Archive for August, 2003

Starting strong, finishing weak

We’ve all done it. We go and stand in line for a sequel to a film because the first one or two were so darn good. The curtain goes up, and BANG! The shotgun of sobering disappointment shoots us right between the eyes. So, lets take a few minutes and review what I submit are the top 10 best/worst film series that started strong but finished pain stakingly weak.

1) The Highlander
I feel my blood starting to boil just thinking about this one. The original Highlander movie with Christopher Lambert to this day is on my top 5 films of all time list. I loved it, and continue to believe it is one of the most truly original films I’ve ever seen. This love makes my hatred for what came next all the more intense. The second Highlander ranks second on my worst films of all time list (right behind Battlefield Earth). What do you mean the immortals are actually all intergalactic Alien convicts whose “punishment” is immortality on earth? Mom, someone’s been smoking the Cherios again! It’s no wonder the 3rd and 4th films as well as the television series all pretend that the 2nd film never happened and never make ANY reference to it at all. I’ve tried on several occasions to drive a tea spoon into my temple to dig the horrific memory of that suck ass movie out of my head. Still no luck, I’ll keep you informed.

2) Batman
The first film with Mike Keaton was great. Period. The following films were never as good as the first, but they held their own and the role of Batman was becoming a Hollywood institution. Who’s next at “Bat” was always the question. Then, on a dark day in film history the hideous movie with Clooney and Arnold came out and the series was DOA. This film was so bad that it killed not only the Batman series, but the whole Superhero genre of films until X-Men came out 4 years later.

3) Police Academy
I laughed myself sick when the original came out. It was just a fun silly comedy in the stylings of Animal House. Then, over the next 6 films it slowly degraded in quality to pathetic sitcom status. Ah, the Police Academy films are truly the living definition of “Direct-To-Video”.

4) Short Circuit
Ok, some may argue that the first Short Circuit wasn√¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t all that good, and really it wasn’t. BUT, everyone was taken with Johnny 5 when it first came out. It was endearing in it√¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s own kind of way and scored some box office success. But man did it go downhill from that! Johnny 5 in the big city with his wacky adventures. Good grief.

5) Friday the 13th
File this one under the category of “Ok, enoughs enough!” We get it. Jason is gonna kill some people and they can’t do a thing about. Yes, we’ve seen it already. The original 13th was a classic, 2 and 3 were pretty novel too, but come on! Jason takes Manhattan?!?! Jason in space? Who thinks this crap up and gets paid for it?

6) Nightmare on Elm Street
Like the Friday the 13th series, the original Nightmare on Elm Street is a true horror classic and carried all the elements that a great scare flick should. There had to be a sequel, and it was pretty good, but like a battered used car your grandfather handed down to you, this series was just driven into the ground.

7) Planet of the Apes
No, I’m not talking about the Marky Marky and his Funky Monkey Bunch version. I√¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢m talking about the TRUE Charlton Heston original masterpiece. I still remember the first time that I saw it and they found the Statue of Liberty at the end! AWSOME! But what the hell happened after that? I think they made like 56 films, and still counting. They eventually got so ridiculous that Heston actually laughed at producers who wanted him to appear in another one and had them thrown out of his house. Good move.

8) Superman
The first Christopher Reeves installment of Superman to this day remains as the unofficial standard for superhero genre films. The second (in my personal opinion) was even better than the first (I just found General Zod so darn lovable!). But what happened after that is a bigger mystery than missing socks in the dryer. Superman battles a super computer built by the evil genius Richard Pryor? Then, to top it off, Superman battles Nuclear Man? Wow those 2 sucked.

9) Analyze This
Easily one of the top 10 comedies over the last 5 years. Billy Crystal and Robert DeNero were just wonderful. There was no reason to expect anything less when the sequel titled Analyze That came out. Well, I guess there was reason. A lot of it. Analyze That was a painful film to watch. Not only do you have to deal with a poor movie, you also have to deal with the huge disillusionment from your high expectations at the same time. Bad bad bad movie.

10) Speed
Yes it was brainless and a little goofy, but you had to admit that the first Speed film was a lot of fun. Even Neo Reeves looked like he fit in. Then, some studio rocket scientist had the idea “Hey, lets do another one, without Neo, only its on a boat√¢‚Ǩ¬¶ no, not a boat, a CRUISE SHIP! Yeah! Everyone will LOVE IT!” No we won’t. And we didn’t. This movie sucked.

