20 items from 2013
Odd List Ryan Lambie 26 Nov 2013 - 06:44
From reissued, obscure first films to misleading marketing, here are 12 film covers that exaggerate the role their famous actors play...
Filmmaker William Castle was famous for his movie gimmicks, from vibrating chairs to plastic skeletons soaring over the heads of audiences in cinemas. The marketers of 1958's The Fly, meanwhile, promised to pay $100 to the first person who could prove that its matter-transportation plot "couldn't happen".
Selling movies to cynical punters is tough at the best of times, and using tricks and white lies to get people to part with their hard-earned cash is nothing new. And one of the simplest tricks in a film marketer's tool bag is to exaggerate an actor's role in whatever it is they're trying to sell. So if uncredited bit player number two suddenly becomes an A-list star three years after a movie's shot, you can be »
Like most Americans living today, I was born after November 22, 1963, so I don't remember John F. Kennedy and can't tell you where I was when news broke of his assassination. So here's what I know about the man, his presidency, and his death, thanks to the history professors of Hollywood.
Let me see if I have this right: JFK was a handsome man with the charisma of a movie star. (Indeed, he had connections to Hollywood through his father, a onetime movie producer; through his brother-in-law Peter Lawford and fellow Rat Packer Frank Sinatra; and through his torrid affair with Marilyn Monroe.) Through his youth, good looks, charisma, and forward-looking rhetoric, he inspired a nation to stop wearing hats, build rockets to the moon, and join the Peace Corps. His even more attractive, youthful, stylish, and patrician wife Jackie swept out the dowdy cobwebs of the Eisenhower years and turned »
- Gary Susman
In 1993, Clint Eastwood delivered Kevin Costner as a man on the lam in A Perfect World. It was a smart, dusty twist on coming-of-age featuring a kidnapped boy and ketchup sandwiches. It’s one of Eastwood’s best as a director, and watching the new trailer for Jason Reitman’s Labor Day, I couldn’t help but pick up an echo of it. Reitman looks like he’s doing what he always does (which also means casually going after a fifth Oscar nomination) with the story of an escaped convict (Josh Brolin) playing house with his collateral. Naturally, there’s more to his and the family’s stories. Our review is here. Check out the trailer for yourself and be prepared for a flash of James Van Der Beek as a lawman: Labor Day hits theaters January 31st. Source: /film »
- Scott Beggs
Odd List Ryan Lambie Simon Brew 10 Oct 2013 - 03:27
Another 25 unsung greats come under the spotlight, as we provide our pick of the underappreciated films of 1993...
What a year 1993 was. It saw the release of Star Fox on the Super Nintendo. Bill Clinton became president. Season three of Deep Space Nine premiered on Us television. UK politician Douglas Hurd visited Argentina. Cyndi Lauper released her album Hat Full Of Stars.
Aside from those earth shattering events, we'll probably remember 1993, in cinema terms, as the year Jurassic Park dominated the box office like an angry Tyrannosaurus. A true phenomenon, its profits doubled those of the second most watched film in 1993 cinemas, Mrs Doubtfire, and almost three times as much as the movie below that - the Harrison Ford thriller, The Fugitive.
But as ever, there was so much more to the 1993 movie landscape than dinosaurs and Robin Williams dressed as an old woman. »
A Perfect World is a somewhat forgotten Clint Eastwood film, which is a shame. It may not be quite in league with Eastwood's best work (that's a very tall order), but this unconventional crime film is both a gripping chase movie and a nuanced tale of a relationship between a misunderstood criminal and a young boy.
Eastwood directed and starred in this 1993 drama set in 1963 Texas, in which he plays Texas Ranger Red Garrett, a seasoned lawman in pursuit of prison escapees Butch Haynes (Kevin Costner) and Terry Pugh (Keith Szarabajka). Shortly after their escape, Butch and Terry break into a house and kidnap 9-year-old Phillip Perry (T.J. Lowther), son of a devout Jehovah's Witness mother.
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- Don Clinchy
Subtract the kidnapping, and “Labor Day” depicts the most romantic long weekend a divorced hausfrau could hope for, as a swarthy stranger waltzes into her life, passing the time by fixing her car, making pie and teaching her awkward son to play baseball. Factor in the notion that the outsider is an escaped killer, however, and this all-summer-in-a-day story starts to feel as baked as the convict’s peach pies. Underserved female auds will gladly indulge such well-intentioned shenanigans when Paramount opens the film on Dec. 25, since it all builds to a series of emotional payoffs that should elevate this moving weeper into a holiday sleeper.
