What is Inception?

Little is known about Inception, Chris Nolan's cryptic follow up to The Dark Knight. Both cast and crew are keeping lips tightly sealed regarding plot details, leaving a rabble of internet Fanboys to concoct their own interpretations.

So what exactly do we know about Nolan's follow up to the biggest film of 2008? Inception stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a company man leading a small team on a mysterious mission into the 'architecture of the mind'. Brick's Joseph Gordon-Levitt will star as his associate, with Nolan regulars Michael Caine and Cillian Murphy also making an appearance.

Billed as a sci-fi thriller where your mind is the scene of the crime, the film will also boast Matrix-style fight sequences. Sounds interesting.

Written and directed by Nolan, Inception looks to be his 'quiet before the storm' movie, with rumours suggesting the director will return to Gotham for his next project.

If you were hoping the teaser trailer would shed some much needed light then guess again. Opening up a whole new world of questions, it does what a trailer is suppose to do: make you want to see the movie.

Inception has a 16th July 2010 release date.

In The Loop.

Crass, intelligent and very funny, if you missed In The Loop during it's brief theatrical run then your in luck as it was released on DVD this week.

Armando Iannucci, the brains behind The Thick Of It and I'm Alan Partridge (among others) shows us behind the scenes of the cut throat world of politics, where inept MP Simon Foster (Tom Hollander) accidentally backs a decision to go to war.

Sparking the attention of the media and the venom spitting Communications Chief Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi), soon MP Foster is embroiled in a political pickle made no easier by US involvement.

In The Loop has some great one liners, superb comedic performances and is one of the funniest films to come out of the UK in years. For fans of Iannucci and great British comedy In The Loop is a must watch.

More Moore.

Based on this trailer I can totally see how audiences either love Michael Moore or hate him. Deep down I'm sure he has honest intentions; wanting only the truth for the country that he so obviously loves. Although clearly it's apparent he's not above whoring his infamous celebrity status in order to obtain said truth.

Capitalism: A love story, a no holds barred look at the US economy and recent financial crisis is sure to be an interesting if slightly tongue in cheek piece of work. Guaranteed to keep his supporters supporting him and his oppressors fighting him.

Capitalism: A love story premiers at next month's Toronto International Film Festival, UK release date TBC.

Watch this space.

Last night two interesting trailers finally arrived onto the internet, one of which debuted at this year's Comic-con. The trailers in question are Joe Johnston's The Wolf Man and the highly anticipated Avatar, marking James Cameron's return to the big screen after a ten year absence.

The Wolf Man, a remake of the 1941 Universal monster movie of the same name will see Dr Gonzo himself Benicio Del Toro snarl, drool and howl at the moon. He'll also turn into a Werewolf.

Avatar has been heavily hyped, heralded as the movie that will change the way you watch movies, sporting revolutionary motion capture and CG special effects. Paraplegic war vet Jake (Sam Worthington) has his mind placed into a Na'vi, an 8-foot blue alien and virtual avatar; he is sent to help establish a human settlement on the planet Pandora becoming entangled in a war in the process.

Based on the trailers i think The Wolf Man has the potential to be really cool, just as long as it doesn't turn into a repeat of 2004's Van Helsing. Avatar depicts a vibrant war torn new world; hopefully the story has enough substance and coherency to support its state of the art effects.

Catch both trailers after the jump!

Avatar is released on 18th December 2009, The Wolf Man will hit cinemas on the 12th of February 2010.

In case you missed it . . .

Some of you may have already seen the feel good Swedish Vampire flick Let The Right One In, but if you haven't then let this blog serve as a quick reminder to drop what you're doing and find a copy.

Based on the John Ajvide book, it follows the unlikely friendship between a 12-year-old boy and a young vampire who moves into his apartment building. Over time the pair help each other overcome their personal problems and form a heart warming relationship.

The film boasts stellar performances and one kick ass scene towards it's climax (I wont say which one, rest assured you'll know it when you see it). Production has already begun on the unnecessary but seemingly inevitable American remake, Let Me In will place Cloverfield director Matt Reeves at the helm. So take this opportunity to check out the original in all it's glory before Hollywood gets it's grubby fingers on it.

Oh my Holy Crap, Gentleman Broncos

It took almost a year for 2004's Napoleon Dynamite to find it's audience and for everyone to jump on the bandwagon of a film that had already been around for some time. That said, if you watch this trailer for Gentleman Broncos now, when people decide to jump on it's indie-gem bandwagon a month or two down the line, you'll be able to say something like "Oh my god, i totally knew about that film before it was huge" and what Facebook loving youth doesn't enjoy doing that?

The fourth film from writer/director Jared Hess looks like a return to the low-key oddball comedy that made Napoleon Dynamite such a cult fave. Gentleman Broncos is the story of Benjamin, a home-schooled misfit with a passion for fantasty writing who has his first story 'Bronco' ripped off by his idol, the legendary fantasy novelist Ronald Chevalier. Played by Flight of the Conchord's Jemaine Clement, the desperate Chevalier changes a few details and the story becomes a best seller, forcing Benjamin to seek revenge.

We'll get a glimpse of the story in question in the form of fantasy sequences of the book throughout the film. Sam Rockwell, fresh from the Moon, will star as the transvestite lead character in both Benjamin and his rival Chevalier's version of the story.

By the looks of the trailer Gentleman Broncos looks filled with weird characters, which is a good thing. Both Clement and Rockwell look like they've sculpted characters that everyone will be quoting this time next year. After the disappointing Jack Black vehicle Nacho Libre, going back to the oddball comedic style that gave Napoleon Dynamite its charm is a wise choice.

