20 items from 2014
"What if?" is the burning question our favorite sci-fi movies ask: What if Earth was invaded by aliens or giant spiders? What makes us human once we start bending the laws of genetics and robotics? And if we worked out really really hard, would we ever have Linda Hamilton's arms in "Terminator 2"?
Here are some of the best of the sci-fi genre now streaming on Netflix, including Chris Evans in "Snowpiercer," Bruce Willis in "The Fifth Element" and plenty of Godzilla and the crew of the USS Enterprise.
1. "Antiviral" (2012) Nr
David Cronenberg's son, Brandon, makes his film debut with this gore-filled horror flick about a company who deals in viruses collected from celebrities since people want to be infected with the same diseases as the ultra-famous.
2. "Barbarella" (1968) PG
The cult film, starring Jane Fonda as the sexy space babe of the title, may be overlong, but it's an eye-popping must-see '60s flashback. »
- Sharon Knolle
I've said this two or three times now around these parts, so I apologize if I sound like a broken record, but of all the forthcoming DC Comics films Warner Bros. announced earlier this fall, the one that has me most intrigued is Suicide Squad, about a group of incarcerated supervillains who perform special ops missions for the government in exchange for favorable prison terms. While there's no confirmation yet which characters will comprise the titular squad, or which actors will play them, The Wrap is reporting Jared Leto is now in talks to play The Joker in the David Ayer-directed project. It was previously announced Warner Bros. was aggressively pursuing Ryan Gosling, Tom Hardy, Margot Robbie, and Will Smith for roles in the film, and according to The Wrap, Gosling was actually the studio's first choice to take on The Joker. However, it seems Gosling was hung up »
- Jordan Benesh
Britney Spears looked on in horror as Jimmy Fallon revealed last night on the “Tonight Show” that he’d set up a profile for her on an online dating service now that she’s back on the market. But it was all in good fun, although she can’t feel too good about her cheating ex-boyfriend. Spears, 32, had been dating David Lucado, who was hailed as a “Mr. Nobody,” for 18 months before their relationship crashed and burned. ...Read More »
San Diego Comic-Con has released the full schedule for the first day of programming at Comic-Con 2014, Thursday, July 24. We've pulled out all the movie, DVD and TV-related panels and events right here, but you can also clickHere if you want to check out the full schedule with all of the comic book events. You can also clickHere to find out what pilot episodes Warner Bros. Television will be screening during Preview Night on Wednesday, July 23. Take a look at the exciting panels that will kick off the con this year.
Thursday July 24
10:00am - 11:00am - 24
Jack is back at Comic-Con, damn it! Kiefer Sutherland takes the stage to celebrate 24's most iconic moments and highlights of Jack Bauer's triumphant return in 24: Live Another Day. Catch the exclusive sneak peek at highly anticipated Blu-ray and DVD featurette, Worlds Collide, illustrating how the pulse-pounding storytelling was created for this thrilling new season. »
How does the world’s biggest video and voice call provider make you want to smash your PC or phone into the nearest wall or window?
Millions of us around the world use Skype. It’s become a necessity for so many people, and yet something so popular and important in modern technology is regularly less reliable than a man dressed in stripes and a balaclava holding a shotgun to a bank manager’s head.
Every Skype user has to endure a whole selection of problems. Why? Who knows. Many people have unstable internet, but when you combine it with the way Skype is poorly maintained, it can only lead to extreme frustration a lot of the time.
If you ever use Skype and are forever rolling your eyes at your phone, tablet or computer screen, you’ll definitely be nodding your head at some or all of the following »
- Francesca Jones
If a deal is finalized, this will be Jared Leto's first major role since winning the Oscar for Best Supporting actor in Dallas Buyers Club. This adaptation of Marcus Sakey's novel is set in a world where a rare group of people known as "brilliants" are born with superhuman abilities. The plot follows a government agent who has incredible tracking skills, tasked with hunting a dangerous terrorist in Wyoming. He comes to learn that the evil man he is following has his own set of special skills, and that he is trying to create a civil war. Noomi Rapace is also attached to star, although no details have been released regarding her character.
The Alice in Wonderland sequel Through the Looking Glass has brought on Rhys Ifans to play Zanik Hightopp, the father of Johnny Depp's The Mad Hatter. Rhys Ifans is actually four years younger than Johnny Depp, although their ages do not matter much since both actors will be covered in makeup and prosthetics.
Last month, Mark Rylance was in negotiations to play Zanik Hightopp, described as having brightly-colored hair like his son which cannot be contained under a top hat, but a deal was never reached. Rhys Ifans joins a cast that includes Alice in Wonderland stars Johnny Depp as The Mad Hatter, Mia Wasikowska as Alice and Helena Bonham Carter as The Red Queen, with Sacha Baron Cohen joining the cast as a villain named Time.
