Lorenza Izzo and Ana De Armas play pretty liars in ‘Knock Knock’

Up and coming actresses Lorenza Izzo and Ana De Armas who have slowly gained attention in Hollywood star opposite Keanu Reeves in the adult thriller Knock Knock, rated R16 and R18 by the local censors board (MTRCB). Check out your favorite cinemas’ preferred rating.

“Knock Knock” brings the audience into the Evan’s (Reeves) happily married life with a talented wife and two adorable kids.  As his wife and kids prepare for a weekend away from home, Evan is forced to stay home due to a pressing work deadline. As he prepares for a self-retreat over the weekend, Evan hears a knock on their door the first night he’s left alone.  At the door are two young women, wet and seemingly lost in their neighbourhood.  Evan dismisses the two, Genesis (Izoo) and Bel (Armas) but the two insisted that it’s within the neighbourhood that they’re trying to look for the house where they’re supposed to party all night.  Giving in, Evan lets them in to lend his computer to find the exact address the two are looking for.  As the evening progresses, Evan starts to feel uncomfortable with the physical advances the girls are giving him. Initially avoiding the temptation, Evan finally succumbs to seduction only to find out that Bel and Genesis are the liars from hell every married man should be cautious of.  A series of unlucky streaks befall on Evan as soon as he falls for the two, literally tearing his home apart and soon his marriage to a horrifying conclusion.

Lorenza Izzo and Ana De Armasn have quickly captured the attention of Hollywood. Izzo who starred in the cannibal thriller “Green Inferno” gives cannibal a different kind of meaning in “Knock Knock.”  Izzo’s other film credits include the English-language debut in the Dimension thriller, “Aftershock,” directed by Nicolás López and was the female lead in the horror film “The Stranger” which was written and directed by Guillermo Amoedo. The film was released by IFC Films on June 12, 2015. She also starred opposite Haley Joel Osment in the romantic comedy, “Sex Ed.”

Ana De Armas Izzo’s partner in crime in “Knock Knock” recently wrapped shooting the Warner Brothers feature film “Arms And The Dudes”, directed by Todd Phillips (“The Hangover” franchise), in which she stars opposite Miles Teller and Jonah Hill. The film will be released March 11, 2016.

Following a very competitive international casting search, Ana landed the coveted role of “Felicidad” opposite Edgar Ramirez in the Roberto Duran bio pic, “Hands of Stone”. The film about the legendary boxing champion, which also stars Academy Award® winner Robert De Niro and was directed by Jonathan Jakubowicz (“Secuestro Express”), will be released in early 2016.

De Armas additionally worked opposite Keanu Reeves in Gee Malik Linton’s mystery-thriller, “Daughter of God,” currently in post-production. The Cuban born actress made her feature film debut in “Una Rosa De Francia” for the Cuban Institute of Cinematography and quickly transitioned into one of Spain’s rising film stars. Her previous credits include the Spanish films “Por Un Punado De Besos,” “Faraday,” “Blind Alley” and “Sex, Party & Lies.”

A cautionary tale that would make you think twice before opening your doors, Knock Knock opens this October 21, 2015 in cinemas nationwide as distributed by OctoArts Films International.

Johnny Depp plays notorious mobster in ‘Black Mass’

Three-time Oscar nominee Johnny Depp (“Sweeney Todd” “Finding Neverland,” the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films) stars as notorious mobster James “Whitey” Bulger in Warner Bros. Pictures’ gangster thriller Black Mass.

For more than a decade—until his capture in 2011—Boston’s most infamous crime lord, James “Whitey” Bulger, was hunted by the FBI, surpassed only by Osama Bin Laden at the top of the Bureau’s Most Wanted List.

Directed by Scott Cooper (“Crazy Heart”), “Black Mass” explores how a deal between ruthless gangster Whitey Bulger and FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) enabled Bulger to expand his criminal empire with complete impunity, as Connolly—blinded by his own ambition—shielded him from investigation, ignoring the rising body count.

