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20 articles

Earth: One Amazing Day review – wild pussycats and daft zebras run riot

4 hours ago

Robert Redford narrates this high-def documentary about wild animals that eschews a Werner Herzog-style emphasis on the brutality of nature

This perfectly serviceable and somewhat conventional documentary tracks the daily struggle to survive for an assortment of wild animals. Adhering to the tried and tested tropes of nature documentaries, this one offers a discreet set of vignettes featuring assorted fauna in the full spectrum of landscapes (tropical, arctic, deserts and so on), usually in danger from predators or environmental risks. It subtextually reinforces the usual message about the diversity and resilience of nature and is sprinkled with a smattering of anthropomorphism.

So here are many of the usual suspects: tenacious reptiles, adorably fierce pouncing pussycats (in this case servals, a type of African wild cat), daft zebras, bears rubbing themselves on trees set to corny lounge music, and so on. Judging by the release date, the intended audience is families, »

- Leslie Felperin

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Marshall review – Chadwick Boseman holds court in powerful civil rights drama

18 hours ago

The Black Panther star is outstanding as the real-life hotshot lawyer who defended a black man accused of rape by a white woman in 1941

It’s impossible not to get caught up in this ripping courtroom drama that watchably restages an episode early in the career of the legendary civil rights lawyer Thurgood Marshall, a decade before he worked on landmark segregation cases in the deep south. It’s 1941 and Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) is a hotshot young NAACP attorney, who, like Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird, is defending a black man accused of rape by a white woman.

As legal drama, this is fairly conventional, stuffed to the brim with stirring speeches and Ah-ha! moments of cross examination theatrics. Sometimes, it feels a bit glib in its focus on the bromance between Thurman and the local white lawyer (Josh Gad) he hires to work with him, though Downton »

- Cath Clarke

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Snake Outta Compton: finally, the hip-hop monster movie the world's been waiting for

19 hours ago

Following the hallowed path marked out by Sharknado, this bargain-bin effort looks set to push the B-movie to new heights of self-aware silliness. We break down its trailer

Sharknado is old hat. Lavalantula? Passé. Supergator? Consider yourself retired. If you’re a fan of objectively bad films with stupid names about large animals, which you’ll watch drunk one night because it sounds funny (only to immediately realise that you much prefer films with things like plot and production design), you are in for a treat. Ladies and gentlemen, may I present Snake Outta Compton.

I mean, I could just stop there. Really, the title is all you need to know about Snake Outta Compton. There’s a snake – and let’s presume, given our affinity with the genre, that it’s quite a big snake – and it terrorises Compton. The end. We can also assume that the title came long before the film, »

- Stuart Heritage

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My Little Pony: The Movie review – horsing around in cloud cuckoo land

21 hours ago

Emily Blunt lends her voice to the latest outing for a featherlight franchise that nods to minipops feminism while it flogging its kid-friendly merchandise

The Hasbroisation of cinema continues apace, although after the relentless din of five Transformers and a Battleship, it’s almost a relief to be confronted with something of a more bucolic stripe.

Scholars of the Mlp canon should be advised that this full-length animation abandons the comparatively hip Equestria Girls strand of 2015’s Friendship Games – wherein the ponies were magicked into smart-talking college students – in favour of a return to the cloud cuckoo land from where the franchise comes. Thus we find earnest purple nag Twilight Sparkle’s efforts to stage the annual Friendship festival sabotaged by underbrushed outsider Tempest Shadow – the latter voiced by Emily Blunt, who must have really loved these toys as a child to have wound up in this vicinity.

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- Mike McCahill

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Lena Headey claims she was sexually harassed by Harvey Weinstein

22 hours ago

Game of Thrones actor recounts producer marching her to his hotel room and reacting furiously to a rejection before warning her not to tell anyone

The Game of Thrones actor Lena Headey has spoken of how she felt “powerless” during an encounter with Harvey Weinstein, adding her voice to the growing number of women who have accused the producer of sexual misconduct.

In a series of posts on Twitter, Headey said that Weinstein had spoken to her inappropriately at the Venice film festival and reacted with anger when she resisted his advances in a Los Angeles hotel.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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French Aids drama Bpm shows Hollywood how to capture gay history

22 hours ago

The Oscar-buzzed film is refreshingly queer, filled with an authenticity that sanitised disappointments such as Dallas Buyers Club and Stonewall still fail to include

It has been a landmark year for Lgbt cinema. From Moonlight’s Oscar victory to the triumphant Sundance premieres of gay romances God’s Own Country and Call Me By Your Name; from the transgender breakthrough of Chile’s A Fantastic Woman to the mainstream politicking of Battle of the Sexes, we’re seeing a wider-than-ever array of approaches to sexuality on film, no longer confined to the arthouse fringe.

