Tag Archives: If I Stay

CHICKS DIG BAD BOYS…WHEN THEY’RE ALREADY HOT

14 Sep

idris elba shirtless 2

1. No Good Deed/SGems                                  Wknd/$ 24.5     Total/$ 24.5
2. Dolphin Tale 2/WB                                       Wknd/$ 16.6     Total/$ 16.6
3. Guardians of the Galaxy/Disney                Wknd/$ 8.0       Total/$ 305.9
4. Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles/Par           Wknd/$ 4.8       Total/$ 181.0
5. Let’s Be Cops/Fox                                         Wknd/$ 4.3        Total/$ 73.0
6. The Drop/FoxSearchlight                           Wknd/$ 4.2        Total/$ 4.2
7. If I Stay/WB                                                    Wknd/$ 4.1        Total/$ 44.9
8. The November Man/Relativity                  Wknd/$ 2.8        Total/$ 22.5
9. The Giver/Weinstein                                    Wknd/$ 2.6        Total/$ 41.3
10. The Hundred-Foot Journey/Disney       Wknd/$ 2.5        Total/$ 49.4

YOUR MOM LIKES HIM TOO
No Good Deed opens at number one starring your wife’s/girlfriend’s fantasy boyfriend, Idris Elba. Oh, he is. Don’t kid yourself. I don’t care what she’s telling you, he is. And apparently when he’s good, he’s good; but when he’s bad he’s better as this almost doubles its budget the opening weekend. And don’t be surprised to find it in her Netflix cue or on her DVD shelf in about 6-12 months. For Elba, whose fame has been bubbling under A-list for a few years now, this is a wise move, being willing to be play the bad guy, albeit not in a stereotypical manner. Range and courage will take you far. Of course being hot helps. A less attractive actor might not have had the same level of success. Your girlfriend/wife is shallow.

REUNITED AND IT FEELS SO SAD
Dolphin Tale 2 opens at number two because apparently somebody somewhere saw the first Dolphin Tale. Only now am I realizing both these films feature the re-teaming of Morgan Freeman and Ashley Judd, who were both white hot after Kiss The Girls to the point where they a) both were given suspense thriller movies (she got Double Jeopardy and he got Along Came A Spider, another Alex Cross adaptation) and b) reteamed to hopefully repeat the success (High Crimes, which didn’t). It’s sad they’re doing this type of family film treacle because they actually had wonderful chemistry. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s only here as a favor to her, because he’s got plenty of hits in a starring role, while she’s now playing the mom to the star. Hell, she’s the mom to the protagonist here too. I still love you, Ashley Judd! Even if rumors have it that male actors have turned down parts once they’ve learned you were cast…

I AM PAID
Guardians of the Galaxy is down to number three and also in this is Vin Diesel as the voice of the biggest breakout character of the movie, the sentient tree, Groot. Everyone loves Groot. The only thing they love more than Groot is Dancing Baby Groot. It’s the easiest and hardest job. After all it’s only three words “I Am Groot” but the intonation has to be different each and every time. It’s also the more perilous gig, because it’s just a voice (neither he nor Bradley Cooper were ever on set). He can’t bargain for more money, because honestly, anyone can do this. But for now this makes him the rare actor with not one, not two, but three franchises to his name: Guardians of the Galaxy, Fast & The Furious and Riddick. And while I loved this movie, I love Chronicles of Riddick just as much if not more.

HEY, AT LEAST IT’S NOT STEVIE-O OR BAM
Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles is down to number four and speaking of an easy paycheck by just being a voice, Johnny Knoxville is actually one of the turtles, giving him two franchises as well. He’s got the Jackass series, which includes Bad Grandpa and now this. If I told you ten years ago Johnny Knoxville would still be around and making money, you’d have called me crazy, but now you see it’s the universe that’s crazy.

IT’D BE TASTELESS TO SAY HE WENT OUT WITH A BANG, RIGHT?
Let’s Be Cops is down to number five followed by The Drop opening at number six and this James Gandolphini’s final film and it’s both fitting and sad that it’s a gangster flick. Fitting because it was Tony Soprano that made him a star and sad because he’d begun transcending it, especially with the wonderful Enough Said. It’s gotten good reviews and it’s on my radar to see, but we know my likelihood when I don’t catch something on opening weekend. And the new fall TV season is coming too? Hoo, boy.

IT’S WHY I SAW THAT MOVIE WITH DENZEL WASHINGTON
If I Stay is down to number seven, followed by The November Man at number eight and part of the lack of interest in this is the lack of a strong antagonist. It’s yet another one of these generic, Australian pretty boys of whom they seem to have a neverending supply. Imagine how much more interesting this would have been with Pierce Brosnan against a younger actor you actually knew? Even Stallone knew that it was good to have then rising star, Antonio Banderas facing off against in him in Assassins (not that it was a great success either). You would have had my money yesterday if you gave me the possibility of seeing Pierce Brosnan kicking the ass of Ryan Reynolds.

