Alex of Venice (2014) - News Poster


‘The Mindy Project’ Alum Chris Messina Inks With CAA

  • Deadline
‘The Mindy Project’ Alum Chris Messina Inks With CAA
Exclusive: Chris Messina has signed with CAA for representation. The actor, who had been with Wme, starred in Hulu’s The Mindy Project and next can be seen opposite Amy Adams in HBO/Blumhouse’s limited series Sharp Objects, which premieres July 8.

His TV credits also include Aaron Sorkin’s HBO series The Newsroom and FX’s Damages opposite Glenn Close and Rose Byrne.

On the film side, Messina appeared in Best Picture Oscar winner Argo as well as Live by Night, Julie & Julia and Away We Go from Sam Mendes. He marked his directorial debut with 2014 film Alex of Venice, in which he also starred.

Messina continues to be repped by Gendler & Kelly.
See full article at Deadline »

50 Overlooked Indie Movies You Must Stream on Netflix

50 Overlooked Indie Movies You Must Stream on Netflix
Netflix adds new movies almost every day, which only makes it harder to find ones worth watching. That’s where IndieWire comes in. From low-budget American gems to foreign film masterpieces, these are the overlooked independent movies you’ve got to make time for on Netflix. All titles are now available to stream.

Read More: 7 Netflix Original Movies That Are Worth Seeking Out

“6 Years” (2015)

“6 Years” provides a moving snapshot of a troubled relationship. The movie follows a young couple facing the titular anniversary as their future is challenged by various spats and infidelities. With an improvisatory style and two heartbreaking performances from Taissa Farmiga and Ben Rosenfield, “6 Years” imbues its traditional narrative with a fiery edge. Read IndieWire’s review.

“A Woman, A Part“ (2016)

In her feature directorial debut, Elisabeth Subrin confronts industry-wide sexism head on, making it clear that her protagonist’s experiences are not unique and dismantling any
See full article at Indiewire »

Hollywood Insiders Explain How They Got Their First Break (Video)

  • The Wrap
Hollywood Insiders Explain How They Got Their First Break (Video)
Three Hollywood insiders explained how they got their first big break in the entertainment industry at TheWrap’s Breaking Into the Business event on Wednesday night. Producer Alex Noyer of You Know Films, actress and screenwriter Katie Nehra and veteran casting director Marci Liroff sat down with TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman in Los Angeles to discuss their careers and give advice to college students looking to break into entertainment and media. Nehra, who co-wrote Chris Messina’s 2014 directorial debut “Alex of Venice,” said that her first break came from playwright John Patrick Shanley, who cast her in his play “Sailor’s Song.
See full article at The Wrap »

Ordinary World (aka Geezer) movie review: from manchild to midlife crisis

MaryAnn’s quick take…

May be unique in the cinematic annals of manchildren in that its protagonist goes from overgrown adolescent to midlife crisis without any intervening adulthood. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

You have two kids,” says the Saintly Sitcom Wife to her husband. “I have three.” Cue laugh tracks sprinkled with a few awwws: it’s so charming and romantic, ain’t it, when a woman has to mother her husband. And it’s very conducive to nookie, of course. Except it isn’t, and there’s nothing charming or funny about a 40-year-old man — like Perry here — who has never grown up.

It’s so charming and romantic, ain’t it, when a woman has to mother her husband.

Ordinary World — titled Geezer when it debuted at Tribeca Film Festival this past spring,
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Flix Premiere soft-launches in UK

  • ScreenDaily
A new VOD service has arrived in the UK with the goal of bringing little-seen gems to home audiences.

Founder and entrepreneur Martin Warner claimed Flix Premiere was the world’s first digital cineplex, although the precise significance of that remained unclear given the increasing prevalence of VOD platforms.

Speaking to Screen International recently, Warner said the launch was the first step in global expansion and that he aimed to be in the Us soon, and in France, Spain, Germany, Australia and Canada by the end of May.

