Posts Tagged ‘Michael Winterbottom’

Coming Soon: The Killer Inside Me

February 17, 2010

Director: Michael Winterbottom
Written by John Curran. Based on the book by Jim Thompson.
Starring Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba, Kate Hudson, Simon Baker
Lou Ford is the charming deputy sheriff in Nowheresville, Texas. Beneath that Mayberry P.F.D. exterior, however, lurks the mind of a psychopath. Stanley Kubrick said of Thompson’s novel that it was “Probably the most chilling and believable first-person story of a criminally warped mind I have ever encountered.”
Noel Murray: “The substance of Thompson’s work survives—in particular the sticky psychological and genealogical origins of Affleck’s psychosis, and his fear of being looked at as an outsider in his hometown—but too often the movie feels like a bumpy, circular road through the novel’s plot points, without enough time spent taking in the scenery.”

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Berlin 2010 Preview: Competition, Part 2

February 4, 2010

This year’s Berlinale features established filmmakers wandering into unfamiliar territory. Martin Scorsese gives a Dennis Lehane tale all the gaudy trappings of a Hammer horror film. Zhang Yimou puts down his ornate sword-play films for a farcical take on the Coen Brothers. 24 hour party person Michael Winterbottom even takes Texas by the tail in a full-blown film noir. Matters of faith also loom large in films from Germany, India and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Berlin is a broad church.

Read the first part of our Berlin Film Festival Competition preview.

The Killer Inside Me

Lou Ford is one of author Jim Thompson’s greatest antiheroes. Ford’s a psychotic charmer who keeps the peace in a town populated by mattress-happy dames and lowdown double-crossers. Guerilla filmmaker Michael Winterbottom (The Road to Guantanamo) isn’t everyone’s first choice to helm a Lone Star noir, but Casey Affleck seems just the right feller to fill Ford’s bloodstained boots.

Mammuth (Mammoth)

It’s easy to take Gerard Depardieu for granted, yet the shaggy icon delivers. Here he plays a worker who can’t retire until he finds his last six employers. That sends him on a journey around France astraddle his Mammoth motorcycle. Among the figures from his past is Isabelle Adjani, asleep for the last four decades. Written and directed by Benoît Delépine and Gustave de Kervern (Louise-Michel).

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Sundance 2010 Preview: Etc.

January 12, 2010

After a hard day watching documentaries about globalisation and touching dramas about growing up in a gentrified Echo Park, what’s a still fiending film fan to do? The answer is head for Sundance’s fringe events. This year, Park City at Midnight serves up a helping of Canadian revenge, a Guillermo del Toro-endorsed horror film, and the wackiest ski thriller since Hot Dog. Also pulling in the A-list names to Utah are two premieres celebrating the great American traditions of hot rock chicks and dying slowly in Texas.

Click here to read our U.S. Documentary Competition Preview
Click here to read our U.S. Dramatic Competition Preview
Click here to read our International Documentary Competition Preview
Click here to read our International Dramatic Competition Preview

Premieres

The Killer Inside Me

Jim Thompson’s bone-dry noir novels of dice ‘n’ deceit have inspired plenty of cinematic adaptations, ranging from Steve McQueen in The Getaway to John Cusack palming twenties in The Grifters. Bringing his 1952 masterpiece to the screen is director Michael Winterbottom, more used to guerilla filmmaking like In This World. The dream cast includes Casey Affleck as a sociopathic Texas sheriff and Jessica Alba and Kate Hudson as his itchy women. Don’t worry about the plot, because Thompson never did. Just groove on the fetid funereal atmosphere.

The Runaways

In the late ‘70s, the all-girl band The Runaways were fun, flirty, and just a little bit jailbait. After lighting up the charts with “Cherry Bomb,” guitarist Joan Jett hearted rock ‘n’ roll, lead guitarist Lita Ford kissed me deadly and singer Cherie Currie fell off the charts into addiction. Her memoir is the basis for this biopic, whose kiss between leads Dakota Fanning and Kristen Stewart has fuelled at least fanboy fantasy. Michael Shannon plays Kim Fowley, the scariest Svengali in rock ‘n’ roll.

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Career Advice for Lindsay Lohan

March 28, 2009

lindsay-lohan1Lindsay Lohan needs a job, dammit. Remember when she had “that Jodie Foster sort of seriousness and intent focus beneath her teenage persona“? Them days are gone. A friend has told the Daily Newsthat the actress is living on Samantha Ronson’s trust fund and the odd personal appearance. As one “pal” puts it:

“Lindsay’s money situation has never been great, but it’s only gotten worse over the last month. For every dollar she makes, she spends double. Her personal appearance fees are literally the only thing keeping her afloat. But here’s the rub: Because of her explosive relationship with Sam, she’s unable to get the type of cash she’s used to. The negative press and constant appearance cancellations are hurting her pocketbook.”

“Explosive,” you say?

Anyway, she’s coked up, seriously Sapphic, and her latest film is going straight to DVD. So what’s a faded star threatened with getting cut off to do?

We have the solution. Lohan needs to cut bait on her Mouseketeer/America’s Sweetheart persona and get in the art-house groove. There are plenty of directors out there taking home Cannes prizes and still starving. So Li-Lo, fire the agent, lower your rate and offer yourself up to them. You’ve already crossed the nudity Rubicon. Maybe it could be a journey into the disturbed psyche of a sexually frustrated woman. Or how about a journey into the disturbed psyche of an bored housewife. Or maybe just make a movie with Gaspar Noe. How about helping a poor auteur dust off one of those old Robbe-Grilletscripts that most be lying around? After the jump, we take a look at a handful of other glamour queens who decided to get their art house on. Lohan, hear us out: Jean-Luc Godard is still working!
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