The New York Film Festival has added David Fincher's "Gone Girl" to the equation and will do the same for Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice" in due time, but let me skip ahead a bit. The "Interstellar" onslaught, you see, has begun. New posters, interviews, a new trailer, TV spots during Sunday Night Football, more imagery, a reported (massive) running time, etc. Nolan's film is finished and has been shown here and there over the last week or so and, well, on a movie like this, it's hard to contain the trickle of buzz (even if everyone is probably signing NDAs). And the buzz is mostly great.
"Harry Potter" and "Perks of Being a Wallflower" star Emma Watson made waves last week for her impassioned United Nations speech on the topic of feminism. Watson's “HeForShe" campaign made waves in the social sphere and continues to snowball with support, but it appears the endeavor won't disable the star from going about her day job. Deadline reports that Watson is on board a Chilean docudrama, fresh territory for the worldly 24-year-old actress.
Update: The 2015 Oscar race may be a twofer for Julianne Moore, with word that "Maps to the Stars" may sneak in a short release to qualify for the race. More details below.
One of the major surprises out of this year's Toronto International Film Festival was Julianne Moore's heartbreaking, subdued work in "Still Alice." A film that could easily have shriveled up into a ball of schmaltz, Moore, along with directors Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland, explore the debilitating effects of early onset Alzheimer's with confidence and familial tenderness. "Still Alice" doesn't twist its knife to illicit a sob-fest — the tears come naturally.
I think few who were paying attention to this year's foreign Oscar race expected Russia to choose "Leviathan" to represent the country. The film is essentially the Book of Job told against the backdrop of corrupt Russian politics, a movie director Andrey Zvyagintsev has even said he probably couldn't even get funded through the Russian Ministry of Culture today as he did two years ago. That's how much things have shifted as of late. And yet, today the selection was made. "Leviathan" will represent Russia in the race.
"Saturday Night Live" is back tonight, so how about a bit of trivia? Sure, everyone from Tom Hanks to Ben Affleck has come to SNL for the big publicity burst that helps feed an Oscar campaign, but which cast members over the show's 40-year history have themselves been recognized by the Academy? It's actually a very exclusive club.
When listing influences for "Inherent Vice," an adaptation of Thomas Pynchon's 2009 detective novel, Paul Thomas Anderson drops genre staples that don't come as much of a surprise: "The Long Goodbye," "Kiss Me Deadly," "The Big Sleep" — on-screen mystery fiction done right. But his tonal reference points turn any conjured vision of the movie on its head. “‘Police Squad!’ and ‘Top Secret!’ are what I clued into,” Anderson told the New York Times in a recent profile. “We tried hard to imitate or rip off the Zucker brothers’ style of gags so the film can feel like the book feels: just packed with stuff. And fun.”
Tonight the New York Film Festival showed off the first of its wares with the opening night world premiere of David Fincher's "Gone Girl." A faithful adaptation of Gillian Flynn's twisted 2012 page-turner, it brings a very different swagger into the season, one of cynicism, the cold chill of deep truths ripe for the kind of dead-faced satire the filmmaker has bathed them in here. But is it an Oscar player for Fox or will the Academy flinch? (I hate myself for even typing that sentence, trust me.)
NEW YORK — David Fincher's "Gone Girl" had a triumphant debut at the 2014 New York Film Festival Friday night and the acclaimed filmmaker and his cast spent a good 30 minutes after the official press screening taking questions from the media the movie so deliciously skewers. Entertainment reporters may not be at the level of a Nancy Grace, but they will still spin what they can from a pull quote, including anything that relates to the fact that none other than the new Batman, Ben Affleck, was on stage. And, yes, even his co-stars wouldn't let him forget it.
TORONTO — You likely have no idea who Ben Schnetzer is. Even if you're one of the few moviegoers who saw the WWII drama "The Book Thief" in theaters last year you wouldn't know the name. You'd remember his performance as Max, the young Jewish man who hides in the family's basement, but you'd find yourself scratching your head as to who actually played him. Since finishing "Thief," the 24-year-old has shot three other movies: "The Riot Club," "Pride" and Duncan Jones' big screen adaptation of the classic video game "Warcraft." Each project finds him playing widely different roles, but if you're looking for a true sign of his talent you must see his performance in the new drama "Pride."
There's been barely a moment to breathe since "The Imitation Game," "Birdman" and "The Theory of Everything" showed their wares at Venice, Telluride and Toronto, but there's rarely any rest for the weary during awards season. Three films are making noise in the Best Picture rankings this week and all for different reasons.