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J.J. Abrams Talks Vague "Episode VII" News: IMAX, Casting And Production Schedule


Jj Abrams Jesse Plemons Alfonso Cuaron

J.J. Abrams has confirmed that with the script now finished, filming for Star Wars: Episode VII is set to begin in May. Abrams also confirmed that he has talked to Breaking Bad actor Jesse Plemons about a possible role in the film. Abrams was, however, surprised to read about rumors of Plemons’ casting before an official announcement was made.

JJ Abrams, Star Trek Into Darkness Premiere
Abrams dodged the question of whether he would be directing all three films on his own.

“He is one of the actors that we’ve talked to, yeah,” Abrams said, speaking at the Television Critics Association Summer Press tour.. “But, you know. It’s not often that I read about actors that I’m going to be meeting … that I get to read articles about actors who are going to come in. And so I get to see someone and say, ‘Oh, I read that I’m going to see you.’ … It’s usually agents talking to people about what’s happening. It’s a lot of noise.”

Continue reading: J.J. Abrams Talks Vague "Episode VII" News: IMAX, Casting And Production Schedule

Santa Monica Tastes Hollywood Glamour As Stars Come Out For Critics Choice Awards [Photos]


David O Russell Amy Adams Leonardo Dicaprio Jennifer Lawrence Chiwetel Ejiofor Steve McQueen Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock Cate Blanchett Matthew Mcconaughey Margot Robbie Adele Exarchopoulos

The Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California, set the stage for the latest instalment of the awards season program, playing host to some of the biggest names in showbiz and paying tribute to some of the year's biggest films for the 19th annual Critic's Choice Awards.

Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock
Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron and star Sandra Bullock both took home awards

The latest instalment of the awards show schedule to pass us by offered another indicator of what films will continue to find success over the course of the next few months, with Gravity, American Hustle and 12 Years A Slave dominating proceedings.

Continue reading: Santa Monica Tastes Hollywood Glamour As Stars Come Out For Critics Choice Awards [Photos]

'Gravity,' 'American Hustle' And '12 Years A Slave' Scoop Major Wins At Critic's Choice Awards: Full Nominees & Winners


Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock Matthew Mcconaughey Chiwetel Ejiofor Cate Blanchett Bradley Cooper Jared Leto James Gandolfini Jennifer Lawrence Lee Daniels David O Russell Spike Jonze Woody Allen

On the same day as the nominations for this year's Academy Awards ceremony were revealed, the latest instalment of the ongoing awards season went by at the Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California, where the 19th annual Critic's Choice Awards honoured the cast and crew of some of last's year's biggest and best films.

Gravity
Gravity soared to success at the Critic's Choice Awards

The big winner on the night was the space thriller Gravity, which soared to success with seven wins by the end of the night. Among it's credits the film earned Alfonso Cuarón the award for Best Director and the award for Best Editing, shared with co-editor Mark Sanger. The film also earned Sandra Bullock the award for Best Actress In An Action Movie and was crowned as crowned the Best Sci-Fi/Horror Movie. The film also scored recognition for Best Visual Effects, Best Cinematography and Best Score.

Continue reading: 'Gravity,' 'American Hustle' And '12 Years A Slave' Scoop Major Wins At Critic's Choice Awards: Full Nominees & Winners

'12 Years A Slave,' 'American Hustle' And 'Breaking Bad' Among The Big Winners At The 2014 Golden Globe Awards: Full Winners List


Golden Globe Awards Steve McQueen Amy Adams Jennifer Lawrence Coen Brothers Matthew Mcconaughey Jared Leto Leonardo Dicaprio Cate Blanchett Alfonso Cuaron Spike Jonze Andy Samberg Bryan Cranston Robin Wright Michael Douglas Elisabeth Moss

The 2014 Golden Globes came and went on Sunday, 12 January night as the stars of Hollywood gathered for the first real awards showcase of the year. The event didn't let down, with hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler delivering the laughs throughout the event and with individual stars using their time in the spotlight to grand effect, resulting in a night to remember.

