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Showing posts from August, 2016

Summer 2016: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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In hindsight, this wasn't the best summer we've ever had. While we've had some good films, we've also had a lot of disappointments. Last summer had so many giant, awesome blockbusters (like Mad Max: Fury Road, Jurassic World, Mission: Impossible- Rogue Nation) that maybe our expectations were a bit too high going into this summer. Because we didn't get that level of quality in our blockbusters this year. And actually, it was the smaller films that came out this summer that turned out to be the good ones. So as we head into the fall, it's time to reflect on this past summer, and weigh the good with the bad with the ugly. 
The Good:

2016 was not necessarily the best year for the big summer blockbusters. Many that have come out have been disappointing or just plain bad. But it would be a crime not to mention the few blockbusters that were actually good. Captain America: Civil War (read our review here) may end up being one of my favorite movies of the year. It del…

First Trailer for Manchester by the Sea

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I've actually known about Manchester by the Sea for a while. One of my friends auditioned for a role in it a couple years back. I even got to read a page of the script for it. He didn't get the role, but the movie has been on my radar ever since. I've been following it as it's gone through production the past couple years. So I've been anxious to see a trailer for this film for a while now. And I've especially wanted to see one since it's been getting such great buzz. Critics have loved this movie, and it's being looked at as one of the serious Oscar contenders. So of course I'm going to be excited to see a trailer for this film. And now we have our first trailer. 
This is a really good trailer. It gives you small taste of the story, and it's jam-packed with spotlighting the performances. Casey Affleck looks phenomenal, and may be looking at a Best Lead Actor nomination this year. Michelle Williams also looks great, and could be leading her cat…

Ben Affleck Reveals Deathstroke May Be an Upcoming DC Villain

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Ever since this incarnation of the Caped Crusader won fans over in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, the question of what villain Batman will fight in his upcoming solo film has been prevalent. While Dawn of Justice itself wasn't the best, Batman was undoubtedly the best part of it, and fans have been waiting to hear news about the solo film, being written and directed by Ben Affleck himself. But regardless of story or supporting characters or anything like that, people have wanted to know who Batman will be facing. And now, Affleck may have added some fuel to conversation, with a possible candidate.
Affleck posted on his social media accounts a video of a man dressed as the DC villain Deathstroke. The video is featured above which you can view for yourself. It shows Deathstroke walking around, and the camera pulls out revealing the video to be on a camera monitor, displaying what is being filmed on set. This adds a lot of question as to where Deathstroke will be used. Right n…

Hell or High Water SPOILER-FREE Review

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I've been really looking forward to seeing Hell or High Water. I wasn't first-in-line excited, but I was very interested in it. Chris Pine is shaping up to be a very capable actor, and Ben Foster and Jeff Bridges are both tremendous talents. Plus, the idea of a plot centered around two bank robbers in Texas sounded like it could be a fascinating drama. So I went into this movie with high expectations, especially after it got a 98% on Rotten Tomatoes. A couple of my friends saw the movie before me, and were raving about it, so maybe that skewed my anticipation for the film and put it unrealistically high, because I was thinking this could end up being one of my favorites of the year. And in short, it isn't, though it is really good. Hell or High Water proves itself to be a very competent drama, even if it doesn't meet the expectations (unfairly) put on it.
Two Texas brothers, Toby (Pine) and Tanner Howard (Foster) rob banks in order to gain money for a better reason th…

Beauty and the Beast- New Image Reveals Lumiere and Cogsworth

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While Disney hasn't necessarily been on a roll with their live action adaptations of their popular animated movies, 2016 has certainly been a good year. April's The Jungle Book was fantastic, and this past month saw Pete's Dragon, which was good on its own merits (you can read our review here). So with 2016 being a good year for these adaptations, it makes one more hopeful looking into the future, especially for next year's Beauty and the Beast. I have been excited for this movie from the beginning. There's a lot of possibilities with turning it into a live action film, and the cast is remarkable. This movie has a lot of potential, and I'm really excited for it. And now we have a new image from the movie, giving us a look at the style of the character design.
A picture has been released, revealing Lumiere (Ewan McGreggor) and Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), which you can view below. 

