THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 1 Teaser Trailer Hints at the Battle to Come

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Lionsgate has released the first teaser trailer for the first half of the conclusion to the Hunger Games series, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, directed by Francis Lawrence.  Since the teaser trailer is only a minute, Lionsgate has wisely chosen to let the visuals and minimal dialogue set the stage at the battle to come.  I especially enjoyed seeing Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) and Alma Coin (Julianne Moore) discussing Katniss’ purpose in the rebellion.  Plutarch insists, “Listen to me.  No one else can do this, but her.”  Coin disagrees.  “She won’t be able to handle it.  The games destroyed her.”  Shortly after their scene we get a glimpse of Natalie Dormer as Cressida with her half shaved head as well as Liam Hemsworth looking serious as Gale.   Hit the jump to check it out.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 also stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Jena Malone, Sam Claflin, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Jeffrey Wright,, and Donald Sutherland, and opens in theaters November 21st.  Watch the first The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 trailer after the break.

First Images from MY OLD LADY, NED RIFLE, THE RIOT CLUB, and STILL ALICE

by     Posted 8 days ago

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Earlier today, the Toronto International Film Festival announced additions to their Galas and Special Presentations programs. Among the films with new images and synopses are:

  • My Old Lady (Directed by Israel Horovitz) starring Maggie Smith, Kevin Kline, and Kristin Scott Thomas.
  • Ned Rifle (Directed by Hal Hartley) starring Aubrey Plaza.
  • The Riot Club (Directed by Lone Scherfig) starring Natalie Dormer, Max Irons, Sam Clafin, Jessica Brown Findlay, and Douglas Booth.
  • Still Alice (Directed by Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland) starring Kristen Stewart, Alec Baldwin, Kate Bosworth, and Julianne Moore.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses. The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 4 – 14th.

NON-STOP Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 31 days ago

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Liam Neeson has become the go-to asskicker of late.  Even more so than Jason Statham, audiences have responded to Neeson’s world-weary charms and commanding presence.  So it should be no surprise that Jaume Collet-Serra’s Non-Stop was a modest hit earlier this year.  Neeson stars as air marshal Bill Marks, who is forced to act when he’s contacted on an international flight to deliver a $150 Million ransom or a passenger will die every twenty minutes.  My review of Non-Stop follows after the jump. 

Oscar Beat: Early Contenders Arise from Cannes Film Festival

by     Posted 66 days ago

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It seems like only yesterday we were closing out the lengthy and eventful awards season with my 2015 preview installment of Oscar Beat, but the next race is already starting to heat up.  The first awards barometer of each year arrives with the Cannes Film Festival, and the most recent fest is no different.  A number of potential contenders premiered on the Croisette over the past couple of weeks, and after all the standing ovations (and a fair amount of boos), some serious Oscar contenders have emerged.

Hit the jump as I take a look at the post-Cannes Oscar landscape, which includes contenders like Foxcatcher, Mr. TurnerMaps to the Stars, and even a possible Oscar nomination for Channing Tatum.

WINTER SLEEP Wins the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival; FOXCATCHER’s Bennett Miller Takes Best Director

by     Posted 68 days ago

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Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan is the winner of the coveted Palme d’Or at the 64th XX Cannes Film Festival for his three-hour twenty-minute film Winter Sleep. The director had fierce competition… with better films – mainly Mr. Turner by Mike Leigh, Mommy by Xavier Dolan, Foxcatcher by Bennett Miller, The Homesman by Tommy Lee Jones and the critically-acclaimed Still the Water by Naomi Kawase.

Alice Rohrwacher‘s Le Meraviglie (The Wonders) won the Grand Prize, while Bennett Miller takes home the best direction Palme for another favorite amongst critics, Foxcatcher. Julianne Moore won the best actress award for her performance as a C-list actress in David Cronenberg‘s Maps to the Stars and Timothy Spall the best actor award for his unforgettable rendition in the title role in Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner.  Hit the jump for more, including the full list of winners.

