Bill Murray

Grand Budapest Hotel

It’s funny to think one of the most honest movies about families stars stop-motion foxes. Then again, when you know Fantastic Mr. Fox was helmed by none other than Wes Anderson, it’s no surprise that the ins and outs of family have been explored with wit and earnestness. His newest movie, The Grand Budapest Hotel, doesn’t have any foxes voiced by George Clooney, but that doesn’t mean Anderson doesn’t strive again for the same nuance underneath the grand theatrics. The magnificence of the acclaimed filmmaker’s eighth feature film comes from both onscreen and off. Some critics have called this his most ambitious work to date, covering various time periods, a huge ensemble cast, and heavy themes reinforced by a sharp sense of humor. It’s also his bloodiest movie yet, which Anderson finds amusing. With all the fascists at this party — attended by a stellar cast too long-winded to namecheck — it makes sense there’s more blood drawn in this crime picture than any of his previous movies.

read more...

Bill Murray in GROUNDHOG DAY

I made plans late last week to feature Groundhog Day as my next Commentary Commentary title, and immediately discovered that I didn’t own a copy of the film. A quick trip to a nearby video store graced me with a used Blu-ray which I brought home, watched, and fell in love with all over again. It’s that rare, near-perfect movie where everything seems to fall beautifully in place, a film that never weakens on repeat viewings, and one that says more about humanity than many examples of far more serious cinema. Harold Ramis died this past Monday, and while it’s a tragedy for his wife, children, and friends, it also leaves a void for the millions of fans who’ve loved much of his work over the years. Meatballs, Caddyshack, Stripes, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Ghostbusters, Back to School, Groundhog Day, The Ice Harvest… all fantastically fun films that wouldn’t have been the same without his involvement as writer and/or director. Keep reading to see what I heard on Harold Ramis’ commentary for Groundhog Day.

read more...

Harold Ramis

Of course it happened in February. Yesterday, Harold Ramis passed away from complications resulting from autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis, a rare blood disease. He is survived by his spouse, Erica Mann, as well as his three children and two grandchildren. He is also survived, for those of us who knew the man’s work but never met him personally, by some of the most influential and game-changing comedies of the past forty years. It’s difficult to know what the careers of Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, and John Belushi would look like without him. If there had been no Harold Ramis, there would be no Caddyshack, no Vacation, no Groundhog Day. If Ghostbusters could ever have existed sans Ramis in some other form, it’s impossible to imagine quite what that would be. He was, by all measures, a consequential figure in American comedy.

read more...

Bill Murray Retirement

Inarguably one of Bill Murray‘s best performances is Don Johnston from Jim Jarmusch‘s Broken Flowers. Murray has successfully played a variety of characters over his career, so pinning down Murray’s defining performance isn’t easy, but Broken Flowers is certainly close to the top in that regard. It’s a performance devoid of any associations we have of Murray as an actor. There’s no overt charm to Johnston. The jumpsuit-wearing character has a dry humor to him, but he’s not one of Murray’s characters we’d all jump at the chance to hang out with. However, we certainly want to watch him through Jarmusch’s lens for a few hours. The journey that the Don Juan character goes on is quielty powerful, leaving you completely feeling for this guy who’s hurt more than a few people in his life. It’s a testament to Jarmusch as a filmmaker, but also to Murray as an actor. Murray considers Johnston his finest work. Recently on Reddit, Murray mentioned how he briefly retired after Broken Flowers, believing he couldn’t do any better. And yet, he came back, for reasons he didn’t really discuss in that Q&A.

read more...

scrooged anne ramsey

It’s not even Thanksgiving yet and we’re already devoting a second Scenes We Love list to a Christmas movie. Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of Scrooged, so how could we not? Did you know this modernization of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol had the fourth best opening of 1988? And of those four, it debuted in a significantly fewer amount of theaters, giving it the second-best per-screen average among them. It also opened on a Wednesday, like three of those films, and of those three it had the second-best five-day opening. People clearly loved this movie, right? Not quite, but they really wanted to see it. Unfortunately, it didn’t stay at or near the top for very long. By the big holiday weekend, it was in 9th place, behind stuff like Tequila Sunrise, The Naked Gun and Oliver and Company. But at least it was doing better than Ernest Saves Christmas. Scrooged received a fair amount of negative reviews when it came out, and maybe the audiences then were disappointed, especially if they were hoping for something as entertaining and funny and spectacular as Ghostbusters, since this was both Bill Murray‘s first comedic starring vehicle since then and it was also marketed to that film’s fans. In the decades since, many of us have warmed to it, probably through countless TV airings, where it does seem kind of appropriate. Back then perhaps audiences weren’t happy with how unlikable Murray’s character is for much of the movie, even though that’s part of […]

read more...

