August 31, 2015

Tag Archives: uma thurman

Bradley Cooper will heat up the Oscar race in “Burnt”

By now, it seems like a perennial contender for Oscars is none other than Bradley Cooper. He’s on quite the run of late, between his collaborations with David O. Russell, the stunning success that was American Sniper, and just being one of our most charismatic A-list stars. Later this year, he’ll look to again appeal to Academy voters, not just with a supporting turn for Russell in Joy, but also in the culinary comedy/drama Burnt, which has taken a bit to develop. Cooper has helped shepherd it to the screen (it’s now test screening, leading to some early reactions to his performance), and judging from the recent Trailer that dropped (which you can see at the end of the piece), this is going to be one intense flick. If things break the right way for it, you could also see it becoming another Oscar vehicle for Cooper.
The film is a look at the obsession that can go into being a chef. Adam Jones (Cooper), was once considered to be one of the best chefs in the world, but his fast rising career flamed out when he got lost in diva antics, drug addictions, and other such bad behavior. Now having cleaned himself up, he’s determined to essay a rags to riches redemption story by taking a top level restaurant and making it even better, earning the elusive full level Michelin Star rating in the process. John Wells directs from a script by Steven Knight (with a story credit going to Michael Kalesniko), while the cast besides Cooper includes Daniel Brühl, Lily James, Sienna Miller, Omar Sy, Emma Thompson, Uma Thurman, Alicia Vikander, and more.
Without question, the big selling point here for Burnt is Cooper. He’s become one of our bigger A-list stars over the last handful of years, so anything he chooses to make is of course noteworthy in and of itself, but this one seems especially worthy of our time. Not only is he again playing a chef after having done so briefly on television before he hit it big, he’s utilizing his star power as the sole big star here. He’s carried movies before, but perhaps never to this extent. The film could be an interesting test of his drawing power, not only at the box office but with awards season voters as well.
Awards wise, it could be Cooper or bust for this flick. That being said, if […]

The Ten Best Action Movies of the New Millennium

Who doesn’t love a good action movie? They’re among the most fun that Hollywood has to offer, particularly when they’re of a high quality. Later on this week, a reportedly amazing new one in Mad Max: Fury Road is hitting theaters, so to prep us all for that experience (I see it later on today, so yay for that), I wanted to do a countdown of the recent best that the genre has to offer. Essentially, every action flick since 2000 was eligible, and I whittled that down to a top ten list. It’s hardly the definitely “new millennium action movie” list, but I think it’s a pretty solid one, to say the least. You’ll be able to see the list below, which could very well be amended once Mad Max: Fury Road comes to town…
Here now are my picks for the ten best action films since the year 2000:
10. King Kong – Peter Jackson’s unneeded remake of the classic action adventure turned out to be my favorite version of the story, go figure. The special effects are extraordinary and watching Kong interact with the world through Andy Serkis was a real joy. I may be in the minority here, but I absolutely loved it. It manages to stand alongside the all time classic original.
9. Kick-Ass – It hasn’t quite held up as well as the initial viewing suggested, but Matthew Vaughn’s deconstruction of the superhero origin story is a ridiculous amount of fun. The main pleasures are watching Nicolas Cage not play Batman, along with Chloe Grace Moretz giving a nomination worthy supporting turn as Hit-Girl. That initial magic wasn’t captured by the sequel, but that takes nothing away from this one.
8. Looper – Not only is this a great action flick, it’s also the best film of Rian Johnson’s career so far and a amazing time travel tale as well. It’s nearly perfect, offering up one of the best performances to date from both Joseph Gordon-Levitt as well as Bruce Willis. A modern classic, it basically demands that you honor it for its inventiveness and effectiveness.
7. Black Hawk Down – I’d have put this higher if not for the fact that it’s less fun due to the tragic real life story that inspired it. Still, this is one of Ridley Scott’s best and the most effective war movie since Saving Private Ryan. It’s so visceral and well made, […]

