Joe Swanberg’s Win It All is yet another forward step in the ongoing maturation of a filmmaker previously known as a mumblecore icon. Win It All is a low-key comedic drama that delivers big laughs, courtesy of star and co-writer Jake Johnson, who previously worked with Swanberg on Digging for Fire and Drinking Buddies. In their latest collaboration, Johnson plays a directionless gambling addict (hence the wry title) who falls in love with a single mother (played by Aislinn Derbez) and struggles to get his act together. It’s an incredibly familiar (and some might say tired) formula, sure, but Johnson and Swanberg still manage to make it entertaining, hilarious and heartfelt, through and through.
Don Rickles’ talents were seemingly limitless: An outrageous insult comic, a gifted dramatic actor, a welcome sight on stages and screens (big and small), and a constant presence whose career endured for decades, often surpassing his contemporaries. And now he’s gone on to join them, as the legendary Rickles passed away today, April 6, at the age of 90.
In 2017, Netflix will spend $6 billion on original content (up $1 billion from 2016), including 20 new TV shows and, pending negotiations, Martin Scorsese’s long-awaited mob drama The Irishman — which could finally earn Netflix a spot at the Oscars. That’s certainly a goal, but according to Reed Hastings, it’s not the only goal for the streaming giant, which has struggled to find balance between quantity and quality despite massive spending. The CEO and co-founder of Netflix recently offered some insight into their plans for original content and threw some shade at theater chains for good measure.
Today we mourn the loss of Carrie Fisher: Iconic actor, talented author, brilliant script doctor and, most of all, an incomparable force to be reckoned with. There are so many great adjectives you could use to describe Fisher: Uncompromising, unapologetic, fierce, witty, relatable, real, honest. She took all of those qualities and put them to work in her books — from memoirs to novels, Fisher had a knack for telling poignant and painful stories with wit and wisdom. Writing a worthy obituary for one of the best and boldest women on this planet or any other is surely an impossible task…so it’s a good thing that the perfect obit basically already exists, and unsurprisingly, Fisher came up with it herself.
As it turns out, Jackie Kennedy didn’t just have great taste in fashion and furnishings — she was also something of a cinephile. A newly-released list reveals every film the former First Lady watched during her all-too-brief time in the White House, from home movies and TV specials (including her own) to James Bond and, in an eyebrow-raising move, the Marilyn Monroe classic The Misfits.
Trolls. Ouija. Battleship. G.I. Joe. My Little Pony. LEGOs — okay, well, that last one really defied expectations, but overall, movies based on beloved classic toys are a real crapshoot. And that’s exactly how Bob Weinstein describes his plan to make a live-action / CGI hybrid movie based on Furby. “I’m rolling the dice and playing for hits,” Weinstein said at the American Film Market before revealing that the “Dimension” part of TWC-Dimension is actually a gaping void to look upon with great uncertainty and existential dread, a place where the realm of man is reflected in infinite emptiness — or so Werner Herzog might say.
If nothing else, Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s upcoming Han Solo prequel / spinoff is going to look fantastic, as the duo have hired Bradford Young to serve as cinematographer. Okay, let’s be honest: With Lord and Miller on board and the incredibly charming Alden Ehrenreich in the lead role, it’s almost guaranteed that the next Star Wars anthology film will be pretty entertaining — but now we know it’s also going to look really, really, really good.
If you haven’t been paying attention: Leslie Jones endured a barrage of disgusting racist and misogynist attacks that ultimately forced her to take a leave of absence from Twitter. The culprits? The very vocal contingency of Ghostbusters fans (aka Ghostbros) who have been decrying Paul Feig’s reboot because it features an all-female cast. Original Ghostbusters star Dan Aykroyd has come out in support of Jones, and he’s got some seriously harsh words for all the haters.
If you were a fan of Bill & Ted in the late ’80s and early ’90s, then you probably recall a time when Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves’ rad, time-traveling high school party dudes were pretty much everywhere. They had their own animated TV spinoff, a Halloween special and even a breakfast cereal (“the most triumphant part of this balanced breakfast!”). What you might not remember is their incredibly short-lived live-action TV series — and who could blame you?
Chances are, you or someone you know either shares their Netflix and HBO Go passwords or benefits from using someone else’s account. It’s such a common occurrence that, when asked about it, even the CEO of HBO was like, “No big deal,” then he tipped his shades and sent out a memo with a shrug emoticon — okay, I made that last part up, but if even that guy doesn’t care, then what’s the problem? Oh, just a little something called Federal Law.
It’s become impossible to talk about Paul Feig’s Ghostbusters without acknowledging the unsavory reactions from fans of the original who have declared the reboot cinema non grata (to say the least). It’s also been suggested that perhaps some words of support from the original cast members might help soothe the aggressive fanbase, that if their so-called childhood heroes give Feig’s film the stamp of approval (as if their willingness to cameo in the film wasn’t endorsement enough), maybe the anti-reboot fan contingent would settle down and come to accept a crew of female Ghostbusters. That’s not the case, as OG Ghostbuster Dan Aykroyd shared his positive thoughts on Feig’s reboot, inspiring a slew of predictably angry reactions.
Game of Thrones Season 6 comes to an end in June (so soon!), but luckily HBO NOW has plenty of viewing options to help keep you occupied during your annual mourning period. Next month brings the premiere of HBO’s new weekly series Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons, hosted by the renowned sports analyst, author and ESPN vet. Cinephiles, meanwhile, will be thrilled to see the addition of Ridley Scott’s The Martian and (maybe) David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars. But more importantly, the epic Problem Child trilogy is coming to HBO NOW in June, giving you a chance to engage in a fierce familial debate over the finer points of Junior’s schemes — surely a more contentious topic than the resurrection of Jon Snow.
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