9 items from 2014
Principal photography has started today on Screen Gems. new thriller The Perfect Guy, starring Sanaa Lathan (The Best Man Holiday), Michael Ealy (Think Like A Man,About Last Night) and Morris Chestnut (Think Like A Man, The Best Man Holiday). The film, directed by David M. Rosenthal (A Single Shot, Janie Jones) also stars Charles S. Dutton (.Longmire.), Rutina Wesley (.True Blood.) and Kathryn Morris (.Cold Case.). »
“I was the client contact and handled the on-set supervision for Scanline in Bulgaria,” explains Scanline VFX Supervisor Bryan Hirota. “Once principal photography wrapped I stayed in the La office and supervised the teams there. Danielle was in Vancouver nearly full-time and supervised the teams in that location. Given her experience working in the Munich office for a number of years it made sense for Danielle [Plantec] to oversee the work sent there as well. Stephan oversaw all Flowline simulation.” Orchestrating the visual effects for the stylish historic epic helmed by Noam Murro (Smart People) was Richard Hollander (Wall•E). “I’ve known Richard for many years so it was easy to establish a dialogue with him while we were in Bulgaria during principal photography »
- Trevor Hogg
Wes Bentley rarely takes on leading roles, probably partially because his youthful, nondescript features lead audiences to identify with him most as a background player. Things People Do, a quiet drama directed by The Thin Red Line editor Saar Klein, finds Bentley taking on the main role of insurance adjuster Bill Scanlon, who turns to a life of crime when always playing the nice guy leaves him jobless and heavily in debt. Unfortunately, the film’s plodding, ham-fisted narrative allows neither Bentley nor Things People Do as a whole any opportunity to leave even the slightest impression.
Klein and co-writer Joe Conway clearly wanted their film to be received as a morality play, with seemingly every line of dialogue holding deeper meaning. In moderation, symbolic dialogue can be one of a screenwriter’s most potent weapons, but here it’s more exhausting than enlightening. One of the reasons Things People Do »
- Isaac Feldberg
The North American premiere of the film >A Single Shot was shown at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival, which stars Sam Rockwell as hunter John Moon. The 116 minute film was shot in Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States and was directed by David Rosenthal. Written by Matthew F. Jones (who also wrote the book), the film follows the hunter as he accidentally kills a young woman and finds a large amount of money on her. As he tries to escape the wrath of the criminals looking to find him and the money, he finds himself putting his survival skills to the test for his ultimate existence.
The film also stars William H. Macy as Daggard Pitt who is a shady lawyer, Jeffrey Wright as Simon who is a drunk that is expected to move the plot along with his character but is rather impossible to understand within the film, »
- Catherina Gioino
Sam Rockwell is one of the greatest actors working today. If you’re not already in agreement with me, look over his diverse body of work. Rockwell has killed roles, both lead and supporting, in movies as weird as Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, as shattering as Conviction, and as breathtakingly original as Moon. Along the way, he’s played integral parts in classics like The Green Mile and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. He’s one of my favorite actors because, no matter how many great roles I see him in, he just sells it every time.
A Single Shot, a relentlessly bleak and atmospheric noir drama, is no exception. As hunter John Moon, who accidentally shoots and kills a young woman, only to uncover a huge amount of money she was guarding, Rockwell is absolutely terrific. It’s a very physical part for the actor, »
- Isaac Feldberg
Moviefone's Top DVD of the Week
"20 Feet From Stardom"
What's It About? Being a back-up singer is no easy task, especially when you're working so hard and getting so little credit. Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer, Judith Hill, and other singers take front and center in this doc about the women who've revolutionized the music we listen to.
Why We're In: The doc features fantastic footage of performances from every era of modern music -- we dare you not to get teary when you see and hear Luther Vandross doing backup with Fischer and others for David Bowie. Interviews with Mick Jagger, Stevie Wonder, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, and Bette Midler are icing on the cake.
Moviefone's Top Blu-ray of the Week
What's It About? Director Jules Dassin snagged the Palme d'Or for this film noir about four guys going in on one last heist -- and we all »
- Jenni Miller
Short Term 12 One of my top ten movies of 2013, Short Term 12 was a movie that surprised me with its honesty as well as writer/director Destin Cretton's ability to turn a cliched moment into an authentic one. It's a film filled with passion, disappointment, love and humor. You know, sorta like life. I urge you to check it out.
Fruitvale Station A heavy contender for my top ten movies of 2013, on another day, perhaps Fruitvale Station actually makes it into my top ten. From the feature writing and directorial debut of Ryan Coogler to the performances from Michael B. Jordan, Melonie Diaz and Octavia Spencer, this is a film that deserves recognition, but it unfortunately won't receive anywhere near as much as it deserves.
Rififi (Criterion Collection) I will have my review of this one online shortly, but until then know this Blu-ray looks great, far better than the previous DVD release. »
- Brad Brevet
Each Monday we present you with the most up-to-date list of the top 10 (indie) movies in the iTunes store (combining rentals and purchases). This week, "I Give It A Year" and "Closed Circuit" top the list. It's worth noting that "I Give It A Year" was an iTunes Movie of the Week and was on sale for 99 cents, which, no doubt, helped to boost its popularity. Thee top 10 indies in iTunes are listed below (number represents North American gross, where applicable): 1. Give It A Year (Magnolia Pictures, $34,657) 2. Closed Circuit (Focus Features, $5,750,401) 3. Thanks for Sharing (Roadside Attractions, $1,065,881) 4. Murph: The Protector (Starz/Anchor Bay, N/A) 5. A Single Shot (Tribeca Film, $18,642) 6. The Way, Way Back (Fox Searchlight, $21,502,690) 7. Inequality for All (Radius-twc, $1,194,500) 8. Enough Said (Fox Searchlight, $17,517,110) 9. The Spectacular »
- Paula Bernstein
12 Years a Slave, 2013.
Directed by Steve McQueen.
Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Fassbender, Sarah Paulson, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Quvenzhané Wallis, Garret Dillahunt, Lupita Nyong'o, Michael K. Williams, Scoot McNairy, Ruth Negga and Taran Killam.
The true story of one man's fight for survival and freedom after being sold into slavery in the pre-Civil War United States.
I wish I didn't have to write this review. I've seen a lot of films, probably too many some may argue, but no film has affected me in a manner by which 12 Years a Slave did. In a year in which Quentin Tarantino's ill judged Django Unchained was released, Steve McQueen's quite extraordinary masterpiece is more important than ever.
- Gary Collinson
9 items from 2014
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