Tagged: Robert Zemeckis

Allied

New suspense-thriller Allied is one of those films that has risen to notoriety before its release not because of what critics have been saying about the film but because of the rumours and innuendo that have surfaced about its stars – Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard. With all of those stories circulating it seems that everybody forgot that for the third time Pitt was starring in a fairly decent war film.

Pitt’s co-star Marion Cotillard says it only took her reading through the script to realise that this was a film that she certainly wanted to make. “When I read the script I wanted to see the movie,” she says grinning. “I thought that it was such a beautiful story. It was a mix of a very entertaining film and very deep emotions and questions about love; it’s really a beautiful, beautiful love story and it has this spirit of ‘old movie’ about it and knowing that it would be directed by a visionary like Robert Zemeckis made the project even more exciting. It is at the same time very entertaining and it talks about what are you choices in an extreme situation like the war, especially when your work is being a spy and you are pretending that you are somebody that you are not. In the beginning of the movie both of us are spies and they don’t know anything about each other and they pretend to be this loving couple and it is going to turn into this very extreme situation that the war creates, so part of the movie is very entertaining and part of it is very serious with all the questioning about choices and all the questioning about love.”

Cotillard also admits that one of the reasons that she was attracted to making Allied was because she was a huge fan of the film’s director, Robert Zemeckis. “He was really part of my desire to be an actress,” she says thoughtfully. “I’ve watched all of his movies, and I knew what he wanted to tell with this story because when we first met, he said ‘I’m not used to telling love stories like this one, this is really new for me.” It was very exciting to see him be so honest and so committed to doing something that he is not used to delivering and he was so good at it, all the questions that we had, all that we shared during the preparation time that we had. We had little more than two weeks where we all sat together, with Brad Pitt, with Robert, with Steven Knight who had written this amazing script, and to have this period of time where we could get to know each other, get to really understand what we wanted to tell with this movie was really fascinating and I was really fascinated by Robert on set because of all the movies that he had directed already and all the special effects that he has been part of creating. He has really changed cinema with what he has done and the movies he has done. So yeah I was in awe a lot and really fascinated by the way he directed this one.”

When it comes to the man himself, Robert Zemeckis, he says it was the characters that really drew him to want to direct Allied. “What I really liked about the project when I first read the screenplay was that this story had these two unbelievably well-written characters. These two characters were very complex and very passionate, that was what I was drawn to. The way that the screenplay was written so elegantly and these characters just really, really jumped right off the page, and that really attracted me as well. I think the question at the heart of the film is one that is universal, a universal question, which is – does love trump all? Is love the key driving emotion in everyone’s life and what happens when you love somebody and the circumstances get very, very complicated and what choices should we make? Those questions are all very universal and have been there all through time, and they are the ones that I think are very dramatic and very interesting. That is one of the things that I like to do and one of the things that I think cinema does very well and that creates tension and suspense. It is interesting in this movie that the tension and suspense come from the emotions of these two characters, and this incredible passion that they have for each other in these circumstances that are very, very complicated and dire. To have that much tension and suspense come from within characters was a wonderful challenge for me and something that I enjoyed doing.”

Zemeckis also seems genuinely excited when he gets to talk about having to recreate the past for the film. “I did a lot of research,” he explains. “It’s one of the things that movies do really well, they can evoke and re-create past periods of time and the way that you do is you do a lot of research and look at a lot of photographs, a lot of footage – a lot of historical footage – and then you talk to people that really know – people like historians – what was going on. We were lucky on our film because the Imperial War Museum were our consultants, so we had great people surrounding us.”

This leads to being asked what was it like working with two of the biggest movie stars of current day – Brad Pitt and Marion Cottilard. “Working with both Brad and Marion was a real thrill because they were both professional and very focused and very hard working. Brad also a very good attention to detail and I was very impressed that he went down so deep and gave such an emotional performance, one that I had never seen him do before, so that was a thrill. Marion is amazing, I mean she is one of the best and greatest actresses that I have ever worked with. She is one of those actresses that can make anything work and she pays such close attention to her character and does an amazing amount of work on her own preparing, so when she comes onto the set, she is ready to deliver and does.”

Allied is in Australian cinemas now.

Allied

One of the big films opening in Australia on Boxing Day is Allied and we thought now was a great time to bring you interviews with the star of the film Marion Cotillard and the director, Robert Zemeckis.

