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A monthly series in this site wherein the geek dish out his TOP 5 films/awesomeness of something or someone.

Rebecca Ferguson Whips Up A Storm in 'Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation'

While “Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation” brings together the best and the brightest of the IMF in hot pursuit of The Syndicate, the film also bring several new faces into Ethan Hunt’s (Tom Cruise) world. Most notably, Hunt meets Ilsa Faust, a woman who literally takes him by storm, with savvy and skills that rival his own.

To play Ilsa, the femme fatale who reverses the tables on Hunt, the filmmakers chose a relative unknown: Rebecca Ferguson, who hails from Sweden, and was recently seen in “Hercules.” She won the role in part because she was a total surprise, says director Christopher McQuarrie. “When I first saw Rebecca on tape, she was 180 degrees from what I thought I was looking for. But Tom and I just looked at each other and said, ‘that’s her.’ Immediately we saw that she had the energy we wanted – she was independent, elegant, full of grace and maturity,” the director observes. “We called her in to read with Tom and they instantly clicked. Everyone just stood back and watched the chemistry.”

The only thing Ferguson didn’t have was a long resumé of action. But what Ferguson lacked in experience, she made up for with a willingness to try things that terrified her. “Rebecca had only a few weeks to train before we started shooting,” recalls McQuarrie. “There wasn’t a lot of time and she was very honest that she had a serious fear of heights and claustrophobia, but four weeks later, she was leaping off the roof of the Vienna Opera House! She never pretended she wasn’t afraid, but she pushed herself and became so remarkably proficient that I think she had a great experience.”

Cruise was impressed with the way Ferguson deftly tackled the role’s huge physical demands without losing Ilsa Faust’s intriguing feminine wiles – and a personality that has Hunt believing in her in spite of himself. “I think she’s an incredibly powerful actress and also incredibly charismatic. She exudes both elegance and intelligence,” Cruise says. “Chris and I talked a lot about what we wanted in Ilsa and we wanted a very strong woman, someone both powerful and mysterious who would have the audience leaning forward watching her, rooting for her and being a little shocked by her.”
He goes on: “Rebecca had never done this type of action before, but luckily she’s a natural athlete. She herself didn’t realize how good she would be at it until the training began. When we were working together, I kept telling her, ‘look, you’re really talented at this.’ It’s true. Her hand-eye coordination, the way she moves, it’s instinctively powerful. I think we were quite fortunate to find her; and Ialso think audiences will be truly captivated by her.”

Ferguson knew right away what her approach would be to the role: to be Ethan Hunt’s counterpart in an unapologetically feminine form. “Ilsa is the female Ethan Hunt,” she sums up. “And that’s why he kind of meets his match in her. What I love about her as a character is that she has both a very badass side and a vulnerability that entwine together. So she’s very strong and driven, like Ethan, but I think she’s also someone to whom people can relate.”

She was also thrilled to find herself at the center of a series she has been enjoying for years as a movie-going fan. “I have always loved ‘Mission: Impossible,’” Ferguson muses. “I love that you can always expect the unexpected. You know going into it there will be the coolest technology, stunts and exciting actors. This one is a great ride, but a ride with emotions, and that’s the best kind.”

With no time to lose, Ferguson recalls that she had to throw herself into training with all she had. “It was six hours a day and six days a week of stunt rehearsals, learning the specifics of hitting, ducking, jumping and moving,” she describes. “The training was very detailed and specific. At the same time, I was looking to find Ilsa’s own personal way of moving and fighting. I came to think of her as a lot like a cat, someone who kind of claws herself into anyone who attacks her. She uses pure body momentum to take down much more massive guys. During the training, we found this robust, raw, animalistic style of fighting for her that is really cool – and unlike any man you’ve seen.”
She says she didn’t give herself time to question too much what she was doing as she literally dove headlong into the stunts – which was a good thing. “Working on the stunts was a trip. I have claustrophobia and vertigo, but somehow, they got me to throw myself off high buildings and strap myself in underwater. I had to just do it and so I did,” she offers.

Now showing across the Philippines, “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

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Henry Cavill, Suave American Super Spy in 'Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Before he reprises his Superman role in the much-anticipated “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” scheduled for release in March 2016, Henry Cavill will first tackle the role of CIA super spy Napoleon Solo in Warner Bros.' slick action-thriller “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

Cavill and Armie Hammer (“The Social Network”) team up in the film as, respectively, CIA operative Napoleon Solo and KGB agent Illya Kuryakin—two fierce rivals from opposing sides of the Iron Curtain who are ordered to put aside their differences and work together to subvert a global catastrophe at the height of the Cold War.

