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Brian De Palma has become the directorial litmus test of cinephiles everywhere. To supporters, he stands as a startling visual genius with a penchant for set pieces and lurid subject matter. To naysayers, he remains a lowbrow imitator who spends his studio budgets chasing the ghosts of Alfred Hitchcock and Jean-Luc Godard. Great director or high class hack? Inconsistent misogynist or Master of the Macabre? Much like his fractured narratives, the answer is never an easy one to attain.
Both sides provide ample support for their case. De Palma’s resume is riddled with enough hollow imitations (Sisters , Raising Cain ) and bloated commercial flops (The Bonfire of the Vanities , The Black Dahlia ) to sink any director. But even in misfires such as these, an undeniable attention to detail remains.
The split screen cover-up of Sisters or the heartbreaking screen tests of The Black Dahlia are breathtaking in scope and execution, »
- Danilo Castro
The film editing branch of the Academy used to offer up adventurous options like “Basic Instinct,” “Hoop Dreams,” “Speed,” “Crimson Tide,” “Seven,” “Air Force One” and “Out of Sight,” best picture prospects be damned. Not so much anymore. Every now and then we’ll get a “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” here, a “United 93” there, but mostly — and perhaps even understandably, given the expanded top field of the last six seasons — this race has shifted to a place of mirroring the best picture category.
With that in mind, this year’s top contenders are sure to figure in as always. At the top of the list of anticipations is Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s “The Revenant,” cut by Oscar-winner Stephen Mirrione (“Traffic”). The film was shot in sequence, which is unique, particularly for a project of this scale and scope. The stitching technique employed on Iñárritu’s “Birdman” was brought into the equation as well. »
- Kristopher Tapley
Cinematography is perhaps the most revered of cinematic art forms. The reason for this is simple – our films would literally not exist without the camera. From crafting mood and atmosphere to wowing us with the sheer ability to have “pulled off” a shot, cinematographers (also known as directors of photography or “D.P.s”) are the amazing talents responsible for realizing a director’s vision through command of the camera. And after the director, D.P.s are arguably the most important person on a film’s set. The cinematographers’ branch in the Academy is a group that loves epic luscious landscapes and war films. The branch is also relatively keen on foreign-language titles. And there is usually – though by no means always – significant overlap between the Cinematography race and the Best Picture race. (An unfortunate bizarre fact – this is the only Oscar category outside of Best Actor and Best »
- Gerard Kennedy
We’d like to welcome the awesome podcast – 365Flicks – to the ever-growing podcast roster here on Nerdly. If you haven’t heard the show yet, you can check out previous episodes on Podomatic and Libsyn, whilst we’ll be featuring each and every new episode as it premieres.
This time we stray from our beaten path and delve into the 1991 classic JFK by Oliver Stone, but rather than talk about the movie and its numerous theories. We decided to take another route and figure out the fact from the fiction. Chris has become a fan of one our fellow Tangent Bound Podcasters, The Dallas Action.
The Dallas Action is presented by Doug Campbell a “Student of the Narrative” so he came on board from Tennessee over the Skypes and brought along his fellow Researcher Martin Rigby. »
- Phil Wheat
Sixty-one years ago today, this iconic image was born: Marilyn Monroe, laughing as the skirt of her white cocktail dress is blown up by the air from a subway vent. Monroe had her famous skirt moment on the set of “The Seven Year Itch” for a scene with Tom Ewell filmed on Sept. 15, 1954. Her husband, baseball player Joe Dimaggio, was reportedly infuriated by the scene, and the couple divorced shortly afterward. The iconic photo of the “flying skirt” moment was taken by Monroe's friend Sam Shaw. Other notable Sept. 15 happenings in pop culture history: • 1949: “The Lone Ranger” premiered on ABC. • 1956: Elvis Presley started a five-week run at No.1 on the U.S. charts with “Don't Be Cruel.” • 1961: A band from Hawthorne, Calif. called The Pendletones had their first recording session at Hite Morgan’s studio in Los Angeles. The band later changed their name to The Beach Boys. »
- Emily Rome
With a pair of legendary leading men never before seen on screen together, a December release date in the thick of awards season and a modern crimescape narrative that became an instant classic, Michael Mann’s “Heat” probably should have been up for a slew of Oscars. Somehow, that didn’t happen.
