Your eyes don’t deceive you – Joe Alwyn really is everywhere this year. Perhaps you missed his film debut in 2016’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Ang Lee’s ambitious foray into high-frame rate photography that grossed under $2 million stateside. Well, casting agents certainly didn’t. Alwyn appears in four films this year – Operation Finale, Boy Erased, Mary Queen of Scots and The Favourite, each of which showcases a different side of a versatile performer.
From the moment I first encountered Alwyn at the press day for The Favourite, I could understand why he’s an heir apparent to claim the mantle of the rising young male star from the London drama school world. He can command a room like a true English gentleman – for example, he’s the rare interview subject who made a point to shake every writer’s hand at the roundtable discussion before sitting down to field questions. He radiates a genuine sincerity, too … which is perhaps why it’s so fun to watch Emma Stone and Nicholas Hoult’s characters play him for such a fool in The Favourite.
Alwyn’s character Masham, who the actor describes as an “airhead,” plays a key role for Stone’s Abigail as she plots her course out of the maids’ quarters and into the queen’s chambers. But he’s far from a wallflower or a forgettable supporting character, just like Alwyn’s other three roles this year. In our conversation, we discussed what it was like working with director Yorgos Lanthimos, how he and Rachel Weisz came to have a wild ahistorical dance number and his approach to bringing thorny characters to life.
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A bumbling leader with little idea of the extent of duty and responsibility, surrounded by opportunistic aides looking to gain influence by obsequiously flattering the power broker and swaying the weight of an empire behind their pet cause, a coterie of enablers willing to treat geopolitical conflict like a game with winners and losers… but anyways, enough about the latest Maggie Haberman story about the White House in The New York Times, let’s talk about The Favourite! Read More »
The life of abolitionist Harriet Tubman will be chronicled in Harriet, a new film from Eve’s Bayou director Kasi Lemmons starring Widows‘s Cynthia Erivo. Erivo will be joined by Hamilton‘s Leslie Odom Jr. and Boy Erased‘s Joe Alwyn.
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A tense, and final, Operation Finale trailer presents the true story of the Mossad’s hunt for, and capture of, Nazi officer Adolf Eichmann. Oscar Isaac and Ben Kingsley star, and based on this trailer, both of them are acting their heads off, to the point that it might end up giving you anxiety. Watch the Operation Finale trailer below.
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With just a few weeks until Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk starts hitting theaters, one final trailer has arrived, and it’s full of quotes from critics who are primarily talking about the high frame rate that director Ang Lee used to shoot the war drama. Based on the book of the same name by Ben Fountain, the story follows a soldier who comes home from the war in Iraq on a temporary victory tour. Through flashbacks, we learn about what he’s endured on the battlefield as he and the rest of his squad are honored over the Thanksgiving break on the holiday’s big football game.
Watch the Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk trailer after the jump. Read More »
Last night brought the world premiere of Ang Lee’s latest film, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Yesterday we happened to run a featurette exploring director Ang Lee‘s use of new technology that allowed the film to be shot at 120 frames per second (FPS). That’s a significantly higher frame rate than Peter Jackson’s experimental use of 48 FPS for The Hobbit trilogy, and it sounds like the reaction to this format from the first reviews of the movie is even more resistant than to that previous effort.
Most of the criticism from the first Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk reviews are with regards to the distracting presentation (which will end up not matter for general audiences, as we’ll explain at the end). But beyond that, it sounds like the film doesn’t bring anything else potentially groundbreaking to the table, offering another metaphor for our society to deal with in relation to war with some decent performances and occasionally beautiful visuals scattered throughout.
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Posted on Friday, October 14th, 2016 by Angie Han
As the new movie by Ang Lee, and an adaptation of a highly acclaimed bestselling novel to boot, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk would be one of our most anticipated movies of the fall no matter what. But the project’s been getting special attention for the way it was shot and is being presented: in 120 frames per second. For comparison, most movies are in 24 fps; Peter Jackson made a very unusual move when he shot The Hobbit in 48 fps.
So, what does that high frame rate do, exactly? In a new featurette, Lee and his cast members talk up the “immersive experience” of 120 fps. Plus, there’s a behind-the-scenes promo featuring NFL stars J.J. Watt and Richard Sherman, both of whom appear in the movie, and a more straightforward 30-second spot. Watch it all below. Read More »
Posted on Thursday, May 12th, 2016 by Angie Han
Sony Pictures has unveiled the first teaser trailer for Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Ang Lee‘s drama about a squad of soldiers who are brought home from Iraq for a victory tour around the U.S. Much has been made about Lee’s groundbreaking use of 120 fps to heighten the realism of the war flashbacks, but the present day unfolds at a Thanksgiving Day football game, where the soldiers are to be honored in a glitzy halftime show.
“It is sort of weird being honored for the worst day of your life,” observes Billy (played by newcomer Joe Alwyn), and that’s this movie in a nutshell — it exists in the dizzying space between our sentimental celebration of the troops, and the harsh realities they face every day. Watch the Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk trailer after the jump. Read More »
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Posted on Wednesday, May 11th, 2016 by Angie Han
Four years after the technically audacious, jaw-droppingly gorgeous Life of Pi, Ang Lee is back this fall with Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Based on the novel by Ben Fountain, the modern wartime drama follows a squad of heroic American soldiers brought home for a victory tour culminating in a showy appearance at the Thanksgiving Day game. Get your Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk first look below. Read More »
Posted on Wednesday, March 4th, 2015 by Angie Han
Steve Martin will follow up his extraterrestrial landing in Home with a very different movie about a very different journey. He’s just signed on for Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Ang Lee‘s upcoming Iraq War drama.
Also set to star are Garrett Hedlund, and newcomer Joe Alwyn as the titular Billy Lynn. More on the Steve Martin Billy Lynn casting after the jump. Read More »