Related: After the Moonlight fades: what's next for Lgbt cinema

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- Guy Lodge

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Bill Pullman breaks award moments after receiving it – video

23 hours ago

Bill Pullman was honoured with an excellence in acting award at the Woodstock film festival in Kingston, New York. But as he was about to deliver his thank you speech, the award toppled off the lectern and snapped in half. After being handed the broken award, Pullman held up a piece in each hand and said: 'I've got two awards tonight!' It was later repaired by the local artisan who made it

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- Guardian Staff

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Carry on up the Kremlin: how The Death of Stalin plays Russian roulette with the truth

17 October 2017 10:00 PM, PDT

Armando Iannucci’s new film is a romp through some of the darkest days of the 20th century. But, asks one historian, is farce really the best way to understand the dictator’s murderous regime – or its legacy in Russia today?

My first memory of the outside world was watching my parents as they heard an announcement on the radio that Joseph Stalin was dead. The news was greeted not with relish but with awe and apprehension. The Soviet dictator was a colossal figure in the mid-20th century, even in the west. His death on 5 March 1953 was a reference point not just for the Soviet people but for the wider world. Now it is history.

That is until now. With The Death of Stalin, director Armando Iannucci has brought the story surrounding the dictator’s last hours and the political scramble among his potential successors to a modern audience. »

- Richard Overy

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'Not the case': Lars Von Trier denies sexually harassing Björk

17 October 2017 2:33 PM, PDT

Danish director rejects singer’s allegation as the producer of Dancer in the Dark claims he and Von Trier ‘were the victims’

Danish film director Lars von Trier has rejected Icelandic pop singer Björk’s allegation that he sexually harassed her during the making of the movie Dancer in the Dark.

“That was not the case. But that we were definitely not friends, that’s a fact,” Von Trier told Danish daily Jyllands-Posten in its online edition.

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- Staff and agencies

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Bob Weinstein accused of inappropriate behavior by female TV producer

17 October 2017 2:20 PM, PDT

Weinstein denies claim by Amanda Segel, a showrunner for Spike TV’s The Mist, who says he made unwanted advances despite her multiple refusals

Bob Weinstein on Tuesday denied an accusation that he made unwanted advances toward a female showrunner working for the Weinstein Company last year.

The showrunner, Amanda Segel, is an executive producer on Spike TV’s The Mist. Segel claims that beginning last summer, Weinstein repeatedly asked her to dine alone with him and made romantic overtures despite her multiple refusals, according to Variety.

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- Molly Redden

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Reese Witherspoon alleges sexual assault by director when she was 16

17 October 2017 6:15 AM, PDT

Actor says that agents and producers told her to remain silent about the incident, which she says was the first of many experiences of sexual assault and harassment throughout her career

Reese Witherspoon has alleged that she was sexually assaulted by a director when she was 16, but was told to remain silent by agents and producers.

The actor made the claims during a speech reflecting on the problems faced by women in the film industry at the Elle Women in Hollywood event on Monday, People reports. Witherspoon did not name the director in question but said that the incident was the first of many experiences of “harassment and sexual assault” throughout her career.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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The Lego Ninjago Movie karate kicks Blade Runner 2049 off top of the UK box office

17 October 2017 6:01 AM, PDT

The Snowman gets a slightly chilly reception, while arthouse audiences warm to animated biopic Loving Vincent and Sally Potter comedy The Party

Opening in the UK with £3.64m, The Lego Ninjago Movie tops the box-office chart, elbowing aside Blade Runner 2049. It’s the second Lego-themed chart-topper this year, following The Lego Batman Movie in February. It’s also the fifth animated chart-topper, following Sing, The Lego Batman Movie, The Boss Baby and Despicable Me 3.

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- Charles Gant

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Carrie Fisher gave predatory producer a cow's tongue in a box

17 October 2017 4:17 AM, PDT

Screenwriter Heather Robinson says that after telling Fisher she’d had to fight off a Hollywood executive, the Star Wars actor hand-delivered him the gift with a threatening note

Carrie Fisher once hand-delivered a cow’s tongue wrapped in a Tiffany box to a predatory Hollywood producer, a friend of the late actor has claimed.

Screenwriter Heather Robinson said that Fisher had intervened after the unnamed executive, identified as an Oscar winner, had tried to force himself on Robinson while in his car.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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Back from the dead: is the slasher movie set to make a killing?

