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Wilson Review


It's never helpful when a comedy becomes a bit too smug about its own quirkiness. This movie is wilfully goofy but feels oddly irrelevant, focussing on a colourful central character who never quite seems like a real person. Woody Harrelson pours plenty of energy, humour and emotion into the title role, but it's difficult to identify with this optimistic curmudgeon. Still, quite a few moments are genuinely hilarious.

Harrelson plays Wilson, a guy who can't resist saying whatever he thinks, even though it annoys pretty much anyone within earshot. He over-shares with strangers, complains constantly about everything and refuses to stop offering unwanted advice. In his mind he's making the word a better place, but his life is a mess. And when his father dies, he realises that he has no friends left aside from his dog Pepper. Leaving Pepper with a neighbour (Judy Greer), Wilson tracks down his ex-wife Pippi (Laura Dern) and is shocked to learn that she gave birth to his daughter after they split up, giving the baby up for adoption. So Wilson goes on a quest to find the now 17-year-old Claire (Isabella Amara), barging into her life in the hope of rescuing his own.

There are very few characters in this film who can bear to be in the same room as Wilson, a man with no manners who has no idea that he is rubbing everyone the wrong way. And for the audience, it's not much better to be in his presence for the length of this 94-minute movie. Harrelson is charming, but the script has Wilson veering from giddy to angry to cruel and back, which is a serious challenge for the actor to play consistently. That Harrelson manages it is no mean feat. Opposite him, Dern and Greer are terrific as his long-suffering foils. And Amara takes every opportunity to steal scenes out from under her veteran costars.

Continue reading: Wilson Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer

After the release of The Force Awakens at the end of 2015, Disney and Lucas films didn't mess around delivering the general public its first announcement/teaser for The Last Jedi back at the start of 2016. Now, well over a year later, we finally get to see some proper footage from the upcoming movie. 

Many of the key cast from Star Wars: The Force Awakens will feature in The Last Jedi including Daisy Ridley as Rey, John Boyega as Finn, Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron and Adam Driver as Kylo Ren who famously slaughtered his much-loved father in a face to face battle that made for one of the most pivotal scenes in the history of Star Wars.

As ever with new Star Wars releases, the scrip and the story outline is one of Hollywood's most closely guarded secrets and few official details have been released to the public. We do know that the story will pick up where The Force Awakens ended with Rey going off into a mountainous setting to hunt down Luke Skywalker in a bid to train with him and learn his knowledge. 

Continue: Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer

Certain Women Review


In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply pointed stories about women's lives. So this drama weaves together three narratives with distinct female perspectives. Based on short stories by Maile Meloy, these tales only barely intersect, but they echo similar themes in a striking rural Montana setting.

In the central story, Beth (Kristen Stewart) is a young lawyer who drives four hours twice a week to teach a night class, where she develops a fan in a young rancher (Lily Gladstone) who has a secret crush on her. Meanwhile, Laura (Laura Dern) is another lawyer representing an injured worker (Jared Harris) who took a small financial settlement before learning that he would never physically recover. And then there's Gina (Michelle Williams), who is building a home in a gorgeous location with her strained husband (James Le Gros) and surly teen daughter (Sara Rodier). They need a pile of old sandstone that has been sitting for some 50 years next to the home of a man (Rene Aberjonois) everyone's afraid to talk to.

All of this is set against Montana's big-sky landscapes, sumptuously captured on-screen by cinematographer Christopher Blauvelt. Everything is crisp and wintry, and Reichardt cleverly designs the film in a simplistic, insightful way that quietly focusses on unspoken interaction between the characters. Yes, much of this movie is completely silent, as these women consider the realities of their lives. This of course allows the actresses to make the most of their characters, adding weight and depth to each scene, often without saying a word.

Continue reading: Certain Women Review

Woody Harrelson: 'Laura Dern Is An Incredible Actress'

Woody Harrelson Laura Dern

It's always a good experience for an actor when they get to meet another actor who they have so much chemistry with, and especially when they get to see them at work first hand. Woody Harrelson was mindblown by co-star Laura Dern on the set of Craig Johnson's 'Wilson'.

Woody HarrelsonWoody Harrelson admires the talents of Laura Dern

Harrelson plays the titular lead character; an overly honest and neurotic man who talks to strangers a lot to overcome his loneliness. He's been a broken man ever since his wife Pippi (played by Laura Dern) left him 17 years previously, but finds new hope when he discovers that he may have a secret daughter who was put into foster care. 

