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by Jason Gargano 07.29.2011
at 12:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: Ryan Gosling x 2 Edition

We have a odd-ball batch of opening films this week, including a pair of documentaries (one about a fascinating 1970s experiment on a chimpanzee, the other about a money- and fame-hungry woman disguised as a political and cultural leader); a pair of genre mashups (one a sci-fi western starring Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford, the other a romantic dramedy featuring yet another beguiling turn from Ryan Gosling); and a 1980s cartoon staple that probably should have stayed untouched by studio executives.

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by Jason Gargano 12.03.2008
at 05:35 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Spirit of Indie Cinema

The 2009 Independent Spirit Awards were unveiled yesterday. And while the Academy Awards' more adventurous little brother has been leaning toward higher-profile specialty films in recent years (like Juno and Little Miss Sunshine), the ’09 batch hearkens back to the awards’ early days when ultra-low-budget indies ruled the scene.

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by Jason Gargano 10.16.2009
at 01:33 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: The Curious Case of Spike Jonze

Spike Jonze is a curious case.

Born into the Spiegel mail-order catalog fortune (his given name is Adam Spiegel), the teenage Jonze found solace in the skateboard/BMX bike culture of the 1980s. A DIY-bred autodidact with an oddball sense of humor, Jonze’s filmmaking “career” kick-started with a series of crafty skateboard videos that caught the attention of the Beastie Boys, who eventually recruited him to direct their playful, refreshingly lo-fi video for 1994’s “Sabotage.”

A series of inventive music videos followed, all of which were informed by Jonze’s boundless imagination and complete indifference to the flashy, jump-cut-laden techniques that flooded other MTV fare.

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by Jason Gargano 10.09.2009
at 01:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Paranormal Release Pattern

What’s up with this supposedly scary movie called Paranormal Activity?

Paramount Pictures, the film’s distributor, has been sending me e-mail press releases with big, bold-faced titles like “More Than 230,000 Fans “Demand” Paranormal Activity" and "Fans Spur the Film’s Opening in Twenty Additional Cities Across the Country” and “Paranormal Activity Sells Out Midnight Screenings Across the Country.”

Really?

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by Jason Gargano 10.21.2011
at 01:53 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: Emilio Estevez Edition

Emilio Estevez has been making movies nearly as far back as I can remember going to movies.

My first memories of Estevez date back to 1983's The Outsiders, in which he was but one of many young actor dudes (including but not limited toTom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Rob Lowe and Matt Dillon) to grace Francis Ford Coppola's slick, black-and-white adaptation of S.E. Hinton's novel. That was followed by Alex Cox's Repo Man, which I wouldn't see until several years after its 1984 theatrical release (when I was old enough to rent it for myself) and which probably stands, at this late date, as the best film with which Estevez has ever been associated.

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by Jason Gargano 09.29.2011
at 10:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Cincinnati Film Festival Opens Tonight!

New Cincinnati Film Festival (CFF) Director of Programming Brandon Harris isn't shy about pimping the quality of his choices for this year's fest: “This represents the most ambitious and internationally acclaimed program of films ever screened in Cincinnati.”

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by Jason Gargano 12.07.2010
at 05:35 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Zuckerberg Critiques 'The Social Network'

Did anyone else see baby-faced Facebook founder/CEO Mark Zuckerberg on 60 Minutes the other night? The 26-year-old multi-billionaire told interviewer Leslie Stahl that, after initially vowing that he would never see David Fincher's Facebook origin story, The Social Network, he took the entire company to check out the film the day it opened in theaters.

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by Steven Rosen 07.26.2009
at 10:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
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Wishful Thinking at the Oxford Film Festival

I guess there’s nothing wrong with wishful thinking.

I bought my ticket for the 6:30 p.m. Friday film Official Rejection at Oxford International Film Festival — being held on short notice at the Esquire Theatre in Clifton — 90 minutes early because the volunteer at the information booth warned me it would be one of the better-attended movies. I then watched the clock as a friend and I had dinner nearby, wanting to be sure we got there in time for a good seat.

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by Jason Gargano 12.18.2010
at 11:52 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: David Thomson Edition

A fine last-minute option for the movie buff on your Christmas list, the fifth edition of David Thomson’s The New Biographical Dictionary of Film was published in late October. I finally got around to cracking it open this week … and I’ve yet to close it. Thomson’s 1,076-page tome is as addictive as ever, bound to keep one engrossed as they move from entries that have appeared in every edition since the first, in 1975, to new and/or updated capsules on those who’ve emerged since his most recent edition in 2004.

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by Jason Gargano 11.05.2010
at 10:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: ’Tis the Season

It's already November? It seems like it just yesterday that The Hurt Locker took home a surprising (and much deserved) Best Picture win. We're now entering the stretch drive of the fall movie season, a period laden with the big studios' “prestige” films — those they believe have the best chance to grab awards love (thus bigger box-office numbers and the media attention that follows), none more important than that shown by the Academy.

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