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’ve got new stuff from Jennifer Lawrence, Sean Connery, Russell Crowe, Liam Neeson, Richard Gere, Emma Thompson, Kenneth Branagh, Elizabeth Banks, Andy Garcia, Robin Williams, Woody Harrelson, and Val Kilmer, plus three terrific documentaries. Check them all out after the jump, and follow the title links to watch them right now. … 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
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
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. This week, we find Netflix purging a bunch of good titles for a giant batch of new ones in early June (must be some sort of mid-year end-of-contract period or something), so our list is mostly — but not entirely — comprised of stuff you’ll have to get on quick, featuring stars like Johnny Depp, Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones, Michael Douglas, Billy Bob Thornton, Parker Posey, Matthew McConaughey, Kevin Spacey, Woody Harrelson, Tom Cruise, Winona Ryder, and Sylvester Stallone. Check them all out after the jump, and follow the title links to watch them right now. … Read More
HBO has gone and landed itself another TV-production dream team: Less than a month after announcing that Ira Glass, Owen Wilson, and Veronica Mars/Party Down creator Rob Thomas were at work on a This American Life-inspired drama, the network has signed another promising trio. Jane Eyre and Sin Nombre filmmaker Cary Fukunaga will… Read More
This week’s must-see DVD for film fans is Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel, Alex Stapleton’s wickedly enjoyable documentary profile of Roger Corman, the B-movie master whose exploitation movies launched half the moviemakers and movie stars of the ’70s. One of the film’s highlights is Jack Nicholson’s remembrances of his first movie roles, including his debut performance in The Little Shop of Horrors (which Corman shot in all of two days). Nicholson’s story got us thinking about other stars and their first movie roles, so we put together this quick video essay with a peek at some other famous film debuts. Check out our latest video essay after the jump. … Read More
We haven’t heard much about Jack Black and Kyle Gass’s mock rock band/sketch comedy act Tenacious D since 2008, when their forgettable film, Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny, came out to lukewarm reviews. Which, we admit, we weren’t too torn up about — we have mixed feelings about the whole ironic project, though we tend to enjoy Jack Black. Regardless, the pair have just released a short film announcing (and faux-documenting) their return, complete with cameos by Val Kilmer and Woody Harrelson and a coaching montage presided over by Josh Groban (vocals, cement block breaking) and Dave Grohl (guitar, ballroom dancing) — and after watching it, we found ourselves just a little bit glad to have them back in the mix. If only so we can see Val Kilmer in more stuff. Click through to watch the video, and let us know if you’re excited for this musical turn of events in the comments. … Read More
Rampart, Owen Moverman’s tough urban drama featuring Woody Harrelson as a somewhat less than principled LA police officer, goes into limited release tomorrow (following a brief Oscar-qualification run in November), and while the movie itself is pretty good, we must take some exception to its bold poster and trailer tag line: “The most corrupt cop you’ve ever seen on screen.” Well, that is a might tall claim. After the jump, we’ll run down ten previous movie cops who could give Harrelson’s Dave Brown a run for his money. … Read More
Shame, a candid and powerful look at sexual addiction from director Steve McQueen (no, another Steve McQueen) is out in limited release tomorrow, and as we reported last month, it’s going out with the NC-17 rating—no children under 17 admitted, under any circumstances. The rating, many have surmised, is due to the film’s copious male nudity, and that’s how the American ratings system works: all the naked ladies you want, but the erect male member= automatic NC-17.
The rating was initiated by the MPAA back in 1990, and was intended to be an alternative to the porn-stained (if you’ll pardon the pun) X rating; NC-17 movies, like Henry & June (the inaugural film to carry the rating), Bad Lieutenant, The Dreamers, and Lust, Caution would be for adults, by adults. But it quickly became the kiss of death for filmmakers and distributors. Just as with the X rating before it, newspapers and television outlets wouldn’t carry ads for NC-17 films, while larger theatrical chains and home video outlets refused to carry them. Smaller films would take the mark or (as Kids and Happiness did) go out unrated, while the editing process for big releases became something of a con game: if a film was rated NC-17, the distributor would make the trims necessary for an R-rating, enjoy the publicity, and then restore the cut material for the inevitable “unrated” DVD release (frequently carried by the very chains that refused to stock NC-17 films). By the late 1990s, studios wouldn’t even bother with the first step, cranking out unrated versions of raunchy comedies and adult thrillers as a standard step in their home video release plans.
While the politics of who gets an R and who doesn’t are shady at best (check out the terrific documentary This Film is Not Yet Rated), we can’t help but wonder about what would have happened if the NC-17 could have been what its creators wanted it to be. Fox Searchlight’s decision to release Shame with the scarlet letters/numbers has prompted another round of “will the NC-17 finally become respectable?” questions (answer: dubious), but what if that question weren’t necessary, because the NC-17 had never been stigmatized? Had that been the case, we might have seen the uncut movies we’ve assembled after the jump. … Read More
Welcome to “Trailer Park,” our regular Friday feature where we collect the week’s new trailers all in one place and do a little “judging a book by its cover,” ranking them from worst to best and taking our best guess at what they may be hiding. We’ve got five new trailers for your post-turkey consumption this week; check ‘em out after the jump. … Read More