The first image and a new synopsis have been released for David Gordon Green‘s upcoming southern thriller, Joe. Nicolas Cage stars as the titular an ex-con who “becomes the unlikeliest of role models to 15 year old Gary Jones (Tye Sheridan), the oldest child of a homeless family ruled by a drunk, worthless father.” Green delivered one of his best films in years with Prince Avalanche (click here for my review), and it looks like Joe will continue the director’s return to form. I’m curious to see how Sheridan’s performance in Joe compares to his excellent work in Mud where he also plays a kid from a broken home who embraces a criminal as a role model.
Hit the jump to check out the image and synopsis. WestEnd Films is handling international sales and will be shopping the films to buyers at this month’s European Film Market.
Jeff Nichols‘ Mud almost has it all. It’s a sweet coming-of-age story, an adventure, a crime-thriller, and a romance. Lead actors Tye Sheridan and Matthew McConaughey give outstanding performances as a boy and a man, respectively, who bristle when the world won’t conform to the mythic journey they’ve envisioned. Nichols gives the movie a sweet, soft, and loving tone that takes the best of identity of the Deep South (i.e. avoids racism), and uses it as a rich backdrop for a captivating tale. The film’s only flaw comes from implicitly agreeing with the main characters’ immature belief that women are not to be trusted. To the film’s minor detriment, Nichols doesn’t examine how his characters can grow up when the script embraces such a facile and childish notion.
We saw the first two clips from writer/director Jeff Nichols’ Mud back in May of last year, but now the first trailer has been made available. Starring Matthew McConaughey (Magic Mike) as a fugitive drifter who finds safe harbor on an island in the Mississippi River, but is discovered and befriended by two teenage boys (Tye Sheridan and Jacob Lofland). The trailer gives a great sense of the tension that builds over the course of the picture and hints at the dangerous situation the boys unwittingly become involved in. Also starring Reese Witherspoon, Sam Shepherd, Michael Shannon and Sarah Paulson, Mud opens in limited release on April 26th. Hit the jump to watch the trailer.
Up-to-the-minute casting information follows below:
- Emmy Rossum (The Day After Tomorrow) is in negotiations to join Hilary Swank (Boys Don’t Cry) in You’re Not You, directed by George C. Wolfe (Nights in Rodanthe).
- Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones) will join Juliette Binoche (The English Patient) in the indie drama A Thousand Times Good Night for co-writer/director Erik Poppe (Hawaii, Oslo).
- Derek Jacobi (The King’s Speech) will be tasked with refining Grace Kelly (Nicole Kidman) from an American movie star into a princess in Grace of Monaco, directed by Olivier Dahan (La vie en rose).
- Finally, Tye Sheridan (Tree of Life) has joined Joe, a drama starring Nicolas Cage (National Treasure) and directed by David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express).
Hit the jump for more on each picture.
The prestigious Cannes Film Festival kicks off next week, and we’re starting to see some promotional materials from a few of the films that will premiere at the fest. We’ve already seen a stellar trailer for the prohibition-set crime drama Lawless and a fantastic clip from director Andrew Dominik’s (The Assassination of Jesse James) Killing Them Softly. Now a few clips have surfaced for two Cannes films (both set in the South) that feature Matthew McConaughey. The first is director Lee Daniels’ (Precious) adaptation of The Paperboy, which features McConaughey and Zac Efron playing a pair of brothers who team-up to investigate the potential wrongful conviction of a death-row inmate (John Cusack).
We also have two clips from director Jeff Nichols’ (Take Shelter) deep South drama Mud, which finds McConaughey playing a fugitive hiding out on an island in Mississippi who, with the help of two young boys, tries to escape and reunite with his lost love (Reese Witherspoon). Hit the jump to check out the clips.
There is a critical sport in wrestling with Terrence Malick. Because the director doesn’t do press, and spent nineteen years not making movies, Malick is such an oddball – on top of his films not coming across in classic Hollywood narratives - that reviews often try to engage the man as much as the film. But when you make a film as personal as The Tree of Life, that’s bound to happen. Here, Malick uses a mother (Jessica Chastain) and son (Sean Penn) to delve into the pain of death and life – going so far back as the birth of planet Earth – to understand what it means to be alive. Part of that is coming to understand one’s relationship with the father (Brad Pitt). The easy dismissal is that the film is pretentious, which is just as easy as declaring the film an impenetrable masterpiece. Our review of The Tree of Life on Blu-ray follows after the jump.
Director Jeff Nichols is looking at a trio of actors to star in his next film. Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon and The Tree of Life star Tye Sheridan are in negotiations to join Mud. Nichols is best known for 2007’s Shotgun Stories starring Michael Shannon, and most recently debuted his film Take Shelter (also starring Shannon) at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Mud centers on a dangerous fugitive aptly-named Mud who strikes up an unlikely friendship with a 14-year-old boy in Mississippi. The boy decides to help the nice criminal escape the police and some pesky bounty hunters.
Chris Pine had been in talks to take on the role of the title character, but Variety now reports that McConaughey is eying the role. Sheridan will play the boy, while Witherspoon will play Mud’s soulmate who he’s trying to reunite with. Everest Entertainment is fully financing the film and company founder Lisa Maria Falcone will produce. You can read Matt’s review of Take Shelter here.