Jobs

2013.moviedoppelgangers

Every year, there seem to be unintended themes emerging from movie releases. It’s almost as if the studios called each other to coordinate projects like friends in high school planning to wear matching outfits on a Friday. Sometimes this effect is unintentional, like when an emerging movie star manages to have multiple films comes out the same year (see Melissa McCarthy below); other times, it’s a result of executives switching studios and developing similar projects (like the infamous Disney and DreamWorks 1998 double-header grudge match of A Bug’s Life vs. Antz and Armageddon vs. Deep Impact). This year is no different, producing a slew of movie doppelgangers. For the sake of creativity, I left the painfully obvious off. Still, who can forget offerings like Olympus Has Fallen up against White House Down as well as This Is the End paired with The World’s End? And, if you really hate yourself, you can watch a terrible trippleganger of A Haunted House, Scary Movie 5 and 30 Nights of Paranormal Activity with the Devil Inside the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Whether it’s similar themes, the same actor in noticeably similar roles, or parallel stand-out moments in two films, this list of 13 movie pairings can provide a nice selection of companion pieces for your viewing pleasure.

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The Worst Films of 2013

If you listen to the wrong kind of people (cultural pessimists, that is), every year is the worst year in cinema, at least since the last one. But as we learned last year, high highs tend to come with low lows. In a year that saw the release of such instant classics as 12 Years a Slave, Gravity, Inside Llewyn Davis, and many more, there were also scads of terrible contributions to the greater world of movie-going. High highs, people, and low lows. Let’s try to make next year a little better, or at least let’s aim to populate it with satires that actually try to be funny, sequels that aren’t a disgrace to their franchise history, and nothing even remotely resembling inAPPropriate Comedy 2. While there were certainly more than a mere thirteen bad movies that hit the big screen this year (and, yes, we’re more than eager to see your contributions in the comments), here are thirteen that stuck out to us in the most unforgettable of ways. We’ve come to bury them, and certainly not to praise them, so here are thirteen films that we’re giddily throwing in the grave.

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Ashton Kutcher in jOBS

Editor’s note: Kate’s review originally ran during this year’s Sundance Film Festival, but we’re re-running it as the film opens in limited theatrical release this weekend. Apple founder and technology visionary Steve Jobs changed the way the world connects and computes, created one of the world’s most revolutionary companies and recently died, so of course he is now being remembered by way of an unsatisfying biopic that could have been far more creative and inspired than the final product. Director Joshua Michael Stern (best remembered for the completely forgettable Swing Vote) works off a script by newbie scribe Matt Whiteley (a former marketing wonk who was commissioned to write the script by his boss, producer Mark Hulme) that, while well-paced and interesting, also fails to illuminate much about the man and skips over large chunks of his life. As Jobs, Ashton Kutcher does a fine job (sorry, had to do it) with his role, though when Jobs amps up its intensity, he can’t quite keep his character compelling or believable.

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Ashton Kutcher in jOBS

Ashton Kutcher, Josh Gad, Dermot Mulroney, and writer-director Joshua Michael Stern have put together a handy-dandy guide to Jobs, the biopic about the iconic Apple co-creator. And while it’s basically just the men talking about how inspirational their subject matter is over footage from the trailer, it’s still a neat look at what makes the film tick. Kutcher and company are clearly very excited to be part of this film, which starts when Jobs and Steve Wozniak (Gad) were free-wheelin’ ’70s college students/dropouts and ends at the revolutionary debut of the first iPod. I’m hoping this means that at some point, someone will explain how they developed those orange and blue iMacs that we all had to use in the school computer labs. You know the ones. And while we all know that Kutcher knows the ’70s quite well, it’s a dramatic turn for the usually goofy actor. In his interview, he still seems a little awestruck that he gets to play this part. Check out the interviews and inspirational speeches in the featurette after the break.

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Jobs Instagram Trailer

It had to happen sometime. Today marks the first time a movie trailer has been released on Instagram, and that movie is Jobs, the upcoming biopic starring Ashton Kutcher as Apple icon Steve Jobs. Back in June, Instagram gave users the option to filter videos as well as photos, and now it seems as though Instagram movie trailers will become a regular thing.

