Neil Labute

Neil Labute

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Some Girl(s) Review


Very Good

Neil LaBute adapts his bracingly astute play into a series of scenes that make us question how men and women ever come together to make a relationship work. The central idea is that we hurt each other even when we don't mean to, and through a series of face-offs between a man and his ex-girlfriends, the film leaves us wondering what we might have done to our own partners along the way.

At the centre is a writer (Brody) in his 30s, who wants to clear away his relational baggage before he gets married. He flies first to Seattle to meet his school girlfriend Sam (Morrison). She's now married with kids, and he wants to talk about their break-up. "You ended it," she corrects him. And he finds his memories equally unreliable as he visits Tyler (Maestro) in Chicago, Lindsay (Watson) in Boston, Reggie (Kazan) back in Seattle again and Bobbi (Bell) in Los Angeles. While zig-zagging across America he begins to realise that he was always the problem.

As the scenes unfold, Brody's unnamed character reveals himself as weak, shallow and self-absorbed, but also relentlessly charming. it's a brave, transparent performance that takes on resonance as he begins to understand that he's flawed and, even worse, ordinary. Opposite him, the women are all variations on a fantasy: the good girl, the sex pot, the experienced older woman, the flirty little sister of his best friend, the brainy hottie. They're superbly well-played by these actresses; Watson's piercing honesty is the stand-out, while Kazan's role is the most haunting.

Continue reading: Some Girl(s) Review

All In! DirecTV Gambles On 10 Episodes Of Neil LaBute's 'Full Circle'


Neil LaBute

DirecTV has ordered ten episode of Neil LaBute's Full Circle, a modern take on La Ronde about 11 characters who are all connected to one another. It marks LaBute's first television project and only the satellite provider's second original series following on from 'Rogue'. Casting is already underway with production on the ten-episode order, scheduled for this summer in Los Angeles. 

DirecTV's confidence in the series appears to suggest the writing is pretty top draw, "Neil has written a piece of revolutionary television," said executive producer Nick Hamm in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter. "I am honored and privileged to be able to bring it to the screen with such a forward-thinking and adventurous network as DirecTV." LaBute's work on the big-screen, notably In The Company Of Men, The Shape of Things and Fat Pig, have garnered high praise form audiences and critics and 'Full Circle' is likely to do the same. 

Continue reading: All In! DirecTV Gambles On 10 Episodes Of Neil LaBute's 'Full Circle'

Death At A Funeral Trailer


Death often brings a family together and this story is no exception. Aaron and his partner Michelle are finding it hard enough having to live with Aarons folks whilst they get their lives in order. When the death of Aaron's father happens, the whole family is sent into turmoil. A funeral is arranged and Aaron's brother Ryan returns home from LA where he lives and works as a successful writer.

Continue: Death At A Funeral Trailer

Possession Review


Bad
A.S. Byatt's Booker Award-winning novel Possession might have provided some literary delight, following two academics who track the love letters of a Victorian poet and his free-spirited mistress. That doesn't translate well to cinema, though. Neil LaBute's film adaptation boils down to a buttoned-down Gwyneth Paltrow (sporting her Academy Award winning faux-Brit accent from Shakespeare in Love) and square-jawed Aaron Eckhart running from one Masterpiece Theater location to the next (the library, the moors, the waterfall, the gothic archway, the castle wall, and the moonlit graveyard) all the while reading aloud from the correspondence of dead Englishmen.

While it might make a charming book-on-tape for the Oprah crowd, this "love loves to love love" hokum masquerades as a real movie. The present day academics exist in counterpoint to the period movie flashbacks (basically Jeremy Northam donning his suit again and looking forlorn, intercut with shots of his beautiful mistress Jennifer Ehle looking voluptuous and forlorn). And they talk, talk, talk about subtext within the letters; but they're actually talking about each other. Yes, it's When Harry Met Sally in the Library. So help me God, Eckhart's emotional revelation is when he asks Paltrow, "Is there an Us in You and Me?" (If I were Paltrow, I'd say, "I'll call you.")

Continue reading: Possession Review

The Shape Of Things Review


Extraordinary
Neil LaBute, you're a cruel, cruel man.

After the somewhat senseless Your Friends and Neighbors and the bafflingly bad period piece Possession, LaBute has at last returned to his roots with the kind of story that made In the Company of Men such a kick in the nuts.

Continue reading: The Shape Of Things Review

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Neil LaBute Movies

Some Girl(s) Movie Review

Some Girl(s) Movie Review

Neil LaBute adapts his bracingly astute play into a series of scenes that make us...

Death At A Funeral Trailer

Death At A Funeral Trailer

Death often brings a family together and this story is no exception. Aaron and his...

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Possession Movie Review

Possession Movie Review

A.S. Byatt's Booker Award-winning novel Possession might have provided some literary delight, following two academics...

The Shape of Things Movie Review

The Shape of Things Movie Review

Neil LaBute, you're a cruel, cruel man.After the somewhat senseless Your Friends and Neighbors and...

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