Dishonorable Mention goes to:
Iron Eagle

Agree with my list? Disagree with it? Are there others I should have included? Let me know in the comments section.

3 films stand out in a swamp of suckiness

Although its still summer, this is a horrible time of year for films. As I look down the list of movies being released soon, almost nothing excites me. Dickie Roberts looks pathetic. The Order is a joke. Cabin Fever, maybe. Cold Creek Manor looks like it might surprise us, but the marketing isn’t doing a good enough job to get me in line for it. Matchstick Men like many of Nick Cage’s film is hit or miss. The list of yawners goes on and on. Yet, in the midst of the mediocrity 3 films have grabbed my attention. Once Upon a Time in Mexico has one of the best trailers I’ve seen for a film in a long time. For Antonio’s sake, I hope the actual film is at least half as good, his career needs a boost. Underworld has me drooling at the mouth! Vampires vs. Werewolves! This is going to make Freddy vs. Jason (which was boring) look like the Cabbage Patch Kids vs. My Pretty Pony. The third on my list is Jeepers Creepers 2. The origional Jeepers Creepers was a gem that most people missed out on. To this day it is still my favorite 80’s style horror film of all time.

So what films are you looking forward to in the next couple of months?

Official Spiderman 2 website up and running

The officail site for Spiderman 2 is now online and its looking pretty good. There are a lot of features the die hard fans will enjoy and enough boom that will keep the marginal fans attention. There’s also a cool pic of Doc Oc on the front thats been circulating around the web for a while. Personally, the site seems to have a Lord of the Rings.Net feel to it. Take a look and see what you think

The Matrix vs. The Matrix:

The Matrix vs. The Matrix: An Oscar Showdown?
An interesting situation is developing over at WB that I hadn’t really taken into consideration. A great little article at The Gate elaborates:

When it comes to filmmaking - nothing has made the Oscar race stranger than the recent trend of filming a series of movies back-to-back. One example would be The Lord of the Rings series, but an even bigger challenge comes when you look at four films that will all likely be released in 2003. The Matrix: Reloaded, The Matrix: Revolutions, Kill Bill Vol. 1, and Kill Bill Vol. 2. What exactly should the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences do with multiple films that could conceivably be called one film, split in to two parts?

Well, according to the Academy, it doesn’t matter how many films you shoot at once, when they’re released, or how you market them - if the films are split into two parts, and obviously released separately, then they’re separate films that will have to be submitted separately to the Academy.

Of course, if you’re a company trying to make an impact at the Oscars (which have been moved earlier in the year, starting in 2004, to February 29th) - the concept might not be as easy as all that. Warner Bros., the company behind the Matrix films, obviously doesn’t want to have to pit the second and third parts of the film against each other - mainly because that could mean one of the films won’t even get a nomination. That’s because the Matrix films stand the best chance in the technical categories, which often are heavily fought over and don’t always even get the maximum nominations of five films.

You can read the entire Gate article by clicking here.

If a choice has to be made by WB of one or the other, I’d think they’d go with Revolutions. However, I also think the point is moot since Return Of The King will most likely sweep up all the Tech awards in February. Time will tell.

Not really news, but…

Not really news, but…

Although this information has been out for awhile, here’s a little tidbit about prequels for Bubba Hotep:

This movie will be a prequel to 2003’s Bubba Ho-Tep, depicting Elvis Presley’s earlier adventures before he ended up in an elderly citizen’s home in west Texas. This project’s title was first revealed in the end credits of Bubba Ho-Tep, and then elaborated upon in February, 2003 during a Q & A with star Bruce Campbell and director Don Coscarelli. At the same event, they also revealed that a third movie may be called ‘Bubba Sasquatch’ and depict Elvis Presley adventures in the north woods, helping someone fight off a pack of bloodthirsty Bigfoots (Bigfeet?).

You can read the whole story here.

Death To Smoochy

Death To Smoochy - A much maligned piece of brilliance
Every once in a while a film comes out that is universally slammed by the critics. When Death To Smoochy came out, I remember how surprised I was to hear the utter distain the critics had for the film, especially when you consider the cast. Robin Williams, Edward Norton, Danny Devitto and so on. But from top to bottom the reviews were horrible. Horrible enough to keep me away from the theater and buying a ticket. For example, good ol Roger Ebert said:

In all the annals of the movies, few films have been this odd, inexplicable and unpleasant

A year later a friend brought the DVD over. We all moaned since we heard the film was horrible, but he rented it and the pizza was already here, so we put the film in. About 2 hours later we were still all in tears from the laughing.

