MAPS TO THE STARS Review | NYFF 2014

by     Posted 33 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-mia-wasikowska-julianne-moore-slice

I don’t like to admit it, but every now and then, I do enjoy picking up a tabloid.  Simply put, it’s fun to read about nonsense like what everyone’s wearing and see that celebrities are really “just like us.”  And the same goes for covering industry news as well.  I truly enjoy finding out what everyone’s up to, whether I’m a fan or not, and that’s a big part of the reason David Cronenberg’s latest works so well.  Maps to the Stars is a Hollywood satire that takes you behind the scenes and dishes out joke after joke at the industry’s expense, but screenwriter Bruce Wagner also slips in an offbeat and riveting mystery that makes the experience more than a fleeting laugh, but rather a dark, absurd and disturbing experience that’ll stick with you well after it ends.

THE DOUBLE Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 37 days ago

the-double-blu-ray-review

While Richard Ayoade first came to prominence as a comedic actor on British TV series like Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace, The Mighty Boosh, and The IT Crowd, the guy is proving himself to be quite the formidable filmmaker.  He made his feature directorial debut with 2010’s delightfully funny and offbeat Submarine, and his follow-up film The Double marks yet a massive step forward for Ayodae as a filmmaker.  He really hones in on his aesthetic style with this darkly comic adaptation of Fyodor Dostoyevski’s novella of the same name, and anchored by a terrific dual lead performance from Jesse Eisenberg, has crafted one of the more inventive films of the year.  Read my full The Double Blu-ray review after the jump.

MAPS TO THE STARS Trailer Featuring Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska and Robert Pattinson

by     Posted 49 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-julianne-moore-slice

When you’ve got a film featuring a Cannes Film Festival Best Actress awarding winning performance from Julianne Moore, you better put it to good use and this new trailer for David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars does just that.  The first 25 seconds of the piece is just Moore whining on the phone, but her work is so amusing and commanding that it instantly sparks a desire for more.

And best of all, we’re going to get to see more Moore (sorry, I had to) because earlier this month, Focus Features’ alternative distribution initiative, Focus World, snatched up the U.S. distribution rights to the film and plans to release it in early 2015.  Hit the jump to check out that new Maps to the Stars trailer.  The film also star Mia Wasikowska, Olivia Williams, Evan Bird, Sarah Gadon, John Cusack and Robert Pattinson.

David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Acquired by Focus World for Early 2015 Release

by     Posted 59 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-release-date-2015

Filmmaker David Cronenberg’s latest effort will find its way to U.S. screens early next year.  Ahead of the film’s North American debut at the Toronto International Film Festival, Focus World announced today that it has acquired U.S. distribution for Maps to the Stars with plans to release the film stateside in early 2015.  The film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals (John Cusack), his wife (Olivia Williams) who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter (Mia Wasikowska), who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana (Julianne Moore), an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother.  The pic premiered earlier this year at the Cannes Film Festival, and while the overall reaction was mixed, Moore drew high praise for her performance and won the Best Actress award.

Many had pegged Moore as a contender in this year’s Oscar race, but if Focus World doesn’t stage a limited release in December to qualify for contention, that takes her out of the running.  That said, Focus World’s specific release strategy is unknown at the moment.  Read the full press release after the jump.

New MAPS TO THE STARS Trailer: Director David Cronenberg Highlights the Madness and Paranoia of Hollywood

by     Posted 80 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-trailer

Entertainment One UK has released a new Maps to the Stars trailer 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.  I’m still not 100% sure what to expect from Cronenberg’s new picture, but that’s one of the reasons it’s one of my must-see films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.

Hit the jump to check out the new Maps to the Stars trailer.  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah GadonMaps to the Stars opens in the U.K. and Ireland on September 26th.  There is currently no U.S. release date.

James Bobin’s ALICE IN WONDERLAND: THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS Begins Production

by     Posted 87 days ago

alice-in-wonderland-2

Tim Burton‘s Alice in Wonderland is one of the director’s weakest efforts, but it’s also by far his highest grossing.  The movie made over $1 billion worldwide at the box office, and I’m surprised it’s taken so long for a sequel to start moving into production.  But four years later, production has begun on Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass with James Bobin (The Muppets) in the director’s chair and the original actors returning along with new additions to both the live-action and the voice cast.  Plot details are scarce, but the story will “revisit Lewis Carroll’s beloved stories with an all-new new tale that travels back to Underland—and back in Time.”

