Tag: Tom Hardy
Lawless is the South’s answer to the typical gangster film–just trade the Yankee accents for Southern growls. Based on the book, “The Wettest County in the World,” author Matt Bondurant spins a tale of his grandfather and grand-uncles, who are bootleggers in Franklin County, Virginia during Prohibition.
Forrest (Tom Hardy), Howard (Jason Clarke), and Jack (Shia LaBeouf) Bondurant successfully run moonshine out of the mountains and into Chicago, until the law gets involved–and not in the way you might initially think. In what’s referred to as the Great Franklin County Moonshine Conspiracy, Commonwealth Attorney Mason Wardell got his hands dirty when he demanded money in return for moonshine-running protection. Wardell brings in Special Deputy Charlie Rakes (Guy Pearce) to encourage (read: bully) all bootleggers into helping, but of course the real fight is with the Bondurants, as they stand against Wardell’s orders. The Bondurant boys become the heroes of the mountain area as they fight to preserve their product and property.
Tom Hardy shines as Forrest Bondurant, the oldest and smartest of the brothers. I’d gone in expecting a tough, bossy big brother, but Hardy’s quiet portrayal of the strongest brother was a pleasant surprise. Hardy bulked up for The Dark Knight Rises and hides his muscles beneath layers of grandfatherly sweaters; he also hides his brass knuckles in the pockets, which makes for some great fight scenes.
He has a few spectacular lines, but it’s what we don’t hear that makes him great–like how he explains how he’s a Bondurant and “we don’t lay down for nobody.” The line itself is good, but the way he delivers it, with pride and strength and a hint of threat, is what makes Forrest the leader of the brothers. He growls out his words exactly like some southern relatives I know and his shy mumbling around Jessica Chastain’s love interest makes Hardy that much more endearing. I rooted for Forrest perhaps more than the other Bondurant brothers. The cast is solid, but Tom Hardy really stands above them all.
That being said, Lawless might be based on a true story, but Hollywood certainly took certain liberties with the storyline. The connection to Chicago was strange–despite my lack of bootleggin’ knowledge, I didn’t think Chicago was a major player when it came to Virginia moonshine. It seemed pretty obvious that the writers brought in a well-known gangster city of the era if only to show the differences in regional attitudes and connect the two locations so the audience realizes there’s an important link in there somewhere.
Gary Oldman’s Chicago gangster character was disappointingly underused, though that may just be my bias towards loving any character he plays. Oldman dances on the line of hammy but he’s enjoyable to watch. His character is simply a way for Jack, the youngest of the brothers and consequently the one who most wants to prove himself, to become more involved with moonshine and gangster life, to show the audience how he gets a better standing in the family business and establish the connection between gangsters, both Yankee and Southern.
Also disappointing was the fact they filmed in Georgia–the scenery is certainly beautiful, but I really wanted to see them film this IN Franklin County. I got excited when I heard they brought in people to help the actors with their accents and I also heard several of the cast and crew visited the area for research, but why not film even a few scenes here? My husband, who’s read the book, did say that he felt that despite the few changes where the movie deviated, the film stayed pretty true to the book, which is speculative fiction wrapped in real history. He was most disappointed that they didn’t show the red clay, a well-known staple in the area that could’ve added a little more local oomph to the story.
Then again, I understand that I’m from the area. I expect nods and winks from the cast–when they talk about “the city,” they’re referring to Roanoke–but I had to remind myself that most people won’t find the historical aspect as fun as we Virginians might. A Californian won’t get the inside jokes, nor will they care, and I get that they wanted to make it more accessible for the audience.
“Lawless” is rated R for sex and violence. It’s certainly violent, with plenty of gunfights and blood (and no one wants to be on the end of Forrest Bondurant’s brass knuckles or switch blade), though several scenes help add to the Bondurant boys’ legacy of being indestructible. As established within the first few minutes, Forrest Bondurant is no stranger to violence, taking any means necessary to protect his family business and stand for what he believes in. Be prepared to watch a few scenes through splayed fingers.
