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The Hobbit journeys to top of UK box office

18 December 2012 9:26 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Festive battle for No 1 heats up as first instalment of Peter Jackson's Middle-earth epic precipitates a fall of the Guardians

The winner

Peter Jackson and Jrr Tolkien have consistently proved a potent combination at the box office, so it's no surprise to see audiences turning up in droves for the first of three films based on The Hobbit. However a haul of £11.60m in four days is far from record-breaking, and isn't even the biggest opening of 2012. Skyfall debuted in late October with £20.18m, and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 followed a month later with £15.85m. Both titles achieved these sums in three days with no previews, as did The Dark Knight Rises when it opened in July with £14.36m. Marvel Avengers Assemble kicked off with £15.78m over its initial four days. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey has thus only achieved the fifth-best opening of the year.

The »

- Charles Gant

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What films have you been watching?

17 December 2012 8:42 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Tell us about the films you've seen in the past few days – and find out what our critics made of them

Seen any good films over the weekend? Or bad ones for that matter? Whether you went to the cinema, watched movies on TV, or even visited what used to be known as the "video shop", we'd like to hear about your recent viewing in the comments below.

Here's what our critics had to say about recent releases:

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Peter Bradshaw said: There can be no doubt that Jackson has made The Hobbit with brio and fun, and Martin Freeman is just right as Bilbo Baggins: he plays it with understatement and charm. But I had the weird, residual sense that I was watching an exceptionally expensive, imaginative and starry BBC television drama production. Read more

Smashed

Peter Bradshaw said: Raw and sombre, not without flaws, »

- Adam Boult

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This week's new films

14 December 2012 4:05 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey | Smashed | Neil Young Journeys | Chasing Ice | Love Crime | Dead Europe | UFO | False Trail | Code Name: Geronimo | Tinkerbell And The Secret Of The Wings | Babette's Feast | Baraka | What Ever Happened To Baby Jane?

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (12A)

(Peter Jackson, 2012, Us) Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Andy Serkis. 169 mins

So the three-movie idea is more likely down to financial demands than creative ones, and the now-notorious higher frame rate reduces cinematic spectacle to pin-sharp TV movie, but this is terrifically wrought escapism. Freeman is the perfect lead, too. But what could have, should have been a masterpiece ends up a fantasy epic with too much epic and not enough fantasy.

Smashed (15)

(James Ponsoldt, 2012, Us) Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Aaron Paul. 81 mins

Winstead shows impressive range as a young alcoholic teacher trying to get back on track. The familiar subject feels fresh applied to a new demographic. »

- Steve Rose

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Film Review: 'Dead Europe'

13 December 2012 3:35 AM, PST | CineVue | See recent CineVue news »

★★☆☆☆ In Dead Europe (2012), Australian photographer Isaac (Ewen Leslie) heads to Greece (his family's home nation) for the first time, presenting an exhibition of his work while at the same time visiting his errant brother Nikolai (Marton Csokas). His father - an ex-communist who fled the fascist uprising - has sunk into depression and pleads with his son not to make the trip as does Isaac's mother. Following his father's death, Isaac decides he will also take his father's ashes back to his mountain village so bring his father some peace, but once in Europe Isaac will find that his rationality and his very identity are in danger of crumbling.

Read more » »

- CineVue UK

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This week's new films

7 December 2012 4:05 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Seven Psychopaths | Celeste And Jesse Forever | I, Anna | Confession Of A Child Of The Century | The Oranges | The Man With The Iron Fists | You Will Be My Son | So Undercover | When Santa Fell To Earth | Gremlins | Khiladi 786

Seven Psychopaths (15)

(Martin McDonagh, 2012, Us) Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken, Woody Harrelson, Abbie Cornish, Tom Waits. 110 mins

It's a cult movie formula to die for: Pulp Fiction meets the Coens meets Adaptation, with postmodern high-jinks, wacky crime thrills and lashings of irreverent comedy. The latter redeems a movie that's almost too manically clever for its own good. Reality barely enters into this story of a blocked screenwriter caught up in a dognapping escapade, but there's never a dull moment. Perhaps it could do with a few.

