Do you really want to fuck with Karma and fuck with cancer in a comedy? Can that go well? Well, Seth Rogen and Mandate Pictures seem to think so.
According to the The Hollywood Reporter, Rogen has signed on for "I'm With Cancer," an autobiographical script by Will Reiser that he and his writing partner Evan Goldberg will produce.
We guess that means Reiser has some experience with this, so it's not like they've just picked some random disease to laugh in the face at. But apparently Rogen will only have a supporting role in the picture, and the story is Reiser's account of struggling to beat cancer, centering on a 25-year-old who finds out he has the disease. Mandate is also producing " Jay & Seth vs. The Apocalypse," which stars Rogen and Judd Apatow mainstay, Jay Baruchel.
Do you really want to fuck with Karma and fuck with cancer in a comedy? Can that go well? Well, Seth Rogen and Mandate Pictures seem to think so.
Kate Winslet, Leonardo DiCaprio and Sam Mendes. It's not completely different from what we've already seen of the suburban ennui/marriage is suffocating drama, but there are some new scenes and images worth taking a peek at. The cinematography by Roger Deakins is breathtaking and Thomas Newman's score sounds grandiloquent without being overwrought. "Revolutionary Road," hits theaters in limited release on December 26.
NYFF: 'Tulpan' Director Says Kazakhstan Officials Think Film Is Worse Than 'Borat' For Country's Image
Yesterday evening we saw "Tulpan," at the New York Film Festival, the debut feature-film narrative by Kazakhstani documentarian Sergei Dvortsevoy. The film won the Prix Du Certain Regard at the Cannes Film Festival in May.
"Shy courtship, stark landscapes and a spirited supporting cast of livestock make 'Tulpan' a vivid, intensely enjoyable debut feature from former documentarian Sergei Dvortsevoi," writes Jonathan Romney in Screen Daily. That pretty much says it all. The film centers on Asa, a big eared Kazakstan sailor who tries to become a sheephearder under the auspice of his sister, his unforgiving step-brother and their lovely little family of tots and animals. The only way to win his own flock is to score a wife, but his big ears seem to prevent him from scoring the only girl around for miles.
It's honestly not a film for everyone, but it's definitely unique, spirited and has some beautiful moments (the native songs the little girl sings are simply gorgeous). However, not everyone loved it. Some political officials in Kazakstan hated it and felt it did further damage to the country's image than a certain other famous mockumentary that unintentionally put the country on the global map.
"A lot of people were there, and people loved the film, but some [government] officials said, 'It's worse than Borat, it's very bad for Kazakhstan,' Dvortsevoy said in the Q&A after the film in his partly broken English. "I mean politically, because they ask, 'why do you want to show this? Why would you want to present Kazakhstan to the world as a poor country?" How do I explain [to them] this is a story. In Kazakhstan there are rich people, there are poor people, so why can't I show that? But for the [political] officials, it's no good."A comedic, but tenderly sad ethno-drama and practically part wildlife film its tenor is not that far off "The Story of the Weeping Camel." We honestly didn't love it completely, its long 10-minute takes were dry at times, but its humor was pretty rich. And when will you ever see dramatic birth of a baby lamb onscreen that's captivating and stunning. A lot of people seemed to love the bleak beauty of the windswept landscape in a way that remind them of the austere John Ford films, but while it's intimate in its own way, it didn't totally grab us and we'd probably rank it lower on the scale of film's we saw at NYFF. Still we're glad we had a chance to experience such a different film. We don't want to throw it under the bus, but this is about all the review we can muster. There were a lot of older people (maybe your grandparents) who seemed to love it, so take that for what it's worth. You can see some clips of the film here.
The weekend, weekend, weekend. We won't be seeing jack probably cause we're still trying to keep up with the last bits of the very-excellent New York Film Festival (NY'ers should note the last screening of "The Wrestler" is this weekend), but there's some decent stuff opening up.
