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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Pre-Valentine Date Movie “THE RIGHT KIND OF WRONG”

Love at first sight is one of those enduring mysteries that the majority of us believe in and surveys show more than half have experienced. That the object of such affection is a married woman is as classic a dilemma as Paris and Helen of Troy.

In “The Right Kind of Wrong,” a romantic comedy, or perhaps a comedy about the madness of romance, we are introduced to Leo, a total romantic and a failed-writer-turned-dishwasher made famous for his many flaws in a blog called “Why You Suck,” a huge Internet success written by his ex-wife Julie (played by Kristen Hager).  Then Leo meets Colette (Sara Canning), the girl of his dreams… on the day she is marrying the perfect man.  And so, the ultimate underdog story begins as Leo, a fearless dreamer, risks all to show Colette and the whole wide world all that is right with a man famous for being wrong.  

Convinced Colette is his soul mate, Leo goes on the ‘unconventional tours’ that she leads in the scenic town of Mount Yalo and doggedly observes her secret daily rituals. He invites her anonymously to witness him in action – in his job as a dishwasher ‘with themes.’ In the process he discovers that Colette is an outsider, like himself, with a wicked sense of humor and a passion for speaking her mind.  In Leo’s war to win Colette’s heart, he gets beat up by kids, loses his home, his job, and (temporarily) his cat.  Leo’s pursuit of Colette also changes Leo himself. Because when he discovers Colette has read Julie’s book… he reads it to know what he is up against. And taking in Julie’s complaints, he is finally forced to face the ways he let Julie down. And the ways that his refusal to listen to others -- has let others in his life down too, including himself.

Colette is a strong-willed woman,” observed Canning, “and, at first, she's really not having this crazy pursuit from Leo, bombarding her at work and doing crazy things all over town. But somehow, he manages to find his way in.” At first, Leo’s demented behavior substantiates the claims Julie makes in her blog-turned-book. “But bit by bit, Colette begins to see a lot of her own traits reflected in Leo's actions and she realizes Leo might not be too far off the mark. Colette has a great line after she reads Julie's book and the blog and she says to Leo, “You know, a lot of the things she [Julie] calls wrong don't seem wrong to me.””

From my first chemistry test with Ryan, I really hoped that this would all work out and I'd be sitting here in this gorgeous location shooting this film,” said Canning. “I think he's perfect for Leo. We laugh all the time. We laugh in between all these really difficult scenes that we have to shake it off. And he's right there. There's no transition for him between his crazy lovely self off-camera and then what he brings to a scene. It’s great to watch him and to play with him.”

Kwanten returned the affection in his observations about Canning, when he wasn’t ducking her cross punch. “Sara brings such an exuberance to that character. I don't think the girl actually sleeps. She's sort of permanently buzzed. And she loves this character, she loves the story and I couldn't ask for sort of a better co-star.”
In love, there are no boundaries and there are no obstacles, that is the theme of “The Right Kind of Wrong.” It’s a fantasy that is fun to subscribe to from time to time and if you do, you’ll root for Leo and feel romantically transported to where you can believe what Leo, our hero, says, which is that nothing is impossible,” concludes producer Lantos.

The Right Kind of Wrong” opens February 6 in cinemas from Axinite Digicinema.  Tune in to DWLL 94.7 for a chance to win free posters and tickets to the pre-Valentine date movie of the year.
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Award-Winning troupe assembled in “THE MONUMENTS MEN”

The story of the Monuments Men is one that really very few people know,” says George Clooney, who returns to the director’s chair for the story of a small group of artists, art historians, architects, and museum curators who would lead the rescue of 1000 years of civilization during World War II in his new film, The Monuments Men.  “Artists, art dealers, architects – these were men that were far beyond the age that they were going to be drafted into a war or volunteer.  But they took on this adventure, because they had this belief that culture can be destroyed.  If they’d failed, it could have meant the loss of six million pieces of art. They weren’t going to let that happen – and the truth of the matter is, they pulled it off.”
Part of the drama of the film is that all of the Monuments Men are so unsuited to serving as soldiers in wartime.  “Wars are fought by 18-year-olds,” says Clooney.  “Once you get to the John Goodmans and the Bob Balabans and the George Clooneys, you know – these guys are not getting drafted.” Producing and writing partner Grant Heslov adds: “They did it because it was clear that they were the only people who could do it.”

The answer was the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives group, which would go to the front lines and, for the first time, try to save the treasures that could be saved. “Culture was at risk,” says Clooney.  “You see it time and time again.  You saw it in Iraq – the museums weren’t protected, and you saw how much of their culture was lost because of that.”

