Philip Roth's layered novels are a challenge for filmmakers (see also 2003's The Human Stain or this year's American Pastoral), but they're so rich and provocative that they can't be ignored. For his directing debut, writer-producer James Schamus (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Brokeback Mountain) adaps this story as a tightly controlled period drama with blackly comical edges and darkly personal emotions.
It's set in 1951 New Jersey, where the young Marcus (Logan Lerman) is preparing to leave home for university in Ohio. His parents (Linda Emond and Danny Burstein) are worried that he will make the same mistakes that are ruining teens' lives across the country at the moment or, even worse, head off to fight in the Korean War. But Marcus is a very serious kid, focussed on making his own decisions about what he wants to do. He certainly wants nothing to do with his crazy roommates (Ben Rosenfield and Philip Ettinger) or the Jewish frat-house, whose leader (Pico Alexander) is desperately trying to recruit him. And then there's the pressure he's getting from the university dean (Tracy Letts). He's much more interested in the enigmatic Olivia (Sarah Gadon), a young woman who constantly surprises him.
Yes, this is essentially a coming-of-age drama about a young man making the shift from his loving family to take control of his own destiny in the big bad world. But it's much more complex than that, as it weaves in political and topical themes. The conversations are riveting, as Marcus' atheistic beliefs provoke everyone he meets. This leads to a stunning centrepiece scene, a blistering 15-minute argument between Marcus and the dean that's like a battlefield set-piece with subtle attacks, bomb blasts and surprising outcomes. Through all of this Schamus maintains the beautifully tailored appearance of the period, when the carefully muted surfaces obscured the churning, world-changing ideas underneath.
Continue reading: Indignation Review
Brad Pitt took extensive research into the toils of war in preparation for 'Fury'.
Now storming through cinemas worldwide after claiming the US box office crown last weekend, the World War II tank-crew thriller 'Fury' is an old-school war movie that attempts to update the genre with a more internalised approach to its characters.
Brad Pitt has deep respect for the war veterans who inspired 'Fury'
"It's about a family and their love for each other," says writer-director David Ayer of the five-man crew played by Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Michael Pena and Jon Bernthal. "We wanted to explore the moral and psychological hazards of war, and how they affect this family of brothers."
Continue reading: Brad Pitt And Co Head Back To WWII With 'Fury'
From Training Day to this year's Sabotage, filmmaker David Ayer writes and directs movies about the cathartic power of releasing your inner warrior. And this World War II action thriller is more of the same, with a "war is hell" message stirred in for good measure. The problem is that there's nothing particularly new here. It's a beautifully shot and edited film, with terrific performances and a remarkable sense of scale, but there have been so many movies made about this conflict that it's difficult to find something original to connect with.
It's near the end of the war, April 1945, as Wardaddy (Brad Pitt) leads the crew of a tank named Fury: Bible (Shia LaBeouf) is a true believer, Gordo (Michael Pena) is a relaxed joker, and Coon-Ass (Jon Bernthal) is a hot-headed thug. Having just lost their driver, they're joined by rookie Norman (Logan Lerman), who doesn't yet have a wartime nickname because he never thought he'd end up driving a tank. Together, they head further into Germany, not as liberators but as invaders and occupiers, working with other tank crews to take a strategic town before heading further into the hot zone, where a series of particularly brutal Nazi assaults ensue.
The point of the film seems to be that war erodes a person's humanity over time, and the sharpest aspect is the way each character emerges at some point on the continuum. Obviously, Norman is the naive newbie who still has a strong conscience, while at the other extreme Coon-Ass is virtually a monster. Wardaddy is somewhere in between, a tough guy who still has a sense of perspective, such as when he reasons that Norman should be allowed to have some private time with a young German girl (Alicia von Rittberg) simply because they're "young and alive". All of the actors are excellent, adding telling details to their characters that deepen every scene. And the camaraderie between the five-man crew is remarkably authentic, as is their ease inside the cramped quarters of the tank, which makes submarine movies look spacious by comparison.
Continue reading: Fury Review
Brad Pitt was joined by his 'Fury' co-stars at a Paris photocall held at Les Invalides. He posed on the red carpet in front of an army tank with actors Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeouf, Jon Bernthal and Michael Pena, as well as director David Ayer. During the photo session, Shia and Jon appeared to share a little playful banter, with Shia exclaiming, 'What's the deal, man?!' as they are joined by General Christian Baptiste and General Herve Charpentie.
During April, 1945, the final month of World War Two, the Allied Forces are making their final push into German territory. With the recent death of one of the crew of the tank, 'Fury', Norman (Logan Lerman) is inducted into the crew. The other members, 'Wardaddy' (Brad Pitt), 'Bible' (Shia LaBeouf), 'Gordo' (Michael Pena) and 'Coon-Ass' (Jon Bernthal) have been together for the entirety off the war so far, and desperately hope that the new recruit is ready to do his job. The film is brought to us by writer/director David Ayer ('Harsh Times' and 'End of Watch') and will be distributed by Columbia Pictures.
