The Playlist

Discuss: Do We Really Want Our Most Promising Filmmakers Directing Superhero Movies?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 11, 2012 11:28 AM
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  • 49 Comments
Pretty much the hottest directorial job in Hollywood right now is that for "Justice League," the Warner Bros. movie that will team superheroes Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash and more. The film is still likely three years away, but the success of "The Avengers" and the end of Christopher Nolan's Batman saga has caused Warners to actively move forward on the project, commissioning a script from "Gangster Squad" writer Will Beall last year. And earlier this week, news leaked out of the director that was their first choice for the project: Ben Affleck.

The Films Of Spike Lee: A Retrospective

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 10, 2012 4:05 PM
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  • 32 Comments
If this weekend feels special for movie fans, it's not because of the trio of big-name blockbusters hitting theaters, it's because it sees a new dramatic feature -- the first in four years -- from Spike Lee, one of the most talented, idiosyncratic, maddening and controversial American filmmakers of the last thirty years. It's a rarity for a director to be instantly, iconically recognizable, but Lee's one of the exceptions, gaining visibility through starring roles in his early films, a famous appearance in a Nike ad alongside Michael Jordan, and plenty of moments when he's spoken his mind and caused an uproar.

The Essentials: The 5 Best Sam Fuller Films

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 10, 2012 3:49 PM
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  • 8 Comments
The great Sam Fuller began life as a crime reporter at the age of 17, before writing pulp novels and doing mostly uncredited work on screenplays through the 1930s (his first credit was on 1936's "Hats Off"). He served in World War Two, seeing action in France, Italy and North Africa, as well as being present at (and filming) the liberation of the concentration camp at Sokolov. By the time he came to direct in 1939 -- having been inspired by his anger at what Douglas Sirk did to his screenplay "Shockproof" -- Fuller would infuse his work with his experience as both a journalist and a soldier.

Interview: Tony Gilroy Talks The Challenges Of Mounting 'The Bourne Legacy,' Addresses The 'Enhancement' Concerns & More

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • August 9, 2012 3:25 PM
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  • 3 Comments
"The Bourne Legacy" could be seen by some as a long-time coming for writer/director Tony Gilroy. While the almost billion-dollar grossing series has been defined by Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass, arguably the man behind the scenes masterminding many of the strings was Gilroy, who wrote all three 'Bourne' films (two writers were hired to work on 'Ultimatum' after his first draft).

The Playlist Q&A: Spike Lee Talks 'Red Hook Summer,' Hollywood, Michael Jackson & More

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • August 9, 2012 3:07 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The Republic of Brooklyn and its ongoing chronicles have taken director Spike Lee all over New York's brightest and best borough (its estimated that if Brooklyn was its own city it would be the third largest in the United States). "Do The Right Thing" took place in Bed-Stuyvesant, parts of "Jungle Fever" took place in Bensonhurst, while Harlem-centric "Mo' Better Blues" homebase was Dumbo, "Clockers" was set among the Boerum Hill projects, "He Got Game" landed in Coney Island and "She’s Gotta Have It" was centered in Fort Greene where Lee lived for many years, to name a few.

The 5 Best Bob Hoskins Performances

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 9, 2012 1:43 PM
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  • 9 Comments
For many actors, there is no such word as "retirement." While there are big names who slip away from the movie business to do other things, or simply enjoy time off as they head into their twilight years -- Gene Hackman and Peter O'Toole being among the recent examples -- those feel like the exception, rather than the rule. But unfortunately, the great British character actor Bob Hoskins has been forced to step away from the limelight.

5 Of Dustin Hoffman's Most Underrated Performances

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 9, 2012 10:01 AM
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  • 13 Comments
There’s a certain generation of male stars who emerged in the 1960s and 1970s who signify that golden age of American cinema, starring in some of the most acclaimed films of that era while also maintaining long careers as box office draws that continue to this day. Jack Nicholson, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Robert Redford, Warren Beatty -- a line-up of actors that, for the most part, puts today’s A-listers to shame. And the unlikeliest of them all is Dustin Hoffman.

The Playlist's Guide To The Best And Worst Spin-Off Movies

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 7, 2012 12:20 PM
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  • 4 Comments
This week sees "The Bourne Legacy" hit theaters, and it's a little hard to know what to describe it as. After all, it doesn't feature, except tangentially, the character whose name it bears, Matt Damon's Jason Bourne. Instead, it focuses on a new character, Jeremy Renner's Aaron Cross, whose adventures overlap with and feature some of the same characters in the previous 'Bourne' films. Is it a sequel? Kind of. Is it a "sidequel," as some have termed it? Yeah, maybe. But given the way it jumps off from the existing 'Bourne' films and heads off into new territory, we think it qualifies as one of the more successful examples of a less-than-illustrious Hollywood concept: the spin-off.

5 Things You Might Not Know About Stanley Kubrick's 'Full Metal Jacket'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 7, 2012 11:22 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Stanley Kubrick was never the most prolific of filmmakers, but his productivity slowed right down in the last couple of decades of his life; while there were several projects he worked on that never got made, including "Napoleon" and "A.I.," the director only made three films in the last twenty years of his career. And sandwiched between 1980's "The Shining" and 1999's posthumously-released "Eyes Wide Shut" was his Vietnam war epic "Full Metal Jacket."

5 August DVDs You Should Know About Including 'Jaws,' 'Quadrophenia,' and A Pair of Derek Jarman Films

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • August 7, 2012 9:14 AM
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  • 5 Comments
As summer starts to fade, the big Hollywood blockbusters are replaced with more modest and arty fare, while on home video, long overdue titles finally make their way to disc. This month, we have new-to-DVD titles from Derek Jarman, Andrzej Wadja, and Ken Russell, plus deluxe reissues of two favorites – "Quadrophenia" and (of course) "Jaws." Just when you thought it was safe to go into the video store… Whether it's the first time you've seen these titles or the fiftieth, these new discs are sure to please.

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