At this point Spike Lee’s remake of Oldboy is something of an underdog. One of 2013’s bigger bombs, the film got shellacked by critics who found it lacking in comparison to Park Chan-wook’s original adaptation of the manga, while audiences had no interest in the movie, which – for whatever reason – opened Thanksgiving weekend. It’s not that bad, it just is hard to watch without comparing it to the original, which is clearly superior. This film tries to do its own things, and there are moments of inspiration, but… Josh Brolin, Sharlto Copley and Elizabeth Olsen star in the remake, and my review of the film on Blu-ray follows after the jump.
This week’s new Blu-ray releases includes the most recent winner of the Best Picture Oscar, the highest grossing film of 2013, an American remake of a South Korean revenge classic, a few older titles, and more. Briefly:
Last night I rewatched Man of Steel for the first time since catching it in theaters back in June. Previously, I wrote that the film had me emotionally invested in Supes in a way that only Grant Morrison‘s All-Star Superman had done before. While I’ve since been blown away by Alan Moore‘s For the Man Who Has Everything tale, my second Man of Steel viewing from yesterday corroborates my previous statement. I see the pic as being good, borderline great thanks in large part to the outstanding performances of Michael Shannon and Kevin Costner. The tragedy of Zod’s story was somewhat lost on me during my first screening (perhaps it was dulled by the impressive array of action set pieces). This time around, though, I felt the full brunt of it and I couldn’t help but sympathize with him for knowing no other purpose than to defend the people of Krypton at any cost. Also, the scene where he introduces himself to the citizens of Earth? Downright frightening. Regarding Pa Kent: although I loved every facet of Costner’s performance the first time I watched the film, I was surprised at how much his scenes still resonated with me on the repeat viewing. Kudos to Zack Snyder and Co. for limiting his screen time and, in doing so, making every single second with him in the frame mean that much more.
My Blu-ray pick of the week aside, this week’s Top 5 features Frozen interviews with Kristen Bell and more, an It’s a Wonderful Life trailer cut in the style of Martin Scorsese‘s The Wolf of Wall Street, Homefront interviews with James Franco and more, the first installment in Allison’s new monthly list of recommended streaming, and Oldboy interviews with Spike Lee, Josh Brolin, and more. As tradition dictates, a brief recap and link to each of the above rests after the jump.
Now playing in theaters is Spike Lee’s Oldboy. As most of you know, it’s a remake of the acclaimed Korean film by Park Chan-Wook, which was inspired by the Japanese graphic novel by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi. Lee’s film follows the downward spiral and unfathomable experience of Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin), who, one drunken night, is kidnapped and imprisoned in a bizarre hotel without any idea of his captor’s identity or motive. When he’s inexplicably released 20 years later, Doucett embarks on a quest to find out who orchestrated his punishment and why. The thriller also stars Elizabeth Olsen, Sharlto Copley, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Imperioli, Lance Reddick, James Ransone, and Rami Malek.
At the Los Angeles press day, I landed an exclusive video interview with Brolin. While I normally sit down with the person I’m interviewing and ask them a few questions, as soon as I entered the room, Brolin said he had a few questions for me. As you’ll see in the video, we went back and forth on what I thought of the film, what does the remake offer those that know the original version, how he prepares for a role, and he also talks about what it was like to work for Paul Thomas Anderson on Inherent Vice. Hit the jump to watch.
Who knows what we would have got had Will Smith and Steven Spielberg followed through with their plans to remake Chan-wook Park’s Oldboy, but, odds are, it would have been entirely different than the one we’re getting from Josh Brolin and Spike Lee on Wednesday, November 27th. Brolin stars as Joe Doucett, an advertising executive decimating his career and family life with his abysmal behavior and alcohol addiction. At the tail end of one particularly drunken night, Joe is snatched off the street and wakes up in solitary confinement. After 20 years of loneliness and dumplings, he’s suddenly released and challenged to figure out why he served such a lengthy sentence.
With Oldboy nearing its wide release, Lee sat down to talk about working with cinematographer Sean Bobbitt, the intensity of shooting a three and a half-minute one-shot fight sequence, the importance of surrounding yourself with great talent, his Neil Bogart biopic Spinning Gold, and more. Hear it all for yourself after the jump.
