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10 One-Man Show Movies

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • April 22, 2014 2:04 PM
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  • 10 Comments
feature, 10 One-Man-Show Movies
If there's any justice in the world, many of you will spend 85 minutes of your upcoming weekend in a car with Tom Hardy. "Locke," the formally-rigorous, real-time Steven-Knight-directed film opens on Friday, and it's terrific: a taut drama that unfolds like a thriller despite being a small, detail-specific, domestic story; and an absorbing Richard Burton-inflected showcase for its sole onscreen star. Hardy, aided by the offscreen voices of Olivia Colman, Andrew Scott and others via his handsfree phone ( the way Knight organized the calls, so that they came to Hardy "live" is fascinating) is just brilliant, crucially underplaying most of the time, as though aware that with only him onscreen (also immobile), the tiniest tic is magnified exponentially. It's the kind of tour de force that highlights by contrast just where so many other single-actor films go wrong.

BFI London Film Festival Review: 'Saving Mr. Banks' With Tom Hanks & Emma Thompson

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 20, 2013 6:00 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Saving Mr. Banks
Though the general public doesn't always share their enthusiasm, Hollywood loves making movies about itself. Whether fictional or based in reality, it's rare for a year to pass without some kind of film about filmmaking, from classics like "Sunset Boulevard" and "Mulholland Drive" to, uh, not-classics like "Hitchcock." In recent years, "The Artist" and "Argo" have both been critical and commercial successes (and not coincidentally, Best Picture Oscar winners), and Disney are clearly hoping that the same kind of success follows for "Saving Mr. Banks," which examines one of the family friendly company's most beloved films, 1964's "Mary Poppins," and their own founder and figurehead, Walt Disney, here played by megastar Tom Hanks.

NYFF Review: Paul Greengrass Takes You Hostage In The Desperately Harrowing ‘Captain Phillips’

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • September 27, 2013 11:00 AM
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  • 8 Comments
Captain Phillips
Comparing oranges and apples tends not to be conducive to any critical discourse, but to get something off my chest that I can’t shake (and hopefully provides some convincing context), in the fall sweepstakes to create the most gripping, immersive and emotionally resonant survival tale, Paul Greengrass’ “Captain Phillips” has the surprisingly thematically similar “Gravity” licked. With apologies to Alfonso Cuaron’s film, which I enjoyed, the buzzier effort may be an enveloping visual tour-de-force, but the one (wo)man-against-the-universe endurance saga in space lacks in character development and genuinely convincing emotional stakes. These are not, however, narrative areas that “Captain Phillips” is deficient in. In fact, its character and rich emotional layers are what elevates the film from a precisely-told absorbing thriller into something much more potent and powerful: a breathtakingly harrowing tale of survival and grueling desperation that redefines the term “nailbiter.”

The Assessment: Ron Howard's Directorial Career In 8 Movies

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • September 26, 2013 4:00 PM
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  • 9 Comments
Ron Howard, Assessment
Erstwhile star of the beacon of TV Americana that was “Happy Days,” occasional actor, and now Oscar-winning director and major Hollywood power player, Ron Howard is, by every account you can find the length and breadth of the World Wide Web, a really nice guy. Almost every interview starts with a reference to his niceness, his approachability, his affability, his talent for not taking himself too seriously. Which kind of makes it okay for us not to take him too seriously either.

Oscars: A Look At The Supporting Actor Field, Including Michael Fassbender, Jared Leto & James Gandolfini

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • September 23, 2013 2:32 PM
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  • 9 Comments
So far, for the most part, a good chunk of the 2013 awards contenders have been seen, but only by those high falutin' critical types at film festivals -- as we saw last week. But that started to change last week with the release of two legit Best Picture contenders: Ron Howard's "Rush," and Denis Villeneuve's "Prisoners." So even those trying to stick their head in the sand and avoid Oscar season aren't going to have much of a choice from here on out.

Watch: New Trailer For ABC's 'Toy Story OF TERROR!' Halloween Special

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 18, 2013 2:01 PM
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  • 2 Comments
One of the highlights of the Disney Animation panel at this year's D23 Expo was getting a chance to watch the first ten minutes of the upcoming Halloween special "Toy Story of Terror" (sorry, that-scene-from-"Planes: Fire and Rescue"). Even though the footage was somewhat rough (and temped with music from "Ed Wood," which was actually kind of neat), it was totally compelling. Instead of being an anthology piece, like the recent "Shrek" Halloween special (and countless "Treehouse of Horror" episodes of "The Simpsons"), it assumes a single narrative thread, appropriating the "spooky motel" conceit of "Psycho" and "Vacancy," as an unseen malevolent force hunts hunt our toys after Bonnie's family stops at a roadside inn on a dark and stormy night. Now a new trailer has been released for the 30-minute-special, so you too can get spookily excited.

Early Buzz: Paul Greengrass' 'Captain Phillips' Is An Unbelievably Tense Real World Thriller; Politics Questionable

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 6, 2013 5:04 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Captain Phillips
"It's like the last half hour of 'Zero Dark Thirty' but for the whole movie." That was someone's description of "Captain Phillips" when we quizzed them about the film earlier today. The film, which stars Tom Hanks as the titular captain of the Maersk Alabama, a ship that found itself under siege by Somali pirates back in 2009, was directed by "United 93" and "Bourne Ultimatum" filmmaker Paul Greengrass, whose last feature, the troubled Matt Damon vehicle "Green Zone," proved an underwhelming and costly flop. But by all accounts from those who have seen it, "Captain Phillips" is the director back on his game, with a tense and enthralling real-life thriller. Although how successful it ultimately is seems to be up for grabs depending on how moved you are by it and how questionable you find the film's racial politics. Also, stick around to watch the new Japanese trailer for the film.

Tommy Lee Jones To Remake 'The Cowboys,' Tom Hanks' 'Hologram' Gets Ready To Shoot & More

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 6, 2013 4:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments
With the Toronto International Film Festival in full swing, all sorts of deals are being made and mended, and the news is coming fast and furiously, straight from the great white north. Predictably, we're doing all we can to keep up with the news, with a rundown that includes the start date for Tom Hanks' next feature, a big time cast member joining David Gordon Green's "Manglehorn," information on Tommy Lee Jones' next directorial project, a legendary name lending a hand to Elijah Wood's new horror movie and word that a creepy old dude will be joining a young adult novel adaptation.

Watch: Trailer For JFK Assassination Drama 'Parkland' Produced By Tom Hanks, Starring Paul Giamatti, Zac Efron & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 21, 2013 9:21 AM
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  • 8 Comments
When it comes the assassination of JFK, it's still one of the most sensitive wounds in America's history, with a recent study suggesting that only 24% of Americans buy the official story that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman. But another case will be made for that theory with the upcoming "Parkland," a star-studded take on the events of November 22, 1963, and director Peter Landesman is making clear his intentions. "This is a movie about the ground truth from the ground level," he told USA Today.

Paul Greengrass' 'Captain Phillips' To Open 51st NYFF New York Film Festival; Check Out New Pics & Posters

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 29, 2013 12:30 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Captain Phillips, Tom Hanks
You can't have it all, Toronto. While the Canadian festival unveiled a slate last week that seemed to include every hot title you could think of left in 2013, today organizers of the New York Film Festival revealed that there's still much more to come, and they'll have their own big highlights that'll get cinephiles looking at the cost of flights.

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