 

The Walk Still

Principal photography has wrapped on the inaugural film from Tom Rothman’s TriStar Productions, now officially titled The Walk.  Directed by Robert Zemeckis, the film is a true story based on Philippe Petit’s book “To Reach the Clouds,” starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the young dreamer who dared the impossible: an illegal wire walk between the World Trade Center towers.  Zemeckis wrote the screenplay with Christopher Browne. Producers are Steve Starkey, Robert Zemeckis, and Jack Rapke.  The film will be released in Australian cinemas on October 8, 2015 (October 2 in the USA).

 Today is the 40th anniversary of the astounding event, now being brought back to vivid life in the third act climax of the film.

 Twelve people have walked on the moon, but only one man has ever, or will ever, walk in the immense void between the World Trade Center towers.  Guided by his real-life mentor, Papa Rudy (Ben Kingsley), and aided by an unlikely band of international recruits, Petit and his gang overcome long odds, betrayals, dissension and countless close calls to conceive and execute their mad plan.  Robert Zemeckis, the director of such marvels as Forrest Gump, Cast Away, Back to the Future, Polar Express and Flight, again uses cutting edge technology in the service of an emotional, character-driven story.  With innovative photorealistic techniques and IMAX 3D wizardry, The Walk is true big-screen cinema, a chance for moviegoers to viscerally experience the feeling of reaching the clouds. The film is a love letter to Paris and New York City in the 1970s, but most of all, to the Towers of the World Trade Center.

 Also starring in the film are James Badge Dale, Ben Schwartz, Charlotte Le Bon, Clément Sibony and César Domboy.

 The production’s creative team includes director of photography Dariusz Wolski, production designer Naomi Shohan, editor Jeremiah O’Driscoll, and costume designer Suttirat Larlarb. The composer is Alan Silvestri.

 Moviegoers can follow the film on the official movie site at www.thewalkmovie.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheWalkMovie or on Twitter @TheWalkMovie

Tom Hanks

When Oscar nominations have been announced over the years Tom Hanks’ name has been read out five times. He has won two Oscars – one for “Philadelphia” and one for “Forrest Gump” – and been nominated for “Big,” “Saving Private Ryan” and “Cast Away.” The mere fact that he has had his name read out five times shows just what a good actor he is, so what are the best films to sit down and watch if you want to see the best that Tom Hanks has to offer.

“Forrest Gump” (1994) – At a quick glance the film “Forrest Gump” should not have worked. The very idea of taking one character and placing him in the right place to be involved in some of the world’s most historic moments sounds like the kind of script that would be too hard to bring to the screen. That wasn’t the case though when Robert Zemeckis tackled this film, instead he made one of the finest films to ever come out of Hollwood. Aside from Zemeckis’ great work you also have a great performance by Tom Hanks in the title role of Forrest Gump. Hanks brought an air of innocence as he played one of the most lovable simpletons of all time.

“Cast Away” (2000) – Hanks also brought his A-game to another film that on paper looked like it should never have worked. The idea of taking a character and placing them on an island where their only partner in conversation is a volleyball sounds like a boring kind of film, yet once again director Robert Zemeckis was up to the task. A disheveled looking Tom Hanks showed the world exactly what ‘against-type’ acting is all about, while making the scenes between him and Wilson the volleyball the kind that the audience can’t take their eyes away from.

“Saving Mr. Banks” (2013) – It’s hard to imagine that when Tom Hanks was asked to play the legendary Walt Disney in 2013’s “Saving Mr. Banks” that it was the first time that anybody had every portrayed the filmmaker on the big screen. The film followed Walt Disney’s fight to bring the film “Mary Poppins” to the big screen when her creator P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) sticks her heels in and decides things will be done her way. While Hanks’ pretty much bares no physical resemblance to Disney at all he did capture all of his mannerisms and ended up pulling out one of the surprise performances of the year. With Colin Farrell also putting in a great performance the two men and Thompson made this one of the must see films of the year.

“Captain Phillips” (2013) – Over the years Tom Hanks has revealed himself as one of the finest character actors of all time. In 2013 he was on fire delivering good performances in “Cloud Atlas” and “Saving Mr. Banks” but he saved his best for “Captain Phillips.” Director Paul Greengrass worked hard to bring the true story of Captain Richard Phillips’ clash with Somali pirates to the big screen and his leading man delivered in sensational form. Hanks was great throughout the film, but during the final half an hour of the film he gave every other actor in Hollywood an acting lesson. As the film reaches its tensest moments Hanks turns his acting skills up to a level rarely seen and enhanced the film in a way that had critics unloading the praise.

