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2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

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Review: Depressing new spin on 'Annie' seems completely embarrassed to be a musical

15 hours ago | Hitfix | See recent Hitfix news »

As Will Gluck's new film version of "Annie" opens, an adorable red-haired moppet stands in front of her class reading a plucky book report. As she finishes, her teacher rolls his eyes and calls on the next student, Annie B. With that very post-modern move, things are handed over to Quvenzhane Wallis, who approaches her first scene the way she approaches literally every single second of the film: big smile in place, bouncing rather than dancing, and sing-talking her way through songs that demand a much better singer. Harsh, perhaps, but from start to finish, "Annie" feels like a movie made by people who are deeply embarrassed to be working on a musical, and that's a problem. Wallis, who is an appealing young performer, simply doesn't have the chops for what has traditionally been one of the more demanding leads in a musical for a young performer, and Gluck, »

- Drew McWeeny

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Film Review: 'Annie'

17 December 2014 2:38 PM, PST | CineVue | See recent CineVue news »

★★☆☆☆Not even the promise of sunshine can save the one-note exercise in musical adaptations that is Annie (2014). Helmed by Will Gluck (of Easy A (2010) notoriety), this adaptation of the 1977 Broadway musical delivers on sights and sounds, but sadly, there is little meat on these bones. Screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna and Gluck have updated not only to a modern New York City, but they have also tweaked the plot to near fallibility. Most noticeable is a more racially diverse cast, a musical score that has been sufficiently urbanized and a more whip-smart yet oh-so-doe-eyed Annie (Quvenzhané Wallis). Annie lives in foster care rather than a bustling orphanage and with only a few girls to keep her company.

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- CineVue UK

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Annie movie review: abandoned child

17 December 2014 12:39 PM, PST | www.flickfilosopher.com | See recent FlickFilosopher news »

Quvenzhané Wallis is adorable and Cameron Diaz is a hoot. But the movie is energetic yet bland, inoffensive and instantly forgettable. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

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

She’s not an orphan in this latest version of her musical-comedy adventure: Annie is a foster kid. At least, the “It’s a Hard Knock Life” song substitutes “when you’re a foster kid” for “when you’re in an orphanage” in the lyrics… which are pretty much the only bits of the lyrics that are intelligible (other than “it’s a hard knock life”). There’s something very desperate and frenzied in this 21st-century updating of the story of the spunky little parentless girl who wins over a gazillionaire, and it’s not, oddly, anything to do with the economic echoes today of the original stage »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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'Annie' (2014) Movie Review

17 December 2014 10:31 AM, PST | Rope of Silicon | See recent Rope Of Silicon news »

The story of the little red-headed orphan who warms the heart of a billionaire is one of the most famous in all of musical theater history. This is mainly due to the fact it has inspired countless little girls to annoyingly sing. The story has already been given two screen adaptations, one for the big screen in 1982 by John Huston and one for the small screen in 1999 by Rob Marshall. So, instead of Sony trying to adapt a musical that has not made it to the screen yet, they have decided to go to the Annie well once more. But this time the plot, setting, and music have been updated for 2014. The result is one of the most charmless movie musicals I have seen in some time. I knew I was in for trouble when the first scene of the film contains two groan-worthy winks at the audience (something that »

- Mike Shutt

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ABC Family Orders Teen Addiction Drama Recovery Road to Series

16 December 2014 11:23 AM, PST | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

ABC Family junkies, prepare for your next major addiction — wildly inappropriate puns intended.

The network on Tuesday announced a series order for Recovery Road, an hour-long drama about Maddie, a teen party girl who’s suddenly faced with a life-changing ultimatum: rehab or expulsion. But how long can she keep her new digs — a rehab facility amongst other addicts — a secret from the other kids at school?

Written by Bert V. Royal (Easy A) and Karen Diconcetto (Ruby & the Rockits), Recovery Road is based on Blake Nelson’s novel of the same title.

No casting or scheduling information is available at this time. »

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ABC Family Gives Series Order to Addiction Drama ‘Recovery Road’

16 December 2014 11:00 AM, PST | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

ABC Family has given a series pickup to the addiction drama “Recovery Road.”

The series, based on Blake Nelson’s 2011 young adult novel of the same name, follows Maddie, a high school party girl dealing with addiction who is forced to choose between being expelled or going to rehab, and ultimately enters a rehabilitation facility.

