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The most popular poster I’ve posted on Tumblr in the past three months—and actually the second most “liked” poster I’ve posted in the three years I’ve been doing this—was this Italian design by the great Luigi Martinati for a lesser known Lauren Bacall vehicle, but one in which the late star was unusually front and center. (You can see more of Bacall’s posters here.)
The rest of the top twenty are a wild variety of old (three for films from the 1920s, no less) and new (two 2014 releases). I was especially pleased to see Dorothea Fischer-Nosbisch’s superb 1967 design for a Festival of Young German Film get such attention. A lot of other design greats are featured: Saul Bass, the Stenberg brothers, Macario Gomez, Karl Oskar Blase and Josef Fenneker. And »
- Adrian Curry
Édgar Ramírez has been an actor on the rise for the past seven years, after he first came into prominence playing the deadly and mysterious Paz in The Bourne Ultimatum. Following roles in Vantage Point and Che (Part 1), the Venezuelan-born actor delivered a breakthrough performance in the mini-series Carlos, which lead to roles in Wrath of the Titans, Zero Dark Thirty, The Counselor and Deliver Us from Evil.
The actor takes on a character close to his heart in the fascinating indie drama The Liberator, where he plays the historic figure Simon Bolivar, who became a legend by literally liberating South American countries such as Peru, Panama, Northern Brazil, Panama, Ecuador, Colombia and the actor's home country of Venezuela. I had the chance to speak with the actor earlier this summer about The Liberator, which hits theaters on October 3. Here's what he had to say below.
I have to say, »
What a pleasure it is talking to Terry Gilliam. Not only he one of the founding members of Monty Python - a troupe I love more than words can describe - but this is the man who directed Time Bandits, Brazil, Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas and 12 Monkeys. It's also not every day you get to meet a bona fide cinematic genius - who just happens to be a hell of a nice guy. I could have talked to Gilliam for hours, but alas I only has a scant four minutes available to me. We take what we »
- Eric Walkuski
Warning: This article is best read after having seen all the films in the title. Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem is widely considered both an extension and revisitation of the dystopian themes the director so spectacularly explored in Brazil. Gilliam’s newest has even been categorized as a third part of a trilogy of dystopian science fiction satires – or, in Gilliam’s words, “Orwellian triptych” – following Brazil and 12 Monkeys. While Gilliam in interviews resists notions of a planned trilogy portraying future systems of control over almost thirty years, the Orwellian triptych carries remarkable similarities beyond these films’ driving conceits and Gilliam’s signature wide angles. The films of this trilogy portray individuals attempting to find truth and meaning beyond the dehumanizing systems in which they live, yet each protagonist is overcome by a sort-of predetermined fate and ultimately victimized by the alienating forces of technology. But the films of this trilogy are as notable for their »
- Landon Palmer
It’s virtually impossible to recognize Terry Gilliam’s Zero Theorem as anything but a spiritual sequel to Brazil. It’s a similar story of a corporate cog lamenting his status in an insane (and insanely large) world that makes him feel powerless, but it takes place in the universe next door where the Marx Brothers didn’t invent the bureaucracy. Christopher Waltz plays a man desperately waiting for a phone call that will explain his purpose. He kills his time by obsessively trying to slam math blocks into an impossible equation for a paycheck. It’s a somber absurdity, which is why this new poster represents the film beautifully. The stoicism, the closed eyes, the deconstruction. Not only is it striking, it looks like the back of his mind turns to stardust just off the edge of the page — a fitting representation of the movie’s larger-than-the-universe sentiment that plays out in a cramped church nave »
- Scott Beggs
I've given up trying to understand my own life," Terry Gilliam says. "I'm just trying to make sense of the world this life is taking place in." The movie director emits a high-pitched giggle.
At the moment, Gilliam's "world" is located in the trendy restaurant in Manhattan's Tribeca Grand Hotel, but, just as he's done for decades, the director is continuing to parse the meaning of life on film. His latest movie, The Zero Theorem, focuses on a discontented misanthrope, played by Django Unchained's Christoph Waltz, who attempts to »
The Zero Theorem is director Terry Gilliam-squared. The sci-fi film features all of his trademarks—unhinged characters, oppressive societies, canted angles and zooms, colorful settings—and then pushes them to a level that would border on self-parody if Gilliam wasn't already a self-deprecating person. There's something fearless inside the Zero Theorem in that the movie tries to wear its brain on its sleeve, which is good because there's more pontificating than genuine romance. The movie will inevitably invite comparisons to Gilliam's masterpiece Brazil, but The Zero Theorem struggles to solve its own problem, namely, turning all of its subtext into text. Qohen Leth (Christoph Waltz) is an anti-social introvert who would rather stay at home inside his abandoned chapel than go to work at Mancom where he excels as a "number cruncher." He wants to stay at home because he's anticipating a mysterious phone call, and is terrified he'll miss it. »
- Matt Goldberg
Films from notables Nick Cave, Kevin Smith and Terry Gilliam, and another featuring Downton Abbey vet Dan Stevens are helping fill this weekend’s box office, despite studio blockbuster debuts for The Maze Runner and This Is Where I Leave You.
