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With Camp X-Ray hitting theaters this weekend, Kristen Stewart is finally exploring life beyond Twilight. The indie drama, which tells the story of one soldier stationed at Guantanamo Bay detention camp, is a far cry from Bella and the world of vampires Stewart became so famous for over the past five years. During that time, Stewart became pigeonholed and often hated on for her participation in The Twilight Saga. And for those who only know those films are doing themselves a disservice. Her latest film — the first of three high profile films she has coming out this year — has earned the actress accolades on the festival circuit and reminded many of the promise she showed in roles, such as Sarah Altman in Panic Room or Emily in Adventureland. It’s those films that fans (and the haters) should watch if they want to restore their faith in Stewart.
Panic Room (2002)
Directed by David Fincher, »
- Stacy Lambe
The first trailer for new romantic comedy Playing It Cool has arrived online, and you can view it below at your leisure.
A long-delayed film (it was filmed way back in 2012, and has had its name changed from A Many Splintered Thing), the film is directed by feature-debutant Justin Reardon and stars Chris Evans (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) as a screenwriter who wants to write an action movie, but is being asked to write a rom-com instead. However, he doesn’t believe in love, and so struggles to find a story for it.
On paper, the film has a pretty impressive ensemble. Alongside Evans are his Winter Soldier co-star Anthony Mackie, as well Michelle Monaghan (True Detective), Aubrey Plaza (Life After Beth), Topher Grace (Interstellar), Luke Wilson (The Skeleton Twins), Philip Baker Hall (Magnolia), Giovanni Ribisi (Ted), Ioan Gruffudd (Fantastic Four) and Martin Starr (Adventureland).
It certainly isn’t anything original or different, »
- Scott Davis
Written and Directed by Chris Rock
Chris Rock has always been one of the most invigorating presences in the comedy scene. His comedy is confrontational, biting and hilarious. Up until this point, his foray into filmmaking has rarely matched his unique and vibrant talents and while there are certainly exceptions, on screen Chris Rock has often been reduced to a much tamer and often much less funny version of himself. With Top Five, however, the gears seems to shift. Chris Rock not only shows off why he is one of the funniest people alive, but blends his humour to a surprisingly daring narrative about the value of laughter and the struggle of being an artist. The film also works as a wonderful metatextual narrative on the state of the current Hollywood system, as well as a touching romance.
Top Five opens up as a fairly straightforward Hollywood comedy. »
- Justine Smith
The word coming out of Tiff about Kristen Stewart’s performance in Clouds of Sils Maria mirrors the word that came out of earlier festival runs. It boils down to, “Surprise! She’s an actress!,” but Sam said it a bit more eloquently in his review: “Stewart is magnetic, devoid of the amateurish affectations that have plagued her in the past (the nail and lip biting, the hair twirling). In Clouds she’s sexy, confident and articulate, with oversized rims and enough vulnerability to draw you in.” For her fans, this has to be both a No Shit, Sherlock moment and a vindication of sorts. Here’s the child star from Panic Room (who David Fincher must have seen something in) proving that her persistence in the industry isn’t a fluke. For the skeptical, it may signal a maturation — the next step in talent evolution for a promising figure who hadn’t yet lived up to »
- Scott Beggs
Global film and television studio Miramax announced today that it has acquired all U.S. distribution rights to Mr. Holmes and will partner with Roadside Attractions on domestic theatrical distribution of the film. Directed by Academy Award winner Bill Condon (Gods and Monsters, Kinsey), Mr. Holmes stars Academy Award nominees Ian McKellen (The Lord of the Rings franchise, X-Men franchise) and Laura Linney (Kinsey, You Can Count on Me, The Savages).
Thomas J. Barrack, Jr., Chairman of Miramax, had this to say in his statement.
