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The Playlist

5 Unmade Movies From Spaghetti Western Maestro Sergio Leone

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 30, 2012 12:58 PM
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  • 7 Comments
For someone who's considered one of the greatest filmmakers in history, Sergio Leone was not especially prolific. While he was a prolific assistant director (with credits including "Bicycle Thieves," "Quo Vadis" and "Ben Hur"), he was only credited on seven films across his thirty-year career (with uncredited direction work on three others -- "The Last Days Of Pompeii," "My Name Is Nobody" and "A Genius, Two Partners and A Dupe").

Will We See 'Cloud Atlas,' 'Only God Forgives' & Terrence Malick's Latest & More Before The End Of 2012?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 30, 2012 12:02 PM
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  • 8 Comments
We're almost exactly a third of the way through the year, and thanks to the announcement of the Cannes Film Festival line-up a couple weeks ago, we're now a little clearer on the timetable of some of the most anticipated films of the year. We know that "Cosmopolis," "Killing Them Softly," "On The Road," "Mud," "Rust And Bone," "Amour" and "The Paperboy," among others are done, and will be screening in only a few short weeks for critics, and U.S. releases, if not set already, can't be far behind. And the release schedule for the rest of the year is firming up fast, with films like "The Master" and "Seven Psychopaths" getting added to the calendar.

The Playlist's 10 Most Anticipated Blockbusters Of The Summer Season

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 30, 2012 10:58 AM
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  • 17 Comments
It feels like the summer movie season has been underway for some time already, given that last month saw the arrival of huge blockbuster "The Hunger Games," as well as "21 Jump Street," an R-rated comedy that's taken an enormously impressive $130 million. And that's even without mentioning those that hoped to be big box office stuff, but fell at the first: "John Carter," already taking its place among the annals of the great flops, and "Wrath Of The Titans," which has taken less than half what its predecessor made domestically.

Videodrome: The Best Recent Music Videos Including Clips From The Shins, tUne-yArDs, Liars & More

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 27, 2012 12:04 PM
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  • 2 Comments
In case you missed it, we resurrected our old Videodrome column a month or so ago (first installment here, second here): our semi-regular showcase for the best music videos around. Since the form has given the world game-changing helmers in both the blockbuster and arthouse worlds, it's always important to keep an eye on promos, and indeed, one could argue that there's more invention to be found in the short-form than there is in features. So, with no further ado, the five best music videos we've seen in the last few weeks. As ever, any tips and suggestions are more than welcome.

Fall In Love: The Playlist's Favorite Romantic Comedies

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 27, 2012 10:56 AM
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  • 20 Comments
Few genres of film inspire more personal responses than the romantic comedy. Given that you spend a disproportionate time of your life thinking about your romantic woes, it's no surprise that it's remained one of the popular formulas since the dawn of cinema, and while the genre has undisputed classics, you can end up cherishing certain films purely because of their connection to your own life. They can help pull you out of a post break-up tailspin, they can comfort you through unrequited love, and, if a film hits you at the height of your passion for someone, they can end up associated forever, even blinding you to the movie's flaws -- seeing "Elizabethtown" in the midst of first love left this writer swooning after exiting the theater (thankfully, a subsequent rewatch put me straight as to how terrible it is...)

Tribeca: David Riker & Abbie Cornish Discuss Immigration Tale 'The Girl'

  • By John Lichman
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  • April 26, 2012 3:45 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Known for his neo-realist film about the plight of Latin American immigrants living in New York City, "La Ciudad," indie writer/director David Riker has spent the better part of 14 years evolving story of his latest feature, "The Girl" which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival last week. In the minimalist drama, Abbie Cornish plays Ashley, a minimum wage earner working in a podunk South Texas chain store, who is determined to get her son back; taken by child services after a drunken mistake. She finds out her wandering, absentee father (Will Patton) is on a self-proclaimed "lucky streak" which turns out to mean he's using his truck driving job to sneak Mexican immigrants into the country. When she tries her hand at it out of desperation, it goes terribly wrong --except she now has to deal with Rosa (Maritza Santiago Hernandez), a little girl that forces her to help find her mother and deal with her actions.

5 Things You May Not Know About Akira Kurosawa's 'Seven Samurai'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 26, 2012 9:58 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Picking your favorite Akira Kurosawa film is a tricky choice for any movie fan. From "Rashomon" to "Ran," the great Japanese filmmaker, one of the most beloved and influential directors of all time, knocked out a string of classics in a career that lasted well over 40 years. But more often than not, at the top of the list for Kurosawa fans is "Seven Samurai," the 1954 samurai epic that redefined the action movie for generations.

10 Of Saul Bass' Greatest Title Sequences

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 25, 2012 12:22 PM
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  • 5 Comments
The art of movie titles is becoming an increasingly lost one: aside from a few films (the Bond movies) and directors (Steven Spielberg, David Fincher and Jason Reitman always take particular care over their credit sequences), it feels like relatively little care is taken over such things, with many movies dumping them altogether. And it's hard not to put that down to the fact that we don't have Saul Bass around anymore.

5 Things You May Not Know About 'The Third Man'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 25, 2012 10:03 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Thirty-six years ago today, on April 25th, 1976, filmmaker Carol Reed passed away. One of the greatest directors ever to come out of the U.K, Reed started out as an actor, but gained fame as a writer-director in the late 1930s and 1940s, thanks to films like "Night Train To Munich," and the outstanding "Odd Man Out" and "The Fallen Idol." Later, he'd also find success with films like "Trapeze," "Our Man In Havana," "The Agony and the Ecstasy" and "Oliver!," for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director, beating out Stanley Kubrick for "2001" and Gillo Pontecorvo for "The Battle of Algiers."

Jack Nicholson: 5 Of His Most Underrated Performances

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 23, 2012 10:56 AM
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  • 13 Comments
There can be little doubt that Jack Nicholson is one of the greatest movie stars in the history of the medium. He's had more Oscar nominations and wins than any other actor -- twelve, having won three -- and has been an A-list star for over forty years now, remaining a legitimate box office draw in films like "Something's Gotta Give" and "The Departed" even in his seventh decade. He's worked with everyone from Antonioni to Scorsese, and given some of the most iconic screen performances ever, from "Easy Rider" to "The Shining."

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