SM Cinema Telabastagan opened its doors for its Blessing Day on May 17 (Thursday) and officially, to movie goers on May 18 (Friday). SM City Telabastagan, which can be found in the northern part of the city, is the third SM mall in San Fernando City, after SM City Pampanga and SM City San Fernando Downtown.
SM Cinema will take you to greater heights with the newest movie destination in Telabastagan. Take your family with you to the movies as SM Cinema opened six digital theatres with comfy seats, optimum surround-sound system, and delectable snacks.
Guests received a double cinematic treat from SM Cinema Telabastagan as they experienced the advance special screening of Solo, A Star Wars Movie, from the iconic franchise ‘Star Wars’, and Truth or Dare, a horror-slasher movie with a twisted take on the classical game. There were galactic fan cosplayers and a display of Avengers: Infinity War characters to celebrate the opening of the cinema. These movies blockbusters were shown in state-of-the-art digital cinemas located at the second level of the SM City Telabastagan.
The opening weekend, from May 18 to May 20, is the perfect opportunity to sit back, watch, and enjoy the movies as all films during that weekend will be 50% off for the guests, regardless of screening times! The fun doesn’t stop there, as Snack Time launched its exclusive Tasty Combos priced at only PhP 100.
Don’t miss out on the fun and festivities as SM City Telabastagan is sure to be the site of many great movie moments.
For more exciting offers and bookings, visit the SM Cinema website, www.smcinema.com or download the SM Cinema app through the App Store and Google Play. You may also follow /SMCinema on facebook and @SM_Cinema on Instagram for more information and updates!
When Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice premiered March 26, 2016 in the Philippines, long lines of die-hard fans of the Bat of Gotham and the Son of Krypton formed in theaters.
But for many, watching the movie once was not enough. The MX4D experience now available in the Philippines let moviegoers double the fun and excitement of watching the super blockbuster in 4D.
MX4D is a movie-watching experience like no other. Right from the start you are part of the action on-screen when you watch movies like Batman vs. Superman in the new format. From the moment when the Metropolis is being destroyed by aliens, you ride shotgun with Bruce Wayne as he races to save his employees from the oncoming onslaught. Smoke comes out of the screen when the building collapses and debris starts flying everywhere.
You’ll never know what, or when, to expect the next big thing if you’re watching a movie in MX4D. Jolts, turns, gusts of wind and scents are some of the extraordinary things you will experience while watching a movie in the format.
It is highly recommended that you immerse yourself completely in the action and not munch on snacks while the on-screen action is hot. MX4D really literally moves you, and you won’t know what’s going to happen next. The action-filled Batman V Superman showcases the best of what the MX4D experience can offer.
Although those who prefer to be relaxed while watching movies may prefer the conventional theatrical experience to the all-engaging style of watching movies in 4D, it is a must to watch a movie in this format at least once. The MX4D experience helps viewers feel more connected to the scene and the protagonists and makes movie-watching more interesting and fun.
Good news for Metro South residents, who can now enjoy this one of a kind experience right outside their doorstep. The Philippines’ first and only MX4D theater is at Vista Cinemas in Evia Lifestyle Center, Vista City, Daang Hari. It’s worth visiting and experiencing too, even if you’re not from the South.
The Goethe-Institut Philippinen presents Berlinale Spotlight film festival from December 2 to 20 with twelve short films from the Berlinale, the Berlin International Film Festival. The screenings will be shown for free in four cities around the Philippines. Dubbed “Berlinale Spotlight”, the films are especially curated for screenings in Southeast Asia and will be shown in two programs.
Included in the film roster are Berlinale laureates HOSANNA (Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2015, Korea), Bad at Dancing (Silver Bear Jury Prize (Short Film) 2015, USA) and the Berlin Short Film Nominee for the European Film Awards 2015 Dissonance (Germany), among others.
Berlinale is Germany’s most prestigious film festival and also one of the most important dates on the international film industry’s calendar. In 2015 at its 65th edition, 443 films were shown in different sections. The films shown in the sections Competition and Berlinale Shorts competed for the prestigious Golden and Silver Bears.
