THE INFILTRATOR

In a diverse and celebrated acting career that includes an Oscar nod for last year’s Trumbo and four Emmys for Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston obviously knows a thing or two about acting. His latest film The Infiltrator centers on the true story of U.S. customs agent Robert Mazur’s (Cranston) attempts to take down Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar.

During The Infiltrator interviews, we asked Cranston if there is a particular method he uses as an actor. “We all approach things differently,” says Cranston, whose previous credits also include Godzilla . “The traditional way of describing it is that some actors are ‘outside in’ and others are ‘inside out.’ I use kind of a combination of that. Sometimes it’s something that happens on the outside - the look or the feel that informs the inside or plants a seed. Ultimately, you need to grow, for me, the emotional core of (the character).”

Click on the media bar to hear Bryan Cranston give his take on the acting process:



Co-starring Benjamin Bratt and Diane Kruger, The Infiltrator opens nationwide July 13.

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi


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Susanna White (dir.)/Our Kind of Traitor. (CR: Jaap Buitendijk)

The oft-used phrase “no good deed goes unpunished” applies to the lead character in Our Kind of Traitor, the story of a poetics professor named Perry (a subdued yet effective Ewan McGregor) whose attempts to help his new Russian friend Dima (Stellan Skarsgård) find sanctuary in Britain puts he and his wife (Naomie Harris) in immediate danger. Based on a John Le Carré novel and directed by Susanna White (Nanny McPhee Returns, Generation Kill), Our Kind of Traitor may have its share of action and political intrigue (Damian Lewis co-stars as a refreshingly unpredictable MI6 agent), but the heart of the story deals with Perry’s gradual re-investment in his own life and his relationship with Gail (Harris).

“It’s a very contemporary story of what it’s like to be a couple in 2016 when you’re both trying to hold down careers,” said White, who will next direct Jessica Chastain in Woman Walks Ahead “He’s a lost soul at the beginning of the movie. He likes the idea of his wife being a successful lawyer but actually she’s overtaken him in some ways. He’s feeling a bit emasculated by that and (here comes) this super macho guy in the form of Stellan who really makes him question who he is and takes him on a really surprising journey.”

White may not be a “lost soul” herself, but one would assume getting lost during Our Kind of Traitor’s hectic production was inevitable. Whether it was shooting in the “deep snow” of Finland (where elk stew was the food of choice!) or attempting to shoot a quick scene on the train with Harris and McGregor before reaching the Channel Tunnel, rest and comfort were two luxuries that weren’t afforded to the film’s cast and crew (the project’s script supervisor breaking her wrist as well as losing Marrakesh as a location were just a few more challenges White faced).  “It wasn’t like running a marathon,” added White, whose movie features locations from five countries. “It was like doing an Iron Man (laughs)!”

Click on the media bar below to hear Susanna White talk about casting Damian Lewis in Our Kind of Traitor.



Our Kind of Traitor is now playing in select theaters, and to listen to our CinemAddicts discussion of the film, please click on the media bar below:





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Captain America: Civil War


Captain America: Civil War was a bonafide box-office hit with a worldwide take of $1.14 billion, and now the film is headed to Blu-ray on September 13 and Digital HD on September 2.

In this installment, Cap (Chris Evans) and Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) do not see eye to eye on how The Avengers should conduct their business. While Iron Man believes world governments should have a huge say on what The Avengers can and can’t do, Cap believes “Earth’s mightiest heroes” doesn’t need supervision.

The movie also featured the additions of scene-stealing actor Tom Holland as the latest iteration of Spider-Man and Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther. Daniel Brühl also stars as Zemo (Marvel Comics fans know him as the super-intelligent villain Baron Zemo), the man who plays a big part in this latest Avengers rift.

Bonus features on the disc include:

1. United We, Stand Divided We Fall - The Making of Captain America: Civil War Part 1 & Part 2 - This featurette looks at the origins of the Marvel story and discusses the inclusion of Spider-Man and Black Panther into this saga.

