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A deleted gag scene from 'It' shows a hilarious alternate opening for the movie


georgie it movie

  • Thriller "It" was released on Blu-ray and DVD January 9.
  • The movie contains several deleted and extended scenes which have started appearing online.
  • A gag scene shows an alternate opening for the movie where the young boy Georgie survives his encounter with Pennywise, something that would have defeated the entire point of the movie.
  • Actor Bill Skarsgard, who plays the clown, has said he was afraid he traumatized the kid actors on set, so it's cool to see a lighter scene like this from behind the scenes. 

What would have happened if Pennywise the Clown never succeeded in kidnapping Georgie at the start of Stephen King's "It"?

The movie would have been a lot shorter. 

Since the film's Blu-ray release January 9, some of the movie's deleted scenes have been finding their way online. One of the best is a short gag scene which shows an alternate opening to Warner Bros.' thriller.

In the original story, Georgie plays with a paper boat — the S.S. Georgie — on a rainy day. The boat falls into a storm drain, believed to be gone forever. When a curious Georgie pops his head into the drain, he meets Pennywise — Derry, Maine's resident demon clown. 

The actual movie shows Georgie get his arm ripped off and pulled into the sewer, never to be seen again. 

The gag scene flips the scene on its head. Georgie gets the boat back, bids the clown a swift farewell, and, we presume, gets home safely. 

pennywise clown it georgie lives

What we didn't expect was the immediate cut to a defeated Pennywise proclaiming "Ah, sh--" with a goofy look on his face. 

pennywise the clown It

It's hilarious not only because of the nature of the scene, but because it's a gag scene you wouldn't expect to find on a scary movie. 

It is nice to see the film did gag scenes like this since actor Bill Skarsgard, who plays Pennywise, said he was scared he traumatized the kids with his performance. This probably made it easier for the young actors to be around Skarsgard a little on set.

Watch the video below.

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'The Last Jedi' director says the movie's polarizing final scene was almost taken out: 'We went back and forth in the editing room'


temiri the last jedi lucasfilm final

  • Director Rian Johnson explained in a recent interview why the final scene in "The Last Jedi" is so important.
  • Johnson admits that the scene, which has split "Star Wars" fans, was also heavily discussed in the edit room.

Warning: Spoilers below if you haven't seen "Star Wars: The Last Jedi."

If you're kind of mixed about the final scene in "The Last Jedi," you're not alone. It turns out it was heavily discussed during the editing of the movie. 

Director Rian Johnson has had to weather the storm of social media reaction for his "Star Wars" movie, as its dramatic deaths and moments that seemingly contradict what was set up in "The Force Awakens" has split fans of the saga. But one of the most polarizing moments is its final scene.

Following a scene in which the Resistance escape the clutches of Kylo Ren and the First Order (thanks to a major assist by Luke Skywalker) and fly off in the Millennium Falcon all laughing and hugging, a scene follows in which we return to Canto Bight to see the stable kids of the Fathiers (aka, space horses) acting out the heroics of Skywalker. After being chased off by their master, we follow one boy, Temiri, walking outside and using the Force to grab his broom. He then looks up to the stars, we see he's wearing a ring bearing the symbol of the Resistance, and the credits roll.

The scene leaves audiences with more questions than answers. Will we see more of him in "Episode IX? Is Johnson introducing us to the character we will follow in the new, non-Skywalker family trilogy he's creating for "Star Wars"? Was the scene even necessary?

TheLastJediChewbacca LucasfilmJohnson recently spoke to Empire and addressed the final scene:

"That was something I really stuck to, and believe me, we went back and forth in the editing room," Johnson said. "In the script, when I wrote that scene in the Falcon, I wrote the words, 'This seems like the perfect image to end on.'

However, Johnson wanted to show how Skywalker's stand against the First Order inspired the galaxy. And that led to adding a scene.

"To me, it was really important to have that final scene, because it turns what Luke did from an act that saves 20 people into an act that inspires the galaxy," Johnson continued. "The notion that what we're setting up here is something big in the next chapter. And when Leia says, 'we have everything we need,' she's talking about everyone on the Falcon, but also about what we see next, which is we now have a galaxy that has seen this beacon of hope and is getting inspired to fight the good fight."

Johnson now passes the torch back to "The Force Awakens" director J.J. Abrams to finish the trilogy with "Episode IX" (opening December 2019). We will see how far Abrams goes with that inspired feel Johnson has ended on in "Jedi." 

SEE ALSO: All 9 "Star Wars" movies, ranked by how much money they made at the US box office

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'Phantom Thread' star Vicky Krieps opens up about the movie's grueling shoot and working with Daniel Day-Lewis


phantom thread focus

  • Vicky Krieps plays Alma in "Phantom Thread," the muse of Daniel Day-Lewis' character, Reynolds Woodcock.
  • Krieps didn't meet Day-Lewis until their first day of shooting and said he was in character as Woodcock every day of production.
  • Being in the movie was grueling for Krieps, not because of working across from the demanding Day-Lewis, she said, but because her schedule was six days of shooting a week and her off day consisted of constant dress fittings.

Luxembourg actress Vicky Krieps is a veteran of over 30 movies, but many will see her for the first time as the star of Paul Thomas Anderson's "Phantom Thread" (currently playing in select theaters, opening nationwide on Friday).

Krieps plays Alma, the muse of renowned 1950s dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock (Daniel Day-Lewis) who figures out an unconventional way to get him away from his work. Exploring obsessions and unconditional love, Anderson cast an incredible actress in Krieps to take on these themes opposite the all-consuming Method acting style of Day-Lewis.

Business Insider talked to Krieps about the experience of working with Day-Lewis and finding the strength to get through one of the most grueling shoots she's ever been a part of.

Jason Guerrasio: So when you got an email about auditioning for this movie you didn't realize it was a Paul Thomas Anderson movie, right? You've said at first you thought you were going out for a student film.

Vicky Krieps: That's right. It was more of me making things up out of not knowing anything. I basically got this email from an American casting agent, who I didn't know, and I certainly wasn't expecting someone from America to write to me. But I'm always interested in projects. Whatever I do, I'm interested in the color of the material, I'm not interested in who's making it. I'm more concentrated on the work. So I opened the email and scrolled to find not a script but just some text, really a monologue. So I did the lines on tape and sent it in. 

Why I thought it might have been a student film was because I didn't get a script, I thought maybe it wasn't finished yet or this is for a short movie. I never thought I wasn't getting it because of secrecy of the project and that it was in fact for a movie by a famous American director. [Laughs.]

Vicky Krieps APGuerrasio: Looking back, are you happy you didn't know who you were auditioning for? Perhaps you would have been more nervous?

Krieps: Perhaps. I think I always try to prepare the same. I don't think I would have been different. But I think what was good was I was only relating and concentrating on the work, and that turned out to work well for me. 

Guerrasio: When you realized what the movie was about and who you would be playing, did you do a lot of research on the era?

