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Quendrith Johnson


Everything happening in film covered from LA...
@Quendrith I Facebook I screenmancer.tv


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Joan Kron's TAKE MY NOSE...PLEASE! is Kinda Fonda Plastic Surgery

Intro by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Sometimes a film comes along that is so unusual you have to sit up and take note. Such is the case with TAKE MY NOSE... PLEASE! It's a debut documentary by Joan Kron, an 89-years-young journalist and comedian who took up filmmaking in her mid-80's. It opens Oct. 6 at Village East in NY and Oct. 13 at Laemmle Santa Monica. I've picked up the interview below from Screenmancer.tv for you, and you'll notice they discuss the Ja...

There’s a Sphinx in Santa Barbara Thanks to Cecil B. DeMille, Wander Into THE LOST CITY Sept. 23

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent When THE LOST CITY OF CECIL B. DEMILLE screens at The Egyptian Theatre Sept. 23, and the documentary’s full 30 years of footage finally gets a proper showing, it will be in the mythical city of its origin, Hollywood. Scroll back in time to 1923, the Great Director DeMille stands in blowing sand, turning back the hands of time to a Biblical Age when “The Ten Commandments” made for cinematic chaff. Pardon the “outdoor voice&r...

Harry Dean Stanton Was LUCKY & Best Three Obits

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Harry Dean Stanton, who died Friday, Sept. 15 at age 91, was in the first movie I ever covered as a film reviewer. On Monday, Feb. 2, 1985, the New Mexico Daily Lobo in Albuquerque published a halting, lukewarm review of Wim Wenders' PARIS, TEXAS. It was a college try at doing this sort of thing, but years later, what strikes me about Harry Dean Stanton is that a lot of us  lived the quirky way he did on screen....

LA LA LAND for Shoes, That’s FOOTNOTES Plus a Social Message

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Damien Chazelle should be thrilled that his movie LA LA LAND has joined the serious ranks of American films that have opened up global audiences to a renewed appreciation of singing and dancing films. The proof? French film FOOTNOTES, originally titled “Sur Quel Pied Danser,” that “opens” on VOD, Tues. Sept. 19. Although the press notes assure all that its inspiration comes from the movies of Jacques Demy and Stanley D...

Crazy Little Thing Called DOWNSIZING from Payne with Damon, Wiig, Waltz & Hong Chau

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent For everybody who loved the DESCENDANTS with George Clooney, but thought it was too sad, or loved SIDEWAYS with Paul Giamatt but not that comedic mean streak of Alexander Payne, here comes something to really love. It’s called DOWNSIZING from Paramount, directed by Payne and co-written with Jim Taylor. This new comedy stars Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Kristen Wiig and Hong Chau from INHERENT VICE. If it sounds like “Honey, I ...

DADDY’S HOME 2: Mel’s Like Team Spirit, That’s Gibson, Wahlberg, Ferrell & Lithgow

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Mel Gibson comes back from traffic court, lol, okay too soon. Mulligan. Mel Gibson comes back from his Hollywood resurrection this year with his six-pack Oscar-nominated movie HACKSAW RIDGE (2016), that won two Oscars for sound mixing and editing, to join son of anarchy Mark Wahlberg and deviant nice guy Will Ferrell in DADDY’S HOME 2, their hit franchise reteam. But he’s not alone in the father-figure star power value-add. Beloved ...

Mumblecore No More, Greta Gerwig’s Debut Directing Film LADY BIRD Is Picture Perfect

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Raise your hand if you think Soairse Ronan should have won Best Actress for BROOKLYN. Anyone?  Yes, it’s an exercise in futility since Ronan was only a nominee in 2016. Lucky for her, Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut LADY BIRD, from A24 films and just shown at the Telluride Film Festival, is where Soairse gets redeemed. Or, you could say given a second chance to make a first impression as an emerging woman trapped ins...

Not Seeing Double, Clooney Has Twins & Two Bros Coen movie SUBURBICON

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Guess what George Clooney and wife Amal named their twins? Romulus and Screamus. Just kidding, actually they have normal names: Ella (think Fitzgerald) and Alexander. But that’s old news. The breaking news is the images coming out of the Venice International Film Festival. It's not kid pics so much as the SUBURBICON photo call and red carpet shots. SUBURBICON is Clooney’s new adventure in filmmaking. It stars Matt Damon as ...