American Hustle
American Hustle was the night's big winner

The two top-contested awards, Best Motion Picture for Drama and for Musical or Comedy, were awarded to the early favourites and the two titles looking most likely to sweep up over the course of awards season: 12 Years A Slave and America Hustle.

Continue reading: '12 Years A Slave,' 'American Hustle' And 'Breaking Bad' Among The Big Winners At The 2014 Golden Globe Awards: Full Winners List

Alfonso Cuarón and Sheherazade Goldsmith - 3rd AACTA International Awards At Sunset Marquis Hotel - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 11th January 2014

Alfonso Cuarón and Sheherazade Goldsmith
Alfonso Cuarón and Sheherazade Goldsmith

10 Films Vying For Producers Guild Of America Best Picture Prize, American Hustle Favorite?


Jennifer Lawrence Bradley Cooper Christian Bale Alfonso Cuaron Chiwetel Ejiofor Michael Fassbender Leonardo Dicaprio Tom Hanks Coen Brothers

American Hustle appears to have emerged as the favorite to claim the Producers Guild of America Best Picture award when it’s handed out on January 19th. The darkly comic crime drama sees Bradley Cooper and Christian Bale play 1970s con artists.

American HustleAre these two plotting an Oscars raid?

The 'outstanding producer of theatrical motion pictures' award certainly acts as a bellwether for the Oscars, which will be taking place shortly after the Producer’s Guild awards.

Continue reading: 10 Films Vying For Producers Guild Of America Best Picture Prize, American Hustle Favorite?

Meanwhile, On Earth: See Who Picked Dr. Ryan Stone's Distress Call In 'Gravity'


Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron George Clooney

Gravity has received unanimous critical praise, but if there were one criticism you could legitimately levy at Alfonso Cuaron’s space epic, is that the plot is somewhat lacking compared to the breath-taking imagery and CGI. It’s more or a roller-coaster ride, a theme park attraction, than a film.

Gravity Stranded above earth in Gravity

However you, as the audience, are welcomed to fill in any blanks you wish to. Cuaron provides ample space, no pun intended, for you to ponder your own plot points in the film. Like: does Matt break the record? What does Ryan Stone do when she lands on earth? And who was on the other end of that SOS call?

Continue reading: Meanwhile, On Earth: See Who Picked Dr. Ryan Stone's Distress Call In 'Gravity'

Director Alfonso Cuaron - BFI London Film Festival: 'Gravity' Gala Screening held at the Odeon Leicester Square - Arrivals - London, United Kingdom - Friday 11th October 2013

Alfonso Cuaron

Alfonso Cuaron and Guest - BFI London Film Festival: 'Gravity' Gala Screening held at the Odeon Leicester Square - Arrivals. - London, United Kingdom - Thursday 10th October 2013

Alfonso Cuaron and Guest
Alfonso Cuaron and Guest
Alfonso Cuaron and Guest
Alfonso Cuaron and Guest
Alfonso Cuaron and Guest
Alfonso Cuaron and Guest

Alfonso Cuaron Reveals How 'Gravity' Was Very Nearly, Rubbish


Sandra Bullock George Clooney Alfonso Cuaron

Studio pressure is one of the biggest movie killers out there. It can strip the creative power away from a director, making the final piece a pandering mess. But Alfonso Cuaron – whose film Gravity has stunned wherever it has played – wasn’t about to let that happen.

Sandra BullockSandra Bullock in Gravity

"With making a film it's like trying to create a tune in the shower while you have a hundred people singing around you. You have to focus yourself in on the tune that you're trying to create. Because you have hundreds of people singing different songs at the same time around you," he explained, via The Guardian

Continue reading: Alfonso Cuaron Reveals How 'Gravity' Was Very Nearly, Rubbish

Video - Director Alfonso Cuaron Spotted At 'Gravity' NY Premiere - Part 2


Alfonso Cuaron, director of space thriller movie 'Gravity', was snapped at the New York premiere of the movie alongside his son and co-writer Jonas Cuaron. The film stars Sandra Bullock and George Clooney - who are the only visible actors on screen - and is set to be released in the UK on November 8th 2013.

