› R. Cortés' Down A Dark Hall
› Gabriel and the Mountain
› Zellner Brothers' Damsel
› Michael Noer's Papillon Rmk
› Eugene Jarecki's The King
› Pasha Patriki's Black Water
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› The Rider Director Chloe Zhao
› Bing Liu of Minding the Gap
› Petra Volpe of Divine Order
› Filmmaker Denis Villeneuve
› Filmmaker Darren Aronofsky
› Lake Bell Talks Making Films
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Listen to the Newest Episode of The First Word Podcast:
"So things haven't spiraled out of control the moment I left?" Disney has debuted another new 60-second "sneak peek" TV trailer for Pixar's Incredibles 2, and it contains a few more scenes of unseen footage. We keep seeing more and more in extra trailers, and the more footage we see, the more excited I get. I have a good feeling this might just be amazing, and we barely have any real sense of the plot because Pixar usually likes to keep it all a big secret (especially whatever happens in the second half). Craig T. Nelson is back to voice Bob, with Holly Hunter, Samuel L. Jackson, and Sarah Vowell. At this point, I'm ready to just watch this movie and find out what is going on here before any more of it is revealed in more TV spots and trailers. This new footage is also an announcement that tickets are on sale now for the June opening. Enjoy.
"Our hope was always to bring civilization to Congo…" Abramorama has debuted the official trailer for a documentary titled This Is Congo, a film made by war photographer Daniel McCabe. This looks like an incredible inside look at the African country known as the Congo (in full: the Democratic Republic of the Congo). "From embedding on the front lines with the national army, to displacement camps, to the black market for minerals, McCabe had unprecedented access to many sides of a decades long struggle for control over the most mineral-rich country in Africa. To capture the footage, McCabe shot with customized camera rigs and used creative sound recording solutions often acting as a one-man crew." This will be released in theaters in NY & LA in late June this summer, timed to the 60th Anniversary of the Democratic Republic of Congo's independence. Holy hell does this look terrific, a definitive portrait of a country perpetually at war.
Well, this is wonderful. Polaris is an animated short film made by Japanese filmmaker Hikari Toriumi, finishing his 4th year of study at CalArts. This is his 4th year short film in the character animation program, and it's an adorable, heartwarming film about a young polar bear leaving home for the first time, having trouble letting go of her mother. The animation style is unique and simple, but still meaningful and elegant. And the story perfectly captures that feeling of leaving home for college, or wherever, and how much you miss your parents. This film really moved me and made me sad at first, then happy by the end. Watch below.
It's fairly easy to throw around the phrase that a film is an "instant cult classic", but this time I really mean it. Border, which is the translation of the title Gräns in Swedish, is a new film from filmmaker Ali Abbasi (Shelley) and it just premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in the Un Certain Regard section. File this one under "what the fuck did I just watch?!?" It's one of those kind of "WTF" films, but it's actually damn good. The more I think about it, the more I love it, so quirky and ridiculous and weird and wild and disgusting yet surprisingly amusing and tender. The only problem - I don't want to give away the big reveal, and it's hard to talk about this film without discussing that aspect of it. For this early festival review, I'll be as vague as I can, and I won't spoil it - because this is best experienced without knowing the big reveal before watching it.
"This is insane! Have you ever felt so alive?" Lionsgate has debuted the second official trailer for the buddy comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me, starring Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon as best friends who get into some spy trouble. The title is a riff on the classic James Bond movie The Spy Who Loved Me (released 1977). The plot involves the two women getting caught up in a deadly spy conspiracy with assassins on their tail, and even though he's her ex-boyfriend, they're still going after them. This trailer is a more conventional action movie trailer, and I still prefer the Bond song riff for the first teaser. Justin Theroux co-stars as the titular "spy", with Gillian Anderson, Ivanna Sakhno, Sam Heughan, and Hasan Minhaj. This does look a little too absurd, and a little too cheesy, maybe it could be entertaining? Let's hope it's not a disaster.
"I need to know how everything unfolded." Sony Pictures has debuted the first official trailer for the film Searching, from writer/director Aneesh Chaganty, making his feature directorial debut. This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival under the title Search, and was one of my favorite films of the festival - I wrote a glowing review of it, which is quoted in this trailer. Searching is an emotional dramatic thriller told entirely through computer screens. John Cho stars as the father of a young Korean-American teenager who goes missing, and he frantically searches through her computer and phone in an attempt to find her. The small cast includes Debra Messing, Michele La, and Joseph Lee. This is the best computer screen film to date, and it shows the potential for truly authentic and meaningful storytelling using this technique. I can't wait for everyone to finally have the chance to see this incredible film. Check out the first trailer below.
"It has this kind of gothic element…" Universal has launched another final "Look Inside" featurette for J.A. Bayona's Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, which hits theaters next month (yep, we're already getting deep into the summer movie season!). We already posted the epic final trailer as well as a behind-the-scenes featurette from last year with the first trailer, but now we get another final look to keep you excited. This doesn't really have any new footage, only a few interview clips and that's it. Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard return as co-stars, along with "Ian Malcolm" himself, Jeff Goldblum, also starring BD Wong, Toby Jones, Ted Levine, James Cromwell, Geraldine Chaplin, and Rafe Spall. I'm honestly really looking forward to seeing this, it looks like a fun time at the movies with killer dinosaurs going wild. Enjoy.
There's always a few good Russian films at the Cannes Film Festival every year, but this is one of the best Russian films I've ever seen in the nine years I've been coming here. Leto, which translates to Summer, is the latest feature from Russian filmmaker Kirill Serebrennikov (who is currently under house arrest and unable to attend the festival). The B&W film is a tribute to 80s punk rock and musicians who break the rules and sing songs and make music despite the government saying they can't. I could describe Serebrennikov's Leto as a Soviet, 80s rock version of Inside Llewyn Davis meets Trainspotting, directed by a Russian Edgar Wright. It's awesome. And easily my favorite film at Cannes so far (it's only Day 3). The songs throughout, composed by a Russian band called Zveri, are excellent and I need a copy of this film's soundtrack already.
"They are in the business of helping people in pain." Wait, what? Nuns who grow weed? Get out of here. Deadline has debuted a trailer for a new documentary that is being shopped at the Cannes market this week. Titled Breaking Habits, the new film from Robert Ryan is a feature documentary about a group of women who started a medical marijuana growing business in California. These are really real nuns, per se, but they operate under the guise of nuns at a convent/farm called "Sisters of the Valley" taking names like "Sister Kate" in order to run their business and safely grow their weed. Of course, she has also "faced a number of challenges over the years including run-ins with the county sheriff and black-market thieves playing a role as well as threats from local drug cartels and the California state Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation." Say no more, I'm already way into this, and I want to see it as soon as I can. This trailer is just about perfect.
"Tell me about the mission - did you see anything unusual?" 20th Century Fox has revealed the first teaser trailer for The Predator, a new take on the Predator sci-fi action franchise, this time directed by Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Iron Man 3, The Nice Guys) - who appeared in the original Predator as the character Hawkins. This is somewhat of a re-imagining, or reboot, focusing on only one predator alien again who comes to Earth and wreaks havoc. The ensemble cast is lead by Jacob Tremblay, who "accidentally triggers" their return to Earth again, along with Sterling K. Brown, Yvonne Strahovski, Olivia Munn, Lochlyn Munro, Thomas Jane, Boyd Holbrook, Jake Busey, Keegan-Michael Key, Niall Matter, Trevante Rhodes (from Moonlight), plus Edward James Olmos. This is our long-awaited first look at any footage from this, and so far it looks damn good - of course. It's only a tease but I'm totally sold already.