When it comes to the first photos and synopsis from upcoming films, Collider has reaped great rewards from this year’s American Film Market (AFM). For those who don’t know, AFM is where film buyers from around the world come once a year to buy movies and also pre-buy films in development. Simply put, this is where a lot of money changes hands in the film industry and it’s where many decisions about what you and I get to see are made. In an effort to try and raise a film’s profile or attract film buyers, many of the studios distribute full synopses and still images for their movies.
With that in mind, we have grabbed some of those synopses and images for Manolete (starring Adrien Brody and Penelope Cruz), Mona Lisa, Pearblossom, Small Town Saturday Night (starring Chris Pine), and The Long Good Friday. Hit the jump to check it all out. Please note that the synopses are copied down exactly as printed. I have made no editorial changes. Furthermore, some of these synopses are complete as describe the entire film. For those wary of spoilers, read carefully.
And if you missed our previous coverage, click here, here and here. You can see images from All Good Things starring Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst, Pirhana 3D starring Elisabeth Shue and Richard Dreyfuss, Shanghai starring John Cusack and Ken Watanbe, The Fighter starring Christian Bale, The American starring George Clooney, Eagle of the Ninth starring Channing Tatum, Greenberg starring Ben Stiller, and Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere starring Stephen Dorff and Elle Fanning, and much more.
MANOLETE, directed by Menno Meyjes (Martian Child)
This extraordinary film tells the true story of Spain’s most famous bullfighter, Manuel ‘Manolete’ Rodriguez, whose original style and tragic death in the bullring at 30 years old turned him into a legend.
The Film centres around the bullfighter and his obsessive love for Lupe Sino – an actress and social beauty who becomes the love of Manolete’s life, despite fierce opposition and jealousy from those closest to him. In Manolete’s world, it is considered bad luck to befriend a woman, let alone fall in love with one.
Lupe and Manolete couldn’t be more different from each other. She is in love with life and he is in love with death. Their love for each other is passionate, explosive, dangerous and ultimately tragic. On the last day of Manolete’s life, after a bitter argument with Lupe, he enters the bullring for the last time filled with sadness and rage. He has lost the will to fight.
Having shown Manolete how to live, Lupe ultimately also shows him how to die.
MONA LISA, directed by Larry Clark (Wassup Rockers)
GEORGE is a lowly misfit, rejected by his wife, struggling to inspire his adolescent daughter SHELLY and now, finding it difficult to make his way legitimately in the real world, works for the criminal MORTLOCK, for whom he kept quiet in prison. Taking on odd jobs, but naïve to the nature of contemporary crime, George fails to recognise that Mortlock is the boss of an underground operation.
Although initially unsure, George meets and is won over by a sophisticated hooker called SIMONE, whom he chauffeurs from client to client. At first she mocks his lack of manners and outdated appearance, then gradually warms to George and draws him into her confidence and though the thought of her pleasuring obese businessmen disgusts him, George gains sympathetic insight into Simone’s situation.
On their frequent drive-bys, Simone obsessively scans the street prostitutes, searching for someone. Confiding in George, Simone reveals her quest to find MAY, a young hooker she befriended, but failed to save two years ago. May still works for ANDERSON, a nasty pimp from Simone’s teenage years. George is eager to help. Charged by his mission, George pursues May through the Bronx underworld, a truly brutal place. Attempting to save May from an awful fate puts him in the firing line, not only of Anderson, but his associate Mortlock. Any respect George had for Mortlock evaporates; he is the linchpin behind this sickening operation.
After a violent confrontation with Anderson, George saves the traumatized May, reuniting her with Simone, but is dealt an emotional blow when Simone reveals her true feelings. His passionate actions will never be reciprocated; Simone and May are lovers. George’s pleas fail to move Simone.
Niagara Falls sets the final scene: Simone’s game of deception brings about the wrather of Mortlock and Anderson. Caught between Mortlock’s vengeance and Simone’s betrayal, George is spared a dilemma as Simone turns his gun on Mortlock and Anderson, killing them both, before finally turning the empty chamber upon George. Broken, George heads home, leaving Simone with May and the carnage.
SMALL TOWN SATURDAY NIGHT, directed by Ryan Craig (MTV’s Taildaters)
Days before leaving for Nashville, Rhett Ryan (Chris Pine) discovers that the desire to follow his dream of becoming a singer-songwriter will get in the way of being with the woman he loves. While Samantha does loves him, she starts to realize what’s best for her daughter and their future may not be what’s best for him.
PEARBLOSSOM, directed by Ron Carlson (Midgets vs. Mascots)
It’s New Year’s Eve, 1968: While driving on the Pearblossom Highway, two women (played by Sophie Monk of “The Hills Run Red” and “Date Movie”; and Anya Lahiri of the “Goal” series) find themselves face to face with the creator of the universe (played by Victoria’s Secret supermodel Angela Lindwall). Laid to rest for 40 years, the women wake up on New Year’s Day as reborn creatures. Now, they walk the earth fighting in the eternal battle of good and evil, not always certain which side they are on. Also starring new horror/genre icons Scout Taylor-Compton (Rob Zombie’s “Halloween”), Patrick Renna (“Dark Ride”), and Charles Napier (“The Silence Of The Lambs”).
THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY, directed by Paul W.S. Anderson (Alien vs. Predator)
The Long Good Friday takes place over 72 hours. A Good Friday weekend which should see the crowning achievement of career criminal Alex’s life, instead becomes his violent, terrifying downfall.
Alex is planning Miami’s first legal casino with the help of a corrupt congressman and bribed city councilor. Already under construction on an artificial spit of land just off the mainland, it is to be the Las Vegas of the East Coast. In order to finance this massive venture, Alex has struck a deal with the same Chinese Triads who transformed Macau into the gambling centre of the World. This weekend the Chinese are visiting Miami to finalise their arrangement.
But the arrival of the Chinese coincides with a sudden explosion of gangland violence. Alex’s nightclubs and restaurants are bombed. His best friend is knifed to death in a pool at the chic Delano Hotel. Even his Rolls Royce is car-bombed – right outside the Russian Orthodox Church where his mother is taking mass.
As Alex tries to deal with an increasingly vicious but unknown adversary, his wife Rebecca does the best to hide the truth from Mr. Wan – representative of the powerful 15K triad. Soon, however, Alex and Rebecca realize they are fighting not just to protect a business deal – they are fighting for their lives.
For 10 years there has been peace in Miami, but now at the worst possible time, there is a violent, bloody, upheaval. Someone is trying to take Alex down. But who?
This mystery lies at the heart of The Long Good Friday.
With his gangland adversaries long since dead, Alex finds himself confronted with a brand new foe. An enemy that fights not for money, but something more powerful – a belief.