New Trailer for THE EAST Starring Brit Marling, Alexander Skarsgard, and Ellen Page

by     Posted 363 days ago

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Fox Searchlight has released a new trailer for Sound of My Voice director Zal Batmanglij’s upcoming thriller The East.  The film stars Brit Marling as an undercover operative for an elite private intelligence firm who infiltrates a domestic terrorist organization in order to protect her corporate clientele.  Once she starts living as part of the anarchist collective, though, she finds that her loyalties aren’t as solid as she believed them to be.  I caught the film at Sundance and it’s a very solid thriller.  Batmanglij and star/co-writer Marling prove that they can skillfully craft a commercially pleasing film that still manages to be smart and thought provoking, and Marling turns in a riveting performance as the film’s protagonist.  This trailer delves quite a bit deeper into the pic’s plot than the first teaser trailer, and it gives you a good idea of the pic’s intensity level and story beats.

Hit the jump to watch the new trailer, click here to read Matt’s review, and click here to read my interview with Batmanglij and Marling.  The film also stars Alexander Skarsgard, Ellen Page, Patricia Clarkson, Julia Ormond, Shiloh Fernandez, and Jason RitterThe East opens on May 31st.

Alexander Skarsgard Talks DISCONNECT, Getting into the Headspace of His Character, TRUE BLOOD, TARZAN, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 11 days ago

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The dramatic thriller Disconnect shows how ordinary people struggle to find personal connection in today’s world where modern technology is so readily available, and it can both unite and divide us.  While the stories of strangers, neighbors and colleagues collide, the technology that we so often rely upon proves that it can result in unforeseen consequences for those around us.  From first-time narrative feature director Henry-Alex Rubin, the film stars Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, Frank Grillo, Michael Nyqvist, Paula Patton, Andrea Riseborough, Alexander Skarsgard and Max Thieriot.

At the film’s press day, Collider spoke with actor Alexander Skarsgard at both a press conference and a 1-on-1 interview, in which he talked about what attracted him to Disconnect, how he got into the headspace for the character, the scene he was most concerned about shooting, his own experience in the Navy in Sweden, and how often he disconnects from technology himself.  He also talked about the kinds of roles he looks for, how he feels about being on the hit HBO series True Blood for six seasons now, and whether he’s officially signed on for Tarzan (which was recently halted by Warner Bros.), as the title character.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

DISCONNECT Review

by     Posted 1 year, 11 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my review from the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.  Disconnect opens today in limited release.]

Modern technology has radically changed the way we interact socially. Go stand in a line, and I guarantee at least a few people will have whipped out their smartphones and are happily ignoring the world around them. We don’t call anymore; we text as if that were the same as a discussion. As author, psychologist, and MIT professor Sherry Turkle recently noted in a New York Times editorial this past April, “we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection.” Henry Alex Rubin‘s Disconnect ignores this contemporary issue, and sacrifices worthwhile social commentary for mere cautionary tales. Disconnect has all the dramatic weight of a driver’s education video, but then pads its thin plots with three loosely-connected narratives, two of which feature character actions so ludicrous that the movie becomes almost completely disconnected from reality.

Future of David Yates’ TARZAN Uncertain at Warner Bros; Potential Filming Pushed to 2014

by     Posted 1 year, 13 days ago

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Director David Yates—who helmed the final four Harry Potter films—is having a bit of trouble getting a post-Potter project off the ground.  He was initially attached to direct the small-scale drama Your Voice in My Head with Emma Watson and Stanley Tucci attached to star, but was subsequently forced to drop out of the director’s chair for personal reasons.  After briefly flirting with a large-scale adaptation of The Stand, Yates then moved on to a reimagining of Edgar Rice BurroughsTarzan as his next project.

The filmmaker has been developing Tarzan since last summer and recently set True Blood star Alexander Skarsgard as his lead.  We learned last month that Jessica Chastain was circling the Jane role, but now Warner Bros. is putting the brakes on the project due to budget concerns.  Hit the jump for much more.

