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‘Serena’ Review: Not Even Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper Can Salvage This Wooden Drama

21 hours ago | | See recent FilmSchoolRejects news »

Serena is one of two films from director Susanne Bier screening at the 2014 London Film Festival, and the other  is a Danish-language film titled A Second Chance. While both of these have a lot to say about babies only one of them is completely enthralling from its opening scene to its end while the other bores for at least an hour before shifting into a high-tension ending. Sadly, despite the well-established chemistry between Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, Serena is the latter film. Cooper plays George, a lumber baron whose finances are starting to wear thin right around the time the sheriff (Toby Jones) decides that George’s land would be best utilized as a national park. George also has some untouched land in Brazil, but he’s uninterested in selling either piece of property. Just as his financial worries begin, George meets Serena (Lawrence), an independent woman whose entire family died in a fire years ago »

- Emily Estep

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Serena movie review: logging for pulp

22 October 2014 12:00 PM, PDT | | See recent FlickFilosopher news »

What starts out as solid romantic melodrama — almost Golden Age of Hollywood stuff — gets so crazy so fast in so many ways. I’m “biast” (pro): love Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

I have not read the source material

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Um, so, yeah: How about them Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper? They are so amazing and gorgeous. And what chemistry! “I think we should be married” is the first thing he says to her in Serena, which is, to be fair, the first thing anyone would say to either of them. And so they are wedded. It’s early Great Depression North Carolina to which lumber magnate George Pemberton (Cooper: Guardians of the Galaxy) brings his new wife, Serena (Lawrence: X-Men: Days of Future Past), where his company is cutting down the last virgin forest in North America. »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Susanne Bier Says 'Serena' Was "Never A Mainstream Film," Talks "Anxious" Bradley Cooper & Jennifer Lawrence

22 October 2014 6:05 AM, PDT | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

After a long, long wait, Susanne Bier's "Serena" finally emerged at the BFI London Film Festival, and it isn't a lost classic, or even a so-bad-it's-good future cult move. As our own Oli Lyttelton wrote in his D- grade review, the movie is simply "tedious" and that "given the result, you can see why people might be keen to sweep this one under the rug." For the most part, Bier and the cast have kept quiet on the long delayed movie, but with "Serena" hitting UK cinemas this weekend, the director is now opening up about the movie, and what she doesn't say is an interesting as what she does. Speaking with The Times, Bier insists her vision for the Depression-era drama was never one for mass consumption, but things changed as the film's stars Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence became more famous. "I had to fight for Jennifer »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Go Girl! Jennifer Lawrence Swings an Ax and Impresses All the Guys in New Serena Clip

20 October 2014 8:49 PM, PDT | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

Just call Jennifer Lawrence, super woman! She's conquered evil in The Hunger Games and appeared in head-to-toe blue makeup in the X-Men movies. And in a new clip from her upcoming movie, Serena, Lawrence is proving to the guys once again that she's one tough lady. In a sneak peek, the actress is taking care of family business as she spots a man trying to notch a tree. Once she realizes he's doing it completely wrong, Lawrence grabs the ax and shows him how it's done. "Get back to work," she tells the crowd of men looking on in shock as she succeeds on the first try. Ohhh, snap!  Set in the 1920s, Serena tells the story of a married couple (played by Lawrence »

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Int’l Box Office Final: ‘Guardians’ Now 3rd Biggest Marvel Movie Ever

20 October 2014 2:45 PM, PDT | Deadline New York | See recent Deadline New York news »

3rd Update, 2:45 Pm (Pt): Finals are in for Guardians Of The Galaxy, the No. 1 Bollywood movie this year stateside Bang Bang, director David Fincher’s thriller Gone Girl (which passed $100M stateside), the Denzel Washington action/drama The Equalizer, the animated The Boxtrolls, the Ya hit The Maze Runner, Luc Besson’s Lucy, Universal’s Dracula Untold, Fox’s sequel Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, Ice Age: The Meltdown In 3-D which debuted in China this weekend to $3.2M on 2,800 plays, and also its buddy comedy Let’s Be Cops. In addition, Warner Bros.’ just reported for its horror film Annabelle and the courtroom drama starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Robert Duvall The Judge, and lest we forget Paramount’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (which debuted strong in the UK this weekend) and Hercules which are still playing in 17 markets. Final tallies for stateside newcomers Fox »