I’m not going to hyperbolize and claim this is one of the greatest comedies of all time, but this is a very well made, well directed and most of all very well performed piece of work. Looking at the dark side of children’s entertainment and the seedy underworld of children’s charity organizations, this movie just catches you off guard every step of the way. My favorite line in the film was “You’ve gotta be careful of the Wishes of Light Foundation. They’re the most ruthless of all the charities”.

While this is not Robin Williams best film, I have to say that I have never seen him better in a comedy. His timing was always bang on the money, and his energy just sucks your eyes to the screen.

The DVD has some wonderful special features including some behind the scenes footage, outtakes, deleted scenes and even a short making of piece.

A little warning. While there is no nudity or sex in this film, there is a TON of swearing. Especially from Mr. Williams. Just so you’re prepared.

Overall, this is a great one to rent with a group of friends on a Thursday night. Great laughs, solid film and wonderful extra DVD stuff. For the life of me I can’t understand why so many of the critics hated this film so much. Then again, what do I know.

The Most Expensive DVD in the Universe. Tremors.

Okay granted, I’m sure there’s a more expensive one somewhere but folks, this really frazzles my butt.

I love Tremors. It’s a great movie. I have nearly every line downpat - Every cuss from Kevin Bacon to Michael Gross’ fantastic commentaries on his stockpile of military weapons. (That’s even a cool SENTENCE!) However, I can’t and WON’T enjoy this movie from the comfort of my own home because IT’S TOO BLEEDING EXPENSIVE. The SINGLE DVD!!!- not a 2, 3 or 4 disc set.. the SINGLE DVD is or 40, sometimes 50 bucks!!!!! WHAT IN SAM-BLAZES IS THAT?!?!

HMV - 44 - 49 bucks
Sunrise records - 45 bucks
Sam The Communist Record Man : 53 BUCKS!!

Does the dvd come with a cool poster? Free Friends? University Diplomas? No - It comes with JACK SQUAT! (Mind you, it does have a COUPLE actual special Features (see below). But folks, that’s all the bang your getting for your Half a C-Bill of money BEFORE taxes!!

Why is this DVD so expensive? Who can I write to so I can complain about this? Why can’t they over charge for something stupid like “Eddie and the Cruisers”?? I hope whoever’s trying to grab as much cash as they can knows the only reason I’ve never bought it, it’s because it’s so frickin unreasonable.

The DVD Features Scam. Or reasonable fascimile.

Okay. Dvd’s. Fascinating, right? So much more than VHS right? Well, don’t get excited…

I think there should be some sort of “standard” as to what a “feature” on a dvd is. Saying a dvd has a feature (even if there’s no real feature at all) gets used more than an aspiring actress who can’t say no.

Whoever the mental fart is that decided these were features needs a shot in the gums:
- Interactive Menus is not a feature. (Interactive Menus…. as opposed to WHAT? those Non-interactive ones? Oh Gee, thanks. Thanks for helping me spend my hard-earned buck via jamming it straight back up my chute.)
- The movie’s format ratio is NOT a feature. (I already bought the bloody movie, it had better be on there already - “Thanks for purchasing our over-priced movie - as a special bonus, you get — The Movie” - Ugh, idiots.)
- Chapter Selection isn’t a feature. (Giving me the option of jumping ahead, when I could technically jump ahead at 32x speed already shouldn’t be considered special. - Sure it’s HANDY, but quit telling me I’m lucky to have it. — If you didn’t include it, your dvd would suck)

Have you ever heard this sentence: “You’re hired, welcome aboard - as a new member of our employment staff, you’ll recieve a very special bonus of washroom breaks, and we’ll even try to cut back on the sexual harrassment” ? Probably not. However, I bet you the people who work at the DVD factory have.

Okay, granted, the picture i was using as an example, was from my dvd of Action Jackson - not a shiny example of cinema, no - actually it’s complete bung (expect for the fung-fu of Craig T. Nelson - wow, my hero) BUT it’s an example that’s repeated far too much. (its “Special Features” were: ‘Interactive Menus’) Anybody have these “empty dvds”? They drive me nuts and haunt my dreams that should normally be filled with various images of ladies and hot tubs full of warm jello.

