20 items from 2015
Chicago – There were basically two careers for Pierre Morel, before he directed the mega-hit “Taken,” starring Liam Neeson, and afterward. The French-born cinematographer, camera operator and now director is releasing “The Gunman,” an action film that stars Sean Penn. Like “Taken,” the motivations for the action are based in the real world, and “The Gunman” travels to Africa, London and Barcelona on his way to redeeming his soul.
Morel has had an adventurous career, in both European cinema and in notable films, beginning with his days as a camera operator on “The Truth about Charlie” (2002), “The Dreamers” (2003) and “Before Sunset” (2004). He was the cinematographer on “The Transporter” (2002) and Director of Photography on “Love and Other Disasters” (2006). His breakthrough came in 2008, when he directed “Taken.” The film resonated with audiences, and allowed his career to move into a new direction.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Our Oscar coverage continues. Here we overview the best acting and best directing award nominees.
The Best Actor Nominees
Previously Best Known For:
Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
Interesting Fact: Owns and operates the Marshfield Hills General Store in Marshfield, Massachusetts where he has a summer home.
Previously Best Known For:
Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role 2013- as Richie Dimaso in American Hustle
Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role 2012 - as Pat in Silver Linings Playbook
Interesting Fact: Had to miss his graduation commencement at Georgetown University because he was filming Wet Hot American Summer.
- email@example.com (G.S. Perno)
With the 2015 Oscars coming up this weekend, we go back ten years to see if the 2005 awards still hold up today...
It was during an interview with Mark Kermode that I asked him how long someone really needs to gestate on a film, and come up with a proper review. "About ten years", he said. I get his point. Each awards season, it's about, at best, what feels like the best film right then. Not the one that settles over a period of time, or shows you new things each time you watch it. But the one that you watched once, and affected you once. It's the only way, anyway, I can think of why A Beautiful Mind won a Best Picture Oscar.
This weekend, then, is the Academy Awards once more. And I thought it'd be worth rewinding ten years, to see whether the Academy's choices on February 27th »
Written by Benson, the movie stars Lou Taylor Pucci as Evan, a guy whose life at home isn't going so well so he escapes to Italy in hopes of some reprise. There he meets Louise, German actress Nadia Hilker, a woman who might just be the love of his life except... she's hiding a secret.
Described by many as a horror version of Before Sunset, the newly unveiled trailer certainly suggests good things to come from Spring. The movie was already high on the list of titles to see this year and it looks like we'll have a chance to do so in short notice with Drafthouse Films and Film Buff teaming up for [Continued ...] »
By Anjelica Oswald
The 87th Academy Awards acting race is almost evenly divided between veterans and first-time nominees.
Nine of the 20 nominees in the four acting categories are newcomers — four lead actors (Steve Carell, Michael Keaton, Eddie Redmayne and Benedict Cumberbatch), two lead actresses (Rosamund Pike and Felicity Jones), two supporting actresses (Patricia Arquette and Emma Stone) and one supporting actor (J.K. Simmons).
As for the 11 veterans, the number of Oscar nominations between them ranges from 19 to one. Four of them have previously taken Oscars home.
Meryl Streep received her 19th nomination this year for her supporting role as The Witch in Disney’s Into the Woods, the film adaptation of James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim’s musical. She holds the record for most acting nominations ever received and is one of six actors to have won three or more Oscars. Streep was first nominated in 1979 for her »
- Anjelica Oswald
Directed by: Kevin Reynolds
It could be the flop of all flops. At the time, “Waterworld” was the most expensive film ever made. Starring Kevin Costner, “Waterworld” is a science-fiction/fantasy film taking place roughly 500 years after the polar ice caps melted in the beginning of the 21st century, effectively covering the entire world with water. Dirt has become a commodity and an unknown traveler named “the Mariner” (Costner) is trying to find anywhere to trade his stash. The catch: he’s a mutant, with gills, allowing him to breathe underwater. He is joined by a woman named Helen (Jeannie Tripplehorn) and child named Enola (Tina Majorino) with an elaborate map tattooed on her back. They sail the world and encounter various groups of survivors. They are pursued by a group of evil forces, led by an eye-patched man called “the Deacon” (Dennis Hopper). The special effects are actually pretty impressive, »
- Joshua Gaul
By Anjelica Oswald
Chazelle’s Whiplash, about an aspiring jazz drummer and his sadistic instructor, is his second feature film and is adapted from a short film of the same name that he also wrote and directed. The short won the jury award for short films at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. Whiplash was nominated for four other awards, including best picture.
Anderson received his second adapted screenplay nomination for Inherent Vice, based on Thomas Pynchon’s novel of the same name. The film was also nominated for costume design. Anderson previously received an adapted screenplay nomination for 2007’s There Will Be Blood, which he also directed. He received a best director nomination, and the film was nominated for best picture.
