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The Playlist

Hamptons Film Fest: Edgar Wright & Richard Curtis Talk Working Title Films & The State Of The Industry

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 14, 2013 12:01 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Edgar Wright
This weekend at the Hamptons International Film Festival, a special tribute to Working Title Films was held as part of the festival's strain of British-themed programming (it just so happened to also coincide with the 10th anniversary of their beloved rom-com "Love Actually"). On hand for the panel were the company's current co-chairs Eric Fellner and Tim Bevan, who were later joined by special guests Edgar Wright and Richard Curtis, whose new film for Working Title, "About Time," also played the festival. Together, they helped illuminate what makes Working Title such a unique place for filmmakers, how the company was founded, and what they think the future of cinema holds.

Hamptons Film Fest: Helena Bonham Carter Compares Reaction To 'The Lone Ranger' To 'Fight Club'

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 13, 2013 10:08 AM
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  • 15 Comments
The Lone Ranger, Helena Bonham Carter
One of the more infamous Hollywood stories this year was the inglorious demise of "The Lone Ranger," Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer's $200 million+ western that failed to connect with audiences and was outright scalped by critics (sorry, we couldn't resist). While chatting with "The Lone Ranger" costar Helena Bonham Carter at this year's Hamptons International Film Festival for her new biopic "Burton & Taylor," we couldn't help but bring up the response to the film and what she thought it's chances were of a life beyond this initial reception. Carter responded by comparing the film to another of her movies that was judged harshly upon release but blossomed lovingly into a bona-fide cult classic years later, David Fincher's "Fight Club."

HIFF Review: Charming 'Sin Bin' Heavily Indebted To The Work Of Wes Anderson

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 9, 2012 6:02 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Young filmmakers often reference their heroes outright. This isn't a phenomenon exclusive to creatively wayward directors; look at the early films of genuine auteur Paul Thomas Anderson to see wholesale theft from Martin Scorsese and Robert Altman (to name a few). But when the references are a distraction to the point of actively taking away from the enjoyment of the movie, that's when things become a problem. And it's a problem that plagues the otherwise wonderful "Sin Bin," a charming little comedy about a high school kid (Michael Seater) who rents his beat-up van out to his fellow students for sexual liaisons, which owes such a stylistic debt to the films of Wes Anderson that it makes you think somewhat less of the movie.

HIFF Review: Disney's 2D & 3D Animated 'Paperman' A Romantic & Inventive Short

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 8, 2012 5:20 PM
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  • 8 Comments
This year's Hamptons International Film Festival has largely been defined by movies that make you want to cry your eyes out until they're squishy red gobs. Pictures like "Rust and Bone," "Amour" and "Silver Linings Playbook" challenge even the manliest audience members to sit there with a straight face and not be reduced to jags of blubbery weeping. But no movie at the festival has packed quite the emotional punch of the Disney Animation short film "Paperman," which, in its brief 7-minute run time, will defy even the most stoic viewer to keep a straight face. From the opening frame, the film's sweeping romanticism and groundbreaking visual style proves too much to resist. The fact that this might be the new face of traditional animation isn't something that even registers; it's that involving.

HIFF Review: 'The Girl' Creates Dark Hitchcockian Mood, But At The Cost Of Virtually Everything Else

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 7, 2012 12:18 PM
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  • 5 Comments
Like with the two competing Snow White movies earlier this year, Hollywood finds itself in the midst of battling Alfred Hitchcock pseudo-biographies this fall; each detailing the production of one of the master director's seminal films and his relationship with that film's comely leading lady. Timed for optimum Oscar impact, arriving in November is "Hitchcock," with Anthony Hopkins as the tumescent filmmaker and a story centered around the making of his touchstone horror classic "Psycho." And later this month HBO is airing "The Girl," starring Toby Jones and Sienna Miller as Hitchcock and ingénue Tippi Hedren, who the director provoked into starring in both "The Birds" and "Marnie."

Hamptons Film Fest Review: 'Sparrows Dance' A Simple Story Delivered With Affecting Charm

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 6, 2012 11:56 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The synopsis for "Sparrow's Dance," the new pocket-sized film from writer/director Noah Buschel, makes it literally sound like the most boring movies ever forged. It's about an unnamed agoraphobic woman (Marin Ireland, most notably from TV shows like "Homeland" and "The Killing"), who struggles with making the simplest human contact. All of that has to change when her apartment becomes flooded and she has to allow a plumber named Wes (Paul Sparks, the colorful goon Mickey Doyle on "Boardwalk Empire") in to fix the leak. That is pretty much as far as it goes for plot. But, amazingly, unburdened with excessive narrative and weighted by a pair of outstanding performances, "Sparrow's Dance" (under Buschel's inventive direction) absolutely flies.

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