Flix Premiere aims to introduce eight or nine new titles each week and will champion quality films that struggle to make a noise in the over-crowded distribution landscape.

‘Tickets’ cost £3.99 (approximately $5.81 at time of writing) and special packages are available.

Once purchased, the film is available for 24 hours and can be viewed on all browsers. A mobile version will be offered shortly.

Launch titles
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Where Are the Women?: crunching the numbers

• only 22% of 2015’s movies had female protagonists

• best and worst representations of women on film in 2015 (and the average Watw score for the year)

• critics are slightly more likely to rate a film highly if it represents women well

• mainstream moviegoers are not turned off by films with female protagonists

• movies that represent women well are just as likely to be profitable as movies that don’t, and are less risky as business propositions

The Where Are the Women? project was designed to drill deep down into the films of 2015 in order to determine how well — or how poorly — they represented women. The project has now come to its end, and you can examine the final ranking here. The ranking includes 270 films released in the Us, Canada, and the UK, in both limited and wide release (including every wide-release North American film and most of the UK wide-release films). The
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

10 Cloverfield Lane movie review: the monsters women have to deal with

A marvelous little movie: compact, efficient, almost unbearably intense, smartly (perhaps accidentally) feminist. A glorious treat of pulp genre fun. I’m “biast” (pro): loved Cloverfield, love Mary Elizabeth Winstead

I’m “biast” (con): wary of the forced franchise concept

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Fans of movies generally don’t want to hear the sort of thing we started hearing about 10 Cloverfield Lane when its existence first became known a few months ago: that producer J.J. Abrams took a spec script called The Cellar that had been floating around for a while and rejigged it into a movie that would maybe kinda work as a sequel to 2008’s Cloverfield (on which he also served as producer). This sounds like the worst sort of Hollywood folly: bad enough when movies are created as franchise cutouts, but now they’re shoving preexisting stories into franchise
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

The Hateful Eight movie review: all hat, no cattle

Inexcusably self-indulgent. Tarantino gratifies his enormous self-love and his amusement at his own genius at the expense of all else. I’m “biast” (pro): loved Tarantino’s last two films…

I’m “biast” (con): …but really hate some of his films, too

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Damn. So after the marvels of Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino has swung back to the Kill Bill style of filmmaking, which I described in my review of Basterds as a cinematic “circle jerk in which he and his fans get off on one another and how clever they all are to be such rapacious film geeks.” With the inexcusably self-indulgent The Hateful Eight, Tarantino has returned to the gratification of his enormous self-love and his amusement at his own genius at the expense of all else.

There are no characters to like in Eight.
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Recommended Discs & Deals of the Week: ‘Jurassic World,’ ‘Z For Zachariah,’ ‘Kwaidan,’ and More

Every week we dive into the cream of the crop when it comes to home releases, including Blu-ray and DVDs, as well as recommended deals of the week. Check out our rundown below and return every Tuesday for the best (or most interesting) films one can take home. Note that if you’re looking to support the site, every purchase you make through the links below helps us and is greatly appreciated.

Jurassic World (Colin Trevorrow)

As all good sequels must learn, the key to success is delivering on the promise set forth by the original while also providing something fresh and improved. Just ask James Cameron, a master at the task, who injected action-packed life into both Aliens and Terminator 2: Judgment Day without negating or watering down the mythology still relevant beneath those newfound popcorn blockbuster sensibilities. Neither The Lost World nor Jurassic Park III did it. They
See full article at The Film Stage »

Mary Elizabeth Winstead Goes 'BrainDead' for CBS

  • MovieWeb
Mary Elizabeth Winstead Goes 'BrainDead' for CBS
Mary Elizabeth Winstead will star in BrainDead, a new comedic thriller set in the world of Washington, D.C. politics, to be broadcast in summer 2016. The series comes from Robert King and Michelle King, creators and executive producers of The Good Wife. The actress is the first cast member to sign on for BrainDead, which was given a straight-to-series order by CBS

