hannaposter Award-winning director Joe Wright creates a boldly original suspense thriller with Hanna, starring Oscar nominee Saoirse Ronan (The Lovely Bones, Atonement) in the title role. Raised by her father (Eric Bana), an ex-CIA man, in the wilds of Finland, Hanna's upbringing and training have been one and the same, all geared to making her the perfect assassin. Sent on a mission by her father, Hanna journeys stealthily across Europe while eluding agents dispatched after her by a ruthless intelligence operative with secrets of her own (Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett). As she nears her ultimate target, Hanna faces startling revelations about her existence and unexpected questions about her humanity. The film opens in select theaters Friday, April 8. And now you have a chance to win a cool Hanna prize package thanks to a giveaway sponsored by GreenCine and Focus Features.

Blog entry 04/05/2011 - 10:30am

 By Kathy Harr

Camus said, "Yes, there is beauty and there are the humiliated. Whatever the difficulties the enterprise may present, I would like never to be unfaithful either to one or the other."

That describes the folksinger-songwriter Phil Ochs as seen in Kenneth Bowser's new documentary, Phil Ochs: There But for Fortune. Bowser, who is married to actress Amy Irving and has also made a films about Saturday Night Live, Preston Sturges andFrank Capra, is probably best known for making the film based on Peter Biskind's Easy Riders, Raging Bulls. His next project may be one based on another Biskind best-seller, Down & Dirty Pictures.

There But for Fortune, which is slowly releasing nationally, including San Francisco'sBalboa Theater this weekend, was called a “A complex portrait of an ultimately unknowable man,” by Peter Rainer “At once an unsentimental portrait of the ambitious singer who thought himself bound for glory, and an affecting elegy for a time when song was a form of revolution,” wrote Lisa Schwarzbaum. Bowser was kind enough to chat with me about art and truth, yesterday's failures and today's wars, and what was left on the cutting-room floor.

Blog entry 03/25/2011 - 10:42am

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Though the multitalented Tom McCarthy, 45, made his acting debut in Mike Binder's Crossing the Bridge (1992), the nineties gave him very little follow-up work. But in the 2000s things began to happen for him, including small parts in movies like Meet the Parents (2000), The Guru (2002), Good Night, and Good Luck (2005), Syriana (2005), and Flags of Our Fathers (2006). However, McCarthy answered his true calling when he was able to write and direct his first film, The Station Agent (2003).

That film may have seemed on the surface a slight, indie comedy, but had subtle depth of character in addition to sharp writing, clever casting, and strong performances, and it was a modest success story. The same thing happened with McCarthy's second film, The Visitor (2008), which still serves as a model for cross-cultural Hollywood tales. An achingly good Richard Jenkins earned an Oscar nomination for his lead performance. McCarthy himself earned an Oscar nomination the following year for contributing to the screenplay of Pixar's Up (2009). Now comes McCarthy's third movie, Win Win (opening today in select theaters), which is a good deal messier, but perhaps even deeper than his previous works.

Blog entry 03/18/2011 - 10:14am

Jane Eyre poster Mia Wasikowska (Alice in Wonderland) and Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds) star in the romantic drama Jane Eyre, based on Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel, from acclaimed director Cary Fukunaga (Sin Nombre). "Wasikowska is flawless, complex, the most self-possessed Jane ever," writes Caryn James in IndieWire. "and Fassbender the most romantic Rochester in a glorious film that embraces Bronte's wildest emotions." The film opens in select theaters March 11. And now you have a chance to win a cool Jane Eyre prize package thanks to a giveaway sponsored by GreenCine and Focus Features.

Blog entry 03/09/2011 - 1:23pm


A lot of good films are out on DVD today, including another of our best of 2010 picks, plus a nice indie treat from an actor/director, a compelling doc, a claustrophobic thriller, and more. Check these out and some very cool titles coming soon, all within.

Blog entry 01/18/2011 - 11:32am
Poll 12/23/2010 - 7:01pm

somewhereposter Somewhere won the Golden Lion Award for Best Picture at the 2010 Venice International Film Festival. From Academy Award-winning writer/director Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation, The Virgin Suicides, Marie Antoinette), Somewhere is a witty, moving, and empathetic look into the orbit of actor Johnny Marco (played by Stephen Dorff). Filmed entirely on location, Somewhere reunites the writer/director with Lost in Translation editor Sarah Flack and production designer Anne Ross. Stacey Battat (Broken English) is the costume designer, and Harris Savides (Elephant) is the director of photography, on Somewhere. " "Original and smartly funny with top performances," says Empire Magazine. And now you have a chance to win a cool Somewhere prize package thanks to a giveaway sponsored by GreenCine and Focus Features.

Blog entry 12/17/2010 - 2:27pm
Poll 09/27/2010 - 11:41am

kidsareallright_poster.jpg The Kids Are All Right is the heartfelt new comedy from acclaimed director Lisa Cholodenko [interview], starring Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, and Mark Ruffalo. Two teenaged children (Alice in Wonderland's Mia Wasikowska and Journey to the Center of the Earth's Josh Hutcherson) get the notion to seek out their biological father and introduce him into the family life that their two mothers (Bening and Moore) have built for them. Once the donor (Ruffalo) is found, the household will never be the same, as family ties are defined, re-defined, and re-re-defined. The New York Times raves that it's "a generous, nearly note-perfect portrait of a modern family," and Entertainment Weekly calls the movie "funny, smart and sexy!" And now GreenCine and Focus Features have teamed up teaming up for a new contest with prizes that are more than all right. 

Details within!

Blog entry 07/23/2010 - 11:16am

by Jeffrey M. Anderson 

THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT director Lisa Cholodenko<br />
(photo credit: Danielle Taormina-Keenan)

Lisa Cholodenko's well-received 1998 debut High Art was a major landmark for lesbian filmmaking in the '90s, even if the writer-director makes films more to please herself than to fill any LGBT niches. After moving from New York to Los Angeles (where she shot 2002's titularly set ensemble drama Laurel Canyon—which, coincidentally, was centered around straight people), dealing with distribution troubles and working in television (directing episodes of The L Word and the short-lived Push, Nevada), the 46 year-old auteur returns to the big screen with her finest and most widely released effort yet, The Kids Are All Right.

Blog entry 07/07/2010 - 10:22am

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