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Directed and Written by: Alex de la Iglesia
Clown enthusiasts seem to hold American clowns in far lower regard than their European counterparts, and The Last Circus has helped me to crystallize just why this is the case.
Take your typical American clown, with a typically stupid name like, say, Bongo the Putz. The guy playing Bongo probably hates kids and hates his job and hates his wife and thinks his dog is a freeloader, but you wouldn’t necessarily know it watching Bongo in action. He seems to convey only empty cheer and bludgeoning neon, as if that is enough to distract children from the horrors of existence. Now, I know what you’re thinking folks: That’s probably the pessimistic view, and I should just congratulate Bongo for entertaining children and move on with my jaded, hopeless life. However, »
- Thomas Duke
Each week within this column we strive to pair the latest in theatrical releases to worthwhile titles currently streaming on Netflix Instant Watch. This week we offer alternatives to War Horse, Pariah, & A Separation.
With the Academy Awards eligibility deadline about to hit, three Oscar hopefuls do battle at the box office, including Steven Spielberg‘s latest epic, a gritty indie from Brooklyn, NY, and an Iranian thriller that’s drawing worldwide notice.
Based on Michael Morpurgo’s children’s novel and its resulting Broadway hit, Spielberg’s War Horse centers on the bond between a young man and his horse. With its posh pedigree, this drama is looking to win more than audience attention. [Full Review.]
Oscar loves a good war story:
The English Patient (1996) This epic World War II-set romance scored 12 Oscar nominations and took home nine, including honors for writer-director Anthony Minghella and star Juliette Binoche, not to mention Best Picture. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (thefilmstage.com)
Welcome back, fiends! We’re reached yet the end of another year and as always, it’s time to look back and discuss the best stuff that’s come and gone, look over some titles you might have missed and just reflect on what our beloved horror genre had to offer this year. I will say right off the bat that scanning over the titles I picked for my Top 10, the Top 6 are what I’d personally consider legitimate great genre offerings whereas picks 7 through 10 were serviceable horror movies that I didn’t love, but that entertained me tremendously and I’ll explain why I consider them serviceable when I get to them.
That said, I missed some great stuff that people have been talking about when compiling their lists. I have yet to see the much-praised horror/comedy Tucker & Dale Vs Evil which just hit DVD/Blu-Ray. Also haven »
Super, Trespass, Melancholia, Quarantine 2: Terminal, Black Death, We Are What We Are, Red State, Kidnapped, Rammbock: Berlin Undead, Phase 7 (Fase 7), Hobo With A Shotgun, The Shrine, Burke & Hare, Cold Fish, Atrocious, The Last Circus, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil , Outcast, The Pack (La Meute), The Human Centipede Part 2: Full Sequence, Chillerama. What do those films have in common? Theyre horror films (or films with enough intensity, gumption and violence for tertiary association) that incorporated Video On Demand into their distribution models in a major way this year. That means there's a lot going on here - and it affects you. Hit the jump to check it out and contribute your opinions in the comments. »
Well, folks, 2011 is officially in the can, and surprisingly it wasn't such a horrendous year. It was definitely better than 2010, which was a huge step up from the putrid 2009. We laughed, we applauded, we were left dumbstruck, and of course we were infuriated. Read on for our cheers and jeers!
Now, with a fresh movie-watching start before us, we're taking our usual yearly look back at the good, the bad, the Wtf, and everything in between.
And don't be lazy by just reading along! Get off of your asses and give us your lists in the comments section below. We wanna hear from you if only to compare notes. Lots and lots of notes.
Speaking of notes, the most common complaint we've heard over the years is that we don't have one definitive list representing Dread Central as a whole so for 2011 we dropped everyone's choices in the blender, hit puree, »
- Uncle Creepy
The Berlin International Film Festival has just announced the first five films lined up for the Competition and five more for the Berlinale Special. The 62nd edition runs from February 9 through 19.
Update: The Berlinale's also announced that the members of the International Jury, presided over by Mike Leigh, will be Anton Corbijn, Asghar Farhadi, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jake Gyllenhaal, François Ozon, Boualem Sansal and Barbara Sukowa.
With Isabelle Huppert, Katherine Mulville, Marc Zanetta
From Ioncinema: "Based on a real-life event that occurred in 2001. It centers on Thérèse Bourgoin (Huppert), a French woman who works for a humanitarian organization on Palawan Island in the Philippines. While she is transporting equipment to Puerto Princesa, she is kidnapped by mistake with a colleague by Muslim extremist group Abu Sayyaf, who are fighting for Mindanao independence."
Now that the fall “awards festival” circuit is finally at a close — but with Sundance looming in the distance — it’s easy to forget about Biff — the Berlin International Film Festival, that is. (See, I even have to give the name.) This might have something to do with their less-than-huge lineup; in terms of films playing in competition, last year’s biggest art house title was The Turin Horse, while the most mainstream was probably Margin Call. Nothing too slim, but not much compared to Cannes, Venice, or Tiff.
