New to Blu-ray: LOCKE, MUPPETS MOST WANTED, HERCULES, FILTH, BREATHE IN, and More

by     Posted 78 days ago

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This week’s new Blu-ray releases include a wonderfully compelling drama told entirely from the confines of a car, a quartet of older animated Disney films getting an HD upgrade, a new Muppet movie, and more.  Briefly:

Oscar Beat: What Awards Prospects Does the First Half of 2014 Have to Offer?

by     Posted 114 days ago

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We’ve now passed the halfway point of 2014, and while we dusted off our awards column Oscar Beat to rundown the post-Cannes Film Festival atmosphere back in May, the Oscar season doesn’t begin in earnest until September.  That said, given that fall isn’t the only time of the year that’s considered eligible for awards notice, I thought it fitting to take a look back at the last six months to see what films might pop up in the Oscar conversation later this year.  Read on after the jump.

Tom Hardy and Director Steven Knight Talk LOCKE, BMW’s Generosity, Low Loaders, SPLINTER CELL and More

by     Posted 188 days ago

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Tom Hardy is Ivan Locke, a successful building site manager and dedicated family man.  The night before one of the biggest concrete pours of his career, Ivan learns that a woman he once slept with is about to have to his baby.  Determined to be there for the birth, Ivan spends the night driving to the hospital, switching from phone call to phone call trying to keep the soon-to-be mother calm, walk his second-in-command through the preparation process for the big pour and attempt to keep his marriage afloat, and every single bit of it takes place in a single location – Ivan’s car.

To match Locke’s unconventional setting, writer-director Steven Knight used an unconventional filming method for the shoot; he shot the material in full twice each night and then edited the best parts together.  With Locke due for release this weekend, both Knight and Hardy sat down in New York City with Collider to discuss the pros and cons of running with such a technique, including securing the right car, how Knight gave Hardy and his voice-only co-stars notes throughout the shoot and more.  Catch the details on the making of Locke as well as an update on the adaptation of Splinter Cell after the jump.

LOCKE Review

by     Posted 188 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my review from the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.  Locke opens today in limited release.]

When a film is executed under a series of conditions, it can feel like an exercise. It can come off like a director running a test rather than telling a story. But restrictions can also spur creativity and yield unexpected results. Steven Knight’s Locke sets its conditions: a story told in real time where the protagonist is stuck behind the wheel of a constantly moving car, he’s the only character on screen, and he only talks to other characters over the phone. Under these conditions, Knight and star Tom Hardy have created a surprisingly captivating picture where adultery and concrete maintenance carry the same dramatic weight.

Writer/Director Steven Knight Talks LOCKE, Keeping a Film Set Entirely Inside a Car Engaging, Casting Tom Hardy, PAWN SACRIFICE, TABOO, and More

by     Posted 192 days ago

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Written and directed by acclaimed filmmaker Steven Knight and driven by an unforgettable performance by Tom Hardy, Locke is an exploration of how one decision can lead to the complete collapse of a life.  On the eve of the biggest challenge of his career, Ivan Locke (Hardy) receives a phone call that sets in motion a series of events that will unravel his family, job and soul even as he fights to salvage all that is important to him.  Opening April 25th, the film also features Olivia Colman, Ruth Wilson and Andrew Scott.

In an exclusive interview, Knight spoke about wanting to direct a film where all the action takes place over the course of one absolutely riveting car ride, what Hardy brought to the unusual role, what inspires their continued collaboration, how the entire film was shot at night within a short two-week window, how he sustained the pace and kept it visually dynamic while the main character’s life was unraveling in real time, and his cool upcoming projects including The Hundred-Foot Journey with Helen Mirren, Pawn Sacrifice with Tobey Maguire, a second season of the Peaky Blinders gangster series, and Taboo, an 8-episode drama for the BBC executive produced by Ridley Scott.  Check out the full interview after the jump:

New Trailer, Images, and Poster for LOCKE Starring Tom Hardy

by     Posted 238 days ago

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A24 Films has released the U.S. trailer for writer/director Steven Knight’s thriller Locke.  The film stars Tom Hardy as Ivan Locke, a man driving to London in the middle of the night to take responsibility for a mistake he made, and as a consequence, trying to handle the personal and professional reverberations of his decision. All of the action of the film takes place within the confines of the car during Locke’s drive, which is quite a tricky conceit to keep compelling for the length of a feature film.  By all accounts, though, Knight has succeeded, as Matt called the film “surprisingly captivating” in his review.  This trailer showcases the immense amount of pressure that Locke is under as well as Hardy’s intense performance, and it certainly looks to be engaging stuff.