In some respects, it’s a buddy movie…apart from the fact that “they kick the living daylights out of each other as soon as they meet,” says Cavill.

As Cavill understands the quintessentially smooth Solo, “He’s not career CIA; in fact, he’s kind of anti-establishment. He acquired his skill set dealing art and antiques on the black market after sneaking his way into post-war European high society, and was so good that no one could catch him for years. It’s something he took a great deal of pride in. But eventually he was given up by a jealous girlfriend, and the CIA, seeing the value of a man like him, offered an ultimatum: go to jail or work for us. So he ended up becoming an agent, very successfully but somewhat reluctantly. It’s better than being in jail and he can still wear natty suits.”
Cavill himself calls the pairing of Solo and Kuryakin “a very odd and broken relationship,” he laughs. “It’s: ‘I hate you, but I have to work with you.’ They really don’t want to like each other, but ultimately each comes to kind of respect the other.”

For his part, Solo finds the Russian unrefined and unpredictable, “but in some ways they’re two sides of the same coin,” Cavill observes. “The differences in their personalities and methods are vast, but they’re on the same spectrum. And even though they’re in this because Solo and Kuryakin have no choice, they are always mindful that they have a mission and there are lives at stake, not to mention the destruction of the world, so they have to try to make their skills work together. It could end up that the team is greater than the sum of its parts.”

Set against the backdrop of the early 1960s, at the height of the Cold War, “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” centers on CIA agent Solo (Cavill) and KGB agent Kuryakin (Hammer). Forced to put aside longstanding hostilities, the two team up on a joint mission to stop a mysterious international criminal organization, which is bent on destabilizing the fragile balance of power through the proliferation of nuclear weapons and technology. The duo’s only lead is Gaby Teller (Vikander), the daughter of a vanished German scientist, who is the key to infiltrating the criminal organization, and they must race against time to find him and prevent a worldwide catastrophe.
Set for release across the Philippines on Aug. 13, “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

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'Inside Out' Directors Pete Docter and Ronnie Del Carmen Visits PH

ronnie del carmen pete docter philippines visit inside outThe creative geniuses behind Disney-Pixar's latest acclaimed blockbuster “Inside Out” – director Pete Docter and co-director Ronnie del Carmen – will be in Southeast Asia from August 2-10 as part of a three-city tour just before the movie opens in these markets. The tour which starts from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia will head to Jakarta, Indonesia and end in Manila, Philippines. Both filmmakers are scheduled to meet with numerous Disney-Pixar fans and the local creative communities at various on-ground events.

In the Philippines, Pete Docter and Ronnie del Carmen will attend the by-invite-only red carpet premiere on Friday night, August 7 at the IMAX SM Aura in Taguig. And on Monday, August 10, Ronnie del Carmen will give an inspirational lecture before local animators and animation students in an event organized by the Animation Council of the Philippines. Venue is also the IMAX SM Aura.
Interestingly, the Philippine tour will also serve as a homecoming for Del Carmen who was born and raised in Cavite, migrating to the US several years after graduating from the University of Santo Tomas.

