The Films of David Fincher: THE SOCIAL NETWORK

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[With the upcoming release of his new film Gone Girl, I’m taking a look back at the work of director David Fincher.  These articles contain spoilers.]

If The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a director and a screenwriter working at cross-purposes, then The Social Network are the two sides working in perfect harmony.  Fincher’s cold, austere tone was energized by Aaron Sorkin‘s fast-paced, witty dialogue, and Sorkin’s grandiloquent verbiage was grounded by Fincher’s realism.  In some ways, the movie is highly stylized and yet it’s indisputably honest when it comes to the characters, stakes, environment, and tension of the story.  The facts may be in dispute, but this much is true: The Social Network is one of the defining works of the 21st century.

The Work of David Fincher: Introduction, Commercials, Music Videos, and THE BEAT OF THE LIVE DRUM

by     Posted 10 days ago

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In an age where movies are designed to appeal to the broadest demographic possible and no one wants to feel too uncomfortable, David Fincher has gone against the grain time and time again, but his work is consistently engaging.  “I don’t know how much movies should entertain. To me, I’m always interested in movies that scar,” he told The Independent in 2010.  Known for his exacting, precise, and unique approach on-set, Fincher has consistently pushed boundaries with films that are divisive, thought-provoking, biting, and yet, for all their cynicism, strangely heartfelt.

In anticipation of the release of David Fincher’s latest film, Gone Girl, I’ll be looking back at his career and filmography.  In this first installment, I’ll be examining his work in commercials, music videos, and his first movie, Rick Springfield’s concert picture The Beat of the Live Drum.

HUSTLE & FLOW Director Craig Brewer in Talks to Helm THE IDOLMAKER Remake for Producer Justin Timberlake

by     Posted 211 days ago

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MGM’s The Idolmaker remake has a new director.  Though Ryan Gosling was initially attached to star in and direct a new iteration of Taylor Hackford’s 1980 musical drama, he subsequently left the project.  Now Variety reports that Hustle & Flow director Craig Brewer is in talks to take the helm as Justin Timberlake has closed a deal to produce.  The original film starred Ray Sharkey and told the story of a songwriter/manager searching for “the next big thing.”  The pic was based on the life of concert promoter and manager Bob Marcucci, but it’s unknown if this new iteration will still take cues from Marcucci’s life or if it will explore new territory.

Brewer certainly has experience with music-themed projects, as he wrote and directed 2005’s Hustle & Flow and the 2011 Footloose remake.  Since he has a tendency to also write the films that he directs, one imagines he’ll have a hand in the screenplay for The Idolmaker.  Watch the trailer for the original film after the jump.

Watch a Clip from INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Featuring Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake and Adam Driver with Commentary from T-Bone Burnett

by     Posted 271 days ago

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Currently playing in theaters is the new Coen Brothers’ film, Inside Llewyn Davis.  The folk music drama centers on the title character (Oscar Isaac), a young singer attempting to navigate the Greenwich Village scene in the early 1960s.  If you need more of a hook to get you into the theater, this new clip from the film highlights the musicality of the picture, with Isaac recording a song live alongside costars Justin Timberlake and Adam Driver.  Stick around after the clip for commentary from executive music producer, T-Bone Burnett.

Also starring Carey Mulligan, John Goodman and Garrett Hedlund, Inside Llewyn Davis is in theaters now.  Hit the jump to watch the clip.

Watch Full Performance of “Please Mr. Kennedy” from INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Plus a New Featurette

by     Posted 307 days ago

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The Coen BrothersInside Llewyn Davis is terrific, and it’s also probably the duo’s saddest movie.  However, it also has some hilarious moments, and its funniest scene by far is when struggling folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) reluctantly plays “Please Mr. Kennedy” with his friend (Justin Timblerlake) and another musician (Adam Driver) who has a unique approach to the song.  I’ve recommended holding off on listening to the song until you see the movie, but that’s because I wanted you to see Driver performing it.  Now you can, and you absolutely should.  There’s also a new featurette, which does a good job explaining the music’s role in the production and in the story.

Hit the jump to check out the clip and featurette.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Stark Sands, Garrett Hedlund, and John GoodmanInside Llewyn Davis opens December 6th.

3 Clips and 5 New Images from the Coen Brothers’ INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Starring Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake, and John Goodman

by     Posted 308 days ago

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CBS Films has released three clips and five new images from the Coen Brothers‘ upcoming film, Inside Llewyn Davis.  The story takes place in the Greenwich Village folk scene in 1961, and follows singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) as he struggles with his career and strained personal relationships.  It’s one of the best films I’ve seen this year and the soundtrack is a must-buy.  These are good clips that won’t spoil anything, and they also highlight Isaac’s strong performance.  John Goodman‘s character, an ornery jazz musician, also explains a traditional commit suicide.

Hit the jump to check out the clips and the images.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Adam Driver, Stark Sands, and Garrett HedlundInside Llewyn Davis opens December 6th.

Jimmy Fallon, Paul Rudd, and John Goodman to Host SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE in December

by     Posted 314 days ago

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Saturday Night Live has lined up a fantastic trio of hosts for its December shows.  Paul Rudd will kick off his third appearance as host on December 7th with musical guest One Direction, no doubt promoting Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues; could a Will Ferrell cameo be in the cards?  Next up is Inside Llewyn Davis star John Goodman making his 13th appearance on December 14th with musical guest Kings of Leon.  Finally, SNL will finish strong with the promising duo of Jimmy Fallon as host and Justin Timberlake as musical guest on December 21st.  Not a bad way to get ready for the holidays.

