Widows review – Steve McQueen's brutal heist thriller delivers the swag

Widows review – Steve McQueen's brutal heist thriller delivers the swag
Viola Davis leads a bereaved crew into the urban underworld in this sardonic and stylishly old-fashioned crime caper, which kicks off the 2018 London film festival

Viola Davis’s contemptuous stare has the force of a double-barrelled shotgun in this blistering thriller from Steve McQueen. Rocking a sleek belted trenchcoat rather than conventional widow’s weeds, Davis leads a blue-chip cast in McQueen’s cracking reboot of Lynda La Plante’s Thatcher-era Brit TV drama about bereaved women taking over a planned robbery from their criminal menfolk killed on an abortive job.

It’s a violent heist movie, a twisty neo-noir and an old-school municipal graft drama with something of Robert Rossen’s 1949 picture All the King’s Men. It has the urban cynicism and male toxicity we saw in McQueen’s sex addiction nightmare Shame but his signature alienated long takes are in evidence just once in Widows, when a
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Oscar Flashback: The eight films that struck out in the Big Five, including ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,’ ‘American Hustle’

Oscar Flashback: The eight films that struck out in the Big Five, including ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,’ ‘American Hustle’
This article marks Part 1 of the Gold Derby series reflecting on films that contended for the Big Five Oscars – Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Screenplay (Original or Adapted). With “A Star Is Born” this year on the cusp of joining this exclusive group of Oscar favorites, join us as we look back at the 43 extraordinary pictures that earned Academy Awards nominations in each of the Big Five categories beginning with the eight that were shut out of these top races.

At the 31st Academy Awards ceremony, “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” (1958) was well-positioned for Oscar glory. Critically acclaimed and commercially successful, the film adaptation of Tennessee Williams’ play was up in six categories, including the Big Five, plus Best Cinematography.

Instead of emerging victorious, however, the film found itself steamrolled over. It would lose Best Picture and Best Director (Richard Brooks) to the musical “Gigi” and its filmmaker,
See full article at Gold Derby »

Where Are They Now: Albert Brenner Went From Window Dressing to Oscar Noms

  • Variety
Growing up among his native Brooklyn’s brick-and-fire-escape facades in the 1930’s, production designer-to-be Albert Brenner often dreamed of the wide open spaces depicted in his favorite Saturday-matinee Westerns. At 16, he landed his first “art job”: dressing windows for a New York City department store.

Two years later, Brenner swapped mannequins for military service and flew in B-24 bombers until World War II ended in 1945. On the G.I. Bill, he attended Yale University, graduating with skills in drafting, and went into summer stock theater under designer Samuel Leve, toiling away on plays like “The Fifth Season” and gaining a union card in the process.

He developed his designer chops in New York on TV shows like “The Phil Silvers Show,” “Car 54, Where Are You?” “Captain Kangaroo” and “Playhouse 90.” His first day on the Silvers show, where he eventually earned $250 a week, was nearly his last, when he
See full article at Variety »

'The Hustler': THR's 1961 Review

On Sept. 25, 1961, 20th Century Fox premiered Paul Newman's The Hustler in Washington, D.C. The film went on to be nominated for nine Oscars at the 34th Academy Awards, winning in the art direction and cinematography categories. The Hollywood Reporter's original review, headlined "'The Hustler' Provocative, Powerful Offbeat Picture," is below.

Provocative and powerful, The Hustler is an odd and serious picture that will have some fanatical admirers — as it should, because the Robert Rossen production is an important and, in its way, satisfying experience. It is, however, well outside the usual Hollywood ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

The Sea Wolf

Now restored to perfection, this genuine classic hasn’t been seen intact for way over sixty years. Michael Curtiz and Robert Rossen adapt Jack London’s suspenseful allegory in high style, with a superb quartet of actors doing some of their best work: Robinson, Garfield, Lupino and newcomer Alexander Knox.

The Sea Wolf

Blu-ray

Warner Archive Collection

1941 / B&W / 1:37 flat Academy / 100 min. uncut! / Street Date October 10, 2017 / available through the WBshop / 21.99

Starring: Edward G. Robinson, Alexander Knox, Ida Lupino, John Garfield, Gene Lockhart, Barry Fitzgerald. Stanley Ridges, David Bruce, Francis McDonald, Howard Da Silva, Frank Lackteen, Ralf Harolde

Cinematography: Sol Polito

Film Editor: George Amy

Art Direction: Anton Grot

Special Effects: Byron Haskin, Hans F. Koenekamp

Original Music: Erich Wolfgang Korngold

Written by Robert Rosson, from the novel by Jack London

Produced by Hal B. Wallis, Henry Blanke

Directed by Michael Curtiz

Chopping up films for television was once the
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Early Garrel: The Holy Familiar

Mubi will be showing the retrospective Philippe Garrel: Fight for Eternity from May 1 - July 5, 2017 in most countries around the world.Les enfants désaccordésQuestion: I must ask you here about one concept you discuss in your book, one that also might be thought of, next to the structural work, as another way to break from the story in the film. The concept is muzan, and I find it quite difficult to think of a proper translation of it into English. How do you employ this concept into your films, and does it, in fact, have anything to do with the way you wish to break away from the story?

