THX 1138

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly column about movies that may or may not be skimming the good stuff off the top of tonight’s news sundae because it needs to go get caught up on Breaking Bad. Don’t worry, there’s still plenty happening… We begin this evening with an image of Forest Whitaker as Eugene Allen in The Butler. The Lee Daniels directed film focuses on the long-time White House servant and will also star the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Robin Williams, John Cusack and Alan Rickman.

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Kevin Carr

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr is feeling hungry. Of course, this is nothing strange because he’s always feeling hungry. But this week, he’s extra hungry because only one movie is opening wide, and that is the highly anticipated adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ novel, The Hunger Games. So Kevin grabs a bow and arrow, a tub of magical antibiotics, tracker jacker repellant and a big bucket of popcorn to check out what is sure to be the next big young-adult-novel-turned-billion-dollar-franchise. (Spoiler alert: Kevin is still hungry when the movie is over, but that’s no surprise either.)

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This trailer is the kind of efficiency that will make you proud to live in the era you live in. Before Star Wars, there was THX 113. Newcomer George Lucas expanded his short film Electronic Labyrinth THX 1138 4EB while shortening the title to create this vision of the future. He also wrangled Robert Duvall and Donald Pleasence for this sci-fi epic about what all sci-fi Dystopian epics are about: two humanoids finding love in a drug-addled world that forbids it. Also like most Dystopian futures, some of the dialogue (SEN’s) is drawn directly from Richard Nixon’s speeches.

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Robert Duvall turns 80 today, and that’s an achievement all on its own. It’s also important to keep in mind that Duvall has been in the filmmaking business for 49 years. That’s 61% of his life. The last thing any of us dedicated that much time to was our Regarding Henry action figure collection and doing the math for that problem. Duvall is an icon amongst icons, a living legend that has put just as much love into his craft as he’s gotten back, a cinematic luminary that still continues to make great films. Attempting to pay tribute to him is a difficult task not only because there’s not enough space on the internet to do it, but because his career is a difficult one to wrap one’s mind around. He’s done just about everything except compose a film score, and he’s done so while staying at the top of his game through almost five decades of Hollywood evolution.

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Hollywood is already clamoring for more sci-fi to remake, and a lot of it seems to come from the 1970s and 1980s. What else should they go ahead and add to the list?

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