ABC Family is best known for its ground breaking original series and ‘Recovery Road’ is right in our wheel-house,” said Karey Burke, exec VP of programming development. “This series will explore relevant social issues for our audience and shine a light on addiction.”

Bert V. Royal (“Easy A”) and Karen Diconcetto (“Ruby & The Rockits”) will serve as exec producers, along with Craig Piligian (“Abducted: The Carlina White Story”), Beth Miller (“Revenge of the Bridesmaids”) and Danielle VonZerneck (“Left to Die”). Royal and Diconcetto wrote the pilot.

Recovery Road” has been in the development pipeline at »

- Elizabeth Wagmeister

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Annie Review

14 December 2014 9:11 PM, PST | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

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When the first trailer for Sony’s remake of Annie hit the web, my gut response was to involuntarily cringe in my seat. The brightly colored preview hit every wrong note for me, promising a traditional take on the play peppered with kid-friendly (read: unsubtle and forced) jokes and heavily auto-tuned musical numbers. So, admittedly, it wasn’t with great enthusiasm that I finally sat down to watch the final product.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not someone who usually recoils from song-and-dance productions, or someone who haughtily looks down upon those movies that try their damnedest to leave you tapping your toes with a big, stupid grin on your face. What I am, however, is someone who’ll defend until my dying breath the importance of being earnest. And that is one trait that this new Annie lacks almost entirely. »

- Isaac Feldberg

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Watch Emma Stone Sing and Dance on Broadway in Sexy Cabaret Video

3 December 2014 4:26 PM, PST | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

As if we didn't love Emma Stone enough already, this week Vanity Fair posted a video from Broadway.tv of the Crazy, Stupid, Love star showing off her crazy talent on Broadway. The actress took her skills to the stage to star as Sally Bowles in the popular musical Cabaret in November at Studio 54 in New York City—and now fans worldwide are able to see the star in action. In the video, Stone shows off her sexy side while wearing a red feather boa. She also dances around the stage in a racy, black lace getup with a leather jacket. Looks like the Easy A star is back to showing her wild side! Surrounded by dancing, shirtless men and seductive backup dancers, Stone steals the show with her »

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Stage Door: Emma Stone in "Cabaret"

25 November 2014 12:30 PM, PST | FilmExperience | See recent FilmExperience news »

Jose here. Earlier this year I reported back from the Kit Kat Club to share my impressions about Michelle Williams’ performance as Sally Bowles in the Roundabout Theatre production of Cabaret. Last night I went back to see what Emma Stone (Spirit-Nominated this morning) brought to the part...

Halfway through the first act of Cabaret, Sally Bowles realizes that life with her naive, new lover Cliff (Bill Heck) might be exactly what she needs. She sits with Cliff on a chaise lounge and for a moment she sees herself living the life of a wife and mother, satisfied with keeping home and raising her child. Suddenly, the Emcee interrupts this precious moment by bringing a microphone, its allure too powerful for Sally to resist, and drawn towards it as if under a spell, she performs “Maybe This Time”.

Onstage, the heartbreaking irony of this moment (Sally selling her soul to showbiz, »

- Jose

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Leeds International Film Festival 2014 Review – Birdman (2014)

21 November 2014 5:00 AM, PST | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Birdman, 2014.

Directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu.

Starring: Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Edward Norton, Zach Galifianakis and Naomi Watts.

Synopsis:

Riggan Thomas (Michael Keaton) attempts to distance himself from his famous role as the superhero, Birdman by staging a Broadway play adaptation of Raymond Carver’s ‘What We Talk About When We Talk About Love‘. In the days leading to the premier, Riggan must overcome his ego and family troubles to ensure he can once again hit the big time.

