Exclusive

Tai Chi Hero Poster Debut

Last year, just before Fantastic Fest, we debuted a poster for the martial arts epic Tai Chi Zero. Sometime later, we reviewed the film at the Austin-based genre haven, only to find that it was fun, but also quite strange. Part of its oddity was the fact that its closing credits included a trailer for its already finished sequel, Tai Chi Hero. I remember personally thinking, “that’s the movie I want to see. The action-packed sequel.” A number of months later, that opportunity is upon us. And as Tai Chi Hero gears up for a theatrical release starting on April 26, we’ve come back with yet another exclusive poster debut. Well, a sort of debut. This poster, “Baby,” was released as part of the film’s Chinese release. This time though, it’s got English letters. So enjoy the debut of this brand new Tai Chi Hero poster’s English lettering.

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Lenny_Cooke_face_tribeca

Lenny Cooke, the documentary debut from Josh and Benny Safdie (Daddy Longlegs) follows its eponymous subject from his position as highest ranked high school basketball player in the nation to his fall from grace and into relative obscurity. In this unflinching documentary, skillfully compiled of hours of footage of Cooke in his basketball playing heyday to current footage of his quiet life in Virginia, the Safdies weave together an incredibly moving story that is wholly true but features nearly operatic peaks and valleys. Cooke was once ranked higher than Carmelo Anthony or LeBron James, and this film shows how chance and motivation brought his dreams crumbling down, and how he wants others to learn from his experience. My full review will be posted after the film makes its world premiere at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival later this week, but I’ll just tease that it’s definitely something to seek out. And know absolutely nothing about basketball (or any sport, for that matter), so that says quite a lot.

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poster new world

New World is the new gangster epic from South Korea that follows an undercover cop’s struggle to do his job and stay alive while the criminal organization he’s a part of falls apart around him. My full review will be posted later, but I’ll say now that fans of Infernal Affairs and Goodfellas will definitely want to keep an eye out for this one. Keep reading for the full synopsis.

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This is 40 Security Cam

If you’ve seen Judd Apatow‘s This is 40, you know that Megan Fox‘s character Desi co-owns a boutique with Leslie Mann‘s Debbie, and she likes to use the shop after hours for some interesting recreational activities. Fortunately, there’s a security camera to catch every clothed detail. In this exclusive clip, Apatow and Fox talk a bit about filming the scenes within the scene. It’s as educational as a home-done rectal examination. Plus, Fox finds Apatow’s sex directions and Charlene Yi’s walking in circles absolutely hilarious. Which is strange, because the funniest thing about this is Bill Hader‘s hat. This is how comedy gets made, people.

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MBTD_FINAL POSTER

Do you think Sally El Hosaini‘s My Brother the Devil is any good? Not sure? Really? Why not just look a few lines up at the film’s new poster, which we’re pleased to exclusively debut here on Film School Rejects. See all that praise? See all those laurels? It’s fair to guess that the new British release (and Sundance and Berlin winner) is pretty damn good. El Hosaini’s debut film was crafted at three different Sundance Institute labs (Middle Eastern, Screenwriting, and Directing) and has gone on to make the festival quite proud. A tale of two different brothers – James Floyd as the mixed-up Rashid and Fadi Elsayed as his adoring younger brother Mo – My Brother the Devil chronicles the pair has they both attempt to work their way out of a life on the streets with different aims and different results. My Brother the Devil will open in NYC on March 22nd and Los Angeles on April 5th.

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The Sweeney

According to the press releases we’ve received about eOne Films’ upcoming crime thriller The Sweeney, we can tell you that it very well could be “a stylish, exhilarating action thriller proving sometimes you have to act like a criminal to catch a criminal.” Then again, that might be a little bit of marketing hyperbole. But we’re rooting for it, as it’s the kind of movie that sees the likes of Ray Winstone playing a tough, legendary detective and Damian Lewis playing his no-nonsense boss. It also stars Captain America dame Hayley Atwell, which is another mark in the plus column. Full of thick accents, car chases and what we can only expect to be a lot of turse language from the director of Outlaw and The Business, this one has us looking over iTunes to make sure it’s available for rent. And it is, as The Sweeney hits VOD platforms today, March 1. To celebrate, here’s an exclusive clip of Ray Winstone being Ray Winstone, along with some other shenanigans.

