Hands on a Hard Body: The Documentary (1997) - News Poster

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Movie Poster of the Week: “They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?”

  • MUBI
Desperate times call for desperate movies, and there are few movies that express genuine desperation better than Sydney Pollack’s 1969 dance-marathon melodrama They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? Released for the first time on Blu-ray last week, Horses was a film that made a big impression on me as a teenager. Partly it was that ominous title (which I first heard when Welsh rock band Racing Cars had a 1977 top 20 hit with a song with the same name) and partly it was the indelible concept: in Depression-era America crowds paid to watch couples dance for days on end in the hope of winning a cash prize for the last man and woman standing (a concept fascinatingly re-worked in the 1997 documentary Hands on a Hard Body). Nominated for nine Oscars (it holds the record for the film with the most nominations without a Best Picture nod), They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?
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'Hands on a Hardbody' to Close on Broadway

  • The Wrap
'Hands on a Hardbody' to Close on Broadway
"Hands on a Hardbody," a new musical about a punishing contest to win a truck, will close its Broadway run on Saturday, producers said. The show is one of the first big casualties of a packed theatrical season that has seen strong ticket sales for star-driven shows like Tom Hanks' "Lucky Guy" and heavy anticipation for upcoming musicals like the West End transplant, "Matilda." It demonstrates once again how inhospitable Broadway can be to shows that arrive without much brand recognition or star power. The biggest name in this production was
See full article at The Wrap »

Slackery News Tidbits: April 1, 2013

  • Slackerwood
Here's the latest in Austin and Texas film news -- no April Fooling here.

The 16th Annual Cine Las Americas International Film Festival has announced its opening and closing-night movies. Blancanieves will open the festival April 16 at the Stateside Theatre. The drama, a twist on the Snow White fairy tale that centers on a female bullfighter in 1920s Seville, was chosen by Spain as its Foreign Language Film Academy Awards nominee in 2012. 7 Cajas (7 Boxes), about a boy's journey transporting unknown cargo, will close the festival April 21, also at Stateside. In celebration of April Fools' Day, the Austin Film Festival will screen the fest's 2012 audience award-winning comedy Junk at 7 pm at Alamo Drafthouse Village as part of its Best of Fest series. Junk follows two B-movie co-writers through their film's festival debut.Ryan Long, former Austin Film Society programs and operations manager, has been named director of programming at Tugg, Austin 360 reports.
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Theater Review: Hands on a Hardbody

  • Vulture
Theater Review: Hands on a Hardbody
One kind of source material rarely exploited for musicals is the documentary. I’m not looking forward to a singing version of Capturing the Friedmans. But Doug Wright (who pulled off the trick with Grey Gardens) must like the grit and rhythm of real-life drama. His adaptation of the 1997 film Hands on a Hard Body into a musical of almost the same name (The last two words have mysteriously become one) features tough times, moral uplift, and alt-country songs by musical-theater royalty Amanda Green and Trey Anastasio of Phish.The story is vastly and smartly tightened; instead of giving us two dozen Texans competing in an endurance contest to win an Aztec-red Nissan (quite unsexy, but it gets entrance applause), the musical focuses on ten. Each struggles to keep a paw on the prize; the last to drop from exhaustion or dementia after several days will go home with the keys.
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Slackery News Tidbits: March 4, 2013

  • Slackerwood
Here's the latest in Austin and Texas film news.

Factory 25 has acquired David and Nathan Zellner's awardwinning feature Kid-Thing (Don's review), according to The Hollywood Reporter. The movie, about a mischief-making 10-year-old girl in East Texas who stumbles on a mysterious abandoned well in the woods, will be released theatrically in New York on May 24, followed by a nationwide tour through the early summer. The Brooklyn-based distributor has scheduled a digital release via VOD and iTunes, among other outlets, on May 24 as well.SXSW has been chosen as an Academy Award-qualifying festival in the Documentary Short Subject category. This means that recipients of the Documentary Short Film award at this year's SXSW Film Festival will qualify for consideration in the Academy Awards' Documentary Short Subject category without the standard theatrical run, provided the film complies with Academy rules.Fans of the 1997 long-lost documentary Hands on a Hard Body will
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'Hands on a Hard Body' to Touch Down on Broadway

'Hands on a Hard Body' to Touch Down on Broadway
Hands on a Hard Body, the new musical based on S.R. Bindler's award-winning 1997 documentary about an endurance competition organized by a Texas car dealership, has secured a Broadway berth, beginning previews Feb. 23 for a March 21 opening at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre. The show had its world premiere early this summer at La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego. Doug Wright, a Pulitzer and Tony winner for his 2004 solo play I Am My Own Wife, penned the book for the musical, while Trey Anastasio of prog-rock band Phish wrote the music, with lyrics by Amanda

read more
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

A New Broadway Season, A New Set of Tony Hopefuls

By Sam Negin

Theater Editor & Columnist

***

A new Broadway season is about to begin and, with it, new life has been brought to my posts. After over 900 posts, 50 comments, over 325 Tony nominees and over 75 winners in the two-and-a-half years I blogged independently about the Tony Awards, I am proud to be joining the team at ScottFeinberg.com.

