Sofia Vergara

Danny Trejo Sherrybaby

Our official review of Machete Kills is pretty negative. Rightfully so, it’s a major disappointment following the purposefully cheesy yet still politically relevant first film. This time it’s all just silly, kind of like an Austin Powers movie for the Latino audience instead of 13-year-old boys — though the 13-year-old boys may still be the best audience for this. I want to recommend it solely for Demian Bichir, though, because he is a pleasure to watch every second he’s on screen. Maybe it’s just how great he is relative to the rest of the cast and movie, but I’d give him another Oscar nomination for this. If you think that’s ridiculous, you haven’t seen the movie (because that is ridiculous). If you don’t see Machete Kills, no big deal, even if you won’t know what’s going on when Machete Kills Again… In Space arrives. This week’s gateway recommendations have nothing related to any spoilers in the movie. Most are just better films starring parts of the sequel’s ensemble. I also almost thought about including Star Wars, not because I think any of you haven’t seen it but because I think you’d want to clean yourself in the form of a re-watch after seeing all the bad references here. Seriously, even if we’d never had 35 years of parodies, copycats, fan films and other works derived from and informed by Star Wars, the allusions here would still feel stale. The following ten selections are worth checking out whether you bother with Machete […]

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Allen and Turturro

“I’ve always been open to acting in other people’s films, but no one has ever asked me to be in their films, only two or three times in 30 years. When John Turturro asked me to be in Fading Gigolo, I said sure.” Not many people can get Woody Allen to play a part in their movie, but I guess all you really have to do is ask. And Turturro’s latest directorial effort, Fading Gigolo, looks like an absolute blast- partly because of Allen’s presence. Even without Allen, Fading Gigolo seems like a very Woody Allen-ish film. Turturro stars as Fioravante, whose friend Murray (Allen) convinces him to become a gigolo for a little extra cash. With a frazzled, bespectacled suitor finding an unlikely (and unconventional) outlet for romance, this one definitely seems like Allen has been rubbing off on Turturro (especially to the sounds of Louis Prima). And the trailer doesn’t ever get to extreme with the sex jokes (save for a brief bit with Sofia Vergara). Fading Gigolo seems to focus on companionship, growing older, and romance, with Allen making continual “I need more money” jokes along the way. Think of it as a grown-up version of Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo. Check out the first trailer for the film after the break.

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dicaprio

What is Casting Couch? It’s likely the only news roundup on the Internet today that has nothing to do with new iPhone features. Instead we’re dealing with movies, and their casting of names like Josh Duhamel, Christoph Waltz, Reese Witherspoon, and Sofia Vergara. History buffs are usually fascinated by Grigori Rasputin—who was an advisor to the Russian Imperials at the beginning of the 20th century—because political rivals shot him, stabbed him, poisoned him, and nuked him while he was hiding in a fridge, and the guy still somehow managed to keep living. Movie fans are likely to be fascinated by Rasputin because Warner Bros. has just bought a script about his life, called Rasputin, and they’re developing it as a starring vehicle for Leonardo DiCaprio. This, of course, means that we’re going to get the chance to see DiCaprio grow a crazy long beard and likely try out a Russian accent, which just sounds like so much fun. [Deadline]

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vergara guns

You’ve probably already got an idea in your head of what a sequel to Robert Rodriguez’s tribute to B-movies, Machete, is going to look like. You expect that unique-to-modern-cinema, handcrafted look that Rodriguez’s do-it-yourself strategy produces, you expect some hammy acting and over-the-top action scenarios, and you expect at least one closeup of Danny Trejo’s glorious, craggy face. So, seeing as everyone pretty much already knows what to expect from Machete Kills, and already has a strong idea of whether or not they’re interested in going to see it, what sales tactic could one use to catch potential audience members off guard with the trailer? This time around they seem to have decided to highlight just how absurdly eclectic the cast Rodriguez has put together is, mostly by having all of his actors do ridiculous things while their names flash across the screen. Click through to see who all he got. Oh yeah, and hopefully you speak Spanish.

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favreaudinner

Jon Favreau seems to be the type of guy who’s pretty into food. No, that wasn’t a fat joke—he who lives in glass houses and whatnot—it’s just an observation coming after he hosted a talk show called Dinner For Five that was based on a crew of interesting people gathering around a table full of food, and now he’s reportedly taking a break from making wildly profitable (when not involving cowboys *and* aliens) blockbuster tentpole pictures in order to put together a little independent project that will see him doing a lot of cooking. The project, according to a scoop that came out of Variety, will see Favreau writing, directing, and starring in a film called Chef, which is said to be a comedy about an emotional chef who runs a Los Angeles-based restaurant.

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Sofia V 4

What is Casting Couch? All of the day’s casting news, here in one spot. Stick around to find out which screen veteran has become the latest member of Jason Bateman’s dysfunctional family in This is Where I Leave You. Modern Family star Sofía Vergara seems poised to start transitioning over to big screen roles. Not only does she have a featured part in Robert Rodriguez’s upcoming schlock sequel, Machete Kills, but now Variety is reporting that she’s also negotiating to be the female lead in Simon West’s remake of Heat. Of course, every time this remake is brought up, it seems a requirement to bring up the fact that it isn’t a remake of Michael Mann’s Heat but a remake of the Burt Reynolds movie from 1986 about a gambling addict taking on the mob, so let’s take care of that. We just did. If Vergara’s casting becomes official, it will see her acting opposite leading man Jason Statham, which, as far as I’m concerned, is every little girl’s dream.

