To paraphrase Loverboy, everybody’s waiting for the weekend… to read the best original movie-related content on the web. So, come on baby, let’s go back to the start and give the past week of Film School Rejects a second chance. But first, we want to remind you of the category links on this page that will help you find the most recent reviews (including new releases Dredd 3D, End of Watch and The Perks of Being a Wallflower) and trailers (new spots for The Hobbit and The Life of Pi included) as well as the sidebar of all your favorite columns.
And, of course, this week brought the start of Fantastic Fest, so you’ll want to look back on what films we’ve covered so far, such as Frankenweenie and Holy Motors. Keep this link handy through the next five days or so.
Before our team began consuming the Fantastic films of this year’s event, we took a look at some of our most-anticipated titles. While possibly functioning as a reminder to ourselves, it’s mostly a guide for you. Whether you’re on the ground in Austin and wondering what to get in line for or you’re stuck at home across the world and curious about what to hope becomes available to you down the line, our list should be the perfect primer.
“Action, Eyeball Violence, Fellatio, Strippers…” “Crazy special effects, fight choreography by Sammo Hung and a vibrant energy atypical to period kung-fu films.” “A grizzled cop with a penchant for booze and doing things his way.” “Buckets of shell casings spilled upon the ground as we ingest buckets of popcorn.” See which films those quotes describe by clicking on the link above.
Additional recommended reading: 10 Movies That Might Secretly Screen at Fantastic Fest and Surviving Fantastic Fest: Seasoned Veteran’s Edition.
With his latest film, The Master, now in theaters — and in even wider release as of yesterday — Cole collected some artistic wisdom spouted by Paul Thomas Anderson over the years. Among the sources, you’ll find a conversation between Anderson and Lars von Trier, so that’s one to dig deeper into. Otherwise, just read or hear what the There Will Be Blood director has to say on adaptation, actors, pornography, entertainment (“Fuck! It’s a movie first.”) and starting out with short films.
Speaking of starting out with shorts, Cole also shared a full video of Anderson’s 30-minute The Dirk Diggler Story, which is The Short Film That Grew Into ‘Boogie Nights.’ Watch that.
Perhaps you had time over the week to get your hands on the necessary Indiana Jones Blu-ray set, but before you spend your weekend with the films and their extras, here’s a review of the good and the bad. Neil celebrated his hero with a look at the packaging (“first impressions matter, people”), the menus, the bonus features (“so much fun, it’s like being a little kid again trying to imagine what it would have been like to be on that set”) and the four installments themselves.
And not all is positive, even regardless of Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Find out his issue with the Raiders of the Lost Ark restoration, but more importantly see why ultimately it’s “a best case scenario kind of release.”
Additional recommended reading: find out what other new DVD and Blu-ray items are recommended in This Week in Discs: So Much Goddamn Goodness!
There’s been a lot of talk lately about the RoboCop remake, which recently started shooting with Brazilian filmmaker Jose Padilha at the helm and Joel Kinnaman as the eponymous crime-fighting cyborg. Taking on the debate for a Boiling Point column, Rob o’ Fure argued that there is nothing too sacred about the property that it can’t be redone.
“Technology has advanced. It’s possible to do things today that weren’t possible then. Effects are better. Materials are better,” he wrote, adding, “At its heart, its about a cop who gets fucked up and then comes back as a badass cyborg. It’s a tale as old as time, one destined to be retold.” All he asks is that they stay to the violent spirit of the original.
Additional recommended reading: last weekend, Jack took a look at the on-set shots of the new RoboCop “suit” and asked, Should the New ‘RoboCop’ Look the Same as the Old ‘RoboCop’? And in a MNAD roundup, Neil shared the remake’s first teaser poster.
We can’t wait for Skyfall, the latest James Bond movie, which opens in the U.S. on November 9th. To keep us busy in the meantime, 007 obsessives Brian and Kevin will be counting us down to the release with a new weekly feature. In the first of these, Brian compiled a bunch of trivia for us. Did you know Bond is named after a birdwatcher? That his favorite card game is the French Go Fish? How about the significance of the title of The World is Not Enough?
Jack talked to End of Watch writer/director David Ayer about the found footage structure of the film, as well as about his screenwriting career. This could be helpful for aspiring scribes who can’t let go of their early ideas: “The earlier scripts of mine that didn’t get made didn’t get made for a reason,” Ayer told us. “I thought they were brilliant. I thought people should’ve handed me bags of money for them. Oh God, I’ll never touch of those scripts. I’ll never dig up the old pirate’s chest to see what’s in there.
Additional recommended reading: Robert Levin gave End of Watch a ‘B’ grade, highlighting its acting and “existential depiction” of South Central peace keepers.
What do the McFlys, the McAllisters and the McClanes have in common besides an Irish name? They’re all ridiculously unlucky, as noted in the latest list from David Christopher Bell. What other clans are even less fortunate than the ones tormented by Biff Tannen, an easily forgotten child and regular proximity to terrorist plots, respectively? Maybe those haunted by ghosts, sharks and immortal, murderous family members? Or, how about some hapless vacationers?
More family vacation drama can be found in the classic silent film Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, which Cole and Landon discussed in their latest spotlight on one of the greatest movies of all time. The wine-drinking pig is possibly one reason for its lasting acclaim.
But Landon summed up more: “Sunrise is a one-of-a-kind Hollywood movie. Its artistic expression really is still resonant after all these years, but Murnau’s artistry isn’t merely something to be admired (as it is inNosferatu) or something used to make a larger point (as it is in The Last Laugh). It’s Murnau’s best because it goes so many places, accomplishes so much emotionally, earns all of it, and does so through a visionary style that also manages to suck the audience in.”
One of the big new television series of the fall is Revolution, a sci-fi drama from producers J.J. Abrams and Jon Favreau, the latter of whom directed the pilot. In her latest Channel Guide column, Amber rated the show, bringing up problems like the “unnecessarily cagey” dialogue and “laughable scenes” that cause it to be “disappointingly mediocre.”
Additional recommended reading: with the show premiering this week, we reposted Kate’s report on its presentation at Comic-Con: Jon Favreau, J.J. Abrams, and Eric Kripke Turn Out the Lights with Their Ambitious ‘Revolution.’
We often appreciate someone who can laugh at their past sex-related scandals (Pee-Wee Herman’s “heard any good jokes lately?” self-jab at the VMAs, for instance), but Roman Polanski‘s statutory rape offense will never be a forgivable, let along laughing, matter to many. So, the news that the Chinatown director is set to adapt Venus in Fur is interesting, to say the least.
To say more, Nathan asked, will it “be a misstep to try and sell this to a public who’s already uncomfortable thinking about the man’s past crimes? Is art something that should be judged on its own merits, with no consideration given to where it’s coming from? … Will this guy ever not have us talking?”