Indie News

Black Cinema’s Rise in 2018: In the Year of ‘Black Panther,’ Has Real Change Happened?

Black Cinema’s Rise in 2018: In the Year of ‘Black Panther,’ Has Real Change Happened?
Black Panther” is a game changer. With over $1.3 billion worldwide, it shattered the long-standing, fallacious belief that black films don’t sell overseas. It also should close 2018 as North America’s highest-grossing film — a historic first for a film with a predominantly black cast, black writers, and directed by a black filmmaker.

There’s another way to look at this: Deja vu. Hollywood’s interest in black stories surges, and then the “renaissance” is followed by a fallow period … until the next one. It’s a pattern that strips the consistency and continuity that’s essential for lasting change.

In the late 1960s, following the Civil Rights movement and facing pressure from a socially and politically conscious black audience seeking full representations of their humanity, Hollywood responded with blaxploitation movies. (It didn’t hurt that Hollywood was in economic flux at the time.) This overdue recognition of the power of
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Jason Momoa Changes His Tune & Now Says Henry Cavill Is “100%” Staying In The Dceu As Superman

Hot off the heels of Jason “My Man!” Momoa seemingly at peace with the idea of continuing the Dceu without the help of Henry Cavill as Superman, the “Aquaman” actor is changing his tune a bit.

A couple days ago, in an interview, Momoa said that he didn’t know what was happening with Cavill in the role of Superman, after rumors and speculation said the actor has decided to hang up the blue and red tights.

Continue reading Jason Momoa Changes His Tune & Now Says Henry Cavill Is “100%” Staying In The Dceu As Superman at The Playlist.
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Mormons Upset Over New ‘Once Upon A Deadpool’ Poster Depicting The Hero As Jesus

The whole point of “Once Upon a Deadpool” was to take the R-rated, foul-mouthed, adults-only superhero and package “Deadpool 2” in a PG-13, family-friendly way, right? Well, apparently that’s not completely going according to plan. You see, the good folks at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (aka the Mormon Church) are pretty upset by the new film, particularly with a new poster depicting Deadpool in a very…religious way.

Continue reading Mormons Upset Over New ‘Once Upon A Deadpool’ Poster Depicting The Hero As Jesus at The Playlist.
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Nadine Labaki Talks Her Golden Globe-Nominated Film ‘Capernaum’ And Life Intersecting With Art In Lebanon [Interview]

If it’s hope you seek in the new Lebanese film “Capernaum,” you have to look deeply. It lives mostly in the characters’ minute actions, which reveal kindness and care that long ago departed their eyes and demeanor. Look, for instance, to the pots and pans our pre-teen protagonist Zain has rigged into a rattling cart to dutifully haul around a baby that life has left in his lap.

Read More: Nadine Labaki’s ‘Capernaum [Capharnaüm]’ Restlessly Moves Like An Uber-Realist ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ [Cannes Review]

The larger world, by contrast, is bleak.

Continue reading Nadine Labaki Talks Her Golden Globe-Nominated Film ‘Capernaum’ And Life Intersecting With Art In Lebanon [Interview] at The Playlist.
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The Best TV Performances of 2018

The Best TV Performances of 2018
Actors and actresses are an oft-celebrated aspect of popular culture. They play the characters viewers identify with, rage against, or otherwise become emotionally tied to, and then they show up on “Busy Tonight” to play with a puppy or snap an Instagram picture calling out Hollywood’s double standards. In other words, they make a connection with their audience that needs to continue.

