The Weinstein Company
Sundance is long gone, Cannes sailed away months ago, and both Tribeca and the Los Angeles Film Festivals have cleared away until next year. But when one major film festival ends, another starts putting its lineup together, and this time, it's Canada's time to shine. The Toronto International Film Festival, which will run from September 4 until the 14, has unveiled the list of titles they'll be premiering this year, and it's packed with under-the-radar indies, highly anticipated returns from accliamed directors, and of course, several likely awards contenders. But with nearly 60 films all making their debut in Toronto this fall, it can be hard to pick out the good from the bad and the exciting from the ones you've probably seen before. In an attempt to simplify the decision-making process for you, we've highlighted some of the most exciting films to hit north of the border this fall.
The Imitation Game Who’s Involved: Benedict Cumberbatch, Kiera Knightley, Matthew Goode and Charles Dance star What It’s About: The British mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing, who helped the Allies win WWII by cracking German codes, and was then prosecuted by the government for being homosexual. Thoughts: Finally, a cast good enough to convince you that math is interesting for two hours.
The Last Five Years Who’s Involved: Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan What It’s About: A musical that tells the story of a married couple’s five-year relationship – his perspective runs from the day they met to when it all fell apart, and hers from the end back to the beginning. Thoughts: The perfect example as to why you should pay attention when your theater nerd friend tries plays you cast recordings.
Foxcatcher Who’s Involved: Bennett Miller directs; Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, and Mark Ruffalo starWhat It’s About: Based on a true story, it follows two championship wrestler brothers and the tragic consequences that they face after getting involved with an eccentric millionaire coach. Thoughts: We really are going to have to come up with the Tatum equivalent of “McConaissance” sometime soon.
A Little ChaosWho’s Involved: Alan Rickman directs; Kate Winslet, Stanley Tucci and Rickman star What It’s About: A landscape gardener finds herself struggling with the politics of Louis XIV’s court and her own demons after she’s hired to work at the Garden of Versailles. Thoughts: You had us at “Rickman.”
The Riot Club Who’s Involved: Lone Scherfig directs; Sam Claflin, Max Irons, Natalie Dormer and Jessica Brown-Findlay star What It’s About: A privileged young man is inducted into the “Riot’s Club,” an exclusive, wild group of young men full of debauchery and bad behavior, during his first year at Oxford. Thoughts: Look! It’s that guy from that thing! And that girl, from that other thing! I like them. They should be in more things.
Before We Go Who’s Involved: Chris Evans directs; Evans and Alice Eve star What It’s About: Two strangers bond over the course of one night in Manhattan, and the conflicts in their lives allow them to explore more about each other and themselves. Thoughts: Captain America is directing movies now!
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This Is Where I Leave You Who’s Involved: Shawn Levy directs; Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver, Connie Britton and Jane Fonda star What It’s About: Four adult siblings return to their childhood home after their father dies. Dysfunction and hijinks ensue. Thoughts: Does Driver say “outer space” in this? Can we re-write the script so that he does?
Men, Women and Children Who’s Involved: Jason Reitman directs; Jennifer Garner, Adam Sandler and Judy Greer star What It’s About: A group of parents and children navigate the way the Internet has changed their relationships and lives. Thoughts: Well, it’s got be better than Labor Day, right?
Miss Julie Who’s Involved: Liv Ullman directs; Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell star What It’s About: Set over the course of one night in the 1880s, an aristocratic woman and her father’s valet struggle for power. Thoughts: Should we also be thinking about the “Farrellissance?”
Nightcrawler Who’s Involved: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, and Bill Paxton star What It’s About: An ambitious journalist becomes involved with the world of LA nighttime journalism, and the line between spectator and perpetrator becomes blurred. Thoughts: Oh, so this isn’t an X-Men solo film? That’s slightly disappointing.
Rosewater Who’s Involved: Jon Stewart directs; Gael Garcia Bernal stars What It’s About: The true story of Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who appeared on The Daily Show before being imprisoned for five months by the Iranian government. Thoughts: This is the movie that gave us Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and for that we shall always be grateful.