2. Captain America: The Road to Civil War - A look at Cap’s evolution from a dutiful and dedicated soldier to a superhero with a bit of trepidation towards the government (obviously, that’s easy to understand from the events that transpired in Captain America: The Winter Soldier).

3. Iron Man: The Road To Civil War - A look at Tony Stark and the evolution of Iron Man.

4. Gag Reel - Yuk yuks and funny moments from the set.

5. Deleted and extended scenes - Hopefully more scenes of Daniel Brühl which detail more of Zemo’s backstory and motivations are featured! Nevertheless, extra scenes from a good movie are always welcome!

6. Audio Commentary - Directors Anthony and Joe Russo, along with scribes Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are featured on the track.

7. Open Your Mind: Marvel’s Doctor Strange - This exclusive sneak peek gives a preview of Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch). The movie, directed by Deliver Us From Evil filmmaker Scott Derrickson, comes out November 4, 2016.

**For our CinemAddicts review of Captain: America Civil War, click on the media bar below:





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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi


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Chris Pratt and Academy Award winner Jennifer Lawrence are two of the most in demand actors working in film today. Both are not only good actors whose work is always liked by critics and audiences, they are also big box office draws. They will be seen together in a the sci-fi film Passengers which opens in theaters December 21.

The film sounds like it could a great science fiction, one that can only hope that it’s much better than any other sci-fi movie we have seen recently. Instead of telling you what the movie is about, let’s get the inside scoop from Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence. (Click on the media bar below to hear Chris Pratt & Jennifer Lawrence)

Pratt and Lawrence are both excited to be working on an original story, something which is rare in Hollywood these days. (Click on the media bar below to hear Chris Pratt & Jennifer Lawrence)

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Posted by: Susan Brown


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owendrawing

Whether it’s a family friendly film about a giant (The BFG) or watching Tarzan swing from tree to tree (The Legend of Tarzan), there is a plethora of high profile films coming out this week. But if you’re in the mood for smaller, more intimate fare, the documentary Life, Animated should do the trick.

The project centers on the life of Owen Suskind, an autistic man who learned to communicate with his family by immersing himself in the world of Disney films. A documentary that tugs at one’s heart but also gives an incisive look at Owen’s journey, Life, Animated is the movie pick of the week on CinemAddicts.

Other films discussed on the podcast include the subtle yet effective spy thriller Our Kind of Traitor, the fantasy comedy/drama Swiss Army Man, and the Bruce Willis heist thriller The Marauders. For his streaming pick, Anderson Cowan reviews the William Friedkin directed crime drama Cruising and my Blu-ray pick is Rams (a review of the film is posted on Hollywood Outbreak). Take a listen,and if you have any comments, please share below!





Last but not least, here is our ‘180 Seconds or Less’ review of Life, Animated:




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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi



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The USA Network hit series Royal Pains is now is in its eighth and final season is currently the longest running scripted show on the USA Network. A huge reason for the show’s success is thanks to the diverse talents and leadership of actor Mark Feuerstein. Along with Feuerstein, his co-stars and guest stars have made the show one of the best series on the network. We spoke to Feuerstein. who reminisced with us about the history and says each season was its own world.  He goes on to say how fortunate he was to work with a great cast such as Henry Winkler and Campbell Scott among them and he’s more than grateful that he landed the role. (Click on the media bar below to hear Mark Feuerstein)

Don’t miss the last season of Royal Pains Wednesday night on the USA Network.

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Posted by: Susan Brown


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Now out on Blu-ray via Cohen Media Group, Rams is an Icelandic film that grabs you from the opening shot and refuses to let go. The film, however, doesn’t seduce with quick cutting and flashy action sequences, as the story of two brothers living on a secluded Iceland property may actually seem, upon first blush, as boring.

Even in their silences, sibings Gummi (Sigurdur Sugrjónsson) and Kiddi (Theodór Julísson) are always intriguing to watch and observe, as the mystery behind their fractured relationship continues to build right until the narrative’s final chapter. For some reason, the pair, although they live in different houses on the same piece of land, haven’t spoken to one another in over 40 years, and most of their communication is aided by messages delivered to each other by Kiddi’s loyal dog.

