If you were to stop someone on the street and ask them to name any film composer, their answer would likely be John Williams or Hans Zimmer. Indeed, with 169 credits to his name, Zimmer is one of the most prolific film composers of our time, and also one of the most memorable. From the “Brahhhmmmm” of Inception to the emotional swells of The Thin Red Line, Zimmer’s work has transcended the cinema time and time again to become part of the pop culture lexicon. But one of the qualities of Zimmer’s work that doesn’t seem to get enough credit is his versatility. He is equally at home in the world of a giant, heady sci-fi film as he is in a Nancy Meyers romantic comedy. This versatility has served him well—almost too well. With so many credits to his name and a chameleon-like ability to mask his signature, »
- Adam Chitwood
Last year, Christopher Nolan drew—and divided—audiences with his epic space spectacle, “Interstellar.” And while a full third of the nine features he directed were Batman related, it’s impossible to have a thorough discussion of Nolan’s body of work without including his 2010 blockbuster, “Inception.” One of the more mind-bending films of his consistently mind-bending filmography, “Inception” is Nolan’s third most financially successful film to date (behind the second and third installments of the Dark Knight franchise), and the sixth highest grossing film of 2010. With it, Nolan created a multilayered, complex story about dreams and dreams within dreams, adding tiered levels of reality and time. It was nothing short of an inspiring achievement, especially in writing and editing. Read More: Video Essay Exploring The Surrealism in Christopher Nolan's 'Inception'. In a newly resurfaced video essay, Kevin B. Lee contests that, incredible as “Inception” was, »
- Zach Hollwedel
Leonardo DiCaprio is a mama's boy! The Oscar nominee dropped more than $13,000 on a Chanel purse for his mom while attending the Heart Fund Gala in Cannes. A blue Neoprene flap bag with embroidered flowers, the purse was sold as part of an auction to benefit the charity. Leo told reporters that he purchased the accessory for his mom. Cue the awwws. But the Inception star, 40, didn't win it too easily. He was in a bidding war against Paris Hilton, 34, who was just as anxious to take home the bag as he was. Even though she didn't win the coveted bag, she didn't play the role of a sore loser. A source told People that both she and Leo were enthusiastic members of the auction all night »
Cannes — In 2001 Benicio Del Toro won an Oscar for his portrayal of a Mexican police officer attempting to take down the drug cartels in Steven Soderbergh’s “Traffic.” Fourteen years later he’s starring in another film about North America’s “drug war,” Denis Villeneuve’s “Sicario,” and the picture makes the disheartening argument that things may have actually gotten worse. The film begins during an FBI operation in Phoenix, Arizona where veteran agent Kate Macy (a superb Emily Blunt) is leading a Swat team to take down a hostage situation. They soon discover a home with no hostages to be found but over 20 dead bodies hidden within its walls, all victims of a Mexican drug cartel. Kate is shaken by the murders enough that she reluctantly signs on to be the FBI liaison for what she’s told is a DEA and Dept. of Justice task force. This group »
- Gregory Ellwood
Next week marks the 35th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, and it will be screening during the 16th season of Film on the Rocks on June 9th. Also in this round-up: a Dark Was the Night trailer and listing information for the house from Poltergeist.
The Shining 35th Anniversary Screening: Press Release -- "Denver Film Society and Denver Arts & Venues announced the line-up for the 2015 edition of Film on the Rocks (Fotr). Presented by Pepsi, the 16th season includes nine events throughout the summer. Each film is preceded by a live concert and local comedian, courtesy of Comedy Works.