Attendees at next month’s Cannes Film Festival will hear plenty of French being spoken — except, that is, by the characters onscreen. Of the French films recently announced as part of this year’s official selection, two (Olivier Dahan’s opening-nighter “Grace of Monaco” and Olivier Assayas’ “Clouds of Sils Maria”) are predominately English-language features with largely American and British casts, while “The Search,” from “The Artist” helmer Michel Hazanavicius, reportedly features a mix of English, French, Chechnyan and Russian. Meanwhile, in the festival’s Un Certain Regard sidebar, “Lady Chatterley” director Pascale Ferran’s “Bird People” is another hybrid English/French affair, with a cast that includes Josh Charles, Radha Mitchell and Clark Johnson.
On the one hand, this may seem fated in a year when reliable linguistic provocateur Jean-Luc Godard will be present in the Cannes competition with a film titled “Goodbye to Language.” On the other, this »
- Scott Foundas
After years of appearing in a succession of truly terrible movies from How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days to Failure to Launch to Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, Matthew McConaughey has done an amazing job of reinventing himself in the public imagination as a hugely talented and in-demand actor. Finally fulfilling the promise he showed in the early days of Dazed and Confused, McConaughey’s run of films involving Killer Joe, Mud and Magic Mike resulted in an Oscar last month for Dallas Buyers Club.
This so-called “McConaissance” has generated plenty of column inches and enormous amounts of media discussion, but the Interstellar star is not the only actor to have hit a rich vein of form of late after years of uninspiring films. While critics and the Academy have been falling over themselves to shower McConaughey in praise, these six actors have been quietly enjoying their own career renaissances. »
- Jack Gann
Oscar doesn’t always translate to career gold, but winning an Academy Award can boost reputations, earning power and/or brand value. Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, the poster children of Hollywood’s rags-to-riches stories, launched their careers by winning an Oscar for original screenplay in 1997 with “Good Will Hunting.” Since then, the two friends have become bona fide superstars — in Affleck’s case, both in front and behind the camera.
In the past 20 years, Oscar winners such as Quentin Tarantino (“Pulp Fiction”) and Jennifer Lawrence, who was nominated for her third Academy Award in four years, have proved that an Oscar win or even just a nomination can take a showbiz career to a whole new level.
After a four-year acting hiatus, »
- Maane Khatchatourian
Moviefone's Top DVD of the Week
What's It About? A routine space walk goes horribly awry when space debris smashes into the shuttle, leaving a medical engineer (Sandra Bullock) and an astronaut (George Clooney) a mere 90 minutes to make it to the International Space Station.
Why We're In: Even though you won't be getting the whole IMAX 3D experience of being alone in space with Sandy Bullock, you'll still feel crazy anxious about the fate of her character. Plus, Alfonso Cuarón and his crew have snagged tons of awards and Oscar nominations for this sci-fi chiller.
Exclusive: Go behind-the-scenes on "Gravity" (Video)
Moviefone's Top Blu-ray of the Week
What's It About? Roman Polanski's take on Thomas Hardy's classic novel "Tess of the d'Urbervilles" is a Victorian drama about a lower class peasant (Nastassja Kinski) who runs into all sorts of trouble when her father discovers »
- Jenni Miller
Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Mr. Nobody Nemo Nobody (Jared Leto) is 118 years old and on his death bed. He’s the last human doomed to die in a world where mankind has achieved a level of immortality and no longer faces an expiration date. Before he passes on, Nemo gives an interview to share the story of his life, but the tale he tales is an impossible one featuring multiple outcomes and events that simply couldn’t all be true. Or could they? This gorgeously shot and endlessly fascinating film is actually from 2009 and only now getting a release here in the U.S. for reasons unknown. It’s far from a traditional film, but if you like science fiction that explores humanity in surprising ways then you owe it to yourself to seek this one out. Leto »
- Rob Hunter
Gravity While my opinion of Gravity has diminished somewhat since first seeing it, if there was a movie last year that I hope you caught in theaters before seeing it at home it would be this one. I just don't know how good this film can be on a smaller screen in your living room. After all, at home is where movies depend on the narrative even more than they do in theaters and this one is seriously lacking in that department.
Blue Is the Warmest Color (Criterion Collection) I don't quite understand the motivation behind Criterion's decision to release a bare bones version of Blue is the Warmest Color with the promise of a special edition further down the line, but here it is. Their explanation was something to the effect of "get it to the audience as soon as possible", but it seems to me Criterion is just sugar-coating a double-dip effort. »
- Brad Brevet
Best Supporting Actor
Justin Chang: Bonjour, Peter. I know you’re still settling into your new Parisian digs as we speak (I’m picturing you at your laptop in an “I Louvre Paris” T-shirt with a cafe au lait at the ready), so I appreciate your taking the time to discuss this year’s Oscar nominees for supporting actor and actress — specifically, the ones we’d love to see win, the ones we’d rather see lose, and the grievous omissions in each category.
