DEVIL’S KNOT Review. DEVIL’S KNOT Stars Reese Witherspoon and Colin Firth | Collider
The injustice perpetrated against The West Memphis Three—three teenagers who in 1994 were wrongly convicted of the brutal slayings of three young boys in Memphis, Arkansas—was powerfully revealed in the 1996 documentary Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills. Directors Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky proceed to keep interest in the case alive with their two sequels, and the accused were finally released from jail in 2011. Berlinger and Sinofsky did the hard work and compelling filmmaking that captured the drama and tragedy of the case. Atom Egoyan’s Devil’s Knot takes that hard work and turns it into a based-on-true-events movie that’s not only pointless, but also exploitative and disrespectful.
JOE Review. David Gordon Green’s JOE Stars Nicolas Cage and Tye Sheridan | Collider
Heard good things about this, hell for wringing a good performance out of Cage I would say a Oscar nom for best Director is deserved.Quote:
Cage has built a reputation for being in silly movies that earn him the constant mockery of the Internet, but Joe is a reminder that audiences can never write him off completely. As Joe, Cage is restrained and quiet but always hints at the character’s criminal nature ready to re-emerge should he break away from the honest life he’s tried to build for himself. There’s no over-acting or material for memes. It’s one of Cage’s best performances, and Sheridan holds his own against the veteran actor. With only two previous movies to his credit (The Tree of Life and Mud), Sheridan has proved himself one of the most remarkable young actors working today. Even though he played another Southern teenage earlier this year in Mud, Sheridan’s work in Joe is distinct and played with far more anger, frustration, and desperation. We understand why Joe sees himself in Gary, and wants to save the teenager from going down the same dark path.
The darkness that permeates Joe isn’t done with great foreboding. It’s provided as a natural extension of a place where people depend on each other, but also put great stock in self-reliance. Joe will pay his workers even if they’re rained out, and he doesn’t mind helping friends learn how to properly cut butterfly steaks from a dead deer. However, when Willie shoots him early in the film, Joe doesn’t go to the hospital or file charges. He digs the buckshot out of his shoulder, and waits until he crosses paths with Willie again. Authority figures exist in this world, but they’re minor functionaries within it.
The trouble with this self-reliance is that the freedom provided fosters a kind of frontier justice when, as one of the characters notes at one point, “there’s no frontier anymore.” Green recreates the “frontier” as closely as possible because he knows our values are trying to invade the roughshod world depicted in the movie. None of the locations are glamorous; there are no rich people. There are only the people we see trying to make their way through hard work, or they’ve just given up entirely and have devoted their lives to ruining the lives of others. Green never forces the issues and themes beyond some symbols like Joe’s dog and the poisoned trees. The most important part is to quietly and respectfully look at the characters, and let their values make us think about our own.
With Joe, Green has created a compelling drama, and he commands our respect of the characters even if those characters question who among them deserves their respect.
Charlie Hunnam Turns Down $125,000 Payday for FIFTY SHADES OF GREY Over Creative Differences | Collider
They originally pawned it off on hectic tv shooting schedule, this sounds more like it. This movie really could be a multi-Rasberry award winner and Hunnam would be basically betting his career on it. Smart move if you ask me...he got the publicity from the announcement and walked away.
NYFF Review: Spike Jonze's 'Her' Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams & Rooney Mara | The Playlist
Deeply perceptive and attuned to the risks, fears, surprises and wonders of intimacy, “Her” is a vulnerable, earnest movie that strikes no false notes, never feels manipulative, and earns the sadness and reflection it evokes in its audience. Disarmingly funny, insightful and empathetic, “Her” may not see Jonze leave his current comfort zone, but the quietly plaintive film is perhaps his most grown-up effort—a tender and moving portrait that's easy to fall in love with. [A-]