Joaquin Phoenix: Oscar veterans hoping for another nomination this year

Each and every single awards season, there are tons of both newcomers and veterans to the Oscar game. Tomorrow I’ll be taking a bit of a look at those seeking their first nominations from the Academy, but today I’m going to be going ahead and listing some of the major players who’ve already been nominated before, and in some cases are already winners. It’s leading up to me re-ranking the contenders in the major categories next week, but right now it’s just going to be a preview of which old hands to the Oscar ranch are saddling up for another ride on the awards season pony.
In the Best Actor race, the highest profile former nominee is Joaquin Phoenix, who will look for his first win this year with Inherent Vice. He represents the most likely non first time nominee who could win the Oscar in this category, though one level down we have Bradley Cooper for American Sniper and Bill Murray for St. Vincent, with Jake Gyllenhaal for Nightcrawler and Brad Pitt for Fury as other possibilities, plus Ben Affleck, who I’m counting here since he’s an Oscar winner, even if he’s never received an acting citation to date. Longer shots for nominations who’ve been to the dance before include Christian Bale for Exodus: Gods and Kings, Ralph Fiennes for The Grand Budapest Hotel, Philip Seymour Hoffman for A Most Wanted Man, Matthew McConaughey for Interstellar, Al Pacino for Manglehorn, Jeremy Renner for Kill the Messenger, and Mark Walhberg for The Gambler. Those fellas will be fighting it out with a bunch of first timers in this category, and it’s going to be a bloodbath.
Over in Best Actress, we have perennial bridesmaid Amy Adams hoping that this year she’ll finally be the bride with her work in Big Eyes. She’s going to be getting a challenge from both Jessica Chastain (for either The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, Miss Julie, or A Most Violent Year) and Reese Witherspoon for Wild though. One level down you have Julianne Moore for Still Alice and Meryl Streep for Into the Woods, with other former nominees/winner on the hunt including Marion Cotillard for The Immigrant or Two Days One Night, Keira Knightley for Begin Again, Hilary Swank for The Homesman, Kate Winslet for A Little Chaos, and Robin Wright for The Congress. The newbies could seriously vie for a win here, but the vets have […]

“Skyfall” topped the box office in its fifth weekend

The decision by Warner Bros. to move The Gangster Squad (trailer) to January, 2013 and Universal’s choice to move Les Miserables from next weekend to Christmas day should have caused a giant game of musical chairs. It didn’t, and now we have the second December weekend in a row (with one more to come) with just a single new release). Meanwhile the last two weekends of the year are going to be jam-packed with major films (Jack Reacher, This Is Forty, DJango Unchained, The Guilt Trip, etc.), all of which could have *easily* topped the box office and/or dominated the competition had they opened this weekend or last weekend. But weekends that are barren of new releases save for a Gerald Butler vehicle tend to be very boring box office weekends indeed.
But this weekend saw but a single half-hearted new release, a Gerald Butler rom-com that once again proves that Butler is only a movie star when he has a bigger co-star beside him. And while Jessica Biel may be a better actress than the mainstream material she gets offered would attest, she ain’t Katherine Heigl or Jennifer Anniston (or Jamie Foxx for that matter). Play For Keeps debuted with $6 million this weekend. The film earned a B+ from Cinemascore while playing 57% female and 74% over 25 years old. Forgive me if no one cares, save to feel bad for the careers of Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Judy Greer as they are forced to play desperate soccer moms who just can’t resist Mr. Butler. 300 was a long time ago, and it’s tough to be a movie star when your break-out role renders you unrecognizable. He’ll continue to work because the industry still thinks the man who killed Joel Schumacher’s Phantom of the Opera (he can’t sing, he really can’t sing) is a next wave movie star. But I think it’s time to call time-of-death on Butler’s alleged movie stardom.
To read more go to Mendelson’s Memo
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Uma Thurman reportedly gave birth to a baby girl

HollywoodNews.com: Uma Thurman is reportedly a mother for a third time as it is rumored that she has given birth to her baby girl.
Thurman was expecting the child with her on and off boyfriend since 2007, Arpad Busson, states RadarOnline. She reportedly gave birth to the healthy child on Sunday.
She already has a son and daughter with her ex, Ethan Hawke.
Details like the name have not yet been released.
Do you think they will choose a unique name?
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Why some comic adaptations failed: Iron Man 2, Punisher: War Zone, Superman Returns, Hulk