Warner Bros. was coming off an impressive Oscar streak in 1995, with films like “The Accidental Tourist,” “Dangerous Liaisons,” “Driving Miss Daisy,” “Goodfellas,” “JFK,” “Unforgiven” and “The Fugitive” doing a lot to bolster the company’s archives. This particular year brought an interesting assortment of films to play with: Clint Eastwood’s “Bridges of Madison County,” Marc Rocco’s “Murder in the First” with a dynamite performance by Kevin Bacon, etc. Yet the film which netted the most nominations for the studio was summer tentpole “Batman Forever.”
But “Heat” should have been all over the place. Nominations for best »
- Kristopher Tapley
Originally looking like it might be one to enter the awards race this year, Oliver Stone’s latest, Snowden, is now reported to be eyeing a 2016 release date instead.Once scheduled for Christmas Day in the States, the film, which stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Nicolas Cage, Timothy Olyphant, Zachary Quinto and Keith Stanfield, is now moving to an unspecified berth sometime next year. Before you start wondering about conspiracy theories – this is from the man behind JFK, and tells the story of the whistleblower who took on the Us government, after all – The Hollywood Reporter’s sources say it’s because the film isn’t finished yet.Stone is still tinkering with his latest, which chronicles the experiences of Edward Snowden (Gordon-Levitt), the whistleblowing National Security Agency contractor who began leaking classified documents to former Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald in June 2013. Snowden, currently stuck in Russia after the Us cancelled his passport, »
The comeback of motion picture film will literally get its biggest boost yet with the Ultra Panavision 70 release of celluloid defender Quentin Tarantino's post-Civil War Western "The Hateful Eight." Shot on 65mm film with classic Panavision lenses in the widest aspect ratio of 2.76:1, this marks the first anamorphic 70mm theatrical release in nearly 50 years. The two-week roadshow engagement in 50 theaters (with the Cinerama Dome in contention for La, of course) will be the best holiday gift for cinephiles. "The Hateful Eight" will also pit three-time Oscar-winning cinematographer Robert Richardson ("Hugo," "The Aviator," "JFK") in a shoot-out with Emmanuel "Chivo" Lubezki, who's going for a third Oscar in a row for his own frozen wilderness adventure, "The Revenant," from "Birdman" director Alejandro G. Iñárritu. (Both films are racing to the editorial finish line for a Christmas Day »
- Bill Desowitz
'Fantastic Four' 2015 with Miles Teller, Kate Mara, The Thing (Jamie Bell) and Michael B. Jordan. 'Fantastic Four' 2015 box office: A costly domestic flop in the making? Fantastic Four 2015, a 20th Century Fox release “in association with Marvel Entertainment,” is about to become the biggest big-budget superhero(es) dud at the domestic office since at least The Green Hornet (not to be confused with the equally underwhelming Green Lantern) four years ago. Directed by Josh Trank, who dissed the film's final edit on Twitter (see more details below), Fantastic Four stars Kate Mara (Sue Storm / The Invisible Woman), Miles Teller (Reed Richards / Mr. Fantastic), Michael B. Jordan (Johnny Storm / The Human Torch), and Jamie Bell (Ben Grimm / The Thing). A while back, Fantastic Four became the subject of ardent arguments because of Michael B. Jordan's ethnicity: unlike the Fruitvale Station actor, the comic books' Johnny Storm is white. »
- Zac Gille
Chicago – She burned like a firework in the sky, and just as quickly faded away. The unique voice of Amy Winehouse was fresh air into the music vacuum, and yet the delicate state of her destructive addictions succumbed to a sudden notoriety. Director Asif Kapadia and producer James Gay-Rees tell her story in ‘Amy.’
The documentary stands by itself as a trek into darkness, through a 21st Century life captured on video, film and photographs from childhood to superstar fame. Amy Winehouse was a girl from North London with a jazz smooth vocal styling seemingly from the gods. She was twenty years old when her first album, “Frank” (2003), brought her to a wider audience. The follow-up in 2008, “Black to Black,” established Winehouse as a one-of-a-kind singer and personality. The ironic song “Rehab” from that album was a huge hit, but couldn’t save Winehouse from her own tragic sensitivity to love, »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Director John Frankenheimer.