"Mr. Holmes is a smart, exciting film that has attracted the highest caliber director, cast and producers, and it is a perfect fit for Miramax. We are very pleased to acquire U.S. »
Red Oaks, one of the new Amazon Studios pilots now available to watch, is executive produced by Steven Soderbergh, but it’s certainly nothing like his current airing television project, the dark early-20th-century medical drama The Knick. Though Red Oaks could sound like a similarly bloody affair, Soderbergh’s never been one to stick to a genre, and the show is a small scale comedy named for a country club in New Jersey where the hero, David, gets a gig as a tennis pro one summer in the ’80s. There’s potential within Red Oaks if Amazon does decide »
- Esther Zuckerman
Bill Hader has begun to stretch himself as an actor since leaving Saturday Night Live last year. Sure, he has worked steadily in films like Superbad, Adventureland and Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs amongst numerous other parts, but he has also begun taking lead roles in movies like The Skeleton Twins. He has begun earning more and more acclaim as an actor rather than the funny guy who did impressions on SNL. In the upcoming book "Poking a Dead Frog: Conversations With Today's Top »
- Alex Maidy
Bill Hader has come a long way since his stint on Saturday Night Live, creating many popular characters and impersonations such as Stefon, Vincent Price and CNN’s Jack Cafferty. He is one of the highlights in such films as Adventureland, Knocked Up, Superbad and Pineapple Express, and so it is easy to see why author Mike Sacks interviewed him for his new book Poking A Dead Frog. In it, Hader talks about his career and he also lists 200 essential movies every comedy writer should see. Xo Jane recently published the list for those of us who haven’t had a chance to read the book yet. There are a ton of great recommendations and plenty I haven’t yet seen, but sadly my favourite comedy of all time isn’t mentioned. That would be Some Like It Hot. Still, it really is a great list with a mix of old and new. »
‘Camp X-Ray’ trailer 2014: Kristen Stewart and Payman Maadi in Guantanamo’s ‘war zone’ (photo: Kristen Stewart in ‘Camp X-Ray’) The official Camp X-Ray trailer is out. "Make no mistake about it. This is a war zone," a male voice tells the recruits (and us) at the start of the movie trailer, set in Guantanamo’s temporary detention center Camp X-Ray. A "war zone" in more ways than one; he’s referring not only to the physical danger faced by the U.S. military guards (and their Muslim prisoners — or rather, "detainees"), but also, and more ominously, to a war of minds and mindsets between the two groups, who may have more in common with each other than is apparent on the surface. Private Amy Cole aka Kristen Stewart is forewarned: "You can talk to ‘em, but do not let these guys learn anything about you. Do not let them get inside your head. »
- Andre Soares
Having premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, we have heard little more from The Skeleton Twins – until now. The dramedy stars regular collaborators Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader as co-leads, and is written and directed by Craig Johnson (True Adolescents), with Mark Heyman (Black Swan) as co-writer.
After a decade of estrangement, twins Milo and Maggie are thrust back together in unexpected and surprising circumstances. Their respective lives have taken some wrong turns, and they gradually realise that the key to resolving their issues is to repair their relationship with each other. That synopsis – while succinct – does no justice to what is a joyous trailer. Joyous, not for its generally uplifting atmosphere, but because of the perfect showcase it provides for the revelatory Bill Hader.
- Sarah Myles
Fresh from its debut at Sundance, and subsequent showings on the festival circuit in the Us, the first trailer for The Skeleton Twins has arrived online, which you can view below…
The film stars Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues) and Bill Hader (Adventureland, Superbad) as the titular siblings, who after years of estrangement, are reunited after ten years, still facing up to the varied challenges of their respective lives. Directed by Craig Johnson (True Adolescents) the film has been garnered with mixed praise across the festivals, but the majority of critics have shared their love of Wiig and Hader’s performances in a much more dramatic setting. The Playlist in particular said that the film “proves to be a fine showcase for Wiig and Hader.”
- Scott Davis
If you miss Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader together on Saturday Night Live and loved them as husband and wife in 2009's Adventureland, this new venture might pique your interest. The two play estranged twins Maggie and Milo, brought together by Milo's botched suicide attempt, in The Skeleton Twins. Living together once again, the reality of their very different lives sets in. I actually got a peek at this movie early, and it's a fantastic showcase for both Wiig and Hader. There's definitely some comedy (plus a kick-ass lip-syncing scene), but I was mostly impressed by the heartbreaking realness of their dramatic sequences. As an added bonus, Ty Burrell and Luke Wilson both costar. Check out the trailer, and plan on seeing it when it's released on Sept. 19. »
- Maggie Pehanick
The first trailer for The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby has been released online, which you can view below. The film from writer/director Ned Benson stars Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty) and James McAvoy (Filth) in the leads, with William Hurt (Body Heat), Bill Hader (Adventureland), Isabelle Huppert (I Heart Huckabees), Viola Davis (The Help), Jess Wexler (Teeth) and Ciaran Hinds (Munich) supporting. The film is distributed by The Weinstein Company.
Once happily married, Conor (McAvoy) and Eleanor (Chastain) suddenly find themselves as strangers longing to understand each other in the wake of tragedy. The film explores the couple’s story as they try to reclaim the life and love they once knew and pick up the pieces of a past that may be too far gone. Screened for the first time at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, Benson’s latest version of their story combines his previous two films – titled »
- Scott Davis
Kristen Stewart has been busy traveling for the past few months, but it seems she's finally back to her old routine in La. She stepped out on Sunday, looking casual as she walked around the city. Her new film Clouds of Sils Maria made its debut at the Cannes Film Festival in May, but it does not have a release date yet. She also recently wrapped American Ultra with Adventureland costar Jesse Eisenberg in New Orleans, which will hopefully hit theaters soon too. Though Kristen isn't set to team up with Robert Pattinson anytime soon, she does have a new connection to her ex and former Twilight costar. Guy Pearce, who costars with Rob in his new film The Rover, just joined her new film Equals. After Kristen was cast in the film, she opened up about how "terrified" she is to star in the "love story of epic, epic, »
- Alyse Whitney
Chicago – Now in its second year, the Chicago Film Critics Festival opens tonight, May 9th, 2014, with the Chicago Premiere of “They Came Together,” starring Paul Rudd, Amy Poelher, Ellie Kemper, Bill Hader and Ed Helms, and directed by David Wain. Wain makes an appearance after the 7pm screening at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago. Click here for details and the complete schedule for the week long festival.