Continue: Video - Director Alfonso Cuaron Spotted At 'Gravity' NY Premiere - Part 2

The Box Office Gods Proved Kind To 'Gravity' Over The Weekend, But Was It All Just Good Marketing?


Sandra Bullock George Clooney Alfonso Cuaron

The critics love Gravity. Moviegoers love Gravity. Given these two facts, it’s no wonder that Alfonso Cuaron’s dizzying space thrill-ride easily topped the weekend box office in an otherwise fairly uneventful season. The movie was off to a great start, with $55.6 million in opening weekend revenue (according to Box Office Mojo), helped in part by the pricier 3D ticket. Those earnings seem pretty appropriate for the movie’s large scope, really. Cuaron’s beautiful orbital setting, as well as Sandra Bullock and George Clooney’s moving performances helped Gravity top the opening weekend record for October. The record was previously held by 2011’s Paranormal Activity, which grossed $52.6 million on opening weekend.

Gravity Still
At least visually, 'Gravity' is a sight to behold.

Meanwhile, the film far surpassed the weekend’s other hopeful – Runner Runner, starring Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake. Could it have been all those rageful Batman fans, refusing to see the film in protest of Affleck’s casting? One can only speculate.

Continue reading: The Box Office Gods Proved Kind To 'Gravity' Over The Weekend, But Was It All Just Good Marketing?

What Are You Seeing Tonight, Justin Timberlake's 'Runner Runner'?


Justin Timberlake Ben Affleck George Clooney Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron

It’s a big night for cinema goers in the U.S. Two of the biggest movies of the year are out (Oct 4th): Runner, RunnerJustin Timberlake and Ben Affleck’s crime thriller – and GravityGeorge Clooney and Sandra Bullock’s space thriller.

Justin Timberlake and Ben AffleckJustin Timberlake and Ben Affleck in Runner Runner

So which movie are you going to see? Well Gravity is the obvious choice; it’s got rave reviews, an exciting, complex and original plot; it’s headed up by Clooney and Bullock and comes from celebrated director Alfonso Cuaron. It’s a classy blockbuster that should, in some way or another, prosper at the Oscars come March 2014.

Continue reading: What Are You Seeing Tonight, Justin Timberlake's 'Runner Runner'?

On The Eve Of It's US Premiere, Alfonso Cuaron's Stunning "Gravity" Is Already Attracting Early Oscar Buzz


Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock George Clooney

Gravity, Alfonso Cuaron’s head-spinning space adventure starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney premieres across US theatres today. The movie, which features a very minimal cast and storyline, has none the less managed to impress quite a few reviewers with its ambitious, at times even dizzying cinematography. Critics have been impressed by said heart-stopping cinematography ever since the first trailer was released and now, following the first screenings, Bullock’s performance is attracting a lot of attention too.

Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Gravity Still
The movie's visual landscape is has impressed critics.

Maybe a bit of Oscar buzz too? In the film, Bullock plays Dr. Ryan Stone, a medical engineer on her very first shuttle mission. She teams up with Clooney astronaut Matt Kowalsky on what is supposed to be a routine procedure, until everything goes haywire, their shuttle gets destroyed and the two end up stranded in space.

Continue reading: On The Eve Of It's US Premiere, Alfonso Cuaron's Stunning "Gravity" Is Already Attracting Early Oscar Buzz

Gravity Trailer


Dr Ryan Stone is a medical engineer who happens to take her first space adventure with one of the most experience astronauts she knows, Matt Kowalsky. It should be an experience of a lifetime, but instead becomes one with life and death hanging in the balance as floating debris rips apart their craft, Explorer, as they venture on a routine spacewalk. As Ryan Stone is left spinning through the air while still attached to an arm of the vehicle, she is forced to detach herself or risk being catapulted far into space with no way of getting back. Gasping for breath with what little oxygen she has left and feeling disorientated from the ceaseless movement, she attempts to make contact with Houston. But as she drifts further and further away, loss of contact becomes inevitable and with Kowalsky nowhere to be found, all she has left to live for is the hope for a miracle.