Continue reading: Woody Harrelson: 'Laura Dern Is An Incredible Actress'

There's Only One Person Laura Dern Loves More Than Woody Harrelson

Laura Dern Woody Harrelson

At the Sundance Film Festival premiere of her latest film Wilson, in which she stars opposite Woody Harrelson in a drama about broken families, Laura Dern spoke about the “amazing” time she had on set – not just him, but his wife too!

“I mean, we worship each other! In every single way! I love him so much, I really had the most amazing time,” she said exclusively to us. “As I said to him – there’s only one person on the planet I worship more than you, and it’s your wife Laura [Louie]! She’s the most amazing person, we had basically a summer vacation together!”

In Wilson, an adaptation of Daniel Clowes’ novel, Harrelson plays a neurotic middle-aged who reunites with his estranged wife (Dern), and who meets his now-teenage daughter for the first time in the process (played by Isabella Amara).

Continue reading: There's Only One Person Laura Dern Loves More Than Woody Harrelson

The Founder Review


This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's. And the most remarkable thing about this film is that it's not a feature-length advertisement for the fast-food outlet. Instead, it's a strikingly balanced, warts-and-all exploration of one man who pioneered a whole new way of making a fortune, even if it meant crushing some innocent people along the way. Which of course makes the film both entertaining and involving.

Michael Keaton delivers a storming performance as Ray, who we meet as a travelling salesman in the American Midwest in 1954. Unable to get anyone to understand his theory about simplified menus and faster service, he follows a lead out west to Southern California, where brothers Dick and Mac McDonald (Nick Offerman and John Carroll Lynch) have done just that. He buys into their concept and begins opening franchises back in the Midwest, and his network rapidly expands. But a business partner (BJ Novak) shows him that he'll need to push the brothers aside if he wants to make some proper money.

Director John Lee Hancock keeps the film's tone light and the pace brisk, never bogging down in the darker edges of the story. But he never shies away from them either, which adds a blackly comical tone to Keaton's full-on performance as a man who will do whatever it takes to make a profit. As a result, the audience is able to sympathise with Ray even though he's increasingly unlikeable, a charming monster who shamelessly borrows ideas from everyone he meets. This makes his relationships with his fragile first wife (Laura Dern) and his more aggressive second wife (Linda Cardellini) fascinating, even if neither woman is very well defined.

Continue reading: The Founder Review

The Founder Trailer

Ray Kroc is a milkshake maker salesman who is intrigued by a large number of orders one day and decides to track down the business buying them. It's a burger restaurant in California owned by two brothers named Richard and Maurice McDonald who have revolutionised dining with their lightning fast service and quality control. Ray starts to see potential in the company and tries to encourage them to branch out, and while the McDonald brothers are initially hesitant, they soon slowly allow Kroc to take over their business without realising that they are in danger of losing their hold on it. Kroc wants McDonald's and he's not going to let anyone stand in his way.

Continue: The Founder Trailer

Wilson Trailer

Wilson (Woody Harrelson) may not be the most likeable of fellows; he has a penchant for startling and offending strangers with his overly honest opinions; but he considers almost everyone as a friend he just hasn't met yet. His gregariousness, however, didn't save his relationship with his estranged wife Pippi (Laura Dern) when she left him 17 years ago, and since then he's been on a quest to save himself from his crushing loneliness. Things seem to take a turn for the better when he discovers that Pippi put a daughter named Claire (Isabella Amara) up for adoption around the time that they broke up, and he sets out to find her and become the father that he's always wanted to be. He drags a reluctant Pippi along with him, but is he just trying to force a happy family on two unwilling figures that don't really want anything to do with him?

Continue: Wilson Trailer

"Weird, Wonderful And Empathetic" Shailene Woodley Cuts Hair For Charity

Shailene Woodley George Clooney Nat Wolff Laura Dern

Shailene Woodley, the actress best known for her role in The Descendants, has cut her long locks for a role. The 21-year-old actress has decided to donate her cut hair to a children's charity called Children With Hair Loss, an organisation which makes wigs for children suffering from hair loss due to cancer or other medical treatments.

Shailene Woodley
Shailene Woodley at the 2013 San Diego Comic-Con.

