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‘Birdboy: The Forgotten Children’: Inside the Year’s Darkest, Most Daring Hand-Drawn Animated Movie

53 minutes ago

While “The Breadwinner” has deservedly grabbed all of the accolades for GKids (including a Golden Globe nomination), Oscar voters should not overlook another GKid animated feature contender: “Birdboy: The Forgotten Children.” The Spanish dystopian fable, directed by Alberto Vázquez and Pedro Rivero, is the darkest and most daring hand-drawn animated movie of the year. It alternates between the horrific and the comical, and its imagery assaults the viewer like a nightmarish Goya painting.

Indeed, the twisted tale about troubled animated critters living on a post-apocalyptic island first sprung from Vázquez’s graphic novel. It was initially adapted into a short by the two filmmakers as a prequel to the feature. Following an ecological crisis that fosters crime, repression, and drug trafficking, Dinky, a young teen mouse, hatches a plan to escape with her friends, including Birdboy, a shy, tormented bird who lives in a lighthouse and consumes drugs to subdue the demon living inside him. »


- Bill Desowitz

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‘Burial Rites’: Jennifer Lawrence to Star in Luca Guadagnino’s True-Crime Drama About Iceland’s Last Public Execution

1 hour ago

Luca Guadagnino is quickly becoming one of our most prolific filmmakers. With “Call Me by Your Name” currently in theaters and his “Suspiria” remake on the way, the Italian auteur will next direct Jennifer Lawrence in “Burial Rites.” The news comes from Variety, who note that the true-crime drama is in the works at TriStar Pictures.

Read More:Jennifer Lawrence and Darren Aronofsky Each Processed Mixed ‘mother!’ Reviews Differently

The film is to be based on Hannah Kent’s novel of the same name, which tells of Agnes Magnúsdóttir — the last woman to be publicly executed in Iceland. That event took place in 1830 and was the result of her conviction for killing two men and setting their home on fire, suggesting that “Burial Rites” will be a light, airy affair that definitely won’t anger viewers for killing off J-Law’s character.

Read More:Luca Guadagnino Couldn’t Direct the »


- Michael Nordine

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‘The Big Sick’ Star Kumail Nanjiani’s New Reason to See ‘Last Jedi’ is a Sweet Story About Director Rian Johnson

1 hour ago

The star and writer of “The Big SickKumail Nanjiani took to Twitter on Tuesday morning to share a humble and unforgettable encounter he had with director Rian Johnson, whose film “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” will rule the box office this coming weekend. This encounter happened in 2012, before Nanjiani starred in HBO’s “Silicon Valley,” when he was doing interviews on a San Diego Comic-Con red carpet.

Nanjiani details in his 12-tweet thread how stressful the job was for him to do interviews on a red carpet, a situation only made worse by an interviewee who was extremely rude to him and made a mockery of him.

After that unfortunate encounter, Nanjiani went to the “Total Recall” and “Looper” red carpet and saw that Johnson was one of the people he was interviewing. Never leaving his comedic charm aside, Nanjiani recounts how the situation could have gone so much »


- Alberto Achar

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Mel Gibson’s Past Sins Get Changed by a Time Traveler in Insane Short Film ‘Pumpkin’ — Watch

2 hours ago

They say you should never meet your idols, and this short film learns that lesson the hard way.

Pumpkin” centers on Brian, a Mel Gibson superfan who has “What Women Want” and “The Patriot” posters tacked on his bedroom wall and who attends a Mel Gibson “support group.” Brian wishes he could go back in time and stop his idol from making “The Beaver” (don’t we all?) and one of his fellow superfans has a plan. Taking a page from “Black Mirror,” Brian is given a Tamagotchi that transports him back in time, but what he discovers there will change him and the course of movie history forever.

Read More:‘Daddy’s Home 2’ Review: Mel Gibson Proves to Be One Daddy Too Many in Queasy Holiday Comedy

Pumpkin” was co-written by Brendan Walter (who also directed the short), Jon Lullo, and Dan ShepardBrian Bonz, who starts as the main character, »


- Jamie Righetti

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Jessica Chastain on Speaking Up About Harvey Weinstein: ‘I’m Really Terrified I’m Destroying My Career’

2 hours ago

Jessica Chastain received a Golden Globe nomination for her role in “Molly’s Game” yesterday, which didn’t surprise many awards prognosticators. The actress herself was taken aback, however, as she feared that her outspokenness on sexual harassment in the film industry would incite backlash. In a New York Times interview, Chastain even says she’d privately told friends that “I’m really terrified I’m destroying my career right now.”

Read More:Rotten Apples Allows You to See How Many Alleged Harassers Were Involved in a Movie or TV Show

“I’m mainly surprised about my nomination. As an actor, I have a lot of fear, thinking that if I speak my mind, or something that feels like it deviates from the norm as a woman, am I going to be made to disappear in my industry?” she tells the paper of record.

