The Playlist

Catherine Hardwicke Talks Musical Thriller 'Plush,' Blockbuster Vs. Indie Releasing & More

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 17, 2013 1:06 PM
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Catherine Hardwicke
Catherine Hardwicke is insane. This isn't a dig. It's a fact. Like the sky is blue and water is wet. The director of "Thirteen" and the first "Twilight" has a delightfully off-kilter aura that is positively infectious. After helping to create that blockbuster franchise (and, honestly, what would those movies be without her casting?), she directed a big studio movie for Warner Bros. ("Red Riding Hood") before going back to what she does best: dramatize the lives of young people on the edge. The result? "Plush," which after a brief theatrical run is out on DVD this week.

Interview: 'The Fifth Estate' Director Bill Condon Talks Tackling Julian Assange, Returning To Horror & Sherlock Holmes

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 16, 2013 10:00 AM
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The Fifth Estate Bill Condon
It's rare that a movie inspired by true events is released while those events are still happening. But such is the case with "The Fifth Estate," a movie that dramatizes the firestorm of controversy that engulfs Julian Assange, the eccentric founder of the WikiLeaks website that made national headlines when they distributed thousands of previously classified documents about America's ongoing wars in the Middle East. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Assange as part freedom fighter, part hustler, part egomaniac, accompanied by lively direction from "Gods & Monsters" filmmaker Bill Condon. We spoke with the director about visualizing Assange's headspace, a potential return to horror, and his upcoming Sherlock Holmes movie.

NYFF: Jim Jarmusch & Tilda Swinton Talk The Vampire Romance Of ‘Only Lovers Left Alive’

  • By Edward Davis
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  • October 14, 2013 3:03 PM
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While she arrived a little late, Tilda Swinton made a grand entrance at the New York Film Festival press conference for “Only Lovers Left Alive," Jim Jarmusch’s meditative, moody and yet hilarious look at a vampire relationship that has spanned centuries. The movie stars Tom Hiddleston and Swinton as Adam and Eve, two vampire lovers separated by continents, she in Tangiers and he in bombed out Detroit. But the duo have to reuinte when Adam, an Über-hip but anti-hipster musician, who would rather not have his music out in the world because that would taint it, goes through a kind of existential and perhaps even suicidal crisis (read our full review here).

"I Just Needed To Know You Weren't Nuts": Robert Redford Talks Making The Bold 'All Is Lost' With J.C. Chandor

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • October 9, 2013 2:25 PM
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  • 6 Comments
All Is Lost, Robert Redford
Yesterday at the New York Film Festival, director J.C. Chandor revealed one of the best pictures of the fest: "All Is Lost." A masterful and tense drama that immediately elevates the "Margin Call" filmmaker from a promising indie director to a promising new auteur, who is one to watch from now on. "All Is Lost," is not only soulful and moving, its an incredible achievement. Boldly austere and silent, the drama chronicles a resourceful sailor, who after a collision with a shipping container in the Indian ocean, finds himself staring his mortality in the face despite all his best efforts.

NYFF: James Gray Almost Appeared In Wes Anderson’s ‘The Life Aquatic,’ Talks ‘The Immigrant' With Joaquin Phoenix

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • October 7, 2013 2:02 PM
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  • 4 Comments
The Immigrant, Gray, Phoenix, set pic
The highlight of the New York Film Festival post-screening Q&A for “The Immigrant," director James Gray's long-awaited period film, was the unlikely and rare appearance of the notoriously evasive Joaquin Phoenix. And while the press shy actor nearly stole the show from his entertaining director, funny and amusing in his own right, Phoenix did it by hardly uttering a word.

Casey Wilson & June Diane Raphael Talk 'Ass Backwards,' Road Trip Goggles, And The Challenges of Indie Filmmaking

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • October 4, 2013 6:03 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Casey Wilson and June Diane Raphael are two comedians/writers/actresses who have gained recognition on nearly every platform a comedian can take advantage of these days. College buddies at NYU, they studied improv comedy at New York’s UCB theater where they performed their long running show, "Rode Hard and Put Away Wet," before Hollywood scooped them up to write the Kate Hudson/Anne Hathaway vehicle “Bride Wars.” Since then, Wilson has put in stints on TV as an SNL cast member and on the kooky (and sadly cancelled) ABC sitcom “Happy Endings.” Raphael appeared in “Year One,” starred in the "Bachelorette"-parody web series “Burning Love” (coming soon to E!), and is a co-host of the addictive and hilarious bad movie podcast “How Did This Get Made?”

Interview: Robin Weigert Talks The Emotional Intimacy Of 'Concussion'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • October 3, 2013 6:05 PM
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Robin Weigert gives one of the most intimate and brave performances of the year in “Concussion,” a drama about a bored housewife who turns to escorting to spice up her life. But the feature debut by Stacie Passon flips the “Belle de Jour” script, as Weigert’s character Abby is in a same sex marriage with responsible lawyer Kate. The two women live in suburban contentment with their two kids, dream house, and spin classes, until one day Abby gets a “wake up call” in the form of a softball to the head. This injury awakens a long-dormant sexual desire in her, and with the help of her young contractor, begins to see female clients in her New York City loft.

NYFF: James Gray Talks Writing For Marion Cotillard & The Cinematic Influences Of ‘The Immigrant’

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • October 3, 2013 4:03 PM
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​On the surface, filmmaker James Gray’s fifth film, “The Immigrant,” is steeped in the tradition of the director’s chief preoccupations—social class, the nature of tragic characters, stories set in New York City and the immigrant experience (his autobiographically-influenced 1994 debut, “Little Odessa” centers on a tragic family of Russian Jewish immigrants in Coney Island’s Brighton Beach). Set in early 1920s New York, the drama chronicles a Polish immigrant (played by Marion Cotillard) as she arrives at Ellis Island and is eventually deceived by a charming but wicked hustler (Joaquin Phoenix) who manipulates her into a life of prostitution. Her only form of salvation is a magician (Jeremy Renner) who hopes to take her away from that life. But as much as there are superficial James Gray-esque traits, the movie is actually a bold slow-burner that takes the filmmaker in uncharted directions (read our review from the Cannes Film Festival).

NYFF: Tom Hanks & Paul Greengrass Talk Dramatizing Desperate Real-Life Events In 'Captain Phillips'

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • September 28, 2013 2:12 PM
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Captain Phillips
Paul Greengrass’ harrowing, real-time thriller, “Captain Phillps” just screened at the New York Film Festival yesterday. Just go and hit Twitter and you’re going to see plaudits, raves and yes, even lots of Oscar talk. It’s a terrific piece of filmmaking that's intense, grueling, deeply immersive and even takes pains to humanize the complex lives of its villains (you can read yours truly’s A-grade review right here).

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Julianne Moore & Tony Danza Talk Porn & The Sexy 'Don Jon' Plus New Clips & Pics

  • By Chase Whale
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  • September 25, 2013 3:06 PM
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Don Jon, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson
Porn. Masturbation. Scarlett Johansson acting sexier than ever. A pot-smoking Julianne Moore. Tony Fucking Danza. Sex. Sex. Sex. Everything you’ve always wanted in the directorial debut of boy wonder Joseph Gordon-Levitt is here, and it’s called "Don Jon."

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