One of my favorite films I saw at this year’s Sundance Film Festival took me completely by surprise in the best way possible, and now you too will be able to enjoy the delightful wickedness of director Marjane Satrapi’s (Persepolis) dark comedy The Voices. Lionsgate has acquired US distribution for the pic, which stars Ryan Reynolds as a loveable psychopath who converses with his dog, cat, and other disembodied parts in his droll apartment. As I said in my review, Reynolds is positively stellar in the lead role and Satrapi mesmerizes as she takes us inside the mind of one twisted individual, basking in all of the colorful eccentricities of his point of view.
No details are given as to when Lionsgate will release The Voices, but the studio feels like a smart fit for the genre-bending pic. The film also stars Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver in supporting roles. Read the full press release after the jump.
The Voices is an insane movie about insanity. That’s not me being hyperbolic; this movie is joyously, unabashedly out of its mind. Director Marjane Satrapi, who previously helmed the coming-of-age animated pic Persepolis, takes audiences inside the mind of a psychopath in The Voices to wonderful results. Ryan Reynolds fearlessly plays a Jerry, a psychopath who converses with his dog, cat, and other disembodied parts in his droll apartment. Through Satrapi’s twisted vision, we’re given a skewed and darkly comic view of the world through Jerry’s eyes. It’s a wholly unique film that, while becoming a bit more conventional in its third act, is still gleefully violent, wickedly funny, and a whole lot of fun. Read my full review after the jump.
We are pleased to premiere the first teaser poster for The Voices, a Sundance 2014 entry directed by Marjane Satrapi (Persepolis). Ryan Reynolds, Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver star in the psychological thriller about Jerry Hickfang (Reynolds), a factory worker who fancies his co-worker in accounting: “When their relationship takes a sudden, murderous turn, Jerry’s evil talking cat and benevolent talking dog lead him down a fantastical path where he ultimately finds salvation.”
Adi Shankar (Lone Survivor), Spencer Silna (Escape Plan), Roy Lee (Oldboy), and Matthew Rhodes (Fire with Fire) are producing. Check out the teaser poster after the jump and look for our review of the film in the coming days,
A new trailer has been released for Runner Runner, and I can’t decide what the funniest thing about it is. Is it that the plot—Justin Timberlake playing a guy who falls in with bad people after being swindled in online poker—seems like it should be a movie from the mid-2000s? Or is it that the movie harkens back to the days when Ben Affleck made bad career choices? If there’s a sliver of hope for this movie, it’s that director Brad Furman and screenwriters Brian Koppelman & David Levien have good movies in their filmographies (The Lincoln Lawyer and Rounders, respectively). Runner Runner has a slight chance of being the pleasant surprise of fall 2013 instead of the forgettable flop of 2004.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer. The film also stars Gemma Arterton Anthony Mackie, David Costabile, Ben Schwartz, and Oliver Cooper,. Runner Runner opens October 4th.
On a hot and humid night last August, I spent the night on the San Juan, Puerto Rico set of director Brad Furman‘s (The Lincoln Lawyer) crime thriller Runner, Runner. The film stars Justin Timberlake as a Princeton student who is cheated out of his tuition money playing online poker and ends up traveling to Costa Rica to confront the on-line mastermind (Ben Affleck). The film also stars Gemma Arterton, Ben Schwartz, Dayo Okeniyi and Oliver Cooper and it was written by Brian Koppelman and David Levien (Rounders). For more on the film, watch the trailer.
During a break in filming, I got to participate in a group interview with Gemma Arterton. She talked about what drew her to the role, working with Timberlake and Affleck, shooting in Puerto Rico, being inspired by Gilda, and a lot more. Hit the jump for the interview. Runner, Runner opens September 27th.
A few new posters have landed online. Briefly:
- The Wolverine – A Japanese poster that makes us wonder once again why a guy with knives in his hands would need a sword. The film stars Hugh Jackman and open in 3D on July 26th.
- Runner Runner – Three character posters with gambling-related taglines for the thriller starring Justin Timberlake, Gemma Arterton, and Ben Affleck. The film opens September 27th.
- Frozen – A French teaser poster that’s much better than the U.S. version, which is basically just a title treatment. The film opens in 3D on November 27th, and features the voices of Kristen Bell, Jonathan Groff, and Idina Menzel.
- The 70th Annual Venice Film Festival – A neat poster that celebrates the work of Theo Angelopoulos and Federico Fellini. The film festival runs from August 28 – September 7th.
Hit the jump to check out the posters.
[This is a re-post of my review from the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival. Byzantium opens today in limited release.]
The possibilities of the vampire story have become increasingly limited. The story has been around for so long, and has been done so many ways, especially of late, that it’s difficult for a storyteller to come in and find a new spin within the predefined parameters of what we all agree is a “vampire”: a bloodsucking immortal. In his new film Byzantium, director Neil Jordan has seized upon the “immortal” part and how a vampire would always be, in a sense, frozen in the past and unable to move forward. Consequently, Byzantium has trouble gaining any momentum. As its protagonist moans about telling a story hundreds of times but never finding anyone to listen, the film struggles to find a rhythm and gets bogged down in some cringeworthy dialogue. But the most frustrating aspect of Byzantium is how it fails to pursue a thoughtful, gender-related idea that holds far more potential than another exploration of how vampires are accursed creatures sentenced to wander the earth alone forever and ever anon.
