arrival first look

UPDATE: Fantastic Fest has unveiled the second wave of films in this year’s line-up, including Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival, Paul Verhoeven’s Elle, Park Chan-Wook’s The Handmaiden, and Sadako vs Kayako (which finds the monsters from The Ring and The Grudge battling it out). We have added the complete list of second wave films to the bottom of this post.

Fantastic Fest, the Austin, Texas-based film festival built around showcasing genre movies from the around the world, has announced its first wave of programming and it’s a doozy. Sure, the biggest news here is a red carpet screening of Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, but that’s just the bait. The real appeal of Fantastic Fest, and the real appeal of this first wave announcement, is the collection of odd and unusual films that accompany the headliners. Come for the Tim Burton movie, but stay for the latest from Werner Herzog, Andrea Arnold, Don Coscarelli, and a number of the most unusual filmmakers working on the international stage at the moment.

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Southside With You

Note: With Southside With You in limited release this weekend, we’re re-running our review from the Sundance Film Festival.

Richard Linklater’s Before Sunrise has sparked dozens of imitations, some better than others, but Southside With You is almost certainly the first time it’s inspired a biopic based on a sitting U.S. president. Written and directed by Richard Tanne, the gentle indie romance chronicles the charmed first date of Barack Obama (Parker Sawyers), then a summer associate at a Chicago law firm, and Michelle Robinson (Tika Sumpter), then a second-year associate and his mentor at the same firm.  Read More »

24x36 trailer

We live in an interesting age for movie posters. While actual film studios and the marketing people they employ continue to line multiplex walls with generic, heavily photoshopped work that generally relies on giant floating heads and/or random debris particles filling in every inch of negative space, pop culture art has undergone a revolution. Companies like Mondo, the Bottleneck Gallery, and Hero Complex have embraced movie buffs’ desire to line their walls with tremendous art representing films that are important to them. The movie poster has been reinvented.

The new documentary 24X36: A Movie About Movie Posters looks to explore how the beautiful movie posters from decades past gave way to the generic designs of today and how third parties and inspired artists have resurrected the form. And yes, you can watch the trailer below.

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White Girl Trailer

Kids are getting up to some pretty crazy things nowadays with their Tinder and their Pokemon Go, and hopefully a bright future that combines promiscuous dating and Nintendo in a single app somehow. Still, it’s a safe bet that most youths of today don’t get caught up in the kind of risky and risque shenanigans that are on display in the first trailer for the indie flick White Girl.

Marking the directing debut of Elizabeth Wood, the film follows a young girl who isn’t shy about her sex life, usually involving casual drug use. But her wild lifestyle gets a little more crazy when a young drug dealer she starts dating gets arrested, leaving her with a bunch of cocaine and a big decision to make.

Watch the White Girl trailer after the jump, but beware that it’s NSFW due to nudity. Read More »

Blood Father Trailer

If you thought Liam Neeson got upset when some criminals kidnapped Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen and then himself in the Taken franchise, just wait until you see how pissed Mel Gibson gets when some drug cartel thugs come after his daughter.

Blood Father premiered at the Cannes Film Festival back in May, and it’s coming to theaters late this summer, giving Mel Gibson another chance at redemption on the big screen after previous efforts landed without much pomp and circumstance. This almost feels like if Riggs from Lethal Weapon had a daughter, lost Rene Russo and really just let life kick him in the teeth.

Watch the Blood Father trailer after the jump. Read More »

The Intervention Trailer

Several titles that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year are making their way to limited releases and VOD this summer. One of the more charming offerings is The Intervention, a relationship dramedy fueled by an incredible cast, some sharp writing, and one intervention that turns into multiple cries for help among a group of four couples on a weekend getaway.

Watch The Intervention trailer after the jump. Read More »

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Squirrel Girl Movie

There are plenty of comic books movies coming down the pipeline. Marvel Studios has new heroes like Black Panther and Captain Marvel getting their own movies, 20th Century Fox has another Wolverine sequel on the way, and Sony has teamed with Marvel to revive Spider-Man yet again. But one superhero we’ve heard nothing about on the feature film side of things is Squirrel Girl. Wait, who?

Believe it or not, Squirrel Girl is a Marvel superhero and she has gained quite the following in recent years. While there’s no indication that a Squirrel Girl movie is even in development, that might change once the folks at Marvel Studios hear that Anna Kendrick may have an interest in playing the superhero. Find out more about this Squirrel Girl movie chatter after the jump. Read More »

Fundamentals of Caring Review

Note: With The Fundamentals of Caring out this weekend, we’re re-running our review from the Sundance Film Festival.

Often times at Sundance you see the same stories played out with different characters. This year alone, for example, there are two movies about an estranged New York man returning home when his mother comes down with a debilitating ailment. Familiar indie stories don’t always work on the festival circuit, but sometimes when the right cast comes together, a decent amount of magic happens. Such is the case with The Fundamentals of Caring, a road trip comedy with heart based on Jonathan Evison‘s bestselling novel of nearly the same name and starring British sensation Craig Roberts (Submarine) and the always reliable Paul Rudd. Keep reading the Fundamentals of Caring review after the jump. Read More »

Swiss Army Man

Note: With Swiss Army Man in limited release this weekend, we’re re-running our review from the Sundance Film Festival.

About five minutes into Swiss Army Man, you’re faced with a choice. By this point in the film, you’ll have seen Hank (Paul Dano), a man stranded alone on a desert island, try to hang himself. His suicide attempt is interrupted by the arrival of a corpse (Daniel Radcliffe) that proves to be a prolific farter. Hank opts not to kill himself, and instead rides “Manny” like a flatulence-powered jet ski in the direction of civilization.

The scene is weird, and absurd, and crude, and dark, but kind of beautiful, too, and it’s at this point you have to make a decision: Either you’re willing to go with a movie that delights in all of those unsavory qualities, or you’re not. If you decide you’re not, know that Swiss Army Man will only get stranger and ruder, and you’re probably better off putting it back on the shelf until you’re in the mood for it. If you decide you are, however, you’ll discover a unique, oddly gorgeous adventure anchored by a superb performance from Radcliffe as a dead body (no, really).  Read More »