Movie News: Paddington Goes to London (and so do I)!

paddington_tree_design_wg039_0090_v002_jmPaddington the Bear goes to London and you can see his adventures on the big screen starting Friday, January 16. I myself am going on my first international journey next week and I’ll be flying through London. I won’t get to see the  city or experience it quite like Paddington since my time will be spent in Heathrow airport on the way to and from India but I imagine my adventures in India will be somewhat eventful and I do share the love of new experiences I see in Paddington’s character.

The great part of this movie is that you see a strong message to make the best of difficult situations and to keep going ’til all is right with the world even if it is not exactly the way we originally planned it.

About Paddington:

After a deadly earthquake destroys his home in Peruvian rainforest, a young bear (Ben Whishaw) makes his way to England in search of a new home. The bear, dubbed “Paddington” for the london train station, finds shelter with the family of Henry (Hugh Bonneville) and Mary Brown (Sally Hawkins). Although Paddington’s amazement at urban living soon endears him to the Browns, someone else has her eye on him: Taxidermist Millicent Clyde (Nicole Kidman) has designs on the rare bear and his hide.
Paddington comes to a theater near you on January 16, 2015.
Join the fun on Twitter, Facebook and the interactive website.
Trailer:
 

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Cameron Diaz Gives Her Opinion on Mommy Blogging for @SexTapeMovie #SexTapeMovie

Sex Tape Movie

Funny woman Cameron Diaz, known for her comedic timing, gets serious when asked about her role as mommy blogger in the f-bomb laden marital comedy, Sex Tape Movie, coming out in theaters this week.

In the film, Diaz plays Annie, a married housewife opposite husband, Jay (played by Jason Segel) who is bartering the blogged content of her life for income with brand Piper Brothers. CEO Hank (played by Rob Lowe) loves her blog but is worried about one post where Annie reminisces of an earlier sex life with her husband Jay that no longer exists due to kids, jobs and general lack of energy and time and the general challenges facing many married couples. As you see in the trailer, the movie starts with a complete replay of their earlier sexual adventures pre-kids, albeit spoofed to the extreme for audience laughs and filmed from intentional angles to hide anything that might give the film a harsher rating.

One night, Annie sends the kids to Grandma and uses the “staycation” to suggest to Jay that they tap their digital side and create a sex tape to spruce things up. Using  The Joy of Sex as their guide, the couple makes a creative three hour video they never intend to be seen, which the producer does show in select clips during the last four minutes of the movie.

The next day, the movie is synced to iPads Jay gave as gifts and thus the movie gets interesting as Annie and Jay try to figure out who saw the movie and who didn’t before they learn how to remote-wipe the iPads.

In  recent interview with a room of “mommy” and professional bloggers, Diaz comments in length on the practice of  blogging in general:

“It’s great. It’s a brave thing to do. You are putting a part of yourself out there into the world as Annie, my character, sees — that the content of her experience and life is being bartered. … She’s trying to see how much of it she can give of herself – to be authentic to herself – so, not be too risqué.

“There are questions about how much you give when you are giving of yourself and you also want to inform people; you want people to relate to you because you want to feel that there are bloggers that understand you because it’s a tough thing to do being human and being a mother and a wife and having these responsibilities and so I think that  it’s definitely one of those things that I say is brave to do but it is also a choice. It is also a decision and it’s elective and it’s a new world. We don’t know what comes of it.

“We don’t know how it affects us, positive and negatively. You guys are sorta in the forefront of those things. You are on the cutting edge, at the beginning of this idea of the Internet and blogging and what that means to our society and to the generation and to the children that you are revealing about their lives to people. You are not just sharing your life, you are sharing your [family’s life].

“That’s what happens with Annie. She’s revealing things about her husband that maybe he doesn’t want revealed and she’s talking about her children that don’t have a choice – all their little bits and pieces about their lives being revealed, you know. I think it’s an interesting study in sociology and you guys are doing it.”

