Hold on to your hats, dear readers: the 29th annual Sundance Film Festival kicks off today in Park City, Utah. Your humble film editor is on the ground, in snow boots and several layers of sensible sweaters, with a film-going schedule that could alternately be described as “ambitious” or “insane.” Here are the ten movies that top our “must-see”… Read More
Given a few minutes for a video interview with Christopher Walken, Colin Farrell, and Sam Rockwell, what would you ask the Seven Psychopaths stars? Something about their craft, perhaps, or what it was like to work together? Well, Screen Junkies’ Hal Rudnick had a different idea: he handed out some transcripts from TLC’s strangely likable exploitation-fest Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and asked the actors to do an impromptu reading. The look on Walken’s face when Rudnick presents his plan is priceless all on its own, but stick around to hear him interpret Mama’s “vajiggle jaggle” musings and Farrell gamely attempt Chubbs’ accent. We can’t help wondering whether we’ll see “sketti” make an appearance on Walken’s new cooking show. … Read More
It’s October, which means that prestige movie season is in full swing, and there are plenty of big, potential Oscar contenders slated for release this month: Argo, Cloud Atlas, um, Here Comes the Boom, maybe? Point is, the art houses are all but overflowing with terrific offerings this month, from dramas and documentaries to comedy and horror; our picks for the month’s dozen best bets are after the jump. … Read More
Last week, Entertainment Weekly published a list of the 50 Greatest Movies You’ve Never Seen from the past two decades. Stars like Ryan Gosling, Kate Winslet, and Emily Blunt chose several of the selections. EW hasn’t ranked the list, because “ranking movies that are already underrated just seems cruel.” We can’t say we agree with all of their choices — and we wonder if the least-seen films actually predate the past 20 years — but we’ve scoured the massive listing for the essentials so you don’t have to. These are some of our favorites. Tell us what movies inspired you to update your Netflix queue, or which of the 50 films you’d have chosen instead. … Read More
We wish Universal would turn 100 years old more often. The famed production banner is commemorating its centennial with a yearlong celebration that includes the restoration of several classic films for the home movie market.
Today marks the Blu-ray release of Universal’s 1973 crime caper The Sting, starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford as two grifters during Depression-era Chicago that craft an elaborate revenge scheme to deplete a brutal gangster of his ill-gotten earnings. The con unfolds in an ingenious, unexpected way, the depth of it leaving audiences in suspense until the end.
Remembering the movie got us in the mood to tackle other tricksters and swindlers. What other cinematic thrill seekers braved it all and surprised us with their complex cons? We chat about a few of the best past the break. There’s plenty of room to chime in with your favorites below. … Read More
Of particular note amongst this week’s new DVD and Blu-ray releases is Buried, Rodrigo Cortés’s tense, harrowing tale of a contractor, buried alive, trapped for the duration of the film in a 2’ x 7’ wood coffin. This is a risky formula for movie-making — not only must the filmmakers keep our interest in that confined space, but star Ryan Reynolds undertakes the considerable challenge of holding the audience’s attention, basically by himself, for 90+ minutes. … Read More
1. Six pages of a contract Sarah Palin‘s handlers sent to Cal State Stanislaus have been discovered in a dumpster; included in her “rider” are “bendable straws” and the specifics on what size private jet she prefers. [via ABC News]
2. The Vatican has finally forgiven The Beatles for John Lennon‘s claim that… Read More
Plays often fall into the trap of telling rather than showing. And then there are playwrights like Martin McDonagh, who crafts viscerally-charged stories that effortlessly unfold and always leave us wanting more. The world premiere of his latest, A Behanding in Spokane , Friday night at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre proved no exception, flying by in a taut, intermission-free 90 minutes. Its charmingly bizarre conclusion hits a lighter note than Mcdonagh’s previous works; it’s also his first to be set in America and originate on Broadway. … Read More
In this remake of Guiseppe Tornatore’s Stanno Tutti Bene, Robert De Niro plays a widower who takes a road trip to reconnect with his grown children (Drew Barrymore, Kate Beckinsale, and Sam Rockwell), when they simultaneously cancel their trips home for the holidays. In the wake of their mother’s death, his kids have all become a bit estranged — and lead him to believe that they’re much happier and more successful than they really are. All he wants is the truth. … Read More
Editor’s note: This review originally ran during the Tribeca Film Festival. We’re re-running it because the film opens in theaters nationwide today.
Moon is a collage of sci-fi cinema whose cut and paste pieces will be familiar even to those not comfortable dropping terms like Replicant or Sleestack into polite conversation. That’s not to say it lacks originality — there’s a star-cluster of clever twists and style — but Moon manages to find that magical middle ground where both zealots of the genre and newbies will feel satisfied to spend 90 minutes on board. Much of this has to do with Sam Rockwell, and the simple concept that gets pulled in a number of contortions that are easy enough to follow yet avoid the soap-opera-in-space-syndrome that plagues too many frames of contemporary sci-fi celluloid.… Read More