This is appropriate considering the role Woodley is to play. She is set to play the lead role in The Fault in Our Stars as Hazel Grace Lancaster. Based on the book by John Green, Hazel suffers from cancer and falls in love with another ill child. The movie is due out next year and will feature performances from Nat Wolff (The Last Keepers), Andel Algort (Carrie) and Laura Dern (Englightened). 

Continue reading: "Weird, Wonderful And Empathetic" Shailene Woodley Cuts Hair For Charity

Video - Laura Dern Is Snapped Taking Her Children Out In Manhattan

Actress Laura Dern is snapped out shopping with her children in Manhattan. She briefly stops to sign autographs for a group of fans. Dern recently starred in the TV series 'Enlightened' for which she won a Golden Globe. The series was, however, recently cancelled due to low ratings.

Continue: Video - Laura Dern Is Snapped Taking Her Children Out In Manhattan

HBO Show Ending: Why Is Fan-Favorite 'Enlightened' Getting The Chop?

Laura Dern

HBO has controversially pulled the plug on fan-favorite drama 'Enlightened' after just two seasons. The show starred Laura Dern as Amy Jellicoe, a self-destructive executive who experiences a philosophical awakening in rehabilitation and subsequently attempts to get her life back on track after an implosion in her professional life. Amy moved back in with her mother and tries to reconnect with her ex-husband Levi, played by Luke Wilson. It was great stuff, the critics loved it, HBO viewers adored it, so why is it no more?

Tim Goodman over at the Hollywood Reporter argues that the cable channel favors exclusive feeling, award winning shows, like Lena Dunham's Girls. You can't browse the internet or walk around New York without seeing Dunham or Allison Williams face, and you need HBO to see more. "It likes buzz, which leads to awards, which lead to a sense of something special you're not getting unless you're getting HBO. So you subscribe. That's the business model," writes Goodman, adding, "But even in that environment, an audience of 200,000 to 300,000 is not sustainable unless there's a critical cacophony a la Girls. So it's not quite a surprise that HBO canceled Enlightened on Tuesday. I would make the argument that if the pay cable channel didn't have a handful of comedies in the pipeline, it probably would have stuck with the show for a third season." Essentially, nobody really knew Laura Dern was in a show called Enlightened, apart from those who watched Enlightened. Ask somebody who Lena Dunham is, and it's the woman from Girls.

"It was a very difficult decision," a rep for HBO told E! Online in a statement. "We've decided not to continue Enlightened for a third season. We're proud of the show and we look forward to working with Mike White and Laura Dern in the future." Despite receiving critical acclaim, Enlightened was lucky not to fall foul of HBO's ruthless cull last year, when Hung, How To Make It In America and the excellent Bored To Death were all cancelled.

Continue reading: HBO Show Ending: Why Is Fan-Favorite 'Enlightened' Getting The Chop?

HBO Cancels Laura Dern's 'Enlightened' After Two Seasons

Laura Dern Diane Ladd Luke Wilson

HBO has cancelled Laura Dern's dramedy 'Enlightened' after just two seasons. Though critics loved the series, it failed to pull in large audience numbers and - as we're now well aware - that won't cut it in the ruthless world of American television. "It was a very difficult decision," a rep for HBO told E! Online in a statement. "We've decided not to continue Enlightened for a third season. We're proud of the show and we look forward to working with Mike White and Laura Dern in the future."

In fairness, Enlightened was expected to get the chop during HBO's bloody cull last year when Hung, How To Make It In America and Zach Galifianakis' Bored To Death were all cancelled. As mentioned, the show was a big hit with critics and Dern - one of America's finest television actresses - won the Golden Globe for Best Actress In A Comedy Series for the first season. The show was also nominated for Best Comedy Series that same year.

The show followed the story of Amy Jellicoe (Dern), a self-destructive executive who tries to get her life back together after the implosion of her professional life and a subsequent philosophical awakening in rehabilitation. She moved  back in with her mother (played by her real-life mom Diane Ladd) and reconnects with her ex-husband Levi (played by Luke Wilson) who is also struggling with his own demons and addictions. 

Continue reading: HBO Cancels Laura Dern's 'Enlightened' After Two Seasons

The Master Review


This jagged, meandering exploration of a Scientology-style movement is hauntingly mesmerising and packed with meaty performances. As he did in There Will Be Blood, writer-director Anderson is exploring how people control and influence each other, this time focussing on a twisted mentor-protege relationship that's strikingly well-played by Hoffman and Phoenix. 

