Alicia Silverstone

Ass Backwards Movie

Kate (June Diane Raphael) and Chloe (Casey Wilson) have been best friends their entire lives, finishing each other’s sentences, sleeping in the same waterbed, they even have a catch phrase when introducing themselves to people (“Kate and Chloe! Her Chloe, me Kate. Kate and Chloe.”) It is endearing how the girls support each other unconditionally with positive affirmations and constantly reminding each other they are on the verge of greatness – Kate is the CEO of her own company! (Kate is an egg doner.) Chloe is on the verge of becoming a big star! (Chloe is a go-go dancer.) But unfortunately, Kate and Chloe are co-dependent messes who have no idea how far from greatness (or even acting their age) they truly are. Despite living large in New York City, when the girls receive an invitation to return to their hometown’s beauty pageant circuit, you can tell they both want to go back and compete. Kate and Chloe came in dead last when they competed in the pageant as children and they believe this could be their chance to show everyone they are no longer losers. After getting evicted from their apartment (a minor set back!), the girls hit the open road and the hi-jinx hit the fast lane.

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Jennifer Garner in Butter

Editor’s note: With Butter finally hitting theaters tomorrow, here’s a re-run of our AFI FEST review, originally published on November 8, 2011, to spread all over your movie theater popcorn. Jim Field Smith’s Butter has been packaged and sold as its own consumable commodity – as some sort of smart, politically-minded satire. Butter is certainly funny in spats, but smart satire it is not, as there are no hard lessons taught or learned within the film. It may be too easy to say that Butter goes soft by its end – but the wording works here, both in terms of a mildly clever food pun and as an actual critique of how the film flip-flops with its tone and message before settling on an easy conclusion. The world of competitive butter-carving is hilarious and bizarre, a fine setting for a straight comedy that culminates with a character incredulously summing up its ridiculousness – “you put it on toast!” – but everything in Smith’s film is just too obvious to transcend basic laughs.

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Vamps

In Vamps, Amy Heckerling has re-teamed with Clueless star Alicia Silverstone to make a movie about vampires and whatever modern life looks like for them. Silverstone plays coffin-mates with Krysten Ritter‘s character, and the result seems a bit like Stakes and the City. The trailer makes the movie look candy-coated and sweet enough to choke on. It’s enough to make you wonder whether Clueless really was a satire on young, rich life or if it was meant far more genuinely than any audience could have stood for. Check it out for yourself:

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Jennifer Garner in Butter

What exactly is Butter? Is it a mock-heroic portrayal of a small town woman’s overblown political aspirations? A domestic story about a man addicted to strip clubs? An inspirational tale about a hard-luck orphan discovering talent and motivation? From what can be discerned by watching its new trailer, Butter would appear to be all of these things. And it would also appear to be a semi-comedic look at the world of competitive butter carving (which is a real thing, and totally worth a Google). At first glance all of that seems likely to be, both figuratively and literally, pretty messy. Can one movie pull off packing in this many disparate plot threads without losing focus and collapsing under its own weight? And are we really expected to watch a comedy about people carving butter that isn’t being brought to the screen by Christopher Guest and his usual cast of players? No, under most circumstances Butter wouldn’t look like a movie worth giving a chance at all – but just look at that laundry list of great people involved.

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Amy Heckerling has been developing the habit of making movies about once a generation that perfectly encapsulates the zeitgeist of current youth culture. In the early ’80s, it was her film Fast Times at Ridgemont High that gave high school kids all over the world the idea to have pizzas delivered to their classrooms and made that one Cars song be forever linked with Phoebe Cates taking off her top. In the mid-’90s she brought us Clueless, which introduced the world to how cute Paul Rudd is when he sheepishly grins and finally asked a lost generation to pull up their pants and stop looking like trashballs. So now that it’s 2012 and Heckerling has written and directed a new film, you have to ask yourself if it’s going to be another one of those generation defining moments in movies, or if it’s just going to end up being another Look Who’s Talking? Her new project is called Vamps, and seeing as it’s a little late to cash in on the vampire crazy, its chances of becoming a big thing are already looking kind of dicey. That doesn’t mean it won’t be fun though, because it has a completely ridiculous cast, and a plot that sounds tailor-made for getting everyone’s girlfriends to squeal.

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I know what you’re thinking: “That’s not what the regulation Sex Scouts uniform looks like! Couldn’t this production have done any research?!” And you’d be right, but you’d be missing the point. In Elektra Luxx, Carla Gugino reprises her role as the titular porn star who has given up the business for baby. And, yes, it’s hers. The funny, sexy, strange, soap-y comedy was written and directed by Sebastian Gutierrez as the meat of a Women in Trouble and Women in Ecstasy trilogy. It’s got the same heart, ovaries and potty mouth as the first, and it now has more Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a sex blogger. Check out the surprisingly not-red-band trailer for yourself:

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Sigourney Weaver

After Clueless, Amy Heckerling only directed two films… Loser and I Could Never Be Your Woman. What? Exactly. But now she’s returning to the big screen with a movie that people may actually want to see. And she’s re-teaming with her (equally MIA) Clueless star, Alicia Silverstone.

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It has been 15 years since Alicia Silverstone was thrust into the mainstream spotlight by a little movie called Clueless, directed by Amy Heckerling. It was an event that not only ushered in the era of Alicia, but phrases like “as if” and “she’s a full-on Monet.” It was annoying, but also quite charming.

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Screen Gems to Remake Emma in a Hip-Hop Context

Haven’t we had enough of Jane Austen? Apparently not, according to Screen Gems. That’s right. They’re not just re-making bad slasher films from the 80s. They’re also remaking stuffy British literature as musical urban street dramas.

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