Krieps: I prepared mostly on London around World War II and after the war. My character had lost her mother. This isn't in the movie, but Alma's mother is dead. So that was my backstory. And I learned as much as I could about models in the 1950s. I found on YouTube how they walked back then in fashion shows. It's very different in how models walk now. It's more human. I also learned hand sewing. But everything else I couldn't really prepare before shooting because I knew I wouldn't meet Daniel until the first day of shooting.

Guerrasio: Oh, wow. 

Krieps: He requested that we don't rehearse and that we meet for the first time on the first day of shooting. So my big thing was to find a way not to be nervous. Really, for a lot of this I did the opposite of preparing.
Guerrasio: So the first scene of Alma in the movie when you meet Reynolds in the restaurant, is that the first time you met Daniel Day-Lewis?

Krieps: Yes. [Laughs.]

Phantom_Thread_241017Guerrasio: It's funny because Alma stumbles coming from out of the kitchen and she has this embarrassed look, it's really art imitating life.

Krieps: Exactly. I really blushed because I really tripped. 

Guerrasio: Really?

Krieps: Yeah. 

Guerrasio: Was it tough to act across from someone you barely knew?

Krieps: That's the thing, of course I was scared, but there was nothing I could do. I knew we would be working together and I just stayed calm as much as I could. I was really in a meditative state of emptiness and forget everything I was researching for the character and just reacted to him. Working with him was rather wonderful. Because of how he works, I could really fall into this world of Reynolds Woodcock. I just concentrated on the moment. Each scene in the movie I was just in the moment. Just reacting to the person across from me. 

Guerrasio: Can you say you even met Daniel while shooting this movie?

Krieps: No. 

Guerrasio: So you were with Reynolds Woodcock.

Krieps: Exactly. I never met Daniel on set until we finished. 

Guerrasio: So, as you said, you don't overthink how he wants to work. This is the job. You just react. 

Krieps: You go with it. I could only go with it.

phantom thread 2 focus featuresGuerrasio: The way he worked, did that bring you deeper into the Alma character than you would have if you worked across a different actor?

Krieps: I think the way I work is similar to how Daniel works, I just don't call it Method acting. I don't have the time and money to prepare the way he does. I have more projects to work on in a year, so it's impossible for me to do it that way. But I definitely have the same dedication and I'm crazy enough to invent worlds around me. It becomes a reality and you are involved in what you invented. 

Guerrasio: American audiences don't know you as well as other parts of the world, but you've worked a lot in your career. Compare this job to what you've done in the past. Is this the most unusual production you've ever been on because of the way Daniel works?

Krieps: It definitely has been the most intense work I've ever done. It was also the only one where I was really struggling with my strength. In the middle of making this I said to myself, "Oh my god, I can't see the end." I felt that I would never get to it. "How can I find more strength in me to continue?" Because it was 16-hour days sometimes. We worked every day, except for Sundays. But on Sundays I had fittings of all the dresses that were made for me. It was endless fittings. So strength was the biggest challenge for me on this. 

Guerrasio: With all that said, if Paul called tomorrow and said "I just wrote a part for you in my next movie," do you say yes?

Krieps: Yes. [Laughs.]

Guerrasio: It's worth the pain, so to speak.

Krieps: Absolutely. In a second I would do it again.

Guerrasio: A lot of the talk around this movie is that Daniel says it's his final movie. What are your thoughts? Do you think he's really quitting acting?

Krieps: I respect him enough to believe that if he says so then he will. But I also respect him enough to leave the door open if he wants to change his mind. If he's determined to stop I understand. But if this is an emotional reaction and he changes his mind I would love that. I would be happy if he continued to be an actor. I just want him to get what he wants. 

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Selena Gomez reportedly donated more than her Woody Allen movie salary to Time's Up — but still won't disavow him


selena gomez woody allen

  • Selena Gomez made a donation to Time's Up that exceeds her salary for Woody Allen's "A Rainy Day in New York." according to People.
  • Fans are upset at Gomez for working with Allen, an alleged sexual abuser.
  • She still isn't publicly distancing herself from him.


Selena Gomez"made a significant donation" to Time's Up, an organization that fights sexual abuse, that "far exceeded her salary for the film" she made with alleged sexual abuser Woody Allen, a source told People.

Gomez is starring in Allen's next movie, "A Rainy Day in New York." Allen allegedly sexually abused his former adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, in 1992. Many of Gomez's fans are outraged that she made the movie with him.

On the same day that Time's Up's defense fund was announced, Gomez shared a post on Instagram expressing support for the organization.

"It’s time to shift the balance in the workplace, from representing the few to representing us all," she wrote.

It’s time to shift the balance in the workplace, from representing the few to representing us all. #TIMESUP @timesupnow

A post shared by Selena Gomez (@selenagomez) on Jan 1, 2018 at 7:13am PST on

Despite the expressions of solidarity with Time's Up, Gomez hasn't publicly disavowed Allen.

Other actors in "A Rainy Day in New York" have. Both Timothée Chalamet and Rebecca Hall, who star in the movie, made statements distancing themselves from Allen and donated their salaries to Time's Up and other charities.

Gomez's refusal to take a public stance against Allen is apparently causing a rift between her and Mandy Teefey, her mother and former manager.

"Sorry, No one can make Selena do anything she doesn't want to. I had a long talk with her about not working with him and it didn't click," Teefey wrote on Instagram on Tuesday. "No one controls her. She makes all her own decisions. No matter how hard you try to advise. It falls on deaf ears."

If you are a victim of sexual assault, you can visit RAINN or call its hotline at 1-800-656-4673 to receive confidential support from a trained staff member.

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Iconic French actress Brigitte Bardot says the 'vast majority' of women who have come forward in the #MeToo movement are 'hypocritical and ridiculous'


brigitte bardot

  • French film icon Brigitte Bardot called the #MeToo movement "hypocritical and ridiculous" in a new interview with the French magazine Paris Match.
  • The 83-year-old actress said that many actresses claim sexual harassment for publicity. 
  • Bardot said that she was "never the victim of sexual harassment."


French actress Brigitte Bardot criticized the #MeToo movement as "hypocritical and ridiculous" in an interview with the French magazine Paris Match on Wednesday, as translated by French 24

"The vast majority are being hypocritical and ridiculous," she told the magazine of actresses who have come forward with stories of sexual misconduct. "Lots of actresses try to play the tease with producers to get a role. And then, so we will talk about them, they say they were harassed." 

brigitte bardots style and god created woman 18Bardot added that she was "never the victim of sexual harassment," and that she "found it charming when men told me that I was beautiful or I had a nice little backside." 

The 83-year-old actress came to prominence in international cinema with her performance in 1956's "...And God Created Woman."

Bardot's comments follow the French actress Catherine Deneuve, who signed a letter with 100 other French women last week, denouncing the #MeToo movement and its French counterpart, #Balancetonporc, or "Expose Your Pig."

Deneuve subsequently apologized to victims of sexual assault on Monday, after the letter drew international criticism.

SEE ALSO: 7 actors who have publicly disavowed Woody Allen or donated their salaries to charity after working on his movies

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Amazon Studios will start going after big-budget movies instead of indie films as part of a strategy shift


24 manchester by the sea.w1200.h630

  • Amazon Studios is shifting resources from producing independent films to invest in more commercial projects, as part of a plan led by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Reuters reports.
  •  The change in strategy follows the departure of former Amazon Studios head Roy Price, who resigned in October over sexual harassment allegations.


SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc, which has made waves in recent years buying art-house movies at the Sundance Film Festival, is heading to the prestigious event this week with a long-term change in the works: It plans to shift resources from independent films to more commercial projects, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

The move reflects a new phase in the online retailer's entertainment strategy. Initially, Amazon worked on high-brow movies that would win awards, put it on the map in Hollywood and help it attract top talent.

Now, Amazon wants programming aimed at a far wider audience as it pursues its central business goal: persuading more people to join its video streaming service and shopping club Prime.

The change in the movie strategy parallels a similar shift in Amazon Studios' TV operation, which is also moving to bigger-budget fare.

Amazon expects to go after films with budgets in the $50 million range at the expense of indie projects costing around $5 million, one person familiar with the plans said on the condition of anonymity. Another person confirmed the overall strategy, adding that the Culver City, California, studio is still working out the details on how much of its film budget will go to these bigger releases.

Amazon declined to comment.

The course change comes after Roy Price, who led Amazon Studios from its inception in 2010 and was a champion of projects with awards potential, resigned in October. Albert Cheng, the studio's chief operating officer, has stepped in as interim head and is in charge of television projects, while Vice President Jason Ropell runs the film division. Both report to Jeff Blackburn, a Seattle-based senior vice president who wields broad authority at the company.

It is unclear who will permanently replace Price.

On the film side, Amazon is not moving all the way into blockbuster territory. The TV group had offered $250 million just for the rights to a fantasy prequel series of "The Lord of the Rings," according to people familiar with the matter. That is a far more expensive project, representing a bigger change in direction than what the movie division is considering, one source said.

Nor is Amazon abandoning indie films entirely. But industry sources are unsure how active the company will be at Sundance this year. The festival's lineup is not believed to have a standout like "Manchester by the Sea," which Amazon bought at Sundance for $10 million and which went on to win two Oscars. Amazon and rival Netflix Inc in general have pushed up prices for such prestige fare.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon's chief executive, recently told at least one industry executive that it is business as usual at the movie studio, a person familiar with the matter said. At Sundance, that could mean multi-million-dollar deals for films destined for theaters, as well as small deals by a separate team - Amazon Video Direct - that offers more modest payments for a project's online streaming rights.

Still, several filmmakers were surprised recently when the studio turned away a handful of projects with budgets up to $6 million, which they believed fit the mold of Amazon's 2017 hit "The Big Sick," another person familiar with the matter said.

It was not immediately clear if their rejection was due to Amazon's new priorities.

(Reporting by Jeffrey Dastin in San Francisco and Jessica Toonkel in New York; Additional reporting by Lisa Richwine and Piya Sinha Roy in Los Angeles; Editing by Jonathan Weber and Leslie Adler)

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Scott Eastwood says he originally auditioned for Captain America


captain america scott eastwood

  • Chris Evans has been playing Steve Rogers/Captain America since 2011.
  • Scott Eastwood tells INSIDER he auditioned for the role "many moons ago."
  • Eastwood says though it didn't pan out, he'd welcome the opportunity to star in a franchise of his own. 
  • The 31-year-old actor says Wolverine is actually his favorite superhero.
  • He wouldn't be against dying his hair to play a younger Wolverine now that Hugh Jackman has said he is done playing the role.

It's tough to imagine anyone but Chris Evans playing Captain America, but it could have happened.

"I remember auditioning for Captain America many moons ago," Scott Eastwood told INSIDER Wednesday while promoting a new partnership with ANA airlines. "I always thought that was cool. I'm American. That's awesome."

He doesn't have any hard feelings though about losing out on the role.

"I think Chris Evans did an incredible job of doing it," he added.

chris evans captain america 2

The first Captain America movie was released in 2011. Evans has appeared in seven Marvel movies since, including two "Captain America" sequels. He'll next reprise the role in May's "Avengers: Infinity War."

Though he didn't wind up as Steve Rogers, Eastwood has appeared in the ensemble of several large franchises, including "Suicide Squad" and "Fast and Furious," and would be down for starring as the leading man in one of his own.

fast furious 8 scott eastwood

"I'd love that," Eastwood said. "If the opportunity comes around, you know, one that I'm passionate about and one that I like, yeah, I would welcome that opportunity."

There is one other superhero who sparks Eastwood's interest. 

"My favorite comic-book character is Wolverine," he said. 

wolverine hugh jackman logan

Hugh Jackman said after 17 years of playing the clawed Marvel mutant that he was stepping down from the role after "Logan." Not even a potential Disney and Fox mergercould get Jackman to reprise the role.

Perhaps Hollywood will one day want a newer, younger Wolverine? 

"They'll probably tell me I'm too old or something," quipped Eastwood, who is 31 by the way.

scott eastwood

There's one other thing that may hold him back. We know Wolvie has darker hair.

Would Eastwood dye his blonde hair to play a younger Logan?

"Yeah, why not?" he said.

We could get on board with this. You can next see Eastwood in "Pacific Rim: Uprising" in theaters March 23.

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See how the gorgeous gowns were made in Daniel Day-Lewis' final movie 'Phantom Thread' and why it's getting Oscar buzz


phantom thread

  • Daniel Day-Lewis has said "Phantom Thread" is going to be his final movie.
  • The movie, about the life of famous dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock (Day-Lewis) and his sister Cyril, has been receiving Oscar buzz.
  • In an exclusive behind-the-scenes clip provided to INSIDER, costume designer Mark Bridges details how all of the garments in the movie were made from scratch.
  • Woodcock and his sister dressed members of the royal family, celebrities, socialites and more in 1950s London.
  • "For a long time we avoided things like strapless dresses, which were huge in the '50s. But at some meeting or at some point, I'd heard from Daniel that Reynolds would have thought that that was vulgar," said Bridges. 
  • Bridges says he's most proud that all of the outfits work in each scene without overshadowing any one of them.
  • "Phantom Thread" is currently in theaters. You can watch the behind-the-scenes video below.

SEE ALSO: 8 actors who have publicly disavowed Woody Allen or donated their salaries to charity after working on his movies

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The 29 most rewatchable movies ever made


lord of the rings

“Pain is temporary, film is forever.”

That quote has been used ad nauseam to drive home the fact that cinema is engrained in permanent ink, and that however difficult or arduous the process of making a particular film, the end result is (hopefully) worth it.

The truth is not every movie is worth standing the test of time, and some age more gracefully than others. But film is forever, and that’s one of the great things about the artform. Movies are always there, unchanged (unless George Lucas is involved), to revisit at any time you like.

Granted that’s become more difficult in the post-Blockbuster era, but everyone has their stable of movies they return to time and time again.

So the Collider staff put their heads together to generate a list of the most rewatchable movies of all time. These are films that, for a variety of reasons, hold up on repeat viewing after repeat viewing. Maybe they perfectly evoke a universal theme, or maybe they’re just immensely enjoyable. Some were even made to purposely reward repeat viewings with in-jokes and nods that are reflected in reveals later in the film. But all of these, we attest, are worth revisiting many times over.