Among the festival sections is the Berlinale Shorts which comprises of short films from around the globe. These “shorts” can either be fiction, documentary, experimental or animation. The section aims to showcase new directions in filmmaking that often make first appearances in short films. The shorts in the two programs to be shown in the Philippines focus largely on existentialist reflections, possibilities of artistic expressions and human relationships.
Berlinale Spotlight will be shown in the following venues:
December 2 to 3 – Auditorium of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) in Intramuros, Manila
December 5 to 6 – Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) Cinematheque in Baguio City
December 12 to 13 – FDCP Cinematheque in Davao City
December 19 to 20 – at the FDCP Cinematheque in Iloilo City
Manila | NCCA Auditorium 1/G National Commission for Culture and the Arts, 633 Gen. Luna St., Intramuros, Manila
December 2 | 7:00 PM Shorts Program 1, STRANGER THAN PARADISE
December 3 | 7:00 PM – Shorts Program 2, WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE
Baguio | FDCP Cinematheque Baguio Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City
December 5 | 5:30 PM – Cocktails
December 5 | 6:00 PM – Shorts Program 1, STRANGER THAN PARADISE
December 6 | 5:30 PM – Shorts Program 2, WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE
Davao City | FDCP Cinematheque Davao Palma Gil Street, Davao City
December 12 | 1:30 PM – Shorts Program 1, STRANGER THAN PARADISE
December 13 | 3:30 PM – Shorts Program 2, WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE
Iloilo | FDCP Cinematheque Iloilo B&C Building, Solis Street Cor. Iznart Street, Iloilo City
December 19 | 1:30 PM – Shorts Program 1, STRANGER THAN PARADISE
December 20 | 3:30 PM – Shorts Program 2, WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE
Films in Exhibition
A. Shorts Program 2 – STRANGER THAN PARADISE
1. PLANET Σ (Winner, Audi Short Film Award 2015) France | 2014 | 12 min Momoko Seto
The universe in all its infinitude. On planet Sigma, enormous creatures are trapped inside the ice. And then, all of a sudden explosions erupt from subterranean volcanoes. The ice begins to melt; a global warming concludes the giants’ deep slumber and new life begins. The creatures crawl forth, out of the ice. With the aid of slow motion, Seto fictionalises the unfolding of events. Liberated from time and space, she draws ever closer to the proceedings, in extreme close-ups. PLANET Σ is the third part of her planet series. (View the trailer here.)
2. HOSANNA (Winner, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2015) Korea | 2014 | 25 min Na Young-kil
HOSANNA is an ancient cry of jubilation and entreaty, which according to the New Testament, was used by the crowds greeting Jesus when he rode into Jerusalem on a donkey.
In a remote village in Korea lives a boy with the power to heal. He can resurrect the dead. And that is exactly what he does. Curing people of death, he gives them back life. However, the new life doesn’t cure them, on the contrary. Rejecting the chance proffered by rebirth, the fighting, killing and murder continue. They punish, spit upon and antagonise the boy. Refusing to be deterred, he goes his own way. The boy and the villagers move about in rigorously framed shots, practically devoid of emotion. There is no cry of jubilation. (View the trailer here.)
3. Pebbles at Your Door Denmark | 2015 | 18 min Vibeke Bryld
“If we all lived in paradise, there wouldn’t be any tears or separation, no hunger and no waiting, no suffering and no oppression, no war, no death. We’d no longer need hope. We’d lose all those hopes we so dearly love. We Koreans call hope ‘Han’.” (Park Kyong-Ni)
Harmonia lived a happy life in North Korea, until one day in her early twenties when she realised the truth. A truth, she says, that she did not want to accept for many
years: that which surrounds her is a fractured paradise. Late, but not too late she hopes, she sets out on the solitary path into the unknown, to the world beyond the narrow borders of the North Korean regime. She flees via China to South Korea. It takes almost a year before she arrives. She comes too late. But there is no returning. Director Vibeke Bryld uses photographs and postcards to piece together Harmonia’s life. (View the trailer here.)
4. SHADOWLAND Sweden | 2014 | 15 min John Skoog
Desolate landscapes are the protagonists. Sound fragments dictate the direction. The drama could begin at any moment.