The story takes place just after the war, as seaman Freddie Quells (Phoenix) struggles to overcome his physical and psychological injuries and fit back into society. After drifting across America, he stows away on a boat captained by Lancaster Dodd (Hoffman), who is known as the Master to followers of the Cause. He takes Freddie under his wing and coaches him to tap into his eternal soul by exploring who he was in past lives. So Freddie becomes part of the family with Dodd's strong-willed wife (Adams), doubtful son (Plemons) and more gung-ho daughter and son-in-law (Childers and Malek). And Freddie's stubbornness both annoys and challenges Dodd.

It's fascinating to watch these two men develop a tight connection while quietly jostling for power. The cycles of interaction make the film lurch in fits and starts as Freddie tries to elevate himself using Dodd's process, but continually finds another way all his own. In other words, both men are using each other to work out their own inner turmoil. While Hoffman gives a layered performance that bristles with quiet shadows and superficial bravado, Phoenix contorts his body and face into a man who has literally been crumpled up by his past. Meanwhile, the darkly intense Adams sneaks up and steals every scene she's in.

Continue reading: The Master Review

Video - Laura Dern Gets A Ticket Despite Paparazzi Pleas To Parking Official

A photographer appeals to a parking officer to not write a parking ticket for Laura Dern's car in Beverly Hills because of her role as Dr. Ellie Sattler in Steven Spielberg's 1993 blockbuster 'Jurassic Park'. The officer politely informs him that it is her job to write tickets for parking offences before getting back into her own car. Laura Dern returns to her car and discovers the ticket but seems somewhat unfazed, merely saying 'It's a bummer!' before driving away in an apparent hurry.
Dern has also starred in 'Blue Velvet' and 'Little Fockers' and will star as Helen in the upcoming drama 'The Master' currently in post-production. There are also rumours of a fourth 'Jurassic Park' film being made with whispers of her taking on her previous role

Inland Empire Review

To those who thought that Terry Gilliam's gothic frenzy Tideland was an auteur who had lost all restraint: In the words of Bachman-Turner Overdrive, you ain't seen nothing yet.

The notorious David Lynch has always held a rather slippery grip on narrative construction and a rather absent grasp on convention. At last we left him, his surreal dreamscape was the city of L.A. and a pair of lesbian lovers who may or may not have broken up because of a brash film director, and that's just the peripheral story. Mulholland Drive was Lynch at his very best, using Los Angeles as a canvas to purge all his hallucinatory digressions and woozy dreams into a noir-tinged love story. Lynch now returns to L.A. once again for Inland Empire, a 180-minute, digitally-shot nightmare that culls together the absolute worst attributes of Lynch and his personal style.

Continue reading: Inland Empire Review

Wild At Heart Review

Was there any film so anxiously awaited in the late 1980s and early 1990s as Wild at Heart? The picture was released to a cult that had just been born: that of its director, David Lynch, whose Blue Velvet, in 1986, had reaped an enthusiastic following among the mainstream hipsters who had missed Eraserhead in 1977, and whose budding appetite for Lynch's singular brand of the macabre had been whetted by the prime-time ghoulishness of 1990's Twin Peaks. Wild at Heart's Palme d'Or win at Cannes just before its 1990 release only tantalized more; and after what seemed for Lynch's starving fans a nearly eternal wait, the film opened at last to high expectations, but decidedly mixed reviews.

Wild at Heart was puzzling, because it was screwed up and it was hard to figure out why. Time - and, 14 years later, the DVD release - helps to clear up that central enigma. Based very loosely on Barry Gifford's novel, this manic, Southern Gothic road movie now seems too deliberately weird. And in retrospect the cause seems to be that its creator, a strange man if the available evidence of his films is to be believed, and one who then was only recently revered as a certain type of genius, was trying so hard just to be himself.

Continue reading: Wild At Heart Review

Fat Man And Little Boy Review

The trouble with true stories is a subject I like to tackle. I really hit it hard with Patch Adams, which was idiotic enough to use "based on a true story" as its tag line. Likewise, I'm not going easy on Fat Man and Little Boy for the fact that it is based on fact.

