new Victoria trailer

Victoria started doing the rounds at festivals early this year, and I’ve talked to more and more people who really admire it, and at times even love it, after it plays each successive festival. What’s the big deal? In this case, it’s that the film was captured in one single shot, running over two hours. And, while part of me thinks 2+ hours is a long time to watch a single-take experiment, the rest of me is totally game for it.

Here’s what the distributor is saying as part of the official blurb for the film: “This film is not a movie; it’s not about a bank robbery. It is bank robbery. “Victoria” was shot in one single take. Two hours and eighteen minutes. No cuts. No CGI. No cheap tricks. No expensive ones, either. Just one shot.” Does that work? The new Victoria trailer has the advantage of cuts, so you won’t exactly be able to tell from this footage, but have a look anyway. Read More »

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens: first order stormtroopers behind the scenes

There’s a big spoiler news report floating around for The Force Awakens. We won’t tell you the details specifically, because we don’t want to spoil the film for anyone, but we’ll let you in on the basics of the talk for those who are very curious. Along with that info, we’ve got the following in this edition of Star Wars bits:

  • Artist Paul Shipper has created a Drew Struzan-esque poster for The Force Awakens,
  • A retailer has leaked info on Star Wars toys months in advance,
  • Dave Bautista would like a Star Wars role,
  • The first Star Wars comics trade collection from Marvel is expected to sell big,
  • And see two new Darth Vader comic book covers, and get a preview of Star Wars #8.

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The Rosie Project Director

Richard Linklater has already completed his follow-up to Boyhood — when your last feature took over a decade to make, pretty much any other turnaround seems quick. The movie has been called That’s What I’m Talking About, and also referred to as Everybody Wants Some, but the current status pegs it as Untitled Richard Linklater movie.

What we do know about the film is that it follows a young man as he arrives at college, and now the film has an April 2016 release date. In addition, Linklater is the top choice to direct The Rosie Project, which Sony has set up with Jennifer Lawrence set to star. Read More »

Star Wars changes

Everyone knows that Han shot first in Star Wars, and that the Special Edition release of 1997 altered the scene to make Greedo the aggressor in that encounter. But do you know how many versions of that scene have been cut over the years? The Star Wars changes are numerous, and go way beyond simple differences between the original 1977 release and the Special Edition.

For instance, can you name the smallest change to the original Star Wars opening crawl? It isn’t the addition of the “Episode IV – A New Hope” subtitle. And where’d the Cantina wolfman go? Find out those details and info on a wealth of other Star Wars changes large and small in the videos below. Read More »

Nolan Brothers Quay documentary

Stephen and Timothy Quay are twin animators who have worked in both short and feature forms for decades, creating striking and unusual images such as the one above, from The Comb. While their style is indebted to other directors such as Jan Svankmajer, whose work is namechecked in an early Quay short, Brothers Quay films are singular efforts. Their shorts have appeared on laserdisc and DVD, but so far the primary way to get their incredible short films on blu-ray has been as bonus features on UK issues of their features.

Now Christopher Nolan and his company Syncopy are working with Zeitgeist Films to curate Blu-Ray releases, including a disc featuring the short work of the Brothers Quay. Now we’ve learned there’s a bonus: Nolan has directed Quay, a short documentary about the animators, which will premiere in New York in August.  Read More »

best Mission Impossible action scenes

Brian De Palma‘s first Mission: Impossible film wasn’t packed with action setpieces — there are only three, really, but those three are all top-tier action filmmaking, and one of those three defined the series for years to come. In the two decades since, the series has been tackled by a variety of directors — John Woo, J.J. Abrams, Brad Bird, and now Christopher McQuarrie — each of whom with a slightly different balance of action and espionage.

Paramount in all the best Mission Impossible setpieces, however, is the physicality of Tom Cruise (and, at times, his co-stars) and a direct simplicity that lets Cruise and many stunt performers shine. We’ve examined the major action concepts in the five films in the series to find the best Mission Impossible action scenes and show-off setpieces. (And, OK, we’ve highlighted a couple of the worst, too.)

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Gambit shoot date

Channing Tatum has a couple months left to brush up on his card-throwing skills, as Gambit is scheduled to shoot in New Orleans this fall, starting in October. That’s the subject of a recent report (which corroborates other info we have) which also includes a bunch of rumored character names and descriptions. Get all that info below, and see if you can figure out what other characters might be showing up. Read More »

Fantastic Four science

For every science-inspired film there’s at least one expert ready to grab headlines by talking about how that film’s science is all wrong. Sometimes the arguments are pedantic and tiring, but at best they’re interesting, and can be a good way to get some actual facts and theories out to a wide audience.

For example, there’s the fact that Antony, the winged ant used as a steed by Paul Rudd’s character in Ant-Man, is actually female. That fact comes from a great interview with a professor of biology who has a lot to say about ants, and the relationship of their on-screen depiction to real-world behavior.

Getting out in front of the whole “impossible science of Reed Richards” discussions, Fox has recruited Michio Kaku for a set of Fantastic Four science videos that discuss the actual science and theories behind some of the concepts seen in the film, and the comics that inspired it.  Read More »

El Chapo Movie

Ridley Scott may go back to the drug trade at some point in the future. The director explored some ugly inevitabilities of the drug trade in The Counselor, and now he is signed to make a film based on Don Winslow‘s recent novel The Cartel.

The novel, which follows ten years’ worth of the diverging paths of two former friends, one in the DEA and the other in a drug cartel, is based in part on the story of Cartel boss Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who has made global headlines since escaping from a Mexican prison earlier this month. While The Cartel won’t quite be an El Chapo movie, but it might be close.

Update: Following the initial report about this project, further info emerged saying that Leonardo DiCaprio is being courted to play the character Keller. More below.

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