As a side note I

As a side note
I noticed that we were getting some traffic to The Movie Blog from a link on a great little site called “The Internet Monk”. Anyway, on the page Michael Spencer has this wonderful quote at the top. I know it’s not movie related, but I just had to share it here:

“A good sermon should be like a woman’s skirt: short enough to arouse interest but long enough to cover the essentials.”
- Ronald Knox

Thanks to Michael for his kind words about The Movie Blog, and for a great site of his own.

And apparently, everybody stayed home

And apparently, everybody stayed home

Wow. Do you know how many landmarks were broken this past weekend?

You probably don’t know, because as it seems, you were doing something else.

1) Freddy vs. Jason - is the first horror movie to stay at number 1 for more than a week in — I can’t even remember. Probably Blair Witch in 99.
2) GET THIS - Gigli is no longer the biggest flop of the year. Lisa Kudrow and Damon Wayans movie, Marci X opened in 1200 theatres and made.. imagine this.. an untruthful 865,000 bucks! - Ouch. - Stingy, Stingy, Stingy in my Thingy, Thingy, Thingy.
3) All the top three films kept their spot. That doesn’t happen much.
4) The highest opening was only the number 5 spot — The Medallion.

I was buying a tv and watching Fubar at my house this weekend… So here’s the question: What were you doing? Anyone, anyone? Bueller?

The Lord of the Rings

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy to be shown in theaters this December
And, what’s this then? Could it be that we’ll be able to see the extended versions of Fellowship of the Ring and the Two Towers in theaters? Then, a marathon showing of all three? Have I died and gone to geek heaven?

Leading up to the December 17 release of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, the final film in Peter Jackson’s epic dramatic trilogy, New Line Cinema will release a limited number of 35mm prints of the Special Extended Editions of The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers in theaters across North America. The special screening series will culminate in an unprecedented marathon of back-to-back presentations of the Extended Editions followed by a special screening of The Return of the King. The announcement was made today by Rolf Mittweg, the studio’s president and chief operating officer, worldwide distribution and marketing.

From December 5 - 11, the studio will release 100-150 35mm prints of the Special Extended Edition of The Fellowship of the Ring in cities across the country. On December 12 - 15, these prints will be replaced with Special Extended Edition prints of The Two Towers. On Monday, December 8, and Monday, December 15, both films will be presented back-to-back. Then, on Tuesday, December 16, participating theaters will show a one-time-only marathon of both Extended Edition prints followed by an 11pm screening of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. The official opening of the film will commence at 12:01 AM on Wednesday, December 17, 2003.

Thanks to Solonor Rasreth via Blogcritics for the post

Surprise Surprise. Ashton Kutcher bombs

Surprise Surprise. Ashton Kutcher bombs at Box Office
Ashton Kutcher’s new film “My Boss’s Daughter” opened this weekend as a true Box Office disaster. Opening on over 2200 screens, Boss’s Daughter could only manage to pull in 5 million bucks. Good money says it doesn’t reach 10.

This shouldn’t surprise anybody. Ashton Kutcher is not an actor. He’s not a movie star. He’s a B grade sit-com regular, that’s it. How on earth this guy gets so much props from the pop-media had been a complete mystery to me. And yet, there he is on the cover of just about every magazine I see. Personally, I think this is proof that the “Mystic Order of Stone Cutters” really does exist and is pulling the strings or our little world. How else can one explain it?

Much like J Lo, Kutcher has achieved huge movie star status, without really doing anything that has earned him the title. The man is dating Demi Moore, and for that, every male on the planet should solute him and wish to be him… but they certainly aren’t paying money to go to a theater to see him.

Ashton is already signed up to appear in no less than 4 more films already in production/pre-production, and I’ll go on record right now and tell you that they will all 1) suck, and 2) make no money. There, my little rant for the day is now done. You may now return to your regularly scheduled lives.

Our Discussion Nemo thought this

Our Discussion
Nemo thought this up yesterday, but no one posted it.
Here’s a nifty thought:

Batman Vs. Daredevil

Your thoughts……(batman)……

Jurassic Park 4 File this

Jurassic Park 4
File this one under the heading of mixed feelings. I love the Jurassic Park series, but Jurassic Park 3 was an incredible let down. I’m not really sure how they can do a part 4. Ooooo… they get stranded on an island with dinosaurs… AGAIN. Haven’t we seen this before? But at the same time I don’t want to jump to conclusions, I mean who knows, maybe with the right idea and the right script new life can be breathed into the series. Signing up Keira Knightly is a good start.

