Friday, July 31, 2015

The Mission (Impossible) Is A-Go With A Solid Start At Thursday Night Screenings

Ethan Hunt was off to fight a rogue nation last night in the newest Mission: Impossible which got off to a solid start with $4 million from Thursday night screenings. That's up 13% from the Thursday night showings of San Andreas, which grossed $3.6 million before grossing $54 million over its opening weekend, as well as more than three-and-a-half times the $1.1 million Oblivion made from Thursday night showings and more than doubling the $1.8 million Tom Cruises last summer blockbuster, Edge of Tomorrow, made in Thursday night screenings.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Southpaw Review

To really depict fighting in cinema, you need a trained visual eye that can make the characters inner struggles come through in every movement in their physical confrontations. Whether you're bringing to life a large scale battle involving multiple armies or just a fistfight in an alleyway, it's crucial that the director of such carnage filled sequences have a way to depict such brawls in a way that doesn't overwhelm the rest of the story.

Will Audiences Choose An Impossible Mission Or A Wacky Vacation?

Two more releases enter the box office fray, looking to close this years July on a high note. The most high profile of those two releases is easily Mission: Impossible- Rogue Nation, the fifth entry in the 19 year old Mission: Impossible saga. Back in December 2011, the fourth Mission: Impossible feature became the second biggest entry in the entire franchise, taking everyone by surprise by grossing $209 million domestically.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Rain Man Review (Classic Write-Up)

Nowadays Tom Cruise is well known for his action performances, and for good reason. The dudes got the Mission Impossible films under his belt, and his most recent movies like Jack Reacher and Oblivion have all been focused on explosions and testosterone. In sharp contrast to those high-octane features is Rain Man, a 1988 Barry Levinson effort that is one of the rare films to accomplish the feat of being both the no. 1 movie at the domestic box office the year it was released and winning Best Picture.

Vacation Starts Off Its Box Office Run With Average $1.2 Million At Tuesday Night Screenings

Tomorrow, I'll be doing my weekly box office predictions where I'll be taking a look at how Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation and Vacation will do over the forthcoming weekend. I'll have more data at my disposal for Vacation than Ethan Hunts newest film, simply because the Griswalds started their trip early with a Wednesday opening. That means the film had advanced screenings on Tuesday instead of Thursday, which grossed $1.2 million. That gross will be put into its opening day (Wedensday) gross.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Channing Tatum Will Not Be Playing Gambit In The X-Men Universe

Well this is surprising. Like, this is seriously shocking. There hadn't been weeks of rumored behind the scenes difficulties on the Gambit movie, why, just two weeks ago Channing Tatum made a surprise appearance at 20th Century Fox's Comic-Con panel to promote his future turn as Gambit. He had been spearheading the project for a while now, and frankly, it did feel like he was the only reason it was getting made.

Penguins of Madagascar Is More Frantic Than Anything Else (Classic Write-Up)

Part of the humor of the main group (that group consisting of Alex, Marty, Gloria and Melman) that all three Madagascar movies center on is that despite being wild animals, their neuroses and problems have an endearing humanity to them. Juxtaposing that with more stylized material (namely that the four at walking talking animals) can make for some fun humor, especially when it involves the franchises penguins, who are smooth talking super spies of sorts who use their skills for mundane tasks such as gambling in Monte Carlo or digging a hole out of the Central Park zoo.

2015 Toronto International Film Festival Announces Film Line-Up

How is it this time of year already? Feels like just yesterday I was celebrating the new year of 2015 and now, here we are, with the line-up of this years Toronto International Film Festival announced. There will likely be further movies announced to have a presence at the festival in the future, but for now, these are the high-profile releases that will be at the prestigious festival.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Richard Linklaters Next Movie Gets Spring 2016 Release Date

My most anticipated movie of 2015, no contest, was Richard Linklaters That's What I'm Talking About, his newest feature after making my favorite movie of 2014, Boyhood. Alas, it looks like I'll just have to settle for the likes a new Star Wars movie and The Martian in terms of forthcoming 2015 films as Linklaters next effort has not only ditched its original title (to my knowledge, it's still untitled) but it has also been given an official release April 2016.

