Hollywood took its first stab at adapting The Great Gatsby for the screen only a year after its publication, and has been trying intermittently ever since — and, for the most part, failing. What is it about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic that makes it so impossible, so utterly untraslatable? It’s certainly not that the film industry hasn’t been trying hard enough: Baz Luhrmann’s new film is the fifth official adaptation. In the course of a week, I watched all of them that can be seen (and another, looser adaptation besides), and came up with a few theories. … Read More
Welcome to Flavorwire’s streaming movie guide, in which we help you sift through the scores of movies streaming on Netflix, Hulu, and other services to find the best of the recently available, freshly relevant, or soon to expire. This week, we’re recovering from the big Netflix “Streamageddon” — but, to their credit, the service did make a healthy chunk of titles newly available (or re-available) for streaming at the end of last week. Included is good stuff from Robert Downey Jr., Reese Witherspoon, Robert Redford, Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Hemsworth, Woody Allen, John Travolta, Michael Keaton, James Woods, Uma Thurman, Joss Whedon, and Quentin Tarantino; check them out after the jump, and follow the title links to watch them right now. … Read More
Good news for cinephiles: the kind folks at Criterion were kind enough to restore and release (on DVD and Blu-ray, along with the expected goody basket of bonus features) Terrence Malick’s Badlands, which is out this week. It’s mostly notable as Malick’s debut feature, but it was also a cornerstone picture of one of cinema’s most durable subgenres: the “lovers on the run” movie, in which an attractive young couple hits the road, fleeing their unfortunate crimes (and/or committing more), with the law in hot pursuit. If you’re in the mood for a marathon, we’ve got a few suggestions after the jump. … Read More
If you haven’t been paying attention to the political pundit class lately (and really, seriously, who on earth couldn’t blame you if you haven’t), you might not have heard about the weird jihad against Nate Silver, the math whiz behind the FiveThirtyEight blog, who has been predicting a better than 60% probability of an Obama win since early summer. (He currently has Obama’s chances of reelection at 85%.) Over the past couple of weeks, many pundits — most of them, unsurprisingly, Republican — have insisted that Mr. Silver is biased, that his model is skewed, that his projection of a big Obama win runs contrary to their impression that the race is a “toss-up.” (Some actually point to the 50-50 national polls as proof, as though the popular vote and the electoral college aren’t different beasts entirely, but I digress.)
The whole thing is mighty silly; as David Roher so eloquently puts it over at Deadspin, “[W]e’ve reached the point in our screwed-up political media culture where the polling companies and forecasters — not the pundits, not the spokespeople, and certainly not the candidates — are the only people being evaluated rigorously on the substance of their arguments.” But here’s what we’ll do for you anti-Silverites: let’s throw out all that complicated averaging and math and science and stuff. That’s for four-eyed eggheads like Nate Silver, amIright? We’re gonna predict the outcome of the election based on something a lot easier to wrap your big meat heads around: movies! Political elections have been a popular film topic for years, so we decided to take a look at what these fictional elections could tell us about how things are going to go tomorrow. The answers may surprise you! (Warning: spoilers after the jump.) … 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 six new trailers for you this week, featuring Robert Redford, Susan Sarandon, Shia LaBeouf, Michael Shannon, Anna Kendrick, Sarah Polley, Ray Liotta, Aubrey Plaza, Winona Ryder, James Franco, and Chris Evans; check ‘em all out after the jump, and share your thoughts in the comments. … Read More
Welcome to Flavorpill’s streaming movie guide, in which we help you sift through the scores of movies streaming on Netflix, Hulu, and other services to find the best of the recently available, freshly relevant, or soon to expire. Netflix is losing some awfully good films at the end of July, so we’re heavy on titles with an expiration date, but we’ve got some new streamers as well — featuring Al Pacino, Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Hilary Swank, Woody Harrelson, Miranda July, and Bruce Campbell, plus a couple of great documentaries and (cheating a bit) one of our favorite TV shows. Check them all out after the jump, and follow the title links to watch them right now. … Read More
The weekend’s big movie, as you well know, was The Hunger Games, while DVD and Blu-ray players have been firing up Fincher’s Girl with the Dragon Tattoo since its release last week. The two films have a lot in common: powerful female protagonists, adaptations of bestsellers, probable franchise kick-offs. As such, they were also each objects of carefully considered casting. It’s become part of the pre-production process, the bandying about of potential name actors for high-profile roles; Fincher reportedly talked to Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightley, Anne Hathaway, Natalie Portman, Kristen Stewart, and Scarlett Johansson before settling on Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander, while Hunger Games director Gary Ross’ alternate Katnisses included Hailee Steinfeld, Abigail Breslin, Emma Roberts, Chloe Moretz, and Saoirse Ronan.
