Film

27 June

 

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Transformers: Age of Extinction

Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Li Bingbing, Kelsey Grammar, Sophia Myles, T.J. Miller
27 June
Transformers: Age of Extinction

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Michael Bay is back. Shia “I am not famous” LaBeouf is not. In his place is Mark Wahlberg as a hard working everyman who just so happens to stumble across a deactivated Optimus Prime in a scrap heap… and it’s a good thing too as, apparently, there is yet another Decepticon threat coming from somewhere. Toss in the geek tweaking Dinobots and you’ve got another busy blockbuster destined to dominate the box office worldwide. While the other films in this franchise are mediocre at best, here’s hoping a new leading man and an infusion of new metal can make the difference, aesthetically speaking.


 

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Snowpiercer

Director: Bong Joon-ho
Cast: Chris Evans, Kang-ho Song, Go Ah-sung, Jamie Bell, Alison Pill\, John Hurt, Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, Ed Harris
27 June
Snowpiercer

Perhaps the most talked about film of the Fall and Spring is not some major Hollywood tentpole or strategic starring vehicle. Instead, it’s the ongoing battle over Bong Joon-ho’s sci-fi allegory, and distributor Harvey “Scissorhands” Weinstein’s desire to re-edit the movie for “American” audiences. This isn’t the first time the former Miramax head has clashed with his creative teams. He demanded cuts from such stalwarts as Martin Scorsese (Gangs of New York) and beloved titles like Hero and The Grandmaster. Bong has apparently refused, so we will have to see which version arrives in theaters at the end of the month


 

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The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz

Director: Brian Knappenberger
Cast: Aaron Swartz
27 June
The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz

Aaron Swartz was a maverick. He was a computer programmer, writer, political organizer and activist, taking his cause to the world (and its wide web) before being arrested on charges of fraud (he allegedly broke into and illegally downloaded a bunch of academic journals from JSTOR). After being denied a plea bargain, he was found dead in his Brooklyn, New York apartment. He had hung himself. The story seems rife for retelling. After all, he was involved in developing the RSS feed, co-founded Reddit, an worked fervently against anti-piracy legislation. Hopefully this documentary does Swartz and his legacy justice.


 

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Whitey: the U.S. of A. vs. James J. Bulger

Director: Joe Berlinger
Cast: Stephen Rakes, James J. Bulger Jr., Tommy Donahue, David Boeri, Steve Davis
27 June
Whitey: the U.S. of A. vs. James J. Bulger

While a fictional biopic, Black Mass, (starring Johnny Depp) is currently filming, Joe Berlinger of the Paradise Lost films has created this documentary highlighting the famous hitman and mobster’s various trials. Bulger’s story is indeed detailed. He was a low level criminal who ended up in prison. After his release, he found a place inside some of Boston’s most murderous gangs. From then on, it was contract killings, a consolidation of power, and the head of his own syndicate. Then the FBI came calling, looking for an informant. Sounds like an intriguing combination of truth and mafia mythologizing.


 

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They Came Together

Director: David Wain
Cast: Paul Rudd, Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Cobie Smulders, Christopher Meloni
27 June
They Came Together

David Wain’s cinematic output is complex, to say the least. While he tends to focus on comedy, the former member of MTV’s The State has roped in several famous friends including Paul Rudd, Jennifer Aniston, and now Amy Poehler to populate his unusual takes on standard movie tropes. This time around, he is tackling the RomCom, more or less spoofing the genre while offering up his own twisted view on relationships. In this film, Rudd will play a corporate jerk who falls for the woman - Poehler - who owns the candy store he is trying to shut down. Could be hilarious. Could be just another indie misfire.


 

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Nothing Bad Can Happen

Director: Katrin Gebbe
Cast: Julius Feldmeier, Sascha Alexander Gersak, Annika Kuhl, Swantje Kohlhof.
27 June
Nothing Bad Can Happen

Now where have we heard THAT before? A young man seeks religious enlightenment and moves to the big city. He befriends a family and is soon taken in by them. Then the torture and torment begin. Highly controversial at last year’s Cannes’ film festival, this German effort is noted for its unflinching look at the violence that occurred (the film is based on a true story) with writer/director Katrin Gebbe focusing on the characters as well. There is a subtext of faith based forgiveness that is hard to take, or shake. Indeed, the main character’s values are often cited as more disturbing than the torment he must endure.


Since deciding to employ his underdeveloped muse muscles over five years ago, Bill has been a significant staff member and writer for three of the Web's most influential websites: DVD Talk, DVD Verdict and, of course, PopMatters. He also has expanded his own web presence with Bill Gibron.com a place where he further explores creative options. It is here where you can learn of his love of Swindon's own XTC, skim a few chapters of his terrifying tome in the making, The Big Book of Evil, and hear samples from the cassette albums he created in his college music studio, The Scream Room.


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