Exarchopoulos Joins BASTILLE DAY; Shannon on Board for FREEHELD; Rourke and Wolff to Lead ASHBY; McAdams and Nyong’o Circling SOUTPAW

by     Posted 77 days ago

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With the Cannes Film Festival underway, plenty of wheeling and dealing is going down, so that means lots of casting news.  Briefly:

  • Adèle Exarchopoulos (Blue Is the Warmest Color) is joining Idris Elba in James WatkinsBastille Day.
  • Michael Shannon will co-star with Julianne Moore and Ellen Page in Freeheld.
  • Mickey Rourke, Nat Wolff, Emma Roberts, and Sarah Silverman will star in Ashby.
  • Rachel McAdams and Lupita Nyong’o are circling the drama Southpaw.

Hit the jump for more on this casting news.

First 3 Clips from David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Starring Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, and Robert Pattinson

by     Posted 86 days ago

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Ahead of its Cannes Film Festival premiere, three new Maps to the Stars clips have gone online.  David Cronenberg‘s latest film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals, his wife who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter, who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana, an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother.  These new clips feature most of the main characters, and they provide a sense of unease as well as Hollywood satire.  I don’t know if that will be the overall tone of the movie, but there’s definitely something quietly unnerving about these clips.

Hit the jump to check out the clips [they're slightly NSFW because of language].  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah GadonMaps to the Stars opens in France and Italy on May 21st.  A U.S. release date has yet to be announced.

New Images from David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Starring Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, and Robert Pattinson

by     Posted 101 days ago

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With its premiere set for the Cannes Film Festival, new Maps to the Stars images have gone online.  David Cronenberg‘s latest film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals, his wife who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter, who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana, an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother. The two trailers have been cryptic, and we’ll probably get a better sense of the movie after it plays at the festival.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah GadonMaps to the Stars opens in France and Italy on May 21st.  A U.S. release date has yet to be announced.

NSFW Trailer for David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Starring Mia Wasikowska, Julianne Moore, John Cusack, and Robert Pattinson

by     Posted 107 days ago

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A new Maps to the Stars trailer has gone online, and this one is a French, NSFW version (it’s NSFW because of language and nudity, not because it’s French).  The film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals, his wife who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter, who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana, an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother.  Like yesterday’s trailer, I’m still not quite sure what to make of the movie.  There are clearly some darkly comic elements, but there’s also some serious intensity, and it’s sometimes difficult to tell where one ends and the other begins.  I can’t wait to see this flick.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah GadonMaps to the Stars opens in France and Italy on May 21st, and will probably make its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.  A U.S. release date has yet to be announced.

First Trailer for David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Starring Mia Wasikowska, Julianne Moore, and Robert Pattinson

by     Posted 108 days ago

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The first Maps to the Stars trailer has been released.  The film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals, his wife who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter, who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana, an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother.  I’m not quite sure what to make of the footage in this promo trailer, and that’s part of what makes me so excited for this movie.  The other part is that this is a new David Cronenberg movie, and I’m eager to see anything he does.

Hit the jump to watch the Maps to the Stars trailer.  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah Gadon

TOP 5: Adam Driver Nears Deal to Play Villain in STAR WARS EPISODE 7, GODZILLA Trailer, NON-STOP, Cinemath Meets Oscar Beat, VERONICA MARS Set Visit

by     Posted 152 days ago

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Lying somewhat quietly between two of David Fincher‘s most beloved works is The Game (1997) starring Michael Douglas. Although it failed to reach the level of critical and box office success enjoyed by Seven (1995) or the cult classic status of Fight Club (1999), after watching its Criterion Collection DVD release this past week I came away thinking that it may actually be one of Fincher’s best directorial efforts. Working from a script by John Brancato and Michael Ferris (2/3 of the writing trio that helped bring you the 2004 Catwoman screenplay that you enjoyed so much), Fincher’s cold/muted color palette, striking visual style, and fantastic pacing help elevate the interesting, albeit occasionally absurd, screenplay to another level. The result is a haunting work that expertly sets up and tears down the callous, calculated world of corporate wealth by forcing Douglas’ Ebenezer Scrooge archetype to see the shell of a life he has outside of his work and possessions. The Game may go off the rails at times, but with Fincher’s steady hand guiding the story it does so in all the extremely dark, right ways.