Elizabeth Olsen has maintained a steady stream of work since her indie hit, Martha Marcy May Marlene, but with films like Godzilla and The Avengers: Age of Ultron on the way, Olsen is going to hit a whole new level and she’s about to begin that progression up with the highly anticipated remake of Oldboy. Olsen steps in as Marie Sebastian, a volunteer nurse who comes face to face with Josh Brolin’s Joe Doucett shortly after wrapping up his 20-year stint in solitary confinement. Even though Joe is understandably rattled and rather off-putting, he strikes a cord with Marie and she agrees to help him assimilate. The thing is, in order to do that, she’ll have to dive into the vicious mystery that’s been plaguing him for the past 20 years of his life.
While in New York City ahead of Oldboy’s November 27th release, Collider got the chance to sit down with Olsen, pinpoint her optimal solitary confinement meal, talk about her preference for Mikey over Brand Walsh in The Goonies, and, of course, discuss the sex scene. Hit the jump to catch all of that, her restrained but enthusiastic thoughts on playing Scarlet Witch in The Avengers: Age of Ultron, and more.
Whereas both Josh Brolin and Elizabeth Olsen have to live up to the expectations set by Min-sik Choi and Hye-jeong Kang in Chan-wook Park’s Oldboy, Michael Imperioli has the luxury of portraying a character from the manga that’s yet to make it to the big screen. Brolin leads as Joe Doucett, a brash selfish drunk who’s suddenly plucked off the streets and thrown into solitary confinement for 20 years. Even though he comes out a changed man, the people in his life are left with the impression he made before his disappearance and nothing more. Fortunately for Joe, his life-long pal Chucky (Imperioli) is willing to give him a second chance.
In support of Oldboy’s November 27th release, Imperioli sat down with Collider in New York City to talk about his many collaborations with Spike Lee, what drew him to the role, whether or not Chucky really believed Joe was a guilty man, the details on the Martin Scorsese executive produced-film The Wannabe, and more. Watch the full interview after the jump.
It ain’t easy being the guy who opts to remake Park Chan-wook’s Oldboy. Back at New York Comic Con, Oldboy scribe Mark Protosevich took the stage and even though the footage shown was well received, he still got slammed with question after question regarding why he’d even try to remake the cult classic and how he could possibly do that original film justice. Protosevich’s version swaps Min-sik Choi’s Dae-su Oh for a new main man, Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin). Like, Dae-su, Joe is kidnapped and locked away for years until he’s unexpectedly released and then tasked with the challenge of finding out why he was imprisoned to begin with.
While talking to Protosevich during Oldboy’s New York press day, we opted to nix repeating that same question and rather find out how Protosevich feels about repeatedly answering it. Check out what he had to say about his own skepticism regarding an Oldboy remake before he was even attached to the project, the need to block out fan expectations while writing, the challenge of maintaining an element of surprise for fans of the original, the status of Edgar Wright‘s Collider, and more after the jump.
This week on The Collision, we talk about the 2013 Oscar Race as it stands at November. Considering the two possible contenders that have yet to premiere–The Wolf of Wall Street and American Hustle–we look at the current frontrunners for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay (Original and Adapted), Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress. We also point out some smaller films we hope the Oscars won’t overlook. As always, we finish up with our recommendations.
Click here to listen to the new episode of The Collision, click here for the previous episode (“Thor: The Dark World and the State of Marvel”), click here to add the podcast to your RSS, and click here to find us on iTunes. To keep up to date with The Collision, you can follow us on Twitter at @MattGoldberg, @AdamChitwood, and @DrClawMD (Dave Trumbore).
Spike Lee’s Oldboy is a stylish reimagining of a legendary tale of vengeance inspired by the Japanese graphic novel by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi and the acclaimed Korean film by Park Chan Wook. Lee’s new take follows the downward spiral and unfathomable experience of Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin), who, one drunken night, is kidnapped and imprisoned in a bizarre hotel without any idea of his captor’s identity or motive. When he’s inexplicably released 20 years later, Doucett embarks on a quest to find out who orchestrated his punishment and why. The visceral thriller also stars Elizabeth Olsen, Sharlto Copley, Samuel L. Jackson, and Michael Imperioli.
