Weekly Poll Results: Best Neo-Noir Film

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Well it appears the sci-fi nerds may have skewed our neo-noir poll just a little bit as Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner took the top spot with 18% of the votes. That’s a slightly unexpected result from my point of view, but in retrospect it makes perfect sense. Roman Polanski’s Chinatown wasn’t far behind with 15%, however, coming in a close second while L.A. Confidential and Seven tied for third. Christopher Nolan’s Memento rounded out the top 5. After that the votes start to fall off pretty quickly, although even the three films tied for last place (Hard Eight, Jackie Brown, and A Simple Plan) still finished with one vote apiece. Do you agree with these results?

1. Blade Runner — 18%
2. Chinatown — 15%
3. L.A. Confidential — 9%
3. Seven — 9%
5. Memento — 8%
6. Mulholland Drive — 8%
7. Drive — 7%
8. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang — 4%
9. Out of Sight — 3%
10. Brick — 3%
10. Blood Simple — 3%
12. Sin City — 3%
12. The Long Goodbye — 3%
14. The Grifters — 2%
15. Thief — 1%
15. Point Blank — 1%
17. Blow Out — 1%
17. Body Heat — 1%
17. To Live and Die in L.A. — 1%
20. Hard Eight — 0%
20. Jackie Brown — 0%
20. A Simple Plan — 0%

Monday Morning Box Office Report: Guardians of the Galaxy Becomes the Biggest Movie of the Year

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Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy took advantage of the slow long weekend, adding another $16.3 million to its total and easily topping the box office for the third time this summer. More importantly, however, it also passed Captain America: The Winter Soldier to become the biggest movie of the year in the U.S., although it is only the eighth biggest movie of the year worldwide and has little hope of catching Transformers: Age of Extinction which has long since hit the billion dollar mark. The top 3 did not change from last week as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles stayed at #2 while If I Stay remained in third. As Above So Below was the top newcomer, opening in fourth with $8.3 million, while Let’s Be Cops rounded out the top 5. The November Man disappointed with just $7.7 million, which is not a great start for a movie that supposedly already has a sequel in the works. Elsewhere, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For dropped right out of the top 10 in its second weekend, pulling in just $2.2 million.

1. Guardians of the Galaxy — $16.3M
2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — $11.8M
3. If I Stay — $9.3M
4. As Above, So Below — $8.3M
5. Let’s Be Cops — $8.2M
6. The November Man — $7.7M
7. When the Game Stands Tall — $5.6M
8. The Giver — $5.3M
9. The Hundred-Foot Journey — $4.6M
10. The Expendables 3 — $3.5M

The Tick Possibly Being Resurrected as an Amazon Original Series

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Back in the late ’90s and early 2000s, it was a great time to be a fan of The Tick, Ben Edlund’s cult comic book series about a nigh invincible blue superhero and his sidekick Arthur, a former accountant wearing a moth suit. The comic was turned into an animated series that ran for three seasons and a live-action series that was slightly less successful, lasting just eight episodes before being cancelled. Since then, Ben Edlund has gone on to become a writer and producer on such shows as Angel, Supernatural and Revolution, but The Tick has mostly faded from the public eye. This week, however, we are hearing reports that the live action series is in the process of being resurrected. Is it time for The Tick to once again dispense two-fisted justice on the small screen?

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New to Theatres This Weekend: The November Man, As Above So Below, The Congress

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As we’ve come to expect, the summer movie season will go out with a whimper rather than a bang by pitting two somewhat uninspired new releases against the reigning summer champion Guardians of the Galaxy. Roger Donaldson’s The November Man will try to hang a new spy franchise on former 007 Pierce Brosnan while As Above So Below offers the requisite low budget horror fare. Jon Favreau’s Chef is also taking advantage of the lack of competition by heading back to theatres and Ghostbusters is getting a theatrical re-release for its 30th anniversary. In limited release, we also have Ari Folman’s live-action / animated sci-fi satire The Congress, Elmore Leonard’s Life of Crime starring Jennifer Aniston, and Cantinflas, a biopic about the “Mexican Charlie Chaplin”. What will you be watching this weekend?

Jon Stewart’s Rosewater Trailer Starring Gael Garcia Bernal

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One of the biggest unknowns heading into awards season this year has been Jon Stewart’s directorial debut Rosewater, which will soon be premiering at festivals in both Telluride and Toronto. As you might expect from the host of The Daily Show, the movie does have a political angle to it, although aside from some touches of dark humour, it doesn’t appear to be all that funny. Early reviews have just hit the web and they appear to be positive, but not overwhelmingly so.

Gael Garcia Bernal plays Iranian-born Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who was arrested and then tortured and interrogated for 118 days after sending footage of the Iranian election protests to the BBC. The movie has a personal connection for Stewart because Bahari’s appearance on The Daily Show was used by his captors as potential proof that he was a spy. Rosewater hits select theatres on Nov. 7th; check out the trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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Night Moves Review

Night Moves
Directed by: Kelly Reichardt
Written by: Jonathan Raymond and Kelly Reichardt
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning, Peter Sarsgaard

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Night Moves (2013) is not to be mistaken for a remake of the 1975 Gene Hackman thriller, though both do star Lex Luthors in-waiting. It’s Kelly Reichardt’s follow-up to her 2010 anti-western Meek’s Cutoff, and it’s being lauded as her most accessible film to date.