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Alex Karpovsky

You guys are fans of Alex Karpovsky, right? Oh, good, because we’ve got a double feature of exclusive clips from the writer/director/actor’s latest two films, the very funny Red Flag and the very unsettling Rubberneck, both of which are hitting the big screen in New York City today as part of a special engagement at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. What’s most impressive about these two features is how very different they are. In Red Flag, Karpovsky plays a familiar version of himself – no, really, the film is loosely based on his own experiences as a struggling filmmaker – as his character embarks on an ill-fated road trip to promote one of his films at some of the most random (and tiny) venues in America. When an old pal tags along, it seems like a good idea, until a big fan of Karpovsky’s (read: she’s a stalker) starts popping up everywhere, ultimately leading to one of the most awkwardly hilarious love triangles in recent memory. And if you like your love triangles slightly more dangerous, Rubberneck is the Karpovsky joint for you. In it, the multi-hyphenate plays the sort of guy we’re not used to seeing him as: an obsessive creep who cannot take a hint. After a one night stand with a co-worker, Karpovsky’s Paul can’t seem to let go of his desire, which causes some major problems when the object of his infatuation strikes up with yet another co-worker. No, really major. After the break, enjoy twice the Karpovsky bang for your post-reading buck, including the dry […]

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Sake Bomb

Premiering next month in the New Visions section at the SXSW Film Festival, Junya Sakino‘s Sake-Bomb takes the old road trip formula and adds in some extra-special ingredients – like unrequited love, mismatched family members, and cultural clashes. And you thought simply traveling to Disneyland with your family in a minivan was tough, amirite? The film centers on young Sebastian, “a bitter, self-hating wannabe Internet star from Los Angeles” (which is, incidentally, my favorite character description of the year so far), who has just been dropped by his lady love. He’s soon joined by his quiet Japanese cousin, Naoto, who needs Sebastian’s help to find his own ex-girlfriend in Northern California. Cue road trip, misunderstanding, and probably more than one breakdown (and not just of the vehicular variety). Sake-Bomb will have its world premiere at SXSW on Friday, March 8, with three additional screenings to follow later in the festival. Until then, enjoy our exclusive poster from the film, featuring both Sebastian and Naoto looking none too pleased with each other. Ah, family.

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Aaron Eckhart as President Benjamin Asher in OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN. Photo credit: Phillip V. Caruso

It’s quite serious. That’s the one thing that FilmDistrict seems to want you to know based on these new images from Olympus Has Fallen, released exclusively to Film School Rejects this morning. It’s true, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about this one. Among them: Antoine Fuqua is a director who has dealt in more quality than anything else, as evidence by his gritty turns with Brooklyn’s Finest, Shooter, Training Day and Tears of the Sun; Aaron Eckhart‘s jaw structure, as seen in The Dark Knight, was clearly made to exist about a foot and a half above the Presidential podium; Gerard Butler plays a good redemption story, always delivers with a gun in his hands; and it’s got Morgan Freeman. On top of all that, it’s a movie about a siege of the White House, in which one man is the key to saving POTUS from some Asian-based threat. It’s also quite bloody and full of what the kids might call “mean mugging,” also known as serious people looking very serious.

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Resolution

You know that terrible, bumper-friendly saying, “friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies?” Well, turns out, it’s not entirely accurate – real friends help you detox from meth while rangy, money-hungry drug dealers try to knock down your door. Such is the plot of Justin Benson and Aaron Scott Moorhead‘s genre-bending Resolution. In the film, Mike (Peter Cilella) decides to stage an intervention for his methhead friend Chris (Vinny Curran), the kind of intervention that involves handcuffing his pal to a pipe in a dirty cabin while all sorts of weird things keep happening around them. Trust us, there is far more to this very surprising project than that little logline could ever let on. Do you think you know what’s going to happen next? Nope. You don’t. Check out a very special exclusive clip (and Reject-special introduction!) from Resolution after the break, one that will surely continue to lull you into a false sense of what to expect from this new feature.

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Supporting Characters

For fans of Girls, Alex Karpovsky‘s confusion over text messages, emoticons, and just what the hell they mean when sent in the context of a romantic relationship was a source of great hilarity during the show’s second season premiere, as Karpovsky’s Ray demanded to know what a wrapped gift, a panda, and a gun meant when sent to him by a lady he has bedded. Yet, it turns out that was not quite the first time that The Karp (go with it) was confused by text messaging. In Daniel Schechter‘s Supporting Characters, Karpovsky plays one half of an editing team tasked with cleaning up a terrible film by a moronic director – but that’s the least of their worries, as both guys (Karpovsky’s co-star is played by co-writer Tarik Lowe, who is just smashing in the film) are also struggling with romantic issues. Karpovsky’s Nick is engaged, but drawn to said terrible film’s star, played by Arielle Kebbel, even though she’s just getting out of a stupid relationship, one marked by all sorts of “winky face emoticons.” I saw the film at last year’s Tribeca Film Festival, and enjoyed it quite a bit, writing that “the film is at its best when it’s not trying to expand on things too far, and its finest moments are little ones – a look that crosses over Nick’s face when he meets Jamie’s boyfriend, an offhand comment about lighting by an angry director of photography, a wordless shot that conveys the state of Nick and Amy’s relationship after a particularly […]