“When the article came out about Weinstein, »


- Michael Nordine

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Michael Haneke Says He’s Not ‘Dark’ but If ‘Happy End’ Disturbs, That’s Your Problem

2 hours ago

Michael Haneke received worldwide acclaim and two Oscar nominations for his tragic romance “Amour,” the mesmerizing tale of an elderly couple facing the inevitable specter of death. Though downbeat in the Haneke fashion, “Amour” also registered as the Austrian filmmaker’s most emotionally accessible work. His followup, “Happy End,” found a more mixed response — and yet, for serious Haneke devotees, it should hit all the right buttons. Still, Haneke remains such a singular director that, 30 years into his career, he continues to challenge even his greatest devotees.

For those among us, “Happy End” delivers one of the most enjoyably twisted movies of Haneke’s career. The story of a dysfunctional bourgeois family where self-loathing and suicidal thoughts loom large, it’s a profoundly cynical work so incisive that it renewed a once-familiar element in Haneke’s career trajectory: divisiveness. Following the filmmaker’s back-to-back Palme d’Or wins for “Amour” and “The White Ribbon, »


- Eric Kohn

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‘The Detour’ Season 3 Trailer: Jason Jones Goes Off-Road Boating, Sinks, Remains the World’s Best Dad — Watch

3 hours ago

The Detour” began as two parents recounting a disastrous road trip, but what happens when the road runs out? That’s what Season 3 of the hilarious TBS comedy is all about, as the Parker family finally stops running and settles down.

In the first trailer for Season 3, Nate (Jones), Robin (Natalie Zea), and their two kids (played by Ashley Gerasimovich and Liam Carroll) try to make a home for themselves in small-town Alaska. Spurred on by a mishap involving a snowmobile and a lake — more of a “final straw” kind of deal — the Parkers still can’t slow down while trying to settle down, and the 10 new episodes look just as wild as the first 20.

Read More:‘The Detour’ Review: Season 2 Switches Drivers, Keeps Pushing the Boundaries of Family Comedy

The Detour” debuted on TBS in 2016 to solid reviews and has steadily proven itself to be one of the most surprising, »


- Ben Travers

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Jada Pinkett Smith Accuses the HFPA of Not Even Watching ‘Girls Trip’ for Golden Globes Consideration

3 hours ago

Update: A source with knowledge of the situation tells IndieWire that there was an HFPA screening of the film in July and that members were also invited to the premiere.

Earlier: There were many snubs and surprises in yesterday’s Golden Globe nominations, as there always are, but few got more attention on social media than the complete shutout of “Girls Trip.” The film wasn’t nominated for Best Picture — Comedy or Musical, and Tiffany Haddish (who won the Nyfcc Award for Best Supporting Actress) was likewise unrecognized.

According to her co-star Jada Pinkett-Smith, the problem isn’t that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association didn’t like their movie — it’s that they didn’t even see it.

Read More:Golden Globes Slammed For Shutting Out Women and Minorities in Best Director Race

After a cryptic tweet sent yesterday — “I have so much to say on why @TiffanyHaddish was not nominated for a Globe… »


- Michael Nordine

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SAG Awards Film Predictions 2018: Laying Oscar Odds for ‘Lady Bird,’ ‘The Post,’ and ‘Call Me By Your Name’

4 hours ago

Many awards shows are important to the Oscars; they act as divining rods, pointing toward the films in toppling screener plies that most deserve voters’ attentions. However, tomorrow’s announcement of the Screen Actors Award nominees stands alone. Like the other Hollywood guilds, SAG voters actually overlap with the Academy — and no guild is more predictive of the actual race.

SAG TV and film nominating committees attend screenings in eight national markets. When it comes to the final vote, all national SAG/AFTRA members weigh in via online screenings and voting. (Last year’s voters numbered 121,000.) This year’s blissfully brief two-hour SAG Awards will air live January 21, right before Oscar nominations are announced on January 23.

While being slightly more mainstream, SAG Awards voters tend to align with the Academy actors branch and adds momentum to certain races. The SAG Ensemble award often presages the eventual Oscar Best Picture winner: Last year, »


- Anne Thompson

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Rotten Apples Allows You to See How Many Alleged Harassers Were Involved in a Movie or TV Show

4 hours ago

Over the last few months, the Weinstein effect has retroactively altered our perception of countless movies and television shows. Everything from “Louie” (all those sexual jokes seem less funny now) to “The Usual Suspects” (which was directed by Bryan Singer and stars Kevin Spacey) feels different now. To stay ahead of this problem, a new website is here to inform you how many questionable figures are involved in a given film or TV show: the cleverly titled Rotten Apples.

