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By Anjelica Oswald
Telluride is over, Toronto is on its way, awards buzz is growing and the fight is on for Oscar hopefuls. It’s just another fall in the film world.
Since opening the 71st Venice Film Festival and making its North American premiere at Telluride, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu‘s Birdman has affirmed its place in the Oscar race with rave reviews both overseas and here in the States.
Bennett Miller has made two feature films — Moneyball (2011) and Capote (2005) — that received Oscar nominations for best picture and premiered at one of the fall festivals, Moneyball in Toronto and Capote at Telluride. His third feature Foxcatcher made its American debut at Telluride to high praise, echoing the sentiments from Cannes.
These are just a few of the fall premieres vying for an Oscar nomination, but what about the movies that have made their theatrical debut before September? Sundance takes places in January, »
- Anjelica Oswald
The Cosmopolitans, Season 1, Episode 1: “Pilot”
Written by Whit Stillman
Directed by Whit Stillman
Released August 28, 2014 by Amazon
As Amazon continues to attempt to expand into original programming with their pilot season, they are promoting many of their pilots as the work of a distinct, well-known voice: “produced by Steven Soderbergh” or “created by Jay Chandrasekhar.” For The Cosmopolitans, that distinct voice is Whit Stillman, the writer-director-producer behind movies like Metropolitan and Damsels in Distress. It’s billed as a comedy about modern American ex-pats in Paris, a sort of twist on Hemingway’s classic A Moveable Feast. It’s got the same tone and slice-of-life feel as Stillman’s other works, or an HBO comedy like Girls or Looking.
If Girls attracted controversy for its lack of diversity, I can’t imagine what those critics are going to say about The Cosmopolitans. It’s all a very heteronormative, upper-class, »
- George Morvis
Screwball comedy was already a retro affair when Peter Bogdanovich mastered it in 1972 with “What’s Up, Doc?” Forty-two years later, that ageless throwback is the standard to which the director aspires in “She’s Funny That Way,” . At once invoking genre forebears like Ernst Lubitsch and contemporaries like Woody Allen, this diverting tale of a Brooklyn callgirl wreaking havoc among the romantically frustrated cast and crew of a dud Broadway play accumulates the necessary narrative chaos without ever building a full head of comic steam. The diverting result will find a modest audience principally among those old enough to recall Bogdanovich’s glory days.
“She’s Funny That Way” was initially, and more intriguingly, titled “Squirrels to the Nuts,” a reference to an irresistible nugget of do-your-own-thing philosophy from “Cluny Brown,” Lubitsch’s last completed film: “Some people like to feed nuts to the squirrels, but if someone wants »
- Guy Lodge
The teacup-eyed beauty that is Marion Cotillard is arguably one of the finest actresses working in cinema today. Currently one of only two female performers in history to win a Leading Actress Oscar in a foreign language picture, she has transitioned between genres and, even more impressively, languages.
She is stunning critics and arthouse audiences alike once again with her remarkable work in Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne’s exquisite Palme d’Or contender Two Days, One Night which is out now in select cinemas and available to watch on-demand through Curzon’s new Home Cinema function.
To celebrate the release of this fantastic film, we select Six of the Best Marion Cotillard performances.
The ever-prolific Woody Allen stopped off in the French Capital during his European tour for a spot of vaudevillian charm and wonder with his 2011 title Midnight in Paris. The comedy sees a wide-eyed nostalgian »
- Chris Haydon
Brody learned the magic trade when he was six years old from one of his mother’s coworkers at The Village Voice who “had all these crazy gadgets and weird tricks and gizmos that he would review and discuss,” Brody said. “He would let me take a coin trick or something and show it to me, and I’d go around and practice on all of my mom’s coworkers and develop a pattern. »
- Jacob Shamsian
The South Korean city of Gyeongju is known for its hundreds of burial mounds, making this town with its head in the past a fitting backdrop for director Zhang Lu’s exquisitely observed personal drama. Inspired by an obscene painting the Chinese-Korean helmer once spotted on the wall of a local teahouse, “Gyeongju” follows a young(ish) man’s search for the same naughty artwork — a curious quest with bemusing consequences. Running an unhurried 145 minutes, the poetic pic came and went quietly in Korea earlier this summer, but should court more receptive international audiences thanks to a fest slot in Locarno.
More concerned with immaterial memories than anything that can be directly captured onscreen, this ruminative offering plays almost like an existential ghost story. Returning to his old haunts after seven years, soft-spoken Choi Hyeon (“The Host’s” Park Hae-il) is troubled not by evil spirits, but by lingering questions from his past — subtle, »
- Peter Debruge
If one can expect anything from Michel Gondry, it is that along with the whimsy and touch of the bizarre inherent in his work is an element of truth. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind uses erasure imagery to illustrate the pain of heartbreak. Be Kind Rewind has friendly video store employees creating their own versions of Hollywood hits for their neighborhood. Gondry's latest film, love story Mood Indigo, however, is utterly drowning in whimsy and lacking any figment of truth.
