THIS IS 40 Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 1 year, 210 days ago

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It’s weird to think we’re only four movies in to Judd Apatow’s directing career, because for the last ten years he’s become a brand.  Between working with Adam McKay and Will Ferrell on their comedies, to launching Seth Rogen and Kristen Wiig (and more), he established that he was one of the biggest forces in comedy.  But his most recent film, This is 40, came out and it didn’t feel like event.  It’s a modest film that’s enjoyable enough, but feels like a B side.  Our review of This is 40 follows after the jump.

Christopher Mintz-Plasse and Dave Franco Join Seth Rogen in TOWNIES; Chris O’Dowd in Talks for ST. VINCENT DE VAN NUYS

by     Posted 1 year, 214 days ago

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Three breakout comedy stars have added new projects to their rosters:

  • Dave Franco (21 Jump Street) and Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Superbad) were just added to the impressive cast of Townies, also featuring Seth Rogen, Zac Efron, and possibly Rose Byrne.  The comedy will be directed by Nicholas Stoller (The Five-Year Engagement).
  • Chris O’Dowd (Bridesmaids) is in talks to join Melissa McCarthy and Bill Murray in Ted Melfi’s St. Vincent De Van Nuys  After impressive turns with Girls and This is 40, this would see him re-teaming with his Bridesmaids costar McCarthy.

Hit the jump for more on each casting.

Chris O’Dowd Cameos in THOR: THE DARK WORLD; Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr. Duel in KICK-ASS 2

by     Posted 1 year, 216 days ago

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While the action cast is set for both Thor: The Dark World and Kick-Ass 2, the comic book movie sequels will be getting additional comedic cameos.  Chris O’Dowd (The Sapphires) recently revealed that he will be doing a small part in Alan Taylor’s Thor: The Dark World and it appears to be opposite star Natalie Portman, who is reprising her role from the first film.  While O’Dowd likely won’t be donning a cape or cowl, Kick-Ass comics writer Mark Millar and illustrator John Romita, Jr. will be in full regalia in a fight between good and evil in Jeff Wadlow’s Kick-Ass 2.

Hit the jump for what O’Dowd had to say about his scene and for more images of Millar and JRJR. 

First Trailer for Christopher Guest’s HBO Series FAMILY TREE

by     Posted 1 year, 218 days ago

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HBO has released the first trailer for brilliant satirist Christopher Guest’s newest television venture, Family Tree.  Family Tree stars Chris O’Dowd as a man who starts to track down his real family, and follows him on that crazy journey.  The trailer gives a quick look into this journey, with O’Dowd’s character discovering his family’s military past, and eventually making it out to Los Angeles.  O’Dowd was last seen in Judd Apatow’s This is 40, but also made big splashes stateside with Bridesmaids and his recurring appearances on Girls.

I’m glad that O’Dowd is getting the chance to lead his own comedy series, and with help from Guest mainstays like Michael McKean, Ed Begley Jr., and Fred WillardFamily Tree could be a really solid new HBO comedy.  With a straight-to-series eight-episode pick-up for the first season, it looks like HBO is starting to hone in on creating a fantastic roster of innovative and hilarious comedy shows that could rival any of the big networks.  Hit the jump to watch the trailer.

New Trailer for THE SAPPHIRES Starring Chris O’Dowd

by     Posted 1 year, 256 days ago

A new trailer has gone online for The Sapphires.  Based on the play of the same name, the film takes place in 1968 and tells the story of four Australian aboriginal girls who are plucked from obscurity by a talent scout (Chris O’Dowd) and packaged as the answer to The Supremes.  I like the mash-up of cultures in the plot, and it looks like a fun movie with just the right amount of drama.  The movie played at TIFF and Telluride last year, and it could be worth checking out when it theaters next month.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film also stars Deborah Mailman, Jessica Mauboy, Shari Sebbens, and Miranda TapsellThe Sapphires opens in limited release on March 22nd.

