CHICAGO PD Review: An Old-School Cop Show with the Right Balance of Action and Drama

by     Posted 196 days ago

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“You tell me the truth so I can lie for you,” is how Sergeant Hank Voight (Jason Beghe) instructs his Chicago Intelligence Unit, proving himself to be a loyal, if unconventional leader.  Chicago PD is a spin-off of NBC’s windy city series Chicago Fire, and while there are some crossover characters and plots, the show not only stands on its own, but seems to improve upon its parent series.  Unlike FirePD is not just produced by, but created by veteran TV content magician Dick Wolf, and PD feels (in the best of ways) like those early years of Law & Order – plus a little more melodrama, but that’s not a bad change.  Hit the jump for more.

Exclusive Clip from THE LAST DAYS ON MARS

by     Posted 229 days ago

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Now available on demand is director Ruairi Robinson’s The Last Days on Mars, a sci-fi horror thriller that centers on a group of space explorers collecting specimens on Mars.  As our exclusive clip from the film shows, things go terribly wrong during the expedition as each of the astronauts fall victim to a mysterious force.  The clip also reminds viewers to make sure you know who’s in the spacesuit before you open the airlock hatch.

Starring Liev SchreiberElias KoteasOlivia WilliamsRomola GaraiJohnny HarrisGoran Kostic, and Tom Cullen, The Last Days on Mars opens in a limited theatrical release Friday, December 6th. Hit the jump to watch our exclusive clip from the film.

First Trailer and Poster for THE LAST DAYS ON MARS Starring Liev Schreiber

by     Posted 309 days ago

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Magnet has released the first trailer and poster for director Ruairi Robinson’s sci-fi thriller The Last Days on Mars.  The film follows the crew of a Mars base that discovers fossilized evidence of bacterial life, but their unauthorized expedition leads to disaster when one of the crew members falls into a sinkhole, and the life-form they’ve discovered might still be alive.  The trailer promises an interesting twist on the Alien-esque premise, though it’s disappointing to see that it appears to give away almost the entire movie.  Nevertheless, the cast is promising and the VFX are impressive, so maybe Mars can be a saving grace following a disappointing summer of sci-fi.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer and poster.  The film stars Liev Schreiber, Elias Koteas, Olivia Williams, Romola Garai, Johnny Harris, Goran Kostic, and Tom CullenThe Last Days on Mars will be available VOD on October 31st and hits theaters on December 6th.

TIFF 2013: DEVIL’S KNOT Review

by     Posted 316 days ago

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The injustice perpetrated against The West Memphis Three—three teenagers who in 1994 were wrongly convicted of the brutal slayings of three young boys in Memphis, Arkansas—was powerfully revealed in the 1996 documentary Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills.  Directors Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky proceed to keep interest in the case alive with their two sequels, and the accused were finally released from jail in 2011.  Berlinger and Sinofsky did the hard work and compelling filmmaking that captured the drama and tragedy of the case.  Atom Egoyan’s Devil’s Knot takes that hard work and turns it into a based-on-true-events movie that’s not only pointless, but also exploitative and disrespectful.

Magnet Picks up Rights to LAST DAYS ON MARS Starring Liev Schreiber; First Image Released

by     Posted 1 year, 14 days ago

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Magnet has acquired the distribution rights to Ruairi Robinson‘s debut feature film, Last Days on Mars.  The sci-fi thriller follows the crew of a Mars base that discovers fossilized evidence of bacterial life, but their unauthorized expedition leads to disaster when one of the crew members falls into a sinkhole, and the life-form they’ve discovered might still be alive.  It’s a solid premise for a flick, and the great cast includes Liev Schreiber, Elias Koteas, Olivia Williams, Romola Garai, and Tom Cullen.  I’m also interested in checking it out based on Robinson’s creepy 2011 short, “BlinkyTM”.

Hit the jump for the press release and to see the first image from the movie, which debuted at the Director’s Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival.  Last Days on Mars will be released on VOD later this year.  I’ve also included “BlinkyTM” for those who haven’t seen it.