Despite a few flaws, “Lawless” stands on its own as a unique gangster tale. The soundtrack is terrific, including two different bluegrass-infused covers of the Velvet Underground’s “White Light/White Heat” that wouldn’t be out of place at the Country Store down the road.
I saw this in a packed Sunday afternoon theater, where my husband (29) and I (27) were on the lower end of the age groups. Have you seen the film yet? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this movie based on our own local history! (Perhaps you even know some Bondurant relatives!)
After The Dark Knight hit theatres in 2008, it wasn’t hard to believe that there would be a third film in Nolan’s Batman franchise. What was hard to believe was that it could even come close to touching what The Dark Knight had achieved. The brilliant story, the stunning visuals, and of course the performances that will never be forgotten, all were key parts to making The Dark Knight a huge success. When the announcement came that there would be a third film, The Dark Knight Rises, the fans were unsure of what to expect. Would this film be as good as The Dark Knight or Batman Begins? Could Christopher Nolan and Co. even come close to the success of the second film? Well I am here to tell you that the answer to those questions is a big, massive: YES!
Don’t worry, this review will be spoiler free. Anything I say in this review that pertains to the story will be what you already know from having read the synopsis or watched the myriad of trailers on the web right now. I am just going to tell you what worked, what didn’t work (which was pretty much nothing), and why this film is a MUST see.
The story of The Dark Knight Rises takes place eight years after the events of The Dark Knight. Batman has been declared an outlaw (although, technically, he was always an outlaw), and has disappeared from Gotham. The city has galvanized itself after the death of Harvey Dent and have put a stop to organized crime. But when the menacing brute known as Bane comes to Gotham City, Bruce Wayne must, once again, don the cowl. In a fight for Gotham City’s freedom from this new terrorist threat, he will need to once again become the symbol of hope for Gotham’s Citizens. But how will he overcome a threat as mentally and physically strong as himself, while dealing with the Gotham City Police Department and a seductive cat burglar? Well you will just have to watch and see for yourself.
First off, lets start off with the story. Christopher Nolan, Johnathan Nolan, and David S. Goyer, have out done themselves. After watching The Dark Knight, which is one of my favorite movies of all time, it was hard to believe that they could write something as compelling, deep, and incredibly rich as their second movie. But if you really think about it, Batman Begins was an incredible story and I thought it would be hard to top that. But The Dark Knight brought on an even deeper, more intricate story, so it is not surprising that the story of The Dark Knight Rises is incredible as well. It wraps up the series in such a succinctly sublime manner that it is hard to think that this wasn’t originally written as a trilogy. Threads from both previous movies make their way into this film. The themes of corruption, fear, chaos, and, as always, good versus evil, are all very much present in this film. I am not going into too much detail as to how each one shapes this film, as I would need to give much more away than I want to. But it is safe to say that this film ties the story of Bruce Wayne up into the package every fan could possibly want and with a the presence of the previous films and a few nods to the comic books, it really doesn’t disappoint.
As for the acting, everyone is stop on in their roles. After watching Heath Ledger as the Joker, I knew that no matter who Christopher Nolan picked for the leading roles of The Dark Knight Rises, that I would trust his judgment. And you Anne Hathaway naysayers will rue the day that you spoke negatively about the actress. She is plays Selina Kyle/Catwoman better than many of her predecessors (about a billion times better than Halle Berry). She is the femme fatale that Catwoman should be, portraying a character that is not only smart, but sexy and incredibly tough. After watching this film you will no longer bash Anne Hathaway. As for Tom Hardy, who plays the incredibly frightening Bane, it is hard to imagine anyone else in that role. Heath Ledger’s Joker was scary for many reasons. He just exuded this chaotic nature that bordered on insanity that you were scared of the unpredictability and anarchistic nature of the character. Bane is frightening for different reasons. Not only is he physically dominating in every scene, but his facial expressions beyond the mask, are just intense. Tom Hardy had to act with his eyes, and you see the exact emotion he wishes to convey behind his menacing looks. Of course, all of the other characters are incredibly performed once again. Michael Cain as Alfred again is the heart of the movie, stealing a few scenes away from Christian Bale. But that doesn’t mean that Christian Bale doesn’t perform the hell out of Bruce Wayne/Batman. He fully stepped up to the challenge of having to play a character that has really lost everything and really delivered on the emotional front. Of course, there are countless other actors in the film: Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman, Joseph Gordon Levitt and Marion Cotillard, and they all do wonderfully in their respective roles, and I could go on for days why each of them played their roles so well, but I will let you experience the film and realize for yourself why they were so great.