In a subsequent interview, Director Jake Kasden is asked about making Annie a mommy blogger and says that it was in the original script and that it felt right to start the movie in her voice. The opening scene shows Annie typing her life into her blog, an outlet analyzed and scrutinized by friends, strangers and brands wanting to pay her for the content. Of the movie itself, he states, “The movie isn’t pro-sex tape but it is pro-sex and it should be an affirmative message where you should feel like they are doing something good for themselves.”

MOVIE REVIEW:

The movie has its share of traditional laugh-out-loud slapstick physical comedy (above and beyond what’s implied by the title) and poignant moments where married couples are challenged with their own deficiencies and strongly encouraged to make time for each other in the special ways we forget or ignore way too often.

That said, you do have to get past a LOT of foul language and potentially face-reddening nudity (though Cameron Diaz & Jason Segel assured us in the interview that they were wearing modesty patches so it really wasn’t like they were walking around nude the WHOLE time.) This is a movie only one step above porn with the amount of “fake” sex that occurs, which Diaz & Segel assure us is also completely fabricated as they finish each other’s sentences and laugh like an old married couple the entire interview.

On a final note, my voice-to-text function even censored the title. “You said: s-asterisks-asterisks-asterisks-asterisks-asterisks-asterisks.” What does that say about calling  movie something even basic SPAM filters catch? Or maybe, it’s just my phone.

In Theaters July 18, 2014.

Rated R for STRONG SEXUAL CONTENT, NUDITY, LANGUAGE AND SOME DRUG USE.

Official Synopsis:

When Jay (Jason Segel) and Annie (Cameron Diaz) first got together, their romantic connection was intense – and though they’re still very much in love, ten years and two kids have cooled the passion. To kick things up a notch, they decide – why not? – to make a video of themselves trying out every position in THE JOY OF SEX in one marathon three-hour session. It seems like a great idea – until they discover that their most private video is no longer private. With their reputations on the line, they know they’re just one click away from being laid bare to the world… but in their race to reclaim their video, they’ll find that it will expose even more than they bargained for.

DIRECTED BY:

Jake Kasdan

SCREENPLAY BY:

Kate Angelo and Jason Segel & Nicholas Stoller

STORY BY:

Kate Angelo

PRODUCED BY:

Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal, Steve Tisch

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS:

David Householter, Jason Segel, Jake Kasdan, David Bloomfield, Ben Waisbren

CAST:

Cameron Diaz, Jason Segel, Rob Corddry, Ellie Kemper, Rob Lowe

 

Interview Pict with Bloggers:

Cameran Diaz Jason Segel Sex Tape Movie

Picture: From L to R: Enza of Enza’s Bargains, Tiffany of Broward Saves, Marybeth of Baby Savers, Liza of Cira’s Lyrics, Tracy of Hollywood Mom Blog, Danelle of Home Ever After, Jason Segel, Cameron Diaz, Samantha Ettus, (ME – Sarah of Mama Loves Media), Angela of Momfluential. In front: OC Moms Blog, Toric with Momfluential.

Note: We were media guests of Sony & Columbia Pictures. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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GIVEAWAY: Son of God Movie Tickets, Soundtrack & Inspired By Album

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Curious about the new film about the life of Christ called Son of God?

I am giving away:

  • TWO movie tickets,
  • ONE Inspired By Album, and
  • ONE Soundtrack

Comment here for a chance to win.

Contest Ends March 21, 2014.

ABOUT THE MOVIE:

This major motion picture event is an experience created to be shared among families and communities across the U.S. It brings the story of Jesus’ life to audiences through compelling cinematic storytelling that is both powerful and inspirational. Told with the scope and scale of an action epic, the film features powerful performances, exotic locales, dazzling visual effects and a rich orchestral score. The film spans from Jesus’ humble birth through his teachings, crucifixion and ultimate resurrection.