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Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation have just announced that production has kicked off on their inevitable “live-action/computer animated hybrid 3Dfamily comedy” sequel to last year’s smash hit, The Smurfs. The Smurfs 2 brings back all of the cast from the first film, including Neil Patrick Harris as Patrick Winslow, Jayma Mays as Grace Winslow, Sofia Vergara as Odile, Hank Azaria as Gargamel, Katy Perry as Smurfette, Jonathan Winters as Papa Smurf, Alan Cumming as Gutsy, Fred Armisen as Brainy, George Lopez as Grouchy, and Anton Yelchin as Clumsy. Director Raja Gosnell is also back behind the camera. Screenwriters J. David Stem, David N. Weiss, Jay Scherick, and David Ronn are also returning, along with a newcomer to the Smurfs franchise, Karey Kirkpatrick (James and the Giant Peach, Chicken Run, Charlotte’s Web), proving that it takes five screenwriters to write something this unoriginal. The film will have some new faces, however, both on the human and the blue side. Brendan Gleeson joins the cast as Patrick ‘s stepfather, along with Christina Ricci and JB Smoove, who will voice “new Smurf-like naughty characters,” Vexy and Hackus. Uh oh, just “Smurf-like“?

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The Three Stooges has been a passion project for the Farrelly brothers for almost a decade. From swapping studios to switching up actors, the project has gone through plenty of ups and downs, and it seemed as though it would never make it to the screen. After a few revisions and dedication, Bob and Peter Farrelly‘s modern day take on The Three Stooges finally got off the ground. According to Peter Farrelly, only the film’s environment is “modern.” Instead of going with satire or irony, the Farrelly’s wanted to stick with and respect the old-fashioned physical comedy the Stooges are famous for. Yes, there is a Jersey Shore gag (something I’m guessing wasn’t in the original Stooges’ work), but the Farrelly’s set out to recreate the spirit and charm of The Three Stooges. Here’s what Peter Farrelly had to say about receiving the PG rating, writing oblivious but lovable characters, bringing the Stooges back to life, and how Wes Anderson inadvertently helped save There’s Something About Mary:

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John Turturro’s new effort as a writer and director, Fading Gigolo, sounds like a pretty fantastic story, and already it’s attracting a pretty fantastic cast. First, the story: Fading Gigolo tells the tale of two cash-strapped friends who decide to get into the prostitution business, one as a gigolo and the other as a pimp, which quickly attracts the suspicions of the community living around them; because they happen to be Hasidic Jews. Oh, also they take on the names Virgil and Bongo. Now, the cast: Turturro plans on playing the gigolo himself, and in the role of the pimp will be none other than Woody Allen, the famed director who hasn’t acted in somebody else’s work (in Picking up the Pieces) for twelve years now. This project must look pretty interesting on the page to get a guy who’s busy making a movie a year to take time out of his schedule and do some acting.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr dresses up in layers and layers of rain gear to brave the estrogen storm that comes with the showing of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part I. After enduring that non-masterpiece, he dances down a few screening rooms to watch the new Happy Feet movie. Confounded by the gelatinous goop that masquerades as movies this weekend in American cinema, Kevin eventually curls up in a ball and softly weeps.

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The horror…the horror… The best part about this poster for New Year’s Eve is either that it features all of the names and pictures of the actors, but not in the same order, or that the catchphrase “Let The Countdown Begin” lets us know that it’s a Doomsday Movie. Garry Marshall, who should be ashamed of himself for directing Valentine’s Day, proves once and for all that he owes some serious men down at the race track by stepping up to direct this sequel which seeks to squeeze even less screen time out for even more famous faces. Also, Homeless Hector Elizondo is kind of cruel considering they made everyone else look halfway decent (except for Ashton Kutcher who clearly didn’t show up for a photo shoot and forced the marketing department to find a paparazzi shot of him smiling). Enough with the words! Check it out for yourself, and feel free to largify it by clicking (if you dare):

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After reading that headline, fans of J. Scott Campbell’s comic books series “Danger Girl” might have had their heads explode. And even people who don’t know what “Danger Girl” is are most likely now intrigued. Say what you will about the Underworld and Resident Evil series; they’re not great, but they managed to cast leading ladies so appealing that they just keep making money and getting more sequels produced anyways. And now this new action adventure tale looks to take both of those leads, Kate Beckinsale and Milla Jovovich, and have them running around in skin tight outfits together. Plus they’re going to throw in Modern Family’s buxom and charismatic Sofia Vergara for good measure. I’ve maybe never heard better news in my entire life. Does that sound misogynistic? Who cares… hot ladies shooting guns and doing high kicks! Yeah! For the uninitiated, Danger Girl takes the James Bond concept and turns it on its head. We still get the sultry Bond girls, but this time they are the secret operatives kicking all of the ass. Danger Girl Freelance Operations Limited is kind of like the A-Team, but with hot chicks instead of grizzly old dudes and a black guy with a Mohawk. They often run afoul of a group of neo-Nazis called the Hammer Empire, and there’s even an Indiana Jones type mystical relic hunting aspect to their ongoing adventures. Basically, Danger Girl has everything.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr runs screaming from little blue people invading his life and seeks refuge in the old west, hoping that James Bond and Indiana Jones will protect him. When he returns home, he has a fight with his wife and uses the events of Crazy, Stupid, Love to put his relationship back together. What a godsend Hollywood can be for marriage woes. Finally, Kevin curls up for a long nap after an exhausting summer movie season with many more arrests than he ever thought he’d incur.

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Sofia Vergara

This is noteworthy for two reasons. One is that the Smurfs film will be in 3D, and I’ve always wanted to see what Ms. Vergara looks like through stereoscopic glasses. Secondly… well, I forgot the second reason.

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