It’s happening: we’ve arrived in the era of pandemic-themed movies, and the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is far from over. And I’m not convinced that it will be over by the time Doug Liman‘s pandemic heist movie, Lockdown, is released, whenever that is. But Hollywood is getting ready to mine the pandemic for all its storytelling potential, with Liman set to direct Lockdown, penned by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight and set to star Anne Hathaway.
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Kristen Stewart will become royalty in Spencer, a film about the late Princess Diana directed by Pablo Larraín (Jackie). The plot will focus on Diana’s decision to leave Prince Charles, thus ending any chance she might have had to one day be Queen. Steven Knight, whose credits include Locke, Taboo, and…uh…Serenity, wrote the script. Read More »
Do we really need a new Great Expectations adaptation? Probably not, but as long as the BBC keeps recycling its costumes, we’ll keep getting more adaptations of Charles Dickens novels. However, BBC’s newly announced adaptation of Great Expectations has a writer that could give the Dickens classic a gritty edge. Steven Knight, best known for creating the stylish 20th century gangster drama Peaky Blinders, is set to write and executive produce the six-part BBC One/FX limited series adaptation of Great Expectations following the success of his dark 2019 A Christmas Carol.
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Posted on Wednesday, December 25th, 2019 by Jack Giroux
One of Apple TV’s first major shows, See, couldn’t have been more in director and executive producer Francis Lawrence‘s wheelhouse. The director behind The Hunger Games sequels, I Am Legend, and Constantine is no stranger to expansive fantastical worlds. Created by Steven Knight (Peaky Blinders), See presents a future where sight is a thing of the past. No one can see, which presents the visual challenges Lawrence relishes as a director.
It’s not the first time Lawrence has defined the aesthetic and tone of a show as a filmmaker. He directed three episodes of NBC’s Kings, which was a short-lived but entertaining show that probably would’ve resonated more today, and the premiere of Tim Kring‘s Touch. All high-concept projects. Recently, we talked to Lawrence about the type of material that appeals to him, including See, as well as growing as a director and his most-watched work, Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” video.
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Posted on Wednesday, November 20th, 2019 by Ben Pearson
We’re just over a month away from Christmas, and while that means we’re going to be spending lots of time in theaters catching up on some of the year’s best movies, FX is giving us something else to watch in our downtime at home. The cable channel is airing a “dark reimagining” of A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens’ classic tale of Ebenezer Scrooge as he’s guilted into transforming from a penny-pinching, Christmas-hating miser into the world’s best boss. But if you’re looking for a lighthearted version of this story, look elsewhere: Guy Pearce‘s Scrooge adds “sex creep” to his character’s long list of terrible attributes in this one. Read More »
We caught a brief glimpse of footage from See, the upcoming AppleTV+ series from Steven Knight (Eastern Promises, Peaky Blinders) which stars Jason Momoa (Aquaman), during the company’s sizzle reel earlier this year. But today, Apple CEO Tim Cook debuted the first full trailer for the series, and this thing looks ambitious as hell. Check it out below. Read More »
Serenity is probably not the movie audiences are expecting. Steven Knight’s third feature as a director is a bonkers thriller, both old-fashioned and modern, that defies expectations. Nobody could ever call this movie predictable. Knight says he’s not a fan of the constraints of any given genre, and it shows in Serenity, a movie not tied down to the rules of a thriller. It’s not an easy film to put in a box or even say much about without spoiling anything.
It’s the first feature Knight has directed since Locke, and although that drama came out six years ago, it’s so memorable that it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long since the creator of Peaky Blinders and Taboo directed a movie. Recently, he told us about the challenges of his latest film, why he doesn’t like labeling movies by genre, the differences between writing for himself or a studio, and more.
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Right from the beginning, there is something off about Serenity. The sultry neo-noir thriller starring Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway seems to take place on a fictional fishing island that boasts a New England name but a tropical climate, while half the residents speak with a vague Southern twang. McConaughey’s character, Baker Dill, receives strange visions and omens — some of them seemingly supernatural in nature. And there’s the matter of Jeremy Strong‘s bespectacled businessman chasing after Baker Dill with urgent news about…something.
These all lay the grounds for a twist of sorts, or a revelation that some greater conspiracy is at work. But the Serenity ending has a twist that is so out of left field, it feels like you have fallen into some drug-fueled fever dream.
Major spoilers for Serenity follow, so do not read on if you want to see the movie…although these spoilers may convince you to actually see this movie.
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A certain level of worship has grown around the movie “twist.” Career-ending contracts have been signed, backs bent, people probably (not really) thrown in movie jail for committing the worst sin a film lover can make: spoiling the twist. Twists have become such an essential part of our pop culture language that they’re more expected than not, and usually come in the form of a shocking death or a rote reveal. But there’s something to be said for the twist so monumental, so disruptive that it retroactively transforms the entire movie.
One such twist happens two-thirds of the way through Serenity, Steven Knight’s neo-noir thriller starring Matthew McConaughey as a rugged fishing boat captain whose dark, tortured past comes back to haunt him in the form of his sultry ex-wife Karen (Anne Hathaway). The sexy narrative that follows is pretty standard noir melodrama stuff: Karen begs McConaughey’s absurdly named Baker Dill to kill her abusive husband (Jason Clarke), whose drunken rages not only endanger her, but her and Baker’s young son. Though he at first refuses, bent on his obsession with catching a giant tuna that he hilariously nicknames “Justice,” Baker relents after he begins to experience strange visions that convince him that he is telepathically linked to his son.
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The sexy thriller Serenity was originally supposed to hit theaters in October – but that didn’t happen, and we all sort of forgot about it. Now it’s back! The flick now opens in January, and there’s a new trailer full of twists, turns, and Matthew McConaughey with his hair slicked back. In this sun-dappled noir, McConaughey is reunited with Interstellar co-star Anne Hathaway, who here plays a bleached-blonde looking to bump off her husband, Jason Clarke. Watch the Serenity trailer below.
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