First Trailer for Pattinson Romance Remember Me

RememberMeMovieStillSome credit needs to be given to the folks at Summit fore releasing this at the peak of Robsession. As the New Moon crew runs through the promotional ringer and RPattz and KStew are everywhere, they release the first full length trailer for Robert Pattinson’s newest film Remember Me.

Directed by TV regular and first time feature film director Allen Coulter, the film stars Pattinson and Emilie de Ravin (of Brink and “Lost” fame) as a young couple trying to keep their budding relationship strong amidst various family problems. The film also stars Chris Cooper (as Ravin’s over protective cop father) and Pierce Brosnan (as Pattinson’s uncaring father).

I haven’t been tracking the production that closely but am impressed that the studio managed to pump out a trailer so soon (the film isn’t scheduled to open until March 12, 2010) but what’s most impressive is that it actually looks promising. I’m not sure how well I guy Pattinson’s accent (I had a slight problem with it in the past) but the trailer suggests a promising drama. And no, not just because of the fangirls.

Trailer tucked under the seat.

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More Vampires! Rejoice?!?

KrystenRitterWhen I think of teen films, a couple of directors come to mind almost immediately but the two that float to the surface are Catherine Hardwicke and Amy Heckerling.

The recent vampire craze has already consumed Hardwicke who stepped onto the boat to really kick things off with Twilight (our review) but Herckerling isn’t waiting for someone to come to her with an offer to direct her own vampire film instead, she’s biting into the action by writing and directing her own story.

Screen Daily is reporting that Parlay Films has acquired all international rights for Vamps, a project which centers around two young-looking female vampires living the high life in New York until “love enters the picture and each has to make a choice that will jeopardise their immortality.” UGH. I’m not sure what’s worse, the fact that this seems played out or the fact that a little part of me is still interested.

Krysten Ritter is signed on for one of the lead roles while casting is still going on for the second.

I can see it now: fabulous clothes, accessories to die for (ah!), cool night spots and blood, lots of blood! It’ll be like Sex and the City but with vampires! Or not…I have a feeling this is going to have as much blood and gore as a PG-13 movie with sparkly vampires (read: zero).

Review: New York, I Love You

Directors: Natalie Portman, Jiang Wen, Mira Nair, Shunji Iwai, Yvan Attal, Brett Ratner, Allen Hughes, Sheekhar KapurFatih Akin, Joshua Marston, Randy Balsmeyer
Writers: Emmanuel Benbihy, Tristan Carné, Hall Powell, Israel Horovitz, James C. Strouse, Shunji Iwai, Israel Horovitz, Hu Hong, Yao Meng, Israel Horovitz, Scarlett Johansson, Joshua Marston, Alexandra Cassavetes, Stephen Winter, Jeff Nathanson,
Anthony Minghella, Natalie Portman
Producers: Marina Grasic, Emmanuel Benbihy
Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Natalie Portman, Orlando Bloom, Rachel Bilson, Bradley Cooper, Maggie Q, Hayden Christensen, Christina Ricci, Andy Garcia, Ethan Hawke, Blake Lively, Anton Yelchin, Shu Qi, Carlos Acosta, James Cann, Justin Bartha, Eli Wallach, Cloris Leachm
MPAA Rating: R
Running time: 103 min.


Three years ago one of my favorite films of the year, Paris Je’ Taime was released to theaters and I was actually taken aback at how much I liked the piece. It was a series of vignettes, each directed by a famous director (from Gus Van Sant to the Coen Brothers to Wes Craven) with a whole slew of great, character actors and A-list stars. Each vignette was a cute little story examining a relationship somewhere within the great culture of Paris. Not necessarily lovers either. There were fathers and daughters, sisters, elderly couples and even a vampire tale amongst many others. Within months it was announced that a follow-up to the film would be coming soon that would take place in New York. So I’ve been waiting the better part of three years to see the sequel of sorts to one of my favorite films of 2007 with another set of great stories told by world class film makers and actors. And finally it is here in America showing to a fairly wide audience.