It’s true! I didn’t think anybody knew about that! It was so amazing because I’ve been a big fan of the original film for years. Steven said he liked my work in Bend It Like Beckham and wanted to meet me. I think Sam Neill really pushed for me as well, ’cause we had worked together before on [BBC TV series] Doctor Zhivago. There were actually two roles in Jurassic Park IV Steven thought I might fit. First there was the granddaughter part, which wasn’t all that big a role, she was only in it at the beginning. The other part he was considering for me was substantially larger, but I won’t go into any details in case I make Steven angry (laughs). I truly don’t know if I’ll end up getting either part or not. The script is pretty much locked down, but I think they’re still working on final drafts at the moment. But just to be even considered by Steven Spielberg was a humbling honour.

Johnny Depp offered Willy Wonka

Johnny Depp offered Willy Wonka role

Johnny Depp has been offered the role of Willy Wonka in director Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, a Warner Bros. remake of Mel Stuart’s 1971 Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. This will be the third reteaming for Depp and Burton, who previously collaborated on Edward Scissorhands and Ed Wood. According to Variety, talks could potentially break down between the studio and Depp’s UTA reps, since the commercial success of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl gives the actor an upper hand in the negotiations. The adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic is being produced by Michael Siegel, who manages the interests of the author’s estate, and Plan B partners Brad Grey, Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. A script for the pic is in the works, but Warner Bros. has moved carefully over the years to prep the remake; Dahl adapted his novel for the original Willy Wonka movie but wasn’t content with the result.

GRINDing to a complete halt

GRINDing to a complete halt
In the midst of the great blackout, it seems that most people “forgot” to buy their tickets for the epic skateboarding adventure Grind. The film chronicles a group of young skaters following their favorite skater star on his tour in an attempt to get noticed and become skater stars themselves. What?!?! Didn’t that description stir you into an overwhelming frenzy that leaves you NEEDING to see this film? No? Apparently nobody else did either. I mean come on! Whose idea was this?

Despite the fact that Grind opened in over 2200 theaters (200 more than Open Range did) it appears nobody noticed. Grind was only able to rake in a touch over $2 million on its opening weekend, basically guaranteeing it won’t even hit $8 million in total. WB has lost A LOT of money, and someone at WB is going to lose their jobs.

Pirates of the Caribbean 2

Pirates of the Caribbean 2 setting sail

Are You Looking for POTC 2 Auditions? You need to CLICK THIS.

A sequel is currently in the works for the biggest surprise hit of this summer. Pirates has already brought in about $250 million dollars at the box office and is still going strong. The film had its obvious weaknesses, but by the time the credits rolled I had to admit I was entertained. The picture was fun, lighthearted and was supported by decent visual effects.

Apparently Orlando Bloom , Keira Knightley and Johnny Depp have all been secured for the sequel.

Tuesday Top Ten Wow,

Tuesday Top Ten

Wow, I almost forgot all about the Tuesday Top Ten today. I shudder to think what it would mean to my public if I were to neglect my self-appointed duties, even for a day. If I know internet readers, and I think I do, you’d all turn on me like a pack of rabid wolves and demand more free entertainment on a dependable schedule. But, luckily for us both, I remembered and here I am to once again bring a ray of sunshine into an otherwise cold and gray life, if only for a little while.

Speaking of things that are cold and dark, I’d like to point out that I live in the small city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (that’s in Canada), where all of our movie theatres are small and old and we don’t even get every new release, and my two ‘friends’ who write this column with me live in the bustling metropolis of Toronto, which is a cultural mosaic blah blah blah. I wasn’t supposed to say this, but they caused the blackout by sticking pennies into as many electric sockets they could find. Plus I think they might of spilled some water onto a nuclear reactor. On purpose.

Ya like that, guys? If I wasn’t so amazingly poor right now thanks to textbooks and tuition, I could’ve gone and seen Freddy vs. Jason on Friday and written a plot synopsis right here, in my air-conditioned and fully lit house.

Okay, I promise never to mention that again.

