SXSW FILM FESTIVAL
Did you hear about the "best action in decades"? It's the movie that had our very own Alex saying, "Holy shit I haven't seen an action movie this good in years!" and no one argued. The Raid: Redemption is without question the most talked about action movie in a long time. Deservedly so. Filled with wall-to-wall ass-kicking, it's setting a high water mark for any film of its ilk in the future. Luckily, we were able to sit down with director Gareth Evans along with Mike Shinoda and Joe Trapanese, who did the score for The Raid's US release. We chat about creating perfect "holy shit" moments as well as John Carpenter scores.
On this week's episode of The Golden Briefcase, Tim & Jeremy are joined by Drew Tinnin, of Gordon and the Whale and Dread Central, to go through their Picks of the Week, the newest DVD/Blu-Ray releases, talk through the new trailers for Tim Burton's Dark Shadows and Zal Batmanglij's Sound of My Voice, and much more. The main topic of the night was a discussion on this past week's 2012 SXSW Film Festival down in Austin, Texas (find Jeremy's coverage here). Drew and Jeremy go through their favorites and least favorites of the fest, the new Mondo Gallery opening and talk about this year's festival as a whole. Listen in!
Don Coscarelli has a way of creating heroes, building protagonists in his films, whether he writes them or not, to a point where there's no choice but to do battle with forces of evil. Hell, he's the guy who pit Elvis and a black-dyed JFK against an evil, Mummified spirit. John Dies at the End, Coscarelli's latest, is based on the novel by David Wong, but the material is ripe for Coscarelli tone. Colorful in its elaborate, often horrific characters and not always comprehensive in story, the film is a fine joining of Wong's material and Coscarelli's film grammar. For better or for worse, John Dies could be the quintessential Coscarelli film.
In 1996, Bernie Tiede, a funeral director in Carthage, Texas, shot and killed 81-year-old Marjorie Nugent. He confessed, and a first degree murder trial began, one many locals in Carthage believed was too harsh. You see, people liked Bernie, a pleasant man who contributed so much to that community and who would seemingly never harm a fly. They didn't feel he was the calculating murderer the prosecution made him out to be but a man who was pushed to tragic extremes by Nugent, essentially a woman no one liked and for good reason. Now, Texan-native filmmaker Richard Linklater has turned his story into a film, Bernie.
Following up the interview with 21 Jump Street co-stars Rob Riggle & Dave Franco is my interview with the co-directors, Chris Miller and Phil Lord, who last directed Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs before this, as well as the animated show "Clone High". This new 21 Jump Street is furiously funny (review here). While down at SXSW in Austin, we were lucky enough to pull some of the people behind and in front of the camera to talk about making this comedy. Check out what directing duo Chris and Phil had to say about taglines, a hypothetical situation where their film features the biggest movie star on the planet, and more.
Classic monster stories have creatures tormenting children. Children are often the protagonist unless there's an adult around to really take charge of a situation. Monsters haunting children is comfortable to a story. It's easy. At least, it feels easy with Intruders, the new film from Juan Carlos Fresnadillo. But Fresnadillo, who knows intensity and haunting atmospheres, has the whole thing on auto-pilot. Intruders is a film that desperately yearns to find its rhythm, which it never does, all the while we're revving up for the inevitable information dump. Info dumps are easier than monsters scaring children, now that I think about it.
This new 21 Jump Street is furiously funny (my review here). Unrelenting, I would say. It takes tropes you learned from the show fits them into a tight-fitting, buddy cop comedy that holds little back in the way of R-rated humor. While down at SXSW in Austin, we were lucky enough to pull some of the people behind and in front of the camera to talk about this very funny movie. Up first are co-stars Rob Riggle and Dave Franco. Hear what the two had to say about working with dual directors (interview coming), thoughts on the original series, and Riggle's most famed catchphrase. It's a very amusing interview itself! Watch below.
While found footage is on the upswing and may be taking over the planet soon, anthology horror is a thing of the past. A genre that's never really found its footing for upper level cultural dominance, anthology horror films find themselves in 2012 on DVD shelves, film festivals, and the occasional, short-lived TV series. Creepshow was 30 years ago. Thankfully, we do have those film fests that showcase quality films, anthology or found footage, when they come into play, and V/H/S is both. It's an anthology of found footage films, all tied with a wrap-around story and dished out for your horror hunger pangs. It's scary. It's funny.
What would it be like to be the last of a species in the world, especially a world that scours the planet for rarities? It would be a threatened life, always on the move, even more so a rare creature living in the wild. That's just one of the questions raised in Daniel Nettheim's The Hunter, a haunting yet balanced film with the vibe of The Edge and precision of The American. With a stunning performance by one of today's best actors, it transcends its slow burn, a touch slower than necessary, to become a top-notch thriller, one that thankfully has something important to say. It's anything but flawless, but, then again, the rarities
Sinister had just ended. A sense of unnerving rushed over the SXSW audience, at the film's surprise secret premiere. At first, I didn't think I like the film I had just seen, the R-rated, haunted house horror starring Ethan Hawke and co-written by C. Robert Cargill (aka AICN's Massawyrm). I didn't think I liked it. In hindsight, I realize it just upset me. Sinister is the kind of horror that hurts, a found footage film where you see the character who actually finds the footage. But this footage isn't film students running through the woods or even a 9-foot tall demon bending people over backwards. This is snuff Hawke's writer character is
You know Channing Tatum is damn funny, right? There hasn't been much opportunity for him to flex his comedic muscles with things like G.I. Joe and The Vow getting in the way, but all that changes in 21 Jump Street. Tatum is funny. His co-lead Jonah Hill is funny, but we knew that. In fact, listing the aspects of 21 Jump Street that will make you laugh is a fruitless act. Everything about this film is funny and not only funny. It's delirious how viciously funny 21 Jump Street is, a modern update of the '80s TV show about undercover cops going back to high school to bust drug rings. You could call the comedy in this intense.
Nir Paniry's Extracted, playing at SXSW, is a classic case on how indie science fiction works. Focusing more on narrative and character than blockbuster explosions or motion captured creatures, Paniry wraps his story tightly around its central premise and leaves little fat around the meat. Extracted moves with a purpose, setting up the characters and conflict quickly so that there's plenty of room for the second and third acts to breath. The non-linear structure combined with the vast amount of time within which the story takes place create a scope that no amount of computer generated, alien landscapes could achieve.