Christian Bale

Why ‘American Hustle’ Is Much More Than Just Scorsese-Lite

If there was a more influential American motion picture in the last 25 years than Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas, I can’t think of it. Scorsese’s 1990 organized crime epic was a razzle-dazzle stew of black comedy, gangster cool, hyper-linked narrative, and stunningly confident technique, reestablishing its director as a moviemaking god and leaving film geeks agog. You can see its fingerprints all over Boogie Nights, The Sopranos, Donnie Brasco, Pulp Fiction, and all of that film’s imitators (not to mention much of Scorsese’s subsequent filmography, particularly Casino and The Departed). And it seems like every review, positive or negative, of American Hustle has drawn a not-exactly-recondite line from Scorsese to director David O. Russell, who wears the master’s influence on his sleeve: it is, after all, a two-plus-hour fact-based ‘70s crime picture, filled with insane period costumes and hair, battling voice-overs, gliding camera-work, a button-pushing pop music score, and even a Robert De Niro cameo. Nobody’s cracking any code by pinpointing the Scorsese influence, and we’ve had plenty of opportunities to see how easy it is to make an imitation Scorsese movie. What matters is if the good ones (and I’d include Hustle in that group) go beyond the influence. … Read More

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Christian Bale Discusses Bat-Kid

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Flavorwire’s Big Deal, All-In Fall Movie Preview

There’s a particularly juicy crop of Movies for Grown-Ups™ to look forward to this season — daunting, even. It’s all exhaustive and a little overwhelming, but hey, that’s what fall moviegoing is all… Read More

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The Best Elmore Leonard Movie Adaptations

Legendary writer Elmore “Dutch” Leonard died this morning, surrounded by friends and family. He was 87 years old, and was one of America’s most distinctive and influential genre novelists, penning over 40 books and numerous short stories. Yet he wasn’t just known to bookworms; his work inspired television shows (including the current Justified) and several excellent films. Our favorite Leonard movies are assembled after the jump, along with links to those currently available for streaming. … Read More

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Hollywood’s All-Time Most Memorable Meltdowns

That Kanye West, he just keeps on giving. Gawker has gotten its hands on a surreptitiously recorded audiotape of West having a rather nonsensical meltdown after the Tyler Swift-VMA debacle back in 2009. It’s a pretty entertaining bit of tape, and it immediately reminded this viewer of the notorious David O. Russell tape, and other movie-related throwdowns. After the jump, a roundup of the most notorious tempter tantrums in movies — both on-screen and off. … Read More

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The 50 Greatest Movie Antiheroes of All Time

Last month, this site took a look at the entirety of cinematic history and cooked up a ranking of the 50 best villains of all time. In honor of this week’s release of Man of Steel, the natural follow-up would seem to be a list of the best heroes — except, ugh, how boring are heroes? They can’t hold a candle to the villains, the supporting goons, or (especially) the antiheroes. The latter is usually defined as a protagonist with no heroic virtues or qualities, but that definition can get a little blurry; some would consider characters that are treated as heroes but have a few unlikable or unpopular qualities (like Han Solo, Dirty Harry Callahan, or Snake Plissken). But a true antihero is made of darker stuff than that. Here are a few examples — well, 50, to be… Read More

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10 Mom-Approved Movie Character Crushes

Try as you might, mom won’t ever let you forget that she knows what’s best for you. In the spirit of Mother’s Day, we played matchmaker and set you up with a few film characters that mom would approve of. She only wants you to be happy. We chose ten films, guesstimated who you probably have a crush on, and then selected a character from the same movie that mom would prefer you invite over for dinner sometime. Feel free to leave your own mom-approved film character crushes in the comments section. … Read More

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10 Authors Who Loved the Film Adaptations of Their Books

Last week, we had a good laugh at the recently uncovered notes from the producers of Blade Runner, who seemed united in their hatred for the “deadly dull” sci-fi noir that would prove one of the most influential movies of the ‘80s. But it’s important to remember that some of those casually involved in the production actually liked it quite a bit — particularly Philip K. Dick, whose book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was the basis of Ridley Scott’s film. And while there’s a long (and enjoyable) history of authors loathing what Hollywood does to their books, there are a few examples of writers who are utterly delighted with their page-to-film adaptations. We’ve collected them for you after the jump. … Read More

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