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7:00 PM on 10.01.2014

UPDATE: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon sequel releasing to Netflix and theaters simultaneously

UPDATE: According to the good folks at Variety, it looks like Weinstein Company's deal with Netflix has rubbed some theater chains the wrong way. AMC, Regal, Cinemark, and Carmike have all refused to show the sequel. Each the...

Nick Valdez




Final Trailer for Christopher Nolan's Interstellar photo
Final Trailer for Christopher Nolan's Interstellar
by Nick Valdez

As Interstellar is one of the few films left making use of physical film over digital, you'll notice a surprising amount of emphasis over it in this most likely final trailer for Christopher Nolan's space hip-hopera (not really) Interstellar. Being touted as a 70mm IMAX film, 70mm film and 35mm film release, Nolan's longest film yet might be his most visually exciting. 

I'd just have to hope it's at least visually good because this trailer showing a few cracks. Watch it and you'll see what I mean. Interstellar opens November 7th. Follow this link to find all the ways you can watch this sucker. 

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Review: The Boxtrolls photo
Review: The Boxtrolls
by Nick Valdez

Laika is that rare production company where you absolutely have to pay attention to whatever they put out next. As one of the last few studios that specializes in stop motion animation, their films have garnered a lot of well deserved praise. With such a demanding production, their output is limited to one film every few years, the pressure is on to make every film count. 

The company's last film, ParaNorman, went on to become my favorite animated film of 2012 so I jumped into The Boxtrolls hoping to see some amazing work once again. Thankfully, The Boxtrolls is another hit for Laika...but unfortunately isn't a hit out of the park. 

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NYFF Review: Whiplash photo
NYFF Review: Whiplash
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

I thought the good folks over at the NYFF were kidding when they described Whiplash as "Full Metal Jacket at Julliard." I've been burned by their film descriptions before, so I couldn't trust something that just sounded so brilliant. I mean, that's one hell of a pitch. But sticking with my rule of going into films blind, I left it at that. I didn't watch the trailer, nor did I seek out the short film that raised the money to fund the feature. I didn't even listen to "Whiplash."

But that pitch pulled me in. And much to my surprise, it's shockingly fitting. And to be honest, it's even better than it sounds.

[For the next few weeks, Flixist will be covering the 52nd New York Film Festival. More information can be found here, and all of our coverage can be found here.]

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First Tak3n trailer lacks anything getting taken photo
First Tak3n trailer lacks anything getting taken
by Matthew Razak

After Taken 2 was easily the most disappointing thing to hit movie screens in years (Sean's review is far too kind) and Liam Neeson came out saying he probably wouldn't do another I was pretty happy that we wouldn't be seeing another Taken movie. Way to crush my happiness, world. Above you'll find the trailer for the entirely unnecessary, but awesomely titled, Tak3n.

I will say that this looks better than the second, though director Olivier Megaton is the guy who ruined the Transporter series so I don't have that much faith. I suppose they're at least taking it in a bit different direction and hopefully the story won't be as terrible as the last one. The plot seems a bit more cohesive, and hopefully the action actually holds together this time. I think the most important part here is that Neeson is actually a badass, unlike the last film where he just felt old and dumb.

New poster below. 

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First trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice photo
First trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice
by Nick Valdez

Paul Thomas Anderson's upcoming adaptation of Thomas Pynchon's novel Inherent Vice might just be the craziest, and best thing to come out this year. Just by looking at this trailer with its unique style, stupidly talented cast (Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Benecio Del Toro, Reese Witherspoon, Jena Malone, Owen Wilson, Katherine Waterson, and Martin Short!), and it's great feeling vibe overall. 

There might be something sinister underneath, but this is a great first look. Starring Phoenix as a muttonchopped private eye who gets roped into stopping a kidnapping by his ex, I can't wait to see what else lurks. Inherent Vice releases December 12th. 