"Memorial Day weekend is the traditional start to Summer and Film on the Rocks is a Colorado Summer tradition," said Britta Erickson, Festival Director for the Denver Film Society. "We are so excited to kick off the season on the holiday weekend and bring cult-classic and fan-favorite films, great »
- Tamika Jones
Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Spielberg on the Oscars' Red Carpet Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Steven Spielberg and daughter Destry Spielberg arrive at the 83rd Academy Awards, held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Spielberg has taken home two Best Director Oscars: Schindler's List (1993) and Saving Private Ryan (1998). Schindler's List also won Best Picture, but Saving Private Ryan lost to John Madden's Miramax-distributed Shakespeare in Love. There was quite a bit of animosity at the time, as some felt that Miramax, owned by brothers Bob and Harvey Weinstein, overdid its Oscar campaigning – while still managing to sway enough Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences members to vote for its film. Somewhat ironically, at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony Steven Spielberg presented the Best Picture Award to The King's Speech. Toplining Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter, Geoffrey Rush, Guy Pearce, and Claire Bloom, this British production was »
- D. Zhea
Chicago – Far more marvelous than imperfect, “Interstellar” is the answer for moviegoers who have lost the zeal for massive films, citing a lack of ideas, heart, or general passion for filmmaking. Director Christopher Nolan’s 2014 space odyssey is an event of beauty, with the rare experience of showing viewers something they haven’t seen before.
As a blockbuster of familiar features but unique successes, “Interstellar” welcomes comparisons to numerous films but consistently stands apart from them. Nolan has fashioned a singular experience that works with the busy simplicity of his previous movies, like “Inception”: It’s recognizable and easy to follow along, but with a clear interest in the philosophy that puts these tales into action.
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Sound on Sight undertook a massive project, compiling ranked lists of the most influential, unforgettable, and exciting action scenes in all of cinema. There were hundreds of nominees spread across ten different categories and a multi-week voting process from 11 of our writers. The results: 100 essential set pieces, sequences, and scenes from blockbusters to cult classics to arthouse obscurities.
Hollywood has had a long love affair with the heist sub-genre. Dating as far back as the silent film era with 1928’s Alias Jimmy Valentine, and transcending various genres like westerns (The War Wagon), war (Kelly’s Heroes) and even animation (Toy Story 3), the heist has tantalized our fantasies and outsmarted our wits for decades. Whether it’s for the very last time before retirement, gathering the gang back together for a big payday or for the thrill of pulling off the perfect robbery, all heist films share one key element: commitment to a plan. »
- Shane Ramirez
In news coming out of the Cannes Film Festival, it has been announced that Gus Van Sant’s Sea of Trees has found a new home in the U.S., with Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions striking a deal for distribution.
Trees stars Oscar winner Matthew McConaughey (Interstellar) alongside Naomi Watts (Birdman) and Ken Watanabe (Inception), and sees McConaughey playing an American travelling to the famous Suicide Forest in Japan where, after the death of his wife (Watts), he intends to take his own life. But he strikes up conversation with a lost Japanese man (Watanabe) and the two help each other to find their way out of the forest.
In addition to the news that the film has been picked up for U.S. distribution, a new clip has appeared online, which you can view below….
- Scott J. Davis
The man, the muscle, the mouth. Tom Hardy may have gained international attention only two short years ago thanks to his part in Christopher Nolan's labyrinthine Inception but the London native is no overnight sensation. A student at the Drama Centre London in the '90s, a winner of a modelling competition at age 21, Hardy has already lived a lot of life in his short 35 years, battling alcoholism and drug addiction and emerging on the other side with great success first on the small screen and then unleashing his special brand of suave, menacing, bulked-up and multifaceted bad guys on the big screen. His latest big-screen outing is Mad Max: Fury Road oppositeCharlize Theron and Nicholas Hoult in George Miller’s post-apocalyptic reboot.