They both raise sheep, and one of Gummi’s rams wins the town’s annual best in show competition, leaving a jealous Kiddi understandably depressed. While inspecting the winning, Kiddi discovers the animal has scrapie, an incurable and communicable disease which attacks the sheep’s brain and spinal cord.

With the scrapie discovery, farmers around the town are ordered to kill their sheep and eventually raise a new flock which in effect will cripple their livelihood for the next couple of years. Faced with killing animals who in many ways are their sole form of companionship, the brothers must find a way through their respective struggles.

Director/writer Grímur Hákonarson based his screenplay on a true story, and along with growing up in rural Iceland, he also worked on a sheep farm as a teenager. The filmmaker’s lived-in experience is infused all throughout the methodical, contemplative pacing of Rams, as the solitary lifestyle of the brothers are also heightened by the beautiful yet ultimately desolate surroundings that envelop their environment. For urban dwellers looking for a picture postcard filled with ice capped mountains and eye catching landscapes, Rams has that in spades.

Though the 93-minute film is billed as a dark comedy, Hákonarson’s tale is mainly rooted in drama that surfaces from real life struggles and tragedies. The film’s closing moments, which is the director’s emotional, cinematic aria, is definitely a showy, standout moment that organically fits into the story’s structure. Lesser storytellers would have gone off the rails and punctuate the story with broader comedy or a few stylistic bells and whistles, but the director thankfully keeps the cards close to his vest (until the story’s denouement).

Honored last year with the Un Certain Regard Award at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, Rams is a cinematic tale of pure meditative and heartbreaking wonder, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Hollywood takes notice of his talents.

Special features on the Blu-ray include an interview with Grímur Hákonarson, the 22-minute short Wrestling (directed by Hákonarson), and the theatrical trailer.


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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi



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Animated family films continue to do well at the box-office. Finding Dory, The Angry Birds Movie, Kung Fu Panda 3 have all done well, and you can bet the next big animated family hit will be The Secret Life of Pets.

Featuring the voice talent of such A-List actors as Louis C.K., Kevin Hart and Modern Family star Eric Stonestreet, the film centers what happens when the pets are left at home when the human leave the house. Stonestreet sees this movie as a “celebration of animals” that, on an entertainment and a personal level, has universal appeal.. (Click on the media bar below to hear Eric Stonestreet)

The Secret Life of Pets comes out nationwide July 8.

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Posted by: Susan Brown


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For nearly three decades, Benjamin Bratt has been a familiar face on the big screen and small screen. Back in in 1995, he became a household name playing Detective Rey Curtis in the landmark NBC procedural Law & Order. For four seasons Bratt turned in great performances, as he and late actor Jerry Orbach had an undeniable chemistry.

To this day you can catch a Law & Order episode seven days a week on various channels. We caught up with Bratt and asked him if he ever watches the show whenever it’s on television. During the conversation, he reminisced about working on the show, joked about how young he looked, and reflected on how much he enjoyed working with his close friend and mentor Jerry Orbach. (Click on the media bar below to hear Benjamin Bratt)

You can next see Benjamin Bratt co-starring with Bryan Cranston in The Infiltrator opening July 13 and he will also be starring with Queen Latifah in the FOX series Star, created by Academy Award nominated director and Empire Creator Lee Daniels, in 2017.

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Posted by: Susan Brown




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The Freeform (formerly ABC Family) hit series Pretty Little Liars is now in its seventh season and fans of the series can’t seem to get enough of the drama that has captivated young audiences all over the world. This season promises more twists and turns with love triangles and mystery galore! Shay Mitchell, who plays Emily Fields, says this season will answer many questions that have lingered for some time and she goes on to say it’s also going to be a season of romance. (Click on the media bar below to hear Shay Mitchell)


Pretty Little Liars airs Tuesday nights 8/7 on the Freeform network.

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Posted by: Susan Brown


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