Number 1 on our list of things you should see this weekend is Mike Leigh's "Happy Go-Lucky." The vibrant film is superficially chipper and has a dark and troubled meaty center via an astounding performance by Eddie Marsan who's downright brilliant. Sally Hawkins is grabbing all the headlines and yes, she's remarkable as well, but Marsan's neurotically dysfunctional character and role is a knock out. We liked the film a ton when we saw it, but had issues with the opening. On reflection we like the film even more and its really resonated well. It's got a stellar 97% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Also opening up this weekend is "The Duchess," which we weren't impressed with at all and Ridley Scott's "Body Of Lies," which is so masterpiece, but a capable thriller that surely wasn't as bloated and dull as "American Gangster" was. Maybe not a return to form exactly, but at least an entertaining film. It's nice to see a movie with Leonard DiCaprio where you can actually buy who he is and believe his performance. Russell Crowe's subverting his leading-man status was fun to watch to. "The Duchess" has a 61% rating and "Body Of Lies" has a 54% rating.
One film that still falls flat is Guy Ritchie's paint-by-numbers gangster/caper flick, "RockNRolla." This tepid rehash says nothing new, fails to retain his crisp sparkle and falls far off the mark from his early work. He needs a new genre and a new style to try on. Ratings are mixed too and it has a 59% RT rating.
We would have liked to have seen Bill Murray in "City Of Ember" but we missed our screening, but don't feel totally bad since it only has a low 47% rating. Reviews generally state that the film is for kids, so maybe we'll wait for video, though we would like to hear and see Lavender Diamond's songs in the film. They're one of our favorite bands of recent years. We didn't write a review for the "Good Dick," but we saw it (ages ago) and it was ok, we suppose. Nothing amazing, though there were some decent moments. Maybe we'll write a review next week. It only has a 55% rating though (probably around what we felt about it).
We really can't believe that the mumblecore movement's next flick, "Nights and Weekends" has an 85% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Joe Swanberg is kind of insufferable and grossly overrated (TimeOut New York rightly says he has a "painfully limited range."). We will note there are only 13 reviews of the film though. We're not saying that movement is total trash, we've seen some ok films from these guys, but we couldn't even sit through "Hannah Takes the Stairs," and had to eventually turn it off it was so excruciating and we'll generally sit through anything.
Everything else this weekend ("Express," "Quarantine" for example) are films we'd never bother with. "Rachel Getting Married" a film receiving rave reviews that we didn't love (but didn't hate), is still in limited release. Also still in limited release is the cheap, preaching-to-the-choir documentary, "Religulous," by Bill Maher and Larry Charles. These guys practically use the same snake-like tactics and bias on their
victims subjects that Fox News does.
If you haven't heard of "The Unborn," don't get discouraged, because you're in the majority as are we, because we didn't have a clue that this film existed until today. From the trailer, all that we could get was that a sexy but reserved babysitter gets hit in the eye with a tea cup by the kid from the "Hancock" trailer. The attack causes her to go to an eye doctor who tells her that her irises are two different colors. The eye doctor tells her that this is mostly common in twins, but she is an only child, or so she thought... She finds out that she had a twin brother who died in the whom and freaky shit starts happening. "By living, you denied him entry in to our world." Those words are actually spoken in the trailer!
Paul Thomas Anderson: Careerist Whorebag or Driven Auteur? The 'Secret' History Of PTA According To Esquire?
Considering how big and beloved Paul Thomas Anderson is, it's curious that almost no bloggers have chosen to write about this.
Two or three weeks ago Esquire ran a piece investigating the mysterious past of PTA and speculates on why he chooses to leave it all behind, and we have noticed that no one has touched the thing with a twenty-foot pole.
Are people not willing to write about it because everyone love's PTA? Or is it cause it's just not that damning and damaging. There are a few eye raising incidents in the story, but nothing even close to damaging his untarnished reputation. We read it awhile ago and thought we would give it a whirl. It's fascinating whatever your take on it. Apparently the Esquire write spent months working and researching the piece and if you're a big PTA fan you should read it (especially if you're into hearing more of the "The Dirk Diggler" story)
Esquire tries to make a correlation between how his work mentions a lot of experiences in his San Fernando Valley and why he now tries to avoid it, but the thesis is pretty thin and vague to boot.
The most "damning" parts are his late high school/early P.A. years and its pretty mild stuff.
If anything the article just illustrates how driven PTA was.
Even though he was a first time director, and a young one at that, he didn't hesitate to fire his professional cinematographer or let the actors know what he wanted. "A lot directors shoot from the monitor, or even from another room. He will get as close as he can, just out of camera range. Sometimes just inches away. At first I found it a little distracting-he's always right there, with such intensity. But if it doesn't unnerve you, it probably gives your performance a little extra buzz," recalls Hall.