Debonair and bearded Romain Duris (Populaire, The Beat That My Heart Skipped) stars as Colin, living off family money in a spacious Paris apartment. Audrey Tautou (Amelie, A Very Long Engagement) plays cute Chloe, whom Colin meets at a party. The plot goes something like this: guy meets girl, guy and girl fall in love and marry, flower grows in girl's lung.
There's also a B-plot, involving a friend (Gad Elmaleh, »
- Elizabeth Stoddard
Read installment 1 here (on Canon log, waveform monitors & hiring the best documentary Dp); installment 2 here (on lighting dark skin, SLRs and recreating 'Sex and the City'); installment 3 here ("#AskCybel" Installment 3 - on "Midnight in Paris" and Getting Paid to Travel Internationally); installment 4 here (On Intelligently Filming Sex Scenes and Becoming a Key Grip); and installment 5 here (First Time Shooting a Doc in China and Film Set Politics), if you missed them any of them. Editor's Note: Before you dive in, here's a reminder of my initial announcement, to remind you what this new series is about, and, for »
- Cybel Martin
You should know Corey Stoll had concerns about his awful wig on The Strain, too. It’s not the first time the actor has worn a piece (he played a very memorable, very hairy Ernest Hemingway in Midnight in Paris), but on FX’s super icky eye-worms-and-vampires drama, he’s been made over to look like Billy Zane minus the eyeliner. What sort of epidemiologist needs to look like Billy Zane? Does anyone ever need to look like Billy Zane? Stoll assured us the reasons would soon become apparent. He chatted with Vulture about hair and what’s silly and serious about his new role, which he bravely calls Walter White–esque.So far, The Strain is the best kind of gory, campy, B-movie cheese. Was that part of its appeal?Well, I grew up really into comic books, and I actually thought I was going to be a comic-book artist. »
- Denise Martin
(Note: This piece reveals details about the ending of “Magic in the Moonlight.”)
Amid this unusually busy season for faith-based cinema — or whatever we should call 2014’s bumper crop of Christian-themed and/or spiritually inclined movies, from “Son of God,” “Noah,” “God’s Not Dead” and “I Origins” to the still-forthcoming “Left Behind” and “Exodus: Gods and Kings” — the arrival of one of the year’s more prominent anti-faith movies should not go unnoticed. I’m talking about “Magic in the Moonlight,” the latest sun-drenched romantic travelogue from that fitful cinematic genius and self-styled nihilist philosopher, Woody Allen.
Fittingly enough for a story about professional magicians and wily con artists, the film unfolds against the French Riviera in 1928, a setting ripe with all manner of enchanting and seductive possibilities. But don’t let that title fool you: Earnest as it may sound, it actually begs to be read sarcastically. Allen »
- Justin Chang
Read installment 1 here (on Canon log, waveform monitors & hiring the best documentary Dp); installment 2 here (on lighting dark skin, SLRs and recreating 'Sex and the City'); installment 3 here ("#AskCybel" Installment 3 - on "Midnight in Paris" and Getting Paid to Travel Internationally); and installment 4 here (On Intelligently Filming Sex Scenes and Becoming a Key Grip) if you missed them any of them.Editor's Note: Before you dive in, here's a reminder of my initial announcement, to remind you what this new series is about, and, for those who may just be joining us... Her much-anticipated monthly columns on all things »
- Cybel Martin
This new clip centres on Stanley and the spiritual medium debating who has more to lose if either is proved incorrect in their quest.
Allen's latest film is now playing on limited release in the Us and opens on September 19 in the UK. Watch a trailer below: »
<< Continued from "Weekend Report"Playing at 361 theaters, spy thriller A Most Wanted Man cracked the Top 10 with $2.7 million. That's the second-biggest opening ever for distributor Roadside Attractions, and is noticeably higher than last year's Mud ($2.2 million). With strong reviews and built-in curiosity surrounding the final lead role from Philip Seymour Hoffman, this should be a solid performer in the weeks ahead.Richard Linklater's Boyhood expanded to 107 theaters and earned $1.73 million this weekend ($16,121 average). The movie has now earned $4.1 million, which ranks fifth all-time for distributor IFC Films. According to IFC, there will be an aggressive expansion over the next few weeks that will include a national television advertising campaign. It's unclear exactly how high this can go, but a total north of $15 million seems like a likely outcome.Gabriel Iglesias stand-up flick The Fluffy Movie opened to $1.3 million from 432 theaters. In comparison, Kevin Hart: Laugh at My Pain »
- Ray Subers <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Your Top Three is a series here at Movies.com where we choose a topic and you give us your top three picks. Magic in the Moonlight is Woody Allen's 45th feature film as credited director. That's almost one per year since the first release back in 1966, and if we count some of the ones he at least wrote and are often considered Woody Allen films, the ratio is just about even. Not all are masterpieces, of course, but regardless it's quite a task to thumb through all those titles and pick a favorite. Or three favorites. Even to say he's well beyond his best years, there are a lot of modern-day Woody movies that fans have added to their list of top-tier titles, such as Match Point, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Midnight in Paris and last year's box office smash and...
