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Today Marks 50th Anniversary of Beatle’s ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’

sgt peppers lonely hearts club band

Today (May 26th) marks the 50th anniversary celebration of The Beatle’s revolutionary album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The LP was the first released by the band following their retirement from touring after their final performance at Candlestick Park in 1966. Although The Beatles had already begun a steady transition from being a more traditional pop-rock group with albums like Rubber Soul and Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s has been hailed as their ultimate creative masterpiece, followed closely perhaps by 1969’s Abbey Road. Released at the beginning of the Summer of Love, it set a new precedent for what a rock and roll record could be. The concept behind the album began following the exhaustion the group experienced after the whirlwind of Beatlemania. Paul McCartney came to Lennon, Starr, and Harrison with an idea that they would record an all new album under an alternative persona, which would free them from the weight of being the Beatles and usher in a fresh wave of musical creativity. Sgt. Pepper’s not only ushered in a new era for the Beatles; it also marked the beginning of the psychedelic rock movement that would see new groups like The Doors, Pink Floyd, and Jefferson Airplane begin to climb the pop music charts. Now, 50 years later, Sgt. Pepper’s is known not only for its conception and importance to 60s rock (and music in general), but also for the history of its production. Continue reading

Movie News/Independent Highlight

This week will see a number of indie projects open on select screens across the country. We mentioned the Kristen Stewart (Twilight, Snow White and the Huntsmen) drama Equals opening this Friday, about a couple who falls in love as the result of a disease in a futuristic utopia that is devoid of feeling and emotion, and the tension it causes between them and their society. Co-starring with Stewart is Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road, X-Men: Apocalypse), who are led by director Drake Doremus (Like Crazy, Breathe In).

Also opening on the indie circuit this week is a new animated movie called Phantom Boy, which takes place in the 1940s-50s and follows a young boy with superpowers who helps a wheelchair-bound policeman in his efforts to take down a notorious mob boss. The film comes from Oscar-nominated filmmakers Loup Felicioli & Alain Gagnol (A Cat in Paris) and stars French actors Edouard Baer (Chicken with Plums), Jean-Pierre Marielle (Coup de torchon, The DaVinci Code), and Audrey Tautou (A Very Long Engagement, Amelie).

Finally on the indie film circuit for this week is a new comedy called Undrafted Continue reading

New Extended Trailer For Disney’s Upcoming ‘Pete’s Dragon’

Disney is continuing to replenish its classic animated line-up with a new live-action adaptation of the 1977 feature Pete’s Dragon. Co-written and directed by David Lowery (Pioneer, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints), the new film is led by Oakes Fegley (This Is Where I Leave You, The Truth About Lies) as the young orphan Pete, whose best friend just so happens to be a big green dragon named Elliot. Leading the rest of the cast is The Help and Jurassic World star Bryce Dallas Howard, who is joined on screen by Karl Urban (The Bourne Supremacy, Star Trek), Wes Bentley (American Beauty, Interstellar), Oona Laurence (Southpaw, Lamb), and Oscar-winner Robert Redford (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, All The President’s Men). Screenwriter Toby Halbrooks, who has worked on a number of projects with director Lowery, co-wrote the film, which doesn’t appear to feature the all-too-memorable Gogans or the crazed and crooked Dr. Terminus. The trailer looks like it’s going to turn into a really heavy, emotional movie, like Disney tends to do these days, but I’d say it will probably still be worth the watch. The new movie opens in theaters this August 12th. Watch the trailer here on MADE!

‘The Divergent Series: Allegiant – Part 1’ Now Playing In Theaters

Fans of the Divergent films, which are based on the books by author Veronica Roth, finally get to see the last chapter of the series on the big screen this weekend, or at least half of the last chapter. Like so many series-films have all done since the filmmakers behind Harry Potter split the final book into two movies, this final chapter, Allegiant, will also be split into Parts 1 and 2, with the second installment expected in theaters next year. Allegiant – Part 1 picks up after the conclusion of Insurgent, and finds the protagonist Tris Prior and Four trying to escape over the wall surrounding futuristic Chicago in order to discover what is hidden behind the other side. Insurgent director Robert Schwentke (FlightPlan, Red) returned to direct the new installment, working from a screen adaptation by Noah Oppenheim (The Maze Runner, Jackie), Adam Cooper and Bill Collage (Accepted, Exodus: Gods and Kings). Starring in the series are actors Shailene Woodley (The Descendants, White Bird in a Blizzard), Theo James (The In-between Movie, Underworld: Awakening), Naomi Watts (King Kong, J. Edgar), Octavia Spencer (The Help, Fruitvale Station), Jeff Daniels (Dumb and Dumber, The Martian), and Zoe Kravitz (Dope, Mad Max: Fury Road). Watch the trailer one more time before you see the movie in theaters, and have a safe Saint Patrick’s Day weekend!

