Release date: Friday March 28, 2008 Genre: Drama Director: Kimberly Peirce Studio: Paramount Pictures Producer(s): Gregory Goodman, Kimberly Peirce, Mark Roybal, Scott Rudin Screenplay: Mark Richard, Kimberly Peirce Cast: Ryan Phillippe, Abbie Cornish, Channing Tatum, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ciarán Hinds, Timothy Olyphant, Victor Rasuk, Rob Brown Official Site:stoplossmovie.com Rating:R for graphic violence and pervasive language Available Poster Art:Stop Loss movie posters
Synopsis: Decorated Iraq war hero Sgt. Brandon King makes a celebrated return to his small Texas hometown following his tour of duty. Brandon tries to resume the life he left behind with the help and support of his family and his best friend, Steve Shriver, who served with him in Iraq. Alongside their war-time buddies, Brandon and Steve try to make peace with civilian life. Then, against Brandon’s will, the Army orders him back to duty in Iraq. This upends Brandon’s entire world. The conflict into which he is thrown tests everything he believes in: the bond of family, the loyalty of friendship, the limits of love, and the value of honor.
Michael Clayton (Thriller/Drama) – Michael Clayton (George Clooney) is an in-house “fixer” at one of the largest corporate law firms in New York. A former criminal prosecutor, Clayton takes care of Kenner, Bach & Ledeen’s dirtiest work at the behest of the firm’s co-founder Marty Bach (Sydney Pollack). Though burned out and hardly content with his job as a fixer, his divorce, a failed business venture and mounting debt have left Clayton inextricably tied to the firm. At U/North, meanwhile, the career of litigator Karen Crowder (Tilda Swinton) rests on the multi-million dollar settlement of a class action suit that Clayton’s firm is leading to a seemingly successful conclusion. But when Kenner Bach’s brilliant and guilt-ridden attorney Arthur Edens (Tom Wilkinson) sabotages the U/North case, Clayton faces the biggest challenge of his career and his life.
Cast: George Clooney, Tom Wilkinson, Tilda Swinton, Sydney Pollack, Jennifer Ehle, Michael O’Keefe, Ken Howard; Directed by: Tony Gilroy
Margot at the Wedding (Drama) – The film will be a multigenerational story that takes place over a weekend and follows a mom and her son who visit the mom’s sister. Kidman and Leigh will play the sisters.
Cast: Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jack Black, John Turturro; Directed by: Noah Baumbach
Lust Caution (Drama/Thriller) – The film, based on a 26-page short story by famed Chinese writer Eileen Chang, is about a group of patriotic students who plot to assassinate the intelligence chief in the Japanese-backed Chinese government during the World War II era.
Cast: Joan Chen, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Wei Tang; Directed by: Ang Lee
In the Valley Elah (Drama) – Tommy Lee Jones plays a career soldier whose son mysteriously goes AWOL, shortly after returning to the U.S. from the front lines in Iraq. Charlize Theron will play a local police detective who helps him get to the bottom of the soldier’s disappearance.
Cast: Tommy Lee Jones, Charlize Theron, Barry Corbin, Frances Fisher, James Franco; Directed by: Paul Haggis
American Gangster (Crime/Drama) – “American Gangster” concerns Harlem drug kingpin Frank Lucas (Washington), who smuggled heroin in the body bags of U.S. soldiers slain in Vietnam. Brolin plays Det. Trupo, a crooked NYPD cop who piggybacks on the Lucas investigation conducted by Det. Ritchie Roberts (Crowe).
Cast: Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Cuba Gooding Jr., Josh Brolin, RZA, John Ortiz, John Hawkes, Ted Levine, Yul Vazquez; Directed by: Ridley Scott
An interesting mix of movies opening in wide release this week. Check out the list and purchase the movie posters:
Spiderwick Chronicles (Family/Fantasy) – When the three Grace children — troubled Jared; his bookish twin, Simon; and their sister, Mallory, a fencing jock — move to the ancient Spiderwick mansion, they are at first none-too-enchanted by the rundown Victorian … until they discover a Brownie, an enchanted creature, living in the walls. They soon find a book — Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You — that will open their eyes to the invisible, odd, and sometimes dangerous world of dragons and boggarts, phookas and fairies, sprites and goblins that is all around them. When they cross paths with Mulgarath, an ogre, they realize quickly that he will stop at nothing to get his hands on the Field Guide. Based on the bestselling series of books by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black.
