Friday One Sheet: La La Land

There is certainly nothing wrong with simplicity. This minimal poster for upcoming Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling musical, La La Land, still offers plenty of information. The posh clothing indicates a swanky night out, the stage door sign indicated that this is likely the two performing. Not sure what the cool blue tint is indicative of, but the text helpfully offers that the film is from, Damien Chazelle, the director of Whiplash.

The musical premieres in Venice and Toronto in the coming weeks before getting a limited theatrical release in December.

Bradley Cooper is Word [Thursday One Sheet]

 

 

Tomorrow’s regular post is already set to go (and it’s a good one), so I thought I’d jump the gun a bit and post a taste of first time directors’ Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal’s film The Words. I’m pretty sure this sort of design has been done before, but I can’t recall one quite as classy or eye-catching. So first time film makers they may be, but from a marketing standpoint, it looks good so far.

Furthering my interest, the movie also boasts a really nice cast. Obviously Bradley Cooper; but also Zoe Saldana, Jeremy Irons, Dennis Quaid, Olivia Wilde, Ben Barnes, John Hannah and J.K. Simmons.

I don’t know much about the movie’s plot yet. It has something to do with strong consequences for plagiarism and how our use of words defines us especially when they are not your own. Now to me, this poster gives off a bit of a sci-fi (sort of an The Adjustment Bureau) feel for some reason. No reason to think that will be part of the story, but I like the style/vibe.

 

Review: The Vicious Kind (with trailer)

Director: Lee Toland Krieger
Screenplay: Lee Toland Krieger
Producers: Neil Labute
Starring: Adam Scott, Brittany Snow, J.K. Simmons, Alex Frost
Year: 2009
Country: USA
Duration: 92 min

In the opening minutes of Lee Toland Krieger’s The Vicious Kind, Caleb Sinclaire (played grizzly by my new favorite actor, Adam Scott) imparts upon his little brother some unsolicited advice on the true nature of women. Steeped in misogyny, the monologue sets the stage for what we are to come to expect of Caleb: a chain-smoking, ball-breaking, sleep-deprived ‘vicious kind’ that on a bad day would make even Patrick Bateman wince.

As we come to learn during the film, the apple didn’t fall far from the tree; the Sinclaires are a family at war with themselves. Caleb’s nemesis and one-time father, Donald (played mostly straight by J. K. Simmons), bears his own vicious tendencies. Caught between them is Caleb’s younger brother, Peter, a timid Switzerland to their eight year Cold War. Not exactly the ideal family to introduce your new girlfriend to, but Peter is left with just such a task; the arrival of Emma into the mix makes what was already to be a dysfunctional Thanksgiving all the more toxic.
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TIFF 09 Review: Up In The Air

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George Clooney has come full circle in his stardom. Getting a romantic and engaging ‘time-out’ with Jennifer Lopez after she blows off a couple of traveling corporate types flirting in the lounge, his character in the latest Jason Reitman comedy, Ryan Bingham, is exactly one of those transient and boring corporate drones. Being George Clooney (particularly in a suit) he still manages to find a willing and no-strings-attached lady friend in the gorgeous and mature Vera Farmiga. But I am getting ahead of myself here, Ryan makes a living downsizing employees for corporations timid (for personal or legal reason) of doing the dirty work (involuntary severance packages). This means a lot of time on the road between auto companies and banking institutions, you know the places hit the hardest in late 2008.

Bingham has also downsized his own life, whether because of the emotional toll his job takes (albeit is is damn good at it), or for other less clear reasons, to become the self-described “wealthiest homeless man in America.” No long term relationships and little connection with his extended family, he is happy to only spend a small fraction of the year in his tiny barely adorned apartment. Instead his existence is all transience and freedom; in hotel suites, courtesy lounges and other travel-holding zones across America. All the while collecting loyalty points. Lots and lots of Loyalty points. It is not the money or the ability to travel around the world several times on his accumulated tally, it is the status of the thing. He is proud and confident to skip airport and check-in, to board and exit airports in the most efficient manner possible rewarded by his status, but also has the goal of hitting a point total that earns him a recognition only 7 other people have achieved in their lifetime (“less than have walked on the moon”) and he is well under 50.

Much like his life, his baggage is smallest of carry on bags packed efficiently with neat, anonymous suits and toiletries. Rolling smoothly along from town to town he also gives paid talks on how to be the most efficient business traveler, using an empty backpack as a metaphor for mobility and movement as a metaphor for life. Material things like a house or a car weigh you down, and relationships are the heaviest, he pontificates to the other road warriors. The philosophy he spouts in his ballroom seminars is practically a pithy and institutionalized version of Tyler Durden’s 20th century ‘freedom-from-stuff monologues’ in Fight Club. Ironic that Bingham (the shiny mirror image of ragged Durden) is often wearing that cornflower blue tie to match his pressed suits. Philosophy is so malleable these days.

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