The Playlist

Cannes Review: 'The Kid With The Bike' Rides Into Trouble, Crashes Into A Savior

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 14, 2011 8:04 AM
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  • 1 Comment
All the books on parenting notwithstanding, it's always been pretty simple: kids not only want love, they need it. And in the latest from Jean Pierre and Luc Dardenne that need is amplified into a mellifluous tone of desperation encapsulated in little Cyril (Thomas Doret) the titular 'kid with a bike.' When the film opens Cyril literally can't believe what he's hearing: left by his father in a children's home (it's hinted that his mother is dead), he calls the number he has for his Dad, only to hear that the line is no longer in service. He's told that his father has moved without leaving a forwarding address and, unconvinced, he leaves school one morning to go there himself where he not only finds an empty apartment but learns that his bike is gone as well. With the school counselors on his tail he ducks into a doctor's office and literally crashes into Samantha (Cecile de France, most recently seen by American audiences in Clint Eastwood's "Hereafter") and hangs on to her. Surprised, but not fazed, the first words she says to him are, "You can hold me, but not too tight."

Ashton Kutcher Stops Pretending He Is A Movie Star, Signs To 'Two And A Half Men'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 14, 2011 7:00 AM
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  • 12 Comments
Theoretical Hollywood leading man Ashton Kutcher has decided to take a knee on his big screen career. The former “Punk’d” creator is now gunning for those lucrative TV dollars by replacing Charlie Sheen on the show everybody watches and nobody likes, “Two and a Half Men.”

Ti West, Nacho Vigalando, Many Others To Teach Us 'The ABCs Of Death'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 14, 2011 6:00 AM
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Directors Of 'Hobo With A Shotgun,' 'A Serbian Film,' 'The Kill List' & Many Others Also On BoardAre you ready to learn “The ABC’s of Death”? The good people at Drafthouse Films, Timpson Films and Magnet Releasing are behind the anthology horror film, an unprecedented effort that will feature 26 vignettes from 26 directors each dedicated to a letter describing a manner of dying, while “a linking device will open, connect and close” each short, according to the official website.

TWC Picks Up 'The Iron Lady' While FilmDistrict Nabs 'Playing The Field' And 'Arabian Nights'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 14, 2011 5:24 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The Weinstein Company may have another Oscar darling on their hands. A year after grabbing $400 million worldwide and scads of major awards for “The King’s Speech,” The Brothers W paid $7 million for the domestic rights (via Deadline) to another film about British aristocracy, nabbing “The Iron Lady” starring Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher. Producers only showed five minutes of the film before the bidding started between the Weinsteins, Summit and Relativity, though all someone had to say was “Streep as Thatcher” to ensure this would be a major purchase and, as planned by TWC, a high profile late ‘11 release. Expect it to be a big dog in the awards race.

Cannes Review: 'Wu Xia' Mostly A Period Melodrama Punched Up By A Few Fights

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 14, 2011 5:00 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The Weinstein Company has been on an acquisitions tear at the Cannes Film Festival this year and one of their pick ups, the Midnight Movie selection "Wu Xia," certainly reflects the kind of film that interested Harvey and Bob even back in their Miramax days. A genre film with an impressive pedigreed talent and sold on Donnie Yen kicking ass, "Wu Xia" seems ready made to be a niche hit. But with only three fights -- at the beginning, in the middle and at the end -- the film stretches into a far-too-long two-hour running time to tell an ultimately tired story about a man looking to reform himself and has to reckon with his past first.

Vertigo Films To Make Sequel To Gareth Edwards' Indie-Flick 'Monsters'

  • By Catherine Scott
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  • May 14, 2011 4:40 AM
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  • 5 Comments
But Edwards Won't Be Returning Behind The CameraGareth Edwards' "Monsters" was little-seen last year, even though reaction to the film from critics was wholly positive. The director made the film for a micro-budget and produced many of the special effects on his own computer. And while Edwards is already moving on to bigger, possibly better things with a "Godzilla" re-imagining, U.K. production company Vertigo Films has decided make a sequel to the original "Monsters" in the hopes of attracting a wider audience.
More: Films, Monsters

Director Paul Feig Developing Romantic Comedy For 'Bridesmaids' Break-Out Star Melissa McCarthy

  • By The Playlist
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  • May 14, 2011 4:21 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Plus 'Bridemaids' Writer Annie Mumolo & McCarthy Sell Comedy Pitch To ParamountEarlier this week, The Playlist's Drew Taylor spoke to director Paul Feig about this weekend's raunchy and funny R-Rated wedding-themed comedy "Bridemaids" (which looks like it's on track to be a $21 million opening weekend hit). While Feig was amiable and forthcoming, he would only tease two of the new projects he was working on and wouldn't really give details. One sounded like a bigger studio project that depended on actors' upcoming availability and the other was another Judd Apatow-produced project that could star members from the "Bridemaids" cast.

Wakah Wakah: First Poster Arrives For 'The Muppets'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 14, 2011 4:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment
There are plenty of films coming in the rest of the year that we're excited about. "The Tree of Life," obviously. "Hugo Cabret," "Drive," "The Skin I Live In," "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy" and many, many more. But this writer has to confess that he's almost as excited about a somewhat less highbrow film: Disney's long-in-the-works reawakening of "The Muppets." And frankly, we hope you are too.

Cannes Review: 'Miss Bala' A Visceral, Layered Look At The Mexican War On Drugs

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 14, 2011 3:23 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Cinema, television and even the music world have always had a somewhat romantic notion of the drug trade. Guys like Scarface and Omar from "The Wire" are seen as badasses making their way, while hip-hop has a whole sub-genre dedicated to raps about slinging crack. And while in our homes and on our iPods it may seem far away or even harmless, in Mexico, they are in the midst of a very real war. The statistics are staggering -- 36,000 dead from 2006-2011 including women and children -- and the economics moreso. $25-40 billion is generated by drugs alone; the crime lords definitely have a vested (and violent) interest in keeping their business going. But unlike movies, music and TV, in the real world, no one just decides one day they are going to get in the game -- sometimes you just end up there. And as we learn from "Miss Bala," once you're in, getting out is nearly impossible.

'Zodiac' & 'The Amazing Spider-Man' Writer Jamie Vanderbilt To Pen 'Red Riding' Remake

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 14, 2011 3:00 AM
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  • 4 Comments
You might not have seen "Red Riding," the trilogy of British crime films that hit theaters at the start of last year. The films only received the briefest of releases, with a simultaneous video-on-demand release, although they attracted millions of viewers when they aired in the U.K. in January 2009. If you didn't, you should: the three films -- "In the Year of Our Lord 1974," "In the Year of Our Lord 1980" and "In the Year of Our Lord 1983," directed by Julian Jarrold, James Marsh and Anand Tucker, respectively -- were among the best crime movies of recent years, with an outstanding cast including Andrew Garfield, Rebecca Hall, Sean Bean, Paddy Considine, Maxine Peake, Mark Addy, David Morrissey, Eddie Marsan, Warren Clarke, Peter Mullan and many, many others.

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