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November 2017 Film Preview

Lady Bird

November is here with collection of women-centric, women-directed, and women-written films that range from funny to heartbreaking to eye-opening to game-changing. On November 1, the month begins with “A Bad Moms Christmas.” This sequel follows three frustrated mothers as they try to conquer the upcoming holiday season. On the same day we have Jessica M. Thompson’s “The Light of the Moon,” a portrait of a sexual assault survivor.

November 3 follows with a blend of comedy and drama. First up is Michelle Morgan’s “It Happened in L.A.,” which follows two women navigating modern romance in Los Angeles. Greta Gerwig’s “Lady Bird” traces the journey of the titular character, a self-mythologizing, rebellious teen living in Sacramento, CA. And Ana Asensio’s thriller “Most Beautiful Island” presents one hellish day in the life of an undocumented immigrant in New York.

November 10’s releases will see women making unexpected and bold moves. “Thelma” follows a college student falling in love while simultaneously developing supernatural powers. Marianna Palka’s “Bitch” centers on a stressed housewife adopting the psyche of a dog in order to cope with her life. And “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” stars a foul-mouthed Frances McDormand as a mother putting up signs on a highway in an effort to find her daughter’s murderer and draw attention to the local police’s ineptitude.

Among November’s documentary releases are Christina Herrera’s “No Dress Code Required,” about two men who become lightning rods in the process of getting married, and Alexandra Dean’s “Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story,” which highlights the movie star’s hidden life as an inventor who trademarked an element found in all cell phones.

Here are all of the women-centric, women-directed, and women-written films debuting in November. All descriptions are from press materials unless otherwise noted.

November 1

A Bad Moms Christmas

A Bad Moms Christmas”: Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/Stx Entertainment

A Bad Moms Christmas” follows our three under-appreciated and over-burdened women (Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn) as they rebel against the challenges and expectations of the Super Bowl for moms: Christmas. And if creating a more perfect holiday for their families wasn’t hard enough, they have to do all of that while hosting and entertaining their own mothers (Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines, and Susan Sarandon).

The Light of the Moon” — Written and Directed by Jessica M. Thompson

The Light of the Moon

Bonnie (Stephanie Beatriz), a young and successful architect, is sexually assaulted while walking home from an evening out with friends in Brooklyn. At first, she attempts to keep the assault a secret from her long-term boyfriend Matt (Michael Stahl-David), but the truth quickly emerges. Bonnie emphatically denies the impact of what has just happened to her. Another attack in the neighborhood only drives Bonnie further into denial, before an encounter with an at-risk woman causes her to face the truth and confront her own self-blame.

November 3

Lady Bird” — Written and Directed by Greta Gerwig

Lady Bird

ChristineLady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) fights against but is exactly like her wildly loving, deeply opinionated, and strong-willed mom (Laurie Metcalf), a nurse working tirelessly to keep her family afloat after Lady Bird’s father (Tracy Letts) loses his job. Set in Sacramento, California in 2002, amidst a rapidly shifting American economic landscape, “Lady Bird” is an affecting look at the relationships that shape us, the beliefs that define us, and the unmatched beauty of a place called home.

It Happened in L.A.” — Written and Directed by Michelle Morgan (Opens in NY November 3; Opens in La November 10) (Available on VOD November 14)

It Happened in L.A.

Annette (Michelle Morgan) and Elliot (Jorma Taccone) are a mostly happy, moderately neurotic La couple. Maybe Annette doesn’t enjoy game nights or taco stands as much as Elliot does, but no relationship is perfect, right? Rather than embracing their differences, Annette can only compare their relationship to their happy couple friends. This cannot be endorsed by Annette’s beautiful but romantically troubled best friend, Baker (Dree Hemingway), who is very well-versed on the bleakness of the La dating scene. Taking its cues from classic mid-20th century comedies with a stylish and contemporary spin, “It Happened in L.A.” is an irreverent tale of life and the search for elusive love in the 21st century.