GIRLS Recap: “Bad Friend”

by     Posted 1 year, 268 days ago

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Did anyone count the seconds Shoshanna and Jessa turned up on screen in this episode of Girls?  More than twenty, but less than a full minute, surely.  The problem with any episode that focuses entirely on Hannah is that Hannah is, by far, the least likable of the foursome.  In small doses she can be fine — the cold open was a thing of beauty to anyone who works in, or pays close attention to, media.  Hannah, looking to do some kind of Woody Allen-esque “I just want to talk about how awkward I am” piece, or maybe some kind of long-form old-school journalism is told, “have a threesome with strangers you meet off of Craiglist.  Or go on a cocaine binge.  Just an idea.”  Hit the jump to see how that played out, as well as why you should “look at the doll and describe her!”

GIRLS Recap: “I Get Ideas”

by     Posted 1 year, 275 days ago

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Already the critics who lauded the first season of Girls for being the defining series of the Millennial generation (funny how none of those critics actually are Millennials, hmm) started to turn their backs on the series last week, saying that the broader humor wasn’t better.  I disagree, and “I Get Ideas” is a great example of how more standard humorous exchanges, with beats for jokes and speedily-delivered one-liners that may not reflect the cadence at which people speak in real life, is still representative of the situation’s reality while still being enjoyable to watch.  Now that the characters (except for Marnie) aren’t spending all of their time complaining about not having money, they’re just having conversations.  With that as the core, the dialogue has really elevated into its own art, and “I Get Ideas” had an incredible amount of great quotes (such as anything/everything Jessa and Shoshanna say).  Hit the jump for more on why “I’m not, personally, attracted to you, but that’s only because I know you.”

GIRLS Season Two Premiere Recap: “It’s About Time”

by     Posted 1 year, 282 days ago

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“I watched Girls, but I didn’t really have an opinion of it” – said no one ever.  Last year the show started off shaky and turned some viewers off, but got progressively better as the reality of what the series is — and not what the divisive hype claimed it was — became clear.  Girls is really a fine show.  Series creator and star Lena Dunham is not “the voice of the generation” (which was a satirically uttered line that HBO turned into a sincere tagline), but she has moments where she gets it really right.  So maybe getting the most out of the show means accepting it as an ironic embrace of White Girl Problems, without being dismissive of its truths.  Hit the jump to find out where all of the girls are now, and why things are already so much better than before.

THIS IS 40 Review

by     Posted 1 year, 305 days ago

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It’s not all gold, Mr. Apatow.  The logic behind his films seems to be, “If it got big laughs at a test screening, we should probably keep it.”  Therefore, the editing isn’t decided on how best to tell the story, but how many jokes they can stuff into a borderline-ridiculous runtime.  If this is the case, then there must be an absolute certainty that the jokes are all terrific, and that it doesn’t detract from the characters or the plot.  You can have the “Know how I know you’re gay?” scene in The 40-Year-Old Virgin because it’s funny, it doesn’t slow the film down, and it doesn’t detract from overall narrative.  This Is 40, Judd Apatow‘s latest film, lacks any such cohesion.  As nothing more than a slice-of-life, it’s free to wander around aimlessly, sometimes running up against great jokes, and sometimes meandering through scenes that could be cut completely.  More frustrating, beneath the sporadic success of the humor, there’s a compelling story and strong performances, especially from Leslie Mann.  Unfortunately, This Is 40 works in reverse, trying to let a story flow out of humorous situations rather than vice-versa.

5 Clips from Judd Apatow’s THIS IS 40 Starring Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann

by     Posted 1 year, 312 days ago

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Universal Pictures has released five clips from writer/director Judd Apatow’s new film This Is 40.  For those unaware, the pic is a “sort-of sequel” to Apatow’s 2008 film Knocked Up, and continues the story of the characters played by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann five years later as they’re navigating new challenges to their careers, parents, marriage, and children.

Hit the jump to watch the clips.  The film also stars Albert BrooksJohn LithgowMaude ApatowIris Apatow, Megan FoxChris O’DowdCharlyne Yi, Jason Segel, and Melissa McCarthy.  This Is 40 opens on December 21st.