But their work can transcend that relationship, as well. Certain performances require recognition for their continued, intricate development (which often happens in TV), how they break from expectations, or when a new actor shows up and forms a fresh, unshakable bond. In 2018, a slew of actors did all of this and more. Some well-known faces forged exciting new aspects of their onscreen identity. Other newbies stole the show from their more experienced peers. Still more performers put out work fans didn’t expect or couldn’t get enough of.
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The State Of Peak TV In 2018: New Report Says There’s Still Too Much Damn Content To Watch

If people know as a film/TV superfan, then you probably hear something similar to this on a daily basis: “Hey, you really need to watch [Insert New TV Show]. It’s really good!” What ends up happening is that you’re left with a Netflix (or whatever streaming service) queue about a mile long of new TV series that you say to yourself that you’ll eventually watch, but you just never seem to find time to do it.

Continue reading The State Of Peak TV In 2018: New Report Says There’s Still Too Much Damn Content To Watch at The Playlist.
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Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K: Is it Worth It?

A $1300 4K Raw camera that comes with DaVinci Resolve and produces stunning, detailed images as those featured in the above camera test seems like a no-brainer. But as Blackmagic begins shipping their latest Pocket Cinema Camera, reports are rolling in of faulty battery life and other hang-ups. More than one reviewer noted that the battery has a tendency to jump from 70% to 0% in a second flat. Another suggests remedying the issue by purchasing a handful of Canon LP-E6Ns for back-up, effectively tacking an extra couple hundred dollars onto the baseline price tag. He also warns that the audio jacks can […]
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K: Is it Worth It?

A $1300 4K Raw camera that comes with DaVinci Resolve and produces stunning, detailed images as those featured in the above camera test seems like a no-brainer. But as Blackmagic begins shipping their latest Pocket Cinema Camera, reports are rolling in of faulty battery life and other hang-ups. More than one reviewer noted that the battery has a tendency to jump from 70% to 0% in a second flat. Another suggests remedying the issue by purchasing a handful of Canon LP-E6Ns for back-up, effectively tacking an extra couple hundred dollars onto the baseline price tag. He also warns that the audio jacks can […]
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‘Into the Dark’: Hulu’s Insane Holiday Horror Movie Helps Explain America’s Mascot Fixation

When the Philadelphia Flyers officially unveiled the team’s new mascot in September, the googly-eyed orange monster quickly became one of Twitter’s fiercest obsessions. Now, more than three months later, the creature known as “Gritty” has launched a thousand memes and the social media phenom shows no signs of stopping. (He just graced the cover of Artforum’s year-end issue.)

The internet’s collective interest seems driven by a series of unanswerable questions: Where did he come from? Was he born or made? Does Gritty actually ascribe to gendered pronouns? Was he born in the sewers under a hockey stadium? What is Gritty? Despite a cyclone of reporting on the mascot — some serious, some very serious — his genesis remains a thing of legend. However, the most recent installment of Hulu’s “Into the Dark” series may offer some much-needed answers.

“Pooka” is not a Gritty biopic; it was conceived,
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Berlinale 2019. Lineup

Ghost Town AnthologyThe titles for the 69th Berlin International Film Festival are being announced in anticipation of the event running February 7-17, 2019. We will update the program as new films are revealed.COMPETITIONThe Ground Beneath My FeetThe Golden Glove (Faith Akin, Germany/France)By the Grace of GodThe Kindness of StrangersI Was at Home, but A Tale of Three SistersGhost Town Anthology (Denis Côté, Canada)Berlinale SPECIALGully Boy (Zoya Akhtar, India)BrechtWatergate (Charles Ferguson, USA)PANORAMABuddies (Arthur J. Bressan Jr., USA, 1985) Bungalow (Ulrich Köhler, Germany, 2002) Rebels of the Neon God (Tsai Ming-liang, Taiwan, 1992) Daddy and the Muscle Academy Lady Chatterley (Pascale Ferran, France/Belgium, 2006)The Man Who Drove With Mandela (Greta Schillar, UK/South Africa/USA/Netherlands, 1998)My Life As A Dog (Lasse Hallström, Sweden, 1985)Mysterion (Pirjo Honkasalo, Finland, 1991)Savage Nights (Cyril Collard, France/Italy, 1992) Self-Portrait in 23 Rounds: a Chapter in David Wojnarowicz's Life, 1989–1991 (Marion Scemema,
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“What Moonlight Gave Us Was the Confidence to Execute Our Ideas Without Fear”: Writer/Director Barry Jenkins on If Beale Street Could Talk