As for the cinematography and visual affects, this film really kicks things up a notch. The last film had some amazing set pieces and incredible shots of various action scenes, but this film takes it to another level. The war to save Gotham is so well choreographed that you are literally at the edge of you seat for the last act of the film. Wally Pfister who has worked with Nolan on all of the Batman films, has proven with this film that he is one of the best cinematographers of this age. If you can, I do recommend spending the extra coin and seeing this film in IMAX and experiencing it the way that Pfister and Nolan intended. With over an hour of pure IMAX footage, it is a beautiful piece of film making and it is hard to think of seeing it in any other format. As for the visual affects and the action set pieces, this film is definitely on par with any other blockbuster of this year. While it may not have as many explosions or CGI animation, the major scenes have you on the edge of your seat and just when you get to the edge and are pulled back, it throws you right back to the edge again.
Now, all movies have flaws. You have to look at it from so many angles that it can be hard to let yourself get immersed in the story while keeping that critical eye (which is why I often see a movie like this on more than once occasion). But this film was so enjoyable it was hard to find anything that might be considered detracting or jarring. Except on thing. Bane’s voice. Don’t get me wrong, it sounds frightening and fits the character perfectly. But when the prologue was released before Mission Impossible; Ghost Protocol, there were many audience members that had a hard time hearing him and understanding his lines. It was then reported that Nolan went back and edited it in a way to help clear up the dialogue. For the most part you can understand him perfectly. Even in that said scene, the audio was much clearer than when I first experienced it a few months back. But there were a few times that it was still incredibly hard to pick up every word Tom Hardy was saying. Not enough to make me upset or angry, but enough for me to notice. I would say that 95% of the time you can understand him, but there were a few scenes were I had to pay close attention to the dialogue. But that would be my one and ONLY gripe with this film.
Overall The Dark Knight Rises is a perfect closing to Nolan’s Batman franchise. It surpasses every one of my expectations (and my expectations were VERY high indeed). Whether or not it will gross as much as The Dark Knight did in 2008, especially with the hype surrounding Heath Ledger’s death, is unknown. But I believe that once people start seeing this film and the word of mouth spreads, it could be within the top ten highest grossing movies of all time. And furthermore, it will definitely get the Best Picture and Best Director nomination at next years Academy Awards. Whether or not they win is an entirely different argument, and I will say that, If it doesn’t I will boycott the awards for the rest of my life. So get out there and see why I have such high praise for this film and comment below if you agree or disagree with anything I have written here today!
Oh, and if you’re wondering why I didn’t give it my usual ‘whatever star rating out of five’, it is because that this movie is so good that I couldn’t possibly rate it on a scale so small. You’ll understand when you see it.
NERD IT UP!!!
Happy Wednesday Nerdites! As many of you know tomorrow night marks the beginning of the end for Christopher Nolan‘s Batman trilogy, or at least let’s hope it does. The Dark Knight Rises has been a constant point of conversation for years at this point, and to be honest I am quite happy just to see it all come to an end. Do not get me wrong, that is not to say that I do not love the series, I will be at the midnight showing tomorrow myself, I just am not as fanatical about it as others.
