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The Playlist

Interview: William Friedkin on ‘Sorcerer,’ The ‘Killer Joe’ TV Show And Life Beyond “Macho Bullsh*t Stories”

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • July 21, 2014 2:05 PM
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  • 3 Comments
At 78, William Friedkin is experiencing a new lease on life, career-wise. When we spoke with the genial, anecdote-laden, Oscar-winning director at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, he let drop that he's in contention, at least, for what has to be one of the choicest TV gigs on offer: season 2 of “True Detective,” or part thereof.

Interviews: Mike Cahill & Michael Pitt Reflect On Science Vs. Faith In 'I Origins'

  • By Kristin McCracken
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  • July 18, 2014 3:02 PM
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  • 0 Comments
I Origins
When “Another Earth” premiered at Sundance three years ago, the quiet, otherworldly drama made quite a splash with critics and audiences alike. First-time director Mike Cahill’s talents were obvious—even on a low budget—and lead actress (and co-writer) Brit Marling was a breakout star.

Interview: Michel Gondry On ‘Mood Indigo,’ Fancy Props, And The Future Of Stop-Motion Animation

  • By Alex Suskind
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  • July 16, 2014 3:24 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Michel Gondry’s newest movie, “Mood Indigo” (based on the legendary French novel by Boris Vian), is filled with many of the same fantastical and emotional tropes that have been splashed throughout his filmography: cloud rides over France, cars made of see-through panels, a piano that produces cocktails (fittingly called a Pianocktail). There’s also the familiar romantic approach––a budding relationship between two individuals (Romain Duris and Audrey Tatou) that reaches the manic highs and depressing lows we’ve all come to experience at some point in our lives.

Interview: Richard Linklater Examines 'Boyhood,' Memory, Time & Perspective

  • By Sam Adams
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  • July 15, 2014 11:36 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Boyhood
Richard Linklater says making "Boyhood" was "unlike any film ever," and it's hard to disagree with him. Plenty of movies have spent more than a decade stuck in turnaround, but there's nothing in the history of fiction film to match the unique process of "Boyhood," shooting several days each year for 12 years and then turning the results into a poetic and deeply moving look at how time changes us in ways we both do and don't see (If the title weren't already taken, "Boyhood" could easily have been called "Life Itself.") Since its late-breaking debut at Sundance, Linklater's sprawling but intimate story has been met with near-universal praise, and continued a winning streak that, after "Bernie" and "Before Midnight," is rivaled only by the early threepeat of "Slacker," "Dazed and Confused" and "Before Sunrise."

Interview: Director Matt Reeves Explores The "Anatomy Of Violence" In ‘Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes’

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • July 14, 2014 1:03 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Dawn of the Planet Of the Apes
Tribalism, the rise and fall of civilizations, broken brotherhoods and the tragic failure to coexist: these are not the familiar ingredients for a summer tentpole movie. And yet here they are in Matt Reeves’ well-considered, thoughtful and morally complex, “Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes,” a summer blockbuster that considers a lot of ambitious ideas, successfully arranges them and yet never at the expense of scope, spectacle and drama. We could probably see hundreds of blockbusters like these and not get tired of them. They are every reason we go to the movies: for escapism, but also to have a piece of art reflect back a little piece of humanity back at us. And Reeves' movie does that in spades.

Interview: David Thomson Talks New Edition Of 'Dictionary Of Film,' Roger Ebert, Future Of Cinema And Much More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 10, 2014 11:10 AM
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The Dictionary Of Film David Thomson
Diving into a 1168 page reference book in the age of the internet, might seem like an outdated notion, but don't let the title of "The New Biographical Dictionary Of Film" fool you. More than just a dry, Wikipedia style encyclopedia of film talent, critic and acclaimed writer David Thomson brings his own unique wit, style and flavor to each entry, offering his own unbiased opinion on a director's career or actor's canon. The 'Dictionary Of Film' isn't just something you have on a shelf waiting for the rare moment when you're not near a computer or phone and you need to look something up. Thomson's depth of knowledge make the voluminous book one you'll want to keep nearby, turning to first for its insights, perspective, the dashes of added detail and context, and just the plain pleasure the verve of his writing style brings.

Interview: Composer Max Richter Talks Scoring HBO's 'The Leftovers,' Writing For Television & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 30, 2014 1:41 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Max Richter
If there is one defining characteristic about composer Max Richter, is that he refuses to stay within any preconceived boundaries. Classically trained at Edinburgh University and finishing his studies under the tutelage of avant-garde composer Luciano Berio in Florence, from there Richter’s career went in a variety of directions. He did traditional compositional work, collaborated with acts as varied as The Future Sound Of London, Roni Size and Vashti Bunyan, and issued his own complex and acclaimed solo work.

Interview: Bong Joon-Ho Talks ‘Snowpiercer' & Why The Stories About Harvey Weinstein Conflict Are Wrong

  • By Alex Suskind
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  • June 26, 2014 12:25 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Snowpiercer
Before the critical praise, the overseas box office success, and the rumored infighting between director Bong Joon-ho and studio head Harvey Weinstein, the film “Snowpiercer” was a graphic novel. Called “La Transperceneige,” it focused on a post-apocalyptic world, one filled with class warfare, political strife, and global warming, all set on a train carrying the last humans on earth.

‘Obvious Child’ Director Gillian Robespierre & Jenny Slate Talk Boundaries In Comedy, Naturalism, Improv, More

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • June 19, 2014 12:15 PM
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Obvious Child, With Jenny Slate, Gabe Liedman and Gillian Robespierre.
Razor-sharp writing, taut direction, and a stellar central performance by Jenny Slate anchor Gillian Robespierre’s debut directorial feature “Obvious Child.” You’ve likely heard otherwise, its treatment of abortion dominating conversation and even the film’s promotional material, but while Robespierre wanted to buck convention with her narrative aims, she recognizes why the safer romantic comedy choices exist. “I watched those kind of films recently, and they’re still entertaining. We just wanted to tell the other side,” she says about the film, which follows New York stand-up comic Donna (Slate) as she discovers she’s pregnant after a drunken one-night-stand.

The Movies That Changed My Life: Amma Asante, Director Of 'Belle'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • June 12, 2014 11:20 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Amma Asante, Belle
The quiet little indie sleeper of the summer has been “Belle,” the British costume drama ignored by most of the movie blog world, but which has proven to be a real word-of-mouth hit: at present, it’s taken more than $7 million, making it the third biggest indie of the year (behind “Chef” and ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel”), and is still going strong. The true-life tale of Dido Elizabeth Belle, born to a British aristocrat and a West Indian slave, and raised in high society, but never able to fully participate in it, it’s also terrific, as our review from a month or so back said.

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