The first close-up in The Master, the sublimely grand and wonderfully eccentric new film from Paul Thomas Anderson, holds tightly on the eyes of Freddie Quell, the troubled seaman played by Joaquin Phoenix. Anderson’s camera fixes on those eyes—fixates on them, really—and challenges us to understand what’s happening behind them. For a good long while, it’s anybody’s guess; Freddie is an opaque and worrisome protagonist, an aimless troublemaker and desperate alcoholic who puts himself into questionable situations with nary a moment’s hesitation. Throughout the film’s first act, those eyes are a blank, the actor following the lead of a director determined not to show his hand. And then he meets The Master. … Read More
Doesn’t it seem like forever ago that Where The Wild Things Are? was in theaters? OK, so in reality, it was only 2009, but as longtime Spike Jonze fans we’ve been anxiously awaiting news of his next project, which we already know stars Joaquin Phoenix and his co-star in The Master, Amy Adams, alongside Rooney… Read More
As we close in on Labor Day — you can do it, c’mon, four short days, and you know you can get away with sneaking out early on Friday — the summer movie season is winding down, so you know what that means: the fall movie season is winding up! (Can’t not be in a movie season, ya know.) It’s something of a changing of the guard at the multiplexes; the superheroes, action heroes, and animated animals march off, replaced by (mostly) serious actors and prestige projects. It’s that special time of year when Hollywood pretends like they make intelligent, grown-up movies all the time, so let’s play along! Our ten most anticipated fall flick are collected here, organized by release date; agree, disagree, and add your own in the… Read More
Every Friday here at Flavorwire, we like to gather up the week’s new movie trailers, give them a look-see, and rank them from worst to best — while taking a guess or two about what they might tell us (or hide from us) about the movies they’re promoting. This week, we’ve got new trailers from Pixar, Paul Thomas Anderson, and Christopher Nolan, plus vehicles for Liam Neeson, Andy Samberg, and Rashida Jones. Check ‘em all out after the jump, and share your thoughts in the comments. … Read More
1. Danny Boyle’s 86-track playlist for the upcoming Olympic opening ceremony in London has leaked, and it doesn’t feature anything from Sir Paul McCartney or Sir Elton John, but notably does include “God Save the Queen” by the Sex Pistols! [via Stereogum]
2. Curious as to what former Sonic Youth frontman Thurston Moore’s… Read More
Every Friday here at Flavorwire, we like to gather up the week’s new movie trailers, give them a look-see, and rank them from worst to best — while taking a guess or two about what they might tell us (or hide from us) about the movies they’re promoting. We’ve got a boatload of new trailers this week — many of them from Cannes, which is after all not just a film festival but a film market, where foreign rights are sold and trailers are thus trotted out. So we’ve got new films from name directors like Paul Thomas Anderson, Sam Mendes, and Baz Luhrmann, featuring Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Craig, Bill Murray, Will Ferrell, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, Carey Mulligan, Jackie Chan, Joaquin Phoenix, and his late brother River. Check ‘em all out after the jump, and share your thoughts in the comments. … Read More
Clint Eastwood’s J. Edgar Hoover biopic J. Edgar is out on DVD today, following a fall theatrical run notable mostly for its lack of awards consideration; the film, and particularly Leonardo DiCaprio’s leading role in it, had been the object of much presumptive Oscar buzz (hitting, as it does, multiple circles in the Oscar Venn diagram: slightly villainous, based on a real person, wide range of aging, secretly gay). But the film underwhelmed, for one very simple reason: we’re just getting tired of biopics.
The biographical film portrait has been a venerable institution since the early days of cinema; Georges Méliès made a Joan of Arc biopic clear back in 1900. And while there have been scores of great ones, the tropes of the form (the birth-to-death chronology, the trials and triumphs, the romantic struggles, etc.) are so firmly established that the only biographical films that really make an impression any more, it seems, are those that buck the trends and experiment, or at least futz with the form a bit. After the jump, we’ll take a look at ten great biopics that made an impression, and float some theories as to why. … Read More
Brad Pitt is the latest Hollywood star to threaten to leave the spotlight and has given a three-year timetable to make his exit. The actor — fresh off some stellar reviews for his role in Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life — wants to adopt more of a producer’s role. “I am really enjoying the producing side and development of stories and putting those pieces together. Getting stories to the plate that might have had a tougher times otherwise,” he recently told Australia’s 60 Minutes. Pitt’s already found his place in the producer’s chair, working behind-the-scenes on Malick’s movie and past efforts like The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, as well as the upcoming World War Z and Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave. It’s hard to imagine a Hollywood without the likable actor. If he does follow through on his word, we hope he’ll still make an appearance every so often. History proves, however, that the acting bug is a pesky one and most screen stars renege on their promises to quit for good. Click past the break for a history of other actors that wanted to say goodbye. … Read More
Yesterday we told you that Dark Blood, the movie that River Phoenix was working on (and 11 days from completing) when he died back in 1993, was finally going to be making its way to theaters. Along with some re-editing, part of what was needed to make that happen was voiceover work by River’s… Read More
1. Deadline is reporting that Dianne Wiest and Chris Cooper are negotiating to play the leads in HBO’s forthcoming Noah Baumbach-helmed adaptation of Jonathan Franzen’s award-winning novel, The Corrections. We approve heartily!
2. Dark Blood, the movie that River Phoenix was filming at the time of his death, might be getting released almost… Read More