Showing posts with label Movies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Movies. Show all posts

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Idris Elba is Allergic to Horses


I had no idea people could be allergic to horses:

Idris Elba trained to ride horses to get into character as an estranged father in Concrete Cowboys — despite being allergic to the animals.

 "In defense, I'm allergic to horses, OK. I couldn't see what I was doing, I couldn't breathe," Elba said as fellow cast members ribbed him about his horseback skills during a press conference at the Toronto Film Festival on Sunday.

Elba and Stranger Things star Caleb McLaughlin star in writer-director Ricky Staub's drama Concrete Cowboy, which has its world premiere on Sunday night in Toronto and is produced by Lee Daniels.

The father and son drama, set in North Philadelphia, portrays a troubled teen, played by McLaughlin, torn between a life of crime and the urban-cowboy lifestyle of his estranged father (Elba).

While hardly a horse whisperer, The Suicide Squad star said he learned to ride horseback to ensure realism for his role as an urban cowboy. "It goes beyond just learning how to ride a horse. Very quickly, you have to have a bond with the horse," Elba recalled.

I mean, it makes sense because of the hair and all that, but I didn't know people could be allergic to larger animals like horses. I've never heard of having a horse allergy, so many that's what surprised me about this.

Idris Elba is one of those artists who is going to work his way through a problem, whether it's the accent, the dialogue, or whatever gets thrown in his way. There's a reason why he's so good at what he does and it comes down to a work ethic that is second to none.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

The Jesus Rolls


Everything about this film looks wonderful:
Riding Off Into the Sunset: The Jesus Rolls feels less like an update of Blier’s blithe style and more like the kind of comedic whatsits of Italian directors Dino Risi, Mario Monicelli, Pietro Germi, and Alberto Lattuada. But this isn’t the first time the Italian Turturro has dipped a toe in the sandbox of Italian film: His 2005 musical Romance and Cigarettes has sincere Germi-influenced anarchy in its DNA; his 2010 historical drama Passione is all about the songs and dances found in Naples; he’s adapted a play set in pre-industrial Rome (Illuminata); and he’s acted for Palme d’Or winning Italian director Nanni Moretti among others of his fellow countrymen. 
That cultural affection is all over this film. Turturro manages to make upstate New York look like the Italian countryside, the dance breaks and wine on every table are snagged from a midcentury Italian romp, and the film liberally breathes between the gags. Scenes of Turturro and Cannavale riding innumerable trains to flee police are downright soothing, as is an extended detour at a beach house. This is a movie all about the weird pleasures of hanging out with friends who never say no to sensation, and the only time the fun threatens to come to an end are when they get close to death, which, thanks to the sweet and mournful tone, feels almost welcome.
It may not be the film you want, and there might only be a handful of super heroes in it, but this is the film America needs right now.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Community


This is great news:
The return of hit sitcom Community is looking much more likely now, as cast member Alison Brie has taken to Reddit to reveal discussions around a potential film are ongoing. 
Brie played Annie Edison in all six seasons of the NBC comedy, which told the story of an eclectic group of students at a community college in the fictional town of Greendale, Colorado. Now, five years after the final episodes aired, Brie has commented on continued fan speculation about a movie. 
Asked whether there was “any news about the Community movie” during a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) Q&A session, Brie responded: “[I’ve] actually got an interesting call about it this week…stay tuned…”
I'm not a purist, but I want Dan Harmon to run this thing if it happens. I want Paget Brewster and Keith David to be a part of it, too. I will mourn Leonard, of course because Richard Erdman was pitch perfect every chance he got to deliver a line.

If, for some reason, it does not involve Chevy Chase, I am not going to be upset.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

You Were Never Going to be Happy


I won't properly review The Rise of Skywalker here, nor will I spoil anything for you. I will say this--American cinema is in bad, bad shape.

My overall, general reaction to this film is that it typifies the need to please everyone, especially foreign film markets, without having any core beliefs present in the actual film or story. This is a summer movie, released at Christmas, that should be taken as a fun ride through a world that is already familiar. If you take a step back and look at the Lucas films (the original three), the prequels, and the JJ Abrams series (Rian Johnson's lone contribution is meaningless here) as something to watch when nothing is on, they're fine.

