Listen to Cinema Chat with Russ Collins & David Fair Thursday mornings on 89.1 WEMU or visit https://www.wemu.org/programs/cinema-chat
A lot is going on this week in the world of cinema, including the nods for next year’s Golden Globes! In this week’s “Cinema Chat,” WEMU’s David Fair meets up with Michigan and State Theater executive director Russ Collins to discuss the latest movie news and all of the new flicks arriving at your local movie house this weekend.
We know the 90-member Hollywood Foreign Press — an old, white, and hopelessly coddled bunch — are idiosyncratic at best. The Golden Globes voters lean mainstream with their nominations, love to welcome their favorite celebs at the Beverly Hilton, and provide extra nomination slots to play with in the Best Picture category by have a Comedy or Musical categories (as well as a Dramatic Picture categories). That’s why they always throw a few curves, like Cate Blanchett for Best Comedy Actress for long-forgotten “Where’d You Go Bernadette?,” one of several surprises.
And distributors can seek advantages by pushing films into categories they are more likely to win, slotting dramedy “Marriage Story,” musical “Judy” and comedy “Uncut Gems” into drama while leaving room in the comedy/musical categories for “Jojo Rabbit,” “Rocketman,” and “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.”
Last year, Queen bio-musical “Bohemian Rhapsody” took home Globes for Best Motion Picture Drama and Drama Actor (which repeated at the Oscars), while “Green Book” won three Globes (Motion Picture Comedy, Supporting Actor, and Screenplay) on the way to a Best Picture Oscar win. And Olivia Colman followed her Comedy Globe win for “The Favourite” with the Best Actress Oscar.
- “The Irishman” (Netflix)
- “Marriage Story” (Netflix)
- “1917” (Universal)
- “Joker” (Warner Bros.)
- “The Two Popes” (Netflix) opens this week!
- Cynthia Erivo (“Harriet”)
- Scarlett Johansson (“Marriage Story”)
- Saoirse Ronan (“Little Women”) Opens 12/25 Tickets for “Little Women” on sale now
- Charlize Theron (“Bombshell”)
- Renée Zellweger (“Judy”)
- Christian Bale (“Ford v Ferrari”)
- Antonio Banderas (“Pain and Glory”)
- Adam Driver (“Marriage Story”)
- Joaquin Phoenix (“Joker”)
- Jonathan Pryce (“The Two Popes”)
- “Dolemite Is My Name” (Netflix)
- “Jojo Rabbit” (Fox Searchlight)
- “Knives Out” (Lionsgate)
- “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” (Sony)
- “Rocketman” (Paramount)
- Ana de Armas (“Knives Out”)
- Awkwafina (“The Farewell”)
- Cate Blanchett (“Where’d You Go, Bernadette”)
- Beanie Feldstein (“Booksmart”)
- Emma Thompson (“Late Night”)
- Daniel Craig (“Knives Out”)
- Roman Griffin Davis (“Jojo Rabbit”)
- Leonardo DiCaprio (“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”)
- Taron Egerton (“Rocketman”)
- Eddie Murphy (“Dolemite Is My Name”)
- “Frozen 2” (Disney)
- “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” (Universal)
- “The Lion King” (Disney)
- “Missing Link” (United Artists Releasing)
- “Toy Story 4” (Disney)
- “The Farewell” (A24)
- “Les Misérables” (Amazon)
- “Pain and Glory” (Sony Pictures Classics)
- “Parasite” (Neon)
- “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” (Neon)
- Kathy Bates (“Richard Jewell”)
- Annette Bening (“The Report”)
- Laura Dern (“Marriage Story”)
- Jennifer Lopez (“Hustlers”)
- Margot Robbie (“Bombshell”)
- Tom Hanks (“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”)
- Anthony Hopkins (“The Two Popes”)
- Al Pacino (“The Irishman”)
- Joe Pesci (“The Irishman”)
- Brad Pitt (“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”)
- Bong Joon-ho (“Parasite”)
- Sam Mendes (“1917”)
- Todd Phillips (“Joker”)
- Martin Scorsese (“The Irishman”)
- Quentin Tarantino (“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”)
- Noah Baumbach (“Marriage Story”)
- Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won (“Parasite”)
- Anthony McCarten (“The Two Popes”)
- Quentin Tarantino (“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”)
- Steven Zaillian (“The Irishman”)
- Alexandre Desplat (“Little Women”)
- Hildur Guðnadóttir (“Joker”)
- Randy Newman (“Marriage Story”)
- Thomas Newman (“1917”)
- Daniel Pemberton (“Motherless Brooklyn”)
- “Beautiful Ghosts” (“Cats”)
- “I’m Gonna Love Me Again” (“Rocketman”)
- “Into the Unknown” (“Frozen 2”)
- “Spirit” (“The Lion King”)
- “Stand Up” (“Harriet”)
“The Aeronauts” — OPENING FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13 AT THE MICHIGAN
Set in 1862, daredevil balloon pilot Amelia Wren (played by Felicity Jones) teams up with pioneering meteorologist James Glaisher (played by Eddie Redmayne) to advance human knowledge of the weather and fly higher than anyone in history. While breaking records and advancing scientific discovery, their voyage to the very edge of existence helps the unlikely pair find their place in the world they have left far below them. But they face physical and emotional challenges in the thin air, as the ascent becomes a fight for survival.
