Movies

Word of Mouth
11:53 am
Thu April 26, 2012

You might not know his name, but you DEFINITELY know his voice...

(Photo by Sarah Ackerman via Flickr Creative Commons)

Here at Word of Mouth, we frequently crack wise about bizarre stories by imitating that ubiquitous announcer voice from movie and video game trailers…the one who always beginning with “In a world where…"

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Interviews
3:08 am
Sat April 21, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: Carl Zimmer, The Three Stooges

After they leave their orphanage for the first time, Curly (Will Sasso) bears a heavy burden — his fellow Stooges, Moe (Chris Diamantopoulos, left) and Larry (Sean Hayes).
Peter Iovino Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Originally published on Sat April 21, 2012 11:58 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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Movies
6:46 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Italian Critics Don't 'Love' Allen's Roman Holiday

Woody Allen at the Italian-language premiere of To Rome With Love, in Rome, April 13.
Andrew Medichini AP

After shooting in London, Barcelona and Paris, Woody Allen made his latest European backdrop Rome. To Rome With Love opens Friday in Italy — in Italian.

The movie is a magnificent postcard of the eternal city — a carefree romp along cobblestone streets nestled between ancient ruins and Renaissance palaces. A soft yellow glow pervades every scene. It projects an image of the sweet life with all the charms under the Italian sun, set to the tune of old standbys like "Volare" and "Arrivederci Roma."

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Movie Reviews
10:18 pm
Fri April 13, 2012

An Inspiring Teacher, Exactly When He's Needed

Mohamed Fellag, an Algerian comedian and humor writer, plays the title character in the Oscar-nominated Monsieur Lazhar, who steps in to teach a class of middle school students at exactly the right time.
Music Box Films

Originally published on Tue January 29, 2013 5:55 pm

At the start of a bright, sunny day that seems otherwise like any other day, a popular teacher is found dead in her classroom. It was suicide.

The school is traumatized, especially that teacher's students. By the next day, the principal is at her wits' end trying to find someone willing to take the class. So when Bachir Lazhar (Mohamed Fellag) offers to teach, it comes at just the right moment.

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Movies
3:01 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

Watch This: 'Harold & Kumar' Directors' DVD Picks

Harold and Kumar directors Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg arrive at the premiere of American Reunion at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on March 19 in Hollywood, Calif.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Directors Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg met in high school and went on to create the Harold and Kumar stoner comedies. Their new movie is American Reunion, the latest installment of the American Pie franchise.

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Movie Interviews
4:34 pm
Tue April 10, 2012

'Indie Darling' Greta Gerwig, Making A Bigger Splash

Greta Gerwig (center) tells NPR's Robert Siegel that she doesn't mind being called "Hollywood's indie darling" — as long as she can keep making movies the way she wants.
Sony Pictures Classics

Greta Gerwig, who stars in Whit Stillman's Damsels in Distress, has made a name in indie films like Greenberg with a style that stands out for its naturalism. In Damsels, she inhabits the role of Violet, a bright, sweet, sincere college girl as only a bright, sweet, sincere former college girl could.

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Movies
3:26 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Many Colors Of Prejudice Are Revealed In 'Dark Girls'

Student Pamela Moore is one of the women interviewed in Dark Girls, a documentary on color discrimination by actor-director Bill Duke and co-director D. Channsin Berry.
Dark Girls, LLC

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 7:56 am

Bill Duke knew he was going to get flak from a lot of people before he ever turned the cameras on to film Dark Girls, a new documentary about the painful encounters dark-skinned black women experience in a society where lighter is usually considered better.

It's a subject that has, more often than not, been considered taboo to discuss outside the black community. So Duke knew making a general-distribution movie about color prejudice within the black community was definitely going to rub some black folks the wrong way.