I surprisingly like it. At first I was thrown off, but then I realized that having …

Director Doug Liman Leaves Gambit to Helm Justice League Dark

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Gambit has been in limbo for a very long time. A long time ago, it was scheduled to come out this year, but that obviously never happened. Producer Simon Kinberg has continuously said the project isn't dead, but rather they are trying to fine-tune the script to make it the best they could. And Channing Tatum is still working on his Cajun accent. Because apparently it takes several years to learn an accent. Regardless, they have been saying that Gambit is still happening, with Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman set to helm the film. But it seems Fox was taking too long to get Gambit up off the ground, because Liman has left the project and has now joined the other side.
It is being reported that Liman has not only left Gambit, but has signed on to direct DC's Justice League Dark. No, this is not the Justice League with Superman or Batman, but rather a more obscure team of supernatural characters and monsters, such as Constantine, Deadman and Swamp Thing. Not only is it intere…

Don't Breathe SPOILER-FREE Review

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I have been really excited to see Don't Breathe. While the trailers were good but not great, the buzz surrounding the film has been outstanding. People have been raving about this movie, And I just have to say that this has been a great year for horror movies. We've had more good than bad, and that's really saying something. The Conjuring 2 was really good. Lights Out was good. And now we have Don't Breathe. Could it add its name to the list of quality horror movies? Could it top it? These were all questions I had going into my screening of the film. With an actor like Stephen Lang at the center of this movie, along with a fascinating premise, I thought this had all the makings to be a fantastic horror flick. And it is for the most part. Don't Breathe is a really good, tension-filled horror thriller, even if it doesn't propel itself into becoming great.
Three low key house burglars discover a blind man (Lang) living in his house with over $300,000 from a settl…

Joshy SPOILER-FREE Review

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Seeing Joshy was a very last minute decision for me. I knew nothing about it. I never say a trailer. No posters. Nothing. I had never even heard of it. I honestly thought it was a fake movie when my friend first told me about it. But he really wanted to go see it, so I decided I'd just go with him. I can't say I had any expectations for it. I didn't want it to suck. That's about it. That was my only criteria. I just wanted to be entertained for an hour and a half. And I can honestly say Joshy did the trick. This film works well as a comedy, but has something not a lot of comedies have, which is an emotional core and relatable characters. 
After suffering a terrible tragedy in his life, Joshy (Thomas Middleditch) is brought out to a wood cabin by his friends in order to cheer him up, and try to get him back on track. But while they're out there, they all individually discover and work on their own problems. 

This is a very non-traditional comedy. It doesn't fol…

Kubo and the Two Strings SPOILER-FREE Review

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For a while, I wasn't really interested in seeing Kubo and the Two Strings. The trailers weren't very gripping to me. I've just never gotten into stop motion animation. Maybe it's wrong of me to assume without having seen any of this studio's previous films like ParaNorman or Coraline. The only stop motion I had seen were movies like Chicken Run and Wallace & Gromit, and as a kid I think the animation freaked me out more than anything. So maybe I was just being ignorant, but I didn't have much interest in seeing Kubo. But hey, it got a 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, so it had to be somewhat decent, right? So I decided to go and check it out. And I'm really glad I did, because this is a fantastic movie. Kubo gives us a surprisingly adult story filled with great fantasy action and a powerful message about dealing with death and grief.  
Kubo (Art Parkinson) is a young storyteller who is in hiding from his wicked grandfather, the Moon King (Ralph Fiennes), and h…

Blood Father SPOILER-FREE Review

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I was actually really looking forward to seeing Blood Father. I hadn't heard of it before a week ago. I never saw a trailer. I just heard from my friend that he saw it and really liked it. Plus it got really good reviews. So I made sure I took time out of my day to go and see it. My theater was empty except for one other person, and it just made it a better experience. Even though I was really excited for the movie, I knew practically nothing about it. I didn't know the plot. I didn't know really anything about it. And I find the less I know about a movie going into the screening, the more rich the experience is. Ultimately, I really enjoyed Blood Father. It works as a great callback to the old fashioned R-rated action flick, but with a lot more depth and emotion to it.
Link (Mel Gibson) is on parole and works as a tattoo artist. He lives a pretty sh*tty life, when he gets a call from his estranged daughter, Lydia (Erin Moriarty), that she is in trouble and needs his help…

