Friday, January 18, 2019

James McAvoy Feeds the Beast

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Given the weekend's stultifying forecast -- they keep throwing the world's worst phrase "wintry mix" around willy nilly -- I'm having a hard time deciding whether I'll head out to a movie theater to see Glass or not. It really is just the weather and not the shit-ass reviews dampening my devotion to seeing James McAvoy get his big-screen Beast back on (pic via) -- I was only going for James's Shirtless Rampages anyway and those be review-proof. But perhaps I'll go and perhaps I'll review it, we will see -- if any of you do venture thus please feel free to share your thoughts and prayers in the comments. And with that, bye until Monday!
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"I guess we're more the 'Art Fag' types."

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When I posted the trailer for Jake Gyllenhaal's upcoming art-thriller Velvet Buzzsaw here on the site a week back I didn't make mention of my homosexual suspicions towards his character... I took those suspicions straight to Twitter instead:
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Well now it looks like we might have confirmation that the legs, they be of fella origin. That is if Queerty is to be believed, as they've said as much in their run-down of 7 Queer Movies to see at Sundance:

"Writer/director Dan Gilroy of Nightcrawler (if you haven’t seen it, do it now) fame reteams with Jake Gyllenhaal in this new thriller which sees the actor return to playing a gay role. As an art critic, Gyllenhaal begins experiencing a series of murderous supernatural events surrounding the work of a dead artist. Oh, and he does have a sex scene but we are not sure whether or not the handsome star bottoms again."

Well if that shot from the trailer's any indication it would seem that Jake's moved up top this time around, but I guess we'll just have to wait and see when the flick hits Netflix in just exactly two weeks, on February 1st.
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Great Moments In Movie Shelves #175

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It should be noted that 99.9% of the rooms inside the luxe seaside Italian houses featured in the 1970 giallo The Forbidden Photos Of A Lady Above Suspicion are entirely shelf-free - these characters do not seem to have much of an interest in reading! - but it was either give this ridiculous moment of dramatic turtle revelation some love via the shelves glimpsed there in its background or give the movie some love via a "Great Moment in Movie Staches" post, and...

... ain't nobody here for calling that tragedy sitting astride the inspector's upper lip "great." Egads. Still I have been wanting to give The Forbidden Photos Of A Lady Above Suspicion a lot of love this week after watching it and falling in love, and not just so I could cut and paste its typically giallo-ian elongated title twenty times, but rather because this shit is a hoot and a blast, it's a bloot and a hast, and you should probably go find the blu-ray that Arrow Films just dropped on us, the unsuspecting public. It has everything...

Insane mod costumes, BDSM,
turtle action sequences, air-bound SCUBA interludes...

... excessive tranquilizer use, sheer curtains cordoning off 
one's telephone, hairy shoulders, a woman addicted to wigs...

I might go on and on...

... seriously I could go on and on, but it'd be better to let y'all discover the pleasure of this movie on your own. Unlike many of the lesser giallo The Forbidden Photos Of A Lady Above Suspicion isn't in the slightest a nonsensical slog - it's frothy fun, a soapy cocktail of Rosemary's Baby and Valley of the Dolls, all set to a cooing Ennio Morricone score. Go forth and watch, groovy babies!


Pic of the Day

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Wave hello with whatever you've got handy to this picture of Avan Jogia and Beau Mirchoff in Gregg Araki's forthcoming television program Now Apocalypse, which we just shared the trailer for on Wednesday. The show premieres on March 10th and I can only assume, blessed be, this is only the start of a massive PR push involving all manner of bulges.  (click to embiggen) 
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Everything You Ever Need To Know About Life...

... you can learn from:

Mother: Loneliness can do strange things to the mind.

Any fans of this strange, haunting, frightening film? I reviewed it right here - even though I haven't seen it in two and a half years I can still conjure up some of its terrifying images at a moment's haste and a shudder runs down my spine. (Especially its opening scenes, which left me shook.) The film's director Nicholas Pesce - who is celebrating a birthday today, holla - has a new film that's just hit streaming called Piercing that stars Mia Wasikowska and Christopher Abbott that I've been wanting to see; I heard mixed things (for one it got dragged for casting white actors in an adaptation of a Murakami book about Japanese people) but the talent is good enough I feel the need to decide for myself. Have any of you watched it yet?