Even today, people are still trying to get back the art that was looted from their families by the Nazis,”Heslov says, noting that just recently, a treasure trove of looted art was discovered in a Munich apartment – 1,500 works worth $1.5 billion, paintings by Matisse, Picasso, Dix, and other artists that had been thought to be lost.

Clooney and Heslov note that while the film is based on the true story of the Monuments Men, they did take some liberties with the characters for dramatic purposes.  Though many of the characters are inspired by real Monuments Men, Clooney and Heslov have invented characters for the film.  More importantly, even if the characters are invented, their story is real.  “We invented a few mundane scenes, just to help the story along, but the things in the movie that you’d think are so ridiculous and strange, ‘well, there’s no way that those actually happened’ – those are the things that actually happened,” says Clooney.

Meet “The Monuments Men,” for the film, Clooney and Heslov were able to attract a top tier of actors, including Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, Hugh Bonneville, and Cate Blanchett.  

George Clooney heads the cast in the role of Frank Stokes, a leading art historian. The inspiration for Clooney’s character was art historian George Stout.“In real life, he was a very scrappy guy.  He could do anything – like fix cars and radios.”  The head of the conservation department at the Fogg, and later the director of the Worcester Art Museum and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Stout was on the front lines during the war, helping to rescue cultural treasures in Caen, Maastricht, and Aachen, as well as Nazi art repositories in Siegen, Heilbronn, Cologne, Merkers, and Altaussee.

Matt Damon takes on the role of James Granger and marks his sixth collaboration with George Clooney.   The James Granger character is inspired by James Rorimer, who later became director of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. Granger’s relationship with Claire Simone (Cate Blanchett) was inspired by Rorimer’s interaction with Rose Valland, an employee of the Jeu de Paume gallery in Paris. 

Bill Murray was excited to join The Monuments Men from the minute George Clooney first told him about the project.  Murray’s role, Richard Campbell, is an architect.  Murray’s character is inspired by several real Monuments Men, including architect Robert Posey.  While embedded with Patton’s Third Army during the war, Posey discovered the salt mine at Altaussee, where the Nazis had stashed the Ghent Altarpiece, the Bruges Madonna, Vermeer’s The Astronomer, and thousands of other works of art. For his contributions, Posey was awarded the Legion of Honor from France and the Order of Leopold from Belgium.

John Goodman says that his character, Walter Garfield, represents the people, men and women, who were stuck on the home front but eager to help the war effort in any way they could.  Goodman’s character is inspired by the real-life Monuments Man Walker Hancock, a renowned sculptor. Hancock was a native of St. Louis, as is Goodman.  “Oddly enough, when my mother and I would take the bus to downtown St. Louis to go shopping, we’d pass one of his sculptures, the Soldiers’ Memorial,” Goodman says. “It just put me in touch with the character. It’s a small connection, but a happy coincidence.”

Goodman’s character, Walter Garfield, is paired with Jean Claude Clermont, portrayed by Oscar®-winning actor Jean Dujardin, a re-teaming of Goodman and Dujardin from “The Artist.”  “Jean’s role as Claude Clermont is a French Jew who is an art dealer in Marseilles,” Dujardin explains. “He escapes and takes refuge in London with his family. He is recruited by the American army for his artistic knowledge. He’s not a soldier, but it’s really important for him to take part in the war. He’s really proud to be a member of the Monuments Men.”

Downton Abbey’s”Hugh Bonneville plays Donald Jeffries, a flawed man seeking a second chance.  “When the characters are introduced, you see them in their natural habitats, so to speak,” Bonneville explains. “Donald’s happens to be a pub. We come to learn that he has made mistakes in life, has been unreliable and George’s character gives him a second chance to re-embrace his first love, which is art.”

Bob Balaban takes on the role of Preston Savitz.  “Savitz is an intellectual, an art historian and a theatrical impresario,” Balaban says.  Preston Savitz is inspired by Monuments Man Lincoln Kirstein, an American impresario, art connoisseur, author, and a major cultural figure in New York who co-founded the New York City Ballet.
The final Monuments Man in the film is Sam Epstein, played by Dimitri Leonidas.  Not yet 19, Epstein is the only real soldier in the group, recruited for his ability to drive and to speak German.   “My character grew up in Germany – but Germany rejected him, because he’s Jewish,” Leonidas says.  The inspiration for Leonidas’s character is Harry Ettlinger.  “I was born in Germany under the Jewish faith,” says Ettlinger.  “Hitler was on his way to get rid of all Jews in all the world.  My father lost his business, and my parents realized that economic life for a Jew was no longer possible in Germany.”