“It is with utmost joy and pride that we welcome Pete Docter and Ronnie del Carmen to Southeast Asia in this historic tour. We want to bring Disney-Pixar fans closer to our movies with such events and allow them to experience such one-in-a-lifetime chance to meet with notable creative minds in the animation and entertainment industry,” said Amit Malhotra, General Manager, Studio Entertainment, The Walt Disney Company, Southeast Asia.
ronnie del carmen inside out
Ronnie Del Carmen
One of the best reviewed movies to date, “Inside Out” is a comedy adventure featuring a team of Emotions who help guide an 11-year-old girl named Riley through an unsettling change in her life.
Inside Out” opened in the U.S. June 19 with a monumental USD $92-million haul, the biggest debut ever for an original film. On its third week of release, “Inside Out” catapulted to the number one spot of the US domestic box-office. Its cumulative gross now stands at USD $325-million and still counting.
pete docter philippines inside out
Pete Docter
Pete Docter has been nominated for six Academy Awards, including best animated feature winner “Up” and nominee “Monsters, Inc.,” and best original screenplay for “Up” and “WALL•E.
Aside from co-directing “Inside Out,” Ronnie del Carmen has also been a member of the story team on a number of the Pixar’s films, including the Academy Award-winning features “Finding Nemo,” “Ratatouille” and “Up” (for which he served as story supervisor).
About “Inside Out”
From an adventurous balloon ride above the clouds to a monster-filled metropolis, Academy Award®-winning director Pete Docter (“Monsters, Inc.,” “Up”) has taken audiences to unique and imaginative places. In Disney•Pixar’s original movie “ Inside Out,” he will take us to the most extraordinary location of all—inside the mind. 
Growing up can be a bumpy road, and it's no exception for Riley, who is uprooted from her Midwest life when her father starts a new job in San Francisco. Like all of us, Riley is guided by her emotions – Joy (Amy Poehler), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith). The emotions live in Headquarters, the control center inside Riley’s mind, where they help advise her through everyday life. As Riley and her emotions struggle to adjust to a new life in San Francisco, turmoil ensues in Headquarters. Although Joy, Riley's main and most important emotion, tries to keep things positive, the emotions conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house and school.
Opening across the Philippines on August 19, “Inside Out” is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International through Columbia Pictures.

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Meet the Modern-Day 'Fantastic Four'

In this year’s highly anticipated superhero film, “Fantastic Four” from 20th Century Fox, acclaimed filmmaker Josh Trank (Chronicle) directs a stunningly talented young cast in a new imagining of the iconic superhero family.  Miles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Bell star as, respectively, Reed Richards, Johnny Storm, Sue Storm and Benjamin “Ben” Grimm.
fantastic four poster

'Jurassic World 2' Set For 2018 Release!

jurassic world 2Universal Pictures has announced that a sequel to 'Jurassic World' is indeed happening and will be released on Friday, June 22, 2018. For a summer movie that just surpassed Marvel's 'The Avengers' in the box-office and now reigns as the third highest movie of all-time, this is a no shock.

Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard will return to star, as well as the first film director Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connolly, are set to pen the screenplay for the sequel.


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America's Unluckiest Lovable Family Returns in 'Vacation'

vacation rebootNew Line Cinema’s outrageous comedy “Vacation” starring Ed Helms, Christina Applegate and Chris Hemsworth, marks the big screen return of the Griswold clan—and their epically disastrous family outings.

The Griswolds first hit the screen in 1983 with the release of John Hughes’s and Harold Ramis’s zeitgeist-shifting “National Lampoon’s Vacation,” based on Hughes’s short stories in the eponymous humor magazine. The film became a global phenomenon and opened the way for the Griswolds to bumble through an escalating series of hilarious highs and gut-bustingly funny lows in the three subsequent films that followed—1985’s “National Lampoon’s European Vacation,” 1989’s “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” and 1997’s “Vegas Vacation.” Collectively, the films have introduced a litany of outrageous one-liners into the American cultural lexicon, and garnered generations of fans.

Among them were filmmakers Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley, the scribes behind films like “Horrible Bosses” and “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2,” who are making their directorial debut with the 2015 entry in the canon.

The creative pair grew up steeped in the misadventures of the luckless but ever-optimistic Clark Griswold, which Chevy Chase embodies as the ultimate silver screen father who tries too hard, along with Beverly D’Angelo as his wife and eternal voice of reason, Ellen. But the hapless father taking his family to Walley World this time around is Rusty Griswold—who as a teenager delivered some of the film series’ biggest laughs and as an adult is walking proof that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Goldstein calls the Griswold clan “the unluckiest family in the world, but that’s also what makes them relatable. We’ve all been in these situations where you get together with your family and nothing seems to go right. On the other hand, the things that happen to our Griswolds probably never happen to anybody in the real world to a large extent.”
walley world vacation
“I would only hope,” Daley adds. “At the same time, it’s funny to watch someone fall down, but it’s never funny to fall down. You’re laughing at yourself, you’re embarrassed, but if you’re looking at it from an outsider’s perspective, it’s always going to be funnier than if you’re the one experiencing it. And I think that there is a certain sense of relief that people get in watching a family go through such terrible, terrible times—because it’s not happening to them.”

With the torch being passed to the current generation of gifted onscreen comedians, it makes perfect sense that the writer/directors would enlist The Hangover trilogy’s hapless dentist Stu—Ed Helms—to inherit the Griswold surname. As Rusty, Helms is joined onscreen by Christina Applegate, one of today’s most beloved cinematic comediennes, as Rusty’s wife, Debbie, with young actors Skyler Gisondo and Steele Stebbins playing their warring sons, Kevin and James, and Chase and D’Angelo reprising their iconic roles.