First Teaser Trailer For Upcoming ‘Pete’s Dragon’ Remake Now Available

A few months back we heard the first whisperings of an upcoming remake of the 1977 Walt Disney classic Pete’s Dragon, and now we have the first teaser trailer for the new movie, which is due out in August. Writer/director David Lowery (Pioneer, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints) adapted the original S.S. Field story with co-screenwriter Toby Halbrooks (Robots Are Blue, Dig) about a young orphan named Pete who goes on extraordinary adventures with his friend, a giant dragon named Elliott. Leading the cast are actors Bryce Dallas Howard (The Help, Jurassic World), Robert Redford (All The President’s Men, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid), Karl Urban (The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Bourne Supremacy), Wes Bentley (The Hunger Games, Interstellar), Craig Hall (King Kong, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug), and Oakes Fegley (This Is Where I Leave You, Prism) as young orphan Pete. This will be the third Disney remake that’s due out this year, at least that we’ve been watching. The first is the new adaptation of The Jungle Book from director Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Chef) coming out this April, and the second is the The Legend of Tarzan from director David Yates (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince), starring Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street, Focus) and Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained, Inglorious Basterds), which is due out in July. The trailer for the new Pete’s Dragon is available here on MADE. Look for more updates on these three movies coming out soon.

New Trailer For ‘Suicide Squad’ Now Available

The latest trailer for the upcoming Suicide Squad movie was released this week, giving fans a much closer look at the group of maniacal killers that are recruited by the government to carry out black-ops missions in exchange for reduced sentences. Writer/director David Ayer (Training Day, Fury) assembled an all-star group of actors for the line-up, including Will Smith (Independence Day, I Robot), Jared Leto (Requiem for a Dream, Dallas Buyers Club), Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street, Focus), Joel Kinnaman (Safehouse, Run All Night), Viola Davis (The Help, Prisoners), and Jai Courtney (Divergent, Terminator: Genisys). There’s not much I can really say; everything looks really well done, including the acting, and it looks like we’ll see more by way of real action stunts than overdone CGI effects. Check out the trailer here on MADE; the movie comes to theaters August 5th.

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Director David Ayer Tweets Actor Jared Leto’s ‘Joker’ Photo For Upcoming ‘Suicide Squad’ (2016)

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Actor Jared Leto in his Oscar-winning role as Rayon (Left) in Dallas Buyers Club, featured opposite the iconic DC character.

This week Academy Award-winning musician-turned-actor Jared Leto (Requiem For A Dream, Dallas Buyers Club) was seen in a new photo from director David Ayer’s Twitter account. The photo displays Leto’s Joker make-up for the upcoming Suicide Squad, due out in theaters in August 2016, while simultaneously celebrating the 75th anniversary of the character’s first appearance. Writer/director David Ayer (End of Watch, Fury) will be working from his own script adaptation of Ross Andru, Robert Kanigher, and John Ostrander’s DC Comics series. Joining Leto in the cast line-up are actors Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street, Focus), Jai Courtney (The Water Diviner, Terminator Genisys), Will Smith (Independence Day, Men in Black), Joel Kinneman (Safe House, RoboCop), and Viola Davis (The Help, Prisoners). Actor/rapper Common (Now You See Me, Selma), Scott Eastwood (Invictus, The Longest Ride), Jessie Eisenberg (The Social Network, Zombieland), and Adam Beach (Joe Dirt, Flags of our Fathers) are also expected to make appearances in the film. The plot details are minute but the general outline from the comics is that the Suicide Squad is a group of super-villains put together by a government agency tasked with carrying out dangerous missions in exchange for shorter prison sentences. Principle photography is currently underway, so we should see a teaser trailer coming out pretty soon. Follow the link below to see the tweeted photo from director Ayer.

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Writer/Director Mike Binder’s ‘Black Or White’ Now Playing In Theaters

Writer/director Mike Binder (The Upside of Anger, Reign Over Me) has a new project in theaters this week titled Black or White with Academy Award winners Kevin Kostner (The Untouchables, Dances With Wolves) and Octavia Spencer (The Help, Fruitvale Station). The film follows a grandfather who receives custody of his granddaughter and ensues in a custody battle with her paternal grandmother (Spencer) and her father after her mother dies. What follows is an interesting look of culture-clash and understanding as the two families come to work together in their child’s best interest. Also making up the supporting cast are actors Jillian Estell (Chase, So This Is Christmas), Bill Burr (Date Night, The Heat), Anthony Mackie (The Hurt Locker, Gangster Squad), and Gillian Jacobs (Walk of Shame, Community). Check out the trailer here on MADE.

MADE Review: ‘A Most Violent Year’


If you haven’t had a chance to go and see A Most Violent Year yet, you should be aware of what you’re walking into before you go. While the movie, itself, is really well done, and, in my opinion is a very good movie, if you’re expecting a big violent mafia flick, you’re going to be extremely disappointed. Writer/director J.C. Chandor‘s screenplay was very well written; he conveys the themes of the movie very clearly and the plot allows for a refreshing look of the hardworking American immigrant and the belief in strong family values. But as far as violence goes, the movie is definitely lacking, especially considering the title is A Most Violent Year, which really only relates to 1981 when the story takes place, one of New York City’s most violent years on record. Other than that it felt like the same story could have been put into modern times and it still would have made sense. All that aside, the acting performances by Golden Globe nominees Oscar Isaac (Robin Hood, Inside Llewyn Davis) and Jessica Chastain (The Help, Interstellar), and also that of supporting cast members Albert Brooks (Taxi Driver, Drive) and David Oyelowo (Lincoln, Selma) are outstanding, and Chandor’s filmmaking is exceptional and well deserved of recognition. So if you go in expecting more of a Coppola (The Godfather)-like movie as opposed to a Scorsese (Mean Streets, Goodfellas) or DePalma (Scarface, The Untouchables)-like movie, I think you’ll really enjoy it. Here’s the trailer one more time.

J.C. Chandor’s ‘A Most Violent Year’ Now Playing In Theaters Nationwide


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.