Wednesday, August 05, 2009

News: At the Movies Get New Hosts

Source: Ain't It Cool News

It was just over a year ago when it was announced that Roger Ebert and Richard Roeper ended their involvement with At the Movies and were replaced with Ben Lyons and Ben Mankiewicz.

Well now it is being reported that the two Bens have been fired from the show and they are going to be replaced by the Chicago Tribune's Michael Phillips and the New York Time's A.O. Scott, both of whom previously guest-hosted with Roeper when Ebert was sidelined after jaw surgery.

They aren't Ebert and Roeper themselves, but I respect the critics enough to begin watching the At the Movies reviews again.

News: Cast for Machete

Source: FirstShowing

Robert Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis are currently shooting an expanded version of the Machete trailer from Grindhouse.

In addition to star Danny Trejo, there has been an interesting cast list announced for the film. The list includes Robert De Niro, Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Steven Seagal, Lindsay Lohan, Cheech Marin, Don Johnson and Jeff Fahey.

I'm not sure if the film is going to incorporate the footage shot for the trailer or if this is entirely being done by scratch. Either way, this seems really interesting.

TIFF09: Special Presentations Thoughts

If I'm hard-pressed to find a film to see at TIFF, I always look towards the Special Presentations, since these films are already set for release and they are usually only at TIFF for their premiere.

There have been many great special presentations announced over the last few weeks and I thought I would mention my favourites.

A Serious Man - Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, USA
This is the third year in a row that the Coen brothers are showing up at the festival. I saw the trailer for this last week and this black comedy should make stars out of the mostly unknown actors appearing in it.

The Hole - Joe Dante, USA
It's been a while since I heard from Gremlins director Joe Dante, however this new thriller seems very interesting.

Up in the Air - Jason Reitman, USA
It's Jason Reitman's third film and his follow-up to Juno. The film stars George Clooney and I expect it to have a bit more of a Thank You for Smoking vibe than Reitman's last film.

Capitalism: A Love Story - Michael Moore, USA
This is probably the biggest film in the Special Presentations programme as Michael Moore shows up to debut his newest documentary. Should be interesting.

Whip It - Drew Barrymore, USA
With Ellen Page staring, it seems that Drew Barrymore's directorial debut about roller derby may attract the Juno crowd.

The Informant! - Steven Soderbergh, USA
There is a big Ocean's Eleven vibe about this film staring Matt Damon and it should be a fun film.

The Invention of Lying - Ricky Gervais and Matthew Robinson, USA
Ricky Gervais shows up for the second year in a row for what should be a very interesting film.

That's all for now.

Classic Thoughts: The 40 Year Old Virgin

After seeing Funny People this week, I thought I would go back and re-visit Judd Apatow's debut as a director.

Before this film, I was very iffy about R-rated comedies. I also have to admit the premise of the film, combined with the sunny poster featuring an innocent-looking Steve Carell really freaked me out.

However, I then decided to see the film and found that it was really funny. Extremely funny.

The film also featured stars in the making. Steve Carell only had supporting roles before and was just starting on The Office. Seth Rogen was only really known for being on Apatow's TV shows Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared. As for Paul Rudd, well he was on Friends.

Even with it's adult premise, the film still had heart, and it was a great start for Apatow's directorial career.

8/10