'Gravity' is the heart stopping space thriller directed by Alfonso Cuaron ('Children of Men', 'Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban', 'A Little Princess') and co-written by his son Jonas Cuaron ('Year of the Nail'). With little cast and few sets, this is a movie relying solely on the emotions it evokes, and you certainly won't be short of those when this is released. It is set to hit the UK on November 8th 2013.

Click here to read Gravity Movie Review

Heart-Racing 'Gravity' Trailer Released As October Release Inches Closer


George Clooney Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron James Cameron

After months of being tantalised with intriguing and hauntingly beautiful Gravity teaser clips, we finally have our first, full-length official trailer that makes us more excited about the upcoming Alfonso Cuarón-directed space thriller than ever.

Gravity Movie Still
Sandra & George's Performance As Two Astronauts Has Been Praised.

The trailer, released a month ahead of Gravity's early October theatrical release date fleshes out the stark clips we'd been teased with and reveals more of the action scenes as George Clooney and Sandra Bullock struggle as two astronauts adrift in space after their shuttle is damaged by space debris. We are reminded of the odds faced by our astronauts as they float "372 miles above the earth." An on-screen blurb reads "There is nothing to carry sound. No air pressure, no Oxygen. Life in space is impossible."

Continue reading: Heart-Racing 'Gravity' Trailer Released As October Release Inches Closer

New Full-Length 'Gravity' Trailer Hits The Ground Running, God It Looks Good [Trailer]


Sandra Bullock George Clooney Alfonso Cuaron Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences

Having stunned at Venice, Gravity is now pulling in the rest of us with a compelling new full-length trailer. Before – the teaser - we saw Sandra Bullock and George Clooney eerily drifting in space and saw a hint of the nightmare to come. Now it’s time to learn more about our seemingly hopeless space transients.

George Clooney and Sandra Bullock in GravityGeorge Clooney and Sandra Bullock in Gravity

“I think it’s the best space photography ever done, I think it’s the best space film ever done, and it’s the movie I’ve been hungry to see for an awful long time,” veteran filmmaker James Cameron told Variety.

Continue reading: New Full-Length 'Gravity' Trailer Hits The Ground Running, God It Looks Good [Trailer]

A Week In Movies: Gravity Bows In Venice, One Direction Takes To Cinemas, All-star Film Explores JFK's Death


George Clooney Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron One Direction Niall Horan Amber Heard Anson Mount Alan Rickman Hilly Kristal Rupert Grint Malin Akerman Ashley Greene Mickey Sumner

Gravity premiere in Venice

George Clooney and Sandra Bullock brought their star power to opening night at the 70th Venice Film Festival on Wednesday. The event launched with the world premiere of Alfonso Cuaron's Gravity, and the critical buzz has been big for the thriller about two astronauts stranded in space when their shuttle mission is hit by debris. Take a look at photos of Clooney and Bullock attending The 70th Venice Film Festival here.

The big movie in cinemas around the world this week is the documentary One Direction: This Is Us, which has taken a hammering from critics for being far too on-message. But it's likely to keep fans very happy, especially since it reveals things like the fact that Niall Horan strips down to his underpants when he records in the studio. A scene in the film shows him recording this summer's big hit Best Song Ever in his boxers. Find out why Niall says "I sing better naked" here.

Continue reading: A Week In Movies: Gravity Bows In Venice, One Direction Takes To Cinemas, All-star Film Explores JFK's Death

George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuarón - 70th Venice Film Festival - 'Gravity' - Premiere - Venice, Italy - Wednesday 28th August 2013

George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuarón
George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuarón
George Clooney
George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuarón
George Clooney
Sandra Bullock and George Clooney

Space Thriller 'Gravity' Debuts At Venice Film Festival, Were The First Critics In Awe?


George Clooney Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock

If like us, you've been itching to see Gravity even since the 90 second teaser trailer was first released, the news that there are people somewhere out there who have seen the movie will be enough to make your ears prick up and start crossing off the days until 4th November (if you're in the US, 8th if in the UK).

George Clooney Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron
Cuaron, And The Entire Cast Of
Gravity.