MARKETING FAIL
The Giver is down to number nine and also in this…Taylor Swift!?! Clearly there’s something in her contract prohibiting them from pushing this point because when your film is disappointing, you might want to mention it’s got one of the biggest pop stars on the planet in it.

THE END
Finally, The Hundred Foot Journey closes out the top ten at number ten, a modest success with $61M worldwide from a $22M budget. Emphasis on “modest.”

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THE WEEKEND WHERE NO ONE CARED.

7 Sep

zoe-saldana
1. Guardians of the Galaxy/Disney                 Wknd/$ 10.2 Total/$ 294.6
2. Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles/Par            Wknd/$ 6.5 Total/$ 174.6
3. If I Stay/WB                                                    Wknd/$ 5.8 Total/$ 39.7
4. Let’s Be Cops/Fox                                          Wknd/$ 5.4 Total/$ 66.6
5. The November Man/Relativity                    Wknd/$ 4.2 Total/$ 17.9
6. As Above/So Below/Universal                    Wknd/$ 3.7 Total/$ 15.6
7. When The Game Stands Tall/TS                 Wknd/$ 3.7 Total/$ 23.5
8. The Giver/Weinstein                                     Wknd/$ 3.6 Total/$ 37.8
9. The Hundred-Foot Journey/Disney          Wknd/$ 3.2 Total/$ 45.7
10. Lucy/WB                                                        Wknd/$ 2.0 Total/$ 121.2

COLOR BLIND
Guardians of the Galaxy holds at number three and also in this is Zoe Saldana and you have to wonder if it has escaped her that she’s been basically unrecognizable in two giant science fiction hits. First, she was a big blue CGI creature in Avatar and here she’s a green alien. I’d be a little worried, but apparently she isn’t, as she’s given to stupid statements like Obama being in office means she doesn’t have to worry about race in casting. Yeah, she needs to have a coffee with Jennifer Beals about this before the Marvel Movie Money Train runs dry. Maybe Rae Dawn “I’m Not Black” Chong can join them. Better yet, Andy Serkis. You know him, right? No? He was Gollum in Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, not to mention Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Yeah, that’s what being covered in science fiction and fantasy films does for you. Or does anyone want to tell me about Anthony Daniels’ great career? He was C3PO. This is sad because I kinda like how she said, she fucked somebody on the train from Coney Island because she was “ghetto like that.”

ISN’T MELODRAMATIC TEEN A REDUNDANCY?
Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles holds at number two, followed by If I Stay at number three and this snuck in under the wire to be a summer hit, $33M domestic from an $11M budget, so it may be time for me to get to writing a Young Adult novel, because between this and The Fault In Our Stars, the YA movie genre has expanded beyond science fiction (Hunger Games, Divergent) and Fantasy (Twilight, Harry Potter). Of course I may be out of my depth given this new moneymaking genre is “Tragic Teen Girl.” This comes not a moment too soon for Chloe Grace Moretz, who seemed primed for kid stardom with the unexpected success of Kick Ass due in no small part to her role as the foul-mouthed, bloodthirsty Hit Girl. The problem was, only adults saw it and not her needed audience: kids. To correct that, they sanitized Carrie down to a PG13, which only resulted in another failure. This is why you don’t let suits make decisions.

“IT” FLOATS
Also holding (no one went to the movies because they were busy watching football) at number four is Let’s Be Cops, and the downside of this success is that the no-talent writer/director, Luke Greenfield, will be allowed more chances to be mediocre. Don’t believe me? His track record includes The Animal (Rob Schneider, which says it all), Something Borrowed (Kate Hudson, which seriously says it all) and The Girl Next Door, which is currently the center of some attempted revisionist history of it being a good more that was merely overlooked, which is bullshit. That movie blew and looking at his resume, there’s no mystery as to why.

SOMEBODY’S WORKING OUT THEIR ISSUES
Down to number five is The November Man, starring Pierce Brosnan. It’s a movie about a retired secret agent who was the best at his job drawn into conflict with his successor. Gee, we aren’t still bitter about Daniel Craig, are we, Pierce? Apparently we are. What’s worse is also in this is Olga Kurylenko, who was actually in Quantum of Solace, so the bulk of her time on-set was undoubtedly spent being asked over and over again who her favorite Bond was (the correct answer is always “Connery”). I actually do like Pierce a lot and was tempted to see this, but it just looked a little too cheap. I mean like made for Cinemax cheap. Not to mention the really sad subtext going on. You can do better, dude. That Kevin Costner spy movie? That should have been you. I’d have seen it if it were you.

