So, here and there this weekend some “Zero Dark Thirty” reviews are popping up, and yay to all those positive reviews!
From director Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal, the team that brought you “The Hurt Locker,” “Zero Dark Thirty” — military jargon for 30 minutes after midnight — is as relentless and committed to its convictions and presentation as its main protagonist Maya (played by Jessica Chastain with firebrand passion), a CIA intelligence agent unremittingly driven by her pursuit of Bin Laden. The film slowly coils with an absorbing intensity. For better or worse, Bigelow extracts the details with myopic, laser precision until her characters find clues, inklings and suppositions to inform their argument concerning the whereabouts of the “world’s most dangerous man.”
(…)As far as awards go, (because at this point in the season it has to be discussed), “Zero Dark Thirty” could easily grab Best Directing and Picture nominations – Bigelow deftly impresses with her ability to compress events and tell a multifaceted tale without it ever feeling shortchanged – but whether the picture can grab the top slot remains to be seen, as it won’t be as user-friendly as “Les Misérables” or “Life of Pi” – both more emotionally engaging pictures. /Indiewire
I don’t know if there’s a real-life Maya, but Chastain inhabits this woman fully. It’s a very lived-in performance, and she continues to blow me away in terms of how much technical skill she exhibits as an actor, and yet how natural every choice she makes seems to be. Chastain is one of those performers where I’m sure there’s a ton of craft behind every beat of what she does, but she never appears to be “acting.” /HitFlix
On one end of the Sony Pictures Entertainment lot here is a three-story rainbow: a new work of public art that seems to sprout from the Thalberg executive building and convey the magic of the made-up world of the movies.
Across the lot is art of another kind: a towering black billboard announcing the bleak arrival of “Zero Dark Thirty,” a movie about the hunt for Osama bin Laden that is replete with jarringly gruesome scenes of torture as Central Intelligence Agency officers seek information.
To join the grit of history with the glow of narrative film was the task Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal set out to accomplish with “Zero Dark Thirty.” It is among Hollywood’s most challenging films since “The Hurt Locker,” the brutal Iraq war drama that Ms. Bigelow directed and Mr. Boal wrote and that won the best-picture Oscar from “Avatar” in 2010. (The film also won Oscars for directing and writing.)
The new movie is not for the faint of heart or for those expecting typical Hollywood fare. Whether “Zero Dark Thirty” succeeds may depend on the willingness of audience members (and awards voters) to relive difficult events in a drama that Ms. Bigelow and Mr. Boal insist should honor the facts and protect sources, even if that means giving less attention to cinematic conventions like a love interest, comic twists (à la “Argo”) or characters’ back stories.
A new “Zero Dark Thirty” poster featuring Jessica Chastain has just been released.
Kathryn Bigelow’s “Zero Dark Thirty” is on the way, and for now the movie is keeping itself as classified as the reports on the actual operation. But what we do know is that Jessica Chastain leads the ensemble (which also includes Joel Edgerton, Chris Pratt, Kyle Chandler, James Gandolfini, Mark Duplass and many more), and as the new international poster for the film reveals, her character has long been on the trail (and looks pretty dope in aviators). A couple new snaps give a further peek at the movie, but Sony seems to have struck a real balance between stoking excitement and keeping the big reveals under wraps.
“Zero Dark Thirty” opens in limited release on December 19th and nationwide on January 11, 2013. [Source]
It’s difficult to know quite what to make of ‘Tar,’ a multi-authored project seemingly coaxed into being by the sheer force of James Franco’s current artistic cachet. Playing In Competition in the XXI sidebar of the Rome Film Festival, the film represents the work of twelve newbie directors — NYU film students all — and attempts to create an impressionistic interpretation of the work of poet CK Williams, who himself appears occasionally, reading from his collection. Championed by and starring Franco, amongst a starry cast including Mila Kunis, Jessica Chastain, Henry Hopper, Bruce Campbell and Zach Braff, the film shifts around in time and mood, using four different actors (Franco one of them) to depict Williams at different stages in his life, with the scenes sometimes playing out with internal dialogue and mini-storylines, and other times played mute, with snatches of poetry voiced over. It is to be commended that despite the far-ranging approach and the cadre of people involved in its making, the film doesn’t feel disjointed or particularly uneven, that’s a lot down to shared cinematography and production design departments, we are told. But whether the approach enhances or detracts from our appreciation of Williams’ poetry is another question.
Hollywood actress Jessica Chastain and House Shorts winner James Kibbey
Soho House last night announced the winner of the House Shorts film competition, a platform committed to discovering the next generation of filmmakers from across the UK, USA and Germany. James Kibbey was crowned the winner at a screening and announcement ceremony at Soho House New York, attended by the nine finalists, as well as Hollywood actress Jessica Chastain – who was part of the judging panel for the competition.
Jessica Chastain who announced James as the House Shorts 2012 winner with his submission House Cocktail said: “I picked House Cocktail because of the playfulness, creativity and relationships established in the short.”
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