Steeped in mystery with a rather unique concept, shots of Alfonso Cuaron's new space thriller look hauntingly beautiful and the movie's disaster scenario sounds gripping. When films look this good, we don't like sitting around and waiting a long time for them to hit our screen. The movie was famously difficult to make, as Cuaron wanted to make the space shots look as authentic and CGI-less as possible with a heavy emphasis on single take scenes that made for gruelling filming sessions.

Continue reading: Space Thriller 'Gravity' Debuts At Venice Film Festival, Were The First Critics In Awe?

Alfonso Cuaron, George Clooney and Sandra Bullock - 70th Venice Film Festival - 'Gravity' - Photocall - Venice, Italy - Wednesday 28th August 2013

Alfonso Cuaron, George Clooney and Sandra Bullock
Alfonso Cuaron, George Clooney and Sandra Bullock
Alfonso Cuaron and George Clooney

Forgotten Men Terry Gilliam, Jonathan Glazer Set For Venice Film Festival


Terry Gilliam Jonathan Glazer Alfonso Cuaron Christoph Waltz Matt Damon Tilda Swinton James Franco David Gordon Green Nicolas Cage Paul Schrader Lindsay Lohan

The Venice Film Festival 2013 boasts one of the most intriguing movie line-ups of the year, with two fallen heroes of cinema coming in from the cold and testing out new material after underwhelming efforts last time out.

Terry Gilliam and Jonathan Glazer will screen their new movies, The Zero Theorem and Under the Skin.

Gilliam hasn't been seen since 2009's poorly received The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, while Sexy Beast director Glazer was scolded by the box-office almost a decade ago with Birth.

Continue reading: Forgotten Men Terry Gilliam, Jonathan Glazer Set For Venice Film Festival

Could 'Gravity' Be The Most Terrifying Space Movie, Ever? [Trailer]


Sandra Bullock Alfonso Cuaron George Clooney

Warner Bros has unveiled its new trailer for Alfonso Cuaron's sci-fi thriller Gravity, featuring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney as a medical engineer and astronaut lost in space.

Bullock play Dr Ryan Stone, an engineer on her first shuttle mission, while Clooney is veteran astronaut Matt Kowalsky, in command of his last flight before retiring. Of course, if a routine spacewalk had gone exactly to plan, then Warners would have had a fairly dismal movie on its hands.

Of course, disaster strikes and Stone and Kowalsky's shuttle is completely destroyed, leaving them completely alone in space. They spiral into the darkness as the radio connection to Earth is lost.

Continue reading: Could 'Gravity' Be The Most Terrifying Space Movie, Ever? [Trailer]

Space Thriller 'Gravity' To Open At Venice Film Festival [Trailer]


George Clooney Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock

Gravity, Alfonso Cuarón's new space thriller will debut on Venice Film Festival's prestigious opening night on the Venice Lido. With a stark, but strong cast of George Clooney and Sandra Bullock the film will centre on two astronauts who are working on a space station, when they encounter problems after a meteor shower causes damage and the unthinkable happens - they are left alone to drift in orbit.

George Clooney
George Clooney Stars In Chilling New Space Thriller, Gravity. 

The intimacy of the small cast and the scenes shot from their point of view will lend a chilling claustrophobia to the film, as utilised most effectively on fellow thrillers Sunshine (2007) and Moon (2009). Indeed, the trailer evokes Moon's creeping solitude of space, as well as the bloodpumping disaster scenario of Sunshine combined with the deeply emotive piano notes on its soundtrack. Like those two films, it seems that Gravity will take a more psychological line as opposed to the kind of space action seen in Apollo 13 or Armageddon.

Continue reading: Space Thriller 'Gravity' To Open At Venice Film Festival [Trailer]

Alfonso Cuaron, Johnny Sequoyah, Jake McLaughlin, Delroy Lindo and and J.J. Abrams - 2013 NBC Upfront Presentation - Arrivals - New York City , New York , United States - Monday 13th May 2013

Alfonso Cuaron, Johnny Sequoyah, Jake Mclaughlin, Delroy Lindo and And J.j. Abrams
Alfonso Cuarón
Alfonso Cuarón
Alfonso Cuarón

