Tag Archives: l.

The Frozen Film Festival Is Showing In Downtown Saint Paul February 1st-4th

frozen

The 2017 Frozen Film Festival kicks off today and runs through this Saturday night in downtown Saint Paul. Frozen Film Festival plays host to both feature length and short length features in the categories of drama, comedy, and documentary. In addition, short films by students are also presented at the event. The festival kicks off tonight with a party at Sakura in downtown Saint Paul. The main venues for the event are F.K. Weyerhaeuser Auditorium at 75 W. 5th St. and TPT Street Space at 172 East Fourth Street. Tickets for the event are available on the website, along with a full schedule of films showing each day. If you’re interested, VIP passes are also still available for sale. Continue reading

This Week in Film History….

serpico

Director Sydney Lumet‘s 1973 undercover police drama Serpico earned Al Pacino his second Oscar nomination for Best Actor. While it was another in a long-running streak of Oscar nominations for Pacino that resulted in no wins until 1992’s Scent of a Woman, Serpico‘s other Oscar nomination was for Best Adapted Screenplay for screenwriters Waldo Salt (Midnight Cowboy, The Day of the Locust) and Norman Wexler (Saturday Night Fever, Staying Alive). Although Serpico proved to be the last Oscar-worthy project of Wexler’s, Waldo Salt had a much longer, and much darker story in Hollywood screenwriting history.

Waldo Salt was born on October 18, 1914 and grew up in Chicago an accomplished academic. He was so accomplished, in fact, that he graduated from Stanford University at the same time his friends were graduating from high school. Shortly thereafter, Salt was in Hollywood working as a screenwriter for MGM. There he worked on and assisted with various writing projects, but his first solo writing adaptation was with a 1937 film called The Bride Wore Red. The next year, Salt joined the American Communist Party, putting himself on the radar for the House Un-American Activities Committee during the Red Scare/McCarthy era 12 years later. Continue reading

New Indie Drama ‘Captain Fantastic’ Seeing Limited Theatrical Release This Weekend

A new independent drama starring Viggo Mortensen (The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, A History of Violence) is seeing a limited theatrical release this Friday. Written and directed by Matt Ross (The Aviator, Silicon Valley), Captain Fantastic tells the story of a man who raises and home schools his six children in the countryside. After his wife commits suicide, however, they are forced to move into the city, and he soon discovers the children are not prepared for the realities of life in the city. The film won Un Certain Regard Award for directing at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, and also took home the Golden Space Needle Award at the Seattle International Film Festival. Starring in the film are actors George McKay (Defiance, Pride), Samantha Isler (Sean Saves the World, Dig Two Graves), Annalise Besso (Standing Up, Oculus), Nicholas Hamilton (Long Shadows, Strangerland), Shree Crooks (Ray Donovan, American Horror Story), Charlie Shotwell (The Comedians, Shot Down), and comedic vets Steve Zahn (Saving Silverman, Sahara) and Kathryn Hahn (Step Brothers, Parks and Recreation). Continue reading

Quentin Tarantino’s ‘The Hateful Eight’ Now Playing In Theaters Nationwide

After the limited release that took place on Christmas Day, writer/director Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight is now playing in theaters nationwide. Starring Samuel L. Jackson (Die Hard with a Vengeance, The Avengers) Kurt Russell (The Thing, Escape from New York), Jennifer Jason Leigh (Road to Perdition, The Machinist), Walton Goggins (The Green Mile, Sons of Anarchy), Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction), Michael Madsen (Free Willy, Kill Bill Vol. 2), and Bruce Dern (Django Unchained ,Nebraska), the film takes place in post Civil War Wyoming, where a group of bounty hunters become trapped in a lodge during a snow storm and end up having to survive both the storm, and each other. Tarantino worked with Oscar-winning composer Ennio Morricone (The Good The Bad and the Ugly, Once Upon A Time in the West) on the new project, Morricone’s first Western film score since the mid-70s, making Hateful Eight the first film of Tarantino’s to feature an all-out theatrical score and not simply a soundtrack. Those that were lucky enough to catch it in theaters last week have reported nothing but great reviews, so even if you’re not a Tarantino or Western-genre fan, I would definitely put this one on your list. The trailer is available one more time on MADE. Enjoy!

