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Commenting on the Critics with Simon Columb...
It was obvious I would discuss this; The Observer writes a short piece about *shudder* Casablanca 2: As Time Goes By:
"According to a planned sequel to the 1942 classic, the couple, played by Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart, had a child together who was brought up in America by Lund and her husband, the principled humanitarian Victor Laszlo. The sequel, Return to Casablanca or As Time Goes By, is being developed in Hollywood by Warner Bros and will see Lund's illegitimate son return to North Africa to seek out his real father's past."
Read the full article here.
So the frustration sets in - and I partly blame myself. The only reason I even know about this information is because I read an awful amount of film news on a regular basis. There are bound to be thousands of films that have fell by the wayside because, »
Sure we've met cute and charming robots like Wall-e, Johnny 5, and more, but now it's time to meet Gumdrop. The 27-year old Bulgarian actress has appeared in films with Fred Astaire and Charlie Chaplin, and now she's auditioning for a new film with someone called TikTok. Voiced by visual effects artist Venti Hristova (who sounds like a dead wringer for Kristen Schaal), Gumdrop is one of the most cute and endearing robots I've ever seen, and this short film from Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow director Kerry Conran is totally worthy of a feature length version, diving into the life of Grumdrop. Watch it! Here's the short film Gumdrop from Wigs, brought to our attention by reader Matt Grossbart: Wigs, a scripted drama channel on YouTube created by Black Swan producer Jon Avnet and Albert Nobbs producer Rodrigo Garcia, premiered the short and the talent behind the effects »
- Ethan Anderton
‘Tis the season… for costly 3D animated blockbusters! The newest animated confection to roll out of the major studio pipeline, just a few short weeks after the sweetly charming retro-romp “Wreck-It Ralph,” is “Rise of the Guardians,” the last film from DreamWorks Animation to be distributed by Paramount Pictures (next year, Fox will take over those duties). “Rise of the Guardians” collects various characters from mythology and folklore and puts them together into an “Avengers”-style super-team (Alec Baldwin is Santa Claus, Chris Pine is Jack Frost, Hugh Jackman is the Easter Bunny and Isla Fisher is the Tooth Fairy), to ward off the evil boogeyman Pitch (Jude Law). Is “Rise of the Guardians” the stuff of legend, or merely something that will (ever-so-briefly) get you away from your more annoying family members this holiday season? Let's find out. Pro: The Concept Is Ingenious How no one has previously thought »
- Drew Taylor
In the landscape of a Hollywood cinema where fear of failure engenders safe formulas over and over again, Cloud Atlas is some kind of meteoric event, risking catastrophe at every turn and obliterating the sanctions of good taste. In its multiplicity of narrative threads, genre send-ups, and plot overlaps, it practically guarantees disorientation. Unlike 95% of commercial movies, it moves according to thematic rather than narrative logic. It runs just short of three hours, and could theoretically end at any moment once its central theses have been established. It offers neither narrative coherence, satisfying character development, or rational cutting rhythms—all qualities viewers have come to expect from a movie that costs this much. It is merely images and feelings, moving in time and ready to collapse at any moment.
- Carson Lund
Every once in a while, a film is released with such a ludicrous premise that you simply have to take note and Iron Sky is such a film. It is set at the end of WWII and follows various high-ranking Nazi officials setting up a well-equipped (and very smartly polished and decked-out) base on the moon. Jump forward to 2018 where the President of the United States (Stephanie Paul), a Sarah Palin lookalike, is up for re-election and to help her campaign, has Nasa send leaves astronaut/ male model James Washington (the charismatic and amusing Christopher Kirby) Nasa to the moon for their first landing in decades (her campaign poster reads: ‘Black to Space: Yes She Can’.). This leaves Washington at the mercy of the followers of the so called ‘Fourth Reich’. The Nazi brass, including Moon Fuehrer Wolfgang Kortzfleiche (cult legend Udo Kier), and his protoge-turned-rival Klaus Adler (Gatz Otto »
- Tom Stockman
Let the Meteorblitzkrieg begin!
Iron Sky is finally here! Director Timo Vuorensola’s Finnish-German-Australian science fiction comedy, six years in the making, represents a collaborative approach from conception to marketing. Iron Sky milked the Internet for all it’s worth, building up a community of artists and fans who got involved one way or another including the kicking in of much of the film’s funding (these deep-pocket collaborators are listed in the credits). In a happy ending for dreamers everywhere, the result is a genuine success story for what is, after all, a small movie with a tighter-than-tight budget. But while the budget was necessarily low, the filmmaker’s ambition is unmistakably high and Iron Sky looks like a film that cost many many times its actual budget. If you enjoy your sci-fi with some satire and count Brazil, Dr. Strangelove, and Mars Attacks among your faves, do not »
- Tom Stockman
You don't see many blimps, canoes or ships on film these days, a sure sign that when you do it can only mean trouble
Premium Rush is a strange anomaly when it comes to bicycle movies, because it deals with the reality of urban cycling: every journey involves zipping between objects massive enough to immediately kill you, and the constant risk of slamming your spine awkwardly on the side of a skip because someone opened their car door unexpectedly. Traditionally, however, bikes on film tend to represent innocence and freedom. While his future lay in dystopian sci-fi and Russell Crowe grunting at things, Ridley Scott's first ever short Boy And Bicycle was concerned with nothing more than showing a young Tony Scott contemplatively pedalling around west Hartlepool and Seaton Carew when he should have been at school. Then take Et's centrepiece, where a boy's bicycle is propelled skywards »
- Stuart Heritage
In case you weren’t following our Twitter feed on Friday (and why weren’t you?) you missed the winners of the International Association of Media Tie-In Writer’s annual Scribe Awards ceremony, held Friday night at Comic-Con in San Diego.