- Nancy Tartaglione

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Watch: New Clip, Featurette & TV Spot For 'Serena' Starring Jennifer Lawrence And Bradley Cooper

20 October 2014 7:25 AM, PDT | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

Described as "a moderately-sized trainwreck" in our review of the film out of the BFI London Film Festival, it appears there was a very good reason why Susanne Bier's "Serena" didn't take the fast path to theaters. Shot two years ago, and essentially sitting around on a shelf for a year, the Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper starring film is finally making its way out in the world, and a new clip plus some promo materials have arrived. The latest look comes courtesy of Glamour Magazine and highlights an axe-swinging Lawrence, the wife of a timber baron, showing the rough and ready dudes how to do the job right. After that you can see a new featurette that explores the chemistry of the two leads, with each actor fawning over the other, and Cooper comparing Lawrence's skills to those of Robert De Niro. Finally, there's a U.K. TV spot. »

- Kevin Jagernauth

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Jennifer Lawrence, Emma Stone & Nicole Richie Rock Our Favorite Looks of the Week!

17 October 2014 5:09 PM, PDT | Entertainment Tonight | See recent Entertainment Tonight news »

We're breaking down the fashion do's and don'ts of the week.

Hollywood’s most stylish stars can sometimes make poor stylistic choices so we’re looking at the do’s and don’ts of the latest red carpet trends.

Nicole Richie and Reese Witherspoon recently strutted down the red carpets wearing sheer lace, which can be very sultry and glamourous when styled correctly. Richie successfully pulled off a rocker chic look at the AOL Originals Fall Premiere event with a lace and rose print gown. This Blumarine design called for a touch of elegance and she delivered by pulling her hair back and keeping accessories to a minimum with a choker necklace. Reese Witherspoon's styling of a black Stella McCartney gown missed the mark at her premiere for Wild during the 58th BFI London Film Festival. There were a lot of contrasting elements in the design which may have worked if she had pushed the limits »

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Bradley Cooper on working with Jennifer Lawrence: 'I've hit the jackpot'

17 October 2014 4:39 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Bradley Cooper feels like he has "hit the jackpot" working with Jennifer Lawrence on three films.

The actor - who stars alongside Lawrence in period drama Serena - told Pa that it is "thrilling" to work with the 24-year-old.

The pair have also starred alongside each other in American Hustle and Silver Linings Playbook, which earned Lawrence the Oscar for Best Actress in 2013.

Cooper said: "I've sort of hit the jackpot with being able to work with Jennifer Lawrence. When I knew she was going to play this character, I was fully aware it was going to be comic.

"Once she would breathe life into this character, it would become much more dimensional. It could be very easy to portray her as a stock character and there's just not one moment where you don't believe she's a human being."

"She's a wonderful, wonderful actress," he continued. "Her biggest asset is »

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Jennifer Lawrence Hates Fancy Diets As Much As She Loves Junk Food!

16 October 2014 2:06 PM, PDT | Entertainment Tonight | See recent Entertainment Tonight news »

The Oscar winner keeps making headlines with her views on food!

Jennifer Lawrence has never been shy about sharing her opinions on food, eating, body image and diets, and the Hunger Games starlet made headlines once again with a brand-new Vanity Fair interview.

The 24-year-old actress put gluten-free dieters on blast, claiming the regime is "the new cool eating disorder, the 'basically I just don’t eat carbs' [diet]."

Jen also revealed her favorite snack in the November 2014 issue of the magazine.

"Cool Ranch Doritos are my girl. I've been trying to wean myself off of Cool Ranch Doritos and move on to Pirate's Booty but it's just not doing the trick."

Related: 11 Reasons Why We Love Jennifer Lawrence!

In 2011, the then new-to-the-scene bombshell joked with Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa about how her career in Hollywood started. When Regis asked if she was discovered by a modeling or acting agency, she coyly admitted »

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58th BFI London Film Festival Review – Serena (2014)

15 October 2014 9:59 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Serena, 2014.

Directed by Susanne Bier.

Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, Rhys Ifans, Toby Jones, David Dencik, Ana Ularu and Sean Harris.


Newlyweds George and Serena Pemberton plan to start a timber empire in North Carolina in the late 1920s. Powerful and unrelenting, Serena earns the fear and respect of the working men in her husband’s command. Yet their unstoppable hurricane of a love faces a storm when Serena attempts to convince George to eliminate everyone who stands in their way—including George’s illegitimate son, Jacob.