Most Beautiful Island” — Written and Directed by Ana Asensio (Also Available on VOD)

Most Beautiful Island

Most Beautiful Island” is a psychological thriller set in the world of undocumented female immigrants hoping to make a life in New York City. Shot on Super 16mm with an intimate, voyeuristic sensibility, “Most Beautiful Island” chronicles one harrowing day in the life of Luciana (Ana Asensio), a young immigrant woman struggling to make ends meet while striving to escape her past. As Luciana’s day unfolds, she is whisked, physically and emotionally, through a series of troublesome and unforeseeable extremes. Before her day is done, she inadvertently finds herself a central participant in a cruel game where lives are placed at risk, and psyches are twisted and broken for the perverse entertainment of a privileged few.

“No Dress Code Required” (Documentary) — Directed by Christina Herrera (Opens in NY)

A rallying cry for equality, this loving documentary follows Victor and Fernando, two respected stylists from the Baja California border town of Mexicali who became the center of a social firestorm from their simple desire to get married.

“Wait for Your Laugh” (Documentary) (Opens in NY; Opens in La November 17)

Rose Marie’s rise to fame began at the age of four with her own NBC radio show. As she grew, she went from the stages of Vaudeville to the bright lights of Vegas to some of the most iconic television shows. But it’s not just credits like “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and “Hollywood Squares” that make her life so memorable. Characters like Al Capone, Bugsy Siegel, and Jerry Lewis all played a part in this woman’s story of fame, love, tragedy, and success. A woman’s 90-year career is also the greatest untold story in show business.

Princess Cyd

Princess Cyd

Sixteen-year-old Cyd (Jessie Pinnick) decides to take a break from her depressive single father and spend a summer in Chicago with her aunt Miranda (Rebecca Spence), a well-known novelist. Soon after her arrival, Cyd encounters Katie (Malic White), a young barista behind the counter. The two make plans to meet up after Katie’s shift and a new, charged relationship begins. The Chicago landscape expands, and we navigate intimate and fragile moments between Cyd and Katie as they explore their new attraction. Miranda functions as a counterpart to young Cyd’s new explorations of sexuality and love, and as the summer continues, they develop a strong relationship founded on a shared openness and healthy criticism of particular personal moments.

Battlecreek” — Directed by Alison Eastwood; Written by Anthea Anka

Henry Pearl’s (Bill Skarsgård) rare skin disease has left him hiding from the sun in the shadows of small town Battlecreek. His overprotective mother,​ the local diner, and his night time job at the gas station provide him a nocturnal and mundane existence. When a beautiful, yet tormented girl (Claire van der Boom) becomes stranded in town, Henry is awakened by love, forcing them both to face their turbulent pasts in light of the future.

“11/8/16” (Documentary) — Co-Directed by Sheena M. Joyce, Petra Epperlein, Alma Har’el, Alison Klayman, Ciara Lacy, Martha Shane, and Elaine Mcmillion Sheldon (Also Available on VOD)

On the morning of Election Day 2016, Americans of all stripes woke up and went about living their radically different lives. These were the hours leading up to Donald Trump’s unexpected, earth-shaking victory, but, of course, no one knew that yet. Featuring footage captured by a carefully curated group of some of America’s finest documentary filmmakers, “11/8/16” follows 16 subjects spanning the country’s geographic, socioeconomic, and political divides throughout the course of that history-altering day.

“Uncle Gloria: One Helluva Ride” (Documentary) — Directed by Robyn Symon (Available on VOD November 7)

“Uncle Gloria”

“Uncle Gloria: One Helluva Ride” recounts the astonishing true story of Butch, the macho owner of a South Florida auto-wrecking company, who in a desperate search of a way to hide from the law, transformed himself into a woman named Gloria. But what started out as a trick to beat the system ended up changing Butch’s life forever. Now in her 80s, Gloria’s stranger-than-fiction life has been filled with risky surgeries, sex work, family dysfunction, activism, and a gender-bending love story. Full of humor, warmth, and sass, “Uncle Gloria” is a rollicking ride that must be seen to be believed.