We can't be sure of his motive for "abandoning" his past, but one thinks it has something do to with his intense ambitious to see his images converted onto the screen, or so we would like to think, rather than just a careerist whorebag who uses everyone around them before cutting them off and moving onto the next set of connections. Let's face it. There's not too much to Esquire's article. Drive and ambition don't have to be pejoratives and getting in the face of a few directors when you're young isn't a sin, but it's kind of curious the way Esquire set up this article as it seems like they've got major dirt on PTA and then fail to deliver it. What was this writer doing for all these months?
PTA's got a new stageplay hitting Largo Saturday night in Los Angeles with Jon Brion doing the music again (like he did a few months ago). If anyone attends and its worth a write-up, email it to us and we'll post it.
The gushing Latinos over at Latino review (you'd think these guys had never been out of the house or had a drink before) were at a New York party for "Watchmen" and they bumped into D.C. Comics President Paul Levitz and they wasted no time in asking about the reported "Superman" reboot and the future of the franchise.
The biggest piece of news that got out of the conversation was that despite director Bryan Singer being out of the picture, it appears his Superman, Brandon Routh is still in the frame for whatever comes next.
“Last week Brandon Routh has come around the offices in New York and Los Angeles as of late to talk about Superman and what we want to do,” Levitz told the LT writer.
The booze (or was it the enthusiasm boner in their pants?) got to their heads. Who writes like this?
"At first I thought it was the Apple Martini I was drinking but I soon realized that I just heard a bombshell go off in my brain! Brandon? He did say Brandon Routh was coming around talking about Superman! Why the hell would they be talking to Brandon if he was not going to be part of the reboot? Because he’s still in the mix!!!"Alright, don't wet yourself. Brandon Routh will probably still be Superman.
And apparently 'Superman Whatever Comes Next' is contingent on Christopher Nolan and his may-or-may-not plans for 'Batman 3.'
“Everyone is waiting for Nolan to sign on for another Batman, once that happens, the release date for Superman and all other future projects will follow." Wait, why? Probably cause it's their flagship show and every movie release has to circulate around its behemoth stature. We wanted to headline this story, 'Brandon Routh Still In Superman Franchise; Latinos Sport Erections,' but we thought Google might not be down with it. Yes, our last name is Perez and we'll milk that, "we're allowed to say whatever we want" for the rest of eternity.
Random BS, this stock market crash is making us really irritable. We just got seriously fucked. We hate the world right now. We quit.
Behind the Scenes photos from "The Road." No, they're not zombies, they just look that way. It's a post-apocalyptic movie and there are no showers. [Cinematical
Bill Murray wants a female 'Ghostbuster,' shrug, whatever. [MTV]
"A Christmas Tale," one of the films at Cannes and NYFF, has a poster. [Cinematical]
Kristy Flores, Paul Lacono, Paul McGill, Naturi Naughton, Kay Panabaker, Kherington Payne, Collins Pennie, Walter Perez, and Anna Maria Perez de Tagle are the (mostly) unknown kids set to appear in MGM's "Fame" remake. Whatever...[Hollywood Reporter]
Kirk Douglas talks the Hollywood blacklist, slavery, the depression and lots of other Old-Timey stuff [Reuters]
Shots of Robert Downey Jr. on the set of Guy Ritchie's "Sherlock Holmes" have surfaced from the streets of London. Did he borrow that jacket from Heath Ledger's Joker? [JustJared]
F. Gary Gray ("Italian Job", "Set It Off") and Eric Bana are in negotiations to direct and star in a remake of 2004's "Le Convoyeur," which will be written by David Ayer and Andrew Kevin Walker who wrote "Se7en." What happened to Walker? "Se7en" was so amazing and everything that came after was aggressively mediocre ("Sleepy Hollow," "8MM"). Maybe it's the directors who fuck it up...[Variety]
The upcoming 'Hulk' DVD will have a new alternate opening set in the Arctic - one that hints at/shows Captain America? [Movieweb]
As we've written ad naseum, TV On The Radio's frontman, Tunde Adebimpe sings Neil Young's classic, "Unknown Legend," acapella in Jonathan Demme's "Rachel Getting Married," which came out in limited release last weekend.
