Rowdy Roddy Piper 1954-2015

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Throughout history the world has seen many battles. Coke vs. Pepsi, good vs. evil, up vs. down, and to many Film Junk lovers: wrestling vs. magic. Thanks to one man, wrestling met film and created magic. The ‘Hot Rod’, ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper was that man and tragically, at the age of 61, he passed away due to cardiac arrest.

Piper, born Roderick Toombs in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, was a true legend in the wrestling business. Known by many as the greatest villain ever, he had the ability to incite such hatred in the crowds during the ’70s and ’80s that many times his life was in danger. During the late ’70s Piper wrestled for the NWA (the National Wrestling Alliance) and had an incredible feud with the Guerrero family. Continuously hurling insults toward the Mexican community, Piper, at one point agreed to make amends by playing the Mexican national anthem on the bagpipes (he was a legit player), but instead played ‘La Cucaracha’ further pouring gasoline on that fire.

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Tom Cruise Already Planning M:I6 and Edge of Tomorrow 2

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There was a time when it seemed like Tom Cruise was getting ready to bid farewell to the Mission: Impossible franchise and perhaps hand it off to someone else, but since then he has seemingly re-evaluated just how important it is to his career. The realization probably came after Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol was the highest-grossing installment in the series, earning $694 million worldwide. Now that the fifth installment has garnered strong reviews and is expected to earn at least $40 million this weekend, he is already eager to get started on the next mission. That’s not the only sequel that he has on his mind, however; word on the street is that he is dying to make a follow-up to last year’s Edge of Tomorrow as well. Hit the jump for more details.

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Room Trailer Starring Brie Larson

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Here’s another film premiering at TIFF this year that already has a lot of people talking. Room is based on the best-selling novel by Emma Donoghue (she also wrote the screenplay) and it revolves around a five-year-old boy (Jacob Tremblay) and his mother (Brie Larson), who have been held captive in a small room since he was born. Rather than let their lives be overcome by despair, his mother does her best to create a healthy and happy environment for her son through love and imagination. That being said, she will still do anything she can to set him free.

Obviously there is a big underlying metaphor for the struggles of parenting here and the movie is already drawing some comparisons to Dogtooth, but it sounds like a fascinating concept. And as dark as it might sound, the trailer wants to assure us that it is also beautiful and uplifting. Brie Larson has previously earned acclaim for performances in films like Short Term 12, but this could be the film that finally makes her a breakout star. Room is directed by Lenny Abrahamson (Frank) and hits select theatres on Oct. 16th; check out the trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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Weekly Poll Results: Best Adam Sandler Movie

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No real surprise here… Film Junk readers have decided that P.T. Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love is Adam Sandler’s best work to date. However, it was a much closer race than anticipated as there were only a handful of votes separating that film from Sandler’s 1996 comedy Happy Gilmore. In third place, it was a tie between The Wedding Singer and Billy Madison while Judd Apatow’s Funny People rounded out the top 5. After that, there were a smattering of votes cast in almost every direction, but it was interesting to see Big Daddy end up in sixth place while the notorious bomb That’s My Boy finished in the top 10. Way down at the bottom of the list, Sandler’s animated holiday film Eight Crazy Nights was the only film not to get a single vote. Do you agree with these results?

1. Punch-Drunk Love — 25%
2. Happy Gilmore — 23%
3. The Wedding Singer — 13%
3. Billy Madison — 13%
5. Funny People — 6%
6. Big Daddy — 3%
7. The Waterboy — 3%
8. That’s My Boy — 2%
8. 50 First Dates — 2%
8. Reign Over Me — 2%
11. Airheads — 2%
11. You Don’t Mess with the Zohan — 2%
13. Little Nicky — 1%
13. Anger Management — 1%
15. Bulletproof — 1%
16. Grown Ups — 1%
16. Click — 1%
18. Spanglish — 0%
18. The Longest Yard — 0%
20. Eight Crazy Nights — 0%

New to Theatres This Weekend: Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Vacation, The End of the Tour

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A new Mission: Impossible movie is always an event and it looks like the early reviews on Rogue Nation have been pretty positive so far. Expect the latest Tom Cruise vehicle to win the weekend but it will be interesting to see how well it does, especially since Cruise is coming off Edge of Tomorrow which was a critical hit but commercial disappointment. Reviews have been much less kind to the Vacation reboot starring Ed Helms and Christina Applegate, which is also in wide release this weekend. In select theatres, keep an eye out for The End of the Tour, the Jason Segel / Jesse Eisenberg film about David Foster Wallace, as well as Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s latest film The Young & Prodigious T.S. Spivet and a couple of interesting docs: A Lego Brickumentary and Listen to Me Marlon. What will you be watching this weekend?

Entertainment Trailer Starring Gregg Turkington

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These days Gregg Turkington is probably best known as the co-host of the tongue-in-cheek movie review show On Cinema with Tim Heidecker, but for years now he has been making a name for himself as his alter-ego, “anti-comedian” Neil Hamburger. Now at long last Neil Hamburger is starring in his very own movie, Entertainment, which also finds Turkington reteaming with The Comedy director Rick Alverson. The first trailer has arrived online this week and it definitely looks pretty strange and surreal with half of the film apparently taking place in a metaphorical desert. It’s a story about the darker side of show business and it features a supporting cast that includes John C. Reilly, Michael Cera and Tye Sheridan. Entertainment hits select theatres and VOD on Nov. 13th; check out the trailer after the jump and let us know what you think.