So without further ado, we present to you the most rewatchable movies ever made:

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"Goodfellas" (1990)

When filmmaker Martin Scorsese made Goodfellas, he was coming off the controversial reaction to his 1988 film The Last Temptation of Christ and before that, the tepid reception to The Color of Money. So you could say he had something to prove. Scorsese dug back into his Italian roots to craft one of the best gangster films of all time, with a contemporary spin. The result is a rollicking, epic, comic, and ultimately tragic tale of life in the mob from street-kid to rat.

Scorsese proves his mastery of cinema with a film that is impeccably paced, filling out the ensemble with unforgettable performances from Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Lorraine Bracco, and of course Joe Pesci. The film has not one but multiplepieces of cinema iconography in it, from the legendary Copacabana tracking shot to the frenetic, visceral “coked out cooking day” sequence. It is, obviously, tremendously watchable, and that Scorsese was able to combine such entertainment value with such rich storytelling is a testament to his talent. – Adam Chitwood

"Ferris Bueller’s Day Off" (1986)

If we were ranking this list in terms of rewatchability, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off would be towards the top. By 1986, John Hughes had perfected the “teen movie” format in a variety of ways, from the female-centric young love of Sixteen Candles to the outsider POV of The Breakfast Club. But with Ferris Bueller, Hughes tackled quite possibly his most trite subject yet—skipping school—and churned out a classic. As with all of his films, there’s a hefty amount of heart to be found in Ferris Bueller, and while the title character is a fun-loving dude, it’s Cameron and Sloane who carry the hefty thematic weight.

Cameron’s struggling with depression and a troubled relationship with his father, while Sloane worries about her future. It’s to Hughes’ credit that he was able to tackle weighty subjects and in the same breath stage a massive dance sequence in the middle of Chicago, and it’s that balance of pure joy and crushing reality that make Ferris Bueller so memorable. The film is the anti-party movie party movie, having its cake and eating it too, and it is delicious. – Adam Chitwood

"Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" (2004)

A film you can quote from end-to-end is a pretty good sign that you’re willing to watch the film endlessly. While Will Ferrell and Adam McKay have shown their strength as a team time and time again, it’s their first feature outing, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, which shines the brightest. It’s a film that’s unafraid to be totally weird, and unlike Anchorman 2, which is fine but doesn’t hold up on repeat viewings, it knew that a little Brick went a long way. Anchorman wasn’t a huge hit when it was released in 2004, but it found its audience on home video, which isn’t surprising. It’s a film you want to own so you can watch it again and again. – Matt Goldberg

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

A fan flew to Italy to seamlessly match the most romantic scenes in 'Call Me by Your Name' to their real-life places


IMG 1052 call me by your name crema italy

A lot of people love "Call Me by Your Name," but few love it as much as Zineb Bayad.

The French university student made a pilgrimage to the Italian town of Crema, where the movie is set. Based on research for her trip, she visited the real-life places from the film and matched up stills to the scenery. Her photos went viral in cinephile circles when she posted them to Twitter on Thursday.

"I always wanted to visit it and the movie motivated me even more," Bayad told INSIDER in a Twitter direct message. "I start school on the 29th, so I decided to take a one-week vacation."

See Bayad's inspired images from her emotional trip through the actual places from "Call Me by Your Name" below. The movie will be in expanded release this Friday.

"The movie was an ethereal experience and I truly believe I will never forget it," Bayad told INSIDER. "So I thought about creating more memories around it."

"This movie has helped me so much, first because of its lesson about love and self acceptance. It helped me to embrace my sexuality and take my mind away during some hard times."

"I did a lot of research on the spot, like [where] the villa is," Bayad wrote. "I was really excited to go."

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Colin Firth says he 'wouldn't work with' Woody Allen again over sexual assault allegation


colin firth

  • Colin Firth joins the growing list of actors who have denounced Woody Allen over the sexual assault allegation from Allen's adoptive daughter, Dylan Farrow.
  • Firth told The Guardian, "I wouldn't work with him again," in response to an inquiry about Farrow's first televised interview on Thursday. 


Colin Firth has joined the growing list of actors who have disavowed filmmaker Woody Allen after working in his films.

Firth told The Guardian, "I wouldn't work with him again," in response to an inquiry on the first televised interview from Dylan Farrow, Allen's adoptive daughter who alleges that the filmmaker sexually assaulted her when she was seven years old.

Firth, who starred alongside Emma Stone in Allen's 2014 film "Magic in the Moonlight," joins actors like Greta Gerwig, Rebecca Hall, and Timothée Chalamet in denouncing Allen over Farrow's accusation. 

In her interview with CBS News on Thursday, Farrow called on actors to "acknowledge their complicity" in perpetuating Hollywood's "culture of silence."

"I have been repeating my accusations unaltered for over 20 years and I have been systematically shut down, ignored or discredited," Farrow said. "If they can't acknowledge the accusations of one survivor's how are they going to stand for all of us?"

SEE ALSO: 8 actors who have publicly disavowed Woody Allen or donated their salaries to charity after working on his movies

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'Paddington 2' has broken the record as the best-reviewed movie on Rotten Tomatoes of all time — and critics cannot stop gushing about this adorable bear


Paddington 2

  • "Paddington 2" broke the record for the best-reviewed movie on Rotten Tomatoes of all time, officially surpassing "Lady Bird."
  • It was supposed to be distributed by The Weinstein Company in the United States, but producers looked for another distributor following allegations of sexual misconduct against Harvey Weinstein.
  • The movie is adorable and enjoyable for kids and adults, and has received glowing reviews from critics. 

"Paddington 2"  a movie about an adorable Peruvian bear who wears a blue raincoat and a red hat, and is obsessed with marmalade — just broke a record as the best-reviewed movie on Rotten Tomatoes, surpassing Golden Globe winner "Lady Bird."

It has 164 "fresh" reviews and no "rotten" ones.

The first movie in the franchise, "Paddington," which starred Nicole Kidman, was released in 2014 and is now on Netflix. Kidman plays an evil taxidermist and you should definitely watch it.

In "Paddington 2," Paddington is adjusting to his new life in London with the Brown family. He gets framed for stealing a special pop-up book of London, gets sent to prison for the crime, and has to figure out how to prove he was framed. It's one of those rare sequels that's better than the original. And the original is still really good.

"Paddington 2" stars an adorable computer-generated British bear voiced by Ben Whishaw and features Hugh Grant, Sally Hawkins, Hugh Bonneville, and Brendan Gleeson in live-action roles. 

Responding to the news that his movie broke the record, director Paul King said, "The 'Paddington' films are a real labor of love. So many people pour their hearts and souls into them for months or even years, hand-crafting every last frame, and we are all incredibly grateful for the overwhelmingly positive response we’ve had so far. We hope it inspires people to go to the cinema to see for themselves if a talking animal film really can be any good, and whether Hugh Grant really can look devilishly handsome even while dressed as a nun. Clue: yes."