Really, you could turn Brendan Fraser's Mummy movies into the "new" Star Wars and not miss a beat as long as you don't bring JJ Abrams in to ruin everything.  Neither are cinema. They're intended to be entertainment, and there's nothing wrong with that and there's no need to be snobbish about it. The fact is, they work on many levels. But they are not "elite" storytelling, nor are they as important as they are made out to be. In fact, they're just simple, enjoyable films that provide a lot of visual excitement. They are not films where adults speak to one another. They are films where adults escape from reality and shoot things that you don't mind seeing killed.

Here's my overall problem with that. Every attempt to make that excitement happen comes with a suspension of disbelief that gets old after a while. There's only so much you can take. And these films overload you with things that seem to be about marketing toys than they are about story telling.

Overhyped kiddie movies that are designed to appeal to teenagers in China? Yeah, I would agree with that. We make far too much of that crap right now. It's choking out actual creativity, little by little. Star Wars was supposed to revolutionize things. It did so visually, but did not improve story telling at all.

There's a really good story embedded here, and some day, someone will reboot that story and focus on it in a way that will really enhance it for an audience that, I hope, will be ready to experience it. There are hours and hours of performances from great actors that stumbles on dialogue that was added as an afterthought. Is there a single Star Wars screenplay that doesn't read like absolute shit? Honestly, with all of the writers in the world, you couldn't find someone to make the script work? Ever? And, yes, I remember the work Lawrence Kasdan did on the original films. Even he couldn't fully shine the turd.

You have talented actors in every scene, and some of the moments really shine. As a whole, there's not much for them to do except adapt to things that bounce around on a sound stage. There's very little acting between people, but, when there are real conversations, they are brief and forgotten on the next amusement ride through the green screen world that appears, as if by magic, and right on cue.

Star Wars was always more enjoyable as a book, for me, than it was as a film. I can remember reading the original movie tie-in books, as well as Splinter of the Mind's Eye and the series of canonical books that were released in the 1990s. This was always escapism for me, and I like that sort of thing. In the hands of skilled writers, the story is far more enjoyable than in the hands of film makers who are pressured on all sides to make something everyone will like that is full of things everyone will buy that won't offend everyone who lives in a part of the world that hates originality and rebellion.

Having said all of this, Rogue One is still the only decent Star Wars movie. I will welcome your agreement.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Gaslight




Oh, does this represent what’s happening in America right now? What’s been happening for the last several years? I just thought it was appropriate.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

This is the Smartest Move Yet


No one is more deserving of a second chance than James Gunn, who shouldn’t even have been fired from his job because alt-right trolls shouldn’t be getting anyone fired, dammit.

Warner Bros. have reportedly hired former Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn following his departure from the franchise.


Gunn is a proven commodity. He took the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise into the nether reaches and actually made films worth watching. They aren’t exactly my thing, but the heart and soul of these movies resides in the right place, and a weirdo like Gunn being given a second chance is a good thing. Yes, he said horrible things. He has paid the price for that and he deserves a shot.
From a business perspective, hiring him to make a Suicide Squad movie is a brilliant way to check the unstoppable growth of Marvel Inc.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Slumming With Another Star Wars Movie




Given all of the nonsense and negativity that surrounds starring in a Star Wars movie, this is kind of a surprise:

Keri Russell is headed to a galaxy far, far away.

Sources tell Variety that the “Felicity” alum is in early talks to join J.J. Abrams’ “Star Wars: Episode IX,” which Abrams is writing and directing. Russell and Abrams last collaborated on 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”

The role calls for action-heavy fight scenes. Russell has shown her ability to perform tough stunts in projects like FX’s “The Americans,” “Mission: Impossible,” and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.”

Abrams and Lucasfilm execs met with several actresses for the role in the past two months and settled on Russell right before the Fourth of July holiday. Abrams will likely cast two more actors by the time the film begins production at the end of the month. Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver are all expected to return.

