Recent Posts in movies

January 28, 2015

WHAS

The film Wet Hot American Summer came out Summer 2001 and didn't do much at the box office but had cult hit written all over it. A satire of '80s summer camp movies, it was written by David Wain and Michael Showalter of The State and featured most of the rest of that comedy in the cast. It also starred a lot of folks who'd soon be a lot more famous -- Paul Rudd, Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, and Elizabeth Banks, to name a few -- and featured songs by Shudder to Think's Craig Wedren. You probably know all this.

Director David Wain, and pretty much all of the original cast (including Cooper, Rudd, Pohler and Banks), are going back to camp for an eight-part miniseries, subtitled "First Day at Camp," that will air on Netflix this summer. Also appearing on the new series: Chris Pine, Jon Hamm, Kristen Wiig, Paul Scheer, Rob Huebel, John Slattery, and Jason Schwartzman. And probably more. They just debuted a trailer for the miniseries, which doesn't show much beyond the names of the castmembers, but you can watch it below.

Continue reading "'Wet Hot American Summer' coming back as Netflix miniseries"

January 22, 2015

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Matt Johnson hasn't made a proper The The album since 2000's Nakedself but he has done scores for a few films through his Cinéola film company. In 2007, he composed the music for his brother Gerard Johnson's film, Tony, and then in 2010 scored the documentary Moonbug. He's scored Gerard's upcoming film, Hyena, which will be out in the UK in March as will the soundtrack. Matt wrote and produced all 20 tracks on the soundtrack, and you can listen to "Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven (But Nobody Wants to Die)" via The Quietus, below.

As for the film itself, it's a crime drama starring Stephen Graham (who played Al Capone on Boardwalk Empire) and this is the synopsis:

Good policing doesn't necessarily mean doing everything by the book. But as the business of crime in London turns to favour the Albanians and Turks, how does a "good" policeman survive?
No North American release for Hyena has been set but you can watch the trailer below.

In other news, The The's classic 1983 album Soul Mining got a deluxe 30th anniversary box set reissue last year, remastered at Abbey Road Studios from the original analogue tapes and came with a bonus platter of remixes and outtakes. You can watch an unboxing video of the box set and stream the original album via Spotify, below...

Continue reading "The The did the score to new film 'Hyena' (stream a track), released 30th anniversary 'Soul Mining' box set"

by Andrew Sacher

photo by Katie Hovland
Treasure Fleet

Treasure Fleet, the Chicago band featuring members of The Arrivals, The Lawrence Arms and The Smoking Popes who put their punk spin on '60s mod/psych pop, will release the followup to 2012's Future Ways this year. It's called The Sun Machine and is due on February 10 via Recess Records (pre-order). Its new single "Max Consumption" is most likely named after The Kinks' "Maximum Consumption" (and it quotes some of its lyrics, as well as quoting Harry Nilsson's "Coconut" and Queens of the Stone Age's "Feel Good Hit of the Summer"), but it sounds more like a punked up take on The Village Green Preservation Society. That song premieres in this post and can be listened to below.

The album also functions as the soundtrack to their sci-fi film of the same name, which premiered at London's Raindance Film Festival last year. The film trailer (aka the music video for another track, "The View from Mt Olympus"), also below...

Continue reading "Treasure Fleet releasing a new LP (stream the new single)"

January 15, 2015

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The 87th Annual Academy Award nominations are out and Alejandro G. Iñárritu's flashy Birdman leads the charge with nine nominations, followed by WWII drama The Imitation Game (8), Clint Eastwood's American Sniper (7) and Richard Linklater's Boyhood (6). Whiplash, the intense drama about a young jazz drummer who falls under the tutelage of a demanding teacher, got five nominations.

The Best Song category includes "I'm Not Gonna Miss You" from documentary Glen Campbell...I'll Be Me; "Everything is Awesome" (performed by The Lonely Island and Tegan & Sara) from The LEGO Movie (which got snubbed in the Best Animated Film category); music industry comedy Begin Again's "Lost Stars" which was co-written by Greg Kurstin (The Bird & the Bee) and former child actress Danielle Brisebois; "Grateful" (written by vet Diane Warren) from Beyond the Lights; and "Glory" from Selma (performed by John Legend and Common) which won the Golden Globe for Best Song last weekend. The Best Score nominees include onetime 4AD and Fatcat signee Jóhann Jóhannsson's work on The Imitation Game which won the Golden Globe.

Find out who wins February 22 when Neil Patrick Harris hosts the 87th Annual Academy Awards, live on ABC. Full list of 2015 Oscar nominations are below...