At yesterday’s Los Angeles press day, Lee talked about making Oldboy his own, why he considers the film a reinterpretation and not a remake, keeping the twists and turns of the story fresh for a new audience, what Brolin and Olsen brought to their roles, why he’s confident fans and audiences will go to see this movie, Film District’s clever marketing strategy, his pet peeves about trailers today, how the process and business of filmmaking has changed since Do the Right Thing, his new HBO movie Undisputed Truth: Mike Tyson, and his latest Kickstarter project, the recently filmed Da Sweet Blood of Jesus. Hit the jump to read the interview.
FilmDistrict has released a green-band trailer and new images for Spike Lee‘s Oldboy. For those unfamiliar with the story, it centers on a man (Josh Brolin) who is kidnapped for mysterious reasons, and is released twenty years later with no explanation. Once free, he goes on a mission to find his captor and take revenge. The new trailer is mostly the same as the red-band trailer but with a few bits of new footage. I keep forgetting this movie is coming out, and then I get interested again once I remember. There are definitely going to be some new twists and turns, but I’m still curious how far it will veer away from Park Chan-wook‘s excellent 2003 adaptation of the graphic novel.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer, images, and comments from Brolin on why he prefers the director’s cut. The film also stars Elizabeth Olsen, Sharlto Copley, Lance Reddick, Michael Imperioli, and James Ransone. Oldboy opens on November 27th.
We’re about a month out from the opening of Spike Lee’s Oldboy and, to celebrate, we have a behind-the-scenes featurette for the film to share with you. It features commentary from stars Josh Brolin, Sharlto Copley, Michael Imperioli and Lee himself. It also gives a nice look at Brolin’s transformation for the role of Joe Doucett, plus a bit of insight into the prison that houses him for twenty years and its innkeeper, played by Samuel L. Jackson.
Also starring Elizabeth Olsen and Lance Reddick, Oldboy opens November 27th. Hit the jump to watch the featurette.
FilmDistrict has released a few new images and a lot of new posters for Spike Lee‘s remake of Oldboy. The story centers on Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin), who is kidnapped for mysterious reasons, and is released twenty years later with no explanation. Once free, he goes on a mission to find his captor and take revenge. The new images give us our first clear picture of Sharlto Copley as the film’s antagonist. Even cooler is a series of 20 posters with each poster marking a year in Doucett’s imprisonment. Each year is marked by one “event” ranging from 9/11 to New York Rangers defeating the Vancouver Canucks in the 1994 Stanley Cup Finals. I wonder if the makers of these posters looked over the posters and thought, “Yeah, we did go to war against Iraq in 2003, but people really did love that cloned sheep.”
Hit the jump to check out the images and posters. The film also stars Elizabeth Olsen and Samuel L. Jackson. Oldboy opens November 27th.
FilmDistrict has released the first clip from Spike Lee’s Oldboy. The story centers on Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin), a who is kidnapped for mysterious reasons, and is released twenty years later with no explanation. Once free, he goes on a mission to find his captor and take revenge. The clip does a good job of showing off Brolin’s intensity, and I look forward to see how it plays out beyond threatening Elizabeth Olsen’s character. There’s also some new footage of Joe devouring dumplings as way to find a restaurant that could lead him to his captor. This has inspired FilmDistrict to run a promotion where people should go to their local dim sum spot and tag a photo with #eattheclues for a chance to win the original hammer from the movie (how they’ll prove this is the real hammer and not something from Home Depot is beyond me). I say the winner should be someone who goes to a restaurant, puts a live squid in his or her mouth, and sends in that photo.
Hit the jump to check out the clip and the additional footage. The film also stars Sharlto Copley and Samuel L. Jackson. Oldboy opens November 27th.
Here’s today’s poster round-up:
- Oldboy – Spike Lee’s take on Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi’s manga, starring Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Samuel L. Jackson and Sharlto Copley. Oldboy opens November 27th.
- Vampire Academy - Mark Waters’ adaptation of Richelle Mead’s novel, starring Zoey Deutch, Lucy Fry and Olga Kurylenko. Vampire Academy opens February 14, 2014.
- Bad Grandpa – Jeff Tremaine directs Johnny Knoxville as the title character, along with his “grandson” Jackson Nicoll. Bad Grandpa opens October 25th.
- The Book Thief – Brian Percival’s book adaptation starring Sophie Nélisse, Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, and Ben Schnetzer, opens November 15th.
Hit the jump to view the posters and synopses.