The End Is Nigh In The Newest Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 Trailer

The Hunger Games is ending this Fall, and while Lionsgate will doubtlessly create numerous spin-offs to extend the shelf life of the franchise, the saga of Katniss Everdeen is likely ending with Mockingjay: Part 2. An impressive ensemble of actors (Jennifer Lawrence, Elizabeth Banks, Woody Harrelson, Julianne Moore, Donald Sutherland, Phillip Seymour Hoffman) have come together to be in this feature, which released a new trailer late last week that you can watch below.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Brother Bear Is Straightforward, Flawed But Not Without Its Charms (Classic Write-Up)

Those early years of the 21st century of Walt Disney Animation Studios will likely be looked upon in the same manner as the studios work of the 70's and 80's, with both eras trying to overcome expectations of the past while attempting to blaze new storytelling trails. The films of the 70's and 80's have mostly fallen into obscurity (though this time period did give me one of my favorite films of all-time, The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh), but hopefully the films that greeted audiences in this new century don't share the same fate, as there are some gems to be found in that era.

Ant-Man Scores Victory Over Pixels Meek Box Office While Paper Towns Underwhelms

Adam Sandler failed to rebound from recent box office misses this weekend, leading Ant-Man to gain a clear victory for this box office frame. Peyton Reeds Ant-Man film secured its second straight weekend at the top of the box office with a $24.7 million haul, becoming the tenth Marvel Cinematic Universe feature to be number one at the box office for more than one week. Its 56% second weekend dip is bigger than the 55% dip of Guardians of The Galaxy, but much better than  the 60% drop of Captain America: The First Avenger, which was the last MCU film to premiere in mid-July. Its total haul though 10 days is $106 million, and should end up at $155-160 million by the end of its run.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Pixels Is Almost As Bad As Gamergate

Let's just cut to the chase here; as you can tell from that headline, Pixels is bad. But it reaches a level of incompetence that even past Adam Sandler catastrophes like Jack & Jill could only dream of.  This is a film where the acting of its leading man (the incomparable Adam Sandler) is somehow one of its lesser problems. From the get-go of the feature, which depicts a younger version of the character played by Kevin James stealing money from a little girl, the movies puzzling lack of awareness of its own characters blatant flaws is apparent.

Revolutionary Road Review (Classic Write-Up)

Road To Nowhere
Who among us hasn't had the desire to escape conventionality for an existence riddled with unpredictability? It's a common ailment that is examined at length in Revolutionary Road, a 2008 feature from Sam Mendes that utilizes the 1950's as a way to examine how that compulsion to subvert our daily routine can consume ones soul. Coming right off of the horrors and uncertainty of events like World War II in the 1940's, the 1950's were an age where people looked for consistency and peace in their lives. While it's not like archetypes such as "stay at home mom" or "Father knows best" didn't exist prior to the fifties, they did rise to extreme prominence in this decade to the point of being considered the only way of executing a standard family lifestyle.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Pixels Crashes And Burns While Paper Towns And Southpaw Deliver Solid Results In Thursday Night Showings

The three new wide releases of this weekend got their box office runs started last night to differing results. First up, Paper Towns made a decent $2 million at Thursday night screenings last night. That's less than a quarter of the $8 million that The Fault In Our Stars made at Thursday night showings last year, though that book was more popular anyway and it had a super expensive screening on that evening that certainly boosted its grosses. This does guarantee that Paper Towns won't get anywhere near the opening weekend of last years film adaptation of a John Green novel, but that was to be expected. Look for Paper Towns to creep just above or below the $20 million mark for the weekend.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Ellen Page and Julianne Moore Fight For LGBTQA Rights In Freeheld Trailer

Now that Julianne Moore has finally won an Oscar, where does she go with her career? Why, her next will movie will be starring in the upcoming drama Freeheld. Director Peter Sollett is in charge of this movie, which just released a trailer that you can watch below.

