Year-end top 10 lists can get pretty mind-numbing, as you see the same titles crop up again and again and again… and again, but filmmaker John Waters has set himself apart by both by posting his a bit early and by, oh yeah, being John Waters. You wouldn’t seriously expect the man who gave us Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble, and Hairspray to just name War Horse and The Artist like everrrrrrryone else, would you?

No, Waters’ tastes tend toward more unconventional choices, like Kaboom, Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, and Justin Bieber: Never Say Never (seriously), with Pedro Almodovar‘s The Skin I Live In topping the list. Read the top 10 after the jump.

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Not only is Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life one of the most beautiful films of the year, it’s also sparked some of the most fascinating online discourse. Critics are fairly divided, with some arguing that “The Tree Of Life has a vision that makes most movies look like crude stick drawings,” while others opine, “Tree of Life? Tree of sanctimonious mopey male egotism disguised as a search for meaning, more like.” Overall, though, the film has a high ranking on Rottentomatoes and has performed respectably at the box office.

But one thing that I’ve heard numerous times is that Sean Penn is wasted in this film. And a recent interview that Penn gave seems to affirm that the strong-willed actor himself believes his character was not put to good use. Hit the jump to read his comments.
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The answer to that question may, possibly, be ‘yes.’ (But my gut says ‘no.’) We hear about super-long cuts of movies relatively often; many a film has been the subject of rumor about an early edit running four, five, even six hours. These often refer to early, raw assembly edits that are never meant to be seen as a final film. (And, in the modern age of on the fly non-linear editing, such cuts are mostly relics of the past.) Most of the time, the extra-long cut of a movie is simply a fantasy cooked up in the imaginations of hopeful audiences.

But sometimes not. Terrence Malick is a notorious tinkerer in the editing room, where he gradually ‘finds’ his movies through a great deal of experimentation with what we often imagine to be mountains of film. And while it seems difficult to believe that The Tree of Life, which currently runs a little under two and a half hours, might be stretched to SIX hours, that’s what a recent interview may claim will happen. Read More »

I’m not convinced that this isn’t just preaching to the converted, but a new featurette in which David Fincher and Christopher Nolan gush about the work and influence of Terrence Malick is pretty cool regardless. Fox Searchlight put this together either to draw some new audiences in to see The Tree of Life, or just to please the existing audience that already pays attention to all three directors. Either way, it’s a nice little thing that will only take up a few minutes of your time. Read More »

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This week, Dave, Devindra, and Adam continue their discussion about Tree of Life, find something redeemable about the Pirates sequels, and get excited about Darren Aronofsky’s next project. Special guest director Rian Johnson returns. Check out Rian’s films on Netflix and Amazon. His newest film, Looper, will be in theaters September 2012.

You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Join us for our next live broadcast on Sunday, June 19th, at Slashfilm’s live page where we’ll be discussing The Green Lantern.

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Briefly: Good news for film fans in the UK who want to see the new Terrence Malick film: after Icon Entertainment totally botched release plans for The Tree of Life by announcing a plan to open it in London ahead of the Cannes premiere, Fox Searchlight and int’l right holders Summit International got more than a bit angry, and we didn’t know when the movie would open in the UK. Some behind the scenes legal wrangling no doubt went on, but the bottom line is now clear: financier Bill Pohlad and his River Road Entertainment has sold UK rights to Fox Searchlight. The company will open the film in the UK on July 8, which is the same date the film goes wide in the US.

We don’t have any word on the planned Australian or New Zealand release for the film, however. (Icon also had rights for those countries.) But this is a good step. [Deadline]

Terrence Malick‘s epic dissection of life, love and everything in between, The Tree of Life, continues its limited expansion today, opening in cities like San Francisco, Austin, Atlanta, Boston and Chicago. As more people get to experience Malick’s passion project, the famously reclusive filmmaker is apparently worried about the film’s presentation and he’s written a letter to all the projectionists who will be showing his film, complete with specific directions on how to do so.

Check out Malick’s projection wish list, as well as a hint to when he might shoot his next project (not the Ben Affleck/Rachel McAdams one, another one), after the jump. Read More »

The past couple of weeks have been like Christmas for Terrence Malick fans. A new film (The Tree of Life, opening limited tomorrow) and information about two more films: the IMAX documentary Voyage of Time and a new drama possibly to be called The Burial. We just got confirmation that Voyage of Time would still be happening, after most talk of the project seemed to dissipate in the past six months.

Now a new interview with producer Bill Pohlad (the day you see an interview with the reclusive Terrence Malick will probably be the day the Rapture actually happens) sheds a bit more light on both projects. Read More »

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