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“How happy is the blameless vestal’s lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Each pray’r accepted, and each wish resign’d”
This writer is no romantic. As much as a need exists for romantic comedies there are few capable of breaching my cynical defences; less still which bear repeat viewing. Thankfully there are those who cater to the romantic realist, striking a balance between the fluff of Ephron and flim-flam which is Richard Curtis. Those are the ones I return to because few people intellectualise love like Allen in Annie Hall, while Kaufman’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is both love letter and warning shot for the unwary.
My primary reason for revisiting is simply one of fascination. Love is defined by scientists as a chemical reaction built through the sharing of collective experience. In filmic terms »
- Gary Collinson
Say When (being released in the Us under its original title Laggies) is set to open across the UK through Icon Film Distribution on 10th October. Directed by Lynn Shelton (Your Sister’S Sister; Hump Day; Touchy Feely), Say When received its world premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. It stars Keira Knightley (Begin Again; Atonement; A Dangerous Method), Chloe Grace Moretz (If Stay; Kick-ass; Kick-ass 2) and Sam Rockwell (The Way, Way Back; Moon; Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind).
Megan (Knightley) is 28 going on 14. Whilst her oldest friends are settling down and starting families, Megan prefers to be the bridesmaid to the bride, the godmother to the actual mother. When her boyfriend Anthony proposes to her, Megan runs away from grown up life for a while and hides out with her new friend, high school student Annika (Moretz). There follows a week of reliving the ups and downs of teenage life, »
- Jazmine Sky Bradley
As a filmmaker, George Clooney has shown a deep passion for bringing audiences true stories that are stranger than fiction. To date, he's helmed the bizarre Chuck Barris biopic Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, the celebrated Edward R. Murrow-centered docudrama Goodnight and Good Luck, and the star-stuffed World War II drama The Monuments Men. For his next venture, Clooney is turning to drug smuggling, and he's picked up a solid accomplice. THR reports George Clooney and producing partner Grant Heslov have hired Debora Cahn to pen the screenplay for their upcoming drama Coronado High. Like those movies mentioned above, Coronado High finds its inspiration in real-life events, in this case that of Lou Villar, a hippie teacher and swimming coach in 1969 Cornado, California, who decided to enlist his students in a plan to smuggle pot from Mexico. In a plan perfect for dopey surfer teens, they transported the illegal »
Production designer Jim Bissell has been chosen to receive the Art Directors Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
The kudo will be presented Jan. 31 at the 19th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Bissell’s credits include “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” “The Rocketeer,” “Jumanji,” “300,” “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” and “The Monuments Men” — his fourth collaboration with George Clooney following “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,” “Good Night, and Good Luck” and “Leatherheads.”
He is working on “Mission: Impossible 5.”
- Dave McNary
Clooney will produce the film along with Grant Heslov (The Monuments Men) and David Klawans (Argo). Grey’s Anatomy and The West Wing writer Debora Cahn will pen the screenplay, which is an adaptation of a Atavist article by Joshua Bearman. The piece told of a hippie teacher who teamed up with high school students in the beach town of Coronado, California in 1969 to smuggle pot from Mexico to the Us by swimming and paddling surfboards. They successfully created a criminal empire that stretched into the 1970s, before being taken down by the DEA.
This isn’t the first of Bearman’s articles to get the Hollywood treatment. He wrote a story for Wired that became the basis for Ben Affleck’s Academy Award winning film Argo. Cahn, on the other hand, »
- James Garcia
He will oversee the development and production of Annapurna projects, and will report to Ellison.
Gordon produced David O. Russell’s “American Hustle” with Ellison, Charles Roven and Richard Suckle and “Silver Linings Playbook” with Bruce Cohen and Donna Gigliotti. “Hustle” received 10 Oscar nominations, including best picture.
Prior to becoming a producer, Gordon was president of production at Universal Pictures under Stacey Snider and previously spent 15 years with Harvey and Bob Weinstein at Miramax Films, where his last position was co-president of production.
