Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 12:22 PM
Photo via Columbia Pictures.

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Hey hobo man, hey Dapper Dan: Target is partnering with the costume designer of the upcoming "Annie" remake on an apparel line.

Renee Ehrlich Kalfus has created a 25-piece limited-edition collection of girl's apparel and accessories line that hits stores and Target.com starting Nov. 16. The mix-and-match collection includes patchwork, embroidery, pins, buttons, tulle and, of course, Annie's iconic red dress and heart-shaped locket. The collection also includes a DIY kit to inspire creativity in budding fashionistas. Keeping an eye on customers' bottom dollars, each item is priced at less than $30.

"Target is excited to bring guests a piece of the 'Annie' movie magic, just in time for the holiday season," said Stacia Andersen, senior vice president of apparel and accessories for Target. "The collection's mix-and-match theme inspires girls to express themselves by creating a look all their own, at prices moms and dads will appreciate." 

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014, 2:27 PM
BURBANK, CA - FEBRUARY 28: Director Ed Gass-Donnelly, producer Eli Roth and actress Ashley Bell attend a special screening of CBS Films' 'The Last Exorcism Part II' at AMC 16 on February 28, 2013 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for CBS Films)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Lotus Entertainment has tapped Ed Gass-Donnelly, director of "The Last Exorcism Part II," to write and direct the sci-fi thriller "Pivot." 

The story centers on a scientist inventing a device to pivot between parallel universes to save his wife's life -- but to be with her, he'll have to kill the parallel version of himself.

Lotus' Jim Seibel and Bill Johnson will produce the film, with D.J. Gugenheim and Ara Keshishian of Lotus exec producing alongside Gass-Donnelly. 

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014, 10:42 AM
Baby Groot dances in 'Guardians of the Galaxy.' (Photo via Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Fans of Marvel Studios' "Guardians of the Galaxy" are getting their wish fulfilled: a dancing Groot toy. 

The charming character, who is seen wiggling to Michael Jackson in the film will be turned into a collectible figure by Funko through its Pop! vinyl toy line. 

Marvel and Funko announced the bobble-head figure on Friday via their social media accounts, with Marvel saying "It's real! The first official Dancing Groot toy, from the amazing folks at Funko."

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014, 10:38 AM
Vertigo.

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Joseph Gordon-Levitt is one of the newcomers in "Sin City: A Dame to Kill" and recently wrapped Robert Zemeckis' 3D drama "The Walk," but there's another buzzed about adaptation on audiences' minds. 

According to Gordon-Levitt, "Sandman" is still in the early stages of development. The multi-hyphenate actor will direct and produce the film from a script by David S. Goyer, based on Neil Gaiman's acclaimed comic book series.

"Right now we're working on a script," he told Moviefone. "It's me and Goyer and the screenwriter and Neil Gaiman, as well as the good folks at DC and Warner Bros. It's a really cool team of people. It's a lot of the same people who worked on the Nolan 'Batman' movies."

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014, 10:28 AM
1985: British actor, director and producer Richard Attenborough directs American actress and journalist Candice Bergen during the making of 'Gandhi'. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - To many in the entertainment industry, Richard Attenborough will always be synonymous with "Gandhi," which is understandable. The filmmaker, who died Sunday at 90, directed only a dozen films, and none of them matched his 1982 bio-epic. 

But Attenborough was also an actor of great range, from his lower-class hoodlum in the 1947 "Brighton Rock" (from Graham Greene's novel) to the POW in "The Great Escape" (third-billed under Steve McQueen and James Garner) to a high-kicking circus owner in the 1967 "Dr. Doolittle," adding energy and pep to a film that needed both. 

Attenborough's best-known work as an actor was in the 1993 "Jurassic Park," but his career had been going for 50 years at that point. Some of his best performances came in the mid-1960s. He starred with Kim Stanley in "Seance on a Wet Afternoon" as two scam artists whose scheme goes very wrong, and it was followed in the next two years by "Flight of the Phoenix" and "The Sand Pebbles," in which he did nuanced work in interesting films. 