At least part of my diminished enthusiasm stems from the fact I still do not think Nolan and Bale’s Batman is anywhere near the best. Oh it certainly can make a claim as the best film version of the character, but even that is debatable. I can name a number of Batman writers over the years that have done better things with the character, but that is like comparing apples to oranges.
A comparison we can make is that to the DC animated films and TV shows. Batman in particular has been the most well represented in the animated universe and it is hard to compete with the Batman: TAS version of the character. Certainly no one can argue that Kevin Conroy’s Batman voice is infinitely better than Christian Bale’s attempt at a sore throat. That is why when I saw this TDKR trailer inspired by Hub‘s BTAS marathon I almost started squealing like the Geico Pig. To highlight Friday’s ten episode marathon, Hub cut pieces of BTAS into a trailer that closely resembles the original TDKR trailer. It is phenomenally done, and it seems like they even pulled in voice talent to make the dialogue match.
This is some pretty effective marketing as well. if I still had conventional television I might consider staying home Friday just to watch, but alas I will miss it. For those of you still recovering from the midnight showing of TDKR, the marathon will begin 4 pm eastern and 1 pm pacific. Now enjoy the wonderful trailer and let us know what you think in the comments below! Oh and did I mention that Hub also has ALF…. just saying.
These are some set photos from the recently started shoot of Mad Max: Fury Road in Namiba.
The shoot was apparently due to start in Australia in the summer of last year, but thanks to an unusual amount of rain the normally barren out-back was in full bloom, with lovely plants and flowers as far as the eye can see. Less ‘end of the world apocalypse’, more Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah .
Not a massive amount is known about the plot of this movie. Many websites are giving their opinions on what will happen, but they never agree. So, if we cobble together most of the information that remains constant we can get a vague idea. Deep breath everyone.
Right, so, the events in Fury Road are said to take place a short time after the events of Thunderdome, the last Mad Max movie, making this a ‘re-imagined sequel.’ Apparently the movie centres around the ‘Five Sisters’ or the ‘Five Wives’, everyone seems to agree its five women at least, being transported somewhere in the standard Mad Max style armoured convoy. When the convoy is attacked Max has to step in and save the day.
And that’s it so far.
The acting talent in this movie is very impressive. Taking over the role of Max ‘Road Warrior’ Rockatansky from Mel Gibson is the fascinating and intense Tom Hardy. Now this is an interesting choice, mainly due to the fact that Tom is a man mountain of musclyness. In the first three movies Max was a regular looking guy who had nothing to lose but still had his humanity and a conscience, which is in stark contrast to the almost super-human appearance of Hardy as Bane (Dark Knight Rises) or Tommy Conlon (Warrior). Also joining Tom are: Charlize Theron as Furiosa (or Costar depending on what you read, the character may also be missing part of one of her arms), Riley Keough, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoe Kravitz, Abby Lee, Adelaide Clemens (the Five Sister/Wives??) Nicholas Hoult as Nux and Richard Norton. Impressive.
Also, according to Wikipedia, George Millar’s reimagining is set to be a trilogy with Mad Max: Furiosa being shot back to back with Fury Road. This is great news as the original Mad Max films are great, let’s hope the new ones are too.
We started with Fury Road, but we then started to do a second story and a third, we’ve written the script for the second and almost finished the third.
George Millar, Wikipedia.
There are only 30 days until Christopher Nolan’s epic Batman trilogy comes to an end, and the film’s producers (via Nokia) have released a brand new trailer. Clocking in at just over two minutes, the trailer introduces even more footage than we have seen in trailers over the past few months. And, hey, there is even an appearance by Lucius Fox, played by Morgan Freeman. I do not think we have seen that in trailers past. I, for one, am very glad that a new trailer has been released for The Dark Knight Rises, as I have gotten a bit tired of seeing the same spots over and over.
