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Entries in Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (8)

Sunday
Nov202016

Podcast: 'Nocturnal Elle's Halftime Walk'

We're back to weekly podcasts! This week Nick, Joe, and Nathaniel discuss the latest films from Tom Ford, Ang Lee, and Paul Verhoeven, only one of which we can recommend.

Index (42 minutes)
00:01-17:22 Ang Lee's awkward Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk starring Joe Alwyn and Garret Hedlund

17:23-29:45 Tom Ford's revolting Nocturnal Animals. We don't understand the initial acclaim at all

29:46-42:00 Paul Verhoeven and Isabelle Huppert's provocative collaboration Elle, France's Oscar submission (mild spoilers)

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes. Continue the conversations in the comments.

Nocturnal Elle's Halftime Walk

Friday
Nov112016

What are you seeing this weekend?

Just a reminder that three major titles open today

Elle
France's Oscar entry, directed by notorious provocateur Paul Verhoeven (Basic Instinct, Showgirls, Turkish Delight, Black Book, etcetera) features screen icon Isabelle Huppert in arguably the crowning role of her inimitable career as a video game designer chillingly obsessed with uncovering the identity of her rapist. Reviewed. Expect an Oscar nomination or (crossing fingers) two. Reviewed.
[Opens today in New York. Wednesday in Los Angeles]

Arrival
Denis Villeneuve's (Sicario, Enemy) awesome thinking person's sci-fi epic about a curiously immobile alien invasion. The aliens have arrived but what do they want hovering in 12 locations over our world? An expert linguist (Amy Adams, wonderful) is recruited to communicate with them in this superbly executed drama. Reviewed. It's also perfect for this moment for this movie.

 

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
Ang Lee's technically experimental adaptation of the political novel is about a soldier on leave from war paraded for the nation as a war hero. Joe Alwyn (as Billy Lynn) is a compelling debut actor and the film has curio value from this normally great director but the high frame rate technique MUST die a quick death: it doesn't look like cinema at all but like a cheap poorly filmed stage production. More thoughts.
[Opens today in New York and Los Angeles] 

Also Opening:
Wide: Almost Christmas a comedy starring Danny Glover, the Naomi Watts led thriller Shut-In; Limited: a 20th anniversary restoration of the lesbian classic The Watermelon Woman (NY only), three documentaries (Seasons, National Bird, The Anthropologist), and the Oscilloscope curiosity The Love Witch. Here's that trailer:

LOVE WITCH TRAILER from Anna Biller on Vimeo.

 

Wednesday
Oct192016

A Brief Jog Right Past "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk." Get Me Outta Here!

a belated finale NYFF moment with your host, Nathaniel R

Before the world premiere of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk the great director Ang Lee appeared and asked the crowd at the NYFF screening to "keep an open mind." He was speaking about the new technology he used to shoot the 3D movie about a Texas soldier named Billy Lynn (played by talented newcomer Joe Alwyn) on leave from Iraq who is used as a patriotic prop at a football game's halftime show. The movie is shot in 4K (much higher clarity than usual) with a "revolutionary" 140 frames per second as opposed to the standard for decades upon decades now which is 24. As a cinephile without much technical savvy and who doesn't get too caught up in aspect ratios or film stocks or whatnot, I thought "no problem, Ang!"  I always attend movies with eyes wide open and the mind ready to join the party should the movie engage it.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Aug222016

Ang Lee's 'Billy Lynn' to Launch at NYFF

By Chris Feil

Though New York Film Festival has already announced its splashiest titles for opening (Ava DuVernay's documentary The 13th), centerpiece (Mike Mills's 20th Century Women), and closing (James Gray's The Lost City of Z) galas, they still have another big world premiere up their sleeves. The fest has announced they will also host the first premiere of Ang Lee's high-tech satire Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk.

NYFF was a successful launching pad to Lee's Life of Pi a few years back, so the hope for repeated success is evident. Curiously, the film is premiering outside of the fest's three big slots but this could be a last minute addition. The initial whispers were that the film wouldn't be ready to play the festivals at all thanks to the post-production constraints of Lee's 120-frames-per-second lensing.

The premiere will also be the launching pad for the high frame rate speed, which is even faster than Peter Jackson's attempts with The Hobbit that went over quite poorly with the public. Lee's concept here is to use the medium to heighten the harsh realities of war and contrast that against life back home. This more emotional approach to technical innovation has us hoping that Lee gives us more Pi than Hulk, and the trailer sets the stage for potential weepy, hyper-real highs.

We'll find out if the risk pays off better than it did for Jackson at NYFF's world premiere on October 14 and when the film opens on November 11 - but how many theatres will be able to even show the film in Lee's intended format?

Friday
Jul222016

Oscar Chart Updates: The Acting Races !