“Elliot the Littlest Reindeer” — Written and Directed by Jennifer Westcott

When Blitzen announces his retirement on December 21, a miniature horse (voiced by Josh Hutcherson) has three days to fulfill his lifelong dream of earning a spot on Santa’s team at the North Pole tryouts.

November 7

The Journey Is the Destination” — Co-Written and Directed by Bronwen Hughes (Available on Netflix)

The Journey Is the Destination

Director Bronwen Hughes (“Stander”) and screenwriter Jan Sardi (“Shine”) recreate the inspiring life story of the late photojournalist, artist, and activist Dan Eldon, who documented the struggle, heartbreak, and hope of a war-torn and famine-ridden region of Africa.

November 10

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”: Merrick Morton/20th Century Fox

After months have passed without a culprit in her daughter’s murder case, Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand) makes a bold move, commissioning three signs leading into her town with a controversial message directed at William Willoughby (Woody Harrelson), the town’s revered chief of police. When his second-in-command, Officer Dixon (Sam Rockwell), an immature mother’s boy with a penchant for violence, gets involved, the battle between Mildred and Ebbing’s law enforcement is only exacerbated.

“Thelma”

“Thelma”

A college student (Eli Harboe) starts to experience extreme seizures while studying at a university in Oslo, Norway. She soon learns that the violent episodes are a symptom of inexplicable, and often dangerous, supernatural abilities.

Bitch” — Written and Directed by Marianna Palka (Also Available on VOD)

Bitch

Bitch” tells the powerful and darkly humorous story of a housewife (Marianna Palka) who, after her philandering husband (Jason Ritter) and unruly kids break her psyche, upends the family dynamic by assuming the persona of a vicious dog.

Gold Star” — Written and Directed by Victoria Negri (Opens in NY) (Also Available on VOD)

After dropping out of music school, Vicki (Victoria Negri) drifts aimlessly between her family’s house in Connecticut and an itinerant existence in New York. When her father suffers a debilitating stroke, she has to become his primary caretaker. Vicki resists connecting with him, and making peace with herself, but finds a way forward thanks to a new friend and a life-changing event.

Destination Unknown” (Documentary) — Directed by Claire Ferguson (Opens in NY and La)

Destination Unknown

Destination Unknown” blends intimate testimony with immersive archive to bring the stories of 12 Holocaust survivors to the screen. The survivors share their memories, some for the first time, some for the last, bringing their experiences to a new generation. They endured the death camps. They hid in remote farms. They fought as partisans in Polish forests. But when the war ended, those struggles were only just beginning.

November 15

Song of Granite” — Co-Written by Sharon Whooley

Song of Granite

Song of Granite” revolves around the life of the great traditional Irish singer Joe Heaney. The harsh landscape combined with the myths, fables, and songs of his Connemara childhood helped shape this complex and fascinating character. Enigmatic and complex, Heaney’s devotion to his art came at a huge personal cost.

November 17

Mudbound” — Co-Written and Directed by Dee Rees — November 17 (Also Available on Netflix)

Mudbound

Set in the rural American South during World War II, Dee Rees’ “Mudbound” is an epic story of two families pitted against one another by a ruthless social hierarchy, yet bound together by the shared farmland of the Mississippi Delta. “Mudbound” follows the McAllan family, newly transplanted from the quiet civility of Memphis and unprepared for the harsh demands of farming. Meanwhile, Hap (Rob Morgan) and Florence Jackson (Mary J. Blige) — sharecroppers who have worked the land for generations — struggle bravely to build a small dream of their own despite the rigidly enforced social barriers they face. The war upends both families’ plans as their returning loved ones, Jamie McAllan (Garrett Hedlund) and Ronsel Jackson (Jason Mitchell), forge a fast but uneasy friendship that challenges the brutal realities of the Jim Crow South in which they live.

