Sam Jackson: Here To Stay

Samuel Jackson at ComicCon. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

The New York Times has a fascinating interview with Samuel Jackson, who plays Nick Fury in “The Avengers.”  If you’re unaware of why he’s known as one of the hardest working men in show business, this article should clear that up.

The Times is behind a paywalll, though they do allow you to access ten articles a month for free.

Three Minute ‘Prometheus’ Trailer

I found this trailer via Superherohype, and despite all the noise on the Interwebs, it appears to make the essentials of the plot known.

What follows below is some analysis, and a bit of conjecture, based upon what has been released so far.

It appears that the beings, represented by “The Space Jockey” from the first “Alien” film, have been to the earth in our distant past and are responsible for humanity, or at the least played a significant role in our development.

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‘G.I. Joe: Retaliation’ Trailer 2

The second trailer for John Chu‘s “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” trailer was released today, and looking at it I think that the filmmakers need to be careful to remember that this movie is based on toys from Hasbro.

I mention this because Stephen Sommers‘ original film appeared to be more cartoony than its sequel.

By the way, the last film Chu did was “Justin Bieber: Never Say Never” and “Step It Up 2: The Streets.”

Now, not that I don’t like to give people a chance, but where in his resume does it indicate that he can handle a massive action film?

Just wondering, though since I am asking questions: Why is it that any movie that features a character that uses a bladed weapon, like knives or throwing stars, is guaranteed to have a slow motion scene with the aforementioned weapons flying toward their target?

Because I would, just once, like to see someone step aside, in real time, because they’re moving way too slow to actually hit anyone.

I mean, I get that it looks cool, but it’s also getting JUST.  A.  BIT.  OLD.

In defense of the sequel, they got rid of the non-functional mouth in Snake Eyes‘ mask, as well as that bizarre mask that Cobra Commander had in the last film.

‘Red Hook Summer’ Teaser Trailer

Spike Lee’s last feature, 2008’s “Miracle at St. Anna” didn’t do that well at the box office, though for his latest ‘Joint’ he’s gone back to his Brooklyn roots for a “Red Hook Summer.”  In the film he reprises his character ‘Mookie,’ from “Do The Right Thing,” though supposedly that character is the only thing that links the two films.

Not everyone believes that to be the case.

48 Frames Per Second

Forty-eight frames per second, a measurement that’s meaningless to most of us–including me.  I don’t quite understand how it’s supposedly such a game changer–yet to men like Peter Jackson, Douglas Trumball or James Cameron, it represents the future of movies.  Currently, films are shown at 24 fps, and increasing the frame rate will supposedly create a truer, more vivid image.

Though that is not what everyone thinks because when Jackson showed an excerpt of his film, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” at CinemaCon in Las Vegas not every one was impressed by the visuals brought about by the increased frame rate.

The decription of the footage shown reminded me when I was watching my mother’s HD flatscreen TV.  The image presented were so sharp, so clear that it made just about everything that came on look like a play (in an odd note, it even made the FX in “Tron: Legacy” a bit more obvious and green-screeny).

I can’t speak for other people, but if that’s the way film in 48 fps looks, I am not sure that I would be willing to play premium prices to see it.

You can find more information about frame rates here.

‘Avengers’ Trailer Embargo

Marvel Studios’ “The Avengers” has already been released in London, Australia, New Zealand and Taiwan before it was domestically, and according to Deadline it’s doing very, very well.

In fact, it’s opening huge, with Australia doing particularly good business for Marvel Studios and Disney (which can use some positive news after the “John Carter” misfire and the firing of Rich Ross, the former chairman of Disney Studios).

If it’s not obvious that I really, really want to see this movie, then you haven’t been paying attention.  That being said, I have noticed that there are a lot more trailers popping up, each one revealing a little bit more about the film that the one prior as it gets closer to May 4, when it will be released here.

They have the irritating tendency to reveal things that appear to be important to the film, sucking the almost child-like joy from the movie bit by bit.