Trailer for WHAT MAISIE KNEW Starring Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan, and Alexander Skarsgard

by     Posted 1 year, 50 days ago

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A new trailer has been released for the dramedy What Maisie Knew. The story centers on 6-year-old Maisie (Onata Aprile), who is dealing with the divorce of her rock icon mother (Julianne Moore) and art dealer father (Steve Coogan).  Maisie’s life becomes more complicated as she’s bounced around between her parents’ new partners, Lincoln (Alexander Skarsgard) and Margot (Joanna Vanderham), respectively.  The trailer tries to go for an uplifting tone, but really it all comes off as kind of confused.  The film played at last year’s TIFF, but I didn’t hear any buzz on it, so it fell by the wayside even though I like the cast.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  What Maisie Knew opens this spring.

Trailer and Poster for DISCONNECT Starring Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, and Paula Patton

by     Posted 1 year, 53 days ago

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LD Entertainment has released the trailer and poster for the drama Disconnect.  The film follows three loosely connected stories: one relates to online bullying, another deals with identity theft, and the third is about a reporter trying to save a young man who does sex-cam shows.  I caught the film at TIFF, and thought it was a cheap PSA that wasted the opportunity to show the complexities of online connection in the 21st century.  If you’re still interested in the film, the trailer shows way too much, and takes you deep into the third act.

And if all of that doesn’t bother you, hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film stars Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, Frank Grillo, Michael Nyqvist, Paula Patton, Andrea Riseborough, Alexander Skarsgard, and Max ThieriotDisconnect opens in limited release on April 12th.

Sundance 2013: THE EAST Review

by     Posted 1 year, 91 days ago

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The undercover thriller is a familiar genre, but it rarely reaches its full potential.  For a setting where betrayal and shifting sympathies are central to the plot, most of these stories only provide the semblance of a grey area.  Yes, the terrorist is planning to destroy the western seaboard, but his kid died ten years ago, so he’s not all bad.  This is an easy road to nominal dramatic conflict while still keeping the audience firmly supporting the hero.  With their new film The East, director Zal Batmanglij and co-writer Brit Marling have played the undercover thriller to near-perfection by forcing the audience to sit uncomfortably as we wonder who should deserve our sympathies.  Playing to the conventions of the genre stops The East from holding any major surprises, but Batmanglij and his strong cast always keep us riveted as we become as conflicted as the film’s protagonist.

First Trailer for THE EAST Starring Ellen Page, Alexander Skarsgard and Brit Marling

by     Posted 1 year, 92 days ago

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The first trailer for Zal Batmanglij’s The East is now online.  A follow-up film to Batmanglij’s Sound of My Voice (both co-written by Batmanglij and Brit Marling), The East centers on an undercover operative (Marling) who infiltrates a domestic terrorist organization but becomes conflicted when she starts falling for the charismatic leader.  Fans of Sound of My Voice will recognize some very similar themes here, though the trailer for The East is decidedly more aggressive and promises to deliver on the tension.  The East also stars Ellen Page and Alexander Skarsgard. Hit the jump to watch the first trailer for The East.

Alexander Skarsgard Frontrunner for David Yates’ TARZAN; Samuel L. Jackson Eyed for Supporting Role

by     Posted 1 year, 159 days ago

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We just recently learned that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows director David Yates had finally settled on Warner Bros.’ Tarzan adaptation as his post-Potter project, and now it appears that things are moving rather quickly on the film.  At the time, we heard that Henry Cavill (Man of Steel), Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy), and Alexander Skarsgard (True Blood) were in the running for the titular lead role, with WB also interested in Tom Hardy should the actor spark to the idea.  Now it appears that a frontrunner has emerged in the form of the 6’4″ Swede Skarsgard.  Hit the jump for more.

David Yates Settles on TARZAN as His Next Project; Henry Cavill, Charlie Hunnam, Alexander Skarsgard, and Tom Hardy Eyed for Lead

by     Posted 1 year, 166 days ago

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Director David Yates has understandably taken his time in choosing his next project after helming four Harry Potter films back-to-back, but it appears that he’s finally made a decision.  We learned this past June that Yates was interested in Warner Bros.’ adaptation of Edgar Rice BurroughsTarzan, but at the time a few other directors were eyeing the project and no official discussions had taken place.  Now Yates has officially committed to Tarzan as his next project, and he’s already meeting with actors to fill the iconic titular role.  Hit the jump for more.

