The Playlist

'The Dark Knight Rises' 14 Month Long Marketing Campaign Begins

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 20, 2011 2:57 AM
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  • 12 Comments
Here's the thing about marketing/viral campaigns. The first time around, it's kind of fun to play along with unlocking every morsel and clue of info about a movie. Anytime after that, it's pretty fucking boring. For example, "Super 8" has had a pretty extensive viral campaign running behind it for a while now but except for a few diehard fans, has anyone been paying attention? We kind of tuned in briefly but then realized we had other things to do with our day then spend time figuring out what each little crumb of info might mean.

First Look & Teaser For Spike Jonze Co-Directed Animated Short 'Mourir Aupres de Toi (To Die Next)'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 20, 2011 2:41 AM
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If you're heading to the Cannes Film Festival and just taking a look at the official selection, you're only getting a very small sampling of a plethora of movie options at your disposal on the Croisette. The Cannes market has a boatload of films (if you can manage to squeeze into any of the industry/buyer only screenings), there's numerous special programs and there's also the Critic's Week sidebar focusing on first and second directors (with "Take Shelter" taking the top prize this year). So given all the distraction, a new animated short co-directed by Spike Jonze completely missed our radar.

Watch: Trailer For Joachim Trier's Cannes Flick 'Oslo, 31 August'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 20, 2011 2:22 AM
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Joachim Trier's 2008 debut "Reprise," a kinetic, moving depiction of the friendship and rivalry between two young authors, is something of a favorite around these parts, and we've been eagerly awaiting the Norwegian director's follow-up. That film, "Oslo, 31 August," debuted as part of Un Certain Regard at Cannes this week and, while it doesn't quite match up to its predecessor, it's still a tender, beautifully shot picture.

'Transformers 3' Moves Up Two Days To June 29th, Because That Extra 48 Hours Would Have Been Agony

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 20, 2011 2:05 AM
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Sure, you might be able to get your fix of offensively stupid blockbusters with budgets higher than the GDP of a third-world country this weekend with "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," but scratching that itch won't last long, and it's still over a month until the motherload, Michael Bay's latest explod-o-fest, "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" arrives. A month full of films that have plots, and characters, and that don't have a scene where a robot octopus cuts a skyscraper in half.

First Listen: 3 Clips From Alexandre Desplat's Haunting Score For 'The Tree Of Life'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 20, 2011 1:50 AM
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  • 3 Comments
While the overblown Lars Von Trier-Nazi-gate has quickly raced to the top of the Cannes headlines, you might recall that earlier this week a guy named Terrence Malick finally unveiled his highly anticipated "The Tree Of Life." Even days later, for those bumping into each other around the Croisette, the first question seemed to be, "What did you think?" Well, in addition to our review from the festival we had a lot to more to say about the film that though a bit a uneven, still contains pockets of brilliance, awe-inspiring visuals and a thematic reach that simply is unlike anything being attempted in mainstream or indie cinema. In short, it's still an event and a film that must be experienced on a big screen. Part of the film's power comes from its extensive use of classical pieces as well the incorporation of Alexandre Desplat's stirring score.

Cannes Review: Takashi Miike's 3D 'Hara-Kiri' A Tired Merchant Ivory-Esque Samurai Flick

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 20, 2011 1:38 AM
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  • 3 Comments
The prospect of the first 3D competition film ever to screen at the Cannes Film Festival directed by the ridiculously prolific Japanese madman Takashi Miike sounds too good to be true. And unfortunately, that's the case. "Hara Kiri," Miike's remake of Masaki Kobayashi's 1962 film, is the complete opposite of what you might expect from a three-dimensional samurai movie from the director. Lethargically paced, visually dull and with an emphasis on drama over action, "Hara Kiri" plays like a bad Merchant Ivory film with a lot of sonorous or off-key acting building up to very little.

'Take Shelter' Takes Top Prize At Cannes' Critic's Week

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 20, 2011 1:16 AM
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Australian Serial Killer Flick 'Snowtown' Gets Special MentionThe 2011 Cannes Film Festival is just stumbling on its last legs, with the final big film of the festival, Sean Penn starrer "This Must Be The Place," bowing this morning (watch for our review in a few hours). The festival's main awards won't be revealed until Sunday, but a select few awards have already been given out, focusing on films in the Critic's Week, the sidebar which highlights first and second films from directors, and celebrates its 50th year in 2011.

Jessica Chastain Talks Malick & 'Wettest County,' Martin Campbell Won't Return For 'Green Lantern'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 19, 2011 12:53 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Nicolas Winding Refn Producing Icelandic Gangster Thriller 'Black's Game,' Summit Pick Up Dwayne Johnson Vehicle 'Snitch,' & More News From The Cannes BacklogMore news seems to break during Cannes than at any other time during the year, as you might have noticed. And, while we've done our darndest to cover everything, a few things have slipped through the cracks. But because we're completists, and because our loved ones abandoned us a long time ago, we're going to try and run everything down quickly below, and in our post from earlier this afternoon. So, with no further ado:

Cannes Review: Nicolas Winding Refn's Low-Slung '80s Crime Drama 'Drive' Has A Dark Majesty

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 19, 2011 12:22 PM
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  • 14 Comments
Why is "Drive" -- a seemingly trivial affair about a stuntman and part-time getaway driver, played by Ryan Gosling, pulled into deep and bloody waters on the neon-and-streetlight lit streets of L.A. -- even at Cannes, let alone in competition? It's not merely because of the bloody-but-brilliant background of director Nicolas Winding Refn, whose films (the "Pusher" trilogy, "Bronson," "Valhalla Rising") have demonstrated both an eye for composition and a taste for the jugular. It's not merely because of the film's cinematic roots, with the production seemingly crafted as a clear tribute to '80s-era Michael Mann and other synthesizer-and-faux-leather action-crime stories. Rather, you can make a case that "Drive" is here because action cinema and genre cinema are too important -- and too exciting, enthralling and, yes, artful when well made -- to be merely dismissed as suitable only for hacks to make and dolts to watch. French enthusiasm for American crime cinema from the '40s and '50s gave us the vocabulary and value set to truly appreciate film noir -- and anyone who can truly appreciate film noir will appreciate "Drive."

If The Numbers Keep Going Up A 'Bridesmaids' Sequel Is A Possibility Says Paul Feig

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 19, 2011 12:17 PM
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  • 0 Comments
While this year has seen movies like "The Roommate," "Diary Of Wimpy Kid 2" and "The Rite" top the box office, every now and then, America gets it right and puts quality at the top of the pack. While it didn't beat the mighty "Thor," the Judd Apatow produced, Paul Feig directed ensemble female comedy, kicked some ass over the weekend, surprising everyone with a number two slot and as it headed into this week, overtook the Marvel movie with weekday ticket sales. This is a huge step towards greenlighting female comedies around town (finally) but moreover, proof that if you give audiences quality options, generally, they'll go for it.

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