Hit the jump to check out the new trailer, images, and poster.  Locke opens on April 25th.

New Trailer and Poster for Steven Knight’s LOCKE Starring Tom Hardy

by     Posted 255 days ago

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Lionsgate has released a new trailer and poster for Steven Knight‘s real-time drama Locke. The film stars Tom Hardy as Ivan Locke, a man driving to London in the middle of the night to take responsibility for a mistake he made, and as a consequence, trying to handle the personal and professional reverberations of his decision. He does all of this over the phone while he’s driving in his car. I really liked the film when I saw it at Sundance last month, and while this trailer makes the movie look more like a thriller, it’s more “nail-biting” in the sense of personal stakes rather than some paranoid fear of violence. However, I’m glad that this trailer doesn’t really give anything away.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer and poster. The film also features the voices of Ruth Wilson, Andrew Scott, Tom Holland, Ben Daniels, Bill Milner, and Olivia Colman. Locke opens in the U.K. on April 18th.

Sundance 2014: LOCKE Review

by     Posted 285 days ago

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When a film is executed under a series of conditions, it can feel like an exercise.  It can come off like a director running a test rather than telling a story.  But we also know that restrictions can spur creativity and yield unexpected results.  Steven Knight’s Locke sets its conditions: a story told in real time where the protagonist is stuck behind the wheel of a constantly moving car, he’s the only character on screen, and he only talks to other characters over the phone.  Under these conditions, Knight and star Tom Hardy have created a surprisingly captivating picture where adultery and concrete maintenance carry the same dramatic weight.

Sundance 2014: New Images from BLUE RUIN, THE DOUBLE, LOCKE, and R100

by     Posted 329 days ago

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The 2014 Sundance Film Festival has announced its “Spotlight” category, which they describe as “Regardless of where these films have played throughout the world, the Spotlight program is a tribute to the cinema we love.”  They’ve released new images and brief synopses for the following Spotlight selections:

  • Blue Ruin – Written and directed by Jeremy Saulnier; starring Macon Blair, Amy Hargreaves, Sidné Anderson, Devin Ratray, and Kevin Kolack.
  • The Double – Directed by Richard Ayoade; starring Jesse Eisenberg, Mia Wasikowska, Wallace Shawn, Noah Taylor, Cathy Moriarty, and James Fox.
  • Locke – Written and directed by Steven Knight; starring Tom Hardy, Ruth Wilson, Olivia Colman, Andrew Scott, Tom Holland, and Bill Milner.
  • R100 – Written and directed by Hitoshi Matsumoto; starring Nao Ohmori, Lindsay Kay Hayward, and Hairi Katagiri.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses.  The 2014 Sundance Film Festival runs from January 16 – 26th.

2014 Sundance Film Festival Lineup for Midnight, New Frontier, and Spotlight Includes Adam Wingard’s THE GUEST, DEAD SNOW, and More

by     Posted 329 days ago

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Yesterday, the Sundance Film Festival announced the lineup for the 2014 in-competition films.  Today, the fest has unveiled the list of films that will screen as part of the Park City and Midnight, Spotlight, New Frontier, and the new Sundance Kids categories.  The films include You’re Next director Adam Wingard and screenwriter Simon Barrett’s new film The Guest, director Tommy Wirkola’s Dead Snow; Red vs. Dead, director Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive, director Richard Ayoade’s The Double, the Tom Hardy film Locke, and more.  Hit the jump to take a look at the full lineup.  The 2014 Sundance Film Festival runs January 16 – 26th.

