FRANK Review

by     Posted 105 days ago

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

“He’s the sanest person I’ve ever met,” band manager Don (Scoot McNairy) tells keyboardist Jon (Domhnall Gleeson) about their lead singer and songwriter, Frank (Michael Fassbender). Frank wears a giant fake head that he never takes off. Lenny Abrahamson’s Frank is a funny, warm, thoughtful story about crafting an artistic identity, and needing to seize on to someone else’s expression when you don’t have one of your own. It also provides an insightful look at the fault in trying to forge an identity based on the acceptance of others instead of embracing one’s own oddities and shortcomings even if the world at large sees them as “insane”.

TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY Director Tomas Alfredson to Helm BROTHERS LIONHEART Remake

by     Posted 1 year, 34 days ago

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Director Tomas Alfredson has certainly taken his time in choosing a follow-up project to his slow-burn 2011 espionage pic Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, but it appears that he has now made up his mind.  THR reports that Alfredson will next direct an adaptation of the classic Swedish fantasy novel The Brothers Lionheart, which was previously turned into a film in 1977 by director Olle Hellbom.  Author Astrid Lindgren’s source material revolves around two brothers who meet up in the afterlife and have fantastic adventures.

Tinker Tailor scribe Peter Straughan and Let the Right One In screenwriter John Ajvide Lindqvist penned the screenplay for The Brothers Lionheart, which is set for a Christmas 2014 release in Sweden.  Swiss cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema (The Fighter, Interstellar) will act as director of photography.  Last year we heard that Alfredson was still working on the script for a Tinker Tailor follow-up, but it appears that Brothers Lionheart is taking priority at the moment.  Watch the trailer for the 1977 iteration after the jump.

Producer Eric Fellner Talks TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY Sequel; Says Tomas Alfredson and Screenwriter Peter Straughan are Working on it “As We Speak”

by     Posted 1 year, 351 days ago

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Director Tomas Alfredson’s adaptation of the John le Carre spy novel Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy was a bit of a surprise success last year, grossing over $80 million against a relatively small budget and earning Gary Oldman his first ever Oscar nomination for Best Actor.  Given le Carre’s numerous novels, Alfredson and the folks at Working Title began to mull over the possibility of adapting another one of the books for a sequel, but movement on that front has been relatively quiet as of late.

Steve recently got to interview producer Eric Fellner while attending the press day for Working Title’s upcoming musical adaptation Les Miserables, and Fellner provided a promising update on the sequel to Tinker Tailor.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say.

THE ARTIST Takes Homes Seven BAFTAs Including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor

by     Posted 2 years, 289 days ago

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I’m really hoping for some surprises on Oscar night if only to make things interesting, but it’s looking less likely every day. Last night The Artist nearly swept the British Academy Film Awards (essentially the British Oscars), taking home the prizes for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Original Screenplay, Best Music, Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design. Meryl Streep was named Best Actress for The Iron Lady, while Octavia Spencer and Christopher Plummer won Best Supporting Actress and Actor. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy wasn’t sent home empty-handed, as the spy thriller won Best British Film and Best Adapted Screenplay. I was happy to see Senna get some well-deserved recognition, as the Formula 1 doc chronicling the life of driver Ayrton Senna was named Best Documentary.

While George Clooney seemed the favorite in the Best Actor Oscar race for his magnificent turn in The Descendants, The Artist’s Jean Dujardin could easily prove the spoiler. With the SAG Award in hand and now the BAFTA, the French comedian may very well step up to the podium come Oscar night. Hit the jump to see the full list of BAFTA winners. The Academy Awards will be handed out on February 26th.

2012 Oscar Nominations Announced; HUGO and THE ARTIST Lead the Pack

by     Posted 2 years, 308 days ago

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The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.

There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.

TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY Review

by     Posted 2 years, 354 days ago

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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a crackling, intense, complex, old-fashioned spy-thriller…but you need to wait over an hour to get there.  Director Tomas Alfredson does a fantastic job of painting a rich 1970s setting that swings between London, France, Istanbul, and Budapest, but we have trouble getting our bearings as we jump across timelines and struggle to understand the wide cast of characters.  Terrific performances begin to peek out and try to surface but are smothered in an overdone attempt to obfuscate rather than intrigue.  Alfredson wants to put us inside the web of confusion of trying to uncover the truth, but he strings us along for too long.  At some point, the spy game must begin.

Focus Features to Distribute Miramax’s THE DEBT Starring Helen Mirren and Sam Worthington

by     Posted 3 years, 292 days ago

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The Debt was originally scheduled to come out at the end of last year (you can watch the trailer here), but the prolonged Miramax deal left the drama on the shelf without a release date (same for the other remaining Miramax title, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark).  The Debt has now found a home at Focus Features, which will release the flick on August 31st.

Hit the jump to check out the press release.  Directed by John Madden (Shakespeare in Love), The Debt features an impressive cast that includes Helen Mirren, Sam Worthington, Jessica Chastain, Ciarán Hinds, and Tom Wilkinson.  Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman (Kick-Ass) wrote the screenplay with Peter Straughan.

THREE MUSKATEERS Reboot Currently in the Works; David Frankel or Doug Liman Might Direct

by     Posted 4 years, 274 days ago

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Hot on the heels of Guy Richie’s Sherlock Holmes, it’s no shocker that The Three Musketeers would be next for Warner Brothers. The L.A. Times is reporting the studio is now forging ahead with a list of directors they’d like to see direct the film. Topping the list are David Frankel and Doug Liman.

Frankel, best known for his work on The Devil Wears Prada and Marley and Me, is in current talks with Warner Brothers.  Frankel is currently also set to potentially direct and develop Septimus Heap: Magyk, an adaptation of a Harry Potter style children’s book, also being made by Warner Brothers.  Liman also tops the list.  The director seems more like a fit for what the studio is probably looking for, with his background on action films being extensive.  Liman has directed Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Jumper, and The Bourne Identity.

For more details on the Three Musketeers reboot, and how it is not the only one in development, hit the jump.

SHERLOCK HOLMES Producer Lionel Wigram Raises His Sword to THE THREE MUSKETEERS

by     Posted 4 years, 290 days ago

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Producer Lionel Wigram looks to breathe new life into Alexandre Dumas’ classic tale The Three Musketeers, just as he did with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, according to Variety. Wigram, who oversaw the first three Harry Potter films at Warner Bros. as a creative executive, will naturally set the film up at WB. Wigram co-wrote and produced Guy Ritchie’s Holmes, and added key elements like Holmes’ skills in hand to hand combat, according to Variety.

For more on the possibility of a franchise and who Wigram has tabbed to sexy up the 17th century tale, hit the jump.

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