- Dave McNary
After achieving massive success by collaborating with Jonathan Gordon, Annapurna Pictures chief Megan Ellison has brought on the producer onboard as president of production. Gordon, who produced “American Hustle” with Ellison and also produced “Silver Linings Playbook,” previously served as president of production at Universal, and prior to that, rose up to co-president of production at Miramax. There, he worked on films such as “Good Will Hunting,” “Dogma” and “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.” “After working closely with Jon on ‘American Hustle,’ I was so impressed by him that I knew I needed to have him as a part of Annapurna, »
- Jordan Zakarin
Hollywood Entertainment Network: A few days ago at the Cannes Film Festival, A list actor Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut Lost River (which was originally titled by him as the more compelling How To Catch a Monster) screened to a rather divisive response from critics. Some praised his skill behind the camera and the way he worked in many influences from other filmmakers, while others panned the movie for being derivative and an imitation of better works. That more or less takes the film out of major awards contention, but it does leave me still contemplating Gosling’s future as a director. He may not have hit a home run his first time out, but very few actors turned directors do. My hunch is that he’s a few years away from making a flick that really wows folks. Why do I think that? Look at other A-listers who stepped behind the camera. »
- Joey Magidson
Our “Six Of The Best” actors series has highlighted the work of some of the most revered and celebrated actors of our generation. Some of them are living legends, and others are legends in the making, but they all have one thing in common — their filmographies boast an eclectic mix of strange, heroic, funny and sometimes downright scary characters that are hard to shake. They’ve made an impression on us that deserves to be recognized.
Despite all of the great performers who have impressed us over the years, there is one man who symbolizes the true spirit of memorable character acting. That man is Sam Rockwell: an actor for the ages.
With over two decades in the industry, Sam Rockwell has dipped his toes into virtually every genre of film imaginable. The most impressive aspect of this achievement is how adept he is at comprehending each character, while »
- Damen Norton
David Posamentier and Geoff Moore have been writing together for about ten years. Each has an impressive resume of films they’ve been a part of in some way. Posamentier worked for writer/director Zach Braff on Garden State. Moore has worked on such films as Confessions of a Dangerous Mind and I Love You Phillip Morris. Having worked so long writing and developing projects for others, it seemed inevitable that they would eventually decide to direct themselves. Which is precisely what they have done with the dark comedy Better Living Through Chemistry.
The film tells the story of small-town pharmacist Doug Varney (Sam Rockwell) who’s conventional and boring life is turned upside down when he meets the alluring Elizabeth Roberts (Olivia Wilde). As the pair begins a drug-fueled affair, Doug undergoes a transformation that may ultimately lead him down the path to a better life.
Posamentier and Moore »
- Mike Tyrkus
George Clooney is an undervalued filmmaker. With Confessions of a Dangerous Mind Clooney showed he was the real deal behind the camera. He followed that, his best film, with the widely acclaimed Goodnight and Good Luck, as well as the overlooked Leatherheads, and one of 2011′s best films, The Ides of March. His films have no shortage of ambition or passion, but his newest movie, The Monuments Men, suffers from perhaps too much of both. Hitler started stealing art during World War II in the hopes of creating a cultural town made up of all these stolen pieces. He was robbing people of their history and culture, and in retaliation Fdr commissioned a team to go retrieve the art and find their rightful owners. George Stout (Clooney) led the group and convinced Fdr to support the mission and his team of non-traditional soldiers. For the most part, this ensemble features the kind of limited character definition we »
- Jack Giroux
As the trailers and post-holiday pushback release suggested, George Clooney's "The Monuments Men" is dead on arrival. What went wrong? As a writer-director, Clooney is hit-or-miss. He's in love with old-fashioned Hollywood genres like the Cold War spy thriller comedy ("Confessions of a Dangerous Mind") or period sports romance ("Leatherheads") that would be a challenge for any director to pull off. They were both duds. On the other hand, black-and-white newsroom drama "Good Night, and Good Luck" earned six Academy Award nominations, and "Ides of March" scored another for scribe Beau Willamon, who went on to write "House of Cards." Unfortunately, "Monuments Men," adapted from Robert M. Edsel and Bret Witter's book by Clooney and his co-producer Grant Heslov, is one of Clooney's more flat-footed efforts. It means to be a John Frankenheimer wartime thriller with soldiers in danger trying to rescue the world's great works of art from the Nazis--art-lover Hitler has. »
- Anne Thompson
In his past films, George Clooney has shown himself to be surprisingly deft at working with genre and mood. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind is a stunning directorial debut that melds comedy, paranoia, tragedy, and drama, and his following works all have a smart, sensible core (although I'll admit his previous picture, The Ides of March is slightly shaky). Unfortunately, his confident direction is nowhere to be found in his latest film, The Monuments Men. The story is scattershot in structure, narrative, and tone. The premise is fascinating, but Clooney can never seem to find the right angle, and it's unclear if we're watching a drama with comedic elements or a rousing World War II picture with moments of tragedy. There's almost a total lack of cohesion, and while Clooney is occasionally able to regain control of the picture, the best moments rely almost entirely on the performances. The Nazis »
- Matt Goldberg
George Clooney is now five films into his career as a director, which gives us enough room to try to discern a voice or a thematic intent or a unifying vision for the films he's made, and yet, when I look at those five films, what ultimately emerges is a portrait of a somewhat invisible man. I think "Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind" is a very stylish film, and he navigated a fairly tricky piece of writing there. I understand why so many directors were drawn to Charlie Kaufman's script, and I understand why so many directors ultimately chose not to »
- Drew McWeeny
More than just individually two of the biggest stars in the world, Matt Damon and George Clooney have a habit of producing some great work together when they collaborate. First getting together as part of the ensemble of Steven Soderbergh.s Oceans 11 back in 2001, they.ve since appeared in four other movies together, the fifth coming out this weekend: The Monuments Men. But while it.s clear that the two actors have a great working relationship and enjoy doing projects together, their latest features an important dynamic change. Monuments Men is the first time that Damon has worked with Clooney as a director on a full feature (discounting the quick cameo the former made in the latter.s debut, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind). While you may think that would have a certain effect on the on-set relationship, however, the reality is that the two had enough trust in each »
The Monuments Men, an all new action drama directed by George Clooney is about to hit theaters. Recently, Wamg attended The Monuments Men press day where George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, Hugh Bonneville, Cate Blanchett and co-writer Grant Heslov sat down with press to talk about the film… as well as a prank that George Clooney played on Matt Damon. Check it out below.