POSTED: Friday, August 22, 2014, 12:50 PM
'Jersey Shore Massacre' (Photo via Attack Entertainment)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - A contender for the "Could Be Woise" prize among this year's dogs of late summer, "Jersey Shore Massacre" is a kinda-sorta comedy slasher faintly affiliated (via exec producer JWoww) to MTV's popular reality skein. Several beneficiaries of silicone and steroid enhancement hook up for a fatal party weekend in this knucklehead exercise, which is somewhat better crafted than it is written or acted. It has a few more brain cells than, say, "Zombie Strippers"; too bad they're mostly owned by the tech contributors. Still, as willfully lowbrow dumb fun goes, it's pretty painless. Home-format prospects will rapidly outpace any theatrical hopes in the pic's multi-platform release Aug. 22.

After a de rigueur bloody prologue, we're introduced to the central bimbette sextet, half of whom are employed at Brooklyn's Touch of Class hair salon with the inevitable mincing-gay-stereotype figure. Teaming up with three pals, they head off for an all-girls' beach weekend that's briefly delayed when it turns out their rental house has been double-rented by pothead landlord Ron Jeremy (always a guarantor of quality cinema). Fortunately, somebody has an "Uncle Vito" whose nearby luxe cabin in the woods lies empty while he's under house arrest for, uh, "being Italian."

Once ensconced in this handsome abode, the principals promptly get bored, traipsing back to the shore, where they pick up a matching set of what the press materials aptly dub "obnoxious fist-pumpers." All are promptly thrown out of a local club, repairing back to Chez Vito, where they rapidly pair off and get pared down by an elusive hairy assailant.

POSTED: Friday, August 22, 2014, 12:42 PM
'If I stay' (Photo via Warner Bros.)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Chloe Grace Moretz's "If I Stay" has launched solidly, drawing $1.1 million from Thursday night shows at the U.S. box office. 

The YA tearjerker, backed by Warner Bros./New Line and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, has been forecast to take in $18 million to $20 million in 2,902 locations this weekend. The initial Thursday night numbers for shows at 7 p.m. on indicate that "Stay," directed by R.J. Cutler and based on the popular Gayle Foreman novel, will finish the weekend in that area.

"Stay" is expected to top The Weinstein Co.'s launch of "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For," which is bowing at 2,894 locations. The noir sequel to 2005's "Sin City" opened with $475,000 on Thursday night for shows at 9 p.m. on. 

POSTED: Thursday, August 21, 2014, 10:36 AM
'When the Game Stands Tall' (Photo via TriStar Pictures)

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - The religion of high-school football commingles with plain old-fashioned religion in "When the Game Stands Tall," an inspirational sports drama (from Sony's in-house, faith-based label Affirm Films) that goes long on rectitudinous sermonizing but comes up short on gridiron thrills or genuine love for the game. Save for a couple of fine performances relegated to the sidelines, no one really brings their "A" game to this lazily executed late-summer programmer a "Friday Night Lights" for the Sunday School crowd graced by little of the storytelling craft and skillful emotional manipulation that have distinguished the recent wave of superior Disney sports pics. After an opening weekend that may see a bump from church group sales, expect "Game" to do most of its rushing and passing on home screens. 

Like most entries in this particular genre, "When the Game Stands Tall" traffics in the usual tropes of scrappy heroes and come-from-behind victories -- except that, in this case, the underdogs are more like alpha dogs, and they don't go from last to first so much as from first to second and back again. But then, there's more to life than just winning -- a mantra the movie announces with such frequency and fervor that if you don't leave the theater with it ringing in your head, you should head straight for the nearest ear doctor. When our story begins in the fall of 2003, the De La Salle High School Spartans of tree-lined Concord, CA are coming to the end of yet another undefeated season that has left them with the longest unbroken winning streak -- 151 games -- in American sports history. But dark clouds loom on the horizon: a large chunk of the team's starting lineup is due to graduate in the spring, and the underclassmen waiting to take their places seem to lack a certain team spirit.

"The streak was never our goal," says the Spartans' mild-mannered coach Bob Ladouceur (Jim Caviezel), a religious studies teacher at this private Catholic enclave who preaches the gospel of good sportsmanship (with a bit of Luke and Matthew thrown in for good measure) and rarely opens his mouth without some similarly honeyed homily dropping out of it. It's not giving much away to say that De La Salle's streak does come to an ignominious end, but not before good Coach L almost meets his maker thanks to a massive coronary (prefigured, in a mark of director Thomas Carter's ham-fisted style, by multiple close-ups of Coach's cigarette stash). 

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