Alfonso Cuaron, David Yates, Evanna Lynch and Mike Newell - Alfonso Cuaron, David Yates, Evanna Lynch, Mike Newell Saturday 31st March 2012 The worldwide Grand Opening event for the

Alfonso Cuaron, David Yates, Evanna Lynch and Mike Newell
Alfonso Cuaron, Bonnie Wright, David Barron, David Heyman, David Yates, Evanna Lynch, Mike Newell, Rupert Grint and Tom Felton
Alfonso Cuaron, David Barron, David Yates and Mike Newell
Alfonso Cuaron
Alfonso Cuaron

Rudo & Cursi Review


Excellent
This bright, energetic comedy-drama reunites Garcia and Luna seven years after Y Tu Mama Tambien for a raucous tale of two brothers dealing with fame. The plot is a bit over-structured, but the filmmaking is thoroughly enjoyable.

Tato (Garcia) and his brother Beto (Luna) live in a small town, where Beto, nicknamed Rudo (tough), is married to Tonia (Paz) and has two small kids and Tato dreams of becoming a singing sensation. Then Tato is spotted by a football scout (Francella) and taken to Mexico City to play with the pros. The media nickname him Cursi (fancy). Beto follows soon, and both struggle with the pressures of fame--Tato with a sexy TV-star girlfriend (Mas) and Beto with gambling problems. And they're about to face off in the match of their life.

Continue reading: Rudo & Cursi Review

Rudo Y Cursi Review


Good
Already a massive hit in its home country of Mexico, Carlos Cuarón's Rudo y Cursi is a film about doomed half-brothers, made by exceedingly successful siblings.

The director is the younger sibling of Alfonso Cuarón, director of the excellent Children of Men and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, who serves as producer here in his capacity as one of the heads of Cha Cha Cha Films, along with Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu. Diego Luna and Gael García Bernal, childhood friends and stars of the elder Cuarón's breakout arthouse hit Y Tu Mamá También, play the plainly-nicknamed titular half-brothers who are picked up out of their jobs as laborers in the banana fields of Jalisco and fashioned into soccer heroes in the would-be Metropolis of Mexico City.

Continue reading: Rudo Y Cursi Review

Urors Alfonso Cuaron, Alexandra Maria Lara, Alfonso Cuaron, Natalie Portman, Sean Penn and Sergio Castellitto - Urors Alfonso Cuaron, Alexandra Maria Lara, Natalie Portman, Marjane Satrapi, jury president Sean Penn, Jeanne Balibar, Sergio Castellitto, Richid Bouchareb and Apichatpong Weerasethakul Sunday 25th May 2008 at Cannes Film Festival Cannes, France

Urors Alfonso Cuaron, Alexandra Maria Lara, Alfonso Cuaron, Natalie Portman, Sean Penn and Sergio Castellitto

Jurors Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Alexandra Maria Lara, Alfonso Cuaron, Natalie Portman, Sean Penn and Sergio Castellitto - Jurors Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Richid Bouchareb, Natalie Portman, Marjane Satrapi, Jeanne Balibar, Sean Penn, Alexandra Maria Lara, Sergio Castellitto and Alfonso Cuaron Wednesday 14th May 2008 at Cannes Film Festival Cannes, France

Jurors Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Alexandra Maria Lara, Alfonso Cuaron, Natalie Portman, Sean Penn and Sergio Castellitto
Alexandra Maria Lara
Alexandra Maria Lara
Alexandra Maria Lara
Alexandra Maria Lara
Alexandra Maria Lara

Alfonso Cuaron Saturday 28th July 2007 A Life In Pictures London, England

Alfonso Cuaron
Alfonso Cuaron
Alfonso Cuaron
Alfonso Cuaron
Alfonso Cuaron

Paris, Je T'aime Review


Good
One would like to think that there at least a few other cities in the world besides Paris that could have inspired a film as varied in the types of cinematic pleasure so ably delivered by the anthology piece Paris Je T'Aime -- but it seems unlikely. This isn't due to an unavailability of good stories or locations in many other great metropolises, but more because being able to dangle the possibility of shooting in Paris in front of the world's greatest directors is going to be so much more enticing. Also, there are few other cities besides Paris that come with such a powerful and multifarious wealth of preassociated images and emotions for both filmmaker and audience to both draw upon and react against. So what could have been a collection of short films with a few highs, several lows, and a lot of muddled in-betweens is in fact a remarkably and consistently imaginative body of work, practically giddy with energy, that only rarely touches the ground.