Yoshishige Yoshida: I understand the word in itself, as you would understand the literal meaning of the kanji: something which expresses the impossibility of attaining stability or change for the better. Yes, I believe this is the meaning of the concept that I use.
See full article at MUBI »

A Walk in the Sun

Lewis Milestone’s poetic character study of an infantry landing in Italy gives us a full dozen non-cliché portraits of men in war, featuring a dramatic dream team of interesting character actors. Dana Andrews was the only big star in the cast, joined by hopefuls Richard Conte, Lloyd Bridges and John Ireland; the standout crew includes Sterling Holloway, Norman Lloyd, Steve Brodie and Huntz Hall.

A Walk in the Sun

DVD

The Sprocket Vault / Kit Parker Films

1945 / B&W / 1:37 Academy / 117 min. / Restored Collector’s Edition / Street Date ?, 2017 / available through The Sprocket Vault / 14.99

Starring: Richard Conte, George Tyne, John Ireland, Lloyd Bridges, Sterling Holloway, Norman Lloyd Dana Andrews, Herbert Rudley, Richard Benedict, Huntz Hall, James Cardwell, Steve Brodie, Matt Willis, Chris Drake, John Kellogg, Robert Horton, Burgess Meredith.

Cinematography: Russell Harlan

Film Editor: Duncan Mansfield

Original Music: Fredric Efrem Rich; ‘The Ballads’ sung by : Kenneth Spencer

Written by: Robert
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Something Wild (1961)

Something Wild

Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection 850

1961 / B&W / 1:66 widescreen 1:37 flat Academy / 113 min. / available through The Criterion Collection / Street Date January 17, 2017 / 39.95

Starring: Carroll Baker, Ralph Meeker, Mildred Dunnock, Jean Stapleton, Martin Kosleck, Charles Watts, Clifton James, Doris Roberts, Anita Cooper, Tanya Lopert.

Cinematography: Eugen Schüfftan

Film Editor: Carl Lerner

Original Music: Aaron Copland

Written by Jack Garfein and Alex Karmel from his novel Mary Ann

Produced by George Justin

Directed by Jack Garfein

After writing up an earlier Mod disc release of the 1961 movie Something Wild, I received a brief but welcome email note from its director:

“Dear Glenn Erickson,

Thank you for your profound appreciation of Something Wild.

If possible, I would appreciate if you could send

me a copy of your review by email.

Sincerely yours, Jack Garfein

Somewhere back East (or in London), the Actors Studio legend Jack Garfein had found favor with the review. Although
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Oscars: How Often Is There a Split Between Best Picture and Best Director?

La La Land’ and ‘Moonlight’ (Courtesy: Dale Robinette; David Bornfriend/A24)

By: Carson Blackwelder

Managing Editor

Nothing is certain at the Oscars, and that absolutely applies to the best picture and best director categories. While it is common for films to win both of these trophies in a given year, sometimes they can go to two different works. There’s a chance that La La Land and Moonlight could split these categories at the upcoming ceremony — but how often does that happen?

Both of these films are considered frontrunners in both the best picture and best director category at the upcoming Oscars. This site’s namesake, The Hollywood Reporter’s Scott Feinberg, lists La La Land — written and directed by Damien Chazelle — and Moonlight — written and directed by Barry Jenkins — as the top two contenders in both categories in his latest check-in on the race. The two films have been
See full article at Scott Feinberg »

Piper Laurie: The Hollywood Interview

Piper Laurie Keeps Her Chin Up

By Alex Simon

Few living actors can claim to have experienced the Hollywood machine in all its iterations more than three-time Oscar nominee Piper Laurie. Signed by Universal Pictures at 17, their youngest contract player in years, she was in the last generation that were part of the Hollywood “factory,” pushed into “cheesecake” roles that accented physical attributes, as opposed to talent. It was the beginning of a journey.