During his travels through America’s West, filmmaker John Skoog discovered a new country. In SHADOWLAND, one view of a Californian landscape chases another. Slowly, almost imperceptibly, the landscapes flow into each another. Deserts become forests become water, the street from a car, the river from a boat. Shot on 16mm and in black and white, the montage induces an analogy that recalls the photographs of Ansel Adams and Alfred Stieglitz. SHADOWLAND is a sensual experimental arrangement in which the shift of perceived understanding occurs on a visual and auditory plane. The places visited in the film were once used by Hollywood as substitutes for entirely different locations in the world. The journey is accompanied by a collage of sounds taken from early Hollywood films. (View the trailer here.)
5. Dissonance (Berlin Short Film Nominee for the European Film Awards 2015) Germany | 2015 | 17 min Till Nowak
What is reality and what is imagination? Who defines the boundaries? A gifted pianist plays piano. The piano reflects the pianist’s emotion, exploding every dimension. As does the emotion: the man misses his daughter, is no longer allowed to see her. Had the man seen a doctor however, he would most likely have been diagnosed with a psychosis. Would, should, could.
He lives on the street. The mother is worried, as the man who was once her husband sinks ever deeper. What kind of world is this, that puts a smile on his face, while inspiring nothing but fear in her? The daughter has no fear. All that remains is longing.
In Dissonance, reality and fantasy merge, flow into one another. 3D animation and live action become one. An odyssey through time and space. A modern fairytale. (View the trailer here.)
6. Take What You Can Carry USA/Germany | 2015 | 30 min Matt Porterfield
A journey through day and night, night and day. Lilly has been living in Berlin for a while. She is a US American passing through. She has a lover and no penthouse. The relationship is vague. “You come and go as you please”, he says. “What do you mean?”, she asks. “Nothing.”, he says, “I’m happy when you’re here.” – “I’m also happy when I’m here.” Then he plays guitar and she embraces him from behind. Only briefly, then she packs her suitcase. Lilly drifts between worlds and places. Looking for people and connections but remaining in the external. During rehearsals with the performance group Gob Squad, her thoughts and wishes thrive: words become actions. Back at the apartment, a letter from her home awaits her. Matt Porterfield calmly tells of the longing to arrive in quietly composed scenes.(View the trailer here.)
B. Shorts Program 2 – WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE
1. Snapshot Mon Amour Germany | 2014 | 6 min Christian Bau
After the catastrophe in Fukushima, a new Japanese word came into being: Genpatsu-Rikon, a word pieced-together from the characters for “atom” and “divorce”. In 2011, documentary filmmaker Christian Bau travels to the east coast of Japan to investigate this newly coined word. What did the filmmaker see? “I saw everything.” -“You didn’t see anything, nothing at all!” (View the trailer here.)
2. El Juego del Escondite / Hide & Seek Spain | 2014 | 23 min David Muñoz
A film crew visits a Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon. The refugees are hiding from the war. The children play hide and seek. The film crew tries to stay in the background; they too are hiding. The theme of El Juego del Escondite is composed of the synergies of reality, fiction and the filming process itself. Contradictions arise when disparate worlds collide at the same time and place.
According to theory, reality is an occurrence from which only particular truths are extracted in a film. Thereby, it is expected that a film will sort the events in a particular order of significance. This process destroys reality. Simultaneously, film also wants to be recognized as the only real truth. “As a director I try to observe myself when working, how I behave when the realities of refugees and my own converge. I observe myself, watching how I observe. I feel like a stranger who – also – wants to tell his own story.” (David Muñoz) (View the trailer here.)
3. Däwit / Daewit Germany | 2015 | 15 min David Jansen
A wolf child, a cat, an angel. Young Daewit suffers violence at the hands of his father. He is eventually rescued and able to flee the place of his abuse. He finds refuge with a family of wolves: a foster child in a modern world. Lost, he embarks on a seemingly endless journey, a journey full of riddles and deprivation. He tries to find himself, his identity – amidst the all-encompassing sorrow. At the end, he flies back to the beginning and finds peace in forgiveness. Filmmaker David Jansen found inspiration for the film in the work of Belgian graphic designer and illustrator Frans Masereel. Processing the most diverse emotions in his woodcuts, Frans Masereel developed a noticeably expressionistic style, in which the symbolic and concrete are interwoven. David Jansen transfers that approach to this animated film, in both form and content. Narration meets association and vice versa. (View the trailer here.)