There’s a scene in Birdman where Michael Keaton’s character, Riggan Thomas, confronts the theatre critic who threatens to shut down his play with a single review, without even seeing it. It’s one of the films best scenes – in a film where it’s difficult to choose just one – as Keaton describes her writing as full of labels and adjectives, with nothing about technique, structure or execution, reducing his »

- Gary Collinson

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'Monster' Director Patty Jenkins Takes the Action Comedy 'Jackpot'

18 November 2014 7:36 AM, PST | firstshowing.net | See recent FirstShowing.net news »

At one time, Monster director Patty Jenkins was lined up to direct Thor: The Dark World for Marvel Studios, but some trouble behind the scenes saw her exit the project and the job ended up going to Alan Taylor. Sadly, that means the director hasn't found another big project since her breakthrough with the film famous for Charlize Theron's serial killer transformation. But she just might have another chance at becoming a household name as THR reports Jenkins will direct Jackpot, a remake of a Norwegian action comedy directed by Magnus Martens from 2011, an adaptation of a crime story by Jo Nesbo (Headhunters). After winning a huge sum of money in a betting pool, four coworkers begin to double-cross each other over the prize money, and things turn lethal pretty quickly. The script comes from The Expendables and Godzilla scribe David Callaham with Easy A director Will Gluck acting »

- Ethan Anderton

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Patty Jenkins to Direct Action-Comedy Remake Jackpot

17 November 2014 5:07 PM, PST | Collider.com | See recent Collider.com news »

It appears that Monster director Patty Jenkins is now close to making her second feature film in over a decade.  The talented filmmaker was previously attached to helm Thor: The Dark World but subsequently dropped out over creative differences with Marvel.  Her other credits include directing the pilot for AMC’s The Killing as well as episodes of Entourage and Arrested Development, but now THR reports that she’s turning her attention to the action-comedy genre with a remake of the 2011 Norwegian film Jackpot.  Based on a story by crime author Jo Nesbo (Headhunters and The Snowman), the film revolves around four men who win big in a sports pool, only to resort to lethal measures when dividing the winnings proves difficult. The Expendables and Doom scribe David Callaham penned the screenplay, and Will Gluck (Easy A) is producing.  It’s been too long since Jenkins brought her talents to the feature film world, »

- Adam Chitwood

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Amanda Bynes Tattoo Wish List Includes Some Neck Ink

15 November 2014 10:14 AM, PST | National Ledger | See recent National Ledger news »

Amanda Bynes' tattoo wish list includes a neck tattoo, but unfortunately after she failed to produce identification, she was denied the new ink recently. The 28-year-old troubled actress, who was recently released from a psychiatric hospital for the second time, almost had a name tattooed on her neck before it was revealed that she didn't have any ID on her and the plan was cancelled. According to the gossip website TMZ.com, Amanda arrived at The Honorable Society tattoo parlor in West Hollywood, California on Tuesday (11.11.14) where she asked to have the name of her rumoured fiance Caleb Pusey permanently etched into her skin. After denying the 'Easy A' actress the ink, an employee of the tattoo parlor told TMZ.com that even if she had identificaton, Amanda - who claimed to be bipolar and a manic depressive on Twitter last week (04.11.14) - would have been expected »

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Heidi Montag: I've Never Met Amanda Bynes, But She Can Come Stay With Me!

10 November 2014 12:37 PM, PST | Us Weekly | See recent Us Weekly news »

As they say in the South, bless her heart. Many were confused on Thursday, Nov. 6, when former Hills standout Heidi Montag sent troubled star Amanda Bynes a very public invitation to come stay with her on Twitter.  “@amandabynes you are more then welcome to crash in our guest house in Santa Barbara if you need somewhere to stay! Dm me!” she tweeted.  Now Montag, 28, has clarified her tweet in an on-camera interview with Extra, explaining why she reached out to the Easy A star, 28. Noting [...] »

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Amanda Bynes Dyes Her Hair Purple -- See Her New 'Do!

7 November 2014 11:33 PM, PST | TooFab | See recent TooFab news »

Amanda Bynes switched up her look ... again! The "Easy A" star took to Twitter on Friday to debut her new purple 'do by posting a picture from the salon.  "I dyed my hair violet :D I'm not sure if I like it , and this is a blurry pic but here it is !" she wrote to her fans. It seems strange that the troubled actress had enough money to pay for her beauty treatment, after she revealed that she didn't the funds to pay for a hotel room. Earlier this week, TMZ posted a pic of Amanda sleeping on a couch at the Beverly Center shopping mall in Los Angeles."I was not given money for a hotel so I have been staying with friends and I didn't get enough sleep last night so I fell asleep on a couch @ the Beverly center and a paparazzi snuck in and took pictures of me, »

- tooFab Staff

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'Mean Girls' director is back for more high-school drama, signs on for new comedy

