The Playlist

Sacha Gervasi Shot & Mostly Cut His Own Cameo In 'Hitchcock' & More About The Master Of Suspense

  • By Jen Vineyard
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  • November 21, 2012 1:59 PM
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  • 1 Comment
In Sacha Gervasi's "Hitchcock,” Anthony Hopkins plays the legendary director, and Helen Mirren his wife and often unacknowledged collaborative partner. On the surface, the film is about the making of "Psycho" -- and great fun is there to be had with recreating some of the key moments of that movie, including a shower scene with Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh -- but even more so, the film is a love story (about both the married couple who made the film possible by mortgaging their home and their mutual love of film).

8 Things Learned About 'Sunset Boulevard' Now Out On Blu-Ray/DVD

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • November 16, 2012 11:04 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Man, you gotta love the wit and bite of Billy Wilder. It's hard to pick a best film from the great Austrian-born American filmmaker who made an indelible mark on Hollywood in the '40s, '50s and '60s, making major contributions to American cinema with "Some Like It Hot," "Stalag 13," “The Apartment,” the rediscovered acidic gem "Ace In The Hole," “Double Indemnity” and “The Lost Weekend,” to name just a few (you can dive into our full-blown retrospective to get our take on all his work). But if you had to choose one picture to represent the greatness of Wilder you might be forced to acknowledge the sheer brilliance of perhaps his best known film, "Sunset Boulevard,” his last collaboration with his screenwriting partner Charles Brackett.

The Essentials: 5 Amazing Joe Wright Scenes You Need To Know

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • November 15, 2012 1:14 PM
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  • 6 Comments
In just five movies, British director Joe Wright has established himself as a master stylist with an almost painterly eye for shot compositions and spatial geography. On the eve of his newest film, "Anna Karenina," we thought we would go through the five most amazing shots in his oeuvre (whittling them down was something of a challenge). As an added bonus, we got to talk to Seamus McGarvey, the cinematographer behind behind three of the five scenes, including the one from "Anna Karenina," about what it was like crafting these truly unforgettable moments. We've included the scenes where possible, but of course, you can check out each of these films on home video.

The Films Of Spike Lee: A Retrospective

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 10, 2012 4:05 PM
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  • 32 Comments
If this weekend feels special for movie fans, it's not because of the trio of big-name blockbusters hitting theaters, it's because it sees a new dramatic feature -- the first in four years -- from Spike Lee, one of the most talented, idiosyncratic, maddening and controversial American filmmakers of the last thirty years. It's a rarity for a director to be instantly, iconically recognizable, but Lee's one of the exceptions, gaining visibility through starring roles in his early films, a famous appearance in a Nike ad alongside Michael Jordan, and plenty of moments when he's spoken his mind and caused an uproar.

The Essentials: The 5 Best Sam Fuller Films

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 10, 2012 3:49 PM
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  • 8 Comments
The great Sam Fuller began life as a crime reporter at the age of 17, before writing pulp novels and doing mostly uncredited work on screenplays through the 1930s (his first credit was on 1936's "Hats Off"). He served in World War Two, seeing action in France, Italy and North Africa, as well as being present at (and filming) the liberation of the concentration camp at Sokolov. By the time he came to direct in 1939 -- having been inspired by his anger at what Douglas Sirk did to his screenplay "Shockproof" -- Fuller would infuse his work with his experience as both a journalist and a soldier.

The Films Of Sidney Lumet: A Retrospective

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 9, 2012 11:00 AM
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  • 13 Comments
Lumet was never fancy. He never needed to be, as a master of blocking, economic camera movements and framing that empowered the emotion and or exact punctuation of a particular scene. First and foremost, as you’ve likely heard ad nauseum -- but hell, it’s true -- Lumet was a storyteller, and one that preferred his beloved New York to soundstages (though let's not romanticize it too much, he did his fair share of work on studio film sets too as most TV journeyman and early studio filmmakers did).

Woody Allen & Dick Cavett Look Back At 'Radio Days' In Candid Conversation At 92Y

  • By Cory Everett
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  • February 23, 2012 9:56 AM
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  • 1 Comment
With the Academy Awards almost here at last we can finally put a capper on 2011. One of last year’s most unexpected success stories was “Midnight In Paris,” which is currently nominated for 4 Oscars including Best Picture and Best Director, as well as Best Original Screenplay for Woody Allen. Allen’s 41st feature film was also his highest grossing of all time, but in all likelihood he'll be skipping the festivities at the Kodak Theater this Sunday. Instead, the filmmaker decided to drop in to the 92Y in New York with his old friend, talk show host Dick Cavett for a discussion about his early days in Brooklyn, the golden age of radio and his 1987 film “Radio Days” which screened immediately following the discussion.

The 5 Worst Best Picture Oscar Line-Ups Of All Time

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 20, 2012 2:57 PM
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  • 48 Comments
Alright, you've already seen our picks for the five best BEST Picture years, the Oscar years that you can actually look back on and not wince if you're a fan of movies and just-deserved prizes. So let's keep it simple: here are the five worst years below, the ones that make fans of cinema rather crazy and that have had people bitching about it ever since.

The Playlist's Most Anticipated Escapist/Popcorn Films Of 2012

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 5, 2012 10:31 AM
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  • 38 Comments
Admittedly, Team Playlist is an oddball collection of cinephiles, snobs and genre-dorks, sometimes only unified by one thing: a healthy dose of skepticism in a world largely occupied by wishful-thinking fanboys. But this diversity means that we can be at once cynical optimists and optimistic cynics.

The Films Of Steven Spielberg, Part Two: The Serious Fare

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • December 23, 2011 12:00 PM
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  • 8 Comments
It's the classic dilemma of the entertainer, perhaps best embodied in Preston Sturges' "Sullivan's Travels." After a decade or so of delighting audiences with thrills and wonder, Steven Spielberg decided he wanted to be taken seriously.

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