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Ashton Kutcher in jOBS

So much product placement, right? The Steve Jobs biopic (the Ashton Kutcher one, not the Aaron Sorkin one) hit a bump in the road when it didn’t emerge from Sundance as a clear favorite. Audiences and critics (including Kate) were tepid in their praise, the film’s distribution was delayed indefinitely back in March, and a few months later Open Road Films announced that Jobs would land in August. And so, like a 1980s version of The Social Network, a trailer emerges from the wilderness:

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Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs

What else are you going to do in the middle of the day besides reading movie news? Work? Not a chance. With that in mind, we’re here for your daily news break. A bunch of industry news, not all of which is deeply fascinating, but all of which is worth noting. Today it’s all about Steve Jobs, Ghost Rider and the Terminator.

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Ashton Kutcher in jOBS

Before this year’s Sundance Film Festival even opened, its Closing Night Film, Joshua Michael Stern‘s Ashton Kutcher-starring Steve Jobs biopic, jOBS, had already been snapped up by Open Road Films for a spring release. It was the first big buy of the festival, and it seemed to indicate that the film was more than ready for a big theatrical release. Perhaps not. Vulture now reports that the film will no longer open in its once-set April 19th date (a date that marked the 37th anniversary of Apple, natch), as the studio wants more time to put a bigger marketing push behind it. As of now, the film doesn’t have a new release date. The film premiered at Sundance to mixed reviews (it currently holds a 43% on Rotten Tomatoes, which sounds about right). In my review of the film, I found it to be entertaining, but took issue with the fact that it “is very much a film that tells, not shows, what is going and how it’s going on and what’s important, perhaps the worst sin any biopic can commit. Sadly, jOBS is in no way committed to innovation or creativity, a true shame considering its subject matter.” Oh, and it’s also just called Jobs now, because, come on.

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Ashton Kutcher in jOBS

While some of might still be holding out for that Aaron Sorkin-penned Steve Jobs biopic, there’s still Joshua Michael Stern‘s Sundance-premiering, Ashton Kutcher-starring jOBS to look forward to. Yet, surely, no one is looking forward to this one quite as much as Kutcher, who looks tickled pink to not only be starring in what sounds like a quality film (sorry, Just Married!), but pretty excited by how much he looks like the Apple founder, as evidenced by a brand new still from the film. We can’t wait for Kutcher to fill out those black turtlenecks later in the film, however. jOBS will serve as the Closing Night Film of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, and its official fest synopsis tells us: “The true story of one of the greatest entrepreneurs in American history, jOBS chronicles the defining 30 years of Steve Jobs’ life. jOBS is a candid, inspiring and personal portrait of the one who saw things differently.” The film also stars Dermot Mulroney, Josh Gad, Lukas Haas, J.K. Simmons, and Matthew Modine. The film was just picked up for Canadian distribution by Remstar Films, in collaboration with Entertainment One. The film also has Swiss and Italian distribution lined up. While there is no word yet on domestic distribution or release, it seems like a safe bet that won’t last soon, as jOBS will surely sell very soon, likely before it even bows at Sundance. [ComingSoon]

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Despite it’s truly awful title, Joshua Michael Stern’s indie biopic of Steve Jobs is going to continue to get attention. Despite Ashton Kutcher‘s lack of dramatic chops (as far as we can tell), he does bear a striking resemblance to the young Apple founder. So despite itself, there may be plenty to talk about in the months to come as jOBS continues its production. Today brings a number of new photos from the set, including looks at Josh Gad as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak; Ahna O’Reilly as Jobs’ girlfriend Chris-Ann Brennan; Lukas Haas as early Apple employee Daniel Kottke; and Dermot Mulroney as former Apple CEO Mike Markkula, who will ultimately serve as the villain of this particular story. The folks at /Film were kind enough to assemble a gallery

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Ashton Kutcher and Steve Jobs

Variety’s Jeff Sneider swears this story is not an April Fool’s joke. If it is, he’s gone quite far to make it happen. For one, Variety isn’t exactly the type of publication one would call “playful,” nor is The Hollywood Reporter, who also confirmed the following story. As it stands, Ashton Kutcher has been cast to play a young Steve Jobs in the indie film Jobs, which Swing Vote helmer Joshua Michael Stern will direct from a script by Matt Whiteley. The film is said to follow the years between Steve Jobs’ founding of Apple to his exile from the company and his return, which ultimately spawned the current resurgence that has led Apple to become the most valuable company on the face of the planet. It’s an interesting bit of casting, as Kutcher certainly resembles a young Steve Jobs, but its unknown yet whether or not he can actually become Mr. Jobs. Time will tell, we suppose. It’s worth noting also that Sony Pictures is developing its own Steve Jobs biopic, based on the bestselling book by Walter Isaacson. As it turns out, Steve Jobs is about to be the new Snow White.

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