We posted the soundtrack details earlier this week, but people keep asking us, "do you have the song?" Well, yes we do. You can hear it below. We like to share and think the Internet should do the same so it's embeddable, but throw us a link and use good blogg-iquette if you use it. Oh and note, there's a rhythm going on here that sounds like Adebimpe just tapping on his knee or something. It's minor thing, but it's not like that in the film and we find it a little distracting. There's something about the free-floating nature of it that's better; it was one of our favorite moments in 'Getting Married,' a movie we didn't entirely love.
We gotta say, a lot of new music doesn't impress us much these days, but TV On The Radio's new album Dear Science is probably the best record these guys have put out. We generally thought they were hit and miss in the past despite the hype (Ok, Cookie Mountain has some decent stuff).
Mr. Jeffrey Wells has his hands on a new onesheet for "Australia," which stars Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman. Directed by Ozzie Baz Luhrmann (it's his first feature film since "Moulin Rouge" in 2003), the film is scheduled for a release on November 13 in its native land and comes out in the U.S., November 26.
So the Aussies get it first, which makes sense, but even the Swedes are going to get it before us (likely anyhow). There's not much else to add other than: hey, new poster, cool, right?
"Australia," goes up against "Four Christmases," that Thanksgiving weekend which makes us a little worried, box-office wise, but we can presume it'll have a deeper resonance come Oscar time than the Bond flick will. Let's just say it already: we can't wait for "Australia," the trailer is gorgeous (check out this featurette on the cinematographer behind its lush look).
Lurhmann has also directed an ad for Australian tourism which also features, Brandon Walters, the 12-year-old little aboriginal boy who also co-stars in "Australia" that's been making the rounds.
Variety's got the new trailer, and InContention's got the poster for "Defiance," the new Edward Zwick movie coming out in November starring Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber. Here's what we wrote about the film in our Playlist Fall Preview piece.
Daniel Craig, Live Schreiber and Jamie Bell play three brothers in this true WWII-set story about a group of Jews that fled into the woods of Nazi-occupied Poland in 1942, and recruited other exiles to build a village in a violent campaign of resistance. Directed by Edward Zwick who should get a varsity letter in the sport of epic war movies (“Glory”, “The Last Samurai”), you'd think Tarantino makes a violent WWII film, but these brothers were nothing to sniff at either. "They decapitated a guy who ratted them out, and left his head in the center of the town,'' Schreiber told EW.
We should note, "Defiance" gets good points right off the bat for being a Parmount Vantage film. PV is basically done, having been absorbed by Paramount proper and this will be one of the year's last, if not the last film we'll ever see with the PV logo on it, which is a shame because they always strived to put out good films that aimed at being as close to art as one can get in this commercial film landscape (see "There Will Be Blood").
We caught an early sneak peak of the post-"Superbad" teen comedy, "Sex Drive." The movie had its moments, but some of it was terrible. While funny in parts, but the prime majority of the jokes were based solely on how sexually vulgar, crude, or gratuitous it could be. Rarely was the film clever. It's like the writers thought, "Hey, dildos are funny and so are condoms! Especially when they are flung on to some one's face!"
When the parents fight, it's the children that always suffer, right? We hope you're happy Harvey Weinstein because all your griping has blown up in your face and fucked "The Reader" beyond belief. Scott Rudin has just taken his name of the picture as producer which means this film is tainted goods three months before it even hits theaters. Here's the backstory as to why:
You knew that when Harvey Weinstein got his way over producer Scott Rudin — so that Stephen Daldry’s “The Reader,” could open in cinemas on the 12th of December 2008 in the thick of the Oscar season — that it couldn't possibly be the final chapter in their all-too-public display of corporate greed (the film is the final co-production of the late Sydney Pollack and Anthony Minghella no less, it's great when you squabble over a project that respected and loved film giants that are no longer with us have belabored to get up on screen).
Rudin, who won an Oscar for last year’s Best Picture winner “No Country For Old Men,” and Weinstein, head of The Weinstein Co., have been at each others throats ever since 2002’s “The Hours,” and Weinstein’s persistent attempts to try and get his financially maligned company back on track by securing at least one major awards magnet only made matters worse. Starring Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes, "The Reader" wasn't ready and set for a 2009 release, but when Weinstein realized he had no Oscar bait this year, he kicked and fussed until he bent Rudin over backwards to agree to a December 2008 release (that of course puts Kate Winslet in competition against herself and her husband Sam Mendes with "Revolutionary Road," a move that makes absolutely no sense unless you're coming from a totally capitalistic and self-driven perspective — which Weinstein totally is).