The Theory of Everything Who’s Involved: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Emily Watson, and David Thewlis star What It’s About: The life and relationship of world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife Jane Wilde from their first meeting at Cambridge through Hawking’s diagnosis through their numerous accomplishments. Thoughts: Oscar Season 2014: Alan Turing vs. Stephen Hawking in The Battle of the British Genius Biopics.
Whiplash Who’s Involved: Damien Chazelle directs; Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons star What It’s About: An ambitious jazz drummer who enrolls at a prestigious music conservatory, but must endure the brutal, intense tutelage of a brilliant, drill sergeant-like teacher in order to achieve greatness. Thoughts: Look, we’ll stop talking about this one once it finally comes out, and not a moment sooner, okay?
This year, Hollywood.com will once again be jetting off to Park City, Utah for the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. For 10 days, the small mountain town becomes the epicenter for all things movies, with A-List stars and filmmakers from around the world congregating to get their taste of independent cinema.
Sundance plays host to movies big and small, with comedies starring our favorite funny people, dramas sporting famous faces ready to blow us away, and complete unknowns ready to emerge as the next Beasts of the Southern Wild. Just because you've never heard of the director, lead actor, or lead actress doesn't mean the movie and its crew won't be walking the red carpet at the Oscars next year. This is where the journey begins.
To prepare you for the discoveries to come, our two correspondents on the ground in Park City, Matt Patches and Brian Moylan, sifted through the hundreds of films playing the festival to whittle down a list of their most anticipated list. The top 10 has a little bit of everything — check out their picks and keep your eyes peeled for more Sundance coverage to come:
We've seen Adam Scott and Amy Poehler fall in love on Parks and Recreation, but can we buy them as adversaries? Scott plays a befuddled guy (and inspiration for his shrink's self-help book) who is trying to broker peace between his long-divorced mother (Catherine O'Hara) and his father (Richard Jenkins), who is married to the zany Poehler. If this is half as funny as it sounds, it will be the funniest movie of the festival. — Moylan
Every Sundance has its handful of breakouts and with a costarring role in the David Sedaris adaptation C.O.G. and a prominent part (as well as co-writer credit) on the midnight premiere Ass Backwards, that festival star could be Casey Wilson. She's due for it too: a brief stint on Saturday Night Live led her to become a regular on Happy Endings, and now she has her own flick. Ass Backwards, which follows two women who "both tied for dead last in their hometown beauty paganent" way back when, sounds twisted in all the right ways. — Patches
This past summer, Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy, and director Richard Linklater headed to Summer to shoot the third entry in their "Before trilogy," the story that began with a romantic chance meeting in 1995's Before Sunrise and resurfaced for 2004's Before Sunset. Can the trio continue the magic by having the intertwined lives of Celine and Jesse connect again? With a heap of emotion invested in the fictitious pair, I sure hope so. — Patches
Sundance's NEXT category features a slate of low, low-budget films contending with the star-driven movies that have now become a staple. They're usually amazing too, which is why I'm keeping an eye on Blue Caprice, a black and white docudrama that puts us in the middle of the 2002 Beltway sniper attacks, all from the perspective of the shooters. My heart is racing already. — Patches
Brit Marling and director Zal Batmanglij blew attendees minds in 2011 with their cult sci-fi thriller Sound of My Voice and they return this year to Sundance with a project that's equally mysterious. The East focuses on a contract worker infiltrating an eco-terrorist group — not too dissimilar sounding from Sound of My Voice. Marling returns, joined this time by Ellen Page and Alexander Skarsgård. A larger scope should give Batmanglij more playing room, and even more of a chance to repeat their previous success. — Patches
Kill Your Darlings
Daniel Radcliffe makes his first Sundance appearance playing poet Allen Ginsberg during his days at Columbia University. With a bevy of great actors (including Dane DeHaan, Ben Foster, Michael C. Hall, Jack Huston, Elizabeth Olsen), Kill Your Darlings may approach the biopic with recognizable indie sensibilities, but it's on our radar just to see if Radcliffe has a real dramatic life after Potter. — Patches
What do we want for Sundance? Socially conscious indies from around the world that make us think while being entertained, right? Well, that and pictures of celebs in ski gear. No one will be skiing in this Chilean movie where Gael Garcia Bernal plays a real-life ad man in the '80s who engineered a campaign to get voters to oust dictator Augusto Pinochet. This checks off every box in the Sundance requirements while seeming original at the same time. — Moylan
After two misses with Your Highness and The Sitter, David Gordon Green returns to his indie roots for Prince Avalanche. Pairing two actors I can't help but love, Paul Rudd and Emilie Hirsch, the film should meld the director's penchant for comedy and past character study work. If it's a happy medium, it should be one of the festival's best. — Patches
The Spectacular Now
The addiction drama Smashed was one of the best movies to play 2012's festival. Director James Ponsoldt returns to Sundance with his next, The Spectacular Now, adapting similar themes (alcoholism appears to be an important part of the tale) to a story of adolescent relationships. Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley, two up-and-comers with thoughtful work to their names, star, giving us hope that the movie digs deeper into youth culture than most Hollywood films would even allow. — Patches
What's the only thing better than a movie about a woman falling in love with her best friend's son? A movie about two best friends falling in love with each other's sons! When the two mothers are played by Naomi Watts and Robin Wright (no more Penn) and directed by Anne Fontaine, it's sure to be a deep psychological insight about love and longing rather than the rom-com set up it sounds like. — Moylan
What movies are you looking forward to hearing more about? Check out the films announced to play Sundance and tell us!
