Kevin Smith’s new film Red State is more than just a departure from his trademark comedic style. It’s almost a complete 180. The bright colors and pop culture references have been replaced with blacks, reds and long monologues about scripture. Smith’s still very reliant on the spoken word – almost to a fault – but now he balances it with machine guns, blood and hand held camera moves. This is a maturing, confident Smith who proves, after Cop Out, he still has a unique voice. With Red State, that voice isn’t saying anything incredibly groundbreaking, and at times it gets a tad preachy, but the director has expanded out of his comfort zone and given audiences a genuine piece of art.

Read the rest of the review and watch a video blog featuring Peter Sciretta and Jeff Goldsmith of Creative Screenwriting Magazine after the jump.

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Kevin Smith has unveiled the final credit card of his upcoming horror film Red State, which promises that “almost this entire cast will return in Hit Somebody.”
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‘Red State’ Character Poster: Melissa Leo as Sarah

Ma’s Meatloaf has premiered the sixth poster from Kevin Smith‘s upcoming horror movie Red State. The newest character poster features Melissa Leo’s character, Sarah. As you know, Red State is set to premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival next month. Hit the jump to see the poster in full.
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After years in development, David O. Russell’s The Fighter had its world premiere Tuesday night at the AFI Fest in Hollywood, CA. On hand to introduce the film was producer and star Mark Wahlberg who plays Micky Ward, a down on his luck Irish boxer from Lowell, Massachusetts whose family  – including older brother and former boxer Dickie Eklund (Christian Bale) – holds him back every chance they get. And though the trailer makes the films seem like the atypical underdog true story, The Fighter almost doesn’t need any boxing to be an effective and emotional drama. Read more about it and see a video blog including myself, Peter Sciretta (also from /Film, of course) and Alex Billington from FirstShowing after the jump. Read More »

Logline Released for Kevin Smith’s ‘Red State’

Kevin Smith

Briefly: We still don’t know very much about Kevin Smith‘s long-gestating middle-America horror film Red State, other than that Michael Parks is tapped for a lead role and that the film is based in part on sham ‘preacher’ Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church. But now there’s a logline for the film, which comes via STYD, that clarifies things just slightly:

A group of kids encounters a crazed preacher (based on Fred Phelps, founder of the Westboro Baptist Church) who gives a whole new meaning to the term “extreme fundamentalism.”

Well, OK, very slightly. Smith is doing a good job keeping this one locked up; he’s talked about wanting to just shoot the movie quietly without giving too many details away, and so far he is successful. The film shoots this fall, so we’ll expect to know more in the next couple months. In addition to Michael Parks, Kyle Gallner, Melissa Leo, Dermot Mulroney, Michael Angarano and Steven Root all seem to have roles. So Gallner and Angarano are in the group of kids, and hopefully Melisssa Leo will be on the preacher’s side.

redstate_cast

For the longest time, Kevin Smith’s Red State seemed like a film that would never get made, but bit by bit, the project keeps coming together. The film already has a September shooting date (as tweeted by Smith), and the lead role has been locked in place. And now, the film has a not-yet-confirmed roster of actors to fill out the supporting cast.

The potentials include Dermot Mulroney (My Best Friend’s Wedding), Kyle Gallner (A Nightmare on Elm Street), Michael Angarano (The Forbidden Kingdom), Stephen Root (Office Space), and the Oscar nominated Melissa Leo (Frozen River). Learn more after the break. Read More »

Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: I celebrate all levels of trailers and hopefully this column will satisfactorily give you a baseline of what beta wave I’m operating on, because what better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? Some of the best authors will tell you that writing a short story is a lot harder than writing a long one, that you have to weigh every sentence. What better medium to see how this theory plays itself out beyond that than with movie trailers?

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welcome-to-the-rileys-trailer

Jake Scott, son of Ridley, has directed a new feature, Welcome to the Rileys, starring James Gandolfini, Kristen Stewart and Melissa Leo. The film debuted at Sundance, where it did relatively well and was picked up by Apparition. Bit of trouble there, though, as Apparition has been undergoing some restructuring. Just a couple weeks ago Welcome to the Rileys moved over to Samuel Goldwyn, and the company already has a trailer out for the film. Read More »

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