I'm often asked which, out of the over 600 interviews I've logged with Hollywood's finest, is my favorite. It's not a tough answer: John Frankenheimer.
We instantly clicked the day we met at his home in Benedict Canyon, and spent most of the afternoon talking in his den. A friendship of sorts developed over the years, with visits to his office for screenings of the old Kinescopes he directed for shows like "Playhouse 90" during his salad days in live television during the 1950s.
We hadn't spoken for nearly a year in mid-2002 when the phone rang. It was John, who spoke in what can only be described as a "stentorian bark," like a general. "Alex!" he exclaimed. "John Frankenheimer." He could sense something was amiss with me. It was. My screenwriting career had stalled. My marriage was progressing to divorce. I had hit bottom. John knew that »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
Open Road Films has released the first teaser trailer for Oliver Stone’s upcoming thriller Snowden. The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as government contracter Edward Snowden and recounts how he obtained and absconded with thousands of classified Nsa documents, which he then disseminated to the press in the interest of informing the public about privacy breaches from its own government. This teaser doesn't show any footage so it doesn't really give us any indication of whether this'll be any good or not--it's more of an announcement that Oliver Stone made an Edward Snowden movie. I'm curious to see what Stone put together, but can't say I'm hopeful just yet given Stone's recent output. JFK was a long time ago. Watch the teaser trailer below. The film opens in theaters on December 25th and also stars Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo, Zachary Quinto, Tom Wilkinson, Rhys Ifans, and Nicolas Cage. Here's »
- Adam Chitwood
We know that Quentin Tarantino loves celluloid and that he shot his latest film, "The Hateful Eight" in 70mm (actually Ultra Panavision 70, to be exact). But the problem is most theaters are now equipped with digital systems and are unprepared to properly exhibit the film. Read More: Here's the Best Advice from Cinematographers at CineGear News has come from CineGear Expo by way of cinematographer Bill Bennett who, after a presentation of "Hateful Eight" test footage tweeted that Tarantino plans to help put 70mm projectors equipped with anamorphic gear into 50 theaters worldwide so the film can be screened properly. It's worth noting that Bennett didn't shoot "Hateful Eight." That was three-time Oscar winner Robert Richardson ("JFK," "The Aviator" and "Hugo"). The footage was projected in 70mm anamorphic film and included actor close-ups, interiors and various exteriors in a variety of lighting conditions, »
- Paula Bernstein
By: Jay Dyer
Some of these will be obvious, but are there insights in certain lesser-known films that shed light on real-world conspiracies? My list will exclude all things alien, since I’m of the opinion the alien agenda is largely a bunch of bunk. In selecting my favorites, I’ve tried to balance quality with subject matter, as some films may have a great concept with poor execution. If you missed any of these or if they’re long-forgotten films you halfway watched with that sexy date 15 years ago, I recommend giving them a new look.
10.Conspiracy Theory. 1997. Director Richard Donner has Mel Gibson as the tinfoil hat nutball seeking to uncover the truth about his own past. Ultimately the film details the actual Mkultra program, with Captain Picard as the handler.