Filmed in 2012 in the forests of the Czech Republic, Serena is an epic story of love and loss, framed by beautiful tall trees and fog set in the Us of the late 1920s. George Pemberton (Bradley Cooper, American Hustle) is a privileged man who uses his family’s fortune to build a timber empire. He’s a man’s man through and through, »

- Kat Kourbeti

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Jennifer Lawrence Makes Surprise Appearance At Serena Lff Screening

15 October 2014 4:59 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Film fans were stunned and delighted last night when multi-award-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence made a surprise appearance ahead of the London Film Festival screening of her new film, Serena, along with the film’s director Susanne Bier.

The film is a relatively small part of the festival but with the two leads played by Lawrence and her Silver Linings Playbook co-star, Bradley Cooper, it was bound to generate plenty of interest – though clearly few had expected either of the stars to make an appearance for the film’s premiere.

The room erupted in rapturous applause as Lawrence was introduced and, after an impressive build-up about the ‘huge’ surprise, the star joked that if the surprise was actually popcorn and not her then she was leaving.

The audience were almost too in awe to laugh, though Lawrence was undeterred and continued in much the same tongue-in-cheek manner. When Bier said to »

- Amanda Keats

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Lff 2014: Serena Review

15 October 2014 4:43 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Director: Susanne Bier

Cast: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Toby Jones, Rhys Ifans

Running Time: 109 minutes.

Jennifer Lawrence. Bradley Cooper. A stunning backdrop. High drama and rustic glamour. Serena certainly looks on paper to be one of the biggest films of the festival and yet it was so well hidden that you’d be forgiven for having missed it entirely.

The film has been a long time coming, caught up in post production hell for far too long while the kinks were ironed out. At the post-film Q&A, the director, Susanne Bier, even admitted she wasn’t sure it would be ready in time for the festival (but was clearly delighted that it was).

Jennifer Lawrence makes a surprise appearance to introduce Serena to the Lff audience.

Jennifer Lawrence (Serena) – who surprised everyone by showing up to introduce the film – certainly has great on-screen chemistry with friend and co-star Bradley Cooper. »

- Amanda Keats

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Bollywood turns out for Mumbai fest opening

14 October 2014 11:03 PM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Bollywood stars including Akshay Kumar and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan turned out for the opening of the Mumbai Film Festival (October 14-21), which is celebrating its 16th edition despite almost being shut down a few months ago due to lack of funding.

Saved through donations from filmmakers, stars, industrialists and audience members, the festival put on a glittering opening night ceremony at the historical Chandan Cinema in Mumbai’s Juhu district.

Almost losing the festival appears to have convinced the Bollywood fraternity to show unprecedented levels of support. Sponsors and partners including HBO, Rentrak, Pinkerton, Bajaj Group and Mahindra Rise have also recently come on board the event.

Kalki Koechlin played compere for the evening, while Rai Bachchan inaugurated the festival and Kumar presented a lifetime achievement to veteran Bollywood diva Helen. Rai Bachchan and industrialist Niraj Bajaj also presented Catherine Deneuve with a lifetime achievement award.

Also present in the audience were stars such as Ranbir Kapoor, [link »

- (Liz Shackleton)

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Jennifer Lawrence Fearless, Braless in Lbd at Serena Debut (photos!)

14 October 2014 2:28 PM, PDT | | See recent news »

Jennifer Lawrence had no qualms about wearing a revealing little black dress with a plunging neckline at the premiere of her movie “Serena” last night at the 58th BFI London Film Festival, suggesting she is determined to shake off the release of her private photos. Lawrence has become the poster girl for the nude celebrity hacking scandal. More than 100 actresses and other well-known celebrities were victim’s of Internet hackers who broke into their iPhone iCloud accounts. ...Read More »

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Jennifer Lawrence Rocks Sexy Plunging Tuxedo Dress, Shows Major Cleavage On the Red Carpet

14 October 2014 6:27 AM, PDT | Us Weekly | See recent Us Weekly news »

Menswear inspired, but oh, so feminine! Jennifer Lawrence straddled the thin line between exuberant elegance and all-out sex appeal in a low cut tuxedo dress for the premiere of her new film, Serena, on Monday, Oct. 13, in London. Photos: Jennifer Lawrence's best dresses  The midnight-hued frock plunged dangerously low, as Lawrence, 24, decided to forego the use of a bra. Lawrence’s Dior dress skimmed just above her upper thigh, and she elongated her lean legs with black Brian Atwood Mercury pumps. The Hunger Games actress is the latest A-lister [...] »

