Tag Archive: stanley tucci


UK Release Date: 22nd November 2013

Stars: Francis Lawrence (director), Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz, Jena Malone, Sam Claflin, Donald Sutherland, Stanley Tucci, Philip Seymour Hoffman

Plot: Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games sparks a rebellion in the Districts of Panem.

Arguably the most anticipated film of the rest of the year, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire trailer has just debuted at San Diego Comic Con and it looks fantastic! The original star studded cast has been improved and got even bigger than before for a film that is all but guaranteed to break a few records upon release later this year.

While The Hunger Games went down very well people have argued that the action moved at a pretty slow pace. As a follow up, this is unlikely to be the case again. Since Katniss and the incredibly annoying, never-going-to-be-good-enough-for-Katniss Everdeen, Peeta triumphed in the battle to the death, an uprising has begun around the Districts and the Capitol wish to put an end to any hope that might have stirred by making an example of the two heroes.

I’m sure that a reason will be established as to why all the previous victors don’t just kill the leaders of Capitol and really bring things home but despite that, there is a lot to be excited for and it won’t just be a rehash of the events of the first film (although a few parts seem familiar). There seems to be more drama, more action in the Districts, more Liam Hemsworth, and a lot more action. A real sense of human revolt can be felt and the trailer does an excellent job of exceeding all expectations.

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UK Release Date: 22nd November 2013

Stars: Francis Lawrence (director), Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Sam Claflin, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Donald Sutherland, Jena Malone

Plot: Katniss and Peeta are dethroned from their respective victory riches and are put back into the arena for the most climatic and menacing of the Hunger Games, known as the Quarter Quell.

Last year, The Hunger Games was one of the most anticipated releases as the best selling series of books were inevitably adapted for the big screen. It went on to gross just short of $700,000,000 worldwide and, despite positive reviews, I forgot that the sequel was even out this years. It’s safe to say I haven’t exactly been waiting for it.

I actually found The Hunger Games to be a bit slow paced and a tad boring at times. But Catching Fire looks to take the action to a whole new level and the trailer here is a terrific one. It’s going to build the excitement for anyone who saw the first film and fans of the books are going to wet themselves at just how good this will be.

The storyline does feel a little like clutching at straws, just putting the characters back in the arena again. But hey, that’s coming from the source material and that sold millions so who am I to tell them to do any different.

The Appeal of Emma Stone

Born Emily Jean Stone the young actress took on the name Emma when registering with the Screen Actors Guild due to there already being an Emily Stone registered. That’s a nice little fact not many people will be too aware of. Anyway, Emma Stone is just one of a new wave of actresses who are currently winning critics over and gaining fans with every performance they put in. In this category I place Stone with the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, Michelle Williams and Carey Mulligan among others. But there is something different that sets Emma Stone apart from the rest; she has a very distinct and intriguing appeal.

Emma Stone got her first leading role in 2010’s Easy A, a film which focusses on the novel A Scarlet Letter and parallels that with the main character’s life: Olive, played by Emma Stone. I believe that Stone’s performance here is a clear example of just what a wonderful actress she is to watch. Olive is caught up in a web of lies after just trying to shut her friend up by telling her that she has lost her virginity, when in fact she has not. All of this gets out of hand and pretty much ruins Olive’s life. But the way the story is told is from Olive’s first person perspective, already giving us Stone’s narration. As well as this the film uses the narrative device of Stone talking into her webcam (which becomes the screen). This makes Stone’s performance just seem incredibly relaxed and natural and allowing the audience to see her in this way brings us a lot closer to the character and, in effect, Emma Stone herself. Her performance is full of vibrancy and sarcastic humour, outshone only by the frankly quite incredible Stanley Tucci.

Before Stone’s Golden Globe nominated performance in Easy A she was already making a name for herself in the comedy genre. Stone’s first film role was in Superbad, a film that began a new era of comedy films. After Superbad she appeared in a few, shall we say interesting films: The Rocker, The House Bunny and Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (but let’s not judge her) before getting back on the right track with Zombieland. Also worth noting, Stone actually auditioned for the role of Claire Bennett in Heroes but obviously lost out to Hayden Panettiere who really impressed casting directors: I would have much preferred to have seen Stone in the role though. But anyway…

Emma Stone’s career has continued to go from strength to strength and she has proven that she is not just a one trick pony, despite being more than comfortable and one of the funniest women in comedy film at the minute. She had supporting roles in Friends With Benefits and Crazy, Stupid, Love (where she would work with Ryan Gosling for the first of quite a few times over the next couple of years) before joining The Help. The Help features an ensemble cast of actresses, not one of whom puts a foot wrong in terms of their performance here. Stone joins the likes of Jessica Chastain (another relatively new actress who is just exceptional at her craft), Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard and Viola Davis. Stone’s performance helped The Help win many nomination and awards for it’s cast’s performances.

With The Amazing Spider-Man, Emma Stone became the latest actress to join the superhero film genre. However, unlike the latest incarnations of Pepper Potts, Lois Lane and Rachel Dawes we have seen, Stone’s Gwen Stacy was not the typical damsel in distress as she could more than hold her own; standing up to Flash, being incredible stubborn in an attempt to save New York that could have seen her killed as well as smacking The Lizard over the head during a fight with Spider-Man. Then Stone joined a much more testosterone fuelled ensemble in Gangster Squad, joining Ryan Gosling, Sean Penn, Josh Brolin and Anthony Mackie. She recently lent her voice to the prehistoric animation film from DreamWorks: The Croods.