7 November 2014 6:02 PM, PST | EW - Inside Movies | See recent EW.com - Inside Movies news »

The man behind Mean Girls is ready to jump back into the icy waters of high-school drama. Mark Waters, who directed the cool-girl classic that just celebrated its 10-year anniversary in the EW Reunions Issue, has signed on to helm a comedy called #Catfight, EW has confirmed. And as if its name wasn't a big enough tell, the plot is filled with Plastics-level drama. According to Deadline, which first reported the news, the story centers on Lucy, an insecure high-schooler with a single mom who earns a scholarship to a private high school for her senior year and "attempts to »

- Emily Blake

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This Is Why Emma Stone Is Queen of the GIFs

6 November 2014 3:05 AM, PST | BuzzSugar | See recent BuzzSugar news »

Source: Sony Pictures It's Emma Stone's 26th birthday this week, and though she's still so young, she's already provided us with a treasure trove of memorable movie moments. You know the kind - the moments so good they have been made into GIFs you keep sharing over and over again. To celebrate the versatile actress's birthday, we've got all her best movie GIFs here, ranging from the funny (and there are so many funny ones) to a few fierce and dramatic ones too. Enjoy! Superbad Remember when we all fell for Emma in her debut film? So does Jonah Hill. Source: Columbia Pictures She was so cute, he almost knocks her out. Source: Columbia Pictures Yes, Emma. With laughter. Source: Columbia Pictures The House Bunny She can be glam, but she also makes a great adorable nerd. Source: Columbia Pictures Zombieland This is how one manages to be adorable with a gun. »

- Shannon-Vestal

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Watch: Two Final Trailers for 'Annie'

4 November 2014 9:30 AM, PST | Rope of Silicon | See recent Rope Of Silicon news »

If you've been reading my writing on this site or heard me on the podcast, you know I am a big fan of musicals. However, a musical is a form like any other. It has its highs and its lows. People like to think if I like the form, I like everything within it. Not the case. It would be like saying I like every movie. It is probably the same 30% good/70% bad ratio for any artistic medium. One of the most popular musicals of all time falls in the 70% bad range for me, which is Annie. The musical has already had a film adaptation directed by John Huston and a TV movie adaptation by Rob Marshall. So, instead of trying their hand at something new (such as trying one of the shows on my top ten musicals that should be made into movies), we will be getting yet another version of this story. »

- Mike Shutt

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Bet Your Bottom Dollar on the Final Trailer for the Remake of 'Annie'

4 November 2014 7:17 AM, PST | firstshowing.net | See recent FirstShowing.net news »

"Please, take care of our baby. Her name's Annie." That's right, the remake of the classic musical Annie is still a movie that's coming out this winter, in case you forgot with all the excitement for Interstellar hitting theaters this week. Honestly, if you're not already sold on this flick, then you're probably not going to see anything new in the latest trailer to convince you to see it. While it doesn't look terrible, this movie looks painfully sweet, like Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhané Wallis will give you cavities. And since it's a musical, we know it's not going to be as short as most family films. But will it be worth your time? See for yourself. Here's the last trailer for Will Gluck's remake of Annie direct from YouTube: Watch the most recent trailer for Annie from the United Kingdom right here. Annie is directed by Will Gluck »

- Ethan Anderton

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Watch: Final Trailer For Will Gluck’s ‘Annie’ With Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhané Wallis & More

4 November 2014 5:18 AM, PST | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

The sun’ll come out tomorrow, right? It’s been interesting to watch Will Gluck’s career progress. After years in TV, the writer/director/producer jumped into feature films, making his name on irreverent comedies often in the teen genre, including “Fired Up,” “Easy A” and “Friends With Benefits.” The success of those films have led to the development of a dozen big projects too, including “Stealing The Moon” with “The Social Network” and “Moneyball” producers Scott Rudin, Dan Brunetti and Mike DeLuca. But for his next trick, Gluck flipped the script and instead tried his hand at a big-budget, family-friendly musical remake of “Annie.” Starring Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhané Wallis, Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, David Zayas, and Cameron Diaz, “Annie” is a modern retelling of the Broadway classic, executive produced by Will Smith and Jay-z among others. Here’s the official synopsis: A Broadway classic that has delighted audiences for generations. »

- Edward Davis

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