HOW DO YOU SAY “I DON’T DO THE SCARY” IN FRENCH?
As Above/So Below is down to number six and this is yet another found footage movie and honestly they sit right next to “I Don’t Do The Scary” as movies I just flat out refuse to see. Getting nauseous because of the shakey cam is not high on my list of things to pay for. Fortunately they are usually one and the same, thus avoiding two birds with one stone. This time it’s tourists in the catacombs below Paris who go into a part they shouldn’t go into and get what stupid people deserve. Sorry, but so many of these movies center on people doing what they are explicit told not to do that I’ve lost any sympathy. As far as I’m concerned their eventual horrible deaths are just Darwinism in effect.

AMERICA’S PASTIME: COUCH SURFING!
When The Game Stands Tall holds at number seven, followed by The Giver holding at number eight, followed by The Hundred Foot Journey holding at number nine. Like I said, everyone was home watching football. Okay, maybe some were watching the US Open as well. Maybe.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Finally Lucy returns to the top ten at number ten and given Zoe Saldana’s stupid statements, I hope someone points out to her that she was also the female lead in an equally stupid action film written and produced by Luc Besson (someone else directed): Columbiana. Only that tanked. Hard. The difference being, people could actually see Scarlett Johansson in her big Marvel movies. Well, that and she’s white, blonde and stacked but I’m sure none of that matters, right? OF COURSE IT FUCKING MATTERS, DUMBASS!

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FRANK MILLER SUCKS. THAT IS ALL.

25 Aug

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1. Guardians of the Galaxy/Disney                  Wknd/$ 17.6    Total/$ 251.9
2. Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles/Par            Wknd/$ 16.8    Total/$ 145.6
3. If I Stay/WB                                                     Wknd/$ 16.3    Total/$ 16.4
4. Let’s Be Cops/Fox                                           Wknd/$ 11. 0    Total/$ 45.2
5. When The Game Stands Tall/TS                 Wknd/$ 9.0      Total/$ 9.0
6. The Giver/Weinstein                                      Wknd/$ 6.7      Total/$ 24.1
7. The Expendables 3/LGF                                Wknd/$ 6.6      Total/$ 27.5
8. Sin City: A Dame To Kill For                        Wknd/$ 6.5      Total/$ 6.5
9. The Hundred-Foot Journey/Disney           Wknd/$ 5.6      Total/$ 32.8
10. Into The Storm/WB                                      Wknd/$ 3.8     Total/$ 38.3

AND LORD OF THE RINGS CAME FROM KING ARTHUR. GET OVER IT.
Guardians of the Galaxy returns to the number one spot and also in this is Glenn Close and if this comes as a surprise to you I have to ask you where the hell you’ve been for 35 years, as A-list dramatic stars have been part of superhero movies since Superman The Movie opened with Marlon Brando and Gene Hackman billed above the title. Still, even after Jack Nicholson, Michael Caine, Jeff Bridges, Cliff Robertson, Anthony Hopkins, Tommy Lee Jones, Nick Nolte, Sam Elliot, Peter O’Toole, Faye Dunaway, Martin Sheen, Sally Field, John Travolta and Morgan Freeman have all appeared in them, people are still surprised to see them there. It’s called show “business” people and if there is no business there will be no show. It’s the new “animated movie” where stars want an easy mainstream gig to pad both their resumes and bank accounts with hits. Glenn plays Nova Prime who is the head of the Nova Corps, a type of intergalactic police force which was a very clearly rip off of the Green Lantern Corps in the Green Lantern comics, (which in turn were a rip off of the Lensmen series of science fiction novels). This, however worked out much better for Glen Close than basically everyone in the Green Lantern movie as the success of this film opens the door for a Nova solo film. Oh, and guess who’s going to be in the Ant Man movie currently filming? Michael Douglas.

ACTUALLY SOFT CORE PORN WOULD BE MORE INTERESTING
Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles is down to number two and while this is also based on a comic book, to be in this basically means you’re desperate and one step away from soft-core porn on Cinemax or a eponymously named sitcom. Only one of those I’d actually watch.

NOT A COMPARISON YOU WANT MADE
If I Stay Opens at number three and this is based on a Young Adult novel, a section of the bookstore still being pillaged by movie studios all trying to get the “next big hit.” Clearly this ain’t it. I don’t read, so I know nothing about it, but as a movie the plot of someone in a coma reminds me of that horrible Reese Witherspoon thing, Just Like Heaven, which helped drag both hers and Mark Ruffalo’s careers down. The difference being Ruffalo had no problem doing a superhero movie, whereas Reese Witherspoon has made it clear she’ll never do anything like that. Really? Enjoy starring in “Reese” next fall on NBC.

