love actually sequel

We’ll probably never get a proper sequel to the 2003 romantic comedy gem Love Actually, but we’ll make do with a ten-minute short film starring many of the original cast members that was produced to raise money for Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day. The new trailer for this project, titled Red Nose Day Actually, is here and it shows off many members of the original cast…and asks you to decide which of them has aged the best.

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beauty and the beast compared to the original

(In our Spoiler Reviews, we take a deep dive into a new release and get to the heart of what makes it tick…and every story point is up for discussion. In this entry: Bill Condon’s Beauty and the Beast.)

Once Walt Disney Pictures began adapting its animated classics for live-action, starting with Tim Burton’s 2010 take on Alice in Wonderland and moving into villain-centered fairy tales like Maleficent, it was a safe bet that a new version of Beauty and the Beast wouldn’t be too far behind. The 1991 film is beloved the world over and was a central part of pop culture for countless Millennials growing up. Plus, it garnered heaps of critical praise and a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars, the first for an animated film. So it’s no surprise that Disney has gone all-in with its live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast: it boasts an all-star cast including Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellen, Luke Evans, and more; its director, Bill Condon, has directed everything from entries in the Twilight Saga to the Dreamgirls musical adaptation; and its reported $160 million budget is evident in the sets, costumes, and extensive CGI.

But can the new Beauty and the Beast compare to the 1991 classic? Does this remake feel as timeless as the film that inspired its existence? Or do its changes — and there are quite a few — feel dull and lifeless? Let’s dive in and compare the original and its remake to find out.

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Beauty and the Beast review

Whenever there’s news of a remake or reboot of an old and beloved movie, the reactions usually range from cautious optimism to some variation on “only when you pry it from my cold, dead hands.” In the case of Disney’s live action Beauty and the Beast, it’s the movie itself to which those latter adjectives apply.

This isn’t to say that the movie’s got nothing going on; if anything, it has too much going on. Padded out with 45 extra minutes, the movie’s M.O. is to take everything in the original and crank it up from ten to twenty. There’s more magic, more backstory, more cutlery, more dance breaks, more everything. It feels like love up to a point, the way the best stories get embellished with time, but when the new songs come clunking to remind you of exactly what it takes to get a Best Original Song nomination (and how good the old songs are), the proceedings start to feel a little less genuine.

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beauty and the beast imax ratio

Disney’s live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast is out in theaters today and it is, by all accounts, a visual marvel. So when director Bill Condon, a filmmaker with his fair share of experience in directing lavish and colorful films, sits down for a new featurette and explains how the best possible way to watch his movie is on an IMAX screen, maybe we should listen.

We are pleased to debut this new video, which you can watch below.

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Love Actually 2 Photos - Red Nose Day Actually

Last month, the day after Valentine’s Day, we learned that the ensemble romantic comedy Love Actually was getting a sequel. Sort of. Instead of being a feature film reunion, the cast of the film from director Richard Curtis was reuniting for a short film in honor of the charitable initiative by Comic Relief known as Red Nose Day.

The Love Actually sequel is called Red Nose Day Actually, and the short is in production right now and will debut later this month on TV. For those who can’t wait to get a glimpse of the sequel, Red Nose Day program director Emma Freud has been on set, and she’s revealed out first look at the returning cast. There’s Hugh Grant, who is still Prime Minister and still married to the lovely Martine McCutcheon, Liam Neeson and his much older son played by Thomas Brodie-Sangster, and Rowan Atkinson who is still taking his sweet time at the check out counter.

Check out the Love Actually 2 photos below. Read More »

La La Land concert

La La Land In Concert: A Live-to-Film Celebration is coming to the Hollywood Bowl this summer. If you don’t live in Los Angeles, fret not my fellow La La Land fans: the concert will visit some major cities in the United States before making a few stops in Mexico, Italy, Switzerland, and other countries. However, La La Land‘s Academy Award-winning composer, Justin Hurwitz, is conducting the live shows at the Hollywood Bowl.

Below, learn more about the La La Land musical.

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Beauty and the Beast review

Disney’s live-action-remake obsession continues this month with Beauty and the Beast, and it might be one of the trickiest adaptations they’ve tackled so far. Oh, sure, it’s an easy sell: the 1991 animated feature is one of the most beloved films in the studio’s catalogue, and nostalgia alone would’ve been enough to get some butts in seats. But on the other hand, how do you live up to near perfection? What’s the point in redoing something that good? How do you make a movie that satisfies fans of the original, while adding enough of a twist to justify redoing it in the first place?

We don’t have all the answers — if we did, we’d be running Disney, not blogging for /Film — but the first reactions to the first screenings offer some clues as to how the studio tried to address these challenges. See the first Beauty and the Beast reactions below, as well as our own brief Beauty and the Beast review. 
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The Promise Trailer

Even though a triangle is one of the strongest geometric shapes, a love triangle makes things far less stable. It certainly doesn’t help matters any in Terry George‘s new film The Promise.

A young woman named Ana (Charlotte Le Bon of The Walk) strikes up a close relationship with a medical students (Oscar Isaac) while she’s still in a relationship with an American photojournalist (Christian Bale), all while war breaks out around them in the middle of the Ottoman Empire. It makes for some complicated romantic drama, but it may not turn out to be as important as helping the people around them get to safety in the middle of the turmoil surrounding them.

Watch The Promise trailer after the jump. Read More »

Beauty and the Beast clip

Beauty and the Beast is now only a little bit of two weeks away from an opening weekend that’s expected to be huge. We’re beginning to see more and more footage from director Bill Condon‘s musical, meaning we get to see more of the Beast in action, played via motion-capture by Dan Stevens (Legion). A new clip has arrived online showing an awkward and nervous Beast trying to put on his best smile for Belle.

Below, watch a Beauty and the Beast clip.

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oscars winners and losers

Predicting the Oscars is like predicting the weather. You can look at the charts and determine the general course of the storm, but it’s impossible to tell if the wind is going to knock a tree through your living room window. Last night’s ceremony was peak Oscars. Everything went exactly how it was supposed to go before finding time to also uproot the oak in your front yard and cave-in one of walls with it.

So let’s talk about the winners and losers of this year’s Academy Awards. Not the actual winners, the people who went home with potentially life-changing statuettes, but the people who walked away from that ceremony looking like a million bucks and those who…didn’t. And while we’re talking about winners, we have also have the results from our /Film Oscar prediction contest!

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