Tag Archives: film

WILL I SEE YOU TONIGHT ON A DOWNTOWN TRAIN

16 Jul

 

1. Ice Age 4/Fox                                                Wknd/$   46.0            Total/$   46.0

 2. Amazing Spider-Man/Sony                       Wknd/$   35.0            Total/$ 200.0

 3. Ted/Universal                                              Wknd/$   22.1            Total/$ 159.0

 4. Brave/Disney                                                Wknd/$   10.7            Total/$ 195.6

 6. Savages/Universal                                       Wknd/$     8.7            Total/$   31.5

 5. Magic Mike/Warner                                    Wknd/$     9.0            Total/$   91.9

 7. Madea’s Witness Protection/LGF             Wknd/$     5.6            Total/$   55.6

8. Katy Perry: Part of Me/Paramount           Wknd/$     3.7            Total/$   18.6

9. Moonrise Kingdom/Focus                          Wknd/$     3.7            Total/$   32.4

10. Madagascar 3/Dreamworks                     Wknd/$     3.5            Total/$ 203.7

 

IT COULD BE WORSE. IT COULD HAVE tCHRIS BROWN.

Ice Age 4: Continental Drift opens at number 1 and I stopped after the first sucky one and if you want a clue to how much these movies suck just note how hard they have to push their stars.  Does Pixar push their stars?  No.  It’s about the characters.  Ice Age pushes so hard because god knows you could give a shit about the characters.  Drake and Rhianna? Are you fucking kidding me?

 

HE SHOULDN’T BE IN THE AVENGERS ANYWAY

Amazing Spider-Man is down to number two and one of the reasons this reboot came so quickly is a) IT’S ALWAYS BEEN LIKE THIS IN FUCKING HOLLYWOOD, YOU MORONS! And b) Sony had to get another Spider-Man movie out or the rights went back to Marvel, which is bad if you wanted to see him meet Captain America or Iron Man, but good if you wanted movies that stood alone and weren’t little more than prequels to another Avengers movie. Yes, I’m still bitter about that. It’s not like I get a cut of the $600M to ease my pain at getting half-assed movies designed solely to set up another.

 

COALS TO THE NEWCASTLE OF MY HATE FOR YOU

Ted is down to number three and also in this is Mila Kunis as Mark Walberg’s girlfriend and as you know the age disparity thing is a pet peeve of mine. Walberg gets to play 35 when he’s clearly in his 40’s, while they hire an actress who’s actually 30 to play 30.  Men get to play younger while women do not or actually play older.  I can’t blame Marky Mark because his last two female lead were Kate Beckinsale and Amy Adams who are his age, so it falls on Seth McFarlane who I don’t like any way and this just gives me another valid reason.

 

NOTICE HOW NO ONE THINKS CARS MEANT CARS DON’T SELL

Brave is down to number four and it’s not looking good as with a $185 budget, it has yet to double it worldwide, making it a rare disappointment for Pixar but yet another one for a female lead for Disney, the last being The Princess & The Frog.  Now, neither one of these films is that impressive, but that’s not what assholes in suits will see. They’ll see “Chicks don’t sell” and cite that crappy movies with dudes make money all the time.  Sadly they are right. Women simply don’t have the margin for failure that men do, plain and simple. With that in mind you’d think they’d have given this script another pass because the stakes are higher.  How can the same people who made Up look at this and think it was okay?

 

DIRECTED BY PROFESSOR HENRY HIGGINS

Magic Mike is holds at number five and the mystery as to why Alex Pettyfer was not part of the media onslaught has been revealed: Channing Tatum hates him.  See?  People skills matter.  Playing the female lead is Cody Horn, who is awful and most are seeing it as nepotism because her dad used to run Warner Brothers.  Personally I’m seeing a trend with Soderbergh going back to his first film, sex, lies & videotape. Andie McDowell couldn’t act either but he made it seem like she could and since then he’s kinda prided himself on casting lots of no-talent females and watched while people gushed over their performances with him while tanking everywhere else. Hell, he got Julia Roberts an Oscar and she can’t act worth shit.  Of course it’s doesn’t always work as Sasha Gray, Gina Carano and now Cody Horn have proven.

 

THE LEGGY BLONDE BEGETTING THE LEGGY BLONDE

Savages is down to number six and don’t tell me you’ve got a movie that’s over two hours and don’t have time to include the scenes with Uma Thurman as Blake Lively’s mom.  Now, that I might have paid to see.

 

SOME OTHER MOVIES…

Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection is down to number seven followed by Katy Perry: Part of Me actually holding at number eight with Moonrise Kingdom likewise holding at number nine.

 

THE END. THANK GOD.

Finally, Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted closes out the top ten as there’s a newer mediocre animal film here now to take its place.

