Screen Junkies » Michelle Monaghan http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:35:11 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Ain’t No Problem A Bazooka Can’t Solve In ‘Machine Gun Preacher’ Trailer http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/aint-no-problem-a-bazooka-cant-solve-in-machine-gun-preacher-trailer/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/aint-no-problem-a-bazooka-cant-solve-in-machine-gun-preacher-trailer/#comments Fri, 19 Aug 2011 14:36:51 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=225083 Gerard Butler gets results.

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Wow. Gerard Butler is helping hungry kids in a way that makes Sally Struthers look super-lazy. He stars in Machine Gun Preacher as Sam Childers, a former drug dealer who decides to up his good karma by traveling to the Sudan and helping the impoverished by kicking hunger down a bottomless pit. While building an orphanage, he also forms a militia to fight against the warlords that are drafting the children to become soldiers.

It’s your move, Sean Penn.

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Duncan Jones, Michelle Monaghan, And Vera Farmiga Talk ‘Source Code’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/duncan-jones-michelle-monaghan-and-vera-farmiga-talk-source-code/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/duncan-jones-michelle-monaghan-and-vera-farmiga-talk-source-code/#comments Tue, 29 Mar 2011 18:16:44 +0000 Fred Topel http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=204251 The film's director and stars break down the complex format.

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Source Code was the opening night premiere movie of SXSW and I got to interview three of the key players in Austin. The Friday everyone can relive the eight minutes Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) relives on a doomed train so he can find out who bombed it.

Moon writer/director Duncan Jones directed Source Code, this time from a script by Ben Ripley. The idea of connecting to the eight minute memory of deceased terrorism victims still seems like the kind of highbrow science fiction in which Jones specializes. Jones also happily gave some spoilers, easter eggs for time travel fans to watch for, but wait until you’ve seen the movie if you want them to be a surprise.

Q: Do you see the connection between Moon and Source Code as intelligent sci-fi that doesn’t condescend to the audience?

Duncan Jones: I think Inception really is the obvious, had to say that one. Inception has kind of opened the floodgates a little bit. Mine was a little tiny film. I think District 9 did an amazing job of both visually and in some ways intellectually stimulating the audience but Inception has really proven that there is an audience out there for films that really challenge the audience to work out what the hell is going on at times. I think that’s going to open up some opportunities for some kinds of sci-fi that haven’t been made since maybe the ‘70s. I think it’s a good thing.

Q: Were you a “Quantum Leap” fan?

DJ: Did you pick up on the voice I am a “Quantum Leap” fan. I did notice the similarities when I was reading the script and I don’t know if you were going to say, but the voice of Colter’s father is relevant in bringing up “Quantum Leap.”

Q: I totally missed that. I was asking because of the mirror reflection.

DJ: It is. Scott Bakula is the voice of Colter’s father. In fact, if you get the chance to watch it a second time, you’ll notice he does actually say, “Oh boy.” You can tell [your readers] that and you can even say that you realized that.

Q: Are we supposed to debate the ending or is it definitive?

DJ: It’s definitive to me. I am more than happy to see what the reaction is and see what people’s interpretations are but I feel very comfortable I know what’s going on. I think there is a real head scratcher for the audience at the end there and I think it involves where our main protagonist has ended up and what the implications of that actually are.

Q: The questions about your father, David Bowie, and legacy were covered for Moon. My only question is were you a Labyrinth fan growing up?

DJ: I’ll tell you what. It was difficult to separate myself as my dad’s son watching that film, so watching the film was not as enjoyable as being there while it was being made because I was actually on the set while they were making Labyrinth. That to me was the extraordinary experience and the thing that did stick with me and change me.

Q: Were you there for the Helping Hands?

DJ: Oh, I was there for the Helping Hands. I was also there for the goblin village. I think to me the most exciting thing was the actual all-embracing set. It’s like my favorite thing about Blade Runner, the idea that you could leave the characters, you could pan the camera off the characters and you’d feel like you were still in that world. On the Labyrinth set, I was in a world where they were shooting that way but there was still this huge goblin village over here and stuff over here. You really felt like you were in that world.

Q: Just off Moon, you could probably get a budget of at least $10 million for a reasonable second feature. Is Mute too ambitious for that type of budget?

