7 items from 2017
Brawl In Cell Block 99, 2017.
Directed by S. Craig Zahler.
After losing his job, a former boxer starts working for a local drug dealer. When a deal goes sour, he’s held responsible by the cartel involved and can’t escape them when he goes to jail. His wife is under threat if he doesn’t track down another prisoner in a maximum security establishment. And he’s in the notorious Cell Block 99.
The king of the affable layabouts is no more. Vince Vaughn is going through his own Vaughnaissance and he’s taking it seriously. For those that watched it, it all seems to have started with season two of TV’s True Detective: then came his supporting role in Hacksaw Ridge, where he was unexpectedly impressive and now, thanks to Bone Tomahawk director Craig Zahler, »
- Freda Cooper
“Brawl in Cell Block 99” introduces the retooled and muscle-plated Vince Vaughn 2.0 headfirst, his shaved and tattooed skull stomping away from the camera like an asteroid hurtling toward earth. Action Vaughn 2.0 has the same movie star qualities as the hunk of “Swingers”: the barreling 6’5″ frame, the deep-set eyes that convinced Rihanna to call him the sexiest man alive.
But now that Vaughn is 47, his powerful torso has the leather-knotted look of a man who spent his life pounding railroad spikes—no vanity abs here—and the exhausted shadows on his face say he’s seen too much. And that’s not just because he and “Cell Block” writer-director S. Craig Zahler just wrapped their second film together, “Dragged Across Concrete,” just four days before flying to Austin for the movie’s American premiere at Fantastic Fest. (It opens theatrically on October 6.)
For the first time in two decades, and »
- Amy Nicholson
Madrid — Spanish writer-director brothers Alex and David Pastor have joined high-concept TV drama project “The Head,” a co-production by Spain’s Mediapro with Sweden’s Dramacorp, the Patrick Nebout-Beta Film joint venture.
“The Head” was presented as a project at April’s Series Mania forum in Paris.
A survival thriller, “The Head” follows ten scientists trapped in a mobile science laboratory at the South Pole who realize that one among them is a killer. The Pastors will be responsible for developing the project.
Barcelona-born, the Pastors already boast a solid film and TV track-record, including Paramount Vantage’s “Carriers,” the Wild Bunch-sold apocalyptic thriller “The Last Days,” both written and directed by the duo, and Ben Kingsley and Ryan Reynolds-starrer “Self/Less,” directed by “The Cell”’s Tarsem Singh, which they wrote.
They recently made their TV drama debut creating, and partially writing and directing, “Incorporated,” (pictured »
- Emiliano De Pablos
STXfilms touted the movie as being in the vein of “Working Girl” and “Maid in Manhattan.” Lopez will portray a big box store employee who reinvents her life and her lifestyle, which gets her the chance to prove to Madison Avenue that street smarts are as valuable as a college degree.
“There are so many things I love about this project and script,” said Lopez. “People try to put women to sleep at a certain age. ‘Second Act’ is a story that empowers the every woman to do more, to be more, and not limit their dreams. I am thrilled to partner with Stx as they continue to create and empower the female audience.”
Jennifer Lopez’s NBC Series ‘World of Dance’ Marks Game-Changing Moment for Dance Industry
The project was developed by Stx with Lopez from an idea conceived by Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas and Justin Zackham. The two wrote the script for “Second Act,” which will be produced by Lopez, Goldsmith-Thomas, Zackham and Benny Medina.
“When Jennifer, Elaine and Justin came to us with this idea, we loved it right away,” said Fogelson. “The premise of reinventing yourself and creating a career and life-defining second act is hugely relatable and aspirational. Jennifer’s talents as a film and television actress, producer and recording artist are legendary. She is a true global superstar and and we think she is perfect for this role.”
Lopez starred in several successful romantic comedies and dramas between 2001 and 2005, including “The Wedding Planner,” “Maid in Manhattan,” “Shall We Dance,” and “Monster in Law.” Other key credits include “Out of Sight,” “The Cell,” and “Anaconda.” She starred opposite Ryan Guzman in 2015’s erotic thriller “The Boy Next Door.”
Stx noted in the announcement that its next six releases feature women in leading roles — “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets,” “Molly’s Game,” “Gringo,” “A Bad Moms Christmas” and “The Happytime Murders.”
Related storiesJennifer Lopez's NBC Series 'World of Dance' Marks Game-Changing Moment for Dance IndustryNBC Pushes 'Bye Bye Birdie' Live Musical to 2018Katy Perry, Jennifer Lopez Join James Corden's 'Carpool Karaoke' Special »
- Dave McNary
Kayti Burt Feb 8, 2017
This review contains minor spoilers and slight references to later episodes.
L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz and its sequels have been adapted for the screen for nearly as long as there has been cinema. There's something about the tale of farmgirl Dorothy Gale being swept into the strange, magical, and sometimes scary land of Oz that has stuck in American popular consciousness and never let go.
Emerald City is the latest addition to the long on-screen Oz tradition, but, for all of the ways it draws from its obvious source material, it's strengths and weakness are defined by other pop »
Four episodes were provided prior to broadcast.
If you’re not one for the resurgence of classic fairy tales translated into hard-edged, dark adventure stories (Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Huntsman), then you’ll likely have a difficult time connecting with NBC’s wondrously visualized but narratively slight re-do of The Wizard of Oz. Dubbed Emerald City, the new show has all the trappings of the hero’s journey – a reluctant heroine, an animal companion, a potential love interest, and about three too many villains – but it does nothing interesting with L. Frank Baum’s decidedly classic storytelling other than make it slightly more “adult.”
A twist on such a wholesome, homegrown American myth is ripe with potential, but Emerald City‘s idea of an origin story is one filled with cable-protected sex scenes for the Witch of the West (Ana Ularu, one of Emerald City‘s gleefully »
- Mitchel Broussard
A sexy, gritty reboot of The Wizard of Oz. It sounds like something Jack Donaghy would dream up on 30 Rock, doesn’t it? Yet Emerald City isn’t a 10-second sitcom joke; it’s a 10-hour actual thing that NBC has created. And while it displays some dazzling visual flair and is plenty ambitious in its scope, like a certain famous Scarecrow, this ponderous revamp doesn’t seem to have much of a brain at all.
7 items from 2017
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