ABC’s ‘How To Get Away With Murder’ and ‘Black-ish’ also picked up trophies at the 46th annual awards.
Civil rights drama Selma has been named ‘outstanding film of 2014’, at this year’s NAACP Image Awards, held at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The film. which chronicles the journey of Martin Luther King Jr. in 1965 to secure equal voting rights, walked away with four awards during the two ceremonies on Thursday and Friday evening.
David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma
After being denied an Oscar nomination for his portrayal of Rev. King, David Oyelowo took home the Image award for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture. Accepting the award Oyelowo said, “I want to take this opportunity to say I thank the Lord I was able to play one of the most transcendent human beings who ever walked the planet.”
Continue reading: 'Selma' Honoured At NAACP Image Awards After Oscars Snub
One of the finest biopics in recent memory, this drama manages to present someone as iconic as Martin Luther King Jr. as a normal man anyone can aspire to emulate. Anchored by an internalised performance from David Oyelowo, the film is skilfully directed by Ava DuVernay (Middle of Nowhere) with a sharp attention to subtle details. And the script by newcomer Paul Webb draws the characters with such complexity that the film has provoked controversy from people who like their heroes untextured.
The film enters Martin's story as he is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize alongside his activist wife Coretta (Carmen Ejogo) in October 1964, just over a year after his soaring "I have a dream" speech. And a few months later, he's called to Selma, Alabama, to help blacks who are being denied the right to vote by racially motivated voter registration laws. Martin meets with President Lyndon Johnson (Tom Wilkinson), who has more pressing things on his political agenda, then heads to Selma to lead a march on the state capitol in Montgomery. But the peaceful protest is met with nightmarish violence, ordered by Governor George Wallace (Tim Roth). So as the protesters regroup and plan a second march, Martin heads back to Washington to challenge Johnson to set some new priorities.
Cleverly, the script just covers a few months, punctuated with a series of King's most rousing speeches. Since none of this is presented for its big inspirational value, it has a much stronger kick than we expect. The film's punchiest scenes are almost silent, as King struggles to knot his tie before an appearance or fails to find the words to confess his infidelities to his wife. Oyelowo is so transparent in the role that King emerges as an everyday man with a gift for oratory in the right place at the right time. But it's his steely desire to do the right thing that makes him inspirational. And how he reacts when he discovers the human cost of his actions.
Continue reading: Selma Review
'Vice' star Bruce Willis was seen arriving with his wife Emma Heming at the National Board of Review Gala held at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York, alongside a string of Hollywood's biggest superstars. From actors to directors, and even various music stars, this gala definitely seemed to be the celebrity place to be this month.
On 14th December 2014, the New York premiere for 'Selma' took place at the Ziegfeld Theatre, with various celebrities and stars of the film gracing the red carpet. Amongst these was Oprah Winfrey, who appears as African-American civil rights activist Annie Lee Cooper. Andre Holland and Jeremy Strong - both of whom also appear in the film - posed on the red carpet as well.
“What happens when a man stands up and says ‘enough is enough’?” So goes the question raised by Martin Luther King, Jr. (David Oyelowo) when President Lyndon B. Johnson (Tom Wilkinson) declines to help him in battling the race-related violence in Alabama. In retaliation, King organises a peaceful protest; he has African Americans march into Selma, Alabama, in an attempt to gain rights to vote. What follows, is a truly horrifying attack from the police on the peaceful protest which was televised and seen by millions, forcing the President’s hand, as he is forced to watch innocent people suffer.
Continue: Selma Trailer
The Red Bull Music Academy Festival has featured events across the city, including performances from David Byrne and lectures with D'Angelo, but it all culminates on Saturday 31st May, with the official closing party.
Firstly, we recognise that reporting on a mixture of New York parties, eclectic performances and signature lectures from prominent music movers and shakers could seem, well, immaterial. Let's face it, Gotham is one long eclectic party - but the Red Bull Music Academy Festival is different. The Academy itself, which took place in New York in 2013 and will visit Tokyo this fall, is a travelling series of music performances, club nights, lectures, workshops, art installations and more founded in 1998 - it doesn't look to create "stars" (despite notable participants including Aloe Blacc, Flying Lotus, Hudson Mohawke and Juan Son), instead it looks to bring together music makers from around the globe. Think of it as a mobile behemoth of culture, skills and sound.
