Monday, August 21, 2017

Tag: Biography

Sidemen: Long Road to Glory (2016)?

Title: Sidemen: Long Road to Glory
Rating: NR
Directed by: Scott D. Rosenbaum
Written by: Jasin Cadic, and Scott D. Rosenbaum
Starring: Marc Maron, Pinetop Perkins, and Hubert Sumlin
Release Date: 8/18/2017
Running Time: 77 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
In the summer of 2008, a group of legendary bluesmen, some of the last surviving members of the Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters bands, were brought together by director Scott Rosenbaum for a cameo appearance in his feature film, The Perfect Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Pinetop Perkins, Willie “Big Eyes” Smith and Hubert Sumlin were cast for their authenticity and ability to underscore the film’s critical subplot, the evolution of rock ‘n’ roll through the blues. During breaks in production, these bluesmen thrilled Rosenbaum with their tales of a lifetime spent on the road. First hand accounts of experiences with the mythical Robert Johnson, the larger-than-life Howlin’ Wolf, the seminal Muddy Waters and disciples such as Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones got the director’s creative wheels spinning. Between takes, Sumlin called Rosenbaum over to the bandstand and prophetically told him of his feeling that they would be working together again. In an instant, an idea that had been germinating with the director for years took root.

When the bluesmen’s booking agent, Hugh Southard approached Rosenbaum, asking him to lend the film’s name to help galvanize a world tour featuring these legendary musicians, a concept had fully blossomed. Having grown up on Martin Scorsese’s valediction to The Band, The Last Waltz, Rosenbaum wanted to make a film that similarly honored the life and musical legacy of these aging bluesmen. When Pinetop, Hubert and Willie “Big Eyes,” along with Sugar Blue, Robert Stroger and Bob Margolin hit the road as The Perfect Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll Blues Band, Rosenbaum, along with producers Jasin Cadic, Tony Grazia, Joe White and Emmett James were determined to capture this important moment and fleeting history. Over the next three years they would follow these blues legends, shooting live performances, an historic Grammy win, dozens of intimate interviews, countless behind-the-scenes moments, and documenting their lives on the road. Sadly, the 2011 deaths of Willie, Pine and Hubert altered the film’s initial Last Waltz style vision; to capture these legends performing live versions of classic blues songs with the musicians they had so heavily influenced. Luckily, several of these performance pairings were filmed before their deaths. Those treasured moments are complimented by over two dozen subsequent interviews with some of blues and rock’s biggest names, demonstrating the true impact and tremendous respect that these men engendered over the course of their long careers.

Members of The Doors, The Allman Brothers, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Aerosmith, The Dave Matthews Band, as well as artists like Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Winter, Bobby Rush and Shemekia Copeland share their personal and professional recollections of these men and the impact that they’ve had on their own careers. When asked how they hoped to be remembered, Willie, Pine and Hubert consistently expressed their wish to be known for both having kept the blues alive and to serve as an inspiration for the younger generations of musicians. Interviews with blues acolytes Joe Bonamassa, Eric Gales, Warren Haynes, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and Derek Trucks affirm that their legacies are alive and well. Several of these musicians have even contributed searing on-camera solo performances in tribute to these late blues legends. Haunting imagery of the Mississippi Delta region, the birthplace of the blues and these legendary bluesmen, punctuates this powerful piece of history. This film succeeds in capturing the personal triumphs, tragedies and tremendous perseverance of three of the last original Delta and Chicago bluesmen while preserving a critical legacy that is nothing short of our last links to the origins of all popular music.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Unknown

 

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? Unknown

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Glass Castle, The (2017)*

Title: The Glass Castle
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Destin Daniel Cretton
Written by: Destin Daniel Cretton, and Andrew Lanham
Starring: Brie Larson, Woody Harrelson, Naomi Watts, Max Greenfield, Sarah Snook, and Robin Bartlett
Release Date: 8/11/2017
Running Time: 127 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
Chronicling the adventures of an eccentric, resilient and tight-knit family, THE GLASS CASTLE is a remarkable story of unconditional love. Oscar® winner Brie Larson brings Jeannette Walls’s best-selling memoir to life as a young woman who, influenced by the joyfully wild nature of her deeply dysfunctional father (Woody Harrelson), found the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Yes

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Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

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Dedication: To all families who, despite their scars, still find a way to love.


