Checking in with our favorite directors

22 Jul

filmspool.jpgI don’t find myself writing about movies during the summer months, which is not a real shocker considering the summer is a horseshit time for movies. Not like that’s any new phenomenon or anything – people are busy in the summers, they don’t want to spend their time indoors in a dark theater while they can be out playing four-square and hopscotch and lawn darts and whatnot.

But the cineplex choices will inevitably improve at some point, and with that in mind I decided to do a little research on my favorite directors to see what they’ve been up to. Below is a list of movies you might want to keep on your radar.

DIRECTOR: Charlie Kaufmann

BEST KNOWN FOR: Being one of the best screenwriters ever. A few of the films he has written include Being John Malkovich, Adaptation and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (the latter two being among my all-time favorites).

CURRENT PROJECT: Directing Synecdoche, New York. The cast includes Philip Seymour-Hoffman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Emily Watson and Samantha Morton.

SYNOPSIS: I’m not even going to try to explain the plot. You’ll have to read for yourself. I got a headache about halfway through. The word “complicated” doesn’t begin to justify this film’s storyline.

RELEASE DATE: The only information given is “2007”, which probably isn’t happening. Keep your eyes peeled for a definitive date.

*****

DIRECTOR: Joel Coen

BEST KNOWN FOR: Being one of the best directors ever. He, along with brother Ethan, is responsible for Blood Simple, Raising Arizona, Fargo, Oh Brother Where Art Thou and about a dozen other kick-ass movies.

CURRENT PROJECT: No Country For Old Men, featuring an eclectic cast that includes Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Woody Harrelson and more.

SYNOPSIS: “Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon some dead bodies, a stash of heroin and more than $2 million in cash near the Rio Grande.” God, I hope this movie is funnier than it sounds.

RELEASE DATE: November 21, 2007

***

DIRECTOR: Martin Scorcese

BEST KNOWN FOR: Like you don’t know.

CURRENT PROJECT: Shine a Light

SYNOPSIS: A documentary about the Rolling Stones. The Stones haven’t been relevant or interesting in many a moon, but since Scorcese also directed The Last Waltz, the greatest music documentary ever created, I’m willing to give this one a shot.

RELEASE DATE: September 21, 2007

***

DIRECTOR: Wes Anderson

BEST KNOWN FOR: Directing Bottle Rocket, The Royal Tenenbaums and my favorite movie Rushmore. His movies have gotten increasingly strange, but each one remains a must-see. At least for me. I hope you feel the same.

CURRENT PROJECT: The Darjeeling Limited, starring Natalie Portman, Owen Wilson and Jason Schwartzman.

SYNOPSIS: The death of their father sends three brothers on a journey through India. Sounds heavy, man.

RELEASE DATE: January 3, 2008

***

DIRECTOR: Paul Thomas Anderson

BEST KNOWN FOR: Directing Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch-Drunk Love. Single-handedly proved that anyone can be a decent actor if they’re working with a quality director by coaxing solid performances out of Mark Wahlberg and Adam Sandler (both of whom were previously known as shitty actors).

CURRENT PROJECT: There Will be Blood, starring Daniel Day-Lewis, who is commonly known as one of the best actors of his generation (along with Andrew Shue, of course).

SYNOPSIS: A story about family, greed, religion, and oil, centered around a turn-of-the-century Texas prospector in the early days of the business. Once again, a premise that sounds far from hilarious. Dammit.

RELEASE DATE: Sometime in 2008. Don’t worry, I’ll remind you when this one nears its release date.

***

DIRECTOR: Fernando Meirelles 

BEST KNOWN FOR: Directing the amazing City of God and the impressive The Constant Gardener.

CURRENT PROJECT: Blindness, starring an impressive cast of Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Danny Glover and everybody’s favorite indie actor Gael Garcia Bernal.

SYNOPSIS: “A doctor’s wife becomes the only person with the ability to see in a town where everyone is struck with a mysterious case of sudden blindness.” Um, okay.

RELEASE DATE: March 2008

***

DIRECTOR: Sam Mendes

BEST KNOWN FOR: American Beauty, Road to Perdition, Jarhead

CURRENT PROJECT: Revolutionary Road, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, who previously starred in a criminally under-recognized, brilliantly subtle film entitled Titanic.

SYNOPSIS: A young couple living in a Connecticut suburb during the mid-1950s struggle to come to terms with their personal problems while trying to raise their two children. Based on a popular book, which is usually a bad sign.

RELEASE DATE: No idea. Sometime in 2008, is my guess.

***

DIRECTORS: Peter and Bobby Farrelly

BEST KNOWN FOR: Dumb & Dumber, Kingpin, the underrated Outside Providence, and the undeniably awesome There’s Something About Mary.

CURRENT PROJECT: The Heartbreak Kid, starring Ben Stiller. (Perpetual joke-stealer Carlos Mencia is also in the cast, which is a huge red flag for me and anyone else with even a semblance of respect for stand-up comedy. I am probably the one millionth person to publicly announce my loathing of Mencia.)

SYNOPSIS: A newlywed man who believes he’s just gotten hitched to the perfect woman encounters another lady on his honeymoon. Sort of the bizarro Along Came Polly.

RELEASE DATE: October 5, 2007

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One Response to “Checking in with our favorite directors”

  1. TJ July 24, 2007 at 5:29 am #

    Blindness and Revolutionary Road are two of my favorite novels. I trust both these directors to do them justice.

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