DJ: I think so. I think Mute would’ve been more comfortable in the same kind of budget as Source Code was, but I have lived with it for such a long time and I have such strong feelings about how to do it right that at this stage, I don’t want to take any shortcuts. If I’m going to do it, I’m going to do it right and that means I have to be patient. I have to wait and I have something else I’m working on which I know I can get made and I feel very excited about. I think by making it a graphic novel, I can probably expand on certain things which I had never intended to expand on as a first feature film

Q: When you say “can get made next,” what are the elements that make you think that?

DJ: My producer and I have been realistic about both tonally and character-wise what is needed in order to find people who are willing to invest both as performers and financially to get the film made, but still do it in such a way that I feel that it’s worth making. It’s a story that I want to tell.

Michelle Monaghan plays Christine, a woman on the train sitting across from Colter when he wakes up in the body of Sean Fentriss. She replays the train scene seven times, a little differently each time Colter tries to fix things. She was almost on her way out of Austin to catch a plane when we spoke.

Q: Was it your job to bring the reality to this outrageous sci-fi concept?

Michelle Monaghan: I think so. I think that’s sort of the heart. I think it was my job and Vera’s job because Vera’s really conflicted. She’s morally conflicted obviously and I think really the heart of the matter is really about living your life to the fullest. I think that’s what Christine is conflicted with in her own life.

Q: Is the film saying that even if none of these changes last, it’s still worth making it better for 8 minutes?

MM: Yeah, I think. Yeah, because I think that’s life. We all do things that may not last but hopefully they inspire other people and they pay it forward. I think absolutely, I totally agree. Good will lingers.

Q: I first spoke to you for Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. What has this ride been like for you?

MM: Oh my gosh, it’s so amazing. That was one of the best experience I’ve ever had. It was just a great film. I still love it to this day and I’m good friends with Shane and Robert and Val still. I just had a really good run and I’m really grateful. I’ve had the opportunity to work with a lot of great filmmakers. I’m really proud of the films I’ve been in and I just want to continue to do films that are big and small.

Q: That’s what you’ve done.

MM: Yeah, it’s important to me. Nowadays it’s really tricky to find a good story, a story that’s compelling with really rich, colorful characters that are really reflective of true life. I find that the meat of that is in independent film. So as long as we keep getting festivals like this to appreciate and honor independent films, wow, by god, I’ll still be doing them.

Vera Farmiga is on the other side of the source code. Every time Colter returns to present day, Goodwyn (Farmiga) is debriefing him for intel. Colter’s not the most cooperative soldier either, and Goodwyn can’t really explain exactly what he’s doing going back in time for eight minute increments.

Q: What was your take on the dilemma of motivating Colter when you couldn’t explain what he was involved in?

Vera Farmiga: I think keeping in mind the urgency of the situation and urgency of the task at hand, which is life saving and preventing catastrophe. The frustration, that’s where it comes from, keeping in mind the urgency of what’s going on. It’s called parenting.

Q: Does Source Code deal with faith in a way like you dealt with in Higher Ground?

VF: Well, to me there’s a lonesomeness in this, stuck in space and time and this loneliness where that might echo Higher Ground in a way that when doubt enters the faith equation, you’re in limbo. In that respect, I feel like Colter is a man who’s lost in knowing who exactly he is. He’s in limbo. He’s lost.

Q: Do you agree with the worldview that even if these eight minutes won’t matter, we should make them the best eight minutes we can?

VF: Sure, and I think that was the note the film left me on upon the first reading really was a reminder to cherish everything that is most dear to you in your life and to acknowledge it, be present and not take it for granted and treasure those things.

Q: Who is Goodwyn when she’s off work?

VF: Yeah, we’re clued into the fact that she has a marriage that expired, that didn’t work. You have to suppose that she’s married to her job and thus is probably a very lonesome person. Honestly, I don’t necessarily think that whether you think of her as someone with children, I don’t know if any of that is imperative to the dynamic between her and Colter and the mission and what the story is. We decided that she was someone who just is consumed with work and that when career comes first, oftentimes it’s a pretty lonely existence. More often than not, if you’re career minded you’re coming home to an empty house and I think that’s why connections with her are life changing.

Source Code hits theaters Friday.

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SXSW Review: Source Code http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/sxsw-review-source-code/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/sxsw-review-source-code/#comments Sat, 12 Mar 2011 08:16:07 +0000 Fred Topel http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=201393 An intelligent sci-fi with thoughtful themes.

