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Entries in Philip Seymour Hoffman (4)


The Ides of March review - Gosling and Clooney can do no wrong

It’s starting to seem like Ryan Gosling can do no wrong.

His Oscar-nominated turn as a drug addicted junior high school teacher in 2006’s Half-Nelson proved he had chops, and he’s been showing them off ever since--in films such as last year’s Blue Valentine and the recently-released Drive. Now, he’s showing them off in George Clooney’s political thriller The Ides of March and it seems implausible that the academy won’t honor him again next year.

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From stage to screen: why DOUBT is amazing in all its forms


Doubt is one of the best films I have ever seen. I feel the need to say this, because it will become evident in this writing. It represents a kind of movie that we don't see very often. It has virtually no "action;" it's full of extended scenes of dialogue; it's a mystery; and it is a completely different film to every person who sees it. Every moment and camera move, no matter how small, holds significance. It begs to be examined, poked, and prodded over multiple viewings and offers something new each time. It tells its story, but doesn't tell us how to feel about it.

I first found out that Doubt was adapted from a play when I was rooting for it to win "Best Original Screenplay" at the Academy Awards, and it wasn't even nominated. Instead, I found it in the "Best Adapted Screenplay" category. Released in 2004, Doubt, a parable, is written by John Patrick Shanley, who also wrote and directed the big screen version. After reading the play, I noticed that there are intense similarities and stark differences between the two versions, but they compliment each other well. Reading the play focused my eye on small details in the film; and watching the film, I see benefit in the more disciplined and simple approach of the play. Shanley has achieved an amazing feat, in that he's written a story and shaped the best elements of it across two very different mediums. Both the play and the film are full of theatrical and cinematic elements, squeezed and molded together in near perfect harmony.

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Weekend Preview - It's 2012 or PIRATE RADIO for you...

What a weekend. Apparently no one wants to face the apocalypse head-to-head because the only competition for 2012 is Pirate Radio and it's in about a third of the theaters. What the hell happened to John Cusack's career, anyway? If I remember right, it was respectable at one time, but I can't remember a good film he's been in since Identity and Runaway Jury in 2003. Maybe he thinks the world is ending in two years. 

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So, I've been doing movie news bits. I usually include a fresh trailer or two in each one, but there have been quite a few interesting trailers lately. And so I bring you a collection of some of my favorites. Enjoy.

That Evening Sun

Hal Holbrook is amazing. Unfortunately, my first major notice of him was in 2007's "Into the Wild," but he has played memorable characters for more than 50 years. If you haven't seen "Into the Wild," watch it. "That Evening Sun" is made by an unproven writer/director, just as I like em. Scott Teems has everything to show and nothing to hold back. I can't wait to see this one. Hopefully it will get a decent release. 

More trailers after the jump.

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