The Playlist

Review: 'Norman' A Well-Observed, Tender & Moving Ode To Adolescence & Loss

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 5:15 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Being a teenager is hard enough, but for Norman (Dan Byrd), the minefield of emotions he is forced to navigate is almost absurd in its proportion. Certainly not popular, but not a total exile either, Norman seems to exist in his own bubble at high school, one that keeps his pervading depression and suicidal thoughts as a close companion. But if this weren't enough, Norman, still reeling from the tragic death of his mother in a car accident, is also bearing witness to his father (Richard Jenkins) wasting away in the final stage of stomach cancer, with this painful experience compounded by the worry that the bills around the house are starting to pile up. But with all of this comes a shining ray of light in Emily (Emily VanCamp), a classmate who shares Norman's oddball sense of humor (and is the rare girl who loves Monty Python) but more importantly, shows a genuine interest in the outsider.
More: Films, Review

Watch: Trailer For Christian Bale & Zhang Yimou’s Oscar Contending ‘The Flowers Of War’

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 4:52 AM
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  • 10 Comments
After winning his first Oscar last year for "The Fighter," can Christian Bale make it a repeat this year? Judging by the first international trailer for Zhang Yimou's Oscar-contending "The Flowers Of War," we somehow doubt it, but the scale of the film does look impressive even if the tone seems somewhat uneven.

‘Jupiter Ascending’ Will Be The Wachowskis Next Film, Shooting To Start Spring 2012

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 4:28 AM
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  • 4 Comments
First cropping up in the middle of the summer, the mysterious "Jupiter Rising" (now being called "Jupiter Ascending") was added to the already lengthy list of movies being eyed by The Wachowskis. And since 2008's eyeball-melting "Speed Racer," they've certainly had no shortage of movies to choose from. While "Cloud Atlas" is now in front of cameras, “Hood,” an “urban retelling” of the Robin Hood mythology with Will Smith sought to star, and the R-rated Iraq War gay romance picture “CN-9” (aka “Cobalt Neutral 9”) were also tossed around as possibilities. But the former sounds, frankly, pretty terrible and latter is not going to get financing from any major studio ever, so it looks like the sibling duo will go back once again to their comfortable sci-fi territory for their next flick.

Review: 'Le Havre' Another Hilarious, Humane & Moving Film From Aki Kaurismaki

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 4:13 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The following is a reprint of our review from Cannes.

'Bad Teacher' Trio Director Jake Kasdan & Writers Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg Team For New Film

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 4:09 AM
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  • 0 Comments
While it wasn't the funniest R-rated comedy of the summer, "Bad Teacher" was certainly one of the most successful. Made on a slim budget of around $20 million, the film went on take in over $200 million worldwide, so no surprise that Sony are eager to get the creative team behind that film back together. And it looks like it's going to be another tale of jilted love.

And So It Begins, 'The Descendants' & 'Martha Marcy May Marlene' Lead Gotham Award Nominees

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 3:28 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Well folks, the first batch of nominees this awards season have been revealed, with the Gotham Independent Film Award nominations landing this morning, giving an early peek at what will likely be some strong contenders down the line. Bear in mind, the Gotham Awards have little bearing on the eventual Oscar nods with only last year's Best Feature winner "Winter's Bone" factoring into the proceedings at the Kodak Theater. However, it does represent a good chunk of what you might see at the Independent Spirit Awards later in the year and if anything, these nominations confirm that Fox Searchlight is going to have another banner year on the statue circuit.

Review: 'Margin Call' A Compelling 24-Hour Slice Of The Start Of The Economic Collapse

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 3:15 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The following is a reprint of our review from Cannes.

Warner Bros. Aiming For February/March 2012 Start On 'Akira,' Garrett Hedlund Frontrunner To Star

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 3:04 AM
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  • 16 Comments
After some minor drama, which saw long-attached helmer Albert Hughes bail on the gestating "Akira" remake this spring, the project came back to the life in the middle of the summer when "Unknown" and "Orphan" director Jaume Collet-Serra came aboard. Things then went quiet on the project, but once again, it has come roaring back to life as Variety reports that a late February/early March 2012 production start is being eyed, and moreover, the leading man may have been found.

Martin Scorsese & Mick Jagger's Music Drama At HBO Now Moving Forward

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 2:48 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Given the five thousand things Martin Scorsese is doing at any given moment, we kind of forgot about this project, a music drama with his long time Rolling Stones bud Mick Jagger, that was set up last summer over at HBO. Penned by "Boardwalk Empire" (on which Scorsese serves as executive producer) and "The Sopranos" writer Terence Winter, it was first announced under the working title "History Of Music," and was initially envisioned by Jagger as a feature film that followed two friends who work in the music industry across 40 years. William Monahan had actually penned a script over at Paramount where it was going under the title "The Long Play" that Scorsese was eyeing to direct. But now that it's over at the cable channel, it has changed focus, though it's no less exciting.

Matt Damon's Directorial Debut With John Krasinksi Moves Ahead, But It's Not 'Father Daughter Time'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 2:36 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Building up for much of the first half of 2011, Matt Damon is gearing up to step behind the camera for his directorial debut. During the summer, the actor let slip that "The Office" star John Krasinski would be taking a role in the upcoming film that many assumed was “Father Daughter Time: A Tale of Armed Robbery and Eskimo Kisses.” Warner Bros. had picked up that spec script -- about a man who goes on the lam with his daughter, who is an accomplice in a three-state crime spree -- as a vehicle for Damon to direct. But as it turns out, it's not that project at all, and in fact, Krasinski is a much bigger collaborator on the forthcoming movie that we had thought.

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