Joe Alwyn Eight Times

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After the great big huge year that Joe Alwyn had in 2018 I'm a little surprised to see he's only attached to one movie ahead -- he's co-starring in Kasi Lemmons' Harriet Tubman biopic (hooray Kasi Lemmons directing again!) called Harriet that has Cynthia Erivo (yay Cynthia Erivo!) in the lead role. We don't know who Joe is playing but I'm going out on a limb here and guessing it will be, you know, a white dude. I was gonna say "a racist white dude" but hey maybe he's the "Brad Pitt in 12 Years a Slave" character, who knows. Anyway I doubt we need to worry about Joe's career -- surely this young pretty dating-a-famous-singer white dude is courting plenty o' offers after all the good press 2018 gave him including at least thirteen dozen photo-shoots we have already shared and of which we'll share the latest right after the jump...

Hey Where'd Your Hair Go, Alexander?

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Do you guys remember when Alexander Skarsgård shaved himself some male pattern baldness last year for a movie role? Well the movie, called The Hummingbird Project, now has a trailer and... sure enough he's sure bald. He's definitely wearing a fat suit too. Ahh the strains for being taking seriously. The film's from Quebecois director Kim Nguyen (he made War Witch a few years back) and co-stars Jesse Eisenberg...

... who's getting to come off as "the cute one" in this strange one-time scenario (I wonder if Jesse had bad Lex Luthor flashbacks) and also starring a silver-haired Salma Hayek (okay okay she's "the cute one") and it's out on March 15th. Watch the trailer now, please:
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Which is Hotter?

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If there's one thing we definitely know about Timothée Chalamet it's that he needs a well-educated father with a salt-and-pepper beard to teach him valuable life lessons. In Call Me By Your Name we watched Mr. Perlman (Michael Stuhlbarg, criminally robbed of an Oscar nomination and win last year) dole out romantic wisdom from the sofa of his wife's Italian country villa, while this year the real-world Rolling Stone journalist David Sheff (Steve Carell) chased our Timmy to Timbuktu and back yanking needles out of his every arm along the way in Beautiful Boy. Inspired by this piece at W Magazine yesterday (thx Mac) dissecting this phenom we instead focus in on the more pertinent to our interests query...

panel management

5 Off My Head: Righting Scorsese's Wrongs

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Making lists is a futile sort of business. The second you've made one, and every single second thereafter, ten things you totally forgot about stampede across the roof of your brain, having their way with you. It's utter torment. It's probably one of the mid-levels of Hell, like the staircase between the third and fourth ring. So I forgive Martin Scorsese for forgetting some vitals when he listed "The 39 Essential Foreign Films"...
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Before you ask no, I do not know the context of that note - who he was sending it to or why. I guess it's to "educate" someone - hence there being no films later than the 1970s. Anyway laying the blame on forgetfulness when it comes to the titles "missing" is awfully brassy of me - perhaps it stands to reason that Martin Scorsese, a 76 year old heterosexual film-maker from Queens, might have different tastes than I do? I suppose it's possible! Anyway I figured I'd take a little of Marty's torment on and make my own (far less substantial) list and give us...

5 Foreign Films I'd Add To Marty's List

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)
-- directed by Jacques Demy --

In the Mood For Love (2000)
-- directed by Wong Kar-Wai

Persona (1966)
-- directed by Ingmar Bergman -- 

Jeanne Dielman, 23 Commerce Quay, 1080 Brussels (1975)
-- directed by Chantal Akerman -- 

Belle de Jour (1967)
-- directed by Luis Buñuel -- 

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Of course I could go on and on,
which is part of the problem in the first place.
So y'all give me your five in the comments to keep it going...
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Five Frames From ?

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What movie is this?
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Good Morning, World

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It's about to get real cold and wet here in New York this weekend, so I'm looking at this flannel-y photo of Noah Centineo (via) and thinking that Noah could probably keep me warm... and wet... uhh... like I said good morning!
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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Hey Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em

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I'm guessing the first photo, seen down below, of Armie Hammer and Dakota Johnson in Wounds -- Under the Shadow director Babak Anvari's thriller that's coming out in March -- got dropped online when Sundance announced the film is screening there a few weeks back. But s'new to me so there it is for us today. Coincidentally I'm seeing Armie's other 2019 movie -- Hotel Mumbai, which we shared the trailer for right here -- this very afternoon! What a coincidence. So what I'm saying is you'll just have to stare at this picture and try to remember Armie & Dakota in happier times until I am back tomorrow. Bye until then...


