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The Help

  • Women and Hollywood
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    Cross-Post: Oscars 2011: Single Fathers and the Vanishing Mothers

    One of the threads running through this year’s Oscar race is the single father who must pull things together for the sake of his kids.  This is especially poignant in three films – Moneyball, The Descendants and We Bought a Zoo.  It’s even funnier that it happens to be Ge...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: Families Complete The Circle Of Life, Pack Theaters For Movie They Own On DVD

    Right now, some jerk at Disney is finding a way to use the term “circle of life” to define how they can release “The Lion King” anytime, and it will always make money. A 3D re-issue of the film became the number one weekend attraction by a very wide margin with $29 million, a huge middle finger to t...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: 'Contagion' Infects Box Office In Year's Weakest Overall Frame

    It looks like “Contagion” lived up to its name, landing at number one with $23 million and sapping the rest of the lineup of its health, creating one of the genuinely weakest weekends of the year. The Steven Soderbergh thriller, loaded with familiar faces, benefited from a savvy ad campaign and a fe...

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  • The Playlist
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    Terrence Malick Chooses The Relatively Unknown Haley Bennett For Christian Bale Drama

    Terrence Malick, whose output seems to be exponentially increasing, has no fewer than three projects actively on his docket: cosmic documentary "Voyage of Time;" an untitled Ben Affleck/Rachel McAdams drama rumored to be called "The Burial;" and a third project, starring Christian Bale, which should...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: Three Straight Weeks At #1 For 'The Help'

    There are all sorts of qualifiers to this summer becoming the most financially robust in box office history. Chief amongst them are both the inferior product, but also the illusion of 3D prices, which do an excellent job of covering up the consistently-dropping attendance numbers. In other words, mo...

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  • The Playlist
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    Who Were The Winners And Losers Of The Summer Of 2011?

    As the summer winds die down with a flat and uninspired whimper, the realization sets in: the summer of 2011 was for the birds. "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" was the last major tent-pole to open, followed by sleeper hits like "The Help" and the not-so-successful R-rated action comedy, "30 Minutes or Less." Many had forecast that the overstuffed summer would prove disastrous, with Jon Favreau predicting that, "There’s not a weekend where there won’t be teeth on the floor," but ironically it's Favreau's film that proved to be one of the biggest box-office disappointments. Financially, films did very well with three billion-dollar blockbuster...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: 'The Help' Defeats Tepid Newcomers And Hurricane Season For Another Week At #1

    Usually, studios will look for any possible reason to blame the weather for a film’s poor box office showing. Heat waves only mean audiences will seek the air conditioning of a theater, at least when something exciting is playing. And people will withstand non-apocalyptic snowstorms simply to get away from the cold while enjoying the blockbuster of their choice. But there aren’t a whole lot of options when almost half of a movie’s proposed locations are under siege by a vicious hurricane. Many large chains didn’t even bother to stay open during Irene’s reign, meaning that these quiet end-of-August releases could find no traction heading into ...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: Audiences Stay Home In Droves As 'The Help' Defeats Weak New Releases

    Credit a canny expansion strategy that nabbed “The Help” the number one spot at the box office in its second weekend of release. Disney wisely banked on the film having more buzz than the slate of underwhelming new releases (not all of it positive), and after two weekends, it’s easily one of the season’s big success stories, as the picture has crested $70 million after only twelve days of release. The establishment has been encouraged - stories of the struggles of minorities highlighted by the heroism of a plucky white person of higher social strata are surefire earners, particularly if you market to families. Institutionalized racism at its ...

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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: 'Apes' Dominates 'The Help'; One Franchise Reaches Its 'Final Destination'

    All is forgiven between the public and the “Planet Of The Apes” franchise. This relationship seemed on the outs as soon as Tim Burton gave us Apebraham Lincoln a decade ago, but “Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes” has healed all wounds. While not keeping pace with that last Apeventure, 'Rise' has still...

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  • Leonard Maltin
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    The Help—movie review

    Any time a book strikes a chord with a vast number of people, as Kathryn Stockett’s The Help did, there is a mixture of anticipation and trepidation about its transition to the screen. Overall, I think writer-director Tate Taylor has done a good job bringing the book and its characte...

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