Dwayne Johnson And San Andreas Director Prepare For A Rampage

Remember when I talked about how video game movies were about to hit the big time next year with 2016 releases like Assassin Creed, Ratchet & Clank and Warcraft? Well, it looks like another big time video game can be added to the slate, with this one, an adaptation of the game Rampage, being planned for 2017. That year will also bring a new Laura Croft movie from MGM and Warner Bros. and I doubt these two will wind up being the only video game movies in 2017.

Uncertainty Reigns Over This Weekend As Ants, Minions, Video Games And Paper Towns Gun For First Place

It's rare for me to say this, but I truly don't know whose gonna win this weekend. There's numerous times where my predictions for who will be number one don't come to fruition, but most of the time I feel confident enough to say "Here's who I think will be above all other releases this weekend". But this time around, two holdovers and two of this weekends new releases are all gunning for that number one spot.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Oh What A Blu-Ray...WHAT A LOVELY BLU-RAY; Mad Max: Fury Road Hits Blu-Ray September 1st

One of the summers best movies, Mad Max: Fury Road will arrive on Blu-Ray and DVD just before the summer movie season concludes. Typically, Labor Day signals the conclusion of whats typically the most financially lucrative part of the year for Hollywood, and just a week before that holiday arrives this year, you can pick up George Millers epic action film on Blu-Ray and DVD on September 1st and on Digital HD on August 11th.

Second Good Dinosaur Trailer Emphasizes How A Single Moment Can Change Everything

PIXAR just had one of the biggest hits of their career with Inside Out and surely they're hoping that their next film, The Good Dinosaur, replicates that success. They put out a teaser trailer for the motion picture last month and now a new trailer, chock full of footage, gives a better look at the film and its world.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Five Actors Who Deserve Better Roles

There are some actors who get all kinds of great roles of all shapes and sizes, but what about the talented actors who just can't seem to get the kind of work they more than deserve? Thanks to renewed discussion about one of the actors in this article, I've decided to examine five actors who deserve more and better work than they're currently getting in Hollywood.

Trainwreck Review

Trainwreck Does Not Go Off The Rails (I Spent Five Hours Working On That Pun,  Savor It)
Perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of Amy Schumer breaking out with Trainwreck is her lack of previous film roles. The likes of Zach Galifianakis, Melissa McCarthy and Will Ferrell spent years as character actors doing supporting roles in comedies, whereas Schumers largest film roles prior to Trainwreck were an uncredited role in Sleepwalk With Me and a part in Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

New Batman v. Superman Trailer Edits Down Comic-Con Footage Awkwardly

Ya think someone at the marketing department at Warner Bros. would have put a bit more effort into the newest trailer for Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, which is out exclusively on IMAX screenings of Ant-Man this weekend. I assume it'll be shown on conventional screenings of upcoming summer blockbusters like Pixels and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation starting next weekend, but lucky for you, I've used the magic of the official Warner Bros. YouTube channel to bring you the newest trailer of Batman v. Superman and discover why I think more effort should have been put into it.

Ant-Man Has Solid Opening Weekend While Trainwreck Fails To Live Up To Its Title

Two very different titles debuted at the box office this weekend and both managed to secure success despite having leads (Ant-Man and Amy Schumer) that had never headlined a motion picture before. The biggest of those two new releases was Ant-Man, which made $58 million over the weekend. That's the second lowest debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but that's to be expected given that Ant-Man hasn't appeared in any other MCU film. In fact, in terms of MCU non sequels, only Iron Man and Guardians of The Galaxy have managed to open above $65 million in their opening weekends.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street Review (Classic Write-Up)

The Todd Are About To Get Even
Tim Burton is strongly associated with the macabre, but I find it interesting how rarely he divulges from the world of films that are rated PG-13 softer. That's not a bad thing at all, but it is an observation I find interesting considering how much Burtons career relives on dark storytelling. That darkness can usually fit into a family friend format (like in the abominable Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, which I hate with a strong passion), but in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, we get only the second R-rated movie of Burtons career, as well as one of his better movies.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Ant-Man and Trainwreck Off To Great Starts At The Thursday Box Office

The newest movies from Marvel Studios and Judd Apatow got off to great starts last night at Thursday night screenings that bode well for how both projects will fare through the weekend. The two films had their own challenges to face (interestingly, both had leads that had never led a mainstream motion picture before), but if last nights box office is any indication, neither one has anything to worry about come this weekend.

