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The Playlist

Watch: Abigail Breslin Gets Hunted In Trailer For 'Final Girl'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 19, 2014 10:39 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Final Girl Abigail Breslin
The first thing you should know about Tyler Shields — making his directorial debut with "Final Girl" — is that he's a photographer by day, and kind of a poor man's Terry Richardson (though given the current heavy controversy around the latter, Shields may have new gigs available to him). Just look at this photo shoot he did with Abigail Breslin, the star of his film. But hey, credit to Shields, he has managed to do something Richardson hasn't — make a movie. It's just too bad it doesn't look very good.

Exclusive: Join The Murder Club In Clip From 'Perfect Sisters' Starring Abigail Breslin

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 8, 2014 10:01 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Perfect Sisters
The "perfect murder" — one that you can commit without leaving a trace of evidence or suspicion — is one that has tripped up many would be killers. There is always an element of unpredictability, or a chance for something to go awry that gums up the game. But in the forthcoming "Perfect Sisters," two young women will again try and get away with murder, plotting the kill out in the open.

Review: Sprawling, Sneering 'August: Osage County' Starring Meryl Streep & Julia Roberts

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 27, 2013 1:07 PM
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  • 1 Comment
August: Osage County
It's undeniable that, at least on paper, "August: Osage County" looks like a can't-miss proposition. Pairing Tracey Letts' Pulitizer Prize and Tony Award-winning play with an outstanding ensemble cast ranging from awards-nominated veterans to rising young stars—Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, Margo Martindale, Dermot Mulroney, Julianne Nicholson, Sam Shepard, Misty Upham—it's hard to fathom the material not working. And while the choice of helmer John Wells ("The Company Men") might not seem like the most inspired decision, all he theoretically has to do is put the camera on a tripod and let the actors do their thing. And he does. And yet, 'Osage County' still turns out be an exhausting, screechy drama, in which a lot of very good actors work very hard, and yet produce so little as a result.

Review: 'Ender's Game' Starring Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, Hailee Steinfeld & Abigail Breslin

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • October 28, 2013 12:06 PM
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  • 0 Comments
For all of the considerable questions raised in “Ender's Game," director Gavin Hood's adaptation of Orson Scott Card's sci-fi novel, they ultimately all revolve around process. The film has numerous steps toward intergalactic war pitting Earth against an alien race and is most engaged when exploring the moral, strategic, and psychological knots at each juncture, only tied to the military teens trained to lead the effort. Those three aspects are troublesome, however: they're hard to depict cinematically, quibbles which have made Card's internally-focused work so meddlesome to adapt. But more importantly, if made the central force of the unfolding drama, they require articulation deeper than what Hood's ambitious but unsatisfying fable provides.

Review: Vincenzo Natali's 'Haunter' Starring Abigail Breslin

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 16, 2013 6:06 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Haunter
Vincenzo Natali is one of those genre filmmakers who has the rare ability to inspire loyalty in his small but vocal fan base by maintaining an aura of utter fearlessness. The director of ingenious, high concept doodles like "Cube," "Cypher," and most importantly, the envelope pushing, outrageously underrated "Splice," can literally go anywhere or do anything. Unlike his contemporaries, Natali isn't happy to ever be pigeonholed or pinned down. You go to his movies not because you know what to expect, but because what you end up seeing is so unexpected. All of this makes "Haunter," his new "reverse ghost story," a disappointment and a dull, repetitive, utterly confounding chiller.

TIFF Review: 'August: Osage County' Starring Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 9, 2013 10:43 PM
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  • 67 Comments
August: Osage County' Starring Meryl Streep
It's undeniable that, at least on paper, "August: Osage County" looks like a can't-miss proposition. Pairing Tracey Letts' Pulitizer Prize and Tony Award-winning play with an outstanding ensemble cast ranging from awards-nominated veterans to rising young stars—Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, Margo Martindale, Dermot Mulroney, Julianne Nicholson, Sam Shepard, Misty Upham—it's hard to fathom the material not working. And while the choice of helmer John Wells ("The Company Men") might not seem like the most inspired decision, all he theoretically has to do is put the camera on a tripod and let the actors do their thing. And he does. And yet, 'Osage County' still turns out be an exhausting, screechy drama, in which a lot of very good actors work very hard, and yet produce so little as a result.

Watch: Final Trailer For Sci-Fi 'Ender's Game' Lifts Off

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 6, 2013 12:00 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Ender's Game
"The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" won't be the only film this fall boasting an array of wacky names. The sci-fi blockbuster "Ender's Game" will be bringing folks named Ender, Mazer, Hyrum and Bonzo to tell Orson Scott Card's futuristic tale of kid killers in space (or something) and as yesterday's preview of the final trailer suggested, it's going big or going home.

Watch: Abigail Breslin Faces A 'Haunter' In Trailer For New Film From 'Splice' Director Vincenzo Natali

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 31, 2013 12:48 PM
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  • 0 Comments
In certain horror circles, Vincenzo Natali has built up a lot of goodwill thanks to cult faves like "Cube," "Cypher," and the chiller "Splice." But can he keep up the inventive low budget scares for his latest feature, "Haunter"? Well, the first trailer is here to tease out what he has in store.

SXSW Review: Frighteningly Dull 'Haunter' Missing Vincenzo Natali's Usual Edge & Inventiveness

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • March 10, 2013 2:43 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Vincenzo Natali is one of those genre filmmakers who has the rare ability to inspire loyalty in his small but vocal fan base by maintaining an aura of utter fearlessness. The director of ingenious, high concept doodles like "Cube," "Cypher," and, most importantly, the envelope pushing, outrageously underrated "Splice," can literally go anywhere or do anything. Unlike his contemporaries, Natali isn't happy to ever be pigeonholed or pinned down. You go to his movies not because you know what to expect, but because what you end up seeing is so unexpected. All of this makes "Haunter," his new "reverse ghost story," one of the bigger disappointments of the South by Southwest Film Festival thus far – a dull, repetitive, utterly confounding chiller that had the usually uproarious SXSW midnight crowd as quiet as church mice.

Watch: New Trailer For 'The Call' In Which Halle Berry Answers 911

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • February 21, 2013 12:44 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Remember "Rescue 911"? In the era before the glut of reality shows, it was a precursor of sorts, a program that offered up re-enactments of real life situations and emergencies, all narrated and given gravitas by the show's host, William Shatner. And if you ever wondered what a big screen version of that might be, "The Call" seems to come pretty close.

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