The Pentagon Likes War Machine

War Machine was nearly destined to become another forgotten film on the dust pile of Netflix’s original movies. On paper it doesn’t seem like that would be the case: War Machine was a $60 million Brad Pitt-starring satirical war movie based on a best-selling book and directed by a fairly established director, David Michôd (Animal Kingdom, The Rover). But middling reviews and the Netflix marketing machine had caused the film to disappear into the back of the “Netflix Originals” category — for everyone except for the Pentagon.

The film has picked up an unexpected fanbase among the federal employees at the Pentagon, where it has become the hot topic of the moment among an audience who you would expect to hate the anti-Afghanistan War satire.

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War Machine Trailer

Right now political satire is at its best simply because everything coming out of Washington DC is just as laughable as it is disheartening. The only way we can cope with this kind of nonsense is to make fun of it, and that’s exactly what Netflix’s new movie War Machine appears to be doing with the war in Afghanistan.

Brad Pitt plays a fictionalized version of four-star General Stanley McChrystal (named as General Glen McMahon in the movie), the commanding general of international and US forces in Afghanistan. The real life general’s career tanked after a journalist exposed the wild partying, unorthodox behavior and surprising incompetence that took place behind the scenes of this military operation that appears to be unwinnable despite the general’s best efforts, and it appears that’s exactly what we’ll see happen in this movie, albeit with a bit more of an exaggerated comedic spin.

See the war satire on full display in the new War Machine trailer after the jump. Read More »

James Gray sci-fi movie

For years, Brad Pitt and filmmaker James Gray (The Immigrant) have talked about working together. Pitt almost appeared in We Own the Night, as well as a scrapped project of Gray’s, The Grey Man. At one point, the actor was even going to star in the director’s new epic, The Lost City of Z, but he decided to remain behind-the-scenes as a producer with his production company, Plan B.

His banner is also behind Gray’s next film, Ad Astra (translation: “Through hardships to the stars”), which Pitt is now confirmed to star in. Below, learn more about the James Gray sci-fi film.

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war machine trailer

Brad Pitt has always been at his best when he abandons all pretense of being a “movie star” and embraces his inner-character actor. So there’s plenty of fun to be had in the War Machine trailer from watching one of the most famous men in the world vanish under a grey head of hair and a grizzled accent.

Pitt seems to be putting his energies into a film that feels designed to ruffle feathers. While the new film from Animal Kingdom director David Michôd is based on the non-fiction book The Operators, his execution looks almost purely comedic. This appears to be a harsh and satiric look at the United States’ military operations in Afghanistan, falling somewhere between Dr. Strangelove and Three Kings.

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War Machine trailer starring Brad Pitt

One of the interesting things about Netflix’s massive original programming slate is that unlike a lot of traditional distributors, they don’t really have a type. They’ll release gritty superhero dramas and fluffy kiddie fare, sober documentaries and goofy standup specials, Adam Sandler comedies and arthouse oddities. They’ve got a little something for everyone, which makes perfect sense since “everyone” is their target customer.

So while we’re not super into, say, Sandy Wexler, we’re more than happy to tolerate its existence if it means we also get movies like War Machine. Directed by David Michôd (of Animal Kingdom fame), the pitch-black satire stars Brad Pitt as real-life U.S. general Stanley McChrystal. You may remember his dramatic fall from grace a few years ago after a Rolling Stone exposé. Tilda Swinton and Ben Kingsley also star. Check out the War Machine trailer below.  Read More »

James Gray sci-fi movie

There’s a bit of a holdup on the World War Z sequel. We don’t know the exact reason why Paramount hasn’t green-lighted the movie, but they’ve created an opening for Brad Pitt to pursue another job for the near future. The actor is now thinking about starring in director James Gray‘s (The Lost City of Z) original science-fiction film, Ad Astra (translation: “Through hardships to the stars.”).

Below, learn more about the James Gray sci-fi movie.

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fincher

Six months ago it was reported David Fincher (The Social Network) was in talks to direct World War Z 2, following director J.A. Bayona‘s (A Monster Calls) departure from the sequel. Yesterday Paramount finally scrapped the project’s 2017 summer release date. But the good news is Fincher is still considering the World War Z sequel. The meticulous filmmaker reportedly wants to make a film that’s not as costly as Marc Forster’s $200 million popcorn movie, which came out a success story after a troubled production.

Below, learn more about Fincher’s involvement with the World War Z sequel.

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Steven Knight Interview

Screenwriter Steven Knight‘s latest film, Allied, has shootouts, impeccable costumes, exotic locations, and two appealing movie stars, but there’s a fine conflict to go along with all the eye candy. Over 30 years ago, Knight was inspired to one day write about a Canadian intelligence officer (Brad Pitt) who learns his wife, a former French Resistance fighter (Marion Cotillard), might be a spy for the Germans.

Allied is based on a true story Knight was told in his 20s, but his version of the story plays out differently. Knight took the premise he heard, ran with it, and turned it into the movie we see today. His script ended up in the hands of director Robert Zemeckis, who crafted some top-notch sequences in the film we recently asked Knight about.

The screenwriter behind Eastern PromisesDirty Pretty ThingsPeaky Blinders, and next year’s Taboo took the time to discuss setting up challenges for himself, directing, rules, and some of Allied‘s standout scenes.

Below, read our Steven Knight interview.

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Allied trailer

All relationships have secrets, but any problems you have with your significant other will surely pale in comparison to Brad Pitt‘s issues with Marion Cotillard in the new trailer for AlliedRobert Zemeckis‘ romantic thriller stars Pitt as Max, an intelligence officer who meets French resistance fighter Marianne (Cotillard) during World War II. They’re assigned to pose as a couple for a mission, but begin to fall in love for real. So far, so good; Allied sounds like a star-crossed romance set against the dramatic backdrop of war.

But when Max and Marianne return to London and start to build a home, a shocking revelation threatens to destroy the trust they’ve built. Max gets word that Marianne is under suspicion of working for the enemy, and finds himself tasked with killing the woman he’s come to love. Told you their problems were more serious than yours. Watch the Allied trailer below.

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Allied spot

Unless you’ve spent the entire day sleeping under a rock at the bottom of the ocean, you’ve probably heard that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are over. And unless you’ve also spent the past decade-plus sleeping under that same rock, you probably recall that rumors about that relationship first began around the release of Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Anyway, on a completely unrelated note, Paramount has dropped a new spot for their upcoming film Allied, a spy thriller starring Pitt that basically looks like Mr. & Mrs. Smith as a World War II drama. Watch the Allied trailer below.  Read More »