Claude Chabrol, Father of French New Wave, Dies at 80 


Claude Chabrol, known as the founding father of the French New Wave movement and one of the most influential French filmmakers, has died at the age of 80.

Chabrol began his impeccable career as a critic for the notebook of cinema, Les Cahiers du Cinema, then went on to make more than 50 films, helping to launch the New Wave movement in the 50s with his directorial debut, 1958's "Le beau Serge." Some of his notable films are "Les Biches (1968)," and "Le Boucher" (1970). Isabelle Huppert was considered Chabrol's muse and favorite actress. The director and his muse worked in "Merci pur le chocolat," "Violette Noiziere," and "Une affaire de femme." To read more of Chabrol's great achievements, click here.

*** French New Wave was a term coined by critics for a group of French filmmakers of the late 1950s and 1960s who shunned classical cinematic narrative form and invented a new, fresh way of storytelling by combining Italian Neorealism and classical Hollywood cinema. Through creative visual style, editing, and narrative, these filmmakers translated their contemporary social and political problems onto the big screen.

Merci Monsieur Chabrol for bringing French New Wave cinema to popular culture. Au Revoir!

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Mickey Rourke to Star as Mafia Contract Killer Richard "The Ice Man" Kuklinski  


Mickey Rourke's current film, "Passion Play," premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival last Friday, and now, the actor is set to star in "Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer." According to The Hollywood Reporter, "'Ice Man' is the true story of Richard "The Ice Man" Kuklinski, who for more than 40 years led a double life as both a professional assassin and a doting husband and father in suburban New Jersey."

David McKenna ("Natural History," "Blow") is adapting the book by Philip Carlo.

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"Resident Evil: Afterlife" and "I'm Still Here" Movie Reviews 


One for action-thriller fans, the other for documentary buffs -- two films to choose from this weekend. We have "Resident Evil: Afterlife" and "I'm Still Here," the documentary (or a mockumentary, or both?) about the career reinvention of Joaquin Phoenix as documented by his brother-in-law, Casey Affleck. "I'm Still Here" is in limited release so check your local theaters. Here are my reviews of both movies:



Here are more info of both movies from Yahoo:

"Resident Evil: Afterlife"

In a world ravaged by a virus infection, turning its victims into the Undead, Alice, continues on her journey to find survivors and lead them to safety. Her deadly battle with the Umbrella Corporation reaches new heights, but Alice gets some unexpected help from an old friend. A new lead that promises a safe haven from the Undead takes them to Los Angeles, but when they arrive the city is overrun by thousands of Undead - and Alice and her comrades are about to step into a deadly trap.

Genres: Action/Adventure, Suspense/Horror, Thriller and Sequel
Running Time: 1 hr. 36 min.
Release Date: September 10, 2010 (wide)
MPAA Rating: R for sequences of strong violence and language.
Distributors: Sony Pictures Releasing

Cast and Credits
Starring: Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter, Kim Coates, Shawn Roberts, Sergio Peris-Mencheta
Directed by: Paul W.S. Anderson
Produced by: Martin Moszkowicz, Victor Hadida, Paul W.S. Anderson

"I'm Still Here"

"I'm Still Here" follows Oscar-nominee Joaquin Phoenix as he announces his retirement from a successful film career in the fall of 2008 and sets off to reinvent himself as a hip hop musician.

Genres: Documentary, Musical/Performing Arts and Biopic
Running Time: 1 hr. 48 min.
Release Date: September 10th, 2010 (limited)
MPAA Rating: R
Distributors: Magnolia Pictures

Cast and Credits
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix
Directed by: Casey Affleck
Produced by: Joaquin Phoenix, Amanda White, Casey Affleck

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Movie News Roundup -- Joaquin Phoenix NOT Quitting Acting, "Y tu mama tambien" Stars Go Telenovela with Will Ferrell, "Dark Tower" News, and Gwyneth Paltrow Sings! 
Happy Friday everyone! Lots of fun and crazy news in Tinseltown today -- Joaquin Phoenix not quitting, Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna get it on with Will Ferrell, more "Dark Tower" news, and check out Gwyneth Paltrow singing the country blues.



We all knew Joaquin Phoenix was not done with acting yet, right? His "I'm Not Here" is shaping up to be a quasi-mockumentary of a documentary of a hoax! That Casey Affleck project will be unveiled at the Toronto International Film Festival tonight and guess what? Hollywood is still showering offers to the Oscar-nominated actor, and Phoenix is NOT turning his back on Hollywood either. According to The Hollywood Reporter, "The Raven" (which now will star with John Cusack) was once upon a time a project for Jeremy Renner and Phoenix was negotiating to play Poe to Renner's police detective. But Renner moved on to make "Mission: Impossible 4" and Cusack is now playing Poe.

Then, the actor was set to co-star with Sean Penn in "Genius," and with Jonah Hill for "The Sitter" but both didn't materialize. But Phoenix is clearly not entirely walking away from acting. He is attached to star in the indie flick "Big Shoe" about a foot and shoe fetishist. Sounds like a perfect film for Phoenix no? To read the full article, click here.



"Dark Tower" fans rejoice! Universal Pictures and NBC Universal Television Entertainment have signed a deal with Stephen King to turn his "The Dark Tower" series into a feature film trilogy and network TV series! Both projects will be under the creative tutelage of the team behind "A Beautiful Mind" and "The Da Vinci Code!" According to Deadline, Ron Howard is attached to direct the first film AND the first season of the TV series. Akiva Goldsman will write the script for the film, and the first season of the TV series. King will co-produce with Howard and Brian Grazer's Imagine Entertainment. Click here to read more.



"Y tu mama tambien" hotties, Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna, are set to work with Will Ferrell in the Spanish-language comedy "Casa de mi padre" from director Matt Piedmont. The story is a big top secret right now, but Garcia Bernal will play a family friend, and Luna is going to be Ferrell's brother. The best part? The film will be told in over-acting telenovela fashion and will be subtitled in English. Click here to read more

And now, it's time to see Paltrow channel a country chanteuse for the film "Country Song." The new trailer hit the interwebz last night and let me tell you, judging by the trailer? "Country Song" has that "Crazy Heart" vibe. And we all know what award Jeff Bridges got from that film! "Country Song" opens in limited release on Dec. 22, and wide release on Jan. 7th. I'll leave you now with the trailer, sing Gwynie sing:



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Wanna Hear a Song from "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark?" 
Then set your DVR tomorrow, Friday, to record Good Morning America. Broadway's Peter Parker, Reeve Carney, will sing a song live. Director Julie Taymor will be interviewed at the GMA studios and Bono and The Edge of U2 will join her via satellite to talk about their creative collaboration.

It's nice to know that this much-maligned project is finally opening Nov. 14.

Here's more info on the sneak peek:



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