Although all seemed to be at peace when the two Hollywood heavyweights released a joint statement saying that they were both committed to getting “The Reader” finished as quickly as possible for its shiny new release date, their forced, and very artificial, solidarity faded fast after over a week of suspicious silence. Patrick Goldstein reports (in your face Nikki Finke), that Rudin has finally taken his name off the project altogether, to try and mend any tarnished relationships and to focus solely on the two potential Oscar candidates he is already representing, “Revolutionary Road.” Kate Winslet has already made it all too clear that she would not promote “The Reader” if it were to conflict with the success of her husband's film and put her in the position of having to compete with herself come Oscar night, and “Doubt” (another Rudin produced project).
Goldstein says, “Scott Rudin is walking away from “The Reader.” The Oscar winning producer, who has been embroiled for weeks in a nasty squabble with Harvey Weinstein over the release date of the film, has decided to quit the project and take his name off the film.” Although the director Daldry is contractually bound to get his film ready for December and some say he feels terrible that he ever agreed to do so in the first place, it seems as though “The Reader” has now been removed from The Weinstein Co.’s site altogether, so perhaps Rudin’s departure finally made Weinstein realize just how difficult handling the publicity and an extensive Oscar campaign without the help of Rudin and Winslet would be.
Either way, it's kind of like Weinstein has unintentionally cut off his nose to spite his face. Harvey's tactics have created a Solomon cutting the baby in two halves scenario handing him one and saying, "you happy now, dude?" Our guess is that after this mess it's probably going to be relegated to 2009 if Harvey has a peanut in his brain. But the overall effect of Rudin’s self-removal remains to be seen. Talk about taking the long way around.
[Big Picture via In Contention] Post courtesy of Fataculture/Image: Defamer
We were at the New York Film Festival press conference for "The Wrestler" and we took video of the whole event which you can see on our Playlist YouTube channel, but cause FoxSearchlight has sent it out, why not highlight a clip of Marisa Tomei talking about her role as stripper in Darren Aronofsky's new film which is garnering great reviews for comeback kid Mickey Rourke. JoBlo geek sites and the likes take note: Tomei is very naked in the film. Pretty much as raw and bare as she was in "Before The Devil Knows You're Dead," a film that made the rounds at the top of every nerd-sites Best Nude Scene of 2007.
It was supposed to come out tonight at 9 p.m. EST on Myspace, but the new "Twilight" trailer has leaked a few short hours early. How awesome would it be if despite all the hype, the tweener-vampire melodrama went nowhere? Anything's possible, right? It could just be a super-dedicated, but small core audience that doesn't translate into big numbers. We really do think this won't connect on as massive a scale as everyone thinks, but we could be wrong. This trailer looks so over-the-top and cheesy. Kristen Stewart is so above this material. As you'd imagine, the YouTube clip got pulled, but it's up on Myspace now.
Simple, but effective. The great thing about this sort of thing is that it's already everywhere and probably has already been passed on to Lucas, Spielberg and Ford via email already. Maybe it'll finally convince Lucas to give it up (no 'Indy 5' please let this shit die). You gotta love the "South Park" guys, they rip new assholes like no other (pardon the pun here). You know we haven't made our top 10 worst films of 2008 yet, but 'Indy 4 And the Skullamachacallits' will surely be on it.
We can't really waste words here. 50 Cent is the worst and he's a corny mutherfucker. The slow-witted rapper has apparently directed a new movie to go along with a new album, both of which are called, "Before I Self Destruct."Apparently the really, really cheesy song that plays in the background is a Scott Storch-produced track "Get Up." Do not ever give this man your money. We just finished watching this thing. Stay til the end when Fiddy shoots a gun through a doorway! Lol. So bad... Angel Lola Luv and Naughty by Nature's Treach also star. At least "Menace II Society"s Clifton Powell is still getting work. He's the man.
So yeah, Darren Aronofsky is prone to projects with uncreative titles ("The Wrestler," "The Fountain"), but whatever.
The director was supposed to be shooting, "The Fighter" (see?) this fall, according to star Mark Wahlberg; a biopic about the unorthodox and almost improbably junior welterweight champion, "Irish" Micky Ward.
