When Marty McFly traveled forward to 2015 in Back to the Future Part II, he was greeted by a theater marquee touting Jaws 19, a canny wink to the franchise craze that was only just starting to take over Hollywood. (If Back to the Future had been released 20 years later, there's no way they would have stopped after just three.) Now, to celebrate Marty's impending arrival in our timelines — set your watches for October 21, 2015 — Universal has released its own trailer for Jaws 19, showing where the franchise headed after 1987's Jaws: The Revenge. (Highlights include J.A.W.S. 7 and Jaws 17: Fifty Scales of Grey.) After finishing this trailer, the studio went back to prepping for Jurassic World 2 and Furious 8.
Pixar pushed back the release of The Good Dinosaur, leaving 2014 as the first year since 2005 without a Pixar movie. Now, in 2015, we are about to see the second by-product of this decision: Pixar will have to compete against itself for the Best Animated Feature Oscar. Watch the first full trailer for The Good Dinosaur below and decide if you think it has a chance against Inside Out. Or maybe you think Minions will win in a walk; however, if that's case, we have to assume you are 4 years old, and if so, what are you doing reading blogs? Blogs are for big girls and boys, who need to kill time until their lunch.
A week after Cathriona White died, THR reports that Jim Carrey's off-again, on-again girlfriend was married to an unknown man at the time of her alleged suicide. According to the L.A. medical examiner's office, White's medical information listed a husband as her next of kin, but no other details of her marriage are confirmed. A THR source in Carrey's camp says White was separated from her husband and about to get a divorce, adding, "There is no way that Jim would have taken her out to public places if he thought [otherwise]." The medical examiner also stated that White's body will be repatriated to Ireland.
When first we checked in on Furious 8's search for a director, Universal was wary of Vin Diesel taking the job himself. And when we last checked in, Diesel was promising to reveal the choice on his Facebook page; leading to fears that he would indeed pull a Dick Cheney. Now THR reports that's unlikely to be the case, as the studio has landed on Straight Outta Compton's F. Gary Gray for the gig. Gray was one of three filmmakers short-listed for the job alongside The Transporter's Louis Leterrier and You're Next's Adam Wingard; his filmography also includes A Man Apart with Vin Diesel and The Italian Job with Jason Statham. It's like he was part of the family already.
The playfully dead-serious drama Experimenter depicts the life of Stanley Milgram (Peter Sarsgaard), the Yale social scientist who, in 1961, directed his subjects (“teachers”) to deliver shocks of escalating severity to a “learner” in order to gauge their level of obedience to “malevolent authority.” The writer-director, Michael Almereyda, clearly sees his protagonist as a master of stagecraft as well as psychology, and he gives the movie a whiff of the circus — a gorgeous, photorealist circus, often against tinted black-and-white backdrops that push its ringmaster into the foreground. Milgram talks to us, shows us things. He puts his work in historical context. He expounds on the role of obedience in turning individuals into instruments of the state — as in Nazi Germany. The word reflective suggests a slowdown or cessation of action proper, but Experimenter is busily, thrillingly reflective. Its artificiality makes it seem even more alive, more in the present tense.
Although Will Smith has been busy making kids and stuff (his words), he had time last week to drop his first guest track in a decade. The release prompted a visit to Zane Lowe's Beats 1 Radio show, where the former Fresh Prince dished about more new music, his movie career, and what the heck is happening with that on-again-off-again, long-awaited Bad Boys sequel. Read on for highlights.
A James Franco–painted picture is always worth at least three words. But this one, of Randall Park as his Interview character, is particularly provocative.
Like Montage of Heck, the doc's forthcoming companion album fittingly promises a slew of unreleased Kurt Cobain material. Monday brought forth one such confection, an early version of "Sappy" (or a precursor to "Verse Chorus Verse"), from Cobain's collection of personal recordings. Rolling Stone notes the song endured a torturous path to release, one that saw multiple reiterations and an ultimate shift into more polished, upbeat sonic territory. This cut sounds like it could serve as a piece of the soundtrack to The Conjuring — just with the Nirvana singer's trademark drawling vocals over top. It's eerie, but as with most of the other music recently resurfacing, a treat nonetheless. You can grab the album, as well as the hard-copy release of the movie, on November 13, just in time for a very pensive, moody Thanksgiving.
There's going to be a decent helping (read: veritable boatload) of Mad Max and Transformers projects rolling out in the next ten years. If you like things that go boom, you're probably happy — elated, even. (Or maybe you're respectively half-happy, half-sad.) Regardless, stick with us just so you know exactly how much you have to endure, because whether you like it or not, these blockbuster bundles of adrenaline will be a part of your moviegoing life for awhile. You'll probably have the responsibility of introducing a child (either of yours or someone else's) to one of these forever franchises, so plan accordingly.
There’s one shot from Mad Max: Fury Road that has stuck with me longer than most of the two-hour movies I’ve seen this year, and if you blink, you’re liable to miss it. The moment comes deep into the movie, as Fury Road’s dazzling all-day car chase has given way to blue-hued night, and our heroes have driven to a new, different wasteland. The shot that establishes this new location puts their familiar convoy deep into the background, while the foreground is dominated by dead trees, misty muck, and a handful of unearthly, silhouetted feathered beasts.
