Jackie Director: Pablo LarraÃn Screenwriter: Noah Oppenheim Cast: Natalie Portman, Greta Gerwig, Peter Sarsgaard, Max Casella, Beth Grant, Billy Crudup, Richard E. Grant, John Hurt Distributor: Fox Searchlight Pictures Rated R | 99 minutes Release Date: December 2, 2016
Contemporary biopics no longer adhere to the traditional means of telling the entire life story of a subject. Nowadays, audiences are only given a small fraction of it. But it is in that stage of life that truly defines the subject. In Jackie, we see Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy at her most vulnerable point in life, where she has to deal with the grief of losing her husband, the 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy. The traumatic event would be enough to shatter anyone, but it is what she does in the aftermath that will truly cement her name among the greatest of First Ladies. With a strong script from Noah Oppenheim and director Pablo Larrin giving an outsider’s perspective on the matter, Jackie is hauntingly poetic view of an untold story. My full review below.
Black Mass Director: Scott Cooper
Screenwriter: Jez Butterworth, Mark Mallouk
Cast: Johnny Depp, Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Kevin Bacon, Jesse Plemons, Corey Stoll, Peter Sarsgaard Warner Bros. Pictures
Rated R | 122 Minutes
Release Date: September 18, 2015
Directed by Scott Cooper (Out of the Furnace), Black Mass depicts the true story of James “Whitey” Bulger (Johnny Depp), leader of the notorious Winter Hill Gang.
In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) persuades the Irish-American mobster to work with the FBI to bring down a common enemy: the Italian mob. After making a name for himself through loansharking, bookmaking, and extortion, Bulger would become one of the most dangerous gangsters in history, all with the help of the United States government.
Depp’s Bulger is a fascinating, terrifying individual. With his pallid flesh and icy blue-gray eyes, Whitey is the Count Dracula of South Boston, a creature of the night who preys upon innocence, feeding off the city and sucking it dry.
MGM has found their primary villain for the upcoming remake of The Magnificent Seven, which already features a great cast consisting of Denzel Washington (Glory, American Gangster), Ethan Hawke (Before Sunset, Boyhood), Chris Pratt (Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic World), Vincent D’Onofrio (Men In Black, Daredevil), Wagner Moura (Elysium, Elite Squad), Haley Bennett (Marley & Me, The Equalizer), and Matt Bomer (White Collar, Magic Mike).
The studio has chosen Peter Sarsgaard to be the film’s biggest bad guy, a robber baron named Bartholomew Bogue. But while they’ve found their primary antagonist, the movie is also losing a villain. Game of Thrones and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice star Jason Momoa was also recently reported to be in negotiations for a role, but now it’s being said that the actor is no longer attached to the project. Whether his duties playing Aquaman conflicted with the shooting schedule, he simply decided he didn’t want the role, or something else caused the departure is not known for sure at the moment.
The first image of Johnny Depp as Whitey Bulger in Scott Cooper‘s (Crazy Heart) Black Mass was unveiled yesterday, and now we are getting a first look at the footage from the film in an all-new trailer.
The film will center on Bulger’s life as a Bostonian gangster while acting as an FBI informant. In the new trailer we see a huge departure from the roles we are accustomed to seeing from Depp in recent years. No more silly pirate play or childish gestures, this is a Depp that needs to be seen more often. Hit the jump to check out the first trailer for Black Mass.
Robot & Frank Directed by: Jake Schreier
Written by: Christopher D. Ford
Starring Frank Langella, Peter Sarsgaard, James Marsden, Liv Tyler, Susan Sarandon, Jeremy Strong
Samuel Goldwyn Films
Rated PG-13 | 90 Minutes
Release Date: August 24, 2012
I don’t know much about Jack Schreier. Luckily, it doesn’t seem like anyone else does, either. According to IMDb, Schreier is the ex-keyboardist for Francis and the Lights, a pop-synth indie band that has toured with the likes of Drake, MGMT, and Ke$ha.
Aside from Robot & Frank, Schreier’s only other directorial credit is a 2005 short film, Christopher Ford Sees a Film, in which Christopher D. Ford (Robot & Frank‘s writer) sees a terrible film that presumably affects him deeply. As for Ford’s work as a screenwriter, he’s got a couple of projects in the works, including Eli Roth’s Grindhouse-inspired horror slasher, Thanksgiving.
I say all this only because it is extremely rare to watch a smart, thoughtful, and altogether well-made film like Robot & Frank and discover it was the feature-length debut of an earnest, young filmmaker and a no-doubt talented scribe. There are plenty of great first films by directors, but Robot & Frank feels like the work of an established, tenured filmmaker – someone who has matured and refined his style through other films.
The premise of Schreier and Ford’s film is simple, and delightfully so. Set in the near future, Frank, an ex-convict and master thief (Frank Langella), receives a gift from his son, Hunter (James Marsden): a robot butler programmed to look after him.