The newly created 'RBMA Festival ' - now taking place annually in New York City - is a legacy to the critically acclaimed Red Bull Music Academy that took place in New York in 2013. It is a month-long blowout that brings together a diverse group of the world's most creative young musicians. Since May 1st, this year's programme has blanketed the boroughs with a selection of richly curated events - and you're invited to the ultimate wrap party. But more on that soon.
Basically the best things in pop culture, smushed together, coming to Soundcloud in March.
It’s official – HBO has the best promotional strategy. Not that the fourth season of Game of Thrones needed any more hype, but it’s getting heaps of it with a new hip hop mixtape. Dragons, kings, ice creature zombie... things – hip hop should fit right in there, right? The new mixtape is intended to help fans catch up on the fantasy series ahead of Season 4 and is called Catch the Throne, because... well, you know.
Turns out, Common is big on hip hop.
But wait, there’s more! Because HBO wouldn’t just bank on some third rate rappers to get the job done, the mixtape features the likes of Common, Wale, Big Boi and DADDY YANKEE (always pegged him for a GoT fan). It also shines the spotlight on some fresh talent like Bodega Bamz and Show Tha Product. Each rapper had a chance to spit fire (pun intended) about the show’s big theme – the struggle for power. It makes perfect sense, according to Common.
DJ Peanut Butter Wolf set up independent LA label Stones Throw Records in 1996 and it has since released a string of critically acclaimed artists that have helped to shape the music industry. Current artists include the likes of 7 Days of Funk, Arabian Prince, The Stepkids and Madlib, while previous years have seen Mayer Hawthorne and Aloe Blacc as label artists. These artists may not be mainstream chart gold, but they have captured the imaginations of hip-hop, soul and R&B lovers everywhere since its inception.
Continue: Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton Trailer
'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' New York premiere at the AMC Lincoln Square Theater saw arrivals from lead star Jennifer Lawrence, who was seen talking to reporters on the red carpet in a black, blazer-style dress; Elizabeth Banks, who turned heads in a sparkly, embellished, black jumpsuit; and Stanley Tucci alongside his stunning wife Felicity Blunt.
The idea of magicians conducting a series of heists is a great one, but this under-developed film never quite seizes the opportunity. Even its terrific A-list cast can't make much of the lame plot. And director Leterrier is so enamoured with magic that he packs the film with whizzy digital trickery. Which completely misses the point.
At the centre are four illusionists: card trickster Daniel (Eisenberg), hypnotist Merrit (Harrelson), escapologist Henley (Fisher) and street magician Jack (Franco). They're summoned by a mysterious figure to team up for a series of elaborate performances funded by a wealthy benefactor (Caine). First up is a Las Vegas show that involves stealing millions of euros from a Paris bank and raining them down on the audience. This attracts the attention of FBI Agent Rhodes (Ruffalo) and Interpol's Dray (Laurent), who follow them to their next shows in New Orleans and New York. As does a notorious debunker (Freeman) determined to expose their secrets.
The film never quite gets the balance right, as we're not sure if we should root for these flashy young magicians or the people they're leading on a wild goose chase. But there's plenty of eye candy to keep us happy, as each whizzy stunt goes over-the-top to make us wonder what's really happening here. Everything this quartet does has an anarchist slant, stealing from the wealthy to help the needy, which adds a tinge of topicality. Although the gratuitous action scenes and ludicrous effects leave the film about as realistic as a Road Runner cartoon.
Continue reading: Now You See Me Review
Michael Atlas is the leader of the most formidable magician group ever seen, The Four Horsemen, alongside Merritt Osbourne, Henley and Jack. Being able to pull off some of the most baffling illusions ever seen, they decide to use their talent to outwit the highest authorities of the country and give something back to their loyal audience. They announce, at one show, that they will rob a bank in Paris and subsequently shower their fans with cash while using their ability to expose the white collar crimes that have been going on in the underground financial world. While the FBI flounder around trying to work out how the trick is done, magic genius Thaddeus Bradley remains the only person who seems to have an idea on how it was worked though he is equally as reluctant as the perpetrators to reveal the secrets.