Kevin J. Anderson was awarded this year’s Grandmaster award for remarkable achievements in the tie-in field, which include more than one hundred novels, adding up to over 20 million books in print in thirty languages. His work includes the Star Wars “Jedi Academy” books, three internationally bestselling X-Files novels, the Superman novels The Last Days of Krypton and Enemies & Allies, many novelizations (Sky Captain And The World of Tomorrow, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, etc.) and ten globally bestselling Dune novels he has co-authored with Brian Herbert.
But he wasn’t alone accepting honors on Friday. Cowboys & Aliens by Joan D. Vinge was the winner for Best Adaptation, Dungeons & Dragons »
- Glenn Hauman
Between 1956 and 1969, Elvis Aron Presley starred in a total of 31 movies. Now he could be back for more.
Virtual actors in new films have long been a dream for producers. Since 2004, when Kerry Conran's Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow brought Laurence Olivier back 15 years after his death to play crazed scientist Dr Totenkopf, it has been a reality. Yet though Sky Captain represented a big step forward from the simple archive footage techniques used in films like Zelig and Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid, it has taken a while for technology to catch up to the point where it can successfully render dead actors in new situations. The options available to producers have also been limited by copyright issues, with the rights to big stars' images often increasing after their deaths.
Last month, Core Media made a big impression by bringing Tupac Shakur back from »
- Jennie Kermode
Brenton Thwaites, a young Australian actor, has been cast as the prince in Robert Stromberg’s upcoming reimagination of Sleeping Beauty told from the villain’s perspective, according to Deadline. The Disney film has quite a fun collection of cast members, including Angelina Jolie (Wanted) as Maleficent, Elle Fanning (Super as the princess Brenton will have to woo, Sharlto Copley (District 9) as the princess’ father, and Imelda Staunton (Harry Potter), Lesley Manville and Juno Temple as fairies.
Apparently, Brenton Thwaites cut his teeth on Australian soap Home And Away, which has such luminaries as Heath Ledger, Chris Hemsworth, Guy Pearce and Naomi Watts in the show’s past (Slashfilm). That seems to bode well of the hiring, and due to the cast and decent concept, I’m onboard. It’ll be Stromberg’s directorial debut, but he’s cut his teeth on special effects in Hollywood since the 1980s, »
- Andy Greene
At this point in time, Jude Law seems to have found his place in the Hollywood star system. He's been cropping up in movies for over fifteen years, but he was always more of a character actor than a leading man, and when pushed into more traditional star roles, in films like "Enemy At The Gates," "Cold Mountain" and "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow," he always sat a little uncomfortably. But these days, he gets to play second fiddle in the mega-hit "Sherlock Holmes" franchise, a far more natural fit, which gives him the freedom to tackle quirkier supporting roles in films like "Contagion."
But for the right project, his leading man days aren't over, and the actor's just signed up to a very promising-sounding dark comedy, with the Hollywood Reporter bringing news that Law is now attached to "Dom Hemingway," a new film written and directed by Richard Shepard, »
- Oliver Lyttelton
Unapologetically corny, "Iron Sky" looks quite a bit like "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow", but feels a whole lot like "Mars Attacks". And if neither one of those films is at the very least a guilty pleasure, you'll probably have a hard time swallowing all the goofiness on display here. Me personally, I'd never try to defend either as a great film, but I've still watched both multiple times, and "Iron Sky" has a lot of the same retro charm.
Continue reading »
Chicago – Usually it’s critics critically flogging a film when we say it weakly lacks originality and borrows too heavily from others. Disney’s “John Carter” attacks that classic grumble by promotionally comparing itself to “Star Wars” and “Avatar” before critics even had a chance to deduct points for it.
But while being proactive in its contrasts, the film also attempts to sell moviegoers on one unknown fact: The basis for Pixar writer and director Andrew Stanton’s (“Wall-e,” “Finding Nemo,” “Toy Story”) story actually originates before its George Lucas and James Cameron predecessors.
Stanton’s current creation is based on the classic stories of a 19th-century Earth man who gets accidentally transplanted to Mars. And it’s been more than 100 years since “Tarzan” creator Edgar Rice Burroughs crafted the character John Carter: the hero of his science-fiction “Barsoom” (Mars) book series.