There had been some grumbling that New York, I Love You wasn’t quite the film its predecessor had been. Quite honestly I can’t fathom that notion as this film is at least the former’s equal; if not superior to the “original.” If you liked Paris Je’ Taime (or loved it as much as I did), there’s no reason to steer clear of this reimagining. It’s got the same amount of heart and inspiration and should capture your heart just as quickly and steadfast as the stories did threeyears ago.
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Von Trier’s Box Office Buzz

antichrist_picture_2

Chaos Reigns! I caught Antichrist [Kurt’s Review] at the only screen it is publicly playing in New York, The IFC Center on 6th ave. The midnight screening that had shown the night before was a complete sell out and the matinee films for the following day were quickly filling up. Notices were posted up around the box office, on the theater’s exterior as well as inside our waiting room for warning of the extreme gore and violence, alongside it was a “wimp’s guide to surviving Von Trier’s ‘Antichrist.'” The steps were simple, the 63 minute mark and the 85 minute mark are your cues to leave- included were film stills and lines of dialog for scenes that you should watch for to begin packing your bags in order to make it to the exit in time.

Did they post this at everyone’s theater?

As we filed into the 50-something-seat theater, and the rustling of bags and umbrellas let up, I caught a number of wrist watch alarms and cell phone alarms being set- people selecting their ring tone and vibrating patterns for their big escape. Sure enough, on my return from the bathroom at the 55-minute mark, it was only a scene or two before the high-pitched beeping and hum of pocket-alarms broke everyone’s focus. We lost three older ladies and a young guy, not to mention the woman who left immediately after the death of the child.

To say the least, I was dazzled by the film. The movie expresses the basic fears of all women: loss of child, difficulty to deal with pleasure, loss or abandonment from partner, inhibition/exhibition and overall a stunning study of this woman (Gainsbourg)’s decent into Hysteria. However…Horror flick? I don’t think so.

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Row Three Exclusive – What’s Up Lovely One Sheet

Back in March I reviewed a small but beautiful film directed by Gary King called New York Lately. That movie is still on my top 10 for this year and we are getting closer to King’s next movie, What’s Up Lovely. What’s Up Lovely tells the story of Luci a down on her luck insomniac who has lost her job and the unforgettable night she has wandering through the streets of New York. Andrew posted a teaser back in the spring that had me intrigued and now we have a new one sheet that is really quite stunning.

Whats Up Lovely One Sheet

In the message from King where he passed along the the one sheet for your viewing he mentioned that he hopes to have a few more posters created over the next couple of months and then will hold voting to choose the one which will be used for the festivals and for a DVD cover. You can keep watch on this over at the What’s Up Lovely Website, Facebook and on Twitter.

I’m curious to see what the next few sheets look like as I really enjoy the style of this one and will be likely voting for it.

Rising Star: Sean Baker’s Take Out & Prince of Broadway

Last year I had the opportunity to see Take Out, the authentic and wonderfully compelling story of Ming, a Chinese food delivery man. He borrowed money to make the trip to the US but he’s fallen behind on his regular payments and now the loan shark wants his money. He sends out a couple of goons to collect the $800, which Ming doesn’t have, but between money collected from outstanding debts and a hard night’s work, he may just make it.

I was impressed by Shih-Ching Tsou and Sean Baker’s debut, a film that shares one aspect of the immigrant story while also presenting the “real” New York. The film is well worth a look and lucky for us, it’s now available on DVD care of Kino.

Would you like to know more…?

Mendes Travels to Netherland

Sam MendesSam Mendes is returning to the literary cannon with another book adaptation but this time, the story in question also involves one of the director’s passions.

Reports today are that Mendes’ next project will be an adaptation of Joseph O’Neill’s acclaimed novel “Netherland.” The story of a Dutch stockbroker who moves from London to New York with his wife after 9/11, he finds himself lonely until he meets a group of expatriates who play cricket.

Though this story doesn’t sound like anything I’d be interested in, this project has quite the pedigree attached. Aside from Mendes, the book is being adapted for the screen by BAFTA and Oscar winning screenwriter Christopher Hampton (Atonement, The Quiet American and Dangerous Liaisons) and the source material won the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction.

