Ep. 19 – Gone Girl, Adam Sandler’s moving to Netflix, a Zombieland sequel, Joaquin Phoenix out of the running for Doctor Strange, and our Netflix picks.

October 6, 2014 by  
Filed under Podcast

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In this week’s episode of The CineSnob Podcast, the guys from CineSnob.net review “Gone Girl.” They also discuss Adam Sandler signing a four-movie deal for movies exclusively for Netflix, a “Zomebieland” sequel and Joaquin Phoenix being out of the running for Marvel’s “Doctor Strange.”

[0:00-4:25] Intro; Everyone is tired and Jerrod bought a Disneyland jacket
[04:25-18:57] Adam Sandler signs a four-picture deal with Netflix.
[18:57-27:03] Zombieland sequel is coming
[27:03-36:54] Joaquin Phoenix no longer in talks to play Marvel’s Doctor Strange
[36:54-50:49] Gone Girl
[50:49-1:01:28] Gone Girl Spoiler Talk
[1:01:28-1:08:24] Gone Girl Wrap-up
[1:08:24-1:34:53] No Ticket Required – Netflix picks
[1:34:53-1:41:38] Teases for next week and close

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To give your feedback, e-mail us at podcast [at] cinesnob [dot] net, or leave a voicemail at 920-FILM-210.

Gone Girl

October 3, 2014 by  
Filed under Jerrod, Reviews

Starring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry
Directed by: David Fincher (“The Social Network,” “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo”)
Written by: Gillian Flynn (debut)

When a beautiful young woman disappears mysteriously in this country, leaving behind a too-calm husband who, in the 30 seconds of video the 24-hour cable news networks replay hour after hour, doesn’t appear to be concerned enough, the court of public opinion—and the shrieking harpies on said cable news networks—has the husband convicted of murder before the first commercial break.

“Gone Girl,” the latest film from director David Fincher, based on the smash-hit novel by Gillian Flynn (who also wrote the screenplay), feels ripped from the pages of Us Weekly and the programming of HLN. Laid-back, jock-ish Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) returns home from his bar to find his wife Amy (Rosamund Pike) is missing, the house amiss with the signs of a struggle. A diligent detective (Kim Dickens) and her skeptical partner (Patrick Fugit) begin investigating, noticing the pieces of Nick’s story don’t add up, with expensive credit card splurges in his name and the damning testimony of a neighbor who claims Amy told her of Nick’s physical and verbal abuse.

Nick also comes across aloof and cold as the national media spotlight intensifies on him, committing huge PR gaffes like smiling at a press conference about his missing wife and posing for a selfie with an over-eager volunteer, the blood in the water attracting a Nancy Grace-like shark (Missi Pyle) who practically calls for Nick’s execution every night on national TV. But is Nick innocent or guilty? Was Amy the abused wife her diary describes, or the anti-social trust fund shut-in bitter about moving from New York City to Missouri? Where exactly does the truth lie?

While both Affleck and Fincher have referred to “Gone Girl” as a satire in interviews leading up to the film’s release, this description misses the mark. Sure, the depiction of the media in the movie is ridiculous, but nothing comes close to biting satire or even the hoisting-with-their-own-petard model that both “The Daily Show” and “Last Week Tonight” traffic in. Sure, it’s stupid, but all Fincher and Flynn really did was change the names of the anchors. Toothless satire aside, “Gone Girl” is a fantastic face-value thriller, with enough twists and turns to remain completely unpredictable. Affleck and Pike are great in roles that call for both of them to be honest with each other while being dishonest to the world, and Tyler Perry—of all people–turns in a funny, assured performance as a high-profile celebrity lawyer with more nuance than 10 Madeas smashed together.

Maybe Fincher will be watching the reaction audiences at large have to the film, silently judging us all as philistines who fail to notice the scathing criticism he thinks he’s delivering to the already dead horse of the mainstream media’s credibility. Good thing the movie is extremely enjoyable anyway.

Scoot McNairy – Non-Stop (DVD)

June 13, 2014 by  
Filed under Interviews

In the high-intensity action-thriller “Non-Stop” starring Liam Neeson, actor Scoot McNairy stars as Tom Bowen, a passenger on a non-stop flight from New York to London, who is caught up in what may be a hijacking situation when a U.S Federal Marshal (Neeson) begins to receive text messages threatening the lives of everyone on the airplane.