Josh (Jesse Eisenberg) and Dena (Dakota Fanning) are friends who live and work on the margins of modern society in the Pacific northwest; he on an organic farm, she at a wellness center and spa. Dena’s a trust fund brat who’s slumming it with the tree-hugger set and using her wealth to bankroll direct action against industrial interests they perceive as enemies of the environment. For their next target, they enlist Josh’s friend Harmon (Peter Sarsgaard), a wilderness recluse, former marine, to help devise and execute a strike that will cross the line from activism into eco-terrorism: the bombing of a local dam.

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Charlie Hunnam to Star in Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur, Elizabeth Olsen Also Rumoured

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Last month we reported that Idris Elba was in talks to star in Guy Ritchie’s upcoming film Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur, although he wasn’t going to play the lead role. Now it looks like he will be reteaming with his Pacific Rim co-star Charlie Hunnam, who is reportedly headlining the film. Elba will once again be playing a mentor of sorts to him, taking on the role of Sir Bedivere, a Merlin-esque figure that trains Arthur. Guy Ritchie and Warner Brothers are also supposedly zeroing in on a female lead for the film as well. Hit the jump to get the latest scoop on this upcoming project.

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Underworld Reboot in the Works

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It’s been over a decade now since Len Wiseman first launched the vampires vs. werewolves action-horror franchise Underworld starring his soon-to-be wife Kate Beckinsale. Since then, there have been three more installments in the series with the most recent one, Underworld: Awakening, being the most successful of the bunch. No doubt that was partially due to Beckinsale’s return after sitting out the prequel, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, but it left the franchise’s production company Lakeshore Entertainment in a bit of a bind. Although Beckinsale was apparently uninterested in returning for another sequel, they couldn’t just let the series die after its biggest hit. Clearly that can mean only one thing… it’s time for a reboot!

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The Connection Trailer Starring Jean Dujardin

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A couple of years ago, Jean Dujardin took TIFF by storm in Michel Hazanavicius’ The Artist which went on to win Best Picture at the Academy Awards. Now this year he returns in Cedric Jimenez’s The Connection, a ’70s-style crime thriller that evokes William Friedkin’s The French Connection in more than just name alone. The film is based on the true story of an ambitious young French magistrate determined to take down the untouchable kingpin of a major drug ring. It also happens to be shot on 35mm and looks absolutely gorgeous. Drafthouse Films picked this up for release in North America early next year; check out the first trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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Warner Brothers Mandate Says No Jokes Allowed in the DC Universe

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By now it has become clear that when it comes to their comic book movies, Warner Brothers is trailing far behind Marvel. Sure, they may have a very successful trilogy of Batman movies under their belt as well as a profitable (albeit poorly reviewed) Superman reboot, but they have been slow to get projects off the ground and unable to build multiple franchises thus far. Now that they are officially working towards a Justice League movie it appears that they are finally starting to learn from Marvel’s example, but there are still some key differences to their approach. Thanks to the influence of Christopher Nolan and Zack Snyder, they have clearly been pursuing a dark and gritty tone, and based on the recent reveal of Wonder Woman’s costume, they are afraid of colour. Now this week we have an interesting report that they are essentially stamping out all traces of humour in the DC Universe with a bizarre “no jokes” mandate. Is this really the right way to go about making comic book movies?

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The Overnighters Trailer: A Non-Fiction Modern Day Grapes of Wrath

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Although Drafthouse Films is known for bringing interesting genre films and foreign films to North America, they are slowly starting to build up an impressive library of documentaries as well. The Overnighters is their latest non-fiction acquisition and it’s one that doesn’t seem to have any direct genre ties, but it has been picking up rave reviews from across the festival circuit. Directed by Jesse Moss (Speedo), the movie centers on the oil boom town of Williston, North Dakota, where desperate job seekers come from all over in search of easy money. Although it is clearly a portrait of a battered U.S. economy, it looks to hide some unexpected twists as well. The Overnighters hits select theatres on Oct. 10th; check out the trailer after the jump and see what you think.

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Boardwalk Empire’s Jack Huston Rumoured for Doctor Strange

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Last month it seemed almost certain that Marvel would use Comic-Con to announce the star of their upcoming Doctor Strange movie. The day before Marvel’s panel, multiple sources were indicating that Joaquin Phoenix was deep in negotiation to play the Sorcerer Supreme and that it was essentially a done deal. Then the Marvel panel came and went without even mentioning the good Doctor. So what happened? The obvious explanation is that Joaquin Phoenix balked at Marvel’s offer or took issue with their many contract stipulations. Then again, perhaps the rumour was completely untrue in the first place. Either way, it appears that Marvel is considering other actors again and this week we are hearing that one of the stars of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire could take the role instead.

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