She was born Rosetta Jacobs in Detroit, Michigan, on January 22, 1932, to immigrant parents of Polish and Russian Jewish descent. When she was still five, the family sent her and her sister to a children’s sanatorium in the mountains to see if her sister’s asthma could be cured. Three years later after being reunited with her family she decided she wanted to become an actress and studied with Benno and Betomi Schneider for several years
See full article at The Hollywood Interview »

Alexander the Great

Tired of stupid sword 'n' sandal costume pictures? Robert Rossen's all-star bio-epic of the charter founder of the Masons is a superior analysis of political ambition and the ruthless application of power. Yeah, he's wearing a blond wig, but Richard Burton captures the force of Alexander without camping up Asia Minor. Alexander the Great Blu-ray Twilight Time Limited Edition 1956 / Color / 2:35 widescreen / 136 min. / Ship Date March 15, 2016 / available through Twilight Time Movies / 29.95 Starring Richard Burton, Fredric March, Claire Bloom, Danielle Darrieux, Barry Jones, Harry Andrews, Stanley Baker, Niall MacGinnis, Peter Cushing. Cinematography Robert Krasker Art Direction Andrej Andrejew Film Editor Ralph Kemplen Original Music Mario Nascimbene Produced by Gordon Griffith, Robert Rossen Written and Directed by Robert Rossen

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

Critical opinions aren't supposed to flip-flop with every screening of a film, but I have to admit that my appreciation of Robert Rossen's 1956 epic Alexander the Great
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Piper Laurie At Screening Of "The Hustler" March 16, L.A.

  • CinemaRetro
The Royale Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles will be presenting a 55th anniversary screening of Robert Rossen’s The Hustler. The 134-minute film, which stars Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, Piper Laurie, George C. Scott, Myron McCormick, Murray Hamilton, and both Jake Lamotta and Vincent Gardenia as bartenders, will be screened on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 7:00 pm.

Actress Piper Laurie, who appears in the film as Sarah Packard, is scheduled to appear at a Q&A session after the film to discuss her role and career.

From the press release:

The Hustler

Part of our Anniversary Classics series. For details, visit: laemmle.com/ac.

The Hustler (1961)

55th Anniversary Screening

Wednesday, March 16, at 7:00 Pm at the Royal Theatre

Three-Time Oscar Nominee Piper Laurie in person for Q&A after the screening

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, one of the most incisive character dramas of the 1960s, earned nine Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars,
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Piper Laurie At Screening Of "The Hustler" March 16, L.A.

  • CinemaRetro
The Royale Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles will be presenting a 55th anniversary screening of Robert Rossen’s The Hustler. The 134-minute film, which stars Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, Piper Laurie, George C. Scott, Myron McCormick, Murray Hamilton, and both Jake Lamotta and Vincent Gardenia as bartenders, will be screened on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 7:00 pm.

Actress Piper Laurie, who appears in the film as Sarah Packard, is scheduled to appear at a Q&A session after the film to discuss her role and career.

From the press release:

The Hustler

Part of our Anniversary Classics series. For details, visit: laemmle.com/ac.

The Hustler (1961)

55th Anniversary Screening

Wednesday, March 16, at 7:00 Pm at the Royal Theatre

Three-Time Oscar Nominee Piper Laurie in person for Q&A after the screening

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, one of the most incisive character dramas of the 1960s, earned nine Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars,
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Piper Laurie At Screening Of "The Hustler"

  • CinemaRetro
The Royale Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles will be presenting a 55th anniversary screening of Robert Rossen’s The Hustler. The 134-minute film, which stars Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, Piper Laurie, George C. Scott, Myron McCormick, Murray Hamilton, and both Jake Lamotta and Vincent Gardenia as bartenders, will be screened on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 7:00 pm.

Actress Piper Laurie, who appears in the film as Sarah Packard, is scheduled to appear at a Q&A session after the film to discuss her role and career.

From the press release:

The Hustler

Part of our Anniversary Classics series. For details, visit: laemmle.com/ac.

The Hustler (1961)

55th Anniversary Screening

Wednesday, March 16, at 7:00 Pm at the Royal Theatre

Three-Time Oscar Nominee Piper Laurie in person for Q&A after the screening

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, one of the most incisive character dramas of the 1960s, earned nine Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars,
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Piper Laurie At Screening Of "The Hustler"

  • CinemaRetro
The Royale Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles will be presenting a 55th anniversary screening of Robert Rossen’s The Hustler. The 134-minute film, which stars Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, Piper Laurie, George C. Scott, Myron McCormick, Murray Hamilton, and both Jake Lamotta and Vincent Gardenia as bartenders, will be screened on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 7:00 pm.

Actress Piper Laurie, who appears in the film as Sarah Packard, is scheduled to appear at a Q&A session after the film to discuss her role and career.

From the press release:

The Hustler

Part of our Anniversary Classics series. For details, visit: laemmle.com/ac.

