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The Playlist

Review: 'Million Dollar Arm' With Jon Hamm, Lake Bell, Alan Arkin & Bill Paxton

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • May 14, 2014 6:02 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Million Dollar Arm
In terms of in-house branding, the "Disney sports movie" has almost as much instantly recognizable cachet as something like their animated princess movies or Marvel superhero flicks. Movies like "Cool Runnings" up through "Remember the Titans" and "Miracle" have the same general, crowd-pleasing formula of being based on a true story, set in the past (either immediate or distant) and featuring a truly likable lead who, against all odds, triumphs at the end. These movies are as warm and comforting as your favorite old sweatshirt. And usually they're just as surprising. With "Million Dollar Arm," the awkwardly titled new Disney sports movie, the studio mixes up the formula with mostly winning results; the unpredictability does them some good.

The 10 Best Episodes Of 'Mad Men'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 16, 2014 2:13 PM
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  • 14 Comments
Mad Men
It might not be the pop culture phenomenon that it once was (the grabbier, faster likes of “True Detective” and “Game Of Thrones” having surpassed it at the nation’s watercoolers), but last Sunday saw the return of “Mad Men,” and if the seventh season premiere was anything to go by, it’s as good as it ever was. Matthew Weiner’s show, about the lives of the employees of a Madison Avenue ad agency in the 1960s (and in particular, the alienated, self-reinventing golden boy Don Draper, played to star-making effect by Jon Hamm, and Elisabeth Moss’s secretary-turned-high-flyer Peggy Olsen) has been a critical favorite since it launched in 2007 and almost singlehandedly made AMC a serious home for prestige drama (paving the way for network-mates “Breaking Bad” and “The Walking Dead” in the process).

Cannes Review: Ari Folman's Part-Animated 'The Congress' Is Overstuffed And Overwritten, But Sort Of Fascinating

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • May 16, 2013 7:21 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Ari Folman's "The Congress" aka "Robin Wright at The Congress" aka "Reviewer's Nightmare" (last title mine) opens the director's fortnight at Cannes this evening and screened for a group of alternately beguiled and baffled press this morning. Evoking Miyazaki and perhaps on-form Gilliam in its best moments, and lurching oddly into "Southland Tales" territory in its worst, it is a film we'd be happy to call a fascinating muddle, were it not a little overstretched to really support even that summation. At the very least, however, should your copy of "Pink Floyd's The Wall" have worn out through overuse, we can see "The Congress" having a similar kind of life as a late-night stoner mindfuck.

Daniel Radcliffe Circling Brit TV Miniseries, Will Play Younger Version Of Jon Hamm

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 2, 2012 10:38 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Don Draper and Harry Potter as the older and younger versions of each other? If these reports pan out that could very well be the case.

Melissa McCarthy & Paul Feig Project Titled 'Dumb Jock' & Talks New Project 'Tammy'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 28, 2011 6:29 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Also Writing Dark Comedy With 'The Help' Director Tate Taylor; Jon Hamm Says He Doubts Kristen Wiig Will Want To Do 'Bridesmaids 2'So just how scorching is the heat on Melissa McCarthy right now after her breakout turn earlier this year in "Bridesmaids"? Well, after taking the statue for Lead Actress In A Comedy Series for "Mike & Molly" (a show wholly undeserving of her talents) at the Emmy's talk pretty much immediately began for an Oscar run for the actress. And while we'll believe it when we see it, that's just an indication of how universally beloved in a span of about four or five months. And Hollywood isn't wasting any time in making sure she has gigs lined up for her next hiatus from the CBS sitcom. "Bridesmaids" director Paul Feig and Judd Apatow are already developing a movie for her which may star Jon Hamm and she's got "ID Theft" lined up with Jason Bateman. And Judd Apatow also gave her a part in his forthcoming "This Is Forty." But believe it or not, that's not all.

Who Could Be The Men In Steven Soderbergh’s ‘The Man From U.N.C.L.E’?

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 20, 2011 4:29 AM
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  • 14 Comments
'The Killing' Star Joel Kinnaman, Michael Fassbender & Ewan McGregor Among Names Being Considered By The DirectorSteven Soderbergh's latest picture "Contagion" is in its second week of release with a healthy tally thus far of over $45 million, and his next feature, the independent male stripper film "Magic Mike," is currently shooting. And now the director is already mapping out -- at least if he sticks to the current plan -- his penultimate film, "The Man from U.N.C.L.E."

First Look: Ed Helms & Jason Segel In The Duplass Brothers' 'Jeff Who Lives At Home'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • July 26, 2011 4:08 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Plus Jon Hamm, Kristen Wiig & Adam Scott In 'Friends With Kids'Lots of Toronto first looks coming down the wire today, so we'll keep it brief, but two of the more anticipated comedies that'll bow at the festival just had their first official stills released. First up is "Jeff Who Lives At Home," the second mainstream picture from The Duplass Brothers, who became indie favorites with films like "The Puffy Chair" and "Baghead," proving to be standouts of the so-called 'mumblecore' scene, before getting to work with bigger names and budgets on last year's excellent "Cyrus."

'Bridesmaids' Director Paul Feig Says He's Rebooting A Comedy Franchise: 4 Possible Contenders

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • June 16, 2011 3:59 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Plus Helmer Talks Upcoming Jon Hamm/Melissa McCarthy ComedyAlmost everyone involved in "Bridesmaids" has gotten a major boost from its huge success (although, note we said almost everyone: more on this later on), and none more deservingly though than its director, Paul Feig. Since co-creating classic one-season wonder "Freaks and Geeks" with Judd Apatow over a decade ago, Feig has worked consistently on some of the best TV shows around, including "The Office," "Arrested Development" and even "Mad Men," but big-screen success had so far eluded him, with features "I Am David" and "Grounded" landing with a thud.

New Paul Feig/Judd Apatow Project May Reteam 'Bridesmaids' Stars Jon Hamm & Melissa McCarthy

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 15, 2011 10:07 AM
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  • 0 Comments
With "Bridesmaids" a bonafide runaway success -- $126 million and counting -- it didn't take long for Universal to re-up with director Paul Feig and producer Judd Apatow signing the pair a new film that has so far been described simply as "an unconventional love story." But it looks like it's a project that Feig has been hinting out throughout the spring.

"I Told You It Would Fit In There": Watch 3 Minutes Of NSFW Outtakes From 'Bridesmaids'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 26, 2011 12:59 PM
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  • 0 Comments
After a tough few years, 2011 has turned out pretty well for Universal so far: "Fast Five" is currently the top-grosser of the year, fairly impressive considering its the fifth entry in a franchise, with "Hop" not far behind, and even "Paul" and "The Adjustment Bureau" did better than expectations. On top of all that, there's "Bridesmaids," not only a film that's one of our collective favorites of the year, but also a genuine word-of-mouth hit, taking a minimal drop in its second week, and steaming towards at least $100 million.

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