Ed Wallis has never really been the popular boy in his class and the thought of having to move to a brand new school and start over isn't exactly his idea of fun. Starting over in a new location with his mum, Ed soon becomes an easy target for the class jocks but he doesn't let it bother him. When he's given a new assignment from school to speak with and write an essay on an older person, Ed doesn't know where - or rather who - to turn to, that is until he sees his neighbour might and thinks he might be just the person to speak to.
Though hesitant at the start, the neighbour agrees to speak with Ed. After the duo spend some time together, Ashby and Ed soon open up to one another and form an unlikely friendship. Ashby teaches Ed some much needed life lessons and vice versa.
Ashby was written and directed by Tony McNamara and had its premiere at this year's Tribeca Film Festival. Natt Wolf recently starred in Paper Towns with Cara Delevingne and The Fault in Our Stars alongside Shailene Woodley.
Ron Masak - 23rd Annual Night Of 100 Stars Black Tie Dinner Viewing Gala at the Beverly Hills Hotel - Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday 24th February 2013
With an all-new cast, it feels almost like a jazz riff, playing with the characters and themes and sending them in new directions. And it's both hilarious and clever.
When she realises that her husband (Williams) hasn't overcome his urge to make obscene phone calls, Joy (Henderson) heads to Florida to see her sister Trish (Janney), who has told everyone that her husband Bill (Hinds) has died. But he's actually in prison for abusing a young boy. Trish is now seeing a nice Jewish man (Lerner) and being a bit too honest with her son Timmy (Snyder).
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Both the credit and the blame go to writer-director Robert Celestino. His cornball plot shouldn't work, but his direction, especially with actors, does. Chazz Palminteri (Celestino's executive producer) is the title guy, a gambling stiff with an amazing ability to cheat crap games. He'll belly up to a table, pull some David Blaine-like moves to drop tainted dice into a game, and make a fortune. Unfortunately, Atlantic City security has his number, and private games are too small for his ambitions.
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Isn't it funny that if a stockbroker said that, his friends and family would question his psychiatric health and advise him to find profession help, but when a 69-year-old Academy Award winner says that, he not only gets a movie made, but attracts a renowned cast and crew boasting a combined total of more than 250 awards, honors, and nominations?
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Writer-director Michael Caleo clearly fancies himself a David Mamet acolyte. Like Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross, The Last Time's plot centers on the vicious and primal world of high-pressure sales, and the dialogue comes out fast and caustic. Michael Keaton plays Ted, the top seller at a high-tech company whose product is frequently referred to but never actually defined. Ted is lonely, angry, and mean and he runs roughshod over everyone in his office, including his toothless boss, John (Daniel Stern). Ted is openly pissed off when he's directed to help orient the new guy, Jamie (Brendan Fraser). Everything changes, however, when Jamie introduces Ted to his gorgeous fiancée, Belisa (Amber Valletta). Ted takes an immediate interest in Belisa -- and his feelings only strengthen when he discovers that Belisa and Jamie aren't entirely happy together.
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The obese and ugly North Carolina Senator Jack Kray (Michael Lerner) keeps his boozy wife (Karen Allen) on a very short leash and would do the same to his college student son Henry (Matt Newton) if Matt were still close enough. When they reunite on the eve of a speech that the Senator will deliver on Henry's campus, Henry is appalled to find out that father wants him to deliver a fawning introduction to dear old dad. When Henry balks, Dad simply smacks him in the face. Nice.
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Any movie that has a cast like that should give you an immediate clue as to the cinematic quality.
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Shot in black and white and filled with about 30 big-name stars, Celebrity is a welcome return to old-school Allen, his first really good film since 1994's Bullets Over Broadway.
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