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Depp tells of his character, “Many people grew up kind of idolizing him; many wanted to be him because he did things his own way and, for the most part, he won. But he was also a very charismatic man. He had this draw that made people want to get close to him. They wanted to understand him. They wanted to know him. I found James Bulger to be a fascinating character and was interested in what drove him.”

Evoking the adage that there is honor among thieves, Depp contends, “First and foremost, Jimmy Bulger is—in his own mind and his own heart—a man of honor. His immediate response to Connolly is that he would never be a rat. He’s not going to rat on his own people, for nobody, for nothing. But helping the FBI get the Italian Mafia is a business decision that, without question, works for him. I mean, if you’re offered that kind of clemency, you’re going to take it, and he takes it and runs with it. He ends up giving the FBI very little and gets a lot in return, so it’s kind of brilliant on his part.”

Cooper calls Depp’s Whitey Bulger “a character unlike any he’s ever played. Whitey could be charming, but he was also a man who, in the blink of an eye, would just as soon kill you as look at you. Johnny understood that Whitey Bulger is not a likable character for the most part; there’s a very vicious side to him, which you’ve never seen before from Johnny.

“But,” the director continues, “what he wanted to do was create a full-bodied portrait—to show him as flawed as he is maniacal, ruthless but also human. There’s a danger to that because we don’t want people to say we’re humanizing a man who personified evil. We certainly show all levels of his brutality. He was a stone cold killer and Johnny plays that to the hilt. He went to great lengths to create his performance through a tremendous amount of research and in-depth discussions between the two of us and others. From the way he moved to the timbre of his voice, he was able to inhabit fully the sociopath that is Whitey Bulger.”

Depp offers, “One of the great challenges in ‘finding’ James Bulger is that he’s a pretty mysterious fellow. I got to know him mainly through friends and people he worked with in those early years. That was helpful in being able to literally grab hold of the character and hang on. For me it was walking that tightrope between playing a very dangerous, unpredictable walking time bomb who could also be emotional and even sensitive.”

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The actor confirms that his portrayal involved more than delving into his character’s psyche. “It’s also very important, when you’re playing someone who existed or exists, to approach it with respect, no matter what. It’s their life, so regardless of what they may have done, they deserve as close to an honest version of themselves as humanly possible. So that’s where prosthetics come into play. Joel Harlow, who did the makeup for the film and whom I’ve worked with for years, did an amazing job.”

Cooper adds, “Johnny wanted to fully embrace the physical aspects of the character. Whitey Bulger was balding and blue-eyed while Johnny has dark eyes and a full head of dark hair. But between Johnny and Joel Harlow, they nailed Whitey perfectly. Through archival footage and photographs, they were able to develop a very complex process to get all of Whitey’s facial features right: the distance between his eyes and his nose; the sneer of his lip; his chin; his hairline… It was so convincing that when he walked on the set, people who knew Whitey found it chilling.”

“He really, really looked like Whitey,” avows Dick Lehr. “He had that same body language and swagger. It was eerie and very effective.”

Opening across the Philippines on October 21, 2015, Black Mass is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

‘Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension’ closes Screamfest 2015

Paramount Pictures’ Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension will premiere as the closing night film of the Screamfest Horror Film Festival, playing in RealD 3D at the TCL Chinese Theatre in L.A. Screamfest runs Oct. 13 to Oct. 22.

The move is a homecoming of sorts for the scary movie franchise as the first “Paranormal” made its debut at the festival, the largest and longest-running horror festival in the U.S., in 2007.

“We are thrilled to have the `Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension’ premiere close this year’s festival,” said Screamfest founder and festival director Rachel Belofsky. “We are so proud of writer-director Oren Peli and his success with the franchise. It’s great to have him back in the festival where it all began.”

“It’s incredibly exciting, and somewhat surreal, to premiere the final installment of the Paranormal series at Screamfest where the first film premiered eight years ago,” said Peli. “These films continued to be made because of the incredible fans that supported them from the very beginning, so I look forward to bringing the series back to its roots to honor them.”

