Posts tagged films

Midnight Movies at the TLA

I love movies. Kind of an obvious statement I know, let me try to explain….

I get asked the question “Oh you like movies, what’s your favorite movie?” a lot. Anyone who loves film HATES this question with a burning passion. We suddenly have a list of films that run through our heads with no way to pick just one. The thoughts seem to gravity around this…

"I really love Indiana Jones but I just saw The Dark Knight again last week and that was just SOO good! But I love Singing in the Rain. I DON’T FUCKING KNOW!"

A follow up question that comes after you explain you “don’t really have a favorite” is usually…. “Well then what’s your favorite genre of film?”

To which any film fan would go. “Who the fuck doesn’t like all genres of film?” A good documentary (Man on Wire) is less entertaining than a good horror film? (The Shining) That question is even stupider than the last.

BUT! Through the years there have been many films that stand the test of time. Films that become “cult” classics. The TLA on South Street is playing 3 of these films in their full glory (with alcohol in the back of the room ready to warm up even the shyest of the audience up.)

Movie News Update: Martin Scorsese LOVES 3D!!

In the latest Pretentious Film Majors Movie News Update, Zach & Chris break down the recent CinemaCon panel on 3D technology, as well as Oscar-winning directors Martin Scorsese & Ang Lee’s comments on it. Does Martin Scorsese think films like Raging Bull and Taxi Driver would have benefitted from 3D technology? Would Ang Lee opt to do Brokeback Mountain or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon in the third dimension? And which director said using 3D cameras feels like operating inside a refrigerator? The answers to all these questions inside the latest video from the PFM Channel’s Pretentious Film Majors!

Contest: Casa De Mi Padre - Screening Passes

Will Ferrell has been in an extremely high (almost too high) amount of films spanning his career. But even with that he is still receiving less Razzies than Adam Sandler whom was nomiated for 12 razzies this year for his piece of shit Jack and Jill.

Casa de ma Pedre is a film that goes back to the will Ferrell humor we all originally fell in live with. (Streaking down the street) We also know that you want to see it for free and early. Enter the code below at to claim your free passes.

Screening Info:
March 12, 2012 at 7:30PM
Philadelphia, PA

Gofobo Code:

Interview with Justin Kurzel - Director of “The Snowtown Murders”

The Snowtown Murders is and will remain one of the years most raw and un-nerving films. Its gravitas cannot be described in words; only felt by watching this truly psychological horror masterpiece.

Based on a true story and a real town with real local people as actors there is a haunting mood in this creepy, slow paced, two hours of horror. Check out our exclusive interview with Director Justin Kurzel to find out more about how they managed to keep things light on set even though the story is the exact opposite.

Interview: Andrea von Foerster - Chronicle Soundtrack

Andrea von Foerster may not be a household name, but her work as a music supervisor helped define the present generation’s teenagers and twenty-somethings from her work on The O.C., (500) Days of Summer, and most recently, the sci-fi action flick, Chronicle (opening in theatres Feb. 3). In this exclusive, we chat with Andrea about the life and work of a soundtrack curator, Asking the burning question, What do you listen to?

Q1.) What’s a typical day like for you as a music supervisor?

One of the fantastic things about being a music supervisor is that you get to be both creative and business minded. In a typical day, I’ll answer an obscene amount of emails, send out requests and confirmations, search for music to pitch to my projects and go to meetings or spotting sessions or mixes. I have an exhaustive need to hear as much music as possible so I have music on from morning till night. I need music like I need air so if music isn’t playing, then I’m humming, whistling or singing something.

Q2.) When working on the film, Chronicle, did you have certain songs or artists in mind to feature in the film? How much give-and-take is there amongst you, the film’s director and producer?

