Tagged: Film News

First Mysterious Teaser for Johnathan Glazer’s ‘Under the Skin’

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A new film starring Scarlett Johansson? Seems like we’ve been getting quite a few of those lately. Under the Skin is Johnathan Glazer‘s new film. The movie will première tomorrow at the 70th Venice International Film Festival and will play at the Toronto International Film Festival as well later this month.

I am not familiar with Glazer’s work (Sexy Beast Birth), but I liked this teaser, because it’s very atmospheric and moody. It has a very mysterious aura. I’m not sure if the film will be as surreal, but it certainly looks interesting. I also happen to like Scarlett as an actress and I feel that many people still tend to underestimate her or take her for granted.

Since this teaser seems to be spoiler free I feel I can recommend it to anyone (even people who dislike trailers). At the same time I don’t feel like mentioning any plot details here, because I would like to know as little as possible myself going into this film. That’s also the reason why I’ll avoid any other trailers we might and will get for this film. I’ve made up my mind to see it, I don’t need further “encouragements”, if you do go ahead, but the next time you’ll hear me mention this film it’s probably for a review.

First Trailer for Gia Coppola’s Palo Alto

Premiering at the 70th Venice Film Festival, Gia Coppola‘s debut feature Palo Alto is based on the short stories by James Franco (who also stars in the movie). In line with the Coppola family tradition the film is about a group of teenagers and Emma Roberts seems to be the protagonist of the story. Looking at this trailer it is not clear what the story is about, but there are some distinct The Perks of Being a Wallflower vibes going. The musical choices are reminiscent of Sofia Coppola’s films, making it almost seem like an unofficial sequel to The Virgin Suicides.

Personally I look forward to this film, or anything the Coppola family does, except for the ones that change their last name (kidding! kind of). Gia is the granddaughter of Francis Ford Coppola, so that makes her Sofia and Roman’s niece. Her father was Gio Coppola, he died at the age of 22 in a car accident and the film Tucker: The Man and His Dream was dedicated to him (because he loved automobiles). If you want more details about that check out the Coppola family tree on Wikipedia, I know it helped me out more than once.

OMG! First Trailer and Poster for Spike Jonze’s HER!

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You have no idea how excited I am about this one! Spike Jonze is up there with Sofia Coppola as one of my favorite directors. I am at the Locarno Film Festival right now and I’ve just seen the first trailer and poster for HER, which is most likely going to end up on my top ten of the year.

The trailer starts with Avril 14th a piece of music used in Marie Antoinette (and you might have noticed Sofia “borrowed” Crown on the Ground for her newest film The Bling Ring). This film, HER (sorry I just have to use caps) looks phenomenal. It seems like a natural progression after Jonze’s 2010 short I’m Here, which is also about technology.

The film comes out November 20, 2013 and it’s definitely one of my most anticipated. I don’t want to add anything else, except that the minute the trailer began I was entranced and transported into Spike’s world, everything around me disappeared. Incredible filmmaking. Great cast of incredibly talented (and good-looking actors). Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Olivia Wilde: I am stunned. See for yourself!

First Trailer For Diablo Cody’s ‘Paradise’

Like I’ve said in my previous post about the film I am looking forward to whatever Diablo Cody does, but I can’t help but feel a little skeptical about her directing. This trailer looks “okay”, but I hope it’s not just “bashing of Christians just for the sake of bashing Christians”. What I mean is: I hope it’s not more shallow making fun of religious people, and admittedly religious nuts exist and deserve to be called out, but I hope this isn’t a preachy/judgy type of film.

With that being said, the whole idea of a main character wanting to sin reminds me a whole lot of my favorite Sono Sion film Love Exposure (2008). In that movie a teenage boy was trying hard to sin, because his father (a priest) forced him to confess his sins even if he hadn’t any to confess. So the kid decides to do some serious sinning, might as well right? Maybe Cody has seen that movie and was inspired by it, maybe not. Either way I’m only being cautious here because I’ve been burned before in my over-excitement for a film, numerous times actually.

I do love Octavia Spencer‘s line “Let me guess you came here to be a showgirl” which is obviously a reference to Paul Verhoeven’s 1995 film Showgirls. It’s that kind of witty dialogue that I love and look forward most, but Julianne Hough has yet to convince me as a charismatic lead. Russell Brand‘s character looks funny, he’s doing the usual british shtick which seems to be working out for him. All in all Paradise could be good, but I guess we’ll find out when it comes out later this year, that is October 18th to be precise.

More ‘Moebius’ News

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The Korean Media Rating Board (KMRB) just doesn’t want to let Kim Ki-duk release his new film Moebius. After cutting 21 scenes in hopes to release the film in South Korea, the KMRB voted once more the film be restricted from inland cinemas. The KMRB described Moebius as “terrifying and harmful to underage audiences,” depicting “unethical and unsocial expressions of sexual activity between immediate family members”.

The South Korean auteur, is returning to Venice with Moebius (out of competition), after winning the Golden Lion last year for his critically acclaimed film Pietà. The good news is that Kim showed his new film to critics, journalists and industry professionals and 87% of them would approve to show the film in South Korea. Unfortunately, it isn’t up to them to decide, but it is great to hear that the film is considered so good that the violence in it is almost secondary. It sounds like another quality film from the director. At least that’s how people who really know something about cinema are reasoning, what goes on in the minds of the KMRB is beyond me. They should be proud to have an internationally critically acclaimed director just wanting to show the good work he has done (I’ve never seen a bad Kim Ki-duk film) to his compatriots.

There seems to be at least some good news for the director and the film however, because the company behind it managed to sell the film already for Italy, Germany and Italian- and German-speaking Switzerland. As an Italian I’m very happy and proud of this. Considering that Moebius’ production cost around $1 million it should be easily able to make its money back on the home video market alone, but being someone who cares about art and that many people get to see good art, this has almost become a matter of principles here. I want this film to succeed, because I love Kim and his passion and the people who worked on Moebius deserve to have their work shown in their own country, where they can get the recognition they deserve.

New ‘Machete Kills’ Trailer Shows Off Big Name Cast

If you were wondering who was going to star in Robert Rodriguez‘ sequel to his own Machete: Check out this trailer for Machete Kills. It’s got everything you love about the first film, although and I hope it’s just the editing in this trailer, I hope Danny Trejo’s character isn’t reduced to one-liners even more in this. Nothing against corny one-liners per se, but comedic timing in this trailer isn’t as great as they think it is.

So how about this trailer? Charlie Sheen is in it (as the president), Mel Gibson (aptly playing a villain), Lady Gaga (in a classy red dress), Michelle Rodriguez (looking tough), Jessica Alba (doing Lord knows what), Amber Heard (playing a Miss Bala type character), Cuba Gooding Jr. (remember? he won the Oscar), Vanessa Hudgens (doing her usual face), Antonio Banderas (with a mustache!) and that busty woman who purposely speaks with an over-exaggerated Spanish accent from Modern Family (showing off her large breast, once more). 

Machete Kills comes out in American theaters September 13th, 2013. I’m still excited for it, but a bit less than in my last post. Hopefully that’s a good thing so I won’t have unrealistic expectations about it.

Ellen DeGeneres To Host the 86th Academy Awards

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She’s back! Seven years ago, back when Martin Scorsese’s The Departed won Best Picture, in 2007 Ellen DeGeneres hosted Hollywood’s biggest, most glamorous and possibly important event of the year. It seems that the newly appointed president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science was impressed with her, or the good rating she managed to get back then.

Here’s how she announced the news via twitter: “It’s official: I’m hosting the #Oscars! I’d like to thank @TheAcademy, my wife Portia and, oh dear, there goes the orchestra.” She also remarked “I am so excited to be hosting the Oscars for the second time. You know what they say — the third time’s the charm.” Sounds like she likes hosting the awards telecast.