Over 20 New Images from Judd Apatow’s THIS IS 40 Featuring Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Chris O’Dowd, and Lena Dunham

by     Posted 1 year, 315 days ago

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Universal Pictures has released a large batch of images from writer/director Judd Apatow’s upcoming comedy This Is 40.  For those unaware, the film is a “sort-of sequel” to Apatow’s 2008 film Knocked Up and picks up with the characters played by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann five years later as they’re navigating new challenges to their careers, parents, marriage, and children.  I’m encouraged by what we’ve seen thus far, and if anyone can bring a brutally honest portrayal of a marriage to the screen with equal parts charm and heartbreak, it’s Rudd and Mann.  These new images provide a colorful look at Apatow’s impressive cast.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  The film also stars Albert Brooks, John Lithgow, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow, Megan Fox, Chris O’Dowd, Charlyne Yi, Jason Segel, and Melissa McCarthyThis Is 40 opens on December 21st.

New Red-Band Trailer for THIS IS 40 Starring Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann

by     Posted 1 year, 315 days ago

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A new red-band trailer has been released for Judd Apatow‘s new comedy, This Is 40.  The Knocked-Up spin-off follows Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) as they try to navigate new challenges to their careers, parents, marriage, and children.  Since Apatow films about 26-days of ad-libbing, a third of the jokes in this trailer aren’t in the movie even though the film is over two-hours long.  That’s not to say that movie isn’t funny, but it’s odd to use jokes to sell the film and then decide those jokes weren’t good enough for the final cut.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film also stars Megan Fox, Albert Brooks, John Lithgow, Chris O’Dowd, Jason Segel, Maude Apatow, and Iris ApatowThis Is 40 opens December 21st.

First Trailer for GIRLS Season 2

by     Posted 1 year, 325 days ago

The first trailer for the second season of HBO’s comedy series Girls has arrived, and it’s pretty great.  The first season of the Judd Apatow-produced series was met with a surprisingly polarized response, but creator/writer/producer/star Lena Dunham took it all in stride and is back with a vengeance.  Some of the season one criticisms were valid, but I’ll be damned if I didn’t find this season two trailer incredibly funny.  The events of the season one finale look to be reverberating throughout the show’s second season, as we see Hannah (Dunham) taking advantage of her single life, Jessa (Jemima Kirke) getting to know her new husband (Chris O’Dowd), and the unendingly creepy/affable Adam (Adam Driver) going full stalker on Hannah.  Oh yeah, and Jorma Taccone’s back.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  Season two of Girls, which will also feature Donald Glover, Andrew Rannells, Rita Wilson, Patrick Wilson, and Colin Quinn, premieres on HBO on January 13th.

First Images and New Synopsis for CUBAN FURY Starring Nick Frost and Rashida Jones

by     Posted 1 year, 341 days ago

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A couple of weeks ago, Steve attended the American Film Market (AFM) and was able to snag a few promo posters, images, and synopses for some upcoming films.  One such pic happens to be the upcoming salsa dancing revenge comedy Cuban Fury, and we’ve now got a detailed synopsis and the first images from the film.  The story revolves around a former salsa-dancing prodigy (Nick Frost) who attempts to regain his dancing form in order to impress his new American boss (Rashida Jones).  The pic is based on an original idea by Frost and also stars Bridesmaids standout Chris O’Dowd as Frost’s nemesis.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopsis.  Directed by James Griffiths, the film also stars Ian McShane and Olivia ColmanCuban Fury opens on March 22 in the UK and Ireland.

Charlie Hunnam Talks FRANKIE GO BOOM, the Success of SONS OF ANARCHY, His Desire to Direct, and More

by     Posted 2 years, 8 days ago

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The outrageous comedy Frankie Go Boom, from writer/director Jordan Roberts, tells the story of Frank Bartlett (Charlie Hunnam), who tells himself that he’s holed up in the desert to write, but in reality is just hiding from his family, namely his brother Bruce (Chris O’Dowd).  A reckless but charming addict, Bruce has always enjoyed secretly filming Frank in all sorts of compromising positions and sobriety isn’t making their relationship any better.  And as much as Frankie tries to move on with his life, family just keeps sucking him back in.

At the film’s press day, actor Charlie Hunnam spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about why he didn’t think he was right for this role, what finally convinced him to sign on, what made Ron Perlman the perfect actor for Phyllis, how it was to work with Lizzy Caplan, and giving CPR to a pig.  He also talked about what it’s been like to be a part of Sons of Anarchy and how bittersweet it is that they’re closer to the end of the show now than the beginning, and his desire to direct a film that he’s written for Tommy Flanagan (who plays Chibs on SOA) to star in.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

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