Cate Blanchett rounds out the cast as Claire Simone, a Frenchwoman in a unique position in Occupied France. “Claire Simone is a curator at the Jeu de Paume – once an art museum but became a kind of depot for art looted by the Nazis,” Blanchett explains.  “But her real work goes on at night, when she records the provenance of the works and where they were being taken in an obsessively detailed way. She’s the catalyst for the third act of the movie – the Monuments Men know the works are disappearing but they don’t know where they are going, and they need her information.”  Blanchett’s character is inspired by Rose Valland, a French woman who bravely and secretly kept track of the Nazis’ systematic tracking, risking her life in the process. 

The Monuments Men” opens February 12 in cinemas from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.

View the trailer below: 
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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Snowpiercer: Movie Review

By: Lakwatsera Lovers

Thanks to my cousin, we are lucky enough to attend the advance screening of Snowpiercer last night at SM Megamall. We didn't expect too much in this film since the trailer didn't look spectacular enough, but we pushed through because of the great actors in it. 

In the future, the government failed an experiment to stop global warming resulting to a massive wipe out of all living things on Earth. The few remaining survivors inhabit inside a train called the "Snowpiercer" where it revolves around the planet. The people inside are divided into different classes where the elites stay on the front while the poor people are locked up at the tail. Sick, by the way, they are treated; the colonist in the back of the train planned to revolt. They are led by Curtis (Chris Evans) and must overcome the odds and reach the front to take full control of the train. 

The film didn't waste any time in gaining momentum. It like a game where they need to endure different challenges at each stage facing a particular task. Every level gets one notch higher as they need to battle it out in order to survive. Each door they open is a visual spectacle as the movie never runs out of brilliant ideas, keeping the audience thrilled on what would happen next. It appears that Director Bong Joon-ho (The Host 2006) made a statement in his first film outside South Korea. He used his skills, get a little ambitious but still manage to pull away with a spectacle masterpiece.

Chris Evans fans wouldn't love his rugged look in this movie but handed out a strong performance. Octavia Spencer and Jaime Bell also did well in their department, portraying characters you definitely would care for. Tilda Swinton simply did a fantastic job as a villain as, she was quite irritating at times that makes us wish we can bash her head on the wall. And we almost forgot to mention the Korean stars Song-kang Ho and Ah-sung Ko who played the awesome father and daughter tandem.

Overall, Snowpiercer knows when exactly to pull the trigger in every scene. It managed to deliver perfect execution right from the very beginning. We don't usually recommend sci-fi themed films, but we highly recommend this one so don't you dare to miss it.

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 10 out of 10 stars

Cast: Chris Evans, Jaime Bell, Octavia Spencer

Directed by: Bong Joon-ho
Distributed by: Multivision Pictures PH
Now Showing in cinemas nationwide

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From Academy Award-winner Paul Haggis (“Crash,” “Million Dollar Baby”) comes the romantic thriller “Third Person” which jumps from Paris to Rome to New York as it traces the hidden connections between three very different men. The acclaimed film will be shown exclusively at Ayala Malls Cinemas nationwide starting February 19.

Written and directed by Haggis, “Third Person” had its successful world premiere at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival and features an all-star cast including Academy Award®-nominee Liam Neeson, Academy Award®-winner Kim Basinger, Academy Award®-winner Adrien Brody, Academy Award®-nominee James Franco, Olivia Wilde, Mila Kunis, and Maria Bello. 

Third Person” wends its way through three cities and three tales. The various stories, situated in Paris, Rome, and New York, are, at first glance, all separate, but Haggis effortlessly makes connections among them as the film unwinds, concentrating on three men and their romantic entanglements. 
Michael (Liam Neeson) is a writer whose latest manuscript has been refused, so he flies off to Paris to rethink his life, leaving his wife (Kim Basinger) behind in the States. Sean (Adrien Brody) finds himself wandering the streets of Rome and befriends a Romanian woman in a bar, while Rick (James Franco) lives in a tony New York apartment with his son from a previous marriage and his new girlfriend. Gradually, each one of these stories unveils its secrets, testifying to the whims and complexities of life. Surfaces are deceptive in the Haggis universe, but as each story is explored we discover untold pleasures and pains. Life is never easy: it can be deceptive, inhabited by anger and jealousy, but it can also be surprisingly joyous. 

