Diego Luna

I Will Never Let You Down Short Film

Why Watch? In the rare example where corporate synergy doesn’t create an awkward, lumbering Franken-short, Diego Luna has managed to craft a short film for Pepsi with soccer and Rita Ora at its core without compromising quality. The result is I Will Never Let You Down (conveniently sharing its title with Ora’s summer hit), a balletic view on elderly people playing the beautiful game. Like the most epic pick-up match on record, Luna makes sweeping use of slow motion and a hazy lens that gives everything a shot of instant sweet memories. It’s the slow motion — particularly making slow-moving people move even slower — that offers a wry touch of brilliance, but it’s the transformation of the players into 78-year-old children that ultimately brings the magic here. There’s also the sprightly, tinkling score and the pleasantly absurd elongation of the ref’s whistle to provide a few smiles. I’m not taking sides or anything, but that bearded keeper has some serious swagger.

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image_elysium sharlto copley

One of the more anticipated films hitting theaters next year is Neill Blomkamp‘s Elysium. The sci-fi epic is the director’s long-awaited (well, since 2009 anyway) follow-up to his breakout hit District 9, and it follows a similar path melding action, science fiction and social commentary. It stars Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, William Fichtner, Diego Luna, Talisa Soto and Sharlto Copley. He played the hero in District 9, but Copley’s turn here is of a far darker flavor. Empire Online has just debuted the first glimpse above of Copley in full bad guy gear, and he’s nigh unrecognizable. Elysium is set in the year 2159, and pits the oppressed people of the ruined planet Earth against the privileged elite aboard the Elysium space station. Matt Damon is ex-convict man-on-a-mission Max, fighting with the Terrans for equality, and Jodie Foster is the dastardly government official intent on enforcing anti-immigration laws and keeping Elysium for the Elysians; Kruger is her relentless attack dog.” Elysium invades theaters August 9th, 2013.

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Casa de mi Padre

To Say Will Ferrell is an incredibly polarizing figure in comedy is to just point out something all our mothers already knew. Is he a comedy genius, or a man-sized enfant terrible? Is he one step ahead of us, or are we justified shaking our heads at his absurdity? This is the constant tango most movie-goers partake in when setting foot into one of his new films, never knowing for sure if Ferrell is going to leave us sated or enraged. While we all have our favorite (or not so favorite) Ferrell offerings, his newest film Casa De Mi Padre is so full of heart and balls that it is almost impossible to not see it taking a cult favorite status amongst film lovers. Set on a Mexican ranch with a nearly entire Spanish speaking cast, the film explores the tumultuous relationship between brothers Armando (Ferrell) and Raul Alvarez (Diego Luna) as they try to protect their family’s land from the looming threat of drug lord Onza (Gael Garcia Bernal). Raul is the prodigal son whose return brings joy to his father Miguel Ernesto (Pedro Armendariz Jr.) with the news of a wedding to his new fiancé Sonia (Mexican pop sensation Genesis Rodriguez) but also a sense of change for Armando, who is less than trusting of his brother’s new riches (spoiler alert, he dabbles in the illegal). Unlike the typical idiot savants Ferrell normally plays, Armando reveals himself to be quite intelligent and forward thinking. His love of his […]

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Kevin Carr

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr dresses up in skinny jeans and bling-bling (‘cause that’s what the kids nowadays are wearing, right, dawg?) so he can sneak into his old high school and pose as a student. After spending the following night in jail, he heads to the multiplex to watch the biweekly Channing Tatum movie spectacular. Unfortunately, he goes in the wrong theater and ends up seeing a movie that requires him to read the whole time. And he doesn’t even get to see Genesis Rodriguez’s breasts. It’s a sad day.

