Jesse Eisenberg, star of Ruben Fleischer’s Zombieland, will be working with the director again this summer in the comedy 30 Minutes Or Less, to begin production in July. Eisenberg will co-star alongside Aziz Ansari as two friends, a slacker pizza deliveryman and a junior high school teacher, who are coerced into robbing a bank when two bad guys, played by Danny McBride and Nick Swardson, force Eisenberg to wear a bomb.
The script is the work of two relative unknowns, Michael Diliberti and Matthew Sullivan, but veteran comedy producer Ben Stiller has signed on to the project, along with Stuart Cornfield and Jeremy Kramer of Red Hour Productions. Fleisher reportedly chose to direct '30 Minutes or Less' over the fourth installment of Mission Impossible, so we can only hope that the script, which The Playlist is reporting is reminiscent of 2008's Pineapple Express, must be pretty good - the kind of paycheck that a franchise flick guarantees is formidable.
It will be interesting to see whether Eisenberg breaks out of the nebbishy, neurotic mold that he has fashioned for himself with recent roles in Adventureland and Zombieland, or if he continues to play the sophisticate's Jewish Michael Cera. Either way, an Eisenberg - Ansari pairing, plus the comic stylings of Danny McBride, sounds like potential comedy gold.
Source: THR, The Playlist
Blades of Glory is just another one those foolproof Will Ferrell comedies in which he plays someone on top who falls from grace only to come out of it a wiser person. OK maybe wiser is a strong word but at least he’s a better person. Maybe better is the wrong word too. Oh whatever. You catch my drift. This time Ferrell plays Chazz Michael Michaels a male figure skater who is all id and uses his improvisational techniques on the ice to woo the ladies. Chazz’s only real competition is Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder) a precision skater who is all about the details especially when he executes his trademark peacock move. Of course they hate each other and in an embarrassing no-holds-barred fight at the World Championships they are stripped of their gold medals and banned from the sport for life. Now three-and-a-half years later they’ve found a loophole that will allow them to compete: If they can put aside their differences they can skate together--in pairs’ figure skating. Let the games begin! Even though he has proven to be successful at this kind of stuff Ferrell is still considered an acquired taste by some. But for those of us who know he could make a Coke Icee blow out of our noses just by reading the phone book he never grows tiresome. He had some excellent support in Blades of Glory as well. Finally starting to really shed his alter ego Napoleon Dynamite Heder is in top form as the prissy MacElroy the smart one--if you can believe it--in the duo. He ends up getting a romantic interest as well in the form of Jenna Fischer. Slightly less mousy than she is on The Office Fischer plays the hapless sister/slave to the brother and sister pair figure-skating duo and reigning champs Fairchild and Stranz Van Waldenberg played to malicious hilt by SNL’s Amy Poehler and Arrested Development’s Will Arnett respectively. Also watch out for Craig T. Nelson as the boys’ unorthodox coach; Romany Malco (The 40 Year-Old Virgin) as their hip-hop choreographer; veteran character actor William Fichtner as Jimmy’s adoptive millionaire father and many other well-placed cameos. Blades of Glory must have been an easy sell for producer Ben Stiller and his Red Hour Productions partner Stuart Cornfield who were able to stock the film with some great comedic talent. Newbie co-directors Will Speck and Josh Gordon are more an afterthought since all they really have to do is point and shoot. Maybe not as edgy as say Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy but certainly more cohesive than Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby Blades simply follows a tried and true formula with very little missteps but hardly any surprises either. The best part? The opening sequence from the skating routines to the fisticuffs which lead to setting a mascot on fire. Good stuff. Blades is just dumb fun.
In the vein of Field of Dreams Astronaut Farmer is about building the seemingly impossible. Thankfully in this case it’s simply a rocket in the barn not a ballpark in a cornfield where ghosts of baseball heroes past can play the game. That is a bit far-fetched. Instead we meet Charles Farmer (Thornton) a man who was once on track to be an astronaut but was forced to leave NASA to save his family farm. He still wants to go into space however and so sets out to build a rocket inside his barn. By the time the movie starts the rocket is pretty much put together so we aren’t burdened with how he gets his supplies. All Charles needs now is 10 000 pounds of fuel which shoots up a big red flag with the government--a government that now considers Charles a threat--while the media look at him as a big story. But no matter the odds nothing can deter Charles from his dream to break through the atmosphere and orbit the earth. It’s refreshing to see Thornton as a loving father who wants to inspire his kids rather than make them go get him another beer. Of course Charles Farmer isn’t all sweetness and light—he’s an obvious eccentric whose obsession to launch into space effects the entire family—and it’s definitely a role right up Thornton’s alley. Virginia Madsen does an admirable job as the loving and supportive wife who nonetheless puts her foot down when things get out of hand while Bruce Dern plays the grizzled but equally supportive father-in-law. There’s also a supportive lawyer played by Tim Blake Nelson. In fact besides the big evil NASA chief (J.K. Simmons) and two bungling FBI agents (Mark Polish and Jon Gries) everyone supports Charles in his crazy dream. How could he fail? From the writing-directing team of Michael and Mark Polish (Northfork) Astronaut Farmer is pure old-school—an unassuming throwback to those feel-good movies of the ‘40s and ‘50s. In fact Thornton told Hollywood.com he considers this his “Jimmy Stewart” movie. While the Polish brothers based Charles Farmer on their own eccentric father and obviously harbor their own boyhood dreams of being an astronaut the guys still follow a nice and simple formula finding some good actors to carry it out and adding cool visual effects when they can. Yes the more cynical moviegoer may look at Astronaut Farmer as completely improbable and trite. But those willing to be taken back to a simpler time--when movies were about walking out triumphant--should find watching Astronaut Farmer a pleasant way to spend an afternoon.