MCN Originals Archive for November, 2010

MW on DVDs: Antichrist, Liverpool, Moonfleet, Fantasia/Fantasia 2000 … and more

CO-PICKS OF THE WEEK: NEW Antichrist (Two Discs) (Three and a Half Stars) Denmark/U.S.A.: Lars von Trier, 2009 (Criterion Collection) Lars von Trier strikes again. The beginning looks like a poor man’s Citizen Kane which segues into a disease-of-the-month teleplay that becomes a Sam Shepard two-character Gothic pop drama in the deep woods, and then…

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Gurus o’ Gold: True Grit Week – Episode One

This is Round 1 of 2 rounds of voting this week, as True Grit rolls out for most of the Gurus. Will it change the complexion of the race? Tune back in on Friday to see, as The Gurus vote on all of the Top 8 categories. Today, Winter’s Bone moves into a Top Ten tie.

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The DVD Wrap: Fantasia/Fantasia 2000, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Knight and Day, Cairo Time, The Sicilian Girl, Vampires Suck … and more

Fantasia/Fantasia 2000: Blu-ray The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Blu-ray According to Disney legend, Dopey the Dwarf was originally pushed for the role in Fantasia that went to Mickey Mouse. Instead, Uncle Walt went with the established star, hoping the role would maintain Mickey’s high profile in movies. Although Dopey might have been an inspired choice, there’s no…

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Frenzy on the Wall: How to Fix the Oscars

I am an unabashed fan of the Academy Awards. I have watched every telecast since I was a young boy and I still anticipate Oscar Day as much as I always have. Historically, I have never really been a fan of the choices the Academy has made, but I still see the show itself as…

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Weekend Box Office Report — November 28

Industry trackers generally predicted that Deathly Hallows would prevail at the box office but few anticipated that Tangled would be truly competitive with the Hogwart’s grad. They also generally over estimated the strengths of the remaining trio of new entries; especially Faster, which was given the edge over Love and Other Drugs.

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Friday Estimates – November 27

As anticipated, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1 has a firm hold on the top box office slot in its second weekend. Animated kid-flick Tangled looks to be off to a decent start, while the tenacious Unstoppable surprises by clinging to 4th position over newer entries in the field — at least for now.

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MW on Movies: Tangled, Burlesque and White Material

Tangled (Three Stars) U.S.: Nathan Greno, Byron Howard, 2010 I don’t know: Maybe I’m going though my second childhood. But, these days, very often, the kids’ movies coming out of the big studios (and I mean mostly the cartoon features) seem and look to me so much brighter, funnier, more entertaining — hell, so much…

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Box Office Hell — November 25

Heading into the long Thanksgiving weekend, our box office pundits predict that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1 will handily hold onto the top slot. Meanwhile, newcomer kid-flick Tangled will have to battle it out with Megamind for second place in the frame.

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Love & Other Drugs, dir/co-wr Ed Zwick, co-wr/prod Marshall Herskovitz

DP/30 – They have been making TV and movies together for decades. This week, they have Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal in the Oscar-buzzed Love & Other Drugs. They took some time to talk about the film, their work together, and the future of the industry.

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MW on DVDs: Metropolis, Flipped, Last of the Mohicans, The Bing Crosby Collection … and more

PICK OF THE WEEK: CLASSIC Metropolis (Most Complete Version) (Four Stars) Germany: Fritz Lang, 1927 Metropolis, Fritz Lang’s great, spellbinding science fiction epic about a futuristic city gone mad, has been regarded as a cinematic classic since almost the very hours of its premiere, in Berlin in 1927. At that first showing, German audiences and…

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Review: Burlesque

It’s a Xerox of a Xerox of an Original. Steve Antin imitates Rob Marshall imitating Bob Fosse. Cher plays… “Cher”. Stanley Tucci queens it up to great effect, The Magic Homosexual, really. Cam Gigandet plays The Boy. Kristen Bell is objectified as The Villain. And a series of cardboard cutouts posing as actors turn up,…

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The DVD Wrap: Flipped, Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore, The Six Million Dollar Man: The Complete Collection, Deadwood: The Complete Collection … and more

Flipped Anyone who lost faith in Rob Reiner after blowing their hard-earned dough on such star-studded duds as The Story of Us, Alex & Emma and Rumor Has It …, might want to give the filmmaker another chance. In the pre-pubescent romance Flipped, we meet a boy and girl who could have lived down the…

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Gurus o’ Gold – November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving all. Some votes have changed and three films have fallen off The Chart, but the Top Ten remains unchanged from last week. This week’s special categories are Unexpected Nods I’d Be Thankful For and a pair of categories in memory of Ronni Chasen.

