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Greg McLean's wasting no time, moving from WOLF CREEK to THE ROGUE. Signing his soul away to the Weinstein brothers, McLean will film the giant croc film in Victoria. Yes, I said giant croc. Has the potential to be the coolest monster movie ever. Has the potential to be ANACONDA. Based on WOLF, I'm leaning towards the former.
Russell Crowe just can't move an inch without people getting on his case about a MASTER AND COMMANDER sequel. While most of those people might be Billy Boyd, it still raises the possibility of a sequel based on one of the zillions of Patrick O'Brien books currently taking up shelf space in Borders. I, for one, loved MASTER AND COMMANDER, and if Weir's directing, I say make a bunch more of them. I'm certainly more excited about that than I am the proposed GLADIATOR sequel. Yes, Crowe apparently hired bad seed Nick Cave (who wrote the upcoming THE PROPOSITION) with his very own money to pen a draft. I'm guessing that either (a) it's a prequel; (b) it's a sequel set in the afterlife; (c) it's a sequel set on Earth, with Crowe as a zombie; or (d) Crowe isn't in it at all. If there's a fifth option that sucks *less* than those, let us know below.
In town to promote SERENITY (read my review here), Whedon told Moviehole.net that WONDER WOMAN may shoot in Sydney. We'd be hearing for a while that it will shoot somewhere in Australia, but this is the first we've heard of specifics. He also mentions he's got some very cool ideas for the invisible plane, lasso, etc. Cannot wait.
Looks like Richard Roxburgh will hold off on the thesping for a bit in order to direct Eric Bana in ROMULUS, MY FATHER, an adaptation of Raimond Gaita's novel. If this film is a success, it will presumably give way to sequels VULCAN, MY MOTHER and FERENGI, MY ACCOUNTANT.
ICE AGE director Chris Wedge is considering doing an Australian-set film based on cane toads. He got the idea when he came out to promote (but not apologise for) ROBOTS. I think it's a safe bet to assume the film will follow a cane toad who must team up with a kangaroo and a platypus to go on a journey for some reason. And when they get to Victoria, Greg McLean's giant croc eats them.
Unfortunately for underage AICN-D reader Justin, Roadshow has lost its appeal to the OFLC; WOLF CREEK will be slapped with an R18+. I really agree with this decision, as this is about as hard core as it gets. Justin and his friends will just have to sneak in to see it. (Note: AICN-Downunder does not condone sneaking into R rated films. Unless you consider the ticket prices too high, in which case it's totally justifiable.)
AWARDS AND FESTIVALS
SAN PAULO INTERNATIONAL SHORT FILM FESTIVAL
The Silver Rabbit (seriously?) this year went to South Australian film MOUSTACHE. Director Vicki Sugars is rumoured to be "elated" that her film won the Brazillian prize. The win follows MOUSTACHE's Best Foreign Film at CrÃ©teil International Women's Film Festival in Paris and Best First Film at the Montecatini Film and Video Awards in Italy earlier this year.
TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Australian director Roger Donaldson, who directed the criminally-underrated THIRTEEN DAYS, was overjoyed at the three standing ovations THE WORLD'S FASTEST INDIAN received at its world premiere. Meanwhile, New Zealand director Vincent Ward joined his RIVER QUEEN stars for its own world premiere at the same festival, and enjoyed a similarly enthusiastic response.
SHORT FLICKS 2005
Because nepotism is rife and there's nothing any of you can do about it, I'm going to give a shout out to my buddy Joel and the premiere of his short film at the La Trobe University screening this Tuesday. If you're in the Melbourne area, rock along to ACMI at 8pm on the 20th of September. Tickets are only $13 and $8 concession. The event is exempt from classification, so no one under the age of eighteen will be permitted to enter. That means Justin and his friends will probably have to sneak in. (Note: AICN-Downunder does not condone sneaking into R rated films. Unless you're being chased by werewolves and it's the only place you can think of to hide.)
Wow, STEALTH actually came out? And people went to see it? That's what happens when you spend all of your time working; you miss all the important stuff.
1. CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
3. WEDDING CRASHERS
4. RED EYE
5. THE PERFECT CATCH
RELEASED THESE TWO WEEKS PAST
Robert Rodriguez makes a film so simple a seven-year-old could have conceived it, Jay Chandrasekhar makes a film so stupid a seven-year-old may be offended by it, Cate Blanchett prequalises Tim Burton, the French git from the MATRIX sequels get his own spinoff, a documentary about quadriplegics is far more violent than it sounds, Nick Hornby's FEVER PITCH gets an inexplicable title change, the latest piece of Hilary Duff trash makes the FEVER PITCH title-change seem even dumber given the release timing, Disney releases a ninety minute "Previously, on every film you've ever seen", hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha, politicians who deal with the Australian Family Association finally get a film of their very own, and Dreamworks accidentally releases a funny animation.