This is why I don’t intend to post any more Avengers-related trailers.  If you want to view them, they’re out there to be found, though when I saw the one with The Hulk catching Iron Man (which happened to be released by Marvel themselves) I knew that I didn’t want to see any more of the film outside the theater.

So, I’ll continue to link to box office-related stuff, as well as other items of interest, as long as they don’t tell anymore about the film than I already know (which is getting too much for comfort).

In Case There’s Any Doubt About ‘The Avengers’

In case anyone has doubts about “The Avengers” being THE summer movie to see (and yes, I am including “The Dark Knight Rises” in that boast) then consider this excerpt from The Hollywood Reporter:

“The Avengers is humongous — the film Marvel and its legions of fans have been waiting for.”  It’s hard to imagine that anyone with an appetite for the trademark’s patented brand of fantasy, effects, mayhem and strangely dressed he-men will be disappointed; not only does this eye-popping 3D display of visual effects fireworks feature an enormously high proportion of action scenes, but director Joss Whedon has adroitly balanced the celebrity circus to give every single one of the superstar characters his or her due. Worldwide box-office returns will be, in a word, Marvelous.”

This one is going to be the real deal, and as I have posted elsewhere, I fully expect that it will pull in at least a billion dollars in worldwide box office receipts before its theatrical run is complete.

Marvel Studios’ “The Avengers” premieres Friday, May 24.

‘Hunger Games’ Dethroned!

I wrote a week or so ago about ‘Hunger Games fatigue,’ that is, despite the millions of young adults–and not-so-young adults–that are fans of the books, there was no way that it could maintain its stranglehold over the North American box office for too much longer.

Everything that goes up–assuming that it does not escape the earth’s gravitational field, and sometimes even then–will eventually come back down, so it’s no surprise that it’s no longer occupying the top spot.

What is somewhat surprising was that it was dethroned by Tim Story’s “Think Like A Man,” (I expected that “The Hunger Games” would soon fall from the Number One position over the North American box office, though that a comedy directed primarily at an African-American audience was able to do so–that had nothing to do with Tyler Perr–is pretty impressive), which earned almost $34 million over the weekend just past.

Screen Gems, a division of Sony Pictures that produced the film, deserves kudos for a perfectly timed release against some fierce competition.

Listen Bastiches! The Main Man Is Coming!

I am not a huge fan of DC Comics, though I do like a few of their characters, which is why when their movies don’t work it bothers me.

I mean, if Marvel Studios screws up–they haven’t so far, but bear with me–then I can just lick my wounds and go on because they have done well so far, and there are many other characters that I am familiar with.

DC, not so much, so it hits harder when they mess up.

For instance, Green Lantern has always been one of my favorite superheroes, so imagine my dismay when the film ended up being really mediocre.  I enjoy the ‘Batman’ films, though director Chris Nolan’s attempt to place the character so firmly in the real world sucks a lot of the enjoyment out of watching the movies.

By which I mean, the Batman films are a lot of things, but a fun time at the movies isn’t one of them.

I grew up on Vertigo’s “Hellraiser” (‘Vertigo’ is an imprint of DC Comics) and when I heard that a movie was being created about John Constantine’s adventures, I was psyched, till I heard that Keanu Reeves was playing the title character.

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Lionsgate Has Found A Director For ‘Catching Fire’

And according to Deadline, it’s Francis Lawrence.  Lawrence directed NBC’s short-lived series “Kings,” as well as “Constantine” and “I Am Legend” and most recently, “Water For Elephants.”

So why is it that I think he’s not a great choice?  Is it because he cast Keanu Reeves as John Constantine (from the Vertigo comics series, Hellblazer).

Sure, it came out in 2005, and sure, I haven’t seen it, but Keanu Reeves!?

Yeah, I am that bitter.

“I Am Legend” was OK, till the blatantly obviously CGI vampires decided to make an appearance.

“Catching Fire” will be following on the heels of “The Hunger Games,” which has currently earned over $500 million worldwide, so it will take an awful film to kill that kind of momentum.

Then again, stranger things have happened.

Part of the relevance is that Artisan Entertainment was purchased by, wait for it….Lionsgate.