 

YES, THERE IS TIME FOR LOVE, DR. JONES

Now, not all science fiction is robots and space ships. Some of the best science fiction is about smaller yet still fantastic things that help speak to the human condition. Timer is an example of one of these. It’s about a world where a “timer” can be implanted into you arm and it will tell you how long you have until you meet the person you’re supposed to be with—but only if that person also has a timer. If it doesn’t, your timer remains blank.  Oona, played by Emma Caulfield who was Anya on Buffy, has a blank timer and tends to push every guy she dates without a timer into getting one, obviously with no success. On the other hand her sister has a timer that tells her she’s got 12 years until she meets her guy, so she’s just partying until that time comes.  They’re two sides of the same misery. Adding insult to injury, their 14-year-old little brother gets his timer and it tells him he’s going to meet the love of his in 24 hours.  This pushes Oona into the arms of a cute 20-something drummer/grocery clerk who’d asked her out even though his timer gives him just four months. Going against all her instincts, she decides to just enjoy being with him. In the meantime her party girl sister meets a widower with no timer at all and starts to fall for him.  You can see the twist that’s coming from a mile away, but it’s a nice little film that surprisingly doesn’t wuss on its ending which is optimistic but realistic. No great shakes but nice to see something beyond lasers and monsters in science fiction.

 

HE DIDN’T JUST LOOK GOOD, HE LOOKED GREAT

I’m also continuing with my fashion documentaries and just finished Vidal Sassoon: The Movie, which was wonderful, because the man lived an amazing life.  He grew up Jewish in the Depression in England, got an apprenticeship for free because he was polite, fought fascists in the streets in London after WWII which lead him to Israel to fight for the motherland. Came home to be a hairdresser and the rest is history.  He was as much part of the 60’s Swinging London as The Rolling Stones.  Grace Coddingtion the artistic director of Vogue was one of the models who made his work famous and vice versa.  One of his best friends was the woman credited with formally creating the mini-skirt.  An avid follower of physical fitness he was doing Pilates in the 70’s where he also had a talk show with his second wife.  He was 80 when the documentary it was made and looked 60, swimming and doing yoga like a man half his age.  It seems impossible that he’d be dead within a year, but sadly cancer doesn’t care.  Still wonderful he got to see this before he passed.

 

DON’T SLEEP IN THE SUBWAY, DARLING

So this week’s cultural trip was to the NY Transit Museum in Brooklyn and when you really understand the effort took to create the subway system as well as keep it running, you realize it’s a wonder it works at all.  Seriously.  It’s a staggering example of human achievement but all we can do is bitch about it because we’ve never known anything else.  I went because of a series of 18 watercolors about all the bridges around New York and while they were wonderful what was an unexpected pleasure was learning about the history of the city’s lifeline and I only scratched the surface.  I’ll have to look for that documentary about its creation on Netflix (‘cause I damn sure ain’t readin’ no books).  Speaking of the surface, it seems obvious now but I walked around for a few minutes before realizing the damn thing is entirely underground.  Of course it is! Duh.  And it’s huge. Just when you think you’ve seen it all there are another set of doors leading to another huge room filled with displays and dioramas and even full sized buses.  And under that is a station with subway cars from every era of the system’s 100 year history, complete with the ads from that time.  And it’s only $7.  Which I just happened to find on the ground that day so it was meant to be.

 

IT’S THE 90’S AGAIN ALREADY!?!

18 Apr

1. Rio/Fox                                                        Wknd/$40.0                    Total/$ 40.0

2. Scream 4/Dimension                               Wknd/$ 19.3                     Total/$  19.3

3. Hop/Universal                                           Wknd/$ 11.2                     Total/$  82.6

4. Soul Surfer/TriStar                                   Wknd/$   7.4                     Total/$  20.0

5. Hanna/Focus                                              Wknd/$   7.3                     Total/$  23.3

6. Arthur/Warners                                         Wknd/$   6.9                     Total/$  22.3

7. Insidious/                                                     Wknd/$   6.9                     Total/$  36.0

8. Source Code/                                               Wknd/$   6.3                     Total/$  37.0

9. The Conspirator                                          Wknd/$   3.9                     Total/$    3.9

10. Your Highness/Universal                        Wknd/$   3.9                     Total/$  16.0

AS ALWAYS, SOMEWHERE THE PIXAR STAFF SITS BACK AND LAUGHS

Rio opens at number one and I just had to give this a pass. I simply can’t take another colorful CGI animated film with a bunch of stars with no real character content (I’m looking at you Despicable Me, Megamind, etc).  This looks hella-pretty and has as its lead voices Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway, but the fact that it’s coming from the creators of Ice Age (which is nothing to brag about, honestly) means it’s going to have depth of character that can only be measured by a saucer.  Not a real saucer either, but one used in a Barbie playhouse.

