Earth, in Neill Blomkamp’s new science fiction thriller Elysium, set in 2154, is one big wretched slum: arid, diseased, dangerous and overcrowded. There is little hope for its denizens, though at least all are equal in their own miserable destitution. Until they look up.
Their poverty is thrown into sharp relief by a giant orbital space station visible high in the sky above them like some exotic moon, to which the ultra-wealthy have absconded. In this paradisiacal gated community writ large—it resembles an elaborate golf course, dotted with mansions, palm trees and other gold-plated trappings—the rich live extremely well.
Most of Elysium takes place in Los Angeles, a filthy hellhole of stacked homes and narrow streets patrolled by robot police. Max (a ripped, tattooed Matt Damon) is an ex-car thief who works at a factory. One day at work, he is exposed to a lethal dose of radiation and is told he has five days to live. Unless, that is, he makes it to Elysium, where the rich have developed tanning-bed-like contraptions that will cure any illness. Elysium, however, is assiduously guarded by the sociopathic defense secretary Delacourt (a cold-blooded Jodie Foster); a voyage into space is a death wish.
Golden Globes 2013
If you are too busy watching the Australian cycling thing and can’t understand what the hell is going on with Twitter (honestly, we don’t know who you follow, but no one on our feed actually bothers naming the winners of these things), here are the latest updates for the 2013 Golden Globe Awards.
We’re not sure why, but the shy and retiring double Oscar-winner Jodie Foster showed up at last night’s MTV Movie Awards, where she presented the Movie of the Year Award to the fourth Twilight film, Breaking Dawn: Part 1. (How many of the kids in the audience do you think have watched The Accused?) At least Read More
Roman Polanski’s Carnage, a brisk, 79-minute adaptation of the wildly successful play God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza, is a case of the right film by the wrong director. This one-set, four-character theater piece that kept audiences in stitches for long runs in London, Paris and on Broadway, is a giddy war of words and modern manners between a quartet of highly sophisticated, unspeakably duplicitous New Yorkers who thrust and parry on the front lines of the domestic battlefield to see who can draw more blood with the sharpest teeth and most insincere smile. It’s a slight but highly entertaining little morsel that leaves you laughing and thinking about how rotten apples never fall far from the tree, and it needs a director who knows how to move four people nimbly through a single living room in Brooklyn without claustrophobia. Mr. Polanski is a gimlet-eyed master craftsman, but comedy is not his forte.
Watching Mel Gibson’s relentlessly reckless self-destruction has been about as much fun as standing by helplessly, observing a truck jackknife on a crowded turnpike. This is what it must have been like in the old days, when Fatty Arbuckle ruined his career with a Coke bottle and Frances Farmer went from Cary Grant’s leading lady Read More
Plenty happens each day—how to keep up with it all? Time to test your memory!
–How did Tina Fey acquit herself as a tertiary character in a fake Bravo reality show?
–…and how does Mel Gibson do in Jodie Foster’s new dip into directing?
–Speaking of which! How did the husky-voiced Read More
Michael Caine is such a consummate actor that it’s a major cause of concern to see him in Harry Brown, another hateful vigilante flick the wags in England have already labeled Dirty Harry Brown for reasons that are immediately obvious.
Following in the worn avenger footprints of early gut-riddled Clint Eastwood crime melodramas, Charles Bronson Read More
Monday: The Bachelorette
All the rose petals, candles, sky-diving, cringing hands-over-face-embarrassment and general buffoonery has led us to tonight, when our Bachelorette finally picks her man on the big finale. And yes, we are sort of un-ironically excited! Who will Jillian, former hot dog Read More
Unless you’re like the Comic Book Guy, you probably don’t even realize The Simpsons is still on the air. That’s okay we barely remembered either! It’s not that we aren’t fans; when push comes to shove, we’d still say we love The Simpsons. It’s just that but we haven’t watched a new episode Read More
Vogue intern and New York Ranger, Sean Avery, says the magazine is "a real, tight-knit family," and he hasn’t had to fetch a cup of Starbucks yet! [Intelligencer]
Drea De Matteo was overheard saying that one of NBC’s better known spin-off disasters, Joey, ruined her career. [P6] Read More