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The Playlist

Senate Gives 'Zero Dark Thirty' More Free Promo, Decides To Probe Ties Between CIA And Filmmakers

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 3, 2013 10:41 AM
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  • 2 Comments
And you thought the ruckus around "Django Unchained" was bad. With Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty" slated to go into wide release in just over a week, it appears the controversy over its presentation of "enhanced interrogation" (ie. torture) as one of the many methods used in shaking out information that led to the killing of Osama Bin Laden, is far from over. Both Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal have stressed in official statements that, "The film shows that no single method was necessarily responsible for solving the manhunt, nor can any single scene taken in isolation fairly capture the totality of efforts the film dramatizes." But since politics are involved, that will not suffice.

Drew Taylor's Top Ten Favorite Films of 2012

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • January 2, 2013 11:04 AM
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  • 8 Comments
2012 was all about escape. Not only in terms of the big-budget movies that offered us escape from the increasingly ugly real world (how many superheroes or swoony vampires can we stomach?), but by the content of the more adult movies. Characters wanted an escape – from slavery, from a futuristic Korea, from time-travel gangsters, from a burdensome lover – and in these stories we were afforded tremendous freedom. They transported us, for sure, while reminding us of the very real hardships 2012 afforded us all. Below are my very favorite movies of the year, all of which I will be escaping to, again and again, for years to come.

Watch: New TV Spots For 'Zero Dark Thirty' & 'A Good Day To Die Hard'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 28, 2012 4:16 PM
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  • 5 Comments
Santa may have already left the building, but that doesn't mean marketing or advertising stops, as an awards contender and blockbuster hopeful hit the small screen to get your hard earned cash. So let's dive in.

"It's Not A Propaganda Movie": Jessica Chastain On Torture, The CIA & 'Zero Dark Thirty'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • December 28, 2012 1:21 PM
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  • 11 Comments
Two years ago, it's possible that only friends and family of Jessica Chastain, along with a savvy casting director or two, would have been able to point her out in a line-up. But after a hugely busy 2011, and a fairly hectic 2012, she's one of the most in demand actresses around, something that's only been further cemented by her role in Kathryn Bigelow's controversial, much-praised "Zero Dark Thirty," which looks set to land her her second Oscar nomination -- and possibly even her first win -- in a few weeks time.

Gabe Toro's Ten Best Films Of 2012

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 28, 2012 9:56 AM
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  • 28 Comments
A strong year, this 2012. Every genre had its share of riches, and we were spoiled by new films from Andersons Wes and Paul Thomas, further mythmaking from Quentin Tarantino and an inquisition into our currency from David Cronenberg. We saw the continued evolution of the careers of Jacques Audiard, Rian Johnson, Craig Zobel and Ira Sachs, while William Friedkin was revitalized, and, as if by accident, two more great films tumbled out of Steven Soderbergh’s pocket. By the time Steven Spielberg cranked out his finest film in almost two decades, we were awash in riches.

Fox Honcho Rupert Murdoch Says 'Zero Dark Thirty' May "Inflame Arab World"

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 28, 2012 8:56 AM
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  • 8 Comments
Even though "Zero Dark Thirty" is still only in a handful of theaters in New York City and Los Angeles, it seems everyone has an opinion on the movie at this point. The "pro-torture" controversy continues to swirl, though director Kathryn Bigelow has tried to make it clear the interrogation method was included because, well, it's something that was used along the way (United States Secretary Of Defense Leon Panetta has admitted "enhanced interrogation" was used to get intel on Osama Bin Laden). Anyway, the talk around the movie won't end anytime soon, and now Rupert Murdoch is weighing in.

Kathryn Bigelow Talks "Torture" Controversy, Her First "Failed" 'Hunt For Osama Bin Laden' Film & More About 'Zero Dark Thirty'

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • December 27, 2012 4:31 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Here's the rundown. Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty," her follow-up to the Oscar-winning Best Picture "The Hurt Locker" depicts an eight year hunt for Osama Bin Landen (our review calls it "one of the best of the year," and "an intense and dense" national security procedural). Bigelow and her screenwriter Mark Boal, also an investigative journalist, received flak earlier this year and were the target of controversy when accusations flew that the CIA gave them special access to classified documents regarding the Bin Laden hunt. Boal said earlier this year that the picture was not vetted by the CIA and that seems to be the case, as Acting CIA Director Michael Morell recently criticized the film in a letter to his employees stating the film takes too many liberties with the truth while still claiming to be historically accurate. Marketing is one thing, but as we've said ourselves: the movie is not a documentary.

What Are You Seeing This Weekend? 'This Is 40' & 'Jack Reacher' Are 'On The Road' At 'Zero Dark Thirty'

  • By Emma Bernstein
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  • December 21, 2012 5:21 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Well folks, today is the Mayan Apocalypse, the official end of the Mesoamerican Long Count Calendar -- which doesn't sound so bad -- and, possibly, the world as we know it, which sounds pretty terrible. If we're all still here tomorrow (or tonight, for that matter), there is a delectable spread of filmic morsels on this weekend's menu. The latest Judd Apatow feature, Tom Cruise's new moody thriller, the first direct cinematic adaptation of Jack Kerouac's most famous work, and Kathryn Bigelow's second venture into modern warfare will grace the nation's silver screens, and we would encourage you to indulge where possible. So, toast the end of planet Earth while you tell us what you hope you'll be seeing in the comments section below. It probably wouldn't hurt to knock on wood or rub a rabbit's foot too. No, seriously: we really want to see "Gangster Squad" next year.

New Yorker's David Denby Names 'Lincoln,' 'Zero Dark Thirty' & More As Best Movies Of 2012

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 19, 2012 3:33 PM
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  • 3 Comments
David Denby may think that cinema is dead (or dying), but maybe the dude needs to get out more. The New Yorker film critic has dropped his list essay on the Best Movies Of 2012, and for a guy has found a lot of fault for how the studios make movies, his list features lots of studio and studio indie fare. Just sayin'.

'Holy Motors' Tops Film Comment's Top 50 Films Of 2012, 'The Master,' 'Moonrise Kingdom' & 'Amour' In Top 10

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 14, 2012 4:16 PM
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  • 14 Comments
Another awards season week draws to a close, and another poll drops, this time from Film Comment. And a few cinephile favorites feature in the top ten of a fifty strong list.

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