“The Two Popes” — OPENING FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13 AT THE STATE
Golden Globe® nominated for four awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor (Jonathan Pryce), Best Supporting Actor (Anthony Hopkins), and Best Screenplay (Anthony McCarten)! Frustrated with the direction of the church, Cardinal Bergoglio (played by Jonathan Pryce) requests permission to retire in 2012 from Pope Benedict (played by Anthony Hopkins). Instead, facing scandal and self-doubt, the introspective Pope Benedict summons his harshest critic and future successor to Rome to reveal a secret that would shake the foundations of the Catholic Church. Behind Vatican walls, a struggle commences between both tradition and progress, guilt and forgiveness, as these two very different men confront their pasts in order to find common ground and forge a future for a billion followers around the world.
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”— OPENING DECEMBER 19 AT THE STATE THEATRE! Tickets On Sale NOW (They are moving fast, get them before they are sold out!)
This film is produced, co-written, and directed by J. J. Abrams. It will be the third installment of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following “The Force Awakens” (2015) and “The Last Jedi” (2017), and the final episode of the nine-part “Skywalker saga.” A year after the events of “The Last Jedi,” the remnants of the Resistance face the First Order once again—while reckoning with the past and their own inner turmoil. Meanwhile, the ancient conflict between the Jedi and the Sith reaches its climax, altogether bringing the Skywalker saga to a definitive end.
This film will play December 17 & 19 at the Michigan. It is directed by Louie Schwartzberg and narrated by Brie Larson, is a consciousness-shifting film that takes us on an immersive journey through time and scale into the magical earth beneath our feet, an underground network that can heal and save our planet. Through the eyes of renowned scientists and mycologists like Paul Stamets, best-selling authors Michael Pollan, Eugenia Bone, Andrew Weil and others, we become aware of the beauty, intelligence and solutions the fungi kingdom offer us in response to some of our most pressing medical, therapeutic, and environmental challenges.
SPECIAL SCREENINGS DOWNTOWN
This film plays Friday, December 13 and Saturday, December 14 at 11:00 PM at the State also as a part of our Late-Night Film Series! Before Director Bob Clark (“A Christmas Story”) was making holiday movies about young kids and BB guns, he made one of the earliest slasher films that would go on to inspire John Carpenter’s “Halloween.”
This film plays Sunday, December 15 at 1:30 PM at the Michigan as a part of the Holiday Classics Film Series – FREE and open to the public! This series is sponsored by Old National Bank and Sesi Mazda with media support from Ann Arbor Family Press, and this film is sponsored by My Urban Toddler. This modern holiday classic comedy stars funnyman Will Ferrell as Buddy, a human who was raised as an elf and thus struggles to fit in. So, when Buddy discovers his true identity, he sets off to New York City to meet and form a relationship with his biological father, a cynical businessman played by James Caan, with increasingly chaotic results. In the Big City, Buddy learns that the real world is not as magical as the North Pole but remains determined to spread Christmas cheer. Also stars Ed Asner, Mary Steenburgen, Zooey Deschanel, and Bob Newhart.
Holiday Classics – Kick off the holiday season with some FREE Holiday Classics Sundays at 1:30 PM at the Michigan!
- 12/22 – It’s a Wonderful Life
This film plays Monday, December 16 at 7:30 PM at the Michigan as a part of the Play it Loud! film series. A documentary by Albert and David Maysles recalling the events surrounding a free concert by the Rolling Stones at the Altamont Speedway outside San Francisco in 1969. Worried about the security, the Stones asked the Hell’s Angels to keep order for them, but the day ended tragically as violence broke out and a fan was killed.
