Like Ficarra and Requa’s 2011 comedy Crazy Stupid Love, Focus begins promisingly and bops along enjoyably for a while, only to run out of steam…
* This filmography is not intended to be a comprehensive list of this artist’s work. Instead it reflects the films this person has been involved with that have been reviewed on this site.
David Lowery on "Force Majeure"; Rick Perlstein on "Life Itself"; Jacqueline Keeler responds to Matthew McConaughey; Beatrice Welles on "The Other Side of the Wind"; Brandy Burre on "Actress."
Picks for the best of the 2013-14 television season, in the form of a Dream Emmy ballot.
Richard Roeper reflects on his long friendship and professional association with Roger Ebert.
Why DiCaprio doesn't get lucky at the Oscars; Atheism in Hollywood; Famous rejection letters; Wes Anderson as an advertiser; Auteur theory and Kent Jones.
The calculation of odds is finished. The campaigning is done. Erik Childress predicts the winners of the Oscars.
Erik Childress analyzes the impact of the recently-awarded BAFTAs on the Oscar race.
Actors with "A-list" name recognition continue to migrate to television. "True Detective" uses Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson to make great television.
Matthew McConaughey talks about how he is dealing with the Oscar buzz around his "Dallas Buyers Club" performance.
Seongyong Cho sings the praises of Richard Linklater's quirky small-town true-crime comedy "Bernie."
Michael Haneke's "Amour," which won the Palme d'Or last May at Cannes, was voted Saturday the best film of 2012 by the prestigious National Society of Film Critics. The award, coming on the eve of voting for the 2013 Academy Awards, confirms "Amour" as a Best Foreign Film frontrunner. Other NSFC winners will also draw welcome attention.
Big stars were out to shine this morning in Cannes, when "The Paperboy" by Lee Daniels premiered in competition, with a cast that includes Matthew McConaughey, Zac Efron, Nicole Kidman, David Oyelowo, John Cusack, and Grammy Award-winning R&B singer Macy Gray. Daniels had a massive hit with his previous film "Precious," which premiered here in 2009 and went on to earn six Oscar nominations with two wins, and countless other awards worldwide.
A director with that kind of success in his recent past has got to have a lot of hopes and fears riding on his next film. Daniels certainly had star power in his corner on "The Paperboy," but the film got a mixed reaction this morning in the Palais, and I'm not sure it's headed for a repeat of the acclaim that "Precious" experienced.
"The Paperboy" is adapted by Pete Dexter and Daniels from Dexter's novel of the same title. The film reportedly takes a few deviations from the source novel (which I haven't read) to result in pretty much a whole new story. There are many shifts of tone, making the film simultaneously a comedy, a mystery/thriller, and a Southern gothic potboiler. It's amusing and frustrating; hilarious and tense; awkward in its construction yet featuring bursts of gripping acting.
Absolute silence while the Warner logo, the name of the production company and the title of the movie are displayed on the screen. Suddenly, we see ourselves orbiting the Earth while a cacophony of radio and television transmissions confuses us by their sheer volume and sound pollution they cause. Then, slowly, we begin a journey throughout the universe that will last for the next few minutes, taking us far from our old and familiar planet while we experience a kind of time traveling as sounds of our atmosphere become older and older - until, eventually, we are involved by an oppressive silence and we realize that we traveled further than our oldest sound emission. And when we begin to realize the dimension of our surroundings - that goes much beyond our capacity for abstraction -, we are back to the starting point, returning to Earth through the portal represented by the blue and young eyes of Ellie Arroway, our leading character.