HollywoodNews.com: Actor Tom Hiddleston wrote an eloquent essay yesterday for The Guardian basically praising and defending the sub-genre known as the superhero picture. Plenty of disdain for the genre comes from the very notion that it’s big-budget entertainment based on literature that was technically intended for children that gobbles up production dollars and screen space that otherwise might be allotted for more explicitly grown-up fare. But at least some of the alleged weariness of this specific type of film (the superhero comic book adaptation) comes from a feeling that all-too many of them are basically telling the same story. You’ve generally got the standard origin story which (let’s be honest) basically takes Richard Donner’s Superman: The Movie and pours it into a different color bottle (I say that as a big fan of Spider-Man and Captain America). Then you have the sequels, which are quite often merely a case of escalation and/or the hero dealing with self-doubt often while in combat with a ‘bigger/badder’ version of himself (again, thank you Superman II). But over the last twenty years or so, there have been a handful of high-profile comic book films that have attempted to play around with the formula but have artistically failed anyway. As a rebuttal to the idea that ‘all superhero movies are the same’ as well as a reaffirmation of the idea that ‘it’s not what it’s about, but how it’s about it’, let’s take a look at five comic book adaptations that didn’t play it safe, but didn’t come out on top either.
Batman & Robin (1997)
I would argue that it’s a sign of maturity among film pundits and critics when they are finally adult enough to realize that Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin is not the worst film ever made. Peel away all the attempted camp, the self-depreciating homoerotic jokes, the terrible lead performance from Arnold Schwarzenegger and you’re left with simply a good story told very poorly. As the fourth film in a franchise, Schumacher and company had a bit more leeway in terms of where they wanted to take their film this time around. And as such, they told a rather thoughtful tale of an adult and sane Bruce Wayne trying to figure out how to be an appropriate head to his surrogate family. No longer wracked with guilt over his parents’ deaths, Wayne […]

Uma Thurman allegedly having a baby girl

HollywoodNews.com: Uma Thurman was recently confirmed to be pregnant and is apparently going to be welcoming a baby girl to her family that already includes two children.
It is rumored that a friend of Uma’s has commented that the actress is expecting a daughter this time around, states Hollyscoop. She is reportedly a few months along at this time and expecting to deliver in late summer.
This will be her first child with her boyfriend, Arpad Busson.
What do you think they will name their child?
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Uma Thurman is pregnant

HollywoodNews.com: Uma Thurman has just been confirmed by her rep to be expecting her first child with her current boyfriend, financier Arpad Busson.
Thurman has been dating Busson since 2007, although they briefly split in 2009.
Now, the actress is expecting her first child with him which will make this her third child as she has a son and daughter with Ethan Hawke, states People.
Thurman was recently out at New York Fashion Week, but no baby bump was spotted on the actress.
Do you think they’ll have a boy or girl?
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Chelsea Handler is single once again

HollywoodNews.com: Chelsea Handler is back on the market as she has reportedly split from her boyfriend, hotelier Andre Balazs.
Her rep has confirmed that the couple of less than a year are no longer dating, states UsMagazine.com. Handler did address the relationship back in May, but commented that she was likely going to keep it private.
Balazs previously dated Uma Thurman.
Who do you think Chelsea Handler should date next?
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Robert Pattinson’s Sexy New Trailer for ‘Bel Ami’ Released

HollywoodNews.com: A trailer for the upcoming film ‘Bel Ami’ has finally been released. The movie stars ‘Twilight’ actor Robert Pattinson, Uma Thurman, and Christina Ricci.
The sexually charged film, which is to be released sometime this year, includes Robert cozying up with both Uma and Christina. According to Celebuzz.com, the film’s “a chronicle of a young man’s rise to power in Paris via his manipulation of the city’s most influential and wealthy women.”
What do you think of the new trailer?
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