It’s always exciting to work on a project with teenage characters because it generally means you’ll be using quite a bit of music. The director, Josh Trank, chose not to have any score in the film so it meant we would be using more source music at parties, in bedroom, in the car, etc. We ended up with just fewer than 40 cues in the film. After reading the script, I knew I wanted the music to be fairly diverse and a little more under the radar. I’m not a fan of people pigeonholing teenager’s musical tastes in films or television shows. When I was a teenager, I had a voracious appetite for music and listened to everything I could get my hands on. That’s never changed for me and I think that teenagers today listen to a little of everything simply because they have access to everything via the Internet. We had a limited budget for this film so we concentrated mostly on newer indie acts like Class Actress and A B & The Sea to lend us credibility but we were very happy that the publishers and labels of artists like David Bowie and M83 agreed to our fee requirements. Josh Trank has excellent taste and was very open to hearing new music as well as bringing his own ideas to the table so it was a very cool collaborative process.

Q3.) The opening of Chronicle’s trailer has the three main characters (played by Michael B. Jordan, Dane DeHaan, and Alex Russell) singing along to Jessie J’s “Price Tag.” That scene not only provides background music, but it’s very literary in that it foreshadows the rest of the film. Apart from researching artists and licensing costs, do you choose songs to fit a certain character/narrative/mood?

That scene is hilarious. I believe it’s just Alex Russell who sings the song in the car, much to Dane DeHaan’s chagrin. We definitely chose happier and more accessible music for Alex Russell’s character, Matt, and more sullen and diverse music for Dane DeHaan’s character, Andrew. Sometimes a film’s overall musical identity is more important than the individuals in it but for Chronicle, Josh and I agreed that each main character should have their own musical identity. Each project is different in that regard.

Q4.) In Death Cab for Cutie’s documentary, Drive Well, Sleep Carefully, Ben Gibbard talks about how the television drama, The O.C., helped their career in terms of exposure to a new audience. Did you have a hand in that? How did you discover DCFC and what does it feel like to be a factor in a band’s success?

I was the music coordinator on The O.C. under the helm of music supervisor, Alex Patsavas. The O.C. was such a fantastic opportunity for breaking bands and I’m so happy Death Cab For Cutie was one of them. A friend of mine had introduced me to ¡All-Time Quarterback!, the name Ben Gibbard once recorded under, as well as the early albums Something About Airplanes and The Photo Album in 2001. “A Movie Script Ending” from the latter album is still one of my favorite Death Cab songs as well as the video directed by Josh & Xander. Along with Alex, I pitched music for the show and Death Cab was one of those bands that always seemed to have the right lyrics and sound specifically for the character Seth Cohen, played by Adam Brody. The O.C. started airing the same year Death Cab’s album Transatlanticism was released (2003) and they were a natural fit. The show’s creator, Josh Schwartz, also had great taste in music and I think the show and the band grew together. The greatest thing about music supervision is being able to be a part of a musical story. You get to help a band on its way up and make your project cool at the same time. It’s a win-win situation.

Q5.) What is the proverbial Holy Grail of film/television project for you?

I’m a lifelong entertainment junkie. I was raised by television and movies. I was a film production major at the University of Southern California. Because I plan on being a music supervisor for life, there’s no one Holy Grail…there are many. I’d love to work on projects that use a lot of music with montages where you can really showcase songs. I love everything Kevin Williamson does and I’m obsessed with The Vampire Diaries, it’s my favorite television show. I’d be honored to work on films directed or produced by David Fincher, the Coen Brothers, Danny Boyle, Baz Luhrmann, Jason Reitman, Guy Ritchie and J.J. Abrams. I’m dying to work on a Marvel film. I dig superhero, action and especially martial arts films. I want to do it all.

Q6.) Looking over your career, the music picks range from French chanteuse songs like Carla Bruni’s “Quelqu’un m’a dit” in (500) Days of Summer to old-school hip-hop in Run’s House. When you’re not working, what music do you like to listen to?

When not listening to music for work, I go through phases. Some artists will be on repeat for months because their songs match what’s going on in my life. I tend to like music with a bit of duality: Sad music with happy lyrics or happy music with sad lyrics. Scandinavian and British artists tend to fit that bill more often than not. Sometimes I want songs with a big bass that make me forget the world around me. Other times I want quiet songs that feel epic from their simplicity and lyrical content. Right now I’m listening to Alex Clare, Liam Bailey, Various Cruelties, Woodkid, Nick Waterhouse, Gary Clark Jr., Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings, Etta James, Kings of Convenience and a lot of `90s hip hop —mostly De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest.