Based on the true story of the greatest treasure hunt in history, The Monuments Men is an action drama focusing on an unlikely World War II platoon, tasked by Fdr with going into Germany to rescue artistic masterpieces from Nazi thieves and returning them to their rightful owners. It would be an impossible mission : with the art trapped behind enemy lines, and wight the German army under orders to destroy everything as the Reich fell, how could these guys – seven museum directors, »
- Melissa Howland
In a handful of projects, George Clooney has proven himself as equally suave and confident behind the camera as he is in front of it. At the same time, however, his handsome visage has grown steadily worse for wear as he has mellowed into middle age — and the movies have followed suit. The result has been a decidedly tamer, if never entirely dismissible, pop culture artist intermittently successful at making smarter Hollywood movies. While his Charlie Kaufman-scripted "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind" had experimental bite, and the superbly restrained "Good Night, and Good Luck" explored its topic with oodles of intellectual élan, the earnestly upbeat sports comedy "Leatherheads" flopped hard, and "The Ides of March" displayed its "all-politicians-are-monsters" polemic a little too broadly. But like Clooney's slick grin, the later movies reflect an eagerness to satisfy audience expectations on par with attempts by the earlier ones to challenge them. »
- Eric Kohn
I consider George Clooney's directing work to be 4-for-4. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind is a brilliant debut, Good Night, and Good Luck. is a perfectly timed critique of the Bush Administration, Leatherheads is a ton of fun, and The Ides of March, while it has some issues, is still an assured piece of filmmaking. His latest, The Monuments Men, has a terrific premise—a true story about a group of soldiers trying to rescue art from the Nazis—and an outstanding cast. I have no reason to believe he won't be 5-for-5. I'm pleased to announce that we're giving away 20 admit-two passes to The Monuments Men. Hit the jump to find out how you can see the movie early and for free. The Monuments Men opens on February 7th, and stars George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Bob Balaban, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, and Cate Blanchett. »
- Matt Goldberg
It’s not only the great works of European art that have gone missing in “The Monuments Men”; the spark of writer-director-star George Clooney’s filmmaking is absent, too. In adapting writer Robert M. Edsel’s account of the men charged with protecting the Western world’s aesthetic treasures from wartime destruction, Clooney has transformed a fascinating true-life tale into an exceedingly dull and dreary caper pic cum art-appreciation seminar — a museum-piece movie about museum people. Fronting an all-star cast and top-drawer craft contributions in every department, this expensive-looking Sony/Fox co-production should outpace the $75 million worldwide gross of Clooney’s previous turn in the director’s chair (2011’s “The Ides of March”), but doesn’t amount to more than a footnote in his remarkable filmography.
When Clooney started out as a director, it was clear he’d learned a great deal about technique from his many collaborations with Steven Soderbergh, »
- Scott Foundas
Sam Rockwell is one of the greatest actors working today. If you’re not already in agreement with me, look over his diverse body of work. Rockwell has killed roles, both lead and supporting, in movies as weird as Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, as shattering as Conviction, and as breathtakingly original as Moon. Along the way, he’s played integral parts in classics like The Green Mile and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. He’s one of my favorite actors because, no matter how many great roles I see him in, he just sells it every time.
A Single Shot, a relentlessly bleak and atmospheric noir drama, is no exception. As hunter John Moon, who accidentally shoots and kills a young woman, only to uncover a huge amount of money she was guarding, Rockwell is absolutely terrific. It’s a very physical part for the actor, »
- Isaac Feldberg
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