Pain & Gain

Michael Bay and his Cameras

Michael Bay loves to shoot action like one would assume he does most things: hard and fast. It’s just part of the aura of Bayhem to do things not just over-the-top, but in a manner that exudes maximum bravado. It’s why it’s hard to not envy the guy’s commitment to his own style — he sure doesn’t make it easy on himself. And in this newly uncovered exclusive clip from the Special Collector’s Edition Blu-ray of Pain & Gain, which hits shelves this week, Bay shows how he made capturing muscly Mark Wahlberg hard on his camera crew and his editing team with an assortment of camera formats, styles, placements and techniques. It’s as beautiful as it is terrifying in an indulgent way. See for yourself just after the jump.

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discs drinking buddies

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Drinking Buddies Kate (Olivia Wilde) and Luke (Jake Johnson) are friends and co-workers at a beer brewery, and both are in relationships. She’s dating Chris (Ron Livingston), and he’s engaged to Jill (Anna Kendrick), but when the four get together for a weekend at Chris’ cabin some lines are crossed in the realm of love and fidelity. Ignore the marketing as it’s selling something (a romantic comedy) that this film is most definitely not. Director Joe Swanberg keeps the improv method used in his past “mumblecore” films, but it still manages to tell a cohesive and truly affecting story. A big reason for that is a cast of extremely talented actors with wicked good comedic timing in the lead roles. The four performers, along with a more assured Swanberg directing and editing, have crafted a story about heartbreak, temptation, and friendship. While they’re all fantastic, this is Wilde’s show, and she absolutely crushes it with a character that will leave you frustrated, aroused, entertained, and engaged in nearly equal measure. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Deleted scenes, interviews, featurettes, commentary, trailer]

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discs le tableau

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Painting A painting of a far away kingdom reveals glimpses of people, but unseen is a caste system separating the perfect Alldunns from their lessers, the incomplete Halfies and the ghostly Sketchies. The Alldunns look down on the others treating them as less than second class citizens, but a cross-caste romance threatens to upset the status quo. Three of them, one from each group, are forced on the run where they discover and pass through the edge of the painting. Only to find themselves in the painter’s shack among several other discarded creations. International animation doesn’t get a lot of play here in the States, but thanks to the GKids label a few gems have been making their way into our Blu-ray players. Their latest is a French film cut from the same cloth as Pleasantville in its aversion to subtlety and fantastic mix of beauty and entertainment. The parable tackles racism, xenophobia, and more including the existential quest for meaning and a creator. And the final line and shot are simply masterful. If it weren’t for the fact that it was actually released in 2011 it would easily be the best animated film of the year this year. [Blu-ray extras: Trailer, making of, slide show]

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Sound City Movie

July marks the middle of summer, but it also marks the half way point of each year which means half the movies you were looking forward to seeing this year have already hit theater screens! With so many major studio releases out each weekend (plus a healthy offering of indie fare) it can be overwhelming to try and remember what you’ve seen, what you wanted to see, and any unexpected titles that may have caught your eye, but you never got a chance to actually sit down and check out. At the beginning of the year we posted a list of the 52 Most Anticipated Movies to come out in 2013 and with half the year already gone, it seemed like a good time to look back on the films that have already come out and highlight those with fantastic music you might have missed. Summer is the perfect time to play catch up on entertainment with most television shows on hiatus and long summer nights to fill so if you are looking for a list of movies from this year that featured noteworthy tunes, you have come to the right place. Some of these films are still out in theaters, some are already available on DVD, and some may need to be added to your Netflix queue to ensure you don’t miss them a second time, but all ten of these soundtracks should have you humming along well into December.

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mnad_allisonwilliams

Tonight on Movie New After Dark, you know you’ve made it when you become part of the rumor mill for a distant, not entirely in-production reboot of a superhero franchise. If only I could get my name in the hat for the 2020 reboot of Blankman…

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Armageddon

This week, Michael Bay did something that I thought was only possible if you were named Joel Schumacher: he apologized for a loud, bloated late-’90s summer stimulus-athon. In an interview with the Miami Herald promoting his Florida-set Pain & Gain, Bay said, “I will apologize for Armageddon, because we had to do the whole movie in 16 weeks. It was a massive undertaking. That was not fair to the movie. I would redo the entire third act if I could. But the studio literally took the movie away from us. It was terrible. My visual effects supervisor had a nervous breakdown, so I had to be in charge of that. I called James Cameron and asked ‘What do you do when you’re doing all the effects yourself?’ But the movie did fine.” It’s unclear exactly what Bay’s problem is with the third act of Armageddon that isn’t also characteristic of the film as a whole (cloying sentimentality, a rushed pace, the central premise), or whether or not, in typical Bay fashion, his real problem is solely with special effects or the film’s box-office performance (“the movie did fine” here seems to relinquish any issues he may have had). But one thing’s for sure: Armageddon, according to its maker, is not a pure, ideal Michael Bay vision. (Bay, of course, later refuted the story and says he’s proud of the film, as he should be.)

