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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Strike Back Episode 9 – Fear is Beautiful (Spoilers)

    David Chute finds surprising beauty in television's best action drama.Director Daniel Percival has no need for 3-D. He can define a space with the parallax of a brief dolly shot. His staging of an incursion into a mammoth bunker complex under a forest in Chechnya adds a sweep of operatic grandeur to the penultimate ninth episode of Strike Back, the twisty action and drama series recently renewed by Cinemax. After a blast cuts off their escape, Section 20 comrades Scott and Stonebridge are forced go deeper and deeper into the earth, through claustrophobically narrowing staircases and oozing tunnels, until the complex opens out into a series of eerie vaulted caverns. The huge spaces have a menacing grandeur that’s appropriate to the way the stakes have been ramped up for the show’s two-part finale -- and to the scale of the biological horror plotted by global super-terrorist Latif (Jimi Mistry), as illustrated by the spreading circles of devastation on a computerized damage-estimate diagram.

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'The Three Musketeers' Swings, Misses & Fails To Make A Mark

    It doesn't take long for director Paul W.S. Anderson -- the man behind two "Resident Evil" movies, "AVP: Alien vs. Predator" and "Death Race" -- to put his own dubious stamp on the latest big screen adaptation of "The Three Musketeers." It'only takes about ten minutes into the movie until he sends his wife and longtime muse Milla Jovovich running and then sliding across the floor to avoid gunfire (in slow motion, of course). You'd be forgiven if for a brief moment you thought you were watching a scene from a period movie version of the zombie killing franchise. Yet, for all the gadgety weapons, battle ready airships, cleavage plunging dresses and outlandish facial hair, "The Three Musketeers" is a dreary bore that manages to squander the game cast and impressive sets under dull political intrigue and rote explosions.

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  • The Playlist
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    NYFF '11: 'Kid With A Bike' Directors The Dardennes Say They Originally Planned A Different Ending

    Reveal That Holly Hunter Is One Of The Hollywood Stars Who Has Expressed Interest In Working With Them What can be said about the Dardenne brothers that five Cannes awards don't already say much more definitively? Even a mediocre splotch in their oeuvre is twelve notches above most other contemporary films that get paraded around on the blogosphere.

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  • The Playlist
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    NYFF '11: 'The Artist' Director Michel Hazanavicius Credits Orson Welles As One Of Many Influences

    Director Wanted To Revive Silent Movie Style For A Contemporary Movie AudienceDespite stealing audiences' hearts and walking away from the prestigious Cannes Film Festival with the Best Actor Award, Michel Hazanavicius's nostalgia-fueled silent feature "The Artist" may have its work cut out for it. Will regular movie-goers go and see something like this in an era when the mere thought of a flick not being in color is appalling? It's a tough call, but with the right push, it might get sales solely based on the fact it's unlike anything in at the cineplex today. After that, all the movie needs is five minutes: it's an instant charmer, an escapist picture done with flair and an enormous amount of heart.

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  • The Playlist
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  • The Playlist
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    Matt Reeves Will Take A Trip To 'The Twilight Zone'

    Despite much more high-profile names like Christopher Nolan, Michael Bay, Alfonso Cuarón and Rupert Wyatt being wishlisted by Warner Bros., the forthcoming "The Twilight Zone" has found its director, and it's a pretty inspired choice.

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  • The Playlist
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    'Attack the Block' Director Joe Cornish Says He Declined 'Die Hard 5' Because It Was Too Big A Step

    Compares 'Die Hard With A Vengeance' With 'Slumdog Millionaire'; Gives A Small 'Ant-Man' Update (Sort Of)We got to sit down this afternoon at the New York Comic Con with Joe Cornish, who made one of our very favorite movies of the year, the alien invasion romp "Attack the Block." There will be more from our interview in the next few days, but while we were chatting with him we had to ask if the recent rumors were true – that he was shortlisted to direct Fox's next "Die Hard" entry, the hilariously titled "Good Day to Die Hard." Our interest was further piqued after Nicholas Winding Refn, who was also supposedly up for the job, told us that he had never been approached.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    Festival of the New Black Imagination - Today, Sat. Oct. 15th In NYC

    We recently posted on the fundraising push for Festival of the New Black Imagination, a new multi-media event set for Saturday, October 15th in Brooklyn, NY.

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  • The Lost Boys
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    Happy Four Year Blogaversary

    It's frighteningly been FOUR years since I started this blog, which I'll admit is probably facing an expiry date (or at least a makeover) at some point soon given it's title and general approach to bloggery. I fear if I keep it going as I head toward thirtysomethingland it will only enable me to act all Peter Pan (or maybe I should just hide that year-specific birthday tagline). But until then, I'll continue to enjoy updating it for its dozen or so lovely readers, all of which should check out - and cringe at - the first entry here. Happy blogaversary!

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  • Shadow and Act
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    Kickstarter Campaign Trailer: Shauna Garr's "1 More Hit" Takes An Honest Look At Drugs & Hip-Hop

    One of the main issues I have with the so-called "hip-hop culture" is its occasional glorification and romanticization of illegal substance abuse. The tired argument of "it's just entertainment" just doesn't fly with me because, believe it or not, some people just don't know the difference between real and "entertainment".

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