August 16, 2012

My Guilty Pleasure: Awful, Cheesy, Elvis Movies

In honor of the 35th anniversary of Elvis's death I have compiled a list of my favorite Presley movies. Now, if you have never seen an Elvis Presley film then I must warn you-- most of them are bad. Like REALLY bad. His films followed a specific formula. Elvis is always the dashing hero in some way shape or form, who happens to sing (crow baring at least several songs), surround himself with half naked girls gyrating around, and in the end saves the day. Top this with a paper thin plot and you have a typical Presley movie. These films are the equivalent of our Step Up movies. No one really cares about the story, they just want to see the dancing (or in this case, Elvis's singing.) Since, Elvis was under contract with MGM at the time, he had no real say on the type of films he was given (mix that with a slew of other things that were going on in his life and you have a reluctant Elvis practically sleep walking through half  his films.)  Elvis hated the roles he was being offered and around the end of the 60's it showed. However, the man was extremely good looking and believe it or not was a good actor when given the right material. If he had, had the chance to take on roles that would've strengthen his creativity (he was offered the role of Tony in West Side Story and opposite Barbra Streisand in A Star is Born) who knows what he could've done.

However it wasn't all bad films. Presley made some solid films in his career. Here is the list of my top Elvis films (cheese and all.)

Love Me Tender (1956)

Jailhouse Rock (1957)

Follow That Dream ( 1962)

It Happened at the World's Fair (1963)

Viva Las Vegas (1964)

Double Trouble (1967)

Change of Habit (1969) 

August 8, 2012

Coming Soon- August 8, 2012

3, 2, 1...Frankie Go Boom- Not going to lie, I was at a Starbucks when I watched this trailer and by the end I was chuckling like a moron. I give in, I'm hooked. You can learn more about the film in this weeks post.

Nobody Walks- Proof, that Lena Dunham isn't a one hit wonder (GIRLS)

Craigslist Joe- Craigslist has always skeeved me out a bit. I dunno, maybe it's the multitude of creeps looking for some freaky fun involving weird fetishes and what not. However, my mom used it all the time when we were trying to get rid of excess junk and it worked out really well. We met some very interesting people and our house was completely d-cluttered. I do want to see how this guy manages to live off of only Craigslist.

The Master- Welcome back, Joaquin. PTA, you're going to blow us away, again, aren't you?

A Royal Affair- I love a good period piece. As long as the creative liberties don't get in the way of historical accuracy (I mean, don't go crazy and completely re-write history) then I'm good to go. This looks like some Anna Karenina kind of goodness (who doesn't love a good scandal?) So, I'll keep my eye on this one.

Chasing Mavericks- Blue Crush minus the estrogen and annoying Kate Bosworth. I'm not sure this is right up my alley, but it's nice to see Gerard Butler not playing a misogynist cad.

August 7, 2012

2013 Tribeca Film Festival Dates Announced

If you have read my past posts you know that I had a blast at Tribeca this year. My first experience was extremely memorable to say the least. The new festival dates have been announced including a new program to support and spotlight transmedia creators.

The Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by founding sponsor American Express, announced today that the 12th annual Tribeca Film Festival will be held April 17– April 28, 2013 in New York City. Tribeca’s programming team, led by Geoffrey Gilmore, Chief Creative Officer of Tribeca Enterprises, Artistic Director Frédéric Boyer, who joined TFF last year, Director of Programming Genna Terranova, Programmer Cara Cusumano, and Shorts Programmer Sharon Badal, also announced a call for submissions for narrative and documentary features, and short film entries.

In addition, the Festival and BOMBAY SAPPHIRE gin today announced a new transmedia program with an award launching at the 2013 Festival that will celebrate new trends in digital media and recognize these transmedia creators who employ an innovative, interactive, web-based or multi-platform approach to story creation. Through open submissions, selections will be presented to the public at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival. Ingrid Kopp, Director of Digital Initiatives for the Tribeca Film Institute, the year-round not-for-profit affiliate of Tribeca Enterprises, joins the Tribeca Film Festival programming team to collaborate on the initiative.