If either wins, they will become the fifth adapted screenplay »
- Anjelica Oswald
Most Richard Linklater fans can tell you which film – and sometimes which scene – ignited their enthusiasm for the director, whether it was 1991’s influential indie Slacker, 1993’s high-school classic Dazed and Confused or 2003’s comedy School of Rock.
But, it all began with Before Sunrise.
Released 20 years ago this week, Before Sunrise boasted fresh-faced actors and a swoon-worthy premise: An American man (Ethan Hawke) meets a French woman (Julie Delpy) on a train, and they spend one magical evening together in Vienna. That alone was enough to attract my 17-year-old self to the theater, as was the case with many of my peers.
News: Julie & Ethan Reunite 'Before Midnight'
The true magic of Before Sunrise, however, lies beyond the picturesque scenery and smitten gazes. Building upon his gift for crafting relatable and engrossing conversation, Linklater’s characters feel fully formed, discussing everything from philosophy and religion to love and their hopes for the future.
Ethan Hawke scored his fourth Oscar nomination today for IFC Films’ Boyhood, and his second as supporting actor after 2001’s Training Day. What makes Hawke’s turn in Boyhood sublime is the fact he had to play the character across 12 years on and off; the divorced father of Mason (Ellar Coltrane), who grows from 5 to 18 years old.
How did Hawke jump in and out of character? “When [Best Director nominee Richard Linklater] approached me with this idea, I had a clear idea of what we were trying to do,” Hawke said today after the film picked up six nominations, including for Best Picture. “I had an image in my head of remembering my dad when I was in the sixth grade through my high school graduation; the way he had grown. If I could create a portrait of a grown man over a time period, then that was my job.”
Every time Hawke stepped back into the role, »
- Anthony D'Alessandro
The last time I hopped on the phone with Ethan Hawke to discuss a nominations haul for "Boyhood," it was just after the announcement of the Golden Globe nominees. At the time, he said it felt like he, Richard Linklater, Patricia Arquette, Ellar Coltrane and the whole team were "crashing the party," and today, seven Oscar nominations later, it still feels that way for the newly minted Best Supporting Actor nominee. "Anyone who is in the Academy is someone who's incredibly passionate about film and has done something to warrant admission," Hawke says. "They're usually extremely knowledgeable and care about movies, so when you get recognition from your peers for something you love, it's great." But Hawke entered rare air Thursday morning. He has now received multiple nominations for acting and writing on four separate projects ("Training Day," "Before Sunset," "Before Midnight" and "Boyhood"). "It's pretty special," he says. "I »
- Kristopher Tapley
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association has a reputation for catering to its A-list nominees but this year’s Golden Globes have been dominated by first-time nominees and new shows.
Director Richard Linklater, actors Eddie Redmayne (“The Theory of Everything”), Gina Rodriguez (“Jane the Virgin”), Jeffrey Tambor (“Transparent”), Matt Bomer (“The Normal Heart”), Joanne Froggatt (“Downton Abbey”) and J.K. Simmons (“Whiplash”) and composer Johann Johannsson (“The Theory of Everything”) capitalized on their first nominations and won Golden Globes.
See photos: Golden Globes: Red Carpet Arrivals (Photos)
- Jeff Sneider
For many film buffs out there, The Criterion Collection are an array of must-buy titles that encompass many of the best films of recent times, giving them the five-star treatment with blu-ray and DVD releases, along with a whole host of special features you cannot get anywhere else. At the start of 2015 (so, last week) the little devils at Criterion produced their annual “megaclue” (see below) as to what treats may be in store for collectors in 2015.
Many of the hints in the drawn picture were easy to decipher (Moonrise Kingdom, Inside Llewyn Davis, Two Days, One Night), but the drawing of two suns and a moon left many speculating that, finally, Richard Linklater’s Before… Trilogy (Sunrise, Sunset, Midnight) may finally be set for release together for the first time. And, Before… star Ethan Hawke has confirmed that the company is attempting just that.
