The Playlist

AFI Fest Review: ‘Hitchcock’ A Breezy, Disposable Effort Saved By Anthony Hopkins & Helen Mirren’s Dedicated Performances

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
  • |
  • November 2, 2012 7:32 AM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
Hypnotic, beautiful, and perilous in equal measure – one needn’t glance anywhere else but at the leading ladies of Alfred Hitchcock’s films to garner their intense influence, yet as dramatized in “Anvil!” director Sacha Gervasi’s loving biopic, “Hitchcock,” the real authority lingered off the set at home, shielding her husband quietly from failure and ruin. What follows is a peek behind the curtain on Hitchcock’s marriage to Alma Reville (the couple played by Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren), while charting their pangs of jealousy and pressure during the turbulent making of “Psycho.”

Oscars: Can Mary Elizabeth Winstead Sneak Into The Best Actress Field For 'Smashed'?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
  • |
  • October 15, 2012 11:59 AM
  • |
  • 19 Comments
We've been looking in detail at the acting categories in recent weeks, and this week, we figured it made sense to examine Best Actress, given that one potential contender has her film arriving in theaters. Today sees the release of "Smashed," which sees "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World" star Mary Elizabeth Winstead play a schoolteacher who comes to realize that she has a serious drinking problem, and sets about kicking the habit, even as it puts her marriage to her equally sozzled husband (Aaron Paul) at risk.

New Photos Of Anthony Hopkins & Helen Mirren In 'Hitchcock'

  • By Edward Davis
  • |
  • October 8, 2012 4:25 PM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
Two films enter, one film leaves! Dueling "Snow White" pictures made way for dueling Alfred Hitchock pictures in 2012 (oh, how Hollywood loves to battle with itself). And the verdict may already be in. The version focusing on the master of suspense's releationship with Tippi Hedren staring Toby Jones and Sienna Miller, "The Girl" screened this weekend at the Hamptons International Film Festival and our reviewer wasn't overly impressed (however some other reviews have been a bit more generous). That leaves "Hitchcock," which centers on the making of the groundbreaking psychological horror film, "Psycho." The synopsis so far is rather vague, but provides enough to keep us interested:

Karlovy Vary Film Fest Review: Even Helen Mirren Can't Save 'The Door'

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • July 3, 2012 3:27 PM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
If you were to attempt to genetically engineer the perfect film for Karlovy Vary, Eastern Europe’s biggest film festival and one of the oldest in the world, your checklist of ingredients might include: an internationally revered film star lead, a respected veteran European director, a Central or Eastern European setting and a story in which both the Holocaust and post-WW2 communism figure largely. Maybe throw in a little subtext about class division and gender roles for good measure. “The Door” is a new Helen Mirren film from Hungarian director István Szabó ("Meeting Venus," "Being Julia,""Mephisto"), set in 1960s Budapest and detailing the relationship between a wealthy female novelist and a strong-willed cleaning lady who may or may not be harbouring dark secrets regarding her actions during the war. It pretty much hits the jackpot, or rather it would have if it was good. It’s not.

Karlovy Vary Film Festival: Helen Mirren Talks Women In Filmmaking, Violence Vs. Nudity, 'Hitchcock' & More

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • July 2, 2012 12:04 PM
  • |
  • 2 Comments
The organisers of the Karlovy Vary International FIlm Festival, taking place this week in the obscenely picturesque spa town of Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic, have hit on a canny strategy. The festival’s programming has for some years now been above reproach in every respect, something that has not always been the case in its storied 47 year history, that at one point saw the event pretty much shunned because of its apparent kowtowing to the communist powers-that-were.

Watch: Hilarious Trailer For 'Movie: The Movie' Featuring Charlize Theron, Tom Hanks, Matt Damon & Much, Much More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
  • |
  • February 27, 2012 11:22 AM
  • |
  • 8 Comments
Memo to the Academy: Next year, you might want to get the writing staff of "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" to write jokes for the show, because this nine-minute bit is funnier than anything that happened at the Oscars last night.

Helen Mirren Joins Anthony Hopkins In 'Alfred Hitchcock And The Making of Psycho'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
  • |
  • December 7, 2011 4:58 PM
  • |
  • 6 Comments
Looks like we're gonna have two Alfred Hitchcock movies on the way, and in a rare feat, they both look promising. Just yesterday it was revealed that Toby Jones and Sienna Miller were heading up"The Girl," which focuses on the director's obsessive relationship with Tippi Hedren, who starred in "The Birds" and "Marnie." But in case you forgot, over at Fox Searchlight, another movie has been brewing from "Anvil!" director Sacha Gervasi with the self-explanatory title "Alfred Hitchcock And The Making of Psycho." In his flick, Anthony Hopkins plays the legendary director and now he's got one of the classiest gals around to hang off of his arm.

David Mamet's Phil Spector Biopic Sings A New Tune As Helen Mirren Replaces Bette Midler

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
  • |
  • July 19, 2011 1:50 AM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
Well, it was less than a week ago when Bette Midler suffered a herniated disc and on doctor's orders was forced to pull out of David Mamet's Phil Spector biopic he has brewing for HBO. Production was put on hold as a replacement needed to be found quick and damn, did this movie ever step up its game big time.

Review: 'Arthur' A Tedious, Bland Comedy That Earns Intermittent Laughs Almost By Accident

  • By Kimber Myers
  • |
  • April 8, 2011 2:21 AM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
“Why?” will echo through your head if you’re a fan of the 1981 “Arthur” starring Dudley Moore as you watch this useless remake. The original won a shiny pair of Oscars and is considered a classic, but apparently Warner Bros. thought it needed to be remade for contemporary audiences. But the larger philosophical question soon fades in favor of a strictly personal one: “Why me?” Though it has fleeting funny moments, this Russell Brand vehicle is a sputtering Pinto that surprises more when it runs well than when it lurches to a stop.

Watch: Second 'Arthur' Trailer Adds Greta Gerwig, Still Not All That

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
  • |
  • March 3, 2011 2:56 AM
  • |
  • 5 Comments
It's possibly just because the rest of the ceremony was such a painful, dull slog, but the presentation of Best Foreign Language Film by Helen Mirren and Russell Brand was one of the few lively points of this year's Oscars, with some suggesting on the night that the duo would make better hosts next year than James Franco and Anne Hathaway, although it could also be argued that the Pixar lamp and the rotting corpse of David Niven would have more chemistry as hosts than Franco & Hathaway.

Email Updates

Recent Comments