An undeniable talent with a flair for the unpredictable - he caused a stir when he nonchalantly admitted in an interview that he's been intimate with »
- Andrea Miller, Emma Badame and Rachel West
Hugh Jackman and wife Deborra-Lee Furness, Nicole Kidman and husband Keith Urban at the Oscars Wolverine Hugh Jackman and wife Deborra-Lee Furness at the Academy Awards Hugh Jackman and wife Deborra-Lee Furness, along with Best Actress nominee Nicole Kidman and husband Keith Urban, are pictured above arriving at the 83rd Academy Awards, held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Stage and screen actor-singer Hugh Jackman was the Oscar ceremony host a couple of years ago, while Nicole Kidman was a 2011 Best Actress nominee for her performance as a bereaved mother in John Cameron Mitchell's Rabbit Hole, co-starring Aaron Eckhart and Dianne Wiest. More on Kidman further below. Recent Hugh Jackman movies The most recent film efforts of the Sydney-born Hugh Jackman were Gavin Hood's X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009), in which he has the (second half of the) title role, and Baz Luhrmann's epic romance Australia (2008). Co-starring Nicole Kidman, »
- D. Zhea
Even before Mel Gibson made an unannounced appearance on the red carpet for “Mad Max: Fury Road,” energy was high at the Hollywood premiere of George Miller’s action epic, as the cast and producers reunited for the first time since the Warner Bros. production wrapped filming more than two years ago.
“It’s so good that this film has finally made it to the screen, because we shot it almost three years ago, and then it’s been an idea of George’s for over a decade,” Megan Gale (Valkyrie) told Variety. “It’s been a labor of love not just for us but definitely for George Miller, so I’m so thrilled for him that it’s here.”
Labor was the operative word, especially for Miller: “People often say it’s like giving birth — it’s the closest a man gets to it, and it’s been a long labor, »
- Laura Prudom
Tom Hardy is great. We know this, you know this, and apparently Warner Bros. knows this too. The studio has footed the bill for the actor’s three biggest movies: “Inception,” “The Dark Knight Rises” and next week’s much anticipated “Mad Max: Fury Road.” The studio nearly continued that relationship, with Hardy set to appear in David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad” before abruptly dropping out, but Hardy now makes it clear that it wasn’t because the affection wasn’t mutual. In an interview with Collider, Hardy made it clear how disappointed he is that he’s missing out on the villain team-up film: “Warner Bros. is my home studio and I love them, so I was really bummed out. I wanted to work on that and I know the script is really fucking alley, and I also know what’s gonna happen with The Joker and Harley Quinn »
- Cain Rodriguez
Director Gus Van Sant’s has had great experiences at the at the Cannes Film Festival, winning the Palme d'Or in 2003 for his drama “Elephant," and not so great experiences — 2011’s “Restless” was not so warmly received. He’s been on the Croisette several times, and he’ll be In Competition once again for his upcoming film, “Sea Of Trees.” But which Van Sant will show up? The filmmaker obviously vacillates from the commercial (“Milk”) to the more esoteric and introspective (his entire “Gerry” through "Paranoid Park" run, which went from 2002 to 2007 and includes four films, so it'll be interesting to see what flavor we get here). Well, despite the starry cast of Mathew McConaughey, Ken Watanabe (“Inception”), and Naomi Watts, it sounds like the artier Van Sant will appear at Cannes. “Sea Of Trees” sounds like more of an existentialist, minimalist effort, and it follows two strangers who meet »
- Edward Davis
Photo: Warner Bros. / Lionsgate / Paramount Christopher Nolan was asked, during a Q&A at the Tribeca Film Festival, to choose which sequence from his films he considers his favorite. The log chase scene in Insomniac The semi-flip in The Dark Knightc The docking sequence in Interstellarc Every single one of themc Nope. The director answered as some may have expected, with the opening scene from The Dark Knight Rises, often discussed as his most impressive stunt sequence thus far in his directorial career. Call it the prologue scene, call it the airplane hijacking scene, call it what you want, Nolan is proud of it no matter what title you give it. "It took us about two days in Scotland," he told host Bennett Miller and the crowd. He continued: "It was an incredible sort of coming together of months and months of planning by a lot of different members of »
- Jordan Benesh
Has being the director of a film in a major franchise become a high-stakes gamble? Ryan looks at the pressures faced by modern filmmakers.
