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Archives for : Suspense

Quick Review: “Dark Places”

DARK PLACES marks the second film adaptation of a Gillian Flynn novel. And no, it’s not a GONE GIRL sequel. This film just proves once again that Flynn knows how to capture her audience with intricate story-lines that keep you on the edge of your seat.

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Interview: Joel Edgerton talks “The Gift”

We sat down with triple threat star, Joel Edgerton (Director/ Writer/ Actor) to discuss his new film, “The Gift”. We talked about bullies, rumors and much more! There’s a reason why critics are loving this film. It’s the must see summer thriller!

“The Gift” opens in theaters August 7.

Click Here to Watch “The Gift” Interview with Joel Edgerton

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Interview: Director Kevin MacDonald talks “Black Sea”

Black Sea tells the story of Robinson (Jude Law), a submarine captain who, in order to make good with his former employers, takes a job with a shadowy backer to search the depths of the Black Sea for a submarine rumored to be loaded with gold.

We got a chance to sit down with the Academy Award winning director, Kevin MacDonald (The Last King of Scotland), to discuss his latest film.

Besides the fear of being at the bottom of the ocean, these men are also kind of thinking about this money that they are about to find.  And some of them aren’t too happy about the fact that they have to do the even split, even though it would still be plenty of money. What do you think it is about money that changes people and makes them act in psychotic ways?

“Yeah I mean; I think the center of this movie is sort of what greed can do to people.  And not even so much what money can do to people, ‘cause it’s not sort of anti-money in this film.  It’s sort of anti-greed, I suppose.  And it’s the idea that, people, instead of realizing when you’ve got enough, it’s like I always want more.  I want more and more!  And that’s kind of part of human nature.  That kind of dark part of human nature, isn’t it?  Yeah, it’s the positive and negative of human nature, both present in this extreme circumstance.”

This was probably one of my favorite roles to see Jude Law in as Robinson.  I really felt for his character, especially, with him losing his family to his job.  Because I think in any work that you do, you can get wrapped up in it and kind of lose sight of the ones you love.

“I think that’s exactly, that’s the sort of central theme I suppose.  And it’s a very simple one really of this movie.  Is that we all kind of think that our jobs are so important; that we only get respect from other people, because of whether we’re successful in our jobs and all these sort of things.  And the pressure that there is to be successful to earn money, but actually when all is said and done; that’s not what’s important about life.  And at the end of our lives none of us are going to think, “oh I wish I had spent more time at the office.”  We’re going to think, “I wish had spent more time with my family.  I wish I loved that person more, and made that relationship work.”  Those are the things that you’ve got to think about.  And I guess that’s what’s fundamentally at the heart of this movie.”

I mean for me, the moment they entered the water; I was on the edge of my seat.  I was just terrified the whole time.  So, is there another film for you that has given you that same excitement while watching?

“I mean, I think Gravity has that feeling for me.  You know pretty much as soon as the movie starts, and you’re in this precarious situation space walking with Sandra Bullock. You’re terrified.  And you’ve got vertigo (laughs), and yeah, I think this is sort of the underwater version of that.”

Yeah, it is. It gave me the same effect actually, because I struggled to breathe in both those films.

“(Laughs) So there’s a good recommendation.  If you want to struggle to breathe, go and see this movie!”

Click Here for Video Interview

Black Sea opens in select theaters January 30.

Movie Review: “#PopFan” is a Ridiculous but Entertaining Psycho Thriller

Be careful who you trust, because the awkward, timid guy who lives in the secluded lighthouse may be someone you want to steer clear from.

A young pop star (Chelsea Kane) looking to recreate herself and her sound on a quiet trip to Maine is caught in a storm, crashes her car, and rescued by a young man (Nolan Funk) who takes her to his secluded lighthouse to recuperate. But she soon discovers that he is not just her rescuer, but a mentally unstable and obsessed fan who believes she is the image created in her videos.

Let’s be honest, we’ve seen this essential plot on Lifetime before.  The seemingly good guy turns out to be some psycho freak that won’t let his current obsession go.  This time around the recycled premise in #Popfan works in Lifetime’s favor.

Chelsea Kane shed her Disney image fairly quickly after Jonas, so it isn’t as alarming when she flaunts her sultry, strut at the beginning of this film.  Kane is the perfect balance of sweet and sexy, making her a fitting damsel in distress.  As for her capturer, Nolan Funk, I believe he must have channeled Mark Wahlberg from Fear, because that’s the voice I heard anytime this kid spoke.

This movie is not based on a true story and yes, there will moments of stupidity from the characters that will have you yelling at the screen.  But when it comes to Lifetime dramas, I think we can all admit we’re just looking for absurd amusement.  #PopFan is a fun and exciting watch.

#PopFan Premieres Saturday, August 23, at 8pm ET/PT on Lifetime.

“#PopFan” Official Trailer HD

 

Interview: “Jinn” Star Dominic Rains Discusses New Thriller

In the Beginning, Three were Created…

Man made of Clay.

Angels made of Light.

And a Third…made of Fire.

From the beginning, stories of angels and men have captured our imaginations and have been etched into our history crossing all boundaries of culture, religion, and time. These two races have dominated the landscape of modern mythology for countless centuries, almost washing away the evidence that a third ever existed. This third race, born of smokeless fire, was called the jinn. Similar to humans in many ways, the jinn lived invisibly among us and only under dire or unusual circumstances were our paths ever meant to cross.

As humans became the dominant force on Earth, contact between man and jinn steadily decreased.

Modern man has all but forgotten the jinn.

“Jinn” is the new thriller set to make its theatrical release in Dallas on April 4.  I got a chance to speak with the star of the film, Dominic Rains to discuss the movie, his character, and projects he hopes to work on in the future.

 

How did working on “JINN” compare to any other production you have worked on?

Well first of all it was the first time I was carrying a film the whole way through. It was by far one of the most physically exhausting experiences I’ve had which in turn was emotionally exhausting.  I mean there were days where I was drenched in water in Michigan 30 degree biting weather, and that’s just one part of it. The majority of the shoots were night shoots so my hours were completely off. I also played three characters in the film which made it ever so interesting. But given the material at hand, the most challenging place was trying to find the arc of the character.  Sometimes you’re shooting out of sequence, time is against you, you’re shooting on 35mm film so you’ve got to get it right or you’re just burning film, unlike digital where you can shoot endlessly, and you’ve got to focus all your energy to make sure that you know in the grand scheme of things, you’re giving just enough for the 180mm lens that’s focused on your eyes. One exaggerated expression here or there and it’s a 15 foot difference on the silver screen. AJ, the writer/director, loved to tell me, ‘its all in the eyes!’ haha… But learning to focus and harness that energy was important. And knowing what the scene was about was imperative.

What can you tell us about the character (Shawn) you play in this film?

Shawn is an automotive engineer living a quiet idyllic life with his wife Jasmine when one day it is interrupted by a package delivered by a sketchy dude that contains an encrypted message. It warns him of imminent danger and that this ‘thing’ the Jinn is coming after him. At first Shawn tries to disregard the message but weird things start to happen and after a number of events test his belief, his wife is kidnapped and Shawn is forced to face his fears and is tossed through a gauntlet of emotional, physical and mental tests. He is helped along the way by three men who aid him in what to do to fight and overcome the Jinn, but ultimately he’s the only one that can save himself and his family.

What was your favorite scene to shoot?

I had two favorite scenes in the film; the first was with his parents when he’s trying to piece everything together and the second was at the end of the film where he rises to the occasion. I won’t say anymore than that but that it’s a very cool scene and you’ll know what I’m talking about when you see it. Everything came together, AJ’s direction, our stunt performers, Ray Park, and the incredible genius of our VFX supervisor Joe Coleman. It was a test of many things that evening and it’s a testament to the work of a great team. On a personal level it was a test of the physical and mental for myself.

Why should audiences go out and see this film?  How does it stand out above other mystery thrillers?

Well besides the fact that it’s based on an ancient mythology that over 2 billion people believe in around the world, it’s mentioned or alluded to in the books of the leading three religions, Islam, Christianity and Judaism.  Also, it’s a fun family film for all ages; it’s essentially a hero story of courage and the will to fight to overcome our fears. We see the slow rise of a man who finds it in himself to become the man he never thought existed.

You have worked on a variety of different TV shows and film.  What genre of film do you hope to work on that you haven’t done yet?

I’d really like to go into more heavy dramas, dark comedies and twisted psychological thrillers. It would be a dream to work with filmmakers like Gasper Noe, PT Anderson, The Coen Brothes, Lars Von Trier. Very avant garde, art house, challenging character pieces. I love playing heavy character pieces.  I enjoy the leading men as well but since they tend to be closer to me they’re more a naked vulnerability.  With character heavy roles you get to be vulnerable as well but you get to funnel them through a lot more so you can indulge a bit more, it seems.

Who are some actors that you admire and hope to work with in the future?

There are so many actors I admire.  So many actors of all ages that inspire me and push me to do great work that I don’t have enough space to say them all but in the meantime I’ll express a few. God bless Phillip Seymour Hoffman, he was a titan, he’ll stand as one of my all time greats. I would love the pleasure to work with Ethan Rains, Daniel Day Lewis, Meryl Streep, Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro, Robert Duvall, Willem Defoe, Susan Sarandon, Matthew McConaughey, Brad Pitt, JACK NICHOLSON for sure, Anthony Hopkins, Cate Blanchett and the list goes on.

Originally posted on RedCarpetCrash.com

TV Movie Review: “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax” Features a Spine-Chilling Performance by Christina Ricci

“Lizzie Borden took an axe, and gave her mother forty whacks. When she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one.”

We’ve all heard the infamous skipping rhyme many times that was based on the true story of the girl who allegedly killed both her parents gruesomely with an ax. Well now, Lifetime has taken the bleak tale and turned it into one of their highly anticipated TV movies.

Starring Christina Ricci in one of her most disturbing roles yet.  She gives an unforgettable performance in an otherwise tedious film.  For those of you who don’t know the story of Lizzie Borden, she was an American woman who was tried and acquitted in 1892 for the axe murders of her father and stepmother in Fall River, Massachusetts.  There were other theories that surfaced trying to explain who might have killed Lizzie’s parents.  But with no one else being as strong or as likely of a suspect, the murders of Andrew and Abby Borden still remain a mystery.  Heavy speculations about the crimes still continue today.  However, it is clear that director Nick Gomez has made up his mind about who the murderer is.

The story itself is an interesting one.  But when told through a made for television movie, it can be pretty boring.  Lifetime tends to do a good job with respecting the known facts of any true story they turn into film.  This is great for accuracy, but not always engaging enough for audiences.  Luckily, “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax” is less than half an hour long.  But even the short running time doesn’t make this film any more exciting.

The film starts off well.  We get thrown into to the murders fairly quickly, but not before we get a good amount of character development from the Borden family.  It is once the murders have happened that this film starts to go down hill.  Trying to hook the audience back in with as many random bloody axing shots, the film still has trouble trying to stay entertaining.  By this point, the audience knows all the facts and the end results.  It just becomes a matter of how the movie will handle the ending.  The last 35 minutes is a repetitive mess.  The film throws in various shots of unexplained scenes with never before scene characters.  In an effort to explain other possible scenarios, this sequence becomes confusing and a bit of tease.  Some of those shots would have been fun to watch had they fully played out, even if they were just theoretical.

What I can not complain about is the haunting performance Ricci gives as an unhinged, Lizzie Borden.  Ricci, no surprise, shines in this film.  From her creepy head tilts, to her untrusting wide eyes, she nailed this potentially dreadful role.  As long as she is on the screen, you will be kept amused until the unexpected and satisfying ending.  With all the information the filmmakers knew, they handled the end scene in the best way I could imagine; tasteful, realistic, and eerie.  No matter how you feel getting through “Lizzie Borden Took an Ax,” you will be content with the acting and conclusion.

“Lizzie Borden Took an Ax” premieres on Lifetime January 25th at 8PM ET/PT.

Originally posted on RedCarpetCrash.com