WILD THINGS 10: ORGY

Scream 4 opens at number two and I have never seen any of the Scream films and I’m not about to start now.  Yeah, I get they’re post-modern spoofs of the slasher flicks of the 80’s, but somewhere down the line I lost my taste for watching even the dumbest teen get butchered.  Not to mention the first film opened with Drew Barrymore being gutted while crying and begging for her life. How is that supposed to be fun?  And how is it Neve Campbell hasn’t turned into Linda Hamilton from Terminator 2 after all she’s been through?  The woman should be armed to the teeth and spent the last decade studying krav maga.  As soon as whomever the hell is in the mask this time (given how they’re all related to her somehow, I’m thinking it’s her fourth cousin on her dad’s side she wouldn’t play with at a family picnic 30 years ago) shows up he should have both his kneecaps blown off before having his neck snapped.  Clearly she’s the new Jamie Lee Curtis in that no matter what else she tries she’s still bound to the genre movie that made her famous to begin with. But it could be worse.  She could be in Wild Things: Foursome—and you wish I were making that up, but I’m not.  And still worse, she could be with Denise Richards in Cougars, Inc.  Again, not making that up.  Not that this could have ever beaten Rio, but it wouldn’t have hurt to have better known young cast.  When Hayden Panettiere is the best you’ve got, you’re in trouble.  This should have been filled with Gossip Girls & Boys and Twilight kids getting hacked to pieces.  I know plenty of people who’d have paid to see Blake Lively or Robert Pattinson get a blade in the neck.

HE WAS THE MATTHEW MCCONUGHEY OF HIS DAY

Soul Surfer is down to number four and also in this are Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt, who I like to think are both beyond caring too much about being at the top of the heap after 30+year careers.  For them this was getting paid to go to the beach for a few months and a movie their kids could see them in.  It’s just a win all around.  And Dennis Quaid continues to taunt other men with washboard abs well into his 50’s.  But clearly the deal he made with the Devil for that body was having a crazy brother.  Do you think he and Emilio Estevez exchange sympathy calls? And conference in Alec Baldwin?

ASK THE GEEKS TO EXPLAIN WHAT “RELATIVITY” MEANS

Hop is down to number five and I realize most women look less pretty standing next to James Marsden, but let’s be real; Katy Cuoco was never some great beauty to begin so this is just borderline cruel.  Betcha she was glad to get back to the set of The Big Bang Theory where she felt like Megan Fox again.

IT’S A DIRTY JOB BUT SOMEBODY’S GOTTA DO IT

Hanna is down to number five and also in this is Eric Bana as the CIA agent who trains Hanna pretty much from birth to be a killing machine and since his much heralded entrance to the American movie scene in The Hulk didn’t pan out, he’s gone from being a leading man to the male lead to female stars. Natalie Portman & Scarlett Johansson (The Other Boleyn Girl), Rachel McAdams (The Time Traveler’s Wife) and here to both Saoirse Ronan and Cate Blanchett.  He can take a seat on the bench next to Mark Ruffalo, Dermot Mulroney and David Strathairn.

IT’S WHY THEIR CAREERS THREATEN TO CANCEL EACH OTHER OUT

Arthur drops to number six to no one’s real surprise and also in this is Jennifer Garner who also didn’t quite make the jump to big screen female lead despite doing the prerequisite cookie-cutter romantic comedies (one of which co-starred Mark Ruffalo).  Her role in the universe has actually been filled by another tv-to-film star, Katherine Heigl.  And honestly, isn’t Jennifer Garner the answer to the question “What if Hilary Swank were a little more attractive and a little less talented?”

I GET PAID TO GET NAKED WITH HER? HA! SUCK IT, MBA OLDER BROTHER!

Insidious is down to number seven and everyone is getting cheese on their whopper after this. $1.5M budget with a $36M return so far.  And few are happier than Patrick Wilson who is a talented theatrical actor and been in good indie work (Little Children, Hard Candy) but his mainstream Hollywood work hasn’t panned out quite as well (The Watchmen, The A-Team, Lakeview Terrace).  This is why you see young actors and actors whose careers have taken a stumble doing genre films.  They’ve got a built in audience who can help get you an easy win, but you don’t get blamed if it fails, because it usually sucks anyway.  But as far as I’m concerned any man whose past work includes being married to Jennifer Connelly and cheating with Kate Winslet (in graphic sex scenes) has already won big time.

BRUTHAS BE CREATING SUPER SCIENCE TOO!

Source Code is down to number eight and speaking of talented Broadway and indie actors, also in this as “the brilliant yet, cold scientist who creates the device that sets everything in motion” is Jeffery Wright, who didn’t really need a win since he became Felix Lighter in the Bond films.  Then again, maybe he did since they were put on hold thanks to MGM’s perpetual bankruptcy.  Seriously.  I can’t remember a time when they weren’t in trouble for some reason.  Thanks for nothing, Michael Cimino.  The evil that was Heaven’s Gate lives on long after your career has gone.

