The Playlist

Review: 'The Counselor' Starring Michael Fassbender, Javier Bardem, Cameron Diaz, Penelope Cruz & Brad Pitt

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • October 24, 2013 11:39 AM
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  • 34 Comments
The Counselor
Michael Fassbender is sexy like a shark, and sleek as a sports car. His chin is chiseled and hard, forever confident, but his smile is subterranean, hiding secrets we could never guess. As compelling an actor he is, perhaps there’s almost too much depth to this classically pretty face, one that cannot help but come across as predatory, salacious. He’s an unlikely choice to be a wronged man in the middle of a suspense thriller, and yet here he is, apparently meant to be likable and relatable at the center of Ridley Scott and Cormac McCarthy’s reptilian “The Counselor.”

5 Michael Fassbender Films You May Not Have Seen

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • October 22, 2013 2:03 PM
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  • 15 Comments
5 Michael Fassbender Films You May Not Have Seen
Michael Fassbender has had a good run of it these past few years. It's a hot streak (one which saw him the recipient of the "staggering honor" that was Playlist Man of the Year 2011) that looks set to continue with the Irish/German actor moving between critically adored arthouse films and broad-appeal tentpoles with ease, often for directors who he's impressed before. Obviously, right now he can be seen reuniting with "Hunger" and "Shame" director Steve McQueen on the Oscar-tipped "12 Years A Slave," while this week also seems him back with "Prometheus" helmer Ridley Scott in the Cormac McCarthy-penned "The Counselor." Next year will again see him do the indie/tentpole one-two: in Lenny Abrahamson's "Frank" (the director previously cast Fassbender in a Mastercard commercial before either had made the real leap to features), before he returns as Magneto in "X-Men: Days of Future Past."

Cameron Diaz Has Sex With A Car In New Pics From 'The Counselor' Plus Behind-The-Scenes Featurette

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 21, 2013 11:08 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Can Ridley Scott's "The Counselor" finally usurp Alfonso Cuaron's "Gravity" from the top of the box office this weekend? Certainly, it's got a killer cast—Michael Fassbender, Javier Bardem, Brad Pitt, Penelope Cruz and lots more—and it also has Cameron Diaz....having sex....with a car. Yes, really.

Michael Fassbender Explains Parallels Between '12 Years A Slave' & 'Wuthering Heights,' Talks Awards And More

  • By Jen Vineyard
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  • October 18, 2013 12:11 PM
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  • 3 Comments
12 Years A Slave, Michael Fassbender
There's something that Michael Fassbender does in "12 Years a Slave" (our review) that reveals the nature of his character, the unstable, probably psychotic plantation owner Edwin Epps, which wasn't on the page. Every time Epps is around one of his slaves, he's touching them — hooking his arm around the neck of Solomon Northup (played by Chiwetel Ejiofor), as if the two of them were best buds, or propping his arm atop another's head, as if it were a fencepost. The gestures seem casual on the surface, even friendly, but because he is the master and they are slaves, it's something more threatening and contemptuous, erasing the notion of personal space.

Review: Steve McQueen's '12 Years A Slave' Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender & More

  • By Chris Willman
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  • October 17, 2013 7:07 PM
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  • 1 Comment
12 Years A Slave
Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” instantly establishes itself as the most unflinching of all slave dramas, which is to say, there is plenty of flinching, not to mention cowering and recoiling and passing out, thanks to beatings and whippings that arrive at roughly 10-to-15-minute intervals throughout a 133-minute running time. “Amistad,” meet the Marquis de Sade, in the form of slavemaster Michael Fassbender, who puts his victims through more tortures than Mel Gibson ever could have imagined for Jesus.

Exclusive First Listen: 4 Tracks From 'The Counselor' Score Plus Michael Fassbender Buys Lingerie In Viral Footage

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 15, 2013 12:03 PM
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  • 3 Comments
The Counselor
While Daniel Pemberton prepares to make his biggest splash yet as a feature film composer, with Ridley Scott's "The Counselor," he's been popping up on the right radars elsewhere for a while now. He's an Ivor Novello award winner and multi-BAFTA nominated composer who has done work extensively on TV, tuned up the Rebecca Hall chiller "The Awakening" and even worked on video games such as "Little Big Planet" and "Kinetic." But the Cormac McCarthy penned thriller is certainly his biggest opportunity and he's seized it with both hands.

Michael Fassbender Calls Awards Campaigning A "Grind," Says He Won't Put Himself "Through That Kind Of Situation Again"

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 15, 2013 9:00 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Michael Fassbender hasn't yet been nominated for an Oscar, but it's not for lack of trying. Two years back, the actor was highly praised for his turn in Steve McQueen's "Shame," and the actor got fully engaged in the awards season scrum, resulting in nominations from the Golden Globes, BAFTA, Australian Film Institute and more, but with the British Independent Film Awards giving him his only win. The actor is no less acclaimed his year for his turn as the ugly slave master Edwin Epps in "12 Years A Slave," but this time out, he's not going to attend any soireés to court votes.

Check Out New Images, Clip And Full NYFF Q&A For '12 Years A Slave'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 14, 2013 12:23 PM
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  • 2 Comments
In case you haven't noticed, you're now in the midst of the awards season at the multiplex, which means bye-bye bloated butter-soaked blockbusters, and hello movies of substance and value. Two weeks ago, Alfonso Cuaron's "Gravity" dropped into orbit, last weekend Paul Greengrass' "Captain Phillips" got in the water and this upcoming weekend, Fox Searchlight will start the rollout of their (current) Oscar frontrunner, Steve McQueen's "12 Years A Slave."

NYFF: Steve McQueen Talks '12 Years A Slave,' Michael Fassbender & More Plus Watch Full Q&A

  • By Diana Drumm
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  • October 10, 2013 3:11 PM
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  • 5 Comments
12 Years A Slave, Chiwetel Ejiofor
Steve McQueen's "12 Years A Slave" is one of the most buzzed about films this year. Based on the true story of Solomon Northup and helmed by the director behind "Hunger" and "Shame," the film follows an African American free man who in 1841 was kidnapped and forced into slavery. There's been a lot of talk already about the film being a shoe-in for a few Academy Awards. Our own critic-on-the-ground at Telluride Chris Wellman wrote, "....it quickly became apparent that leading man Chiwetel Ejiofor had moved to the head of the line of best actor candidates, with [Michael] Fassbender and newcomer Lupita Nyong'o sure to contend in the supporting categories. Even those of us who aren’t Oscar bloggers should break out whatever mnemonic devices we need to immediately commit Ejiofor’s and Nyong'o’s names to the tips of our tongues."

Watch: Brad Pitt Advises Michael Fassbender In New Clip From 'The Counselor'

  • By Cain Rodriguez
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  • September 26, 2013 9:01 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Michael Fassbender, The Counselor
We’re just under a month away from Ridley Scott’s “The Counselor” and the anticipation is mounting. That tends to happen when you’re working from Cormac McCarthy’s first original screenplay and working with a cast that includes Michael Fassbender, Javier Bardem, Brad Pitt, Penelope Cruz, and Cameron Diaz. While we wait to hear word of any screenings—the film’s skipped out on any festival appearances thus far—a new clip has arrived online and it name-checks a certain tough guy actor.

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