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Thompson on Hollywood

How Alex Gibney Found Nigerian Superstar Fela Kuti

Afrobeat superstar Fela Kuti provides a fascinating subject for frequent music documentarian Alex Gibney in "Finding Fela," which was well-reviewed at Sundance and opens in theaters Friday via Kino Lorber.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 1, 2014 4:49 PM
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ILM Gets Trippy with Scarlett Johansson's VFX in Luc Besson's 'Lucy'

Industrial Light & Magic embraced something completely different with Luc Besson's heady sci-fi actioner, "Lucy," in which Scarlett Johansson plays a badass and brainy super-gal who taps her full cerebral capacity in blazing a new evolutionary trail for humanity.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • August 1, 2014 1:01 PM
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'Calvary' Director McDonagh and Brendan Gleeson Talk the Betrayal of Trust (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

John Michael McDonagh's second film, "Calvary," was grabbed at Sundance by Fox Searchlight and opens in theaters August 1. "Calvary" marks perhaps Brendan Gleeson's best performance to date among many others--and a potential Oscar nomination. I talk to them both.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 1, 2014 6:16 AM
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William Friedkin Makes a Midler Musical, Defends Digital, Restores 'Sorcerer,' Reveres Old Studios

The director has been keeping busy not only writing his memoir, The Friedkin Connection, and directing such films as Tracy Lett's adaptation of "Killer Joe," starring Matthew McConaughey, but many operas. He's legendary for his intensity and demands for excellence--but the results speak for themselves. Always have. Friedkin has also painstakingly restored 1977 cult film "Sorcerer" which is out on Blu-Ray and is coming on DVD and Digital Download.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 31, 2014 5:25 PM
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'Guardians of the Galaxy' Director James Gunn Looks Forward -- and Back

"Guardians of the Galaxy" is the most irreverent Marvel departure, and, thanks to writer-director James Gunn ("Slither"), we're reminded that sci-fi can be fun. What's old is new again. But even though it wasn't his intention to give us a nostalgia trip while creating his own colorful galaxy of rogues and villains, it's an occupational hazard of turning archetypes on their heads.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • July 31, 2014 1:44 PM
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'Happy Christmas' Stars Melanie Lynskey and Mark Webber Dive Off the Deep End with Joe Swanberg

Joe Swanberg is familiar to many as a Mumblecore director--which means he writes, directs, shoots, often acts in and improvises his way through his low-budget naturalistic movies, although his last one was done on a somewhat grander scale that required some writing and organization--"Drinking Buddies. "Happy Christmas," though, is a return to his old ways, which means you need to like this kind of movie to enjoy it.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 30, 2014 5:28 PM
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How Roadside Attractions Made Hit of 'Most Wanted Man,' Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, the Web is Changing the Movie Business

Roadside Attractions' Howard Cohen Talks 'A Most Wanted Man,' Philip Seymour Hoffman, fall film festivals, theaters vs. VOD and the indie future.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 30, 2014 2:37 PM
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Guillermo Del Toro Talks the Horror and Romance of 'Crimson Peak' at Comic-Con

Guillermo del Toro, who's become quite the Comic-Con fixture, hugging fanboys and journos alike, admits that his gothic horror-romance, "Crimson Peak" (Oct. 16, 2015), is the biggest movie he's ever made. "Not only the scope is bigger, but I'm going to use a word that I don't normally touch, and that's ambition. This is an ambitious movie from the thematic point of view and from the visual point of view."
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • July 29, 2014 12:01 PM
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Titans Peter Jackson and George Miller Take Over the Con with 'Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies' and 'Mad Max: Fury Road' (POSTERS & TRAILERS)

Despite the momentary wow factor of glimpsing that spooky stare-down in "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," (yes, Ben Affleck looks perfectly suited as The Dark Knight), the real joy of the Warner Bros. Hall H panel on Saturday was Peter Jackson and George Miller geeking out about the "The Hobbit" finale and the re-imagined "Mad Max."
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • July 28, 2014 4:25 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Best of the Week: TIFF & Venice Stir Fall Fest Circuit, Comic-Con, How 'Snowpiercer' Became a Gamechanger & More

The top stories of the week from TOH!
  • By TOH!
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  • July 26, 2014 10:30 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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