Kill the Messenger follows the real life story of Journalist Gary Webb (Jeremy Renner), as he stumbles upon the story of a lifetime. When Webb hears that the US government was aware of the exportation of drugs to America, he begins following up the story. This, in turn, leads him to uncover a conspiracy where the CIA imported vast amounts of cocaine to sell in the US in order to raise money for the Nicaraguan Contras rebel army. Webb is then faced with the option to leave the story alone, or continue his investigation and put his career, family and own life at risk.
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Robert Patrick and Barbara Patrick - British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Los Angeles TV Tea presented by BBC and Jaguar at SLS Hotel - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 23rd August 2014
This remake strips away everything that made the 1981 Brooke Shields romance so scandalous. Re-designed for 12-year-old girls, this version of Scott Spencer's novel plays like a dreamy Nicholas Sparks-style fantasy. There's no sense of urgency or danger, and not a single whiff of actual love, despite a lot of heaving sighs and longing glances. Everything on-screen feels like a predictable cliche yearning to pull our heartstrings, but these tricks only work on young teens who haven't seen many movies.
The story centres on good-guy David (Pettyfer), raised by his working-class single dad (Patrick). At his high school graduation, David finally gets up the nerve to talk to the class wallflower, beautiful rich girl Jade (Wilde), who is still grieving over the death of her big brother. There's a spark between them, but Jade's harsh dad (Greenwood) dismisses David as unworthy, then sets out to crush their blossoming romance. Jade's mother (Richardson) and brother (Wakefield) are more supportive, but Dad is so determined to get David out of Jade's life that he inadvertently pushes them even closer together. Surely a happy ending is out of the question.
Only of course it isn't, because we can see that this film doesn't have the nerve to get very dark. Filmmaker Feste only toys around with the nasty side of the story. She can't even let Greenwood play a properly conflicted man; he's essentially bipolar, veering wildly from understanding to maniacal in his reaction to the relentlessly lovely David. Pettyfer's one-note performance merely reminds us of Channing Tatum, but at least he registers on-screen, unlike the vaguely beautiful Wilde. The only performers allowed any complexity are Richardson and Patrick.
Continue reading: Endless Love Review
Jade Butterfield is a wealthy and beautiful young teenager who loves to read and has never experienced an intimate relationship with a boy before. However, that begins to change when she meets David Axelrod; a handsome young man who works at the inn where the Butterfields stay on their summer vacation. Jade's parents notice her suddenly becoming distracted as she embarks on a reckless adventure with her mysterious boy. On meeting David, her parents are unimpressed, with her father attempting to show up any flicker of dishonesty that he might exhibit. Undeterred, he takes Jade on a passion-fuelled adventure of parties, road trips and fervent love-making, but when Mr Butterfield digs into his past he becomes obsessed with trying to unveil the dark truths about him, and becomes desperate to take David out of Jade's life by any means possible.
'Endless Love' is the dramatic romance re-make of the 1981 movie of the same name starring Brooke Shields and Martin Hewitt. It has been directed by Shana Feste ('The Greatest', 'Country Strong') who co-wrote the screenplay opposite Joshua Safran ('Gossip Girl'). This harrowing film about an ill-fated youthful romance is set to hit movie theatres in the US on Valentine's Day, February 14th 2014.
An unusual structure gives this biopic a surprising kick as it explores both sides of the porn industry: the glamour and the sleaze. Oscar-winning documentary filmmakers Epstein and Friedman (The Times of Harvey Milk) keep things so balanced that it sometimes feels a bit clinical, never letting us feel the intense emotions that gurgle throughout the story. But it's a strikingly well-made film with a terrific all-star cast.
It also cleverly looks like it was actually made in the early 1970s, the period in which it's set. This is when 21-year-old Linda Boreman (Seyfried) left the home of her harshly religious parents (Stone and Patrick) to live with her free-spirited boyfriend Chuck (Sarsgaard). By 1972 she was the most famous porn-star on earth, as the lead actress in the crossover adult movie Deep Throat. But the glamorous lifestyle covered a much darker reality: that the abusive Chuck forced her to make the film while selling her body to anyone willing to pay. And it took her several years to break free, tell her story and stand up against the industry that used her.
Cleverly, the film carefully lays out the male-dominated culture in the industry along with the jet-set high life before rewinding and showing us the gruesome underbelly. It's a bold gimmick that undermines the emotional momentum but forces us to examine our own perceptions. And it helps that the filmmakers recreate the period without much fussiness. Yes, there's a lot of big hair and groovy music, but it's never played for laughs. Everything centres on the characters, who are sharply well-played. Seyfried brings a terrific fragility to Linda, while Sarsgaard reveals Chuck's darkness in a complex way. The unrecognisable Stone is also excellent, while Patrick has the film's most moving moment.