Contemplating proxy casting choices is a fun parlor game for movie fans (perhaps second only to considering movies that never came to pass at all). After the jump, we’ll take a look at a dozen iconic movie roles, and the actors who almost, almost filled them. … Read More
Tower Heist, Brett Ratner’s late-fall heist picture, is out this week on DVD, so our latest video essay takes a look at this durable genre via a step-by-step examination of how to put a big heist together — according to the movies, anyway. We grabbed pieces from over two dozen heist movies, from here and abroad, from the 1950s to the present, and put them together to show, in seven easy steps, how to pull that one big score. (Bonus points if it’s your last big one before retiring somewhere warm.)
We’ll show you how it’s done with the help of some of our favorite directors, including Martin Scorsese, Steven Soderbergh, Stanley Kubrick, Quentin Tarantino, Wes Anderson, Michael Mann, John Frankenheimer, Bryan Singer, John Huston, David Mamet, Peter Yates, Jean-Pierre Melville, Jules Dassin, Sidney Lumet, John McTiernan, Jim Henson, and Frank Oz. And check out our all-star cast: Robert DeNiro, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Gene Hackman, Robert Redford, Marlon Brando, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Edward Norton, Julia Roberts, Michael Caine, Charlize Theron, Pierce Brosnan, Harvey Keitel, Val Kilmer, Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, Steve Buscemi, Mark Wahlberg, Kevin Spacey, Samuel L. Jackson, Ray Liotta, Danny DeVito, Michael Madsen, Stellan Skarsgård, Tom Sizemore, Vincent Cassel, Owen Wilson, Joe Pesci, Luke Wilson, Sean Connery, Guy Pearce, George Segal, Sam Rockwell, Delroy Lindo, Seth Green, Sterling Hayden, Chris Penn, Mos Def, Lawrence Tierney, Jason Statham, Jean Reno, the Muppets, and many, many more. Find out “How to Pull the Perfect Movie Heist” after the jump. … Read More
1. Starchitect Rem Koolhaus has signed a deal to design and construct Marina Abramovic’s Center for the Preservation of Performance Art. The $8 million space in Hudson, New York will be devoted to showcasing performance art pieces of “six hours minimum.” [via Vulture]
2. While Whitney Houston’s funeral, which takes place this Saturday… Read More
This Saturday, October 15 people will be digging into their personal archives celebrating Home Movie Day. For those who don’t have a projector, the event provides an opportunity for people with reels of family memories and thrift shop finds to check them out on a big screen — many for the first time ever. The event will take place at 66 venues across 13 countries where historians, curators, archivists, and enthusiasts will be on hand to provide insight into the uniqueness and artistic relevance of amateur film.
English actor Roddy McDowall — best known for his role in the original Planet of the Apes — was also a home movie enthusiast. He recorded a group of Hollywood pals at random parties in the mid ’60s — and the list of friends reads like a who’s who of Tinseltown during its prime. Watch Dennis Hopper, Jane Fonda, Natalie Wood, Judy Garland, Rock Hudson, Robert Redford, Paul Newman, Lauren Bacall, Julie Andrews, and many more hang out. It’s a great, rare opportunity to see what some famous faces were like off screen. Click through for more. … Read More