While the trailer does not answer any more of our questions, I think that it solidifies the fact that this will be an incredible film. To be honest, I think it introduces even more questions, especially about the ending of the film. We have debated this issue at length on Film Fans, but really, what will be the fate of the Batman? Will “Gotham’s reckoning” put and end to him? Will Bane be too much for Batman to handle? I want to see the movie just so I can find out how it all ends, as Nolan has gone on the record saying that there will not be a fourth film.
Are you excited for this movie? Get your advanced tickets now and then come back and tell us why you want to see it!
The Dark Knight rises into theaters on July 20.
Holy Blockbuster Box Office Hits, Batman! A brand new trailer for The Dark Knight Rises!
Annnd, if you nerddudes and nerdettes are truly representing your prestigious, hard-earned title as a “Nerd”, then you must already know that the cheesemo Robin joke for the intro is probably the closest Nolan-verse style Batman will ever come to acknowledging the Boy Wonder. Without further ado: The Dark Knight Rises trailer…
A small blurb description from www.traileraddict.com for The Dark Knight Rises newest trailer:
Feature trailer for The Dark Knight Rises. Despite his tarnished reputation after the events of The Dark Knight, in which he took the rap for Dent’s crimes, Batman feels compelled to intervene to assist the city and its police force which is struggling to cope with Bane’s plans to destroy the city.
The Dark Knight Rises Trailer
……………… <— See that, folks? My absolutely STUNNED silence over the pure epic AWESOMENESS of this trailer!!!!! Excuse me while I totally fan-girl GEEK out and squeal-scream followed by an implosion over how excited and amped those delicious 2 minutes and 19 seconds were! Admittedly, I was pretty dubious about Anne-“Princess-Wears-Prada-While-Reading-The-Devil’s-Diary”-Hathaway taking on the role of the feisty femme fatale, Selina Kyle, aka Catwoman, especially after seeing the first released trailer for TDKR…
When I first heard that you, Anne Hathaway, was going to be the sex kitten Catwoman, I felt the exact same way your contorted face looks in this pic below….
She almost seemed stiff and hokey, as if Hathaway was trying to invoke one of badly acted characters from that corny black and white gangster movie Kevin McAllister was emotionally scarred by watched in the Home Alone flicks.
For some ’90s nostalgia fun time, check out the fun clip below. “Keep the change, ya’ filthy animal…”
However, seeing Hathaway pull off slinky, savvy, and seductive in this last trailer, now has me convinced that director Christopher Nolan has done it again by managing to assemble the most unlikely actor to portray such a notorious character. Not to mention the way she dons that sexy cat-suit in the pic on the lower left, it’s purrfect. (Eh-hem, check out the lower pic on the right. Heath Ledger’s Joker ring a bell, anyone? Yeah… Not even the peeps at 1-800-Psychic-Hotline could’ve predicted his monumentally genius performance… Or the fact that it would be his last.)
R.I.P. Heath Ledger…
Meeeeow Anne Hathaway!
Now, if any of you had a hard time deciphering just what it was Bane’s first words were in this trailer—here’s what it sounded like he said, but most definitely did NOT actually say: “I’m Gotham’s Rectum.” Then again, with a name like Bane—perhaps that misinterpretation isn’t too far off the mark. For those who still aren’t sure, here’s what Bane REALLY said: “I’m Gotham’s reckoning.” Looks like Christian Bale’s gruff mumbly Bat voice appears to be more understandable this time around, while Tom Hardy’s pixilated baritone Bane voice might earn the endless scrutiny of the audience’s knit-picky demands for clearly spoken dialogue. I say just wait before judging, and especially just wait to hear the movie in its entirety on the crystal clear Sony digital surround sound speakers that only IMAX can truly give justice to.
Much like the trailer ended in showing the Nolan-verse style of the Bat’s jet, the Batwing, I too am gonna’ jet! I am SO there to see The Dark Knight Rises the moment it comes out, perhaps you peeps may rise to the occasion as well. “DESHAY BASARAH!” HE RISES.
Bane and the Bat, who will rise?
The Dark Knight Rises on July 20th, 2012
Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some sensuality and language