Writer-director Barry Jenkins solidifies his position as one of the current cinema’s most empathetic and visually (and aurally) expressive filmmakers with his third feature, If Beale Street Could Talk. Adapted from a 1974 novel by James Baldwin, the film tells the story of Tish and Fonny, a young couple whose dreams are cut short by Fonny’s wrongful imprisonment; moving back and forth between the early days of their love story and the brutal reality of their present, Jenkins crafts a masterpiece that is simultaneously achingly, hopefully romantic and unblinking in its portrait of social injustice. While Moonlight drew upon cinematic […]
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“What Moonlight Gave Us Was the Confidence to Execute Our Ideas Without Fear”: Writer/Director Barry Jenkins on If Beale Street Could Talk

Writer-director Barry Jenkins solidifies his position as one of the current cinema’s most empathetic and visually (and aurally) expressive filmmakers with his third feature, If Beale Street Could Talk. Adapted from a 1974 novel by James Baldwin, the film tells the story of Tish and Fonny, a young couple whose dreams are cut short by Fonny’s wrongful imprisonment; moving back and forth between the early days of their love story and the brutal reality of their present, Jenkins crafts a masterpiece that is simultaneously achingly, hopefully romantic and unblinking in its portrait of social injustice. While Moonlight drew upon cinematic […]
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

John Cho Sees the Future of Film in ‘Searching’ and Its Colorblind Casting

John Cho Sees the Future of Film in ‘Searching’ and Its Colorblind Casting
The technological demands of Aneesh Chaganty’s feature directorial debut “Searching” were profound. A computer-screen thriller that unfolds on various displays, zinging from laptop to laptop and back again, Chaganty’s film required a canny handle on technology and the way it looks and moves, but it also needed an actor able to root the family-centric film in emotion and humanity.

That came from the inspired casting of the always-reliable John Cho as David Kim, a recent widower who must use all his smarts (and a ton of literal screen time) to find his missing teenage daughter Margot. The “Star Trek” and “Columbus” actor delivered, turning in a nuanced performance in a film that could have been dominated by on-screen wizardry.

While a film like “Searching” could impress by virtue of craftsmanship and technology that makes it feel so contemporary and true-to-life — this is the rare internet-centric film that utilizes existing apps and websites,
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‘Mary Poppins Returns:’ Emily Blunt Is Terrific In A Mostly Forgettable Imitation & Uneven Sequel To A Classic

Disney‘s new “Mary Poppins Returns” is a lot like a Snuggie™. That wearable fad blanket provided instant warmth and comfort to the receiver of the popular White Elephant gift, generated a hearty laugh or two, and was then thrown into the back of the closest, never to be seen again until the annual Goodwill run. This newfangled invention can’t compare with the reliability of a good ol’ regular blanket, but there is something charming— if a little bit off— about this new imitation.

Continue reading ‘Mary Poppins Returns:’ Emily Blunt Is Terrific In A Mostly Forgettable Imitation & Uneven Sequel To A Classic at The Playlist.
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‘Ozark’ Actress Julia Garner Cast As Lead In Upcoming Harvey Weinstein Film

Unsurprisingly, the controversy surrounding disgraced producer/mogul Harvey Weinstein in light of last year’s sexual assault allegations has spawned many filmmakers to adapt the story for the big screen. Multiple documentaries and narrative features are being developed as we speak, with big names like Brad Pitt and Brian De Palma attached to their own respective projects. But it appears one of the first that is coming together is from filmmaker Kitty Green, who has just hired the lead for her untitled Weinstein film.