I was going to do my top ten disaster movies, or something to do with blackouts or light, but I couldn’t think of 10 disaster movies that I like, so I guess we’ll just have to settle on something less topical.

So, for your reading pleasure, I present the Top Ten Movies that I have Never Seen but Probably Should

1. Life is Beautiful
Well, it won all those Oscars, and everybody seems to rave about it. Plus, it’s a pretty awesome premise. I have seen some Roberto Benigni movies before and enjoyed them, so that’s a good sign. All in all, I should really see this movie.

2. Shindler’s List
Yeah yeah, I know. No one can ever believe I haven’t seen this yet. If it makes you feel better, I have read the book, which means I’m smarter than someone who just saw the movie, but dumber than someone who saw the movie and read the book.

3. Adaptation.
This seems to be a hate it or love it kind of movie. People who know me seem to think I’d love it, and who’s going to argue with people who know me? Nobody, that’s who.

4. American Beauty
I have to see this at least once so that I can appear intelligent in conversations about film. If there’s one thing university has taught me, it’s how to make it sound like you know a lot more that you actually do. Here’s a tip: Watch one high end, intelligent film, and you can bluff your way through a good 15-60 minutes of conversation with a real film expert, depending how much actually talking you’re forced to do.

5. The Empire Strikes Back
My friends tell me that a lot of stuff in Return of the Jedi will make more sense if I see this first. For example: what’s the deal with that green guy on the swamp planet?

6. Glengarry Glen Ross
A classic with a cast like that. I really want to see this.

7. Gone With the Wind
I don’t really expect this movie to be any good, but I’m the kind of person who enjoys reading bad poetry from the 1300’s just to see the history of the modern novel. Like it or not, this movie has had a huge influence on film the world over.

8. Casablanca
See above, plus: Nazis!

9. Shichinin no samurai (The Seven Samurai)
Really, you could stick and film by Akira Kurosawa into this slot. Considering the influence this filmmaker has had, I really should check out his stuff.

10. Dog Day Afternoon
Yet another classic that I’ve never seen. This column is depressing me. Everyone leave, I want to be alone.

(psssst. one of these is a lie. See if you can figure out which one)

New/Newish Movies Ya Might Wanna

New/Newish Movies Ya Might Wanna See.

Well folks, don’t say we don’t look out for you. I spend a little too much time browsing through what’s coming up in movies, and I’ve selected a number of trailers that look quite promising. There’s no order here, these have just stood out in the trailers I’ve seen in the past hour or so.

Paycheck - It’s John Woo. Uma Thurman’s in it. Should I keep going?
Bubba Ho-Tep - If you don’t want to see this, you’re a fart.
Hidalgo - Viggo Mortensen. This actually looks like it could be pretty good. I’m surprised I haven’t even heard of it yet.
Passionada - Maybe it’s because it has a sub theme of “Women will notice you if you’re rich”, I dunno. Maybe I’m just bitter.
Cat in the Hat - Dr. Suess. Mike Myers. Shut Up.
Godsend - Creepy Movies = Good. Creepy movies with enigmas after cloning a dead person = Really Spiffy. Creepy movies with enigmas after cloning a dead person starring Rebecca Romijn-Stamos = Never leaving the theatre.
The Eye - This release is very limited, if it’s still available to see at all. If you can, see it see it see it see it………
Master and Commander - Russell Crowe might be playing the “leader” roles a lot, but I’ll hand it to them, despite the mainstreaminess, this looks pretty solid.
The Battle of Shaker Heights - For winning the Greenlight Project, (a “contest” spearheaded by Affleck and Damon where a “nobody”s script is chosen to make into a film) this movie has got a funky atmosphere and has a few snappy one-liners.. in the trailer anyway. Congrats to whoever wrote it.
The Rundown - I know I already mentioned it, and I know a movie with ‘The Rock’ may not blow wind up your skirt, but this trailer has me sold and then some.

From ‘the Passion’ to Luther

From ‘the Passion’ to Luther
I don’t know if one movie inspired the idea for the other, but knowing the story behind this, I’m actually surprised that no one has shot a movie about it yet. Click here for the trailer of “Luther”. At the very least, I would’ve figured that some Public Domain Bible Society with no money would’ve tried to make a 10 dollar rendition of it by now. It will be interesting to see what kind of a person Martin Luther is made out to be. I’d imagine that since he challenged the order of the church head on, they’ll make him out to be an ‘edgy’ rebel rather than a rebel in a single, serious matter. Oh well.. it would make for a better script. We’ll see how Hollywood’s words (well, this is independent, so not necessarily Hollywood, but you know what I mean) mess with Luther’s words.

