What’s more American than apple pie? Captain freakin’ America. After transforming from a scrawny wannabe to a star-spangled super soldier in Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) was accidentally frozen in an iceberg. In The Avengers, he was thawed out and recruited by ultimate crime-fighting agency SHIELD, joining forces with his badass buddies to stop an alien invasion.
Now Captain America is living it up in the most American of all cities, Washington DC, working alongside legendary eye-patch clad agent Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and SHIELD’s new head honcho, Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford). He’s still adjusting to the modern world, his wholesome 1940′s sensibilities often clashing with today’s aggressive approach to crime-fighting. He’s also probably trying to comprehend the cultural importance of hashtags and twerking.
When one of his fellow agents is attacked, Captain America jumps into action. He joins forces with Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johanssen), aka the Black Widow, who knows how to use a skintight jumpsuit and a Russian accent to her advantage. They also team up with a new ally, Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), aka The Falcon.
As they begin to reveal a dangerous conspiracy, the agents are confronted by hordes of deadly assassins. Who’s behind all of this madness? Apparently it’s Captain America’s old BFF, Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan). After being indoctrinated by the Soviets and outfitted with a bionic arm, he’s become a very formidable menace. Apparently the name “Bucky” wasn’t ominous enough, so he has become “The Winter Soldier”, a masked supervillain who’s up to no good.
The Winter Solder is coming. Will Captain America beat him up till he’s red, white, and blue? Find out when Captain America: The Winter Soldier marches into theaters on April 4, 2014. Enjoy the trailer below.
Thank you Liam Neeson for making the Internet more badass this week. The first trailer for his new suspense thriller, Non-Stop, has officially taken flight. Yep, pun. The film is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, who also worked with Neeson on Unknown (2011). This time around, he plays hardened U.S. Air Marshal Bill Marks, who will put his particular set of skills into use at 40,000ft.
Marks is settling in for a long transatlantic flight from New York City to London and is jolted into action by a string of threatening text messages. An unidentified hijacker is demanding $150 million from the government. The mysterious messenger threatens to kill a passenger every 20 minutes if Marks refuses to initiate the transaction. Which makes sense. I mean, he paid $5 for Wifi, so what else is there to do? Neflix? Nope.
When the funds are nearly transferred off-shore, the owner of the account is identified as Marks himself. Now he has two jobs: saving the plane and clearing his name. Or, if Hollywood wanted to be less predictable: save the plane and then live grossly rich on some sweet island. My suggestion: Palawan in the Philippines. Either way, things get intense when he finds a dead hostage and a ticking time bomb on board. Luckily, no snakes – though they wouldn’t be a problem.
The trailer for American Hustle is a star-studded montage of disco, danger and drama. Directed by David O. Russell and starring an ensemble cast of familiar faces, the film is based on a real scandal from the late 1970’s.
Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale) is the king of the con – he’s suave, sharp, and knows how to get the job done. He also knows how to surround himself with beautiful ladies. His partner in crime is the seductive Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams). He also has his alluring wife Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence) waiting for him when he comes home. He’s living the American dream.
Things escalate quickly when rogue FBI agent Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper) recruits Irving for a top-secret sting operation. He’s forced to use his con artistry to expose a corrupt network of high-level swindlers, mafia bosses, and dirty politicians. State assemblyman Carmine Polito (Jeremy Renner) finds himself caught in the middle of it all, and Irving’s unpredictable wife somehow emerges as the most powerful player in the game.
Apparently a life of crime has its fair share of ups and downs. One moment you’re drinking the finest champagne and admiring a suitcase full of cash, the next moment you’re getting slapped across the face and handcuffed by the feds.
Catch American Hustle in theaters on December 25, 2013. If you happen to be in LA or NYC - take advantage of early screenings on December 13th.
Focus Features unveiled production stills from Closed Circuit opening up tomorrow. It’s a legal thriller wrapped in jolly old England. In the trailer Eric Bana aka Eric Banana Bread is as a hotshot lawyer who finds himself in the midst of a dangerous national crisis.
It’s a quiet morning in London. Everyone’s sipping on tea, the royal baby is probably napping, and Big Ben is ticking through morning air. If you’ve never been to the UK, particularly in London, there are surveillance cameras everywhere – they’ve taken over like a flock of pigeons at a park. So the obvious reaction is that everyone’s safe cause Uncle Sam or in this case, John Bull, is watching, monitoring everyone’s every move. Nothing to worry about, right? Wrong. A sudden explosion hits a busy market destroying everything, throwing the city into crisis.
After an epic manhunt, the lone survivor of a terrorist cell is captured and blamed for the crime. It’s the trial of the century, and two of the nation’s top lawyers are paired up on the defense team: Martin Rose (Eric Bana) and Claudia Simmons-Howe (Rebecca Hall). The superstar lawyer duo are ex-lovers and make a pact to keep their previous affairs under wraps. As the case progresses, a deadly government conspiracy emerges, and they’re drawn together again as their reputations and lives are threatened. Sounds like a modern day John F. Kennedy story… sweet-deets.