Cast: Sarah Bolger, Freddie Highmore, Mary-Louise Parker, Seth Rogen, David Strathairn, Izabella Miko, Andrew McCarthy ; Directed by: Mark Waters
Jumper (Sci-fi/Thriller/Drama) – A genetic anomaly allows a young man to teleport himself anywhere. He discovers this gift has existed for centuries and finds himself in a war that has been raging for thousands of years between “Jumpers” and those who have sworn to kill them.
Cast: Hayden Christensen, Samuel L. Jackson, Diane Lane, Rachel Bilson, Tom Hulce, Michael Rooker; Directed by: Doug Liman
Buy Jumper movie poster here
Definitely Maybe (Comedy) – Ryan Reynolds stars as Will Hayes, a 30-something Manhattan dad in the midst of a divorce when his 10 year-old daughter, Maya (Abigail Breslin), starts to question him about his life before marriage. Maya wants to know absolutely everything about how her parents met and fell in love.
Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Elizabeth Banks, Rachel Weisz, Isla Fisher, Abigail Breslin; Directed by: Adam Brooks
The release date for the Star Trek feature length film has been moved forward to May 09.
Paramount Pictures has shifted the release date of its forthcoming Star Trek movie from Christmas 2008 to May 8, 2009. The J.J. Abrams-directed film is still in production.
Variety reports that Trek’s release date shift “was part of a major reshuffling to the studio’s release calendar, as well as DreamWorks’ release calendar. Studio insiders said Star Trek has the potential to gross more in May than in December.”
Michael Bay has written the outline for Transformers 2.
As the writers’ strike appears poised to finally end, Transformers director Michael Bay has revealed that he’s already penned the story for the sequel himself, despite the fact that his screenwriters — Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci and Ehren Kruger — were not allowed to work on the project during the strike.
“I’ve been writing Transformers 2,” Bay revealed to RottenTomatoes.com. “We’ve got our characters all designed. I always write all my scripts, my movies anyway so at least I’ve got something to give the writers. It’s like a template. We have a really good outline so I worked on that.”
A big week for DVD(s). Lots of good movies. Just click on the links below to purchase the movie posters:
We Own the Night (Drama) – New York, 1988: A new breed of narcotics has swept the great city, bringing with it a ferocious crime wave more terrifying than any in recent memory. Outmanned and outgunned by the new criminal order, the police find themselves burying one of their own at the rate of two a month. An all-out war rages, threatening to engulf guilty and innocent alike.
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Wahlberg, Robert Duvall, Eva Mendes; Directed by: James Gray
The Martian Child (Drama) – John Cusack plays a science fiction writer who adopts a 6-year-old boy after the death of his fiance…except he’s a bit worried by the fact that this boy claims he’s from Mars.
Cast: John Cusack, Joan Cusack, Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Sophie Okonedo, Bobby Coleman, David Kaye; Directed by: Menno Meyjes
In the Shadow of the Moon (Documentary) – In the Shadow of the Moon is an intimate epic, which vividly communicates the daring and the danger, the pride and the passion, of this extraordinary era in American history. Between 1968 and 1972, the world watched in awe each time an American spacecraft voyaged to the Moon. Only 12 American men walked upon its surface and they remain the only human beings to have stood on another world. Now for the first, and very possibly the last, time, In the Shadow of the Moon combines archival material from the original NASA film footage, much of it never before seen, with interviews with the surviving astronauts, including Jim Lovell (Apollo 8 and 13), Dave Scott (Apollo 9 and 15), John Young (Apollo 10 and 16), Gene Cernan (Apollo 10 and 17), Mike Collins (Apollo 11), Buzz Aldrin (Apollo 11), Alan Bean (Apollo 12), Edgar Mitchell (Apollo 14), Charlie Duke (Apollo 16) and Harrison Schmitt (Apollo 17). The astronauts emerge as eloquent, witty, emotional and very human.
