AND THE AWARD GOES TO…PUSSY GALORE!

14 Oct

Rosamund-Pike
1. Gone Girl/Fox                                            Wknd/$ 26.4    Total/$ 77.9
2. Dracula Untold/Universal                     Wknd/$ 23.5    Total/$ 23.5
3. Alexander & The Terrible…/Disney     Wknd/$ 18. 4   Total/$ 18.4
4. Annabelle/WB (NL)                                Wknd/$ 15.9     Total/$ 61.6
5. The Judge/WB                                           Wknd/$ 13.1     Total/$ 13.1
6. The Equalizer/Sony                                  Wknd/$ 9.7      Total/$ 79.9
7. Addicted/Lion’s Gate                                Wknd/$ 7.5      Total/$ 7.5
8. The Maze Runner/Fox                            Wknd/$ 7.5      Total/$ 83.8
9. The Boxtrolls/Focus                                 Wknd/$ 6.6      Total/$ 41.0
10. Left Behind/Free                                     Wknd/$ 2.8      Total/$ 10.8

HERE NOW GIRL
Gone Girl holds the top spot and starring as the girl in question is Rosamund Pike, one of those actresses you’ve seen everywhere who has now broken through to the top. How do you know when a female star is rising? Well, first of all they pair her with older men. She’s in her 30’s but was in Jack Reacher with the 50-something Tom Cruise, is now here with the 40-something Ben Affleck and has been in two films with the 40-something Simon Pegg. And it goes without saying she was in her 20’s was in Die Another Day with Pierce Brosnan because that’s how old most Bond girls are. One the exceptions to that rule was Halle Berry and that’s why I really hope Pike wins Best Actress. That she’s going to be nominated for everything under the sun goes without saying. She’ll deserve each and every one because she kills this role, but I need her to win because that will mean Die Another Day will include not just one, but three Oscar Winning Actresses (Dame Judi Densch), two of them fighting to death with swords.

YOUR PUN ABOUT DRACULA SUCKING HERE:
Dracula Untold opens at number two and this is Universal’s second attempt to restart its classic horror franchises in as many years and may just be its second failure (The Wolfman tanked) because while vampire heroes have been the rage for awhile now, no one wants it from the King of Vampires. Oh, he can have a tragic past that turned him evil (as Coppola’s Dracula proved), but it only needs to be backstory. The whole damn film can’t be about just that. Guess what this whole damn film is about? It has gotten abysmal reviews and while that matters little to a genre film like this they did keep people on the fence about it away. People like me. And it shows. While a near $24M opening for a $70M film isn’t bad, remember freaking Annabelle made over $30M last week. The King of Vampires, the most famous vampire in history, made less than a doll. In a sequel. Not good.

I’M SURE THIS NEVER COMES UP AT HOME
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day opens at number three and clearly Steve Carrell clearly needed an easy payday and Jennifer Garner needed…anything. As we’ve discussed many times, kids’ films and horror films are the best thing for an actor whose career needs a bump either to rise or to slow down a fall. It’s got a built in audience. Carrell hasn’t been going hungry between Anchorman and Despicable Me sequels, but Jennifer Garner is clearly trying to get back into the stable of Hollywood female leads instead of just being Ben Affleck’s wife who strangely is never in any of his highly praised and even Oscar-winning films. I’m just sayin’…

GUILTY OF EXCESSIVE CLICHES AND SCENERY CHEWING
Annabelle is down to number four, followed by The Judge opening at number five and this is as slick and by-the-numbers as a mainstream Hollywood production gets. It is as glossy and cliché-ridden piece of entertainment as you might expect, set apart only by the language, which is how it acquired its “R” rating. But this is not to say it is without merit, as it’s always fun to see seasoned actors do what they do well. Robert Downey Jr is playing that same character he always plays, which is to say, Robert Downey Jr. (in a metatexual moment one character actually addresses what she calls his “verbal diarrhea”) and Robert Duvall is playing an ornery old coot, which also what he always plays these days. But if you don’t enjoy them playing off each other you’re in for a whole lotta clichés. Slick, hot shot, cold-blooded lawyer denying his small town past? Check. Estranged father and son? Check. Ironically in the same profession? Check. Slowly revealed incident from the past that helped drive them apart? Check. Old girlfriend still in town, still hot and still hot for him? Check. In fact the only new thing is a odd, out-of-place pseudo-incestuous subplot, which actually is part of yet another cliché I won’t reveal here. If you’re going, you’re going for the performances, not the story itself.

DENNIS HOPPER IS DEAD AND CHRISTOPHER WALKEN’S GETTING OLD
The Equalizer is down to number six and also in this is “That Guy You’ve Seen A Hundred Times Before” Marton Csokas. He was in Lord of the Rings, Amazing Spider-Man 2, Alice in Wonderland, The Bourne Supremacy, etc. You know him when you see him ‘cause he’s usually the bad guy (Lord of the Rings as the exception the proves the rule) and this is no exception.

BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL. SO IS BROWN. AND STILL ANOTHER SHADE OF BROWN.
Addicted opens at number one and this is one of those “targeted” films for audiences who feel neglected by Hollywood. Usually minorities (though Christian-themed films have made a splash recently) eager to see all facets of their existence portrayed and not just stereotypes which is why Latino Americans have put Spanish-speaking films in the top ten, along with Bollywood films and of course African Americans. No one is a sidekick, no one is a criminal and no one has an accent. Addicted portrays nothing but seriously upper middle class Africans Americans. If you’re looking for baggy pants and grills, look elsewhere. This is every upper middle class story of adultery you’ve ever seen. Fatal Attraction, Unfaithful, etc, only everyone is brown and impossibly beautiful. In fact, its overdone perfection is what turned me off of it. There’s no atmosphere, no style to it all. It’s just overly lit and pretty. It looks like a moving catalogue. As photographer Norman Jean Roy said, “When you make something perfect you kill the art.”

DON’T LAUGH IF YOU WANT TO GET PAID
The Maze Runner is down to number eight, followed by The BoxTrolls at number nine and hanging around at number ten is Left Behind and I think I’ve figured out why Nicholas Cage is perfect for all these movies: no matter how outlandish the premise he can keep a straight face.

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FORMER BOY WONDER PHOTOGRAPHY

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