4. YúYú France/Spain/USA | 2014 | 15 min Marc Johnson
In the beginning there is nature. Landscape footage of the “Five Dragons” in the Yangtze Valley, the third-largest river in the world, a Unesco World Heritage site in the Chinese province of Chóngqìng, is coupled with views of the gigantic city of Chóngqìng, which resembles a juggernaut and dominates the valley.
The beekeeper Shé Zuŏ Bīn performs a traditional rite of spring on one of the rocks. He allows queen bees to be placed on his body who then summon worker bees. By the end, Shé Zuŏ Bīn’s body is entirely covered by bees. In a kind of trance, he stands utterly still. The buzzing of bees dominates all. He trusts the bees completely, and for a moment they lose all that is dangerous, terrifying. They are a protective shield. (View the trailer here.)
5. Bad at Dancing (Winner, Silver Bear Jury Prize (Short Film) 2015) USA | 2015 | 11 min Joanna Arnow
Interior, Night. Matt and Isabel have sex. Their bedroom is sparse. It is silent except for their breathing. Joanna, the flatmate, enters the room and lies down right next to them on their bed. Only briefly noting this interruption, Isabel continues moving on top of Matt, undeterred.
Matt (after a while, without glancing sideways):
“What is she doing here?
Joanna: “I couldn’t sleep.”
Isabel (still having sex) “Were we being too loud?”
Joanna (still lying next to them): “No…”
Bad at Dancing is a chamber piece and a comedy, a sex game. Isabel and Matt are together, Joanna seems to be pursuing Matt and maybe Isabel too. Joanna tries out various approaches to achieve her aim. The three move together, vying for control – dressed and naked. Always introversive. Always direct. Envy and emotion are given a surreal context. The question of borders and their necessity is raised anew. A rickshaw always drives on three wheels. (View the trailer here.)
On the night of 22 July 2014, Matthias Wermke and Mischa Leinkauf hoist two white American flags on the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City. They take the US flags down and fold them in the prescribed orderly fashion.
Poetry or threat? An act of surrender or perhaps art? These were the theories that New York puzzled over last summer. How can one incident be interpreted in so many ways? By means of press reports, Symbolic Threats allows the public at large to express their extreme disparity of interpretation. Inspired by the heated debate over the two flags that suddenly appeared on the towers of the bridge, the film asks what kind of societal scope art has in the present day. What happens when threatened freedom reinstates art with the element of danger? Who or what makes it into a threat? Are we safe in the city? What is next? (View the trailer here.)
Universal Pictures and Legendary have released the first trailer for Warcraftan epic adventure of world-colliding conflict based on Blizzard Entertainment’s global phenomenon. The trailer may be viewed below.
In the film, the peaceful realm of Azeroth stands on the brink of war as its civilization faces a fearsome race of invaders: Orc warriors fleeing their dying home to colonize another. As a portal opens to connect the two worlds, one army faces destruction and the other faces extinction. From opposing sides, two heroes are set on a collision course that will decide the fate of their family, their people and their home.
So begins a spectacular saga of power and sacrifice in which war has many faces, and everyone fights for something.
Directed by Duncan Jones (“Moon,” “Source Code”) and written by Charles Leavitt and Jones, the film stars Travis Fimmel, Paula Patton, Ben Foster, Dominic Cooper, Toby Kebbell, Ben Schnetzer, Rob Kazinsky and Daniel Wu.
Opening across the Philippines in June 2016, Warcraft will be distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.
— PRESS STATEMENT FROM UNITED INTERNATIONAL PICTURES
Award-winning filmmaker Ryan Coogler directs the upcoming boxing drama Creed. The film reunites Coogler with his “Fruitvale Station” star Michael B. Jordan as the son of Apollo Creed, and explores a new chapter in the “Rocky” story, starring Academy Award nominee Sylvester Stallone in his iconic role.
