Archive: July, 2012
Today, we wrote about the Blackstar Film Festival, a new film fest in Philly focusing on the African diaspora. Check out some of the our favorite trailers from the fest. These are just a taste of what's going on at the fest: In all, there are 40 films from four continents. The festival runs from Thu., Aug. 2 to Sun., Aug. 5. Tickets are $8, $5 for students.
Silver Linings Playbook, the Bradley Cooper/Jennifer Lawrence/Robert DeNiro tale of a guy just out of a mental institution trying to put his life back on track, based on the novel by Matthew Quick and shot in these-here-parts by David O. Russell of The Fighter fame, is one of a dozen or so hotly anticipated titles set for the Toronto International Film Festival, running Sept. 6 to 16th.
The 37th TIFF will open with Looper, Rian Johnson’s futuristic thriller starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis (as the same guy -- a hitman sent from the future to kill his younger self). Emily Blunt, Paul Dano and Jeff Daniels also star.
Other films with buzz:
The Dark Knight disappeared from TV, radio and newspapers over the weekend. No ads, anywhere. But in Los Angeles, the image of the soul-ravaged vigilante superhero still loomed: Christian Bale’s chiseled jaw jutting beneath his Bat-mask on billboards in Hollywood and Santa Monica, Pasadena and Sherman Oaks, images of Batman and The Dark Knight Rises’ uber-terrorist villain, Bane, facing off on bus shelters and parking garage kiosks.
On Saturday morning, I was in a bookstore in Los Feliz, just east of the heart of Hollywood. There on a table was a whole Dark Knight library: the graphic novels, the movie tie-ins, and a giant new coffee table book, The Art and Making of the Dark Knight Trilogy. I went to grab it, and stopped. Somehow the book seemed tainted, the whole display table of Bat-books situated in a terrible new context. Aurora, Colorado. James Holmes, A dozen dead, 58 wounded.
L.A. is an industry town, and everywhere the talk was about Warner Bros., the $250 million spent to make Christopher Nolan’s final Dark Knight installment, the $150 million in marketing. Will moviegoers stay away? What about the theater chains? How will they handle security issues? What if there are copycats? Those weren’t the first concerns on people’s minds. The shock and hurt, the empathy for the victims’ families and the survivors was foremost, I’m sure. But Holmes’ midnight massacre in theater 9 of the Century 16 multiplex in Aurora on Friday sent a seismic wave trembling through this town. All the usual business paradigms, the publicity strategies, the box office spins, the IMAX revenue reports… sent off into some dark, haunted limbo.
Warner Brothers, the studio that released "The Dark Knight Rises," issued a statement regarding the tragic shooting in an Auroro, Colorado midnight screening of the movie that left 12 dead and 38 injured:
“Warner Bros. is deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident. We extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims at this tragic time.”
The Paris premiere of the film was canceled in reaction to the shooting.
The vampire thing didn’t work so well, but maybe that’s a good thing for Steven Spielberg, Daniel Day Lewis and company. In Lincoln, the historical/political/bio-drama based on Pulitzer Prize-winner Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, Day Lewis portrays the 16th president of the United States, tracing his rise from one-term congressman and prairie lawyer to the White House, and then on into the cataclysms of the Civil War. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter this is not.
Spielberg has maintained that he wouldn't release Lincoln until after the presidential election in November -- he didn’t want the film to become politicized by either the Obama or Romney camps. (That said, Spielberg is a big Obama supporter.) But now DreamWorks/Disney has set a release date: On November 9, the Friday following the elections, the film will open in a few top markets. A week later, everywhere. Sally Field is Mary Todd Lincoln in the film, Joseph Gordon-Levitt is Robert Todd Lincoln, the First Couple’s son and future Secretary of War, Jared Harris is Ulysses S. Grant and Tommy Lee Jones is Thaddeus Stevens, the powerful Pennsylvania Congressman. If Day Lewis doesn’t nab an Oscar nomination for this one, then they’ve all done something seriously wrong.
Steven Rea, Inquirer Film Critic:
Every year, the Colonial Theatre in Phoenixville hosts BlobFest, a tribute to the classic 1958 film "The Blob," starring Steve McQueen. Part of the festivities, that took place July 14 and 15th, includes recreating the famous run-out scene, in which teens try to escape the deadly goop, filmed right at the Colonial. YouTube user ShawnProctor1 got last weekend's run-out on film for your viewing pleasure.
Is it just us, or do these people look far too happy to be running from murderous Jell-o?
Comic-Con unveils footage, teasers, trailers, from Twilight, Man of Steel, Expendables 2 and Lone Ranger
Comic-Con, the annual summer rite of frenzied movie fandom, kicked off Thursday with a Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn -- Part 2 panel, with Kristen Stewart talking about what it’s like to finally be a vampire and TSBD2 director Bill Condon, in London doing the post-production work, video-messaging the crowd – and treating them to the final installment’s opening seven minutes. In the sequence, Stewart’s Bella and Pattinson’s Edward prowl around for fresh, warm-blooded critters to feast on. Stewart, red-eyed and, well, vampiric, takes down a big, wild cat, according to a report from The Wrap. Breaking Dawn: Part 2 opens November 16.
A launching pad for sci-fi, fantasy, and genre fare, this year’s San Diego confab also brought in former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and his senior citizen co-star Sylvester Stallone, to discuss the body count and bad-ass attitude of their Expendables sequel, opening August 17. Other big-dealpics to be unveiled with hype and hoopla before Comic-Con ends on Sunday: Lone Ranger, the re-cowboy-boot with Johnny Depp as Tonto; Man of Steel, the Zack Snyder-helmed Superman reimagining; Elysium, the 22nd century space thriller starring Matt Damon, from District 9 director Neil Blomkamp, and Pacific Rim, Guillermo del Toro’s aliens-attack-Earth extravaganza, with Idris Elba and Ron Perlman. All are set for 2013 release.
Also on Philly.com: