MSN Movies Blog

For J. Edgar Hoover biopic

By Kim Morgan Dec 31, 2010 11:26AM
Judi Dench? I'm in. (Have I discussed my James Franco-like love for Judi Dench? No? Perhaps in another post).

Anyway, ComingSoon learned via a site called "Sandwich John Films" that Clint Eastwood has cast Dame Dench in his newest film, the Dustin Lance Black-penned J. Edgar Hoover biopic "J. Edgar."

Here's more:

"In fact, they learned this when they asked about Charlize Theron's rumored casting in the movie, to which the filmmaker responded:

'We think she will be in the film, and Judi Dench is definitely in the film, and there we are.'


Actor toys with Hawkeye speculation

By Kim Morgan Dec 30, 2010 2:58PM
OK, I'm actually confused even after TheWrap has made things clear concerning the work of Jeremy Renner ...  I think.

Admittedly, I'm still contending with major sugar crashes due to copious cookie consumption over Christmas, not to mention Chinese dumplings (my parents live next to a family much like Eastwood's neighbors in "Gran Torino," and, boy, did they bring a lot of food over. Great food, God bless them all ... but I ate about as many dumplings as Oh Dae-Su in "Oldboy.")

Anyway, I'm wrapping my mind around this Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye in ... how many movies? And, excuse me, this has nothing to do with "M.A.S.H."? They aren't remaking "M.A.S.H." because studio executives forgot it was a movie to begin with? What? (Where's that Russian tea ball?) Also, where's James Franco in all of this?

Here's more from TheWrap:

"Everyone knows that Jeremy Renner will play Hawkeye in Joss Whedon's "The Avengers," but that's not the first time we'll see the Oscar-nominated "Hurt Locker" star drawing the bow and arrow.

"Renner will first appear as Hawkeye in a cameo in the Kenneth Branagh-directed 'Thor,' TheWrap has learned.

"There has been a lot of confusion about whether Hawkeye would be popping up in 'Thor,' as Empire Online speculated in November 2009 that the character would appear at the end of the film, similar to how Samuel L. Jackson was introduced as Nick Fury at the end of 'Iron Man.'


'If I was a betting man, I would bet that Hawkeye would probably show up in 'Thor,' and then be in 'The Avengers,' Renner told Empire. 'But do I know for sure? I can’t say. But I’d love for that to happen. It’d be fun.'

"However, just a month later, Renner told Movieline that there was "no truth" to rumors of Hawkeye first appearing in 'Thor.'"


Death reports once again prove to be hoaxes

By Kim Morgan Dec 30, 2010 12:24PM
My unsteady feelings about all those mosquitoes (including myself) fluttering around Twitter, using limited characters, spilling private news and joking about things that require a deft writing style and comic timing to convey ... jokes, continues.

I love it. I loathe it. It freaks me out.

Particularly with these rumors (you may have heard them yesterday), reported by TheWrap.
"Twitter and other social media portals flared up Wednesday afternoon with news that Owen Wilson died in a snowboarding accident in Switzerland.

"It turned out to be utter nonsense, of course -- just like earlier reports that Charlie Sheen and Adam Sandler suffered the exact same fate this holiday season.  

"'Absolutely false,' Ina Treciokas, Wilson’s spokesperson, told TheWrap.  'I spoke with him earlier. He's not in Europe.'"


THR talks to David O. Russell about his temperament -- and his temper

By Kim Morgan Dec 30, 2010 12:07PM
The Hollywood Reporter continues its terrific roundtable series, discussing movies and the work that goes into them with actors, directors and producers.

Here, editors talk to "The Fighter" director David O. Russell, a notorious hothead but a wonderful filmmaker, who discusses some of his famous on-set feuds -- with some regret: "I'm not a tactful or political person ... to my own detriment."

Watch below:


IFC picks them!

By Kim Morgan Dec 30, 2010 11:40AM
IFC is done with the top 10-list thing -- for 2010, apparently. So to make up for the year-end-list lust that seizes us all, they've already listed a string of films they think will be the best of 2011.

They're even ballsy enough to title it "The Top Ten Films of 2011."

They do follow with the parenthetical subtitle: "Or At Least Those We Think Will Be Really, Really Great." They really have to cover themselves regarding Sean Penn in drag. Who I'm starting to think looks really effing cool at this point.

Here are two of them:

"'This Must Be the Place'

Directed by Paolo Sorrentino

Though not yet known much outside of his home country or the festival circuit, Italian auteur Sorrentino received considerable acclaim -- including a Cannes Jury Prize and even an Oscar nomination for best makeup -- for 'Il Divo,' his 2008 tale of political corruption. In his follow-up English-language debut, Sean Penn stars as a retired rock star on the search for his father's torturer, an ex-Nazi war criminal who is hiding in the U.S. Frances McDormand also co-stars. What might be the result is anybody's guess, but the pairing of Sorrentino and Penn is reason alone for great anticipation.

"'The Dangerous Method'

Directed by David Cronenberg

The last time Cronenberg tackled the medical profession, we got the eerily creepy 'Dead Ringers.' The idea that the Canadian maestro is now taking on the birth of psychoanalysis should send shivers down your cerebellum. Based on a play by Christopher Hampton called 'The Talking Cure,' the film stars Viggo Mortensen as Sigmund Freud (he never looked that good), Michael Fassbender as Carl Jung and Keira Knightley as Sabina Spielrein, a patient of Jung's who was also a huge influence on both their theories. A sort of ménage-a-trois of the mind, the 'Method' has all the components of a wonderfully disturbing psychological thriller."


2010's memorable movie moments

By Kim Morgan Dec 29, 2010 2:49PM
Richard T. Jameson and Kathleen Murphy have once again done MSN's annual Moments Out of Time feature, a list of scenes, gestures, flashes, monologues, songs or buckets of water floating downstream (see "True Grit") that made so many great (or even not-so-great) films interesting in 2010.

It's a terrific read. Here's a start:

- The wall that is, and isn't, there: "The Ghost Writer" ...

- In the hills at night, car lights on a distant curve of road: "The American" and "Let Me In" ...

- Gold-brown chicks cupped in Teardrop's (John Hawkes) palms; memento mori in "Winter's Bone" ...

- The nub of a dark quill growing out of Nina's (Natalie Portman) shoulder blade: "Black Swan" ...

- "You'd do that for me?" — a line spoken to, and later by, Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) in "The Social Network"; the addressee not getting it in either case ...

- Nic (Annette Bening) getting lost in singing Joni Mitchell's "All I Want" during a dinner party — "The Kids Are All Right" ...

- Catherine Keener's cheekbones in "Please Give" ...

- "Hereafter": Three blocks away, down the street, trees are falling: Marie's (Cécile De France) first awareness of the tsunami ...

- Mattie's (Hailee Steinfeld) bucket floating away downstream after she sees Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin), "True Grit" ...

- Stretching away from his dead arm to dabble his toes in a spill of sunlight ... Aron Ralston (James Franco), sometime during "127 Hours" ...


New horror film from 'Saw' creators will open next year

By Kim Morgan Dec 29, 2010 2:13PM
So many bad horror films have been released the last few years that the title "Insidious" seems about right. It's a sneaky, nefarious, never-ending problem.

But I won't prejudge. And perhaps this will be an improvement over the "Saw" series. And thank goodness no more "Saw" movies. I think.

Anyway, the new haunted-house movie from "Saw" creators James Wan and Leigh Whannell looks likes it's getting a release date. According to reports, April 1, 2011, is the day.

Here's more from ComingSoon:

"That puts their movie up against a bunch of other genre flicks, including 'Mothers Day,' the new movie from Darren Bousman, who took over the 'Saw' films with 'Saw II'; 'Super,' the superhero comedy from 'Slither' director James Gunn; and Duncan Jones' sci-fi thriller 'Source Code.'


'The Empire Strikes Back,' 'Malcolm X,' others chosen for preservation

By Kim Morgan Dec 29, 2010 2:04PM

More films were added Tuesday to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress, 25 in all: all interesting choices, all that say something about America. "Airplane!" made it. And damn if it doesn't deserve it.

Here's more from The Hollywood Reporter:

"Films from esteemed directors Robert Altman, Blake Edwards, John Huston, Elia Kazan and Spike Lee and two from George Lucas are among the latest 25 motion pictures named Tuesday to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.

"The films, which include Hollywood classics, documentaries, innovative shorts and genres from virtually every era of American filmmaking, span the period 1891-1996. This year's selections bring the number of films in the registry to 550.

"Included this time around is Altman's 1971 Western 'McCabe & Mrs. Miller'; Edwards' 'The Pink Panther' (1964), the first of his eight Inspector Clouseau pics; Huston's 'Let There Be Light,' a 1946 war documentary banned for 35 years by the U.S. War Department; Lee's 1992 biopic 'Malcolm X'; and Kazan's first feature, 'A Tree Grows in Brooklyn' (1945).

"Lucas' 15-minute student film -- 'Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB,' made in 1967 at USC -- also made the list, as did 'The Empire Strikes Back,' his much-lauded 1980 'Star Wars' sequel that was directed by Irvin Kershner.

"In addition to 'The Pink Panther,' Hollywood comedies also are represented by the snappy 'The Front Page' (1931), W.C. Fields' slapstick sensation 'It's a Gift' (1934) and the zany 'Airplane!' (1980) starring Leslie Nielsen. Such cultural touchstones as the Depression Era's 'Make Way for Tomorrow' (1937), the horror box-office blockbuster 'The Exorcist' (1973), the Watergate thriller 'All the President's Men' (1976) and the disco-infused 'Saturday Night Fever' (1977) also were selected, as were lesser-known yet culturally vital works, such as the black independent film 'Cry of Jazz' (1959) and 'I Am Joaquin' (1969), from Chicano groundbreaker Luis Valdez.

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