Each city in Haggis's film provides a physical landscape that reflects the dilemma of the characters, and the locations are used in very different ways. The sensuality of Paris, the warmth of Rome and the edge of New York all heighten the atmosphere. “Third Person” is a film of unexpected wonders, subtle shifts of mood, and powerful emotions. Redemption can be found amidst the chaos, but so can its opposite. Haggis pulls the strings masterfully while negotiating between the two. 
"The opportunity to work with the master himself - Paul Haggis - on creating an intelligent and intriguing relationship movie was an exceptional and fulfilling challenge for me. To see how this group of brilliant actors interpret the characters from the film, was an experience that far exceeded my expectations," says producer Paul Breuls.

"This is an incredibly personal story, the way 'Crash' was an incredibly personal story," Haggis shares. "I posed several questions to myself, as I was going along, and they were all about being in love with someone who is impossible."

     “Third Person” is distributed in the Philippines by Axinite Digicinema.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

“MALEFICENT” Conjures new trailer featuring Lana Del Rey song

Walt Disney Pictures has just unveiled the second trailer for its fantasy adventure “Maleficent” starring Angelina Jolie. The trailer, which features Lana Del Rey's unique, never-before-heard rendition of the fairy-tale tune "Once Upon a Dream," may be viewed below: 

Del Rey's reimagining of the renowned song from Disney's classic animated film “Sleeping Beauty” will be featured in full during the end-credits of “Maleficent.”

The film explores the untold story of Disney's most iconic villain from the classic “Sleeping Beauty" and the elements of her betrayal that ultimately turn her pure heart to stone. Driven by revenge and a fierce desire to protect the moors over which she presides, Maleficent cruelly places an irrevocable curse upon the human king's newborn infant Aurora. As the child grows, Aurora is caught in the middle of the seething conflict between the forest kingdom she has grown to love and the human kingdom that holds her legacy. Maleficent realizes that Aurora may hold the key to peace in the land and is forced to take drastic actions that will change both worlds forever.

The film stars Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, Sharlto Copley, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, Imelda Staunton, Miranda Richardson, Juno Temple and Lesley Manville.

Opening across the Philippines on May 28, 2014, “Maleficient” is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International through Columbia Pictures.

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Crystal Sky Multimedia promises another exciting year announcing some films on their lineup this 2014. 

Geography Club
February 5

16-year old Russell is going on dates with girls while nurturing a secret relationship with star quarterback Kevin, who will do anything to prevent his teammates from finding out. Min and Terese tell everyone that they're just best friends. And then there's Ike, who can't figure out who he is or who he wants to be. Finding the truth too hard to hide, they decide to form a Geography Club, thinking nobody else would want to join. However, their secrets may soon be discovered and they could have to face the choice of revealing who they really are.

A Little Bit Zombie
February 26

Synopsis: Infected by a virus, a mild mannered HR manager attempts to fulfill his overwhelming desire for brains, all while trying to keep it together so as not to incur the wrath of his bridezilla-to-be. 

Awards & Nominations

Best Feature Film Award: Fantaspoa Film Festival, Brazil
Best Feature Film Award: Canadian Film Fest
Rising Star Award:  Canadian International Film Festival
Best Feature Film Award:  Honolulu Film Awards
Gold Remi Award for Best Dark Comedy:  Houston International Film Festival
Best Independent Film Award:  Mexico International Film Festival
Golden Ace Award:  Las Vegas Film Festival
Festival Prize:  Louisville Fight Night Film Festival
Golden Palm Award:  Mexico International Film Festival
2013 Best Feature Film: Freight Night Film Festival Kentucky
2013 Best Comedy Film: Freight Night Film Festival Kentucky
2013 Best Zombie Film: Freight Night Film Festival
2013 Bloody Brilliance Award: Horror Central
2013 Best of 2013 Award: Horror Central

March 5

Synopsis: With the psychic power of clairvoyance, an extra-sensory perception, Amy starts witnessing haunting visions as her entire Amish village begins to fall into demonic control. An ominous funeral director, Christopher, uses Amy's special abilities to seek out the covert leader behind the possession. Amy and Christopher must stop the fall of their village before the Devil takes over Amy's soul-forcing them to perform a controversial exorcism. 