The Hustler (1961)

55th Anniversary Screening

Wednesday, March 16, at 7:00 Pm at the Royal Theatre

Three-Time Oscar Nominee Piper Laurie in person for Q&A after the screening

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, one of the most incisive character dramas of the 1960s, earned nine Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars,
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Piper Laurie At Screening Of "The Hustler"

  • CinemaRetro
The Royale Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles will be presenting a 55th anniversary screening of Robert Rossen’s The Hustler. The 134-minute film, which stars Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, Piper Laurie, George C. Scott, Myron McCormick, Murray Hamilton, and both Jake Lamotta and Vincent Gardenia as bartenders, will be screened on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at 7:00 pm.

Actress Piper Laurie, who appears in the film as Sarah Packard, is scheduled to appear at a Q&A session after the film to discuss her role and career.

From the press release:

The Hustler

Part of our Anniversary Classics series. For details, visit: laemmle.com/ac.

The Hustler (1961)

55th Anniversary Screening

Wednesday, March 16, at 7:00 Pm at the Royal Theatre

Three-Time Oscar Nominee Piper Laurie in person for Q&A after the screening

Robert Rossen’s The Hustler, one of the most incisive character dramas of the 1960s, earned nine Academy Award nominations and won two Oscars,
See full article at CinemaRetro »

The Top Father's Day Films Ever Made? Here Are Five Dads - Ranging from the Intellectual to the Pathological

'Father of the Bride': Steve Martin and Kimberly Williams. Top Five Father's Day Movies? From giant Gregory Peck to tyrant John Gielgud What would be the Top Five Father's Day movies ever made? Well, there have been countless films about fathers and/or featuring fathers of various sizes, shapes, and inclinations. In terms of quality, these range from the amusing – e.g., the 1950 version of Cheaper by the Dozen; the Oscar-nominated The Grandfather – to the nauseating – e.g., the 1950 version of Father of the Bride; its atrocious sequel, Father's Little Dividend. Although I'm unable to come up with the absolute Top Five Father's Day Movies – or rather, just plain Father Movies – ever made, below are the first five (actually six, including a remake) "quality" patriarch-centered films that come to mind. Now, the fathers portrayed in these films aren't all heroic, loving, and/or saintly paternal figures. Several are
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Return to Paul Newman's Legend-Making Performance in 'The Hustler'

This gritty, downbeat adaptation of the Walter Tevis novel was director Robert Rossen’s favorite of his films, and one of Paul Newman’s as well. He reprised his role as pool shark Fast Eddie Felson in Martin Scorsese’s 1986 "The Color of Money" and won the Oscar that eluded him here. Pool pro Willie Moscone coached Newman and served as hand double for the close-up shots. The supporting cast is Aces.
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

‘The Strange Love of Martha Ivers’ is a demonstration of why melodrama is not an inherently bad thing

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers

Written by Robert Rossen, Robert Riskin

Directed by Lewis Milestone

U.S.A., 1946

As a teenager, Martha Ivers (Janis Wilson) was a petulant rebel who regularly struck the ire of her caretaking aunt, a wicked woman prone to sucking the joy out of Martha’s life even though she offers the youngling a home in her plush Pennsylvania estate. One of the teen’s attempts to run away with street smart Sam Masterson (Darryl Hickman) changes the rest of her life in ways she could never have anticipated. Caught by the police once again and sent back home, Martha unleashes her frustrations on her aunt, murdering her in the process. The only witness to the killing is young Walter O’Neil (Mickey Kuhn), son of Martha’s tutor. Martha claims an intruder killed the vile old creature amidst a frantic escape. Flash forward years
See full article at SoundOnSight »

Every Best Picture Oscar Winner, Ranked From Worst to Best

This week marks the 10th anniversary of the release of "Crash" (on May 6, 2005), an all-star movie whose controversy came not from its provocative treatment of racial issues but from its Best Picture Oscar victory a few months later, against what many critics felt was a much more deserving movie, "Brokeback Mountain."

The "Crash" vs. "Brokeback" battle is one of those lingering disputes that makes the Academy Awards so fascinating, year after year. Moviegoers and critics who revisit older movies are constantly judging the Academy's judgment. Even decades of hindsight may not always be enough to tell whether the Oscar voters of a particular year got it right or wrong. Whether it's "Birdman" vs. "Boyhood," "The King's Speech" vs. "The Social Network," "Saving Private Ryan" vs. "Shakespeare in Love" or even "An American in Paris" vs. "A Streetcar Named Desire," we're still confirming the Academy's taste or dismissing it as hopelessly off-base years later.
See full article at Moviefone »
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