TIFF 2012: DISCONNECT Review

by     Posted 1 year, 222 days ago

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Modern technology has radically changed the way we interact socially.  Go stand in a line, and I guarantee at least a few people will have whipped out their smartphones and are happily ignoring the world around them.  We don’t call anymore; we text as if that were the same as a discussion.  As author, psychologist, and MIT professor Sherry Turkle recently noted in a New York Times editorial this past April, “we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection.”  Henry Alex Rubin‘s Disconnect ignores this contemporary issue, and sacrifices worthwhile social commentary for mere cautionary tales.  Disconnect has all the dramatic weight of a driver’s education video, but then pads its thin plots with three loosely-connected narratives, two of which feature character actions so ludicrous that the movie becomes almost completely disconnected from reality.

New Images from Paul Andrew Williams SONG FOR MARION, Peter Webber’s EMPEROR, Dante Ariola’s ARTHUR NEWMAN, and Henry Alex Rubin’s DISCONNECT

by     Posted 1 year, 251 days ago

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Earlier today, TIFF announced that they were adding new films to their spectacular line-up.  Among the new additions are:

  • Song for Marion (directed by Paul Andrew Williams) Starring Terence Stamp, Vanessa Redgrave, Gemma Arterton, and Christopher Eccleston.
  • Emperor (directed by Peter Webber) Starring Matthew Fox, Tommy Lee Jones, and Eriko Hatsune.
  • Arthur Newman (directed by Dante Ariola) Starring Emily Blunt, Colin Firth, and Anne Heche.
  • Disconnect (directed by Henry Alex Rubin) Starring Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, Frank Grillo, Paula Patton, Michael Nyqvist, Andrea Riseborough, Alexander Skarsgård, Max Theriot, Jonah Bobo, Colin Ford, and Haley Ramm.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses.  The 2012 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 6 – 16th.

TRUE BLOOD Recap: “Hopeless”

by     Posted 1 year, 281 days ago

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True Blood at its best and at its worst is still entertaining.  Though we may feel compelled to roll our eyes at some of its most ridiculous storylines, humor is never far.  The best True Blood episodes combine workable mythology alongside its innate snark, and this season has given that us in spades.  It’s a show that tricks you into nodding in assent when a character solemnly says, “turns out it was a crazy smoke monster who wanted to kill me, not the demon baby like we thought.” Of course.  Further, it has developed storylines that are interesting, not always immediately telegraphed, and that have resurrected – literally or metaphorically – characters who had previously fallen out of favor or off of our screens.  Though this season still has too many irons in the fire to tell any one story particularly effectively, it grounds itself in the small moments (like Sookie, Arlene and Holly all man hatin’ together in Merlotte’s) and has continued to be down right enjoyable.  For the nitty gritty of the episode and why peace is for pussies, hit the jump.

Comic-Con: TRUE BLOOD Panel Recap Featuring Joe Manganiello Stripping, Alan Ball Dancing and Ryan Kwanten Doing a Walking Handstand

by     Posted 1 year, 281 days ago

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Current showrunner and True Blood series adapter Alan Ball came on stage in Ballroom 20 to introduce a new trailer for the ongoing fifth season.  The panel for the popular HBO show inspired by the Charlaine Harris novels also featured cast members Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Alexander Skarsgard, Ryan Kwanten, Rutina Wesley, Deborah Ann Woll, Sam Trammell, Joe Manganiello and Kristin Bauer van Straten. The lively and hilarious panel not only teased events in the next season, but also touched on the new relationships that will be forged and acted as a memorial to Ball’s work on the series before he departs as showrunner at the end of the season.  Hit the jump for my panel recap and click here for our continuing Comic-Con coverage.

Benjamin Walker to Star Opposite Henry Cavill in THE GREAT WALL

by     Posted 1 year, 318 days ago

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Just a few days ago, we learned that the co-lead opposite Man of Steel’s Henry Cavill in director Edward Zwick’s The Great Wall was down to either Alexander Skarsgard (True Blood) or Benjamin Walker (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter).  The decision-making process wasn’t stretched out much further, as Variety now reports that Walker has landed the role.  The period pic explores “the mysteries” behind the construction of The Great Wall in China, and apparently involves some inhuman element that the builders of the wall are trying to keep out.  Cavill and Walker will play 15th century British soldiers who stumble upon the construction of the wall, and presumably get caught up in the havoc that this supernatural presence brings.

Walker is a relatively untested actor on the big screen.  He had bit parts in Kinsey and Flags of Our Fathers, but he stretched his chops in the Broadway play Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson.  We’ll get our first good look at Walker in a starring role in this summer’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.

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