Everything about going to the Playboy Mansion is arguably a good idea. Except watching a movie. Properly watching a movie takes concentration, quiet and darkness. But in a place with an open bar, Playmates and a history of sex, drugs and rock and roll, watching a film is a bad idea.
Last week, I was invited to the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles to see Parker. The film, directed by Oscar-nominee Taylor Hackford and starring Jason Statham and Jennifer Lopez, is about a career criminal who vows revenge on a crew that left him for dead. That right there sounds like a film you’d want to see, but seeing at the Playboy Mansion just put it over the top.
The iron gate, the valet, the massive house, the Grotto, the bird sanctuary, the game room, the alcohol — even in a very controlled environment — can be all-consuming. By the time the lights went down, people were texting, talking, getting up and not coming back, and somehow it was all okay.
So instead of reviewing Parker, I figured I’d explain why the Playboy Mansion is simultaneously the best, and worst, place to watch a movie in the world. Read More »
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There are two “Die Hard in the White House” movies set for release this year. One is Roland Emmerich’s White House Down, with Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx. The other is Antoine Fuqua‘s Olympus Has Fallen, which features Gerard Butler as a secret service agent, Aaron Eckhart as the President of the United States, Morgan Freeman as the Speaker of the House, and a whole bunch of Asian antagonists.
Here, Butler’s agent pulls the POTUS from a wrecked limo just before it plunges off a bridge… with the First Lady inside. He’s removed from service, but ends up back in action when the White House is taken over by terrorists while he’s inside. As the President is held hostage and Butler works his violent magic from inside 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., Morgan Freeman’s Speaker manages the situation from the outside. It’s all very explosive, and even the Washington Monument takes a hit.
Check out the trailer below. Read More »
Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2013 by Angie Han
A few days after the kickoff the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, deal-making is in full swing. The well-reviewed drama The Spectacular Now, by Smashed director James Ponsoldt, is headed to newish distributor A24, while the crowdpleasing comedy Austenland, from Napoleon Dynamite writer Jerusha Hess, is nearing a deal with FilmDistrict. Michael Winterbottom and Steve Coogan‘s The Look of Love had a mixed reception, but that’s not stopping IFC Films from closing in on a deal; the distributor also released the pair’s last comedy together, The Trip. Meanwhile, Anchor Bay has picked up two narrative features so far, the Dermot Mulroney-starring The Rambler and Leland Orser‘s Morning. (The latter is not playing at Sundance.)
Over in the world of documentaries, music-centric films seem to be doing quite well. Showtime has acquired the broadcast rights to the two-part documentary History of the Eagles, which will air on the channel February 15 & 16. Also headed to television is Pussy Riot — A Punk Prayer, which has been snapped up by HBO Documentary Films. Finally, Twenty Feet From Stardom, which follows some of popular music’s greatest backup singers, will get a theatrical release by RADiUS-TWC. And in non-music news, AMC’s Sundance Selects has grabbed Dirty Wars, about America’s covert wars, and The Summit, about climbers scaling the most dangerous peak in the world.
Hit the jump to read descriptions of the films mentioned above.
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Director Niels Arden Oplev and actress Noomi Rapace found great success across the globe with the trilogy of films based on Steig Larsson’s Millennium novels, beginning with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. The duo has reunited for Dead Man Down, a revenge tale in which Rapace plays a woman who coerces hit man Victor (Colin Farrell) into helping her execute a revenge plot.
The first trailer for the film is now online; check it out below. (Updated below with a much better embed.) Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, December 11th, 2012 by Angie Han
Not surprisingly, today’s tidbits begin with Star Trek Into Darkness. After the jump:
- Simon Pegg is laughing at your Star Trek fan theories
- You can count out Danny Boyle for Bond 24
- Clerks III already has a 70-page outline
- Andy Serkis talks The Hobbit and Apes
- A Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy sequel is coming
- Barbara Hershey will return for Insidious 2
- Wolverine, X-Men, Apes, and Percy Jackson go 3D
Read More »
James Wan‘s low-budget smash hit Insidious was not only scary, it was a sure-fire conversation starter. Starring Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne as two parents whose son loses himself in a spiritual other world called The Further, the movie cost only $1.5 million and ended up grossing nearly $100 million, meaning lots of people walked out dying to know what happens next. Answers are now going to be offered up.
Insidious Chapter 2 will once again be written by Leigh Whannell, directed by James Wan, and star Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Lin Shaye and Ty Simpkins. It starts production in January aimed at an August 30, 2013 release date. After the jump, read more about the film and some possibilities of where it could go. Read More »
Briefly: Spike Lee‘s remake of Chan-wook Park’s 2003 classic Oldboy, starring Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, and Sharlto Copley, has now been given a release date. You’ll get to see the hammer-fighting, revenge-seeking, mind-melt of a film on October 11, 2013 according to Box Office Mojo. For more on the film, including some set photos and more, check out our Oldboy archive.
For years, DVD extras have given general audiences great insight into how the assembly process for films works. Now the internet is taking over, as filmmakers can bring video directly to fans. Looper director Rian Johnson has taken to the idea more than most, releasing things such as his “live” commentary tracks discussing the making of his movies long before the DVD is out.
And now Johnson has released his early pitch reel for Looper. Created, as his explains, after he finished the script but before pre-production, the “strange curiosity” features footage from films such as Days of Heaven, Fight Club, Blade Runner and Se7en. It also has something most similar reels don’t have: a voiceover track performed by the actor who ended up in the final film. Here we can hear Joseph Gordon-Levitt speaking an early version of the explanatory dialogue that opens Looper, with a darker tone than seen in the final version. Read More »
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