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Troll: The Rise of Harry Potter, Jr. Animated Film and TV Series Announced

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We’ve been hearing rumblings about a possible remake of the 1986 horror fantasy film Troll for a while now, but it appears that this project is finally about to become a reality in animated form. What’s more, they are also making a not-so-subtle attempt to associate it with J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter franchise. The original Troll (connected to the cult classic Troll 2 by name only) was directed by John Carl Buechler (Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood) and written by Ed Naha (Honey, I Shrink the Kids) and believe it or not, the main characters in the movie (played by Noah Hathaway and Michael Moriarty) are named Harry Potter Jr. and Sr. respectively. The movie was released 11 years before J.K. Rowling’s first book, and now they are looking to release the remake under the title Troll: The Rise of Harry Potter, Jr.… pretty brilliant, right?

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Spotlight Trailer Starring Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo and Rachel McAdams

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After last year’s unfortunate misfire The Cobbler starring Adam Sandler, director Tom McCarthy is looking to redeem himself with a movie that tackles a powerful and controversial topic: the Catholic sex abuse scandal in Boston and attempted cover-up. His latest film follows the investigation into the scandal from the point of view of the Spotlight team at the Boston Globe, creating a similar feel to Alan J. Pakula’s 1976 classic thriller All the President’s Men. With a stacked cast that includes Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Mark Ruffalo, John Slatter, Stanley Tucci and Billy Crudup, this definitely looks like it’s going to be one to watch for this fall. Spotlight hits select theatres on Nov. 6th; check out the first trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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First Wave of 2015 TIFF Selections Announced

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July is almost over and we’re heading into the home stretch for the summer movie season, which means that it’s time to start turning our attention to all of the wonderful movies that will be hitting theatres this fall. The Toronto International Film Festival usually marks the official start of awards season, offering a clear view of most of the films that will be a part of the conversation when the Oscars roll around. This week they have announced the first 49 films that will be playing at the festival and it looks like a pretty strong line-up.

Some of the bigger movies premiering at TIFF this year include Ridley Scott’s The Martian, Denis Villeneuve’s Sicario, Scott Cooper’s Black Mass starring Johnny Depp and Stephen Frears’ Lance Armstrong biopic The Program. Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition starring Jake Gyllenhaal has been chosen as the opening night film while the festival will also debut new films from such directors as Michael Moore, Charlie Kaufman, Jason Bateman, Yorgos Lanthimos, Johnnie To and yes, even Roland Emmerich. What do you think are the must-see movies so far? Check out the full list of announced titles after the jump.

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Cary Fukunaga’s Beasts of No Nation Trailer Starring Idris Elba

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When it was announced a couple of months ago that Cary Fukunaga would no longer be directing a new adaptation of Stephen King’s It, it seemed like we would have to wait a fair bit longer to see what he would do to follow up his acclaimed run on the first season of True Detective. But over the past year or so, he has been quietly working on a new movie for Netflix called Beasts of No Nation and this week the first trailer has arrived online. The movie stars Idris Elba as the leader of a brutal guerilla group in West Africa that takes young children and turns them into soldiers. Based on the novel by Uzodinma Iweala, it looks to be an intense and emotional experience that draws from the grim realities of life in certain parts of Africa. Beasts of No Nation debuts in select theatres and on Netflix on Oct. 16th; check out the trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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Five Nights at Freddy’s Movie Gets a Director

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Looks like yet another video game is about to make its way to the big screen, although in this case, it is a somewhat unlikely one. Five Nights at Freddy’s is an indie survival horror game that revolves around a Chuck E. Cheese-style pizzeria where the animatronic characters come alive at night and become murderous monsters. The first game became a huge hit almost overnight, prompting creator Scott Cawthon to release three sequels in the span of a year. Now Warner Brothers are in the process of setting up a movie and they have just chosen a director to make it happen: Gil Kenan, who most recently directed the Poltergeist remake. Hit the jump for more info.

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Victoria Trailer: A Single-Shot Bank Heist Film

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Movies made to look like they were shot in one continuous take are all the rage right now, thanks in part to Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s Birdman, which rode its dazzling cinematography to an Academy Award for Best Picture. It wasn’t the first to pull off this technique, of course; Hitchcock did it with Rope back in 1948, although he was forced to cheat due to the limited length of a film reel. Now we can add another to the growing list of single-take films and it claims to have employed no CGI or “cheap tricks” in accomplishing that goal.

Victoria is a German film that won a handful of awards at the Berlin International Film Festival earlier this year. Directed by Sebastian Schipper (an actor turned director who appeared in Run Lola Run, among other films), the movie tells the story of a runaway party girl who hooks up with three guys at a night club, only to find herself pulled into their plan to rob a bank. Victoria hits select theatres on Oct. 9th; check out the trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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