Plus any film with surveillance doe's in it is an automatic hit in my book.

Gentleman Broncos is released on 30th of October in America, UK release date TBC.

Once upon a time in Nazi occupied France. . .

There are two things you can count on seeing in a Quentin Tarantino movie: cool scenes of dialog, and of course, cool scenes of excessive gore. Both feature in his latest, the absurdly spelled Inglorious Basterds, but they’re accompanied by so much more.

The ballsy title is like the film itself, Basterds is a bold film to make from a director confident he can get away with anything. A multi lingual World War 2 fantasy that remains Tarantino-esque, yet still he pushes his audience for more. Don’t be fooled by the gung ho trailers, for the most part you’ll be reading subtitles and with many long scenes where attention to detail is crucial, you’re almost in art house territory.

Divided into five chapters, each providing a segment of the back-story, which together form the big picture. A plot is formed to assassinate Hitler and his cronies whilst at a film premier, the Basterds are sent in to make sure it all goes to plan and to do what they do best.

And yet Tarantino’s trigger happy team, a group of Jewish American soldiers who specialize in collecting Nazi scalps, lead by the cigar chomping Lt Aldo Raine, appear only briefly in the films 153 minute run time.

Instead we get intense dialog driven scenes; an interrogation of a father accused of harboring a Jewish family faced with a horrible choice, a bar game turned sinister Mexican stand off, two of the films finest sequences. Perhaps ‘Once upon a time in Nazi occupied France’ the films original title may have been more fitting.

After it’s tense opening the film almost goes off track, a brief lull that is saved when the Basterds reappear. The cast is great, Pitt (who looks like he’s channeling Brando with the drawl of Jack Daniels) is entertaining, especially when forced to impersonate an Italian director. And in Christopher Waltz, the smug German ‘Jew Hunter’ who always knows more than he lets on, Tarantino creates one of his best villains. The director even found time for his trademark cameos, keep an eye and an ear out for the obvious - Mike Myers and the not so obvious Harvey Keitel.

With its westerns references, dark humour and comic book style on screen graphics, Inglorious Basterds is not what you may have expected, but in a good way. Think of Tarantino what you will, someone carrying the torch of film making or simply recycling old genres, the fact is he’s making the films he wants to make and having fun doing it. Which makes you wonder if the films final line "In fact, I think this may be my masterpiece" belongs to Aldo or Quentin.

Inglorious Basterds goes on general release August 21st.

Welcome to the Imaginarium.

Earlier this week the first full trailer for Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus made it's way online, and you can check it out after the jump.

Imaginarium almost never saw the light of day due to the untimely death of heath Ledger half way through the films shoot. However, thanks to its fantastical themes, the films director and Monty Python alum Terry Gilliam was able to tinker with the story to ensure the films completion.

And so each time Ledger's character Tony, a mysterious outsider passes through a magical mirror he takes on a new form. Enter Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law.

Most of the movies plot is mentioned in the trailer so I wont go into too much detail. Dr Parnassus made a deal with the devil to become immortal, now the devil wants to collect his daughter's soul and its up to Tony to try and save her.

The film premiered at Cannes Film Festival earlier this year to mixed reviews. Has Gilliam crafted an appropriate swan song for Ledger? Not everyone though so. Despite this, the trailer suggests that there will be no shortage of eye candy in the Imaginarium and it will no doubt be interesting to see how Depp, Farrell and Law rework the same character. Ultimately this film will be famous for being Ledgers final on screen appearance, and after his whirlwind stint as the Joker, who wouldn’t want to see that?

Whilst on the subject, here is a taster of Ledger as Tony, a clip that cropped up on the net a few months ago. Looks pretty cool!

The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus is released on the 16th of October.

John Hughes, 1959 - 2009

Surely the greatest achievement a filmmaker can hope for is to be remembered, to speak to your audience directly so that even if the filmmaker fades away into obscurity, his or her films endure. It would be fair to say that writer and director John Hughes, who sadly passed away this week aged 59, did just that.

It’s hard to tell if our generation fully appreciates the effect Hughes had on shaping aspects of today’s cinema and the output of its directors. By casting real teenagers as appose to young adults, his movies gave a generation a voice and an image they could relate to. Hughes tapped into the minds of teenagers, their insecurities, loves, hopes and the pressures of growing up in the eight films he directed, whilst shaping the careers of his young stars in the process.

It was seemingly the job he was sent to do and in an interview just after the release of Home Alone he said, “When I’ve lost my voice, I’ll know when to go. I’ll disappear in a Puff” and that's exactly what he did. It was time for Hughes to buy the farm – literally - and at just 45 he settled down with his wife in his 600-acre rural retreat. Although he continued to write, often under the pseudonym Edmond Dant├Ęs (from The Count Of Monte Cristo), he never experienced the same success, but he had effected an entire generation in his wake and unwittingly passed the torch.

It’s hard to think where the teen film would be if John Hughes had stayed working as an advertising copywriter. Needless to say we wouldn’t have people like Judd Apatow making the films he’s making today, as he explains, “It’s pretty ridiculous to hear people talk about the movies we’ve been doing, with outrageous humour and sweetness all combined, as if they were an original idea. I mean, it was all there first in John Hughes films. Whether it’s Freaks and Geeks or Superbad, the whole idea of having outsiders as the lead characters, that all started with Hughes”. An opinion echoed by a filmmaker and fan that regularly references John Hughes in his work, Kevin Smith, “If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t be doing what I do. Basically my stuff is just John Hughes films with four letter words”

‘Don’t you forget about me’ a nod to the music that was as big a part of his films as his young stars, acts as a subtle reminder that while Hughes may be gone, the spirit of his work lives on.