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NYFF Review: Gone Girl photo
NYFF Review: Gone Girl
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

Gone Girl is the book of the moment. Much as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was The Big Thing when David Fincher adapted it for US screens, Gillian Flynn's novel seems to be ubiquitous. Everyone is reading it and talking about it, and those who aren't are certainly aware of its presence.

I expect this is partially because of the David Fincher adaptation. The book was released in 2012, and though it quickly hit the New York Times Best Seller List, I didn't hear about it until the announcement of its cinematic release. I considered reading it, but I never got around to it. (Flixist Editor-in-Chief Matt Razak has been hounding me to do so now, though, so I may pick it up.)

Walking around New York City, posters for the film are unavoidable. This adaptation is a big deal. The Big Book is about to be The Big Movie.

And it's going to get people talking.

[For the next few weeks, Flixist will be covering the 52nd New York Film Festival. More information can be found here, and all of our coverage can be found here.]

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Review: Two Night Stand photo
Review: Two Night Stand
by Mike Cosimano

Is there nothing in this world more tiresome than movies about supposedly wise beyond their years, quirky, white, directionless youth philosophizing about the nature of sex/life/interpersonal relationships? I sure as hell can’t think of anything. Retreading this well-worn ground seems to be a rite of passage for indie filmmakers, to the point where I think we should have a separate genre; a veritable landfill for the express purpose of sequestering both this genre and those who actively seek them out.

Anyway, Two Night Stand isn’t very good.

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Review: The Equalizer photo
Review: The Equalizer
by Nick Valdez

I've been looking forward to The Equalizer for some time. The first trailer I sat down and watched featured a cool new Eminem song, Denzel Washington acting like a vengeful badass again, and couldn't stop boasting how it's from the director of Training Day, Antoine Fuqua. Figured that should've been a red flag. 

Although Fuqua's direction on Training Day was good, it was a great film because it had a good team behind it. Take away that team and you'll find the rest of Fuqua's career: King Arthur, Shooter, and Olympus Has Fallen. But hey, he's finally reunited with Denzel Washington! Washington is a powerhouse, so of course they'd bring their A game, right? 

With how much Washington leisurely strolls from place to place in The Equalizer, it's a shame he never gets anywhere. 

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How I did Kickstarter: Deciding on the rewards photo
How I did Kickstarter: Deciding on the rewards
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

Each of these posts have made reference to how important any given aspect of the Kickstarter project is. The pitch text is the most important, but so is the video! And also the goal. And while all of that is true, none of it matters if you don't have good rewards. The rewards are the things that will really define just how much money you get. Some people don't care about rewards, and they will give you a certain amount of money whether they get something out of it or not, but many will define their contributions based on what they're getting out of it. 

I couldn't count on two hands the numbers of times I've considered backing a Kickstarter but never did so because I wasn't interested in the rewards. Kickstarter may not be a store, but it is a marketplace. And everyone in that marketplace needs to have something worth selling at a price worth paying.

[Alec is doing a Kickstarter. You can (and should) back it here. Through the project's duration, he will be writing a series of articles about the process. More about that here. Check out the other entries here.]

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How I did Kickstarter: Making the pitch video photo
How I did Kickstarter: Making the pitch video
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

While I would say that the written pitch is probably the most important part of a Kickstarter project, the video is definitely the face of it. And it’s also vital. While you aren’t required to have a pitch video, campaigns that do use them raise 40% more than those that don’t. Even if you don’t know much about video editing, it’s highly recommended that you have some kind of something.

With any kind of video project, it’s all but mandatory. I couldn’t imagine funding a film that wasn’t accompanies by some kind of basic proof of competence. So for Reel, we knew we had to do something. And what we ended up with wasn’t particularly fancy or high tech, but it was what we were looking for.

Here’s what we did, how we did it, and why we did it that way.

[Alec is doing a Kickstarter. You can (and should) back it here. Through the project's duration, he will be writing a series of articles about the process. More about that here. Check out the other entries here.]