"Paddington 2" was originally meant to be distributed in the United States by The Weinstein Company, but following the allegations of sexual harassment and assault against Harvey Weinstein, producers began looking for another American distributor. Producers believed that a pleasant, upbeat children's film should not be associated with the scandal. In November, Warner Bros. acquired the film's North American distribution rights for $32 million. 

Here are the most breathless quotes from critics about "Paddington 2," along with adorable images of Paddington Bear:

SEE ALSO: Amazon's 26 notable original TV shows, ranked from worst to best

"'Paddington 2' is 'The Godfather Part II' of Peruvian bear movies, a sequel that surpasses the superb original."

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal. 

"It's an exquisite reminder of the wondrous things that can happen when a storyteller of boundless imagination avails himself of some rigorous discipline."

Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times. 

"If you have kids, take them. If you have nieces and nephews, take them. If you don't have kids but just want to feel like one yourself, go see it. Paddington is a bear for all seasons."

Adam Graham, Detroit News. 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

21 horror movies you need to see in 2018


a quiet place emily blunt

2017 was a groundbreaking, record-shattering year in horror cinema. Films like IT and Get Out dominated the cultural conversation and killed it at the box office, making last year the highest-grossing year of all time for horror movies to the tune of more than $730 million domestically.

Meanwhile, films like mother! and It Comes at Night crawled under the skin and fostered challenging, sometimes contentious discussions about how we define the genre. Horror has always been an under-sung backbone of the industry, but it’s rarely become such an overtly influential part of the zeitgeist. Which is to say that 2018 sure has a lot to live up to.

Fortunately, this year’s lineup is stacked with all kinds of promising horror releases, From indie auteurs that promise to spark up new debates to studio fare and big-budget crowd-pleasers, the 2018 haul includes strange and intellectual otherworldly explorations like Annihilation and The Endless, the return of iconic horror franchises like Hellraiser and Halloween, a giant shark movie, a serial killer drama from Lars Von Trier (god help us all), a Christmas zombie musical, and a whole lot more.

Get the details on all the most anticipated horror movies of the year in the list below.

SEE ALSO: The 20 top-earning horror movies of all time

"Mom and Dad"

Release Date: January 19th

Director: Brian Taylor

Cast: Nicolas Cage, Selma Blair, Anne Winters, Lance Henriksen

Nicolas Cage gets fully unhinged in this zombie comedy by way of parental angst. Cage stars alongside Selma Blair as a pair of suburban parents doing the daily grind when a mysterious mass hysteria sweeps over the country, causing parents to turn against their own children in a murderous rage. It’s a silly, subversive B-movie splatterfest with plenty of lunatic verve thanks to the script and direction by Crankco-director Brian Taylor, who previously worked with Cage on Ghost Rider: Spirit of the Vengeance. Boasting one of the most in-on-the-joke performances from Cage in recent memory and a fantastic Lance Henrikson cameo, Mom and Dad is trim, full-tilt mania with cheeky undercurrents of super dark humor.


Release Date: February 2nd

Director: Peter Spierig

Cast: Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke, Angus Sampson, Sarah Snook

Helen Mirren vs. Ghosts? I’ll take a ticket, no questions asked. The film comes from the Spiereg brothers, the directorial duo behind last year’s Jigsaw, and while the Saw reboot may have landed with a thud, the pair’s previous supernatural films, which include Daybreakers and Predestination, have been underrated genre gems. Winchester is also based on the fascinating true story of the Winchester House, located in Northern California, where heiress Sarah Winchester (Mirren) famously constructed a series of endless hallways, stairs, and doors to nowhere in a manic attempt to trap the spirits and ghosts roaming the halls of her home. It’s a gripping true-life tale in its own right, but its also ripe for cinematic adaptation with an added dose of the paranormal and the Spiereg brothers are a visually dynamic pair of filmmakers well-fitted to the home’s labyrinthine halls.

"Hellraiser: Judgement"

Release Date: February 13th

Director: Gary J. Tunnicliffe

Cast: Paul T. Taylor, Damon Carney, Randy Wayne, Alexandra Harris,John Gulager, Mike Jay Regan, Diane Goldner, Heather Langenkamp

Pinhead is back in Hellraiser: Judgement, the latest installment in the long-running horror franchise, which sees horror VFX veteran Gary J.Tunnecliffe at the helm. I’m not very precious about watching actors pass the baton on iconic roles, but the idea of a Hellraiser film without Doug Bradley still rankles a bit after the decades he spent in the character. That said, the makeup on newcomer Paul T. Taylor looks just right and the first trailer teased decent-looking descent into hell, with plenty of well-designed practical ghouls. The bar for a Hellraiser sequel is set pretty low, so if Judgement can deliver on the promises of the trailer without succumbing to the early-aughts, Saw-era aesthetic, Hellraiser die-hards might just have a treat on their hands.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Michael Douglas has been accused of sexual harassment by a former employee, days after preemptively denying it


michael douglas

  • Michael Douglas was accused of sexual harassment by the writer Susan Braudy in interviews with The Hollywood Reporter and "Today" on Friday.
  • Braudy alleged that, during her employment under Douglas in the 1980s, the actor subjected her to profane comments and masturbated in front of her.
  • Douglas preemptively denied the allegations in a Deadline article on January 9.
  • He called the allegations "an unfortunate and complete fabrication" to THR.


Actor Michael Douglas was accused of sexual harassment by the writer Susan Braudy in interviews with The Hollywood Reporter and "Today" on Friday, ten days after Douglas preemptively denied the allegations in a Deadline article

Braudy alleged that, during her employment under Douglas in the 1980s, the actor subjected to her profane language, demeaning comments about her appearance, and masturbated in front of her while the two were working out of his Manhattan home.

"He slid down the floor, unbuckled his belt and put his hand inside his trousers and I could see what he was doing. Then he began to sort of began to fondle himself. And I was very scared," Braudy said in an interview with "Today."

"He thought he was the king of the world and that he could humiliate me without any repercussions," she continued.

A rep for Douglas did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider. Douglas called Braudy's allegations "an unfortunate and complete fabrication" in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

Braudy backed up her story to THR with notes and files she kept during her employment under Douglas, and with the testimony of three people she had told of her experiences.

Watch Braudy discuss her allegations against Douglas with "Today" below:

A representative for Douglas sent Business Insider the actor's full statement in response to THR's article. Find the statement below:

Throughout my career, I have staunchly supported the empowerment of women—in our industry, the workplace, and in life. I have employed and worked with hundreds of female executives and artists, and strived at every turn to treat these professional colleagues with unfailing respect and dignity. My 50-year record and reputation clearly attests to this.

For that reason, and even amid the current charged environment, I will not sit silently and allow unfounded and utterly baseless allegations from a former employee go unmet or given credence.

This individual is an industry veteran, a senior executive, published novelist and an established member of the women’s movement—someone with a strong voice now and when she worked at my company more than three decades ago. At no time then did she express or display even the slightest feeling of discomfort working in our environment, or with me personally.