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Frenzy on the Wall: Anne Hathaway is a Great Actress … Right?

“Anne Hathaway is a great actress.” “Is she, though?” Both speakers in that conversation are me. This was the dialogue I was having with myself as I watched Hathaway on Saturday Night Live this past weekend. She was so effortlessly charismatic, her timing excellent, and her presence inviting. Whether she was playing a hillbilly waiting…

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Weekend Box Office Report — November 21

Harry and the Deathly Swallows … Gulp! Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 ascended to an estimated $126.2 million and corralled more than 60% of weekend ticket sales. Comparatively speaking the remaining films in the multiplex had to settle for chump change, including the bow of the thriller The Next Three Days which…

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Weekend Estimates – November 21

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One falls just about where our Box Office Hell pundits predicted, effectively stupefying all competition for the top slot of the weekend. Meanwhile, Megamind stops Unstoppable from taking the second position.

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Friday Estimates — November 20

As expected, Part One of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows gets off to a good start for the weekend with just over $60 million, bolstered by sold-out Thursday midnight previews. The rest of the pack straggles far behind, battling it out for the leftovers.

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Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One

There’s remarkable attention to the setting of tone of both character and setting in the fantastic production design. Yates uses carefully framed shots of remote, isolated settings to establish the complete and total isolation of Harry, Ron and Hermione once they are forced to disappear into the ether to hunt for the Horcruxes.

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MW on Movies: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 1, The Next Three Days, and Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One (Three Stars) U.S.; David Yates, 2010 The beginning of the end for a very long, mostly gratifying, often magical and sometimes splendiferous and surprising cinematic journey on a constantly twisting fantastical/literary road, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One splits the last of the J. K….

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Biutiful, director Alejandro González Iñárritu, cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto, editor Stephen Mirrione, composer Gustavo Santaolalla, executive producer Guillermo del Toro

DP/30 – Five of the people who made Biutiful come to life, led by the writer/director, sit for a long chat about the film, the process, and the future of cinema for adults.

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MCN Originals

Quote Unquotesee all »

“Let me try and be as direct as I possibly can with you on this. There was no relationship to repair. I didn’t intend for Harvey to buy and release The Immigrant – I thought it was a terrible idea. And I didn’t think he would want the film, and I didn’t think he would like the film. He bought the film without me knowing! He bought it from the equity people who raised the money for me in the States. And I told them it was a terrible idea, but I had no say over the matter. So they sold it to him without my say-so, and with me thinking it was a terrible idea. I was completely correct, but I couldn’t do anything about it. It was not my preference, it was not my choice, I did not want that to happen, I have no relationship with Harvey. So, it’s not like I repaired some relationship, then he screwed me again, and I’m an idiot for trusting him twice! Like I say, you try to distance yourself as much as possible from the immediate response to a movie. With The Immigrant I had final cut. So he knew he couldn’t make me change it. But he applied all the pressure he could, including shelving the film.”
James Gray

“I’m an unusual producer because I control the destiny of a lot of the films I’ve done. Most of them are in perfect states of restoration and preservation and distribution, and I aim to keep them in distribution. HanWay Films, which is my sales company, has a 500-film catalogue, which is looked after and tended like a garden. I’m still looking after my films in the catalogue and trying to get other people to look after their films, which we represent intellectually, to try to keep them alive. A film has to be run through a projector to be alive, unfortunately, and those electric shadows are few and far between now. It’s very hard to go and see films in a movie house. I was always involved with the sales and marketing of my films, right up from The Shout onwards. I’ve had good periods, but I also had a best period because the film business was in its best period then. You couldn’t make The Last Emperor today. You couldn’t make The Sheltering Sky today. You couldn’t make those films anymore as independent films. There are neither the resources nor the vision within the studios to go to them and say, “I want to make a film about China with no stars in it.”Then, twenty years ago, I thought, “OK, I’m going to sell my own films but I don’t want to make it my own sales company.” I wanted it to be for me but I wanted to make it open for every other producer, so they don’t feel that they make a film but I get the focus. So, it’s a company that is my business and I’m involved with running it in a certain way, but I’m not seen as a competitor with other people that use it. It’s used by lots of different producers apart from me. When I want to use it, however, it’s there for me and I suppose I’m planning to continue making all my films to be sold by HanWay. I don’t have to, but I do because it’s in my building and the marketing’s here, and I can do it like that. Often, it sounds like I’m being easy about things, but it’s much more difficult than it sounds. It’s just that I’ve been at it for a long time and there’s lots of fat and security around my business. I know how to make films, but it’s not easy—it’s become a very exacting life.”
~ Producer Jeremy Thomas