Do You Remember When The Movie, Not The Trailer, Was The Event?

The halcyon days when trailers simply existed to inform viewers about a particularly movie, as opposed to being events in and of themselves, is pretty much a thing of the past.  If I had any doubts, then the email I received from The Hollywood Reporter removed them.

It explains that the trailer for the J.J. Abrams-directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens (I still can’t stand that subtitle) will be shown in 30 theaters from one end of the country to the next.

And I wouldn’t be a bit surprised to hear that there are instances where people attend showings just to see it, and leave as soon as it’s finished.  I am not sure what such a hunger for movie-related information means, though I have a feeling that it’s not a good thing because it reflects a preoccupation that is perhaps better reserved for more tangible, more real things.

Then again, keep in mind this is coming from someone who had has a huge nerdgasm whenever a new Marvel Studios movie (or Guillermo del Toro directs a new feature) turns up, so perhaps I am not the best person to make such points.

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Millenium Falcon Footage

Truth be told, I am neither a huge Star Wars fan (beyond the first film and its sequel, The Empire Strikes Back) nor too interested in J.J. Abrams as a director (way too many lens flares).  That being said when video of the Millennium Falcon is posted, you repost it.

Because “when you’re nose to nose with a trash compactor, you cool it.”

‘Prometheus’ With Some ‘Leftovers’

Let me begin by saying that I didn’t start out hating “Lost” when it originally aired back in 2004.  In fact, I honestly didn’t watch enough episodes to form any sort of opinion (of the informed variety, at any rate).

The thing is, I am a huge fan of horror and science fiction movies and television, which I mention because outlandish scenarios aren’t exactly unknown to me.  I am also a huge believer in rules.  For instance, if you establish a universe where everyone can fly, and one person can’t, then there needs to be a damned good reason for it that makes sense within the narrative.

Otherwise, it feels as if things aren’t happening organically, and every event that unfolds does so because it’s necessary to lead into the next.

And so on, and so on, and so on.

I shouldn’t imply that it’s all that unusual for writers to write to move the plot along, though the difference between good and not-so-good writers is that you usually can’t tell that the good ones are doing it.

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Why ‘Pacific Rim’ Will Spawn A Sequel

Pacific Rim - Victory!I should mention that I have said the same thing about “Tron: Legacy,” and while there appears to be minimal movement on that front, all signs seem to indicate that it is happening.

Guillmero Del Toro’s “Pacific Rim,” which cost somewhere between $180-200 million to produce, and earned just over $407 million worldwide – most of that overseas – is going to result in a sequel.

How do I know this, you may ask?  Other than my almost obsessive desire to see the more of the universe that Del Toro created, that is?

First, Pacific Rim isn’t a continuation of anything.  It’s not a sequel, or based upon an existing franchise.  In such situations, marketing is crucial, though considering that Legendary Pictures was divorcing itself from its partnership with Warner Bros. at the time, it can be argued that ‘Rim’ performed relatively weak in this country (just over $100 million) primarily for that reason.

By way of comparison, you have to keep in mind that Star Trek: Into Darkness earned just over $465 million, and the likelihood of a sequel is high, despite that it performed significantly weaker overseas than Pacific Rim.

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The Strangest Of Species: A Warranted Remake

A very rare bird.  Think of a coelacanth (which were discovered alive a few decades ago, though despite being such a remarkable, unusual creature it may be endangered) or a Tasmanian Tiger (none discovered alive, though rumors persist).

It’s that unusual. What makes it such a great idea is that the original – a precursor of James Cameron’s “Terminator” – came out in 1973, and while it wasn’t terrible, it was limited somewhat by the technology available at the time.

What’s also good is that it’s (probably) not a sacred horse to too many people, and its main theme – technology running amok – is a common one, though the way the film goes about illustrating it is novel (essentially “Jurassic Park – also written by Michael Crichton! – with robots) which means that it should be relatively easy to bring it forward into current time.

J.J. Abrams is one of the parties behind the remake, and while I am not a huge fan of either his television series or movies, I don’t hate them either.  There’s also the added bonus of it appearing on HBO, which means that there will (hopefully) be the violence and nudity only implied in the original film.

As long as it doesn’t make a mockery of the original film or series, like the AMC 2009 reboot of “The Prisoner,” then it should at least be worth watching.

‘Pacific Rim’ Review

Pacific Rim

“Guillermo Del Toro approaches giant robots and monsters with a genuine love for the subject matter, and it shows on the screen.”

I saw Guillermo Del Toro’s “Pacific Rim” yesterday evening, and enjoyed myself immensely.  He seems to understand that, if it’s just about the robots, you might as well make a ‘Transformers’ sequel and call it a day.

Which is why he tries to make it about people as well, which I’ll go into a bit more later.

The film revolves around a rift that opens in the Pacific Ocean.  This rift is a doorway for strange, alien creatures called kaiju, which appear without rhyme or reason and seem to exist exclusively to menace humanity.

Initially, we respond to this threat by creating giant robots, called jaegers (German for ‘hunter’) that are controlled by two pilots (the scheme works by each pilot controlling half of a hemisphere of the giant robot’s “brain”) via “The Drift,” a method for the minds of the pilots to bridge their individuality, and act as one.

As the film begin, we witness the destruction of the American jaeger – the jaeger program is a world effort, so I assume that there are, or were, robots representing nations other than America, Russia, Australia (or was that New Zealand, I am not sure) and China – known as Gipsy Danger.

The jaegar program is abandoned for, pardon the pun, monstrous walls which would surround costal cities, though this doesn’t go well because the kaiju seem to be increasing in strength and ferocity.

What surprised me most about ‘Rim’ was the way that Guillermo Del Toro kept working humor into the film.  Speaking of which, Charlie Day (“It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia”) and Burn Gorman (“Torchwood,” “The Dark Knight Rises”) were extremely welcome as two scientists working on a parallel track to determine when and why the kaiju attacked.

And it wouldn’t be a Del Toro film if Ron Perlman didn’t make an appearance (as a criminal specializing in the selling of kaiju organs).

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