“Criterion is trying to get the rights to all three, »
- Scott J. Davis
Rumors have been bandied about for some time regarding whether or not The Criterion Collection would release Richard Linklater's complete "Before" trilogy, including "Before Sunrise," "Before Sunset" and "Before Midnight." At a packed IFC party this week in Los Angeles celebrating Linklater's "Boyhood," Ethan Hawke told Collider: "Criterion's trying to get the rights to all three and do a triptych, which is what we wanted. So hopefully that will be soon." (Interview video below.) Criterion's New Year's teaser art hinted at what's in store for 2015, and in looking at the drawing (below), with its two suns and moon, suggests that the possibility of the "Before" series hitting shelves in a new transfer could finally be more than just hearsay. The cinephiles at CriterionCast agree that this may be true, while hinting that the moon could, in fact, presage "Moonrise Kingdom." »
- Ryan Lattanzio
At the beginning of the year, The Criterion Collection released their annual megaclue, which sent cinephiles guessing which movies the boutique label would release in customary deluxe fashion in 2015. With illustrations of two suns and one moon featuring prominently, many speculated that the long rumored addition of Richard Linklater's trilogy —"Before Sunrise," "Before Sunset," "Before Midnight"— to the collection was on the horizon. According to Ethan Hawke himself, the DVD company is attempting just that. “Criterion is trying to get the rights to all three,and do a triptych, which is what we want. So hopefully, that’ll be soon,” he told Collider. So perhaps a box set with the three films and a bounty of extras? Yes please! But there are likely tricky rights to work out with respect to the middle film "Before Sunset," which was released by Warner Bros. while the other two were handled by Sony. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
I apologize for posting what is essentially a bit of non-news, but it does go to what many (including myself) perceived to be hints at Richard Linklater's Before series of films -- Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight -- coming to the Criterion Collection in their New Year's drawing. Collider.com caught up with Ethan Hawke last night during a big Boyhood shindig and asked the actor about the chances of seeing the films on Blu-ray and Hawke said Criterion is trying to secure rights to all three films and release them as a trilogy. He doesn't haven any additional information, but that at least suggests something is in the works. Of course, that means getting rights from Sony and Warner Bros. and you'd think Hawke would have a little more information had he been brought in to put together a new featurette or possibly commentaries for the three films. »
- Brad Brevet
Last night in Hollywood, IFC Films and Paramount held a party for Richard Linklater’s Boyhood to celebrate its Blu-ray/DVD release and to let the cast and filmmakers mingle with Oscar voters. Based on how crowded the event was and how many people I heard saying “Best Picture,” I think the evening was a huge success for all involved. Shortly before the event started, I landed an exclusive video interview with Ethan Hawke on the red carpet. Besides talking about what the last year has been like since premiering Boyhood at Sundance and future projects like Good Kill, Ten Thousand Saints, and Ti West’s In the Valley of Violence, he revealed some awesome news: Criterion is trying to get the rights to the Before Sunrise trilogy to do a box set of all three films (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight)! As a huge fan of the trilogy, »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
How would you program this year's newest, most interesting films into double features with movies of the past you saw in 2014?
Looking back over the year at what films moved and impressed us, it is clear that watching old films is a crucial part of making new films meaningful. Thus, the annual tradition of our end of year poll, which calls upon our writers to pick both a new and an old film: they were challenged to choose a new film they saw in 2014—in theatres or at a festival—and creatively pair it with an old film they also saw in 2014 to create a unique double feature.
All the contributors were given the option to write some text explaining their 2014 fantasy double feature. What's more, each writer was given the option to list more pairings, with or without explanation, as further imaginative film programming we'd be lucky to catch »
Award season tends to focus on serious movies about serious topics filled with serious performances. And that’s why a late-year release like Chris Rock’s freewheeling comedy “Top Five” — written, directed by and starring Rock — feels like such a breath of fresh air.
It’s top-quality work from an artist intent on challenging himself. It also happens to be the funniest movie of the year.
“Making people laugh is kind of the best feeling you can give them,” says Rock, who will receive Variety’s Creative Impact in Comedy Award on Jan. 4 at Palm Springs. “You can have sex with them or make them laugh. People stop speaking to people they’ve had sex with, but people never stop speaking to people who’ve made them laugh. It’s an important thing in all our lives. More important than we realize.”
That message comes through loud and clear in “Top Five, »
- Geoff Berkshire
Criterion has revealed their latest New Year's teaser art, hinting at what's to come in 2015 and the boys at the CriterionCast have offered up several ideas as to what each clue is hinting at, but for me the most interesting is at the very top. We have two suns and a moon... Could this actually be a hint that Richard Linklater's Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight are coming to the collection in 2015c The CriterionCast guesses do believe the two suns hint at the first two Before films, but they speculate the moon rising tease hints at Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom... Hmmmmmmmmm. Other possibilities the CriterionCast gang speculates includes Edward Yang's A Brighter Summer Day, Two Days, One Night, Terrence Malick's The New World, David Cronenberg's The Brood, Speedy, Stanley Kubrick's Barry Lyndon, Abel Gance's Napoleon, Inside Llewyn Davis, A Master Builder, »
- Brad Brevet
The Green Ray, 1986.
Directed by Eric Rohmer.
A young woman seeks a relaxing holiday in the sun, but pines for something much more …
It is a timeless fact that your mid-twenties can be a daunting place. Richard Linklater’s Boyhood has won plaudits this year by only taking the young man to his late teens – Eric Rohmer, an inspiration to Linklater, is more interested in the summer of a single woman in her mid-twenties. Both filmmakers’ know how to capture a moment and freely utilise the flexibility of acting and truth to adapt and develop their art. Rohmer, in The Green Ray, even credits his lead actress Marie Rivière as co-script-writer to prove her crucial involvement. The Green Ray is deeply personal, capturing the brutal honesty of loneliness with an optimistic attitude towards finding your fated one.
The opening of »
- Simon Columb
20 items from 2015
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