Deadlines to submit U.S. and International films for the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival are as follows:

September 17, 2012 – SUBMISSIONS OPEN




Starting September 17, 2012, submission forms and complete information regarding eligibility for the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival will be available at  Questions regarding submissions may be directed to or by calling 212-941-2305.

August 6, 2012

20 Director's Give Their Top Ten Films From Sight & Sound

Along with announcing Vertigo as the "Greatest Film of All Time," Sight & Sound magazine has compiled a list of directors and their top 10 films. I took the liberty of highlighting the films that show up more than once because I feel that these titles in particular are universally respected and loved in the film community (18 out of the 20 directors have at least one mutual film with each other. That says something.) Take a gander at some of the films, IMDB the ones you've never heard before, and start stocking up your Netflix queue with these titles.

*Excuse the ones I missed

Woody Allen

  • Bicycle Thieves (1948, dir. Vittorio De Sica)
  • The Seventh Seal (1957, dir. Ingmar Bergman)
  • Citizen Kane (1941, dir. Orson Welles)
  • Amarcord (1973, dir. Federico Fellini)
  • 8 1/2 (1963, dir. Federico Fellini) 
  • The 400 Blows (1959, dir. Francois Truffaut)
  • Rashomon (1950, dir. Akira Kurosawa)
  • La Grande Illusion (1937, dir. Jean Renoir)
  • The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972, dir. Luis Bunuel)
  • Paths of Glory (1957, dir. Stanley Kubrick)

Richard Ayoade (Submarine)

  • Persona (1966, dir. Ingmar Bergman)
  • Le Mepris (1963, dir. Jean-Luc Godard)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Ordet (1955, dir. Carl theodor Dreyer)
  • Barry Lyndon (1975, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989, dir. Woody Allen)
  • The Apartment (1960, dir. Billy Wilder)
  • Tokyo Story (1953, dir. Yasujiro Ozu)
  • Make Way For Tomorrow (1937, dir. Leo McCarey)
  • Badlands (1973, dir. Terrence Malick)

Bong Joon-Ho

  • A City of Sadness (1989, dir. Hou Hsiao-hsien)
  • Cure (1997, dir. Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  • The Housemaid (1960, dir. Kim Ki-young)
  • Fargo (1996, dir. the Coen Brothers)
  • Psycho (1960, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Touch of Evil (1958, dir. Orson Welles)
  • Vengeance Is Mine (1973, dir. Shohei Imamura)
  • The Wages of Fear (1953, dir. Henri-Georges Clouzot)
  • Zodiac (2007, dir. David Fincher)

Francis Ford Coppola

  • Ashes and Diamonds (1958, dir. Andrzej Wajda)
  • The Best Years of Our Lives (1946, dir William Wyler)
  • I Vitteloni (1953, dir. Federico Fellini)
  • The Bad Sleep Well (1960, dir. Akira Kurosawa)
  • Yojimbo (1961, dir. Akira Kurosawa)
  • Singin’ in the Rain (1952, dir. Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly)
  • The King of Comedy (1983, dir Martin Scorsese)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • The Apartment (1960s, dir. Billy Wilder)
  • Sunrise (1927, dir. F.W. Murnau)

Guillermo Del Toro

  • Frankenstein (1931, dir. James Whale)
  • Freaks (1932, dir. Todd Browning)
  • Shadow of a Doubt (1943, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Greed (1925, dir. Erich Von Stroheim)
  • Modern Times (1936, dir. Charlie Chaplin)
  • La Belle Et La Bete (1946, dir. Jean Cocteau)
  • Goodfellas (1990, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Los Olvidados (1950, dir. Luis Bunuel)
  • Nosferatu (1922, dir. F.W. Murnau)
  • 8 1/2 (1963, dir. Federico Fellini)

Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (The Kid with a Bike)

  • Accatone (1961, dir. Pier Paolo Pasolini)
  • The Big Heat (1953, dir. Fritz Lang)
  • Dodes’ka-den (1970, dir. Akira Kurosawa)
  • Germany Year Zero (1948, dir. Roberto Rossellini)
  • Loulou (1980, dir. Maurice Pialat)
  • Modern Times (1936, dir. Charlie Chaplin)
  • The Searchers (1956, dir. John Ford)
  • Shoah (1985, dir. Claude Lanzmann)
  • Street of Shame (1956, dir. Kenji Mizoguchi)
  • Sunrise (1927, dir. F.W. Murnau)

Sean Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene)

  • The Shining (1980, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • Rosemary’s Baby (1968, dir. Roman Polanski)
  • Jaws (1975, dir. Steven Spielberg)
  • 3 Women (1977, dir. Robert Altman)
  • The Birds (1963, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • The Goonies (1985, dir. Richard Donner)
  • The Piano Teacher (2001, dir. Michael Haneke)
  • Persona (1966, dir. Ingmar Bergman)
  • The Panic in Needle Park (1971, dir. Jerry Schatzberg)
  • The Conformist (1970, dir. Bernardo Bertolucci)

Asghar Farhadi (A Separation)

  • Rashomon (1950, dir. Akira Kurosawa)
  • La Strada (1954, dir. Federico Fellini)
  • The Godfather (1972, dir. Francis Ford Coppola)
  • Tokyo Story (1953, dir. Yasujiro Ozu)
  • The Apartment (1960, dir. Billy Wilder)
  • Three Colors Red (1994, dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski)
  • Take the Money and Run (1969, dir. Woody Allen)
  • Scenes From a Marriage (1973, dir. Ingmar Bergman)
  • Taxi Driver (1976, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Modern Times (1936, dir. Charlie Chaplin)

Michel Hazavanicius (The Artist)

  • City Girl (1930, dir. F.W. Murnau)
  • City Lights (1931, dir. Charlie Chaplin)
  • To Be Or Not To Be (1942, dir. Ernst Lubitsch)
  • Citizen Kane (1941, dir. Orson Welles)
  • The Apartment (1960, dir. Billy Wilder)
  • The Shining (1980, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • North By Northwest (1959, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • The Third Man (1949, dir. Carol Reed)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937, dir. Walt Disney)

Miranda July (Me and You and Everyone We Know)

  • Blind (1987, dir. Frederick Wiseman)
  • Smooth Talk (1985, dir. Joyce Chopra)
  • Vertigo (1958, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • After Life (1998, dir. Hirokazu Koreeda)
  • Somewhere in Time (1980, dir. Jeannot Szwarc)
  • Cheese (2007, dir. Mika Rottenberg)
  • Punch Drunk Love (2002, dir. Paul Thomas Anderson)
  • The Red Balloon (1956, dir. Albert Lamorisse)
  • A Room With a View (1985, dir. James Ivory)
  • Fish Tank (2009, dir. Andrea Arnold)

Mike Leigh

  • American Madness (1932, dir. Frank Capra)
  • Andrei Rublev (1966, dir. Andrei Tarkovsky)
  • I Am Cuba (1964, dir. Mikhai Kalatozov)
  • The Emigrants (1971, dir. Jan Troell)
  • How a Mosquito Operates (1912, dir. Winsor McCay)
  • Jules Et Jim (1962, dir. Francois Truffaut)
  • Radio Days (1987, dir. Woody Allen)
  • Songs From the Second Floor (2000, dir. Roy Andersson)
  • Tokyo Story (1953, dir. Yasujiro Ozu)

