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This year saw the release of his first film since, 'The Duel', a western starring Liam Hemsworth and Woody Harrelson. He talks to If about living in L.A., the film's development process and a fraught production in Mississippi.
You.ve been living in La since Wish You Were Here, is that right?
We came over for Sundance for Wish You Were Here and the whole experience was a real trip for us. We had the opening night film and there was a massive party afterwards catered by some sort of celebrity chef who had been flown in. And all the top agents had flown up from L.A. specifically for that screening, and we were just being courted. At »
- Harry Windsor
The world blessed us with another Hemsworth this year, and now the elder brother of Liam and Chris is making his next move, going from Westworld to an indie Western. According to Deadline, Luke Hemsworth is set to play Wild Bill Hickok in Abilene. It looks like Hemsworth will be following in the footsteps of his kid brother: Liam Hemsworth jumped into the Western game earlier this year, starring with Woody Harrelson in The Duel. Like Hemsworths, Westerns are an inexhaustible resource.
Timothy Woodward Jr.’s upcoming Western was written by Michael Lanahan, and also stars Trace Adkins, Kris Kristofferson, Bruce Dern and Cameron Richardson. In Abilene, the rough-around-the-edges gunslinger and lawman Wild Bill goes to Abilene looking for an ex but gets roped into being town marshal, having to deal with the town’s outsized outlaw problem. This serves as a lesson: Don’t ever go looking for your »
- Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya
Patriots Day featurette: A new behind-the-scenes look at the upcoming real-life drama based on the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.
You can watch the Patriots Day featurette below.
A new Patriots Day featurette has just hit the web ahead of the film’s release in a couple of months time. The film, directed by acclaimed filmmaker Peter Berg (Deepwater Horizon) is an account of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and the everyday heroes who inspired the world in the extraordinary hours that followed.
In the aftermath of an unspeakable act of terror, Police Sergeant Tommy Saunders (Mark Wahlberg) joins courageous survivors, first responders and investigators in a race against the clock to hunt down the bombers before they strike again. Weaving together the stories of Special Agent Richard Deslauriers (Kevin Bacon), Police Commissioner Ed Davis (John Goodman), Sergeant Jeffrey Pugliese (J.K. Simmons) and nurse Carol Saunders (Michelle Monaghan) this visceral and »
- Paul Heath
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
If this be the movie jail that Mel Gibson is destined to die in, it could be a whole lot worse. Blood Father, directed by Jean-François Richet (Mesrine, Assault on Precinct 13), works remarkably well as a grindhouse throwback, sporting a screenplay (from Peter Craig and Andrea Berloff, based on Craig’s novel) that’s better than it has any right to be. »
- The Film Stage
Woody Harrelson (The Hunger Games franchise) and Liam Hemsworth (The Hunger Games franchise) face off in the action-packed western The Duel arriving on Blu-ray (plus Digital HD), DVD (plus Digital) and Digital HD August 23 from Lionsgate. The film is currently available On Demand. In the small town of Helena, a Texas Ranger investigates a series of unexplained deaths and uncovers a dark secret about the town’s charismatic preacher. The Duel shoots its way on Blu-ray and DVD for the suggested retail price of $24.99 and $19.98, respectively.
A Texas Ranger (Hemsworth) investigates a series of murders in a small town led by a charismatic preacher (Harrelson). However, the routine undercover investigation soon turns personal for the Ranger who must solve the case before he loses everything to the mysterious town.
Now you can own The Duel Blu-ray. We Are Movie Geeks has two copies to give away. All you have t »
- Tom Stockman
International movie sales and finance house WestEnd Films has launched a brand aimed at female audiences called WeLove, with new projects from Agnieszka Holland and Alexis Zegerman forming part of its launch slate.
By launching WeLove, WestEnd aims to meet demand from what it sees as an under-served female audience for high-quality commercial projects in a variety of formats, including feature films, TV and web series, and documentaries.
“It’s an endeavor that answers a real need. The ‘Bridesmaids’ and ‘Trainwrecks’ of this world are too few and far between,” WestEnd managing director Eve Schoukroun said.
WestEnd points out that the majority of moviegoers are female — 52% in the U.S — and that since 2006 in the U.S., movies about men have made an average of $80.6 million, while movies about women have made an average of $121.6 million. Female-led movies have made more on average than male-led ones for nearly every year in the past decade, »
- Leo Barraclough
A cinematically flat, sluggish western that feels altogether bloodless despite offering up several splatterings of runny red stuff, The Duel is a messy misfire, shooting itself in the foot with disjointed storytelling and a lack of artistic vision. It’s a forgettable, muddled affair that’s elevated to a certain extent by two leads whose contrasting styles go together unexpectedly well – just about the only positive note that’s worth pointing out.
