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Hard Boiled: Ultimate Edition

July 31, 2007

 Hard Boiled: Ultimate Edition

In retrospect, John Woo’s Hard Boiled (1992) can be seen as his audition reel for Hollywood. And what a helluva audition reel it was – a masterfully orchestrated magnum opus of mayhem. After its release, he moved to the United States and started over... 

300

July 30, 2007

 300

Capitalizing on the success of Sin City (2005) and some canny marketing (the screening of a trailer at the San Diego Comic Con was particularly effective), 300 (2006) became a surprise commercial hit despite mostly scathing reviews. Like Sin City and... 

Kung Fu Hustle: Axe-Kickin’ Edition

July 27, 2007

 Kung Fu Hustle: Axe-Kickin’ Edition

Fresh from the worldwide triumph of Shaolin Soccer (2001), Stephen Chow surpassed its critical and commercial success with Kung Fu Hustle (2004). He took the winning formula he perfected with his previous film and elevated it to a more ambitious scale.... 

Cashback

July 26, 2007

 Cashback

Cashback (2006) started off as a short film that filmmaker Sean Ellis made in 2004 and that went on to be nominated for an Academy Award. Not doubt inspired by this brush with such a lofty accolade, he expanded it into a feature-length effort. Ben Willis... 

Renaissance

July 23, 2007

 Renaissance

Renaissance (2006) is an animated film made in the tradition of Sin City (2005) and A Scanner Darkly (2006). Like the former film, it was initially shot with live actors on a green-screen soundstage and then this footage was animated like the latter film.... 

Ace in the Hole: Criterion Collection

July 21, 2007

 Ace in the Hole: Criterion Collection

Billy Wilder was a cynical filmmaker working in Hollywood during its most productive time – the classic period when legends like John Huston and John Ford reigned. Wilder made commercial films with a wildly subversive streak. For example, both Double... 

Ace in the Hole

July 20, 2007

 Ace in the Hole

Billy Wilder was a cynical filmmaker working in Hollywood during its most productive time – the classic period when legends like John Huston and John Ford reigned. Wilder made commercial films with a wildly subversive streak. For example, both Double... 

Neverwas

July 19, 2007

 Neverwas

Neverwas (2005) is one of those cinematic oddities that somehow managed to slip under the radar despite its star-studded cast. For whatever reason (usually internal politics), Miramax bought the film two years ago and decided not to get behind it. Reviews,... 

Factory Girl: Unrated

July 17, 2007

 Factory Girl: Unrated

Charles Taylor’s recent article in the New York Times documented the checkered production history of Factory Girl (2006), a biopic about Andy Warhol star, Edie Sedgwick. The shoot was plagued with a shifty financial backer, delays and re-shoots. Then,... 

WR: Mysteries of the Organism

July 12, 2007

 WR: Mysteries of the Organism

WR: The Mysteries of the Organism (1971) is one of those cinematic oddities that could only have come out of the 1960s and be made (and released) in the 1970s when pushing the boundaries of cinema was prevalent. It is a funky hybrid of documentary, fiction... 

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