Continue reading ‘Ozark’ Actress Julia Garner Cast As Lead In Upcoming Harvey Weinstein Film at The Playlist.
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‘Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki’ Review: A Fun Portrait of a Miserable Retiree

‘Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki’ Review: A Fun Portrait of a Miserable Retiree
Here is just a tiny sample of the many different ways that Hayao Miyazaki — arguably the greatest animator the cinema has ever seen — describes himself in Kaku Arakawa’s documentary about the artist’s life since his most recent attempt to retire: “I’m an old geezer.” “I’m used up.” And, at the 2013 press conference where he publicly declared that his beloved Studio Ghibli would no longer be in the business of making feature-length films: “I’ve decided to treat any desire to continue as the delusions of an old man.”

As anyone who’s seen Mami Sunada’s extraordinary “The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness” already knows, Miyazaki can be kind of a buzzkill. And here, in “Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki,” the creator of profoundly vital movies like “My Neighbor Totoro” and “Spirited Away” is full-on goth.

Originally aired on Nhk World TV in 2016, and now being released in U.
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Chris Pratt, Chris Evans & Tom Holland Reportedly Among List Of Actors Originally Sought After For ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’

Look, there’s no way of knowing if the upcoming “Sonic the Hedgehog” live-action/CGI hybrid film will be any good and/or make a ton of money at the box office. Video game adaptations, by and large, have been complete and utter garbage, and there’s nothing about ‘Sonic’ that screams success. But according to some leaked documents, Paramount was originally hoping to stack the deck with some A-list actors to ensure the film’s success.

Continue reading Chris Pratt, Chris Evans & Tom Holland Reportedly Among List Of Actors Originally Sought After For ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’ at The Playlist.
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Talal Derki Made His Documentary About Jihadists in Syria By Pretending to Join Their Holy War

Think of an undercover cop pretending to be an outlaw in order to find incriminating evidence, or a soldier traveling incognito behind enemy lines during wartime. Now imagine a westernized Syrian filmmaker who identifies as a liberal Muslim going to Syria and embedding with radical Islamists by pretending to be one of them.

That’s what Talal Derki did in order to shoot “Of Fathers and Sons.” And what he documented is unlike anything we’ve ever seen. That’s why the movie, which focused on a jihadist’s family, took home the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, and the Filmmaker Award at the Full Frame Documentary Film Fest, is an Independent Spirit Award nominee, and could wind up on the documentary Oscar shortlist December 17.

“I wanted to tell the story from inside the world of Syria,” said Derki in a phone interview from his home in Berlin.
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‘Playmobil: The Movie’ Trailer: Nope, This Is Definitely Not A Cynical Cash Grab Influenced By ‘Lego’ Success

When “The Lego Movie” became a massive hit, spawning two spin-offs and an upcoming sequel, it was only a matter of time before studios went to the literal toy box and began figuring out which brands could be the next big thing. That’s really the only reason we can think of to explain the existence of the upcoming “Playmobil: The Movie.”

In the new teaser trailer for the live-action/animated hybrid film, a young woman and her little brother become trapped in the Playmobil world through some wacky hijinks.

Continue reading ‘Playmobil: The Movie’ Trailer: Nope, This Is Definitely Not A Cynical Cash Grab Influenced By ‘Lego’ Success at The Playlist.
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M. Night Shyamalan Talks Original 3 Hour ‘Glass’ Cut & Pitching The Film To Universal And Disney

2019 is beginning with a hell of a bang, with the long-awaited film “Glass.” After “Split” surprised fans with its revelation that it takes place in the “Unbreakable” universe, filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan started teasing that he had a trilogy-ending film planned already. And now, almost 20 years after “Unbreakable,” the stories of our grounded superheroes comes to its close. But according to the filmmaker, a lot of the story ended up on the cutting room floor.

Continue reading M. Night Shyamalan Talks Original 3 Hour ‘Glass’ Cut & Pitching The Film To Universal And Disney at The Playlist.
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