TV Casting: Kevin Pollak Joins BEVERLY HILLS COP Pilot; Peter Sarsgaard Signs on for THE KILLING Season 3

by     Posted 1 year, 160 days ago

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We’ve got a couple of interesting TV casting stories to share this evening.  First up, prolific character actor Kevin Pollak has joined the cast of CBS’ upcoming Beverly Hills Cop pilotEddie Murphy is producing the hourlong series alongside Shawn Ryan (The Shield, Last Resort), and Brandon T. Jackson (Percy Jackson & the Olympians) was cast in the lead role of Axel Foley’s son last October.  Now THR reports that Pollak is set to co-star as Rodney Daloof, the in-house lawyer for the Beverly Hills Police Department.  The character is described as “incredibly risk-averse, a stickler for the rules, and a loud-mouthed bully,” so yeah, it sounds like Pollak should be able to knock this one out of the park.

The series is envisioned as a police procedural with a comedic element, and Murphy will be reprising his role as the senior Foley in the pilot with the possibility of recurring should CBS pick the pilot up to series.  Hit the jump for news concerning Peter Sarsgaard taking on a major role in the upcoming third season of AMC’s The Killing.

25 New Images and 4 Set Photos from A VERY HAROLD & KUMAR 3D CHRISTMAS

by     Posted 2 years, 278 days ago

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Part of me feels like I’m one of the few people looking forward to another Harold & Kumar movie, but I don’t care.  The Harold & Kumar movies are delightfully madcap, feature a nice mix of gross-out humor and absurdity, and it looks like they’ve gone all out with A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas.  Director Todd Strauss-Schulson seems to have acknowledged that 3D is a mostly-gimmicky technology and used it to augment the shenanigans of his lead characters.

New Line has released twenty-five new images along with four new set photos and I continue to remain jazzed to see the movie.  Hit the jump to check out the images.  A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas opens November 4th.

LET ME IN Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 3 years, 145 days ago

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Some of the most demanding challenges for a filmmaker are to adapt a novel for the screen, translate a foreign work for an English-speaking audience and to put their own mark on a remake without demeaning the original. Matt Reeves’ Let Me In manages to accomplish all three tasks.

The adolescent-centric vampire film, a remake of Swedish director Tomas Alfredson’s Let the Right One In, is an adaptation of the John Ajvide Lindqvist novel by the same name. Reeves’ Let Me In is actually less a remake and more a shot for shot tribute to the original with his own interpretations placed strategically throughout the film. To see how the American film differs from the original and just why this works, hit the jump.

Extended Trailer for WINNIE Starring Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard

by     Posted 3 years, 249 days ago

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An extended trailer (it’s about four minutes) for the Winnie Mandela biopic, Winnie, has gone online.  The film stars Jennifer Hudson as the title character and Terrence Howard as Nelson Mandela.  It looks like a made-for-TV movie and the real shocker is Howard.  I’ve always been a fan of the guy, but looking at the trailer, I was agape how terrible he looks as Mandela.  But the whole endeavor looks like a train wreck from the hammy narration to the awful old-age make-up on Hudson.  I’ll be surprised if this actually makes its way to theaters.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.

Director Matt Reeves and Kodi Smit-McPhee Video Interview LET ME IN

by     Posted 3 years, 296 days ago

Last week I had the opportunity to sit down and discuss Let Me In with writer/director Matt Reeves and the star of the film, Kodi Smit-McPhee, during Fantastic Fest.  I had a notepad full of questions to ask, as I loved the original Swedish film, had finished reading the book a week prior, and screened the remake the day before, but I was given a small window to talk to them so I tried to make my questions count. Join me after the break as we discuss the plot points he wanted to keep from the original film, the decision behind the use of CGI and the vampire aesthetic, and how long Kodi can really hold his breath.