My Fincher recommendation aside, I should mention that the Top 5 will take a quick week hiatus to allow me to travel next weekend. In the meantime, this week’s installment highlights the Star Wars: Episode VII casting news involving Adam Driver, the new trailer for director Gareth EdwardsGodzilla, a review and interviews for Non-Stop, worlds colliding as Brendan’s Cinemath meets Adam’s Oscar Beat, and our Veronica Mars set visit coverage. As you’ve come to expect, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.

Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore Talk NON-STOP, First Flights, Air Marshal Combat Tactics, Maintaining the Mystery, Being Approached by Fans, and More

by     Posted 154 days ago

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He rescued his daughter from human traffickers in Taken, took on a wolf with broken bottles taped to his knuckles in The Grey and now Liam Neeson is off to play an air marshal responsible for rescuing an airplane full of innocent people from an anonymous terrorist threatening to kill a passenger every 20 minutes.  Is it the woman (Julianne Moore) next to him who makes a stink about having the window seat?  Is it the other air marshal (Anson Mount) aboard?  What about the hothead (Corey Stoll) in coach?  Or perhaps have his own demons just caught up to him and warped his perspective?

With the answer coming our way when Non-Stop hits theaters this weekend, Neeson and Moore took the time to sit down with the New York press contingent to discuss personal in-flight memories, close quarter fight techniques, what to expect if you decide to approach Neeson in an airport with a Star Wars photo to sign, and more.  Catch our full press conference coverage after the jump. 

NON-STOP Review

by     Posted 154 days ago

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Non-Stop manages the difficult task of being a solid thriller as well as constantly silly, and the result is a film that was far more entertaining than I expected it to be.  Director Jaume Collet-Serra‘s previously filmography has been underwhelming to say the least, and his previous collaboration with star Liam Neeson, the thriller Unknown, was awful.  But paired with a solid script from John W. Richardson, Christopher Roach, and Ryan Engle, Collet-Serra keeps the story moving, the whodunit a constant question, and utilizes Neeson’s performance to ground the picture so that our eye-rolls don’t do a complete 360.

17 New Images from NON-STOP Feature New Looks at Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore, and Michelle Dockery

by     Posted 170 days ago

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Director Jaume Collet-Serra’s sky-high action thriller Non-Stop recently shared a few clips that show Air Marshal Bill Marks (Liam Neeson) in action attempting to track down an assassin hiding in plain sight somewhere on the passenger jet.  Now, we have a collection of new images that show off the rest of the cast.  In addition to Neeson and Collet-Serra, we get a look at fellow passengers and crew, played by Julianne Moore, Michelle Dockery, Nate Parker, Scoot McNairy, Lupita Nyong’o, Linus Roache, Anson Mount, Corey Hawkins, Corey Stoll, and Frank Deal.  Your guess is as good as mine as to which one of them is the culprit.  Hit the jump to take a look at the new images.  Non-Stop opens February 28th.

Watch 5 Clips from Jaume Collet-Serra’s NON-STOP Starring Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore

by     Posted 173 days ago

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With director Jaume Collet-Serra‘s Non-Stop opening February 28th, Universal has provided us with five clips from the upcoming action/thriller.  If you haven’t seen the trailer, the film takes place on a transatlantic flight where a U.S. Air Marshall (Liam Neeson) must stop a mysterious hijacker who is threatening to kill a passenger every 20 minutes until $150 million is transferred into a secret account.  The film also stars Julianne Moore, Corey Stoll, Michelle Dockery, Scoot McNairy, Lupita Nyong’O, Bar Paly, and Anson Mount.

Like most of you, I’ve love getting to watch Neeson when he gets to punch people in the face, which I suspect will be a big part of Non-Stop.  I honestly can’t wait to see it.  Hit the jump to watch the clips.

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