13 Minutes (2015)

Title: 13 Minutes
Rating: R
Directed by: Oliver Hirschbiegel
Written by: Léonie-Claire Breinersdorfer, and Fred Breinersdorfer
Starring: Christian Friedel, Katharina Schüttler, Burghart Klaußner
Release Date: 6/30/2017
Running Time: 116 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
In November 1939, Georg Elser’s attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler fails, and he is arrested. During his confinement, he recalls the events leading up to his plot and his reasons for deciding to take such drastic action.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No


Churchill (2017)

Title: Churchill
Rating: PG
Directed by: Jonathan Teplitzky
Written by: Alex von Tunzelmann
Starring: Brian Cox, Miranda Richardson, John Slattery, Julian Wadham, Richard Durden, and Ella Purnell
Release Date: 6/2/2017
Running Time: 105 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
Tensions mount for the beleaguered British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Brian Cox) in the days leading up to infamous Allied D-Day landings in Normandy, France in June, 1944. Fearful of repeating his deadly mistakes from World War I in the Battle of Gallipoli, exhausted by years of war, plagued by depression and obsessed with his historical destiny, Churchill is reluctant to embark on the large-scale campaign, one that the entire war effort hinges upon. Clashing with his Allied political opponents U.S. General Dwight D. Eisenhower (John Slattery) and British Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery (Julian Wadham), the troubled Churchill receives support and devotion from his wife, the brilliant and unflappable Clementine Churchill (Miranda Richardson). With her strength and shrewdness, “Clemmie” halts Winston’s physical, mental spiritual collapse and inspires him on to greatness.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Special thanks to Frank for this submission


All Eyez on Me (2017)*

Title: All Eyez on Me
Rating: R
Directed by: Benny Boom
Written by: Jeremy Haft, Eddie Gonzalez, and Steven Bagatourian
Starring: Demetrius Shipp Jr., Danai Gurira, Kat Graham, Annie Ilonzeh, Lauren Cohan, Keith Robinson, Jamal Woolard, and Dominic L. Santana
Release Date: 6/16/2017
Running Time: 140 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
Raised in the Bronx by his outspoken mother Afeni (Danai Gurira), a member of the Black Panther Party, Tupac Shakur (Demetrius Shipp Jr.) confronts police brutality at an early age when FBI agents raid his home on Christmas Eve in search of his activist stepfather. Moving to Maryland in his teens, Tupac attends Baltimore School for the Performing Arts, where he befriends a young Jada Pinkett (Kat Graham). But just as Shakur begins thriving in this creative environment, his now drug-addicted mother ships him off to live with relatives in Oakland, California.

Discovered at a Bay Area poetry workshop, Tupac joins Digital Underground and tours with outlandish leader Shock G (Chris Clarke) during the group’s “Humpty Dance” heyday. Tupac soon lands a solo deal with Interscope Records and his first movie role, in Juice. Despite the breakout success of his second album “Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.,” Tupac’s personal life becomes entangled in a string of arrests, financial problems, and gunfights. The problems culminate in November 1994, when Tupac is shot five times in the lobby of New York City’s Quad Recording Studios. The next day he checks himself out of the hospital and goes to court in a wheelchair. Imprisoned in February 1995, Tupac becomes the first inmate to score a No. 1 album when “Me Against the World” soars to the top of the charts.

Released after eight months, Tupac teams with volatile Death Row Records mogul Suge Knight (Dominic Santana) and artist-producer Dr. Dre (Harold House Moore) in Los Angeles, where he records the world’s first hip-hop double album, “All Eyez on Me.” But he is also embroiled in a bitter feud with East Coast rival Biggie Smalls (Jamal Woolard). Amid the escalating war, Tupac falls in love with Quincy Jones’ daughter Kidada Jones (Annie Ilonzeh). A few weeks after a now legendary House of Blues concert in West Hollywood, Tupac travels with Kidada to Las Vegas for a Mike Tyson fight. Stopped at a red light after the match, with Knight at the wheel, Tupac is shot on September 7, 1996, by unknown assailants and dies six days later. Simultaneously triumphant and tragic, All Eyez on Me tells the untold story of incendiary talent Tupac Shakur, dead at 25, who has sold more than 75 million records worldwide.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Yes

