Stratton trailer

Dominic Cooper has been doing excellent work in the greatly-improved second season of AMC’s TV adaptation of the Preacher comic series, but the former Howard Stark actor has another adaptation lined up – and this one’s on the big screen. He plays an MI6 agent in Stratton, an action thriller from Con Air director Simon West that’s based on a popular series of novels, and a trailer for the film has arrived.
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james bond 25

Now that we know James Bond 25 is happening and that Daniel Craig is most likely returning for one more go-around as 007, it begins — the endless circulation of James Bond rumors and news that may or may not turn out to be true.

So here we are. Bond Watch: Day 1. James Bond 25 may be titled Shatterhand and see the British super agent face off against a blind supervillain.

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village

(Welcome to The Unpopular Opinion, a series where a writer goes to the defense of a much-maligned film or TV show, or sets their sights on something seemingly beloved by all. In this edition: a defense of M. Night Shyamalan unjustly maligned The Village.)

“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.”C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

M. Night Shyamalan’s career has been bumpy. He found monumental success with his 1999 ghost story The Sixth Sense, and continued to garner acclaim and stellar box office returns with its two follow-ups, Unbreakable and Signs. Yet after Signs, a rift began to form between Shyamalan’s work and how the public perceived it. Eventually, the filmmaker fell almost completely out of favor, only managing to climb back on top slowly with recent films The Visit and Split. Nothing can quite capture the meteoric rise of Shyamalan’s early career, though.

While Lady in the Water might have been the film that torpedoed the last remaining shreds of good will towards Shyamalan’s work, it was 2004’s The Village (which came out 13 years ago yesterday) that started the dissent. More often than not, when people want to hold up examples of Shyamalan’s lesser work, they tend to lump The Village in with misfires like The Happening.

This is a mistake.

The Village is one of Shyamalan’s most interesting films, and perhaps one of his best. A melancholy meditation on grief and fear, it radiates sorrow in ways his other films do not. Yes, it does have that expected Shyamalan twist – two of them, in fact. But the film is more than its twists, and deserves to be watched with fresh eyes.

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Mindhunter Trailer

Director David Fincher has tackled crime thrillers with fantastic, acclaimed results in films like Panic Room, Zodiac and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Now he’s returning to the genre, but this time in serial form on Netflix.

Mindhunter is a new Netflix original series based on on Mindhunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit, a non-fiction book by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker about agents of the FBI’s Investigative Support Unit which set out to get into the mindset of serial killers and psychopaths so that they might have an easier time identifying and catching them. A new trailer for the series has arrived, and it looks like exactly the kind of gripping crime drama we’d expect from a filmmaker like David Fincher. Read More »

neill blomkamp to direct the gone world

After temporarily setting aside his film ambitions to focus on his experimental Oats Studios, Neill Blomkamp is set to return to the feature film world to helm an adaptation of the sci-fi thriller The Gone World.

Blomkamp is making a faster return to the feature films than I initially thought. It seemed like he was going through some sort of spiritual rediscovery, reminiscing over his missteps with his latest film Chappie and focusing all his creative energy on the short films and experimental projects of Oats Studios. But it seems that the allure of The Gone World is too strong, and Blomkamp is being pulled back into feature film directing.

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What Happened to Monday trailer

Netflix has unveiled a new trailer for a dystopian thriller called What Happened to Monday that features Noomi Rapace (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) playing seven identical twin sisters whose very existence is a crime: they’ve secretly grown to adulthood in a world in which every family is only allowed to have one child. This looks like a ridiculously fun B-movie, and I can’t wait to check it out. Watch the trailer below.
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the vault trailer

“Crime does not pay,” the trailer for The Vault ham-fistedly declares. But it’s probably a very accurate description for the heist thriller-turned-horror-movie that is The Vault.

In James Franco‘s one-millionth project this year (does the guy never sleep?), he stars as a mild-mannered bank manager with a mustache who finds his bank being robbed by two sisters (Taryn Manning and Francesca Eastwood). But this this isn’t just a nuts-and-bolts thriller as the tables are turned when Franco’s manager unlocks the true horrific nature of The Vault.

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claws tv show

Claws is a little crazy. But in the best way possible.

TNT’s new hit series (which recently got picked up for a second season!), highlighting a crew of scandalous and potent women nail technicians, is far more delicious than it should ever be. In fact, it’s downright criminal. Literally.

The always well-worth-your-money-and-time Niecy Nash is at the center of this dramedy that is best described as a Florida-based Sex and the City, if the Sex and the City women were also low-key criminals whose nails were always on point and could swiftly break out in a perfect, unrehearsed dance number if the moment calls for it. Sure, these ladies on Claws are a little rough around the edges (you never know what’s going to come out of their mouths next). But they can code switch and turn off the sass just as quickly as you can say, “Sugar, please.”

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Christopher Nolan Netflix

If you held an elimination tournament to determine the movie director who was best representative of the 2000s, there are many names that might make it into the final round. Taste is subjective, of course, but by now there is enough distance between us and the decade that we should be able to look back on it with a degree of clarity.

Going by the criteria of the National Film Registry — whereby motion pictures are evaluated as “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” — there is one director whose total output in the 2000s (including teaser trailers for 2010 films) arguably had the most pervasive influence. You would not have to be a “Nolanite” to make a strong case for Christopher Nolan being that director.

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triple frontier movie

Maybe third time’s the charm for the embattled Netflix thriller Triple Frontier.

The Netflix production recently lost star Ben Affleck but is currently negotiating with Mark Wahlberg to replace him. The long-gestating production has gone through numerous rounds of casting, with Tom Hardy and Channing Tatum once attached to star, as well as a revolving door of directors, including Kathryn Bigelow. Now J.C. Chandor is set to direct, with possibly Wahlberg and a few other notable actors in supporting roles.

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