ABOUT THE MUSIC:

SON of GOD (Music Inspired by the Epic Motion Picture)

Courtesy of Word Entertainment. The biggest names in Christian Music collaborate to accompany the story of Jesus through song.  ‘Son of God: Inspired by the Epic Motion’ features exclusive songs by Francesca Battistelli and Chris August plus hits from for KING & COUNTRY, Big Daddy Weave, Sidewalk Prophets and more. http://bit.ly/inspiredbysog

Also, experience the feature film Son of God live in your town this March featuring Francesca Battistelli, Sidewalk Prophets, Natalie Grant and more on the Bible: Son of God Tour 2014!  More information at thebibletourexperience.com

MOVIE TRAILER:

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A Look into Universal’s The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Here are a few of the concept renderings that have been released for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley by Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment, a brand new themed experience for the park opening this summer.

The world of Harry Potter is being brought to life in a whole new way and my kids are really excited. I can’t say I don’t have my reservations since you can kinda skim over the controversial parts of celebrating the act of magic in a book or in a movie but celebrating magic and “the dark arts” this powerfully in person, I can’t mention without a pause, as fiction based as it is.

Diagon Alley:

Diagon Alley orlando

Hogsmeade Station:

Hogsmeade Station drawing

Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour:

Harry Potter Ice Cream

I am hoping to wait a year or two until they really get their details nailed down but to not wait TOO long since it is really going to be amazing.

Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes:

wizarding world shopping

 Here are more details on the Universal website.

What do you think of experiencing the world of Harry Potter in person? Would you pick the fantastical wizarding world of Harry Potter over Disney or Seaworld?

 

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CLOSED: GIVEAWAY: Win a pair of tickets to SURGE film: Casting Crowns, Newsboys, Lecrae & Acquire the Fire

Christian Rock Band filmComment below to enter to win one of several passes for two I am giving away to SURGE the movie, an high-energy Christian rock band compilation film featuring the following artists:  Casting Crowns, Newsboys, Lecrae and worship artists Acquire the Fire.

These evening tickets are for the Pottsgrove theater on the edge of Pottstown, PA. on October 9th.

Address: POTTSGROVE 12, 110 UPLAND SQUARE DRIVE, POTTSGROVE, Pennsylvania, 19464

In PA, you can also see the movie in Bala Cynwyd at: BALA THEATRE, 157 BALA AVE., BALA CYNWYD, Pennsylvania, 19004. (If you would rather have tickets for that location, let me know and I will see what I can do.)

This giveaway will close: Sunday, October 5th. Winners will be notified Monday, October 6th.

To buy tickets for a theater near you, check out the website Surge Experience. The movie will show in 450 theaters nationwide on October 9th and 16th.

ABOUT THE MOVIE:

SURGE is presented by Teen Mania Ministries and Acquire The Fire, which has been developing innovative ways to empower and inspire teens for nearly three decades.

“SURGE is an experience like you’ve never seen before, that will address some of the top fears teens have expressed as they delve into their school year. Fears like bullying, school violence, drug use, peer pressure, acceptance and rejection, economic worries, and depression,” said Ron Luce, founder of Teen Mania. “It’s designed to empower teens to not only face their fears with courage and hope, but to impact the world around them for good.”

SURGE is the brainchild of Luce, who is a highly sought-after expert in youth culture and has appeared on CNN, The O’Reily Factor, The Today Show, Hannity, and in the New York Times. SURGE has been his vision for several years, as a way to bring encouragement to hundreds of thousands of teens who would otherwise never step foot into a church building.

Trailer:

The mission of Teen Mania Ministries is to provoke a young generation to passionately pursue Jesus Christ and to take his life-giving message to the ends of the Earth. Since its founding in 1986, TMM has reached more than 3.5 million teens in the U.S., and sent teenage missionaries to more than 50 nations to share the saving message of the gospel. To find out more about TMM and its various ministries, go to www.TeenMania.com.

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Movies About Finding Faith: Camp and Season of a Lifetime

Camp MovieThis week, I FINALLY got time to sit and watch some wonderful movies for families that were recently released by Word Films.