Bill Murray‘s never doing another Ghostbusters film. We can all hem and haw and hold out hope that the prodigal son of ghostbusting might return, but Murray has staunchly refused to bust even a single ghost for years now. When Ray Parker Jr. famously exclaimed, “I ain’t afraid of no ghost,” maybe he didn’t have Murray in mind. But it seems Bill Murray’s disdain for the supernatural only counts when Ghostbusters is involved. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actor has just attached himself to the upcoming Dreamworks animated film B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations. Murray joins the project alongside two other new additions in Octavia Spencer and Jennifer Coolidge. That titular organization is “the ghost world’s elite counter-haunting unit,” and Murray will be filling the role of Addison Drake, who is both a ghost himself and the film’s primary villain.

read more...

murray

If there were a Mount Rushmore for comedic actors, Bill Murray’s face would have, without question, made the mountain many years ago. And, in addition to his early successes, as he’s gotten older his performances have only become more nuanced and satisfying. For this reason, every time it’s announced that he’s going to appear in a new movie, let alone take the lead role in a new movie, it’s an event that becomes a cause for celebration among cinephiles. So you’re probably going to want to get your party horns and confetti ready, because today news hit the Internet that Murray has his next starring role all lined up, and it’s a gig that’s going to see him working with one of the biggest directors of the last few decades. Deadline is reporting that Murray is all set to star in Barry Levinson’s (Rain Man, Wag the Dog) next film, which is a project that comes from an original script by screenwriter Mitch Glazer (Scrooged) called Rock the Kasbah. In it Murray will be playing a down on his luck music manager who takes his one last client on a USO tour of Afghanistan in hopes of making some money, where he instead finds himself abandoned and penniless in a strange land. The story doesn’t end there though, as it’s said that the character then comes across a young girl with a crazy-good voice, who stows away with him on a ride back to Kabul so that she can appear […]

read more...

THE-MONUMENTS-MEN

When the endless stream of awards-show talk begins its yearly smothering of the movie industry, expect the words The Monuments Men to come up. The film’s got all the necessary pieces: It’s based both on real-life events and on a book (Robert M. Edsel‘s “The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History”) and will have George Clooney wearing both his director and lead actor hats. Presumably, if the film’s actually a good one, it’ll be racking up all kinds of neat little statuettes. And thanks to Entertainment Weekly (via Facebook), you can see the first still from The Monuments Men above. You can also read more about the film below.

read more...

Maya Rudolph

Friday night during the Los Angeles Film Festival, the talented (and 8 months pregnant) Maya Rudolph sat down with LACMA curator and host of KCRW’s The Treatment, Elvis Mitchel, to discuss “the serious business of being funny.” From her days at SNL to her early days watching movies with her dad (composer Richard Rudolph) in Westwood, Rudolph shared some of her favorite comedic moments from various films and how various comedians influenced and advised her throughout her career. Read on for ten tips and antidotes from Rudolph on the art of being funny, her memories growing up in comedy, what kind of comedians she is attracted to, and who gave her the best advice of her career.

read more...

BM-Intro

It’s not his birthday, he didn’t die (at least not when this was written), and he doesn’t have a new movie out, but gosh darn it – let’s talk Bill Murray. He is, as we all know, the best person. Today I wanted to try and find some more roles in the vein of The Razor’s Edge; just some odd, maybe funny/maybe not characters he’s played over the years that we all may have missed out on. My goal here: to give you, at the very least, one Bill Murray role you didn’t know about, but would now really like to watch. Here we go…

read more...

Bill Murray

What is Casting Couch? It’s the surveyor of all that is casting. Today we’ve got joyous news about more incredible actors joining Animal Rescue and sad news about Emma Watson dropping out of some promising projects. Get ready, it’s going to be an emotional roller coaster.

read more...