I hope they give Russell something interesting to do, and I hope it's more along the lines of what they had Laura Dern do the last time they put a female character in their little money-making thing.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Wakanda




If you plan on seeing the movie Black Panther this weekend, try to remember that one of the central arguments made by the Trump regime is that people from Africa shouldn't come to this country because they might bring their "shithole" countries with them.

How is it that no one has asked Trump if he thinks Wakanda is a real country? I still haven't figured that out yet.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Milana Vayntrub is Squirrel Girl




I have no idea what this means because I thought Anna Kendrick was going to be Squirrel Girl:

Milana Vayntrub ('This Is Us') and Derek Theler ('Baby Daddy') lead the ensemble cast of the straight-to-series Freeform comedy.

Three months after being picked up straight to series by Freeform, Marvel's New Warriors has found its cast.

Milana Vayntrub (This Is Us) has landed the breakout role of Squirrel Girl, while Baby Daddy grad Derek Theler will stay in business with Freeform after landing the role of Mister Immortal in Marvel's first live-action scripted comedy.

The duo lead the ensemble cast in the 10-episode series about six young people learning to cope with their abilities in a world where bad guys can be as terrifying as bad dates. Joining Vayntrub and Theler are Jeremy Tardy as Night Thrasher, Calum Worthy as Speedball, Matthew Moy as Microbe and Kate Comer as Debrii.

Sounds like something I would go see.















Monday, January 9, 2017

Tom Hardy is the New Mad Max




I will always have a special place in my heart for the second Mad Max film, The Road Warrior. I think it was the best of the original trilogy and stands apart as one of the greatest dystopian films ever made.

Having said that, it would be foolish not to keep Tom Hardy in mind as the "new" Mad Max and it wouldn't be out of the question to make a new version of that original classic:

It's pretty much undeniable that the gritty, epic Mad Max is a masterpiece, certainly in part because of Tom Hardy's incredible acting. Now, it looks as though there will be Mad Max sequels coming, and Hardy says he'd be down.
When TheWrap asked Hardy about whether Mad Max sequels would be happening, he replied, "Yeah I believe so! I don't know when that starts, but I believe that's in the books. There's a couple of those floating around. I'm waiting for the call to come. It was so good, man."

I thought there were excellent characters in The Road Warrior, and I think it could be expanded for a modern re-telling.  That's not to say that a completely new and updated original movie wouldn't be welcome, either. But if you were going to remake something, you could do a lot worse.













Monday, December 22, 2014

None of These Clowns Are Worth the Attention




At some point, the trolling has to stop:

North Korea threatens to 'blow up' the White House after claiming to find 'clear evidence' that the GOVERNMENT was behind controversial Sony film The Interview

It now looks more like an inside job at Sony Pictures than it does anything else. And it looks to me like the extra attention granted to all three parties--Kim Jong Un, James Franco, and Seth Rogen--is about as shopworn as using a ticking time bomb as a plot device.

In a world...where things actually mattered...nobody would be talking about any of them. Ever.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

This is Why We Can Invade Iraq Again


All someone needs to do is figure out how to blame the hacking of Sony on the Iraqis.

That's it.

Once we do that, we have the case for war. We can invade. We can go break shit. We can own that country all over again.

The problem is, these hacks probably come from the Chinese, who are receiving some hard currency or some other form of graft from North Korea and we can't invade those countries. But, anyone threatening another 9/11 falls under the new American doctrine which allows for tearing up old agreements.

Seriously, though. Threatening another 9/11 isn't cool. Someone is going to overreact to this and we may well end up with a sequel to this movie. Killing Vladimir Putin would make a great film, but he'd probably just kick Franco's ass.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Sacha Baron Cohen's Sad Decline Into Poorly Imagined Spoofs




Rather than come up with something imaginative, original, and daring, why not make another James Bond spoof?

This is what Sacha Baron Cohen is reduced to--spoofing something that has been spoofed to the point where no one cares anymore. They're going to make a fourth Austin Powers movie, and even that will have more going for it than this project. To date, I'm not aware of any indication where being boring and predictable works, but maybe Cohen has decided to chase some of the money that Adam Sandler and Larry the Cable Guy are leaving on the table these days.