Stream the Soundtrack for the Coen Brothers’ INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS

by     Posted 331 days ago

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I’ve been counting down to November 11th to buy the excellent soundtrack for Inside Llewyn Davis.  As I said in my review, music hasn’t been this important in a Coen Brothers‘ movie since O Brother, Where Art Thou?, and once again, music producer T-Bone Burnett has put together another amazing collection of songs.  This time around, it’s folk music, and I love every song on this album.  The entire soundtrack is now available to stream on NPR, but fair warning: you should probably skip the track “Please Mr. Kennedy”.  It’s a funny song, but it will work better if you see Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake, and Adam Driver perform it in the movie first.

Click here to listen to the soundtrack, and click here to pre-order it.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Garrett Hedlund, Stark Sands, and John GoodmanInside Llewyn Davis opens December 6th.

New Trailer for the Coen Brothers’ INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Highlights the Comedy and the Critical Raves; Plus 4 New Images

by     Posted 359 days ago

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CBS Films has released a new trailer for the Coen BrothersInside Llewyn Davis.  The story takes place in the Greenwich Village folk scene in 1961, and follows singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) as he struggles with his career and strained personal relationships.  I saw the film at the New York Film Festival, and though it was great.  It’s melancholy, but also quite moving, and the music is absolutely wonderful.  The new trailer provides a nice blend of the comic moments, the drama, and plenty of blurbs from ecstatic critics.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Garrett Hedlund, and John GoodmanInside Llewyn Davis opens December 6th.

Ben Affleck Plays a Billionaire with a Boat … in this First Clip from RUNNER RUNNER

by     Posted 1 year, 39 days ago

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While you likely have an opinion on Ben Affleck being tapped to play Bruce Wayne/Batman in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel, you may have overlooked his participation in Brad Furman’s upcoming gambling thriller, Runner Runner.  He looks comfortable playing a billionaire on his yacht in this first clip, which features Affleck and Justin Timberlake dabbling in a financial planning conversation of sorts.  This relatively early scene sets up the relationship between Affleck’s entrepreneur and Timberlake’s poor college student that likely intensifies throughout the picture.  Check out Steve’s interview with Timberlake here for more on Runner Runner.

Also starring Gemma Arterton, Anthony Mackie, David Costabile, Ben Schwartz and Oliver Cooper, Runner Runner opens October 4th.  Hit the jump to watch the first clip.

New Trailer for The Coen Brothers’ INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Starring Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, and Justin Timberlake

by     Posted 1 year, 40 days ago

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Inside Llewyn Davis is my most-anticipated film of 2013.  The Coen Brothers are among my all-time favorite filmmakers, and if I could have afforded to fly to France to see Inside Llewyn Davis premiere at Cannes this past May, I would have.  The film garnered rave reviews at the festival, and won the Grand Prix Award.  CBS Films has released a new trailer featuring plenty of footage, and I love the balance between the hardships faced by the eponymous character (played by Oscar Isaac) and the humor (he’s got a great answer to “Do you think about the future?”).  Like the previous trailer, Marcus Mumford‘s cover of “Fare Thee Well” plays over footage.  The song will be available on the soundtrack, which will be released on September 17th.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Garrett Hedlund, and John GoodmanInside Llewyn Davis will play at the New York Film Festival, and opens December 6th.

New Posters for THE WOLVERINE, RUNNER RUNNER, FROZEN, and the 70th Annual Venice Film Festival

by     Posted 1 year, 88 days ago

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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.

New Trailer and Images for The Coen Brothers’ INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Starring Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, and Justin Timberlake [UPDATED]

by     Posted 1 year, 92 days ago

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CBS Films has released a new trailer for The Coen Brothers‘ new film, Inside Llewyn Davis.  The film takes place during the 1961 Greenwich Village folk scene, and follows a week in the life of frustrated musician Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac).  This is my most-anticipated film of 2013, and I love the melancholy tone of Oscar Isaac and Marcus Mumford‘s cover of “Fare Thee Well” that plays over the trailer (the song will be available on the soundtrack that comes out September 17th).  The film premiered to rave reviews at Cannes earlier this year, and I can’t see this movie soon enough.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film also stars Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Garrett Hedlund, and John GoodmanInside Llewyn Davis opens December 6th. [Update: CBS Films has released a couple of new images from the film, which are now included after the jump.]

INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS Soundtrack Set for Release on September 17; Features Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, Marcus Mumford, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 95 days ago

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One of my most anticipated films of this year is Joel and Ethan Coen’s folk music drama Inside Llewyn Davis.  Not only does the film look fantastic, but it also promises to highlight some truly impressive musical numbers from the film’s talented ensemble.  Nonesuch Records has announced today that the soundtrack for Inside Llewyn Davis will hit stores on September 17th, and they’ve revealed the full tracklist for the record.  Produced by the legendary T Bone Burnett and the Coen brothers, the soundtrack features performances by actors Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, and Adam Driver as well as Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons fame, Punch Brothers, and a previously unreleased recording from Bob Dylan.  This definitely looks like a must-own.

Hit the jump to check out the full tracklisting and listen to some of the songs.  Click here to preorder the soundtrack.  Inside Llewyn Davis opens on December 6th.

Justin Timberlake Talks Initially Wanting to Play the Villain, Working in Puerto Rico, and More on the Set of RUNNER, RUNNER

by     Posted 1 year, 97 days ago

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).

During a break in filming, I got to participate in a group interview with Justin Timberlake.  He talked about why he wanted to do the project, how it’ll be rated R, how he prepared for the role, what it’s been like filming in Puerto Rico, and a lot more.  In addition, he talks about Saturday Night Live and if he’d ever consider being a part of the cast for a full season.  Hit the jump to either read or listen to what Timberlake had to say.  Runner, Runner opens September 27th.

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