Why You & Oscar Voters Have to See WIND RIVER, Renner & Gil Birmingham

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Jeremy Renner so far, except for his turn in Affleck’s THE TOWN where he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor in 2011, has not been known for switching up his game. Until WIND RIVER, co-starring Elizabeth Olsen with Graham Greene that is.  Even as Renner received a Best Actor Oscar nom for HURT LOCKER in 2010, there was almost a built-in plausibility to that character. In WIND RIVER, there’s a built-in implausibility to...

Anatomy of a Remake: D.O.A. 1950 to DEAD ON ARRIVAL 2017 with Emmy Nom Billy Flynn

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent   Ever wonder how much the world has changed since the half century mark? Take the case of the Edmond O’Brien noir D.O.A, released in 1950, then jump to the Dennis Quaid-Meg Ryan remake in 1988. Now step into the 2017 reboot, DEAD ON ARRIVAL. Written and directed by Stephen C. Sepher, this is one of the independent films that debuted at this year’s Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF).     DEAD ON ARRIV...

Focus Features Turns 15 & Gifts Freebie Movies for You on FB Live thru Sept. 8

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Friday night for the next three weeks just got a little more exciting now that Focus Features is a teenager. The Comcast-owned movie label plans to gift the public three great first-run features from the past on Aug. 25, Sept. 1, and Sept. 8. All in celebration of their 15th anniversary in the business, the trio of star-vehicles will be shown for free on Facebook LIVE. Big names include Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Carrey, Elijah Wood, Mar...

What If There’s No Back to School or Normal: Ai Weiwei’s HUMAN FLOW for UN’s WHD

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Maybe you’ve never heard of Ai Weiwei, who turns 60 on Aug. 28. Once a pro blackjack player, Weiwei still takes huge gambles as China’s best-known living artist, conceptual artist, and filmmaker who is often jailed or at odds with his government. There’s a link to his timeline and bio below. But for tomorrow Aug. 19, which the United Nation declared “World Humanitarian Day” back in 2003, Weiwei’s new fil...

Picture Is Worth a 1000 Words, But a Picture Distributor Speaks Volumes at First Run Features

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Who will never look at tiki torches the same? Oh, it’s #Charlottesville flashbacks, that mob who tried to destroy the reputation of the Commonwealth of Virginia, home to more US Presidents than any other state . That old tourist ad slogan “Virginia Is For Lovers” has now been flipped on its head. What are we to do? Well, First Run Features President Seymour Wishman has a few ideas. This came to my inbox this morning, likely sa...

Batman & Spiderman Walk Into MOLLY’S GAME, But Jessica Chastain Doesn’t Cave to Superheroes

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Holy Toledo, sometimes an insider Hollywood story is so good, you see how the game is played. Jessica Chastain in MOLLY'S GAME So once upon a Batman, and a few-movies-ago Spiderman, the caped one and the web slinger became poker fanatics, like super fanatics, in a snake-pit-named Hollywood club’s back room, a club once owned by a Pirate. True story, plus there’s an ex-Olympic skier with the same name as a character from James ...

Joe Bang Gives Up James Bond for Channing Tatum in Tenn., LOL, for LOGAN LUCKY

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Some good news Down South as Channing Tatum, who stars in LOGAN LUCKY directed by Steven Soderbergh, has gotten James Bond to dye his hair blonde — "Dye Another Day" would be a great 007 title -- wait, that's not real news. Even though Daniel Craig’s surprise Hillbilly-meets-Okie mega-cameo as Joe Bang in this movie is quite a towhead, the real news? Well, over a ways yonder in Tennessee the cast of LOGAN, which will b...

You Think Google Has Issues: Rachel Feldman Has Something To Say About Women & Directing, Okay?

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent One hot week in August leading up to a full moon, from Aug. 1 to Aug. 7, there was a kind of ground zero for the D-word from Hollywood to Silicon Valley. We’re talking hot-button issues inclusion, fairness, and equity under the heading of Diversity. If you haven’t heard what happened, a recap is in order. Here’s a timeline: on July 31 “CBS This Morning” covers a new USC Annenberg study that cites “inclusion c...

Break-Up School: Joachim Lafosse's AFTER LOVE Has Bérénice Bejo vs Cédric Kahn

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent After eons of human existence, or a short hop since the Sexual Revolution of the 1960’s, we still haven’t learned how to do two things well: Die or Divorce. Even with Gwyneth Paltrow’s co-opted “Conscious Uncoupling,” the recent so-called shock split of Chris Pratt and Anna Faris, that followed Ben & Jen, and Brangelina. Life, art, and pop culture peel back one common truth: we don’t know what to d...

