MGM via Everett Collection
With Divergent is hitting theaters on March 21, the theme of teens fighting for survival on the big screen is at the forefront of our minds. It's one that has resonated through the decades in cinema, and we're taking a look at some of our favorite examples.
I'm talking about the 1984 original, not the forgettable reboot. As someone who was born in the 1970s and was growing into teenager-hood in the 1980s, the sight of those parachuting Russians in the film's opening made me want to crawl under my blankets and hide forever. Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev's steps toward Glasnot years later couldn't come fast enough. This was a bloody movie that featured many up-and-coming stars like Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, and C. Thomas Howell. The film hit towards the end of the Cold War, allowing USSR to play an effective Hollywood villain. The film saw America become a Russian state; the band of teenagers who fought back against the Red Menace made all of us look like sad-sack couch potatoes. To this day, you can yell "Wolverines!" at any person over the age of 35 and you'll much more than likely get a knowing nod back... and not just on the campus of University of Michigan.
By now, nearly everyone in the world knows who Katniss Everdeen is. For the very few uninitiated, Everdeen is a teenager who has to go and hunt other teenagers in a dystopian future that takes its cues from The Running Man more than anything else. Everdeen is tough, resourceful, cunning, and also one hell of a shot with a bow an arrow. She shows people that teens can take matters by the horns and do what it takes to win, and still not entirely sacrifice their humanity. There are those why decry the things she does, but in the long run, she is a good role model for being a strong female lead, which is something the movies have been lacking quite often. Everdeeen isn't one to quake and let a male take over or win or make her compromise herself. Yes, this series of movies shows kids murdering other kids, but the underlying message beneath is one that can't be ignored either.
Released in Japan in 2000, the movie comes from a different culture and as such institutes different tropes into its school-aged characters. The film centers around the students of a ninth-grade class that are made to fight each other to the death. Even more brutal than the American films, it shows what people are capable of when they have their backs to the wall and are being forced to commit atrocities in the name of their own government. I'd be seriously scared to get a note from my son's school in the future about something like this.
What kid hasn't wondered about the true demonic motives of his or her teachers? This 1998 horror/thriller boasts a cast full of comedic powerhouses like Bebe Neuwirth and Jon Stewart, as well as heartthrobs like Josh Hartnett and Jordana Brewster... and, yes, Usher. Running on the theme of teens versus adults, The Faculty becomes an intense and interesting cinematic experience. Beyond its horror aspects, the uniqueness of the overall movie made it better than something like Halloween or Friday the 13th. If you haven't seen it, it'll make you look at the Daily Show host in a totally different light.
Lord of the Flies
The original teen survivor movie, adapted in 1963 from William Golding's award-winning novel. We meet a group of school kids who get stranded on a desert island, and initially band together to survive... before anarchy starts to take over as the veneer of civilization gets stripped further and further in the movie. It's quite harrowing, and a sobering reminder of what can happen when we let the rules of society slip away. And if you've somehow managed to get this far without reading the novel, we highly recommend it. I read it in seventh grade, and had this weird thing about conch shells for a while after that.
Divergent hits theaters March 21. You can check showtimes and purchase advanced tickets here.
Russell Brand's ex-girlfriend Isabella Brewster has tied the knot with basketball player Baron Davis. Brewster, a former talent agent, wed the NBA pro at the weekend (31Jan14), just five months after announcing their engagement.
Brewster's older sister, Fast and Furious star Jordana Brewster, took to Twitter.com to share the excitement for her sibling by posting a photo of herself and her four-month-old son, Julian, dressed in a tuxedo, along with a caption that reads, "Ready for auntie's wedding! Congratulations @BellaBrewster."
Prior to dating Brand, Brewster was also linked to actors Bradley Cooper and Milo Ventimiglia, while Davis was rumoured to have dated Demi Moore and Lauren London.
Model Hannah Davis has split from baseball player Derek Jeter, according to a U.S. report. The Sports Illustrated beauty began dating the New York Yankees star at the beginning of 2013, but they separated at the end of last year (13).
A source tells New York Post gossip column Page Six, "Derek and Hannah broke up a few months ago."
Davis was Jeter's latest celebrity girlfriend - he dated actress Minka Kelly from 2008 to 2011 and has previously been linked to Jessica Biel, Mariah Carey and Jordana Brewster.