Coogler talks about the origins of the Rocky spinoff film in the following interview.
Question: What set you on the path to making “Creed” and why you were drawn to telling a story about Apollo Creed’s son?
Ryan Coogler: It started a long time ago. I’m very close with my dad, who is a big Rocky fan. I played a lot of sports as a kid and before he’d take me to a game, he’d put on a Rocky film to get me pumped up. His favorite was Rocky II. He was a big, strong guy, but he’d get really emotional whenever he’d watch that one. So, because my dad was so passionate about them, I had an affinity for the films too.
As I got older, I found out my dad was so into the Rocky films because he’d watch them with his mom when she was sick. She passed away before I was born. So he was reacting to the movies, but he was also reacting to the memory of his mom.
When I went to film school, I was getting ready to shoot my first feature, and round about that time my dad started to have some health issues. I had a hard time dealing with that—him getting older and me taking care of him. As I was going through that experience, I came up with this idea of a similar situation with his hero, Rocky. It was kind of an artistic way of venting my feelings. I was so busy working on Fruitvale Station that I asked my buddy, Aaron Covington, if he’d like to write it with me.
I mentioned it to my agents at the time and they introduced me to Sylvester Stallone’s agent. This was before I’d even made Fruitvale; I was still casting it. But I had a meeting with Stallone’s agent and his business manager. I pitched them the idea, they thought about it and said, ‘I don‘t think Sly wants to do anything like this.’ [Laughs]
Q: Was that because he’d already done Rocky Balboa?
Coogler: I think so. That movie was sort of his farewell to Rocky and he was very happy with it.
Q: So when did you first talk to him about it?
Coogler: It was in July of 2012; I remember because we were getting ready to shoot Fruitvale. I met him, I pitched it to him, we talked about it, and I could tell he was really apprehensive.
I hadn’t made a feature film yet, so he was probably thinking: who is this kid coming in talking about making a Rocky movie – something that’s so precious to him? I told him, honestly, I wouldn’t blame him if he thought I was crazy. I knew when I was pitching it to him that it was a wild idea. But Sly’s a smart dude; he’s an emotional dude. He’s a thinker, you know what I’m saying? He was thinking about every different way this could work, and every different way it could fail.
Q: What did you say that convinced him to give it his blessing?
Coogler: I was just honest with him. I told him how I saw the film, how I saw the characters. I think what appealed to him was that it wasn’t a Rocky movie, in that Rocky isn’t the main focus of the film. Obviously the character was going to be heavily involved, but the focus is very much on Adonis Johnson.
Q: In a way, your movie takes Rocky full circle in that he becomes a mentor to this young fighter in the same way that Mickey, Burgess Meredith’s character, was to him in the first Rocky movie.
Coogler: Exactly. And I think that connection resonated with him.
Q: Has your dad seen the movie yet?
Coogler: No, he hasn’t seen it yet. If I showed it to him too early he’d tell everyone the whole movie [laughs]. But he’s seen bits and pieces. The crew had tee shirts and sweatshirts made and he’s got all of those. He wears one every time I see him.
Q: Did he get to meet Stallone?
Coogler: Yeah, he got to meet Sly. You know the restaurant in Rocky Balboa [Adrian’s]? We shot some scenes there. My dad came to Philly for those scenes so that’s where he got to meet Sly.
Opening across the Philippines on December 9, 2015, Creed is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.
From Blue Sky Studios and 20th Century Fox – “Ice Age: Collision Course,” the fifth big screen instalment of the colossal blockbuster cartoon franchise “Ice Age” that will take over theatres July 2016, announces the return of its previous cast and introduces new members as a cosmic Scratastrophe looms and endangers their world.
In the new film, the beloved herd from the Ice Age movies — including woolly mammoths Manny (Ray Romano) and Ellie (Queen Latifah), saber-toothed tigers Diego (Denis Leary) and Shira (Jennifer Lopez), and lovable sloth Sid (John Leguizamo) — have to leave their homes to save themselves when cosmic events threaten their world. And one of the places they wander into is an exotic, fantastical locale where one of the new characters known as Shangri Llama (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) is the spiritual leader of sorts.
