Backlash is a funny thing. It’s always been present in popular culture, but it feels as though it’s become particularly prominent over the past few years, an unavoidable step in any celebrated film, band, book, or television show’s penetration into the cultural landscape: first comes critical acclaim, then financial success, then ubiquity, and then the inevitable backlash from those who object (or who have turned, perhaps because of said popularity and/or ubiquity). Sometimes, the pendulum swings back and the backlash fades — but often, the negative connotation is what sticks, and that’s what becomes the lasting perception.
This week’s 3D rerelease of Titanic got us thinking about backlash, and how often we find ourselves defending movies that were, at least in the beginning, critical and popular hits, but have since fallen out of public favor. Thus, we’ve collected ten movies that the worm turned on — but that we’re standing by, damnit, and we’ll tell you why. Check them out after the jump, and add your own in the comments.
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Earlier in the month, we spotlighted some of our favorite performances of the year, and we’re not quite sure exactly where the line falls between loving a performance and loving a character. But the people (and non-people) on this list were real and memorable not just because the actors involved played them so well (though they did). Here, the combination of masterful acting, great writing, and sensitive direction gave us a sense that these were real people on the screen. What’s more, they were real people whom we wish we knew — even though, by the end of their films, in many ways we did know them. Our favorites are after the jump; add yours in the comments.
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1. Last night, The Weeknd — whose House of Balloons was one of our favorite debuts of 2011 — released his third mixtape of the year. You can download Echoes of Silence for free at his website.
2. Louis C.K.’s great online comedy special experiment has now succeeded beyond his wildest dreams: In… Read More
The trailer for Super — which is written and directed by James Gunn (Slither) and stars Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page, Kevin Bacon, Liv Tyler, and Nathan Fillion — makes it look like the kind of movie we originally thought that Kick-Ass was going to be: a warped indie comedy about wannabe superheros. Wilson plays a sad sack who decides to suit up as “Crimson Bolt” after his hot wife (Tyler) dumps him for a smarmy drug dealer (Bacon). Ellen Page is the comic book store clerk who helps educate him on the cannon before eventually slipping into a mask and tights as his sidekick, “Boltie.” We’ll definitely be checking this one out when it hits theaters on April 1st, if only to squirm over the idea of sexual tension between Wilson and Page. How about you?
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After the success of Dark Knight, everyone was wondering what director Christopher Nolan was going to do next. There were rumors that another Batman movie was already in the works, complete with Megan Fox as Catwoman. Thankfully it wasn’t true, and Nolan fans turned their attention to Inception, his latest project, which previewed this past summer during screenings of Inglourious Basterds.
And yet, the plot was still a mystery. Here’s what we know: Leonardo DiCaprio stars as the CEO of a company which has developed technology that allows you go/see into dreams and memories. Ken Wanatabe is the villain blackmailing DiCaprio’s character. Ellen Page stars plays a graduate student who works in the company and serves as DiCaprio’s sidekick. Marion Cotillard is his wife, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, an associate working at the firm.
Peep the freshly-premiered poster after the jump, and tell us what you think of Nolan’s latest.
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1. Could it be true? Amazon has a page up for a new Animal Collective release called Fall Be Kind, with a release date set for December 8. [via Pitchfork]
2. The word of the day is: “annoyed.” Pee-wee Herman’s show has been pushed back until January and moved to a different venue,… Read More
1. It’s Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut. When asked why she picked this project, Drew explained to Time Out New York: “I relate to a theme of it: women who have not only an alter ego but a capability. I love these women who totally have day jobs — they’re nurses and librarians and waitresses… What I love about the sport is that it’s real and high stakes. And by the way, it’s scary as shit to do. I wouldn’t have guessed that the first film I directed would have a sports element, but then again it doesn’t surprise me, because I love girls getting to do what boys do… I love when [women] get to be women and not feel like they have to become a man in order to play in a man’s… Read More
Director Christopher Nolan’s first original screenplay since The Dark Knight, the mysteriously titled Inception, will be out next summer. For now, we can only ponder the film’s tag-line, “Your mind is the scene of the crime.” (Semi-Spoiler Alert!) /Film speculates that the the movie is about “entering peoples’ minds/dreams. A technology to do so has been developed and is done through an injection. DiCaprio and his team work to enter the minds of other characters in order to retrieve/plant… Read More
Since we last checked in with Whip It, the Ellen Page roller derby romp, we’ve been dutifully trying to think up a really good roller derby name. We’re temporarily abandoning that pursuit to let you know that the trailer’s been released! Gawker says it does “not look promising,” but we think the exact opposite, and we’re going to tell you… Read More
The first image from Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut Whip It — which stars Ellen Page — has surfaced and features both ladies (along with SNL‘s Kristen Wiig) clad in rather tame roller derby gear. The script was authored by LA Derby Dolls founding member Shauna Cross, and is based on her book… Read More