Cast: Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, Alan Bean, Eugene Cernan, Michael Collins, John F. Kennedy; Directed by: David Sington
Gone Baby Gone (Drama/Mystery) – “Gone, Baby, Gone,” Academy Award®-winner Ben Affleck’s directorial debut, stars Casey Affleck (“Ocean’s Eleven”), Michelle Monaghan (“Mission: Impossible III”), Academy Award®-winner Morgan Freeman and Academy Award®-nominee Ed Harris. Based on the novel by Dennis Lehane (“Mystic River”) and adapted for the screen by Affleck and Aaron Stockard, the film tells the story of two private investigators hunting for an abducted 4-year-old girl in the seamiest side of Boston’s underworld.
Cast: Casey Affleck, John Ashton, Morgan Freeman, Ed Harris, Amy Madigan, Michelle Monaghan; Directed by: Ben Affleck
Becoming Jane (Drama/Romance) – “Becoming Jane” centers on a love affair British novelist Jane Austen (Hathaway) began as a 20-year-old — with brilliant, roguish Irishman Tom Lefroy — that inspired her career as one of the world’s great romantic writers. The movie also looks at how the writer’s relationship with Lefroy helped create the male characters in “Pride & Prejudice.”
Cast: Anne Hathaway, James McAvoy, Julie Walters, James Cromwell, Maggie Smith; Directed by: Julian Jarrold
Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson both turn in solid performances, in the feature film, In Bruges.
Notorious off-screen antics aside, Colin Farrell has had an interesting career, balancing big-budget studio fare with smaller, more meaningful independent films. Compare 2004′s problematic Alexander with his thoughtful performance in At Home at the End of the World that same year. In Bruges clearly has more in common with the latter, and proves once again that it’s the indie arena in which he does his best work.
In this film, Farrell takes on the character of Ray, a petulant manchild and wannabe hitman who is sent to the Belgian city of Bruges to await further instructions after his first job goes tragically awry in London. Accompanying him on the trip is Ken (Brendan Gleeson), a seasoned professional with a cooler head and an appreciation for the finer things in life.
For those unfamiliar with the nuances of European geography, Bruges (pronounced “broozh”) is the best-preserved medieval city in Belgium. A storybook collection of quaint buildings, canals, churches and cobblestone streets, it’s a lesser-known tourist destination and a peaceful getaway for travelers. This does not impress Ray, however, who pronounces it a “s***hole” from the moment they arrive and resists Ken’s every effort to expose him to the town’s history and culture. Their frequent bickering and trivial banter is the source of much of the humor in the film’s first act.
But to label this as a fish-out-of-water gangster comedy (as the marketing material seems to do) would be a bit of a disservice to the film and to the potential audience. Irish playwright Martin McDonagh (who serves as writer and director here) demonstrates his facility with language by giving the actors plenty of witty dialogue, which they deliver with pitch-perfect timing. That lighthearted tone doesn’t stand unchallenged, though. It is laced with flashes of dark melancholy and startling poignancy, often in stark juxtaposition with the humor, so the film never becomes too frothy or frivolous. One moment Ray is heckling some tourists in front of a church, the next he’s wrestling with his conscience over the unfortunate circumstances that brought him there.
I have died and gone to heaven! Martin Scorsese is in talks with Bob Marley’s family about making a feature length film about the reggae legend’s life.
Having covered the work of Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, and The Band in previous documentaries, director Martin Scorsese is set to examine the life and times of reggae legend Bob Marley for his next musical project.
The Goodfellas helmer is collaborating with Marley’s family on the forthcoming feature, which Screen Daily claims will cover “the life, legacy and global impact of the influential singer-songwriter.”
Speaking of the project, son Ziggy said, “I am thrilled that the Marley family will finally have the opportunity to document our father’s legacy and are truly honoured to have Mr. Scorsese guide the journey.”