ENJOY THE SHOW
Jon Stewart's directorial debut, the feature film Rosewater, is now playing in theaters as of today. To celebrate the film's release, last night's "The Daily Show" hosted by Jon Stewart was an episode dedicated entirely to Rosewater everything. They started by recapping the segment recorded in Iran that first lead to journalist Maziar Bahari's imprisonment in 2009, featuring Jason Jones who made the segment. Then they bring out Maziar Bahari for a discussion, ending with actor Gael García Bernal, who plays Bahari in the film. Stewart, still awkward about hosting a show to promote a movie he made, let John Oliver host while he hid in the background. It's a refreshing, fun recap of the story behind this film and the people who made it.
There used to be a time when we would look up at the stars and dream. We would wonder what it was like out there, what we might find out amongst the endless black of space. But then things changed, we became obsessed with ourselves again, with battling each other for money and power, and we forgot how to dream. Along comes Interstellar, an exhilarating science fiction creation that once again reminds us that we can dream, that we get to breathe this fresh air on this beautiful planet, that we get to smile, cry and laugh. And it's those feelings that matter the most. It reminds us that the desire to connect is one of the most important aspects of humanity and that nothing–whether it be time or space or others–can break those bonds of love.
What does it look like to build the 70mm IMAX print of Interstellar? Find out in this fun video from the AutoNation IMAX Theater in Fort Lauderdale, FL. It's finally time, the week it all goes down, or goes up and away, shall we say – Christopher Nolan's Interstellar arrives in theaters everywhere this week. To kick things off, the sci-fi movie hits 70mm IMAX and 35mm cinemas only starting this Tuesday night. Filmed in the projection booth, this video shows what it's like to build 48 reels into one big print and run it through a state-of-the-art IMAX projection system. There was a similar IMAX projectionist video made for The Dark Knight Rises, another Nolan film of course, but it's always cool to get a look at this side of the movie world.
"I wanted to make the ski trip to hell!" That's exactly what he has made. I really, really love Ruben Östlund's Force Majeure, it's one of my favorite films this year and if you're looking for something fun and original to watch give this one a look. I've been pushing this film and highlighting it as much as possible because it's not easy to get Marvel audiences interested in Swedish films about a family on a "ski trip to hell". But this is one of those great films that stands out in a crowd, and you will probably want to visit the Alps after. While traveling to promote the release, I met up with Swedish writer and director Ruben Östlund (of the films Play, Involuntary and Gitarrmongot previously) to talk about Force Majeure. Watch the full video below.
Who would've thought it would be Best Buy bringing us awesome DVD covers? It is our general policy to skip most DVD/Blu-ray news, however this time I'm making an exception because this artwork is fantastic and I need to pay some compliments to whoever came up with this. A new promo called Project Pop Art has been announced involving Sony re-releasing 16 cult movie hits on Blu-ray this November. Each Steelbook Blu-ray is wrapped in gorgeous pop art from designers all over the world curated by Gallery 1988. They've chosen a handful of bestseller hits including The Fifth Element, Superbad, District 9, Snatch, Taxi Driver, Das Boot, Stripes, even The Who movie Tommy. All of them turned out great - see below.
It has been a while. So, how are things? Over the many years I've been running this website I've had a few amazing chats with Jason Reitman. I first met Jason way back in 2007, interviewing him for his second film Juno at the Toronto Film Festival. That was followed up with the legendary gondola interview from the Telluride Film Festival, where Peter Sciretta from SlashFilm and I talked with Jason about making Up in the Air as we slowly rode a gondola up the mountain and back down. It has been five years since I've sat down for a formal interview with Jason, despite meeting up at film festivals for Labor Day last year and Men, Women & Children this year, but as always it's so much fun to talk with him. Here's our latest chat.
One of my favorite documentaries, in fact one of the very best documentaries this year, is one called The Overnighters from director Jesse Moss. The film follows a wild, almost unbelievable story set in North Dakota about a local Pastor named Jay Reinke who risks everything to help his new neighbors. It won over crowds at the Sundance Film Festival this year, picked up a Special Jury Prize, before going on to play at the Tribeca, Sheffield, Montclair, Sydney and New Zealand Film Festivals, winning awards at Full Frame, Miami and San Francisco, too. Drafthouse Films bravely picked up the doc and it's now playing in select theaters. I was lucky enough to meet up with Jesse Moss for an interview in New York last week and it was wonderful.