If you haven’t already, check out my review of Let Me In from Fantastic Fest here and look for my interview with Dylan Minnette and Elias Koteas in the coming days.  For now, enjoy the interview and look for Let Me In tomorrow.

LET ME IN Premiere Celebrity Images

by     Posted 3 years, 297 days ago

The highly anticipated American remake Let Me In, starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Kodi Smit-McPhee, had its Hollywood premiere at the Mann Bruin Theater in Westwood Village on September 27th. This version – which tells the story of a bullied young boy named Owen (Smit-McPhee) who befriends a young female vampire (Moretz) living in secrecy – is writer/director Matt Reeves’ (Cloverfield) reworking of the acclaimed Swedish book and film, Let the Right One In. Check out more about who attended after the jump:

Casting News: Jessica Chastain joins THE HELP; Fred Ward in 30 MINUTES OR LESS; Elias Koteas is on for WINNIE

by     Posted 4 years, 28 days ago

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There’s nothing like starting off your Friday afternoon with a nice big bowl of casting news. For starters, Jessica Chastain (upcoming The Tree of Life, alongside Brad Pitt and Sean Penn) has signed on to The Help. According to THR, the DreamWorks film is adapted from the best-selling novel by Kathryn Stockett and the story will center around “black maids working in white households in the early 1960s in Jackson, Miss.” As we let you know back in April, Viola Davis (Doubt) is already set to star in the film and, since that time, Emma Stone has also joined the cast.

Hit the jump to catch up on the rest of your well-balanced afternoon casting news including Fred Ward joining 30 Minutes or Less and Elias Koteas signing up for the Winnie Mandela biopic, cleverly entitled Winnie.

THE KILLER INSIDE ME Teaser Trailer Starring Casey Affleck

by     Posted 4 years, 79 days ago

Icon Pictures has released the UK teaser trailer for Michael Winterbottom’s The Killer Inside Me.  It’s one of the best trailers you’ll see this year as it makes the film look mean, nasty, and utterly compelling.  Casey Affleck looks amazing as the lead character, a sheriff who pretends he’s a charming rube when in actuality he’s murderous sociopath.  Unlike the promo trailer that showed up last November, you don’t have to worry about being spoiled.

The film played at this year’s Sundance Film Festival to widespread controversy, particularly relating to questions about whether or not the film was misogynistic due to its portrayal of brutal violence against women.  UK audiences can judge for themselves when the film hits theaters on June 4th.  US audiences will have to wait until June 18th for the flick’s limited release.  The film co-stars Jessica Alba, Kate Hudson, Bill Pullman, Ned Beatty, Simon Baker, and Elias Koteas.  Hit the jump to check out the trailer from The Guardian [via The Playlist] along with the official plot synopsis.

SHUTTER ISLAND Review

by     Posted 4 years, 155 days ago

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Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island is not about solving a mystery. It’s about solving madness.  The legendary director’s latest film is a gothic horror that intrigues without deception, scares without shocks, and weaves a beautiful tapestry of haunting insanity without ever relying on twists and last-minute reveals.  Once again, we see that Martin Scorsese cannot be predicted beyond an expectation of crafting a great film.  By combining breathtaking technical work with memorable performances, Scorsese has added yet another film to his list of cinematic achievements.

Trailer for DEFENDOR Starring Woody Harrelson, Elias Koteas, Sandra Oh, and Kat Dennings

by     Posted 4 years, 158 days ago

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It always feels a bit cruel to show you a trailer for a film you probably won’t get to see in theaters.  Peter Stebbings’ Defendor, which stars Woody Harrelson as a regular guy going into the superhero business with the most basic of weapons (e.g. marbles, angry wasps), played to positive notices at last year’s Toronto Film Festival, and today, TrailerAddict has debuted the trailer for the film. The movie looks smart, funny, and I want to see it now.  Sadly, unless it scores the highest per-screen gross at the box office when it opens in L.A. on February 26th, then we probably won’t be seeing Harrelson fight crime until the film hits DVD and Blu-ray on April 13th.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer along with the official synopsis.

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