Q7.) If you had to be the music supervisor for your own documentary, which artists/songs would you like to feature?

I spent a long time writing down all the songs that I would pitch for the documentary of me and realized that not only would the song list outlast the running time of the film but that the songs are far too telling of my opinion of life. So here is a list of the artists I would want to have songs from. (This would be the most expensive/unclearable soundtrack of all time.)
Radiohead, Guns N’ Roses, Kings Of Convenience, Feist, James Blake, Bon Jovi, Cyndi Lauper, Daniel Merriweather, Sam Cooke, Mark Ronson, The Smiths, Jacques Dutronc, Coldplay, Françoise Hardy, Plan B (UK), Chase & Status, Tiesto, Kanye West, Various Cruelties, Michael Jackson, Adele, Notorious B.I.G., The Blow, Metallica, Whitney Houston, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Jay-Z, Otis Redding, Bloc Party, Alex Clarke, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Portishead, Jose Gonzalez, The Get Up Kids, ABBA, Carly Simon, The Verve, Run-D.M.C., The Promise Ring, A Tribe Called Quest, Madonna, Simple Minds, Death Cab For Cutie, Bruce Springsteen, The Pointer Sisters, Sia, The Sundays and The Magnetic Fields. And that’s just who I can think of right now.

Q8.) Do you find yourself having a different workflow for music in TV shows compared to films?

The workflow for TV is much faster than in film. On TV shows you usually have 1-3 weeks to complete an episode and it’s generally fast and furious to crank out a whole season. For films there is a lot of hurry-up-and-wait depending on what point in the process you get hired. I’ve been hired before films were even greenlit by the studio and pitched and cleared music for 1-2 years and I’ve been hired last minute and had one week to complete everything song related. I do like the immediacy of television as you can place a song and have it heard within the month, but I think films have a more lasting impact.

Grab the Soundtrack at the links below:

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Review: Mission Impossible - Ghost Protocol

Tom Cruise is old.

But thankfully he’s still insane enough to make yet another ridiculous action film. Mission Impossible kicks it up another notch, from the already far and beyond belief notches it has made in the previous Mission Impossible films. This time it’s cut so close at the end that even Tom Cruise is surprised!

What makes these movies so enjoyable is their wit. Tom Cruise and Simon Pegg have impeccable timing throughout these film making what might have been an average enjoyable moment that much more entertaining. Blow shit up, laugh a little, blow shit up more; it’s a formula that works! Who knew?

There’s not much to say about the story, the plot, or any of that here. MI4’s plot is so average that it doesn’t ever really make an impression. This is really meant to be an action ride from start to finish. But for anyone who is actually following the story, if you aren’t fully caught up on your Mission Impossible universe you will find yourself lost and confused. Something about a dead wife? Him in jail? I’m still lost and confused….

But do you really go see these movies because you want a sophisticated plot? Well if this was Mission Impossible 1 then yes… but now that we are at number 4 we expect Tom Cruise on the side of a building hanging on for dear life. Then a sophisticated laugh from Simon Pegg. And he does. And he does too. And it’s so much fun you can’t wait to see him do it again.

Mission Impossible 4 opens today in IMAX theaters and Nationwide on Wednesday Dec 21st.

7.5 Crazy people stuck in the closet out of 10

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PFF - Review: Underwater Love

This parody of sorts is probably the strangest thing you could possibly see at the Philadelphia Film Festival, or ever maybe…… A tale of a factory worker who is about to get married to her kind yet sex-crazed, husband when she meets a Kappa. This…. part duck-part turtle-part human creature is a reincarnation of her high school sweetheart. Their love blossoms as the Kappa and the factory worker go about having explicit sex (involving Kappa genitalia) with various members of the cast. The film uses sex as a way of growth in the characters but yet it also seems to use it as a means of comedy and to be highly disturbing. Oh… did I mention the whole thing is also a musical where people will just stop what they are doing and dance and sing? Well it is. Glee fans eat your heart out.

For those of you still following this movie is for you. It’s full of dry humor from start to finish and is highly entertaining if you’re not looking for it to be serious. For any of you who don’t see the fun in a film like this stay away. Stay far away. For those of you who think films need more Kappa on Human sex scenes with a whole 5 minutes of fake Kappa genitalia fellatio in them then this is the best film you will ever see.