The Chicago Critics Film Festival is the first of its kind, with members of the Chicago Film Critics Association coordinating the events and selecting the films. The schedule features mainstream and independent film premieres – weeks before their general release – plus two short film programs, late night horror films, revivals and one-of-a-kind live appearances. The festival runs through May 15th.
Included in the week-long presentations are after-film Q&As by filmmakers, actors and even the subjects of the movies on tap. Here is »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
I think that there’s a rule in Hollywood that movies that start with the word “American” must have amazing ensemble casts (see: American Hustle, American Beauty, American Pie, American Gangster, American Graffiti). This week, the action-comedy American Ultra adds three new members to an already bustling line-up: Sharon Stone, Bill Pullman and Arrested Development‘s Tony Hale. They join Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Justified‘s Walton Goggins, Topher Grace and John Leguizamo in a film for Project X director Nima Nourizadeh.
The low-budget Lionsgate movie, picked up for a cool $7 million in March, stars Eisenberg as Mike, a stoner and slacker living in a small town whose past as a highly-trained secret agent comes back to interfere with his new, quieter existence. He becomes the target of a top secret government operation, which naturally does not sit well with his girlfriend, Phoebe (played by Eisenberg’s Adventureland co-star, Stewart »
- Jordan Adler
What’s new, what’s hot, and what you may have missed, now available to stream.
streaming now, before it’s on dvd
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues: far from perfect, but its humor is nearly Monty Python-esque, much more deliciously absurd and creatively bizarre than its predecessor [my review] [at Amazon UK Instant Video]
new to streaming
G.B.F.: sharp satire cutting through the sweet silliness makes this a refreshing change of pace for teen comedies [my review] [at Amazon UK Instant Video] Fill the Void: underplayed drama about love and marriage in an orthodox Jewish community never quite catches fire, but does offer a peek into a usually hidden world [at Amazon UK Instant Video]
new to Amazon Instant
Nothing But the Truth: flawed but earnest and honest journalism drama, with a great performance by Kate Beckinsale [my review] [at Amazon UK Instant Video] Now You See Me: most of it makes no sense at all, but who cares? this is cheerful ridiculousness pulled off with panache [my review] [at Amazon UK Instant Video] Adventureland: »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Kristen Stewart spent her 24th birthday on Wednesday with friends in New Orleans. The group celebrated under the sun, playing Frisbee golf and drinking Coors Light as they hung out at a local park. It was a fun break from work for Kristen, who is in Louisiana filming American Ultra with Jesse Eisenberg, but it wasn't her only birthday celebration. Kristen and Jesse, who also starred together in 2009's Adventureland, got together on Tuesday with a few other friends for a night out at Annunciation Restaurant, which serves Cajun and Creole cuisine. She wore a black hat over the past few days, covering up her newly dyed orange hair for her role. Kristen's low-key birthday festivities also included multiple flower deliveries to the production office of American Ultra. Meanwhile, we celebrated the star by taking a look at her many faces and helping you find out which Kristen you are. »
- Lauren Turner
The cast of the buzzy American Ultra continues to grow today as Deadline reports that Topher Grace has joined Lionsgate’s upcoming comedy. Set to star Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, with Walton Goggins and Uma Thurman signed on to co-star, the film was picked up earlier this year for a whopping $7M. That, combined with a script from Max Landis (Chronicle), leads us to believe that American Ultra is definitely a project worth keeping an eye on.
Behind the camera for this outing will be Nima Nourizadeh, who brought an exciting energy level to the party flick Project X. Admittedly, this film sounds a bit different, as it centers on Eisenberg’s small-town stoner who sees his and his girlfriends’ (Stewart) life turned upside down when a government operation puts a bounty on his head. Grace will be playing a “hotshot, power-hungry CIA agent,” who is presumably one of »
- Matt Joseph
A week or so ago we heard that Uma Thurman was in talks to join Nima Nourizadeh's action comedy American Ultra, but while that deal still doesn't seem to be quite done, there's more concrete casting news this morning. Walton Goggins has just signed up.Goggins is, of course, the excellent character actor who's latterly been giving Timothy Olyphant a run for his money in the brilliant Justified, currently in its fifth and penultimate season. For a sampling of his other work, check out Empire's Rogues Gallery. In Justified he's Boyd Crowder. In American Ultra he's playing "Laugher". Who's Laugher? We don't know, but unsuccessful applicant Jasper Cole can at least tell us it's "a great role". Commiserations, Jasper. Tough competition.American Ultra reunites Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart following Adventureland, and sees Eisenberg playing "unmotivated stoner" Mike, with Stewart his girlfriend. They live an uneventful life in a »
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