Quentin Tarantino’s ‘The Hateful Eight’ Opening This Christmas Day

Now that the Star Wars bubble has burst, it’s time to look forward to this week’s Christmas Day releases. The first up is one we’ve been waiting for since last Christmas, when a version of the script was leaked and writer/director Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained) was urged to file a lawsuit over the incident. The Hateful Eight is the eighth writing/directing project from Tarantino and is another Western outing that takes place in post-Civil War Wyoming, where a group of bounty hunters are forced to seek shelter from a blizzard, only to find themselves in a game of betrayal and deception. This time out, Tarantino’s stylistic approach to filmmaking will be backed by a full score from Oscar-winning composer Ennio Morricone, whose last Western-film score went to 1975’s A Genius, Two Friends, and an Idiot, but he is more famously known in the Western genre for his contributions to films like A Fistful of Dollars (1964), The Good The Bad and the Ugly (1966), and Once Upon A Time in the West (1968). Starring in the new film are actors Jennifer Jason Leigh (Road to Perdition, The Machinist), Channing Tatum (22 Jump Street, Foxcatcher), Kurt Russell (Stargate, Death Proof), Walton Goggins (Predators, Sons of Anarchy), Zoe Bell (Grindhouse, Oblivion), and Oscar-nominee Bruce Dern (Monster, Nebraska), along with Tarantino regulars Samuel L. Jackson (Basic, The Avengers), Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction), and Michael Madsen (Free Willy, Kill Bill Vol. 2). The film will be getting a limited release in theaters this Christmas Day, owing to Tarantino’s decision to present the film on 70mm projection screens before the nationwide expansion on January 16th. If a theater near you is showing this one on Christmas Day I would definitely give it some consideration; anything Tarantino is always great, and throw Morricone into the mix and probably got one of the best Westerns that’s hit the big screen in a while, so enjoy!

Director Spike Lee’s New Drama ‘Chi-Raq’ Opening In Theaters Today

Director Spike Lee‘s update of Aristophanes’ play Lysistrata set in the violent streets of modern-day Chicago titled Chi-Raq is opening in theaters today. Set primarily in Chicago’s Southside, the film utilizes modern gang violence to tell Aristophanes’ tale of a group of women who decide to keep sex from their male counterparts in order to encourage them to stop the street violence that is destroying their homes and families. Lee adapted the screenplay with writer Kevin Willmott (The Battle for Bunker Hill, Jayhawkers), which features actors Nick Cannon (Bobby, Day of the Dead), Teyonah Parris (How Do You Know, They Came Together), Wesley Snipes (Blade, Demolition Man), Samuel L. Jackson (The Avengers, Unbreakable), John Cusack (The Raven, Hot Tub Time Machine), and Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls, Lullaby). For Hudson, the film carries a unique weight: she has lost three family members to the gun-violence dividing the streets of Chicago. Comedy veteran Dave Chappelle (The Chappelle Show, The Nutty Professor) is also expected to make an appearance. The trailer is here on MADE; check it out in theaters today.

Watch The First Trailer For Quentin Tarantino’s Upcoming ‘The Hateful Eight’

Yesterday writer/director Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained) released the first trailer for his upcoming western The Hateful Eight. The film is credited as Tarantino’s eighth film and as many of you know has already undergone its fair share of controversy. The initial screenplay was leaked to the public on Gawker earlier this year and Tarantino’s filing a lawsuit against them was highly publicized in the press (to his own dismay). But since then the director has completed his final written script and with filming complete, he appeared at this year’s Comic-Con in San Diego to showcase the movie with a whole 7-minute clip and a discussion about shooting on 70mm film instead of conforming to the film industry’s shift to digital filmmaking, which he has stated may drive him to leave filmmaking altogether (but nothing is yet set in stone). As for the new movie, it will stand as Tarantino’s second venture into the Western genre and this time will even feature a score (the first of his films to do so) by composer Ennio Morricone, who first achieved fame as a composer for westerns on legendary director Sergio Leone‘s A Fistful of Dollars and The Good The Bad and The Ugly. Making up the cast for Hateful Eight include Tarantino regulars Samuel L. Jackson (Jackie Brown, Django Unchained), Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction), and Michael Madsen (Kill Bill Vol. 1-2), plus actors Kurt Russell (Escape From New York, Death Proof), Walton Goggins (Miracle at St. Anna’s, Sons of Anarchy), Jennifer Jason Leigh (Road to Perdition, The Machinist), Zoe Bell (Grindhouse, Inglorious Basterds), and Oscar-nominee Bruce Dern (Monster, Nebraska). You can see the new trailer here on MADE. The Hateful Eight will be opening on big screens nationwide January 8, 2016, with a limited release happening this Christmas Day. Stay tuned!