The July Oscar prediction chart updates are complete! You're welcome. Each chart has been updated (but for foreign film but we start building the submission tables now). With the acting charts newly updated you'll see new predictions we're trying on for size (Jessica Sloane for Miss Sloane and Naomie Harris for Moonlight) and significant chart gains for the casts of three pictures (which affects the supporting actor chart most) Love and Friendship, Loving and Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk.

Will they be contenders? Who knows.

Here are some questions TFE is asking its Oscar Crystal Ball. Care to answer them in the comments? 

• Which sci-fi picture is more likely to be garner acting praise: Passengers with Jennifer Lawrence or Arrival with Amy Adams? Or neither since sci-fi pictures are rarely regarded, right or wrong, as "actor's pictures"?

• Do you think Love & Friendship can muster up an acting campaign to capitalize on its sleeper arthouse hit status?

• Why is buzz around Martin Scorsese's Silence so quiet and does this mean anything for its formidable male actors?

• Will Fences be seen as just the Viola & Denzel show or will it be a force in Supporting Actor? And can Denzel win a third Oscar, tying Daniel Day Lewis, Walter Brennan, and Jack Nicholson?

• Can Sony Pictures Classics make a critical cause of or controversy 'must-see' event out of Paul Verhoeven & Isabelle Huppert's pairing in Elle?

• When will filmmakers quit wasting Oscar caliber actresses as "concerned wife on phone" and "inquisitive wife at kitchen table"? (Actually this last one is rhetorical. No need to answer lest we all weep.)

NEW CHARTS
INDEX |  PIC | DIRECTOR | ACTOR | ACTRESS
SUPPORTING ACTOR | SUPPORTING ACTRESS 
SCREENPLAYSVISUALS | AURALS | ANIMATION & DOCS

Thursday
May122016

YNMS: "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk"

Not to be outdone by all the Cannes buzz starting this week, we have our first teaser trailer for Oscar hopeful Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk. Ang Lee follows up his Oscar winning Life of Pi with this film about a young veteran's Victory Tour after fighting in Iraq. Like Pi, his new work blends a flashback narrative with technical wizardry: Lee utilized a high frame rate to create hyperreal action, aiming to create unprecidentally real 3D.

Backed by a massive ensemble including Kristen Stewart, Vin Diesel, Garrett Hedlund, Chris Tucker, Ben Platt, and Steve Martin, the master director looks to be back in the Oscar hunt once again.

Let's break down the highs, lows and inbetweens of the first look:

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Apr202016

Lukewarm off the Presses: Hamilton, Banks, Anastasia, Cloak & Dagger. Plus Tony Buzz!

Nathaniel, back from the Nashville Film Festival where I juried on the "New Directors" competition. More on that once our awards are announced. Until then, I'm under hush order. But let's catch up on all sorts of movie & entertainment news that happened over the past handful of days that we didn't cover here.

• Lin-Manuel Miranda won the Pulitzer for his Broadway smash Hamilton and, giddy squeal, The New Yorker's television goddess Emily Nussbaum won the Pulitzer for criticism. If you haven't read her, you must. She's just wonderful.
The Golden Globes have clarified their rules for what drama and comedy mean in a probably futile attempt to get campaigns to stop trying to game the system.
• I forgot to mention that teen superhero duo Cloak and Dagger are getting their own TV show (yay! always loved them in the comic books) but Kate Beaton has two words for you "tit windows"
• Elizabeth Banks plans to direct a revival of the Charlie's Angels franchise and she's also playing the villain in the new Power Rangers movie resulting in a horrifying photo.
• Beloved bossy TV mom Doris Roberts has died. The supporting actress won 4 Emmys for her role on Everybody Loves Raymond and also had memorable roles on St. Elsewhere (another Emmy win), Remington Steele, and Angie. She was not only well loved by audiences but co-stars too.
• Carrie Fisher has officially blamed George Lucas for inspiring her writing career because his Star Wars dialogue was so terrible
• Johnny Depp and Amber Heard made some sort of weird apology video for that dog business in Australia
• Adapting animated features into Broadway musicals isn't just for Disney anymore. Anastasia (1997) becomes a stage musical this summer in London and is eyeing the 2016/2017 Broadway season
• There are some who are suspicious that this news is not really official but Nicole Kidman is supposedly returning to Broadway this fall with Photograph 51, after its London run
• Industry people got really excited about 3D high frame rate footage from Ang Lee's Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk at a Future of Cinema Conference
• The Academy is STILL trying to explain their new voting rules. So do we get it now?

