charlie says review

In the 50 years since the Manson Family committed the brutal murders that shook the nation, the cult and its infamous leader Charles Manson has never really left the public consciousness. And this year, the number of movies attempting to decrypt the notorious Manson and his all-consuming influence has ramped up, with everything from shockingly offensive horror films to star-studded Quentin Tarantino dramas taking on the cult leader. But what about the women who were under Manson’s thrall?

Charlie Says attempts to answer that question, examining the horrific Manson Family murders through the perspective of three of Manson’s most devout followers: Leslie Van Houten (Hannah Murray), Susan Atkins (Marianne Rendón), and Patricia Krenwinkel (Sosie Bacon). But despite the three women bringing this story to life from behind the camera — American Psycho‘s Mary Harron helms while frequent Harron collaborator Guinevere Turner wrote the script, and Dana Guerin produced — the film’s purported female gaze feels partially obscured.

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Charlie Says trailer

Charles Manson is having an unexpectedly busy year on the big screen. In addition to The Haunting of Sharon Tate and Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, the infamous cult leader is also featured in Charlie Says. Former Doctor Who star Matt Smith plays Manson, but this film from American Psycho director Mary Harron isn’t about him. It’s about the Manson Girls – star-struck followers willing to kill because Manson told them to. Watch the Charlie Says trailer below.

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uk skins cast

Don’t underestimate those soapy teen shows. Because in 10 years, they may produce the era’s most promising Oscar-nominated actors.

Take Skins, for example. No, not the middling U.S. remake of the series that aired on MTV, but the original U.K. version which aired on E4 from 2007 through 2013. It was a grimy teen drama that inspired controversy with each of its drug-fueled, sexually charge storylines. But it also delved into deeper issues of mental illness, dysfunctional families, bullying, and suicide. While that makes Skins sound like no more than a British version of the teenage soap Degrassi — or worse, a sexy after-school special — the series never became too cloying. And that’s because of its stellar cast.

A cast that includes two Oscar nominees, an X-Men superhero, a YA dystopia star, and two Game of Thrones actors. We probably haven’t seen such a latent pool of talent since Freaks and Geeks.

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Kathryn bigelow hannah murray

Oscar winner Kathryn Bigelow‘s next movie may not have a title, but it certainly has my attention. I’m already fully prepared to watch anything directed by the woman behind The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty, Near Dark, and yes, Point Break, but when she partners up with Annapurna Pictures, screenwriter Mark Boal, and subject matter that will surely rile up a fair number of people, you know that she’s working on something special. That’s a group of people who don’t phone it in.

Now, another new names has joined this promising collective. Game of Thrones star Hannah Murray has entered talks to play a “key role” in the film, but like the title, the details are currently unknown.

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