Continue: Now You See Me - Alternative Trailer
Kanye West is sick of the skirt jabs; he's decided to make his move and formally request that pictures of him wearing the skimpy leather number be removed from a picture agency's website.
Lord Jamar - who penned a track called 'Lift Up Your Skirt', which specifically mentions the skirt, is one of West's main detractors. One lyric, which we can only guess is aimed directly at Kanye, goes: "He introduced the skinny jeans to the rap scene/Then he wore a f***ing skirt on the video screen/Then he wore it again at a memorial/I can't pretend this sh*t ain't deplorable." Fellow rapper Common was equally unimpressed. He wrote on Twitter: "Pyrex and a skirt? S*** ain't adding up And if u co-sign this I'm blocking u!! Straight up. Ima have to save us." That seems a bit closed minded for someone who wrote a song about God being a woman.
Elsewhere on planet Kanye, Pusha T - collaborator on Cruel Summer - has denied rumours of a seasonal follow up called, you guess it, Cruel Winter, according to NME. "I believe that there were intentions for a 'Cruel Winter' and there's so much music floating, but GOOD Music isn't one to just piece a project together," Pusha T said. "I can tell you right now, I probably have 15 verses that are just over beats, that are lying around wherever 'Ye and his hard drive is right now, and I'm sure Cyhi, Sean, Cudi, Tip, everybody has other production or verses on these records as well'."
Continue reading: Kanye West Skirt Jokes Drive Rapper To Order Picture Removal
Michael Atlas is an extremely accomplished illusionist and the leader of his own remarkable band of magicians known as The Four Horsemen which his henchmen, Merritt Osbourne, Henley and Jack, are a part of. Knowing that their abilities astonish and confound audiences everywhere, they decided to use it to their advantage and set out on a path to commit flawless crimes. During a performance, the quartet announce that their next trick is to rob a bank in Paris which they successfully do while exposing the crimes of a white-collar businessman and transporting his large fortune into the bank accounts of all the members of the audience. It isn't long before they are taken into custody by the FBI with Special Agent Dylan Hobbs resolute on finding out how the trick was done and preventing another major crime at the hands of the performers. In order to do so, he finds himself partnering with Interpol detective Alma Vargas against his better judgement and even seeking advice from the renowned Thaddeus Bradley who is well-known for his skill on working out how tricks are done. Dylan must find out if the solution lies with the idea of an outside party being involved, or just a case of master trickery at work.
As well as an all-star cast, this mystery thriller has been directed by action movie connoisseur Louis Leterrier ('The Transporter', 'The Incredible Hulk') and written by Ed Solomon ('Men in Black', 'Charlie's Angels'), Boaz Yakin ('Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time', 'Safe') and Edward Ricourt in his screenwriting debut. It is set for release on June 21st 2013.
Director: Louis Leterrier
Continue: Now You See Me Trailer
Hip hop has always been more of a culture than just a genre of music. It represents a huge portion of the marginalised world of America and how they managed to create something from nothing; how their lifestyle and previously buried literary talents created a culture that has inspired millions. The frontman of rap/ metal band Body Count Ice-T takes his audience on the road to visit the founding fathers, the major superstars and the rising stars of the rap genre including Afrika Bambaataa, Eminem, Nas, Mos Def, Kanye West, Chuck D, Krs-One, Snoop Dogg, Run-DMC, Dr. Dre and Ice Cube and discover the skill and feeling behind what has made them international music heroes. One of the frequent interviewees is Grandmaster Caz who we are taken to visit on several occasions as he writes a new set of rhymes called 'The Art Of Rap'.
Directed by Ice-T with help from Andy Baybutt, 'Something From Nothing: The Art Of Rap' is a feature length music documentary delving into what goes into making the seminal hip hop records that have dominated music since the late '70s. It came about when producer Paul Toogood asked Ice-T the simplest of question which the star had never before been asked: How did he write seminal tracks such as '6 In The Mornin' and 'Colors'?
