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Russ Fischer writes that this got a relatively unexcited reaction at the Toronto Film Festival and that this might be less of a caper comedy than it appears here. He’s right, however, that James Caan looks like he’ll be worth the price of admission (or at least a Netflix rental). Actually, Vera Farmiga and even Mr. Keanu Reeves look pretty good here. Reeves is no Alec Guiness, of course, but in certain kinds of comic roles he can be kind of priceless. Also, it’s got three hugely underrated actors — Peter Stormare, Fischer Stevens and Bill Duke — in supporting roles. How can that be boring?
It’s oh so tempting to slack off with more trailers and videos, but a few items too interesting to ignore…
* Regular readers, both of you, may remember a number of interview pieces here and elsewhere by me dealing with a film called “Middle Men.” Well, my interview with the film’s producer and presumed model for the lead character, Christopher Mallick, has become a lot more interesting over the last few days. It has drawn some unusually strong comments from netizens, and not for no reason. The Wrap’s Johnnie L. Roberts sums up how funds deposited by Mallick’s current company, ePassporte, have been effectively frozen — leaving some people truly in the lurch — and also that this isn’t the first arguably suspicious crisis that Mallick has weathered.
I will say that if you have over $240,000 pre-loaded on a card which I gather is mainly for use on porn sites these days (not online poker as I once assumed) — I’m no one to judge on this matter, but I think you’ve got a bit of a problem.
* A much more positive story, especially for hardcore movie fans, is Roger Ebert’s announcement that he is returning the format he and Gene Siskel perfected back to its original PBS home, with a few interesting new twists including the presence of the one of the universe’s more photogenic of cinephile bloggers, Kim Morgan of Sunset Gun, alongside headliners Christy Lemire and Elvis Mitchell, Omar Moore and Ebert himself. Nikki Finke, via TV Deadliner Nellie Andreeva, provides the turd in the punchbowl. (Please, Mr. Mitchell — don’t give Ms. Finke the pleasure of a “Toldja!” here.)
* Speaking of the amazing Mr. Ebert, be sure to check out his TIFF swag.
* Alamo Drafthouse will be getting into the film distribution game with a bang in more senses than one with their release of the ingenious, ultra-dark British comedy, “Four Lions,” which really does do for terrorism what “In the Loop” did for needless wars. A parking snafu created by the organizers of the Los Angeles Film Festival caused me to be 20 minutes later for the screening but, even so, I can’t imagine that the film will be anything less than one of the year’s best, even if its premise scares many away.
In the short annals of sports-oriented musicals there’s “Damn Yankees” and…well, there must be one I’m forgetting. Anyhow, now, at last there’s another and its about hockey and it’s from Canada and of course it’ll be featured at the Toronto International Film Festival which opened last night.
Here’s the trailer.
I’m not saying that the rather literally titled “Score: A Hockey Musical” looks particularly good — it doesn’t to my eye — but sometimes something is just so bold in conception that attention must be paid.
The organizers of the beloved Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF to its friends) have to put up with an infestation of that feared denizen of the east coast, the bedbug. Fortunately for them, the actual festival doesn’t start for nearly a fortnight. What could be worse, well…
No time for my usual prolix commentary tonight, but time for two short and amusing clips. First, via /Film, comes this clip from an upcoming new 3-D animated short from Warner Brothers. It’s intriguingly forward to yesterday and better looking than I would have expected.
Now comes a brief but promising trailer for a new all-star comedy to premiere at the Toronto Film Festival adapted from a novel by Montreal’s Mordecai Richler.