Read Adam Fendelman’s full review »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
I've heard a lot of reactions from people who have seen the TV spots and trailers for Disney's John Carter. Most of them are along the lines of "it looks like Attack of the Clones" or "oh, so it's Avatar in the desert?" Not quite. While John Carter might seem derivative of about a dozen other movies, the argument could be made that it's really the other way around. John Carter feels to me like a timeless, old-fashioned swashbuckling adventure movie -- the kind I remember watching with my dad when I was younger and the kind I can see myself returning to with my own children several years from now. The fact that the film is 100 years in the making might have something to do with that. Edgar Rice Burroughs, best known as the creator of Tarzan, first introduced John Carter in a magazine serial in 1912. His adventures on »
- Kevin Blumeyer
When a new movie gets released, stars will churn out endless interview with the hopes of convincing you that this new movie is the greatest one ever. After that, those stars move on to promote a new project, which then becomes the new greatest movie ever -- leaving the films of yesteryear to fade into obscurity. No more! Here at Moviefone, we've decided to honor the long lost junket interviews of yore. In this week's installment, we've dug up 2004's "Wimbledon," which co-starred Paul Bettany and Kirsten Dunst. The sporty film would finish fourth on its opening weekend -- behind "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow," "Mr. 3000," and the second week of "Resident Evil: Apocalypse." "Wimbledon" would go on to gross just over $17 million domestically. During this interview (the outlet is unknown), Bettany relays the difficulty of filming the tennis scenes. "We're hitting imaginary balls, and they put the »
- Mike Ryan
Once upon a time, Kerry Conran was attached to direct “John Carter of Mars”, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ tale of a lost Johnny Rb on Mars. Wait, you don’t remember who Kerry Conran is? He was the writer/director of 2004′s “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow” starring Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow. (And a little lady named Angelina Jolie.) Remember that one? No? I don’t blame you. Most people have forgotten, but take it from me, when the film was coming out people were really paying attention because Conran was doing crazy things with computers and CG backgrounds back then. In 2012, “John Carter” is opening next month from director Andrew Stanton, but what if Conran had still been attached to direct? As it turns out, it’d probably have looked a little like Stanton’s version anyways, though I don’t suppose you can do a whole »
From animation to epic sci-fi to intimate dramas, here’s our pick of the 50 finest foreign language films of the past ten years…
It is quite clear that mainstream cinema no longer applies just to Hollywood blockbusters, or the odd British comedy. With the advent of mass home cinema in the last decade, and the increasing availability of pretty much anything and everything on DVD, Blu-ray, or streaming services like Netflix, world cinema has finally crossed the divide of being the preserve of the connoisseur, or the type of thing you’d stumble on late at night on TV.
In the last ten years, world cinema has made a massive impact on film-of-the-year lists, and many people’s personal favourites. Starting from 2002 and ending here in 2012, it’s safe to say that you’ll have seen many of the films below, and enjoyed them simply as great pieces of filmmaking, »
George Lucas must have the deepest pockets of any independent filmmaker on the planet. He self-financed Red Tails – the epic passion project about the Tuskegee Airmen he’s been fighting to bring to the big screen for 23 years — with close to $100 million of his personal fortune. Today he’s got to be smiling, though, because it looks like his investment has a shot at paying off.
It’ll be an uphill battle, but Red Tails soared in its opening weekend with $19.1 million, well beyond what distributor 20th Century Fox anticipated. That beats the openings of previous aerial adventure films like »
- Christian Blauvelt
Underworld Awakening sunk its teeth in to the top spot at the box office this weekend, though that didn't stop Red Tails from also putting up strong numbers in its debut. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and Haywire were less impressive, though, and The Artist failed to gain much traction in its nationwide expansion. The Top 12 earned an estimated $111.7 million this weekend, which is up a whopping 26 percent from the same period last year.The latest entry in the Underworld franchise opened to an estimated $25.4 million, which is just a bit behind Kate Beckinsale's last entry, 2006's Underworld: Evolution ($26.9 million). It did at least mark a slight improvement over 2009's Underworld: Rise of the Lycans ($20.8 million), though that was sans-Beckinsale and didn't receive a boost from 3D premiums. The 3D format accounted for 59 percent of Awakening's ticket sales, while IMAX represented 15 percent (most or all of which is included within »
- Ray Subers <email@example.com>
The late week indications that Red Tails might pull off an upset this weekend proved to be unfounded, as Underworld Awakening easily took first place at the box office on Friday. Red Tails did have an above-average turnout, though, and it should wind up on the high end of most expectations. The same can't be said for Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and Haywire, neither of which attracted a ton of attention. Also disappointing was the nationwide expansion of The Artist, which can't seem to get enough awards attention to overcome its black-and-white-and-silent challenge.Underworld Awakening grossed an estimated $9.4 million on Friday, which is the second-highest opening day for the series behind 2006's Underworld: Evolution ($10.25 million). With 3D premiums, though, attendance was probably at or near the series low. Still, it should easily claim first place for the three-day weekend with around $25 million, which is not bad at all for the »
- Ray Subers <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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