At the Michigan: An American legal thriller film based on the article “The Lawyer Who Became DuPont’s Worst Nightmare,” published in The New York Times Magazine! Inspired by a shocking true story, a tenacious attorney (played by Mark Ruffalo) uncovers a dark secret that connects a growing number of unexplained deaths due to one of the world’s largest corporations. In the process, he risks everything – his future, his family, and his own life – to expose the truth. Also stars Anne Hathaway, Tim Robbins, and Bill Camp.
Golden Globe® nominated for three awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor (Daniel Craig), and Best Actress (Ana de Armas)! Acclaimed writer and director Rian Johnson (“Brick,” “Looper,” “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”) pays tribute to mystery mastermind Agatha Christie in this film. When renowned crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (played by Christopher Plummer) is found dead at his estate just after his 85th birthday, the debonair Detective Benoit Blanc (played by Daniel Craig) is enlisted to investigate. From Harlan’s dysfunctional family to his devoted staff, Blanc sifts through a web of red herrings and self-serving lies to uncover the truth behind Harlan’s untimely death. Also stars Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette, Don Johnson, Michael Shannon, LaKeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford, and Jaeden Martell.
At the State: From acclaimed director Trey Edward Shults (“Krisha” and “It Comes at Night”), this is a heartrending story about the universal capacity for compassion and growth even in the darkest of times. Set against the vibrant landscape of South Florida, and featuring an astonishing ensemble of award-winning actors and breakouts alike, the film traces the epic emotional journey of a suburban black family—led by a well-intentioned but domineering father—as they navigate love, forgiveness, and coming together in the aftermath of a loss. Starring Sterling K. Brown (NBC’s “This Is Us”), Kelvin Harrison Jr. (“Luce”) and Lucas Hedges (“Boy Erased”).
From a screenplay by Shia LaBeouf, based on his own experiences, award-winning filmmaker Alma Har’el brings to life a young actor’s stormy childhood and early adult years as he struggles to reconcile with his father through cinema and dreams in this film. Fictionalizing his childhood’s ascent to stardom, and subsequent adult crash-landing into rehab and recovery, Har’el casts Noah Jupe and Lucas Hedges as Otis Lort, navigating different stages in a frenetic career. LaBeouf takes on the daring and therapeutic challenge of playing a version of his own father, an ex-rodeo clown and a felon. Har’el’s feature narrative debut is a one-of-a-kind collaboration between filmmaker and subject, exploring art as medicine and imagination as hope.
Leading the Golden Globe® nominations with six awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress (Scarlett Johansson), Best Actor (Adam Driver), Best Supporting Actress (Laura Dern), Best Screenplay (Noah Baumbach) and Best Original Score (Randy Newman)! Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Noah Baumbach directs this incisive look at a marriage breaking up and a family staying together. A stage director and his actor wife struggle through a gruelling, coast-to-coast divorce that pushes them to their personal and creative extremes. Stars Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver.
Golden Globe® nominated for two awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor (Roman Griffin Davis)! Writer-director Taika Waititi (“Thor: Ragnarok,” “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”) brings his signature style of humor and pathos to his latest film, a World War II satire that follows a lonely German boy whose world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother (played by Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Aided only by his idiotic imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler (played by Taika Waititi), Jojo must confront his blind nationalism.
Golden Globe® nominated for two awards, including Best Foreign Language Film, Best Director (Bong Joon-ho) and Best Screenplay (Bong Joon-ho & Han Jin-won)! Winner of the Palme D’or Award at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival! Bong Joon Ho brings his work home to Korea in this pitch-black modern fairytale. Meet the Park Family: the picture of aspirational wealth. And the Kim Family, rich in street smarts but not much else. Be it chance or fate, these two houses are brought together and the Kims sense a golden opportunity. Masterminded by college-aged Ki-woo, the Kim children expediently install themselves as tutor and art therapist, to the Parks. Soon, a symbiotic relationship forms between the two families.
OPENING AT THE MULTIPLEX THIS WEEKEND
Directed by Clint Eastwood and based on true events, this film is a story of what happens when what is reported as fact obscures the truth. The world is first introduced to Richard Jewell as the security guard who reports finding the device at the 1996 Atlanta bombing-his report making him a hero whose swift actions save countless lives. But within days, the law enforcement wannabe becomes the FBI’s number one suspect, vilified by press and public alike, his life ripped apart.
The gang is back, but the game has changed. As they return to Jumanji to rescue one of their own, they discover that nothing is as they expect. The players will have to brave parts unknown and unexplored, from the arid deserts to the snowy mountains, in order to escape the world’s most dangerous game. Stars Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas, Awkwafina, Danny Glover, and Danny DeVito