In all, 14 specialty films are debuting this weekend, at the front edge of awards season and the time of year when “serious” films hit the screens left and right. We have The Guest, with Stevens; The Zero Theorem by Gilliam; Smith’s Tusk; Tracks, the latest from the producers of The King’s Speech; and Cave’s doc 20,000 Days On Earth.
And, like a TV informercial, there’s more: the doc Pump, boundary-jumper Stop The Pounding Heart; and Swim Little Fish Swim. Just to fill out the marquees, we also have Tribeca-winning doc Keep On Keepin’ On; Flamenco, Flamenco; Hector And The Search For Happiness; Iceman; Hollidaysburg; and Not Cool. »
- Brian Brooks
Black Holes and Revelations: Gilliam’s Cluttered Dystopia a Mixed Return to Form
In what stands as his best film since 1998’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, director Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem still isn’t quite the dystopic juggernaut one might have hoped for, though it does slightly resemble one of his most noted works, 1985’s Brazil. However, this isn’t quite that state of mind, though it does in fact revolve mightily around the state of its protagonist’s conflicted existence and his unrequited search for meaning in a world that instead contends there absolutely is none. Being treated to a demure theatrical release over a year after its premiere at the 2013 Venice Film Festival, it’s being handled as a boutique title, likely to wallow into the same nether regions as Gilliam’s last several titles, like the valiant exercise The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus »
- Nicholas Bell
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Dec. 9, 2014
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray $39.95
There's adventure and fantasy afoot in Time Bandits.
In the film, a boy named Kevin (Craig Warnock) escapes his gadget-obsessed parents to join a band of time-traveling dwarves. Armed with a map stolen from the Supreme Being (Ralph Richardson, The Four Feathers), they plunder treasure from Napoleon (Ian Holm, The Lord of the Rings trilogy) and Agamemnon (Sean Connery, The Man Who Would Be King)—but Evil (David Warner, Titanic) is watching their every move.
Featuring a darkly playful script by Gilliam and Monty Python’s Michael Palin (who also appears in the film),Â Time Bandits is at once a giddy fairy tale, a revisionist history lesson, and a satire on technology gone awry.
The film has been out in »
If you’ve ever written something about Terry Gilliam, there’s a good possibility he’s read it. Unlike his contemporaries, he makes a habit of checking out everything from reviews of his films to the comments on his Facebook wall. Of course, Gilliam has always been hard to pin down, particularly when it comes to the products he puts on screen. From “Brazil” to “12 Monkeys” to “The Fisher King,” the 73-year-old director is someone who looks to challenge our preconceived notions about personal relationships and the world around us. (Be sure to check out our retrospective and ranking of his films here). For his latest project, Gilliam once again heads back to the land of sci-fi with “The Zero Theorem” (our review). The film, which takes place in a utopian society in the distant future, stars Christoph Waltz as Qohen Leth, an anti-social computer programmer who tries to figure out the meaning of life. »
- Alex Suskind
"I'll always be anti-authoritarian, as long as I live," says Terry Gilliam, the comic provocateur who's been taking aim at the establishment for over four decades. The only thing that changes: his targets. In Life of Brian, it was religion. In Brazil, the government. And in his latest film, The Zero Theorem, it's the biggest oppressor of all: big business. Says Gilliam, "Governments are second rate compared to corporations when it comes to power and influence on our lives." The Zero Theorem stars Christoph Waltz as Qohen Leth, a reclusive computer drone whose life is at the mercy of his employer, Mancorp. His boss, a godlike figure named Management (Matt Damon), and his underlings dictate everything from Qohen's therapist (Tilda Swinton) to his sexual »
20. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)
Directed by: Terry Gilliam
So…drugs, right? Based on Hunter S. Thompson’s 1971 novel of the same title, Fear and Loathing stars Johnny Depp and Benicio del Toro as Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo, respectively. The pair is heading to Sin City, speeding through the Nevada desert, under the influence of mescaline. From there, the film is series a bizarre hallucinations seen through the eyes of Duke. So, we jump from hotel room to hotel room, all of the action a blur of what is happening and what really isn’t. Throughout the course of the film, Duke and/or Gonzo ingest the following drugs: mescaline, sunshine acid, diethyl ether, LSD, cocaine, and adenochrome (probably more). Duke – who is a Thompson stand-in – is supposed to be writing an article before heading back to Los Angeles, but tends to get sidetracked quite a bit. In »
- Joshua Gaul
The first time I recall Terry Gilliam‘s name being used to sell me on a movie it was City of Lost Children, but that was through a critic blurb making a comparison between the Brazil director and City‘s Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro. Prior to that, though, he’d actually lent his name as a presenter for their Delicatessen. I might not have discovered those movies without the endorsement. Later, Gilliam also put his name in a similar manner on Bill Plympton’s Idiots and Angels. As a Gilliam fan, I fell in love with Jeunet’s work immediately, while I’d already been into Plympton and now had more reason to appreciate the animation legend. I don’t know that Gilliam attached his name to anything before, between or after those two — I’m not counting the BBC TV adaptation of the book The Last Machine: Early Cinema and the Birth of the »
- Christopher Campbell
As we look in the rearview mirror of the summer blockbusters, September heralds the start of the fall movie season. Filled with Hollywood heavyweights and A-listers, here’s our Big list of the most anticipated movies coming to cinemas this autumn and during the holidays.