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
[Photo Credit: Benaroya Pictures]
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With the cool autumnal breezes rolling in, so too are Hollywood's biggest, award-hopeful films. Regardless of whether or not it is actually fall quite yet, the little kiddies are back at school, pumpkin spice is being added to everything, and there are only a few days left until staring wistfully at your sweater and scarf collection becomes a summer memory, and wearing becomes the reality. So to prepare us all for the glorious days of movie-watching ahead of us, we've broken it all down for you. So start saving your pennies, coordinate schedules with your film buff buddies and take a bite out of the tasty cinematic offerings that are ripe for the picking. It's like an apple orchard, but glitzier!
Check out the line-up below and get more picks tailored to your tastes in our Fall Movie Guide!
Finding Nemo 3D: A re-release of the popular Pixar film, this time in 3D!
Resident Evil: Retribution: The fighting against the Umbrella Corporation and all those pesky undead continues!
10 Years: A high school reunion with Channing Tatum and Friends.
Arbitrage: Hedge-funder in trouble: a ponzi scheme gone awry. Bernie Madoff-y, huh? The horror, the horror!
Bangkok Revenge: An emotionless war machine returns to the place where his parents were killed to exact ... (you guessed it!) revenge.
Brawler: Brothers! Betrayal! Fight clubs! New Orleans! A battle to the death!
Step Up to the Plate: A cooking documentary about father/son culinary duo the Bras.
Liberal Arts: Lost 30something, a girl named Zibby, and love. But in college.
The Master: The hotly-anticipated Scientology-but-not film from P.T. Anderson.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Stephen Chbosky's classic young adult novel comes to life.
Stolen: A Nicholas Cage film about a daughter locked in a taxi's trunk.
The Trouble with the Truth: A failed marriage reconsidered, now with Lea Thompson!
Radio Unnameable: Documentary about legendary New York City disc jockey Bob Fass who pioneered free expression on the airwaves with his long running program of the same name.
Tears of Gaza: A war documentary that follows three children through war and the period after ceasefire.
Dredd: An action/sci-fi/thriller about fighting a drug war in a big futuristic city. In 3D!
End of Watch: A routine traffic stop gone really, really bad.
House at the End of the Street: Katniss Jennifer Lawrence becomes a scream queen.
17 Girls: A Belgian teen pregnancy pact film!
About Cherry: James Franco is the boyfriend of a porn star, and Dev Patel probably loves her?
Backwards: Life for an Olympic hasbeen-turned-coach is tough.
The Brooklyn Brothers Beat the Best: Brooklyn boys form a band.
Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel: A documentary about the life and work of the influential fashion editor of Harpers Bazaar, Diana Vreeland.
The Other Son: A French film about two young men--an Israeli and Palestinian--who discover they were accidentally switched at birth.
Head Games: A sports documentary to uncover the truth about the consequences of head injuries.
How to Survive a Plague: AIDS documentary about the activism that stopped the disease from being a death sentence.