News On Director Quentin Tarantino’s Upcoming Western ‘The Hateful Eight’

hatefuleight
The first poster for Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming western The Hateful Eight.

Filmmaker Quentin Tarantino went through a pretty big hassle some months back when the script to his upcoming Western, The Hateful Eight, was leaked online, but production seems to be going on without any disturbances and excitement is now buzzing around Hollywood about the new footage Tarantino displayed at the Cine Gear Expo last week using 70mm camera lenses. Tarantino and cinematographer Robert Richardson (Inglorious Basterds, Shutter Island) wanted to present Hateful Eight in 2.78:1 ratio, and so have been working with older Panavision lenses to update the equipment to use on the film, and a total of 50 cinemas across the country are set to be fitted with the special lenses to display the film upon its release. The hope from Tarantino’s view is that the display will bring movie-goers back to the cinema for the visual experience that can’t be duplicated in a home theater system or any other setting. Principle photography is currently underway in Colorado, the story centered on a group of bounty hunters who become isolated in a winter-storm in post-Civil War Wyoming and must survive the weather, and each other. Appearing in the film are Tarantino veterans Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained), Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs, The Incredible Hulk), and Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill: Volume 2), plus Kurt Russell (The Thing, Grindhouse), Walton Goggins (The Shield, Sons of Anarchy), Jennifer Jason Leigh (Road to Perdition, The Machinist), and Oscar-winner Bruce Dern (Monster, Nebraska). No official US release date has yet been scheduled, but we should see a trailer out relatively soon. Stay tuned!

New Spike Lee Drama ‘Chiraq’ Begins Filming In Chicago’s Wicker Park Neighborhood

chiraq
Chicago Police investigate a shooting on Chicago’s southside.

Chicagoans may have noticed all the crazy traffic that surrounded the Wicker Park neighborhood today (June 2nd). The cause? Controversial film director Spike Lee (Malcolm X, Inside Man) is in town at the intersection of North and Milwaukee Avenue beginning principle photography for his new drama Chiraq. The film has already been the subject of much scrutiny owing to the implications of its title, and the graphic nature of the violence in Chicago that is expected to be the film’s main focus. Making up the cast are actors Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained), John Cusack (Hot Tub Time Machine, The Raven), Jeremy Piven (Old School, Entourage), Common (Now You See Me, Selma), and Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls, Empire), with rapper Kanye West rumored to also be in the cast. Details on the plot are still pretty vague, but the film has been in production for sometime now, and this is likely only one location that will be used for film locations. The film is due out in theaters in 2016. Stay tuned.

‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ Now Playing In Theaters Nationwide


At last we have the first big blockbuster release for 2015. Avengers: Age of Ultron is now playing in theaters nationwide, and with the huge success the film saw during its European release two weeks ago, it should be an even bigger hit here in the US. Robert Downey Jr (Good Night and Good Luck, The Judge), Chris Evans (Captain America: The First Avenger, Unstoppable), Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation, The Spirit), Chris Hemsworth (Thor: The Dark World, Rush), Mark Ruffalo (Shutter Island, Now You See Me), Jeremy Renner (The Bourne Legacy, American Hustle), and Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, Django: Unchained) are all back to reprise their roles as the Avengers, with Golden Globe nominee James Spader (The Blacklist, Lincoln) providing the voice of Ultron. Oscar-nominated writer/director Joss Whedon (Toy Story, The Avengers) also returned to lead the project. Here’s the trailer one more time, now go see it on the big screen!!