13 items from 2015
Sometimes, the Oscars have a tendency of giving out awards to actors who are seen to have paid their dues, perhaps not for the best performance of that year or even for the particular actor's own best performance, but to recognise past work. Michael Keaton is not the most likely of these, but this could be why some speculated that he was an early favourite for this year's Best Actor award, for his performance in Birdman.
The later frontrunner Eddie Redmayne rightfully and very graciously wound up taking it home for his work as Stephen Hawking in The Theory Of Everything, though Birdman went on to take home the main prize for Best Picture and a number of other major awards.
It would hardly have been a major upset if »
Read my interview with Sanchez here.
Known for creative fearlessness and a meticulous approach to their craft, actors Michael Keaton (Batman, Beetlejuice, Jackie Brown) and Edward Norton (25Th Hour, American History X, Fight Club) will appear at AFI Fest for a very special discussion covering their unconventional careers. Keaton and Norton co-star in Alejandro González Iñárritu‘s current release, Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance).
Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance is a black comedy that tells the story of an actor (Michael Keaton) – famous for portraying an iconic superhero – as he struggles to mount a Broadway play. »
- Michelle McCue
Welcome to the latest episode of The ScreamCast!
In honor of Black History Month, hosts Sean Duregger and Brad Henderson continue their journey through Blaxploitation as they look at the influence it’s had on modern filmmakers like Mario Van Peebles, John Singleton, Quentin Tarantino and others. Movies discussed include Baadasssss!, Posse, Hoodlum, Panther, Boyz N The Hood, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown, Django Unchained and Bones.
Don’t forget to check out TheScreamCast.com for the show notes and for more news and reviews of Scream Factory releases and make sure to follow them on Twitter too!
Podcast: Play in new window | Download »
- Phil Wheat
“All you need for a movie is a gun and a girl.”
Quentin Tarantino took Jean-Luc Godard’s quote to heart, populating his blood-splattered films with some of the most iconic female characters in the last twenty-five years. There’s almost always a female lead or, at the very least, a villain.
Case in point: Kill Bill. Nearly all the leads – with the exception of the aforementioned Bill – are ladies, and they’re all very, very, very deadly. Luckily, Kill Bill: Vols. 1 & 2 play select Cineplex theatres on Tuesday, February 3, and Wednesday, February 4, as part of this year’s Great Digital Film Festival.
Who is Tarantino’s greatest female character?
Amanda Plummer’s Honey Bunny is a »
- Sasha James
Quentin Tarantino shouldn’t be able to make films this quickly. On paper, he’s one of the more productive modern auteur directors, having knocked out countless screenplays and done a load of script doctoring at the start of his career, kick starting his own directorial debut in superior crime drama Reservior Dogs. And he’s barely paused for breath since.
Considering how densely packed his films are, how complex, how stylistically daring, it’s impressive he manages to make any of these films, let alone in such rapid succession. That he also manages to shift gears so dramatically – going from the fairly straight thrillers of Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Jackie Brown to grindhouse/samurai revenge epic Kill Bill, war movie Inglourious Basterds and Western Django Unchained – is double so.
Speaking of which, a scant two years after Django he’s back with another Western, The Hateful Eight, which started shooting this weekend. »
- Tom Baker
Santa Monica — Michael Keaton is having the time of his life. Cruising along an awards circuit that has brought him plenty of kudos for his performance in Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)" and probably more opportunities to talk about himself than he'd prefer, he seems consistently high on life and not at all phased by the grind. He's not someone who has really sought out this kind of attention and acclaim, often retreating to his ranch in Montana away from the Hollywood fray, but now that he's feeling the love? Let's just say I doubt anyone's having as much fun with all of this than he is. On the eve of this year's Oscar nominations announcement, I met Keaton for coffee and a light lunch at one of his favorite Santa Monica spots to chew on as much of his career and the awards »
- Kristopher Tapley
Happy Tuesday the 13th! This week’s home entertainment releases are an eclectic bunch but we’ve got a lot of fun titles to look forward to including two sci-fi classics- At the Earth’s Core and Supernova- as well several recent indie titles including Honeymoon and Jessabelle.