The first one I watched was CAMP because I was a camper and counselor for 10 years in my youth and loved every moment. Only this camp in this movie is a little different because the counselors work with abused and neglected children but just like my camp, it’s about helping kids and changing the lives of both kids and adults who are involved because camp in general just does that to a person. I liked that this movie dealt with both faith in God and building faith and trust in each other.

ABOUT CAMP

“CAMP” is the story of a deeply troubled boy, Eli (Miles Elliot, “The Mentalist”), and an apathetic investment advisor, Ken (Michael Mattera), who get paired together at a summer camp for foster kids and discover the meaning of unconditional love. “We are excited for the opportunity to share the story of CAMP,” said Director Jacob Roebuck. “We want to entertain audiences, but we also hope they are inspired to get involved in the lives of abused and neglected kids in their communities. We are thrilled to work with Word on the video distribution of the picture. Not only do they bring a first-class distribution team for mainstream and Christian markets, they also understand the heart behind the film.”

Roebuck received inspiration for the film when he joined a summer missions trip and had the opportunity to help abused and neglected children through a program called Royal Family Camp. Once there, he felt the call to help the children he met that so desperately needed contact with loving and caring adults. A portion of the proceeds from the film benefit Royal Family KIDS, Inc., a 501 (c) (3) non-profit that serves as the nation’s leading network of camps for abused, neglected and abandoned children.

The film is rated PG-13 and has a running time of 111 minutes. For more information about “CAMP,” Royal Family KIDS, Inc. and for a listing of upcoming engagements visit: www.campthemovie.com.

TRAILER:

 

The second movie I watched was Season of  a Lifetime which chronicles the terminal illness of Jeremy Williams, Head Coach of Greenville High. My husband nor my daughters are football players, nor do any of us barely watch the sport but you can’t help but be inspired by the life and determination of the coach in this documentary.

ABOUT SEASON OF A LIFETIME

On August 27, Word Films released the Endorphin Entertainment  / Fisheye Media Productions inspirational documentary “Season of a Lifetime” on DVD. The film follows Greenville High football coach Jeremy Williams as he perseveres and inspires his team throughout their winning 2010 season in the face of his progressing ALS disease. For his final season as coach, Williams’ beloved small-town Greenville Patriots battle to the playoffs and adopt his never-surrender attitude. “Season of a Lifetime” is produced by Cohen, Bob McAllister and Jason Haley and executive produced by Chris Pullaro. Cohen also served as director and editor of the film.

season of a lifetime

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRAILER:

About Word Entertainment

A leader in the music industry for over 60 years, Word Entertainment, a Warner/Curb company, is a unique, comprehensive entertainment company comprised of multi-faceted artist service departments including publishing, merchandising, booking, and online initiatives. Word Entertainment represents some of the top names and brands in music, including Meredith Andrews, Chris August, Francesca Battistelli, Big Daddy Weave, Jason Castro, Patrick Ryan Clark, Everfound, for KING & COUNTRY, Group 1 Crew, Love & The Outcome, Dara Maclean, Point Of Grace and Sidewalk Prophets and is home to 25 Entertainment, Word Distribution (representing Curb Records and Big Idea/VeggieTales among others), Word Music Publications & Church Resources, Word Films, Word Music Publishing and Word Label Group’s Word Records, Word Worship and Fervent Records.

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Another Benedict Cumberbatch movie? Wow. The #FifthEstate is coming . . .

Fifth EstateMy teenage sci-fi crazed daughter LOVES Benedict Cumberbatch who is now starring in yet another new release, The Fifth Estate. To say she is a fan of the actor is an understatement. Oh, and don’t get me started when she saw that Peter Capaldi, the actor tapped to take over the longstanding popular role of Dr. Who, was also in this new movie.

My daughter’s foray into Cumberbatch fandom all started with “Sherlock,” a modern take on the character “Sherlock Holmes” originally created by Scottish author and physician Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; and, we watched all of the episodes and then we waited and we are still waiting. And, then as each new movie featuring the actor comes out we are realizing why we are still waiting for new episodes.