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The Kitchen

Featuring a very talented cast of comedic talents (including Compliance‘s Dreama Walker in a refreshingly breezy role), Ishai Setton‘s The Kitchen takes the party-where-everything-goes-wrong to a new level. It’s Jennifer’s (Laura Prepon) thirtieth birthday, and the last thing she wants to celebrate is her life, considering she’s saddled with a scheming ex-boyfriend (Bryan Greenberg), a sister who can’t manage to filter any of her thoughts and opinions (Walker), and a best friend who might be throwing her said party out of more than just the goodness of his heart (Matt Bush). Set entirely inside Jennifer’s kitchen, The Kitchen looks to be a clever, tightly-wound, and amusing comedy of manners (or, non-manners in some cases). In fact, our own dear leader Neil Miller loved the film when he saw it back in October at the Austin Film Festival, writing that the “entire film works on the economics of scale, in which a great deal of energy is created by leaving us, the audience, in one room of the house. We see characters and stories move in and out, leave and return and ultimately develop into a satisfying final act. It sounds frantic, and it can be at first, but it ultimately gives The Kitchen a good pulse.” He also wrote that “Prepon and her co-stars give this story of love, loss, unrequited love, party shenanigans and hurt feelings a great deal of charm and verve, reminiscent of  ’90s ensemble comedies like Empire Records. Clever and fun, The Kitchen sets itself apart from other indie comedies by […]

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Happy People

It’s not often that filmmaker Werner Herzog completes a project that actually includes the word “happy” in even its synopsis, let alone its title, but there’s apparently a first time for everything (after all, this is the guy who made no less than two films about death row in the span of a year). In his Happy People: A Year in the Taiga, Herzog and co-director Dmitry Vasyukov explore the indigenous people who live in the Siberian Taiga. Who knew people could be happy in Siberia, of all places? The documentary centers on the lifestyle of the people who live in the tiny village of Bakhtia at the river Yenisei. Only three hundred or so Siberians live there, and Bakhtia is only reachable by helicopter or boat (one does not simply walk into Bakhtia). Of course, being so cut off from modern civilization has its pluses – mainly, that you don’t have to deal with stuff like telephones or the Internet – but good luck getting running water or medical aid up there in Bakhtia. Herzog and Vasyukov’s film tracks a year for the “happy people” of the village, and looks stunning while doing it. After the break, check out our exclusive poster premiere for Happy People. Point for the Bakhtia people? Everyone gets a sled dog!

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Red Dawn Poster

“A city in Washington state awakens to the surreal sight of foreign paratroopers dropping from the sky – shockingly, the U.S. has been invaded and their hometown is the initial target. Quickly and without warning, the citizens find themselves prisoners and their town under enemy occupation. Determined to fight back, a group of young patriots seek refuge in the surrounding woods, training and reorganizing themselves into a guerilla group of fighters. Taking inspiration from their high school mascot, they call themselves the Wolverines, banding together to protect one another, liberate their town from its captors, and take back their freedom.” It’s hard not to feel like we’ve heard this one before. Then again, we have. But that was the first time Red Dawn was a movie. Now it’s another movie. And instead of Russians, we’re being invaded by Asians. Somewhere our own Rob Hunter is being questioned as an enemy sympathizer. Here though, we’ve got a fancy new exclusive clip for the release of Red Dawn, which invades your local cineplex on November 21. Just in time for that ultimate American invasion holiday, Thanksgiving.

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King Kelly

King Kelly is a divisive movie, and it has an uphill battle to fight in order to win viewers. Why? Two reasons… first, it’s shot (almost) entirely on iPhones. And second, the title character is the most unlikeable creature to hit the screen since Honey Boo-boo. That uphill battle is one worth fighting though because it’s a movie worth seeing. Louisa Krause plays Kelly, a selfish, narcissistic, oblivious young woman who earns her money by way of a webcam sex show. She treats those around her as tools toward making it big with no thought given to their feelings or situations, she rarely shuts up and she’s a magnet for trouble involving missing drugs, threatening dealers and one highly unstable fan. Thankfully she’s also funny and more than a little sexy. It’s an admittedly tough sell that needs some nuance to persuade viewers to spare their time and money for the privilege of giving attention to a truly obnoxious character whose only desire is for more attention. And while the characters may appear blatantly and deceptively dumb the movie itself is actually a pretty smart critique of modern day America’s tastes. I found a lot to love when I reviewed it at this year’s SXSW, but unfortunately the latest trailer doesn’t quite get any of that across. Check it out after the jump. But please note that it’s very Not Safe for Work (NSFW).