Project overseers Emmanuel Benbihy and Tristan Carné wanted to create a cinematic map of Paris, with each short film representing one of the city's 20 arrondissements (neighborhoods). They ended up with 18 films, none of them more than a few minutes long and directed by a glittering, international roster of filmmakers. While none of the films here are anything approaching masterpieces, hardly a one is in any way a chore to sit through, which has to be some sort of an accomplishment.

Continue reading: Paris, Je T'aime Review

Sólo Con Tu Pareja Review


Good
A decade-plus before he wowed the international scene with the sex tragicomedy Y Tu Mamá También, Alfonso Cuarón rolled out the fun, yet less accomplished Sólo con tu pareja (literally "Alone with your pair").

Daniel Giménez Cacho is Tómas Tómas, a kind of scrawny, lazy, and loathsome advertising copywriter who nonetheless has hundreds of sexual exploits leaving notches in his belt. He's a rare kind of cad that juggles two women during one night in apartments across the hall from each other (naturally he's locked out of both) while also carefully avoiding actually doing his job (one of his conquests comes up with his latest slogan, for jalepeno peppers, for him).

Continue reading: Sólo Con Tu Pareja Review

Y Tu Mamá También Review


Extraordinary
When a film opens with a handheld shot of two teens humping under a Harold and Maude poster, one can assume the movie is different. Y Tu Mamá También is certainly that - an original, harsh, funny slant on the traditional road movie, as experienced by two Mexican teens and their gorgeous 28-year-old tagalong. Filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón (Great Expectations) strips the familiar genre to its core, exposing the trailblazing characters at their barest, figuratively and literally.

As go the minds of most 17-year-olds, Tenoch and Julio think about sex. A lot. They talk about sex a lot. They quickly screw their girlfriends before the girls depart for a European summer vacation, they simultaneously masturbate while hollering out their thoughts (Salma Hayek!), and they make fun of their respective, uh, members. Tenoch, the wealthy son of a politician, and Julio, living with his lower-class mother and activist sister, plan to spend the summer getting high and getting laid.

Continue reading: Y Tu Mamá También Review

Children Of Men Review


Excellent
Perhaps because of its bleak outlook, its lushly dark tones, or its often blunt criticism of the current world state, Alfonso Cuaron's fourth major film will have to fight just as hard as his two Spanish films to find an audience. The bearer of one the worst marketing and public relations campaigns in years, Children of Men could have been the wriggling stepson that Universal has made it out to be, but it turns out to be anything but.

It's 2027, and the youngest person in Britain (and the world), Baby Diego, has just been killed by a rabid fan; he was 18. Somewhere between 2006 and 2016, women started becoming infertile, causing mass miscarriages and major panics. Theo (Clive Owen) doesn't seem that concerned when we meet him, narrowly averting an explosion near a local café. He spends his time with his friend Jasper (a wily Michael Caine) who makes cannabis mixed with strawberry and tries to forget the family he once had. Julian (Julianne Moore), his ex-wife, has taken up with a pack of refugees that fight against the military state that has been active since London began understanding its grave future. When Julian stumbles upon a girl who miraculously is with child, she immediately kidnaps Theo and puts him in charge of getting the girl, Kee (Claire-Hope Ashitey), to a specialized group of the world's smartest people known as the Human Project.

Continue reading: Children Of Men Review

Sólo Con Tu Pareja Review


Good
A decade-plus before he wowed the international scene with the sex tragicomedy Y Tu Mamá También, Alfonso Cuarón rolled out the fun, yet less accomplished Sólo con tu pareja (literally "Alone with your pair").

Daniel Giménez Cacho is Tómas Tómas, a kind of scrawny, lazy, and loathsome advertising copywriter who nonetheless has hundreds of sexual exploits leaving notches in his belt. He's a rare kind of cad that juggles two women during one night in apartments across the hall from each other (naturally he's locked out of both) while also carefully avoiding actually doing his job (one of his conquests comes up with his latest slogan, for jalepeno peppers, for him).