“A Fantastic Woman”

“A Fantastic Woman”

Marina and Orlando are in love and planning for the future. Marina (Daniela Vega) is a young waitress and aspiring singer. Orlando (Francisco Reyes) is 20 years older than her, and owns a printing company. After celebrating Marina’s birthday one evening, Orlando falls seriously ill. Marina rushes him to the emergency room, but he passes away just after arriving at the hospital. Instead of being able to mourn her lover, suddenly Marina is treated with suspicion. The doctors and Orlando’s family don’t trust her. A detective investigates Marina to see if she was involved in his death. Orlando’s ex-wife forbids her from attending the funeral. And to make matters worse, Orlando’s son threatens to throw Marina out of the flat she shared with Orlando. Marina is a trans woman and for most of Orlando’s family, her sexual identity is an aberration, a perversion. So Marina struggles for the right to be herself. She battles the very same forces that she has spent a lifetime fighting just to become the woman she is now — a complex, strong, forthright, and fantastic woman.

The Breadwinner” — Directed by Nora Twomey; Written by Anita Doron and Deborah Ellis

The Breadwinner

Parvana (Saara Chaudry) is an 11-year-old girl growing up under the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001. When her father is wrongfully arrested, Parvana cuts off her hair and dresses like a boy in order to support her family. Working alongside her friend Shauzia (Soma Chhaya), Parvana discovers a new world of freedom — and danger. With undaunted courage, Parvana draws strength from the fantastical stories she invents, as she embarks on a quest to find her father and reunite her family.

“Cook Off!” — Co-Directed by Cathryn Michon; Co-Written by Cathryn Michon and Wendi McLendon-Covey (Also Available on VOD)

Reality-show shenanigans mix with the fiery-and-fierce world of competitive baking in the deliciously sly mockumentary “Cook Off!” As a buffet of quirky contestants prepare for the renowned Van Rookle Farms Cooking Contest, the heat is on to win a one million-dollar prize. The filmmakers follow them as the foodie media and celebrity judges descend on a hotel convention area to see which contestants rise, which ones fall, who will reveal their true nature, and who will find love with the contest’s costumed Muffin Man mascot.

Big Sonia” (Documentary) — Co-Directed by Leah Warshawski

Big Sonia

In the last store in a defunct shopping mall, 91-year-old Sonia Warshawski — great-grandmother, businesswoman, and Holocaust survivor — runs the tailor shop she’s owned for more than 30 years. But when she’s served an eviction notice, the specter of retirement prompts Sonia to resist her harrowing past as a refugee and witness to genocide. A poignant story of generational trauma and healing, “Big Sonia” also offers a laugh-out-loud-funny portrait of the power of love to triumph over bigotry, and the power of truth-telling to heal us all.

Soufra” (Documentary) (Opens in La)

Soufra

Soufra” follows the inspirational story of intrepid social entrepreneur Mariam Shaar — a refugee who has spent her entire life in the 69-year-old Burl El Barajneh refugee camp south of Beirut, Lebanon.

On the Beach at Night Alone”

On the Beach at Night Alone”

An actress (Min-hee Kim) wanders around a seaside town, pondering her relationship with a married man.

November 22

Mr. Roosevelt” — Written and Directed by Noël Wells (Opens in NY)

Mr. Roosevelt

Emily (Noël Wells), a talented but hard-to-classify comedic performer, left behind her home and boyfriend to pursue career opportunities in La. When a loved one falls ill, Emily rushes back to Austin where she’s forced to stay with her ex-boyfriend (Nick Thune) and his new-and-improved girlfriend (Britt Lower), a totally together woman with a five-year plan. Though Emily is the same, everything else is different: her house has been smartly redecorated, her rocker boyfriend is training to be a real estate agent, and her old haunts show serious signs of gentrification. Holed up in her own guest room, Emily — who has no idea what she’ll be doing five days from now, let alone five years — is forced to question everyone’s values: are they sell-outs or have they just figured out what makes them happy? And is she following her dreams or is she just a self-absorbed loser?

The Man Who Invented Christmas” — Written by Susan Coyne

The Man Who Invented Christmas”: Kerry Brown/Garlands Films

The Man Who Invented Christmas” tells of the magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and other classic characters from “A Christmas Carol.” The film shows how Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens) mixed real-life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up unforgettable characters and a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season into the celebration we know today.