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Joseph Diamond in Miami Connection

Yes, you read that right. Putting aside the fact that Miami Connection was made in 1987. Discarding the notion that traditional Academy voters (prudes) might think it to be of a quality that is far below that of precious Oscar. And completely ignoring the part where the “martial arts rock bands vs. motorcycle ninjas” genre doesn’t quite fit in with any of the Golden Globes categories (because that shit is highly dramatic and comedic, ya dig?). All of that aside, the folks at Drafthouse Films are still spending money (what we can only envision is about $35) on a For Your Consideration campaign for the upcoming re-release of Miami Connection. We’re proud to be a part of it with this exclusive look at the FYC ad for Joseph Diamond as Best Supporting Actor. It’s a fistful of awards potential, that’s what it is. To talk about why Diamond is a shoe-in for Best Supporting nods throughout awards season, we consulted our own motorcycle ninjas expert Michael Treveloni. “The emotional complexity helmed by Joseph Diamand is a rare glimpse into the maw of perfection,” explains our pundit. “Like a table saw wobbling on unsteady legs, the threat of violence is there, but it is his control that keeps the cuts from being unkind. With deft execution, Diamand breathes life into the role of Jack, unfolding the character like a two thousand thread-count sheet we’ve all secretly experienced. When he loves. We love. When he is hurt. We are hurt. When he sings… we listen. […]

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Come with me on a journey for a moment, back to when you were a youngin’ on the playground. There was a particular technique that seems to have been popular with just about every five year old around, in which the stronger of the two kids grabs the arm of his (or her, if the story is really embarrassing) opponent, hits them with their own arm and says, “Stop hitting yourself! Why do you keep hitting yourself?” It was a humiliation technique, meant to send the other kid running. And more times than not, it worked like a charm. In this clip from Dragon, the latest martial arts import from Radius TWC, we see the legendary Donnie Yen using a similar tactic on a foe. Allow me to set the scene: Takeshi Kaneshiro (Red Cliff, House of Flying Daggers) plays an investigator who has come to a rural village to look into a scruff between a local papermaker (Yen) and two ruffians who came to rob the general store. The simple papermaker remains, while the two wanted criminals, trained killers in their own right, lie dead on the ground. We see Kaneshiro’s character as he’s recounting what he believes happened in the general store, complete with some wicked fight choreography courtesy of star/action director Yen. See for yourself in this exclusive clip below.

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A Liar

Everybody knows the name Monty Python, but most people can’t name the individual members of the legendary British comedians. For the record they’re John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Michael Palin and Graham Chapman. And yes, I forgot Terry Jones at first, too. Like most comedy troupes formed in 1960s England, Monty Python isn’t as whole as they once were. No, don’t go Googling to see if Terry Jones is still alive. He is. I checked. But Graham Chapman is not. He died twenty three years ago from throat cancer, but audio recordings he made in 1986 meant to be narration for his autobiography have been put to celebratory use in the new, factually loose, humorous but sadness tinged animated film, A Liar’s Autobiography. Three directors, multiple animators and several members of Python came together to create this loving tribute to a very special dead man. (It focuses on his life before he died of course.) Check below for four more images from the new film, and be sure to tune into EPIX on November 2nd for the film’s premiere.

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Rob Corddry in Butter

Jim Field Smith’s Butter has been sitting on the shelf for some time now. The film had a secret premiere at Telluride last year (over a year ago), where it was met with a fairly positive response. Now, as it’s finally coming out on VOD and in theaters, it’s being greeted with more of a decidedly mixed response. Whether you come out liking Butter or not, you will, at the very least, come away impressed by Rob Corddry. Here we see Corddry playing the straight man role, something we’re not all that used to from him. Along with Hugh Jackman, he steals the film. With the film’s theatrical release today, we’ve been given an exclusive character poster featuring Corddry himself. Check out Corddry’s innocent, childlike grin after the jump:

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Vulgaria

The Hong Kong import Vulgaria does live up to its name. It sure does deliver its otherwise tender story of a man trying to get ahead and stay connected with his daughter through a divorce with a filthy sensibility. As Rob Hunter explained in his review, “The crassness is all delivered via fast, funny and profane dialogue that more often than not plays into the story.” It’s a movie that includes an awkward moment with at least one mule, but it’s got heart! That said, there isn’t much of the ‘heart’ in this exclusive clip we’ve wrestled away from the folks at China Lion Entertainment. It does, however, explain how a film producer is like the hair in between your legs. And it’s distressingly funny. 

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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