Woody Watson is an 11-year-old boy with a broken family and an unpredictable future. His father is absent and his mother is in rehab leaving him to be cared for by his grandmother and recently out of prison uncle Vincent in their Baltimore home. His aspirations are questionable, admiring Vincent for his life of crime. One day, while Vincent is supposed to be taking Woody to school, he instead takes him out to the bank where he expected to be granted a loan for his food business. However, he is flatly refused based on his criminal past and he is forced to engage in one more drug dealing job for his ruthless boss Mr. Fish with young Woody looking on. When he witnesses his uncle falling into his violent past, he must choose what sort of life he wants to lead for what was meant to be a lesson in how to be man, has turned into a lesson in how to screw up your life like the rest of your family. Will Woody pick the right path?
'Luv' is the gritty drama based on how a broken family can force a child to admire the wrong sort of people and end up making them make life changing decisions at a very young age. It has been directed by Sheldon Candis ('Young Cesar') who also co-wrote the screenplay with Justin Wilson in his full length feature debut and is set to be released on November 9th 2012.
Directed by Sheldon Candis
Continue: Luv Trailer
While staying in a London hotel inhabited by members of the Royal Family, Kanye West played loud rap music and smoked weed - supposedly to the annoyance of the Royals.
Rap superstar Kanye West has supposedly upset members of the Royal Family through a combination of loud music and weed-smoking at a hotel near Buckingham Palace. According to Britain's 'The Sun' newspaper, the 'N****s in Paris' rapper and his entourage were staying at a high-class hotel near the Palace at the same time as members of the Royal Family.
West has been living in London for several months, residing within the Lanesborough Hotel, a luxury hotel with private dining and butler service. Accompanying West were rappers Common, Big Sean and Pusha T. While there, West took over the entire top floor of the hotel, creating space for a fashion workshop and music studios, for the price of 2,700 GBP per night.
Continue reading: Kanye West Upsets The Royal Family With London Hotel Antics
Cindy and Jim Green is a young, married couple who are looking forward to starting a family. They try everything they can but it doesn't work. After the couple find out they can never conceive, it leaves them devastated.
Continue: The Odd Life of Timothy Green Trailer
Mumble (Wood) thinks he's inadequate as a father since his non-dancing son Erik (Acres) feels like such an outsider. So when Erik runs off to visit the guru Lovelace (Williams) and meet flying penguin star Sven (Azaria), Mumble follows.
Meanwhile back home, an ice-shelf collapse has trapped the entire Emperor colony, so now Mumble, Erik and Lovelace's colony must find a solution. Perhaps some passing humans can help. Or a gang of tetchy sea elephants. Or maybe it'll be down to two renegade krills (Pitt and Damon) who are trying to find their individuality.
Continue reading: Happy Feet Two Review
What sounds an awful lot like The Matrix is actually Wanted, an adaptation of Mark Millar's 2004 comic book miniseries by style-conscious Russian filmmaker Timur Bekmambetov. His name may ring a bell with adventurous moviegoers who sampled his frenzied vampire thriller Night Watch and its muddled sequel, Day Watch. And though it's unlikely Bekmambetov will become a household name once Wanted explodes on the scene, a wider audience certainly will become more familiar with the director's uniquely kinetic aesthetics.
Continue reading: Wanted Review
Alcoholic police detective Todd Ludlow (Keanu Reeves) has just finished wrapping up a notorious kidnapping case when Captain Jack Wander (Forest Whittaker) gives him the bad news. His ex-partner Terrence Washington (Terry Crews) is talking to Internal Affairs, and bureau head Captain James Biggs (Hugh Laurie) is looking to take Ludlow down. Before he can intimidate his former friend into not snitching, a pair of gang bangers kill him. Desperate to clear his own name in the death, Ludlow begins to investigate. Soon, he's linking the crime to a couple of local drug dealers who seem incapable of committing the hit. With Wander on his side and Biggs on his back, it will take all the street savvy he has to solve the case -- that is, if someone doesn't try and permanently stop him too.
Continue reading: Street Kings Review
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