THE ADVENTURES OF SHARKBOY AND LAVAGIRL IN 3D
THE DUKES OF HAZZARD
THE PERFECT CATCH
THE PERFECT MAN
WALLACE AND GROMIT: CURSE OF THE WERE-RABBIT
THE DUKES OF HAZZARD
Without wanting to be too condescending, there is a large portion of the population that will be content with a few car chases, some near-naked women cavorting about, and some low-brow crass humour. They may possibly be satisfied by this piece of shit, and I guess that's fine. If you're one of those people, and plot, story and *actual* humour isn't important to you, then this is probably the film for you. But then you?d probably be equally content with "Motorway Patrol" and a "Crusty Demons of Dirt" DVD.
I had an idea that this film would be pretty bad, but if I'd realised just how bad, I probably wouldn't have gone. It was a free screening too, so there's no pining for lost money; just the lost time.
Sean William Scott and Johnny Knoxville are both charismatic enough (and strangely reminiscent of the recent Owen Wilson/Vince Vaughan WEDDING CRASHERS pairing), and Jessica Simpson manages to avoid stumbling over the three lines she has, but that's the best thing you could say about it. The story makes little sense, the characters are all pretty unlikeable, and if you get a laugh out of anything here, you're doing better than I did.
Broken Lizard's Jay Chandrasekhar, whose TV work far outshines his movie work, does some excruciating work here. He also appears to be responsible for what is the most self-indulgent, unfunny, misplaced cameo in cinema history. Yes, the Super Troopers show up to pull the Dukes over. There's nothing funny about it; all they do is repeat one of the jokes from the TROOPERS film. Chandrasekhar himself re-delivers that joke in such a lazy, humourless way, it appears that the audience is meant to be in hysterics simply from their appearance. It's the lowpoint of the film, and that's saying something.
The only thing I think this film will achieve is causing all of the jerks who are easily influenced by everything they see on screen to copycat the Dukes' driving. And why exactly are we supposed to be cheering for a bunch of guys who tell jokes whilst throwing Molotov cocktails at the police?
A pile of trash that deserves to clean up at the next Raspberry Award ceremony.
As a general rule, you either like Jim Jarmusch's films or you don't. And I've never met anyone who didn't. So as a general rule, you like Jim Jarmusch's films.
FLOWERS is his new film, with Jarmusch apparently the next in line to adapt Bill Murray's new motionlessness to his directorial style. Murray, a rich womaniser, receives a letter suggesting that he has a son on his way to find him. His neighbour and best friend, played by Jeffrey Wright, excitedly organises a trip for Murray so he can track down all the women he'd messed around with twenty years ago. After a decent amount of cajoling and persuading, Murray eventually agrees to take the trip.
Tonally, the film is closest to STRANGERS IN PARADISE. It's exceptionally slow, with fewer than ten sequences constructing the entire thing. It's easily the most stoic and perpetually immobile Murray's ever been, suggesting some awkward situations if he ever visits Madam Tussaud's.
The relationship between Murray and Wright's family is so perfect, I really wish someone would adapt it into a TV series. Seriously. Get Daniel Palladino to put a show together. It'll be brilliant.
Murray meeting his ex-girlfriends makes for terrific set pieces, and Jarmusch clearly has a lot of fun with them. The first of these, with Sharon Stone and her daughter Lolita, is the funniest, but they're all entertaining. What's really interesting about the film is its thematic connection to DEAD MAN.
Yes, DEAD MAN. DEAD MAN is easily the high point of Jarmusch's filmography; a masterpiece that gets better with every viewing. If you haven't seen it, the film stars Johnny Depp as an accountant named William Blake, who travels to the town of Machine in the Old West to look for work. A theory floated to me by a close friend suggested it was Jarmusch's way of telling a story about the actual William Blake; ignoring the cosmetic facts of his life, and instead describing him by way of a noir Western. It's an interesting theory, and one I haven't really explored yet.
Now, DEAD MAN's William Blake is constantly being mistaken for his namesake, just as Murray's Don Johnston is constantly being compared to Don Johnson. I don't think FLOWERS is Jarmusch's dissection of Johnson's life, but rather Don Juan. Murray, who is watching 1934's THE PRIVATE LIFE OF DON JUAN in the beginning, is always being compared to Juan, particularly by his neighbour Wright. Murray is drawn to all the women in his life, be they sitting next to him on a bench or a lover he's not seen in two decades. His reaction to the one ex-lover that's passed away suggests he's in love with all of them. There's something genuine about his affections for them that points to the gaping hole in his life that we see clearly from beginning to end.
While very little actually appears to happen in this film, there's a hell of a lot going on under the surface, just as with any of Jarmusch's films. It's an excellent film, and for my money, only topped by DEAD MAN and DOWN BY LAW. Roadshow has it on release at some point in the next few months; make a point to go see it.
- Jackie Chan returns to his roots with modernised reimagining, METHAMPHETAMINE-ABUSING MASTER
- The makers of the upcoming US/Mexican border-set JOINT SECURITY AREA remake announce a remake of THE GREAT DICTATOR, to be set in Florida
- Conspiracy theorists discover new meaning in the WIZARD OF OZ when it's synced up with the crazy frog ringtone