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What do the books Time's Arrow and One Hundred Years of Solitude have to do with Christopher Nolan's Interstellar? Quite a bit, if their appearance in the first teaser means something. Those who've seen the first Interstellar teaser trailer, on the big screen or online, may have noticed the very obvious bookshelf shot, featuring a little toy rocket and a couple of books that very prominently come into focus. As my mind kept wandering back to the teaser, I wanted to see which books I could find and discover what they mean - if anything. Let's have fun and see what references Nolan seems to have hidden in the first Interstellar trailer.
Welcome to 2014. Welcome to another
365 364 days of movies. What will this year have in store for us? What movies we will love, what movies will we hate? To kick things off, I jumped on Twitter on New Years Day 2014 to ask everyone about the first movie they would watch this year, and then the first release they're excited to see. The responses included a few of the expected (Captain America 2, Jack Ryan, Monuments Men, RoboCop) but also plenty of others (The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Raid 2, Noah). We've collected most of the tweets for a look at which upcoming early 2014 releases our followers are anticipating the most.
"The whole creative experience is much more fulfilling as a director." He's a world famous actor, a beloved comedian, a director, a writer, a producer. The latest movie from Ben Stiller is a contemporary take on James Thurber's short story, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, starring Stiller as a humble photo editor who dreams of an exciting life with his crush. Joey Magidson fell in love with the film at the New York Film Festival; I wasn't the biggest fan myself, but it is enjoyable. Fox invited me to sit down for a 10 minute chat with Ben Stiller, and I chose to focus on asking him about being a filmmaker more than an actor/comedian.
Need a list-minute holiday gift for a cinephile? Try these. The story goes that 3 projectionists from New York City decided to make their own Christmas gifts last year and came up with these - film cell votive candle holders featuring a real 35mm frame of film. "We took a film cell from an old movie and embedded it onto a candle votive. We use a real 35mm film cell that ran through a projector and showed on the silver screen. We wanted to find a new audience who would appreciate the value and novelty of owning a piece of old Hollywood." They're now being sold on Etsy for $12 each and you can even choose whichever film you want.
"You always think you'd seen everything, you always think you would run out of stuff, but it's just not possible." While Blockbuster may be dead, the "video store" still lives on thanks to independent shops like Cinefile Video in LA, Kim's Video in New York and Scarecrow Video in Seattle. You may not be familiar with that last one, but this fascinating short doc/video will get you up to speed with Scarecrow. Produced by David Chen of SlashFilm, the video takes us inside the doors of the self-proclaimed "largest independent video store" in the world, exploring their massive collection with the help of enthusiastic employees. Enjoy!
Bard. Zeus. Aramis. Apollo. Shaw. Welsh actor Luke Evans seems to play characters that often have short names, but powerful voices. He's on the rise recently and will break out big with his latest role as Bard the Bowman in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit trilogy. He didn't even get the job until halfway through shooting the first movie, then went down to New Zealand for a year and a half of filming, now he's about to go down in history as Lake-town's savior. I first met and interviewed Luke back in 2011 discussing Immortals, and I followed up with him for another interview this year about Bard, The Hobbit, Dracula, The Crow and more.
Taking a cue from this year's stellar sci-fi flick Gravity, last year's retrospective contributor Nick Bosworth from JoBlo.com is back with Final Cut 2013, and after checking out this look back, it's hard to disagree with his opening text that "Life without movies is impossible." Using 283 films from this year, including some clever lines referencing movies in Don Jon and Pain & Gain, this is a stylish look back at the year in film. From This is The End to The World's End and plenty of other films in between like Nebraska, Only God Forgives, Inside Llewyn Davis, Her, Despicable Me 2, Oblivion & more.
Continuing our annual tradition of posting Thanksgiving and Christmas Movie Guides every holiday season, our San Francisco contributor, Marco Cerritos, has once again put together a holiday movie guide for Thanksgiving 2013, giving a recap and rundown of what's playing and what's worth seeing (or skipping). Marco has seen everything playing, and while you may not always agree with his opinion, he provides the best reviews he can to make it a bit easier for everyone to choose. There are quite a few wonderful films now playing in theaters, so if you're still a bit unsure of what to watch or need extra tips, then look no further!
"People are looking to you, Katniss. You've given them an opportunity. They just have to be brave enough to take it." It's time. Hitting theaters everywhere this weekend is Catching Fire, the second movie in The Hunger Games series. It's exciting, it's deep, it's dark, it's one of the best sci-fi movies all year. Catching Fire should do incredibly well at the box office and I would go so far as to say that this is the next Harry Potter, this is the next Lord of the Rings franchise. Don't compare it to Twilight, compare it to those series in scope and scale and epicness. One review calls Catching Fire "the Dark Knight of Young Adult Films".
I always enjoy getting to talk to members of this industry, specifically the rare times when a veteran actor is made available, but every so often you just get blown away by someone. It doesn't happen too often, but last week it happened when I got the chance to speak to Bruce Dern at Paramount's offices in New York City. Obviously, the interview opportunity came about because of Nebraska, which begins its theatrical run this week, but honestly, wouldn't you use any excuse to talk to a legend like Dern? The man didn't disappoint, as he told some incredible stories (including a few about Alfred Hitchcock!), and paid me a rather stunning compliment. All-in-all it's one of the best interviews and most memorable film-related moments of my life.
"This is the big one that I wanted to do." Now showing in theaters everywhere is the film About Time, the third film (following Love Actually and Pirate Radio) directed by screenwriter/filmmaker Richard Curtis who resides in England. I've thoroughly enjoyed his past scripts and have immense appreciation for About Time, and was lucky enough to catch up with Richard a few weeks ago for an interview about his latest film starring Domhnall Gleeson & Rachel McAdams. While there is a time travel element to it, our chat covered casting, writing & time travel as well as rumors that this is the last film he'll be directing anyway. Read on!
Over a year ago, we highlighted the launch of MoviePass, a $30 a month combination iPhone app and a reloadable credit/debit card that allows users to see one free movie a day at pretty much every theater in the country. The only catch is that it doesn't work for 3D or IMAX movies and you can only see a movie once. It's not a bad deal, though there were kinks to work out at first, the year of service that this writer has utilized has been largely pleasing. But clearly, MoviePass has some problems with how frequent some of their power users are utilizing their service, and they've introduced a "new feature" to stop it immediately.
Tomorrow is Halloween, and then we're moving on to Thanksgiving in November. But before the spooky holiday expires, we wanted to highlight some of our favorite movie-themed costumes from 2013. Last year when we did this, Hurricane Sandy had taken its toll on the East Coast, and it was a slow news day, but we figured this should become a new tradition since there are so many creative people out there with amazing costumes. We tried to include less common costumes and original ideas (there are always tons of Jack Skellington and Sally costumes), but a couple were irresistibly adorable despite being very common. Look!
Unless you're a marching band enthusiast, you might not know that the Ohio State Marching Band is known as the "Best Damn Band in the Land," and one of the few all-brass and percussion bands in the country. Now we get a sense as to why that's the case with the video of their halftime show during the Ohio State-Penn State football game this past weekend. The band decided to pay tribute to Hollywood blockbusters like Superman, Jurassic Park, Harry Potter and more with some truly incredible and mesmerizing formations that come to life across the entire football field. Seriously, this is impressive as hell.