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Source Code is not a time travel movie. It is a time re-assignment movie. Dr. Rutlidge (Jeffrey Wright) would want me to make that clear. It is a smart sci-fi movie and a thriller that happens to support my worldview.

Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) is part of a military experiment designed by Rutlidge. They send Colter into the body of Sean on a train eight minutes before it explodes. Goodwyn (Vera Farmiga) debriefs Colter each time he returns, so they can find out who bombed the train and stop his next attack on Chicago.

Sounds like a more limited “Quantum Leap.” Sounds like a serious Groundhog Day. It’s more. There are familiar elements of time travel stories for fun. The same woman spills coffee each time. The same guy knocks a bunch of files on the floor. Colter gets better at moving through the scenario to piece together the attack.

The film doesn’t just drop red herrings. It beats up its red herrings. Colter also tries to save Sean’s girlfriend, Christina (Michelle Monaghan), which you’d surely wonder about if you watched the train explosion over and over.

What’s deeper is the science of the source code is both quantum and metaphysical. Rutlidge explains the energy field that remains after death and the memory remaining in a postmortem brain. Together, they let Colter’s unique DNA explore a version of the tragic events. Read any spiritual text for more on the metaphysical connection between all living things.

We see the train scene repeat seven times, and there are two more trips we don’t see. Each time, they think of a new way for Colter to die, triggering his return to the present, so it’s not always in the explosion. The eight minute timeframe is a tight increment of suspense. You watch the clock on both sides, Colter’s and Goodwyn’s.

Some nitpicks don’t undermine the power of the story, but the CGI explosion is really bad. There is also a train jump that looks ridiculous, but I appreciate the effort to slam Jake Gyllenhaal around. The ideas behind the effects are worth it, and some of the shots of flames within the train have an aesthetic beauty, if not realism.

The film ultimately asks a beautiful question. Even if you can’t ultimately change the past, shouldn’t you still do it just for the sake of making that temporary alternate history better? Duncan Jones was not a one hit wonder. He’s the go to guy for intelligent sci-fi with thoughtful themes.

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Jake Gyllenhaal Is A Creepy And Talkative Passenger http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-is-a-creepy-and-talkative-passenger/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-is-a-creepy-and-talkative-passenger/#comments Wed, 23 Feb 2011 20:27:30 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Video&p=29391 The second trailer for Duncan Jones's Source Code wastes no time getting to the point. If you like your intrigue sprinkled with cool special effects and Jake Gyllenhaal jumping around on a train, this is your leading source of joy.

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The second trailer for Duncan Jones‘s Source Code wastes no time getting to the point. If you like your intrigue sprinkled with cool special effects and Jake Gyllenhaal jumping around on a train, this is your leading source of joy. 

Jake Gyllenhaal is beamed into the body of a doomed train passenger and only has eight minutes to locate a bomb before it explodes. When he fails to do so, he’s beamed back. The more he travels back. the more events shift and change. Careful playing with that kind of fire, Jake. If you mess around too much, your father may never beat up a rapist outside the Enchantment Under The Sea Dance. Then where would you be?

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Judi Dench And Michelle Monaghan Together At Last! http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/judi-dench-and-michelle-monaghan-want-better-living-through-chemistry/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/judi-dench-and-michelle-monaghan-want-better-living-through-chemistry/#comments Mon, 14 Feb 2011 17:22:00 +0000 Joseph Gibson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=26682 Judi Dench and Michelle Monaghan want 'Better Living Through Chemistry'.

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This weekend, unbeknownst to you, there were movie deals being signed in blood over at the European Film Market in Berlin. One of these deals involves a neo-noir thriller entitled Better Living Through Chemistry, which is now set to star Judi Dench and Michelle Monaghan. They’re joining Jeremy Renner and Jennifer Garner, who have been attached for a few months now. Here’s what the movie’s about:

“[A] pharmacist (Renner) who begins a prescription drug-fueled affair with a trophy wife (Garner) that leads to the two plotting to kill her husband.”