Curse of the Shadow
April 2

Synopsis: A ruthless elven bounty huntress (Nemyt) shoots down the dragon ridden by the fugitive orc shaman, Fangtor Bloodmoon. When Fangtor refuses to surrender quietly, the huntress must battle for her own life against the dangerous villain, and comes away with more than just his head.
 Copiii: The 1st Entry
June 18
Synopsis:  Newlyweds Holly and Trevor Davidson are on a road trip to celebrate their honeymoon in Miami when their new life together takes a surreal turn. A whimsical pit stop in a tourist trap goes horribly wrong and they find themselves forced to face an ominous new presence in their lives and an ambiguous threat. But is that threat coming from Trevor's family, Holly's dark past, or something far more sinister and otherworldly, such as the ancient curse of the Copiii Pierdere?
For the trailers of the films please visit Crystal Sky Multimedia on Youtube 
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The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box: Movie Review

The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box
By: Lakwastera Lovers

First, we would like to thank Gateway Cineplex and Captive Cinema for the advance screening tickets last night. The premise looks like Sherlock Holmes is back to solve another case by searching the Midas Box.  

Mariah Mundi's (Aneurin Barnard) world became tragic when his parents have gone missing and his younger brother Felix (Xavier Atkins), has been kidnapped. With the help of Will Charity (Michael Sheen), they must work together to save his family and locate the Midas Box first before it lands into the hands of Otto Luger (Sam Neill). If they fail, Luger will be the most powerful and wealthiest man alive. 

The film has a really interesting plot, which revolves around a puzzling mystery of a lost artifact. It started well, keeping the film's piece steady, making us enjoy a comical performance from Michael Sheen. It suddenly looses momentum in the middle half as some scenes were bit dragging at times. At the end, it manages to recover the lost time, bringing out some few thrills and capping it off with a decent climax. 

For the cast, as we mentioned we really had fun watching Micheal Sheen not only by playing a goofy version of Sherlock Holmes but also playing his magician alter ego. Sam Neill is also an effective villain while Aneurin Barnard had the charm but seems to lack some energy.

Overall, The Curse of the Midas Box keeps a basic structure formula for an adventure film. It could have been better as they had a great material to work with. It just needed some more spark and were hoping that the hanging ending will be made into a sequel in the future.

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 6 out of 10 stars

Cast: Aneurin Barnard, Micheal Sheen, Sam Neill

Directed by: Jonathan Newman
Distributed by: Captive Cinemas
Opens January 29 in cinemas nationwide

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Geography Club: Movie Review

Geography Club
By: Lakwatsera Lovers

First, we would like to thank Crystal Sky Multimedia last night for inviting us to the advance screening of Geography Club at SM Megamall. The movie is adapted from the best-selling critically acclaimed novel by Brent Hartinger, which tackles about a group of GLBT high-school students.

Russell (Cameron Deane Stewart) falls in love with Kevin (Justin Deeley), their football team's quarterback. The two secretly hides their growing relationship when Min (Ally Maki) caught them kissing one night. Soon, Min invites Russell to join the Geography Club, a support group in their campus for gay and lesbian students. At first, Russell is reluctant to join to keep his secret but returns and became interested more to connect with his other fellow members. Will their secrets keep intact or will they finally decide to come out the closet?

We often get to see a gay-themed film released in our theaters. Its fresh to see a movie separating itself from blockbuster genres and tackle an issue that we find intriguing to watch. They tackled the issue smoothly and enlighten the audience to the world of gay teens who seems confused about their feelings. They also highlighted a soft approach towards bullying. 

Even the actors are not that popular they brought life to their respective roles. Cameron Deane Stewart and Justin Deeley manage to spark the audience with their chemistry. They portrayed their characters well and reacted believably with their situations. The supporting cast also did a great job and supply the energy it needs to sustain the momentum all throughout. 

Overall, Geography Club isn't filled with remarkable actors who can easily lure some moviegoers to watch the film. However, it surely has its strengths, as they made a charming formula and hopefully attracts a lot of audiences to see a captivating entertaining film. It's very different from other teen flicks, but we're sure that you'll find this movie really interesting. 

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 8.5 out of 10 stars

Cast: Cameron Deane Stewart, Justin Deeley, Ally Maki, Meaghan Martin

Directed by: Gary Entin
Distributed by: Crystal Sky Multimedia
Opens February 5 in cinemas nationwide

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Sam Neill’s formidable Otto Luger in The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box’