Bringing a brooding, poker-faced presence to the rivalry at the center of the film is Liam Hemsworth, who plays Texas Ranger David Kingston. It’s 1866, a time when the Rio Grande acted as the border between Mexico and the United States; when a procession of Mexican corpses start floating down the river, David is sent on an undercover mission by his Ranger superiors to investigate the prime suspect, a religious leader named Abraham Brant (a crackling, witty Woody Harrelson »
- Bernard Boo
To help sift through the increasing number of new releases (independent or otherwise), the Weekly Film Guide is here! Below you’ll find basic plot, personnel and cinema information for all of this week’s fresh offerings.
Starting this month, we’ve also put together a list for the entire month. We’ve included this week’s list here, complete with information on screening locations for films in limited release.
See More: Here Are All the Upcoming Movies in Theaters for June 2016
Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, June 24. All synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise.
Director: Gary Ross
Synopsis: “In Jones County, Miss., Newt Knight joins forces with other farmers and a group of slaves to lead a rebellion against the Confederacy.”
- Steve Greene
If you’re an actor playing someone who’s sick and twisted and evil, almost nothing will get you into character quite like a startling new look. That tends to be the case whether the look comes courtesy of the makeup department (think Heath Ledger’s Joker in “The Dark Knight” or Robert De Niro’s Al Capone in “The Untouchables”) or, simply, the electric razor. In “The Duel,” Woody Harrelson plays some sort of lethally charismatic Southern cult leader in the years after the Civil War, and his performance, which is all about being the kind of person no one can take their eyes off of, begins with his look: a shaved head, which seems like no big deal, but with matching shaved eyebrows (and occult tattooish squiggles in their place), all of which give Harrelson the appearance of a death-row psycho, or an overgrown baby, or maybe a strutting alien. »
- Owen Gleiberman
Our resident VOD expert tells you what's new to rent and/or own this week via various Digital HD providers such as cable Movies On Demand, Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play and, of course, Netflix. Cable Movies On Demand: Same-day-as-disc releases, older titles and pretheatrical exclusives for rent, priced from $3-$10, in 24- or 48-hour periods The Brothers Grimsby (comedy; Sacha Baron Cohen, Mark Strong; includes hilarious outtakes; rated R) My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (romantic comedy sequel; Nia Vardalos, John Corbet; rated PG-13) Knight of Cups (drama; Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman; rated R) Midnight Special (sci-fi/thriller; Kirsten Dunst, Adam Driver, Michael Shannon; rated PG-13) The Duel (action-Western; Woody Harrelson, Liam Hemsworth...
- Robert B. DeSalvo
You may be expecting a pistol or a rifle, but Kieran Darcy-Smith’s The Duel uses a more unusual weapon. All who step to it will quake beneath the power of its tedium. A truly remarkable cinematic soporific, one might want buy a DVD copy to keep round the house, just in case the local pharmacist runs out of sleep aids.
What’s most unfortunate about this traditional good v evil tale from the old west is that its story had potential, but as if fulfilling the requirements of a twisted dare, Darcy-Smith stitches the story together in the most defiantly boring style imaginable. Not even the sight of Woody Harrelson atop a horse in a bright white leather duster and top hat make this worth checking out. »
- Jordan Hoffman
George Clooney’s Suburbicon has just picked up Woody Harrelson. According to The Wrap, the former True Detective star has now officially come aboard as part of the forthcoming crime comedy film, scripted by Joel and Ethan Coen.
Suburbicon is set in the quiet family town of Suburbicon in the ‘50s. The film centers on a deadly home invasion that forces a family into the murky waters of blackmail and revenge. The film boasts an impressive cast comprised of Matt Damon, Julianne Moore, Oscar Isaac and Josh Brolin. Needless to say, Harrelson, who previously worked with Brolin in the Coen Brothers’ No Country For Old Men, is a welcome addition.
Harrelson can be seen next in Now You See Me 2 and The Duel with Liam Hemsworth. He can also be seen alongside Laura Dern and Judy Greer in the forthcoming screen adaptation of Daniel Clowes’ Wilson and Rob Reiner’s Lbj. »
- William Fanelli
Sales agent WestEnd Films has sold the rights to Kieran Darcy Smith’s “By Way of Helena,” starring Woody Harrelson and Liam Hemsworth, to multiple territories worldwide, including China, Japan, Korea and Russia.
Lionsgate is releasing the film in the U.S. on June 24. WestEnd is showing the film to distributors in Cannes.