November 24

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story” (Documentary) — Directed by Alexandra Dean

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

Austrian actress Hedy Lamarr fled an oppressive marriage to create a name for herself as one of Hollywood’s top leading ladies in the 1940s. Behind the glamour and sex appeal, though, was a talented and inquisitive inventor who created a radio system that is now considered the basis of Bluetooth technology.

November 2017 Film Preview was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
See full article at Women and Hollywood »

Why This Is Us Star Gerald McRaney Proposed to Delta Burke on Their Second Date

  • PEOPLE.com
Why This Is Us Star Gerald McRaney Proposed to Delta Burke on Their Second Date
Gerald McRaney took home the very first Emmy of his nearly 50-year acting career this weekend for his supporting role on This Is Us, but the Emmys have always been good to him. After all, the award show served as the setting for one of his earliest dates with his wife, Delta Burke.

The couple, married for 28 years, showed up arm in arm at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony on Sunday. McRaney won for outstanding guest performance on a drama for his turn as the NBC show’s Dr. K, and the two reminisced on the red carpet with
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Gerald McRaney On Emmy Success With ‘This Is Us’, Possible Season 2 Return

At age 70, This Is UsGerald McRaney landed his first Emmy nomination and first win for playing Dr. K, aka Dr. Nathan Katowski, on the NBC drama. The win left McRaney in disbelief, he said later backstage Sunday night. “My first thought was, ‘Did I hear that right?’ and when Delta (his wife Delta Burke) started reacting, I thought, ‘Well I guess I must have.’ So I went up on stage and I’m glad I heard it right because it would have been awfully embarrassing if I went and…
See full article at Deadline TV »

Update 0.6.7 docks at World of Warships

Dasha Perova is back to introduce us to the latest update for World of Warships by Wargaming.net. Update 0.6.7 sees the return of Ranked Battles and brings new content, a new map and changes to the economy as well as plenty of improvements and fixes. Watch Dasha’s new update video below…

Update 0.6.7 will see the return of Ranked Battles. Starting from Service Record Level 14, players will be able to face off against other players in epic battles with seven player teams. Players can gain rewards by winning and the more players fight and win the better the rewards will become. Ranked Battles Season 7 starts on the 30th June and ends on the 7th August.

This latest update also makes changes to the in-game economy. Data has been collected since the start of the previous update and the rewards ratios for detection, spotting and potential damage have been reconfigured. There
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

20-Year-Old Sorority Sister Died of Asphyxia After Pancake-Eating Contest, Medical Examiner Confirms

  • PEOPLE.com
20-Year-Old Sorority Sister Died of Asphyxia After Pancake-Eating Contest, Medical Examiner Confirms
The 20-year-old Sacred Heart University student who was rushed to the hospital following complications from a pancake-eating contest on campus died by asphyxiation, the New York City chief medical examiner’s office confirms to People.

Caitlin Nelson, a junior studying social work and a member of Kappa Delta sorority, became “unresponsive” after consuming several pancakes at the Greek Life food-eating competition on March 30, People confirms with the Fairfield Police Department.

“The lack of oxygen for that extended period of time caused irreversible damage, making it not survivable,” Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara told People.

Nelson was declared dead on Tuesday.
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

20-Year-Old Sorority Sister Dies Following Pancake-Eating Contest at Connecticut College

  • PEOPLE.com
20-Year-Old Sorority Sister Dies Following Pancake-Eating Contest at Connecticut College
Sacred Heart University is mourning the loss of a 20-year-old student who died after complications following a pancake eating contest at the Fairfield, Connecticut, campus.

Caitlin Nelson of Clark, New Jersey, was competing in a Greek Life food-eating competition on March 30 when she began shaking uncontrollably and fell to the floor, according to local reports.

She had consumed “several” pancakes and when officers arrived she was “unresponsive and not breathing,” People confirms with the Fairfield Police Department. Nelson had allergies, but medical staff hasn’t been able to confirm that the allergies were a “contributing factor to the incident,” according to police.
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Leon Russell, Musician and Writer of ‘A Song for You,’ Dies at 74

  • Indiewire
Leon Russell, Musician and Writer of ‘A Song for You,’ Dies at 74
Leon Russell, musician and songwriter known for his work with the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan and George Harrison, died in his sleep today. He was 74.

