Getting an established composer to score a short film is downright impossible and, if your short is low budget, not financially feasible. Thankfully, Danny Elfman (Batman, Edward Scissorhands,Alice Through the Looking Glass) is going another direction!
Billy Ray is that rare combination of a successful screenwriter (The Hunger Games, Captain Phillips) who’s also a first rate director (Shattered Glass, Breach). His latest movie is “Secret In Their Eyes,” a topnotch thriller starring Julia Roberts and Chiwetel Ejiofor, is a remake of the Oscar winning Argentinean feature “El Secreto De Sus Ojos.” Thankfully, Ray’s version isn’t a step by step regurgitation of the film, as it manages to carve its own singular narrative.
Though he’s been tabbed as a horror filmmaker, Eli Roth’s distinct point of view, audaciously infused in his body of work (Cabin Fever, Hostel, The Green Inferno), suggests an artist who’s not confined by the strictures of genre labeling. With his new thriller Knock Knock, Roth ventures into the perilous journey of a happy and well to do family man (Keanu Reeves) whose world is shattered by two seductive women (Lorena Izzo and Ana de Armas) with vengeance on their minds.
Opening in theaters Friday, Before We Go marks Chris Evans’ feature directing debut. Set in New York City, the comedy-drama centers on Nick (Evans), a jazz trumpeter who has a once in a lifetime experience with Brooke (Alice Eve), a complete stranger who’s in need of a little assistance.
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl may, upon first blush, seem like a manipulative, tear-jerker about the friendship between an anti-social high school senior named Greg (Thomas Mann) and Rachel (Olivia Cooke), a fellow classmate who’s been diagnosed with cancer.
Thankfully director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, writer Jesse Andrews (adapting from his own book), and an inspired ensemble and crew brought something entirely different to the equation.
Filmmaker John MacLean delivers a visually arresting Western with Slow West, a project that’s headlined by Michael Fassbender and Kodi Smit-McPhee. During our interview, he talked about the importance of storyboarding the entire feature.
Continue reading ““Slow West” Director John MacLean on Storyboarding Advantages”
One of my more anticipated films this year is Ricki and the Flash, which features Meryl Streep as a singer/guitarist who has put music ahead of her family. Although she tries her best to reconnect with her grown kids (Streep’s own daughter Mamie Gummer and Sebastian Stan), certain wounds are hard to heal.
St. Vincent, one of last year’s most beloved films, was buoyed by inspired performances by a stellar ensemble ( Bill Murray, Naomi Watts, Jaeden Lieberher, Melissa McCarthy) and top notch storytelling from writer/director Ted Melfi.
Opening in select theaters today for Academy Awards consideration, The Salt of the Earth centers on the remarkable and inspiring life of Sebastião Salgado, a social photographer who has traveled the world documenting different aspects of humanity.
Filmmaker Wim Wenders had been an admirer of Salgado’s work for over 25 years (two of Salgado’s prints hang over Wenders’ desk), and his inspiration for the documentary took flight when he visited the photographer’s studio and checked out his latest project “Genesis” (the exhibition runs at the International Center of Photography through January 15).
Wenders joined Salgado and his son Juliano Ribeiro Salgado on a photographic excursion, and eventually the filmmaker and Juliano teamed up as co-directors for The Salt of the Earth.
During my interview with Wim Wenders and Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, the pair talked about the “genesis” of the documentary and how the narrative took a different creative shape in the editing room. For Wenders, The Salt of the Earth goes beyond Salgado’s pictures.
“I must admit, for a long time, I thought we were making a movie about a photographer and only slowly it dawned on me that this was a bigger thing. We were touching on something that surpassed (it being) a film about a photographer. His life was about so much more.”
Joaquin Phoenix’s most frequent collaborations have come with director James Gray (The Immigrant, Two Lovers, The Yards, We Own The Night) and Inherent Vice marks his second cinematic experience with filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson (their first was the 2012 drama The Master).
During the interviews for Inherent Vice, Joaquin Phoenix talked about why he loves collaborating with Paul Thomas Anderson:
“He’s really inclusive and warm and thoughtful – He’s one of those people that makes you feel you’re important and you have value – even if you don’t. He deserves all the credit.”
Phoenix also added that Anderson’s approach to a scene isn’t based on rigid story structure, but instead the auteur enjoys exploring the creative avenues that each moment of film provides. Click on the media bar below to hear Phoenix’s full answer:
Co-starring Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, and Katherine Waterston, Inherent Vice opens in limited release December 12 and nationwide January 9, 2015.