“Toy Story 3” (2010) – Throughout his career Tom Hanks has played so many unique characters that it is easy to forget that one of his best performances came when he was simply voicing a character. A lot of cinema lovers seem to have forgotten over the years that Hanks has voiced the character of the lovable toy cowboy Woody all throughout the “Toy Story” franchise. When it was announced that “Toy Story 3” was going into production a lot of naysayers decided that this would be one too many “Toy Story” films, but they proved to be completely wrong when the film exceeded all expectations and became a gripping tension filled film for children and adults alike. “Toy Story 3” wasn’t just a good film it became one of the best animated films ever made.

It is hard to sit down and look at Tom Hanks’ film career and pick just a few films that are great to watch. Hanks has built a career on making great films so whenever you see his name on a film poster you know you are about to watch something special.

The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show

Recently the hosts of ‘The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show’ came up with their favourite directors here’s who is made their lists.

ADAM ROSS’ LIST

David Fincher

  • Anthony Minghella
  • Shane Meadows
  • Todd Field
  • Bobby Farrelly
  • Peter Farrelly
  • Andrew Dominik
  • Clint Eastwood
  • Rian Johnson
  • John Hillcoat
  • Alfonso Cuaron
  • Steven Spielberg
  • Paul Greengrass
  • Ben Affleck
  • Adam McKay
  • Steve McQueen
  • Ang Lee
  • Matthew Vaughn
  • Christopher Nolan
  • Joe Carnahan
  • Derek Cianfrance
  • Todd Solondz
  • Paul Verhoeven
  • John McTiernan
  • Kathryn Bigelow
  • Peter Weir
  • Michael Mann
  • Sam Mendes
  • Robert Zemeckis
  • Ron Howard
  • Terrence Malick
  • Brian De Palma
  • Alexander Payne
  • Sam Raimi
  • David Cronenberg
  • Ridley Scott
  • Paul Thomas Anderson
  • Darren Aronofsky
  • James Cameron
  • Martin Scorsese
  • David Fincher

 

DAVID GRIFFITHS’ LIST

Steven Soderbergh

  • Rob Zombie
  • Alkinos Tsilimidos
  • Ben Affleck
  • Lars von Trier
  • Danny Boyle
  • Steven Soderbergh
  • Woody Allen
  • Martin Scorsese
  • Larry Clark
  • Gus Van Sant
  • Kelly Reichardt
  • Christopher Nolan
  • Rian Johnson
  • Joss Whedon
  • Kevin Williamson
  • Kevin Smith

 

GREG KING

Quentin Tarantino

  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Sam Peckinpah
  • Stanley Kubrick
  • Christopher Nolan
  • David Fincher
  • Ridley Scott
  • Tony Scott
  • Woody Allen
  • James Cameron
  • Ben Affleck
  • Quentin Tarrantino
  • Clint Eastwood
  • Martin Scorsese
  • Steven Spielberg

 

NICK GARDENER’S LIST

00f/22/arve/g2011/043

  • Steven Spielberg
  • James Cameron
  • Ridley Scott
  • Christopher Nolan
  • Errol Morris
  • Ben Affleck
  • Mike Leigh
  • Ang Lee
  • Richard Linklater
  • John Ford
  • Paul Thomas Anderson
  • Roman Palanski
  • Quinten Tarantino
  • David Fincher
  • Peter Weir
  • David Lynch
  • Francis Coppolla
  • Orson Welles
  • Martin Scorsese
  • Stanley Kubrick
  • Woody Allen
  • Alfred Hitchcock

Flight

Summary: In this action-packed mystery thriller, Academy Award® winner, Denzel Washington stars as Whip Whitaker, a seasoned airline pilot, who miraculously crash lands his plane after a mid-air catastrophe, saving nearly every soul on board. After the crash, Whip is hailed as a hero, but as more is learned, more questions than answers arise as to who or what was really at fault and what really happened on that plane?