But Slashfilm talked to Aronofsky right after the Toronto Int. Film Festival and he made it sound that not only was the project having financing issues, it wasn't finished casting and certainly not shooting anytime soon.
"We have a great script, we’re just trying to cast it and try and figure out how it’s going to get made. I think it’s a great project. It’s been in development so long there’s a lot of money against it already. They’re trying to figure that out but [me and Mark Wahlberg are] ready to go on it" (apparently Wahlberg's been training for two years on it already).
Having just finished the script, we find this a bummer.
Maybe one of the problems and why there's a "a lot of money against it already," is possibly the number of screenwriters who have been hired (and paid) to write revisions of the script? In the aforementioned interview, Aronofsky says the "beautiful screenplay" was written by Scott Silver, the author behind, "8 Mile." However, the version we have, dated March 2007, has the name of four writers on it: the screenplay is credited to Paul Tamasy and Eric Johnson with revisions by Lewis Colick and Paul Attanasio. IMDB, however, has the script credited to Attanasio and Colick with Johnson and Tamasay as only having "writer credit" (which one assume is different from screenplay credit) and of course no mention of Silver at all. But then again, IMDB is slow and often inaccurate and when Variety reported in September 2007, that Brad Pitt replaced Matt Damon in the flick as Wahlberg's older brother and eventual trainer, Silver had already been attached. Whatever, all we know is that's five different writers who have been paid to work on this thing which might be a small part of the larger problem with getting it started.
Back to the script. Yeah, we're working on a slightly old version, but who isn't in most script reviews (we're one revision behind). It's rather a lovely thing and hopefully it will only be better since Silver already has had a pass at it.
Based on a true story, "The Fighter" is set in the blue-coller city of Lowell, Massachusetts and Brad Pitt plays Dicky Eklund a welterweight boxer whose claim to fame was facing off against Sugar Ray Leonard, going the distance and even sending Ray to the canvas, but eventually lost by decision. From there, his career took a downward slope trajectory. Cockiness leads to booze and drugs which eventually blooms into full-blown crack addiction. In fact, Eklund was once featured on a1995 HBO documentary called "High on Crack Street." The film starts around 1978 and moves into the 1990s while jumping around chronologically just at the very beginning.
In the script, the movie feels like it's Pitt's story initially, but soon his downfall leads the door open to his younger brother Micky (Mark Wahlberg), who seemingly has never really had his heart into boxing, but he's always looked up to his older brother and wanted him to approve. Dicky eventually goes away to prison — despite the near Sisyphean efforts of loyal Micky who tries to forgive and bail him out like a battered wife that doesn't recognize an abusive relationship — and the focus shifts back to the younger sibling (Dicky becomes a worthless, shifty-eyed junkie for much of the first-to-middle part of the screenplay).
Pitt's character has a devilish, death-wish like streak in him that sounds like it would be amazing to watch and reminds us of his best moments in "Snatch" and "Fight Club" — the character has a ton of great lines and scenes that are funny and self-deprecating. Wahlberg's character is loyal to a fault and everything he does is pretty much in service to his big brother until he reaches a breaking point, but their rapport in the script is excellent and to see these two playfully riff on one another is something that just leaps off the page into your imagination. While as far as we know their tough-as-nails mom who also becomes their manager isn't cast yet, but this would be meaty supporting role for someone like Amy Ryan or the likes (though admittedly, she might be too young to play Pitt's mom unless they delved into a lot of make-up).
"The Fighter" is essentially a gritty, working-class tale about brothers and friendship and it's got (naturally) a ton of heart to it. That probably sounds cliche as fuck for a boxing movie, but the script is a winner, trust us. When Pitt is released from jail and returns to try and train Wahlberg, the scenes where the reformed addict tries to win back his brother's love in his own subtle way is pretty resonating. When those bitter walls are finally broken down and together they aim to land a title fight for Wahlberg, it's like these two boys were never ever meant to be separated even for a minute. It's touching without ever feeling saccharine in that silent manly love kind of way. The bottom line is its extremely easy to visualize these two actors in the film and it plays out in your head rather winningly.
The few small worries are this. The story rings a similar to the arc of Brian Goodman's "What Doesn't Kill You," which features Mark Ruffalo in a similar, South-Boston, crack-addict-to-jail and eventual redemption narrative, but then again, 'Kill You' comes should come out sometime in '08 or early '09 and with "The Fighter" not going into production anytime soon (it might even have to wait for "RoboCop" now), we might not see it for a few years now, which is a bit of a shame.