Hit the jump for the press release, which includes the full cast and who they’re playing as well as the production’s key contributors behind the camera.  Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass opens May 27, 2016.

THE DOUBLE Review

by     Posted 174 days ago

the-double-jesse-eisenberg-slice

[This is a re-post of my review from the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival.  The Double opens today in limited release and is available on VOD]

Director Richard Ayoade delivered a visually distinct, memorable, and funny film with 2010’s Submarine. With his follow-up, The Double, he has made his imagery even more distinct and eye-catching by building a new world from scratch; showcasing Erik Wilson’s gorgeous cinematography; and creating a remarkable and unusual blending of absurd comedy with psychological thriller.  Furthermore, star Jesse Eisenberg takes his two familiar character types, and fits them both into the unique setting Ayoade has conjured.  The result is a movie that can be overly forthright with its themes, but is still utterly captivating.

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

by     Posted 177 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-clips-robert-pattinson

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 192 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-robert-pattinson-slice

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 198 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-john-cusack-slice

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 199 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-trailer

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

New Image and Teaser Poster for David Cronenberg’s MAPS TO THE STARS Starring John Cusack, Robert Pattinson, and Mia Wasikowska

by     Posted 202 days ago

maps-to-the-stars-mia-wasikowska-slice

A new Maps to the Stars image along with the Italian teaser poster has been released.  David Cronenberg‘s upcoming 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.  Mia Wasikowska plays the institutionalized daughter, and the actress is crushing the dead-eyed stare.

Hit the jump to check out the image and the Italian teaser poster.  The film also stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah Gadon.  While the movie has received an R-rating from the MPAA, it currently doesn’t have a U.S. release date.  Maps to the Stars will likely premiere at the Cannes Film Festival next month, and a domestic release date should be announced around then.

New Clips from UNDER THE SKIN Starring Scarlett Johansson and THE DOUBLE Starring Jesse Eisenberg

by     Posted 223 days ago

under-the-skin-the-double-slice

New clips have been released for Jonathan Glazer‘s sci-fi film Under the Skin and Richard Ayoade‘s comic thriller The DoubleUnder the Skin is about an alien (Scarlett Johansson) who comes to Earth and seduces hapless men into an abyss, but then she starts empathizing with them and doubting her purpose.  The clip is just Johansson’s character driving, but it does a good job expressing the mood and highlighting the unbearable, squeaky strings that comprise most of the score.  Click here for my review from TIFF.

As for The Double, Jesse Eisenberg stars as Simon James, a shy office drone whose life is turned upside down when he meets a more confident, physically identical version of himself, James Simon.  The clip highlights not only the comedy, but also provides one of the film’s many example of Simon James’ weak personality: he doesn’t have enough ID and it’s not even worth spelling out his last name.  I can’t wait to see this movie again.  Hit the jump to check out the clips.  Under the Skin opens April 4th, and The Double opens May 9th.

New Trailer for TRACKS, Starring Mia Wasikowska

by     Posted 237 days ago

tracks-trailer-mia-wasikowska-slice

A new trailer for John Curran’s adventure drama Tracks is now available.  Mia Wasikowska stars as Robyn Davidson, who set off on foot to traverse the West Australian desert, a near 2,000 mile trek.  Accompanied by only her dog and four unpredictable camels, she meets National Geographic photographer Rick Smolan (Adam Driver) along the way, who documents her voyage.  This new cut features some new footage not seen in the previously released trailer.

Tracks, also starring Emma Booth, Melanie Zanetti, and Jessica Tovey, is now playing in Australia and will open in international territories throughout the year.  No U.S. release date is set at this point.  Hit the jump to watch the new trailer.

New Trailer for Jim Jarmusch’s ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE Starring Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton

by     Posted 237 days ago

only-lovers-left-alive-tom-hiddleston-tilda-swinton

A new U.S. trailer for director Jim Jarmusch’s love story Only Lovers Left Alive, aka “the Tom Hiddleston vampire movie”, has been released online.  Hiddleston stars alongside Tilda Swinton as two vampires who have been in love for centuries.  This trailer certainly showcases an offbeat tone, but the film actually looks to be quite romantic and, surprisingly, funny.  As individuals who have been alive for a very, very long time, the principal characters have a unique outlook on life and culture and they aren’t afraid to share it.  This also looks to be a wonderful performance showcase for Hiddleston and Swinton.

Hit the jump to watch the new domestic trailer.  The film also stars Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt, Anton Yelchin, and Jeffrey WrightOnly Lovers Left Alive opens in theaters April 11th.

Click Here