Celeste And Jesse Forever (15)

(Lee Toland Krieger, 2012, Us) Rashida Jones, Andy Samberg, Ari Graynor. 92 mins

A made-for-each-other couple have trouble staying separate in this relaxed romcom, »

- Steve Rose

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Tony Krawitz Travels Across Dead Europe In First Trailer

3 December 2012 10:00 AM, PST | Twitch | See recent Twitch news »

Jewboy director Tony Krawitz makes his return with Dead Europe, a festival darling now beginning its international rollout with an impending release coming in the UK. Ewen Leslie, Martin Csokas and Kodi Smit-McPhee star in the picture, one that takes a dark look at hidden family history.A young photographer transporting his father's ashes from Australia to Greece comes to learn that something sinister happened in his family's past involving a young Jewish boy. Despite an effort to distract himself with a mix of random sex and drugs, Isaac's world begins to unravel as he realizes that he cannot escape the ghosts of the past.The first trailer for the film is now available, take a look below. »

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The reality of Tony Krawitz's Dead Europe

21 November 2012 4:01 PM, PST | IF.com.au | See recent IF.com.au news »

Tony Krawitz.s psychological thriller Dead Europe follows the plight of a young man who, disturbed by revelations of his family.s sinister past, attempts to seek solace in a world of random sex and drugs. It is also a film which captures authentic portrayals of the forgotten peoples of contemporary Europe. Keen to ensure their stories were told, Krawitz actually went in search for people he thought would resonate well in the film, and asked for their permission to be included. The result, as Krawitz explains, is a mirror effect between audience and main character Isaac. Just as Isaac is .not sure what.s real and what.s not,. the audience also questions, .Is that an actor or not? Is that a real location or not?. Based on the novel by Christos Tsiolkas, Dead Europe is a mystery set on the turbulent streets of contemporary Europe. The film follows »

- Candace Wise

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The reality of Tony Krawtiz's Dead Europe

21 November 2012 4:01 PM, PST | IF.com.au | See recent IF.com.au news »

Tony Krawitz.s psychological thriller Dead Europe follows the plight of a young man who, disturbed by revelations of his family.s sinister past, attempts to seek solace in a world of random sex and drugs. It is also a film which captures authentic portrayals of the forgotten peoples of contemporary Europe. Keen to ensure their stories were told, Krawitz actually went in search for people he thought would resonate well in the film, and asked for their permission to be included. The result, as Krawitz explains, is a mirror effect between audience and main character Isaac. Just as Isaac is .not sure what.s real and what.s not,. the audience also questions, .Is that an actor or not? Is that a real location or not?. Based on the novel by Christos Tsiolkas, Dead Europe is a mystery set on the turbulent streets of contemporary Europe. The film follows »

- Candace Wise

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The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 takes $12.49m at cinemas

18 November 2012 9:48 PM, PST | IF.com.au | See recent IF.com.au news »

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn . Part 2 has posted the third biggest opening weekend this year after grossing more than $12.49 million at the local box office.

The final instalment in the five-part paranormal-romance series trailed only The Dark Knight Rises ($15.1 million) and The Avengers ($13.3 million), which both posted bigger opening weekends in 2012. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn . Part 2, distributed by Hoyts/Studio Canal, opened across a massive 655 screens and posted an impressive screen average of $19,070.

The opening result was slightly above The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn . Part 1, which opened with $12.1 million in 2011 and went on to gross $28.8 million in Australia.

The second film, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, remains the biggest of the franchise: it opened with $16.1 million in 2009 and went on to gross $38.7 million in total.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn . Part 2 was followd by Argo ($1.07 million in its fourth weekend), The Intouchables ($466,479 also in its fourth weekend), Seven Psychopaths »

- Brendan Swift

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Cast Is King In Devil's Dust Trailer

7 October 2012 7:00 AM, PDT | Twitch | See recent Twitch news »

How do you make a true life story about litigation against a big cement manufacturer appealing to general audiences? You cast the hell out of it. This is exactly what the makers of Devil's Dust, the story of the James Hardie asbestos scandal and court case have done, and the results look superb. Anthony Hayes (The Square) leads the cast as Bernie Banton, the campaigner who became the public face of the political and legal campaign to achieve compensation for the sufferers of asbestos-related conditions, which they contracted after working for the company James Hardie. Other lead cast include Dony Hany (Rake, Lucky Miles), Daniel Henshall (Snowtown, These Final Hours), Ewen Leslie (Mabo, Dead Europe), Mirrah Foulkes (Animal Kingdom), Henry Nixon (Noise), David Roberts (The Square), Alexandra Schepisi (The Eye of the Storm) and the always-great character actor Alan »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: CAA Signs Oz Actor, ‘Ripper Street’ Sells, Bollywood IMAX

