House Logo
Explore categories +

Shia Labeouf (#110 of 20)

Cannes Film Review: American Honey

Comments Comments (...)

Cannes Film Review: American Honey

Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Film Review: American Honey

Andrea Arnold’s latest, American Honey, is a rambling, nearly three-hour travelogue, an On the Road for the millennial set. It may capture the no-fucks spirit of today’s disenfranchised youth, but it’s content to indulge and aestheticize their behaviors for empty displays of style. This is Arnold’s lower-class fetishism at its most vacuous and exploitative.

Watch: Shia LaBeouf & Maddie Ziegler Star in Sia’s “Elastic Heart” Music Video

Comments Comments (...)

Watch: Shia LaBeouf & Maddie Ziegler Star in Sia’s “Elastic Heart” Music Video
Watch: Shia LaBeouf & Maddie Ziegler Star in Sia’s “Elastic Heart” Music Video

Some songs deserve a second chance. And sometimes they get it. Sia’s “Elastic Heart” was originally featured on the Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack back in 2013, and the track, produced by Diplo and featuring the Weeknd, even got a video treatment starring a blond-bobbed stand-in (the clip has since been removed). The Aussie pop singer-songwriter would, of course, go on to cast another proxy for herself, 12-year-old Dance Moms star Maddie Ziegler, in the music video for “Chandelier,” the lead single from last year’s 1000 Forms of Fear. On the heels of that song’s massive success (the video is nearing half a billion views on YouTube), RCA is giving “Elastic Heart” a new shot of adrenaline. The re-launch includes a solo version of the song and a new clip, which finds Ziegler reprising her role as a bewigged (and semi-wigged-out) ballerina sporting a dirty leotard and some fantastic dance moves. This time, though, she goes toe to toe with creepy-sexy enfant terrible Shia LaBeouf, who is, naturally, bearded and half-naked. Locked in a giant birdcage from which only the petite-framed Maddie is able to escape, the pair face off in what is both a tender and sometimes funny sequel to “Chandelier.”

Berlinale 2014 Nymphomaniac: Volume I

Comments Comments (...)

Berlinale 2014: Nymphomaniac: Volume I
Berlinale 2014: Nymphomaniac: Volume I

The first half of Lars von Trier’s probable masterpiece, Nymphomaniac, arrives on eddies of a “playful” publicity campaign that threatened to flatten the licentiousness (and even the straight-up sexiness) of the subject matter into a string of dopey gags. A series of posters featuring ASCII-rendered genitalia and photos capturing its international cast mid-coitus, were mischievous in a way consistent with von Trier’s own smirking, ludic impishness—the pranksterish postures that ignite even his worst and most boring work.

At the risk of whittling one of the most thorny, interesting, and exasperating of living filmmakers down to a single problem, the central concern (for me, at least) with von Trier and his films is that this playfulness rather easily teeters into boring didacticism. His button-pushing provocations—both in terms of his films’ frequently controversial material (rape, depression, mental retardation, racism, more rape) and the ideas (or discernible whiffs of ideas) that drive them—become needling and banal.

It’s like we’re constantly asked to take for granted that von Trier is playing his own devil’s advocate, putting across visions of nihilistic reckoning, sneering at the feeble human soul’s instinctual gravitation toward corruptibility and self-pollution, while simultaneously being asked to believe that he somehow believes the opposite. He angers and riles us and ignites the passion and intellect, while not really meaning any of it, off in the corner with that shit-eating grin on his face offered up as some mawkish mea culpa. He’s like Gabbo on The Simpsons, bashfully offering little else in his own defense beyond, basically, “I’m a bad widdle boy.” It’s infuriating. And much more so because it’s meant to be exactly that.