TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT REVIEW | NYFF 2014

by     Posted 18 days ago

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Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne pose a number of very intriguing questions in their New York Film Festival entry, Two Days, One Night.  If you had to choose between getting a raise and laying off a colleague, which would you go for?  And what if you were that colleague?  Would you fight for your job even after being betrayed by your co-workers?  Those are the predicaments that the characters in the film face and while they are engaging to a point, the execution feels frustratingly lifeless, depressing and repetitive – although that’s likely the point.

Mark Rylance Joins Spielberg’s Cold War Thriller; Dave Franco Joins THE ROOM Movie; Marion Cotillard in MAL DE PIERRES; Duo Set for INSURGENT

by     Posted 135 days ago

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We have a few casting stories to attend to this evening.  Briefly:

  • Stage actor Mark Rylance is the second actor to join the cast of Steven Spielberg’s next film, a Cold War thriller fronted by Tom Hanks.
  • Dave Franco is set to star opposite his brother James Franco in the film about the making of The Room, titled The Disaster Artist.
  • Marion Cotillard will lead the period romance Mal de Pierres.
  • The roles of Uriah and Lynn have been filled for the sequel The Divergent Series: Insurgent.

Hit the jump for more on the aforementioned casting.

First Images from MACBETH Starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard

by     Posted 188 days ago

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Filming on Justin Kurzel‘s Macbeth is currently underway, and the first two images have been released.  The adaptation of Shakespeare’s play stars Michael Fassbender as the titular Scottish king with Marion Cotillard playing Lady Macbeth.  In an interview with the Daily Mail, Fassbender says all the cast speaks with Scottish accents except for Cotillard.  “We felt it would be unreasonable for her to put on a Scottish accent,” says Fassbender.  “It would not be unreasonable to presume that her character spent time in the French court.”  I’m willing to allow for that assumption when there’s a great actress like Cotillard in such a juicy role.

Hit the jump to check out the Macbeth images and to learn more about Kurzel and Fassbender’s take on the material.  The film also stars Paddy Considine, David Thewlis, Sean Harris, Jack Reynor and Elizabeth DebickiMacbeth opens in the U.K. in early 2015.

New Trailer for THE IMMIGRANT Starring Marion Cotillard, Joaquin Phoenix, and Jeremy Renner

by     Posted 189 days ago

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The Weinstein Company has released a new trailer for James Gray‘s period drama The Immigrant.  The story centers on a woman (Marion Cotillard) immigrating to New York City in the 1920s who, when her sister is rejected and sent back to Poland, finds herself lured into the world of prostitution in the hopes of eventually being reunited with her kin.  This trailer focuses on the striking cinematography and throws out several ecstatic blurbs from critics.  I wish I had seen the movie they saw.  When I caught the film at the New York Film Festival last year, I saw a misguided effort that took a softball approach to a harsh narrative.

Hit the jump to check out The Immigrant trailer.  The film also stars Joaquin Phoenix and Jeremy Renner.

BLOOD TIES Review

by     Posted 216 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my review from the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.  Blood Ties opens today in limited release.]

There’s no prequel to Blood Ties, but perhaps there should be. It could provide a reason to give a damn about the characters. We could see the development of their conflict, the tension between brothers and the brothers’ tension with their lovers. Instead, Guillaume Canet’s film hits the ground stumbling as the disjointed picture jumps between characters seemingly at random, and never spends enough time to make us care, or wastes time showing just how shallow these horrible people really are. Coated in the veneer of a throwback crime drama, Blood Ties is an insult to its genre, its cast, and its audience.

New Trailer for BLOOD TIES Starring Clive Owen, Billy Crudup, Marion Cotillard, and Mila Kunis

by     Posted 273 days ago

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Roadside Attractions has released the first theatrical trailer for director Guillaume Canet’s crime drama Blood Ties.  The story takes place in New York in 1974, and centers on two brothers.  One has recently been released from prison (Clive Owen), and the other is a cop (Billy Crudup) who is trying to help his brother out only to discover that old habits die hard.  The trailer paints the film as a crime thriller, but I saw the pic at TIFF and it’s really more of a family drama with tense elements.  Regardless, the film never really comes together and kind of slogs its way through the tropes and clichés of a 1970s crime movie.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer, and click here to read Matt’s review from TIFF.  The film also stars Mila Kunis, Zoe Saldana, Marion Cotillard, Noah Emmerich, and James CaanBlood Ties will be released in theaters and on iTunes March 21st.