17 October 2017 4:00 AM, PDT

The hit Happy Death Day hints at renewed interest in the masked killer genre, with Jamie Lee Curtis back in the Halloween saga and Scream getting revived

Vampire in Brooklyn, Thinner, The Dentist, Leprechaun 3 … the horror genre in the mid-90s was terrifying for all the wrong reasons. It was barely even a thing, at least outside of the very bottom shelf of Blockbuster, a place where kids would awkwardly hover before begging parents to let them watch some film about an evil laundry-folding machine.

Related: Horrorwood! Will the new golden age of scary movies save cinema?

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- Benjamin Lee

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Ex-Weinstein staffer says assistants were manipulated: ‘We weren’t safe either’

17 October 2017 12:01 AM, PDT

As stories suggest female staffers helped lure producer’s alleged victims, former assistant says she and her colleagues also faced abusive behavior

The women who have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual abuse spoke of the same tactic: the movie producer would make young women feel safe with the presence of his female assistants, who would later disappear, leaving the mogul alone to harass and assault his guests, they alleged.

After a week of reading stories casting blame on Weinstein’s female employees, one former assistant said she wanted to speak up and make clear that the situation was much more complicated. She and other women at his company were also victims of Weinstein’s abuse – regularly exploited and manipulated, leaving some severely traumatized, the woman alleged in a recent interview with the Guardian.

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- Sam Levin in San Francisco

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The Secret Actress: I've lost count of the unwanted hands that have touched me

16 October 2017 11:00 PM, PDT

Harvey Weinstein represents a culture in which women are deemed either screen-bait or difficult. If these men are ‘dinosaurs’, bring on the asteroid

The Secret Actress is an Oscar- and Golden Globe-nominated actor who lives and works in La today.

I had a thought the other morning. Yet another actress I know was coming forward with her story of a foul encounter with Harvey Weinstein, and this thought swilled around in the grubby impression left by the details.

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- The Secret Actress

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Turning to the dark side: is Luke Skywalker really the villain of Star Wars: The Last Jedi?

16 October 2017 10:00 PM, PDT

In the new poster for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Mark Hamill’s character looms menacingly in the background – just like his dear old dad Darth Vader used to

When giant Snoke told us last time out that there had been an “awakening”, most Star Wars fans assumed the alien overlord must be referring to Daisy Ridley’s proto-Jedi Rey and her madcap Force visions. But it’s becoming increasingly obvious in the run-up to Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi that disturbances in the Force are more insidious and potentially wide-ranging.

First came last week’s final trailer for the middle part of the new Star Wars trilogy, in which Ridley seems to be cosying up to Adam Driver’s sinister Kylo Ren. And this week there’s been plenty of talk online to the effect that Luke Skywalker himself might finally be set to turn to the dark side, »

- Ben Child

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The Weinstein Company in talks on possible sale

16 October 2017 9:53 AM, PDT

Film studio to take ‘capital infusion’ and discuss potential sell-off in wake of allegations against Harvey Weinstein

The Weinstein Company is in talks to sell to a private equity company in the wake of the sexual harassment and assault allegations against its co-founder Harvey Weinstein.

The film production business has entered into an agreement with buyout firm Colony Capital to secure an “immediate capital infusion”, as the company fights for its future.

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- Mark Sweney and Dominic Rushe in New York

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Woody Allen forced to clarify comments about 'sad' Harvey Weinstein

16 October 2017 3:28 AM, PDT

Director says his remarks about the sexual abuse allegations against Weinstein were misconstrued and that the producer is ‘a sick man’

Woody Allen has been forced to clarify remarks made about the Harvey Weinstein scandal, after stating that he felt “sad” for the disgraced producer.

Allen was widely criticised for comments made on Saturday in which he expressed sympathy for Weinstein, who has been accused of sexual abuse and harassment by a growing number of women.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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Straight to the heart: Hollywood’s hetero approach to casting gay cinema

16 October 2017 2:00 AM, PDT

Call Me By Your Name is the latest movie to cast straight actors in roles that are not, while the opposite seldom occurs. Is it time for #OscarsSoStraight?

Related: Armie Hammer on gay romance Call Me By Your Name: ‘There were fetishes I didn’t understand’

Every time a new movie about a gay relationship comes out, the question gets asked: “Why did they have to cast straight actors?” White actors playing characters of colour is seen as inappropriate; what about straight actors playing gay characters?

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- Steve Rose

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20 articles

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