Joel and Ethan Coen are not known for doing interviews. But over the weekend they took part in the opening celebration of the Film Society of Lincoln Center‘s new Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, by participating in an hour-long talk with director Noah Baumbach. The subject was primarily the openings to several films from all the participants, but the conversation ranged a bit wider than that.

Check out the entire conversation via video after the break, and we’ll also highlight the news that emerged about one of their possible next films. Read More »

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UK graphic artist Tom Muller has created an awesome infographic connecting the dots of reoccurring actors in the movies of Coen Bothers. Hit the jump to see the graphic.

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The Dark Knight Grabs WGA and PGA Nominations

Both the Writers Guild of America (East and West) and the Producers Guild have nominated The Dark Knight as one of the best films of the year. This further solidifies The Dark Knight as a Best Picture contender, shocking some Hollywood insiders. Full list of nominations after the jump.

Read More »

This Week in DVD is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy, Circuit City, and Fry’s.

Please don’t take the commentary on the movies and TV shows too seriously, as they’re meant not to be reviews but rather previews that include the general thoughts and ramblings of a twice-committed DVD addict. The categories represent solely the author’s intentions towards the DVDs at hand, and are in no way meant to be a reflection on what he thinks other people should rent or buy. So if he ends up putting a movie you like in the “Skip it” section without having seen it, please keep in mind that the time you could spend leaving a spiteful but ultimately futile comment could instead be used for more pleasant things in life. Like buying DVDs.

Buy It

BURN AFTER READING
Coming hot off the heels of last year’s celebrated masterpiece No Country for Old Men, the Coen brothers decided to play it smart by kicking things down a notch with something a little more fun. Burn After Reading is vintage Coen, throwing a mess of memorable characters into an outlandish plot (that’s once again trigged by a desire for money) and is filled to the brim with hilarious dialogue and gags. It’s also really dark, with some truly twisted sequences creating a jarring but welcome contrast against the more wacky comedic ones.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: 3 featurettes (‘Finding the Burn: The Making of Burn After Reading’, ‘DC Insiders Run Amuck’, ‘Welcome Back George’).

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $19.99
Amazon – $16.99

Rent It

HAMLET 2
How much you like Hamlet 2 will depend a great deal on how much you like its lead actor, Steve Coogan. His performance is what carries the film, making all the mugging he has to do actually bearable. The movie itself is pretty funny as well, due in large part to its hilarious premise. It wasn’t necessarily the surprise comedy of the year I was hoping for, but it provided enough laughs to make for a decent viewing or two.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Commentary with director Andrew Fleming and co-writer Pam Brady, deleted scenes, Making Number 2 features (Duty Calls, Part Deux), and an Oscar Winner vs. High School Drama Class feature.

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$19.99
Amazon – $19.99

DEATH RACE
Exactly as stupid as you would expect a Paul W.S. Anderson production to be, Death Race doesn’t waste time any more time on stuff like plot and character development than it has to, making room for what it really cares about: racing, mayhem and explosions. And in that regard, it completely delivers. As long as you know that going in, there’s no reason you should be disappointed.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Commentary with director Paul W.S. Anderson and producer Jeremy Bolt and 2 featurettes (‘Start Your Engines: Making a Death Race’, ‘Behind the Wheel: Dissecting the Stunts’).

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$20.99 $16.99 $14.99 $19.99
Amazon – $20.99

AMERICAN TEEN
(Available only at Target)
American Teen was one of the most talked about documentaries on 2008, praised for its charmingly-presented look into the lives of a bunch of regular teenagers over the course of high school. So why is it that the only place you can buy it is Target? What the hell is that all about?
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: Cast interviews, deleted scenes, and Hannah Blogs.

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 N/A N/A N/A
Amazon – N/A

Other noteworthy DVDs available this week…
Savage GraceWWE Edge – A Decade of Decadence

The Specials
NOTE: Some deals may be in-store only.


$44.99 – Planet Earth
$24.99 – John Adams
$19.99 – Bourne Trilogy, Rocky: The Complete Saga
$17.99 – Firefly (Complete Series)


Save 50% on all HBO series, in store and online…
$89.99 – The Wire (Complete Series)
$124.99 – Six Feet Under (Complete Series)
$174.99 – The Sopranos (Complete Series)
$16.99 – Entourage (Seasons 1 – 5)
$32.99 – Band of Brothers
$27.49 – Generation Kill, John Adams
$13.49 – Flight of the Conchords (Season 1)
$74.99 – Deadwood (Complete Series)
$29.99 – Rome (Seasons 1 – 2)
$17.49 – Curb Your Enthusiasm (Seasons 1 – 6)
$99.99 – Sex and the City (Complete Series)

$12.99 – Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles (Season 1)
$16.99 – Angel (Seasons 1 – 5), Martin (Seasons 1 – 4), King of the Hill (Seasons 1 – 6), Friends (Seasons 1 – 10)
$19.99 – My Name is Earl (Seasons 1 – 2), Futurama (Seasons 1 – 4), The Boondocks (Seasons 1 – 2), Seinfeld (Seasons 1 – 9), The West Wing (Seasons 1 – 7), Supernatural (Seasons 1 – 2), Babylon 5 (Seasons 1 – 5)