Mary Elizabeth Winstead will portray Laurel, the daughter of a Democratic political dynasty who left Washington, D.C. to become a documentary filmmaker, but is pulled back into the family business when her brother, the senate majority whip, needs her help running his senate office. Now a young, fresh-faced Hill staffer, Laurel discovers two things: The government has stopped working, and alien spawn have come to Earth and eaten the brains of a growing number of congressmen and Hill staffers. Here's what Robert King and Michelle King had
See full article at MovieWeb »

Mary Elizabeth Winstead to Star in Good Wife Creators' BrainDead

Mary Elizabeth Winstead to Star in Good Wife Creators' BrainDead
Careful, Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Aliens are coming, and they want to eat your brain.

The actress, who starred in A&E’s one-and-done adaptation of The Returned, will topline BrainDead, CBS’ upcoming comic-thriller from Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King.

RelatedFall TV Spectacular: Exclusive Scoop and Photos on 43 Returning Favorites!

Billed as a cross between The Strain and The West Wing, BrainDead stars Winstead as Laurel, the daughter of a Democratic political dynasty who left D.C. to become a documentary filmmaker, but is pulled back into the family business when her brother needs political help. Now a young,
See full article at »

Fantastic Four movie review: fantastic bore

There isn’t an authentic human motivation or emotion to be found here. The bar has been raised too high on comic-book movies for us to accept junk like this. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

I knew from the opening moments of this 187,874th reboot of Fantastic Four that it would be getting everything wrong in most shiftless ways. Because that’s when it suggests that Oyster Bay, on Long Island, is across the East River from Manhattan and has a lovely view of the Empire State Building. Which it isn’t, and which it doesn’t. That may seem like a really nitpicky sort of nitpick, but this is only the first example of the appalling laziness of this all-origin, no-story superhero origin story. Director Josh Trank (Chronicle), who cowrote the script with
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Here’s What’s Coming And Going From Netflix in August

It’s almost August and that means Netflix is about to give their content a refresh. Some of the notable titles leaving include: Family Ties: Season 1-7, Unbreakable, and Titanic. So if you haven’t seen some of these titles, plan your nights accordingly. We of course can look forward more than a few new titles including The Hurt Locker, White God (pictured above), and Girl Meets World season 1.

Available August 1

Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein (1999)

In this animated adventure, Alvin, Simon, and Theodore revel in their new gig at a movie theme park by wandering the grounds after hours. Among the attractions is the spooky Frankenstein’s Castle, where a real mad scientist is bringing the monster to life. But when the boys cross paths with the creature (Frank Welker), they soon learn that appearances can be deceiving, and Frankenstein is more misunderstood than malevolent.

Asylum (2005)

See full article at City of Films »

New on Netflix: August 2015

New on Netflix in August: The original series "Narcos," about Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, starring Wagner Moura of "Elysium;" and the site's first Spanish-language original series, "Club de Cuervos," about a brother and sister who inherit a soccer team.

You'll also be able to stream the critically acclaimed film "White Dog," Best Picture Oscar winner "The Hurt Locker," the Kristin Wiig dramedy "Welcome to Me," and Simon Pegg as an assassin in "Kill Me Three Times."

There are also new episodes of "Doctor Who," "Revenge," "Once Upon a Time," "Transporter: The Series," and "GIrl Meets World." Happy binging!

Here's a full rundown of what's new on Netflix in August 2015, provided by Netflix. As always, all titles and dates are subject to change. We've also go you covered in terms of what's leaving Netflix in August 2015, in case you were wondering.​

Available August 1

"Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein" (1999)

See full article at Moviefone »