Debuting over Labor Day weekend at the Telluride Film Festival, Jason Reitman’s passionate fifth feature left a significant fraction of its audience in tears as they connected with Kate Winslet’s Adele, a depressed single mother whose pain runs deeper than the film initially lets on. »
- Peter Debruge
Two boys, river-rats on the mighty Mississippi, run smack into adulthood when they encounter and befriend a fugitive from the law. Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn echoes throughout every frame of Jeff Nichol’s Mud, the festival hit that became one of the summer’s under-the-radar hits. An Arkansas native, Nichols was mesmerized by the river and all that it represents, both in literature and its geographic importance, and his modern-day tale conjures up all the the familiar rhythms, drawls, and characters that filled Twain’s pages. Matthew McConaughey stars as the mysterious rascal whose name is literally Mud, »
- Jeff Labrecque
Box-sets, much like anthologies, have somewhat of an unavoidable mixed-bag mentality about them. It’s difficult, near impossible even, to ensure that each film within is of equal merit and quality. Increase the number of films, and the odds of consistency decrease in equal proportion. Which brings us to WB’s latest (but doubtfully last) Clint Eastwood retrospective. Clint Eastwood: 20-Film Collection lives up to my theory above thanks in part to a heavy concentration on Eastwood’s most recent output (which few people would argue in favor of), but it does an otherwise fine job of looking across the years at the man’s output both as an actor and a director. WB has also released a 40-Film set onto DVD. The Movies Surveying the twenty films featured here brings an immediate realization. There is absolutely no rhyme or reason to these particular selections. The set doesn’t focus on Eastwood’s director efforts. It »
- Rob Hunter
Chicago – “Clint Eastwood: 20 Film Collection” is a great Father’s Day gift that’s nonetheless a bit difficult to describe. It’s not exactly a greatest hits collection of its legendary star since it’s missing some of his most iconic films and includes some of his most notable failures. At the same time, every Eastwood fan would be happy to have at least half of these films in their collection and there’s no better way to do it then this set. It also may allow for some reevaluation and reappreciation of some of Eastwood’s less-beloved movies. I wish that Warner Bros. had taken the opportunity to upgrade a few Eastwood films that still need HD restoration but there’s enough brilliance in this box that it’s tough to complain.
Which ones are the classics in this impressively-packaged set? There are undeniable, iconic ones like “Dirty Harry, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
In celebration of their 90th Anniversary, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment released the Clint Eastwood 20 Film Collection on Blu-Ray this week. Included here are, as the title says, 20 of the legend’s films as well as two excellent documentaries: Eastwood Factor and Eastwood Directs: The Untold Story. Additionally, the set also comes with a nice little hardcover book that looks at the filmmaker’s illustrious career.
With five Academy Awards under his belt and over $2 billion at the domestic box office, the man is no doubt a legend and with this new Blu-Ray box set, there’s no better time than now to celebrate Clint Eastwood and the impact that he has had on the film world.
Though not the greatest selection, here are the 20 films that you’ll receive. Now, remember, this is a Warner Bros. release, meaning it was released to honour the actor/director’s relationship with the studio. »
- Matt Joseph
Alexandre Aja, the man behind The Hills Have Eyes and Piranha has chosen his next project after Horns. He and Charles Gillibert have nabbed the film rights to In A Perfect World, a novel by Laura Kasischke.
It’s described as follows: ”In A Perfect World revolves around, newly-married, former flight attendant Jiselle, who is surviving life as a new stepmother to three children. Their lives are altered forever when a deadly flu epidemic breaks out.”
This is how the two of them put it: “In A Perfect World is a suspense novel that holds all the emotional layers of a rich family drama, a world where terror, beauty and chaos walk hand in hand. A dystopian family drama, set in an environment of doom,” »
- Andy Greene
If anyone is on a high from success, its Sachin Jigar. With Abcd still doing the rounds and Go Goa Gone taking over the airwaves, does the duo muster up for (another) hattrick? Hot off the press.. well, iTunes actually, we have Girish Kumar’s debut film with Shruti Hassan, Ramaiya Vasthavaiyya.
Straight off the bat, we have a duet with Jeene Laga Hoon. It has the Atif Aslam effect. Soul stirring and oozing with sensuality. The rhythm is even paced and is completely for the melody lover. Shreya Ghosal pipes in for her routine sweetness thrills but after about the 3rd or 4th listen, you get the feeling this is an Atif number. Having said, the two are almost pitch perfect for the lovesick newbie lovers as described in the lyrics. Romantics are the target and it works.
After hearing Hip Hop Pammi, its obvious this one is for the clubs. »
- Githa Vanan
Let's face it... we live in a far from perfect world, but thankfully there are a handful of quality filmmakers out there who make movies that get us through the rough patches in the most memorable, gruesome, and fun ways. Alexandre Aja fits that description perfectly.
In A Perfect World revolves around newly-married former flight attendant Jiselle, who is surviving life as a new stepmother to three children. Their lives are altered forever when a deadly flu epidemic breaks out.
