The prospect of Jason Segel playing David Foster Wallace was, to put it nicely, daunting. Male college students and literary buffs—the two most vocal cohorts of Wallace fans—did not hesitate to express their chagrin that the stoner comedy fan favorite would be playing the enigmatic and genius Infinite Jest writer. Wallace’s family objected to the movie being made.
Fast forward two years: The End of theTourpremiered at Sundance on January 23 and is yet to be screened elsewhere, making the film an impressive grab on IFF’s part. The first of this week’s IFF screenings showed in the Martinos Auditorium in Granoff last night. The film is slated for a limited release in July. Boasting direction by James Ponsoldt, coming off of his critically acclaimed The Spectacular Now, and with its fair share of controversy, The End of the Tour was, if nothing else, tantalizing.
The good news is that Segel soars above expectations, delivering a surprisingly nuanced performance that brings Wallace’s words to life. And what words they are. The End of the Tour is an adaptation of David Lipsky’s 2010 book Although of Course You End Up BecomingYourself, the true account of Lipsky’s time shadowing Wallace during the last four days of the Infinite Jest book tour.
Playwright Donald Margulies’ screenplay maintains much of the book’s insight. Part hyper-intellectual buddy comedy chock-full of snappy dialogue and witty retorts with its fair share of laughs, part genuinely moving rumination on how writers grasp for meaning through their work, the screenplay is truly driven forward by Wallace’s words.
Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson are back at it. The two announced the arrival of Zoolander 2 by walking in the Valentino runway show as a part of Paris Fashion Week. These two really, really ridiculously good-looking men [Ed. really?] have been mulling over a Zoolander 2 for several years now, but the Valentino show this morning marked the official announcement.
On the runway, Ben Stiller rocked a Night Butterflies brocade suit with overcoat and black Creeper shoes, while Owen Wilson wore a Silk Continent print Pajama suit with Double Cashmere overcoat and Black sneakers. The normally subdued audience of Paris Fashion Week went wild as the two strutted down the runway and exchanged a hateful glare. As they strutted back, Stiller ripped Vine star Jerome Jarre’s phone out of his hand and took a Snapchat video. The whole exchange can be seen in the live Snapchat story “Fashion in Paris.”
*SPOILER ALERT: Fifty Shades of Grey pretty much sucks, no matter how intoxicated you are*
Also, this is our first ever virtual Drunk/Sober/High. The writers saw the movies in separate locations (due to the long weekend), but still, of course, remained faithful to their respective substance (or lack thereof).
Before the show
D: I sort of failed at pre-gaming for this film, so my friend and I took a ¾ full handle of vodka into the movie theater. Somehow, despite sitting in the front row, we did not get booted out of the theater. We also didn’t boot. The latter might be more surprising.
S: I can’t believe I’m actually at a movie theater on Valentine’s Day waiting to watch Fifty Shades. Is this real life? I look around and the theater’s pretty empty; I get there about 15 minutes early, thinking that it’ll be packed because the hype was so real, but there are probably less than 20 people there, most of whom are couples who, I’d guess, have been married for at least ten years. I’m suddenly extremely paranoid–what if parents that I know show up? What if they’re already here? What if they see me? What if I see them? I glance down the aisle and notice one couple my age sitting a few rows up and I ask myself the following question: in what world would anyone ever see this movie as a date?
H: Upon arriving to the mall, we made a bee line to the food court, snuck Chinese Food combo dinners under our coats, and found our seats in the way back of the theater. I saw quite a few other Brown students there, and I tried calling their names to get their attention but apparently I was only whispering. We smoked again in the theater; we realized we had great neighbors when we heard, “get it girl” after my friend stifled a cough.
In honor of Black History Month, the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice and the Providence Public Library are hosting film series featuring a number of movies, including the Academy Award-nominated Selma, directed by Ava DuVernay. The film will be showing tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. at the Providence Public Library (150 Empire Street).
Selma tells the story of a key moment in the civil rights movement, the march from Selma to Montgomery, and chronicles Martin Luther King Jr.’s (played by Oscar-snubbed David Oyelowo) campaign to get the Voting Rights Act of 1965 passed.
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Netflix has announced new movies and TV shows that will be making their streaming debut this December. As a way to look forward to lazy days indoors over winter break, or as a way to put off studying for finals a little bit longer, here is a list of all the titles coming to Netflix in the month of December 2014.
A Knight’s Tale (2001) (Dec. 1)
Inspired by Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, this medieval adventure film follows a peasant who is pretending to be a knight to compete in jousting tournaments. Rotten Tomatoes describes this as “Rocky on horseback.” *Dun… dun dun dun. Dun dun dun. Dun dun duuuuuuuun.*
Almost Famous (2000) (Dec. 1)
Directed and written by Cameron Crowe, this comedy-drama film tells the coming-of-age story of a teenage Rolling Stone journalist following the fictitious 70s band Stillwater.
American Beauty (1999) (Dec. 1)
Suggested to be a satire of the American middle class ideals of beauty and satisfaction, this drama tells the story of office worker Lester Burnham, who falls into a midlife crisis, enamored by his daughter’s teenage friend.
Bewitched (2005) (Dec. 1)
Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell in Bewitched (2005)
Based on the 1964-72 TV show of the same name, Bewitched stars Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell. Ferrell plays Jack Wyatt, a struggling actor desperate for a role. Jack agrees to star in a film version of the TV series Bewitched (so meta). Nicole Kidman as Isabel Bigelow is cast as the female lead alongside Jack, playing the witch-turned-housewife Samantha. Nobody knows that Isabel is really a witch (OH BOY).