Jan 5, 2010

The Road Movie Review

"Cannibalism is the biggest fear," warns "The Man" (Mortensen) as he surveys a post-apocalyptic landscape of withered trees, drifts of ash and derelict buildings.

Muffled in grease-stained puffa jacket and pushing his grimy possessions in a dented shopping trolley, he's accompanied by his gaunt son "The Boy" (Smit-McPhee) as they toil across the barren tundra.

Through a series of flashbacks, we see how The Man's marriage to The Woman (Theron) fractured following the birth of their son and an unexplained nuclear winter returned civilisation to the stone age.

Now, years on, they have to desperately forage for food (mainly canned so it hasn't rotted), stay warm in a perpetual dusk and hold their resolve as they trudge along abandoned freeways towards the coast.

However, the lethal threat comes from gangs of feral marauders roaming the dust-coated hills and valleys, hunting down stragglers like The Man and The Boy like carrion to be killed and consumed.

After writer Cormac McCarthy's novel No Country For Old Men was so masterfully adapted for the big screen by the Coen Brothers, director John Hillcoat performs a similar service for The Road.

Make no mistake, this is a grim watch: human larders fester in the cellars of creaking mansions and flesh-eating ghouls scour fields of ash for the innocent all against a backdrop of Stygian gloom.

Yet there is hope. The intrinsic goodness of Mortensen's protective dad and his son's innate morality survive the oppressive desperation that has driven basic humanity from others.

Their bond is unbreakable and its steely strength propels them forward - faltering occasionally: The Man has to be won round to show charity to Robert Duvall's hobo - more in grim hope than sunny expectation.

There are a couple of gripes. The score - civilised strings and piano - doesn't sit well with the ecological hades in which they find themselves and the ending seems brighter than the book.

But, no matter. This is a superlative piece of flim-making. Terse, raw and unadorned, there are no cheap tricks to devalue a story of unconditional love,

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The Road
Coming Soon to Cinemas 08/01/10

Genre: Drama/ Thriller

Director: John Hillcoat

Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Charlize Theron, Robert Duvall, Guy Pearce

The Road (2)

Story: Novelist Cormac McCarthy's spellbindingly bleak story of a post-apocalyptic road trip is sublimely served by Proposition director John Hillcoat's faithful adaptation. Viggo Mortensen and newcomer Kodi Smit-McPhee play the father and son trudging across the scorched earth in search of food while avoiding feral, cannibalistic gangs. Stunningly bleak visuals and first-rate acting complement a story that celebrates the indestructible bond between father and son. Marvellous.

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Ninja Assassin Pictures

Ninja Assassin

Raizo (Rain) is one of the deadliest assassins in the world. Taken into a secret society as an orphaned kid, Raizo was taught the ways of the Ozunu Clan. Haunted by the memory of his friend's death at the hands of his masters, Raizo escapes and vanishes. But he will have his revenge...

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Ninja Assassin
Coming Soonto Cinemas 08/01/10
Director: James McTeigue
Stars: Rain, Naomie Harris, Rick Yune
Year: 2009 Running Time: 99 mins


Dancer-turned-actor Rain plays deadly assassin Raizo. After being plucked off the streets as a child, he was transformed into a trained killer by the secret Ozunu Clan. However, he is haunted by the sinister group's merciless execution of his friend and prepares revenge...

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It's Complicated Pictures

It's Complicated

Streep plays Jane, a divorced mother of three (now grown up) kids who owns a popular bakery and gets on just fine with her now-remarried ex-husband, Jake (Baldwin). When the pair of them head out of town for their son's graduation, they go to dinner - and find things getting complicated. Meanwhile, Steve Martin turns up to refit Jane's kitchen - and finds himself falling in love with her.

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It's Complicated Movie Review

It’s not complicated at all, really. While living in separated harmony, Kate (Streep) and her ex-husband Jake (Baldwin) arrive in New York for their son’s graduation, get drunk, and end up in bed together for the first time in ten years.

The problem is that Jake is now married to Agness (Lake Bell), a controlling nymphette who came with one horrid brat and is desperate for another. And, with the last of their three children having only just flown the coop, Kate has never really tasted the single life.

Still, they continue the affair back in California. But will Kate fall for Jake’s lewd and lardy charms once again, or is there hope for Adam (Martin), the thoroughly nice divorcee who is redesigning her kitchen?

Quite why writer-director Meyers' script was deemed worthy of a Golden Globe nomination is a mystery, since every amusing situation – a marijuana-stoked party experience; an embarrassing webcam episode - is tempered by a moment of toe-curling mawkishness and undertones so false you could use them as dentures.