22 September 2012 9:27 PM, PDT | Deadline TV | See recent Deadline TV news »

Australian Actor Ewen Leslie Signs with CAA The arrangement marks his first U.S. representation. Leslie, repped in Oz by Shanahan Management, plays a gay Greek-Australian photographer who uncovers a shocking family secret when he returns to his ancestral homeland in Tony Krawitz’s Dead Europe, which premiered in Toronto. He also has a supporting role in Jonathan Teplitzky’s The Railway Man, about a Scotsman who travels to Asia to meet one of the men who tortured him during WW2. Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman, Stellan Skarsgård and Jeremy Irvine star in that film that’s slated to bow next year. –Don Groves Canada, Norway Buy ‘Ripper Street’ Ahead of Mipcom Adding to deals in the U.S. and Australia, BBC Worldwide has sold crime drama Ripper Street to Canada’s Space and Norway’s Nrk ahead of Mipcom which runs October 8-11. The 8-part period series stars Matthew Macfadyen, »

- THE DEADLINE TEAM

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Take Two: Cate Shortland and Tony Krawitz

20 September 2012 11:15 PM, PDT | IF.com.au | See recent IF.com.au news »

This article originally appeared in If Magazine #148 (August-September).

Tony Krawitz They were both challenging projects in terms of the geography: Dead Europe was filmed in Australia, Greece, Paris and Budapest; Cate.s Lore was filmed in the German language in five regions across Germany.

Lore was meant to shoot in May/June last year and Dead Europe in October/November but then Lore was put back. I was in denial how difficult it would be. Making films at the same time isn.t recommended for couples with kids!

Our son Jonathan went to school in Berlin and, during his Easter break, I took him with me on a recce to Greece for two weeks. He also spent six weeks working as video split operator and clapper loader on Cate.s film, which ended up starting in early-July. He loved it.

I came back to Australia with the kids in the »

- Sandy George

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Tiff 2012 Review: ‘Dead Europe’

17 September 2012 4:43 PM, PDT | LatinoReview | See recent LatinoReview news »

Writer’s note: This review contains spoilers. 

One of the greatest joys of cinema is being caught off guard. And I don’t necessarily mean this in the sense of traditionally implemented surprise (a pop-out scare, for example), I mean you go into a film thinking that it’s going to adhere to certain genre standards, only to be met with elements that no one could have predicted. ‘Dead Europe’ is one of these films.

The synopsis that was making the rounds on the paper schedules at the festival read something like: “A photographer travels to Europe to unravel the mystery surrounding a family curse.” Sounds fairly conventional, right? Well, I guess I should have read the longer synopsis on Tiff’s official website. At least it makes reference to things becoming “bizarre,” “violent”, and “sexual encounters” becoming “more depraved.” Even with that information, this is still a film that »

- Andrew-Patrick Weymes

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Dead Europe | Tiff 2012 Review

13 September 2012 5:15 PM, PDT | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

Sins of the Father: Krawitz’s Adaptation Promises More Than It Delivers

You can’t escape the past, and if your family has demons haunting it from bad karma dating back to World War II, someone’s going to have to reckon with them. At least that’s what’s in store for a Greek family that relocated to Australia in Tony Krawitz’s adaptation of Christos Tsiolkas’ novel, Dead Europe. The second fictional film from Krawitz, who first directed the 2005 film, Jewboy, begins with a moody, ominous setup, and features a nonchalantly gay lead character, whose sexuality, refreshingly, has no correlation to the proceedings. However, the excellent build up is let down by a second half that feels inevitably predictable, another title in a series of film stories capitalizing on the horrors of Old World Europe.

Isaac Raftis (Ewen Leslie) is a celebrated Australian photographer who has just »

- Nicholas Bell

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Kodi Smith-McPhee Is Everywhere In Dead Europe Trailer

10 September 2012 4:59 AM, PDT | cinemablend.com | See recent Cinema Blend news »

Aussie filmmaker Tony Krawitz first drew international notice and won accolades in 2005 with Jewboy, a dramatic short he wrote and helmed that starred Ewan Leslie as a orthodox Jew struggling to find his place in the world and within his own family. Besides taking home honors from the Australian Film Institute for Best Short Fiction Film and Best Short Screenplay, Jewboy earned coveted spots in the Cannes Film Festival as well as at Sundance. Now at last Krawitz offers his narrative feature follow-up Dead Europe. The drama, which made its world premiere Friday night at the Toronto International Film Festival, reteams Krawitz with Leslie, who stars as Isaac, an Australian photographer who learns some dark secrets while mourning the death of his father. Per his father's last wishes, Isaac takes his ashes to Greece with plans to disperse them from a scenic vista. But when he's stopped by a someone »

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‘Dead Europe’ trailer explores racial tensions through lens of family history

6 September 2012 6:04 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

2010′s searing family crime drama Animal Kingdom brought Australian cinema to the forefront of the international stage with a vengeance, turning attention to the country’s film community once again. One movie that seems poised to benefit from the increased exposure is director Tony Krawitz’s second feature, Dead Europe, a drama about a man discovering unpleasant aspects of his ancestral history as he travels to a racially tense Greece. Child actor Kodi Smit-McPhee, who has already made a name for himself with roles in The Road and Let Me In, leads a cast that includes Ewen Leslie, Marton Csokas, William Zappa, Yigal Naor, and Danae Skiadi. Krawitz hands off the screenwriting reins this time to first time feature film scribe Louise Fox. A trailer for the film has now been released, and can be seen below.

