Four years after delivering the film that would ultimately go on to earn Jacki Weaver her very first Academy Award nomination, writer-director David Michôd is back with his second feature film, “The Rover.”
The film stars “Animal Kingdom” alum Guy Pearce as Eric, a loner roaming the desolate Australian outback where law enforcement is hard to come by and everything comes at a hefty price. When a group of criminals steals Eric’s car in the heat of a botched heist, he decides to pick up the wounded accomplice (Robert Pattinson) they leave behind so he track them down and get back his sole remaining possession.
When you mark your feature debut with something like “Animal Kingdom,” follow-up opportunities are bound to come your way. However, an opportunity and the right opportunity are two different things, so Michôd opted to take his time to ensure he picked the best thing.
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Even though we’re already neck deep in the summer movie season, there’s always the time and often the desire to take a break from superheroes and blockbusters, and this weekend, Pauline Chan’s “33 Postcards” could be that source of relief.
The film stars newcomer Zhu Lin as Mei Mei, a Chinese orphan who’s been sponsored by an Australian man (Guy Pearce) for years. When Mei Mei finally gets the opportunity to travel to Australia she’s determined to meet him, dreaming that he might make her part of his family, but is shocked to discover that he isn’t really the man he wrote about in his postcards.
A script from the Tribeca Film Institute’s All Access program, the second ever China-Australia co-production, and a lead actress who didn’t speak a lick of English when she was cast; “33 Postcards” is an exceptional production for a variety of reasons. In honor of the film’s May 17th limited theatrical release, Chan took the time to run through all her feats from finding and working with Lin to securing financing, ensuring “33 Postcards” is a standout film, and more.
Check out all the details in the interview below and catch “33 Postcards” on VOD now or in theaters this weekend.
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After all these years and all these film, the Marvel Universe is starting to feel very real and that’s vital to “Iron Man 3’s” success because without that acquired ability to re-tap into this realm where Iron Man, Thor, and more are the norm, the details of this installment of the franchise might have been too unsupported to let you enjoy the charm of Tony Stark, the excitement of seeing dozens of Iron Men assemble, watching Pepper Potts get a hefty dose of action and more well earned highlights.
It’s post-“Avengers” time and Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) is still reeling from the battle in New York. Even while suffering from frequent anxiety attacks, Tony must carry on because there’s a new threat that needs his attention, a terrorist known as The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley).
That synopsis is cut and dry, but “Iron Man 3” is loaded with new and returning characters, intricate story details, and plot offshoots, too. Everything works well enough to make “Iron Man 3” the electrifying Tony Stark showcase you’d hope it to be, but unless you’re coursing through on cruise control, it’s easy to get caught up in the barrage of information and then frustrated with the lack of cohesive details.
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There are enough loose ends in life; who needs more via cinema? While few enjoy being jerked around by a convoluted plot there are also the films that don’t merely let you sit back, relax and enjoy the show; you’ve got to work for your entertainment. However, in Prometheus’ case, director Ridley Scott offers up the best of both worlds. You could put yourself on cruise control and enjoy an alien action movie, but it’s highly recommended to watch this one with a keen eye as the details are a stimulant, heightening that action and making Prometheus a notably enthralling experience regardless of some loose ends.
The year is 2089. Elizabeth Shaw and Charlie Holloway (Noomi Rapace and Logan Marshall-Green) have added yet another finding to their collection of symbols drawn repeatedly by entirely separate ancient civilizations. They deduce that these symbols are a star map and Weyland Corporation founder, Peter Weyland (Guy Pearce), opts to fund their expedition to a location pinpointed on this map.
Fast-forward to the year 2093. The crew of the Prometheus, including Elizabeth and Charlie, are waking up from an extended sleep during which, an android named David (Michael Fassbender), monitored the ship’s trip to a moon on that very map. Shortly after arriving, they spot structures and the ship’s captain, Janek (Idris Elba), sets Prometheus down nearby. With Elizabeth and Charlie at the helm, a group of crewmembers venture inside one construction to find what Elizabeth dubs “engineers” and believes preceded humanity.
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How could you have a plot about a guy saving the president’s daughter from an outer space prison riot and not pour every resource into making that scenario as wildly enjoyable as possible? If you’re going high concept, the only way to make it work is if you go high concept to the max. However, the guys behind Lockout only take it about halfway there, as far too much of their energy, attention and budget is stolen by lame story frills.
When a CIA operative is murdered in Washington DC in 2079, agent Snow (Guy Pearce) is hauled in for questioning. Snow is wrongly convicted of the crime and sentenced to 30 years on MS One, a maximum security prison in space. Meanwhile, Emilie Warnock (Maggie Grace), the daughter of the president of the United States, is on her way to that very prison to assess its status and look into potential side effects of the deep sleep treatment used on the inmates, one of which is extreme aggression. When things go awry during one of her interviews, an inmate (Joseph Gilgun) escapes and frees his cohorts, inciting a violent riot.
With Emilie’s life at stake, senior officer Scott Langral (Peter Stormare) reluctantly reassesses his plan to lock Snow away and instead sends him to MS One to find and rescue Emilie. After all, it is a suicide mission.
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You know when you misplace something and someone tells you, “It couldn’t have just walked off on its own?” Well, thanks to Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, you’ve got a culprit to point a finger at; they may claim they just want to be your friends, but this movie’s little monsters also have their eyes on your razors, clothing and your children.
Alex (Guy Pearce) is a struggling architect trying to renovate the old Blackwood Manor to revitalize his career. With his interior decorator and live-in girlfriend, Kim (Katie Holmes), by his side, he calls the location home and works on it incessantly. Things get complicated when his ex-wife decides it’s time for their daughter, Sally (Bailee Madison), to go and live with daddy. Alex thinks he’s child-proofed the house by giving his daughter the quintessential little girl’s dream room, but with little to do, Sally resorts to exploring and winds up discovering that they’re not the only ones living in the Blackwood Manor and that those other residents are viciously desperate to be her friends.
In honor of Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’s August 26th release, writer-producer Guillermo del Toro and star Katie Holmes sat down to talk about the film at a roundtable interview. The session was packed with goods from the set including Holmes’ experience working with Madison, del Toro’s effort to bring the film’s creatures to life and much more. Check it all out for yourself in the video interview below and be sure to keep an eye out for those spoiler alerts, as they’re very much there for a reason.
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Haunted house films are back in full force. In April we got the beautifully modest and wildly enjoyable Insidious from James Wan and now Guillermo del Toro and Co. are giving the subgenre a go with Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. While the two are rooted in entirely different core concepts, they do have quite a bit in common, namely child stars vs. evil entities, eerily warm yet threatening tones, fantastic visuals and the fact that they’re both incredibly frightening, exhilarating and entertaining all in one. Haunted house films are officially two for two in 2011.
When Sally’s (Bailee Madison) mother decides it’s time to hand her over to her father, Alex (Guy Pearce), she’s sent from Los Angeles to Rhode Island where she’ll call the old Blackwood Manor home. Alex, an architect desperately in need of a career comeback, and his girlfriend, Kim (Katie Holms), an interior decorator, are calling the place home for the time being, as they’re working to restore the house and sell it for a pretty penny and ego boost.
In the midst of a snooping session, Sally discovers a room in the Blackwood Manor, a basement her father never knew existed. After knocking down a wall and finding the basement door, Sally, Alex and Kim investigate and discover the famous artist Emerson Blackwood’s studio. Alex is fascinated with the new space and Kim with the work Mr. Blackwood left behind, but Sally winds up enraptured with something else, something connected to Emerson Blackwood’s disappearance over a hundred years ago.
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