That is because at no time, and under no circumstance, did I behave inappropriately toward her. Coarse language or overheard private conversations with my friends that may have troubled her are a far cry from harassment. Suggesting so does a true disservice to those who have actually endured sexual harassment and intimidation.

Having now made clear this is an unfortunate but complete fabrication, I do not plan to comment further.

SEE ALSO: 9 actors who have publicly denounced Woody Allen or donated their salaries to charity after working on his movies

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NOW WATCH: Celebrities flocked to these underground poker games where someone once lost $100 million in one night

Fans noticed this 'Stranger Things' star looks just like a young Natalie Portman and they can't handle it


stranger things millie bobby brown

  • Millie Bobby Brown is one of the breakout stars of Netflix hit "Stranger Things."
  • Fans of the actress noticed that the star bears a resemblance to another big Hollywood actress.
  • People started posting side by sides of Brown alongside a young Natalie Portman.
  • Fans were taken aback by how much the two look alike.

Just about everyone is likely to have a doppelgänger in the world, including celebrities. It's no secret that stars like Zooey Deschanel and Katy Perry or Isla Fisher and Amy Adams get mistaken for one another.

Well, add another pair to the list. 

Fans noticed that "Stranger Things" star Millie Bobby Brown looks an awful lot like a famous Oscar winner when she was just starting her acting career.

Can you guess who?

Millie Bobby Brown

How about Natalie Portman?

@FreddyAmazin put together several stills of the two actresses side by side and the resemblance is uncanny.

Here are a few side-by-sides to see the two together in case you're not convinced.

millie bobby brown natalie portman 2millie bobby brown natalie portman look alike

Millie Bobby Brown loves her tiny glasses on the red carpet and they perfectly channel Portman's "Léon: the Professional" character from the 1994 movie.

millie bobby brown natalie portman

The discovery has brought fans to a standstill.

Others thought they noticed a resemblance between the two.

Some pointed out similarities between Brown's character in "Stranger Things" with Portman's character in "Léon: The Professional."

Does this mean the "Stranger Things" star is destined to be the next Portman?

One thing's clear. Fans want answers.

Hey, Hollywood, can we get a movie with these two stat?

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: The surprising reason some countries drive on the left side of the road

The new unofficial 'Harry Potter' movie about Voldemort's past is exactly why so many people despise fanfiction


tom riddle in voldemort origins of the heir

  • There's a new unofficial "Harry Potter" movie called "Voldemort: Origins of the Heir."
  • It was funded through Kickstarter, but still sanctioned through Warner Bros.
  • It's an impressive attempt, but is basically expensive fanfiction.
  • The movie has all the amateurish qualities that makes people deride fanfiction in the first place.


When news spread last year of a potential "Harry Potter" fan movie, I was cautiously excited.

The project — a story about Tom Riddle's rise to power, and an heir to Godric Gryffindor who tries to stop hom — had the blessing of Warner Bros., the producer of the official "Harry Potter" movies, which signaled it might actually be good.

I misread the signals. 

Released on Tuesday, the 52-minute "Voldemort: Origins of the Heir" shows precisely why so many people are dismissive of fanfiction. It's aimless, poorly made, and it doesn't posses anything resembling an interesting original idea.

To be sure, my expectations were calibrated. "Voldemort: Origins of the Heir" was crowdfunded through Kickstarter, and never had anything close to the budget or established talent of the official movies. But creative and scrappy young people can always come up with an interesting story, and the movie's trailer looked surprisingly cool for a low-budget project. And it was an interesting premise: If the "Fantastic Beasts" movies fill in the background on the rise of Gellert Grindelwald, then some enterprising fans took it upon themselves to do the same for Voldemort.

grisha mclaggen in voldemort origins of the heir

The creativity simply isn't there. In the movie, Grisha McLaggen, the heir of Godric Gryffindor (who doesn't appear in J.K. Rowling's official works) and former friend of Tom Riddle, is trying to track down his Horcruxes now that he's become the evil dark wizard Lord Voldemort. We also get plenty of flashbacks, where a younger Riddle (played by someone who's clearly way too old for the role) argues with friends and shows off his ruthless side. Most of it is done with exposition, in confusing scenes that don't interpret the "Harry Potter" canon in any meaningful way.

All fanfiction is inherently amateur — and this movie can't escape that.

There's a difference between fanfiction and spin-offs. Fanfiction is inherently amateurish, made by fans who use their imagination to push a story further, or take pre-existing characters wherever their imagination goes. There's more quality control and money put into developing studio work, which is why even movies like "Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle" are taken seriously. A lot of people worked hard on it and it's a polished piece of pop culture.

makarov voldemort origins heir

But even professionally made work, if deemed bad enough, is dismissed as "fanfiction." Take "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child," J.K. Rowling's sequel play to the main "Harry Potter" series. Some "Harry Potter" fans derided its dialogue, zany characters, and infidelity to Rowling's established magical world as "fanfiction." Fanfiction is always seen as something less essential, and usually qualitatively worse, than whatever its based on. It didn't help that Rowling's story shared some odd characteristics with actual fanfiction published years before the play itself.

"Voldemort: Origins of the Heir" embodies fanfiction's worst traits.

With the exception of the "50 Shades of Grey" series (which E.L. James originally wrote as "Twilight" fanfiction under the pseudonym Snowqueens Icedragon), "Voldemort" may be the most expensive fanfiction ever. But it still feels like hackwork.

The movie lacks any creative ideas. The movie's biggest is that each Hogwarts House founder has a designated heir, who remain secret from the rest of the world for reasons no one who wrote the script has any interest in. They all talk like they studied the blade. Its cheesiness makes it seem much hokier than the "chosen one" thing Harry Potter has going on.

And if McLaggen is the hero of the movie, the villain it introduces is not so much Tom Riddle/Voldemort, but some guy named Makarov who seems to be a Soviet general. There's a big scene where we first see his face, and dramatic music cues that lead to a reveal where we discover... he's blind in one eye. Yup. The movie has a useless Soviet villain guy with one working eye. It's like a character who would be written out of a bad '80s action film.

voldemort origins of the heir

The movie's directors have few original visual ideas, either. One of the movie's opening scenes tries to set it up as some kind of CGI extravaganza, where McLaggen blasts anonymous goons with her wand. It's shot in first person, with her hands in front of the camera, as if the movie is a video game.

It's just badly made.

One of the weird things about "Voldemort: Origins of the Heir" is that it doesn't even feel like it was written by a "Harry Potter" fans. It needlessly contradicts the "Harry Potter" canon, not to mention basic storytelling rules.

For example, there's a scene where Riddle, working for Borgin and Burkes, meets up with their client Hepzibah Smith, who "Harry Potter" superfans may remember as the owner of Helga Hufflepuff's locket before Riddle stole it from her. Sure enough, Smith tells Riddle that she has the locket but asks him not to say anything about it to Burke, just as she did in the "Harry Potter" books. But then the movie also says that she purchased it from the shop in the first place. Why keep it a secret, then, if the shop-owners know she bought it?

making of voldemort origins heir

There's another part where McLaggen wrongly says Voldemort created Horcruxes because they're the only way to achieve immortality. Meanwhile, Nicolas Flamel is already hundreds of years old at that point.

