When The Big Bang Theory debuted, many thought the show would simply center on four nerds who were into comic books and sci-fi movies, but as the show evolved we got to know the added dimensions behind these likable individuals. Even with the show’s success, some viewers still view Sheldon, Leonard, Howard and Raj as nerds. However, Big Bang Theory creator Chuck Lorre said he never viewed the show’s protagonists as nerds. (Click on the media bar below to hear Chuck Lorre)
The Big Bang Theory airs on Thursday nights 8/7c on CBS.
The freshman series Blindspotcenters on an amnesiac (Jaimie Alexander) who is found naked in Times Square. Her body is adorned with tattoos, one of which has the name of FBI agent Kurt Weller (Sullivan Stapleton). The pair form an unlikely bond as they attempt to uncover a mysterious past that is linked to a grand conspiracy.
Stapleton, who was previously best known for his work on the Cinemax TV series Strike Back, wasn’t an actor by trade at an early age. In fact, the ideas of working in Hollywood was probably a long shot for the Australian native.
Click on the media bar below to hear Stapleton, who also worked on sets as a grip (including The Elephant Princess, The Pacific, and the TV series Rush)talk about his acting journey:
Sullivan, whose film credits include 300: Rise of an Empireand Animal Kingdom, will be seen next year in the Luc Besson (The Professional, La Femme Nikita) penned action film The Lake.
99 Homesweaves a spellbinding tale of survival that’s set in the Sunshine State. It’s 2010, and the foreclosure crisis is devastating families who can’t make their mortgage payments. Nattily dressed to the nines opportunist Rick Carver (Michael Shannon) evicts people from their homes and is paid handsomely for his troubles. Evictions are never an easy process, and Carver always carries a gun just for his own protection.
His latest eviction comes in the form of construction worker Dennis Nash (Andrew Garfield), a single dad who’s struggling to support his mom (Laura Dern) and son (Noah Lomax). Though Dennis and his family are immediately kicked out and move to a decrepit motel filled with previous homeowners, hope isn’t completely lost after Dennis actually lands a job with Carver. Initially tasked with fixing homes (Dennis even repairs the air conditioner in Carver’s domicile), Dennis gradually becomes Carver’s protegee and starts handling his own evictions.
Director/writer Ramin Bahrani’s exploration of what one will do for the sake of family is at the heart of his 2012 drama At Any Price, which had farmer Henry Whipple (Dennis Quaid) struggling to keep his wayward son Dean (Zac Efron, in his best performance to date) on the straight and narrow path. With 99 Homes, the father figure leads the protagonist down a different path, as making easy money, even if it’s at the expense of other families, is still a huge temptation.
Sporting a slight tan, donning tailor made suits and smoking electronic cigarettes, Michael Shannon is blessed with the narrative’s showiest performance. Rick Carver is fine with making a profit from a person’s misfortune, even if it means getting his hands dirty and, as witnessed in the film’s viscerally charged opening moments, a little bloody. It’s hard to watch 99 Homes and not be reminded of Michael Douglas’ Oscar winning work as Gordon Gekko in Wall Street, as Carver has taken a few pages from Gekko’s “greed is good” ethos. Thankfully, neither the narrative or Shannon’s performance exist in a derivative universe, as Bahrani infuses this ripped from the headlines story with a steady dose of realism.
The film’s various evictions, as we witness people being dispassionately extricated from their residences, feels like a true documentary as Bahrani’s love for neorealism, an aesthetic that’s applied to his earlier work (including 2007’s Chop Shop) is in full effect. Amidst its documentary and two hander drama stylings, however, lies the beating heart of a thriller that never loses its grip.
While Carver is an unforgiving force of nature, Dennis is a tortured soul searching for a way out of the morass, and Garfield perfectly embodies his character’s seemingly inescapable desperation. It’s understandable that his work may be overshadowed by Shannon’s charismatic turn (the always plugged-in Laura Dern is also a scene stealer), but Garfield’s steadying hand gives this addicting potboiler a subtle sense of gravitas.
Bahrani’s passion for social injustice and humanity’s ambiguous dance with good and evil is evident in his body of work, but since he’s also a lifelong movie buff (he was a good friend of Roger Ebert and is featured in the documentary Life Itself), he’s also energized by the possibilities of cinema. During interviews he’s mentioned Wall Street, Dog Day Afternoon, and On The Waterfrontas inspirations for the film, and the merging of social drama with white knuckled storytelling is effectively rendered in 99 Homes.
Powered by a finely tuned acting ensemble and assured direction from Bahrani, 99 Homes is a cinematic punch to the gut and one of this year’s best films – even if those eviction notices are an unwelcome sight.
To read about why Andrew Garfield loves “instability” as an actor, check out the following Find Your Seen post.
99 Homes is now playing in New York and opens October 2 in Los Angeles.
Opening in theaters today, THE GREEN INFERNO tells the story of a group of self-absorbed student activists who travel to the Amazon in an effort to save the rain forest and an indigenous tribe from destruction by an unconcerned lumber company. It’s not long until the clueless kids are trapped by the very bloodthirsty cannibals they were on a mission to save and the results are anything but pretty. An homage to the jungle massacre classic CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, THE GREEN INFERNO pushes a whole lot of envelopes when it comes to blood and gore.
Directed and co-written by ELI ROTH, the film stars LORENZA IZZO (aka Mrs. Eli Roth), ARIEL LEVY,AARON BURNS,KIRBY BLISS BLANTON and IGNACIA ALLAMAND in what might just be the most disturbing horror film of the year.
During a recent press conference to promote the film, ROTH talked about his motivation and how he sees THE GREEN INFERNO as more than just a mindless bloodbath. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)
Throughout his film career Matt Damon has worked with some of the best directors the big screen has ever seen. A few of the talented filmmakers that Damon has collaborated with include Academy Award winners Steven Spielberg (Saving Private Ryan), Francis Ford Coppola (The Rainmaker), and Martin Scorsese (The Departed). Now you can add another Oscar winner Ridley Scott who directed him in the upcoming sci-fi thriller The Martian.
Damon who is one of the best actors working in movies today, said working on the epic film with Scott, a talented visualist whose imagination knows no bounds, was a truly great experience. (Click on the media bar below to hear Matt Damon)