Sausage Party- Seth Rogen Talks the Potential Sequel

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Sausage Party may end up being one of the most original films of the year. It set a standard for R-rated animated films, as well as giving us a Pixar-style tale of the perspective of food. You can read our full review here. But since the movie has come out, a lot of talk has gone on about whether there will be a sequel. It mostly depends upon how much the movie ends up making at the box office, but just from looking at the opening weekend numbers, the possibility is definitely in sight. One of the minds behind the film and the lead voice actor, Seth Rogen, has said that he wants to make more films in the series, as well as other R-rated animated franchises. But as to how they will follow up Sausage Party, Rogen has a few ideas.
Rogen talked about his ideas in a recent interview. There will be spoilers for Sausage Party for the rest of the article, so if you haven't seen the film yet, go see it then read the rest of this article. In the interview, on the prospect of a sequel, Rogen…

Vin Diesel Confirms the Guardians of the Galaxy Will Appear in Avengers: Infinity War

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It wasn't too long ago that the announced two-part Marvel event Avengers: Infinity War Part One and Two was confirmed to now be two separate films. The 2018 release, Part One, is now just Avengers: Infinity War and the 2019 release, formerly Part Two, is now an untitled Avengers 4. But back when the saga was two parts, it was highly expected that the cast of Guardians of the Galaxy would appear in one of the two films. But with the downsizing to one movie, the gang's inclusion went into question. Furthermore adding to the idea that the Guardians may not appear was the continued dodging of a definitive answer by Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 director James Gunn, along with his persistence that the sequel would further isolate itself in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 
However, now it seems that the Guardians have been confirmed for Infinity War, by the voice of Guardians member Groot, Vin Diesel. In a recent interview, Diesel said: "What's gonna be surreal is that (Gua…

Pete's Dragon SPOILER-FREE Review

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Pete's Dragon is a film that I didn't really have any expectations for. I don't think I even saw a trailer. To me, it was just another Disney movie. If I saw the original Pete's Dragon from back in the late 70's, then I don't remember it. So it's not really a story that's pinnacle, or ingrained in my childhood. It's just a movie about a big green dragon and, hey, I like dragons. Dragons are cool. I guess I'll go see Pete's Dragon. But the supporting cast did stand out to me. Robert Redford, Bryce Dallas Howard, Karl Urban, Wes Bentley-- these are strong and fantastic actors, and I was really hopeful that their inclusion in the film would elevate the movie. But walking away from the film, I liked it for a whole different reason. The supporting cast is fine(ish), but its the dynamic between Pete (Oakes Fegley) and his dragon that really stole the movie for me. 
After surviving a deadly car accident, Pete (Fegley) is stuck in the woods, where h…

First Trailer for Arrival

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I remember hearing about this film awhile ago. While the premise of aliens coming to earth and humans having to communicate them before time runs out is a worn-out premise, the fact that is was directed by Denis Villeneuve, who directed Prisoners, was the main attraction. I loved Prisoners, and thought it was a very compelling mystery with excellent performances. Also, the main cast is excellent. Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner and Forest Whitaker are all tremendous actors, so it was really the talent behind the film rather than the film itself that caught my interest. So I was looking forward to seeing a trailer for Arrival, so that I could really get excited for the film. Mainly, I was looking for what sets this film apart from others that have the same premise. What makes this movie unique? Well, now we have our first trailer for the film.
The performances all look good, which was something I was expecting. But I never saw what made this film different. I couldn't find the uniqueness…

Sausage Party SPOILER-FREE Review

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Sausage Party may just take the prize for best trailer of the year, because back when the first redband trailer came out for this movie, it was absolutely genius. It was initially set up as a Pixar kind of movie, and then quickly changed into an R-rated horror movie, with anthropomorphic food being ripped in half, skinned, sliced and diced, and more. It was a perfectly edited trailer, and really put expectations for the film through the roof. Seth Rogen and his gang have been on a roll with their comedies, knocking it out of the park almost every time. So a movie about food discovering the truth about what happens when they leave the supermarket seemed like a brilliant film for them to tackle. I can't stress how high my expectations were, but I knew I would be disappointed to some extent. It wasn't going to be a perfect film. So I went in super excited, but knowing it wouldn't meet my expectations. And it didn't. Sausage Party is a funny and enjoyable movie, but it jus…