READY PLAYER ONE, Or a 101 on VR & Why Uncle Spielberg Is On Board

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent If you’re old enough to remember when MIT had a virtual glove and Jaron Lanier threw together a little company called VPL, you’re probably ahead of the game. Suffice it to say, while READY PLAYER ONE (RP1) is the first big bang BO Hollywood VR blockbuster attempt, the weird road to virtual reality headsets and handsets began somewhere in the mid-80’s. Or you could peg Thomas Zimmerman in 1982 with a ‘wired glove’ p...

ASPERN PAPERS: Henry James Gets Jonathan Rhys Meyers, a Redgrave & a Richardson

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Want some film news? Okay. This lazy heat of summer meets Summerstorm Entertainment (Germany) with an announcement about the Henry James adapt THE ASPERN PAPERS now shooting in Venice, Italy. They've added Jonathan Rhys Meyers to a cast that already includes some marquee names, notably Vanessa Redgrave, Joely Richardson, and Poppy Delevingne, as well as a newcomer, Morgane Polanski. What? You've heard that last name before somewhe...

Darren Aronofsky’s Grand Guignol, Or Look Now at His MOTHER!

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent You can literally pin down three “F” words to describe nearly every Darren Aronofsky film from his early work in PI (1998) to best-loved film REQUIEM FOR A DREAM (2000) to Mickey Rourke in THE WRESTLER (2008) to Natalie Portman’s Oscar-winning turn in BLACK SWAN (2010) to obsessive Russell Crowe in NOAH (2014). Fixated. Fragile. Freakish. Herein lies the latest work by this Harvard-trained filmmaker, MOTHER!, complete with an exc...

Que Cera, Cera? Michael Cera Resurfaces in PERSON TO PERSON Like Now

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent What do we know about 29 year-old Canadian actor Michael Cera? Well, he was 16 on hit TV show “Arrested Development” and brought that wise-old-young-man sensibility to alternative-feeling benchmark films like NICK & NORA’S INFINITE PLAYLIST and SCOTT PILGRIM VS THE WORLD. Add odd roles in JUNO with Oscar nominee Ellen Page, and the zeitgeist turn in SUPERBAD that same year, 2007, he seemed poised to be a coming-of-age fixture...

Looks Like Ben Stiller Finds Himself Again With BRAD’S STATUS

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Hey, so Ben Stiller is back. Ignore that casual pop opening. (Smiley face.) It’s just in keeping with Stiller’s upcoming starrer from Amazon Studios, BRAD’S STATUS. You can Google up what this remade actor has been up to personally, because it shows in his work. Those are real tears, and this is a heartfelt movie, despite the toss-away title. BRAD'S STATUS is directed by Mike White, the guy who brought us SCHOO...

Before Kevin Spacey Locks the Gore Vidal Script for Netflix, A True Story

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Everyone from Iran to Serbia seems to be bent on letting me know there’s a Gore Vidal biopic in the works starring Kevin Spacey. And while Gore would definitely think Kevin Spacey is hot, one wonders what he would make of another *damnable biopic,* especially about himself now dead since July 31, 2012. He died on my birthday, in keeping with his sour and sweet tone since we met at an event in Beverly Hills.   We had collaborated on a...

Josh Brolin Was Always on the Hot Side & Now Hotshot Side in ONLY THE BRAVE

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent This opener from ONLY THE BRAVE’s official notes says it best: “All men are created equal... then, a few become firefighters." Josh Brolin stars with Miles Teller to bring the Granite Mountain fire epic to life. Expect this movie to drop Oct. 20, when the summer heat is gone. It’s based on an article by Boston Phoenix alum Sean Flynn, who wrote “No Exit” for GQ magazine upon which ONLY THE BRAVE is based. Should...

Holy Smokes, That Professor Marston Has Some Women Wondering, Wow

By Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Summer is when the blood is up, so this is perfect timing for the convergent efforts of two famous daughters, Megan Ellison and Amy Redford, to bring justice to the humans behind the superhero capes. And it’s directed by a woman, Angela Robinson. What the what, you may say? PROFESSOR MARSTON & THE WONDER WOMEN, starring Luke Evans and Rebecca Hall, is the smoking hot ménage à trois, allegedly a true story, behind the Wo...
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