Ferguson, the Modern Family TV star describes his extremely colourful yoga-loving character as “Me being someone who can barely look at my toes without feeling an incredible stretch, I envy him for his limber nature.”
Joining Ferguson in the “Ice Age: Collision Course” world who will also lend voices to new characters are Adam DeVine, Nick Offerman, Max Greenfield, Stephanie Beatriz, Melissa Rauch, Carlos Ponce, Michael Strahan, pop star Jessie J and popular scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who plays Neil deBuck Weasel.
In a rollout of Tweets from the cast, leading everyone to follow #CollisionCourse, Jennifer Lopez tweeted away “Shira is back with a purr-fect cast!” while John Leguizamo posted his character’s photo too with a suave message “Sloth your roll.” Moreso, youthful Keke Palmer just like her character Peaches tweeted “Ice, Ice Baby” and Max Greenfield known for his recurring television roles in Veronica Mars, Ugly Betty and Modern Men joins the Ice Age family who belongs to the dino bird family. Music phenomenon Jessie J, whose songs such as “Flashlight” and “Price Tag” that topped the charts plays Brooke, from the family of sloths for which she excitedly twitted “You ‘Herd’ it here first! I’m in #IceAge! Follow #CollisionCourse.”
Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) has just announced the finalists for its three categories: Full-Length Features, HOOQ Short Films and Animation. MMFF New Wave 2015 will run from December 17 to 24 at SM Megamall, Glorietta 4, and Robinsons Place Manila.
Here are the screening schedules of MMFF New Wave 2015 per venue:
(See the screening schedules per date further below.)
Here are the finalists of MMFF New Wave 2015 for each category:
Disney has just revealed the teaser trailer for its highly anticipated Alice Through the Looking Glass, the sequel to the global hit “Alice in Wonderland.” The trailer may be viewed below.
In Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass,” an all-new spectacular adventure featuring the unforgettable characters from Lewis Carroll’s beloved stories, Alice returns to the whimsical world of Underland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter.
Directed by James Bobin, who brings his own unique vision to the spectacular world Tim Burton created on screen in 2010 with “Alice in Wonderland,” the film is written by Linda Woolverton based on characters created by Lewis Carroll and produced by Joe Roth, Suzanne Todd and Jennifer Todd and Tim Burton with John G. Scotti serving as executive producer. “Alice Through the Looking Glass” reunites the all-star cast from the worldwide blockbuster phenomenon, including: Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Mia Wasikowska and Helena Bonham Carter along with the voices of Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Michael Sheen and Timothy Spall. We are also introduced to several new characters: Zanik Hightopp (Rhys Ifans), the Mad Hatter’s father and Time himself (Sacha Baron Cohen), a peculiar creature who is part human, part clock.
Alice Kingsleigh (Wasikowska) has spent the past few years following in her father’s footsteps and sailing the high seas. Upon her return to London, she comes across a magical looking glass and returns to the fantastical realm of Underland and her friends the White Rabbit (Sheen), Absolem (Rickman), the Cheshire Cat (Fry) and the Mad Hatter (Depp), who is not himself. The Hatter has lost his Muchness, so Mirana (Hathaway) sends Alice on a quest to borrow the Chronosphere, a metallic globe inside the chamber of the Grand Clock which powers all time. Returning to the past, she comes across friends – and enemies – at different points in their lives, and embarks on a perilous race to save the Hatter before time runs out. Presented in Digital 3D™, Real D 3D and IMAX® 3D, Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass” opens across the Philippines on May 27, 2016.
“Alice Through the Looking Glass” is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International through Columbia Pictures. Follow the official social media accounts of Disney in the Philippines, namely, (FB) WaltDisneyStudiosPH, (Twitter) @disneystudiosph and (Instagram) @waltdisneystudiosph.
The worst in Criminal Activities is about to unfold in John Travolta’s latest action movie that marks his return to bad boy role when they reunite at a former classmate’s funeral. In “Criminal Activities,” when they reunited at an ex-classmate’s funeral, one mentions to the others inside information on a stock that is a guaranteed lock to make them instant millionaires. Unfortunately, the deal goes south along with their investment. Things go from bad to worse: one of them borrowed his share of the money from a mobster.