Continue reading: Lovelace Review
The first trailer for 'Lovelace' gives the first look at a hugely talented cast.
The first trailer for Rob Epstein and Jeffrey's Friedman's biopic of 1970's adult movie star Linda Lovelace has rolled out online. Lovelace, stars Les Miserables actress Amanda Seyfried in the lead role, with the excellent Peter Sarsgaard playing her sleazy and abusive husband Chuck Traynor.
Peter Sarsgaard [L] as Chuck Traynor and Amanda Seyfried [R] as Linda Lovelace
Though the movie is set in the nostalgic era of sideburns, flower dresses, flares and sexual exploration, 'Lovelace' is a grimy film about the 'Deep Throat' star who became a battered, broken woman at the hands of a monster of a man.
Linda Lovelace was a hugely successful pornographic actress who hit global stardom with her 1972 hardcore film 'Deep Throat'. Although apparently happy, feisty and at ease on the surface, she suffered severe abuse and violence at the hands of her husband and manager Chuck Traynor who forced her into the sex industry at gunpoint; a stark contrast to her previous life, being well-known by her friends for keeping all her previous boyfriends at a good distance. While she apparently seemed to enjoy the highlife of national and international stardom, she made attempts to quit pornography to the anger of Traynor, who did everything he could to frighten her into submission. A vulnerable woman who spent her life being used, and who would go on to be a key figure in later anti-pornography movements.
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This may be based on a true story, but the filmmakers never bother exploring the complexities of historical events, instead opting for a comic book-style approach that's entertaining but somewhat unsatisfying. Still, this style-over-substance approach at least produces a rollicking police thriller that's often a lot of fun to watch, packed with gifted actors who gleefully chomp through the scenery.
The setting is 1949 Los Angeles, where the notorious gangster Mickey Cohen (Penn) is launching a Chicago-style mob takeover of the city. The police chief (Nolte) is determined to stop him, but feels surrounded by corruption, so he hires straight-arrow detective John (Brolin) to head up a secret squad that will operate off the books to stop Cohen, whatever it takes. John's pregnant wife (Enos) isn't thrilled by this, but she helps him select his team: techie Conway (Ribisi), gunslinger Max (Patrick), hot-shot Coleman (Mackie) and quick-learning rookie Navidad (Pena). And then there's pretty-boy detective Jerry (Gosling), who courts danger by launching a fling with Mickey's moll Grace (Stone). Understandably, their task doesn't go smoothly.
Billed as the untold story of what really happened, the film ignores quite a few key facts while indulging in implausible plotting and overly colourful characterisations. In other words, it's impossible to believe anything we're watching, which eliminates all of the relevance and resonance that could have filled this story of police corruption, out-of-control capitalism and especially the use of illegal methods to do the right thing. Instead, the film is all shiny surfaces, with flashy production design, too-immaculate costumes and haircuts, and a plot that reduces a complex situation into a simplistic action movie narrative.
Continue reading: Gangster Squad Review
Matt (Reynolds) is a low-level operative watching over the CIA's Cape Town safe house. After months of sitting around waiting, he finally gets to host a notorious guest: most-wanted rogue agent Tobin (Washington). Then violent thugs assault the place and Matt takes Tobin on the run, calling his handler (Gleeson) in Langley to get help from senior agents (Farmiga and Shepard). But there's clearly a leak in the ranks, and Tobin is obviously carrying something both the good guys and bad guys want.
Continue reading: Safe House Review
Matt Weston is a young CIA agent who, for the past year, has been bored by his inactive post in Cape Town. Matt is a "housekeeper" who aspires to be a full-fledged agent, a loyal company man who is waiting for an opportunity to prove himself. That opportunity seems to present itself when Matt's new 'guest' proves to be the most dangerous man he's ever met.
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Robert Patrick Monday 10th October 2011 'Easy To Assemble' season 3 premiere held at the American Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre Hollywood, California
Bob (McGregor) is a Michigan journalist desperate to prove himself, so he heads to Kuwait, hoping to find a story in Iraq. He meets the enigmatic Lyn Cassady (Clooney), whose story is so surreal that he can't help but follow him into the hot zone. Lyn is a member of the New Earth Army, a secret platoon formed in the 1980s by a hippie (Bridges) to create soldiers with Jedi mind powers. But their work went wrong when a jealous teammate (Spacey) dragged them into the dark side.
Continue reading: The Men Who Stare At Goats Review
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