We're only a few weeks away from the release of Christopher Nolan's Interstellar, which will be opening four days early in film only (35mm/70mm projection). The announcement caused quite a stir in the cinema community, as the response from some movie theater chains was not unexpected. Many of them got upset, many of them were pissed off that they weren't a part of this deal, the big reason being that they just gave up their 35mm projectors to transform to digital and now they're missing out on some of the best money of the year. So they blame the studios, and the filmmakers, but never themselves. In response to all of this, Alamo Drafthouse CEO Tim League (who owns a handful of theaters himself) wrote a passionate essay/response and published it on Deadline. It's brilliant, it gets everything right, and at the end of it all, it's inspiring too.
Now that fall is upon us, it's starting to get a little chilly out (at least if you live somewhere with all four seasons), and that means it's time for warmer clothes. Thankfully, if you're a cinephile who just always has to represent what you love with what you wear, then the folks at Mondo have you covered. After unveiling their 237 Collection inspired by The Shining, the collectible arthouse has now released two knit sweaters that will be perfect for fans of the cult classic holiday film Gremlins from director Joe Dante and producer Steven Spielberg and Joel & Ethan Coen's Fargo (though it's more of a tribute to the TV series). Look now!
"A journey should always be mysterious..." One of the best films of 2014 is Birdman, the fifth feature from Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu, following up Biutiful four years ago. Birdman premiered at the Venice Film Festival and Telluride Film Festivals, and will also play at the New York Film Festival before landing in theaters this October. After catching the premiere up in the mountains in Telluride (my review), I met up with Iñárritu for a 15 minute chat about all things: from life to filmmaking to laughter to turning 50 and the lessons he has learned. It happens to be one of the best chats I've had with a filmmaker, and it's rejuvenating to listen to him talk. "If you don't do something that does not terrify you, why do it?"
Birdman 4?! I honestly try not to use hyperbole in headlines (anymore), but this time I just couldn't help it. It's Birdman! And this little piece of movie swag is actually quite awesome. It's unquestionably one-of-a-kind and I'm so glad to see Fox Searchlight make something so special for the release of this film. I am one of the lucky few who has received an action figure maquette of Birdman, from the new film by Alejandro González Iñárritu titled Birdman, now playing in select theaters. Michael Keaton plays Birdman, and the film is about how his ego is manifested in the form of this superhero character who follows him around. I love the film and this swag is a great way to get press, and fans, more excited for its opening. Photos below.
"Action is a magic trick... And good editing and good sound are your friend." In theaters this weekend is Fury, the latest from writer/director David Ayer, following-up his Schwarzenegger flick Sabotage and the LAPD movie End of Watch before that. This time he brings us a movie set during World War II, following one American tank as it continues to work its way through Germany near the end of the war. I really loved the movie, it's brutal yet emotional and was everything I was hoping to see out of this kind of tank action movie. I met up with David Ayer in New York City earlier this week for a chat about making action movies. "Action takes time, and it takes articulation. And you've got to think of it like stop-motion photography."
"Like any journey, it's not what you carry, but what you leave behind." Continuing our latest feature, the Monthly Must See profile, this time around I'm highlighting an extraordinarily beautiful film called Tracks, set in Australia directed by John Curran of We Don't Live Here Anymore and The Painted Veil previously. Tracks is now playing in limited theaters and first premiered at the fall film festivals in 2013, where I first caught it. Actress Mia Wasikowska stars as Robyn in the true story of an independent young woman who decides to hike 1,700 miles across the Australian desert on her own. Aside from her dog and three camels.
This past weekend it was New York's time to geek out. The New York Comic-Con took place at the Javitz Center on the west side, with over 100,000 geeks/nerds/fans of all ages attending. On Friday evening I was invited to participate in a panel called Your Opinion Sucks! Rotten Tomatoes Critics vs. Fans where a small group of "professional critics" sit in front of a room full of fans and argue about what they like/didn't like. This isn't the first time this panel has appeared, as Rotten Tomatoes has been hosting it in San Diego and at conventions like CinemaCon for years, but it was my first time on it. I really wanted to have fun, see what people wanted to debate, and enjoy the experience of being on a panel instead of covering it (for once).