Michael Mann

  • Apocalypse Now (1979, dir. Francis Ford Coppola)
  • Battleship Potemkin (1925, dir. Sergei Eisenstein)
  • Citizen Kane (1941, dir. Orson Welles)
  • Avatar (2009, dir. James Cameron)
  • Dr. Strangelove (1964, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • Biutiful (2010, dir. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu)
  • My Darling Clementine (1946, dir. John Ford)
  • The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928, dir. Carl theodor Dreyer)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • The Wild Bunch (1969, dir. Sam Peckinpah)

Steve McQueen (Shame)

  • The Battle of Algiers (1966, dir. Gillo Pontecorvo)
  • Zero de Conduite (1933, dir. Jean Vigo)
  • La Regle du Jeu (1939, dir. Jean Renoir)
  • Tokyo Story (1953, dir. Yasujiro Ozu)
  • Couch (1964, dir. Andy Warhol)
  • Le Mepris (1963, dir. Jean-Luc Godard)
  • Beau Travail (1998, dir. Claire Denis)
  • Once Upon a Time in America (1984, dir. Sergio Leone)
  • The Wages of Fear (1953, dir. Henri-Georges Clouzot)
  • Do the Right Thing (1989, dir. Spike Lee)

Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter)

  • Cool Hand Luke (1967, dir. Stuart Rosenberg)
  • Badlands (1973, dir. Terrence Malick)
  • Hud (1963, dir. Martin Ritt)
  • The Hustler (1961, dir. Robert Rossen)
  • Lawrence of Arabia (1962, dir. David Lean)
  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969, dir. George Roy Hill)
  • Jaws (1975, dir. Steven Spielberg)
  • North By Northwest (1959, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Stagecoach (1939, dir. John Ford)
  • Fletch (1985, dir. Michael Ritchie)

David O. Russell

  • It’s a Wonderful Life (1946, dir. Frank Capra)
  • Chinatown (1974, dir. Roman Polanski)
  • Goodfellas (1990, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Vertigo (1958, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Pulp Fiction (1994, dir. Quentin Tarantino)
  • Raging Bull (1980, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • Young Frankenstein (1974, dir. Mel Brooks)
  • The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972, dir. Luis Bunuel)
  • The Godfather (1972, dir. Francis Ford Coppola)
  • Blue Velvet (1986, dir. David Lynch)
  • Groundhog Day (1993, dir. Harold Ramis)

Martin Scorsese

  • 8 1/2 (1963, dir. Federico Fellini)
  • 2001: a Space Odyssey (1968, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • Ashes and Diamonds (1958, dir. Andrzej Wajda)
  • Citizen Kane (1941, dir. Orson Welles)
  • The Leopard (1963, dir. Luchino Visconti)
  • Palsa (1946, dir. Roberto Rossellini)
  • The Red Shoes (1948, dir. Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger)
  • The River (1951, dir. Jean Renoir)
  • Salvatore Giuliano (1962, dir. Francesco Rosi)
  • The Searchers (1956, dir. John Ford)
  • Ugetsu Monogatari (1953, dir. Kenji Mizoguchi)
  • Vertigo (1958, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)

Quentin Tarantino

  • The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966, dir. Sergio Leone)
  • Apocalypse Now (1979, dir. Francis Ford Coppola)
  • The Bad News Bears (1976, dir. Michael Ritchie)
  • Carrie (1976, dir. Brian DePalma)
  • Dazed and Confused (1993, dir. Richard Linklater)
  • The Great Escape (1963, dir. John Sturges)
  • His Girl Friday (1940, dir. Howard Hawks)
  • Jaws (1975, dir. Steven Spielberg)
  • Pretty Maids All in a Row (1971, dir. Roger Vadim)
  • Rolling Thunder (1977, dir. John Flynn)
  • Sorcerer (1977, dir. William Friedkin)
  • Taxi Driver (1976, dir. Martin Scorsese)

Bela Tarr (The Turin Horse)