During his 13-year career, McNairy, 36, has starred in such films as “Monsters,” “Killing Them Softly” and “Promised Land.” He also had roles in the last two Best Picture Oscar winners, “Argo” and “12 Years a Slave.”

In the last 86 years of the Academy Awards, only two actors (Wallis Clark and Harry Davenport) have starred in three consecutive films that went on to win the Oscar for Best Picture. It’s quite possible McNairy’s name could be added to that short list next year if his film “Gone Girl,” directed by David Fincher (“The Social Network”), is nominated, which is definitely a possibility according to most Oscar pundits.

During an interview with me for the DVD/Blu-ray release of “Non-Stop,” McNairy talked about the badassedness of actor Liam Neeson, his fear of airplanes and working with two-time Oscar nominated director Fincher on “Gone Girl,” which hits theaters this fall.

Since you spent some time with Liam Neeson on the set of “Non-Stop,” from your estimation, what it is about him that has made him become such a badass on the big screen since around 2008?

Because he’s such a badass in person! All you have to do is put a camera on the guy. He’s so fascinating to watch. But he is one of the nicest most down-to-earth guys I’ve met. You just want to be around him.

This is one of those films where you really don’t know who the bad guy is until the very end. Is it frustrating for you as an actor when reviews or websites spoil the ending in some way?

Not necessarily. I don’t really read reviews. I like to go to the movies and form my own opinion. People shouldn’t go on websites if they don’t want to know the ending of a movie. In this movie, even if you know the ending, it’s still incredible to watch how everything unfolds. It has a good vibe and is still worth the watch.

Director Jaume Collet-Serra does a good job setting up tense scenes. I though he did that with his 2009 film “Orphan” and again here with “Non-Stop.” What kind of director is he on the set and how is he able to create this suspenseful tone?

He is very, very specific and detailed. He knows exactly what he wants. I agree with you. He has a talent in building suspense. He’s incredible at making thrillers. He’s really great with his actors. He’s really focused.

Speaking of directors, you’ve worked with some great ones over the last few years like Terry Zwigoff, Gus Van Sant and Ben Affleck. Is that something you look at when you’re choosing a project?

Sometimes. It’s always great to work with a director you admire and respect. But sometimes it’s the script you identify with. I would say it’s probably 50/50.

Since this film has a lot to do with airport security, or lack thereof, is that something you worry about as a passenger? Last week, the airport in Detroit went on lockdown because a man forced his way through the security checkpoint. Then just this week a man drove his truck through a security gate in Wichita, Kansas. Do you think about those things or have we gotten to the point where we feel we’re pretty safe these days on an airplane?

You’re asking the wrong guy. I’m terrified of flying. Never mind bombs or things like that. I’m just scared to take off and land in a plane. Reading the script [for “Non-Stop”], I really identified with the fear of not having control of your life.

As an actor who I’m assuming spends a lot of time on airplanes, how do you handle that?

Very, very carefully. I’m very delicate with myself before boarding a plane. There’s a lot of prep time involve. Even then, I still panic on takeoff. I may grab the person’s arm next to me. Once we’re up in the air though, I calm down.

You’ve starred in the last two Best Picture Oscar winners, “Argo” and “12 Years a Slave.” Should I go put my money down on “Gone Girl” for this year?

You know, maybe. [Director David] Fincher makes incredible movies, so there’s no doubt in my mind this movie will be a good one. I feel incredibly lucky and blessed even just to work with all the people I’ve worked with on those projects.

I’m assuming working with Fincher was an incredible experience.

Absolutely. Even before I wanted to be an actor I wanted to work with that guy. To work with him was really fun and exciting and something I can check off my Bucket List. I’m hoping I can come back and work with him again.

Someone you’ve worked with and seen grow this year is director Gareth Edwards who put you in his 2010 film “Monsters.” What did you think about what he was able to do with the reboot of “Godzilla?”

Gareth is one of those people that will deliver an amazing story, whether you give him $100 grand or $100 million. He’s an incredible talent. We haven’t even gotten to the surface of what he can actually do. He’s a lovely, really funny guy. He’s great to hang out with.

You’ve been in this industry for about 13 years now. What have you learned about yourself as an actor over that time?

The more preparation I do, the more comfortable I feel. All and all, I’d say I just try to keep up with it. The work days are long, but you really have to love what you’re doing, and I do. It’s very rewarding. I’ve worked really hard and am very satisfied to be where I’m at.