NON-STOP Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 23 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. 

A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST Review

by     Posted 55 days ago

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After twelve seasons of Family Guy and his first feature film, Ted, Seth MacFarlane‘s sense of humor is well-established at this point.  He’s unlikely to lose the fans he has or garner new ones.  His comedy is slightly off-kilter, gleefully offensive, and highly self-aware.  MacFarlane’s latest film, A Million Ways to Die in the West, barely veers away from this formula, although it keeps the reluctant sentiment and plotting he displayed in Ted.  Once again, it’s clear that his passion lies in cramming in as many jokes as possible, but Million Ways feels overlong despite being consistently funny.  But its biggest problem is trying to build up a central character in a movie where its director/co-writer/star is constantly tearing everyone and everything else down.

First A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES Trailer, Poster, and Images Feature Liam Neeson Working Outside the Law

by     Posted 55 days ago

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Universal Pictures has released the first A Walk Among the Tombstones trailer, poster, and images for director Scott Frank’s (The Lookout) dark crime thriller.  The film stars Liam Neeson as an alcoholic ex-cop who investigates the kidnapping of a heroin drug lord’s wife, teaming up with a heroin trafficker (Downton Abbey‘s Dan Stevens) and his brother to hunt down the men responsible for the crime.  Despite a pretty awful-looking wig on Neeson at the beginning of the trailer, this actually looks like a much darker, more interesting film than your standard “above the law” actioner.  Frank has a number of excellent credits as a screenwriter (Minority Report, Out of Sight), and I was a big fan of his previous directorial effort The Lookout, so I’m certainly looking forward to seeing what he’s put together here.  So far so good.

Hit the jump to check out the A Walk Among the Tombstones trailer, poster, and images.  The film also stars David Harbour and Boyd HolbrookA Walk Among the Tombstones opens in theaters on September 19th.

6 Clips and 11 New Images from Seth MacFarlane’s A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST

by     Posted 67 days ago

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Universal Pictures has provided us with a batch of new A Million Ways to Die in the West images and clips from director Seth MacFarlane’s upcoming Western comedy.  MacFarlane also co-wrote and stars in the pic as a cowardly farmer who backs out of a gunfight and subsequently loses his girlfriend.  When he later meets the wife of a notorious outlaw who teaches him how to shoot, he gets an opportunity to win his pride back, but must choose between reclaiming an old love or kindling a new one.  Judging by the trailers and clips, fans of Family Guy or MacFarlane’s directorial debut Ted will likely feel right at home with this new feature.  I’m personally curious to see how MacFarlane fares as the lead, since the ever-busy multi-hyphenate is making his live-action acting debut as the star of the film as well.

Hit the jump to take a look at the new A Million Ways to Die images and clips.  The film also stars Charlize TheronAmanda SeyfriedNeil Patrick HarrisGiovanni RibisiSarah Silverman, and Liam Neeson.  A Million Ways to Die in the West opens May 30th.

FANTASTIC FOUR Casts Reg E. Cathey; Liam Neeson Joins A MONSTER CALLS; Dan Stevens in CRIMINAL ACTIVITIES with John Travolta and Michael Pitt

by     Posted 76 days ago

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Here’s today’s latest casting news:

  • Reg E. Cathey has joined Josh Trank’s The Fantastic Four reboot in a rather interesting role.  The Fox film stars Miles Teller, Michael B. Jordan, Kate Mara, and Jamie Bell as the title heroes.
  • Liam Neeson joins J. A. Bayona’s A Monster Calls, starring Felicity Jones and scripted by Patrick Ness.
  • Dan Stevens will star alongside John Travolta and Michael Pitt in Jackie Earle Haley’s Criminal Activities.
  • Ray Winstone’s role in Point Break has been revealed, and no, he’s not replacing Gerard Butler.

Hit the jump for more on each story.

New Red-Band Trailer for A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST Starring Seth MacFarlane, Charlize Theron, and Liam Neeson

by     Posted 77 days ago

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Universal has released a new A Million Ways to Die in the West red-band trailer.  The story revolves around a cowardly farmer (Seth MacFarlane, who also directed and co-wrote the film) who backs out of a gunfight and subsequently loses his girlfriend.  When he later meets the wife of a notorious outlaw who teaches him how to shoot, he gets an opportunity to win his pride back, but must choose between reclaiming an old love or kindling a new one.  The plot thickens when the outlaw returns to claim his woman.  This red-band trailer contains a lot of the jokes from the first red-band trailer, but the new jokes are terrific.  The film remains one of my most-anticipated of the summer.

Hit the jump to check out the red-band trailer.  The film also stars Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Sarah Silverman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Neil Patrick HarrisA Million Ways to Die in the West opens on May 30th.

New A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST Poster and Exclusive ‘Ways to Die’ Red Band Spot

by     Posted 79 days ago

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With Seth MacFarlane’s latest directorial feature A Million Ways to Die in the West opening May 30th, Universal has been kind enough to let us premiere a new “Ways to Die” red band spot and they’ve also provided us with the new poster featuring a uniquely shaped cactus.  If you’re not familiar with the film, the story revolves around a cowardly farmer (MacFarlane) who backs out of a gunfight and subsequently loses his girlfriend.  When he later meets the wife of a notorious outlaw who teaches him how to shoot, he gets an opportunity to win his pride back, but must choose between reclaiming an old love or kindling a new one.  The plot thickens when the outlaw returns to claim his woman.  As a huge fan of Ted and Family Guy, I’m expecting big things from the film.  Thankfully, all the footage I’ve seen looks awesome.