Read More: Leon Russell Gets Reflective at ‘A Poem is a Naked Person’ NYC Opening

Russell first rose to acclaim as a session musician in the 1950’s and 60’s, playing with a diverse range of artists, from Ray Charles to Gram Parsons. His piano playing can be heard on the Beach Boys’ early albums, including their landmark “Pet Sounds,” The Rolling Stones’ “Live with Me” off of the album “Let It Bleed” and The Byrds’ version of “Mr. Tambourine Man.” Many of his songs have become hits for other artists, such as “Delta Lady” for Joe Cocker, “Superstar” for The Carpenters and “The Masquerade” for George Benson.

On top of his work with other artists, he has also produced plenty of original hit songs. His
See full article at Indiewire »

Ohio Man Charged with Aggravated Murder of College Student Sierah Joughins

  • PEOPLE.com
The man believed to be behind the disappearance and death of Sierah Joughin, the 20-year-old Ohio college whose remains police believe they found last Friday, was charged with aggravated murder Tuesday on top of the abduction charge he received last Friday, People confirms. James Dean Worley, 57, of Delta, was charged with abduction after authorities discovered a body they believe is that of the missing University of Toledo student. Police have not positively identified the body yet, pending DNA and fingerprint tests, and the Fulton County Coroner's Office would not yet confirm the body was Joughin's. At a news conference Friday,
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Best of Late Night TV: Taylor Swift's Jumbotron Dancing, Britt From 'The Bachelor' Defends Herself (Video)

  • Moviefone
If you're like us and value your sleep, you probably nodded off into your Ambien dreamland before the party started on post-prime time TV. Don't worry; we've got you covered. Here's the best of what happened last night on late night.

Taylor Swift was on "The Tonight Show" Tuesday night, and Jimmy Fallon told her he was really upset because she dances all the time now, but that used to be their exclusive thing. They were "famous Jumbotron dancers." Jimmy shared "random" Jumbotron footage showing the two of them going for it. Love how they flip the popcorn every time. Funny bit. The people in the background are the best. Taylor and Jimmy also cemented their new Bff status by drawing each other without looking.

Kristen Bell was on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" to talk about Dax Shepard's 40th birthday and their two young daughters, Lincoln and Delta. They almost
See full article at Moviefone »

Sororities and Segregation: What's Going On at the University of Alabama?

  • Popsugar
Sororities and Segregation: What's Going On at the University of Alabama?
Fifty years ago, the University of Alabama admitted its first black students, but not before putting up an infamous fight. As you might recall from your Us history class, Alabama Gov. George Wallace - who had promised "segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever" - attempted to block the entry of two black students to the school on June 11, 1963, in what was known as the "Stand in the Schoolhouse Door." Thanks to intervention from President Kennedy, the students were eventually allowed in. Now, generations later, the school is back in the spotlight for the apparent segregation of its Greek system. Earlier this month, student newspaper The Crimson White reported that four sororities had stopped two otherwise-qualified black women from rushing. According to the paper, chapter alumnae were behind the discrimination. As this story gains national attention and highlights modern race realities, let's look at how it's unfolded so far. Aug. 9:
See full article at Popsugar »

Michael Shannon: 'The Iceman' star's 5 best screen roles

Michael Shannon: 'The Iceman' star's 5 best screen roles
If you're a Michael Shannon fan (and if you're not, take a long hard look at your life), this month is probably going to go well for you. His take on iconic Superman villain General Zod has been front and centre in the marketing for Zack Snyder's Man of Steel, which hits cinemas next week.

In the meantime, Shannon stars in true-crime thriller The Iceman, turning in another mesmerically intense performance as impassive and ruthless contract killer Richard Kuklinski.

Digital Spy looks back at five of Shannon's most notable previous roles.