Either way, all of the hype surrounding ‘the Passion’s Biblical theme, may in fact give this one a little boost at the box office.

Hot? Yes. Is Brittany Murphy

Hot? Yes. Is Brittany Murphy talented? No.
My first real exposure to Brittany Murphy was in the thriller Don’t Say A Word with Michael Douglas. The movie didn’t thrill, and one of the main reasons for the minor failure was Murphy being in a role that was just over her head. Audiences and critics just couldn’t buy her in the role. She has yet to really impress anybody.

Mark Caro of the Chicago Tribune pretty much sums up Murphy and her short comings as an actress in his review of her new film Uptown Girls opening today. Here’s an excerpt:

The true measure of a star may be her ability to transform pap into froth. Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock and Reese Witherspoon established their leading-lady credentials by elevating otherwise mundane material in “Pretty Woman,” “While You Were Sleeping” and “Legally Blonde.” The chirpy, button-pushing “Uptown Girls” requires a similar magic job from Brittany Murphy, but that trick isn’t up the young actress’s sleeve.

Murphy is an odd sort of starlet to begin with; she was elevated to “it girl” status more through her appearances on magazine covers than her performances in movies. She’s colorful as a side character (as in “Clueless” and “Girl, Interrupted”), with her wide raccoon eyes, runaway hair (usually bleached blonde) and lithe body that always seems a bit off balance. In truth, she usually seems a bit off balance; you watch anticipating which way she’ll teeter and who’ll catch her.

One of the key differences between Witherspoon and Murphy is that when Witherspoon plays a ditz, she’s a ditz in control. When Murphy plays a ditz, she’s just … ditzy. In “Uptown Girls” she’s like a puppy in traffic; you’re confident she’ll reach the curb but only because the cars are swerving, not because her moves are so deft.


Today’s Lesson It’s very tricky

Today’s Lesson

It’s very tricky trying to watch my movies with the power off.

Freddy vs. Jason. Too little

Freddy vs. Jason. Too little too late?
Ok I admit it. I’m looking forward to Freddy vs. Jason tomorrow. To be brutally honest I’m almost giddy. I’ve been waiting almost 15 years for this film. I remember as a kid talking with my friends about how cool it would be to see a movie where Freddy and Jason fight. And now hear we sit on the eve of the monumental event, and I can’t help but feel that the producers of this flick missed the boat by about 5 years.

What we see happening on the big screen right now is just a reflection of what television went through a few years ago. A stab at the nostalgic in an attempt to connect with the audience. For a while it seemed like every new show on TV stared an actor from a hit 80’s show. Nostalgia can be a powerful draw. Just look at how well Star Trek did when it first hit the theaters.

The problem for Freddy vs. Jason isn’t the idea. It’s a great idea! The problem is that this project should have been put to film in 1995 or earlier when it wasn’t so far removed from when the individual titles were successful. In 2003, the younger audience hasn’t ever seen a Freddy movie, they’re only exposure to Jason was in that horrible space movie of his last year and have no sense of connection or nostalgia with the characters. At the same time, most of us who were teenagers when Freddy and Jason ruled are now in our 30’s (I’m 31) and have outgrown them (except me obviously).

The same can be said for the on again/off again Aliens vs. Predator project. This is a film that really should have been made. Someone should go to jail for holding this movie up for so long. And although I personally still want to see it, the door of box office opportunity was closed on this one about 4 years ago.

Look for this film to have a decent opening weekend, after all it’s only opening against Uptown Girls, Grind and Open Range which will attract a totally different audience anyway. But I doubt it will make much at the box office overall since there just isn’t enough of us left who are interested in seeing it.

I expect to see a pretty fun movie tomorrow. The unfortunate part is that I think I’ll be watching it in a nearly empty theater. Too little too late. Time will tell, and I’ve been wrong before.

MY outcomes Ah, picking the

MY outcomes

Ah, picking the winners in imaginary fights. Every geeks pastime including sports geeks and book geeks. I enjoy this so much that I hereby decree Thursday to be imaginary matchup day. Every thursday, John, Dave or myself will post an imaginary matchup, and then the other two can make fun of him. I have discussed this with no-one, so we’ll see how it goes.