First Trailer for James Gray’s THE IMMIGRANT Starring Marion Cotillard, Joaquin Phoenix, and Jeremy Renner

by     Posted 363 days ago

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Fresh off the film’s American debut at the New York Film Festival, the first trailer for writer/director James Gray’s new film The Immigrant has landed online.  The story centers on a woman (Marion Cotillard) immigrating to New York City in the 1920s who, when her sister is rejected and sent back to Poland, finds herself lured into the world of prostitution in the hopes of eventually being reunited with her kin.  This international trailer highlights the dichotomy between the two male leads, Joaquin Phonix as the charming man who recruits Cotillard into prostitution and Jeremy Renner as his debonair magician cousin.  Gray has definitely crafted a visually appealing look at the 1920s underbelly, and while Matt found the film misguided in his review, I’m intrigued by the interplay between the trio of main characters.

Hit the jump to watch the international trailer, which is NSFW.  The Immigrant will open in the U.S. sometime next spring.

NYFF 2013: THE IMMIGRANT Review

by     Posted 1 year, 19 days ago

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There are some settings that don’t quite work with a soft, romantic approach.  There’s no romanticizing child labor or human trafficking or abject poverty.  James Gray’s The Immigrant shows there’s also no romanticizing prostitution in New York City in 1921.  Gray attempts to spin a complicated love triangle though an elegant web, but two of the three main characters get stuck in mushy, bland roles despite the best efforts of the actors.  What’s meant to carry an air of tragedy, damnation, and the hint of redemption ultimately comes off as silly due to Gray’s misguided approach.

TIFF 2013: BLOOD TIES Review

by     Posted 1 year, 47 days ago

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There’s no prequel to Blood Ties, but perhaps there should be.  It could provide a reason to give a damn about the characters.  We could see the development of their conflict, the tension between brothers and the brothers’ tension with their lovers.  Instead, Guillaume Canet’s film hits the ground stumbling as the disjointed picture jumps between characters seemingly at random, and never spends enough time to make us care, or wastes time showing just how shallow these horrible people really are.  Coated in the veneer of a throwback crime drama, Blood Ties is an insult to its genre, its cast, and its audience.

Casting Call: Marion Cotillard Signs on to MACBETH; Ziyi Zhang to Reprise Role in CROUCHING TIGER Sequel; Hayley Atwell Joins CINDERELLA

by     Posted 1 year, 63 days ago

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We have a few quick casting stories for you today.  First up, THR reports that Marion Cotillard has replaced Natalie Portman to a new adaptation of William Shakespeare‘s  Macbeth from director Justin Kurzel (Snowtown).  Cotillard will play Lady Macbeth opposite Michael Fassbender.  As we previously reported, the screenplay by Todd Louiso and Jacob Koskoff will take place in the 11th century, and will “be a visceral approach to the story including significant battle scenes.”  No insult to Portman, who I’m sure would have made an interesting Lady Macbeth, but I have an easier time seeing Cotillard in the role.  She just seems to have an easier time giving off a more sinister vibe, which is key for the role (or at least how it’s usually depicted).

Hit the jump for casting news on Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – The Green Destiny and Kenneth Branagh‘s adaptation of Cinderella.

James Franco, Rachel McAdams, Jeff Bridges, Marion Cotillard, and More to Voice THE LITTLE PRINCE

by     Posted 1 year, 140 days ago

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Quite the prestigious voice cast for an animated feature adaptation of the classic childrens book The Little Prince is being put together.  Heat Vision reports that James Franco, Rachel McAdams, Jeff Bridges, Marion Cotillard, Benicio Del Toro, and Paul Giamatti have all signed on to lend their voices to the pic.  For those unaware, French author Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s story centers on a pilot who crash lands in the Sahara Desert and stumbles across a young boy who claims to be a prince that has fallen to Earth from his home on an asteroid.  As the pilot works to repair his plane, the young boy tells him fantastical stories with heavy thematic resonance.