At the Earth’s Core (Kino Lorber, Blu-ray)
They’re in it Deep now! Murderous monsters, scantily clad prehistoric playmates and telepathic pterodactyls inhabit the center of our world in this colorful fantasy-adventure about a manned “drill-craft” boring its way to the center of the Earth! Starring sci-fi superstars Doug McClure (The Land That Time Forgot), Peter Cushing (Nothing But the Night) and Caroline Munro (Maniac), this subterranean chiller is the most endearingly whimsical entertainment on – or under – the planet’s surface! There’s more than lava at the Earth’s core. There’s also Pellucidar: an underground empire »
- Heather Wixson
★★☆☆☆ Based on Elmore Leonard novel The Switch (presumably the rather prosaic retitling was to stop confusion with star Jennifer Aniston's 2010 comedy of that name) Life of Crime (2013) actually received a limited cinema release, although upon viewing, you'd be forgiven into thinking you had just witnessed a straight-to-video feature. Despite a fine and very able cast, this a plodding and mostly characterless affair. The DVD cover art makes reference to the film being a prequel to Jackie Brown (1997), although this is a spurious claim (the respective sources share a couple of characters) and comparisons between the two only underscore the superiority of Tarantino's adaptation.
- CineVue UK
Elmore Leonard is the author of books that have been turned into such films as "Get Shorty," "Jackie Brown," "Out of Sight," "3:10 to Yuma" and many others. But the last two adaptations, "Life of Crime" and "Freaky Deaky," failed at the box office. Now comes word Leonard's "Bandits" novel is being turned into a film, with Bruce Willis set to play the lead role from a script by Mitch Glazer (Rock the Kasbah). Many years ago, Quentin Tarantino was considering making the movie. And this is the second time that Willis is attached to star. Back in 1987, Willis optioned the book, but never proceeded with the project. The comedy is set in New Orleans. Willis will play Jack Delaney, an ex-con who is struggling to stay on the straight path as he dresses up corpses as a mortician in his brother's funeral home. Things get much more exciting for »
Donning the cape and tights to play a big screen superhero was often seen as career suicide for actors. This idea is mined to brilliant effect in Alejandro González Iñárritu's Birdman, with a former comic book star looking to relaunch his career with an ambitious Broadway play.
Adding extra spice to Birdman is the casting of Michael Keaton, himself a former Batman whose post-tights career has been somewhat hit and miss. This film, however, is a stunning reminder of just how good an actor Keaton is and proof that careers don't end when on-screen superpowers fade away.
Digital Spy takes a look at 20 ex-superhero stars to see how they fared after leaving an iconic comic book role behind.
20. Billy Zane
It's increasingly rare to see Bruce Willis act like a professional and give a quality performance regardless of the material (of his last 12 films, his only worthwhile work was in Looper and Moonrise Kingdom), but perhaps he'll show his acting talent in an adaptation of Elmore Leonard's Bandits. Not to be confused with the forgettable 2001 Barry Levinson film of the same name, Willis optioned the black comedy when it was published in 1987, but the rights lapsed and were picked up by Quentin Tarantino along with the rights to three other Leonard novels. Tarantino only ended up adapting Rum Punch (into Jackie Brown), and now the rights are back in Willis' hands, who will produce the picture in addition to starring. He's also getting his Rock the Kasbah director Mitch Glazer to pen the screenplay. Hit the jump for more. If complex Elmore Leonard storylines are your bag, Bandits will likely have you covered. »
- Matt Goldberg
The Corner Show #1 discovered and curated by Drew McWeeny The following is the first installment in a new regular feature here at HitFix. People are fascinated by stories of films that were almost made, and we've certainly dug into that subject in the past. This is a new way of doing that in an ongoing format, and we hope you enjoy what is meant to be a game, a fun way of looking at an alternate movie history. It is safe to say that I had a very challenging 2014. So maybe what happened was a complete break with reality. Who could blame me? There's only so much anyone can take, and I've certainly had my own limits tested recently. So trust me.. at first, I considered forgetting all about what happened this past weekend and never writing a word about it. But it was so strange and so special that »
- Drew McWeeny
Some actors have careers that can easily be summed up. Either they stick to what they’re good at, and manage to strike out a distinct if unadventurous line of work for most of their time in Hollywood – your Will Ferrells, your Emma Thomases – or else they’re more malleable, mercurial, and turn their hand to all sorts – your Daniel Day Lewises, your Christitna Bales. Michael Keaton isn’t really either.
Making a name for himself with high concept eighties comedies like Mr Mom and Multipicity, Keaton then sort of ping-ponged between similar, silly roles and more straight dramatic parts in the likes of Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing and appearances in the Elmore Leonard adaptations Out Of Sight and Jackie Brown. He was pretty great at both, too.
Then there was a sort of fallow period where Keaton dropped off the map a little, »
- Tom Baker
13 items from 2015
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