The film, based on G.P. Taylor’s novel “The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box,tells the story of young Mariah Mundi (Aneurin Barnard), whose world gets turned upside down when his parents (played by Ioan Gruffudd and Keeley Hawes) go missing and his younger brother (played by Xavier Atkins) gets kidnapped. Mariah teams up with Will Charity (Michael Sheen) to embark on a journey that lands them at the Prince Regent Hotel, which is operated by Otto Luger (Neill).
It’s discovered that Otto is the one responsible for the kidnapping of Mariah’s brother, and he might have also found the secret lair that contains the Midas Box. With this box, anyone can turn anything into gold. And if it falls into the hands of Otto, bad things will happen.
There’s a quote that you said over 20 years ago in reference to your Carl Fitzgerald character in “Death in Brunswick.” And that quote was, “Of all the characters I’ve played, I think I have more in common with [Carl] than I do with “Reilly: Ace of Spies.” I was wondering, even though Otto [Luger] is a villain, what characteristics do you have in common with him?
Did you see “Death in Brunswick?”
No, I did not.
[laughs] OK. [Carl] is a kind of hapless fool. I think the only thing I have in common with this particular character would be the beard. [Otto] is a very, very bad man, and I, myself, am a paragon of goodness.
Out of all the characters you’ve played over the years, which is the one with whom you would say you have the most in common, and which is the one with whom you have the least in common?
Well, I’ve certainly got nothing in common with this guy, apart from an affection for a good neck tie.
I don’t know. I don’t think anything I’ve played has been remotely connected to myself, apart from when I’ve been playing myself in a documentary. Hopefully, every character you play is vivid and complete unto themselves. Inevitably, there will be something of yourself that kind of bleeds into the character to some extent, but I hope they live and breathe on their own.
This is based off the first “Mariah Mundi” book, and a lot of successful, cinematic franchises have been based on books as of recent years – including “Harry Potter”; “Twilight”; and even “Jurassic Park.” If you could place yourself in another franchise aside from “Jurassic Park,” of which one would you like to be in at least one film?
Hmm… can you give me any more franchises?
Oh, there’s “Harry Potter,” “The Chronicles of Narnia,” “Twilight,” “Indiana Jones,” “Star Wars”…
I think they’ve all pretty much done their dash. Although, “Star Wars” is coming back, isn’t it?

Yeah, “Star Wars” is coming back.
With J.J. Abrams. Well, I like J.J. I’d like to work with him again. “Star Wars” would be cool.
Yeah, you guys did “Alcatraz” together.
That’s correct.
There’s a moment in the film where you narrate the tale of King Midas. If someone was to make a documentary about the career of Sam Neill, who would you like to have narrate it?
[laughs] Wow! That’s a left-field question. Let’s see. Who would I like to narrate it? Wow! I think Richard Burton. I think Richard Burton’s got the sonority for it, you know?
Continuing with that, if someone was to make a documentary about you, what would be the one thing that they should include in it?
Oh, my affection for wine probably. That’s my other life, which is diametrically opposed to what I do as an actor. I’m a winemaker, and I find that increasingly enthralling.
You do acting, and you do winemaking. With this being called “The Adventurer,” do you also consider yourself an adventurer of some kind or a risk taker of some kind?
I’m not sure about the risk taking, but I do think that my life has been a sort of very unlikely adventure, and I never expected to be a working actor – let alone, an actor that works regularly on film and television. That wasn’t something I anticipated at all. I counted it up the other day – I’ve worked in about 35 different countries, which is phenomenal. Coming from a small town in a small country, this is beyond any kind of reason. It’s beyond my wildest expectations. I never thought that would happen, and it’s been greatly satisfying and, really, an adventure.
Had you read the “Mariah Mundi” books before doing this film?
No, I hadn’t. They’re kid’s books.
Well, I thought you could have read them to your children, or maybe just…
No, they’re too big for that stuff.
[laughs] There’s a part in the film where your character is having a rare steak, and he says, “A little blood does liven up the parrot.” What is the one thing in your life that kind of livens you up, even if it’s just a little, tiny bit of it?
Conversation [and] stimulating company. And my affection for wine goes beyond opening a bottle. I think wine has immensely enriched my life, because I’m enthralled with the soil and the seasons and the beautiful sort of rich cycle. But also, the end product is so much… I love company; I love being with friends; I love conversation with a glass of wine. So, yeah, probably a glass of wine is the thing that starts me more than anything else. I sound like a terrible alcoholic; I don’t think I’m really [an] alcoholic. But I think, as a part of the fabric of one’s life, the one element that you can introduce to a life – that I introduced to the mechanics of my life – is a glass of wine. A glass of wine goes a long way. [laughs]
[laughs] I wasn’t going to assume you were an alcoholic or anything, because I do like wine myself, and my girlfriend is a wino, too. She loves wine.
That’s my kind of girl.
[laughs] Actually, I wanted to squeeze in one other question. I’m pretty sure you’ve been asked a lot about “Jurassic Park” and the new one that’s coming out [“Jurassic World”]. Even though you are not in it, if [the filmmakers] were to call you up and say, “Hey can you come in for a part in this, or even a cameo appearance?” would you still do it?
Look, you never say no. I think there’s a whole new cast and a whole new look at things, and I think that’s great. As I said, I’d never say no, but I wish them… well, I’m sure it’s going to be great, but they don’t need me.
The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box” is released and distributed by CAPTIVE CINEMA.
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Monday, January 27, 2014