Lately, while we were waiting for more Sherlock, Cumberbatch showed up in The Hobbit:The Unexpected Journey as the voice of the Necromancer and in Star Trek Into Darkness as the big bad villian, Khan. His IMDB page shows many more movies in the works. Maybe it’s because he actually jumped off a tall building in the last Sherlock and he’s waiting for writers to figure out how to bring him back. Maybe . . . .

But, in the meantime, opening October 18th, The Fifth Estate ( a rated “R” movie) is about the following:

Triggering our age of high-stakes secrecy, explosive news leaks and the trafficking of classified information, WikiLeaks forever changed the game. Now, in a dramatic thriller based on real events, THE FIFTH ESTATE reveals the quest to expose the deceptions and corruptions of power that turned an Internet upstart into the 21st century’s most fiercely debated organization. The story begins as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his colleague Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Daniel Brühl) team up to become underground watchdogs of the privileged and powerful. On a shoestring, they create a platform that allows whistleblowers to anonymously leak covert data, shining a light on the dark recesses of government secrets and corporate crimes. Soon, they are breaking more hard news than the world’s most legendary media organizations combined. But when Assange and Berg gain access to the biggest trove of confidential intelligence documents in U.S. history, they battle each other and a defining question of our time: what are the costs of keeping secrets in a free society—and what are the costs of exposing them?”

Trailer:

Genre:                          Drama/Thriller

Rating:                          TBD

U.S. Release date:        October 18, 2013

Running time:                TBD

 

Cast:                            Benedict Cumberbatch, Daniel Brühl, Anthony Mackie, David Thewlis, Alicia Vikander, Peter Capaldi, Carice van Houten, Dan Stevens, with Stanley Tucci and Laura Linney

Director:                       Bill Condon                                                      

Producers:                    Steve Golin, Michael Sugar

Executive Producers:    Richard Sharkey, Paul Green Jeff Skoll, Jonathan King

Screenplay by:              Josh Singer

Based on the books:     “Inside WikiLeaks” by Daniel Domscheit-Berg, and the Guardian book “WikiLeaks” by David Leigh and Luke Harding

{Disclosure: This post does not endorse the movie or its contents since the actual film has not yet been viewed.}

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Exclusive Interview with Movie Director Morgan Spurlock of One Direction: This is Us

One Direction MovieOn August 30th, 2013, One Direction (1D) fans can see their favorite boy band members up close and personal on screens across America in One Direction: This is Us

Niall, Zayn, Liam, Harry and Louis share the inside scoop on their sudden rise to fame, blowing away their own expectations and stretching their dreams beyond the imaginations of their families, friends and themselves.sup

In a private phone interview, Director Morgan Spurlock shared a few of his thoughts with me during his visit to Philadelphia this last week. Spurlock is known for his films Super Size Me and Freakonomics, among others. This movie was the next big step in fulfilling his own dreams as a film director.

Q: Tell me about the movie from your point of view, as the director. What message do you want to see come out of this film?

A: I want people to see these guys for who they really are, to get a sense of their lives and what they go through.

I think a lot of people think that there’s not a lot of work that goes into being in a band like this or that they don’t work hard for what they have. These are five guys who work incredibly hard every day and not only that are five guys very talented guys who were fortunate enough to be put together.

Q: You have done some heavy hitters [thought-provoking films] like Super Size Me and Freakonomics. What about this particular script appealed to you?

A: For me, it was the opportunity to make a film with a studio. We made this movie with Sony Columbia TriStar which was very exciting for me to make the jump into making a studio movie. It was by far the biggest budget on a film that I have ever gotten to work with. I got to work with technology I would never normally get to make a movie with.

Getting to make a movie in 3D is incredible and then to get to have access to these five guys, to a band arguably one of the biggest bands in the world right now who are still kind of exploding in their success and to get to be there and to be the fly on the wall and tell their story is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Q. I see that Simon Cowell is on this project and he’s been going through a lot lately. Do you think he would ask you to make a documentary of his life?

A. {Laughs} I don’t think Simon will ever let anyone make that movie. Whether or not they make it without his consent, that’s something else.