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Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

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Special thanks to Steven for this submission


Maudie (2016)

Title: Maudie
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Aisling Walsh
Written by: Sherry White
Starring: Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke, and Kari Matchett
Release Date: 6/16/2017
Running Time: 115 minutes

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What did you think of this film?
MAUDIE, based on a true story, is an unlikely romance in which the reclusive Everett Lewis (Ethan Hawke) hires a fragile yet determined woman named Maudie (Sally Hawkins) to be his housekeeper. Maudie, bright-eyed but hunched with crippled hands, yearns to be independent, to live away from her protective family and she also yearns, passionately, to create art. Unexpectedly, Everett finds himself falling in love. MAUDIE charts Everett’s efforts to protect himself from being hurt, Maudie’s deep and abiding love for this difficult man and her surprising rise to fame as a folk painter.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Note: Maudie’s actual paintings appear during the credits.


Megan Leavey (2017)

Title: Megan Leavey
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Gabriela Cowperthwaite
Written by: Pamela Gray, Annie Mumolo, and Tim Lovestedt
Starring: Kate Mara, Ramon Rodriguez, Tom Felton, Bradley Whitford, Common, and Edie Falco
Release Date: 6/9/2017
Running Time: 116 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
Based on the true life story of a young Marine Corporal (Kate Mara) whose unique discipline and bond with her military combat dog saved many lives during their deployment in Iraq. When she is assigned to clean up the K9 unit after a disciplinary hearing, Leavey identifies with a particularly aggressive dog, Rex, and is given the chance to train him. Over the course of their service, Megan and Rex completed more than 100 missions until an IED explosion injures them, putting their fate in jeopardy.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Memoriam: In Loving Memory of Rex April 1999 – December 2012
Dedication: This film is dedicated to the many service men, women, & military working dogs who have sacrificed their lives defending our nation.

Special thanks to Frank for this submission


I Am Heath Ledger (2017)*

Title: I Am Heath Ledger
Rating: NR
Directed by: Adrian Buitenhuis, and Derik Murray
Written by: Hart Snider
Starring: Heath Ledger, Naomi Watts, and Ben Mendelsohn
Release Date: 4/23/2017
Running Time: 90 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
The documentary provides an intimate look at Heath Ledger through the lens of his own camera as he films and often performs in his own personal journey – extravagant in gesture and in action. It was his creative energy and unshakable willingness to take risks that instilled such an extraordinarily deep love and affection in the people that entered his life. Heath’s artistic nature and expression set him apart from the Hollywood mainstream, vaulted him to stardom and endeared him to the world.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Yes

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Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

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Special thanks to Frank for this submission


Quiet Passion, A (2016)

Title: A Quiet Passion
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Terence Davies
Written by: Terence Davies
Starring: Cynthia Nixon, Jennifer Ehle, and Duncan Duff
Release Date: 4/7/2017
Running Time: 125 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
Cynthia Nixon delivers a triumphant performance as Emily Dickinson as she personifies the wit, intellectual independence and pathos of the poet whose genius only came to be recognized after her death. Acclaimed British director Terence Davies (House of Mirth, The Deep Blue Sea) exquisitely evokes Dickinson’s deep attachment to her close knit family along with the manners, mores and spiritual convictions of her time that she struggled with and transcended in her poetry.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Special thanks to Frank for this submission


Lost City of Z, The (2016)

Title: The Lost City of Z
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: James Gray
Written by: James Gray
Based on the book by: David Grann
Starring: Charlie Hunnam, Robert Pattinson, Sienna Miller, and Tom Holland
Release Date: 4/21/2017
Running Time: 140 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
Based on author David Grann’s nonfiction bestseller, The Lost City of Z tells the incredible true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam), who journeys into the Amazon at the dawn of the 20th century and discovers evidence of a previously unknown, advanced civilization that may have once inhabited the region. Despite being ridiculed by the scientific establishment who regard indigenous populations as “savages,” the determined Fawcett — supported by his devoted wife (Sienna Miller), son (Tom Holland) and aide-de-camp (Robert Pattinson) — returns time and again to his beloved jungle in an attempt to prove his case, culminating in his mysterious disappearance in 1925.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Special thanks to Frank for this submission


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