The Playlist

Billy Bob Thornton Talks Directing 'Jayne Mansfield's Car' & Looks Back On 'Sling Blade,' 'Armageddon,' 'Bad Santa' & More

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • September 13, 2013 2:06 PM
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  • 3 Comments
These days, most people think of Billy Bob Thornton as an actor, thanks to his unforgettable performances in pictures like the Coens’ “The Man Who Wasn’t There,” Sam Raimi’s “A Simple Plan” and Terry Zwigoff’s “Bad Santa,” so much so that it’s easy to forget that Thornton wrote, directed and starred in the Academy-Award winning “Sling Blade” (Best Adapted) and co-wrote genre classics like Carl Franklin’s “One False Move” and Raimi’s “The Gift.” His latest effort as a co-writer, director, and star is “Jayne Mansfield's Car,” which opens today in theaters and on demand, a charming comedic drama about a southern family whose matriarch leaves, marries a man in England, and then dies (you can read our review from Berlin earlier this year here). The movie takes place on the eve of her funeral, with the two families (one stiff-upper-lip, one deep-fried-south) collide.

Review: 'R.I.P.D.' Starring Ryan Reynolds & Jeff Bridges

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • July 19, 2013 8:57 AM
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  • 10 Comments
One day a studio will fund a $100 million plus tentpole, screen the finished version, and flat-out deem it un-releasable, unwatchable and unmarketable. Until then, we only have reminders that that day is coming, in the form of misguided boondoggles like “R.I.P.D.,” a picture that Universal is releasing in order to create a silver lining around a $130 million cloud. What’s horrifying is that this expensive misfire runs a little less than ninety minutes, which means that there’s likely a 105-110 minute long version that the producers hacked up in order to get the maximum amount of 3D showtimes to not embarrass the studio on opening weekend. Judging by the released product, that version is likely even worse, if such a thing were possible.

Kevin Bacon Wants To Get 'R.I.P.D.'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 29, 2011 3:19 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Kevin Bacon must be getting a thrill these days out of playing the baddie. We're only halfway through the year he's been on screen in three straight films where he's the villain: he was the drug dealing Jacques in "Super"; the twisted Sebastian Shaw in "X-Men: First Class" and the wife-stealing co-worker of Julianne Moore in this weekend's "Crazy, Stupid, Love." Well, people must like what they've been seeing because he's ready to make things difficult for the heroes in the forthcoming "R.I.P.D."

Review: Chemistry Really Cooks In The Uneven, But Super Charming 'Crazy Stupid Love'

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • July 27, 2011 5:39 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Precariously mixing elements of broad comedy, bittersweet heartache, charming romance and soulful, surprisingly mature dramatic moments, "Crazy, Stupid, Love" is an endearing and winning summer comedic drama. It succeeds in spite of some messy plotting, dicey adulteration of tones, and too convenient and ridiculous sequences that threaten to unravel a well-made, mostly well-written picture about love and marital discord.

John Hurt, Kevin Bacon, Robert Patrick & Ray Stevenson Round Out Cast For 'Jayne Mansfield's Car'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 14, 2011 10:43 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Geez, with all the testosterone flying around this film, you might get pregnant just from reading the cast list of Billy Bob Thornton's next effort behind the camera, "Jayne Mansfield's Car."

'X-Men: First Class': The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • June 6, 2011 5:47 AM
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  • 13 Comments
By this point, it's more than likely that you've checked out "X-Men: First Class" (although its underwhelming box office suggests that there were fewer of you than we thought). And, if the film's strong exit scores are anything to go by, you, like most of The Playlist team, found it as entertaining a superhero movie as any in the last few years: fresh, exciting and well-directed, with a brace of star-making performances, it's certainly given a much-needed kick up the ass to a franchise that's had two awful entries in a row.

SXSW Review: James Gunn's 'Super' With Rainn Wilson & Ellen Page Is Twisted, But Uneven

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • March 13, 2011 6:41 AM
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  • 6 Comments
“Shut up, Crime!” bellows Rainn Wilson in “Super.” Such a random demand is highlighted by the outsized appearance of the speaker, clad in thick red fabrics, stocky and pear-shaped within a makeshift superhero costume. It serves as a power fantasy for him, a power fantasy for us. As seen through the eyes of writer-director James Gunn, a man of notably questionable taste, this is no ordinary fantasy.

New Pic From 'X-Men: First Class' Shows Off The Secret Lair Of Emma Frost & Sebastian Shaw

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • March 2, 2011 3:48 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Despite the reportedly rushed production -- and what the ramblings of way-too-invested nerds would have you have believe -- "X-Men: First Class" is still looking like the uh, classiest, of the crush of comic book movies set to hit in the next few months. We're not sure what it is -- the casting, the period setting -- but Matthew Vaughn's film is thankfully devoid of the dorky stink that surrounds its competitors.

Matthew Vaughn Hated The Leaked Image Too & More From The Cast Of 'X-Men: First Class'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 20, 2011 2:56 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Michael Fassbender & Kevin Bacon Talk Shop; Also, Jennifer Lawrence Is All Kinds Of AwesomeTalk about dominating the news cycle: after months of relative inactivity, the 20th Century Fox promotional machine went into full gear yesterday -- perhaps a bit before was originally intended -- in support of the still-filming "X-Men: First Class," with set visits, official stills and a poster all hitting the net, hot on the heels of the underwhelming first look at the cast in full costume/make-up. Now, some of the members of the cast have been talking about the film as well, with Michael Fassbender (Magneto), Kevin Bacon (villain Sebastian Shaw) and Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique) all discussing the film with various outlets.

Now That's Muuuuch Better: More Realistic 'X-Men: First Class' Photos Appear Online

  • By Edward Davis
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  • January 19, 2011 11:29 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Director Matthew Vaughn Says He's Never Felt This Much "Pressure" On Making A MovieOK, this is muuuuuch better. Recent photos of Matthew Vaughn's "X-Men: First Class" leaked on the Internet with the cast in costume and well, they essentially looked like cast off test images from Brett Ratner's "X-Men: The Last Stand" -- definitely not anyone's favorite of the "X-Men" franchise. Heralded as a back-to-basics prequel set in the '60s, the leaked image -- apparently it wasn't ready for public consumption, but once it's out it's out -- seemed to be antithetical to the idea of a group of mutants first finding one another and eventually becoming part of a school of mutants and then a super hero team.

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