Directed by Oscar-nominated actor Jackie Earle Haley with a solid cast that includes Michael Pitt, Rebecca Da Costa, Dan Stevens, Rob Brown, Christopher Abbott and Travis Aaron Wade, “Criminal Activities” is an unpredictable, mind-blowing action thriller that marks Haley’s directorial debut.
Asked in recent interviews on how he came to helm the movie, Haley shares that “It really came out of the blue. I got a call from the producer, who is married to my manager. He really felt like I could direct it. He sent me the script and said he would understand if I didn’t respond to it. So, I read it and loved it. I was super excited about it. I called him back within three hours and was like, “I’m in!” When Travolta agreed to come on board, we were off and running.”
Criminal Activities opens this November 25, 2015 in the Philippines as released by OctoArts Films International.
— PRESS STATEMENT FROM OCTOARETS FILMS INTERNATIONAL
Daniel Radcliffe and James McAvoy star in Victor Frankenstein, a dynamic and thrilling twist on a legendary tale. Radical scientist Victor Frankenstein (McAvoy) and his equally brilliant protégé Igor Strausman (Radcliffe) share a noble vision of aiding humanity through their groundbreaking research into immortality. But Victor’s experiments go too far, and his obsession has horrifying consequences. Only Igor can bring his friend back from the brink of madness and save him from his monstrous creation.
“Victor Frankenstein” is a “Frankenstein” movie unlike any other. While inspired by Mary Shelley’s classic novel and the countless interpretations of that story, screenwriter Max Landis’ “regeneration” focuses on the relationship between Victor and his best friend and assistant Igor. In fact, it’s the first story to be told largely from Igor’s perspective. “It’s a love story between these two mean, really,” notes director Paul McGuigan. “Victor and Igor need each other; in fact, Victor needs Igor probably more than Igor needs Victor in his life.”
Moreover, the film, though set in 1860, at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, has a contemporary sensibility. “I don’t think of it as a period film,” says Daniel Radcliffe, “but as being completely modern. Victor and Igor have cutting-edge ideas; they’re the tip of the spear. They view science as being more than just observational. They believe it could be creative and re-shape the world.
“I like the film’s irreverent tone and how it avoids being Victorian and ‘buttoned-up,’” Radcliffe continues. “Victor and Igor are forward thinking.” Adds McGuigan: “These two young men are changing the world.”
“Victor Frankenstein” is also, notes James McAvoy, a love letter to the myriad films featuring those characters and themes. “This film has many of the familiar elements you expect to see in a Frankenstein movie, but adds unexpected dimensions of character, relationships and entertainment.”
“Max Landis has done nothing less than capture the zeitgeist of all the Frankenstein movies he’s watched,” says McGuigan. “He’s cherry-picked ideas and created his own ‘monster,’ so to speak.”
McGuigan was especially drawn to Landis’ decision to tell the story through Igor’s eyes. That notion points to a key misperception about the character and his role in Frankenstein lore. Igor was not a character in Mary Shelley’s book, nor did he appear in most of the subsequent film interpretations. Actor Dwight Frye’s hunchbacked lab assistant in James Whale’s “Frankenstein” (1931) is the main source for the “Igor” of public imagination, though the character he played was actually named Fritz. Most moviegoers know the character through Marty Feldman’s performance in Mel Brooks’ beloved comedy “Young Frankenstein,” though Feldman’s character insists on being called “Eye-gore.”
A different kind of moniker mix-up accompanies Victor himself. Many people attribute that name to the monster, instead of its creator – the good doctor. “So we give the name ‘Frankenstein’ back to the scientist – to Victor Frankenstein,” says McGuigan.
McAvoy relates that, “Whenever somebody asked me what I was doing at the moment (during production of Victor Frankenstein), I would say, I’m playing Frankenstein, and they’d reply, ‘You’re a little short to be playing the monster.’ And I’d correct them and say, ‘No, no, it’s the doctor.’ So, yeah, we’re giving the name back to Dr. Vic.”
Victor Frankenstein opens November 25, 2015 in cinemas nationwide as released by 20th Century Fox and to be distributed by Warner Bros.