»

- Deepayan Sengupta

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Kodi Smit-McPhee Traverses Darker ‘Road’ In First Trailer For ‘Dead Europe’

6 September 2012 2:57 PM, PDT | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

After going down the unimaginably bleak path of The Road, Let Me In star Kodi Smit-McPhee looks to be traveling a far creepier, unsettling one with Dead Europe. Set to premiere at Tiff tomorrow, Australian director Tony Krawitz‘s drama follows a man (Ewen Leslie) who finds out dark secrets about his family while taking his father’s ashes from Australia to Greece.

The first trailer is a bit unfocused as to what’s its actually going for, but it presents a well-photographed intriguing atmosphere. It should at the very least be a unique option on Tiff’s massive line-up. Check it out below thanks to The Playlist, along with some stills for the film also starring The Debt‘s Marton Csokas, Jean-Francois Balmer, Igal Naor, William Zappa and Francoise Lebrun.

Synopsis:

Following the death of his father, Isaac takes the ashes back to his father’s birthplace in Greece »

- jpraup@gmail.com (thefilmstage.com)

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Watch: Trailer For Tiff Film 'Dead Europe' Starring Kodi Smit-McPhee & Marton Csokas

6 September 2012 11:55 AM, PDT | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

It doesn’t feel as if there has been a load of suspense and intrigue to be had at cinemas lately, but with Tiff firing up for this weekend, many trailers are starting to hit the web for flicks set to debut at the festival – and “Dead Europe” certainly looks as if it could fill that void. Starring “Let Me In” and “The Road” star Kodi Smit-McPhee, “Dead Europe” follows a young photographer by the name of Isaac (Ewen Leslie of “Sleeping Beauty” fame) who -- while taking the ashes of his deceased father from Australia to Greece – learns that his family has some rather insidious mysteries dwelling in their past, having something to do with the fate of a young Jewish boy (or at least that’s what we gather from the trailer). While attempting to drown his sorrows in a flurry of substances, Isaac's world slowly unravels when »

- Benjamin Wright

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Tiff 2012: Uncover a Family Curse in Dead Europe

5 September 2012 3:05 PM, PDT | DreadCentral.com | See recent Dread Central news »

We all have our family secrets. Even family curses. Sometimes they remain hidden, and sometimes... well, sometimes they pop up just in time to ruin your life! Case in point: Dead Europe, which is set to make its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Dead Europe, from the producers of Shame and Animal Kingdom, is a tense and moody mystery set on the turbulent streets of contemporary Europe. The film follows a young photographer named Isaac (Ewen Leslie in a breakthrough performance) who - while taking his deceased father's ashes from Australia to Greece - comes to learn that something sinister happened in his family's past involving a young Jewish boy. Despite an effort to distract himself with a mix of random sex and drugs, Isaac's world begins to unravel as he realizes that he cannot escape the ghosts of the past.

Marking the feature directorial debut of Australian »

- Uncle Creepy

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Watch: Something is Rotten in the State of Greece in 'Dead Europe' Trailer (Video)

5 September 2012 12:35 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

The scant two-minute trailer for Tony Krawitz's "Dead Europe" (premiering in Toronto this Friday) leaves one with the hungover sensation of having undergone a minor bludgeoning. Or at least a very grim full length film.    We learn in voiceover that the bearded, shaggy fellow on screen, a photographer called Isaac (Ewen Leslie), has traveled from Australia to Greece to lay his father to rest. Unfortunately, he learns, dear old dad "apparently had some kind of curse."   Having received this message from a strange ponytailed old man who approaches him at the edge of a cliff, Isaac appears to spiral toward chaos. He runs muddied and naked through cornfields and forest, and hears rather ominously from a young woman with reptilian blue eyes that, "When innocent blood is spilled, the hate attaches to the guilty."   The innocent in question seems here to have been a boy who vanished under strange circumstances long. »

- Chris Pomorski

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2014 | 2013 | 2012

1-20 of 28 items from 2012   « Prev | Next »


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