Vincent Cassel

review our day will come

The French have a slur (“les roux ça puent”) that at its most basic says “redheads stink.” Some translations go so far as to say it means they stink like stinky vaginas. That’s a bit extreme (and strange), but whether due to Judas Iscariot, witches, or just a simple fear of the unusual, it’s an unfortunate fact that red-headed children are sometimes viewed as lesser versions of their “normal”-haired counterparts. Rémy (Olivier Barthelemy) is a young man who knows this truth all too well as he’s been the brunt of abuses both verbal and physical born in large part to his dark, red hair. His rage leads to a physical assault against his own mother that sends him fleeing into the night and into the passing car of a bored psychoanalyst named Patrick (Vincent Cassel). The good doctor has come to grips with his own auburn hair, but he sees both a brother in follicles and an entertaining diversion in the disillusioned youth. He takes Rémy under his wing and challenges him through a succession of awkward and combative situations, but what starts as a deviation from his daily humdrum becomes a violent road-trip that spins wildly out of control. Our Day Will Come is equal parts psychological drama, descent into madness, and buddy comedy, and it’s exactly as odd as it sounds.

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Vincent Cassel Wallpaper

It was just a couple days ago when we were complaining about the curious lack of Vincent Cassel in our current movies and then rejoicing as he stepped in for a dropping out Oscar Isaac as the lead of a cult drama called Partisan. Now there’s reason for even more celebration—though once again bittersweet celebration—because it’s being reported by Deadline that yet another talented actor is having to drop out of a movie, and the situation is once again being handled by Cassel stepping in and taking his place. Suddenly we’re up to our elbows in Vincent Cassel. The movie in question is director Daniel Espinosa’s Soviet-era thriller Child 44 and the actor dropping out is Philip Seymour Hoffman. There doesn’t seem to have ever been any official announcement of what role Hoffman was going to be playing in the film, but once you trade out a Philip Seymour Hoffman for a Vincent Cassel, it’s probably safe to start assuming that it’s someone creepy and evil. Especially when you’re talking about a movie about a bunch of dead little kids.

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trance 1

In less qualified hands, Trance wouldn’t be this entertaining. The script for Danny Boyle‘s newest quasi-thriller asks a lot from its audience. Suspending disbelief is one thing, but demolishing logic is another matter. In the end, the illogical dramatic ambitions hold back Boyle’s film from becoming another major addition to his body of work. Before logic is diminished, however,  Trance is a gorgeous dream of a film that has the Slumdog Millionaire filmmaker unleashing every visual magic trick he has. This nonlinear story calls for that bombastic Boyle approach. The central idea, which is a unique one for the genre, poses the question: what if you forgot what you stole? For the first two acts we see Simon (James McAvoy) dealing with that dilemma. Simon, a charming dweeb who has himself a wee bit of a gambling problem, went to both the right and wrong guy to help him out, Franck (Vince Cassel). After Franck pays off his debt, Simon must use his position at an auction house to assist him in stealing a painting. The robbery goes smoothly until Franck discovers he didn’t actually grab the painting and, due to memory loss, Simon doesn’t know why that is. This where they enlist the help from Elizabeth (Rosario Dawson), a hypnotherapist. Elizabeth wants to give Franck and Simon what they both want…or at least that’s how her relationship with the two men starts. Elizabeth is the femme fatale of this mystery, pulling some strings the audience doesn’t see.

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Trance Movie

Danny Boyle is back in March with Trance, a movie that sees James McAvoy forgetting where he put a stolen painting, the Vincent Cassel- led gangsters that want it and Rosario Dawson attempting to use hypnotherapy to bring that memory back. The first trailer is the best kind of bait and switch. It opens like an airy, empty art house attempt before bashing McAvoy’s head in and revealing the twisty, violent Boyle goodness buried within. Check it out for yourself:

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Today is a sad day for fans of manly movies about manly things, as it turns out two very different but very promising-sounding gritty crime movies have been put on the shelf. First up is Fox’s reboot of Marvel’s Daredevil character. Remember how Fox only has until October 10 to get a new Daredevil movie shooting before they lose the rights back to Marvel? The story is that they have a script that they like, which adapts Frank Miller’s fairly dark “Born Again” storyline from the comics, and they want Joe Carnahan to direct it, but they’re not really sure if they can get things developed before time runs out. Rumor had it that Marvel was willing to do some dealing to give Fox the time extension they would need to make the movie possible, but a new development is making it look like Fox refused to play ball and are likely to let the rights to the character lapse. The bad news comes from Joe Carnahan himself, who recently took to his Twitter account (as spied by ComingSoon) to tell his fans, “Think my idea for a certain retro, red-suited, Serpico-styled superhero went up in smoke today kids.” He then followed with, “We shall see. Time is NOT on anyone’s side.” The deal on the table was that Marvel wanted the rights back for a couple of its Fantastic Four characters in order to give Fox the extension that they need. Looks like the studio decided that maintaining their […]