Leonardo DiCaprio Gets Grizzly In The First Trailer For The Revenant

Coming hot off the heels of the not at all controversial motion picture Birdman, Alejandro González Iñárritu has a new movie coming out this Christmas called The Revenant. He's got a helluva cast lined up for the project (Leonardo DiCaprio stars and Tom Hardy and Domhnall Gleeson co-star) and I'm sure 20th Century Fox would love to replicate the Oscar success of Birdman here. Check out the first trailer for The Revenant below.

Ant-Man Review

It's Tough To Be A Bug
Things get weird in Ant-Man. And I don't mean just a little peculiar, like, there are a couple of moments in this movie that cross the threshold into the realm of bizarre. You thought the raccoon wearing peoples clothes was odd? Wait until you see Paul Rudd surfing on a large mass of ants. Interestingly though, all of that outre content is balanced with character related drama that struck me as surprisingly well-written and realistic.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Virtual Reality Video For Warcraft Shows Potential Future Of Movie Marketing

The Comic-Con footage of Warcraft, a Duncan Jones directed adaptation of the video game World of Warcraft, didn't light the world up (the footage they showed didn't seem to get a good reception and it being scheduled between the Warner Bros. and Fox panels meant Duncan Jones tale of Orcs got lost amidst Batman v. Superman and Deadpool shenanigans), but a video (which I've embedded below) that allows a viewer to fly over the city of Azeroth (which I assume is crucial to World of Warcraft lore) has certainly garnered quite a bit of attention, and for good reason. That's because it's a video that makes use of virtual reality by allowing a viewer to have a 360 view of the city and all that surrounds it. Just use the arrows at the top left portion of the video to navigate your way through this sensational video.

First Photo Of X-Men Villain Apocalypse Has Arrived!!

Entertainment Weekly has a long and proud tradition of wonderful covers that introduce new movie characters to audiences (remember those wonderful Terminator: Genisys portraits?). That tradition is kept alive this week with their newest cover, which introduces newest bad guy Apocalypse. Being played by Llewyn Davis, er, Oscar Isaac, he'll be the newest foe the X-Men have to face next summer, and you can see the first photo of him below!

Minions Review

One In A Minion
What are the Minions exactly? Are they corn pops? The spawn of Twinkies gone awry? How do they breed? There are no female Minions (to the best of my knowledge), so are they asexual? Do they lay eggs? And what's the lifespan for these things? One Minion depicted with placing starfishes over his nipples in prehistoric times is shown to be alive in 1968, so are these guys immortal or something? For some reason, the movie is not interested in answering those questions and instead concentrates all of its efforts on making purely a product, one that's inoffensive enough to make sure no parents feathers get ruffled and one that can supply ample opportunities for numerous marketing partners.

Will Ant-Man Be Huge Or Minuscule At The Box Office This Weekend?

Let's not mince words for a second; if Ant-Man underperforms this weekend, that's entirely on that movies shoulders. They can't blame the success of Minions for it's shortcomings; just last month a summer blockbuster (Jurassic World) and an animated family movie (Inside Out) managed to coexist peacefully, while past Marvel films have faced even greater competition at the box office (remember when the first Captain America movie managed to beat out the second weekend of the last Harry Potter movie, which had the then biggest opening weekend of all-time?). Like I said, if things don't go solidly for Ant-Man this weekend, there's no one to shift the blame to.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Disney Is Developing Live-Action Movie Based On Robin Williams Genie From Aladdin

Have you ever watched Aladdin and been enthralled by The Genie, who is a perfect blend of Robin Williams dynamic vocal performance and Eric Goldbergs energetic animation, and wondered "Where did that Genie come from? What's his story? How did he wind up in that lamp?"