Q. In addition to your documentary work, are you interested in doing fiction?

A. . . . There’s been a bunch of [fiction-based] projects I have been attached over the years — one in particular over at Appian Way [Productions] which is Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company for the last four years and so out of this film what I am hoping for is the chance to do some bigger even more exciting, even more traditional movies.

Q: If there’s one hero you have had in this industry, who would it be?

A. There are so many filmmakers that I admire. If I look at filmmakers who have had such incredible diverse careers, I look at Ang Lee who is just a master. The guy can do anything. The guy can do drama. . . comedy. . . huge-genre special effects laden movies. The guy is a mega talent.

I love folks like Frank Capra. Some of his All-American films were some of the greatest inspirations during my life as a kid. Spielberg, as a child growing up, I don’t think you can be a child growing up in America without having gone to see multiple Steven Spielberg movies.

Q: When did you decide film was a medium you wanted to work with?

A: Ever since I was a kid, I fell in love with movies since I was very young at probably four or five-years-old and all I ever wanted to do was to make movies. All I ever wanted to do was to work in entertainment. It’s all I’ve ever seen in my life as being the end goal.

Q: Do you have any other family members in the entertainment business?

A: No, I don’t have any other family in the industry. I grew up in West Virginia, about as far from the industry as you can grow up but I had two amazing parents who were really supportive of me wanting to be an artist.

Q: Going back to the One Direction movie, how do you look at a story like this and know there’s a story there to tell and determine what the best story to tell is?

A: You always want to have some sort of framework to start from. With any documentary film, once you start shooting, any idea of what you thought the movie was going to be about gets thrown out the window but we start any movie with a basic outline of here’s what, if everybody in the world had unicorns and leprechauns, here’s what the movie would be.

But, for me, this movie mostly boiled down to two things: this is a film that’s about dreams and about family and that’s the heart of the movie. That was the heart of the idea when we first pitched the film and when I first met with the band and when you watch the film today that’s still the essence of the movie. I think the essence of the movie still boils down to dreams and family.

Q: Is there anything else you would like to share with readers [and movie goers]?

A: One of the things I love about this film, and I know fathers who have taken their daughters and mothers who gone with their daughters, is that it is such a family-friendly film . . .  It’s an incredibly fun film. There’s really great family values that come out these boys. They work hard, they stay humble. There are good messages instilled into them by their own families.

The viewing experience you have of seeing this film with a child is a valuable one.

(Thank you, Morgan Spurlock, for coming to Philadelphia and sharing about the movie and YOUR story!)

Trailer to the movie:

 

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International Faith and Family Film Festival

international faith and familyComing soon is the first ever International Faith and Family Film Festival, debuting at Bishop T.D. Jakes’ MegaFest 2013 in Dallas, August 29-31, at the Omni Dallas Hotel.

The film festival will showcase films including Fox Searchlight’s “Black Nativity,” Image Entertainment’s “Winnie Mandela” and Sony Pictures Entertainment’s “Heaven is for Real.” Works from BET and a range of other high quality films from around the world will also be highlighted.

“This is more than just a film festival,” Jakes said. “It is an exciting and emotional re-imagining of all that cinema can and should be for ourselves and future generations. Getting our hearts right and our families back together again is paramount. With this festival we hope to provide more high-quality, family friendly and Bible-centered films over time. This is an essential ingredient for the healing and strengthening of our culture. ”

Tickets for the three-day event are $99 and entitle registrants to enjoy other events in the MegaFest lineup. Discount family and group packages are available.

To register online click here. For a complete list of scheduled events for the film festival visit www.mega-fest.com/filmfestival.

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Red Carpet Appearances

Red CarpetPast Interviews & Events with Celebrities:

Selena Gomez re: Monte Carlo Movie Release

Exclusive Interview with Chris Wedge, Director of 20th Century Fox’ EPIC

Molly Ringwald & Ragu

Bobby Flay & Hellmann’s Mayonnaise

Billy Ray Cyrus & Feeding  America

 

 

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