Without any further ado, I would like to begin with a look ahead at the Broadway shows that will be coming up this year. I have made this list as comprehensive as I could given what information is available but, as is often the case, there is much more data available right now about the fall season (September through the winter holidays) than the spring season (Christmas through the Tony Awards in June) on Broadway. I will update this post with more details as information becomes available.

The list of shows we expect to see this year,
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'Enemy of the People' and 'Hands on a Hard Body' Coming to Broadway

  • Backstage
Manhattan Theatre Club has announced new productions for its 2012-13 seasons both on and Off-Broadway. For its Main Stem opener at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, Tony-winner Doug Hughes ("Doubt") will direct Rebecca Lenkiewicz's adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's "An Enemy of the People" starring four-time Tony-winner Boyd Gaines as a heroic doctor who stands against popular opinion to save his town. Richard Thomas will star as his brother, the conciliating mayor. Previews begin Sept. 4 for a Sept. 27 opening. This is a rare instance of a Broadway nonmusical with a large cast. Nancy Piccione is the casting director. Equity principal auditions will be held June 14.Also coming to Broadway during the 2012-13 season is "Hands on a Hard Body," one of very few Broadway musicals based on a documentary film. ("Grey Gardens" is another one.) The 1997 feature that inspired the show depicts a group of Texans competing in...
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Film Junk Podcast Episode #354: Haywire

  • FilmJunk
0:00 - Intro 6:30 - Headlines: 2012 Golden Globe Winners, The Expendables 2 Will Be PG-13 28:15 - Review: Haywire 1:22:15 - Trailer Trash: Resident Evil: Retribution 1:28:45 - Other Stuff We Watched: Alcatraz, Jim Gaffigan Live, Ahl Winter Classic, And Everything is Going Fine, The Prestige, Summer of Sam, We Bought a Zoo, The Island of Lost Souls, Hanna, Con Air, Hands on a Hard Body, Routine Pleasures 2:05:40 - Junk Mail: Breakout Roles for Athletes, Displaying Box Sets with Cardboard Sleeves, Favourite Breast Shots, Crispin Glover and Nic Cage, Theatre vs. DVD and Blu-ray, Digital Copies, Critiquing a Movie Based on What You Thought It Should Be 2:28:50 - This Week's DVD Releases 2:31:00 - Outro

Film Junk Podcast Episode #354: Haywire by Filmjunk on Mixcloud

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Mark Landsman On His Influences And Thunder Soul

Mark Landsman’s Thunder Soul hits theaters this Friday, so in lieu of a traditional interview we asked him, what five documentary films influenced him as a filmmaker during the creation of Thunder Soul.

I find it challenging whenever anyone asks me to list a ‘top five’ of anything--especially movies--because I love a lot of them for a lot of different reasons--it’s tough to do a process of elimination. But in thinking about it, in terms of the top five docs that have made the greatest impact on me as a filmmaker and most influenced my current project, Thunder Soul, I think it’d be these. I offer them up knowing that there are many more that live in the brain drive and influence me even when I not realizing it.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jet-Ubwk5l8

The Times of Harvey Milk (Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Freidman, 1984)

In
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'Star Trek' Writers Producing Adaptation of Go-Kart Documentary 'Racing Dreams'

'Star Trek' Writers Producing Adaptation of Go-Kart Documentary 'Racing Dreams'
Did you know there's Nascar for kids? Well, that's not exactly what it is, but there is a pee-wee version of race car driving involving go-karts, for those youths hoping to grow up to become the next Jimmie Johnson. A documentary titled "Racing Dreams," about three competitors in this World Karting Association, premiered at last year's Tribeca Film Festival, where it won Best Documentary. And now Variety reports that the film, which was produced by Dwayne Johnson, has been tapped for a dramatized treatment by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman.

The "Star Trek" writer-producers will not adapt the documentary themselves, as they've got a lot of other stuff on their plate. Like the "Trek" sequel. Instead they'll be overseeing the project, with both Johnson and his wife Dany Garcia, also his partner on the original "Racing Dreams," returning to the material as executive producers. DreamWorks, which is distributing the adaptation,
See full article at MTV Movies Blog »

Opening This Week: Nic Cage's new hairpiece, Billy Elliot's dark side

  • IFC
By Neil Pedley

This week's trip to the multiplex offers a jaunt around the globe where, amongst other things, there's a case of mistaken ethnicity in Boston, Nic Cage gets another wig fitted in Thailand, there's whimsy and surrealism in Scotland and Matthew McConaughey is right at home in Malibu, where he might finally have found something he does well, maybe.

"August Evening"

Strained emotional bonds and the transitory nature of the life of an illegal immigrant provide the backdrop for Chris Eska's quietly affecting family drama that stars Pedro Castaneda as an aging farmhand who loses his job at a chicken farm in a sleepy Texas town, forcing he and his devoted daughter-in-law (Veronica Loren) to relocate to San Antonio to stay with his older children and the grandchildren he never knew he had. As Alison Willmore pointed out in last week's Lunchbox, Castaneda is a first-time actor
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