From patisserie proprietor Kate and lawyer Jake to their slappably spoilt kids and the conveniently awful Agness, everyone is rich, successful, and blissfully unaware of the real meaning of hardship.

So there’s no danger of any permanent harm being done. Except, perhaps, to the audience’s intelligence.

“That looks amazing,” drools Adam as Kate rustles up a ham and cheese toastie. “It’s called ‘croque monsieur’ – I learned how to make it in Paris ,” she informs him. Just wait til she brings out the vol-au-vents and Ferrero Rochers, sunshine.

Luckily, the more recognisable members of the cast gather up any nuggets of truth and genuine sentiment to make the patronising more palatable.

Streep is on a comedy roll after Mamma Mia! and Julie & Julia, while John Krasinski (of The Office [US] and Away We Go) lends agreeable support as Jake and Kate’s future son-in-law. Martin also goes some way to atoning for the recent atrocities he’s committed in the name of Clouseau.

And Baldwin, apparently at peace with his inexorable transformation into William Shatner, riffs pleasingly on his 30 Rock persona to flesh out what could have been a two-dimensional rogue.

Following the crime to comedy that was The Holiday, this is a marked improvement from Meyers.

But while making a few pithy observations about the mid-life condition, it's no more complicated - or profound - than a racy issue of Hello!

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It's Complicated

Coming Soon

to Cinemas 08/01/10

: Nancy Meyers

Stars: Meryl Streep, Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin, John Krasinski, Lake Bell

Year: 2009 Running Time: 115 mins Rating: 3 out of 5 3 stars Certificate 12A 12A


Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin are ‘exes with benefits’, an amicably divorced couple who rekindle the old spark at their son’s graduation. Trouble is, it’s taken her ten years to refind her romantic feet and he’s now married to a much younger woman. Steve Martin is the right guy who appears at the wrong time in another bout of gentle farce and middle-aged canoodling from writer-director Nancy ‘Something’s Gotta Give’ Meyers.

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St Trinian's 2 Pictures

St Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold

The cheeky noughties reboot of the classic 50s Ealing comedy continues with the belles of St Trinian's on the hunt for the mythical Fritton's gold - the hidden plunder of a 17th century pirate. However, the evil Pomfrey (David Tennant) has also got designs on the stash and will stop at nothing - well, maybe Rupert Everett in drag - in order to get his hands on it. Gymslipped mayhem ensues.

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McConaughey announces birth of second child

Actor Matthew McConaughey and his girlfriend Camila Alves have announced the birth of their second child — a baby girl.

The actor says on his Web site that Vida Alves McConaughey was born Sunday. She weighs seven pounds, seven ounces.

McConaughey says his girlfriend, model Camila Alves, is "recovering wonderfully" and the couple welcomed "this little lady into our family."

The couple had a son, Levi, in 2008.

McConaughey spokesman Alan Nierob confirmed the Web posting in an e-mail Monday.

Elton John helps Eminem to get off drugs

Legendary British musician Elton John says he has been helping American rapper Eminem to get rid of drugs for more than a year.

"As a recovered drug abuser, I am happy to help people if they want the assistance but drugs make people so arrogant that they often reject [help]," starpulse.com quoted John as saying.

"I am helping Eminem and he is succeeding in his [fight] against substance abuse," he added.

Sandra Bullock can't get over her mother's death

Hollywood actress Sandra Bullock says she still grieves the death of her mother whom she lost to cancer nine years ago.

Bullock, 45, insists she is still struggling to cope with the loss, reports express.co.uk.

"It took me two years to accept that she's not here. It doesn't get easier, it just gets harder. But it's a good thing because I feel it and I value it and I am not rushing through life," said Bullock.

According to the actress, she found it easier to deal with the grief by using her power to help other women suffering from cancer.

"I love to do things that continue what she started, whether it's making candles or creating a place for women going through chemotherapy or to spend time with their families," she said.

'Couples Retreat' actor Vince Vaughn marries

"Wedding Crashers" actor Vince Vaughn is a groom.

Vaughn's spokesman, Alan Nierob, said Monday the 39-year-old "Couples Retreat" and "Swingers" actor wed 31-year-old real estate agent Kyla Weber in a small private ceremony Saturday outside Chicago. He said the nuptials were attended by family and close friends. It is the first marriage for both Weber and "The Break-Up" and "Four Christmases" leading man.

Vaughn previously dated "Break-Up" co-star Jennifer Aniston.

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Tom Cruise and Ben Stiller Reunite for 'The Hardy Men'

Previously playing together in 'Tropic Thunder', Tom Cruise and Ben Stiller are set to play in the same movie again called 'The Hardy Men', portraying the teen supersleuths.