Last year we had Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane presenting, and I thought he did a decent job, although some of his routine was a little boring and over-long. Ellen on the other hand is charming and has great comedic timing. She doesn’t seem like the kind of person to waste people’s time.  I’m very excited for the Oscars and Oscar season. Maybe the new president will shake things up a little, but probably we’ll be getting more of the same ol’ same ol’. Either way I look forward to it. The ceremony takes place March 2nd, 2014!

Spectacular Teaser for Ben Stiller’s ‘The Secret Life of Walter Mitty’

Directed, produced and starring Ben StillerThe Secret Life of Walter Mitty is the story of “A timid magazine photo manager who lives life vicariously through daydreams embarks on a true-life adventure when a negative goes missing” (IMDb plot summary). This looks like a whimsical comedy/drama with adventure and fantasy elements. The tone of this teaser reminds me of the films of Michel Gondry (The Science of SleepEternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) and Spike Jonze (Being John MalkovichAdaptation) or even something like Stranger Than Fiction.

With a screenplay by Steve Conrad and co-starring Sean Penn this could even be an Oscar contender. Also in this: Kristen Wiig, Patton Oswalt and Adam Scott. Good for Ben Stiller trying to do something smarter than most of his buddies: I’m looking at you Adam Sandler! The film comes out in theaters Christmas Day 2013. In the meantime check out the this excellent (and different!) teaser and let me know if you look forward to it as well.

66th Locarno Film Festival Preview

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Today they announced the program for the 66th edition of the Locarno Film Festival. I was there at the press conference held in Bellinzona and I’m proud to announce that I will be attending as a blogger, not for this website however, but Joypad Movies, which sadly is an Italian speaking blog. Luckily, I’ll still report the good news right here of course. I’ll share every bit of information, reviews and photographs I’ll be able to take. But for now let’s stick to the program.

The festival will take place through August 7th – 17th in Locarno, Switzerland. These are the films playing in the Piazza Grande.

07.08 – 2 GUNS by Baltasar Kormákur – United States

08.08 – VIJAY AND I by Sam Garbarski – Belgium/Luxembourg/Germany

09.08 – LA VARIABILE UMANA by Bruno Oliviero – Italy
09.08 – WRONG COPS by Quentin Dupieux – United States

10.08 – WE’RE THE MILLERS by Rawson Marshall Thurber – United States
10.08 – THE KEEPER OF LOST CAUSES by Mikkel Nørgaard – Denmark/Germany/Sweden

11.08 – LES GRANDES ONDES (À L’OUEST) by Lionel Baier – Switzerland/France/Portugal
11.08 – RICH AND FAMOUS by George Cukor – United States

12.08 – GABRIELLE by Louise Archambault – Canada

13.08 – L’EXPÉRIENCE BLOCHER by Jean-Stéphane Bron – Switzerland/France

14.08 – GLORIA by Sebastián Lelio – Chile

15.08 – MR. MORGAN’S LAST LOVE by Sandra Nettelbeck – Germany/Belgium
15.08 – BLUE RUIN by Jeremy Saulnier – United States

16.08 – ABOUT TIME by Richard Curtis – United Kingdom
16.08 – FITZCARRALDO by Werner Herzog – Germany/Peru

17.08 – SUR LE CHEMIN DE L’ÉCOLE by Pascal Plisson – France

As for other films playing. There’s the retrospective of American auteur George Cukor, lots of films by German master filmmaker Werner Herzog who will be receiving an honorary award and they’ll also screen his new (never-seen-before!) documentary series Death Row and a celebration of special effects genius Douglas Trubull (2001: A Space Odyssey). Other celebrities that will be present include: Chrispher Lee, Faye Dunaway and Brie Larson.

The festival will however be mostly about foreign indie fare, with (unknown) films from all over the globe. Debut films, short films, world premieres: It’s going to be a blast. Hope to see some of you out there, just wave and say “hi”!