Our exhaustive list includes films that are playing at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival as well the ones that already have a theatrical release date. With the awards season on the horizon, we also added a few bonus films at the end to keep your eye out for in the months ahead.
Pull up a chair, grab a pen and paper and get ready for Wamg’s Guide to the 100+ Films This Fall And Holiday Season.
We kick it off with what’s showing in Toronto at the film festival that runs September 4 – 14.
- Movie Geeks
Last August here in Saint Louis is a very distinctive time of year. We’re right on the cusp of September and as the rest of the continent starts to cool down, the summer doldrums morph into powerful storms and heavy rain. This happens in spring as well but that season is no fun because tornadoes show up and everyone has to flee for the nearest basement. No, the last week of August is much stranger; the temperatures are still high but as muggy days dissolve into balmy nights, the sky cracks open and oceans spill forth. I sound poetic about this because these changes herald the absolute most wonderful time of year, as many of our residents will testify; early autumn. September is a wonderful month for me, as it’s my birthday, and that is followed up by October, both the best month of the year, containing the best day of the year. »
- Chris Melkus
Sometimes it’s a wonder he gets any movies made at all. Over the course of his legendary career, Terry Gilliam (Brazil, Time Bandits, 12 Monkeys) has built a reputation as a director who likes to try for the impossible — be they shots, scenes, or entire movies. This is, after all, a man who made a romantic comedy about homeless people, madness, and death (The Fisher King). A man who made a microbudget, absurdist, effects-laden coming-of-age fantasy (Tideland). A man who made a film of Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas that's just as nutty, if not more so, as the original book.Sometimes his job is difficult because he sets impossible challenges for himself. Sometimes it’s difficult because fate doesn’t cooperate: His attempted filming of The Man Who Killed Don Quixote was famously scuttled due to horrid weather and an ill lead, as depicted »
- Bilge Ebiri
Opening Night – World Premiere
David Fincher, USA, 2014, Dcp, 150m
David Fincher’s film version of Gillian Flynn’s phenomenally successful best seller (adapted by the author) is one wild cinematic ride, a perfectly cast and intensely compressed portrait of a recession-era marriage contained within a devastating depiction of celebrity/media culture, shifting gears as smoothly as a Maserati 250F. Ben Affleck is Nick Dunne, whose wife Amy (Rosamund Pike) goes missing on the day of their fifth anniversary. Neil Patrick Harris is Amy’s old boyfriend Desi, Carrie Coon (who played Honey in Tracy Letts’s acclaimed production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) is Nick’s sister Margo, Kim Dickens (Treme, Friday Night Lights) is Detective Rhonda Boney, and Tyler Perry is Nick’s superstar lawyer Tanner Bolt. At once a grand panoramic vision of middle America, a uniquely disturbing exploration of the fault lines in a marriage, »
I finally got a chance to see Terry Gilliam’s new film The Zero Theorem and was mightily impressed by its ability to conjure some of the magic of Gilliam classics like Brazil and Twelve Monkeys (albeit in a far warmer, less brutal manner than the latter film). So I'm really glad we're debuting these character posters that don't just showcase the performers in the film, but the philosophies of the people they are playing. The movie is all about ideas, a philosophical dialogue. And these get at that. The Zero Theorem stars Christoph Waltz as Qohen Leth, a computer hacker who searches for the meaning of life while being distracted by Management, a shadowy figure from an Orwellian corporation; Melanie Thierry, Tilda Swinton, and David Thewlis also star. The film hits iTunes today, August 19th and limited theaters on September 19th. Be sure to check out the trailer and »
- Evan Dickson
The lineups for the Mavericks, Discovery, and Tiff Kids parts of the Toronto Film Festival were announced, wrapping up a series of lineup announcements for the Toronto International Film Festival.
With the added films, the festival’s entire slate is now a whopping 393 movies. Two hundred eighty-five of those movies are feature films, of which 143 are world premieres.
The Mavericks portion of the festival includes onstage discussions following the screening of each film. Do I Sound Gay? will be followed by a talk between director David Thorpe and sex-advice guru Dan Savage. Also premiering in that space is The 50 Year Argument, »
- Jacob Shamsian
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