July 14, 2012 |
A hippie circus returned to the hills of Laurel Canyon about this time last year as the cast and crew of the surrealist romantic comedy "Ruby Sparks" gathered at Sid Krofft's infamous retreat. Constructed with bricks salvaged from a Catholic schoolhouse and wood from Amish farms in Mexico, the house bursts with flora and fauna and is one of the most unique in Los Angeles. Krofft, who with his brother Marty created "Land of the Lost"and "H.R. Pufnstuf" in the 1970s, rarely allows filming on the property.
March 28, 2010 |
I'm coming out of the closet about Zoe Kazan, breaking a rule I've kept to my entire professional life. It was either that or stand by and watch a very small and quite special film struggle for life and likely wither and die in an unforgiving marketplace. If you don't know her name, Zoe Kazan is a young actress coming into her own. She played Leonardo DiCaprio's character's mistress in "Revolutionary Road" and Meryl Streep's character's daughter in "It's Complicated," was featured in the Royal Shakespeare Company's New York production of Chekhov's "The Seagull" and is costarring on Broadway with Christopher Walken, Anthony Mackie and Sam Rockwell in Martin McDonagh's "A Behanding in Spokane."
July 24, 2012 |
Imagine a 21st century romantic comedy that flirts with the classic Pygmalion myth - a Greek sculptor's beautiful statue comes to life - and throws in some Dr. Frankenstein "what have I created?" issues. Then you'll have a sense of"Ruby Sparks," an engagingly off-kilter love story of a writer, the girl of his dreams and the power of his pen. The film is about as meta as meta gets. Real-life couple Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan star as lovebirds Calvin (the writer) and Ruby (his dreamy dream girl)
September 21, 2013 |
Actress Mackenzie Davis is probably about to go from a “who's that?” to a “that girl.” In only her third screen role, Davis gives a breakout performance in “We Gotta Get Out of This Place,” a crime thriller that recently premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and plays again Sunday at Fantastic Fest in Austin. The film is directed by the sibling duo of Zeke and Simon Hawkins from a script by Dutch Southern. The story, as Davis recently put it, is a “sort of noiry, dirty Southern thing” that references the pulp fiction of author Jim Thompson in its tale of small town ambitions, bad deals, double-crosses and good love gone sour.
August 22, 2012 |
If you're looking for something light and lovely to finish out the summer before worrisome and weighty films fill theaters this fall, catch"Ruby Sparks"before it floats out to sea. Starring Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan, it is a smarter-than-most romantic comedy that begins with writer's block. Dano plays the writer, but Kazan actually wrote the movie. In the real world they're a couple, so it's all kind of sweet. In the film, the block breaks when Calvin (Dano) starts to put the girl he's been dreaming about onto the page.
April 22, 2011 |
Indie director Kelly Reichardt always brings an artistic eye to her films, though never more so than in the minimalist beauty and stark realism of "Meek's Cutoff. " Hers is an unforgiving Old West pared to the bone — a lyrical poem for some, like watching paint dry for others. I'd argue for embracing the poetic, a rare commodity in American films these days. Set on the Oregon Trail, circa 1845, it is a story of hardships, hopes and the road not taken as three pioneering families hitch their future to a mountain man promising a shortcut over the Cascade Mountains.