Alex Of Venice Review

Humans are inherently programmed with an emotion known as “comfort” that kicks in as a safety net when uncertainty becomes too daunting, as a way of masking our scared vulnerability. Think how you’d react if your life changed tomorrow in the most drastic of ways. You lose your house, a significant other walks out, and you’re left to pick up the pieces all by your lonesome. It’s a terrifying, paralyzing fear that many of us dread, which is why we find solace in the “comfort” of monotonous routines, familiar emotions, and a recurring cycle that we’ve become “good” at managing – a theory that Chris Messina challenges through his new film, Alex Of Venice.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays the titular Alex, a workaholic who begins to crumble under the weight of her chaotically overturned life. After her husband George (Chris Messina) walks out with no warning, Alex
See full article at We Got This Covered »

Where Are the Women? Alex of Venice

Mary Elizabeth Winstead’s lawyer, wife, and mother reflects realities of modern women’s complicated and harried lives that movies often ignore.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Alex of Venice! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Alex of Venice.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, you may:

• become a monthly or yearly subscriber of
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Alex of Venice movie review: no mess like home

Mary Elizabeth Winstead is eminently relatable in a compassionate, human-scaled movie of the sort that movies have almost forgotten of late. I’m “biast” (pro): I am desperate for stories about women

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Alex’s life is falling apart. Her husband, George (Chris Messina: Palo Alto), has had it with being a stay-at-home father and househusband and has hit the road. Her son, Dakota (Skylar Gaertner: They Came Together), is lonely and needs to make more friends, or so his teachers say. Her Dad (Don Johnson: The Other Woman), who lives with them, is having worrisome trouble with his memory. Her sister, Lily (Katie Nehra), has moved back into help out in George’s absence but could be doing more harm than good. And her work as an environmental lawyer for a tiny storefront activist
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Alex of Venice | Review

Touch of Venice: Messina’s Understated, Observational Debut

There’s much to admire in actor Chris Messina’s assured, astutely observed directorial debut, Alex of Venice. Namely its central performance from Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who carries this understated character study that rather uneventfully charts a workaholic woman’s mildly difficult navigation through the denial that her marriage is over. As written by its trio of writers (with Jessica Goldberg joined by first time screenwriters Katie Nehara and Justin Shilton), its dramatic possibilities are severely downplayed, instead attempting to reflect meaning off intertextual echoes borrowed from Chekov’s The Cherry Orchard (the play being staged within the film).

An attorney for an eco-advocacy group, Alex (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) is left reeling when her high school sweetheart husband George (Messina) abruptly announces he’s unhappy with their marriage. A taken-for-granted stay-at-home dad, who cares for both their young son and Alex’s
See full article at »

Mary Elizabeth Winstead on Indie Film Love: It’s Hard to Find a Complex Female Role in Blockbusters

  • TooFab
Mary Elizabeth Winstead is one of those rare actresses who can take on anything – whether it’s geek fare like “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” and “Final Destination” or small, serious indie dramas like “Smashed.” She’s the very definition of versatile. With another critically acclaimed role in Chris Messina’s directorial debut, “Alex of Venice” (out today in theaters and VOD), Winstead sat down with toofab’s Brian Particelli to talk about why she loves going back and forth between big budget films and indies and the frustrations that come from the latter. toofab: You’re on an indie roll right now, what draws you to these kinds of films? Mary: Its just the bigger films tend to be male driven. It’s kind of hard to find like an interesting complex female role in those worlds. Not to say they aren’t great movies, but from time to
See full article at TooFab »

Interview: Mary Elizabeth Winstead On Alex Of Venice, Her Admiration For Indie Film, And More

I really admire Mary Elizabeth Winstead's career choices. She started out as a Scream Queen and then dabbled with big, bad studio movies. Lately her focus has been on roles in smaller films that really make an impact. Winstead still does those big, bad studio roles, but who wouldn't? Many of those movies are fun to watch, so I imagine it's just the same making them. Last week we spoke on the phone and discussed a variety of topics. Among them: her latest role in the eye-opening Alex of Venice (my review from last year's Tribeca Film Festival -- please excuse my ridiculously cool headline), the challenges of tackling the horror genre, our mutual love for independent cinema, and how she balances her fans on social...

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See full article at Screen Anarchy »
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