Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials – Trailer 2

The Maze Runner honestly mystified me.  It was pretty popular, and hugely profitable (earning over $340 million on a $34 million budget) yet was stuck with a seriously nonsensical plot that was way more complex–and not in a good way–than it needed to be.

The cast was pretty game, and clearly brought into the entire premise, but when that premise sucks then typically all the enthusiasm in the world can’t help you.

Which leads me to Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials.  The trailer looks pretty cool (and what trailer these days doesn’t?), though I am hoping and praying that it isn’t as ludicrous as the first movie.

Cooties – Review

Cooties movie poster

Cooties is like Ebola, but funnier.”

Typically, horror movies don’t revolve around children–though there are exceptions, like Village of the Damned, The Brood, The Children, Children Of The Corn, Come Out and Play and Citadel come to mind–though they’re not typical.

And I get it.  Children are uniquely vulnerable in ways the average adult isn’t, and I can see how it’s almost the like a betrayal if we, as adults, are unable to protect them from the horrors of the world just outside the door.

Jonathan Milott and and Cary Murnion, the directors of Cooties, seem well aware of this and decide to leaven the horror with ample laughs, and for the most part it works because as messed up as the children come to be, the adults are in their way significantly worse.

There’s Clint (Elijah Wood) who’s returned home to Fort Chicken to work on his first novel about a possessed boat.  Wade (Rainn Wilson) is the PE teacher who’s dating Lucy (Alison Pill), whom Clint had a crush on long ago.

Special mention goes to Leigh Whannell (writer of Insidious, Insidious: Chapter 2 and Chapter 3–with James WanDead Silence–with James Wan and Cooties–with Ian Brennan) who plays Doug, who apparently wrote some of the best lines for himself.

And speaking of the characters, they’re all a bit broad, though in line with the somewhat lighthearted tone of the movie.

If you want to see a movie with copious violence that doesn’t take itself too seriously, you could do worse than to catch a case of Cooties.

Cooties will soon spread to a theater near you, though be careful because this is like no infection you’ve ever experienced.

New Spectre Trailer

MGM released the new trailer for their latest James Bond adventure a few hours ago, and there’s the prerequisite car chases, explosions and Bond being Bond (by which I mean a bit abrupt and dickish).

It’s also the first trailer that we see Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Christoph Waltz) in a full reveal, though what we don’t see is the damned Turkish Angora cat, who’s been linked to the character every since his first appearance in Thunderball.

In fact, I wish that they had showed the cat in the early trailers, it would have been a much more effective reveal.

And why didn’t they number the trailer?  Will the next one–and you know there will be a next one–be the ‘latest’ James Bond Trailer?  ‘Newest James Bond Trailer?’

Southpaw – Review

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“A boxing movie that overcomes the limitations of the genre.”

If you’ve seen one sports movie–be the subject golf, basketball, football. boxing, etc–you’ve just about seen them all.

And that’s because, while the sport being played may change, they these types of movies follow a, by now, predictable version of Joseph Campbell’s ‘Hero’s Journey,‘ where the main character reaches the pinnacle of their career, is brought low, which enables them to realize all that they have taking for granted, in the end making them better people and redeeming them in the eyes of the people that they love.

And there’s a reason things become formulaic:  When movies that use them work, they can be beautiful things to behold.

And Southpaw in all its brutal, bloody beauty, delivers big time.

Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) is the light heavyweight champion, at the top of the world and his game, till an untimely death–which curiously the movie for the most part abandons once it serves its purpose of breaking down Hope, so he can rise again–sends him into a downward spiral that he spends most of the move coming out of. t

As I mentioned earlier, it’s nothing that you haven’t seen before, though the intensity that Gyllenhaal, Forest Whitaker, Miguel Gomez bring to the story manage to make the material seem almost fresh.

And considering how many times this story has been told, that’s quite an accomplishment.

The Good Dinosaur – Trailer 2

The Good Dinosaur will be the latest from Pixar, and I want to say that it will make a bazillion dollars, like most Pixar movies, though I don’t know…the dinosaur in question looks a bit gummy.  That might not matter at all, after all it’s not like everything that they have done so far is photorealistic, though it bothers me.

Tom Cruise: Going Boldly

You know what?  I honestly think that Tom Cruise is a bit of a nut, and the feeling of well-being he often attributes to his faith are more than likely the insulating effects of money and influence.

That been said, you have to give the guy credit because most any other actor–with the possible exception of Jason Statham–would have either let the stuntman handle the dangerous stuff, or rely on CGI to get the job done.

And in some instances I am reasonably safe in saying that he does just that.  Yet, as the video shows, Cruise is hanging from the door of an airplane that’s in the process of taking off.  Now keep in mind that he’s tethered to a safety line, which will be digitally removed–but it’s an awfully thin one–and that if the stunt were to go in any way pear-shaped the likelihood is high he would be killed.

Though the likelihood that he would fall was probably pretty remote, but doesn’t change how absolutely terrifying what he’s doing feels for me watching it, never mind having to do it.

Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice – Comic-Con Trailer

BvSDoJ  pictureIf the latest trailer for Warner Bros. upcoming Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice is any indicator, it embodies what irritates me about what I have seen of the DC Cinematic Universe (So far, that’s just Man of Steel).  It feels that the heroes that make it up, Superman in particular, just doesn’t get the whole “with great power comes great responsibility” thing.

You see it even in the trailer.  Ma Kent has to CONVINCE Superman to be Superman, when I would have thought that the whole flying, super-strength and heat vision would have went a long way towards clearing that up.

In fact, the picture above perfectly encapsulates my feeling about DC superheroes, namely that they’re distant and place themselves above us, as opposed to being lighthouses, showing us the way to our better selves.

And if this is the difference that they want to convince people of, more power to them, but I get the feeling that the shelf-life is shorter than they realize.