THE GREAT ESCAPE
Let’s Be Cops is down to number four and I’m actually happy for the success of this film because I like the two guys in it and cannot stand the TV show “Zoe Deschanel is Just So Precious.” Though you might know it as “New Girl.” They’re both on it and this is one step closer to them being set free. Especially Marlon Wayans Jr., who was in the much, much, MUCH superior Happy Endings. Though ironically he was in the pilot for New Girl, but left it for Happy Endings, only to return when it was cancelled, so he’s owed this.

AND HOW MANY NFL PLAYERS CAME OUT OF THAT? EXACTLY.
When The Game Stands Tall opens at number five and I’m actually glad this didn’t do better because while I love football I cannot stand this “Football Is A Holy Religion That Will Cure All” mentality and this film utterly comes from that type of thinking. It’s “based on a true event” which means it’s all but fictional and the fiction will overtake the truth like that Remember The Titans movie with Denzel Washington (the coach was a jerk and hated). This is about a high school team that went undefeated for years then lost. OH. MY GOD! THE HUMANITY! They lost a football game!?! In high school!?! How could they go on!?! Seriously, who gives a crap? High school football players should only be in movies as the villains to the quirky, artistic protagonist, period.

I ALSO DON’T BELIEVE IN THE INTERNET. OR MOBILE PHONES.
The Giver is down to number five and this is another science fiction/fantasy Young Adult adaptation and remember how I said that comic book movies were the new way for actors to pad their resumes and bank accounts? Coming up a close second on that are YA adaptations. I mean look at the adult cast list for The Hunger Games. And here you’ve got Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep, though it must be noted Bridges has been trying to get this made for so long he envisioned his father, Lloyd, in the role he himself is playing. Fine. So it’s the exception to the rule. I stand by my cynical observation. Now, you’d think I’d have seen this if for no other reason than the science fiction angle. Well, maybe, but I was on vacation and if I don’t see a film opening week, my chances of ever seeing it at all are slight. Also, I just have a old man prejudice against Young Adult. They’re just not “real” books to me.

THREE STRIKES YOU’RE OUT. TIME FOR ROCKY 18.
The Expendables 3 has dropped to number six and I probably would have seen this as well had I not been on vacation even though I know it’s complete and utter crap. Even worse, it’s selling out its weak-ass premise. The whole conceit of the film was that it was a bunch of old action stars together. That’s it. It’s a one trick pony. Realizing that was why people saw it, the second film decided to wink so hard at the audience that it sprained an eye muscle and the Expendables 2 did less business than the first film. See, the joke only goes so far then you actually have to make an movie worth watching and honestly they didn’t even do that in the first film and the second one was even worse, despite Chuck Norris, Bruce Willis and Arnold doing actual action scenes instead of just cameos and Jean Claude Van Damme showing up as the villain. This sent them into panic mode and rather than just trying to make a better movie, they lowered the water and opted for a PG-13 rating with more of the same crap. As if anyone didn’t let their kid see the first two because of that. Not even the inclusion of Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson and Wesley Snipes as well as a bunch young people (the less said about Kelsey Grammar the better) could make up for this series’ diminishing returns. Look for a fourth one to show up directly on cable if at all.

YOU’RE BETTER OFF KILLING FOR A BETTER WRITER
Sin City: A Dame To Kill For opens at number eight and I don’t know why I went to see this given I’ve never been a fan of the Sin City series or Frank Miller or even the first film. Oh, I know why: Eva Green. She was the best thing about 300: Rise of an Empire and she’s the best thing about this piece of crap. Like The Expendables there was a “gimmick” to get people in to see it. In this case it was visually mimicking Frank Miller’s artistic style, but like The Expendables, once that was done you still had to make a movie worth seeing and given Miller’s bleak, cynical, misogynist, derivative books aren’t even worth reading, that they didn’t make a good film is not surprising. It’s also not surprising that like the Expendables sequel this sequel underperformed as well. People are aware there’s nothing beneath the surface…and the surface gets old fast. Eva Green, however, is a film noir movie waiting to happen. Her raspy voice and intense look make her a natural for a femme fatale that a knight in tarnished armor would risk all to save, even though he knows she’s lying to him the whole time. Also look for any further sequels to show up directly on cable and honestly it would work better as series of half hour episodes. Too short to grow weary of the bleakness and style and realize there’s not much else there.

THE END
A Hundred Foot Journey is down to number nine followed by Into The Storm closing out the top ten at number ten.

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