TIFF 2013: Focus Takes Jason Bateman Comedy BAD WORDS, Millennium Acquires FADING GIGOLO, and A24 Picks Up LOCKE with Tom Hardy

by     Posted 1 year, 51 days ago

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Following yesterday’s big acquisition of the crowd-favorite Can a Song Save Your Life? at the Toronto International Film Festival, we’ve got a few other acquisition stories to attend to:

  • After an intense bidding war, Focus Features has acquired worldwide rights to Jason Bateman’s directorial debut Bad Words for a whopping $7 million.  The spelling bee comedy earned strong marks after its TIFF debut and is slated for a 2014 release.  Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, and Ben Falcone (Bridesmaids) also star.
  • Director/star John Turturro’s Fading Gigolo has been picked up for worldwide rights by Millennium for $3 million, per Deadline.  Turturro stars as a man who aspires to be a professional Don Juan, and ends up being pimped out by his friend played by Woody Allen.
  • The relatively new company A24 has picked up the North American rights to director Steven Knight’s drama Locke, starring Tom Hardy as a man struggling to save his personal and professional life over the course of a car ride.

Hit the jump to read the press releases regarding Bad Words and Locke, and click here to catch up on all of our TIFF 2013 coverage thus far.

First Clip from Steven Knight’s LOCKE Starring Tom Hardy

by     Posted 1 year, 65 days ago

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The first clip has been released for Steven Knight‘s (Redemption) upcoming film, Locke.  The real-time thriller stars Tom Hardy as Ivan Locke, “a man on the road to success who must race to save his life from unraveling after he receives a mysterious phone call.”  It sounds like a gripping, intense picture, but that doesn’t really come across in this clip.  It has nice cinematography, but the clip involves Locke asking to have an important discussion regarding concrete.  There’s a bit of intrigue on the other end of the line, but it’s barely there.  However, it’s sometimes better to obfuscate, and I’ll be eager to hear the word on the movie when it debuts at the Venice Film Festival on September 2nd.

Hit the jump to check out the clip along with a statement about the picture from Knight.

Venice Film Festival Line-Up to Include Terry Gilliam’s THE ZERO THEOREM, Errol Morris’ THE UNKNOWN KNOWN, and Hayao Miyazaki’s THE WIND RISES

by     Posted 1 year, 97 days ago

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Earlier this week, the Toronto International Film Festival unveiled part of its 2013 line-up, and there were plenty of must-see movies.  But the Venice Film Festival, which begins a week earlier, has countered with an equally impressive array of picture.  While there’s the inevitable cross-over like Venice opener Gravity playing at TIFF along with Philomena, Under the Skin, Parkland, Joe, and many more, the Venice exclusives (at this point) make me want to book a Transatlantic ticket.  The fest will play host to the world debuts of Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem, Errol Morris’ Donald Rumsfeld documentary The Known Unknown, Steven Knight’s Locke (starring Tom Hardy and shot in one take), and more.  Also set for the festival is Hayao Miyazaki’s new movie, The Wind Rises as well as Lee Sang-Il’s Japanese remake of Unforgiven.  Last year, most of the movies in Venice eventually ended up in TIFF’s line-up, and since I’ll be going to the latter, I hope most of these movies find their way to Toronto this September.

Hit the jump for the full line-up.  The 2013 Venice Film Festival runs from August 28 – September 7th.

Tom Hardy to Star in Steven Knight’s Real-Time Thriller LOCKE

by     Posted 1 year, 265 days ago

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Tom Hardy is set to lead the real-time thriller, Locke.  Written and directed by Steven Knight (writer of Eastern Promises), the 90-minute film “follows a man on the road to success who must race to save his life from unraveling after he receives a mysterious phone call.”  The greatest of all real-time thrillers is High Noon (it’s a western, but it’s also a thriller), but recent attempts like Nick of Time and Phone Booth have never really lived up to their hook.  At the very least, Locke has a compelling actor with Hardy, so hopefully Locke will be able to live up to the potential of its premise.

According to Screen Daily, filming begins later this month in London.  Hardy recently signed on to co-star with Noomi Rapace in both Child 44 and an adaptation of Dennis Lehane‘s Animal Rescue.  Since shooting begins soon on Locke, Hardy should still be able to do his films with Rapace.

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