Hit the jump to check out the A Million Ways to Die red band spot and new poster.  The film also stars Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Sarah Silverman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Neil Patrick Harris.

Felicity Jones to Lead A MONSTER CALLS; Emily Browning in Talks for LEGENDS; Mark Strong Joins GRIMSBY

by     Posted 90 days ago

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We have a few casting stories for you this afternoon.  First up, Felicity Jones (Like Crazy) is set to star in A Monster Calls, the new film from director Juan Antonio Bayona (The Impossible).   The story, written by Patrick Ness from an original idea by the late Siobhan Dowd, “tells the tale of a young boy who attempts to deal with his mother’s illness and the bullying of classmates by escaping into a fantastical world of monsters and fairy tales that deal with courage, loss and faith.”  According to Deadline, Jones will play “Mum”, and Liam Neeson is being courted to play the Monster.  Jones will next be seen in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and is co-starring opposite Jonah Hill and James Franco in the drama True Story.

Hit the jump for casting news regarding Emily Browning (Pompeii) and Mark Strong (Low Winter Sun).

First THIRD PERSON Trailer and New Images Featuring Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde, James Franco, Mila Kunis, Adrian Brody, and Moran Atias

by     Posted 99 days ago

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Writer-director Paul Haggis’ Third Person trailer is now available online.  As a treat, we’ve also got a look at the film’s international trailer, a bunch of character images, and the film’s poster.  All of the varied media give looks at stars Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde, James Franco, Mila Kunis, Adrien Brody, Moran Atias, and Maria Bello.  That’s quite the cast that Haggis has assembled for his romantic drama that tells the tale of three interlocking stories of couples in Rome, Paris, and New York, familiar territory for the Oscar-winning writer of Crash.

Also starring Kim Basinger, the film will make its U.S. debut on April 24th at the Tribeca Film Festival.  Watch the first Third Person trailer after the jump, plus a bonus international trailer and a host of new images.

New TV Spot for Seth MacFarlane’s A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST

by     Posted 100 days ago

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Universal has released a new TV spot for A Million Ways to Die in the West.  The story revolves around a cowardly farmer (MacFarlane) who backs out of a gunfight and subsequently loses his girlfriend.  When he later meets the wife of a notorious outlaw who teaches him how to shoot, he gets an opportunity to win his pride back, but must choose between reclaiming an old love or kindling a new one.  The plot thickens when the outlaw returns to claim his woman.  I’m really looking forward to this movie, especially since this TV spot shows the jokes won’t just be foul language and slapstick.  There’s also a business called the “Moustachery”.

Hit the jump to check out the TV spot.  The film also stars Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Sarah Silverman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Neil Patrick HarrisA Million Ways to Die in the West opens on May 30th.

Weekend Box Office: NON-STOP Takes Off with $30 Million; SON OF GOD in Second with $26.5 Million

by     Posted 143 days ago

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A rare fourth frame on top was not in the cards for The LEGO Movie.  The animated hit fell to third place this weekend, surpassed by two radically different new titles.  In first place, Non-Stop is the latest thriller to star Liam Neeson and was expected by most to have a strong showing over this Oscar weekend.  What was not as expected was how close Son of God would come to shooting Non-Stop out of the sky.

 Title Weekend Total
1.  Non-Stop $30,019,000 $30
2.  Son of God $26,500,000 $26.5
3.  The LEGO Movie $21,015,000 $209.3
4.  The Monuments Men $5,000,000 $65.6
5.  3 Days to Kill $4,900,000 $20.7
6.  Robocop $4,500,000 $51.2
7.  Pompeii $4,300,000 $17.7
8.  Frozen $3,611,000 $388.7
9.  About Last Night $3,400,000 $43.7
10.  Ride Along $3,065,000 $127.1

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 144 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.

Friday Box Office: NON-STOP Flies to First but SON OF GOD Shines Brightest

by     Posted 144 days ago

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It is not often that there is more interest in the film that places second than in the film that comes out on top of the box office, but that is the case this morning with new releases Non-Stop and Son of God.  Although Friday night estimates put the Liam Neeson thriller on top, all eyes are on the biblical upstart.  Son of God was expected to bring in around $15 million in its first three days – a huge win for a film that is basically last year’s TV miniseries The Bible repurposed for the big screen.  But that was before the movie pulled in an astonishing $1.2 million from Thursday night screenings.  Just for context, that is close to what the hit Bad Grandpa earned from its own pre-release previews last October, although it’s hard to imagine Son of God’s audience sharing much else with the Jackass crowd.

Even with official estimates for Non-Stop and Son of God so close on Friday, weekend projections still fall in the former’s favor.  The thriller is now expected to bring in close to $30 million through Sunday, with Son of God a close second with $29 million.  Could the religious feature pull out the win?  Safe to say that stranger things have happened.

 Title Friday Total
1.  Non-Stop $10,000,000 $10
2.  Son of God $9,400,000 $9.4
3.  The LEGO Movie $4,420,000 $192.7
4.  3 Days to Kill $1,450,000 $17.2
5.  The Monuments Men $1,400,000 $62

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 146 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 146 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.

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