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Not to be hyperbolic, but this is the kind of role that earns Oscar nominations. Iconic public figure? Check. Oscar nominated screenwriter? Check. An actor capable of pulling off a rounded, difficult role? Triple check. Variety is reporting that Diego Luna has hired Michael Peña to star as Cesar Chavez for Chavez – the story of the celebrated labor rights advocate and the guy that 489 streets in the southwest are named after. The man is an idol, and Peña may be the perfect choice to play him. The actor has been all over the map, proving to be versatile and powerful no matter the genre or the role. Plus, the Academy apparently loves it when people play real people – regardless of whether they’re minority figures or old white leaders. But the awards talk is way too early, and it’s secondary because this project sounds like a fantastic movie no matter the gold potential. Keir Pearson (Hotel Rwanda) has written the script, Luna is a strong creative force, Gael Garcia Bernal is producing, as is John Malkovich (unless it’s John Cusack simply pretending to be John Malkovich), and Rosario Dawson and American Ferrara are co-starring in prominent roles. The puzzle pieces are all there to create something phenomenal. Not to mention, award worthy.

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Kevin Carr

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr recovers from his colossal failure in getting any of his votes in the Critic’s Choice Movie Awards to count (except for A Separation for best foreign film, but who didn’t think that would win?) by engaging in therapy via multiplex. Unfortunately, it’s January, and his only choices were Marky Mark and the Smuggling Bunch or Queen Latifah going mano-y-mano with the robot Dolly Parton. He opts for the action film, but he may have also fallen asleep during it. How soon until good movies are released again?

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In a week where a trailer was released where apes take over the planet, I think that this trailer for the upcoming Will Ferrell comedy Casa de mi Padre is still the coolest, weirdest thing I’ve seen. In former SNL writer and Funny or Die contributor Matt Piedmont’s first film, you’ve got Will Ferrell playing a Mexican named Armando Alvarez and speaking only in Spanish, Nick Offerman in full Ron Swanson mustache asking people if they speak American, awesome dramatic actors like Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal trading ridiculous dialogue, and a hottie named Genesis Rodriguez two palming Will Ferrell’s bare ass. The film plays like a big budget telenovela, and while it is clearly a ridiculous comedy, it seems to get the telenovela feel right by taking itself terribly seriously. In Casa de mi Padre’s own mind, it is the awesomest movie that ever existed. The trailer goes as far as listing for you all of the awesome things it features, up to and including, guns, cigarettes, special effects, and slaps. I don’t know how you can argue with that.  Take a load off and give it a gander, you won’t be sorry.

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The last few weeks have been emotionally exhausting and utterly surreal for me, and visiting with some of my favorite movies for advice has been a big help in moving forward. Of course this isn’t the same as talking with a good friend or crying into a whole box of Dunkin Donuts Munchkins (with sprinkles!), but sometimes the stories unfolding on screen just make you feel better in a way talking and eating just can’t. All my time watching movies has taught me if a heartbroken soul can get through it, head held high and sane, so can I. But where do we draw the line between real and too real when it comes to romance and sex in film? Sex complicates, but does it also have to destroy the lives involved? In Cruel Intentions, sex is used as a key element in an emotionally manipulative game between Kathryn and Sebastian, whereas in Y Tu Mama Tambien sex leaves best friends confused about their future, and in Blue Valentine sex brings upon the end of a relationship representing so many couples before and after. In each of these films, the act itself is both poignant and flawed, and no one walks away uninjured.

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There are few things better in this life than realizing something ridiculous is real. It’s like the first time you found out chocolate chip pancakes weren’t some elaborate ruse invented by your parents to get you to the oatmeal-filled breakfast table. Come on. Seriously? It’s pancakes with chocolate in them? The cinematic chocolate chips in this case are falling where they may, and that happens to be in the big warm pancake of Will Ferrell’s Spanish-language comedy Casa de Mi Padre. Not only is the project real, it’s also got a hell of a cast lined up. Both Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna are phenomenal talents – the kind of talents that would be challenged by something like this to great result. Bernal will play a friend of the Ferrell/Luna family with Luna filling in for John C. Reilly this go round as Ferrell’s brother. Before you ask, yes, theoretically they could end up naked in bed together again. Although it’s great that Ferrell has gotten some great help for the film, it won’t matter if he keeps thinking everything in the language means “Whale Vagina.” [Collider]

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There’s something wrong with Abel. We know this moments into Diego Luna’s directorial debut, aptly titled Abel.

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