Paradise - Diablo Cody (header)

How has the movie business changed in the past decade? For one, VOD and streaming video have changed the stigma once attached to films debuting at home before they hit theaters, and movies now routinely can be seen on the small screen before they open on the big one.

But the distribution scheme for Diablo Cody’s first turn as a director is still a bit unusual. The movie is Paradise, starring Julianne Hough as a devout young woman badly burned in a plane crash, who travels to Las Vegas to immerse herself in sin city. Octavia SpencerRussell BrandNick Offerman and Holly Hunter also appear.

Cody said today that the film will premiere on August 8 on DirectTV. A theatrical release will still take place in October, and in other responses to questions Cody said that the film will hit other VOD services after theatrical. Get her comments below.  Read More »

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Paradise - Diablo Cody (header)

Diablo Cody has written some of the sharpest female-led dramedies of the past several years, and now she’s taken the next step by helming her own.

The Juno scribe makes her feature directing debut this fall with Paradise, a comedy about a sheltered young woman (Julianne Hough) taking a walk on the wild side. Octavia Spencer, Russell Brand, Nick Offerman, and Holly Hunter also star. Check out the first pics after the jump.

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Lake Bell In A World

From the instant In A World… premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, I remember thinking, “I can’t wait to see the trailer for that.” That day is here. Written, directed by and starring Lake Bell, In A World… is the story of young woman trying to make a living in the male-dominated field of voice over work, specifically that of movie trailers. When marketers for a new movie decide to reinstate the classic phrase “In a world” for the film’s trailer, a competition breaks out that pits the young woman against her father (Fred Melamed) and an up and comer (Ken Marino).

Featuring supporting performances by Dimitri Martin, Michaela Watkins, Rob Corddry, Nick Offerman and Geena Davis, the film won the Best Screenwriting award at Sundance. It opens on August 9. Check out meta-trailer below. Read More »

offerman1

There’s a lot to like in the coming of age comedy The Kings of Summer, which opens on May 31. The Stand By Me meets Superbad story of three boys who run away from home to make their own house in the woods creates an entertaining and relatable microcosm of teenage life thanks to the script by Chris Galletta. Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, Moises Aries each do wonderful work as the three main characters and Jordan Vogt-Roberts‘ direction brings it all together with a timeless, exciting tone.

But the true highlights are the supporting performances by some of TV’s most recognizable faces. Paramount among those is Nick Offerman. Best known for his role on Parks and Recreation, the actor steals every scene as the man most responsible for the boys running away from home. His performance is heartbreaking, laugh out loud hilarious and totally unforgettable. So while Megan Mullally, Alison Brie and Mary Lynn Rajskub all excel in their small roles, Offerman is the stand out.

We were lucky enough to speak to Offerman about The Kings of Summer and he told us about his love affair with smaller films, how the Internet is hurting comedy, and a bit about The Lego Movie. Read it below. Read More »

We're the Millers

Family road trips gone awry are a staple of comedy — just ask Chevy Chase, who starred in National Lampoon’s Vacation, or Ed Helms, who’s set to lead the sequel. But We’re the Millers mixes up the formula a bit by making its lead family not really a family.

Jason Sudeikis leads the cast as a drug dealer tasked with smuggling weed into the country. As part of an elaborate plan to escape the notice of the U.S. border patrol, he gets a stripper (Jennifer Aniston) to pretend be his wife, and brings on two very different kids (Will Poulter and Emma Roberts) to play their offspring. Rawson Thurber (Dodgeball) directs. Watch the red- and green-band versions of the trailer after the jump.

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Toy's House

Joe is sick of dealing with his depressed father after the death of Joe’s mother; Patrick’s cloying parents are getting him down, too. Sounds like the beginning of a typical teen comedy, but The Kings of Summer (which debuted at Sundance as Toy’s House) isn’t quite that. This is a coming of age story that calls back to certain tendencies from ’80s teen movies. Yet it has personality of its own to spare as Joe, Patrick, and a strange friend literally make their own home as as summer blooms.

Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, and Moises Arias play the lead trio of characters who escape to the woods where they can barrel into adulthood without parents. A host of comedic talent including Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally, Alison Brie, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Kumail Nanjiani, and Hannibal Buress show up to offer support.

We liked the movie a lot at Sundance, and the first teaser, while pretty limited, did a good job of getting the tone of the film into a minute of footage. This first trailer doesn’t do such a good job, however. Still, check it out below. Read More »

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Toy's House

One of the hottest films at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival was a little movie called Toy’s House, which got purchased by CBS Films. The distributor has retitled the film to the less confusing The Kings of Summer, and slotted it for release May 31. That’s coming up quick, so a teaser trailer is out now too.

The Kings of Summer, written by Chris Galletta and directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, is about three friends (Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, Moises Aries) who run away from home and build their own house in the woods. Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally, Alison Brie and Mary Lynn Rajskub co-star, none of whom show up in the tease you can see below. Read More »

This trailer made me laugh. In Somebody Up There Likes Me, which originally premiered last year at SXSW, Nick Offerman of Parks & Rec. plays an ascerbic but good-natured guy who… well, it’s possible that he doesn’t actually do a whole lot other than comment drily on things taking place around him. But since it’s Offerman, I can’t say I’m too upset about that.

And while the rest of the trailer may be a bit uber-indie for some people, the kicker gag is a good one. Check out the footage below.  Read More »

Update: Toy’s House was renamed The Kings of Summer, so I’ve changed the title in this review.

Coming of age stories are a dime a dozen. Good ones are one in a million and The Kings of Summer, written by Chris Galletta and directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, is definitely the latter. It’s the story of Joe Toy (Nick Robinson) who along with his friend Patrick (Gabriel Basso) and oddball Biaggio (Moises Aries) decide to build their own house in the woods and run away from home. Not a tree house, mind you, a real house with everything except plumbing, electricity and running water.

The true joy in the film, though, comes not just from seeing these kids come into their own, it’s with the adult cast, which includes Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally, Alison Brie and Mary Lynn Rajskub. Offerman and Mullally in particular are just spectacularly hilarious, which offsets some of the swings and misses on the part of the kids. Read more after the jump. Read More »