November 13, 2009
James Schamus talks Taking Woodstock - RT Interview
James Schamus might be a workaholic. If it's not enough that he's the head of Focus Features -- the independent imprint of Universal -- he's also an established producer and screenwriter best known for his collaborations with Ang Lee. This week sees the release of the pair's latest, Taking Woodstock, a comedy about a family integral to the birth of the infamous Woodstock concert of 1969. And if that isn't enough, he's an associate professor of film at Columbia University and just delivered a politically-charged lecture to a rapt London Film Festival audience. While in town, he sat down with RT to talk about the release of Taking Woodstock, his work at Focus and his thoughts on the Tomatometer...
November 12, 2009
Five Favourite Films with Ang Lee
The rule that no two Ang Lee movies are ever the same is confidently kept intact with the release of his latest, Taking Woodstock, a comedy about the true story behind the Woodstock music festival in 1969. It follows romantic wartime drama Lust, Caution and the Oscar-winning Brokeback Mountain on the director's CV and arrives in UK cinemas this week. As RT sits down with Lee to ask his five favourite films, he's keen to point out that if we'd asked him another day we'd have received an entirely different list. "It's a hard one to answer," he tells us. "I could give 50, or 100. I'll throw out 5 that come into my head."
August 27, 2009
Critics Consensus: Guess Halloween 2's Tomatometer!
This week at the movies, we've got the return of Michael Myers (Halloween 2, starring Malcolm McDowell and Scout Taylor-Compton), three dimensional fatalities (The Final Destination, starring Shantel VanSanten and Bobby Campo), and the dawning of the Age of Aquarius (Taking Woodstock, starring Demetri Martin and Emile Hirsch). What do the critics have to say? Rob Zombie is back with a new chapter in the rebooted Halloween franchise. However, we don't yet know for sure if Michael Myers' latest adventure is a trick or a treat, since it wasn't screened for critics. It appears we'll have to wait to see what fate has in store for the young protagonists of The Final Destination, as it was not screened for critics prior to release. Depending on who you ask, the Woodstock Music & Art Fair was either a beautiful, generation-defining cultural touchstone or an overrated, muddy bummer - or perhaps a bit of both.
August 27, 2009
Box Office Guru Preview: Fans Choose Sides in Horror Showdown
In a move that studios rarely make these days, two films from the exact same genre open opposite each other on the same day targeting much of the same audience. The Weinstein Co., still riding high on the success of last weekend's Inglourious Basterds, returns with Halloween II while Warner Bros. counters with another R-rated horror sequel with The Final Destination which differentiates itself by offering 3D chills and kills.
May 17, 2009
Cannes 2009: RT Chats to Ang Lee and team Taking Woodstock
It's not every day you get to have lunch with Ang Lee, so when RT were invited to do just that today in Cannes we couldn't refuse. Also joining us, James Schamus, Demetri Martin, Emile Hirsch and Imelda Staunton, and over a three-course meal at the Carlton Hotel on the Croisette we talked cinema, music and, of course, Woodstock. Lee's latest film, Taking Woodstock, which premiered Last Night at the festival, is the tale of Elliot Tibor, the man with the permit that made Woodstock happen, and of his experience of the event coming to terms with his own identity while trying to hold onto his roots.
May 17, 2009
Cannes 2009: The Tomato Report ? Critics Cool on Ang Lee?s Taking Woodstock
As Ang Lee's latest, Taking Woodstock, received its premiere last night at the Cannes Film Festival, critics were intrigued to point out a number of similarities between it and Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous. They both involve young men on the cusp of adulthood finding themselves through seminal rock music while trying to piece together a relationship with their difficult parents. No surprise that Almost Famous has become the film used as a yardstick to Ang Lee's latest, as critics struggle to wonder what it is Lee brings to the table. Taking Woodstock is the tale of Elliot Tiber, president of the Bethel Chamber of Commerce, who held the only permit for a music festival in the area and invited Woodstock's organisers to the town when they were denied a permit in the nearby town of Wallkill.
May 10, 2009
Cannes 2009: RT's 10 Most Anticipated Movies
The Cannes Film Festival will screen nearly 100 films as part of its Official Selection and associated sidebars when it kicks off next week in the Southern France town. The festival runs from 13-24th May and there are plenty of exciting new movies to keep an eye out for as they premiere on Cannes' infamous Croisette. To save you the hassle of having to research the whole programme, RT has helpfully chosen ten films we're most excited to see. Join us as we take a journey through the Cannes Film Festival 2009, kicking off with our daily coverage on Wednesday.