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20th Century Women

As of this moment, 20th Century Women is my favorite movie of the year. Mike Mills‘ (Beginners) latest film is warm, compassionate, honest, and funny. It’s easily the director’s most accomplished feature to date. While watching 20th Century Women, there are themes that call to mind his previous features. Time is a crucial component of Mills’ work, and in 20th Century Women, he focuses on a very particular and relatable time in most peoples’ lives.

Below, watch the 20th Century Women featurette.

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rogue one preview footage

While no audience outside of Disney and Lucasfilm has actually seen the entirety of director Gareth Edwards’ Rogue One: A Star Wars Story quite yet, we were among those invited to a sneak preview of 28 minutes of footage from the upcoming Star Wars spin-off…and what we saw was often spectacular.

“Often” may be the key word there. How do you judge a 133-minute movie based on 28 minutes? You can’t. That would be silly. To declare Rogue One a success or a failure after a half-hour preview would be a foolhardy endeavor. Without the context of the entire movie, it’s impossible to judge any decision as a good choice or a bad one. All you can do is talk about what you enjoyed in the preview and what concerned you.

And for those worried, this is a spoiler-free reaction to what was shown.

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guardians of the galaxy 2 trailer

A few years ago, Guardians of the Galaxy felt like a big left turn and a risk for Marvel Studios. In retrospect, its critical accolades and massive box office felt predestined – this is what happens when a filmmaker as offbeat and clever as director James Gunn is allowed to play in the superhero movie sandbox.

The first full trailer for the sequel, the appropriately titled Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, has arrived and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t overjoyed to see this motley crew of universe-saving a-holes again.

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Rogue One Clip

The clips are starting to pour in for Gareth Edwards‘ Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. After plenty of welcomed secrecy, just two short weeks before the movie finally comes out, we’re seeing more and more footage. Yesterday brought us a clip in which Stormtroopers have yet to master the art of simply aiming, while today brings us a new clip showing Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) trying to get on the same page and another with a character you’ll remember from the prequels.

Below, watch the Rogue One clips.

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EVERYBODY WANTS SOME

After a while, all the top 10 lists and awards nominations start to blur. Sure, everyone’s choices are a little bit different, but a consensus starts to form around certain titles. (This year, those seem to include the very deserving Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea.) But you can always leave it to John Waters to pick a few that are completely off the beaten path.

This year, his favorites include films like Elle and Everybody Wants Some!! that you’re likely to see on many other people’s lists. But they also include movies like Krisha that haven’t received nearly as much attention, and ones like Like a Cattle Towards Glow that — if I’m being honest — I had never even heard. You may agree with his picks or you may not, but either way you’ll probably come away with one or two (or eight) to add to your own to-watch list. Check out the John Waters top 10 of 2016 below.  Read More »

A Monster Calls featurette

A Monster Calls is a heartbreaking movie. When J.A. Bayona‘s (The Impossible) latest film premiered at the Toronto Film Festival, in a nice bit of promotion, tissue boxes were handed out to those in attendance. That was a good call because the film certainly made our own Angie Han choke up once or twice. She praised the drama as a “five-hankie sobfest, a ruthlessly effective tearjerker even by cancer drama standards,” despite a few scenes she found too manipulative.

Below, watch A Monster Calls featurette, which shows how the story came about and evolved.

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Green Band Trailer

Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: What better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? This week we crusade for civil rights using the Internet, get excited over a five-plus hour movie about four women living in Japan, I find a French Robert Downey Jr. lookalike, we try to get to the moon with power tools, we remember VHS board games through a little horror, and we get to know the Big Apple a little better.  Read More »

The LEGO Batman Movie Poster

Why did Jai Courtney get naked and chase David Ayer on the Suicide Squad set? Why does Jason Momoa identify with Aquaman? Are you ready for a Guardians of the Galaxy Telltale video game? Did you know there was once a pitch for an odd crossover between Smallville and Supernatural? All that and more in this edition of Superhero Bits. Read More »

Spectral trailer

Eager to see a sci-fi war movie this month but too lazy to leave your house for Rogue One? Netflix has got you covered. Last month the streaming service scooped up Legendary’s SpectralNic Mathieu‘s directorial debut centers around a Special Ops team going on a deadly mission to stop a wave of otherworldly forces.

James Badge DaleEmily MortimerBruce GreenwoodClayne Crawford, Jimmy Akingbola, and Max Martini play a few of the humans that get mixed up in this crazy mess, which has been described as a sort of supernatural Black Hawk Down. Check out the first Spectral trailer below.  Read More »

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Sight & Sound Announces Their Top 20 Films of 2016

sight & sound top 20 toni erdmann

We’ve reached the point in the year where every publication, website, and critics’ group is rushing to announce their favorite movies of the year before everyone else, a time-honored tradition known as “First!” But few film publications carry as much weight in the end-of-the-year game quite like Sight & Sound, whose Greatest Films of All Time list (updated every ten years after polling critics and film directors) tends ignite movie site comments sections like a match dropped in a puddle of gasoline.

Their annual lists tend to reflect a similar sensibility – a mixture of arthouse fare from around the world with a sprinkle of Hollywood.

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