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A while back David Cronenberg dropped the bombshell news that there were plans for an Eastern Promises sequel, Stephen Knight was already writing a script, and there was even some interest from Focus Features in getting it made. Instantly, fans of slicked back hair, tattoos, and vodka shot grimaces rejoiced at the possibility all over the world. But “script being written” is a long way from “actually being made” in the life of a potential project, so how’s the progress on this one going these days? Turns out, pretty dang good. Vulture is reporting that not only is the first film’s star, Viggo Mortensen, looking like he’s ready to come back and make the sequel, but French actor extraordinaire Vincent Cassel is currently in negotiations to return as well. Mortensen and Cassel teaming up for anything has to be seen as great news. Report that they’re working together on a straight-to-video Gone Fishin’ sequel and it would be exciting. But this? This could be one of the rarest things in the world: a non-superhero sequel that movie fans actually want to see.

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Christophe Gans, who first turned heads in the U.S. by making Brotherhood of the Wolf and last gave us Silent Hill back in 2006, finally has another project on the horizon – and it’s a doozy. The French director, perhaps best known for his moody yet kinetic visual style, will be taking a crack at playing around with the classic Beauty and the Beast story, starting this October. Gans told THR, “Although I will keep to a form of storytelling of this timeless fairy tale that is in keeping with the same pace and characters as the original, I will surprise the audience by creating a completely new visual universe never experienced before and produce images of an unparalleled quality,” then added, “Every single one of my movies has presented me with a challenge but this one is, by far, the most exciting and rewarding.” Though I’ve yet to be rewarded by Gans’ new endeavor, I’m certainly already excited about it. But, honestly, it’s not necessarily because of Gans’ involvement, and it’s not even for any particular love of the Beauty and the Beast story. No, the reason my blood is pumping is the quality of the cast that is being assembled. First off, Gans has cast one of the true heavyweights of the acting world, Vincent Cassel, in the role of the beast. From his work in Gaspar Noé’s films, to his starring role in the Mesrine movies, to his role as the ballet instructor in Black Swan, Cassel […]

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Star of film The Artist and all-around charming guy Jean Dujardin is probably going to be getting a lot more attention now that he’s won a Golden Globe for his work on Michel Hazanavicius’ well-liked silent film throwback. As a matter of fact, The Hollywood Reporter already has word of a project in Dujardin’s future that has my interest peaked. The Artist producer Thomas Langmann has told the trade that his next project will be a remake of Claude Berri’s 1977 French release One Wild Moment (Un moment d’égarement), a film that was about two adult best friends running into some issues when one of their daughters falls for the other. You know, romantically. If that plot sounds familiar to you, maybe that’s because One Wild Moment has already been remade once, as the 1984 English language film Blame It On Rio, which starred names like Michael Caine and Demi Moore and had some sweet boobs in it if my pubescent self is remembering correctly.

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Do not expect a body horror show from A Dangerous Method. Do not expect someone grotesque mental or physical transformation. Do not expect kinky or unbelievably outlandish sex scenes. Most of all, do not pigeonhole director David Cronenberg. Whatever a “David Cronenberg film” means is a mystery now. Who would’ve thought the director behind Videodrome and (the very underrated) eXistenZ would go on to make an excellent gangster picture? Certainly not me. Now Cronenberg has tackled a subject that is, in some ways, in his wheelhouse. A Dangerous Method is not a dry or sloggy bio pic, but an entertaining depiction about the clashing of ideals and an exploration of how we tick, as expected. Much of the film focuses on the rise and fall of a rocky relationship between a young and intellectually hungry Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and the older, wiser and sex obsessed Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortenson). Most the script involves Jung and Freud in back and forth conversations about their ideas, which will surely turnoff many viewers. If you are not at all into psychoanalysis and were bored to tears during your sociology 101 class, then this is not a film for you. At one point Freud jokes to Jung, forgive me if I am misquoting the line, “Have you realized we’ve spoken for eight hours now?”, and some may feel those eight hours. For myself, the exchanges between a convincingly conflicted Fassbender and a surprisingly hilarious Mortenson, are funny, intellectually stimulating, and, yes, cinematic.

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Ever since its debut at Venice, some have discredited A Dangerous Method as not being cinematic. The film is 99 minutes of nonstop conversations — and not at a brisk pace — regarding psychoanalysts and the collision of different ideas. Those conversations are acted out by Viggo Mortensen, Michael Fassbender, Keira Knightley, and Vincent Cassel, and directed by David Cronenberg. I don’t see how that’s not cinematic, and neither does Cronenberg. Just because there’s no body horror involving Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud (although that would be extremely fun to see) doesn’t mean this isn’t a “Cronenberg film,” a tag that the director himself seems annoyed by. When someone is capable of making films as vastly different as Videodrome and A Dangerous Method, all bets are off about what type of filmmaker you’re dealing with. There’s a thematic through line in his distinct works, but they’re mostly their own beasts. Here’s what director David Cronenberg had to say about damaged psychoanalysts, a dramatic conflict of ideas, and why the human face talking is the essence of cinema:

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As many fellow conflicted yet faithful Netflix subscribers know, last week marked the beginning of the separation of Instant and disc-only memberships. I had been trying to whittle down my streaming queue for a few months, but we all know that is a nearly impossible task with that devilish recommendation list appearing every time you go to the site’s homepage. Suffice it to say, my queue had actually grown since the announcement, making the budgeting decision for me. One of the films at the top of my queue was 2010’s long-awaited gay love story I love You Phillip Morris starring the forever not-sexy Jim Carrey and the always delicious Ewan McGregor as two convicts head-over-heels in love with each other. I could spend an entire column writing about this rapid, surprisingly honest and tender romance sprinkled with deception and humor, however my greatest take away from this man on man sexiness was the unexpectedly hot chemistry (and subsequent love scenes) between Carrey and McGregor.

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Danny Boyle’s upcoming art heist movie Trance has had a bit of a problem casting its leads. Every time they seem to go after an actor, he gets too busy to commit to the film. I guess that’s the breaks when you’re going after the best people in the business. Things seem to be a go for James McAvoy to play the lead role of Simon, however; so there is some traction for the film’s development. And if this next casting rumor ends up coming to fruition, suddenly Trance will go from being a project I am vaguely following, to a movie I’m dying to see.

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Adrift is the new drama from Three Marias writer/director Heitor Dhalia, starring Vincent Cassel, Laura Neiva and Camilla Belle. Neiva plays a teenage girl who begins a quest of sexual discovery after learning about her father’s cheating ways. Vincent Cassel looks like he’s aiming those cheating ways right at Camilla Belle’s feet. Check out this exclusive, flirtatious clip from the film:

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Do you like gangster flicks? How about French gangster movies? How about French crime films featuring their lead actor in the nude? (Put your hand down Abaius.) Well if you answered “yes!” to any of those three questions then you’re in luck. Jean-Francois Richet’s Mesrine is a two-part gangster saga (Killer Instinct and Public Enemy #1) based on the true life story of Jacques Mesrine, and it’s a brutal and beautifully shot pair of films. Vincent Cassel brings Mesrine to life with wit, cruelty, and his usual fearlessness. The films had a successful run in limited release, but don’t worry if you missed them in theaters…

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Black Swan is a lot about filmmaking. Nearly all of Darren Aronofsky‘s films have explored the idea of striving for greatness or perfection, and most of the time it only leads to terrible results. His latest film on the competitive dance world is no different, but here it’s more so about striving for perfection in art. In this dreamlike and comedic horror film, Vincent Cassel plays Thomas Leroy. Thomas is a pushy artistic force, almost to the point narcissism. Cassel makes him an understandable and surprisingly likable guy, despite a few of his questionable antics. Cassel himself struck me as a serious actor, but not in the overly self-serious way. Cassel gave brief, but to the point and thoughtful answers in our recent phone interview. Cassel has been becoming more and more well known in the states, and I imagine Black Swan will further assist that rise in awareness for him. There was enough time to comfortably talk about Black Swan, but Cassel also talked a bit about his second collaborative effort with David Cronenberg, A Dangerous Method. Just like Black Swan, it sounds funnier than you’d imagine with its subject matter.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr thumbs his nose at the major studio releases like The Warrior’s Way and The Nutcracker in 3D. Not only do they look like direct-to-DVD releases at best and stinkers of the year at worst, the studios didn’t let him see any of them. So he turns his sights on some award-bait films in limited release: Black Swan and I Love You, Phillip Morris.

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The landscape of cinema is full of monsters – those human, and otherwise. Many of these monsters, as we’ve seen over the years, begin as something like us and are changed somehow, transforming into a creature that is equally interesting and terrifying. This is the crux of great monster stories – we can’t look, yet we cannot take our eyes away. In his completely fresh monster story Black Swan, director Darren Aronofsky shows us a transformation for the ages – one that combines the grace and beauty of ballet with the exhilaration and terror of the classic monster tale. Visually stunning, violent and at times breath stealing, Black Swan gives us the great cinematic monster that we never saw coming: Natalie Portman in a pink tutu. Just remember to breathe.

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Sometime in the next few days, I will be dropping upon you my review of Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan. Here’s a preview: “this is the movie you should see in theaters this fall.” It has something to do with the intensity that Aronofsky and his skilled cast bring to the world of high-stakes ballet. It also has something to do with the blurred lines between passion and obsession, determination and unbridled aggression. Some of those themes come through brightly in this manic music video, released last night.

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The movie that you didn’t know about hitting theaters this weekend is the follow up to Mesrine: Killer Instinct which sees Vincent Cassel continue his role as the notorious French gangster who just happens to look like the anchor for a regional nightly news program in the 1970s. Even without the context of the rest of the film, this clip shows how undeniably charismatic Cassel can play. Even though he’s in the hot seat in court, I’m instantly on his side – especially since he seems to be making an equal number of good points and 101 Dalmations references. Check it out for yourself:

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Could this Tom Robbins journey through immortality and beets be Oscar-caliber? You’re damned right it could.

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