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The Playlist

LAFF Review: ‘Cut Bank’ Traps John Malkovich, Bruce Dern, Liam Hemsworth, Teresa Palmer & More In Half-Baked Caper

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • June 24, 2014 2:31 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Cut Bank
Cut Bank, Montana might be the last place we’d expect to witness an “Office Space” reference, and yet halfway through “Cut Bank” there it is—actor Michael Stuhlbarg asking after a parcel just as Stephen Root’s Milton did with a stapler. The line is meant as a source of both laughs and menace, but the minute Stuhlbarg’s villainous get-up lumbers into frame—heavy-lensed glasses, trucker hat, grimy fingernails—to a sting usually reserved for Jason Voorhees, we know towards which side of the spectrum director Matt Shakman’s leans. It’s just a shame that screenwriter Rodrigo Patino’s Black List script cribs from twenty other sources besides Mike Judge, planting accomplished actors in a dozy small town caper that never gains a sense of location or thrills.

Watch: First Trailer For 'The Judge' Starring Robert Downey Jr., Robert Duvall And Vera Farmiga

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 19, 2014 9:06 PM
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  • 10 Comments
The Judge
"Well, I know it's going to happen," Robert Downey Jr. said last year about his chances of eventually winning an Oscar. "I, personally, would be shocked if we went to the end of the tape now and I didn't have at least one....Because I'm young enough, and I'm running down being occupied with these kind of genre movies, close enough. Even the next thing ['The Judge'] we're doing with the missus, I'm so confident about it. It's the best script the studio has; it's the best thing I've read in years." So, will this film bring RDJ the Oscar gold he's chasing?

Billy Bob Thornton: "My Career As A Writer-Director Is Probably Over"

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 9, 2014 11:05 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Billy Bob Thornton couldn't have dreamed of a better reception for his feature length directorial debut, "Sling Blade." The critically acclaimed film marked the arrival of a writer/director with a unique voice, and his feature, an adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "All The Pretty Horses" nearly destroyed him. Battling with The Weinstein Company, Thornton saw his version of the movie cut to ribbons. "They saw the cast, the director, Billy Bob Thornton, and the fact that we spent $50 million, and they never released our movie—though the cut still exists," Matt Damon said a couple years back. "Billy had a heart problem at that time, and it was because his heart fucking broke from fighting for that film. It really fucked him up. It still bothers me to this day." And it would seem Thornton is done banging his head against the wall in Hollywood trying to make his more literary leaning films.

Watch: First 7 Minutes Of FX Series 'Fargo' Promises Another "True Story"

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 3, 2014 6:06 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Fargo
Of the many elements that made the Coen Brothers 1996 crime drama "Fargo" such a winning success and one of their finest films, was how they hoodwinked the audience from nearly the very first frame. Presenting the film as "Based on a true story," it actually wasn't at all, with the Coens hoping the moviegoers would forgive some of the more twisty developments of movie, if they though it was true. And it seems the TV show will do the same.

I Didn't Do Nothin': Watch The New Trailer For 'Fargo' TV Series With Martin Freeman & Billy Bob Thornton

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • March 19, 2014 11:29 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Fargo
Is this the exception to the rule, that a TV spinoff from a movie could actually be good? We're really hoping so, because so far, we really like what we see from "Fargo," the forthcoming FX show based on the Coen Brothers wintry crime classic. And after a handful of teasers, the first bonafide trailer is here and it looks like it's hitting all the right buttons.

It Only Hurts For A Little While: Watch The First Teaser Trailer For FX Series 'Fargo' Starring Billy Bob Thornton

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • February 26, 2014 11:10 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Fargo
As if we don't have enough TV shows to keep up with over the next couple of months—"Red Road," "Hannibal," "Game Of Thrones," "Mad Men" and more—here comes yet another that will definitely take up more of our time. So we apologize in advance if we're not at the multiplex as often as we usually are. But really, who could blame anyone for staying in, especially with something as tantalizing as "Fargo" on the horizon?

Brie Larson Has 'The Good Luck Of Right Now' & Billy Bob Thornton Joins 'Entourage'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 29, 2014 4:09 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Brie Larson The Good Luck Of Right Now
So, here's equation: the star of "Short Term 12" + a movie based on the novel written by the guy who penned "Silver Linings Playbook" + the directors of "Little Miss Sunshine" and "Ruby Sparks" = sign us up.

Review: JFK Drama 'Parkland' Starring Zac Efron, Paul Giamatti & More Feels Like A Cheap Cash-In

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 2, 2013 8:00 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Parkland
Ever since "PT 109," which detailed his WWII war record and was released while he was still in office, President John F. Kennedy has been catnip to Hollywood. After all, he was good looking, charismatic, had a dark secret life of womanising, among other things, and of course, was assassinated three years into his presidency—an event that inspires debate and conspiracy theories to this day. He's been the subject of great films (Oliver Stone's "JFK") and bad ones (recent miniseries "The Kennedys"), and been played by everyone from Cliff Robertson to James Marsden (in "Lee Daniels' The Butler"). This November marks the 50th anniversary of his assassination in Dealey Plaza, and as such, it was inevitable that there'd be some kind of film to mark the occasion. We just wish it wasn't as terrible as "Parkland."

We Had Him: Watch 4 New Clips From JFK Drama 'Parkland' Starring Paul Giamatti & Billy Bob Thornton

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • September 19, 2013 11:17 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Parkland
Oliver Stone's 1994 drama “JFK” may have provided only one perspective of the events leading up to John F. Kennedy's assassination, but as the tragic event's 50th anniversary nears this coming November, it seemed extremely likely that another examination was coming. Enter “Parkland,” the directorial debut of journalist and author Peter Landesman, which brings together a talented ensemble cast to delve back into the case—many of whom feature in a selection of four new clips from the period drama.

Billy Bob Thornton Talks Directing 'Jayne Mansfield's Car' & Looks Back On 'Sling Blade,' 'Armageddon,' 'Bad Santa' & More

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 13, 2013 2:06 PM
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  • 3 Comments
These days, most people think of Billy Bob Thornton as an actor, thanks to his unforgettable performances in pictures like the Coens’ “The Man Who Wasn’t There,” Sam Raimi’s “A Simple Plan” and Terry Zwigoff’s “Bad Santa,” so much so that it’s easy to forget that Thornton wrote, directed and starred in the Academy-Award winning “Sling Blade” (Best Adapted) and co-wrote genre classics like Carl Franklin’s “One False Move” and Raimi’s “The Gift.” His latest effort as a co-writer, director, and star is “Jayne Mansfield's Car,” which opens today in theaters and on demand, a charming comedic drama about a southern family whose matriarch leaves, marries a man in England, and then dies (you can read our review from Berlin earlier this year here). The movie takes place on the eve of her funeral, with the two families (one stiff-upper-lip, one deep-fried-south) collide.

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