The Movie: Memento
Where You Can Stream It: IMDb TV
The Pitch: A man who has lost his ability to make new memories must rely on his own notes and tattoos to piece together clues about the man who murdered his wife.
Why It’s Essential Viewing: Watching Memento is crucial if you want to begin to understand the mind of one of the most successful working filmmakers today. Christopher Nolan made the one hour and nine-minute movie Following two years before this, but it’s kind of astonishing how much 2000’s Memento feels like a leap into the big leagues, even though this was still made with a relatively small budget. Twenty years after its premiere at the Venice International Film Festival (I’m jumping the gun on its 20-year anniversary in the U.S., which isn’t until March of next year), the film still holds up as a smart, twisty thriller that contains so many of the ideas that Nolan remains fascinated by and continues to explore in his work. Read More »
Tom Holland leads a star-studded cast in a steamy Gothic thriller that could kick off this year’s award season (if there is one). Netflix has released the official trailer for The Devil All the Time, an adaptation of Donald Ray Pollock’s book of the same name which stars Holland, Robert Pattinson, Jason Clarke, Riley Keough, and more put on their best Ohio accents in what’s described as an “explosive” Midwestern Gothic tale. Watch The Devil All the Time trailer below.
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(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)
The Movie: Who Framed Roger Rabbit
Where You Can Stream It: Disney+
The Pitch: You know those Saturday morning cartoons you used to watch as a kid? In Who Framed Roger Rabbit, all those cartoons actually happened and were shot on sound stages with cartoon actors who occupy the same world as live-action humans. That’s the backdrop for this movie, which is basically a comedic riff on Chinatown that features plenty of fun twists and surprises along the way.
Why It’s Essential Viewing: Two words: Bob Hoskins. We’ve devoted lots of love to Hoskins’ incredible work in this movie at /Film over the years, and rightly so – he single-handedly created the template for the modern blockbuster performance by convincingly interacting with a character who would be inserted into the film in post-production. The film itself is wonderful and still holds up beautifully, but watching the movie today, it’s Hoskins’ performance that stands out above everything else. And it’s all the more miraculous when you remember he shot this movie in 1988, years before fully CG characters would become commonplace. (For even more context: at a special screening for the movie’s 25th anniversary back in 2013, I remember producer Don Hahn talking about how he finally got a fax machine halfway through the production.) Read More »
Hulu is now officially in the Elisabeth Moss business.
The powerhouse actress has signed a joint first-look deal with Fox 21 Television Studios and Hulu, the latter of which continues to be the home of Moss’s highly-acclaimed current series The Handmaid’s Tale. Moss has also launched her own production company called Love & Squalor Pictures, and as part of this new deal, she’s developing a new neo-noir series for Hulu called Black Match which she will produce and star in. Read More »
Things get dark and moody in the latest trailer for Perry Mason. This update on the old school courtroom drama show has the lead character in the 1930s, before he became a criminal defense attorney and made his bones as a private eye. Matthew Rhys leads a great cast that includes John Lithgow, Tatiana Maslany, Juliet Rylance, Chris Chalk, Shea Whigham, Stephen Root, Gayle Rankin, Nate Corddry, Veronica Falcon, Jefferson Mays, Lili Taylor, Andrew Howard, Eric Lange, and Robert Patrick. Watch the Perry Mason trailer below.
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A grandma gets caught in a Chinatown gang war after stumbling on a bag full of money. It sounds like the beginning of a joke, or the premise of an unexpectedly thrilling neo-noir directed by Sasie Sealy. Thankfully, Lucky Grandma is the latter, though this heist movie is not without laughs. Tsai Chin stars as the recently widowed grandma, who believes she’s on a lucky streak when a bag of money literally falls in her lap. But it’s just the beginning of her troubles. Watch the Lucky Grandma trailer below.
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Creator John Logan set his Showtime original series Penny Dreadful in Victorian England and took inspiration from classic novels like Frankenstein, Dracula, and Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to tell his story. Now, years after the original series came to an end after a three season run, Logan is back with a spin-off that seems more indebted to film noir than Gothic fiction.
Penny Dreadful: City of Angels shifts the setting to Los Angeles and trades Eva Green (Casino Royale) for Natalie Dormer (Game of Thrones), who’s vamping her way through the city and leaving all kinds of trouble in her path. Check out the newest trailer below, as well as a clip from the show and a video showcasing Dormer’s transformations into multiple characters throughout the series. Read More »
It’s been some time since director David Lynch brought Twin Peaks: The Return to Showtime. The filmmaker has kept relatively quiet since then, but today is his birthday, and he actually has a present to give us in the form of a short film on Netflix.
Overnight, Netflix released What Did Jack Do?, a 17-minute black and white short film where David Lynch plays a detective interrogating a monkey who is being questioned about possibly committing a murder. Before you ask: no, this isn’t just David Lynch asking questions to a monkey that sits in silence and looks adorable in response to the questions. The monkey talks, and as you’ve already guessed, it’s pretty freakin’ weird. Read More »
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Briarpatch is the kind of sleek, stylish neo-noir series that could catch your eye in the age of Peak TV. Coupled with a severe performance by Rosario Dawson, and this USA mystery-thriller anthology series may be the next big thing. Watch the Briarpatch trailer below.
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The idea for a Sin City TV show has been kicking around Hollywood since 2013, but it looks like it’s finally going to happen. Frank Miller, who created the graphic novels on which the two hyper-stylized noir films were based, has signed a deal with Legendary Television to adapt the franchise into a TV show, and Robert Rodriguez – who co-directed the two Sin City movies alongside Miller – is in negotiations to come on board. And from the sound of it, this may not be the only Sin City series that’s in our future. Read More »