  • Man With a Movie Camera (1929, dir. Dziga Vertov)
  • The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928, dir. Carl theodor Dreyer)
  • Alexander Nevsky (1938, dir. Sergei Eisenstein)
  • M (1931, dir. Fritz Lang)
  • Au hasard Balthazar (1966, dir. Robert Bresson)
  • Vivre sa vie (1962, dir. Jean-Luc Godard)
  • Frenzy (1972, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Tokyo Story (1953, dir. Yasujiro Ozu)
  • The Round-Up (1965, dir. Miklos Jancso)
  • Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980, dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder)

Edgar Wright

  • 2001: a Space Odyssey (1968, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • An American Werewolf in London (1981, dir. John Landis)
  • Carrie (1976, dir. Brian DePalma)
  • Dames (1934, dir. Ray Enright and Busby Berkeley)
  • Don’t Look Now (1973, dir. Nicolas Roeg)
  • Duck Soup (1933, dir. Leo McCarey)
  • Psycho (1960, dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
  • Raising Arizona (1987, dir. the Coen Brothers)
  • Taxi Driver (1976, dir. Martin Scorsese)
  • The Wild Bunch (1969, dir. Sam Peckinpah)

Apichatpong Weerasethakul (Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives)

  • Goodbye Dragon Inn (2003, dir. Ming-liang Tsai)
  • A Brighter Summer Day (1991, dir. Edward Yang)
  • Rain (1929, dir. Joris Ivens)
  • Empire (1964, dir. Andy Warhol)
  • Valentin de la Sierras (1971, dir. Bruce Baillie)
  • The Conversation (1974, dir. Francis Ford Coppola)
  • Full Metal Jacket (1987, dir. Stanley Kubrick)
  • The Eighties (1983, dir. Chantal Akerman)
  • The General (1926, dir. Buster Keaton)
  • Satantango (1994, dir. Bela Tarr) 

August 5, 2012

50 Years Ago Today....

“Please don’t make me a joke. End the interview with what I believe. I don’t mind making jokes, but I don’t want to look like one. I want to be an artist, an actress with integrity.”

My Most Anticipated: 3,2,1...Frankie Go Boom

There is something to be said when you have 2 of TV's biggest bad asses (Ron Perlman & Charlie Hunnam's Jax & Clay, hailing from the land of bikes, leather, and complete chaos*) in a film where one is an emasculated victim while the other is a pot smoking transvestite whose bold candor is both amusing and off putting. I heard about this film from a friend who saw this at SXSW and have been monitoring it's progression ever since.

*Sons of Anarchy

The story centers on two brothers, Frankie and Bruce. Frankie (Hunnam) is trying to live down the disgrace of not only finding out that his fiancee had been cheating on him as their wedding was underway, but also that his brother Bruce (O'Dowd) posted a video of his subsequent meltdown on the Internet. Bruce is struggling to overcome addiction issues and reenters Frankie's life just as Frankie is meeting a woman (Caplan) he might have a real chance with. When Bruce uploads another video and complications ensue.- LA Times


Who’s In It?

 Sam Anderson … Chris
  Lizzy Caplan … Lassie
  Whitney Cummings … Claudia
  Justin Dray … Jogger
  Nora Dunn … Karen
  Charlie Hunnam … Frankie
  Leonard Kelly-Young … Arthur
  Kate Luyben … Donna
  David Marciano … David
  Chris Noth … Jack
  Chris O’Dowd … Bruce
  Adam Pally … Brian
  Ron Perlman … Phyllis
  Sarah Rush … Natalie

The film is directed by screenwriter of March of the Penguins, Jordan Roberts. At a screening he describes the film as"..a comedy about second chance, in love, second chance in whatever the thing you got slapped down at, and I was fascinated by humiliation and challenging humiliation." Hopefully, more information will come out before it's VOD September 10/ Theatrical October 12 release. What I find most impressive about this film is the caliber of actors attached to what seems to be a pretty low budget film. I don't know too much about the film a part from the given synopsis, however, I am intrigued by this funny, quirky film.

Perlman and Hunnam briefly discuss their roles in 'Frankie'
Pictures courtesy of Variance Films