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.

Analysts Are So Damned Irritating

Everything Is Better With Legos, Including Ant-Man!

Marvel Studios’ Ant-Man premiered Friday of last week, and earned domestically just over $58 million by the end of the weekend.    Now keep in mind that the movie was budgeted at $130 million, and when you figure in overseas box office (just over $56 million) it has so far pulled in just over $114 million.

That’s not too shabby–especially when you consider that Ant-Man makes the Guardians Of The Galaxy like the Guardians Of The Galaxy pre-movie–yet some are using words like ‘soft‘ to describe its domestic gross.

Now what matters at this point is if the movie has legs, because it can go either way this early in the game.

Though, speaking of ‘soft,’ that’s a word that’s fine for describing pillows; not so much when applied to either box office gross, erections, or movies based on characters as obscure as the Guardians Of The Galaxy (which was a massive hit).

And besides, I get the feeling that such an interpretation can adversely effect how well a movie does because I know that if I get the feeling that a movie is going to tank I am less likely to see it, especially when all you have to do is wait a few months when it will turn up either on Neflix, Hulu, Direct TV or cable (the later two I don’t have, btw).

Ant-Man – Review

Screenshot 2015-07-17 12.07.26

“Ant-Man Shows That Great Things Come In Small Packages.”

Considering how well put together Peyton Reed’s Ant-Man is, it’s a shock that just a few months ago a lot of people were talking about how it would be Marvel Studios’ first misstep.

And I can understand–prior to having seen the movie– how one could come to such a conclusion. The character was virtually unknown to the general public–then again, so was Iron Man and the Guardians Of The Galaxy–and the production was thrown into doubt when Edgar Wright, who was originally chosen to direct, abandoned the production due to “creative differences.”

The writing was on the wall, so Marvel brought in Payton Reed (Bring It On) to replace Wright. Along the way they also hired Adam McKay and Paul Rudd to build on the original screenplay by Wright and Joe Cornish.

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A Single Man – Review

A Single Man movie poster

“Shiny, happy plastic people in tragic circumstances.”

Tom Ford’s A Single Man isn’t a horror or fantasy film, but it might as well be, as far as depicting relationships between humans goes.  George (Peter Firth) is a British expatriate, teaching at a college in California.  His world is seemingly perfect till the death of his lover, Jim (Matthew Goode) in an auto accident changes everything.

For a movie about a man who’s love is torn from him so suddenly, this is a remarkably chaste movie, which is important to note because there’s barely anything even remotely passionate about their relationship, which is a problem when that’s what underlies everything that happens in the movie.

I can understand why two actors might not want to give a more nuanced portrayal of two people in love, but British films (such as the far superior Weekend, also on Netflix) typically aren’t afraid to depict people being intimate–and I don’t necessarily mean in a sexual context.  George and Jim may occupy the same space at any given time, but they never feel as if they’re together.

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Da Sweet Blood of Jesus – Review

Da Sweet Blood of Jesus movie poster

“Entertaining, in that singularly unique Spike Lee way.”

Spike Lee is a fascinating director, for better or for worse.  By which I mean, the trip isn’t always the most leisurely, though if you’re prescient enough to see where he’s trying to take you, you find yourself the better for it.

Da Sweet Blood of Jesus, the movie that he financed via Kickstarter, is no different.  One of the first things you notice, besides the initially stilted-sounding dialog, is how oddly paced the movie is.  It’s not that it’s rushed, but Lee doesn’t spend much time on details that at first seem relatively small, though typically end up defining characters in ways that add to their three-dimen-sionality.  A prime example of this tendency is Dr. Hess Green’s (Stephen Tyrone Williams) journey into vampirism (via being stabbed by an Ashanti sacrificial knife, which is nothing if not novel).

What’s interesting is that Green was arguably a vampire long before he began to actually ingest blood.  He lives in a tony home on Martha’s Vineyard, purchased from money his grandparents earned as the founders of the first black brokerage firm, while as a vampire he makes regular trips into the poorer sections of New York, to sate his hunger for blood, be it blood banks or single mothers.

It’s a fascinating dichotomy that I wish that the movie had spent more time on.

In fact, considering that Lee barely touches on the life of his main character, imagine how those not-quite-so main characters fare?  Not too good, though to have the audacity to name a character ‘Ganga Hightower,’ (Zaraah Abrahams) almost, but not quite, makes up for it.

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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.

Why You Should Be Watching “United States Of Tara” On Netflix

Part of what makes Netflix (and services like Hulu) so awesome is that whenever you see a series, no matter when it was actually released, it’s new to you.

Having recently watched Keir Gilchrist in Dark Summer I was impressed enough with his performance to seek out more of his work, so when I learned that he also starred in Showtime’s United States of Tara I decided to give it a watch.

And it’s a surprisingly entertaining show–though that may have a little to with me binging on it.

And the first thing that came to mind is that United States of Tara initially feels like a Weeds clone (which aired on HBO), down to the opening and theme song, while different, plays visually and aurally similar to Little Boxes.

Little Boxes

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