Bug (2006)

Adapted by Tracy Letts (Killer Joe) from his own stage play, Bug rivals The Exorcist as William Friedkin's most disturbing film to date. Shannon plays psychotic war veteran Peter Evans, who literally drives Ashley Judd's lonely waitress insane over a period of days, gradually convincing her that their shared motel room is becoming infested by insects.
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

On location: film-themed holidays

Star struck? Take a holiday where you can visit the scenery and locations of new, restored and upcoming film releases

Hunger Games: Catching Fire (released 22 November)

Katniss Everdeen is back in the deadly arena for the Quarter Quell in the second instalment of the Hunger Games. This time, the action takes place on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Most of Oahu's hotels are clustered in the Waikiki district of Honolulu, the state capital, but the island's rural accommodation might be more relaxing. The Ke Iki Beach Bungalows on the North Shore (+1 866 638 8229, keikibeach.com) are perfectly placed for summer snorkelling and winter surfing (from £95 a night, sleeping two). Two mountain ranges provide great hiking and there are dozens of white-sand beaches for sunbathing and watersports.

United Airlines (united.com) flies from Heathrow to Honolulu from £609 return

Mud (out now)

This coming-of-age movie about two 14-year-old boys helping a fugitive is set
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Michael Shannon Excels As He Performs Angry Sorority Letter

Michael Shannon has been around for a few years now but it was his role as the mentally unstable (but only logically stable) John Givings in Revolutionary Road that really started to get him noticed. He followed that up with the magnificent Take Shelter as Curtis and Nelson Van Alden in Boardwalk Empire (including that iron scene), which has rightfully placed him in the arena with some the best actors around. Always unbalanced at his most affective, he has now taken on an American sorority letters as his next (Funny or Die) venture and my, what an impact! He’s here to read the Delta Gamma Sorority Letter that went viral last week, from the University of Maryland including the opening line:

“If you just opened this like I told you to, tie yourself down to whatever chair you’re sitting in, because this email is going to be a rough f**king ride.
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Michael Shannon gives a dramatic reading of Delta Gamma's 'insane' sorority girl e-mail

  • Pop2it
In case you missed it, the ugly side of Greek life reared its head last week when University of Maryland Delta Gamma sister Rebecca Martinson sent out a crude, expletive-filled e-mail to her fellow sorority members because they are "Literally being so f**king awkward." The message was posted in its entirety to Gawker and shared Martinson's faults with her sisters with the world, and we've never been the same since.

While Martinson's e-mail in itself is insane and horrifying, what's come after is undeniably amazing. Michael Shannon, an actor best known for playing roles like Nelson Van Alden in "Boardwalk Empire" and General Zod in "Man of Steel," has recorded a dramatic reading of the e-mail for Funny or Die and it is hilarious. Be warned, this video features the same inappropriate language as the original e-mail.

Sure, all this video does is highlight everything wrong with Martinson's message to begin with,
See full article at Pop2it »

Bradley Manning's personal statement to court martial: full text

In the absence of a full official copy of Manning's statement, journalists have had to rely on their own note-taking from court

Bradley Manning read out a personal statement to the court in Fort Meade, Maryland, at a pre-trial hearing over his prosecution for leaking the largest trove of state secrets in Us history. It provides the first account in his own words and under his own name of how he came to download hundreds of thousands of classified documents and videos from secure military databases and transmit them to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

The Us government has refused to publish contemporaneous transcripts and documents from the Manning court martial, prompting legal complaints from open government groups. In the absence of a full official copy of Manning's statement, journalists covering the case have had to rely on their own note-taking from the courtroom.

Here the Guardian publishes a transcript compiled by independent journalist Alexa O'Brien,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Snuffed Out, Too: More TV Series That Were Gone Too Soon

Last month, as the fate of ABC's Gcb hung in the balance, we were worried it would become a member of the "Gone Too Soon" club, TV shows that were snuffed out before they had a chance to flourish, or at least before we had a chance to grow tired of them.

Sadly, Gcb has gone to that big Upn in the sky, where it can run happily in the meadow with the likes of Firefly, Pushing Daisies, and Manimal.

