Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Year in Film 2013: Episode VII

Believe it or not, the Summer Movie Season of 2013 is entering its final month. For movie lovers August is looking mighty good; packed tight with films from nearly every genre.
Things get a’blazing with…

2 GUNS – Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg star as two undercover officers who unknowingly investigate the same crime together. Bill Paxton stars as the Big Bad in this crime thriller directed by Baltasar Kormakur (CONTRABAND)
EUROPA REPORT – This highly-anticipated sci-fi flick has been wildly praised for its scientific, space-bound accuracy. Sharlto Copley (DISTRICT 9, THE A-TEAM) leads a mission to one of Jupiter’s moons in this thriller directed by Sebastian Cordero.

ELYSIUM – Not to be outdone by missions to space, this sci-fi thriller directed by Neil Blomkamp (DISTRICT 9) is a futuristic Earth-bound thriller in which society is split in half; the poor folk live on Earth, the rich snobs live on a massive and luxurious space station. Stars Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, William Fichtner, and Sharlto Copley.
PLANES – Disney sets flight with a spin-off of a Pixar movie (CARS), without Pixar. This animated film involving talking aircraft stars the voices of Dane Cook, Julia-Louis Dreyfus, Brad Garrett, and Stacy Keach.

LOVELACE – Amanda Seyfried (LES MISERABLES, MOMMA MIA) stars as 1970’s porn-queen Linda Lovelace in this story about the coming of the most famous porn film ever made…DEEP THROAT. Co-stars Peter Sarsgaard, Sharon Stone, Juno Temple, Chris Noth, Hank Azaria, Wes Bentley, James Franco, Eric Roberts, Chloe Sevigny, and Robert Patrick.
IN A WORLD… - You know those voices you hear narrating movie trailers and previews? Ever notice that they’re never done by a female? That is the premise of this indie film starring and directed by Lake Bell, who plays a struggling female voice-artist trying to break into a male-dominated craft.

KICK-ASS 2 – The sequel to the smash 2010 psuedo-superhero hit has arrived with a new director (Jeff Wadlow), but with most of the original cast including Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse…and newcomer to the franchise, Jim Carrey.
PARANOIA – Shot in and around Philadelphia  (read about it here) this corporate-thriller stars Liam Hemsworth (brother of Thor) and Amber Heard…who are joined by Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, and Richard Dreyfus.

jOBS – This oft-delayed biopic on Steve Jobs finally gets a release. Ashton Kutchner stars as Steve Jobs.
THE BUTLER – This ensemble piece stars Forest Whitaker as a White House butler who serves eight American Presidents over three decades. Whitaker is joined by Liev Schreiber, John Cusack, Robin Williams, Alan Rickman, James Marsden, Terrence Howard, Jane Fonda, Cuba Gooding Jr., Mariah Carey, Vanessa Redgrave, Lenny Kravitz, and Oprah Winfrey. It is directed by Lee Daniels, who last gave us the Oscar-nominated PRECIOUS in 2009.

AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS – This 1970’s set film is a romantic story following three characters on various sides of the law. Stars Rooney Mara (SOCIAL NETWORK, GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO), Casey Affleck, and Ben Foster.
THE FROZEN GROUND – Nicolas Cage (remember him?) is an Alaskan State Trooper trying to stop the murderous rampage of a serial killer, played by John Cusack. Based on a true story.

THE WORLD’S END – This is the third film in director Edgar Wright’s trilogy of comedies starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, with the first two being SHAUN OF THE DEAD and HOT FUZZ. In this colorful yarn, five friends seek to complete a pub crawl before the pending Armageddon destroys the world. Co-stars Martin Freeman (THE HOBBIT), Bill Nighy, Pierce Brosnan, and Rosamund Pike.
I DECLARE WAR – This highly-regarded indie film has made waves in festivals all year long and finally sees the light of day in limited release. It tells the story of a group of 12-year olds engaged in a lively game of Capture the Flag.

YOU’RE NEXT – Being heralded as one of the most terrifying horror films in years, YOU’RE NEXT puts a fresh twist on the home-invasion genre. Directed by Adam Wingard (VHS, VHS2)

Next month, Reel Speak previews the first month of Oscar (!) season.



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