2007’s “Paranormal Activity” was one of the movies that launched the found footage style of storytelling that proved not only compelling for the new social age but also hugely profitable. The story told of a family moving into a new home only to find a demon in their midst.

Directed by Gregory Plotkin, “Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension” follows a new family, the Fleeges — father Ryan (Chris J. Murray), mother Emily (Brit Shaw) and their young daughter Leila (Ivy George) — who move into a house and discover a video camera and a box of tapes in the garage.

When they look through the camera’s lens, they begin to see the paranormal activity happening around them — including the re-emergence of young Kristi and Katie.

Opening across the Philippines on October 21, 2015, “Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension” will be distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Daniel Craig says ‘Spectre’ bigger, bolder than ‘Skyfall’

When approaching the 24th James Bond movie, SPECTRE, from Albert R. Broccoli’s EON Productions, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios and Sony Pictures Entertainment, the filmmakers were keen to ensure that the film followed on closely from its predecessor, the $1.1 billion global smash Skyfall. Daniel Craig, of course, is back for his fourth outing as 007, while the characters of Q (played by Ben Whishaw) and Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) both return after their reintroduction to the series in Skyfall. The new M (Ralph Fiennes) also returns.

The chance to explore all these characters’ stories was of vital importance to Sam Mendes, who is back for a second stint in the director’s chair. “It all starts from character with me,” begins the Academy Award®-winner, “and I wanted to explore all sorts of different aspects of the characters that I’d left behind in Skyfall. We had populated MI6 with a whole new generation of people — a new M, a new Moneypenny and a new Q. I wanted to let those relationships develop and grow.”

For actor Daniel Craig, the remit for SPECTRE was even simpler. “We wanted to be better than Skyfall,” he says. “It is as simple as that. We didn’t have a choice; we had to be bigger and better. With Skyfall, we set something in motion and we wanted to go a bit further with it and experiment a bit more.”

Bond was rejuvenated at the end of Skyfall. “He had a sense of new beginnings,” continues Mendes, and this had a profound effect on SPECTRE. In the new movie, the world’s most famous secret agent is an entirely proactive character, in control of his own destiny. He has a focussed mission from the outset and nothing, and no one, is going to stand in his way.

“Skyfall was an entirely reactive movie as far as Bond was concerned,” explains Mendes. “In the first sequence he was pursuing somebody with all his old focus and drive, but he gets shot before the credits even roll and for the rest of the movie he is one step behind Javier Bardem’s character, Silva. You could even argue that at the end of Skyfall he has failed. He has not kept M alive, and though Silva’s death is a victory for Bond, there are other elements that are failures. Hence, with SPECTRE, I wanted to give him a chance of redemption.”

EON Productions’ Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, long-serving producers of the franchise, agree. “I think this film is very much about the empowerment of Bond,” says Broccoli, “and with Daniel portraying the character, he does this with such enormous integrity that we really feel what he is going through, emotionally as well as physically.”

Bond’s proactive nature has given the filmmakers plenty of scope in terms of location and narrative ideas. The film sees a cryptic message from the past, which sends 007 on a rogue mission to Mexico City and eventually Rome, where he meets Lucia Sciarra (Monica Bellucci), the widow of an infamous criminal. When overseas, Bond infiltrates a secret meeting and uncovers the existence of a sinister organisation known as SPECTRE.

This infamous organisation has featured in six previous Bond films — Dr No, From Russia With Love, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and Diamonds Are Forever — introducing a whole host of villains. The latest film, however, sees the organisation reimagined for the 21st century.

“What we’ve got here is a kind of creation myth at play,” says Mendes. “We are not adhering to any previous version of the SPECTRE story. We are creating our own version. Our film is a way of rediscovering SPECTRE and the super villain, setting him up again for the next generation.”

Craig concurs. “Having SPECTRE in the film opens up lots of avenues for us to explore,” the actor says. “Having this organisation allows us to be both traditional while also bringing in something very new.”

Opening across the Philippines on Friday, November 6, 2015, “Spectre” will be distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.