The first round of titles to play this coming February (via Twitch) do carry a few major titles, though. Among them are The Flowers of War (which we were quite ecstatic about), Guy Maddin‘s Keyhole, Extremely Loud…, Kevin Macdonald‘s Bob Marley documentary, and an expansion of Werner Herzog‘s Into the Abyss. A few other foreign titles carry potential, »
- email@example.com (thefilmstage.com)
Less than a year since word first surfaced that The Last Circus director Alex de la Iglesia would be shooting a black comedy with Salma Hayek the film is now complete - or close to it - and among the first selections for the 2012 Berlin International Film Festival.Titled La Chispa De La Vida - literally The Spark Of Life in English, though it was announced with the English title of As Luck Would Have It - the picture stars Hayek as the wife of Jose Mota who plays a down on his luck publicist who slips and falls in an old Roman era forum, impaling his head on a metal rod. He does not die but cannot be moved. And, bizarrely, he views »
The weather outside isn't the only thing that's frightful as we have compiled a list of the year's best and worst Blu-ray packages for you or the horror fan on your holiday shopping list! Being that you can score a player for way less than 200 bucks now, there's little reason not to upgrade to the glorious world of high definition horror. Read on to find out where the smart money is!
There's no doubt Blu-ray players will once again be a pretty hot item this year, but what of the movies available for them? If you already own the DVD of your favorite flick, is there a need to replace it with a Blu-ray? I'm here to answer all of your questions in the fourth annual ...
Before we get into my picks (most of which are also available in new DVD versions; see review for information), let's take a second »
- Uncle Creepy
That did not take long. Yesterday we shared the international trailer for [Rec] 3 with you, and today we have the English subbed version for you to enjoy. The footage is a little different from the international trailer so you might want to check out both of them. [Rec] 3 Genesis will open in Spain on March 30, 2012 and is written by Luis Berdejo and stars Leticia Dolera, Javier Botet (The Last Circus) and Diego Martin. Synopsis: "The action in Rec Genesis encompasses the events of the first two films and after the sense of claustrophobia previously experiences. The action now takes place miles away from the original location and partly in broad daylight giving the film an entirely fresh yet disturbing new reality. »
Writer/director Paco ([Rec], [REC2]) Plaza once again delivers the gory goods in [Rec]3: Genesis, out internationally in March, 2012. The film stars Leticia (Man Push Cart) Dolera, Javier (The Last Circus) Botet, and Diego (Mataharis) Martin, and features visual effects from Alex (Buried, [Rec]) Villagrasa.
The action takes place miles away from the original location and partly in broad daylight, giving the film an entirely fresh yet disturbing new reality. The infection has left the building. In a clever twist that draws together the plots of the first two movies, this third part of the saga also works as a decoder to uncover information hidden in the first two films and leaves the door open for the final installment, the future ‘[Rec] 4 Apocalypse.” (source: IMDb)
Take a look at the just-unveiled international trailer (note: trailer contains graphic content and is in Spanish)…
[Rec] 3 Genesis will open in Spain on March 30, 2012 and is written by Luis Berdejo and stars Leticia Dolera, Javier Botet (The Last Circus) and Diego Martin. After much anticipation the official trailer for [Rec] 3 Genesis is finally here. Unfortunately there are no subtitles, but who really cares? The cinematography in the trailer is breathtaking. [Rec] 3 Genesis will break out of the found footage mold as experienced in both the original and [Rec] 2. What is a little disappointing is the film will still have some found footage scenes. The change in filming style and the fact »
This event is absolutely stellar. The newly formed Chicago Cinema Society is showing both of these awesome movies for the low low price of $10 at the door night of the show and a mere $7.50 pre-sale. Plus you also get the awesome short Bobby Yeah. This print of Santa Sangre is the only one that exists in the Us and Ccs went to a huge amount of trouble to get it. It's not hyperbole to say you may never have the chance to see this film on 35 mm again. 7:30pm: Santa Sangre (Dir: Alejandro Jodorowsky, very rare 35mm print, 123 mins) 9:45pm Bobby Yeah (Dir: Robert Morgan, digital projection, 22mins) 10:15pm: The Last Circus (Dir: Alex de la Iglesia, 35mm print, 107 mins) »
The end of the year is approaching, so, Ryan and Lawrence begin to take a long look back at 2011 beginning with this episode.
In addition to reviews for Melancholia, The Last Circus and Mondo Macabro's Don't Open Till Christmas special edition DVD, the two cite their "Biggest Surprises of 2011" in film: Horror titles that took them off guard and proved to be pleasant surprises. Some films include Kidnapped, Insidious and The Reef. What else made Ryan and Lawrence's list?
