The Playlist

Style Or Substance? 20 Visually Stunning Movies That Go For Broke

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • May 8, 2013 1:51 PM
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  • 23 Comments
20 Visually Dazzling Movies
No matter what you think of Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby," opening this week in ultra-luxurious 3D, one thing's for sure – it looks pretty spectacular. Filled with lovingly crafted costumes, opulent sets, and computer generated imagery that makes ragtime New York seem like a quasi-futuristic metropolis, it is drunk on its own excess. It feels like the movie Luhrmann has been angling towards for a while and has finally achieved (thanks in part to the added dimensionality of 3D), for better or worse. It's a giant, gilded, vulgar monstrosity that overwhelms more often than it entertains. And it got us thinking about other movies whose similarly excessive styles have either been an asset or a detriment. So put on your 3D glasses, your best pink pinstripe suit, and grab a glass of bootleg liquor, for our list of 20 visually dazzling movies.

Podcast: The Playlist Talks Terrence Malick's 'To The Wonder' & The Potential Dangers Of Auteur Worship

  • By Erik McClanahan
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  • April 16, 2013 2:41 PM
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  • 20 Comments
To The Wonder, Ben Affleck Rachel McAdams
...and the podcast is back. On this latest episode, host (yours truly) and contributor Erik McClanahan is joined by editor-in-chief Rodrigo Perez, managing editor Kevin Jagernauth and contributor Cory Everett for an in depth conversation about Terrence Malick and his latest film"To the Wonder," and the idea of auteur worship in cinephile/critical circles (also known as vulgar auteurism).

Watch: Alex Cox's 1999 Documentary 'Kurosawa: The Last Emperor' With Francis Ford Coppola, Paul Verhoeven & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • March 18, 2013 11:25 AM
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  • 1 Comment
When you're one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, your life is likely to be thoroughly documented by others, and that's certainly the case for Akira Kurosawa. The director behind "Seven Samurai," "Rashomon," "Ran" and many, many more seminal works has been boxed, written about, discussed at and more, all at length, but his work is so rich and influential, there is always more to discover. And for those looking for a bit of a film class to start of their week, you can perhaps spend your lunch hour on this.

Francis Ford Coppola Quietly Working On An "Ambitious," Epic Studio Movie & Hopes To Start Casting Soon

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 4, 2012 10:29 AM
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  • 12 Comments
You would you have to go back all the way to 1997's "The Rainmaker" to see Francis Ford Coppola's last fully fledged studio picture. Since then, the legendary director has been following his own muse, taking on ambitious if not always entirely successful features made outside of Hollywood, resulting in a trio of pictures: the fantasy "Youth Without Youth," the black-and-white sibling drama "Tetro" and the 3D horror "Twixt." Coppola has long talked about enjoying the freedom that comes with independence, but sometimes you need someone with big pockets to help bring certain stories to life, and it looks like the 73-year-old filmmaker is ready to deliver another big, epic picture.

Read New All-Time Top 10 Lists From Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola, Quentin Tarantino & More

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 3, 2012 8:53 AM
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  • 84 Comments
The big talk of the week has been Sight & Sound's once-every-decade greatest films of all time list as determined by critics from around the world. However, the publication also take the temperature from film directors, asking for greatest lists from 358 filmmakers around the world, and collating the votes into a separate top 10. As we reported previously, "Tokyo Story" topped the list, with "2001: A Space Odyssey" and "Citizen Kane" just behind (read the full top 10 here).

Cannes Review: Beat Classic 'On The Road' Comes To The Screen In Lustrous-But-Long-Winded Fashion

  • By James Rocchi
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  • May 23, 2012 7:29 AM
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  • 15 Comments
Jack Kerouac's "On the Road" has been heralded for decades: an important novel, a cultural signifier, a sociological landmark, a cracking good read. It's also been considered "unfilmable" -- but now Walter Salles ("The Motorcycle Diaries," "Dark Water") brings the novel to the screen, and "The Motorcycle Diaries" turns out to be a pretty good template for understanding how Salles has shot his adaptation. "On the Road," like 'Diaries,' is scenic and episodic, full of youth's passion but with a shade of the future yet to come dimming the brightness of its vision, as a charismatic young man travels with another young man, saying little but watching everything along the way.

Kristen Stewart Did 'On The Road' For The Price Of A Beatles Song On 'Mad Men' & More About The Walter Salles Adaptation

  • By Simon Dang
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  • May 10, 2012 9:03 AM
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  • 17 Comments
The long, difficult journey from page to screen for Jack Kerouac's "On The Road" has been well-documented over the years, and one thing that has been consistent throughout is the passion and love evinced for the novel by all involved --particularly the godfather of it all, Francis Ford Coppola, who acquired the novel's rights back in 1978 at the height of his success.

5 Things You May Not Know About The 'The Godfather Part II'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 9, 2012 1:00 PM
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  • 5 Comments
A sprawling three hour and twenty minute American epic crime film, what can you say about Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather Part II” that hasn’t already been said? Nominated for 11 Academy Awards and winning six, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Robert De Niro “The Godfather Part II” was met with tremendous critical acclaim with many critics claiming it had outdone its predecessor. Award- wise, it had. The original had also bagged 11 nominations, but only had won three.

5 Things You Might Not Know About 'The Conversation'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 9, 2012 10:09 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Two milestones hit for Francis Ford Coppola this weekend. The legendary filmmaker celebrated his 73rd birthday on Saturday, April 7th (happy belated, Francis) and, on the same day, observed the 38th anniversary of the opening of one of his most artistic efforts, 1974’s “The Conversation.”

First Poster & New Images Arrive For Walter Salles' Long-Awaited 'On The Road' With Sam Riley, Garret Hedlund & Kristen Stewart

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 29, 2012 11:19 AM
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  • 4 Comments
It's been a long journey to get "On The Road" to the screen. The beatnik classic by Jack Kerouac was never going to be an easy translation, but Francis Ford Coppola initially bought the rights over thirty years ago, and worked on the project for decades before eventually handing over the directing reins to "The Motorcycle Diaries" helmer Walter Salles. Even then, it's taken a while: the film shot a year-and-a-half ago, and was expected to land last year, but Salles has refused to be rushed in the editing room.

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