Most of the movie takes place as expository dialogue between McLaggen and Makarov, explaining the writers' fanfiction mythology. It gets tiring quickly, especially when so many characters who clearly aren't British try to do British accents.

And don't think that the movie is feminist just because the protagonist is a woman. McLaggen is Mary-sued into being Voldemort's love interest for no reason, and a twist late in the film entirely undercuts her character's existence. By the end of the movie, she's pointless.

The movie can't decide if it wants to be an original piece of work.

When a spinoff succeeds, it both honors the great qualities of the original work yet untethers itself to become its own thing. Just look at "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them," or the new "Star Wars" movies "The Force Awakens" and "The Last Jedi." (Or, heck, even "A Very Potter Musical.")

vodlemort origins heir

"Voldemort: Origins of the Heir" gets it backwards. It fails to recognize the great qualities of the "Harry Potter" series and is uncommitted to becoming its own thing. It's premised on being a "Rogue One" line venture into unexplored territory, but its uninterested in telling an actual story. Its twist ending traps it into being slavishly dedicated to the original series instead of daring to take it further.

At least they tried.

The best I can hope for the "Origins" filmmakers is that the attention to the project launches the careers of everyone involved. (They're all clearly proud of working on this — the opening credits take about three months of the movie's 52-minute runtime.) While the project doesn't work, it isn't lazily made.

Aside from what must have been a struggling negotiation with Warner Bros., you can see the care put into the visual details. The dark color palette establishes some continuity with the official movies, which were steeped in shadow since "Prisoner of Azkaban." The costumes are pretty convincing and far less cheesy than you'd expect. And some props, like Riddle's diary, look like the real thing.

But the movie itself, unfortunately, defeats itself. It ends with a man named Igor (presumably Karkaroff, the Death Eater and Durmstrang headmaster) poking through the ruins of where Voldemort once was. It ties back to the main series, where the character was known to be dedicated to Voldemort even after his reign was over. I don't know if it's supposed to be a metaphor for the movie's relationship with the "Harry Potter" movies, but it sure works as one.

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NOW WATCH: Why you should never throw away these bags again

'The Last Jedi' director just cleverly shut down critics of one of the most controversial parts of the 'Star Wars' movie


mark hamill luke skywalker last jedi star wars

Warning: There are spoilers ahead for "Star Wars: The Last Jedi."

"Star Wars: The Last Jedi" director Rian Johnson is schooling fans who haven't done their homework. 

Johnson took to Twitter Friday to directly address one big critique fans have been divided over near the film's end. 

Near the end of "The Last Jedi," Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) appears on the planet of Crait to engage in an epic lightsaber battle with his nephew Kylo Ren and have a small, intimate moment with Leia. There was just one problem.

He wasn't really there. 

At the end of the movie, it was revealed Skywalker never left the planet of Ahch-To. Instead, he merely projected a younger version of himself onto Crait to help the Resistance and his sister escape the First Order. When Skywalker was finally at peace, he died and became one with the Force. (You can read more on what happened to Luke at the end of "The Last Jedi" here.)

luke skywalker tlj

The idea that Luke was simply a projection for a good chunk of the end of the film only to die right afterward upset a lot of fans

Between that and Leia Organa flying through space, it seemed like Lucasfilm was just making up new rules for the Force.

But Johnson assured fans that wasn't the case — at least with Luke. 

In a series of tweets, the director masterfully zoomed into a text sitting on a shelf. Without tweeting any words, a passage from the book "The Jedi Path" put to rest how Skywalker could have made a strong projection of himself using the Force.

The text shown shows an excerpt describing "Advanced Force Techniques."

Johnson hones in on one section that focuses on creating a doppelganger, also known as a Similfuturus. Here's what it says:

"Doppelganger, or Similfuturus, permits a Jedi to create a short-lived duplicate of himself or herself or an external object that is visually indistinguishable from the real item. Those who have perfected this ability can create phantoms of any person of their choosing or trick an enemy into seeing more objects, such as droids, than are actually present."

That explains why Kylo Ren wasn't able to immediately distinguish his uncle Skywalker from a mere projection. It also explains why Luke was able to give his sister Leia a pair of dice from the Millennium Falcon that also wasn't real. (Of course, if you were paying close attention, you would have noticed there was the smallest moment of recognition between the siblings where Leia realized Luke was nothing more than a projection.)

kylo ren star wars

In case you're quick to think Johnson is just pulling new texts out of thin air provided to him by Lucasfilm to explain away a controversial plot point, think again. 

The book Johnson shows is a 2010 text "The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force" from before Disney ever purchased Lucasfilm. You can check it out here.

One problem some fans may point out is that Disney famously announced that any books written before it purchased Lucasfilm in 2012 are no longer considered canon anymore.

OK. Fine. But the fact Johnson took the time to reference a "legacy" book in "The Last Jedi" shows some commitment to making sure that the franchise is living up to what preceded the Disney era of Lucasfilm.

And if you're thinking that Johnson has too much time on his hands right now, he does have an entire new "Star Wars" trilogy to get to work on. So he's living in a galaxy far, far away each and every day. 

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: I tried the 7-minute workout for a month — here's what happened

Here's why everyone at Sundance is talking about the emotionally charged movie 'Blindspotting'



  • "Blindspotting" is a powerful look at a race and class.
  • It stands out because of its well done use of comedy, drama, and rap.

The Sundance Film Festival is where movies that challenge the audience get their fair shake, and "Blindspotting," the debut feature of director Carlos López Estrada, is exactly that.

The movie is a racially-charged powder keg that uses comedy, drama, and rap to give the audience a journey through the complicated lives of two friends living in West Oakland.

Colin (Daveed Diggs) is days away from completing his probation and is trying to stay on the straight-and-narrow. However, his lifelong friend Miles (Rafael Casal) is not the best influence on him as he walks around carrying a gun and always seems to get Colin involved in things that he doesn't want to do.

The movie's foundation is built on contrasts. Colin is black and Miles is white. West Oakland has a fan base of rowdy Oakland Raiders fans and stylish Golden State Warrior fans. The city is growing more and more gentrified. Even on the marquee of the local theater it has a unique lineup coming soon: rapper Too Short and rock band Third Eye Blind.

And it's through these differences that Estrada lays down the struggle Colin is going through in his life. He isn't just shackled by the label of "convicted felon," but also the fear of the police — after he witnesses a police officer shooting an unarmed black man running from him. Then there's his on-again-off-again girlfriend Val (Janina Gavankar), who he's trying to show he's changed since getting out of prison but can still see she can't let go why he was put there. The only comfort is with his best friend Miles, who sports a gold grill and tattoos.

A lot of the movie is a fun buddy comedy with the two dealing with entertaining situations, like an Uber driver with lots of guns, trying to sell hot-irons at a beauty salon, as they navigate through Oakland.

But there's an unspoken uneasiness about them as well, especially since Colin has gotten out of prison, that finally comes to ahead by the end of the movie. Whenever you think you've figured out this movie, something happens that pulls the rug right from you.

