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Thompson on Hollywood

Weekly Wrap: Trailers, Interviews, Festival Updates, Oscar Watch, and a 2011 Trailer Mashup

Weekly Wrap: Trailers for "Prometheus" and "Dark Knight Rising," Reviews of Late December Releases, Festival Updates, Oscar Watch and updates on projects in the works.
  • By TOH!
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  • December 24, 2011 7:49 PM
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'Tree of Life,' 'A Separation' Lead Village Voice Poll, 'Margaret' Lands Three Wins

"The Tree of Life" has won yet another victory, topping the annual Village Voice critics poll and winning best director for Terrence Malick. The film was followed by Iranian Oscar submission "A Separation"; Lars von Trier's "Melancholia" came in third.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2011 2:02 PM
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Critics Keep Voting for Tree of Life, from Chicago to Indiewire Poll

Critics are lining up behind Terrence Malick's "The Tree of Life." While critics groups don't have as much predictive impact as Guild awards like the Screen Actors Guild, they do add to to winners' patina, build credibility and consensus, and keep attention on some must-see titles.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 1:44 PM
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Now and Then: For Woody Allen, the Place is the Thing, from Manhattan to Midnight in Paris

When asked about Woody Allen's New York, critics often cite the glorious black-and-white Gershwin cinepoem that opens “Manhattan” (1979). I’ve always been partial, though, to the rough magic of Diane Keaton’s terrible driving in “Annie Hall” (1977). (See clips below.)
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • December 19, 2011 12:16 PM
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Early Reviews on Late-Breaking War Horse, Extremely Loud, Land of Blood and Honey

Early reviews are in on Steven Spielberg's "War Horse," Stephen Daldry's "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close," and Anjelina Jolie's "In the Land of Blood and Honey," three of the latest-breaking movies hitting theaters this Christmas. A sampling of reviews of all three movies are below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 7:30 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Review & Round-up: Fincher's The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo Opens A Day Early, December 20

"The Social Network'''s Rooney Mara delivers Salander in a smart expertly executed film that takes the time to make clear plot developments and changing dynamics between investigator Blomkvist (well-played by Daniel Craig) and the androgynous punk researcher who has a woman in her bed when he first knocks on her door.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 13, 2011 8:01 PM
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How to Make a Ten Best List

'Tis the season when ten best lists start rolling in. I smile when I get my first Christmas card, always from John Waters (Highland, Maryland), whose Ten Best is in Art Forum, natch, and below. Kris Tapley and I delivered ours in this week's Oscar Talk podcast; I'll publish mine and the TOH crew's lists on Monday. Herewith are some early lists, below; Sight & Sound had 101 critics weigh in, and Mubi is collecting lists as well, including the Cahiers du Cinema.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 9, 2011 7:23 PM
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  • 4 Comments

Review: Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol Returns Cruise to Giddy Action

Brad Bird Talks Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol: IMAX vs. 3-D, Animation vs. Live Action, Trailer
The supremely imaginative director of "The Incredibles" meets Hollywood’s most determined, career-committed star for the former’s live-action debut and the latter’s reboot of the spy-thrills franchise that keeps on giving as far as his career is concerned.
  • By Matt Mueller
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  • December 7, 2011 6:08 PM
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Concrete Jungles: Doc Short Reimagines the High Rise

“One Millionth Tower” is a visually spectacular Web documentary by Canadian filmmaker Katerina Cizek that reimagines the fate of the dilapidating modern high-rise, a building form that houses over a billion people worldwide.   The six and a half minute short concentrates on a Toronto concrete high rise, Kipling Avenue, home to some 20,000 people. The film mixes photographs of the high rises with whimsical animation that brings these concrete structures to life, communicating the vibrancy of the high-rise through virtual landscapes. “One Millionth Tower” filmmakers spent two years interviewing residents with delicate attentiveness; the animation is sourced from apartment denizens' sketches of ways to improve their home. As the third installment of short web documentaries from the HIGHRISE project (others include “One Thousandth Tower” and “Out My Window”) this short film shows the power of film to transform our world.  Watch "One Millionth Tower" here.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • December 5, 2011 11:47 AM
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Young Adult: Early Reviews and Theron's Deliciously Narcissistic Anti-Hero

"Young Adult," the lastest from director Jason Reitman ("Up in the Air") and screenwriter Diablo Cody ("Juno") is a rare black sheep. It plays like a dark indie comedy with attitude, but it stars Oscar-winner Charlize Theron, sidesteps convention and beats to its own drum. It doesn't conform to mainstream laughs or tidy endings, nor does it charm its way into our hearts. Reitman and Cody happily make us squirm by pointing out things in the culture and ourselves that we may not be ready to see.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • December 5, 2011 11:40 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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