My Uncle Rafael: A comedy about a reality show!
The War of the Buttons: A French film about kid gangs and a Jewish girl in danger of being discovered by the Nazis in occupied France, comes to the states.
Trouble with the Curve: Clint Eastwood and Justin Timberlake make a baseball movie! Now get off my damn lawn.
Unconditional: Two childhood friends reconnect after many years and sad stories to exact revenge on the woman's husband's murderer.
You May Not Kiss the Bride: A pet photographer (seriously) has to marry Katharine McPhee's Croatian bride character. Warning: zany!
Hotel Transylvania: Adam Sandler is Dracula in an animated kids' film.
Looper: Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis play one guy who has to kill himself, from the future. Mob stuff! Time travel!
The Barrens: The Jersey Devil of the state's Pine Barrens is hunting Stephen Moyer, you guys!
Bringing Up Bobby: Bill Pullman is in a family comedy written by Famke Janssen.
Won't Back Down: A serious drama about poor moms trying to do right by their kid's education.
The Other Dream Team: A documentary about the 1992 Lithuanian basketball team who got help from the Grateful Dead (seriously) to win at the Barcelona Olympics.
Starbuck: A sperm donor gets sued by the 142 kids he helped conceive. Yikes!
Butter: A comedy about a butter-carving prodigy. Do you need to know anything else?
Frankenweenie: A kid who just wants his dead dog to be...ALIIIIIIVE!
Sinister: Creepy horror flick with Ethan Hawke about a true-crime novelist who discovers footage revealing why a family was murdered in his new home. Sleep tight!
Taken 2: Liam Neeson will find you, and he will hunt you down, and he will kill you. Again!
Wuthering Heights: Another film version of the Emily Bronte novel.
Decoding Deepak: A documentary about Deepak Chopra by his son.
The Oranges: Hugh Laurie has an affair with his best friend's daughter in New Jersey. Woopsies!
The Paperboy: Yes, this is the movie where Zac Efron gets peed on by Nicole Kidman. It's also about a reporter and a death row inmate.
Pitch Perfect: A capella girls get funky thanks to singing 90s R&B tunes. But funny!
V/H/S: All they wanted to do was steal a video tape, and now they're living a horror film! Everyone's worst nightmare, right?
Wake in Fright: An Australian drama thriller about a man named John Grant and a rough outback town called Bundanyabba, and what happens when the two meet.
Argo: Ben Affleck knows that the real way to free six Americans in Iran is by pretending to film a movie! Chris Messina's also in it, with Bryan Cranston, so it seems like a no-brainer here.
Here Comes the Boom: Kevin James is a high school biology teacher who wants to become mixed-martial arts fighter. You know, to save his school! Natch.
3, 2, 1... Frankie Go Boom: A comedy about drugs and humilation.
Atlas Shrugged: Part II: Atlas Shrugged...again!
Least Among Saints: A roughed-up soldier and a boy from a broken home strike up an unlikely friendship.
Middle of Nowhere: A movie about finding yourself while your husband's in jail.
Nobody Walks: Quick! Lena Dunham made something! It's about a young artist! Everybody dissect it!
Seven Psychopaths: Pretty much everybody good is in this movie about a struggling screenwriter whose friends kidnap a gangster's Shih Tzu.
Simon & The Oaks: A Swedish WWII coming-of-age film.
Smashed: A marriage built on booze struggles when the wife gets sober.
Stories We Tell: A Sarah Polley documentary about looking back at familial events.
Paranormal Activity 4: Some mean ghosts do some f**ked up scary s**t to a new family. This time it involves the neighbors!
Alex Cross: A detective vows to track down the killer of his family.
The First Time: A romcom about high school kids. And probably doing it.
Killing Them Softly: Brad Pitt, James Gandolfini and Ray Liotta in a mob film. Is there anything else you need to know?
That's What She Said: New York City lady misadventures that are NOT about Michael Scott, apparently.
Yogawoman: A documentary about...yoga! The title's so misleading, isn't it?
The Big Wedding: Oh look! Katherine Heigl's in another movie about a wedding. This time with Diane Keaton and Robert DeNiro.
Fun Size: A big Halloween party! A baby who must be watched! Johnny Knoxville. Somebody call the shenanigans police!