“THE LEGO MOVIE” Constructs Big, Fun Adventure Brick by Brick

Anyone who ever designed a universe from a heap of parts on their bedroom floor will know what Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, writer/directors of Warner Bros.' new 3D animated comedy “The LEGO Movie,” mean when they say that, growing up, they always had buckets of LEGO® bricks. “We’d build spaceships and all kinds of crazy things, but it wasn’t just the building, it was the infinite possibilities of things to make and express that was so irresistible and exciting,” says Miller. 
As filmmakers, their interest took a different focus. “Chris and I were inspired by the ingenuity and humor that comes out of the international LEGO community,” says Lord, referring to such outlets as LEGO Cuusoo, the LEGO Group’s fan submission site for potential new products, “ReBrick” forums where people can share their creations, and the growing number of unique short films, using LEGO bricks and minifigures, that are produced and shared online by individuals from every corner of the world. 

Such is the fascination of the LEGO brand, an endlessly evolving and hugely popular construction toy that has cultivated creativity across generations and cultures since its inception. Committed to upholding that principle, Lord and Miller knew from the start that this could be no standard animation but a virtual build, a feature-length motion picture made entirely of LEGO bricks and elements.

We both thought,” Lord continues, “‘Wouldn’t it be amazing to make a big, fun, action-packed LEGO adventure that captures the feeling of being a kid putting these pieces together, but on a truly epic scale?’ And what if it could retain that handmade quality these little films have that’s so engaging. Because part of the appeal of LEGO bricks is how accessible they are as an art form, we wanted to make a film that felt like something anyone could do in their own basement…provided they had a gigantic basement and a few million bricks!”

Actually, closer to 15 million, if you count each brick, character, set piece, and prop needed, as the filmmakers ultimately realized their vision for the film. 

Indeed, “There are two different ways people play with LEGO bricks,” Miller relates. “One is to follow the instructions on the kit and put together this awesome thing, whatever it is, which you then set on your shelf and never use so it doesn’t break, and the other is to take a pile of random pieces and make something from your own imagination, then take it apart and make something else. ‘The LEGO Movie’ uses these two different approaches as the basis for its story, which is really about innovation and creativity and the importance of change.”

Producer Roy Lee calls the directors “two of the most creative people I know. They did an amazing job on ‘Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,’ which was a fairly thin book, and they came in and reinvented some of the characters and really expanded it from what was on the page. With the LEGO concept, we had a blank canvas and they were the perfect guys to come in and invent a whole new world to explore.”

True fans and true originals, they brought equal parts reverence and irreverence to “The LEGO Movie.” 

States Miller, “What we always try to do with our movies is create something that would make us laugh, and make our friends laugh. We don’t ever want to do something that talks down to kids.” 
Obviously, kids and their parents will get it,” Lord says, “but we wanted to bridge the generations and keep in mind that there’s a community of adult LEGO fans who make the most complex and incredible creations a kid might not even think of. My favorite films are the ones I can take my granny to, or my parents and my girlfriend, or my nieces and nephews, and know we will enjoy it together. That’s the most fun you can have at a movie theater—when people of all ages are laughing together.”

Opening across the Philippines on Thursday, Feb. 6, “The LEGO Movie” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

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Joel Kinnaman, New Action Hero in “ROBOCOP”

Man and machine unite in Columbia Pictures' “RoboCop,” a reimagining of the 1980s cult classic, starring actor-on-the-rise Joel Kinnaman (TV's “The Killing,” “The Darkest Hour”). 
In the film, police officer Alex Murphy (Kinnaman) becomes the star product of OmniCorp, the world’s leading robotics defense company. In a Detroit ravaged by crime, OmniCorp sees an opening for the perfect policeman – a robot that can clean up the city, without putting police lives at risk. Trouble is, the idea of a robot pulling the trigger makes people anxious. To get it done, they compromise: after Murphy is mortally wounded, he wakes up in the hospital mostly a robot, barely a man at all – but all cop.