RANDOM CASTING & DATE SHIFTS
No links just news ICYMI: Daisy Ridley will headline a new film from Marielle Heller, director of Diary of a Teenage Girl called Kolma, a 'mystical' romance; Willem Dafoe joined Justice League (role unknown); Walton Goggins has replaced Joe Manganiello (they're so alike. um...) in History Channel's forthcoming Navy SEALs series Six; Naomi Watts will headline the Netflix psychological thriller series Gypsy (not the musical!) in which she plays a therapist who gets mixed up in her client's lives; Kurt Russell & Kate Hudson will star in the TV series Barbary Coast, a period drama about the gold rush in the 19th century; Kate McKinnon may star in the new back-to-school comedy Senior Year; Nicole Beharie, who was so amazing in Shame (2011) and then starred in TV's Sleepy Hollow, will play the lead female role in the remake of 90s thriller Jacob's Ladder; The Golden Globes will take place on January 8th, 2017 this coming awards season. 

THIS JUST IN
Slightly fresher news before we go

Two of Broadway's Funniest Ladies: Laura Benanti & Jane Krakowski, in "She Loves Me"

• Doug Kraner, a production designer on TV's "Gotham" and several movie hits including Uncle Buck, Sleeping with the Enemy and Enough, has passed away.
• A24 is on board a new James Ponsoldt (Spectacular Now) project a true story drama based on the book "I Want My MTV: The Uncensored Story of the Music Video Revolution"
• The Tonys are coming. The Tonys are coming. That means precursor madness. Yes, as with the Oscars there are many precursors to the Tony Awards. The Outer Critic Circle Nominees and Drama League have already announced their nominees (with Drama Desk to come next week). Since all the groups have slightly different rules for eligibility Hamilton is out of the way for some of the precursors (though obviously not for Tony) since it was eligible while it was Off Broadway last season. With the 800 lb gorilla caged (for the moment) that means good news for other musicals: She Loves Me, American Psycho, Bright Star and The Color Purple all appear strong going into the Tony nominations. The schedule is as follows:

April 28th. Drama Desk Nominations
May 3rd. Tony Award Nominations
May 20th. Drama League Awards (Hosted by Megan Hilty & Zachary Levi)
May 26th. Outer Critics Circle Awards 
June 5th. Drama Desk Awards (Hosted by Michael Urie)
June 12th. Tony Awards (Hosted by James Corden)

P.S.
Meryl Streep also recently spoke at the "Women in the World" summit and at the end of her speech she sings a snippet from Hamilton making this an even better week for Lin-Manuel Miranda and the upcoming Tony Awards.

 

Friday
Feb272015

Link Overload: Busy Actors, Deleted Scenes, Movie Spoofs

AV Club there's finally a Whiplash spoof starring The Muppets' Animal. "Animalllll!"
Boy Culture remembering a great poem "Lana Turner Has Collapsed"
EW the DVD of Into the Woods will include the new Sondheim song sung by Meryl Streep cut from the movie - you can see a minute of it here. I like it. Could listen to Meryl sing all day
Pajiba all the crazy shit that's gone down at 50 Shades of Grey screenings
THR Lovely profile of Kyle Chandler's careful career moves. If you missed my review of the pilot of his new series Bloodline it's here. Love this actor. I'm totally curious about what he'll do in Carol with Cate Blanchett

Coming Soon first image and synopsis from Jem & The Holograms
Movie City News David Poland says very smart things about the Academy's lack of confidence in themselves as evidenced on Oscar night. I've often felt this and don't get why they don't embrace their power? They're always worrying about audiences they don't have and not concentrating on delivering for the huge audience they do have.
Variety Brit Joe Alwyn lands the lead in Ang Lee's next project Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk about a 19 year old US soldier home briefly between tours in Iraq. It's Alwyn's first motion picture though he's done stage work.
Amazon I haven't watched this yet but they're streaming the pilot to Sutton Foster's new show Younger for free
THR Blade Runner's sequel will be directed by the talented Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners) though I still don't get why something that perfect in original form needs a sequel (sigh). You're just asking for trouble!
Variety Joan Allen doing a dramatic thriller pilot co-starring Zach Gilford from Friday Night Lights
HitFix Louis Virtel reminds us that The Brady Bunch Movie (1995) was actually hilarious.

Wait, there's still more links? 
i09 bringing comic book characters to life with a really unique take on makeup transformations 
Empire Rosamund Pike lining up lots of projects including The Deep Blue Good-By with Christian Bale which is meant to be a franchise
A Fistful of Films gives out 1939 prizes. I keep thinking of doing this with older film years but I'm such a completist and those big projects undo me! Still giving best actress to anyone but Vivien Leigh that year? I won't hear it!
Stage Buddy talking to The Last Five Years producer. Who came up with that Russell Crowe joke?
Uproxx Neill Blomkamp is refreshingly honest about how he failed Elysium

EXIT VIDEO
Julie Andrews goes Death Metal in this awesome Mary Poppins video