Fat Man and Little Boy, for anyone who has been locked up for the past sixty years, are the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan. The movie is basically a humanization of the people who invented in, the team of crackpot physicists on the Manhattan Project (led by Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, played by Dwight Schultz) and the military general in charge (Leslie Groves, played by Paul Newman). John Cusack plays the wunderkid of the physicists, Michael Merriman. Laura Dern plays his girlfriend, a nurse.

Continue reading: Fat Man And Little Boy Review

October Sky Review


Although "October Sky" is a film with no surprises from its soundtrack of '50s rock 'n' roll standards to its triumph over adversity themes, this teen-years biography of a NASA scientist who got his start building rockets in his basement is so full of spirit and letter-perfect filmmaking that I defy anyone to watch this movie without getting a tingle in his or her heart.

Thrilling in the best sense of the word, traditional without being corny and with a script, photography and symbolism that could be the basis of a film literature textbook, "October Sky" is a classic in the making. It's just a pity it wasn't released in time for Oscar consideration.

The picture stars Jake Gyllenhaal as Homer Hickman, a coal miner's son determined to break away from his assumed destiny following in his father's bleak and dangerous subterranean footsteps.

Continue reading: October Sky Review

Jurassic Park III Review


In 1993, the first "Jurassic Park" took Hollywood's first giant step into the world of computer generated special effects, rendering from scratch huge life-like dinosaurs that genuinely interacted with the humans they chased and chowed on. There were a few tell-tale signs of CGI style that savvy audiences now recognize (soft-focusy skin on some critters, for example). But there wasn't a movie-goer on Earth who wasn't agog at how real those dinos looked.

CGI effects have evolved exponentially in the last eight years and in "Jurassic Park III" the movie's biggest stars are so seamless blended and thoroughly convincing that the very concept of these ancient beasts being a special effect barely even crosses your mind. It only occurred to me once, for about 10 seconds, during a fight between a Tyrannosaurus Rex and this movie's even bigger, meaner baddie called Spinosaurus. Half way through the furious dust-up, it hit me: "Holy cow, these things aren't real!"

I might not even have thought about the effects at all except for being drawn to the extreme deliberateness of the movie's big-budget post-production by the over-amped, over-bearing, Dolby'd-to-death sound effects, apparently designed to shatter eardrums.

Continue reading: Jurassic Park III Review

Dr T & The Women Review

Very Good

After spending the better part of his adult life in a storm of estrogen, OB-GYN Dr. Sullivan Travis (Richard Gere) is still a man in awe of women and still at a loss to understand them.

The fashionable gynecologist to every flaky high society dame in Dallas, his overbooked office waiting room is always a circus of air-kissing aristocrats in leopard print hats and feather boas.

At home he has a wife (Farrah Fawcett) who may be ready for a stay at a well-heeled asylum. Also under his roof are one slightly ditzy daughter (Kate Hudson) preoccupied with planning her deluxe wedding and another offspring (Tara Reid) who wants to throw a wrench in the works because she's suspicious of the curious influence the bourgeois maid of honor (Liv Tyler) seems to have over her sister.

Continue reading: Dr T & The Women Review

Laura Dern

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Laura Dern

Date of birth

10th February, 1967








Laura Dern Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Wilson Movie Review

Wilson Movie Review

It's never helpful when a comedy becomes a bit too smug about its own quirkiness....

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer

After the release of The Force Awakens at the end of 2015, Disney and Lucas...

Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

The Founder Trailer

The Founder Trailer

Ray Kroc is a milkshake maker salesman who is intrigued by a large number of...

Wilson Trailer

Wilson Trailer

Wilson (Woody Harrelson) may not be the most likeable of fellows; he has a penchant...

99 Homes Movie Review

99 Homes Movie Review

This harrowing morality play is timely and riveting, but never remotely subtle. The setting is...

99 Homes Trailer

99 Homes Trailer

Dennis Nash is a struggling single father whose life is turned upside down when he's...

Wild Movie Review

Wild Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon gives a beautifully stripped-back performance in this epic journey based on the memoir...

Wild Trailer

Wild Trailer

The cast and crew of forthcoming drama biopic 'Wild' talk about Jean-Marc Vallée's direction and...

Wild Trailer

Wild Trailer

When young Cheryl Strayed loses her beloved mother, her entire world seems to come crashing...

The Fault in Our Stars Movie Review

The Fault in Our Stars Movie Review

Based on the beloved novel by John Green, this film is so squarely slanted toward...