OmniCorp’s idea is that they need a man inside the machine, a man who makes the decisions so the corporation won’t be held liable if something goes wrong,” says Kinnaman. “They leave his emotions intact in social situations, but when facing a threat or when a crime is committed, the computer takes over. When they realize his emotions make the system vulnerable, they completely shut them off. But when Alex comes in contact with his family, his emotions find a way back and override the computer system. He starts making his own decisions again.”

Kinnaman says he was attracted to play the role of Alex Murphy after meeting with director José Padilha. “José described his vision – his philosophical and political ideas that could fit inside the concept of RoboCop,” says Kinnaman. “You could use that concept to talk about a lot of other interesting things. He wanted to make a fun action movie that discusses philosophical dilemmas that we will face in the very near future. And I wanted to be a part of that.”
The issues aren’t just ethical or moral, but also very personal for Alex Murphy. “In the movie, people have to believe that the machine knows what it feels like to be human, so they keep Alex Murphy’s brain intact. He has all his emotions. He has all his memories. He has cognitive capabilities. However, he can’t hold his son or have sex with his wife,” says Padilha. “It’s a nightmare being Robocop. The movie is very much about the drama of this man facing the existential question – how am I going to go forward like this? Is Alex a machine or a human being?”

We’re talking about a plausible future, but one that doesn’t exist yet,” says the actor. “Jose makes it very believable – not too outrageous or farfetched. We’re close to the world of this movie – we have bionic limbs, they’re attempting fake hearts. It’s still science fiction, but it’s a realistic leap in the future.”

Kinnaman says that, like many actors, being in costume helped him to portray the role – even if this costume was by far a greater challenge than he’d ever faced before. “The suit weighs about 45 pounds. It was constantly uncomfortable, constantly at the wrong temperature, either too hot or too cold. But that was very helpful. As awkward as I felt being in there, I realized that it paled in comparison to what Alex Murphy was feeling. I might have felt insecure and naked – because, weirdly, you don’t wear clothes in the suit – but Alex would have felt 100 times that weirdness. It completely helped my character.”

Despite the physical discomfort of the suit, Kinnaman sought to express the way that RoboCop represents the cutting edge in robotics through his character’s movements. Gone are the days of the clunky and jerky robotics. “They are getting very good at making humanoid droids move very realistically – for example, in Japan, they have nursing droids with very soft movements that give comfort to old people,” Kinnaman notes. “So the idea we had for RoboCop’s movement was that it would be superhuman: everything would work exactly as it should on a human body. He walks perfectly, extremely fluid.” Still, they couldn’t resist making a small nod to the past. “We also did want to make a small homage to the way Peter Weller moved – for example, when I was walking, I’d turn my head first and then the shoulders afterward.”

  Opening across the Philippines in Feb. 05, 2014, “RoboCop” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.
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Hugh Jackman to star in Live-Action Peter Pan Feature Film

BURBANK, CA – January 24, 2014 – Academy Award® nominee Hugh Jackman (“Les Misérables”) has been set to star in Warner Bros. Pictures’ upcoming live-action Peter Pan feature for director Joe Wright (“Atonement,” “Pride & Prejudice”). The announcement was made today by Greg Silverman, President, Creative Development and Worldwide Production, and Sue Kroll, President, Worldwide Marketing and International Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures.

Jackman will portray the villainous Blackbeard in an all-new tale about author J.M. Barrie’s beloved character Peter Pan, the boy who would never grow up.

Silverman stated, “Hugh Jackman always delivers indelible performances that resonate with audiences. We know he will create a Blackbeard who will be a powerful presence in this original Peter Pan adventure.” 
Kroll added, “There is a reason that Hugh is known and loved the world over. He is uncompromising in his dedication to every role, and we are all thrilled to be working with him again.” 
Best known to audiences worldwide for his portrayal of the Wolverine, Jackman most recently wrapped production on “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” reprising his role as the conflicted Super Hero for the sixth time in that popular film franchise. In addition to an Oscar® nomination, he won a Golden Globe Award and earned a BAFTA Award nomination for his gripping performance as Jean Valjean in 2012’s “Les Misérables.” This past fall, Jackman led an all-star cast in the acclaimed dramatic thriller “Prisoners.” Also an accomplished stage actor, he received a 2004 Tony Award for his performance in the Broadway musical “The Boy From Oz.”

Wright will direct the as-yet-untitled Peter Pan adventure from a screenplay by Jason Fuchs. Greg Berlanti and Paul Webster are serving as producers. 
The film is set for a worldwide release beginning July 17, 2015 (including The Philippines).
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