The Playlist

ln Theaters: Will You Be 'Playing For Keeps' With Shirtless Gerard Butler Or Rolling In 'Hyde Park' With Bill Murray?

  • By Emma Bernstein
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  • December 7, 2012 2:48 PM
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  • 0 Comments
It's kind of a weird weekend at the movies, with no major release except for shirtless, hunky Gerard Butler learning about love, life and soccer or something in "Playing For Keeps." Meanwhile, arthouses get the fading Oscar chances of "Hyde Park On Hudson" starring the always awesome Bill Murray. Check out your options below and tell us where your hard-earned dollars going this weekend.

Review: 'Lay The Favorite' A Comedy That's An Empty Bet

  • By John Lichman
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  • December 5, 2012 4:19 PM
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  • 0 Comments
“You can't blame Stephen Frears for trying” seems to be the mantra for "Lay the Favorite," a mild romp through the T&A world of Las Vegas, gambling and literary adaptation. After all, "High Fidelity" is an iconic film to obsessive nerds (Need proof? See: every listicle on the Internet) and Frears is no slouch to crafting strong and/or sexy female characters (Tamara Drew, Cherí, The Queen). But what happens when he tries to mash them up and form the unholy love child of a stat geek and a bubbly idiot savant who used to be a stripper?

5 Great Gambling Movies To Get You Ready For 'Lay The Favorite'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • December 4, 2012 2:45 PM
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  • 5 Comments
Stephen Frears' "Lay The Favorite," the story of a characterful young woman (Rebecca Hall) who becomes involved in sports gambling, and which co-stars Bruce Willis, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Joshua Jackson, Vince Vaughn and Frank Grillo, slinks into theaters this week. In a way, it's lucky to do so. Not taken too kindly by critics when it premiered at Sundance way back in January, it's already hit theaters in much of the world elsewhere, and is likely only making it to theaters out of contractual obligation.

Watch: New Trailer & Pics For Stephen Frears' 'Lay The Favorite' With Bruce Willis, Rebecca Hall & Catherine Zeta-Jones

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 22, 2012 5:08 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Every year, many films hit Sundance packed with stars, and featuring a solid name behind the camera, but not all of them live up to expecatation. And by most accounts, "Lay The Favorite" is one of those movies. Boasting a cast that includes Rebecca Hall, Bruce Willis, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Vince Vaughn, Laura Prepon, Joshua Jackson and more, with Stephen Frears at the helm, the potential was there for a better-than-average comedy, but judging from the notices out of Park City, the result was less than that.

Watch: U.K. Trailer For Gambling Comedy 'Lay The Favorite' Starring Bruce Willis & Rebecca Hall

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 29, 2012 5:51 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Premiering at Sundance in January to rather dismal reviews -- including our own which called it an "empty comedy" -- and acquired by The Weinstein Company which has yet to give the film a release date, who knows when Stephen Frears' star-studded "Lay The Favorite" will land stateside. But over the in U.K., it hits theaters in just a few weeks so why not roll out a trailer?

As Mel Gibson's Latest Film Goes Straight To VOD, Is This A Glimpse Of The Future Of Distribution?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 3, 2012 4:46 PM
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  • 11 Comments
Something curious happened this week. It was announced that an action film from someone who has historically been one of Hollywood's biggest stars would be skipping movie theaters. That's not unprecedented, or necessarily surprising, considering that the star in question is disgraced A-lister Mel Gibson , who's been in the doghouse since his well publicized racist, abusive rants leaked two years ago. And doubly unsurprising considering that Gibson's last film, the Jodie Foster-directed drama "The Beaver" never made it over the million dollar mark at the domestic box office.

Weinsteins 'Lay The Favorite,' Focus Had 'A Good Time,' Millenium Turns On 'Red Lights' & More Sundance Acquisitions

  • By Benjamin Wright
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  • January 25, 2012 11:43 AM
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  • 1 Comment
As many of you know, the Sundance Film Festival is well underway, and there’s been no shortage of studios acquiring some buzzed-about independent titles. As the fest winds into its last few days, the deals are getting done.

Sundance: Stephen Frears & Rebecca Hall Talk Bringing The Gambling Tale 'Lay The Favorite' To Life

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • January 24, 2012 12:03 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Over the weekend in Park City, Utah, “Lay the Favorite” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, drawing mixed reactions from audiences and critics with its colorful portrait of an ex-stripper who discovers an unexpected aptitude for legal gambling (you can read our review here). Amazingly, however, the film is based on a true story, using the memoir by Beth Raymer as a jumping off point, and as Rebecca Hall puts it, her performance as Beth gives the character a believability they might not have if they were in a regular, fictional film.

Sundance Review: 'Lay The Favorite' A Comedy That's An Empty Bet

  • By John Lichman
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  • January 23, 2012 8:11 AM
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  • 3 Comments
“You can't blame Stephen Frears for trying” seems to be the mantra for "Lay the Favorite," a mild romp through the T&A world of Las Vegas, gambling and literary adaptation. After all, "High Fidelity" is an iconic film to obsessive nerds (Need proof? See: every listicle on the Internet) and Frears is no slouch to crafting strong and/or sexy female characters (Tamara Drew, Cherí, The Queen). But what happens when he tries to mash them up and form the unholy love child of a stat geek and a bubbly idiot savant who used to be a stripper?

Watch: Rebecca Hall & Bruce Willis Have A Sunset Strip Singalong In First Clip From Stephen Frears' 'Lay The Favorite'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 18, 2012 11:40 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Many rock stars want to be actors, despite having no real capacity for it, while conversely, many actors would like to be singers, again, without necessarily having the ability to carry a tune. Among them is Bruce Willis, who inexplicably had a successful album, "The Return of Bruno," in the 1980s. Fortunately, we've been spared his vocal stylings for a while on screen, but our time of rest is over; if you've ever wanted to hear John McClane take on The Hollies' "The Air That I Breathe," 1) You're in luck, and 2) What's wrong with you?

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