The strengths of "Blindspotting" is its commentary on race and class through the use of comedy and use of rapping in two powerful scenes (the movie was written by Diggs and Casal). Where it falls short at times is when it becomes too dramatic. When the message is lost through raw anger.

But perhaps that was Estrada's intention all along. To give the audience raw emotion because that's what most of us live through every day.

"Blindspotting" is seeking distribution.

SEE ALSO: 21 movies playing at the Sundance Film Festival that you need to know about

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Nicolas Cage's movie at Sundance, 'Mandy,' uses his vintage, insane acting style to perfection and has all the makings of a cult classic


Mandy Sundance Institute

  • "Mandy" is a cult classic in the making, as the director of "Beyond the Black Rainbow" gives us another stunning look inside madness.
  • It's topped by a Nicolas Cage performance that is pure "Cage Rage."

Nicolas Cage has always been fascinated by the performances that open up his darker side. And though Cage still has too many roles left to say what he does in “Mandy” is the ultimate example, it definitely is one of the toppers.

It’s hard to describe “Mandy” in words. You have to experience it. But here goes.

The movie comes from the mind of director Panos Cosmatos, whose only other directing credit is the now-cult classic, "Beyond the Black Rainbow."

Set in 1983 in the Shadow Mountains, Red (Cage) lives a tranquil existence with Mandy (Andrea Riseborough), who is the center of his universe. They stay up late at night chatting, they connect, and it's clear they've found their soul mates in one another. Things take a turn for the worse when the leader of a group of religious radicals notices Mandy and becomes obsessed with her.

He subsequently calls on a group of leather-clad supernatural bikers to snatch her up in the middle of the night and bring her to him. This leads Red to open up about the madness inside of him, resulting in a psychotic quest for revenge filled with bow-and-arrows, chainsaws, a makeshift axe, and lots of cocaine.

Like “Black Rainbow,” Cosmatos uses colors and lush cinematography to create a world that is beautiful but ominous. He also trades in the synthesized score for a rock-inspired number this time.

Then Cage takes it home. There are so many sequences in the final 40 minutes of this movie that are just vintage "Cage Rage," and I don't want to give them away.

But I'll give you one.

In a scene shot in a bathroom, Red walks in covered in his own blood after being tied up with barbwire. He grabs a full bottle of vodka from under the sink and begins chugging the bottle (as well as pouring the vodka all over his fresh wounds) while screaming between chugs. The scene gets more and more insane (and comical) as it plays out. 

Like “Black Rainbow,” this movie may not be for everyone. Even the most dedicated fans of Sundance’s Midnight Movie section, which “Mandy” is a part of this year, walked out of the theater.

But I can't think of a higher recommendation.

“Mandy” is an acid trip that at times you’ll wish would just stop. But when you ride it out, gives you the payoff of a 100% insane Nicolas Cage performance.

“Mandy” is seeking distribution.

SEE ALSO: Here's why everyone at Sundance is talking about the emotionally charged movie "Blindspotting"

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'The Tale' is an explosive look at its director’s experience with sexual abuse that has Sundance audiences buzzing


The Tale Sundance Institute

  • Director Jennifer Fox recounts being sexually abused at the age of 13 in her new movie, "The Tale."
  • Laura Dern plays Fox, who after coming across a story she wrote at 13, begins to uncover her "special" relationship with two adult coaches.
  • The movie is getting an incredible response at the Sundance Film Festival.

Jennifer Fox has spent her career making documentaries, but with her latest movie, “The Tale,” she’s turned to narrative storytelling and uses the structure to explore her experience with sexual abuse.

In the era of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements, “The Tale” is a project that has shown up right when everyone in Hollywood is publicly grappling with sexual misconduct. But the process of making "The Tale" started long before the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct allegations kick-started the conversation.

Unlike documentaries, which can be shot and edited at a quick pace (while a hot-button issue is in the zeitgeist), narrative storytelling takes a lot longer. You have to develop a script, get the money, cast it, shoot it, edit it, and so on. It takes years, and can lead to movies with a social pulse feeling dated when finally released.

Fox didn’t anticipate our culture’s current examination of sexual misconduct when she decided to make “The Tale,” but sometimes a story and an issue link up.

"The Tale"

At 13 years old, Fox wrote a story titled “The Tale” for a school project. It addressed a girl talking about her “special” relationship with two adult coaches — one male, one female. She said the work was fiction, but in fact it was all too true. Fox has now taken it and adapted it into a movie.

In the film, Laura Dern plays Jennifer. Like Fox, she’s a thriving documentarian. But when her mother (Ellen Burstyn) comes across “The Tale” story she wrote at 13, she sends it to her daughter as she realizes, reading between the lines, that what Jennifer wrote was truth not fiction.

Jennifer Fox Nicholas Hunt GettyAt first, Jennifer deflects her mother’s theory. Reading the story she composed 40 years ago, she doesn’t see anything that would suggest that the relationships she had with her coaches (the female, her horse riding coach; the male, her running and conditioning coach) were inappropriate. But quickly her childhood memories return, and eventually Jennifer heads out on a fact-finding mission that leads to her confronting the two coaches (played by Frances Conroy and the late John Heard in the present day, and Jason Ritter/Elizabeth Debicki in flashbacks).

But what is striking about “The Tale” is the unconventional way the story is told.

Flashbacks and unreliable memories

Fox uses flashbacks to recount her 13-year-old self in the 1970s. But she often replays scenes and sequences numerous times, as the character receives revelations from friends and family that change what she thought happened. This dramatizes how memory can never be 100% reliable, and shows how the brain can alter facts to cope with bad memories.

Fox also uses her documentary style, setting up scenes in which grown-up Jennifer asks questions to her younger self, and the two coaches, as if the scenes were revealing one-on-ones for a doc.

However, the part of the movie that’s going to get the biggest reaction is the graphic nature of the sexual content. Fox doesn’t hold back in showing how the coaches manipulate Jennifer into a sexual relationship with the male coach, with scenes depicting the coach having sexual encounters with her, even taking her virginity.

The scenes are very tough to watch, but they are essential to the movie. They are not there to glorify or titillate, but to lay out to the audience how the coaches made Jennifer feel she was the one with the power, and was becoming a woman through their guidance, when in fact she was just their pleasure toy.

Dern gives a powerhouse performance as a strong-willed woman who has to reexamine her life. Child actress Isabelle Nélisse plays 13-year-old Jennifer with a maturity that’s astounding to watch. Burstyn, Ritter, Debicki, Conroy, and Heard all give strong supporting performances (Common plays Jennifer’s boyfriend — but it’s not his best work).

“The Tale” is the first movie that really epitomizes the #MeToo movement. Though there will likely be a lot of talk about the sex scenes in the movie, this is a story that needs to show the horrors to tell it correctly.

The powerful stories of victims revealed in newspapers, magazines, and websites since last October is what has made the country take notice. This is not the time to water things down.

“The Tale” is seeking distribution.

SEE ALSO: Nicolas Cage's movie at Sundance, "Mandy," uses his vintage, insane acting style to prefection and has all the makings of a cult classic

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