When Two Worlds Collide: ‘The Ugly Truth’ about Andrew Stanton’s John Carter

Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins, left) and John Carter (Taylor Kitsch, right) in the Mars desert.

Expectations were enormous when Disney’s long-announced new live-action 3D blockbuster John Carter hit theaters in March. At an estimated budget of a ‘mere’ $250 million, John Carter is the fourth-most expensive film of all time. The studio was certainly willing to take that risk, given its good experiences with such big-budget blockbusters as the Pirates Of The Caribbean sequels and the animated Tangled. John Carter was supposed to be Disney’s answer to James Cameron’s 3D spectacle Avatar, a science-fiction adventure set in an alien world that would make use of the technology’s manifold possibilities.

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Sweet Temptation: The Collapse of Relationships in Atom Egoyan’s Chloe

Chloe (Amanda Seyfried, left) and Catherine (Julianne Moore, right) play a dangerous game.

‘I think with all directors there are ideas that recur, at least for the ones that have creative control of their films,’ controversial Canadian director Atom Egoyan once remarked. As one of the selected few in the movie industry who don’t need their products to turn a profit, the four-time winner at Cannes and two-time Oscar nominee is privileged to choose his own topics without commercial restraints.

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Women in Love… – Close Encounters of a Different Kind in Julio Medem’s Room In Rome

Alba (Elena Anaya, left) and Natasha (Natasha Yarovenko, right) in their room in Rome.

What happens when two pretty girls stay at a hotel in Italy’s ’Eternal City’? That’s the simple but intriguing premise of Sex & Lucía director Julio Medem’s Spanish arthouse film Room In Rome. Sometimes it doesn’t take more than such a basic idea – an intimate play of two – for a provoking work, in more than one sense. For starters, the movie contains dialog in whopping six different languages. But that’s not really the reason why Room In Rome attracted quite a bit of attention upon its release.

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Girls United: Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids as a Refreshing Take on a Male Genre

The lovely leading ladies (from left to right): Megan (Melissa McCarthy), Rita (Wendi McLendon-Covey), Becca (Ellie Kemper), Annie (Kristen Wiig), Lilian (Maya Rudolph), and Helen (Rose Byrne).

Comedies have always been treated like second-rate citizens at the Oscars. In contrast to the Golden Globes, which hand out separate awards for dramas and comedies, the Academy has downright neglected funny films for ages. It was therefore all the more surprising to see Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids – a movie that scooped no trophies at all at the Globes – score two nominations at the 2012 Oscars.

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