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Jennifer Lawrence Stuns at First Event Since Nude Photo Leak

14 October 2014 6:00 AM, PDT | TooFab | See recent TooFab news »

Jennifer Lawrence is showing some skin -- but this time, it's on her own terms!The actress made her triumphant return to the red carpet on Monday, her first appearance in public since her nude photo leak last month.Sporting a black Dior blazer dress, black heels, burgundy nail polish and some neutral makeup, the 24-year-old looked amazing at the premiere of "Serena" in London today. J-Law, who is also the face of Dior, showed off some cleavage and her long legs in the fashion house's sexy ensemble.How amazing does she look?!Jennifer's appearance comes on the heels of a very candid interview with Vanity Fair, where she opened up about the invasion of privacy that rocked her world (and the worlds of several other celebs) in September.Jennifer's Ex Speaks Out on Nude Photo Scandal"Just because I’m a public figure, just because I’m an actress, »

- tooFab Staff

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BFI Lff: Jennifer Lawrence pretends to pick nose at Serena premiere

14 October 2014 3:43 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Jennifer Lawrence was in typically playful mood during the premiere of Serena at the 58th BFI London Film Festival on Monday night (October 13).

The Oscar-winning star looked demure in a long Christian Dior tuxedo jacket worn as a dress, pointing towards her character's face on the film's poster as though she were pretending to pick her nose.

Lawrence was making one of her first red carpet appearances since she was the victim of a photo hacking last month, an act which she went on to describe as "a sex crime".

She reunites with her Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle co-star Bradley Cooper in the Depression-era period drama.

The pair play married couple Serena and George Pemberton, who run a powerful timber empire in the North Carolina mountains. The film is based on the 2008 novel from American author Ron Rash, and directed by Danish filmmaker Susanne Bier.

Lawrence was joined »

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'Serena': London Review

13 October 2014 4:41 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Screen queen Jennifer Lawrence made a surprise personal appearance at the world premier of Serena earlier today, imploring the London Film Festival audience to embrace the movie with a good heart. "And if you don't, just don't Tweet about it,"  grinned America's Sweetheart. Lawrence's pointed quip was perhaps a sly acknowledgement that Serena has had a long and rocky journey from page to screen. Adapted from Ron Rash's shlocky 2008 bestseller, the project was initially earmarked as an Angelina Jolie vehicle directed by Darren Aronofksy. Then it passed to Danish director Susanne Bier, who won the Best Foreign Language

read more


- Stephen Dalton

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Jennifer Lawrence Shows Major Cleavage at Serena Premiere in London: See Her Sexy Look!

13 October 2014 3:50 PM, PDT | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

Jennifer Lawrence is back on the red carpet with the premiere of Serena at the 2014 BFI London Film Festival. Lawrence looked classy and chic for the premiere held this Monday. She posed for paparazzi wearing a low-cut, black, knee-length Dior dress with long sleeves. The look was completed with black heels and earrings. We can't wait to see J.Law back on the big screen in this new drama. She'll be acting alongside her former co-star Bradley Cooper again too! Serena is set in North Carolina during the Great Depression and opens in theaters Feb. 26, 2015. Lawrence also made headlines last week when she spoke out about the stolen nude pictures that surfaced of her this month. In an »

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Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper’s Serena Is Neither Masterpiece Nor Mess

13 October 2014 2:15 PM, PDT | Vulture | See recent Vulture news »

When Susanne Bier set Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper to star in her Depression-era relationship drama Serena, it was the casting equivalent of striking gold: In the three years that followed their casting in January of 2012, both actors became household names, blockbuster screen presences, and Academy Award favorites. Still, Serena itself remained conspicuously unseen, despite the massive press push that would surely greet the third pairing of Lawrence and Cooper onscreen. Amid reports of a fractious postproduction process and a series of collapsed talks with every film festival under the sun, the fate and quality of Serena became one of the biggest mysteries in Hollywood — and one that was partially resolved tonight, as the film received its world premiere at the London Film Festival.There was no getting around the peculiarity of a film once tipped for Oscar success debuting at a festival whose last major world premiere was »

- Charlie Lyne

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