Read More:‘House of Cards,’ ‘Transparent,’ ‘Today Show’ and More: A Complete Guide To TV Rocked By Sexual Harassment Scandals

The tool, though helpful, is also dispiriting — it’s unsurprisingly difficult to find a “fresh apple,” defined here as a project “with no known affiliation to anyone with allegations of sexual misconduct against them.” A few recent critical favorites pass the test, however: “Call Me by Your Name,” “Lady Bird,” and »


- Michael Nordine

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Catch Up on Films That Leapt from the Black List to the Oscars Stage with a New iTunes Room

4 hours ago

Already this week, the 2017 edition of the Black List was released, and two of last year’s selections — “I, Tonya” and “The Post” — became Golden Globe nominees. Completing a trifecta of recent Black List developments, iTunes has curated a page for cinephiles to watch more than 100 films that graduated from the annual list of unproduced gems. Since former development executive Franklin Leonard created the Black List in 2004, more than 325 of its entries have resulted in movies.

Read More:Attention, Female Filmmakers: The Black List and Women In Film Want You For Two Exciting New Labs

Half of the past 20 Best Screenplay Oscars have been presented to writers who first saw their scripts on the list, including Aaron Sorkin (“The Social Network”), Diablo Cody (“Juno”), and Michael Arndt (“Little Miss Sunshine”); among the represented Best Picture winners are “Argo,” “Slumdog Millionaire,” and “Spotlight.” These features can all be found in iTunes’ new Black List “room, »


- Jenna Marotta

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‘Star Wars’ Always Put Women in the Back Seat, But in ‘The Last Jedi’ They Call The Shots

5 hours ago

Life-long “Star Wars” fan Gwendoline Christie still remembers asking her mother if she could ever star in one of the seminal sci-fi features when she was just a kid. Christie wanted to live in that universe, alongside characters like Carrie Fisher’s Princess Leia, the kind of woman even a youngster could recognize as being unique in the movie world. “I remember thinking, ‘Oh, I love her. She feels different. She feels like she won’t be told what to do. She’s really intelligent, and she’s smart, and she’s wickedly funny, and she’s really bold, and she’s brave,'” Christie recently told IndieWire.

And she thought to herself: “Well, yeah, and there’s not enough characters like that.”

It was a dream made all the more improbable by the fact that, for all intents and purposes, the original trilogy spelled the beginning and the end of the franchise. »


- Kate Erbland

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‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Critical Roundup: Reviewers Think the Force Is Strong With This One

5 hours ago

Reviews for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” are finally in, and nearly everyone who’s taken the latest trip to that galaxy far, far away is extremely happy to have done so. IndieWire’s Eric Kohn calls Rian Johnson’s contribution to the franchise “the most satisfying ‘Star Wars’ movie in decades,” a sentiment shared by many — other than a few dissenters (like this writer), most reviewers are highly positive.

Read More:‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Review: Here’s the Most Satisfying Star Wars Movie in Decades

Matt Zoller Seitz’s four-star RogerEbert.com review is equally enthusiastic:

“Writer/director Rian Johnson’s ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ is a sprawling, incident- and character-packed extravaganza that picks up at the end of ‘Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens’ and guides the series into unfamiliar territory. It’s everything a fan could want from a ‘Star Wars’ film and then some. »


- Michael Nordine

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Critics Reveal Their Favorite Holiday TV Traditions — IndieWire Survey

5 hours ago

Every week, IndieWire asks a select handful of TV critics two questions and publishes the results on Tuesday. (The answer to the second, “What is the best show currently on TV?” can be found at the end of this post.)

This week’s question: What are your winter holiday season viewing habits (that are not for work)? Do you have traditional go-to shows or movies? Are you looking forward to anything in particular?

Eric Deggans (@deggans), NPR

As I have written in the past, I’m not the kind of critic who loves holiday specials. Too often, they’re too hokey, too commercial, too weird (yes, Bill Murray, I still don’t get “A Very Murray Christmas”) or, in the case of countless Hallmark Channel movies, way too white. But I do have a few holiday media traditions, starting with my Spotify Holiday Tunes playlist, which gets fired up as »


- Hanh Nguyen

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‘Homeland’ Season 7 Premiere Date and Trailer: If Claire Danes Can’t Save America, Who Can? — Watch

5 hours ago

Homeland” season seven now has a premiere date and trailer, because America needs to know what Claire Danes will do next, damnit. The political thriller will return on Sunday, February 11. Avail yourself of the trailer below.

Read More:‘Homeland’: An Ode to Rupert Friend’s Quinn After a Divisive Finale

Here’s what’s in store this time around: “At the end of last season, following an assassination attempt on her life, President Keane (Elizabeth Marvel) broke her promise to Carrie (Danes) by arresting 200 members of the intelligence community without bringing charges against them, including Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin). As season seven begins, Carrie has left her job in the White House and moved back to D.C. and is living with her sister Maggie (Amy Hargreaves) to take on the Keane administration and secure the release of the 200.”