A week after notable humanist Meryl Streep distanced herself from the word feminist in her Suffragette interview with Time Out London, photos have begun to circulate of the cast wearing T-shirts with a quote from Emmeline Pankhurst, the woman Meryl portrays in the film. The T-shirt, which says, "I'd rather be a rebel than a slave," is meant to inspire women to fight for the right to vote. Here's the complete wording:
Say, what's that Amy Schumer doing today? Hanging out with her new best friend and collaborator Jennifer Lawrence, of course, and over the weekend it seems they picked up two new pals: Lawrence's Passengers co-star Chris Pratt, and his old co-star Aziz Ansari, thus creating the very likable super-celebrity Amyfer Pratsari. Judging from Schumer's and Ansari's Instagrams, the foursome was hard at work writing scripts — which, as most writers will tell you, usually involves plentiful breaks for taking naps and playing on swings.
Heists — do they ever go right? The first trailer for John Hillcoat's dirty-cop thriller Triple 9 is here, and it's filled with shocking violence, artfully terrifying imagery, and a cast that includes [takes deep breath] Woody Harrelson, Casey Affleck, Kate Winslet, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Anthony Mackie, Norman Reedus, Aaron Paul, Gal Gadot, Teresa Palmer, and Clifton Collins Jr. And just to keep thing from getting too highbrow, there's even a creepy children's choir doing "This Little Piggy," because this is still an action-movie trailer released in 2015.
We're all kicking ourselves for not seeing Broadway's latest darling, Hamilton, while it was still in previews at the Public Theater — since the move, tickets are almost impossible to get. But last night at the New Yorker Festival, Lin-Manuel Miranda, writer and star of the hit show, offered a glimmer of hope: Fear not, Broadway nerds, they are filming Hamilton! "You-couldn't-make-it-up filmmakers have been coming to the show," Miranda said. "I have talked to producers about filming this cast before this cast moves on." He said they will definitely film the production before June, but the team is still undecided about what the format will look like. Fingers crossed for a telecast à la . While you dream about that, scope out more highlights from his talk below:
‘Writing’s on the Wall’ (Spectre) Music Video: Sam Smith and Daniel Craig Show Us Their Best Brooding With the Bond GirlsBy Sean Fitz-Gerald
This Luke Monaghan–directed piece inexplicably came a little late today — much to the consternation of Sam Smith and fans. But it did still come, and that's what counts, because with it comes more footage from Spectre! Along with Smith crooning his heart out, the vid also features Monica Bellucci, Léa Seydoux, Daniel Craig, and lots of brooding looks into the distance. Thankfully, the clips interspersed here are less spoilers and more equal parts stunning suit, sunglasses, tequila, and perfume commercials. Mesh all those things together, and, as Smith notes, you have a true teaser of beauty. Catch the film itself on November 6.
With his sober but stirring Cold War suspense film Bridge of Spies, Steven Spielberg continues his creative evolution from fatherless child to nervous father wondering (absent role models) if he’s doing the right thing in the right way. His protagonist is James Donovan (Tom Hanks), a Brooklyn insurance lawyer tasked with defending a British-born Soviet citizen named Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance) against the charge of spying for the Soviets. We see in the first (masterly) sequence that Abel is indeed a spy (no mystery), but Donovan wants the court to regard the man not as a traitor to be executed but a foreign soldier doing his duty — and bravely refusing to give up information. In this most nebulous of conflicts in a world that could nonetheless end in a nuclear instant, a figure like Abel would look mighty good strapped in the electric chair. But Donovan — though pilloried — stands tall.
For many, the most-loved parts of Forgetting Sarah Marshall, the 2008 romantic comedy written by and starring Jason Segel, are when Segel's lovable-schmuck character performs a puppet rock-opera centered around the life of Count Dracula, cheekily titled A Taste for Love. However, puppet enthusiasts might be surprised to learn that the opera was not specifically written for the movie but was actually a real passion project Segel had pursued many years earlier.
Matt Damon may have earned the ire of the internet when he again put his very famous foot in his very famous mouth this week, but all those angry headlines didn't deter moviegoers from going to see The Martian, which landed the second-best October opening ever with $55 million, about $700,000 behind Alfonso Cuaron's Gravity. Ridley Scott's space epic has been well-received, the Oscar buzz has already started, and it also opened with $45.2 million internationally. The weekend's other major movie from a major-movie director, Robert Zemeckis's The Walk, didn't do nearly as well, roping in a paltry $240,379 on Wednesday, and making $1.9 million its entire five-day opening. The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Philippe Petit, the daring Frenchman who strung a metal cable between the Twin Towers in 1974 and walked on the wire, some 110 stories in the sky.
Is the correct title for Iranian director Jafar Panahi’s latest film just Taxi, or Jafar Panahi’s Taxi? That ambiguity speaks to the movie’s beguiling, quietly revolutionary nature. On one level, this is a film about Panahi driving a taxi — which may not sound like much, but feels like an act of civil disobedience when you consider the fact that his last two, This is Not a Film and Closed Curtain, were made under house arrest. Panahi is still a marked man; the Iranian government’s 20-year filmmaking ban against him continues to stand, and he has very limited freedom of movement. He was unable to travel to Germany to pick up the Golden Bear that Taxi won at Berlin earlier this year. “The Ministry of Islamic Guidance approves the credits of all distributable films,” reads the onscreen text at the end of Taxi. “Despite my heartfelt wish, this film has no credits.” Which brings us to the second reason for that beautifully ambiguous possessive: We have no real idea who any of the other people who worked on this film are. Taxi is Jafar Panahi’s, and his alone.
Bridge of Spies Is a Subtler Kind of Spielberg Movie
Sober but stirring, it continues his creative evolution from fatherless child to nervous father wondering (absent role models) if he’s doing the right thing in the right way.By David Edelstein
Freeheld Lacks the Energy and Passion of the Story, and Documentary, It’s Based On
A cause does not a movie make.By Bilge Ebiri
The Martian Soars
I can’t imagine anyone not liking this one.By David Edelstein