I think you would have to go a long way to find any young actress working today with the combination of talent and on screen charisma that Emma Stone has. She has a wonderful presence on screen with a beautiful charm about her and her career shows no signs of slowing anytime soon. Next year will see her reprise her role of Gwen Stacy in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, while Birdman (from the director of 21 Grams and Babel) is in pre-production. She is also signed on to star in Guillermo Del Toro’s exciting Crimson Peak which is snapping up a superb cast in the form of Benedict Cumberbatch and Jessica Chastain.

Hopefully we will get to see Emma Stone taking the lead in more and more films over the next few years but for now I am happy enough seeing her play supporting roles if she continues to be as good as she is right now!

UK Release Date: 22nd March 2013.

Stars: Bryan Singer (director), Nicholas Hoult, Stanley Tucci, Ewan McGregor, Bill Nighy, Ian McShane, Warwick Davis, Eleanor Tomlinson

Plot: The long-standing peace between men and giants is threatened, as a young farmer leads an expedition into the giants’ kingdom in hopes of rescuing a kidnapped princess.

Jack and the Beanstalk is the latest fairy tale to be adapted into some modern war/adventure film, following in the footsteps of Snow White and the Huntsman and the upcoming Hansel and Gretal: Witch Hunters. Here we have the simple naive farm boy of the fairy tale transformed into some brave, giant killing soldier.

Being directed by Bryan Singer, who took the X-Men films into darkness before Batman made it cool, I am surprised by how much it looks as though Jack the Giant Slayer is being aimed at children. A lot of what we see in this trailer, the attempts at humour and even the whole aesthetic look, makes it seem as though the family audience is being targeted although how many adults are going to be prepared to sit through this film I’m not sure.

I’m not saying this looks bad though because I actually think it could be a lot of fun. I’m pleased to see Nicholas Hoult getting main parts in films these days and its good to see Ewan McGregor offering some comedy up. Jack the Giant Slayer does look incredibly CGI heavy but hopefully that won’t distract viewers too much and, from the trailer, it looks as though it won’t. This one won’t be a film for everyone but it could be a fun ride.

UK Release Date: 21st November 2012

Stars: Michael Hoffman (director), Colin Firth, Alan Rickman, Cameron Diaz, Stanley Tucci

Plot: An art curator decides to seek revenge on his abusive boss by conning him into buying a fake Monet, but his plan requires the help of an eccentric and unpredictable Texas rodeo queen.

Unfortunately, this is not a trailer for a film based around the universally popular X-Men character of the same name, even though if you type ‘Gambit trailer’ into Youtube you will just be forced to watch Taylor Kitsch as Gambit for a few seconds. What this Gambit actually is is a remake of the 1966 Michael Caine film and this trailer is bound to put a smile on anyone’s face.

Written by Joel and Ethan Coen you are guaranteed a hit really, it just seems a shame that they’re not actually directing this one. But since the script is from them you can anticipate lots of humour and great characters. Michael Hoffman’s most recent film was The Last Station which managed to get Oscar nominations for both Helen Mirren and Christopher Plummer, so maybe Hoffman can once again get the best out of his cast here.

The trailer for Gambit gives us plenty to look forward to in terms of a charming-as-ever Colin Firth and a hilarious and naked Alan Rickman; it also gives us something not to look forward to: Cameron Diaz putting on a ridiculously annoying accent as if she wasn’t irritating enough already! Luckily, the trailer puts across a suave sense of style and sophistication which Colin Firth can carry single handedly, but it looks as though Alan Rickman will be allowed to let loose and will be the cause of much laughter come the end of November.

UK Release Date: TBA.

Stars: Robert Redford (acting & directing), Shia LaBeouf, Terrence Howard, Richard Jenkins, Anna Kendrick, Brendan Gleeson, Susan Sarandon, Stanley Tucci, Nick Nolte, Chris Cooper.

Plot: A thriller circled around a former Weather Underground activist who goes on the run from a journalist who has discovered his identity.

StudioCanal has the distribution rights for The Company You Keep in the UK but a date is yet to be named. Despite this, I think that this is one of the most promising trailers/casts/premises I have seen in a long time. With a cast that boasts no less than four Oscar winners and another four Oscar nominees you can’t really expect to be disappointed here.

The storyline looks pretty good to me and seems to be a very good (if not a little similar to other thrillers) story for a thriller film. Robert Redford’s character, Jim Grant, has been hiding from the FBI for over thirty years and is wanted for bank robbery and murder. After his identity is exposed by a journalist he goes on the run to find his ex-lover in the hope that she will clear his name and prevent him from losing his eleven year old daughter (seems to me that if a man Robert Redford’s age was to have daughter she would be older than 11 though so this is clearly for a bit of emotional leverage with the audience).

Shia LaBeouf is an actor that still has to prove to me that he deserves the title of an actor but here I do think he actually looks decent and I am pretty interested in seeing his performance. Hopefully Redford being the director doesn’t take away anything from his performance in front of the camera. The trailer seems to do the film a real justice (or makes it look good anyway) as it seems to have a very good pacing and could be a good hint at what the film will be: back story to begin with, slow pacing with information through the middle, with a fast paced ending. If so, I can’t wait.