Magnolia1. There's a betrayal, or a double-cross, something, at the beginning of "Outrage," and even though I'm not quite sure what it was exactly, I know that everyone was extremely upset about it. I know this because, in pretty much every scene for the rest of the movie, one Japanese man does something just awful to another Japanese man. (Briefly, an African man shows up, awful things are done to him, and then we're back to the Japanese again.) This is obviously an oversimplification of Takeshi Kitano's "Outrage," right? It's not just one scene of mob violence after another, with no context or characterization, right? I'm just dull. Has to be. Right?
Blog Posts by Will Leitch
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Thu, Dec 1, 2011 6:00 PM EST
Magnolia1. There's a betrayal, or a double-cross, something, at the beginning of "Outrage," and even though I'm not quite sure what it was exactly, I know that everyone was extremely upset about it. I know this because, in pretty much every scene for the rest of the movie, one Japanese man does something just awful to another Japanese man. (Briefly, an African man shows up, awful things are done to him, and then we're back to the Japanese again.) This is obviously an oversimplification of Takeshi Kitano's "Outrage," right? It's not just one scene of mob violence after another, with no context or characterization, right? I'm just dull. Has to be. Right?Read More »from REVIEW: ‘Outrage.’ Ninety-Nine Yakuza Ways To Die.
Fox Searchlight1. The New York City of "Shame" is a place so cold, so distanced, so removed from flesh-and-blood humanity, that it's the only place a man like Brandon can truly be alone. It couldn't be more removed from the New York of "Taxi Driver" if it took place on Mars. That New York had streets filled with Travis Bickle's scum; this New York is filled with nothing, just millions of individual slivers of lost souls, running away, hiding in plain sight, all by themselves. This isn't much like the New York City I know and live in, but it's how the city can feel, how oddly comforting it can be to know that, in a city of seven million, you could disappear for days, weeks, months, and no one would ever notice. This is all Brandon, tortured by anguish of an unknown, but clearly devastating, origin, wants: to vanish completely, to try feel something other than pain. He does it through constant sexual stimulation. This does not provide him much comfort.Read More »from REVIEW: ‘Shame.” The Only Living Boy In New York.
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Tue, Nov 29, 2011 5:00 PM EST
IFC Films1. So here's a crazy question: When was the last time you saw a movie that made sex look like it might possibly be fun? I don't mean pornography, of the soft-and-hard-core variety, with the fake writhing and kabuki ecstasy. I'm talking about a normal movie, made by human beings, about human beings having sex, that didn't make sex look like it was punishment for some long-hidden, cardinal sin? Thing is, the sex itself isn't necessarily the sin; no, in movies today, sex has become less the sin and more the numbing, impersonal self-medication of the guilt-ridden doomed. Oftentimes, especially in Julia Leigh's "Sleeping Beauty," sex in film is merely a metaphor for larger issues (even if, here, it's a little baffling what those issues might be). But this is bizarre too. Our movies are spending a ton of time talking about what sex means, and not much time having it.Read More »from REVIEW: ‘Sleeping Beauty.’ Hey, Doesn’t Anybody Ever Just Have Sex Anymore?