Tom Cruise will reunite with his "Tropic Thunder" co-star Ben Stiller to bring literary detective brothers "The Hardy Boys" to life on the big screen. Plans are afoot to bring the two Hollywood stars together again to portray the teen supersleuths in the popular books as adults in "The Hardy Men".

Director Shawn Levy, who will produce the movie, tells Starpulse.com, "I saw how well Ben and Tom got along and that's what gave me the idea of wait a second, I've got to do a movie with them together. Wait a second, let's do 'The Hardy Men' with them together. That brainchild came about because I saw their chemistry as friends."

But Levy admits it could be a while before cameras begin rolling on the film - because he's having difficulty finding the perfect storyline. He adds, "Developing a movie for a movie star is hard. Developing a movie for two movie stars is a very, very challenging enterprise. The bull's eye is small and the tone has to be exactly right. So we are still working on it."

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George Clooney and 'Up in the Air' Become Favorite to Receive Golden Globe

Both George Clooney and his film 'Up in the Air', which are nominated for best Drama Actor and Best Film respectively, become favorite to land nods at 67th Annual Golden Globe Awards.

George Clooney and his film "Up in the Air" are set to have a golden night at the Golden Globes later this month, January 2010 after topping leading critics' picks in a new TheEnvelope.com poll. Eleven of the 20 experts who voted picked "Up In The Air" to claim top honors as Best Film, while 10 gave Clooney the edge over Jeff Bridges ("Crazy Heart") and Colin Firth ("A Single Man") in the Best Drama Actor category.

The Best Drama Actress fight will be a closely contested battle between Sandra Bullock ("The Blind Side") and Carey Mulligan ("An Education"), according to the critics. "It's Complicated" leads the way as the Best Comedy/Musical Picture, but the other four nominees - "The Hangover", "Julie & Julia", "Nine" and "500 Days of Summer" - all get votes.

Robert Downey Jr.'s turn as "Sherlock Holmes" earned him the bulk of votes for Best Comedy/Musical Actor and Meryl Streep is the clear favorite to land the Best Comedy/Musical Actress. Former couple Kathryn Bigelow ("The Hurt Locker") and James Cameron ("Avatar") will battle it out for the Best Director prize - Cameron landed nine votes to Bigelow's eight. The Golden Globe Awards will be held in Los Angeles on January 17.

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Johnny Depp's Car in 'Public Enemies' Is Set for Auction

1930 Ford Model Coupe, which was used by Johnny Depp when portraying John Dillinger in 'Public Enemies', will be up for auction at the 39th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction.

The 1930 Ford Model Coupe, which Johnny Depp drove in "Public Enemies", is to go under the hammer at auction in Arizona. The vehicle actually carried gangsters John Dillinger, Hommer Van Meter and John Hamilton to safety after an FBI raid in Little Bohemia, Wisconsin in the 1930s. Depp played Dillinger in the film.

The car will be the highlight item at the 39th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction, which will be held in Scottsdale between January 18 and 24, 2010. Dillinger reportedly sprayed pursuing cops with his Tommy gun from the vehicle.

Barrett-Jackson president Steve Davis tells WENN, "This car is a piece of American gangster history and as much a part of Dillinger's legend as his Tommy guns and Colt automatics. Not only did this particular car get the famous gangster out of a fix with the cops in hot pursuit, it was used in the recent Johnny Depp movie about Dillinger. So it's played an important role in history and cinema emulating history."

The Ford was carefully restored in 2007 to appear in "Public Enemies", preserving the original bullet holes and dimples under body filler and carefully documenting the original appearance including the upholstery soaked with blood.

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John Travolta Goes for Action in 'From Paris with Love' Fresh Trailer

In this upcoming action movie, FBI agent John Travolta and embassy worker JoAnother sneak peek at action movie "From Paris with Love" has been shared through a brand new trailer. A courtesy of Apple, the video features a lot of action scenes that can be seen in the film about an embassy officer who is partnered with an American spy.

Along with the debut of the new trailer, Lionsgate Films has also released two fresh images from the film. One of the pictures captures Melissa Mars standing between John Travolta and Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, while the other still features Travolta holding a gun.

In this movie, Rhys-Meyers plays James Reese, a low-ranking intelligence operative working in the office of the U.S. Ambassador in France. One day, he gets more than what he bargained for when he teams up with high-ranking U.S. agent Charlie Wax, portrayed by Travolta, who's been sent to Paris to stop a terrorist attack.

Developed using a script co-written by French filmmaker Luc Besson, "From Paris with Love" is directed by "District B13" helmer Pierre Morel. The flick is scheduled to hit U.S. theaters on February 5.

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