The Playlist

Interview: Martin McDonagh On A 'Pillowman' Movie, 'Seven Psychopaths' And The Genius Of Sam Rockwell

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • December 6, 2012 3:23 PM
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  • 1 Comment
One of the most controversial and acclaimed playwrights of the 1990s, Martin McDonagh -- the man behind stage hits like "The Beauty Queen Of Leenane," "The Lieutenant of Inishmore" and "The Pillowman" -- found equal success when he moved into the movies. He won an Oscar for his first short film, "Six Shooter," and a few years later wrote and directed the hilarious, soulful black comedy "In Bruges," which became a serious hit on the festival circuit and earned him an Oscar nomination for the screenplay.

The Playlist Interview: Christopher Nolan Talks The 'Dark Knight' Trilogy, Blockbuster Filmmaking, 'Following' & More [Part 1]

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • December 5, 2012 3:39 PM
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  • 13 Comments
It’s been a big two weeks for Christopher Nolan in New York and beyond. The admired director was feted at the Film Society Of Lincoln Center with an hour-plus conversation about his ‘Dark Knight’ trilogy last week and a few days before that the IFC Center hosted a screening of a new restored print of “Following,” his debut film that Criterion is releasing later this month. To cap it all off, “The Dark Knight Rises” and the entire trilogy is out on Blu-Ray and DVD this week (surely, that is going to be one of the biggest home video releases of the year).

Exclusive: Christopher Nolan Talks Around ‘Justice League' & Says ‘Man of Steel’ Is Not Quite Like His Batman Trilogy

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • December 4, 2012 1:40 PM
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  • 8 Comments
I had the opportunity and good fortune to sit down with director Christopher Nolan last week during some Oscar luncheons to discuss this week’s release of “The Dark Knight Rises” and the complete “Dark Knight Rises Trilogy” on Blu-ray/DVD. Ever the well-coiffed and relatable gentleman, Nolan is obviously known for his secrecy, but I was struck with how carefully he jiu jitsu’d around certain questions without ever coming across as deeply cagey. Instead, perhaps like his silent and swift ‘Dark Knight Rises’ protagonist, it’s as if he shook your hand with a smile and moments later you realized your wallet was gone.

'Sightseers' Stars Alice Lowe & Steve Oram Talk Murders, The State Of British Comedy Film, And Causing An Outrage

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 29, 2012 10:01 AM
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  • 0 Comments
It might not have been a banner year for comedy movies so far, but there's one shining light arriving this week (for U.K. audiences at least -- American crowds are going to have to wait another few months), in the shape of "Sightseers," the third feature from "Down Terrace" and "Kill List" director Ben Wheatley. Blending the outstanding visuals and unsettling sound of the director's earlier films with a unique pitch-black sensibility, it also sees the arrival of two fully-formed comic talents on the world scene, in the shape of the film's stars and writers, Alice Lowe and Steve Oram.

Jacques Audiard & Matthias Schoenaerts Talk Love, Balance & Bon Iver In The Making Of 'Rust & Bone'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 21, 2012 11:22 AM
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  • 2 Comments
We're at the time of year where we're starting to think about annual Best Of picks, and one film that's certain to crop up on multiple Playlist staff lists is "Rust & Bone," the latest film from writer-director Jacques Audiard. Having made two of the most impressive crime movies of the last decade with "The Beat That My Heart Skipped" and "Rust & Bone," Audiard has taken a left turn into romantic melodrama with his latest, which premiered back at Cannes in May.

Bill Condon Combining 'Breaking Dawn' Movies For Single Extended Cut & 10 Things Learned About 'Breaking Dawn Pt. 2'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 15, 2012 11:01 AM
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  • 2 Comments
In just a few hours, the final "Twilight" movie will hit theaters. With an impressively speedy five movies in four years, audiences have seen teen Bella (Kristen Stewart) fall for a mysterious new classmate, Edward (Robert Pattinson), stop him from committing suicide, fight off an army of newborn vampires led by the evil Victoria, get married, have a baby, and transform into a vampire herself.

Spielberg Chased Daniel Day-Lewis For 9 Years, Wanted Him Before Liam Neeson To Play ‘Lincoln' & More About The Film

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • November 7, 2012 1:03 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Now that President Obama is back for a second term, some Oscar pundits are claiming Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln,” starring Daniel Day-Lewis as the titular leader, is a shoo-in lock for a Best Picture win at the Oscars. We wouldn’t go that far, but the political drama, which hit theaters this weekend, is certainly going to be up for a handful of Oscar nominations at the very least.

Interview: Sam Mendes Talks Directing 'Skyfall,' Pursuing Javier Bardem For The Villain & Misconceptions About The Bond Producers' Control

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • November 6, 2012 2:52 PM
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  • 7 Comments
This weekend, "Skyfall" is unleashed on cinemas nationwide. Almost from the very first sequence you will realize this is a very, very James Bond movie, and although it's the third in the Daniel Craig series, "Skyfall" almost feels like a hard reboot of the entire franchise, with winking nods to the previous entries and some bold expansion in other areas. The film is also laced with both melancholy and humor, both of which were absent in the hard-driven previous two.

Interview: Writer/Director Ben Lewin Talks Uncovering The Amazing True Story Of 'The Sessions' And Casting John Hawkes

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 22, 2012 12:03 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Sundance likes nothing more than an overnight success. Countless directors have, over the thirty-odd years of the festival, gone from total unknowns to the hot new thing, and they're usually some fresh-faced whippersapper, relatively speaking. This year's festival had one of those, in "Beasts of the Southern Wild" director Benh Zeitlin, but it also had, in the shape of "The Sessions" helmer Ben Lewin, a rather more atypical overnight success, as Lewin is a 65-year-old filmmaker with credits stretching back nearly four decades.

NYFF: Cristian Mungiu Disappointed With Church Reaction To 'Beyond The Hills,' Talks The Lack Of Romanian Cinema Culture

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • October 12, 2012 3:04 PM
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Cristian’s Mungiu’s “Beyond the Hills” took two substantial awards at its Cannes premiere -- Best Screenplay and Best Actress -- but this writer still can’t help but think word has been unfairly quiet about the rather phenomenal film after the Croisette cleared. Employing a much more refined aesthetic previously used in “4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days,” the filmmaker’s newest tackles rigid faith, emotional/spiritual turmoil, and grave indifference. Up at an Orthodox Church in rural Romania, Voichita (Cosmina Straten) meets with estranged best friend Alina (Cristina Flutur) and allows her to temporarily stay at the convent before leaving for Germany. Both former orphans (with a deeper relationship hinted at), the newcomer disapproves of Voichita’s religious calling and believes that she will join her in the move -- but when that doesn’t happen, both go to disastrous lengths to set the other on what they think is the right path.

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