Continue reading "2015 Oscar nominations announced"

January 7, 2015

David Cross on set with David Koechner and Amy Sedaris
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David Cross, who may be doing something as part of Mr. Show this year, is currently promoting his feature directorial debut, a comedy titled Hits. The yet-to-be-released film is choc-full of comedy talent, including Matt Walsh, James Adomian, Meredith Hagner, Derek Waters, Wyatt Cenac, Amy Sedaris, Jason Ritter, Michael Cera, Amy Carlson, Erinn Hayes, David Koechner, and Jake Cherry. What's it about? Here's the synopsis:

Hits is a dark comedy exploring the nature of fame in 21st century youtube america. The film takes place in a small town in upstate New York populated by people who trade in unrealistic expectations. It's a story in which fame, delusion, earnestness, and recklessness meet, shake hands, and disrupt the lives around them.
You can watch the trailer for Hits below.

Inspired by Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke's very successful solo album BitTorrent model and Louis CK's recent tours, Cross is aiming to distribute the film directly to fans with help from a Kickstarter campaign that is currently underway:

We want you to decide how much tickets cost and you pay artists directly, not distributors or studios. This is an experiment, a first of its kind to see if we can make it more sustainable for both fans, and filmmakers. In order to do this in theaters as widely as possible we need your help to raise $100K. We are distributing ourselves and there are costs associated with making all of this happen. In addition to theater rental fees, we need to cover our marketing and publicity efforts. We ideally want to be in 50 markets, but the more money we raise the more theaters we can be in, so if we go over $100k, we'll just expand our plans, which would be great!
You can watch a video where Cross explains the whole thing over at the Kickstarter site. If the campaign is successful, Cross is planning on distributing via bit torrent, and theaters and via iTunes, Google Play, etc. He's about a quarter of the way there, currently, with 27 days to go.

Trailer below...

Continue reading "David Cross directed a movie (watch the trailer), wants to distribute on BitTorrent, launches Kickstarter campaign "

January 6, 2015

by Bill Pearis

Cat's Eyes

Cat's Eyes, aka Horrors frontman Faris Badwan and multi-instrumentalist Rachel Zeffira, have composed the score and soundtrack for new film The Duke of Burgundy, which opens in select North American cities and VOD on January 23. The soundtrack will be out February 16 via the group's RAF label. The film was was directed by Peter Strickland who gave us 2012's superb giallo tribute, Berberian Sound Studio (which featured a score by Broadcast), and is an homage to '70s-era European erotic (Eurotic, if you will) melodramas. Faris Badwan talked to The Quietus about their approach to the project:

Like many other musicians, Rachel and I have always had aspirations towards working on film soundtracks - so we were happy when Peter trusted us to write the score for his incredible film. Working on the film, the narrative was already there and we had to write music tailored towards it. Long before any filming, we read the script and began writing music based on individual characters and themes...

...We were writing for Peter and the film rather than ourselves and in some ways that was sort of liberating. We had specific scenes to follow and subtle movements to draw attention to... it was very different to making a normal album. In the process, we must have watched the film hundreds of times... and we still like it. We were lucky in that the script was really great and there were some extremely memorable characters to work with.

Cat's Eyes' propensity for harpsichords, oboes and other baroque instrumentation seems like a perfect fit for this kind of thing, and you can stream the gorgeous opening theme to The Duke of Burgundy, below. As for the film, here's The Duke of Burgundy's one-line synopsis: "Two women take their carnal desires to the extreme in this kinky, deliciously twisted tale of sex and butterflies." The Dissolve named it their favorite film at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival, calling it "a stunning-looking and-sounding film, which occasionally digresses into pure avant-garde texture. But it's also a film about recognizable human beings, with real emotional reactions." You can see The Duke of Burgundy in NYC at the IFC Center starting January 23. You can check out the trailer and poster for the film below.

It's been almost four years since Cat's Eyes released their terrific debut and with this soundtrack, the band are officially back in action, and are currently working on their second official album. Zeffira released a solo album in 2013 which is worth checking out too.

Continue reading "Cat's Eyes composed the score for new film 'The Duke of Burgundy' (stream a track), working on second album"

December 19, 2014

by Bill Pearis

Under The Skin

I finally watched Jonathan Glazer's Under the Skin last night. It stars Scarlett Johansson as an alien who spends her time picking up men in Scotland, bringing them back to her place and... well, you should just watch it. You can stream it for free on Amazon if you have Amazon Prime.

Based on Michel Faber's novel of the same name, the film directed and co-written by Jonathan Glazer who made Birth and Sexy Beast, not to mention the videos for Radiohead's "Karma Police" and UNKLE's "Rabbit in the Headlights", among others. Species this is not, owing more to '70s experimentalists and, as you might expect from his CV, Glazer has delivered a gorgeously-shot film that is also thought provoking and unsettling. ScarJo even does a credible London accent. I already want to see it again.