AND AS LINCOLN, ASHTON KUTCHER
The Conspirator opens at number nine and funny how a movie involving the legal system and Abraham Lincoln isn’t the one called “The Lincoln Lawyer.”  Okay, maybe not funny “ha-ha” but…oh, shut up.  This is the story of the only woman put on trial for the murder of Abraham Lincoln, which is admittedly news to me, but not so interesting I’d ever want to see this. I’d be more inclined to watch a History Channel or A&E documentary than a dramatic telling. And now the game of who doesn’t belong in the cast: Robin Wright, James McAvoy, Kevin Kline, Tom Wilkinson, Danny Huston, Justin Long…what?  Yeah, the Mac guy—and I’ve got no problem sticking him with that label—in a period drama.  Even Alexis Bleidel and Rachel Evan Wood don’t stick out like that. You can see them in period dress and it not seem weird, but that doofus?  How the hell does he end up in a film directed by Robert Redford?  It must be a favor to get Drew Barrymore in another movie.  Or did they think this would “Get the kids in”?

LIKE SO MANY THINGS, NOT AS FUNNY WHEN YOU’RE NOT HIGH

Your Highness closes out the top ten at number ten and did they really think this was going to  make money theatrically when its audience is clearly potheads?  And even they are going to be disappointed, because that was a movie about pot from beginning to end, whereas this is not.  Any hope for backend  money is going to be a huge disappointment.

LIKE FRIENDS, BUT FUNNY

Is there someone at ABC watching too much porn?  How else do you get one sitcom called “Cougar Town” and another called “Happy Endings?” What’s the next, “Sodomy & Blowjobs” (hopefully not in that order)?  That said, “Happy Endings” isn’t bad.  You gotta love a sitcom that advertises itself as “Another sitcom about people in their 30’s hanging out” or “Like friends, but not as white.”  Also funnier.  I hated friends for its lily-white depiction of New York, but what I really hated it for was being so successful and so un-fucking-funny.  This is a bit uneven, but the one-liners are non-stop and mostly on-target.  They pretty much had me when one character described another as “What if Paul Rudd gave up?”  That’s razor-sharp and to the bone.  Not to mention a gay character who’s just a guy and not stereotype and the second episode was actually spent mocking women who want a typical TV or movie “Gay Best Friend.”  I’ll enjoy it for as long as I can before ABC again breaks my heart the way they did with the also too-clever-for-its-own-good, Better Off Ted.

BY ODIN’S BEARD!

So I wound up in Brooklyn again on Friday for a combination birthday and dissertation celebration.  As usual, it was one of the women I know from Jezebel who was getting her PhD in Drama.  Not sure what you do with that (“Well, I won’t be sure until I get the tests back, but I think it’s a severe case of lacking a third act.”)  The celebration was at a beer hall at ground zero of annoying hipsterism: Williamsburg.  It’s been a long time since I wanted to punch so  many young people for simply being young. Actually it was only 24 hours, but you get my point.  Being a beer hall meant two things: all kinds of sausage and giant beers.  Seriously, it’s amazing the Germans lived long enough to start two world wars eating and drinking like that.  You’d think we could have just waited them out until their diets killed them.  My beer was literally 1.75 liters in a mug the size of pitcher. It was like something out of a cartoon. Normally I workout on Friday nights, but every time I took a sip, it was like doing a curl and the “Ride of the Valkeries” was playing on permanent loop in my head. We might as well have been drinking from a horn.  I was there until around midnight and in that time all I could consume was one of those and one glass of whiskey (yes, we’re still doing that).  But my night of annoying hip young people was not over. Oh, no.  I’d also been invited to another birthday party by a co-worker who wears some seriously amazing boots on a regular basis, and given I think I was the only person from the office she invited, I felt an obligation (but mostly it was her boots).  This took me to the second most annoying mecca of NYC hipsterism: Nolita to a place called The Back Room, known for having dickish doormen and even more obnoxious bartenders in its heyday (they wouldn’t let you in if you were wearing a fur coat).  Now, you’d think a party that started at 11:00 would just be getting into high gear at 1:00 am which is when I arrived, but they were already gone. You kids today…where’s the endurance?  But the upside is I got go home, but still get points for showing up.  Win-win.  Well at least until the morning, where I felt like shit even though I didn’t get drunk and wasn’t out all night. I feel like my body is taunting me in these instances for not partying my ass off when I could handle it.  Much in the way it taunts me for trying to be athletic now, rather than in my teens. Every ache and pain screams, “Oh, no, muthafucka. You had your chance.”