Mark Osborne (Kung Fu Panda) is onboard to direct the project, with Onyx Films’ Aton Soumache and Dimitri Rassam producing.  Additionally, The Wrap reports that Paramount is eyeing the prospect of distributing the animated pic and Mackenzie Foy (Twilight) is in talks to take on a voice role.

8 Images from Guillaume Canet’s BLOOD TIES Starring Clive Owen, Marion Cotillard, Matthias Schoenaerts, Mila Kunis, and Zoe Saldana

by     Posted 1 year, 161 days ago

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Blood Ties, the new film from Tell No One director Guillaume Canet, is premiering at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and the first eight images from the movie have been released.  The story takes place in New York in 1974, and centers on two brothers.  One has recently been released from prison, and the other is a cop who is trying to help his brother out only to discover that old habits die hard.  The stellar cast includes Clive Owen, Marion Cotillard, Matthias Schoenaerts, Mila Kunis, Billy Crudup, James Caan, and Zoe Saldana.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  The Cannes Film Festival is now underway, so we should expect to hear the buzz on Blood Ties soon.

Cannes 2013: New Images from BEHIND THE CANDELABRA, NEBRASKA, THE IMMIGRANT, and AS I LAY DYING

by     Posted 1 year, 161 days ago

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The 2013 Cannes Film Festival begins today, and new images have been released for these movies in the fest’s line-up:

  • Behind the Candelabra – Directed by Steven Soderbergh, starring Michael Douglas, Matt Damon, Dan Aykroyd, Rob Lowe, and Debbie Reynolds.
  • Nebraska – Directed by Alexander Payne, starring Bruce Dern, Will Forte, Stacy Keach, and Bob Odenkirk.
  • The Immigrant – Directed by James Gray, starring Joaquin Phoenix, Marion Cotillard, and Jeremy Renner.
  • As I Lay Dying – Directed and starring James Franco, co-starring Tim Blake Nelson, Logan Marshall-Green, and Danny McBride.

Hit the jump for the images and synopses.  The 2013 Cannes Film Festival runs from May 15 – May 26th.

Scarlett Johansson Joins Robert Downey Jr. in Jon Favreau’s CHEF; John Wells’ CHEF Fights for the Title

by     Posted 1 year, 161 days ago

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The Iron Man 2 gang is getting back together for what will hopefully be a better movie than Iron Man 2Variety is reporting that Scarlett Johansson will reunite with Robert Downey Jr. and Jon Favreau for Favreau’s indie film, Chef.  The story centers on a man (Favreau) who loses his chef job and starts up a food truck to reclaim his artistic promise and reclaiming his estranged family.  As we previously reported, the film will have a strong supporting cast with Sofia Vergara, John Leguizamo, and Bobby Cannavale on board to co-star.  I’m happy to see Favreau returning to his indie roots (although in this case “indie” simply means it doesn’t have the gigantic budgets of his recent films), and heading back into a leading role.  He’s so money and he knows it.

But the movie is in for a fight over the title as Sony Pictures, which owns John WellsChef starring Bradley Cooper, has sent a cease and desist letter to coax Fairview Entertainment and Favreau to find another title.  Hit the jump for more including possible co-stars for Wells’ Chef.

Marion Cotillard to Lead Dardenne Brothers’ TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT; Matthias Schoenaerts Joins Tom Hardy in ANIMAL RESCUE

by     Posted 1 year, 240 days ago

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We’ve got a couple of casting stories to share this afternoon.  First up, Marion Cotillard is set to lead the next film from brothers Luc and Pierre Dardenne, the drama Deux Jours, Une Nuit (translated to Two Days, One Night).  The Dardenne brothers recently helmed the drama The Kid with the Bike, and penned the script for Two Days, One Night which, per The Film Stage, centers on a woman “who has a weekend to see colleagues and convince them to give up their bonus so she can keep her job.”  Belgian actor Fabrizio Rongione is set to star as Cotillard’s husband in the pic, which will start production early this summer in Belgium.

Hit the jump for casting news concerning the Dennis Lehane adaptation Animal Rescue.

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