Kurt Kuenne's documentary, which chronicles the life and death of his dead best friend, Dr. Andrew Bagby, in an effort for his friend's young son (who happens to be in custody of the woman who killed his father) to have to chance to see who his rather really was. It is being hailed as one of the best documentary of the year and also one that is almost unbearably emotional.
We're kind of dying to see this little IFC movie, "The Pleasures Of Being Robbed," but apparently the film was a little polarizing when is screened earlier this year.
Salon’s Andrew O’Hehir:
"Let’s be honest: “Pleasure of Being Robbed” drove a lot of people crazy at Cannes, including people whose tastes I respect. I could flatter myself by claiming that they didn’t get it and I did, but things are never entirely that simple. What I saw as a challenging, open-ended emotional and psychological journey with an exasperating but irresistible character — something like a slacker-era blend of Bresson’s “Pickpocket” and Godard’s “Breathless” — struck other viewers as self-indulgent pseudo-rebellion."Lord knows we love anything electric, like "Breathless" (see our "Voy A Explotar" review) and "Pickpocket" by Bresson is utterly fantastic, so we're kind of sold already. We got most of this post from AwardsDaily. We wanted to find other quotes, but their find of O'Hehir's Salon take pretty much says it all so kudos to them. If there wasn't more NYFF pictures to see this weekend, we'd probably see 'Robbed' on Sat or Sun, but it might have to wait another week.
Ah, the Smashing Pumpkins. Man they really shit the bed and tarnished whatever remaining shreds of dignity they had with their latest reunion. Billy Corgan and his faithful cronie Jimmy Chamberlin made the colossal mistake of assuming louder and harder is bigger and better and 2007's Zeitgeist was embarrassing. But Corgan has never been one to shy away from the challenge of beating a dead horse beyond recognition hence the new aptly-titled upcoming documentary, "If It All Goes Wrong" (umm, need we even belabor the point??).
And after all this? The doc will be in theaters for ONE fucking day. The 105-minute documentary chronicles their last tour and blah, blah, blah. It's also being released Nov. 11 on DVD in a two-disc set with all the live music, blah, blah. This is when we feel bitter about our obligations about "movies and music," cause frankly, who gives a flying fuck about this? Ugh. [EW/ a "trailer," we use that word as lightly as possible, is at Rolling Stone somewhere/details at RoadRunner]
Remember Yoko Ono's long standing feud with Ben Stein and his creationist doc, "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed," which used part of John Lennon's "Imagine," without consent from his estate?
Last we left off in this case, "Expelled" was being re-released for the summer (it did surprisingly well at the box-office for a documentary) and Ono had lost her initial lawsuit when Stein and Creation Media (the people behind 'Expelled') hid behind the fair-use doctrine.
Well Ono and EMI have dropped their copyright infringement lawsuits against the makers of a documentary because they were basically never going to win and they knew it. Fair-use is an important doctrine, but it still seems fucked up, that shifty-propaganda-ists like Creation media can use songs in their films without your consent. They did the same thing to indie-rockers The Killers and basically lied to them to get one of their songs in the film and the trick worked [Reuters]
God, we're so behind on our script reviews, we've read a ton lately including the most recent version of "Watchmen," Cameron Crowe's 'Untitled,' Darren Aronofsky's possibly-next vehicle "The Fighter" and Guy Ritchie's take on "Sherlock Holmes" but the one we've really got on the brain at the moment is Dustin Lance Black 's "Milk" written for Gus Van Sant.
While its actually less striking than most of the aforementioned stories, its memorable and perhaps more importantly further reveals (more than just superficially) why "Milk" could be a heavy Oscar contender.
The juicier roles however go to less discussed minor characters. Diego Luna's flamboyant and hyper jealous Jack Lira character is something that could be a thrill to watch onscreen. Having minimal screen time, we're still heavily anticipating Josh Brolin's turn as Harvey Milk's disturbed (closeted?) assassin Dan White whose internal brooding in the script could end up being pretty chilling if played out right.
By contrast, award watchers like InContention are already banking on James Franco to take a Best Supporting nomination, but his character Scott Smith has little to do or chew on in the script aside from pout on the sidelines. Its Emile Hirsch's devoted Milk loyalist Cleve Jones who probably has the best shot at the supporting role, at least, according to his meaty role in the script that goes from young naive assistant to turning-confident gay-rights activist.