$4.99 – Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Spider-Man 2, The Fugitive, The Shawshank Redemption, Crash, The Color of Money, Fun with Dick and Jane, Proof of Life, Tin Cup, Swordfish, and more…


$3.99 – True Lies, Point Break, Aliens, Dude Where’s My Car, Speed, The Ringer, Sideways, Men of Honor, Antwone Fisher, The Sandlot, The Family Stone, and more…

The balloon of blind faith gifted the Coen Brothers after No Country For Old Men (and many other great films) by critics and bloggers is beginning to sputter across the Netz. The bros’ new CIA kneeslapper Burn After Reading starring George Clooney and Brad Pitt is receiving decidely mixed early word-of-mouth and reviews from the Venice Film Fest.

“Everything here, from the thesps’ heavy mugging to the uncustomarily overbearing score by Carter Burwell and the artificially augmented vulgarities in the dialogue, has been dialed up to an almost grotesquely exaggerated extent, making for a film that feels misjudged. …Nothing about the project’s execution inspires the feeling that this was ever intended as anything more than a lark, which would be fine if it were a good one. As it is, audience teeth-grinding sets in early and never lets up.” – Variety

“Joel and Ethan Coen clearly are in a prankish mood, knocking out a minor piece of silliness with all the trappings of an A-list studio movie. Those who relish this movie might treat it as the second coming of “The Big Lebowski”; those who don’t might wonder at a story in which no character has a level head.” – The Hollywood Reporter

Word of mouth…

“I’ve spoken to another critic who saw it and was asking himself as he watched the first two acts, ‘Why am I not laughing?’” – Jeff Wells jus’ sayin’

The Guardian was seemingly pleased with the film, but they also refer to it as an “afterthought”…

Burn After Reading may also go down as arguably the Coens’ happiest engagement with the demands of the Hollywood A-list – but this bit of career development may also be contributing to a diminishing of their particular film-making strengths. …in comparison [to NCFOM], [the film is a] bit of a bantamweight: fast moving, lots of attitude, and uncorking a killer punch when it can.”

Personally, I’ve seen Raising Arizona and The Big Lebowski countless times, but I casually walked out on both The Ladykillers and Intolerable Cruelty. When Clooney does cheeky comedy, it rarely gels—he often reminds me of a pillow trying to be funny, weird, right?—while the pics of Brad Pitt’s hair are too overly stylized Beavis for my liking. And yet the cast undeniably slays: Tilda Swinton, John Malkovich, JK Simmons, Richard Jenkins and Frances McDormand. We’ll be there, what about you?

via The Playlist

Discuss: Were any of our readers at the screening? Do you plan on seeing this? What’s your favorite Coens comedy?

Two More Burn After Reading Posters

Posters removed at studios request

/Film reader moosatov sends over two new posters for the new Coen Brothers comedy Burn After Reading. Again, we see the inspiration of legendary poster artist Saul Bass, but I still like the original teaser poster more. High Resolution versions after the jump.

Burn After Reading International Teaser Trailer

Focus Features have released an international teaser trailer for The Coen Brothers’ Burn After Reading on MSN. This is a perfect example of a fast cut, no nonsense teaser trailer which gets it right. And you have to love Brad Pitt’s “Appearances can be Deceptive” line. Classic. And why isn’t JK Simmons getting a topline credit? He’s all over the trailers. Tell me what you think in the comments below!

[flv:http://bitcast-a.bitgravity.com/slashfilm/trailers/burnafterreadingintteaser.flv 460 246]

Official Plot Synopsis: A dark spy-comedy from Academy Award winners Joel and Ethan Coen. An ousted CIA official’s (Academy Award nominee John Malkovich) memoir accidentally falls into the hands of two unwise gym employees intent on exploiting their find.

Burn After Reading hits theaters on September 12th 2008.

Burn After Reading Poster Inspired by Saul Bass

burn after reading posterThe movie poster for Coen Brothers’s Burn After Reading is one of my favorite posters released this year. The distinctive style is a call back to the one-sheets of legendary poster/title artist Saul Bass. I have included some of the great Bass posters which might have inspired this new design below. Click on the image to the right to see it in larger resolution on Cinematical.

Written and directed by The Coen Brothers, this new dark-spy comedy stars Academy Award nominee John Malkovich as an ousted CIA official, whose memoir accidentally falls into the hands of two unwise gym employees (Brad Pitt and Frances McDormand) intent on exploiting their find. Also featuring George Clooney, Tilda Swinton and Richard Jenkins. If you haven’t already, you should watch the red band movie trailer.

Burn After Reading will hit theaters on September 12th 2008.

The Man With the Golden Arm Poster

Vertigo Poster

Anatomy of a Murder,

love in the afternoon poster

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