This week’s Labor Day holiday afforded me the opportunity to check out a matinee screening of writer/director Richard Linklater‘s Boyhood. I consider myself a sucker for coming-of-age stories and, as such, I went into the movie expecting to like it. I didn’t expect to leave the theater feeling as if I’d just watched the greatest coming-of-age film ever made. From beginning to end, Boyhood feels important. Not “important” in that it demands to be taken seriously, rather in a way that feels as if Linklater is genuinely interested in capturing something authentic and meaningful. I never once got the impression that the timeline in which the film was made was being used as a gimmick for cheap emotional connection. To the contrary, Boyhood earns every emotional beat it hits by way of excellent performances (Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke stand out in particular), airtight pacing that documents the highlights of Mason’s adolescence, and sharp writing that makes it feel as if you didn’t miss all that much by bottling up 12 years of life into 165 minutes. I don’t know what kind of award chances Boyhood has and, to be honest, it really doesn’t matter. Awards are beneath this film. It’s a high-water mark not just for Linklater but for the medium in general.
All Boyhood hyperbole aside, this week’s Top 5 features all of our TIFF 2014 coverage to date, Dwayne Johnson being cast as “Black Adam” in Warner Bros. upcoming Shazam pic, interviews for and 24 things to know about Disney’s Big Hero 6, our Fall 2014 Horror Preview, and a disturbingly excellent trailer for the Belgian horror film Cub. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.
1. Our TIFF 2014 Coverage
While several reviews have already filed in, you’re only going to see more and more coverage from the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival in the coming days. If you enjoy reading early reviews and catching behind-the-scenes interviews then you’ll likely see this as a good thing and can click here for all of our continued coverage. If those aren’t in your wheelhouse then you’re still in the clear because Dave is manning the news in Matt & Adam’s absence and is keeping the site relevant with images containing the word “cock”.
2. Dwayne Johnson Will Be Black Adam in Upcoming SHAZAM Film
A considerable step was taken in Warner Bros. Shazam adaptation this week when it was confirmed that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will take on the villainous role of Black Adam. Knowing little to nothing about the character, I won’t comment on whether or not I think The Rock is the best choice for the role. As a general rule, though, I assume that he’s the best choice for most every role. That said, my skepticism of Warner Bros. and its DC Comics movieverse still stands regardless of how “different” New Line president Toby Emmerich says the tone and feeling of the Shazam film will be in comparison to other comic book movies.
3. BIG HERO 6 Interviews and 24 Things to Know
For Disney’s Big Hero 6, following-up the highest grossing animated film of all-time (Frozen) comes with its share of pros and cons. On one hand, you’re still a Disney film so you have a worldwide brand backing you. On the other hand, you’re not Frozen which is a problem because people really really like Frozen. It won’t be easy, but to help prepare you for life post-Frozen, our Christina Radish graced the site with 24 things to know about Big Hero 6 as well as interviews with directors Don Hall & Chris Williams and Head of Animation Zach Parrish.
4. Fall 2014 Horror Preview
If you’ve followed my writing on the site for any amount of time then you should know that I count Horror among my favorite film genres. Movies like Halloween, Rosemary’s Baby, Friday the 13th, and The Texas Chain Saw Massacre have left an indelible mark on my cinematic experience and are the types of films that I find myself wanting to share with others when given the chance. That in mind, our Perri Nemiroff was a woman after my own heart this past week when she pulled together this Fall 2014 Horror Preview to help prepare our readers for some of the horror films that could be worth your time this autumn.
5. CUB Trailer Reminds Us That Only Bad Things Happen in the Woods
Speaking of horror films worth seeing, Cub is a Belgian film directed by Jonas Govaerts and the trailer that premiered this week is sensational. Although it has no U.S. release date as of now, the pic will screen in TIFF’s Midnight Madness program this year and I can’t wait to check it out for myself. The frightening kid in this cut has shades of Guillermo del Toro’s The Devil’s Backbone which is about the highest praise I can offer a trailer.