an ancient and evil strain of vampirism spreads, he may be the only one with answers -- if anyone will listen.
Stoll stars as Dr. Ephraim Goodweather, the head of the Center for Disease Control Canary Team in NYC. As the plague takes over the city, Eph, Abraham and a motley crew of everyday New Yorkers (including Maestro as Dr. Nora »
John Hurt has joined the cast of The Strain, the upcoming FX pilot based on the vampire novel trilogy by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. The 73-year-old British actor, who previously worked with del Toro on 2004′s Hellboy, will play holocaust survivor and professor Abraham Setrakian.
“I am incredibly happy to be reunited with John, who is one of the greatest actors in the world and one of my favorite people ever,” del Toro, who is set to direct and co-write the pilot, said in a statement. “Chuck and I always visualized him while writing The Strain novels and »
- Katie Atkinson
If the “Scene By Scene” interview with Woody Allen whetted your appetite for in-depth film discussion, there’s more to be found here. In this episode from critic/filmmaker Mark Cousin’s brief BBC series, he sits down with the enigma that is David Lynch. Conducted prior to the release of "The Straight Story," Cousins talks with Lynch about his issues with agoraphobia, the language of film, the behind-the-scene details of “Twin Peaks”, "Blue Velvet," "The Elephant Man" and much more. It's pretty much a must for any fan of Lynch, giving viewers a pretty rare and generous sit down with the director. Check it out below, and there's a mostly complete transcript as well right here. »
- Jason McDonald
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