Chasing Mavericks: A surfer movie with Gerard Butler. Hang ten, etc.
Silent Hill: Revelation 3D: Gory alternate reality. In 3D!
Citadel: An agoraphobic dad and renegade priest team up to save his daughter from a gang of feral kids. So...not about a military school in South Carolina then.
Cloud Atlas: The three hour epic with every actor ever in the world telling intertwined stories across millennia.
The Loneliest Planet: A backpacking film with Gael Garcia Bernal in the wilds of Georgia (not the state).
Sleep Tight: A Spanish horror film about how safe you really are at home. Yep, sleep tight indeed.
The Sessions: The heartwarming story of a man on an iron lung who just wants to get laid ... with the help of his priest and a sex therapist.
On The Road: That Jack Kerouac novel-turned-movie with Kristen Stewart
Flight: Robert Zemeckis directs Denzel Washington, John Goodman and Don Cheadle in a film about a plane crash.
The Man with the Iron Firsts: Eli Roth and RZA make a really bloody movie about a blacksmith in China.
Wreck-It Ralph: A video arcade game baddie just wants to be good, you guys!
This Must Be the Place: Sean Penn does his best Robert Smith impression while trying to hunt down a Nazi.
High Ground: A documentary about the emotional journey of a team of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans as they climb a mountain in the Himalayas.
Jack and Diane: A girl's awakened sexual desire for another girl makes her maybe become a werewolf. Seriously.
A Late Quartet: A famous string quartet gets too big for their britches to the point of potential self-destruction. Oh, and Christopher Walken's in it.
Lincoln: One of the many Abraham Lincoln movies being made, this time with Daniel Day-Lewis and no slaying of vampires.
Skyfall: The next installment of Daniel Craig's James Bond empire.
Nature Calls: A hijacked boy scout trip to remember? Sounds super-wacky!
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2: This needs no description. C'mon.
Anna Karenina: Because Keira Knightley cannot go three months without making an epic period piece. This time based on the Tolstoy novel.
Rust and Bone: A Belgian film with Marion Cotillard that involves a killer whale accident and a love story.
Rise of the Guardians: A children's animated film about Jack Frost and saving the kids of the world from an evil spirit named Pitch.
Red Dawn: A remake of the 1984 film about a group of teenagers saving their town from an invasion of North Korean soldiers.
Life of Pi: Based on the best-selling novel is the story of a boy named Pi and his shipwrecked companions. Mainly a hyena, zebra, orangutan, and a Bengal tiger.
Silver Linings Playbook: A feel-good holiday drama about two messed up people teaming up to make good.
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
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The world has spoken, so Channing Tatum has made a male stripper movie. Magic Mike, which has been getting plenty of buzz 'round The Internets, finally has a poster. It seems as though Tatum & Co. have lost their shirts! Oh no! Here, let me not help you with finding them. The movie, which is rumored to be quite funny, is certainly amping up the camp with this poster. It's like the Village People, but hilarious and yet somehow still sexy? Riddle me that, boys.
Also, the tagline...can we have a moment? You have to have a sense of humor about yourself to make that line really...work it. And if you needed anymore convincing that this movie was totally worth it: Matt Bomer and Alex Pettyfer also take their shirts off. Here's hoping bar owner Dallas (Matthew McConaughy) has a glorious monologue about being a grizzled warrior of the dancing dude business--an exotic dancer with a heart of gold, perhaps?
And since we know that this movie is totally getting greenlit for Magic Mike 2: The Naked Michael, we've decided to cast the new male stripper stereotypes for you (you're welcome, Hollywood). namely:
- The Male Nurse Stripper, played by Jean Dujardin
- The Nerdy Philosophy Student Stripper, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt
- The Sommelier Stripper, played by Michael Fassbender
- The Study Abroad Romance Stripper, played by Gael García Bernal
- The Homeless Stripper, played by Shia LaBeouf
- The Train Conductor Stripper, played by Gilles Marini
- The Green Party Presidential Nominee Stripper, played by Ryan Gosling (I will use any excuse to put Ryan Gosling in a film.)
We are but visual beings. The line for this film starts right here, behind me.
Magic Mike is in theaters June 29th.
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
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