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Review: This is Where I Leave You photo
Review: This is Where I Leave You
by Matthew Razak

The dramatic family comedy. A staple in our modern day film scene. Throw is some folky pop music and a few stars and you've got yourself a big giant cliche ready for the theaters. There are ways to do it right, though. If you can pull your film out of melodrama and into actual emotion then you can hit the nail on the head. It happens.

It only half happened here. This Is Where I Leave You boldly teases at pushing its characters and feelings in interesting directions, but holds back far too much. It leaves us with a family dramedy that works on basic levels, but never transcends its genre. 

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Review: A Walk Among the Tombstones photo
Review: A Walk Among the Tombstones
by Matthew Razak

Looking back over Liam Neeson's career since Taken turned him into an action hero one could argue that he's basically made the same movie over and over. A vengeful individual in some sort of manly battle involving life and death. And, yes, that is a valid argument. But it also isn't. 

See, while Neeson's films have all been pushed the same way, they actually haven't all been that similar (both in tone and quality). From the outstanding The Grey too the awful Taken 2 Neeson has basically played around with the theme of the bad ass, elder hero in a variety of ways. Now they haven't always worked, but one thing remains consistent: Neeson is awesome. That pretty much describes A Walk Among the Tombstones perfectly. It doesn't always work, but Neeson is awesome.

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Review: The Maze Runner photo
Review: The Maze Runner
by Nick Valdez

As  Flixist's resident Young Adult novel correspondent, I've seen lots of forgettable teen films. With studios betting huge fortunes on these films becoming successful franchises (like Twilight and The Hunger Games), most of these series tend to forget they need a suitable first entry to get kids interested in the first place less they flop around and count their chickens before anything hatches like Divergent. 

The Maze Runner is the latest in a long line of hopeful franchises that want to hit the ground running, but it stumbles out the gate. While it looks good, and is acted well enough, there's no cheese at the end of this maze. 

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Deadpool movie actually happening, gets release date  photo
Deadpool movie actually happening, gets release date
by Nick Valdez

Folks, is this real? Is this truly, truly real? It seems 20th Century Fox is finally fulfilling the promise made long ago (which possibly is attributed to the test footage "leak" a while back) with an X-Men spin-off starring Deadpool. 

The film will be directed by Tim Miller, and Ryan Reynolds is still rumored to star but no official deal has been set. There's also no other information as to tone or whether or not the studio is still going with the script written by the Zombieland duo of Rhett Rheese and Paul Wernick, but hey it's gonna be a thing for your eyeballs! 

Deadpool releases February 12, 2016. Here's that test footage, in case you've missed it. 

[via THR]

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Review: Tusk photo
Review: Tusk
by Sean Walsh

I have a long-standing history with Kevin Smith, dating back to high school when I first saw the erroneously named "Jersey Trilogy." When Red State came out in 2011, I was intrigued to see what Smith could do with both the horror genre and a parody of the always-awful Westboro Baptist Church. I was...underwhelmed, to the point where sharing the same room as the man whose films I could quote by heart was undesirable.

I was following Tusk with fairly mild curiosity until I saw the trailer (see below), and then found my curiosity going from mild to full-tilt. When we received the invite for an advance screening in NYC, I took my first-ever paid personal day, hopped a train, and went to see if the idol of my teen years still had it in him. 

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Views Askew: Growing Up on Kevin Smith photo
Views Askew: Growing Up on Kevin Smith
by Sean Walsh

[Back in June 2012, we had Kevin Smith Week to celebrate his new Hulu show, Spoilers. What with his new movie Tusk hitting theaters this week, it felt apropos to repost the article, with a new entry for the new film.]

Y'know, I don't exactly remember when or where the first time I saw a Kevin Smith movie was. If I had to warrant a guess, it would've been Mallrats in the living room of my old house, the house where I spent my formative years absorbing as much pop culture as possible (not much has changed). What I do know for sure is that while growing up, the View Askewniverse was as much a part of me as pineapple calzones, Hawaiian shirts, and an inflated ego.