Charles Swan

Almost exactly two years ago, Charlie Sheen started a highly public meltdown that translated his acting fame into the kind of ravenous notoriety that’s an inch wide and a mile deep. Over a few months time, a celebrated film and television actor devolved into a reality star. We watched it in real-time, and even when the train had already wrecked, Sheen seemed impervious to the truth of what he’d done to his image. For those who didn’t tire of the schtick by his Comedy Central Roast in September of 2011, and for those who are thirsty for some severely watered down tiger blood, Sheen stars in Roman Coppola‘s A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III as a boring version of himself. In it, his character is a delusional ladies man who exhaustingly relives the break-up with his latest love Ivana (Katheryn Winnick) after a car accident sends him to the hospital with the sympathies of best friend Kirby Star (Jason Schwartzman), sister Izzy (Patricia Arquette) and accountant Saul (Bill Murray). His only other companion is his brain, a terrible thing that sends him into fantasy after fantasy. Anything to avoid what’s really going on.

read more...

Space Jam

In the game of bad movie coverage, we are poised on the same lofty levels of excellence as either the 1975 Washington Capitals or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers back when they had those supposedly heterosexual tangerine uniforms with the smiling pirate on the helmets. Every week, Junkfood Cinema brings you the best of the worst of the best movies ever made; exposing their faults and cackling like insane toddlers at their dense layers of absurdity. We really do love these films, and that fact of remains despite the mockery, and despite our therapist taking the controversial tact of encouraging us to repress our feelings. To reward you, the unsuspecting reader, for eye-prancing all the way to the end of the article, we will top things off with a sinfully tasty snack themed to the movie. All that being said, today’s piece is different. It will not focus on a bad movie, but instead defend one improperly relegated as such. This article is fraught with anger, fraught I tell you! Today’s film is one most maligned by foolish plebes; those too bereft of wisdom to recognize its brilliance. This is a film that transcends the dubious confines of its genre and operates on a more didactic level vis-a-vis the human condition and societal mores. A film whose roots are embedded in the history of film itself and one that harkens back to some of cinema’s greatest achievements. I’m speaking of course of Space Jam.

read more...

Maggie Gyllenhaal

What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting news roundup that’s been out of work since casting agents seem to be treating the week between Christmas and New Years as one prolonged food coma. If there’s one thing that Jurassic Park taught us, it’s that nature finds a way. Well, casting finds a way too. In a week where there isn’t any news getting leaked to the trades, leave it to Albuquerque Business First to break a new scoop. The eagle eyes over at The Film Stage noticed that, in an article about how that Michael Fassbender-starring rock and roll comedy called Frank is coming to town to shoot, the local source managed to break the news that Maggie Gyllenhaal is coming to town with it. Her involvement in the film sees her joining a cast that includes not just Fassbender, but two of the young MVPs of 2012, Domhnall Gleeson and Scoot McNairy, as well. Which, you know, makes her one of the luckiest ladies in the world.

read more...

The Ingredients is a column devoted to breaking down the components of a new film release with some focus on influential movies that came before. As always, these posts look at the entire plots of films and so include SPOILERS.  There are two films in particular that I thought about while watching Hyde Park on Hudson, the new historical film about an alleged love affair between President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (Bill Murray) and distant cousin Margaret “Daisy” Suckley (Laura Linney). Three films if you count Rushmore, due to the reunion of Murray and Olivia Williams, who plays First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and the much-talked-about scene depicting a handjob in a car (not a bloody Jaguar, unfortunately), but I don’t consider this one to be an ingredient in the same way. The two that I do think of as more content-based precursors are Dave and The King’s Speech. Regarding the former, I’m surely highlighting the wrong film as an earlier instance of a leader and his wife who are all but legally separated behind closed doors, the wife fully aware of the husband’s mistresses. But Dave does involve the POTUS and First Lady, and Williams’s Eleanor did remind me at times of Sigourney Weaver’s character in the 1993 doppelganger comedy. There are very likely other dramas of adulterous true stories that relate more to the overall plot of Hyde Park. I haven’t seen the JFK-mistress movie An American Affair, which might more closely fit. But given that I really despised every moment […]

read more...