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Pain and Gain

Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) believes in fitness – and the American dream and bettering himself and making money and a whole mess of other stuff – but he mainly believes in fitness, and he believes that it is his unique dedication to fitness that will turn him into a success. And, if that doesn’t work, he can always just rob someone. Based on a true story (a claim that gets progressively harder to believe as the film goes on because this stuff is bonkers), Michael Bay’s Pain & Gain centers on the 1990s crime spree committed by Miami’s own “Sun Gym Gang,” one that saw personal trainer Lugo (along with his equally stupid cohorts, Paul Doyle, played by Dwayne Johnson and Adrian Doorbal, played by Anthony Mackie) hatch the brilliant (sarcasm all-around) scheme to trick a gym customer out of everything he owned. What started as a simple plan – kidnap millionaire moron Victor Kershaw (Tony Shalhoub), get him to sign over all his worldly possessions and funds, release him, and enjoy the spoils – goes hilariously, disastrously, and almost immediately awry. Crime does not pay, but crime really does not pay when you’re an evil idiot.

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680x478-7

Michael Bay‘s wacky true-life passion project, Pain & Gain, is finally set to explode on to our theater screens in a mess of steroids, sweat, tank tops, fire, blood, and greyhounds later this month, and if you’re still unconvinced that this thing is going to be some sort of insane masterpiece, we’ve got a batch of new stills for you to eyeball. This new gallery includes plenty we’ve seen before - Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson looking swoll (as the kids say), Anthony Mackie looking ever-so-slightly dubious, Rebel Wilson looking like she’s having the best time ever, and Tony Shalhoub getting the crap kicked out of him – but it also comes complete with some new stuff, like said greyhound. Seriously, if you came up with a harebrained scheme to knock over a rich guy, wouldn’t you celebrate by buying a new purebred pup? Of course you would. After the break, soak up some roid-laced rays with a fresh look at Pain & Gain and its inherent nuttiness.

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Pain and Gain Red Band

While the original trailer for Michael Bay’s upcoming project, Pain & Gain, revealed that it was telling a story that was too bizarre not to be true, it didn’t do all that much to actually sell the movie. Sure, Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson playing a couple of insecure meatheads who find themselves in over their heads while planning a heist is an amusing concept, but the trailer seemed to try to sell the film as an aspirational story about struggling characters trying to make their way in the world—and that is not what we go to see Michael Bay movies for. We go to see Michael Bay movies because they’re ridiculous. There’s no need to worry though, because a new red band trailer for Pain & Gain is here, and it reveals that this story of testosterone-soaked goons in silly outfits trying to become elite criminals isn’t being played nearly as dramatically as we may have first feared. This trailer focuses almost exclusively on the film’s comedy, and it turns out there’s a ton of stuff in it to laugh about. Wahlberg is always at his best when he’s playing clueless, and, given his professional wrestling experience, Johnson is presumably at his best when he’s tossing midgets, so this one is allowing both actors to work right in their comfort zones, which seems to have paid off, because their chemistry is palpable. Throw in some strong deliveries from comedic powerhouses like Rebel Wilson and Rob Corddry, and suddenly I’m on […]

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Pain & Gain

“I’ve watched a lot of movies, Paul, I know what I’m doing!” If you think that the plot of Michael Bay‘s Pain & Gain is insane, or clearly just rooted in action cinema lore, or too damn bizarre to be true, that’s completely understandable – which is why Bay has splashed the film’s first trailer with a big, bold, brazen “THIS IS A TRUE STORY.” Because it is. Don’t believe us? Check out the original Miami New Times report that Bay based his film on. It’s okay. We’ll wait. Now treat yourself to the film’s first trailer after the break. We are so pumped.

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Pain and Gain Poster

Sometimes, Michael Bay‘s balls-to-the-wall, guns-blazing, explosions-popping approach to filmmaking really does work out. And working out in its many forms is at the heart of his new project, the Dwayne Johnson- and Mark Wahlberg-starring Pain & Gain. In case you haven’t quite caught on just yet, Johnson and Wahlberg play body builders in the deranged true-life tale of crime gone buff…and stupid. Seriously, have you read the original Miami New Times report that Bay is basing his film on yet? Do that now. The film’s first poster took a similarly yoked-up approach to the material, so now is perhaps a good time to just get comfortable with seeing guns blazing when it comes to this project. The film also stars Anthony Mackie, Ed Harris, Rob Corddry, Tony Shalhoub, Bar Paly, Rebel Wilson, Ken Jeong, and Yolanthe Cabau. Pain & Gain arrives in theaters on April 26, 2013. [Paramount Pictures]

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Michael Bay to make film with big fucking character development.

Michael Bay may pack up his TNT after Transformers 2 in exchange for a script that focuses more on feelings than fireballs.

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