Hollywood stars including Jordana Brewster, Sarah Hyland and Kat Dennings received a rude awakening on Friday (17Jan14) when an earthquake hit Los Angeles. A minor tremor rocked the city around 5.30am local time, and several stars took to Twitter.com to tell of their terror.
Fast & Furious star Brewster wrote, "That's definitely one way to wake up #earthquake", while Modern Family actress Hyland tweeted, "Definitely just felt my first earthquake. Nature's alarm clock. Goooood morning", and 2 Broke Girls star Dennings added, "I fell asleep on my couch last night only to be lurched awake by an earthquake. I forgot about those, thanks LA #terror."
Glee star Amber Patrice Riley told fans, "Earthquakes usually don't scare me, but that CERTAINLY did. I don't think I can get back to sleep. That was a very violent jolt", actress Julie Bowen wrote, "While I recognize that my priorities may be out of order, I'm still a touch peeved at that earthquake for waking me up", and model Kimora Lee Simmons added, "Up early in #Cali... And I just felt an #earthquake..!! #NotFabulous."
The tremor came 20 years to the day since the 6.7-magnitude Northridge Earthquake hit the city on 17 January, 1994, killing 57 people and injuring thousands more. It caused $20 billion of damage and ranks as the second most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history, after Hurricane Katrina.
A second man accused of stealing the roof from the sportscar Paul Walker took his last ride in has been released on bail after surrendering to police on Tuesday (10Dec13). Los Angeles authorities charged both Anthony Janow, 25, and Jameson Witty, 18, with one felony count of grand theft of personal property on Monday (09Dec13), amid allegations they stole parts of the wreckage of the Porsche Carrera GT that the Fast & Furious star and his pal, driver Roger Rodas, were in when they crashed on 30 November (13).
They also face misdemeanour counts of destroying evidence.
Witty was arrested last week (ends06Dec13) and released from custody, while Janow handed himself in to authorities at the San Fernando court house for booking on Tuesday. He has since been released on $60,000 (£40,000) bail.
Both men face up to four and a half years behind bars if convicted.
Meanwhile, Walker's family is reportedly set to hold a private funeral for the star at Hollywood's Forest Lawn Memorial Park after his remains were released by coroners this week (begs09Dec13).
Sources claim the tragic actor's Fast & Furious franchise co-stars, including Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez and Jordana Brewster, will be among those invited to attend the small family memorial.
Wrestler-turned-actor Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson has urged fans to cherish their loved ones as he struggles to come to terms with the loss of his Fast Five co-star Paul Walker. The actor was killed in a car accident in California last Saturday (30Nov13) and movie tough guy Johnson poured his heart out about his friend's death in an interview on EW.com earlier this week (begs02Dec13), revealing they bonded over their connections as fathers to daughters on set.
He has now taken to his Instagram.com page to remind fans of the importance of showing friends and family that they are appreciated.
Alongside a photo of himself and Walker, Johnson writes, "Losing a loved one jolts our hearts to the core. It also has a very special way of helping us move forward to live & love as greatly as possible. Hug our loved ones a little tighter. Pray a little stronger. Work a little harder. Smile a little bigger. Life goes on and memories are forever cherished..."
Walker's fellow Fast and Furious franchise stars Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson and Ludacris have also paid tribute to the late actor in the days since the tragedy.
Meanwhile, photos showing Walker serving as his brother Caleb's best man at a family wedding in October (13) have been obtained Us Weekly magazine. The touching shots, which include one of the siblings posing with their arms around each other, were taken at the Dove Canyon Country Club in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, where Caleb exchanged vows with his girlfriend Stephanie just six weeks before his brother's death.
Production on Fast & Furious 7 has been shut down indefinitely by movie executives following the death of franchise star Paul Walker. Walker perished in a fiery car crash in Valencia, California on Saturday (30Nov13) - a day before he and his castmates were scheduled to resume filming in Atlanta, Georgia.
Universal Studios bosses immediately shut down the production to allow cast and crew to mourn Walker's death and now it seems filming won't start up again for "a period of time" and the executives, producers, writers and stars of the movie decide how to move forward with the project without their leading man.
