Friday, July 27, 2012

Trailer: Cloud Atlas

The trailer for the Wachowskis' and Tom Twyker's Cloud Atlas has been gone online, and it's pure epic eye candy of the highest order, a mad exercise in cramming as much as possible into SIX MINUTES. Each gorgeous image it throws at you will have you swooning uncontrollably until you feel your sensory arteries begin to explode. Have no clue what it's about but if you don't mind a bit of spoilery plot guide, see here. I expect nothing less than the best-looking mess of the year. Click on Tom Hanks' toupee to watch the trailer.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

NZFF Highlight: Room 237

A brief word of praise for Room 237, Rodney Ascher's doco exploring some incredible, out-there meanings and theories hidden in Stanley Kubrick's enigmatic 1980 adaptation of Stephen King's The Shining. Some of it definitely gets you thinking (continuity errors or is Kubrick playing tricks on us?), some of it will make you spit-take in great WTF fashion, but one thing they all have in common is the utter obsessiveness of it all. This is the perfect companion piece to The Shining (alas no double feature pairing at the fest), and if you love the movie, Kubrick or unpacking puzzles and symbols etc, head on down to the Rialto Cinemas in Newmarket at 8:30 tonight for the final screening of the doco. Last night's session sold out, so get in there quick!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Keanu: Man of Renaissance?

Perhaps Keanu's time has come? We can now all stop laughing about his non-acting and look at what he's doing behind the camera! The dude, who's almost 50 (for anyone who's wondering), has a cool little doco called Side by Side playing at the NZFF, which I strongly recommend to anyone interested in the digital takeover of the celluloid as the primary means for shooting and exhibiting movies. Furthermore, his directorial debut, the martial arts flick Man of Tai Chi, is on the way, and it was recently reported that Iko Uwai, The Raid's chief bone-obliterator, has signed on for a role. According to Reeves, there will be about "40 minutes of fighting". I am excited yes. See the clip below for what to expect as he tests out some new tech for shooting the fights:

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

If you've just finished Curb Your Enthusiasm - Season 8 and are jonesing for more Larry David, he appears in the first episode of Jerry Seinfeld's new web-only series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. It's exactly what the title says, and it's great!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Film Festival Picks

The 2012 New Zealand International Film Festival starts today in Auckland, and if you've been too busy to keep up with what's playing and what might be good, here's a quick list of picks from each section of the programme to help you out:

From Up on Poppy Hill - This wistful-looking new feature from Studio Ghibli master Hayao Miyazaki's son Goro looks about 100% better than this first film (Tales from Earthsea, ughh). Always a treat to catch Japanese animation on the big screen.

How To Meet Girls from a Distance - I can imagine a future when there's a bigger budget, star-studded remake of this but for now let's just see how the winner of last year's Make My Movie competition turned out.

Killer Joe - see here.

The Shining / Holy Motors - If you're a horror fan and you're not even going to entertain the thought of catching The Shining at the Civic...I can't even. And Holy Motors? Leos Carax's mind-bender seems to be the festival's hot ticket to WTF City.

Undefeated - This year's Oscar winner for Best Documentary feature. Inspirational sports doc.


The Imposter - Totally can't wait for this "mesmerizing psychological thriller bulging with twists, turns, nasty insinuations and shocking revelations" (Hollywood Reporter). PS. It's a doco.

In the Fog - The most challenging section of the festival but sometimes the most rewarding. Any film you pick here will not be like any other film in the festival. I spun the wheel and landed on In the Fog, which looks perfectly ponderous.

The Cabin in the Woods - see here.

Searching for Sugar Man - Crowd-pleasing music doco about the search for long lost Mexican/American singer-songwriter who did this catchy little number. Early word has been very positive.

Compliance - This one is going to turn heads. Best to go in cold apparently and be completely horrified by what happens.

Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present - Doco on amazing performance artist whose most famous piece involves sitting silently for 3 months in a gallery and allowing the public to encounter her.

The Sun Beaten Path - I love a good otherworldy ethnographic flick and this Tibetan movie ticks all the boxes. Landscapes, spirituality, completely foreign place and people, etc.

Happy film festivalling!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Classic Trailer: Blow Out

Brian De Palma's 1981 thriller Blow Out is one of his finest movies, and it's finally coming to DVD and Blu-ray from Vendetta on August 22nd. Quentin Tarantino has called John Travolta's performance in the film as his favourite from the actor. Have a peek at the trailer here:

Monday, July 9, 2012


Got lots of old VHS tapes sitting around at home?
Here is a great creative idea that uses the internal tape in a hugely inspiring way.

 From the 2009 Venice Biennale.