No? You were just entertained by the masterful work of Robin Williams in that film and were content to just see the story of how the sagas of the Genie and Aladdin intertwined in the story of Aladdin? Well screw that! Here comes another live-action Disney remake to explain a backstory so crucial to a beloved character that it doesn't even get hinted at in the movie that the character hails from.

The Myth of Marvels "House Style"

Art is subjective. That's a stone cold fact, with various opinions existing on all kinds of pieces of art in all sorts of mediums (literature, cinema, television, video games, etc.). The inherent subjectivity of criticism allows for numerous viewpoints to bubble to the surface, but there's one specific viewpoint I would like to look at and counter. It's a peculiar criticism of films existing in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (movies in this franchise include the Avengers saga, as well as Guardians of The Galaxy and the upcoming Ant-Man) that says they're all the same and share a "house style".

I Love You, Man Review (Classic Write-Up)

Now That We're Men!
A few minutes into I Love You, Man, I truly felt like I was watching something unprecedented. Here was an R-rated comedy that has its protagonist, Peter (Paul Rudd) be in a committed relationship....and the wife isn't treated as some kind of antagonist! His significant other, Zooey (Rashida Jones), is shown to be a well-rounded, nice person, who has a great dynamic with Peter. To boot, the film doesn't depict Peter as being "whipped" or less for having a healthy relationship with his fiancee.

Jennifer Lawrence And The Director Of American Hustle Reveal A Joy-Ful Teaser

Silver Linings Playbook and especially American Hustle (one of my favorite movies of 2013) have made me a huge fan of director David O. Russell. Any new movie he works on would get my attention, but considering the two great performances he's gotten from Jennifer Lawrence in his two most recent films, well, the fact that his next feature stars that masterful actress has gotten me through the roof in terms of excitement. That film is entitled Joy and has just released a teaser trailer that you can watch below!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Infinitely Polar Bear Review

Bear With Me Here
Setting the events of Infinitely Polar Bear in 1978 is a clever idea, since it allows for all of the characters in the story to be lost in one way or another. Cameron (Mark Ruffalo), who lives with bi-polar disorder, has to grapple with the fact that people are still just discovering news ways to treat and handle his disorder. His wife, Maggie (Zoe Saldana), meanwhile has the can-do spirit that drove the 70's feminist movement while facing workplace sexism.

Final Fantastic Four Trailer Brings Doom Into The Equation

This years San Diego Comic-Con is starting to fade into memory, but one last piece of footage from the ceremony has been officially released onto the interwebs. That footage would be the final trailer for Fantastic Four, which has received a lot of scrutiny from the online community. 20th Century Fox has released a new trailer that'll go out on Ant-Man this weekend to the web, so check it out below and see what you're thoughts on it are.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Official Suicide Squad Comic-Con Trailer Comes With Jared Leto And Gun Toting Panda

On Saturday, Warner Bros. debuted the first footage from Suicide Squad, and boy did it get a positive reception. People went nuts for it, and now, two days later, Warner Bros. has put the footage online for the world to see. Check it out below!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Minions Merrily Make Money At The Box Office

Those little Minions continued to be mighty at the box office, as their first spin-off movie delivered the second biggest opening weekend ever for an animated movie, only behind the $121 million debut for Shrek The Third back in 2007. It also garnered the biggest opening day of all-time for an animated film (it made $46 million on Friday), meaning these Minions didn't do a "despicable" job for their first time flying solo at the box office.

The Gallows Review

Just Hanging Around
When a certain film becomes incredibly popular, movie studios tend to take the wrong lessons from the likes of The Dark Knight or Avatar in order to replicate the success of those features. After all, studios such Sony can't guarantee a movie will be as good as Toy Story 3, which is what truly drove that movie to such high box office numbers, but they can guarantee it will be in 3D, just like Toy Story 3, so that's the element they decide to replicate on their own animated movies instead of focusing on making the sort of captivating story that drove Toy Story 3.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Here's All The News Announced At The 2015 Warner Bros./DC Comic-Con Panel

There's so much going on at Comic-Con today film-wise, that it's just boggling my mind. The Hateful Eight, Legendary Pictures and 20th Century Fox all have showcases today, but before all those get underway, Warner Bros. is going up first to Hall H to talk about The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Pan and Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. I'd suspect that the panel will also have some Suicide Squad footage, as well as some new pieces of info regarding future DC Comics motion pictures.