It’s unclear what role cricket plays in the story or if this is a marriage drama or more of a personal/internal struggle. Considering Mendes’ previous films, I’m going on a limb to assume that the relationship between the title character Hans van den Broek and his wife will play an integral part in the story but it’s all speculation.

There was a lot of love around these parts for the director’s previous film Away We Go (our review). Is that love going to carry forth into the next project?

Bookmarks for August 10th through August 11th

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What we’ve been reading – August 10th through August 11th:

  • New York Film Festival 2009 Lineup
    Alain Resnais’ new film, “Wild Grass” (Les Herbes folles), recently acquired by Sony Pictures Classics, will open the 2009 New York Film Festival on September 25, 2009. Lineup also includes Almodovar, von Trier, Breillat, Solondz, Denis & More
  • Glenn Kenny on The Young and Dumb versus Old and In The Way
    Spanning They Might Be Giants to The Hurt Locker, In The Loop, Rolling Thunder and Peter Blegvad, Kenny sure covers a lot in a musing yet brief piece over at Some Came Running
  • Sean O’Hagan on Quentin Tarantino
    A very impartial and interesting interview / profile on Q. Tarantino. Suck it though, Sean, Deathproof is awesome.

New York, I Love You Trailer

New York, I Love YouI knew that at some point we’d posted a trailer for the anthology film New York, I Love You what I didn’t realize was that that trailer was posted a year ago.

The film premiered at TIFF last year and Kurt foresaw the film would open early in 2009 but for some reason, reviews perhaps?, it was shelved and forgotten until today when a sexy discombobulated new trailer appeared. With acting and directing contributions from a long list of talented folk (Park Chan-Wook, The Hughes Brothers, Faith Akin, Mira Nair, Yvan Attal, Shunji Iwai, Wen Jiang, Joshua Marston, Andrei Zvyanginstev, Brett Ratner, Shia LeBeouf, Blake Lively, Natalie Portman, Hayden Christensen, Anton Yelchin, Orlando Bloom, Christina Ricci, Chris Cooper, Kevin Bacon, Robin Wright Penn, Maggie Q, Ethan Hawke, John Hurt, Scarlett Johansson, Natalie Portman and Olivia Thirlby) this is bound to have a little something for everyone.

The trailer is not exactly eye popping but it certainly looks nice and I have love for much of the talent involved so I’m game. I still haven’t seen Paris, je t’aime but I may have to check it out before being sucked into this one.

New York, I Love You is scheduled for limited release on October 16th.

Now, who’s working on a Vancouver, I Love You?

Trailer is tucked under the seat!

Would you like to know more…?

Review: Hazard

hazard-dvd [While this weeks episode of the Rowthree Cinecast hasn’t quite been published yet, I am kind of kicking myself for overlooking the Canadian DVD release of Sion Sono’s Hazard. Its release was delayed by due weeks in an unfortunate manufacturing error, just another little bump on this films way to the public. It was one of my favourite little films that I caught on the festival circuit in 2007, even then the film was finished in 2005 and was not shown until mid 2007 for one reason or another. However, Sono’s current 4 hour opus “Love Exposure” is not plagued with such woes, as it is currently on a rampage winning audience awards at festivals (and is one of my most anticipated films for 2009). Going into the archives and pulling out my Fantasia Festival review of Hazard (originally published on Twitch) to celebrate the films release – note the DVD is available from Evokative films.]

Drifting aimlessly through a foreign country is a time honoured tradition for college students in many cultures. In North America, the obligatory and much clichéd trip to Europe generally involves booze, museums, hostels and trains. There is a part of nearly everyone that wants an experience beyond the standard where hazard is often the goal of the trip as it is a thing of which to be wary.