Read More:‘Homeland’ Finale Review: Season 6 Ended With a Complicated »


- Michael Nordine

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The Most Disappointing TV Shows of 2017

6 hours ago

In the age of peak TV, there’s a lot of bad television out there. But rather than take the time to highlight what everyone should already be forgetting, IndieWire is examining the heartbreaking misses of 2017; the shows that felt like they had something special — either in concept, talent, or early episodes — but failed to fulfill that promise.

For the shows that weren’t cancelled, hope rings eternal. TV is a medium that allows for development, improvement, and the virtual erasure of bad first impressions. The shows below might be a long way from getting good, but their break bad hurt enough that even for the most disappointing, we still hope for the best.

And if you like any shows on the list, then good luck and godspeed. You found something there that we only wish we could have seen. Maybe next year.

Read More:The 25 Best TV Episodes of 2017, Ranked »


- Ben Travers, Hanh Nguyen, Liz Shannon Miller and Steve Greene

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‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Review: Here’s the Most Satisfying Star Wars Movie in Decades

6 hours ago

When Disney bought the entire Star Wars franchise from Lucasfilm for all the money in the galaxy, the deal forced a reckoning: Over 40 years, George Lucas garnered a massive and rabid fanbase for his singular vision of old-fashioned matinees refashioned for a galaxy far, far away — but it also remained tethered to his whims. (Knock those dopey prequels all you want, but they were the movies Lucas wanted to make.)

Millions of fans clamored for satisfaction after the first trilogy, but what they faced was an unwieldy assemblage of Star Wars media in a constant state of identity crisis. There was Jar Jar Binks; there was Hayden Christensen as a young Darth Vader; there were plans to re-release “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith” in 3D.

The first post-acquisition movie, J.J. Abrams'” The Force Awakens,” took some stabs at creating a more vital and singular vision, »


- Eric Kohn

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Morrissey Refutes Victim-Blaming Comments on Sexual Abuse Stories, Blames ‘Foolishly’ Agreed-To Interview

7 hours ago

Last month, musician Morrissey drew significant backlash for comments made to German outlet Der Spiegel that appeared to blame recent victims of sexual abuse and harassment — particularly those who have accused Kevin Spacey of such crimes — by putting the onus on them for getting into situations where abuse was possible. “Kevin Spacey was 26, boy 14. One wonders where the boy’s parents were. One wonders if the boy did not know what would happen,” he said.

“I do not know about you but in my youth I have never been in situations like this. Never. I was always aware of what could happen,” Morrissey added. “When you are in somebody’s bedroom, you have to be aware of where that can lead to. That’s why it does not sound very credible to me. It seems to me that Spacey has been attacked unnecessarily.”

Read More:Morrissey Defends Kevin Spacey, Says Sexual »


- Kate Erbland

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‘Loving Vincent’: How an Unknown Distributor Beat Its Competitors to Find This Runaway Hit

7 hours ago

With screens at a premium, the holiday zone is a hostile climate even for the most-established film distributors. To successfully release an animated biopic funded by the Polish Film Institute — with only modest reviews, via virtually unknown distributor Good Deed Entertainment — the odds were, to be generous, unkind.

Loving Vincent” outsmarted all of us. With $20 million worldwide since its September 22 bow, it’s the highest gross in years for a film that’s never seen more than 250 theaters. On Saturday it won a European Film Award, today a Golden Globe nomination for Best Animated Feature; an Oscar nomination could follow.

Read More:‘Loving Vincent’ Review: The World’s First Oil-Painted Feature is a Truly Insane Vincent van Gogh Tribute — Telluride

Directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, “Loving Vincent” used 125 painters to reimagine much of Van Gogh’s work and to retrace the final days of his life. The artists »


- Tom Brueggemann

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‘Storm: A Star Wars Indie’ Trailer: Funny or Die’s Intergalactic Sundance Parody Is Pitch-Perfect

8 hours ago

Disney is expanding the “Star Wars” universe at a quick pace, and Funny Or Die has pitched a bold idea for the next chapter in the space saga. The comedy brand released a spoof trailer for “Storm: A Star Wars Indie” on Dec. 11, and it’s a too-real spin on a low-budget romance, complete with nods to films such as “Blue Valentine” and “Garden State.”

In the trailer, an emotionally floundering Stormtrooper named Ian meets a Rodian named Teedo, and their interspecies romance fills a hole in their lives, but causes drama in a galaxy that doesn’t believe in them. Along the way, they face prevalent indie obstacles such as a parent’s cancer diagnosis and a broken ukulele.

Read More:‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ First Reactions Are Highly Positive: ‘It Will Shatter You — and Then Make You Whole Again’

IndieWire readers will appreciate the trailer’s many easter eggs, »


- William Earl

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