While we mourn Gcb's loss, let's take a look at more shows that were ended too quickly. They were unappreciated at the the time, but they were either too good or too ... interesting ... not to have been offered the opportunity to flourish. Or flame out. Which is just as good.

The Comeback

HBO (June 5, 2005 – September 4, 2005)

Lisa Kudrow could have played it safe with her follow-up series to Friends, but instead
See full article at The Backlot »

The 7 Best Celebrities With Pageant Pasts

New Miss USA Olivia Culpo

Yesterday's Miss USA pageant was kind of a snore, even though I support the coronation of Miss Rhode Island, Olivia Culpo, who plays cello, supports transgender contestants, and cares about old movie stars. She cited Audrey Hepburn as her hero, which is kind of a cliched move, but at least she knew who Audrey Hepburn was. I consider that a victory for movie fanatics, however slight. At least it wasn't Marilyn Monroe, am I right?

So in honor of Miss Culpo's pop culture awareness, I thought we should revisit seven celebrities who once worked the pageant circuit and elect a definitive winner from the bunch. My #1 choice isn't quite a surprise, but it's the only truly scandalous pick on this roundup. "Scandal" should be a key criterion for all pageant judges. Without further ado, here they are, the seven best pageanteers-turned-celebs in ascending order.

7. Halle Berry
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Smooth Hits of the '80s Make 'Dirty Girl' Soundtrack Memorable

  • NextMovie
There are a few things you need to get right if you're going to make a movie set in the '80s: the fashion, the lingo and, without question, the music.

Every classic "Hey, weren't the '80s wacky?" film has leaned heavily on its soundtrack, and the folks behind the upcoming indie flick and Toronto Film Festival favorite "Dirty Girl" have apparently been taking notes. The soundtrack to the movie is stocked with pop cheese that will set off pastel-hued flashbacks in nostalgia buffs and entertain anyone who's into the whole yacht-rock revival that seems to be going on these days.

The first thing you'll notice about the "Dirty Girl" soundtrack, however, is how heavy it leans on a relatively obscure pop singer named Melissa Manchester. A favorite of one of the movie's central characters, Manchester lands five of the album's 14 tracks, including her best-known song, the 1982 No. 5 hit
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Top Ten Tuesday: We Like To Party

I’m just gonna say it… We Like To Party, but even we can’t party as hard as the Wolfpack! Alan, Stu and Phil are bringing the party back to theaters this Thursday with The Hangover Part II, so we thought, what better way to ring in the party than to count down our favorite party animals!

These are the cool kids that bring the party! They rage, they get down… heck, they might even get “jiggy wit it”! Sure, they might not be from the fluorescent box of crayons, but these folks can MacGyver a good time out of a paper clip, a broomstick and a Nelson cassette. (Yep, I said it!)

So, without further adeu…

Top Ten Party Animals Honorable Mention: Trent (Vince Vaughn) Swingers (1996)

Trent (Vince Vaughn) is an aspiring actor. He’s loud, flirtatious, and he’s living the swinging lifestyle. Vegas is this kings castle,
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"RuPaul's Drag Race" Premiere Recap: "The Queen Who Mopped Xmas"

  • The Backlot
Oh Lordy! Monday night's Drag Race Season 3 premiere was expanded into a giant 2 1/2 hour block of Logo programming. At that rate, when will the network ever have time for Buffy re-runs?

Oh well, I can forgo yet another repeat viewing of "Once More With Feeling" in order to see some talented drag queens compete in a reality show. Especially a reality show that's a wild and gay[er] fusion of America's Next Top Model, Project Runway and Sarah Palin's Alaska!"

If this is your first time tuning in to RuPaul's Drag Race, then you're in for a treat!

First up in Logo's Mondays Are a Drag kick-off was a one-hour Drag Race casting special, then we had the first regular episode of the season, and finally there was a half-hour Untucked episode where we got to see the contestants backstage getting Absolut-ly wasted and taking catty swipes at one another.

But you know,
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