12 Angry Men Review (Classic Write-Up)

Now That We're Men
Sometimes, movies need a grand scope to tell their stories, but other times, there's certain plotlines that only need a room, 12 individuals and a court case that's far more complex than it seems to really get it rolling. As you might have guessed, those are the elements at the center of 12 Angry Men, a 1957 release from director Sidney Lumet that utilizes straightforward storytelling entities to create complexity and a captivating atmosphere.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Here's All The News Announced At The 2015 Star Wars Comic-Con Panel

What would Comic-Con be without Star Wars? Even in the past decade when the franchise hasn't released new movies, The Clone Wars and Hasbro have kept the spirit of Star Wars very much alive at this famous convention. As one might imagine, since the first live-action Star Wars movie in over a decade arrives this December, the epic film saga was there with cast members from the upcoming feature Star Wars: The Force Awakens. To boot, some other bombshells were dropped in regards to future Star Wars motion pictures.

Minions Off To Huge Start At Thursday Night Screenings

Here's a shocking twist for you guys; those little yellow Minions made tons of cash at movie theaters last night during Thursday night screenings. Speaking gibberish and engaging in slapstick, Minions made a whopping $6.2 million, a sum that's 73% ahead of the $3.6 million Inside Out made at Thursday night showings last night and also up 32% from the Thursday night haul of $4.7 million that Despicable Me 2 amassed in 2013.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Ambition Of Disneys Hercules Is Both a Blessing And A Curse

In the age of the mid-90's, it was obvious the filmmakers at Walt Disney Animation Studios were craving a change. Their two most recent films (Pocahontas and The Hunchback of Notre Dame) had been made to be as serious as possible in order to chase the awards glory that Beauty & The Beast had received. The pent up demand to work on something more comic unfolded in the form of Hercules, a feature from Ron Clements & John Musker who, with The Little Mermaid and Aladdin under their belt, knew a thing or two about churning out a successful animated Disney feature.

Minions To Take Over Box Office Without Any Difficulty

For the first time in five weeks, a new release will take the top spot at the box office. What release is that you query? Well, obviously, it's Tarsem Singhs newest movie Self/Less....OR IS IT???? Nah, I'm jesting, it's totally gonna be Minions, third entry in the Despicable Me franchise, no question. Those little yellow creatures will handily beat all newcomers and holdovers for a hefty first place showing and will likely become only the fourth animated movie in history to make over $100 million on opening weekend.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Anakin Skywalker Goes To Heaven In Trailer For 90 Minutes To Heaven

Faith based movies have been around for ages, and there have been box office hits in this subgenre before (remember Fireproof?), but God's Not Dead took Christian films to a whole new level. Buoyed by a major social media campaign and Kevin Sorbos intense fanbase, the movie became a sleeper hit and grossed  $60 million domestically. A month after its release, in April 2014, Heaven Is For Real grossed $90 million, proving God's Not Dead to be far from a fluke.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Alvin And The Chipmunks 4 Is Real, Here's The Trailer, God Help Us All

While John Carter 2 and Hellboy 3 languish unmade, 20th Century Fox has the sequel for you! Alvin And The Chipmunks: The Road Chip! This fourth entry in the epic saga will make sure that chip gets real as those three hilarious chipmunks embark on another new adventure! All that...ah, screw this sarcastic opening, just watch the wretched teaser if you dare below.

Will Terminator: Genisys Get Those Two Sequels?

In September of 2014, Paramount Pictures scheduled not one but two sequels to Terminator: Genisys, which at the time was 10 months away from release. Scheduling release dates for follow ups to yet to be released movies has become a common exercise for Hollywood in recent years, but there was special reason why these two sequels had been dated. Ya see, in 2019, the rights to the Terminator franchise returns to James Cameron, the man responsible for the first two entries in this saga.