9. V for Vendetta. 2005. A Wachowski brothers work, V initiates Eve into the realities of the establishment’s corruption. »
- Jay Dyer
'The Contender' movie hero: Joan Allen as the virtuous Sen. Laine Hanson. 'The Contender' movie: Exceptional Joan Allen in intriguing but ultimately wimpy political drama "Principles only mean anything when we stick by them when they're inconvenient," says Senator Laine Hanson, played by Joan Allen in Rod Lurie's The Contender. Senator Hanson should know. In Lurie's political drama, the poor Democratic senator is grilled by a Republican inquisitor with a bad hairdo (Gary Oldman) who wants to prevent at all costs her being confirmed as the next Vice President of the United States. Even if that means destroying Hanson's political career by making public the senator's alleged participation in an orgy during her college days.* Now, why such hatred? Well, the Republican watchdog is certain that the U.S. president (Jeff Bridges) has chosen Sen. Hanson because of her gender instead of her qualifications for the job. Adding insult to injury, »
- Andre Soares
'JFK' movie with Kevin Costner as Jim Garrison 'JFK' assassination movie: Gripping political drama gives added meaning to 'Rewriting History' If it's an Oliver Stone film, it must be bombastic, sentimental, clunky, and controversial. With the exception of "clunky," JFK is all of the above. It is also riveting, earnest, dishonest, moving, irritating, paranoid, and, more frequently than one might expect, outright brilliant. In sum, Oliver Stone's 1991 political thriller about a determined district attorney's investigation of the assassination of U.S. president John F. Kennedy is a slick piece of propaganda that mostly works both dramatically and cinematically. If only some of the facts hadn't gotten trampled on the way to film illustriousness. With the exception of John Williams' overemphatic score – Oliver Stone films need anything but overemphasis – JFK's technical and artistic details are put in place to extraordinary effect. Joe Hutshing and Pietro Scalia's editing »
- Andre Soares
Pop culture comes to life in St. Louis next month! It’s the Wizard World Comic Con May 22nd through the 24th at America’s Center downtown (701 Convention Plaza – St. Louis, Mo 63101). As usual, Wizard World has an impressive line-up of celebrity guests including Elvira, Christian Kane, and George Romero, but the star I’m most excited to meet is actor Michael Rooker.
Michael Rooker was born in Jasper, Alabama in 1955. He has eight brothers and sisters. His parents divorced when he was 13 years old, and he moved with his mother and siblings to Chicago, Illinois, where he studied at the Goodman School of Drama. Rooker made his feature film debut by playing the title character in the gritty 1985 horror classic Henry Portrait Of A Serial Killer. He followed this with significant big-screen roles in Tombstone, Days Of Thunder, Cliffhanger, JFK, Mississippi Burning, Sea Of Love, The Dark Half, Mallrats, »
- Tom Stockman
If Quantum Leap has always been on your 'to-watch' list but you've never had the time, here are a few suggestions to get you started...
Maps to TV shows: Is there a popular show you’d really like to watch but you just don’t have time to wade through years of it all at once? Do you just want to know why that one character keeps turning up on Tumblr? Do the fans all tell you ‘season one is a bit iffy but stick with it, it gets great!’, leaving you with absolutely zero desire ever to watch the boring/silly/just plain weird season one? Then Maps To TV Shows is for you!
In these articles, we’ll outline routes through popular TV shows focusing on particular characters, story arcs or episode types. Are you really into the Klingon episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation? Do you »
The eagerly-awaited return of HBO’s acclaimed series True Detective is on the horizon with less than two months left until the second season, and HBO has today released three new motion posters with the show’s tagline “We Get the World We Deserve.”
We get the world we deserve. #TrueDetective pic.twitter.com/CFJuv00Nws
— True Detective (@TrueDetective) April 22, 2015
We get the world we deserve. #TrueDetective pic.twitter.com/iTkuP2t04n
— True Detective (@TrueDetective) April 22, 2015
We get the world we deserve. #TrueDetective pic.twitter.com/joLQ4R5b1H
— True Detective (@TrueDetective) April 22, 2015
Created by Nic Pizzolatto, True Detective season two will see Colin Farrell (Seven Psychopaths) play Ray Velcoro, a compromised detective whose allegiances are torn between his masters in a corrupt police department and the mobster who owns him; Rachel McAdams (A Most Wanted Man) plays Ani Bezzerides, a Ventura County Sheriff’s detective whose uncompromising »
- Scott J. Davis
Over the course of film history, we've seen plenty of long-time actors step behind the camera to take up their directorial ambitions. Clint Eastwood did it. Mel Gibson did it. George Clooney did it. What do these three have in commonc Well, for starters, they are all men, so there's that. Further, they are all white, but more on that later. More to the point of the article, these men all eased into their directorial careers by starring in their respective debuts, using their presence on screen to help market their talents off it. And with his feature directorial effort The Water Diviner, which hits limited theaters this week, Russell Crowe is just the most recent addition to a growing list of actors who have decided to try their hand behind the camera. Like Eastwood, Gibson, and Clooney before him, the Best Actor winner stars in his first feature as director, »
- Jordan Benesh
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