A statement from a Universal spokesperson reads, "Right now, all of us at Universal are dedicated to providing support to Paul's immediate family and our extended Fast & Furious family of cast, crew and filmmakers. At this time we feel it is our responsibility to shut down production on Fast & Furious 7 for a period of time so we can assess all options available to move forward with the franchise.
"We are committed to keeping Fast & Furious fans informed, and we will provide further information to them when we have it. Until then, we know they join us in mourning the passing of our dear friend Paul Walker."
The film, which also stars Vin Diesel, Jordana Brewster and Michelle Rodriguez, was originally due to hit theatres on 11 July (14).
Jordana Brewster and Tyrese Gibson have added their tributes to Fast & Furious co-star Paul Walker after learning of his death in a car crash on Saturday (30Nov13). The actor was a passenger in a Porsche sportscar which crashed into a lightpost and tree in Valencia, California and burst into flames.
Many of Walker's co-stars took to Twitter.com to mark the passing of the 40 year old within hours of the tragedy with Vin Diesel and Ludacris among the first celebrities to pay tribute.
Brewster, who played the actor's love interest in the Fast & Furious films, added her thoughts via Twitter on Sunday (01Dec13), writing, "Paul was pure light. I cannot believe he is gone."
And fellow co-star Tyrese took to his Instagram page and posted a photograph on himself and Walker on the set of the latest Fast & Furious film.
He added, "My heart is hurting so bad no one can make me believe this is real Father God I pray that you send clarity over this cause I just don't understand My heart hurts it's broken no one can convince me that this is real... Prayer warriors please pray real hard for his only child, his daughter and family... My God... I can't believe I'm writing this."
He later wrote, "At least I got to say I love you... But this I just don't understand."
Gibson has since paid his respects at the makeshift curbside memorial at the site of the fatal car crash. Fans of the late actor have been leaving flowers and cards at the intersection where Walker lost his life.
In one of his final interviews, Walker told WENN that both Gibson and Brewster were very special to him.
He said, "Tyrese is just like a big kid. I think I'm Peter Pan but he's Peter Pan on crack!"
And the actor stated, "I legitimately love Jordana. We met when we were little kids hanging out on the first one (Fast & the Furious) when she was 17 years old."
Don't be fooled by Paul Walker and Vin Diesel's movie friendship in the Fast & Furious films - it's all just for show. Walker reveals he and his co-star are not pals and they often annoy one another.
He tells WENN, "Vin and I are so east coast-meets-west coast, and we have different approaches to life. We found a respect for one another but we were such opposite ends of the spectrum. The reason why it's worked is because we are so different.
"I don't know if we necessarily found a stride together because there are certain days I still want to crack him in the head! But he looks at me and there are days he wants to crack me in the head too. Then there are times he'll look at me and say, 'Man, I wish I could be more like you,' and I'm like, 'F**ker, I wish I could be more like you!'"
But Walker does get along with his other castmates in the film franchise, adding, "Tyrese (Gibson) is just like a big kid. I think I'm Peter Pan but he's Peter Pan on crack! And Chris (Bridges)... He's one of the coolest people I ever knew. He comes from a really solid family. He's an old soul and wise beyond his years.
"As for the girls, I legitimately love Jordana (Brewster). We met when we were little kids hanging out on the first one (Fast & the Furious) when she was 17 years old. Michelle (Rodriguez) and I, we've been through it all. Michelle's like the most original person on the planet. She's so straight up, uncensored all the time. Be ready. I love her for that."
Actress Soleil Moon Frye is refusing to believe she is expecting a baby boy because she has spent the last five months of her pregnancy convinced she is having another daughter. The former Punky Brewster star, who is already mum to two girls, revealed the gender of her third child with husband Jason Goldberg during a guest hosting stint on U.S. talk show The View on Wednesday (16Oct13), but the 37 year old admits she's not entirely sure doctors have got the sex right.
She said, "The thing is, I can't imagine a penis growing inside of me, so I keep saying, 'I think we know (we're having a boy), but I'm not sure.'
"I was so shocked because I always thought if you had two of one sex, the statistics are that you'll have a third the same sex, so I always thought we had three girls and my girls still don't completely believe me. They're like, 'If it's a boy, we're dressing him up.'"
Frye announced her pregnancy in August (13).