Screen Junkies » neil labute http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Fri, 12 Sep 2014 21:34:42 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Neil LaBute And Aaron Eckhart Getting The Band Back Together? http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/neil-labute-and-aaron-eckhart-getting-the-band-back-together/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/neil-labute-and-aaron-eckhart-getting-the-band-back-together/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 17:53:57 +0000 Joseph Gibson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=210935 Wouldn't it be funny if 'The Geography of Hope' featured Aaron Eckhart getting attacked by bees?

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Neil LaBute and Aaron Eckhart notably collaborated on In the Company of Men back in 1997 (and again on Possession in 2002). Now, it appears that they might be getting back in each other’s company again, on The Geography of Hope. The movie will also star Ed Harris, and here’s what they’ll be pretending to do:

“In the 1970s-set story, two crooks (Eckhart and Harris) flee to Baja, Mexico, after a robbery in a San Diego convenience store goes bad. There they encounter several American women, and they find themselves torn between the impulse to grift the ladies and romance them.”

The script was written by LaBute years ago, and definitely seems to be classic LaBute. Now it’s time for an obligatory reference to LaBute’s Wicker Man remake: Wouldn’t it be funny if The Geography of Hope featured Aaron Eckhart getting attacked by bees? (LA Times)

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Neil LaBute Will Find Out Who Poisoned The Old Man http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/neil-labute-will-find-out-who-poisoned-the-old-man/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/neil-labute-will-find-out-who-poisoned-the-old-man/#comments Mon, 21 Mar 2011 18:55:48 +0000 Joseph Gibson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=202764 Neil LaBute apparently likes Agatha Christie more than he likes himself.

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Neil LaBute is famous for covering Nicolas Cage in bees, but did you know he also directs movies? And his next project is NOT going to be an adaptation of his own short story Seconds of Pleasure, but instead an adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novel Crooked House. The movie is not, as I originally thought, about a corrupt house who takes bribes from huge corporations and drug dealers. Here’s the actual plot synopsis:

“[T]he story is told from the perspective of Charles Hayward whose fiance refuses to marry him until the identity of the person who poisoned her grandfather is found.”

That sounds like the kind of psychosexual tension that LaBute specializes in. The screenplay is by Julian Fellowes, who previously wrote the Christie-like screenplay for Gosford Park that Robert Altman ignored. Fellowes is also working on an upcoming ABC miniseries about The Titanic, which will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the ship’s meeting with an iceberg. (via The Playlist)

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Brendan Fraser Joining A Good Movie? http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/brendan-fraser-joining-a-good-movie/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/brendan-fraser-joining-a-good-movie/#comments Tue, 11 Jan 2011 13:01:18 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=15249 What news is this? Brendan Fraser has signed on to a potentially good movie? In fact, it is so. George Of The Jungle has joined Neil LaBute's next film, Seconds Of Pleasure.

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What news is this? Brendan Fraser has signed on to a potentially good movie? In fact, it is so. George Of The Jungle has joined Neil LaBute‘s next film, Seconds Of Pleasure.

We don’t have plot details for Seconds but assume it’s based off LaBute’s 2004 short story collection of the same name. Is this his attempt at Robert Altman styled filmmaking?  I can get behind Fraser’s casting in this if that is the case. He always works well in ensemble pieces. Especially as morally gray characters.

Rather than starring opposite a CGI dirt tornado or a Canadian stunt guy in a bear costume, Fraser will star opposite Kristin Scott Thomas. Colin Firth and Ed Harris are also considering joining up. There’s no word yet on a Pauly Shore cameo but that news can’t be too far off. It can’t be. (Deadline)

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Review: ‘Death at a Funeral’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-death-at-a-funeral/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-death-at-a-funeral/#comments Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Death at a Funeral R, 93m., 2010Cast: Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Zoe Saldana, James Marsden, Columbus Short, Regina King, Keith David, Peter Dinkaledge with Loretta Devine, Luke Wilson, Tracy Morgan...

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Death at a Funeral
R, 93m., 2010
Cast: Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Zoe Saldana, James Marsden, Columbus Short, Regina King, Keith David, Peter Dinkaledge with Loretta Devine, Luke Wilson, Tracy Morgan and Danny Glover
Directed by Neil LaBute
Screenplay by Dean Craig based upon his 2007 UK screenplay of Death at a Funeral
 
Death at a Funeral is an uneven, occasionally funny remake of the 2007 sleeper British comedy.
 
As family and friends gather for a funeral in an upper class community of Los Angles, eldest son Aaron (Chris Rock, leading an All-Star cast) has to keep everything under control for one afternoon, as he is faced with drugged out family members, bodies popping out of caskets and a blackmailing little man (Peter Dinkaledge, reprising his role from the UK original).
 
The All-Star mourners include a mix of current favorite actors from Zoe Saldana, Columbus Short, and James Marsden, as well as comedians Martin Lawrence, Regina King, Tracy Morgan and old screen favorites like Loretta Devine, Keith David and Danny Glover. (Somewhere in this mad-batch of characters is Luke Wilson looking fatter and awkward as ever.)
 
Many of these acting styles don’t particular blend well, but work on their own time. What keeps it all from total disaster is director Neil LaBute.
 
LaBute treats this Americanized version more like a mad capped play from the 1940s (Harvey or You Can’t Take it with You, come to mind). The first 20 minutes of the movie has some snappy dialogue and hilarious stage tableaux, one of which contains 4 of his male leads starring over a body of a 5th actor.
 
Yet by the end LaBute’s direction feels tired and he lets go of a lot moments that could have been true comedically classic scenes, like the fight between Rock and Lawrence as battlin brothers could have packed a lot more punch than a bunch of school yard disses and soft blows.
 
A lot of this movies success really depends on your personal preferences; if you like Rock, Lawrence, and Morgan then this film is a great canvass for their own individual shticks to be let loose, but if you don’t then this is not a movie for you.
 
Death at a Funeral is something that is classical in the sense of mad capped comedies, but if you’ve seen the original then most of the big laugh-out surprises will be turning in their graves.
 
Grade: C

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