People who have a crazy and open sense of humor: 7.5 out of 10

People who don’t: 2.5 out of 10.

FM Fest - The Films - Sept 22nd through 25th

Music lovers of Philadelphia have a huge weekend up ahead where they will be treated to an abnormally large and abnormally awesome Film and Music Festival. What results are the following films and events that no one in their right mind should miss.

For all you Dorks interested in these films check out the crazy-not-to-partake-in-deal on Groupon where you can go to the Kick-off Party and have a ticket for EVERY SINGLE FILM!

***Friday, September 23*** @ INVINCIBLE PICTURES

Sound It Out / 7:00pm / All Ages / $8
Color Me Obsessed: The Replacements / 8:30pm / All Ages / $8
Better Than Something: Jay Reatard / 11:15pm / All Ages / $8

***Saturday, September 24*** @INVINCIBLE PICTURES

Meet Me On South Street: The Story of JC Dobbs / 6:30pm / All Ages / $8
Beatboxing: The 5th Element of Hip Hop / 8:00pm / All Ages / $10 (live Beatboxing after the film)
Freaks in Love: Alice Donut / 10:00pm / All Ages / $10 (live Alice Donut performance after the film)

***Sunday, September 25*** @ INVINCIBLE PICTURES

Echotone / 5:00pm / All Ages / $8 Broke* / 6:45pm / All Ages / $8
Hilvarenbeek / 8:25pm / All Ages / Free
Bob and The Monster: The Story of Bob Forrest / 8:45pm / All Ages / $8 (special Q&A session with VH1 Celebrity Rehab’s Bob Forrest after the film)

Review: Warrior

Some say MMA is the new boxing. Despite their differences, ‘Warrior’ seems to prove that whichever of the two sports is caught on film, the end product can yield an all too similar story. ‘Warrior’, seemingly having a fresh slate with the lack of mainstream MMA films, doesn’t break rules, set new boundaries, or take any risks. As a film, its style felt very conventional - as a sport, contemporary mixed martial arts is anything but.

Despite its general unoriginality, ‘Warrior’ does have a unique selling point. Since the two protagonists fight each other to wrap the film, it’s an interesting concept where the viewer can freely pick their favorite to win. I mean, no one sided with Ivan Drago, the hotshot Russian boxer that stood opposite of Rocky in the ring.  Having this choice as a viewer without necessarily rooting against a definitive antagonist works in the movie’s favor.

The film does drag a bit. On top of the long running time, the pacing grew to a crescendo too often in the concluding tournament fight scenes. Short, sporadic, high-energy scenes replace usual montage, but not necessarily for the better. With prior knowledge of which contestants are in the final head-to-head fight, too much time is spent showing how they get there. So much, in fact, that it is hard to care by the time the big fight comes around.

‘Warrior’ is good, but not great. (Warrior opens in Theaters September 9th)

6 Pay Per View Channels out of 10

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Random Thoughts - Muppets: The Green Album

I’m in love with just the idea of a new Muppets film. A reboot of a franchise that I didn’t think would see the light of day till I was old and decrepit (Picture Brad Pitt when he’s 90, that’s what I’m gonna look like…). Lucky enough for me and the rest of the world there is a new Kermit-loving film on the way! The beginning of that hype starts NOW with the “Muppets: The Green Album” Album release (TODAY).

Previously and still streaming on NPR the aptly named “Green Album” is a collection of songs from Muppet shows, films, and episodes redone re-imagined by modern day Alternative artists. It is in itself a completely brilliant concept. From Ok Go creating a modern version of the “Muppet’s theme song" to The Fray rockin’ out to "Mahna Mahna" to Andrew Bird’s FANTASTIC rendition of "Bein’ Green" there is an amazing sense of nostalgia here without losing any artistic integrity. Many of the songs are so different and fully realized that they don’t even feel like Muppets songs.

I was excited for the film, but I am now even more excited because it gave us an album of this caliber to jam out till we wait in line repetitively to see the Muppets movie in the Winter. Go grab the album on the sites below or listen to it on NPR. Either way it’s a must.