The process of making the behemoth that is Avengers: Age Of Ultron has clearly taken its toll on Joss Whedon. In each successive interview with the press, he’s talked with surprising openness about the process of making the superhero sequel and his battles to places an individual stamp on it; this culminated in a recent podcast with Empire, in which he described the “really, really unpleasant” fight to keep certain scenes in the film.
For an established writer and director like Whedon, who’s been working in TV and film since the 90s, taking on a project as huge and loaded with expectation as a Marvel film is evidently punishing, both physically and psychologically. Imagine how difficult it must be, then, to make the jump »
Anne Hathaway Red Dress at the 83rd Academy Awards Oscar host Anne Hathaway Wearing a blindingly bright red dress, Anne Hathaway, sporting a blindingly bright white smile, is pictured above at the 2011 Academy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 27, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Hathaway, a Best Actress nominee for Rachel Getting Married in early 2009, was this year's Oscar ceremony co-host alongside Best Actor nominee James Franco (127 Hours). More on that further below. Anne Hathaway movies Below is a partial list of Anne Hathaway films.* Her big-screen debut took place in 2001. Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass (2016). Director: James Bobin. Cast: Mia Wasikowska. Johnny Depp. Helena Bonham Carter. Sacha Baron Cohen. Anne Hathaway. The Interns (2015). Director: Nancy Meyers. Cast: Anne Hathaway. Robert De Niro. Interstellar (2014). Director: Christopher Nolan. Cast: Matthew McConaughey. Jessica Chastain. Anne Hathaway. Mackenzie Foy. Michael Caine. Matt Damon. Ellen Burstyn. Don Jon (2013). Les Misérables (2012). Director: Tom Hooper. »
- D. Zhea
I'm not sure Tom Hardy will ever become a household name. If he were already I don't think I'd be as nervous for the box office prospects as I am for Mad Max: Fury Road, which looks balls-to-the-wall insane and a movie I'm counting the minutes until my press screening next week, though at the same time nervous general audiences won't rush to support. That said, what it would take for Hardy to become a household name is probably a career path that would result in Tom Hardy no longer being the Tom Hardy we all know and love. While Hardy may have played a major role in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises, I would wager the majority of people unfamiliar with his face don't even realize he's the same actor starring in the new Mad Max film or even the actor that played Eames in Nolan's Inception, »
- Brad Brevet
Trent Reznor and wife Mariqueen Maandig Trent Reznor and wife Mariqueen Maandig at the Oscars Sporting an ultra-cool look, Trent Reznor and wife Mariqueen Maandig, both members of the hip, experimental band How to Destroy Angels, arrive at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Trent Reznor, formerly the frontman of the alternative rock group Nine Inch Nails, and fellow How to Destroy Angels band member Atticus Ross went on to share the Best Original Score Oscar for their work on David Fincher's Facebook movie The Social Network. After Reznor's Oscar win, "I want to thank you like an animal" became a Twitter hit – in reference to a similar-sounding line found in the Nine Inch Nails' 1994 song "Closer." Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' Oscar 2011 competitors were: Hans Zimmer, at one point the favorite for the Best Original Score Academy Award, for »
- D. Zhea
Every so often, the stars will align in one particular year for an actor who’ll at last see their movie star status go supernova. In 2011, it was Ryan Gosling’s turn – as Drive, The Ides Of March and Crazy, Stupid, Love. finally tipped him over into superstardom – as well as Michael Fassbender’s, with X-Men: First Class, Jane Eyre and Shame bringing the Irish actor to the attention of the moviegoing public at large.
In 2015, it looks as though the year will belong to Tom Hardy. Already an actor of considerable acclaim amongst critics and serious cinema fans, Hardy’s impressive-looking line-up of upcoming projects this year should see his fame hit peak levels, as all the talk of him being “the best actor of his generation” at last reaches the masses.
It’s been coming for a while – Hardy hasn’t really stopped working since he »
- Brogan Morris
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