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March 21, 2013 | By Roger Moore and MCT
Get past discussions of artistic intent, of the potential career benefits that the cast might have seen in making "Spring Breakers. " What it really boiled down to is this: "None of us had ever experienced spring break," says James Franco. "Really. " That goes for him, and writer-director Harmony Korine, and former child-stars turned "Spring Breakers" wild girls Ashley Benson, Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens. "Actors who start their careers early miss some key experiences in life," Franco confesses.
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ENTERTAINMENT
May 15, 2014 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
**1/2 (out of four) A parent tempted by a student. Another parent who might be in the closet. A strange teen who sometimes says and does unsettling things. Lots of weed. Is “Palo Alto” trying to remind us of “American Beauty”? Probably not. And for what it's worth, the writing-directing debut of Gia Coppola (niece of Sofia and Roman), adapted from stories by co-star James Franco, doesn't suffer for those similarities. It feels closer to a project from Coppola's aunt (“The Virgin Suicides”)
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NEWS
October 21, 2013 | By Julia Borcherts, @JuliaBorcherts and For RedEye
Go: 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday through Nov. 16 at The Den Theatre , 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: $15. 773-609-2336; brownpapertickets.com/event/446529 James Franco is everywhere. He was the subject of September's Comedy Central roast and co-starred in "Spring Breakers," "This Is the End," "Oz the Great and Powerful," "Lovelace" and several other movies in 2013 alone. And of course, he's also a multiple degree-seeking author. And poet. And memoirist. And a collaborator in the Museum of Non-Visible Art, a crowd-funded concept in which your donation buys you a...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 2014 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
The Academy Awards (being held March 2) bring out all kinds of extreme emotions and opinions from some people, but not me: I'm always totally even-tempered and maintain perspective that, in the grand scheme of things, Oscars don't mean a lot. Yeah, right. It's easy to get wrapped up in overrated nominees, undeserving winners and the occasional smart choice. On that note, here are my edited, post-deep breath thoughts about the major categories along with the unedited thoughts running through my head.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 15, 2013 | By Adam Lukach, @lucheezy and RedEye
Its Chicago release date (March 22) is a little more than a month away, but Harmony Korine's upcoming "Spring Breakers" movie has laid some serious groundwork to becoming the greatest film of the year/generation/all-time? If you haven't heard, the film stars, in ascending order of WTF-ness: Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Benson as spring breakers who rob a restaurant for the trip, James Franco as a grill-sporting party rapper and Gucci Mane as the big bad villain. And if it couldn't get any more perversely kitschy, Skrillex will score the soundtrack (dropping March...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
A year after Billy Crystal helmed the Oscars for approximately the 40 millionth time, hosting duties fall to “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane, who's directed a grand total of one movie and had a minor role alongside Dwayne Johnson (and Crystal) in “Tooth Fairy.” Of course, Crystal's shtick was shockingly stale at the 2012 Academy Awards, and the sometimes-hilarious MacFarlane's one movie happens to be “Ted,” the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time. Considering MacFarlane's limited movie history...
ENTERTAINMENT
October 1, 2012 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
 Well, that should bring the Oscars some younger eyes. “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane will host the 2013 Oscars on Feb. 24, thewrap.com reported Monday. MacFarlane also wrote, directed and voiced the title character of one of the year's big hits “Ted” and proved himself a relatively good sport while hosting “Saturday Night Live” in September. The best thing about this choice is that MacFarlane's actually a performer, comfortable in this setting. He hosted last year's roast of Charlie Sheen and knows how to work a crowd (as both a...
ENTERTAINMENT
April 3, 2012 | By Dana Moran and RedEye
We aren't really regular viewers of the Tony Awards, but Neil Patrick Harris just might give us something to tune in for. The "How I Met Your Mother" star will host the night honoring achievements in theater for the third time in four years, producers announced Tuesday. After his tours of duty MCing the Tonys, Emmys and er, TV Land awards, we're pretty much ready to give this guy a crown -- or just a bunch of other wacky gigs. Check out our top picks. damoran@tribune.com | @redeyedana Laser tag tournament If there's one thing Neil's Barney...
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
*** (out of four) Closing out Survival Month at the Movies (“Gravity,” “Captain Phillips,” “12 Years a Slave”), “All is Lost” presents the gravity of being Captain Redford for eight days. No, that isn't the name of the unidentified sailor (Robert Redford) whose boat is violently poked by a shipping container 1,700 nautical miles from the Sumatra Straits. (Of course I knew that was in the middle of the Indian Ocean. Who told you I was awful at geography?) He's everyone - a sole representative for human existence, fighting the odds and seeing that...
