4 items from 2013
Barry Levinson has written and/or directed a number of films set in his native Baltimore (Diner, Tin Men and Avalon among them), and he's returned to the Maryland coast to make this superior example of that hackneyed sub-genre, the found-footage horror movie. The title refers to Chesapeake Bay, site of an ecological disaster that destroys most of the several hundred inhabitants of a small holiday resort on 4 July 2009, for which irresponsible farmers and a complacent, politically motivated mayor are to blame. All that remains is a federally suppressed documentary, recording the terrible events that began some weeks before and were attributed to a shark.
The tension is well enough sustained, the horrors build steadily, the eco message is familiar. The film is a variant on Jaws, an influence it signals by calling the despicable mayor Stockman, the name of both the complacent mayor and his brother, the honourable ecological whistle-blower, »
- Philip French
★★★☆☆ Veteran filmmaker Barry Levinson makes his best movies at home in Baltimore. His memoirs, Diner, Tin Men, Avalon and Liberty Heights - buoyant with wistful charm and unpretentious fondness - have a personal acuity his non-Baltimore films have suffered without. Now in his 70s, the director returns to his home city - not this time for misty-eyed nostalgia - but for an ecological horror inspired by the environmental problems in Chesapeake Bay. Warm sentiment and quiet smiles give way to sheer terror and deathly screams in The Bay (2012), as Levinson deploys the weary fad of faux-found-footage to surprisingly gruesome effect.
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- CineVue UK
Producer Mark Johnson discusses Bless Me, Ultima, debuting in theaters February 22
Producer Mark Johnson has been successful in all avenues of the entertainment business, making movies such as the Oscar-winning Rain Man, Bugsy, Donnie Brasco, What Lies Beneath, The Rookie, The Chronicles of Narnia series, and last year's Not Fade Away, just to name a few. He is also one of the producers of the hit AMC series Breaking Bad, which wraps up its fifth and final season this summer. His latest project is much smaller in scope, but features just as powerful a story as any of those other big-budget movies.
Bless Me, Ultima centers on a young boy named Antonio (Luke Ganalon) who has an awakening of faith when his grandmother Ultima (Miriam Colon), an aging spiritual healer, comes to live with his family in this drama set against the backdrop of World War II. I recently had »
When you.ve lived a life of crime as thrilling and tawdry as James .Whitey. Bulger, you can imagine why Hollywood would circle your story like vultures eyeballing a roadside carcass. And so we.re now getting reports of a second Bulger biopic in the works, with a major A-list talent interested in playing the lead. Johnny Depp is now attached to play the infamous Boston gangster in Black Mass, which will be directed by Barry Levinson (Diner, Avalon). Bulger was the inspiration for Jack Nicholson.s character in Martin Scorsese.s The Departed. The Mafioso, who spent years on the FBI.s Ten Most Wanted list before his capture in 2011, protected the criminals of Boston.s chief neighborhoods, but largely went unbothered because he reportedly worked as an informant to the FBI in exchange for certain freedoms. He eventually was arrested in Santa Monica, California, when the 81-year-old was »
4 items from 2013
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