Year: 2013

Australian Cinema Release Date: 31st January, 2013

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Robert Zemeckis

Screenwriter: John Gatins

Cast: Michael Beasley (Officer Edmonds), Garcelle Beauvais (Deana), Ron Caldwell (Trevor), Don Cheadle (Hugh Lang), Dane Davenport (Derek Hogue), Brian Geraghty (Ken Evans), Peter Gerety (Avington Carr), John Goodman (Harling Mays), Bruce Greenwood (Charlie Anderson), Rhoda Griffis (Amanda Anderson), Tommy Kane (Mark Mellon), Ravi Kapoor (Dr. Kenan), Melissa Leo (Ellen Block), Bethany Ann Lind (Sheila), Justin Martin (Will), E. Roger Mitchell (Craig Matson), Piers Morgan (himself), Tom Nowicki (Len Caldwell), Conor O’Neill (Kip), Kelly Reilly (Nicole), Will Sherrod (Schecter), Gregory Marshall Smith (Greg), Jim Tilmon (himself), Adam Tomei (Fran), Tamara Tunie (Margaret Thomason), Nadine Velazquez (Katerina Marquez), Shannon Walshe (Tilda Banden), Denzel Washington (Whip Whitaker), Darius Woods (Young Will), Boni Yanagisawa (Camelia Satou)

Runtime: 139 mins

Classification:MA15+

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Flight’ Review: 

Look no further ‘Flight’ is the best disaster film that you are ever likely to see. Director Robert Zemeckis breaks his string of animation films (that have included ‘Polar Express’, ‘Beowulf’ and ‘A Christmal Carol’) with ‘Flight’, a film that centres more on its flawed hero rather than the actual disaster at hand.

The hero that Robert Zemeckis decides to concentrate on is long-time pilot Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington – Safe House, Unstoppable) a drug-taking alcoholic who after a rough night on the substances with air-hostess Katerina Marquez (Nadine Velazquez – TV’S The League, TV’S Hart Of Dixie) ends up boarding a ill-fated jet-liner that literally breaks-up in mid-air. Despite being well under the weather Whip works frantically with his flight crew, Ken Evans (Brian Geraghty – Ass Backwards, Refuge) and Margaret Thompson (Tamara Tunie – Missed Connections, TV’S Law & Order: Special Victim’s Unit) to miraculously ‘crash’ the plane in such a way that they have minimal deaths.

While the media at first labels Whip as a hero (until they start to wonder why he isn’t allowed to talk to them), behind the scenes things are very different indeed. At first it seems that Whip union representative Charlie Anderson (Bruce Greenwood – The Place Beyond The Pines, TV’S Young Justice) is going to help him but soon Anderson realizes that this is going to turn into a defence case when it is discovered that Whip had both cocaine and alcohol in his system.

Anderson brings in lawyer, Hugh Lang (Don Cheadle – Captain Planet 3, TV’S House Of Lies) to defend Whip as he heads into an investigation led by the experienced Ellen Bock (Melissa Leo – Dwegons, The Necessary Death Of Charlie Countryman). But while Lang and Anderson try to help Whip clean up his life before the hearing he heads into a dangerous relationship with recovering addict Nicole (Kelly Reilly – Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows, TV’S Above Suspicion: Silent Scream) while drug dealer and close friend Harling Mays (John Goodman – Trouble With Curve, ParaNorman) is always lurking in the shadows.

Robert Zemeckis seems to break every rule of your typical ‘disaster’ movie. Firstly, the hero here is also the anti-hero, the audience is introduced to him in a scene that consists of full frontal nudity and drug use, he’s not your squeaky clean hero but such is the power of the script by John Gatins (Real Steel, Dreamer) no matter how dirty Whip’s life is you can’t help but want to see him come out of this hearing unscathed.

The second rule that Zemeckis breaks is that the film itself focuses around the hero rather than the disaster. The plane crash scene is nothing compared to the one in ‘Final Destination’ but that won’t let you disappointed because Zemeckis and Gatins get suspense out of this films in other ways – ways that include the audience wondering whether Whip will be able to clean up his life before the hearing and then the actual suspense as you wait for Whip’s all important answer during the hearing.

Adding to the power of ‘Flight’ is the terrific acting performances of its main cast. Denzel Washington really laps up getting the chance to play a somewhat unlikable character while Don Cheadle and Kelly Reilly are more than serviceable in their roles. John Goodman also backs up his recent good performances with a role that sees him mix comedy and drama together brilliantly.

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Flight′: Check Episode #18 of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Flight’. Dave’s other review of ‘Flight’ can be found on the Helium Entertainment Channel

Rating: 4.5/5

IMDB Rating:Flight (2012) on IMDb