- Christopher Campbell
Chicago – After last year’s powerful “Blue Jasmine,” writer/director Woody Allen’s trajectory seemed destined toward another film masterpiece, but “Magic in the Moonlight” isn’t it. Colin Firth and Emma Stone are an unlikely pairing in this seen-it-before-Woody film trifle.
Again Allen goes back to the 1920s, an era he has explored before in “Bullets Over Broadway” and to a lesser degree “Midnight in Paris.” The elements of magicians and illusions have also been covered in “Shadows and Fog” and the underrated “Stardust Memories.” Thematically, it feels like Woody Allen has done this film before, even in the relationship between Colin Firth and Emma Stone, which generates zero chemistry. In his quest to make at least one film a year, the 78-year-old auteur has made this one a placeholder, albeit a funnier, more beautifully filmed and at times more interesting placeholder – better than most of the films out there. »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Written and directed by Woody Allen
Woody Allen’s newest film, Magic in the Moonlight, has yet another appealing ensemble, this one featuring Emma Stone, Colin Firth, Marcia Gay Harden, Hamish Linklater, and a handful of other beloved character actors. A 1928 period piece, the film follows Stanley (Firth), a famous magician, as he tries to expose Sophie (Stone), a mystic of increasing notoriety and a possible swindler. Set in the south of France, the film takes place between two houses: the house of Grace (Jacki Weaver), who wants Sophie to stay and help her connect with her late husband, and the house of Stanley’s aunt Vanessa (Eileen Atkins), which Stanley frequently visits to get away from magic and process his thoughts.
Magic in the Moonlight is a very beautiful film in terms of its aesthetic, with its 1920s attire combined with a secluded scenic area of France, »
- Samantha Ladwig
After making a detour in San Francisco to help Cate Blanchett strike gold at last year’s Oscars, Woody Allen kicks off another leg of his European tour with Magic in the Moonlight. Borrowing the magical realist conceit along with the backdrop of Midnight in Paris, and cherry-picking just a hint of the class commentary from Blue Jasmine, Magic in the Moonlight is less a culmination of Allen’s recent output than it is a jazzy riff on the same stories and ideas that have occupied him for the better part of a decade. While the film makes clear that Allen has played these same beats for pretty much all they’re worth by now, the fresh-faced cast and comforting familiarity of Magic in the Moonlight liven up its well-rehearsed routine.
- Sam Woolf
Distributed by Universal, “Lucy” will unroll across 3,172 theaters this weekend and should shoot up an estimated $36 million. That would be a nice return on a $40 million budget and a sign that audiences don’t always need their on-screen mayhem to arrive pre-branded, pre-merchandised and plucked from venerable comic books or toylines. It’s the rare original film that looks ready to upend the steady stream of same-olds.
Sadly, “Lucy’s” main competition, “Hercules,” is looking less than godly. Paramount and MGM’s $100 million re-imagining of the old Hydra killer is on track to debut to roughly $25 million across 3,600 locations, which would be a scrawny showing given the high cost of the production.
- Brent Lang
In theaters Friday, July 25 2 1/2 stars (out of 4 stars) An enchanting look at unlikely powers of love, this comedy is fluffier than a croissant just out of the oven. That's not good enough. By now, we expect more from a sharp-witted, prolific genius like writer-director Woody Allen. At 78 years old, he's still at the pinnacle of his profession, dutifully releasing one original film a year. In the past decade alone, he's crafted such masterworks as Blue Jasmine, Match Point and Midnight in Paris. It's [...] »
Rachel McAdams is a fan of Lindsay Lohan! The "Mean Girls" star covers the latest issue of Allure magazine -- sporting minimal makeup -- where she opens up about working with the troubled actress on the high school comedy. Reports have claimed that Lindsay was intimidated by the "Notebook" actress, but McAdams has nothing but kind words to say about the former child star. "If anything, I was in awe of her talent," McAdams tells the mag. "I looked at her as this experienced actor, and she had great comedic timing, so natural. It's just funny to hear that because you never know what people are thinking. We all try to act like we've got it together."The now-seasoned actress first shot to fame in "The Hot Chick," where she played a man trapped in a teenage girl's body ... and Rachel says that the striptease scene in the flick was »
- tooFab Staff
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