Closed Circuit is directed by John Crowley, which you might recall his recently helmed British dramas Is Anybody There?, starring Michael Caine and Boy A with Andrew Garfield or some of his acclaimed plays (The Pillowman, The Behanding in Spokane).
Cinematographer Adriano Goldman (Jane Eyre, The Company You Keep) dramatizes the mystery with a beautifully muted color palette of grays, blacks, and dark blues. ARRIs Arricam LT was paired with Zeiss Master Prime and Angenieux Optimo lenses. Shot 2.35:1 on 35 mm (Kodak Vision3 200T 5213, Vision3 500T 5219) the film was processed by Technicolor in the UK (digital intermediate (2K) (master format), super 35 (3-perf) (source format)) and printed on 35mm anamorphic.
Boom op David McMillan and production mixer Jim Greenhorn tracked the audio for the film. They both worked on the British miniseries Parade’s End, which Rebecca Hall was in. Jim also mixed one of my recent favorites, Attack the Block. It’s another film showing London under attack, but this time the culprits are monstrous alien beasts with glowing blue teeth.
Lucia Zucchetti cut the film. She also edited The Queen, starring Helen Mirren as Her Royal Majesty, along with the HBO mini-series Game Change, featuring the tale of Sarah Palin, queen of Alaska. Closed Circuit’s visual effects were imagined by the Framestore team, led by VFX supervisor Rob Duncan.
Will the lawyers save London from the deadly grip of a government conspiracy? You can find when Closed Circuit opens in theaters tomorrow, August 28, 2013.
Marvel recently released the poster for the new Thor film starring Chris Hemsworth. To me, the much prettier Hemsworth. Though the trailer dropped a little over three months ago showing the Avenger cape’d and hammer’d, new imagery has been leaked for us to ooh and ahh over.
The sequel is directed not by Thor vet Kenneth Branagh, but by Alan Taylor, yes the brother of Anna Taylor – aka Anna Domino – the singer who brought us Land of Dreams and Caught. No? Well, most of you probably have seen his visual work on Oz, Deadwood, The Sopranos or Game of Thrones… maybe Sex and the City?
Alan teamed up with cinematographer Kramer Morgenthau for the project which is a high fives in my book. Kramer lens’d Havoc. Yes, Havoc – with the glamorous Anne Hathaway. The film every 16-year-old boy or girl with a girl crush should watch. On the production sound side, my boy, David Stephenson, worked the mixing panel. If you’re ever in the UK or run into him in the States, the guy hands down is one of my favorite people. David mixed Captain America: The First Avenger and a slew of fine films: Munich, Kingdom of Heaven, Love Actually. And don’t even pretend you haven’t watched Love Actually. You have. Probably at the request of your significant other. Either way, you ended up enjoying it and likely got in some make out time while the credits rolled.
The Dark World is another fight to restore order to the cosmos. This battle puts Thor up against a super-duper-tremendously-beyond-evil guy named Malekith (Christopher Eccleston). And I quote straight from Marvel, “Faced with an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot withstand.” So you know this Malekith is Godlike-Hercules tough.
It makes you wonder – will Thor prevail and be reunited with Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) along the way? Most definitely. Just look at the poster. But how? That’s the question. I would put money down that he won’t tag team with Superfly Jimmy Snuka – I could be wrong, but if Vegas is laying odds, a few dollars wouldn’t hurt. Thankfully, we only have to wait until November 8th of this year to find out. Check out some of the set images below.
After winning the 74th annual Hunger Games, the ever-so-lovely Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and boy wonder Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) are required to tour the troubled districts of Panem. Their unexpected dual victory is spreading a message of hope, which makes the tyrannical government very uneasy.
An uprising is brewing, and the diabolical President Snow (Donald Sutherland) hopes to extinguish it by removing Katniss and Peeta from the equation. With “Head Gamemaker” Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) by his side, he orchestrates a new twist for the upcoming 75th annual Hunger Games. Instead of using a lottery system to select young participants at random, winners from previous years will be summoned back for an all-out bloodbath of champions. Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) returns as a disgruntled coach/mentor, and Cinna (Lenny Kravitz) resumes his duties as a personal stylist. Caesar Flickerman (a purple-haired Stanley Tucci) reprises his role as host of the spectacularly deadly event.
Let’s raise a glass to The Wolf of Wall Street. Directed by Martin Scorcese, it’s based on the true story of a high-profile scam artist in the 1990’s. Leonardo DiCaprio takes on the role of Jordan Belfort, a young stockbroker who becomes filthy rich through dirty financial dealings. Jonah Hill and Matthew McConaughey co-star as his partners in crime.
The trailer places you right into Belfort’s feverishly wealthy world. His parties have something for everyone: hookers, drugs, marching bands, and even chimpanzees wearing suits. If you’re raking in nearly $1 million a week, it’s only natural to toss $100 bills into the trash and tape stacks of cash to bikini-clad ladies.
It seems like everything is spectacular in Belfort’s deliciously excessive world, but the FBI starts to smell corruption. They show up at his yacht to investigate, but he brushes them off, flinging dollar bills and a lobster at them as they exit. Does it get any classier than that? The real-life saga of Jordan Belfort ended with indictment and jail time, but we’ll see how Scorcese’s version plays out.