To start with the latter: I was saddened, if not exactly shocked, that the Academy didn’t give James Gandolfini a supporting-actor nomination for his wonderful performance as a divorced dad navigating the perils of midlife romance in “Enough Said.” Some suggested early on that the actor’s death, just three months before Nicole Holofcener’s film made its world premiere at Toronto, would surely earn »
- Justin Chang and Peter Debruge
Jared Leto has been busy these last few years with everything except acting.
As frontman for rock band 30 Seconds to Mars, the former star of '90s teen drama "My So-Called Life" has toured the world, released four albums (most recently 2013's "Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams"), and settled a multi-million dollar lawsuit with his record label. He also directed "Artifact," a documentary about that lawsuit, and has made a name for himself as a savvy investor in the tech arena.
Set at the dawn of the AIDS era in the early '80s, "Dallas Buyers Club" marks Leto's first movie role since filming the underrated "Mr. Nobody" in 2007. He plays Rayon, a transsexual who goes into business with Ron Woodruff (Matthew McConaughey), an AIDS-stricken rodeo cowboy, to import AIDS treatment drugs unapproved by the government into the U.S. The role, which saw Leto drop more than 30 pounds, recently »
- Sean Plummer
Jared Leto has a coffin in the living room of his Los Angeles home. Perhaps even stranger, he’s not sure exactly where it came from. “I think it’s from ‘Mr. Nobody,’ ” he says, referring to the recently released film he shot back in 2007. “But I can’t really remember.”
Leto’s eclectic taste in titles, along with his wide collection of unique art from all over the world — including a sculpture inspired by the Moloko Bar in “A Clockwork Orange” — reflects a man and artist who is not easy to pigeonhole.
His co-star in “Dallas Buyer’s Club” instantly discovered that about Leto when they first came face to face: “I met a performance artist,” Matthew McConaughey says. “He is not someone bound by one certain craft — acting, »
- Jenelle Riley
When Jared Leto’s name was called at the Golden Globes as the winner of best supporting actor for his work as transgender prostitute Rayon in “Dallas Buyers Club,” he was likely the only person in the room to be surprised. In an interview one week ago today, which will appear in this week’s issue of Variety, Leto admitted he hadn’t prepared a speech and called himself a “dark horse.”
Asked backstage about this remark after his win, he noted, “Well, obviously I didn’t prepare a speech.” And does he still feel like the dark horse? “I’ve always been a bit of an outsider and I don’t think that changes after tonight.” But, as he noted, “Rayon was a bit of an outsider.”
In actuality, his speech was quite lovely and entertaining. He talked about waxing his entire body, including his eyebrows, and added, “”I »
- Jenelle Riley
Actor Jared Leto expressed gratitude for, uh, pubic hair during the acceptance speech for his first-ever Golden Globe award tonight for his role in Dallas Buyers Club. "I'm just fortunate it was a period piece, and I didn't have to do a full Brazilian," he said. "Ladies you know what I'm talkin about and so do some of you men, I think."
See the Hottest Live Photos From the Golden Globe Awards Red Carpet
Leto won the award for his role in Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture. »
They’ll work closely with Vincent de la Tour, managing director of Twentieth Century Fox of Germany and Germar Tetzlaff, manager, marketing, of Twentieth Century Fox Germany with the goal to increase the co-production, acquisition and development of German-language films for Fip.
“Anna and Magdalena will be instrumental in continuing to build-out our local operations in Germany,” said Fox Intl. Prods. president Sanford Panitch in a statement. “Vincent de la Tour has done a superb job in both managing and distributing our local films in Germany, and this expanded production team brings additional strength to the already excellent local team.”
- Carole Horst
Now that my Overrated and Underrated picks have been released (which many of you have strong opinions about), it's time for me to unveil my 10 favorite films of the year. As I have said before, 2013 has been an incredible year at the movies, with fantastic big-budget blockbusters (Iron Man 3 and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire), superb drams (Philomena, Mud), comedies (The Way, Way Back, Drinking Buddies) and everything in between (Spring Breakers). As much as I loved all of those films mentioned above, you will not find them on my Top 10, which can only mean that the quality of movies released this year was rather special, since superb cinematic experiences like these didn't make the cut. Of course, I didn't see Every movie released in 2013 (clickHere to check out every movie I saw this year), but this list represents the films that blew me away, in more ways than one. »
20 items from 2014
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