After hearing my movie-minded friends rave about it all year, I finally pulled the trigger after it showed up in a few of the band/artist Top 10s we've been running. Here's what Protomartyr, said:

a visually stunning film with a really great soundtrack that defies easy explanation. Actually the real 'best' thing we saw all year. Sure, it didn't have people getting repeatedly kicked in the face or RZA trying on a Jamaican accent sporadically, but not everything can be 'Brick Mansions'.
The minimal, eerie score, which appeared on Travis from Grooms' end of year list, was done by Mica Levi (aka Micachu). It definitely enhances the off-kilter vibe of the film, and you can stream it via Rdio below.

Check it out if you haven't already, and check out nine more recommended movies from streaming sites, courtesy of Sub Pop-signed musician Daughn Gibson, below...

Continue reading "Under the Skin (scored by Micachu), and other movies streaming now (that Daughn Gibson loved in 2014) "

December 17, 2014

protomartyr

Protomartyr's second album, Under Color of Official Right, is one of the year's most acclaimed albums, matching witty if bleak observations to snarling postpunk backing. The band spent most of the year on the road, out on tours with Spray Paint, Whatever Brains and Parquet Courts, making space for both SXSW, CMJ and one of DbA's final shows, too. Which leads to Protomartyr's Top 10 of 2014 list they sent us, which could have only been sent by them. Here's the setup:

As is often the case with touring, all you have is time and it must be killed. Going to see a movie, any movie, is our default band activity. We go to the theater and whatever is showing next is what we see. We'd like to think this is the reason why we saw so much shit, but honestly, seeing something awful became an addiction. Other than that, the only criteria was that the theater had to sell booze. That became an addiction as well.
You won't find Boyhood or Birdman or Grand Budapest Hotel on this list, but it's a funny read and works as a travelogue as well. Protomartyr's "Ten Movies We Saw This Year" are listed with commentary below.

In other news, Protomartyr are part of a Joyful Noise Recordings' new subscription record club, the 2015 Flexidisc Series where "some of our favorite artists to release never-before-heard recordings on a fleeting analog format." Other artists contributing to the series include Cloud Nothings, Wye Oak, Deerhoof & Celestial Shore, Sonny & the Sunsets, and King Buzzo.

If you you're going to be in Detroit around Christmas, Protomartyr are playing on December 26 at Jumbos, a place they wrote a song about on their first album. Flyer for that is below as well...

Continue reading "Protomartyr tell us about 10 movies they saw on tour this year, part of new flexi series w/ Cloud Nothings, Wye Oak & more"

December 16, 2014

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As mentioned, sci-fi/horror master and composer John Carpenter will be releasing Lost Themes via Sacred Bones on February 3.  (Pre-order.) There will be a deluxe edition of the record available too, with remixes by Zola Jesus & Dean Hurley, Blanck Mass, Bill Kouligas, Silent Servant, Ohgr (Skinny Puppy), and J.G Thirlwell. None of the remixes have been shared yet, but you can listen to "Vortex" from the album below.

In conjunction with this, BAM will be presenting a monthlong retrospective featuring all of the director's work titled "John Carpenter: Master of Fear" from February 5 - 22. The series kicks off on February 5 at the BAM Howard Gillman Opera House with a conversation between Carpenter and NPR's Brooke Gladstone. Tickets for that event are on sale now for BAM Cinema Club members, and go on sale to the general public on Thursday (12/18).

The film series includes Carpenter's best-known films (Halloween, The Thing, Escape from New York, Starman) as well as lesser-known gems like Assault on Precinct 13 and They Live. The retrospective also features "Carpenter Selects," a sidebar showcasing three films with exceptional scores that the director has cited as influences on his work: William Friedkin's Sorcerer, Sam Peckinpah's Straw Dogs, and sci-fi classic Forbidden Planet. Tickets for the screenings are on sale now for BAM Cinema Club members and will go on sale to the general public on Thursday. Full schedule of screenings, most of which are being shown in 35mm, below.

Continue reading "John Carpenter talking 'Lost Themes' at BAM film retrospective, gets remixed by Zola Jesus, Thirlwell, Silent Servant & more"

December 15, 2014

OST

As mentioned, the Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood did the score for Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice which is in theaters now. It includes "Spooks," which was originally to be a Radiohead song and never finished, here performed by Greenwood and Supergrass' Gaz Coombes and Danny Goffey with some of Joanna Newsom's narration laid overtop. The rest of Greenwood's score is more traditional orchestration, with lots of strings and wind instruments. The official soundtrack mixes Greenwood's contribution with songs used in the movie, like Can's "Vitamin C," Minnie Ripperton's "Les Fleur" and Neil Young's "Journey Through the Past." You can stream the whole Inherent Vice soundtrack, via Spotify, below...

Continue reading "stream Jonny Greenwood's 'Inherent Vice' soundtrack"

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