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Tue, Nov 29, 2011 12:00 PM EST
ParamountThe 2012 Oscar nominations come out on Tuesday, January 24, exactly eight weeks from today. We gotta say, as thrilled as we are to see Patton Oswalt -- one of our favorite standup comics whose success in recent years has heralded the age of the nerd fanboy (albeit the caustic, hyper-literal, "King of Queens" co-starring one) -- we are far from convinced he's any sort of shoo-in for Supporting Actor in Jason Reitman's "Young Adult." We haven't seen the film yet, but it better be awfully showy: We guarantee you the average Oscar voter has no idea who he is. He'll either need to dominate the whole movie, or the film will have to be so well-regarded that he just rides the wave. We remain unconvinced either of those will happen. Maybe if he just doesn't move. That said: You name a publicity outlet, he'll show up for it. That never hurts. For the second time in this category, let's dig in, with the "Locks," those "On The Bubble," those "Still Holding Out Hope" and the poor souls who will have to make do with the "For Your Consideration" ads. Today: Best Supporting Actor.Read More »from Oscar Patrol: Best Supporting Actor, Eight Weeks Left of Patton Oswalt Ubiquitousness
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Mon, Nov 28, 2011 9:30 AM EST
Walt Disney PicturesRead More »from The Grosses: ‘Muppets’ Dominate, But Nothing’s Beating Those Teen Vampires
Top Five (Full list)
1. "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1" $62,321,838 ($221,300,000)
2. "The Muppets" $42,000,000 ($42,000,000)
3. "Happy Feet Two" $18,369,613 ($43,773,000)
4. "Arthur Christmas" $17,000,000 ($17,000,000)
5. "Hugo" $15,380,000 ($15,380,000)
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Fri, Nov 18, 2011 7:30 PM EST
George Pimentel/WireImage.comWe're not so into the product placement around here, but it's difficult to overstate how excited we are for the Woody Allen "American Masters" on PBS this Sunday. (As you might have been able to tell from our post two hours ago.) This is what classifies as Appointment Programming in our household. Perhaps what we're most looking forward to is an actual focus on the last 20 years of his career, rather than a dismissive "eh, let's talk about 'Annie Hall' some more" wave that period usually receives. "Deconstructing Harry," "Vicky Cristina Barcelona," "Midnight In Paris," "Husbands and Wives" ... those movies more than hold up with his earlier work, and in many cases, are in fact better. We do hope the show recognizes that. Though we'll be staring rapt regardless.Read More »from Well, THAT’S Over: The Week The Woody Documentary Aired (Almost)
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Fri, Nov 18, 2011 5:00 PM EST
JoBlo.comDo you know what the polar opposite -- the actual inverse, the reciprocal, the photo negative -- of the famously overstuffed "New Years Eve" poster is? How about this poster for "The Expendables 2," or EX2, as it's inevitably going to be called? Holy cow, right?
We are looking at the poster in 310 pixel width, and we're going to see if we can actually read all the names on the top, like an eye chart. Let's see:
Stallone.Read More »from ‘The Expendables 2′ Poster Has Y Chromosomes to Freaking Spare
Hemsworth? Is that right?
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Fri, Nov 18, 2011 4:00 PM EST
Summit EntertainmentRead More »from Flop Level Midnight: Will ‘Breaking Dawn’ and ‘Happy Feet 2′ Pass the Flop Threshold?
Welcome back to Flop Level Midnight, where we take a look at each of the new wide releases every week and mark what dollar amount in domestic gross they need to hit to avoid the dreaded "flop" moniker. Remember: Much of this is contingent upon a film's budget: The rule of thumb is that 40 percent of a movie's domestic gross comes its opening weekend, so, depending on the cost, there could be a lot of ground to make up, quick. High stakes! This week's contestants are "Breaking Dawn -- Part One" and "Happy Feet Two." Let's do it.
Paul Zimmerman/WireImage.comWe're trying to remember: Was "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." supposed to be Steven Soderbergh's last movie again? We know there was the dancing male stripper movie, and the Liberace movie, and then another tiny movie, and who knows, he probably has one more Spalding Grey documentary in him, right? Anyway, last we'd heard, Bradley Cooper was gonna play the lead role in Soderbergh's film, which seemed like an odd fit to us. We like Cooper, but there's something about him that seems an odd fit with Soderbergh, particularly with a film that Soderbergh seemed begging to cast George Clooney. Our sense was right: Soderbergh is now off the project.Read More »from Steven Soderbergh Cries ‘U.N.C.L.E.’
- Will Leitch | The Projector – Fri, Nov 18, 2011 11:00 AM EST
Walt Disney Pictures1. "The Muppets" is a roaring good time because of the inherent goodwill the Muppets themselves bring to the screen, not so much because of the movie itself ... but that's OK, because if you've got Muppets in your movie, the journey to mirth is pretty much already completed. To the credit of Jason Segel (the film's star, co-writer and clear creative kingpin; it's his obsessive love for the Muppets that shines through every scene), he knows who his stars are, and lets them do their thing. The movie never quite nails down a consistent tone -- it's postmodern madcap for the first 45 minutes, then shifts into something more traditional and less interesting as it goes along -- and there's a little part of me that wonders whether we needed Segel and his on-screen Muppet brother Walter at all. But then the Swedish Chef shows up and Gonzo jumps off a roof with some chickens and it all fades away. "The Muppets" is an undeniable gas.Read More »from REVIEW: “The Muppets.” It’s Time To Get Things Started.