Continue reading: Sólo Con Tu Pareja Review

The Assassination Of Richard Nixon Review


Good
Richard Nixon does not die in The Assassination of Richard Nixon, but the film's protagonist - a depressed, angry, middle-aged man named Samuel Bicke (Sean Penn) - eventually comes to believe that, for the good of himself and his country, the commander-in-chief deserves death. Estranged from his wife, unable to hold down employment, and disgusted by the lies and hypocrisies of a 1974 American society that favors the deceitful rich and powerful over the little man, Bicke is a powder keg waiting for his fuse to be lit. And in Niels Mueller's unsettling debut, that igniting spark comes from a series of final disappointments that Bicke - the type of man who blames his woes on a general, conspiratorial "they" - conveniently pins on the corrupting influence of the tricky U.S. president seen talking about hope and prosperity on his living room TV.

A kindred spirit of Taxi Driver's Travis Bickle ("God's lonely man") with politics, instead of prostitution, on his mind, Bicke fervently believes in honesty, upright morals, and a sense of decency and fairness. Unfortunately, his uncompromising idealism functions as a straightjacket, preventing him from performing the casual deceptions necessitated by his job as a furniture salesman or accepting the fact that his estranged wife Marie (Naomi Watts) must don a short miniskirt and tolerate customers' gropes to earn a living as a waitress. He resents the success of his tire salesman brother Julius, longs for the happy stability of living with his wife and three kids (who seem to fear him), sports fanciful dreams of starting his own tire business with an African-American friend (Don Cheadle's Bonny) and longs to join the Black Panthers (who he believes can relate to his supposed persecution). To Bicke, the world has been corrupted, and the only effective response - after sending Leonard Bernstein (a "pure and honest" man) his tape-recorded memoirs - is to orchestrate an attack on the White House via hijacked airplane that will, he imagines, awaken the world to American injustice.

Continue reading: The Assassination Of Richard Nixon Review

Crónicas Review


Excellent
In the late '70s and early '80s, one man is believed to have slaughtered over 300 little girls. Pedro Alonso Lopez, the "Monster of the Andes," holds the ignoble title of being the worst serial killer in history after his unimaginable string of murders in Columbia, Peru, and Ecuador. Crónicas, from writer/director Sebastián Cordero, translates those killings to the present day, in a media-saturated Latin America. He posits, in this riveting thriller, that if it had happened today, the results may have been even worse.

The film opens with one of the most harrowing depictions of a near-lynching ever captured on film. In a small town in Ecuador, mourners hold a funeral for the most recent victim of the "Monster of Babahoyo," whose tally of tortured, butchered children is already in the hundreds. After the ceremony, the twin brother of the victim is suddenly run over in a tragic accident. In a murderous rage, the father of the boy and some of the townspeople attempt to immolate the driver, Vinicio (Damián Alcázar). At the last minute, he is saved in part by the efforts of Manolo (John Leguizamo), a famous telejournalist there to cover the slayings.

Continue reading: Crónicas Review

Y Tu Mamá También Review


Extraordinary
When a film opens with a handheld shot of two teens humping under a Harold and Maude poster, one can assume the movie is different. Y Tu Mamá También is certainly that - an original, harsh, funny slant on the traditional road movie, as experienced by two Mexican teens and their gorgeous 28-year-old tagalong. Filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón (Great Expectations) strips the familiar genre to its core, exposing the trailblazing characters at their barest, figuratively and literally.

As go the minds of most 17-year-olds, Tenoch and Julio think about sex. A lot. They talk about sex a lot. They quickly screw their girlfriends before the girls depart for a European summer vacation, they simultaneously masturbate while hollering out their thoughts (Salma Hayek!), and they make fun of their respective, uh, members. Tenoch, the wealthy son of a politician, and Julio, living with his lower-class mother and activist sister, plan to spend the summer getting high and getting laid.

Continue reading: Y Tu Mamá También Review

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Alfonso Cuaron Movies

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