Editor’s note: Hyde Park on Hudson cruises into theaters this week, so please get handsy with our New York Film Festival review of the film, originally published on September 30, 2012. Franklin Delano Roosevelt is considered to be one of our greatest presidents — a strong, charismatic leader during World War II, beloved by his nation. Roger Mitchell’s Hyde Park on Hudson reveals FDR to be all those things… and also quite the Don Juan. The film tries to reveal FDR “the man,” a history-making president who can also seduce the ladies, befriend shy kings, and possess a mean stamp collection. While Hyde Park on Hudson is consistently entertaining, its tendencies to meander in tone and to veer too far into the ridiculous prevent it from succeeding as a whole. One fortuitous day, FDR (Bill Murray) requests that his fifth cousin Daisy Suckley (Laura Linney) visit him at his country home in Hyde Park, New York. Naturally, Daisy obliges, and shortly after being dazzled by FDR’s stamp collection she becomes a fixture at his country home. Their visits turn into full days of merriment and long aimless drives on country roads. When FDR stops the car in the middle of a field of purple wildflowers one afternoon, however, there is only one direction their relationship can go in (not to reveal too much, but watching Bill Murray as FDR receive pleasure in a car is mildly disturbing and somewhat hilarious). Eventually, though, Daisy comes to realize that besides the First […]

read more...

Charles Swan III

The trailer for Roman Coppola‘s Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III is manic, but the star isn’t. In fact, Charlie Sheen is downright soporific in this thing, sleepwalking his way through ill-fitting costumes and outrageous situations that he only seems tangentially aware of. Basically, it looks like he may have done the entire movie on Oxycontin. It’s a colorful first look to be sure, but it’s a little troubling when Jason Schwartzman looks hung out to dry with no comedic partner to keep pace, but Bill Murray, fortunately, looks like he’s in rare form (especially when dressed as The Duke). Check it out for yourself, and be ready to think “Wes Anderson-Lite”:

read more...

A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan the III

A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III is Roman Coppola‘s first film in over ten years. His directorial debut, CQ, was received with a mixed response. It didn’t garner much love, but it’s a really fun movie which goes beyond the average “struggling director” stories. Since then, Coppola’s been keeping busy with his music video and commercial and his frequent collaborations with Wes Anderson. Now he’s finally returned to the director’s chair, with a movie which is exactly what we’d expect from the guy who co-wrote Moonrise Kingdom and The Darjeeling Limited. Apple launched the trailer today. Take a look:

read more...

Bill Murray at Cannes 2012

What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting roundup that’s got news about what weird, clown-related thing Peter Stormare is going to do next. Read on for the juicy details. If your name is Dan Aykroyd or Ivan Reitman, then Bill Murray has been spending the last ten years or so trying to convince you that he doesn’t read scripts. That’s got to sting, because Deadline has a new report that proves this to be balderdash. Murray read Ted Melfi’s script for St. Vincent De Van Nuys and identified with the writer’s work so much that he called him up and invited him out for a drive. One negotiating process later and Murray is reportedly ready to sign on to star in the film, which is about a cantankerous old coot who bonds with a twelve-year-old boy over rounds of drinking, gambling, and generally despicable behavior. Sounds like it’s going to be a hoot.

read more...

Screen Shot 2012-11-02 at 6.00.52 PM

A movie like The Man With The Iron Fists, with the tagline of “They put the F.U. in Kung Fu,” can really go either way. While such a tagline promises some cool fight scenes and much bad-assery, do the goods stop there? Also, can RZA from The Wu-Tang Clan direct? Hell yes, RZA can direct! While the film does lag at around the three-quarter mark, not only are its fight scenes awesome and bloody, but they are creatively shot and have great cinematography. This, in combine with a gleefully clever and referential script co-written by RZA and Eli Roth, make for a fun film that fits nicely within the film’s “presentor,” Quentin Tarantino’s, postmodernist pantheon. After all, there’s even a cameo from Pam Grier.

read more...
NEXT PAGE  
Twitter button
Facebook button
Google+ button
RSS feed

published: 04.18.2014
B+
published: 04.18.2014
A
published: 04.18.2014
B+
published: 04.17.2014
B-

Listen to Junkfood Cinema
Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
SXSW 2014
Game of Thrones reviews
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3