Opening across the Philippines August 19, “Vacation” is a New Line Cinema presentation and will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment company.


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Jeremy Renner Leads Returning Team in 'Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation'

mission impossible jeremy rennerEthan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has never needed the other members of the IMF more than he does in Paramount Pictures’  “Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation” – and despite the appearance that the force is done, they all come together, unpredictably as ever, to take on The Syndicate as only the IMF can.  The result is that Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames had a chance to take their characters more than a few bounds forward. 

“I love the dynamics between Jeremy, Simon and Ving on this film as you see the IMF team come under pressure and almost fracture,” says Tom Cruise. “It looks like the IMF is about to split apart and the whole story is going to blow up basically – and that’s integral to a Mission movie.”
mission impossible 5 luther stickell As Luther Stickell -- the computer expert who first appeared in the original “Mission: Impossible” directed by Brian De Palma – and William Brandt – the IMF agent assigned to guard Ethan Hunt in “Ghost Protocol” -- team up to track Ethan, it was a blast for the filmmakers to watch Jeremy Renner and Ving Rhames riffing off each other.

Says producer Don Granger: “20 years after he first took on the role, Ving just fits on Luther like a glove. He's the elder statesman of the IMF.  Luther has known Ethan the longest, and in a way, Ving has known Tom the longest. So they bring an intimacy and warmth that transfers to the screen. Jeremy, on the other hand, is sort of this live-wire counterpoint to the other characters, while Simon pinballs between all of them. It’s so much fun to watch them all together.”

Director Christopher McQuarrie was thrilled to give the returning cast more screen-time than ever.  “We really wanted to get to the ‘Best of the IMF’ in this film. What’s fantastic for me as a director is that each of these actors brings their own special quality and my job was simply to find everyone’s individual rhythms and synch them together,” he explains.  “And of course throughout it all, Tom was the anchor.  He’s so deep into this world, everyone looks to him for inspiration and wants to play at his level.  The real upside of having Tom and Jeremy and Simon and Ving, who are so well-versed in this universe, that you start with a very strong grounding– which allows you to then take things in exciting new directions.”

Cruise could not have been more exhilarated to reunite with Pegg, who always brings out the comedy that contrasts perfectly with Ethan Hunt’s unceasing intensity.  “Everyday I had so much fun with him. Every single day we laughed and still we were able to focus, work hard and find that live chemistry that McQuarrie and I wanted. In the car sequence, Simon had to totally trust me.  I was thinking, ‘I don’t want to tell him how dangerous this really is,’” Cruise recalls.  “So I’m driving high speed, drifting into very narrow allies, slamming up against the wall at times, really trying to push it to the edge while he was cracking me up with his performance!”

Adds Ellison:  “Simon is hilarious but he also brings in a phenomenal new incarnation of Benji from the one we first met.  He used to be the guy behind a desk but now he’s officially out in the field as a full-fledged agent. When you see him willing to risk his life for Ethan out of true friendship, it feels incredibly authentic.”
mission impossible 5 simon peggPegg admits that he could hardly wait to head off on another “Mission: Impossible.”  “When you get that call that they’re doing another one, it’s always exciting,” he explains.  “Then you wait for the script, hoping your character doesn’t die!” 

One thing that hasn’t altered, says Pegg, is the appeal of the “Mission” premise – that there are people willing to attempt the impossible to keep the rest of us safe.  “Here we are 20 years later and we’re still out there saving the world – so this story obviously has still got a lot to give,” he reflects.

“The world has changed and the missions have grown more complex, but there are still a lot of bad guys out there who should be stopped and I think ‘Mission: Impossible’ is a wish fulfillment in that respect.  There’s seriousness to that idea, but at the same time, we play with it with such a sense of adventure and fun that you can’t help but be swept up in that.”
mission impossible tom cruise jeremy renner
Opening across the Philippines on Thursday, July 30, “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

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Action-Packed 'Man From U.N.C.L.E. Saves The World in Style

man from uncle stillGuy Ritchie’s “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” is a fast-moving, action-packed, sexy and stylish international adventure, shot through with humor, that is as much about the rocky relationship between two sparring superspies – Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill) and Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer) – as it is about the job they have to do. 

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