Alita: Battle Angel is the second movie starring Christoph Waltz that featurs some very prominent big eyes. But it’s the only one that takes place in the 26th century where X-Games style sports are still all the rage and a robot girl called Alita (Rosa Salazar) who loves chocolate can defy death at the hands of an endless array of cybernetically enhanced humans with knifes for limbs. James Cameron had been wanting to make this movie for years, but he left it to Robert Rodriguez instead, for better or worse.
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When a character in Inglorious Basterds looks down at the camera and says, “I think this just might be my masterpiece,” it’s clear that writer-director Quentin Tarantino is carving a self-congratulatory blurb for his own World War II film. Maybe he’s earned the right to gloat. As a viewer, when I think of Tarantino, I think of chapterized revenge. The revenge in Inglorious Basterds is of a historically revisionist nature. It unfolds in five chapters, which collectively serve as a five-point-palm exploder on the moviegoer’s chest. As Once Upon a Time in Hollywood hits theaters this Friday, we can hazard a guess that it might take a similar revisionist approach to its treatment of the Manson murders.
Tarantino was the quintessential filmmaker of the 1990s and he’s never made a movie that was as culturally significant as Pulp Fiction. That kind of era-defining success only comes once in a career. There are cinephiles who prefer Jackie Brown—a like-minded exercise in restraint that consciously appeals to an older audience. These two entries are linked in Tarantino’s directorial filmography in that they’re the only instances where he’s shared a writing credit with someone else. Roger Avary helped conceive the story for Pulp Fiction and Jackie Brown is based on an Elmore Leonard novel.
As great as those movies are, it’s the exuberance and unpredictability of his more original screenplays that made me a fan of Tarantino’s work. In Inglourious Basterds, these elements come into play in a film that is perhaps the truest expression of Tarantino’s style, which is simultaneously cartoonish and craftsmanlike. Tempering some (but not all) of his excesses, he distilled his ideas for a TV miniseries down into a punchy script with sections that play like short stories. Don’t let the title fool you: the results were glorious.
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Back in the fall of 2017, when fans were still waiting patiently to see what would happen with the James Bond franchise, Spectre co-star Christoph Waltz seemed rather confident that he would not be returning as Blofeld. The character was revealed as being the mastermind behind the titular international criminal organization, as well as James Bond’s adoptive brother, so it was a real shame that after his survival at the end of the last mission, he wouldn’t be coming back.
But it turns out that’s probably not true. Read More »
With Georgetown, Christoph Waltz joins the steady stream of actors making their transition behind the camera to make their highly anticipated directorial debuts. And indeed, the two-time Oscar winner seems like the perfect candidate to make that leap: a character actor with a keen eye for a riveting script and larger-than-life characters. But unfortunately, despite the talent that he frontloads into his debut film and despite the sordid real-life story upon which it’s based, Georgetown is a snooze.
Based on a real-life couple that was memorialized in The New York Times’ attention-grabbing article “The Worst Marriage in Georgetown,” the scandal at the center of Georgetown seems better suited for the D.C. gossip magazines or whispered furtively among the city’s elites at black tie parties. But in Georgetown, the story is given the same dramatic weight as a film about the president of the United States. And as electrifying as Waltz is to watch onscreen, his Ulrich Mott is no Richard Nixon.
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Wes Anderson‘s The French Dispatch cast is already stacked, but a few more names won’t hurt. Anderson recently revealed Christoph Waltz has a small part in the film, marking the first time the actor has worked with Anderson. Anderson also revealed some new plot details, stating that the film focused on an American journalist in France.
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Alita: Battle Angel isn’t a movie set in the future that’s all about doom and gloom. Director Robert Rodriguez‘s grand spectacle tells a story with genuine warmth and kindness, thanks in no small part to the presence of actor Christoph Waltz. Playing Dr. Dyson Ido, who discovers Alita in a heap of trash and jolts her back to life, Waltz helps make Rodriguez’s adaptation of Yukito Kishiro‘s manga series more heartfelt than a typical studio movie (which Alita: Battle Angel most certainly is not).
Waltz plays a paternal role and watches Alita’s self-discovery unfold like the audience does. Another part of Waltz’s role and job: assisting in explaining the world, Alita, and the tech. The actor does plenty of heavy lifting for the story, but like Cameron’s handle for world building, Waltz does it all with a natural ease. Plus, if there’s one actor you’re going to immediately buy as a brilliant scientist and doctor, it’s the Inglorious Basterds star, who recently told us about his experience with Rodriguez, cinematographer Bill Pope (The Matrix), and producer James Cameron during a brief phone interview.
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Alita: Battle Angel has been a long time coming. Based on Yukito Kishiro‘s manga series Battle Angel Alita, the big and intimate Robert Rodriguez film was once going to be directed by producer James Cameron, who ended up choosing Avatar over the property. Cameron ultimately handed directorial duties over to Rodriguez, who helped whip Cameron’s epic script into a manageable length.
Even with a different director at the helm, producer Jon Landau wanted to make a James Cameron-style event film, describing the movie as “a movie with themes bigger than its genre” and “has a central relatable character, who on many levels, is an ordinary character who ends up doing extraordinary things against this epic backdrop.” Alita: Battle Angel, which the site’s own Hoai-Tran Bui rightfully praised as Hollywood’s first good manga adaptation, certainly checks those boxes.
We spoke to Landau recently and he told us a bit more about the project’s history, working with Cameron, deleted scenes, and Avatar 2.
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20th Century Fox has released the most action-packed trailer yet for Alita: Battle Angel. In addition to some breathtaking action sequences, new Alita: Battle Angel trailer gives us a first glimpse at the deadly sport of Motorball, the popular and hyperviolent gladiatorial contest that was a central part of the manga upon which the Robert Rodriguez film is based.
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Robert Rodriguez and James Cameron team up for Alita: Battle Angel, a film that blends a cartoon character with human actors. Okay, Alita isn’t really a cartoon. She’s a CGI-enhanced character played by Rosa Salazar via motion capture. Still, there’s something a bit…off about watching Alita interact with a bunch of human characters. Decide if you agree by watching the latest Alita: Battle Angel trailer below.
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Back in August, confirmation finally came that Daniel Craig would return as James Bond from the actor himself. So now everyone is wondering what is in store for 007’s next mission on the big screen. Sadly, for those who enjoyed a certain iconic villain from James Bond history being played by Christoph Waltz, we have some bad news.
During a red carpet interview, Spectre villain Christoph Waltz was directly asked if he would return for James Bond 25, and the actor gave a definitive and firm response in the negative. But his elaboration is what we’re most intrigued by. Read More »