This sausage party has no chicks either (as you prolly expected) so aside from one lesbian campaign manager who joins the boys (Allison Pill plays Anne Kronenberg), don't expect a lot of feminine flavor — at least not coming from anything but queens.
If you haven't guessed, its a heavy pro queer story and it makes no bones about it, but there's a lot less explicit sex than we were led to believe which will make marginally less hateable for those movie goers in the Mid West who probably won't touch this thing with a twenty-foot pole (surely the gayness is toned down in the trailer cause this film won't play in the red states where gay marriage is viewed as an anathema).
"Milk" the script, might not necessarily have the audacious or dazzling notes we're prone to enjoy, but it has that sort of classic Presidential reserve and grace that Oscar seems to love (there's one incredibly vivid scene however that's supposed to be an artful voting montage that feels like it was written specfically for Van Sant's artsy proclivities). If Van Sant keeps the cinematics to a "Goodwill Hunting"-like minimum he could find himself with another Best Director nomination come February. We'd frankly, like to see some of his aformentioned creative tones and textures, but this story doesn't seem to fit those kinds of aesthetics. Essentially, its classically structured screenplay with arcs that feel familiar without seeming predictable and banal.
Ultimately, "Milk" is about the life and times of Harvey Milk — his sacrifice for change — but it's also about salvation through belief (for the once heavy-closeted mayoral supervisor) and hope for the future of tolerance.
Remember "Lou Reed's Berlin" the Julian Schnabel-directed documentary about Reed's first tour for his maligned 1973 album Berlin that was so roasted critically at the time that he never toured it until 2006? The so-so documentary wasn't riveting, but you'll recall our favorite moments were those where Reed played Velvet Underground songs and was joined by Antony Of Antony And The Johnsons. So below, a clip from the film Reed, band and Antony playing, "Caroline Says PT II" from Berlin - a record once so underrated, it's now unfortunately been overrated. Such is life. Berlin: Live at St. Ann's Warehouse, the album, out October 21 via Matador. [Sterogum/Matablog]
Josh Brolin has talked about his "W" arrest for the first time. "None of us were drunk, we had just finished shooting three or four hours before. We were out...in the beginning, it was like [smacks hand] okay! It was time! We did it! We were so proud, what an accomplishment!...and then this fucking happens. To me it was ridiculous. I have never seen...I have never ever, ever, ever, ever seen an escalation of paranoia and abuse like that...ever. And I know a lot of cops. Everybody knows I have a checkered past and I've been in situations that are kind of tough. I've never ever been treated like that by cops. Ever." [Hollywood Elsewhere] Brolin talks more "W" in this YouTube clip which shows more clips from the film including funny combative scenes between Bush and Cheney.
Jeffrey Wells is on a roll. He's also got the first onesheet/poster for Kathryn Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker" which won't be out until summer 2009. [Hollywood Elsewhere]
Alan Moore doesn't hate "Watchmen" anymore than he hates all Alan Moore film adaptations says the graphic novel's illustrator Dave Gibbons. All Alan Moore Adaptations are loathed equally! [Sci-FiWire]
The Oscars are so strapped for cash, they're ending their 50-year ban on having move ads and trailers play during the commercials for the Academy ceremony. Hey, maybe studios will use it as an opportunity to unveil exclusive new trailers. Hey, that'd be rad and probably an even bigger reason to get people to tune in. Win, win for everyone. There are stipulations though, every studio is allowed to purchase only one spot, and only for movies to be released after the last Friday in April. [LATimes]
The new international "Frost/Nixon" poster is much better than the last one. At least from a design perspective. We're still not convinced about that movie, but we do love us some Frank Langellaa so maybe their is hope. This is probably as good as place as any to say, remember the New York Times raves about the Langella flick, "Starting Out In The Evening" last year (they put it on their top-10 list)? Well, it was good, but it certainly wasn't that good. [InContention]
Jamie Foxx and Gerard Butler are going to appear together in Frank Darabont's psychological thriller, "Law Abiding Citizens." [THR]
Julie Taymor's "Spiderman" musical (with U2 doing the music) is getting a $40 million dollar budget. The highest ever on Broadway. We kind of can't wait to see that trainwreck. [Vulture]