Drive stars Ryan Gosling as a Hollywood stunt driver and mechanic who also happens to be a getaway driver. The solitary Driver whose name we never learn is a loner with no friends or family except for his beaten down employer, Shannon (Bryan Cranston) who owns the garage where he works and is also the stunt coordinator who hires him to work in movies.

Driver is a man of few words preferring to let others do the talking while he reveals nothing. Gosling is magnetic as a man who possesses a calm demeanor on the surface but harbors a tightly coiled animal instinct to survive and an explosive propensity for violence when necessary.

Nicolas Winding Refn the director has a firm grasp of his material. There’s a consistent tone to the film from beginning to end. His is not the bright candy colored Los Angeles seen in so many other films. Instead, the Danish director perfectly captures the sprawling and alienating landscape of LA that often serves as a barrier between people.  The empty desolate streets at night and the strip mall restaurants and markets that give the city an eerie, disconnected feel. Continue reading »

I was skeptical about The Artist because it’s a silent film and I’m not going to be pretentious and pretend I love silent film. Secondly, all the critics and Hollywood were gushing about how great it is which immediately made me suspicious.

This is one of those times when the reality equals the hype. The Artist is so full of life and sparkle that it won me over from the very start. It will do the same to you. It’s obvious director Michel Hazanavicius has a fully realized picture of the story, time and place he has imagined and the mastery to bring the world he envisions to life.

Jean Dujardin is George Valentin a big silent film star with an ego to match and charisma to spare. Enter Bérénice Bejo as the perky Peppy Miller, an aspiring young actress who ingratiates herself with the press and the star during a Valentin photo op at a film premiere.

The two meet again when Peppy lands a small role as a dancer on Valentin’s next film. When studio head Al Zimmer (John Goodman) recognizes her as the scene-stealer from the premiere he fires her but Valentin insists she stay in the picture. Soon Peppy’s career is on the rise and she and Valentin are clearly captivated by each other. Continue reading »

the brooklyn mouth had a chance to catch up with refreshing young actress Brooke Bundy who plays Octavia, a member of Katniss Everdeen’s prep team in The Hunger Games. The northern California native and graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts shares her views on acting and how ingenuity and taking initiative led to her first professional on screen role in one of the most anticipated films of the year.

Bundy is a member of Bats the resident acting company of downtown New York theater The Flea and produces a monthly variety show, The Witching Hour at Jimmy’s 43 in the East Village.

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