We’ve got new posters to share for these upcoming films:
- Out of the Furnace – The new revenge drama from Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) starring Christian Bale, Casey Affleck, Sam Shepard, Zoe Saldana, Willem Dafoe, Forest Whitaker, and Woody Harrelson opens in limited release on November 27th and expands on December 6th.
- Kick-Ass 2 – The upcoming action-comedy sequel stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Clark Duke, Donald Faison, John Leguizamo, Olga Kurkulina, and Jim Carrey. The film opens on August 16th.
- Runner, Runner – The thriller starring Justin Timberlake, Ben Affleck, Gemma Arterton, Ben Schwartz, Dayo Okeniyi, and Oliver Cooper opens September 27th.
Hit the jump to check out the new posters.
20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for director Brad Furman‘s (The Lincoln Lawyer) crime thriller Runner, Runner. The film stars Justin Timberlake as a Princeton student who is cheated out of his tuition money playing online poker and ends up indebted to the site’s corrupt boss (Ben Affleck). Furman’s The Lincoln Lawyer turned out to be a pleasantly surprising dramatic thriller, and Runner, Runner appears to quite similar to that pic in tone. No one looks to be gunning for Oscar glory here, but the interplay between Affleck and Timberlake is promising and it’s fun to see Affleck taking on a more villainous role. Moreover, the Puerto Rico locale provides a nice change of pace from the gritty, metropolis-set thrillers that populate the marketplace nowadays.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Gemma Arterton, Ben Schwartz, Dayo Okeniyi and Oliver Cooper. Runner, Runner opens September 27th.
Writer-director Tommy Wirkola’s style is one that will either delight you with its over-the-top gore and sick brand of humor, or will disgust you for the same reasons. I’m happily in the former camp. My first introduction to Wirkola’s work was the fantastic original film Dead Snow – two words: Nazi zombies. While I missed his broader effort Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters when it opened in theaters, last night I had the opportunity to attend the premiere of the film in all of its uncut glory. The film may not have found its audience stateside, but the global box office of nearly $225 million gives hope that Wirkola will be around for future efforts. Perhaps the unrated cut version of Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, available now on digital platforms and due out on Blu-ray/DVD on June 11th, will find more of a home with American audiences. For my review of that particular cut, which features 12 minutes of previously-unseen bloody and violent footage, hit the jump.
A new domestic trailer and poster for director Neil Jordan’s vampire drama Byzantium have been released online. The film stars Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan as a mother/daughter vampire duo who arrive in a small British town where their secret doesn’t stay kept for long. We’ve already seen a couple of international trailers for the pic, but this one does a nice job of teasing the kind of moody, dramatic vampire story that Jordan has crafted, not unlike his previous film Interview with the Vampire. We see a lot of Ronan’s character mulling over her immortality, and in a bit of a twist it appears that women are forbidden from being turned into vampires.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer and to see the new poster, and click here to read Matt’s review of the film from TIFF. The film also stars Sam Riley, Caleb Landry Jones, and Jonny Lee Miller. Byzantium opens on June 28th.
Here are a few casting announcements:
- Anna Kendrick (Pitch Perfect) and Gemma Arterton (Quantum of Solace) will star alongside Ryan Reynolds in the psychological thriller Voices, with a script from Michael R. Perry (Paranormal Activity) and Marjane Satrapi (Persepolis) on board to direct.
- Kate Hudson and Omar Sy (The Intouchables) have joined James Franco in the Henrik Genz (Terribly Happy) helmed film Good People, which will see Genz making his English-language debut.
Hit the jump for more on each of the projects.
We have a couple of casting stories for you this morning. First up, Vince Vaughn is in talks to star in the comedy Business Trip written by Steven Conrad (The Pursuit of Happyness). No director is currently attached, and THR reports that the vague logline is simply “the story centers on a man who flies to Europe for business. Travel mayhem ensues.” We also don’t know much about Vaughn’s character, but I’m willing to bet it’s the same one he almost always plays. He’ll probably keep playing it in the comedies he has coming later this year, The Internship (June 7th) and The Delivery Man (October 4th).
Hit the jump for some Tom Hiddleston casting news.
A new international trailer for Interview with the Vampire director Neil Jordan’s upcoming vampire drama Byzantium has been released online. The film stars Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan as a mother/daughter vampire duo who arrive in a small British town where their secret doesn’t stay kept for long. This latest trailer certainly highlights the film’s impressively stylish visuals, while also showcasing the intensity of the story. Matt caught the film at TIFF last year and expressed his disappointment with the finished product in his review, and I’m interested to see how Jordan sets this pic apart from Interview with the Vampire, which also explores the notion of cursed immortality.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Sam Riley, Caleb Landry Jones, and Jonny Lee Miller. Byzantium opens on June 28th.
Paramount Pictures is now officially developing a sequel to this past January’s R-rated genre pic Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. You’d be forgiven for being a bit surprised at the news, as the film was a flop domestically with a total gross of just $54.6 million. However, overseas the film has now taken in over $150 million. Against a purported budget of $50 million, the pic’s worldwide gross of $205 million is apparently enough to justify moving forward with the follow-up, as Deadline reports that a sequel is now officially in development. Hit the jump for more.