THREE KINGS
1999, Warner Bros., 114 min, Dir: David O. Russell

This virtuoso blend of action, drama and comedy stars George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube (along with noted director Spike Jonze in his acting debut) as soldiers in the waning days of the Gulf War. Discovering a map to stolen Kuwaiti gold, the men set off to steal it for themselves, only to wind up caught between Iraqi loyalists and rebels. Largely shot on transparency stock processed in color negative chemicals, THREE KINGS has a visual style that's as striking as its caustic take on warfare.


BOOGIE NIGHTS
1997, Warner Bros., 155 min, USA, Dir: Paul Thomas Anderson

Eddie Adams, aka "Dirk Diggler" (Mark Wahlberg), is a high school dropout-turned-porn star whose career is on a dizzying upward trajectory thanks to the guidance of adult-movie kingpin Rick Horner (Burt Reynolds). As Eddie and the adult industry descend into the excesses of the late ’70s, devastating personal narratives unfold against a historic shift in America’s cultural landscape. Both intimate and epic in tone, this sprawling ensemble piece is populated by superb actors (Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, William H. Macy) whom Anderson guides with masterful, Altmanesque care.


THE FIGHTER
2010, Paramount Pictures, 115 min, USA, Dir: David O. Russell

Boxer “Irish” Mickey Ward (Mark Wahlberg) is on the verge of complete career collapse, with a losing streak getting him no closer to the lightweight title, his "mom-ager" (Melissa Leo) killing him with love and his crack-addict brother (Christian Bale) for a trainer. When Mickey falls for the feisty, hard-nosed Charlene (Amy Adams), who shrewdly sees through his family, he begins to realize that achieving the dream of a lifetime may require breaking away from the people who have shaped his life.


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