Of course, as one grows up, things change. They mature, develop, become an adult. I haven't had a pineapple calzonne since I don't know when, I haven't purchased a Hawaiian shirt since before I graduated high school in 2005, my ego has deflated (a little bit, at least), and Kevin Smith is no longer a vital part of my DNA. But for a good long while, he was my film god. Join me, if you would, on this personal journey into the past to examine the impact the man and his movies had on my life throughout high school and up through the present. We'll laugh, we'll cry, we'll reflect on the zen of "snoochie boochies*."

*That last bit probably isn't true.

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Review: The Guest photo
Review: The Guest
by Nick Valdez

When I saw the first trailer for The Guest I wasn't particularly interested in the film. It looked generic, bland, and seemed like yet another trite thriller that comes out around Halloween for a cheap buck. But like You're Next (written and directed by the same duo of Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett) last year, there's more here than I initially gave it credit for. 

You're Next went on to become one of my favorite films of 2013, and now The Guest joins alongside as my favorite film of 2014 so far. It exceeded my expectations. Fantastic, thrilling, exquisite, nail biting, hilarious, captivating...

There simply aren't enough buzzwords to capture how much I loved The Guest. 

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Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass returning for Bourne photo
Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass returning for Bourne
by Matthew Razak

Remember when Jeremy Renner took over the Jason Bourne franchise and was going to basically do a whole new set of trilogies? Yea. Not so fast. Deadline is confirming a rumor that went around last year that Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass will be returning to the franchise and stealing the Renner sequel's release date of summer 2016. Where the direct sequel to The Bourne Legacy is still in the works with director Justin Lin helming it appears it won't get released until after Damon's Bourne 5

Now this isn't all bad. Evidently Universal is hoping they can expand the franchise and have characters from both films crossing over with each other developing a Marvel-like universe on a smaller scale and with less spandex. 

I wasn't particularly enthused by Renner's turn in the franchise so I'm happy to see both Damon and Greengrass return. Hopefully this means so awesome Renner/Damon action in the future. 

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The Mockingjay lives in this newest trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 photo
The Mockingjay lives in this newest trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
by Nick Valdez

Looks like a girl, but she's a flame. As Flixist's resident Young Adult book advisor, I love me some Hunger Games (and will always exploit Alicia Keys' once hit single) and I'm glad the newest trailer finally shows off how different the final book in the series is from other copycats out there. 

Watch the trailer. It's so good. This'll probably be the last you can see for awhile before they start spoiling everything too. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 opens November 21st. 

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Review: The Pirates photo
Review: The Pirates
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

Every so often, a film comes along that completely shatters your expectations. You think you've got it figured out and then it throws a curveball. Then another. Then five more. Soon you realize you can't figure the film out and you have to just let it happen, because even hazarding a guess at what happens next will just make you look silly. It's rare for something so consistently bizarre to be released, and even rarer for it to be a blockbuster, even a foreign one.

But The Pirates is one of those films. And I'm still reeling from the impact.

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How I did Kickstarter: Writing the pitch photo
How I did Kickstarter: Writing the pitch
by Alec Kubas-Meyer

When you go to a Kickstarter page, what's the first thing you do? I always read (or at least skim) the text of their pitch. If it looks interesting, I'll read through it properly. If not, I'm not going to back it. If I see the project's video embedded on a different site, maybe I'll watch that first, but the text is always more important to me. 

So when I sat down to write the pitch for Reel, I had to make something that would appeal to me. But this campaign wasn't really written for me; it's for you. That means what I really had to make was something that appealed to everyone else.

I’ve gotten great feedback on the whole, so I guess I succeeded. Head below for a deeper look at that process.

[Alec is doing a Kickstarter. You can (and should) back it here. Through the project's duration, he will be writing a series of articles about the process. More about that here. Check out the other entries here.]

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