Channing Tatum

Film Review: Hail, Caesar!

by Chad Liffmann on February 5, 2016

A silly, subversive, colorful day in the life of a 1950s Hollywood studio fixer — as only the Coens can envision.

Channing Tatum the singing, dancing sailor.

Channing Tatum the singing, dancing sailor.

Expectations were high for Hail, Caesar! the new film from the modern great American filmmakers, Joel and Ethan Coen. Three years after their award-winning triple play of 2009’s A Serious Man, 2010’s True Grit, and 2013’s Inside Llewyn Davis, the sparkling musical trailers for Hail, Caesar! began hitting the web, and suddenly Coen fever began spreading again. However, unlike the washed-out colors and quiet dramatic quality of the former titles, Hail, Caesar! seemed to promise bright colors, outlandish musical numbers, and an unbridled sense of fun. The question I found myself asking was — would Hail, Caesar! embrace the darkly comic bizarreness of early Coen films such as Raising Arizona and The Hudsucker Proxy, or the cynical chastisement of Hollywood in Barton Fink? Well, the answer is really ‘no’ to both. The most wonderful thing about Hail, Caesar! is that it has its own new brand of Coen humor, one of PG-13 lightweight, sarcastic and playful tones, but still filled to the brim with the filmmakers’ unparalleled attention to detail and love of subtle and not-so-subtle references.

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These guys want you to share their long, hot… summer

The boys are back in town.

That Magic Mike XXL is opening in the middle of a heat wave is appropriate, because, well, hot damn, do these boys look good, and man, do they have some scorchingly sexy moves. Bring your bottled water into the theater ladies (and men – this is a movie that knows – and courts – both its female and male audiences; stars Channing Tatum, Matt Bomer, and Adam Rodriguez thrilled fans recently at the Los Angeles gay pride parade), because you’re going to need some cooling down.

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A Jupiter-sized mess (and Jupiter is big).

Channing Tatum "surfing" around shooting and being shot at.

Channing Tatum “surfing” around shooting and being shot at.

There’s a line in Jupiter Ascending where a former alien soldier stationed on Earth tells a newly-discovered woman of royalty, “Bees don’t lie.”  With or without context, you should get a sense of how ridiculous this sounds, because it is.  Completely.  Ridiculous.  Jupiter Ascending, from the Wachowskis, whose credibility is descending rapidly, is a silly overwrought mess.  Too much is packed into too complex a premise.  The tone shifts back and forth between silly and serious, imaginative and derivative, from The Fifth Element to Dune (minus the intelligence).  When a movie gets pushed from a summer tentpole position (May-July) to the cinema graveyard shift (January-February), it’s obvious that something is wrong.  In the case of Jupiter Ascending, it has all the makings of a sci fi summer blockbuster, but fails to execute on all fronts aside from some nifty special effects that look quite pretty.

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Film Review: Foxcatcher

by Carrie Kahn on November 21, 2014

Carell’s performance is main event in otherwise slow wrestling movie

John du Pont (Steve Carell) gives wrestler Mark Schultz (Channing Tatum) an earful.

Director Bennett Miller returns to the big screen this month with Foxcatcher, his first feature since 2011’s Moneyball. Like that film, Foxcatcher also draws its inspiration from a true-life sports story, but, ultimately, Foxcatcher is really more of a psychological character study. While it’s a compelling look at descending madness, the film proves itself a rather static, chilly narrative, albeit one with some exceptionally strong performances.

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The 37th Mill Valley Film Festival wrapped up last night.  The Festival screened some of this fall’s most hotly anticipated pictures: Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler and Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash, and many more.  We gave you a look at some of the festival’s lesser known independent films, now here’s a quick look at a few of the hot titles (and Oscar bait) coming out this fall.  For full festival photos and information, visit: http://mvff.com.

The Imitation Game
(US/UK 2014, 113 min; English)

Cumberbatch cracks the code.

Cumberbatch cracks the code.

The Imitation Game is a return to the traditional period bio-dramas of yesteryear (you know, like A Beautiful Mind).  It tells the story of Alan Turing, the British mathematician who cracked the German Enigma c0de during World War II, thus introducing the world to computer science while having a large impact on helping the Allied forces win the war, and who was also subsequently arrested after the war for being a homosexual.  Everything about the film is rock solid, from the stalwart acting, led by a fantastic Benedict Cumberbatch as Turing, to the film’s music and set design.  While many movies, dramas in particular, flounder under the weight of forced contrivances, The Imitation Game embraces and utilizes them to an entertaining degree.  We’re right there cracking the code alongside Turing in this old-fashioned period drama.

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School in the summer has never been so awesome.

Too cool for school.

Too cool for school.

The unlikely success of 2012’s 21 Jump Street prompted the production and release of the sequel, 22 Jump Street, which ends up being funnier, more ridiculous, and more exciting than it’s predecessor.  Phil Lord and Christopher Miller must be on cloud nine right now since the writing/directing duo has experienced unbelievable success with 21 and 22 Jump Street, the Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs series (they wrote and directed the first and produced the sequel), and one of the top rated and grossing movies of the year, The Lego Movie.  Lord and Miller find creative ways to inject a constant stream of humor into their films.  In the case of 22 Jump Street, they once again exploit the infectious chemistry between Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum and deliver a script that has no shortage of joke types — including slapstick, sight gags, witty banter, and an abundance of self-referential and meta humor.  With such a clever script and the chance for us to revisit the budding bromance at its core, 22 Jump Street is comedic gold and perfect summer fun.

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Film Review: White House Down

June 28, 2013
http://youtu.be/4AXbiCdmXgw

We say a picture is worth a thousand words.  If my math is correct, a two hour and seventeen minute movie, therefore, should be worth 197,280 words (at 24 frames per second).  Why, then, when White House Down ended, did my friend turn to me and say, “There are no words…”, and begin conjuring up fantasies of […]

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Film Review: “Magic Mike”

June 29, 2012

starring: Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Cody Horn, Matthew McConaughey, Matt Bomer, Adam Rodriguez, Olivia Munn, Joe Manganiello, Kevin Nash, Gabriel Iglesias, Betsy Brandt, Riley Keough written by: Reid Carolin directed by: Steven Soderbergh MPAA: Rated R for pervasive sexual content, brief graphic nudity, language and some drug use

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Film Review: “21 Jump Street”

March 16, 2012

starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Brie Larson, Dave Franco, Ice Cube, Rob Riggle, Nick Offerman, Ellie Kemper, Jake M. Johnson, Chris Parnell written by: Michael Bacall and Jonah Hill directed by: Phil Lord and Chris Miller MPAA: Rated R for crude and sexual content, pervasive language, drug material, teen drinking and some violence

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Film Review: “The Vow”

February 10, 2012

starring: Channing Tatum, Rachel McAdams, Jessica Lange, Sam Neill, Scott Speedman, Wendy Crewson written by: Jason Katims, Abby Kohn, Marc Silverstein, and Michael Sucsy directed by: Michael Sucsy MPAA: Rated PG-13 for an accident scene, sexual content, partial nudity and some language

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