The Dark Knight Rises is a mess of a film. If The Dark Knight was filled to the brim with weighty ideas, then The Dark Knight Rises‘ cup overfloweth. Director Christopher Nolan, whose previous films have frequently dealt with the darkness of human nature, was not content with creating a light and fun summer actioner. Instead, he has packed his trilogy-concluding film so full of ideas, plot points, characters, emotional arcs, and set pieces that even with a 2 hour 45 minute runtime, none of them has any room to breathe.

But Nolan still knows how to bring the goods. His visual ambition and scope have grown exponentially over the years, and with about an hour’s worth of IMAX-native footage backed by a massive budget, he has an impressive canvas on which to paint his picture. There are sequences in this film that have a mind-boggling scale rarely attempted before. The result is a astonishing spectacle that manages to wow, despite its deep, deep flaws.

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With Cannes just around the corner we’re going to start seeing even more clips and trailer from some of our most anticipated movies of the year. One of the big ones is Killing Them Softly, the third feature film from Andrew Dominik (Chopper, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) that was formerly titled Cogan’s Trade. We haven’t seen any footage at all from this one yet, so the clip below is a first look.

The film features Brad Pitt as a mob enforcer on the trail of a couple guys (Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn) who ripped off the wrong card game. None of those guys are in this first footage from the film, however. Rather, we see Sam Shepard and Slaine showing up at Ray Liotta‘s house, where they rough him up for some reason. The scene is pretty basic, but the way the camera moves past the action really marks this as Dominik’s work — he’s not a guy to engage a scene in the obvious manner. It’s a great little shot. Read More »

Soon after making his dark relationship indie Blue Valentine, Derek Cianfrance co-wrote a movie called The Place Beyond the Pines, which he says was inspired by Jack London and features two generations of conflicting fathers and sons, as well as motorcycles and guns.

His Blue Valentine star Ryan Gosling signed on to be a motorcycle rider who turns to crime — yeah, shades of Drive there — and is pursued by a rookie cop (Bradley Cooper). Eva Mendes, Rose Byrne, Ben Mendelsohn, Mahershalalhashbaz Ali, and Ray Liotta also joined the cast. After the break are the first full-size official stills of Gosling and Cooper as they appear in the movie. Read More »

We’ve wondered what the story really is with Joel Schumacher‘s Trespass, in which Nicolas Cage, Nicole Kidman and Liana Liberato play a family held in their home by invading criminals Ben Mendelsohn and Cam Gigandet. Do the invaders want money? Diamonds? Secrets? And does Trespass really turn into an all-out violent morass at the end? All I can say after watching this trailer is that we’d better hope Schumacher is keeping a great many tricks in reserve, because there aren’t many on display here. Read More »

We’ve got advance word today on two films. One, the prequel to The Thing, is an object of great curiosity to many fans of John Carpenter’s 1982 film, which stands as a benchmark for practical creature effects. The other, Joel Schumacher‘s home invasion movie Trespass, which stars Nicole Kidman and Nicolas Cage, just seems like an oddity at this point. Surprisingly, the word on both is relatively positive. Read More »

Blue Valentine director and star Derek Cianfrance and Ryan Gosling are back together for the multi-generational crime/grudge saga The Place Beyond the Pines. The film follows Gosling as a stunt cyclist who robs banks in order to provide for his son, and ands up entangled with cop-turned-politician Bradley Cooper. Their antagonism spills down the family tree, eventually involving their sons.

The large cast was said to include Greta Gerwig, but now we’ve learned that she had never fully signed on, and won’t be able to take part in the film due to other obligations. Stepping into the role earmarked for her will be Rose Byrne, of Damages and Bridesmaids. Read More »

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I had hoped that Joel Schumacher‘s new film, Trespass, would be an example of the rare form he displays every few years. The cast seemed promising: Nicolas Cage and Nicole Kidman play a couple taken hostage in their own home by Ben Mendelsohn, Cam Gigandet and Liana Liberato. My hopes may have been in vain.

Millennium Entertainment picked up the film for release not long ago, but we hadn’t heard any plans to actually release it, much less glimpsed any footage. Now there is a poster, and some fine print that indicates the movie will get a very narrow theatrical run before landing on DVD. Read More »

Derek Cianfrance‘s been collecting quite a solid cast for his next project, the “Deer Hunter meets The Godfather” crime drama The Place Beyond the Pines. Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, and Eva Mendes are already on board, with Greta Gerwig circling another part. Now the latest addition to his cast is Aussie actor Ben Mendelsohn, who along with Joel Edgerton and Jacki Weaver has been enjoying a nice (and well-deserved) career boost from the success of last year’s Animal Kingdom.

The Place Beyond the Pines focuses on a multi-generational feud sparked by an encounter between Gosling’s character, a pro motorcycle rider who turns to bank robbing to support his family, and Cooper’s character, a cop. Mendes will co-star as Gosling’s love interest, while Gerwig is up for the role of Cooper’s wife. Mendelsohn is in negotiations to play Robin Van Der Zee, a mechanic who pulls Gosling into his bank robbery operation. After watching his terrifying, riveting turn as Hawaiian-shirted uncle Pope in Animal Kingdom, I can’t wait to see what he’ll do with this part.

The Place Beyond the Pines will begin shooting July 25th in Schenectady, NY. [Variety]

After the jump, new parts for Josh Pence (again), Toby Hemingway, and Nia Vardalos.

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If you didn’t see Monsters or In Search of a Midnight Kiss (or aren’t a dedicated fan of Bones) your first thought here might be ‘who the hell is Scoot McNairy?’ The male lead from Gareth Edwards’ low-budgets sleeper Monsters has got great people working on his side, because despite not having the most head-turning performance in that film he has become a hot commodity after years of playing sideline roles.

The first evidence of that status is grabbing a big role in Andrew Dominik‘s Cogan’s Trade. He also has a couple other possible big jobs brewing. And, good news for fans of the film Animal Kingdom: Ben Mendelsohn is also in Cogan’s Trade. Read More »