Could Brad Pitt's 'Fury' go all the way?
The explosive first trailer for David Ayer's World War II movie Fury starring Brad Pitt has rolled out online. The movie follows army sergeant Wardaddy who heads up an American tank unit in Germany in 1945, as the end of the war closes in. He is joined by the rest of his unit, made up of Shia LaBeouf, Jason Isaacs, Logan Lerman, Jon Bernthal and Michael Pena.
Brad Pitt stars in 'Fury'
Fury, written and directed by the man also responsible for the Oscar winning Training Day and acclaimed thriller End of Watch, has been described as a rich character study with action scenes.
Wardaddy is an army sergeant with years of experience in the horrors and victories of war. He's one of the most effective and most courageous war heroes America has to offer and, now commanding a Sherman tank named Fury with a group of just five soldiers, he must lead his men into a highly risky operation right on their enemies' doorstep. Not only has he and his boys got the threat of serious outnumbering ahead of them, but Wardaddy also has to tutor a terrified new recruit named Norman Ellison, who's less than okay with shooting down hundreds of men in a vehicle he has never used before. It's all about having each other's backs and keeping everyone motivated to keep on fighting, but when a platoon of three-hundred German soldiers strike out, it doesn't look like that will be enough to keep them alive.
Continue: Fury Trailer
Darren Aronofsky continues to ambitiously experiment with genres in this Old Testament blockbuster, but this is his first real misstep as a filmmaker, as the impressive parts simply don't add up. Still, there are flashes of genius as the epic struggle between good and evil is echoed both in the grand spectacle and within the characters themselves.
It starts with the original sin, which divides Adam and Eve's sons - brutal killer Cain and peaceful caretaker Seth - into warring factions. A few generations later, all that's left of Seth's righteous line is Noah (Russell Crowe), his wife (Jennifer Connelly) and three sons (Logan Lerman, Douglas Booth and Leo McHugh Carroll), plus an adopted daughter (Emma Watson). After he has a vision that God is planning to cleanse mankind with a flood, Noah consults his grandfather Methuselah (Anthony Hopkins) and builds an ark to save his family and all of earth's animals. He also gets help from the Watchers, rock-encrusted fallen angels who previously assisted Cain's descendant Tubal (Ray Winstone), who goes into battle mode to stop Noah.
All of this is inventively set in a post-apocalyptic landscape left in ruins after generations of fighting. And Noah is the last true believer tending to creation, refusing to eat meat (although he wears leather accessories) and ruling over his family like a tyrant. This of course creates various carefully scripted conflicts for his family over the months they're stuck in the ark. But the moralising is never as deep as it pretends to be.
Continue reading: Noah Review
The 'Black Swan' director's new bible-based movie has been barred in countries of Islamic faith.
Darren Aronofsky's new movie, Noah, has been banned in Middle Eastern countries because of a fear of religious provocation. The Black Swan director has adapted the Christian bible tale of Noah's Ark for his new epic picture, which stars Russell Crowe, Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly and Logan Lerman.
Russell Crowe Takes A Biblical Turn In Darren Aronofsky's 'Noah.'
The UAE, Qatar and Bahrain are among Middle Eastern countries banning Hollywood epic Noah as it breaks Islam's taboo of depicting a prophet, according to BBC News. "There are scenes that contradict Islam and the Bible, so we decided not to show it," Juma Al-Leem from UAE's National Media Centre said.
Leven Rambin, Douglas Smith, Logan Lerman, Alexandra Daddario and Brandon T. Jackson - Screening of Twentieth Century Fox and Fox 2000's 'Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters' at The Americana - Glendale, California, United States - Thursday 1st August 2013
Philip Roth's layered novels are a challenge for filmmakers (see also 2003's The Human Stain...
The film Indignation is a screen adaptation of Philip Roth's novel of the same name...
From Training Day to this year's Sabotage, filmmaker David Ayer writes and directs movies about...
During April, 1945, the final month of World War Two, the Allied Forces are making...
Wardaddy is an army sergeant with years of experience in the horrors and victories of...
Darren Aronofsky continues to ambitiously experiment with genres in this Old Testament blockbuster, but this...
The cast and crew of ‘Noah’; director Darren Aronofsky, actors Russell Crowe and Emma Watson,...
Noah is a normal family man faced with major responsibility when his dark visions lead...
There can't have been a very big demand for a sequel to 2010's The Lightning...
Percy Jackson is the demi-god son of Poseidon and, what's more, all his friends are...