That sounds pretty cool, actually. The movie is to be written and directed by David Posamentier and Geoff Moore, probably during a 4-month prescription drug binge. I hope there’s Cialis involved! (The Playlist)

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Jake Gyllenhaal Experiences Commuter Hell In ‘Source Code’ Trailer http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-experiences-commuter-hell-in-source-code-trailer/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-experiences-commuter-hell-in-source-code-trailer/#comments Sat, 20 Nov 2010 01:50:25 +0000 Col. Longshanks http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Video&p=8856 Summit has dropped the trailer for Duncan Jones's Source Code, and it's a good ol' fashioned brain tickler. Jake Gyllenhaal is a Captain who wakes up in the body of another man. He soon finds out that he's part of a government experiment called the "Source Code," which enables him to cross over into another man's identity in the last 8 minutes of his life.

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Summit has dropped the trailer for Duncan Jones‘s Source Code, and it’s a good ol’ fashioned brain tickler. Jake Gyllenhaal is a Captain who wakes up in the body of another man. He soon finds out that he’s part of a government experiment called the”Source Code,” which enables him to cross over into another man’s identity in the last 8 minutes of his life. He relives a massive train explosion over and over and over again in an effort to find the bomber and get the damn train safely to its stop. It looks one notch more intense than your average NYC work commute, which is saying a lot. Michelle Monaghan plays the love interest, and Vera Farmiga and Jeffrey Wright run the program. I wish more code writers at my office looked like Vera Farmiga. And smelled less like Pringles. Love you guys! (Please don’t destroy my site).

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Michelle Monaghan http://www.screenjunkies.com/gallery/michelle-monaghan/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/gallery/michelle-monaghan/#comments Fri, 05 Nov 2010 23:33:48 +0000 Col. Longshanks http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Gallery&p=7080 Based on the production stills we’ve seen from Michelle Monaghan’s upcoming film Due Date, it appears she’ll be playing a role best described as “pregnant wife on phone.” With Robert...

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Based on the production stills we’ve seen from Michelle Monaghan’s upcoming film Due Date, it appears she’ll be playing a role best described as “pregnant wife on phone.” With Robert Downey Jr. on the other end of the line, however, those are bound to be some pretty entertaining phone calls. Maybe Zach Galifianakis will even jump into the conversation at one point to make the whole thing a three-way call of weirdness, coolness, and hot-from-the-chest-up-unless-you’re-super-into-pregnant-chicks-for-whatever-reason-ness. We’ll just have to wait and see.

A word from Michelle: Interview with a Vampire, I loved that!”

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Review: Due Date http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-due-date/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-due-date/#comments Fri, 05 Nov 2010 21:29:54 +0000 Fred Topel http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=6971 Due Date is a slow build of a comedy, and it’s effective at that. By the time it gets really crazy, you’re so waiting for it that it’s a cathartic release through the rest of the movie. It also means that the first half could be a bit of a chore if you’re not in it for the long haul.

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Due Date is a slow build of a comedy, and it’s effective at that. By the time it gets really crazy, you’re so waiting for it that it’s a cathartic release through the rest of the movie. It also means that the first half could be a bit of a chore if you’re not in it for the long haul.

Peter Highman (Robert Downey, Jr.) isn’t an entirely likeable guy. Keeping in touch with his wife by Bluetooth is fine, because a man’s got to work, but he does seem to court disaster with his attitude towards other people. Ethan Tremblay (Zach Galifianakis) is an oblivious screw-up, as frustrating as he is lovable.

So the first half of their adventure is full of normal mishaps: an airport misunderstanding, running out of money, an automobile accident. Peter faces an ethical dilemma when he considers leaving Ethan, and Ethan has an emotional stake in the road trip too, because he’s got his father’s ashes. Due Date starts there and then builds to crazy.

Peter actually softens after he’s survived the worst of things, but to appreciate that you have to see him flip out for a while. Ethan starts to say more random non sequitur lines about Shakespeare, and there is more slapstick on the bumpy road. The stunts are huge, really eye popping setups that make you worry for the characters. You’re probably never worried for their life, but you’d worry how on earth they’ll get out of the latest situation when it seems so debilitating.

Sounds like an instant riot, right? To get there is gradual. The first automobile accident really plays the reality of an injury. It’s kind of intense, certainly not comedic slapstick. Peter and Ethan really bite at each other, and the emotional attacks really cut deep. You expect a comedy to throw in the heart, not go all Precious: Based on the novel Push by Sapphire on you. You need that to appreciate when they get goofy though.