Géza in Love & At War

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Lots of groovy press materials worth a look-see hitting this here internet this afternoon - we just shared the trailer for Steven Soderbegh's new film previously, but seconds later into my inbox appeared the trailer for another movie I want inside of me, the surrealist Icelandic comedy Woman At War. The film played Cannes last year to huge raves, and just recently we were reminded of that when our pal Gavin (who actually snuck off to Iceland to see the movie!) put the film at the tip-top of his faves of 2018 list. (PS you should watch Gavin's video.) Here's the trailer:
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Woman At War opens in select cites on March 1st and I'm pretty sure it's one of 2019's must-sees, so see it when you can see it. Next up another one of those must-sees for everybody - Shawn Snyder's To Dust, which I've been raving stark madly over ever since Tribeca last year. (Here's that review.) The film tells the story of a Hasidic man (Son of Saul's immensely talented Géza Röhrig, pictured up top) grieving his deceased wife and the wacky weird spiritual journey that grief takes him on, involving a high school science teacher (shades of Election) played by Matthew Broderick. To Dust already dropped its trailer (watch it here) since it's out very shortly - February 8th - but they've given us a clip now too, so watch, it'll give you some idea of the film's tone:
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High Flying Suit

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High Flying Bird could be 90 minutes of that shot of André Holland sitting at a table in that suit and I'd be in - looks like Stevie Soderbergh's got other stuff in mind according to the trailer but I'm just putting it out there, if he wants to release the "André Holland wears that suit and sits like that for 90 minutes" cut I'd pay good money for it. Here's the trailer for the actual movie:
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When we wished SS a happy birthday on Monday we told you this film's released on February 8th, so it's right quick, and it's Netflix we're talking about so that's for everybody (insert asterisks to say that is meaning America at least). Also in this movie is Zachary Quinto, Zazie Beetz, Melvin Gregg, and Kyle MacLachlan, among many others. It's also screening one day early here at FSLC here in NYC as part of their upcoming Film Comment Selects annual program with Soderbergh and some cast in attendance, and I'm hoping to go to that -- check out the whole program for Film Comment Selects right here. As usual it's good stuff!
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Keep Giving Us What We Want, Chris Hemsworth

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A new workout video on Chris Hemsworth's Instagram this morning reminds me that Chris Hemsworth's Instagram has been semi-relentless in offering up the beefcake the past few weeks, so much so that I've barely been able to keep up. You have Men in Black and the fourth Avengers film coming out in theaters this year, Chris -- don't worry! We are gonna remember you!

Anyway since we're playing catch-up instead of making a thousand gifs (although there are some of those too!) I figured I'd upload a couple of his videos to the YouTube, and that's just what I have done. Hit the jump for the beefcake business...

The Grand High Hathaway

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As expressed not too long ago I have reached the "acceptance" portion of how I deal with remakes -- a remake's existence doesn't eliminate the existence of your beloved original, and there can be pleasure mined from seeing new faces and new voices reinterpreting old tales that still matter to us. Even though film lasts forever (more or less) and threading this take up with the impermanence of the stage isn't one hundred percent it helps to just think of these remakes as new productions of Shakespeare Plays - the original text remains solid, and Shakespeare's Bones can shake off any piss the less reputable aim their way. 

And so. The remake of Nicolas Roeg's 1990 classic adaptation of Roald Dahl's The Witches, aka my favorite childhood book. (Sidenote: when I was cleaning this past weekend I stumbled upon my childhood copy of this book and it is barely held together - it was read so many times the pages are totally unbound now.) Anyway I already posted about this (and said everything I just said then) but now Robert Zemeckis, who's directing, has found his Grand High Witch, and yup it's Anne Hathaway. And you guys, all due respect to Angelica Huston obviously, but Anne Hathaway is really good casting. REALLY good. She's big and performative and a little scary when it comes down to it (it's that mouth, which seems poised to swallow up little children). And this will let her lean into that thing where everybody decided they hated her for a bit - a big camp villain is a really good choice for her, I think. But what do you think?


Five Frames From ?

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What movie is this?
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Everything You Ever Need To Know About Life...

... you can learn from:


Fred Van Ackerman: Mr. President, 
is the Senator calling me a liar?
Senator Bessie Adams: The record must stand as it is,
Mr. President. How the Senator interprets that
record is his own problem, not mine.

I have never seen Otto Preminger's Advise & Consent but glancing at its plot description on IMDb it feels pretty damn timely here today given our current political climate:

"Senate investigation into the President's newly nominated Secretary of State, gives light to a secret from the past, which may not only ruin the candidate, but the President's character as well."

Anyway politics and prescience aside this was the very first film that the legend Betty White, who is turning 97 golden years old today, ever acted in, although she'd done some TV before this... and, you know, she did some TV after this too. Some! I don't have any idea how large her role is then, not having seen it, but I'm sad out of the fifty names on the film's DVD cover they couldn't squeeze her in. Thanks goodness they found room for "George Grizzard" though... (that was sarcasm, what the fuck is a George Grizzard anyway)... (cut to someone yelling at me for my lack of George Grizzard knowledge)... Happy birthday, National Treasure Betty White! Here's to 97 more!