“In a Perfect World is a suspense novel that holds all the emotional layers of a rich family drama, a world where terror, beauty and chaos walk hand in hand. A dystopian family drama, set in an environment of doom,” the pair said in a joint announcement. »
- Uncle Creepy
Happy Camp Peter Webber ("Girl With a Pearl Earring") is attached to direct the noir thriller "Happy Camp" for Bedlam Productions. Playwright Zayd Dohrn penned the script. Shooting will begin in North America at the end of the year.
The movie follows a drug-addled former deputy sheriff searching for his missing daughter amongst the complex politics of a rural Californian logging community. Stella Nwimo will produce. [Source: THR]
The story revolves arounda newly-married, former flight attendant surviving life as a new stepmother to three children. Their lives are altered forever when a deadly flu epidemic breaks out.
Source: Screen Daily
- Garth Franklin
Feature Simon Brew 3 May 2013 - 07:03
It's a risky business, filmmaking. Simon looks back at some bold, expensive 1990s movies where the gambles didn't quite pay off...
This summer's blockbuster season has got off to a startling start, with Iron Man 3 being widely praised for its willingness to rip up the rule book a little, as it continues the story of Tony Stark.
In fact, there's a subset of modern blockbusters - Nolan films, some X-Men features for instance - that are garnering increasing praise for taking bold choices with the material. That they're wagering a lot of movie studio money on projects and stories that once upon a time would have struggled to get through the system.
However, we'd argue that the 1990s was rich with such gambles too, it's just most of them never really made quite the levels of cash we're seeing now. So, here's a »
Clint Eastwood will have lost a few Brownie points for his bizarre and frankly ill-advised conversation with an empty chair at the Republican National Congress last autumn, but he is still much-adored Hollywood royalty – old and craggy, but still directing and acting to a phenomenally high standard and responsible as actor and/or director for some of the greatest and most iconic films ever to have come out of Hollywood.
Most often associated with Westerns and understandably so (the Dollars trilogy, High Plains Drifter, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Pale Rider, Unforgiven), Eastwood also has a sterling track record within the crime genre (Dirty Harry, Mystic River, In the Line of Fire, Play Misty for Me) and with straight dramas too (Million Dollar Baby, Gran Torino, A Perfect World, Changeling). With Oscar statuettes and nominations coming out of his ears, he is clearly much loved by the Academy, but critics and »
- Dave Roper
Mark you calendars folks... on July 15th, Arrow Video is set to deliver a special treat for fans of "The Citizen Kane of Bad Movies" with a special 10th anniversary Blu-ray release of Tommy Wiseau's cult classic The Room, which features both 1080p High Definition and Standard Definition presentations of the feature, as well as never-before-seen extras. Here's the official synopsis from Arrow, along with a rundown of the extras:
A perfect World… A perfect Life… A perfect Lie…?
On the surface, happy-go-lucky banker Johnny has everything: a high-powered job, a smart San Francisco townhouse and a gorgeous blonde fiancée, Lisa. He even has the best buddy a guy could ask for in the shape of the young and handsome Mark. So far, so perfect.
But things are about to take a precipitously downward turn and Johnny will discover that he can’t trust even those nearest and dearest to him. »
- Flickering Myth
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 »
Warner Brothers has just dropped word on a two new collections dedicated to the work of American film icon Clint Eastwood. The two collections (one on DVD, the other on Blu-ray) will feature a new documentary by Eastwood biographer Richard Schickel, along with a copy of the new non-directed Eastwood film Trouble with the Curve.
A portion of the news release is below:
Burbank, Calif., February 11, 2013 – Clint Eastwood’s illustrious motion picture career has spanned more than half a century and touched generations of filmgoers. The filmmaker/actor has received five Academy Awards®and his films have grossed more than $2 billion at the domestic box office. This year marks the 38th anniversary of the relationship between Warner Bros., Clint Eastwood and Malpaso Productions, which has culminated in more than 40 films made for the studio. Now, in honor of Warner’s year-long 90th anniversary celebration, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release two new Eastwood Collections, »
- Nick Allen
Director: Jeff Nichols
Screenwriter: Jeff Nichols
Official synopsis: Ellis and Neckbone are best friends approaching the twilight of their youth. While exploring, they stumble upon the hiding place of charismatic outlaw Mud (played with controlled charm by a well-cast Matthew McConaughey), who takes a quick liking to the boys and recruits them to his cause: the search for true love and a clean getaway.
Illustrating a vibrant imagination, sumptuous attention to detail, and a remarkable gift for extracting magnetic performances from a talented ensemble, Nichols hurtles us into the middle of a lush adventure, ensnaring the excitement every youngster feels when trouble lurks everywhere and anything is possible. Steeped in the vanishing myth of the Deep South, a place that Nichols dearly loves, Mud’s handcrafted vision shines through in each richly textured frame and proves a tall tale for the ages. »
- Ben Pearson
20 items from 2013
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