7 items from 2014
From its start—"this is the new politics," announces a coffee shop lounger, knee knocking at each half-thought protestation—Norte, the End of History broadcasts art-house competency. Austere framing; casual gestures. The lounger's shamefaced need to take something, anything serious without sounding embarrassingly serious himself, it seems, is Lav Diaz's great problem as an artist as well, and the opening sets the appropriate non-tone: just as our hero couches Raskolnikovian pontifications in mock-impromptu waffling, knowing laughter, and conjectural hand-motions, Diaz couches his characters... as couch-dwellers, half-lit, all half-turned away as decorative elements in an astutely naturalistic mise en scène. No doubt, it takes a lot of work to plant so many markers of improvised non-acting in a calculatedly scripted scene about The Nature of the Modern World. Still, though, I feel... well, you know, I feel like there's a thin line between, on the one hand, attentive patience and, »
- David Phelps
London, April 17: A play based on Good Friday re-enactment of Christ's crucifixion was banned after the officials mistook it for a live sex show.
The officials refused to grant the production a licence over fears that it could be "committing an offence", the Daily Express reported.
Oxford City Councillor and United Reformed Church pastor Dick Wolff said that unfortunately, one of the city council's licensing officers didn't recognise that a Passion play on Good Friday was a religious event and though of it as a sex show.
The Reverend Adam Romanis, of St Mary and St John, said that it was very upsetting because so many were looking forward to it. (Ani) »
- Shiva Prakash
As the news broke this week that Paul Greengrass is interested in finding a way to bring "Zealot" the bigscreen, it made me sad that we still haven't seen Paul Verhoeven's proposed movie about the historical Jesus Christ. It's a subject Verhoeven's been studying for decades now, and I have to imagine he would bring a real breadth of knowledge to his approach. Like Verhoeven, I would assume Greengrass is going to try to dig deep to show us something we haven't already seen from this story. Any time a filmmaker tries to tackle a subject as big and vague as "Jesus" for a movie, you're going to learn a lot about the filmmaker from the final product. However, Christopher Spencer has put that theory of mine to the test by turning in a genuinely bland and forgettable picture here, about as middle-of-the-road as a movie can be. I »
- Drew McWeeny
By Mark Pinkert
Unlike the other Best Picture-nominated producers, who each have one film in a field of nine, Megan Ellison has two: American Hustle (directed by David O. Russell) and Her (directed by Spike Jonze). Both films have already hoarded numerous awards on the critics circuit, grossed a combined $200+ million worldwide, earned fifteen total Academy Award nominations, and both have a legitimate shot at winning the Best Picture prize–needless to say, it’s been a big year for Ellison. And what’s more interesting, perhaps, is that these are far and away the most eccentric films on the Best Picture ticket. This speaks, at least in part, to Megan Ellison’s producing style, which has raised a few eyebrows in Hollywood recently.
- Mark Pinkert
R.I.P. Oscar-winner Philip Seymour Hoffman (Capote) was found dead in his home in Manhattan yesterday morning of an alleged drug overdose. He was 46. Deadline reports that Hoffman was discovered in the bathroom of his apartment by an unidentified friend and that a hypodermic needle and what appeared to be heroin were found at the scene. Hoffman leaves behind his three children with costume designer Mimi O’Donnell: Cooper (11), Tallulah (7) and Willa (6).
Some of Hoffman's ongoing projects have been shelved, while others continue on. Only yesterday, we reported that Hoffman's planned second feature as a director, Ezekial Moss, was moving forward with Jake Gyllenhaal and Amy Adams in starring roles. With his passing, Exclusive Media has dropped the movie that Hoffman spent over a year working on with writer Keith Bunin. The Hunger Games — Mockingjay Part 1 will still be released as scheduled, though Lionsgate has not explained how they »
- BJSprecher Sprecher
Get Bill Murray involved with a movie, and everyone in Hollywood wants in! Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, Danny McBride, Shia Labeouf, and Zooey Deschanel will all be joining Murray in Rock The Kasbah. Barry Levinson directs the film with a script written by Mitch Glazer. The last flick Glazer wrote was Passion Play so I.m hoping he.s had some time to think about that since then. But he did so well on Scrooged back in 1988! Also, I thought Labeouf was done...what happened there? Here.s »
- Niki Stephens
2013 was a stellar year for London’s theatre business. The Book of Mormon transferred from Broadway smashing box office records on its way, Bond director Sam Mendes brought another Roald Dahl classic to the stage in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Jude Law, Adrian Lester, Richard Tennant and Tom Hiddleston all took on Shakespeare and Helen Mirren was the queen of the West End in The Audience. Successful revivals included Passion Play, A Dolls House and The Weir and new writing also shone, particularly in Lucy Kirkwood’s Chimerica at the Almeida. 2014, you should be quaking in your boots. Here’s the Thn picks of the productions to see in 2014.
1) Miss Saigon
It’s been fifteen years since Miss Saigon has been in the West End and such is the anticipation for this new production of Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil’s epic musical that when the box office opened »
- Victoria Bull
7 items from 2014
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