Despite the new World War II drama Darkest Hour now playing in theaters nationwide, “Who was Winston Churchill?” still sounds like a question you’re likely to find on one of those ‘the dumbing down of America has happened’ videos. While Churchill may not have been American, himself, his influence and importance in the events of the mid-20th Century cannot be overstated. Winston Churchill was elected Britain’s Prime Minister in 1940, a position he held throughout the remainder of World War II and again from 1951 to 1955. Before his career in politics he had worked as a writer and served as a member of the British Army. His election in 1940 came at a time when Britain’s, and indeed the future of the whole of Western Europe was uncertain. Hitler had been elected Chancellor of Germany in 1933 and, by the time of Churchill’s election, was already marching across France, pushing British forces to the shores of the English Channel, where the famous evacuation at Dunkirk took place (if you haven’t seen Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, I highly recommend it!).
With the United States still hesitant to enter the war effort in either Europe or the Pacific, the newly appointed Prime Minister was faced with the choice of either regrouping and rallying national support to continue the war effort against Nazi Germany, or agreeing to sign a peace accord with Hitler and the Axis Powers. As the United Kingdom stood at the brink of invasion, it was up to Churchill to persuade Parliament, King George VI, and the people of Britain that the war could be won and that it was worth fighting, an extremely difficult prospect considering the ever-growing influence of Nazi Germany and the reluctance of the United States to enter the war. Continue reading →
We first heard about a film adaptation of Captain Chelsey Sullenberger‘s miraculous 2009 landing of US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River back in June of 2015. Now a year later, we have a full-length trailer for the upcoming drama, affectionately titled Sully, from director Clint Eastwood (Gran Torino, American Sniper). Based on the book co-authored by Sullenberger and Jeffrey Zaslow, the film takes a look at the political and procedural implications surrounding Sullenberger’s miraculous effort that ended up saving all 155 passengers on board, although the trailer is reminiscent of the 2012 drama Flight with Denzel Washington. Starring as Sullenberger is Oscar-winner Tom Hanks (Saving Private Ryan, Bridge of Spies), who is joined onscreen by Anna Gunn (Enemy of the State, Breaking Bad), Aaron Eckhart (Thank You For Smoking, The Dark Knight), Sam Huntington (Detroit Rock City, Superman Returns), and Laura Linney (Mystic River, The Exorcism of Emily Rose). The film is scheduled for release this September 16th. Check out the trailer here on MADE…and enjoy the 4th of July weekend!
A new biographical drama called Race is opening in theaters nationwide this week, which follows the story of Jesse Owens, the Olympian who won four gold medals for track and field at the 1936 Olympics. Ownes’ performance went down in history, not only for his amazing skill, but also for the fact that his victory happened in Berlin, the heart of Adolf Hitler’s supposedly supreme Aryan Race. The film is directed by Stephen Hopkins (Lost in Space, The Reaping) from a script by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse (The Tonto Woman, Frankie and Alice) and stars Stephan James (Home Again, Selma), Jason Sudeikis (Horrible Bosses, We’re the Millers), Eli Goree (Godzilla, The 100), Shanice Banton (Degrassi: The Next Generation, A Day Late and a Dollar Short), Carice van Houten (The Fifth Estate, Game of Thrones), Jeremy Irons (The Man in the Iron Mask, Die Hard with a Vengeance), and John Hurt (The Good Shepard, Robin Hood). Considering the ensemble cast and the profoundly positive message, this one might turn out to be one of the more impressive sports biographies recently released, but that’s no slate against Concussion, Foxcatcher, or 42. The trailer is available here on MADE. See it on the big screen this Friday. Enjoy!
A new Western-drama from Oscar-winning director Daniel Barber (The Tonto Woman, Harry Brown) titled The Keeping Room will be opening in theaters this September 25th. Written by actress-turned-screenwriter Julia Hart (Tuck Everlasting), the film centers around three Southern women (two sisters and an African American slave) in the final days of the American Civil War who must defend themselves and their land from rogue Union soldiers while the Union Army draws ever nearer to their location. Starring in the lead roles are actresses Brit Marling (Sound of My Voice, I Origins), Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit, Ender’s Game), and Muna Otaru (Syriana, Lions for Lambs), with Sam Worthington (Terminator Salvation, Avatar), Kyle Soller (Anna Karenina, Fury), and Ned Dennehy (King Arthur, Sherlock Holmes) making up the supporting cast. The film originally aired at the London and Stockholm Film Festival, receiving a nomination for Best Film and the Bronze Horse award, and was also an Official Selection at the Toronto International Film Festival. The trailer is available here on MADE. We’ll keep you posted as the release date draws closer. Enjoy!
Writer/director Luc Besson at work behind the camera.
French filmmaker Luc Besson (The Fifth Element, The Transporter) is currently in production on his new sci-fi project titled Valerian. Besson is still working on the full cast list, as well as his own script adaptation, based on the comic books by Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mezieres, but thus far actors Cara Delevingne (Anna Karenina, Suicide Squad) and Dane DeHaan (Lincoln, The Amazing Spider-Man 2) have both been signed on for the film. The full working title for the project is Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, and will follow the time-traveler Valerian and his sidekick Laureline on an all new adventure. We still have some time before we actually see this one in theaters, but a tentative French release is scheduled for 2017. We’ll bring you more details as they unfold over the next few months. Stay tuned!