Frustrated with college life and feeling simultaneously ‘sleepy and restless’, Shin rockets off campus, literally screaming, for something away from orderly bookshelves and quiet study. The dream is the crime soaked streets of New York City, prompted by a statistic that it is Americas most dangerous city (the film is set in the late 1990s). He pushes off a couple of perky Japanese tourists upon arriving at the Big Apple despite their blatant advances. Shin does not want to be a tourist. He wants the experience of the mean streets. It should be noted that Shin is played by none other than Joe Odagiri, debuting as a leading star here in this 2005 film, Hazard, but has since made a career out of wandering around cities in cinema, including Tokyo (Adrift in Tokyo) and Sao Paulo (Plastic City)

After being mugged and left hungry and lost, Shin drops into the lap of two Japanese-Americans. Lee, played to the hilt by Japanese-Canadian Jai West, is a blustery and unpredictable ball of energy who somehow manages to rob convenience stores, deal drugs, handle the local (racist) thug cop effortlessly while speaking in his own personal patois of Japanese and Gangsta. Takeda is the shy sidekick in love with a white Maître d’ up the street. Wanting to skip relationship and head straight into marriage and babies, his perfect English evaporates whenever he tries to speak to her. The boyish pair like their Carpe Diem mixed with petty larceny, speed laced ice cream and no shortage of firearms. They give Shin his dream of being apart of a full live-in-the-moment-consequences-be-damned existence all the while teaching him English using Walt Whitman verse.

Japanese director Sion Sono’s grunge fantasy of New York is built up from impressions of the city through early Scorsese pictures makes no bones of its wish-fulfillment intent. It is awash in the red and yellow neon glow of the night and the soggy, trash strewn urban ghetto of the day. It is shot in with long hand-held takes and an improvised feel of perpetual motion. The vérité style—using seat of the pants location shooting, non-actors in the supporting roles—is cleverly subverted to full blown fantasy. The consequences of throwing beer into the face of the law and getting into casual gun-fights with shop proprietors? They feed back into the loop of cool that Sono is intent on running for the audience. Lee’s trip to prison amounts to the observation that he looks good in orange. Late Taxi Driver ambitions offer little in the way of substance. But here, that is kind of the point—the films strength and originality if you will.

Think Thomas Vinterberg’s Dear Wendy without the irony and polemic or Wes Anderson’s Bottle Rocket without the goofy humour. Hazard is determined to be lost in the romance of the foreign crazy-sexy-cool and free of any real depth or truth. So, it sort of ends up being the tourist voyage after all. The infectious performances and the dreamy version of New York captured by Sono still make it worth the trip along with the resolute aim of the film to have fun. The sticky question proposed is whether or not a perceived experience by way of fantasy is a healthy way to make one a better person. Wispy and etherial, Hazard manages to linger despite its own best intentions.

DVD Review: Two Lovers

Two Lovers DVD Cover

Director: James Gray (We Own the Night, The Yards, Little Odessa)
Screenplay: James Gray, Ric Menello
Producers: James Gray, Donna Gigliotti, Anthony Katagas
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Gwyneth Paltrow, Vinessa Shaw, Isabella Rossellini, Elias Koteas, Moni Moshonov
MPAA Rating: R
Running time: 110 min.

Irecall walking away from James Gray’s We Own the Night thinking that I’d just seen the beginning of something special. Though the film was overlooked by critics and the general public there was something about it that sat with me long after the credits rolled. Joaquin Phoenix’s performance as Bobby Green was understated but powerful and Gray’s direction was demure and beautiful.

Two Lovers Movie StillI instantly paid a little more attention when a new Phoenix/Gray collaboration was announced and when the trailer for Two Lovers premiered, I knew it was a film I had to see even if the trailer was misleading (as I assumed it was). The trailer does this film very little justice.

Phoenix plays Leonard Kraditor, a man who moved back with his parents after his ex-fiance’s family canceled their wedding. He took the breakup badly, retreating into a world of self abuse and attempted suicides eventually returning home to start rebuilding his life. But months have passed and though he appears to be getting better, his parents are visibly worried and they want him to move on with his life. They devise a plan to set him up with Sandra (Vinessa Shaw), the daughter of a local business owner. Things start off well and the two seem to hit it off but things aren’t as perfect as they appear. Immediately after meeting Sandra, Leonard meets Michelle (Gwyneth Paltrow), his new upstairs neighbor and becomes instantly smitten by both her looks and her personality. In an instant Leonard goes from meek and shy to juggling two very different women in two very different relationships.

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