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Movies
3:01 am
Wed April 4, 2012

'Shanghai': A Rom-Com Look At Americans In China

In Shanghai Calling, Chinese-American attorney Sam Chao (Daniel Henney) relocates from New York to Shanghai at the behest of his law firm. He develops a relationship with Amanda (Eliza Coupe), an expert on relocation and local customs and culture.
Americatown, LLC

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 2:47 pm

A growing number of American professionals have moved to China in the last decade to ride the economic boom. While much of the news coming out of the country is serious stuff — political repression, trade disputes, tainted food — for American expatriates, day-to-day life in China can be chaotic, exciting and often funny.

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Monkey See
5:42 pm
Wed March 28, 2012

DVD Picks: 70 Years Of 'Casablanca'

Warner Home Video

Time now for a home viewing recommendation from NPR's movie critic, Bob Mondello. He's found himself swept up this week by the 70th Anniversary edition boxed set of Casablanca.

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Something Wild
9:42 am
Wed March 28, 2012

The Lorax

Reuters/San Diego Police Department/Handout

The box office success of the new Universal Pictures animated feature film “The Lorax” - based on a classic Dr. Seuss tale – creates a window of opportunity to consider environmental messaging to a new generation of future leaders. The original Seuss tale is beloved. I can still recite it from memory. “Tell us ‘The Lorax’ Dad!” my kids would beg. Like all Seuss books, The Lorax features rhymes, nuances and a moral.

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Movies
12:01 am
Wed March 28, 2012

In Japan, 'Sliced-Up Actors' Are A Dying Breed

Fukumoto in one of the numerous period costume dramas he has acted in for the Toei Company's film studios since he began work there in 1959.
Toei Kyoto Studio Park

Japan is home to Asia's oldest and largest motion-picture industry, with its own unique genres and traditions. While every film industry has stuntmen, only Japan has a class of actors whose main job is to be sliced and diced by samurai sword-wielding protagonists. But the decline of period dramas means that this class of actors is literally a dying breed.

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The Two-Way
5:30 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

After 'Hunger Games,' U.S. Archer Shoots For Olympic Games

Archer Khatuna Lorig, seen here during the London Archery Classic last October, helped actress Jennifer Lawrence prepare for her role as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games.
Dean Mouhtaropoulos Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 28, 2012 10:31 am

This summer, U.S. archer Khatuna Lorig hopes to return to the Olympic Games. But she's already helped put archery into The Hunger Games this spring — by training the film's star, Jennifer Lawrence, to shoot.

In the kill-or-be-killed competition in the film drawn from Suzanne Collins' book, Lawrence's character, Katniss Everdeen, relies on her ability with a bow. And Lorig worked with the actress to ensure she had proper form.

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Movies
12:01 am
Tue March 27, 2012

'October Baby' Tells A Story Hollywood Wouldn't

First-year college student Hannah (Rachel Hendrix) goes on a road trip in search of her birth mother after she learns she was adopted following a failed attempt at an abortion.
Lovell/Fairchild Communications

October Baby tells the story of 19-year-old Hannah, a first-year college student, who leaves home on a search for her birth mother. In many ways, it's a Hollywood-style road trip movie dealing with questions of identity, but at the movie's core is also a vigorous message about abortion.

In one scene, Hannah tracks down a nurse who worked at the health clinic where her birth mother had sought an abortion — one that failed when Hannah was born prematurely.

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Word of Mouth - Segment
11:30 am
Thu March 22, 2012

Hollywood, Hunger Games, and How Small Screens Survive

Hollywood is dominated at the moment by the upcoming release of The Hunger Games, the first film adaptation of a phenomenally successful series of young adult novels set in a dystopian, divided America, where teenagers from different regions are pitted against each other for survival.

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Word of Mouth
11:18 am
Thu March 22, 2012

Undercover, High School Style

21 Jump Street sits atop the box office this week. It is a reboot of the late 1980's television hit about cops going undercover in high schools.  Turns out there are real-life police officers on the high school hallway beat, and, as Slate reporter Will Oremus uncovered, there are specific strategies these fre

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