The latest buyers include Independent (Australia, New Zealand and Latin America), Filmax (Spain), Ascot Elite (Switzerland), Feelgood (Greece), Toho (Japan), Mountain Pic (Korea), DDDream (China), NuMetro (South Africa), Red Mist (East and West Africa), Ecs (Middle East), Sinema TV (Turkey), Russian Report (Russia), HBO (Eastern Europe pay TV) and Cinesky (airlines), in addition to the previously announced deal with Weltkino (Germany).
The revenge thriller centers on a Texas Ranger sent to uncover the secret behind a slew of gruesome murders. The film also stars Alice Braga and Emory Cohen. Matt Cook wrote the screenplay and executive produces. »
- Leo Barraclough
The Duel stars Liam Hemsworth as a Texas Ranger who investigates a series of murders in a small town led by a charismatic preacher played by Woody Harrelson. However, the routine undercover investigation soon turns personal for the ranger who must solve the case before he loses everything to the mysterious town.
The Duel is set for release on June 24th.
- Amie Cranswick
A Texas Ranger investigating a series of murders in a small frontier town finds himself face to face with his father’s killer, now a preacher in the debut trailer for The Duel. “In the Great Plains during 1880s, Texas Ranger David Kingston is sent to an Old West frontier town called Helena to investigate a series […]
The Western has been back in full force for a while now, but this should be the year it really proves popular again with mainstream audiences. They embraced the genre pretty well towards the end of 2015 with such varied works as The Hateful Eight, The Ridiculous 6 and The Revenant. Now we need to see if Westerns work as well at other times of the year. Along with the bigger, more star-studded remake of The Magnificent Seven coming this fall, there's the counter-programming summer release of The Duel. Liam Hemsworth leads the movie as a Texas Ranger investigating a series of murders in a mysterious small town in the 1880s. The place is run by a preacher played by fellow Hunger Games actor Woody Harrelson, and as the official synopsis puts it: "the routine undercover...
- Christopher Campbell
Over the past few years the Western genre has been enjoying a small resurgence; sure, many of those films seem to fly under the radar when compared to the booming superhero genre, but I'm glad to have them. Movies like Slow West, Bone Tomahawk, and The Homesman have supplied me with quality Western entertainment, and the first trailer for Kieran Darcy-Smith's The Duel looks like it could have... Read More »
- Kevin Fraser
Westerns never truly went away, but there sure does seem to be heightened activity coming from the genre lately. "The Hateful Eight" found Quentin Tarantino even deeper into that narrative territory than "Django Unchained," "The Homesman" provided Hilary Swank with the best non-Oscar-winning role of her career and Ti West's "In a Valley of Violence" is among the more anticipated genre films of the year. You can add "The Duel" to that list, a new oater starring Liam Hemsworth and Woody Harrelson. Watch its first trailer above. Read More: Review: 'The Hateful Eight' Proves Quentin Tarantino Can Get Away With Anything As you can imagine, the two are fated go go mano-a-mano as only cowboys in the 1880s can. Hemsworth plays Texas Ranger David Kingston, whose duties take him to the frontier town of Helena. There, he's told that he "needs to meet the Preacher." That'd be Harrelson. »
- Michael Nordine
Ride 'em, cowboy! In the upcoming western thriller The Duel, Liam Hemsworth plays a David Kingston, a Texas Ranger who comes to save the day after a series of murders rocks a small town. While working undercover, Hemsworth (rocking a big beard!) goes head-to-head with Abraham Brant, a cult leader-like preacher played by his Hunger Games co-star Woody Harrelson. "By some strange twist of fate, Abraham is the same man who killed my father 20 years ago," Hemsworth says in a voice over featured in the first trailer for the movie released earlier today. Abraham and his followers make it very dangerous for David. During one confrontation with Abraham, David warns him, "If you »
After gaining attention for the Joel Edgerton-led drama Wish You Were Here a few years back, director Kieran Darcy-Smith fairly quickly followed it up with By Way of Helena, which shot in the fall of 2014. With it’s been mostly radio silence since then, it’s now emerged as The Duel and we’ll see it in just a few months.
Led by Woody Harrelson, Liam Hemsworth, Alice Braga, and Emory Cohen, the first trailer has arrived, which reveals the story of a Texas Ranger uncovering a series of murders in a town featuring Harrelson’s preacher character. Scripted by Triple 9‘s Matt Cook, it doesn’t look to have that same level of grit within John Hillcoat’s film, but perhaps that’s a good thing. Check out the trailer and poster below.
- Leonard Pearce
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