The forces that push them together make sense and build up to outrageous extremes. It takes the exact right exchange of words to get them kicked off a plane, but it seems natural, not contrived. Ethan is relentlessly unhelpful, but again, Peter doesn’t exactly smooth situations over provoking the people whose help he needs.

Some of the early jokes aren’t as funny as they think they are, like Peter riffing on baby names or his chauffeur butting into the conversation. That, I’m just going to have to call it like I see it. It does get crazy funny though. People will say it’s not as funny as The Hangover but The Hangover only works because of the tonal shifts too. Due Date has different sorts of tonal shifts but it commits and gets to a good place.

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Robert Downey Jr. Spits On a Dog In New ‘Due Date’ Trailer http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/robert-downey-jr-spits-on-a-dog-in-new-due-date-trailer/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/robert-downey-jr-spits-on-a-dog-in-new-due-date-trailer/#comments Thu, 16 Sep 2010 23:31:34 +0000 Reza F. Warner Bros has dropped the new trailer for Todd Phillips‘s Due Date. We get a ton more footage in this one, as well as Robert Downey Jr. spitting directly in...

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Warner Bros has dropped the new trailer for Todd Phillips‘s Due Date. We get a ton more footage in this one, as well as Robert Downey Jr. spitting directly in the face of an adorable French Bulldog. The outright gall!

In the film, Downey Jr. plays an expectant first time father who’s forced to go on a cross-country road trip with an aspiring actor (Zach Galifiankis) to get home to his wife (Michelle Monaghan) before she pops out the kid. It’s basically Planes, Trains, and Automobiles with a French Bulldog, but that John Hughes classic rocks and hopefully this road trip flick will too.

Check out the trailer after the jump…


Due Date New Trailer – Watch more Movie Trailers

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Due Date http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/films/due-date/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/films/due-date/#comments Wed, 14 Jul 2010 20:03:05 +0000 Defy Media Director: Todd PhillipsCast: Robert Downey Jr., Zach Galifiankis, Jamie Foxx, Michelle MonaghanSynopsis: High-strung father-to-be Peter Highman is forced to hitch a ride with aspiring actor Ethan Tremblay on a road trip in order to make it to his child's birth on time.Release Date: November 5, 2010

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Director: Todd Phillips

Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Zach Galifiankis, Jamie Foxx, Michelle Monaghan

Synopsis: High-strung father-to-be Peter Highman is forced to hitch a ride with aspiring actor Ethan Tremblay on a road trip in order to make it to his child’s birth on time.

Release Date: November 5, 2010

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Vera Farmiga & Michelle Monaghan Join Duncan Jones’s ‘Source Code’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/vera-farmiga-michelle-monaghan-join-duncan-joness-source-code/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/vera-farmiga-michelle-monaghan-join-duncan-joness-source-code/#comments Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Moon director Duncan Jones will be following up his debut with another sci-fi entry. Source Code stars Jake Gyllenhaal as a soldier investigating a terrorist bombing of a train. Using an experimental technology, Gyllenhaal enters the body of an unknown commuter and must relive the bombing over and over again until he finds who is responsible for the act (Could it be him? What are the twist-ending chances??). Vera Farmiga and Michelle Monaghan have just joined the time-travel mystery. Farmiga will play the communications officer controlling Gyllenhaal and Monaghan will play a love interest he encounters while travelling. Time to come clean a little bit. I originally planned to group the above pictures of the actresses together in the hopes that one thing may lead to another and that they would start to kiss a little bit. Then that baby had to show up and spoil my genius plot. I'll get you for this baby! Just as soon as I can pull my pants back up. (THR)

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Moon director Duncan Jones will be following up his debut with another sci-fi entry. Source Code stars Jake Gyllenhaal as a soldier investigating a terrorist bombing of a train. Using an experimental technology, Gyllenhaal enters the body of at unknown commuter and must relive the bombing over and over again until he finds who is responsible for the act (Could it be him? What are the twist-ending chances??). Vera Farmiga and Michelle Monaghan have just joined the time-travel mystery.

Farmiga will play the communications officer controlling Gyllenhaal and Monaghan will play a love interest he encounters while travelling. Time to come clean a little bit. I originally planned to group the above pictures of the actresses together in the hopes that one thing may lead to another and that they would start to kiss a little bit. Then that baby had to show up and spoil my genius plot. I’ll get you for this baby! Just as soon as I can pull my pants back up. (THR)

  

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