Also - in the news - the pair discuss the recently announced Starship Troopers remake, Cabin In The Woods and the future of The Ring and The Grudge franchises.
("Like" Shock Waves on Facebook!)
Listen below, or, download this episode at:
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Source: Shock Till You Drop
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- firstname.lastname@example.org (Ryan Turek)
The end of the year is approaching, so, Ryan and Lawrence begin to take a long look back at 2011 beginning with this episode. In addition to reviews for Melancholia, The Last Circus and Mondo Macabro's Don't Open Till Christmas special edition DVD, the two cite their "Biggest Surprises of 2011" in film: Horror titles that took them off guard and proved to be pleasant surprises. Some films include Kidnapped, Insidious and The Reef. What else made Ryan and Lawrence's list? Also - in the news - the pair discuss the recently announced Starship Troopers remake, Cabin In The Woods and the future of The Ring and The Grudge franchises. ( "Like" Shock Waves on Facebook! ) Listen below, or, download this episode at: »
Based on the trailer and poster art, Del La Iglesia's Balada Triste de Trompeta was either going to be a great cinematic celebration or a complete and utter failure. The marketing of the film left no doubt that we were in for a bold and daring piece of film, but I wasn't completely certain whether De La Iglesia was really up to the job. After watching the film though, it's safe to say it surpassed all my initial expectations./ I like Spanish (genre) cinema, but overall I have the feeling Spanish films like to play it safe, aiming for craftsmanship rather than creativity and identity. From slow-burning horror films like No Do and El Orfanato to fake-docus like [rec], [rec] 2 and Atrocious, these are »
Kirsten Dunst, Melancholia Lars von Trier's Melancholia is the clear favorite at the 2011 European Film Awards. Nazi joke or no, Cannes Film Festival ban or no, the von Trier-directed apocalyptic drama received eight nominations in seven categories, among them Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay (also von Trier), and Best Actress (Kirsten Dunst and Charlotte Gainsbourg). Melancholia failed to be shortlisted only for Best Actor and Best Composer. [European Film Awards 2011 Nominations.] Five films tied in second place, with four nominations apiece: Aki Kaurismäki's Le Havre, Finland's submission for the 2012 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award; Susanne Bier's In a Better World, this year's Best Foreign Language Film winner; Tom Hooper's The King's Speech, this year's Best Picture Oscar winner; Michel Hazanavicius' The Artist, which is already considered one of the top contenders for the 2012 Best Picture Oscar; and Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne's The Kid with a Bike, »
- Andre Soares
The Last Circus / Balada Triste de Trompeta Contest Giveaway Sweepstakes. This The Last Circus Blu-ray contest, giveaway, sweepstakes illustrates The Last Circus‘ release on DVD and Blu-ray on October 18, 2011.
The Last Circus‘ plot synopsis: “1937 – Spain is in the midst of the brutal Spanish Civil War. A “Happy” circus clown is interrupted mid-performance and forcibly recruited by a militia. Still in his costume, he is handed a machete and led into battle against National soldiers, where he single handedly massacres an entire platoon. Fast forward to 1973, the tail end of the Franco regime. Javier, the son of the clown, dreams of following in his father’s career footsteps, but has seen too much tragedy in his life – he’s simply not funny and is »
Chicago – “The Last Circus” (more directly and appropriately translated as “The Ballad of the Sad Trumpet”) is one of the weirder choices you could make at the Redbox, Netflix queue, or wherever you plan to get your Halloween movies this weekend. What starts as a relatively straightforward but stylish affair about a love triangle between a sad clown, a happy clown, and the gorgeous woman caught in the middle gets totally strange when it essentially becomes about two horrendously mutilated clowns wreaking havoc. Weird in glorious ways, this is the kind of movie that screams cult hit even if it does take a bit too long to get going. When it does, it does Not look back.
Blu-Ray Rating: 3.5/5.0
I’m not sure there’s another movie where a grown man kisses a plugged-in iron as part of his attempt to mutilate himself to the point where he’s always »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
So, what’s it really like to make a go of it on the festival circuit, especially when you’re a much beloved cult filmmaking icon? The Washington City Paper runs a timeline of Jeff Krulik’s Heavy Metal Picnic film festival odyssey of 2011 — and it’s not a rosy journey. Much of the article is framed by a series of update emails that Krulik sends to his supporters, a group of people of which I’m a member. And those emails, thanks to Krulik’s incredible directness, frequently include some of the most hilarious exchanges ever. (The great portrait of Krulik above by Darrow Montgomery is from the article.)The Count Gore De Vol documentary Every Other Day Is Halloween is still racking up great reviews, this time from the Spooky Vegan. If you haven’t had the chance to enjoy this gem yourself, this is the perfect time of year to do so. »
- Mike Everleth
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