ENTERTAINMENT
May 15, 2014 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
**1/2 (out of four) A parent tempted by a student. Another parent who might be in the closet. A strange teen who sometimes says and does unsettling things. Lots of weed. Is “Palo Alto” trying to remind us of “American Beauty”? Probably not. And for what it's worth, the writing-directing debut of Gia Coppola (niece of Sofia and Roman), adapted from stories by co-star James Franco, doesn't suffer for those similarities. It feels closer to a project from Coppola's aunt (“The Virgin Suicides”)
ENTERTAINMENT
December 24, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
**1/2 (out of four) A truer American hustle, Martin Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street" bests David O. Russell's "American Hustle" in an important department: "Wolf" zeroes in on greed and need and says in vivid, convincing fashion, "Baby, the hungrier you are, the easier it is for me to feed you crap. " No, that's not a quote from the movie. Like "Hustle," the three-hour "Wolf" features a great deal of voiceover and a main character who sees no fault in conning people.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
*** (out of four) Closing out Survival Month at the Movies (“Gravity,” “Captain Phillips,” “12 Years a Slave”), “All is Lost” presents the gravity of being Captain Redford for eight days. No, that isn't the name of the unidentified sailor (Robert Redford) whose boat is violently poked by a shipping container 1,700 nautical miles from the Sumatra Straits. (Of course I knew that was in the middle of the Indian Ocean. Who told you I was awful at geography?) He's everyone - a sole representative for human existence, fighting the odds...
NEWS
October 21, 2013 | By Julia Borcherts, @JuliaBorcherts and For RedEye
Go: 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday through Nov. 16 at The Den Theatre , 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: $15. 773-609-2336; brownpapertickets.com/event/446529 James Franco is everywhere. He was the subject of September's Comedy Central roast and co-starred in "Spring Breakers," "This Is the End," "Oz the Great and Powerful," "Lovelace" and several other movies in 2013 alone. And of course, he's also a multiple degree-seeking author. And poet. And memoirist. And a collaborator in the Museum of Non-Visible Art, a crowd-funded...
ENTERTAINMENT
August 12, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
In "Prince Avalanche," an artsy loner (Paul Rudd) and an immature doofus (Emile Hirsch) work together to repair roads in the middle of nowhere. Adapted from an Icelandic film, it's a slow and funny drama that director David Gordon Green says splits the difference between his quieter work ("George Washington," "All the Real Girls," "Snow Angels") and more crass studio comedies ("Pineapple Express," "Your Highness," "The Sitter").  At the James Hotel, the 38-year-old filmmaker - who recently...
ENTERTAINMENT
June 6, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
** (out of four) Even without James Franco and Danny McBride threatening to ejaculate all over each other, “This is the End” would be an aggressive, misguided demonstration of self-love. A comedy in which Franco, McBride, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and more familiar faces play themselves confronting the apocalypse didn't inherently have to be a Hollywood ego-fest. In brief moments, the film (co-directed and co-written by Rogen and Evan Goldberg, the scribes behind the awesome “Superbad” and hilarious...
ENTERTAINMENT
May 31, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
Dave Franco's a good sport about it, but really, we can all stop asking the actor about his big brother James. He's had enough. “I mean, that happened three years ago,” says the younger Franco, whose new movie “Now You See Me” opened Friday, with a laugh. “More than that. Ten years ago. I love and respect him so much, and when I was first starting out, it would be weird if people weren't drawing the comparisons and mentioning his name every time they brought me up … Maybe two or three years ago, I made a conscious decision to distance...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 24, 2013 | By Curt Wagner, @ShowPatrol and RedEye
Everyone seemed to be talking about what Seth MacFarlane would do as host of the Oscars. On Sunday night, MacFarlane kept that dialogue going, making Hollywood's big night all about Seth MacFarlane. The "Family Guy" creator opened the 85th Academy Awards ceremony with a flurry of jokes ranging from very inside Hollywood to funny to Ricky Gervais-style mean. (Chris Brown still is an easy mark.) MacFarlane got in jabs about Ben Affleck's Best Director snub for "Argo" and Daniel Day-Lewis' attempt to always stay in character during the filming of "Lincoln.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 6, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
** (out of four) Even without James Franco and Danny McBride threatening to ejaculate all over each other, “This is the End” would be an aggressive, misguided demonstration of self-love. A comedy in which Franco, McBride, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and more familiar faces play themselves confronting the apocalypse didn't inherently have to be a Hollywood ego-fest. In brief moments, the film (co-directed and co-written by Rogen and Evan Goldberg, the scribes behind the awesome “Superbad” and hilarious...
ENTERTAINMENT
May 7, 2013 | Matt Pais, @mattpais and RedEye movie critic
Apropos of nothing, Craig Robinson is singing R. Kelly's “I Believe I Can Fly.” The Beverly native best known as Darryl Philbin on “The Office” is in the next room prepping for an interview about “Peeples,” his biggest chance at flying - er, being a leading man. (Actually, first he entered the room saying, “All right, RedEye, baby! Now this is for real.”) Obviously, the higher stakes haven't diminished his personality. When prompted, the die-hard Sox fan doesn't hesitate to revive his rivalry with Illinois native and Cubs fan Nick Offerman or teach me a dance...
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2013 | By Roger Moore and MCT
Get past discussions of artistic intent, of the potential career benefits that the cast might have seen in making "Spring Breakers. " What it really boiled down to is this: "None of us had ever experienced spring break," says James Franco. "Really. " That goes for him, and writer-director Harmony Korine, and former child-stars turned "Spring Breakers" wild girls Ashley Benson, Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens. "Actors who start their careers early miss some key experiences in life," Franco confesses.
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