J.C. Chandor‘s new crime-drama A Most Violent Year is now playing in theaters nationwide, and with a Golden Globe nomination already secured, it looks like a pretty great watch. The story takes place in 1981 New York City, the most violent year in the city’s history, and follows an immigrant couple as they struggle to protect their family and business from the impending violence and corruption of the New York streets. Starring as Abel and Anna Morales are Golden Globe nominees Oscar Isaac (Robin Hood, Inside Llewyn Davis) and Jessica Chastain (The Help, Interstellar), along with David Oyelowo (Interstellar, Selma), Alessandro Nivola (Face-Off, American Hustle), and Albert Brooks (Taxi Driver, Drive). Chandor wrote and directed the film himself, his first since his last 2013 project All Is Lost with Robert Redford. The trailer for A Most Violent Year is here on MADE. I’m definitely recommending you go and see this one, so put it up towards the top of your list with Selma and American Sniper.
I know we’ve been putting out a lot of upcoming releases for the holiday season. If you’re having trouble keeping any of it straight, here’s a list of release dates to help you out. Have a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year from MADE.
Christmas 2014 Releases:
1. Big Eyes-Directed by Tim Burton, starring Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams
2. Into The Woods-Directed by Rob Marshall starring Anna Kendrick, Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp
3. Unbroken-Directed by Angelina Jolie, starring Jack O’Connell and Domhnall Gleeson
4. The Gambler-Directed by Rupert Wyatt, starring Mark Wahlberg, John Goodman, Jessica Lange
5. The Imitation Game-Directed by Morten Tyldum, with Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightly
New Years Eve Release:
1. A Most Violent Year-Directed by J.C. Chandor, starring Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain
Wishing everyone an enjoyable holiday season and we’ll see you in 2015!
A new film adaptation of Into The Woods is opening in theaters this Christmas Day, and the movie features an all-star cast that is lead by Anna Kendrick (End of Watch, Pitch Perfect), Johnny Depp (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Alice in Wonderland), Chris Pine (Star Trek, Unstoppable), Emily Blunt (The Adjustment Bureau, Edge of Tomorrow), and Meryl Streep (The Hours, Doubt). James Lapine adapted the screenplay for the film from the musical by himself and Stephen Sondheim, which opened on Broadway in 1987. The story follows several fairy-tale characters that intertwined as a father and daughter go to barter with a witch who has put a curse on their family tree. Director Rob Marshall (Chicago, Memoirs of a Geisha) helmed the project for Walt Disney Pictures. You can watch the trailer here on MADE, then add it to your list of movies to choose from on Christmas Day.
Bryan Singer has been working on the upcoming sequel to his original X-Men franchise in post production for the last few months, while simultaneously planning out the next installment that is set for release one year later. The director recently tweeted a picture of himself in a room with writer Simon Kinberg (X3, Sherlock Holmes) and X2 writers Dan Harris and Mike Dougherty, noting that he was in a “late night X-Men Apocalypse story session.” There have been no other hints as to the plot line of the new movie, but the general assumption is that it will revolve around the villain Apocalypse who appeared in the comics. The upcoming sequel Days of Future Past will incorporate Singer’s original X-Men cast, as well as the cast of First Class, which came out in 2011. Apocalypse, however, may not involve Singer’s original X-Men cast, and may only follow the cast of First Class. We’ll wait for more updates on that. In other editing news for Future Past, one of the cast members from the original franchise has been cut from the movie all together. Anna Paquin only had one scene as Rogue in the upcoming movie, but that scene has now been cut in the editing room due to time constraint and according to the director, the overall contribution of the scene to the story-line. This will come as a disappointment to many fans, but the character of Rogue really said her goodbye in the third film, when she got the “cure” against the advice of her fellow mutants. We’ll have to wait until May to see how her absence affects the film. Stay tuned for more news.
Tonight marks the end of the series that has become so popular, the Chicago White Sox felt the need to borrow its logo to try to get viewers to watch their season-closer instead! Breaking Bad became a smash hit when it aired on AMC back in 2008 with one of the most memorable series openings ever filmed. The story of a dying chemistry teacher who turns Meth-chef in order to provide for his family after he dies drew us in the minute we saw a man in a dress shirt, underwear, and a gas mask frantically driving an RV with two dead bodies in the back and an unconscious passenger through the middle of the desert. Even more engrossing is the progression of Walter White’s greed and self-consumption in his ability to cook the purest Meth in the southwestern United States.
The show has earned Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul, and Anna Gunn Emmy awards for their performances as Walter, Jesse, and Skylar and has secured many other awards and nominations, including three Golden Globes and the 2013 Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series. The series opening scene even won Lynne Willingham the 2008 Emmy for Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Drama Series! This show will surely go down as one of the most memorable and intense dramas that television has ever seen. The award winning writers have done an excellent job bringing Walter White’s story to the screen with such suspense and intensity, and such an epic could not have ended any better way, with all loose ends tied, and Walter’s mission to leave his money behind accomplished (I won’t say anymore in case you haven’t watched it yet!). To fill in the gap that is now your Sunday evening, be sure to catch up on the last season of AMC’s The Walking Dead, and watch the fourth season opener on Sunday, October 13th at 9/8c.