Okay, so I disagree with pretty much every call John made in that last post. Here’s my rundown of the battles he listed.

Rambo (Sylvester Stallone) vs. Major Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator)
How many invisible, super-strong, blaster-wielding, self-destructing aliens did Rambo take out again? Oh that’s right, none. Rambo wouldn’t see Dutch coming. KO in the first minute.

Edward Hyde (From The Leauge) vs. The Hulk
This would probably be a pretty good knockdown-dragout fight, but John’s right. Hyde has about as much chance as a baby seal at a polar bear convention.

Alien vs Predator
See, this is a tricky question. How many aliens? What guns does the Predator have. How many predators are there? How many of them have robotic exo-suits? Still, I’m going with Predator on this one also, if only because the last two alien movies have turned them into jokes.

DareDevil vs. Spiderman
See, I don’t even think this would be close. Spiderman has the edge over Daredevil in every category. Daredevil is in top physical form, but Spiderman has super strength, super agility, spider-sense and the ability to climb walls. Add his webbing to that, and Matt Murphy’s gonna be crying for his Momma when Pete’s done mopping the floor with him.

Jet Li (any character) vs. Jackie Chan (any character)
John and I actually had a conversation about this the other day. We disagreed. I won’t go into my full argument, but I think Jet Li would win unless there was a ladder or shopping cart in the room.

Axle Foley (Eddie Murphy) vs. John McClane (Bruce Willis)
Okay, I’m sorry, but John McClane would literally murder Axel Foley. He stabbed an icicle through a guys eye once, man! He walked on broken glass, blew up a 747, and has a bunch of snappy one liners. Axel’s just got synthesizer music and that laugh. Final score: John McClane is disqualified for shooting his opponent in the head.

Batman vs. Wolverine
Tough one. While I basically agree with everything John said, I’ve been a Batman fan for years, and I’ve yet to see him lose, despite that fact that pretty much all of his opponents have amazing powers. Batman is just plain smart, and I believe he’d figure out a way to stop the Wolverine. To back up my claims, I point to the story arc in which Batman fought the KGBeast. Batman could not defeat the Beast, and to do a horrible injustice to a really awesome story, leaves him trapped in a room down below the sewers, probably to die, though he somehow turns up later in prison.

Heavyweight Championship: Darth Vader vs. Superman
Wow, tough one. How resistant is Supes to force lightning? Does it count as magic, which Superman is vulnerable to? How resistant is Vader to heat vision and being punched in the head by someone who can lift buildings? I’m gonna go with Vader, because Superman just keeps sending him to prison, and Vader eventually builds a giant spacegoing superweapon and blows up his planet.

Let the main event begin

Let the main event begin
To commemorate the opening of Freddy vs Jason tomorrow, I thought it would be fun to imagine the outcome of a few other movie dream matches. Tell me what you think the results would be in the comments section below.

Rambo (Sylvester Stallone) vs. Major Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator)
Ok, on the surface this one looks like it would be pretty close. At first you may be tempted to give a slight nod to Dutch due to his superior size and strength. But in the end I think the pure combat experience of Rambo (Dutch’s experience was more secret missions) would give him the edge, especially is the fight took place in a jungle setting.
John’s Winner: John J. Rambo with a 9th Round K.O.

Edward Hyde (From The Leauge) vs. The Hulk
I know most of you are thinking this is an easy one, but keep in mind that the Edward Hyde from The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen is a MUCH larger, stronger and more powerful Hyde than the one in literature. Busting through concrete walls is nothing for this guy. Also, he’s much more intelligent than the Hulk is which could give him an edge. But in the end, the fact that The Hulk only gets larger and strong the angrier he gets pushes him way over the finish line. Theoretically speaking, we don’t know what the limit is to his power, so give this one to the Hulk.
John’s Winner: The Hulk with a 5th Round T.K.O

Alien vs Predator
This has been an on and off movie project for a while. Personally, I think this a pretty easy one to call. If Sigourney Weaver could take out a whole bunch of Aliens, but it took everything Arnold had to take down just one Predator, then I think the outcome is clear. The Predators are more intelligent, have superior technology and firepower, and may even be as physically strong as the Aliens.
John’s Winner: The Predators with a 2nd Round K.O.

DareDevil vs. Spiderman
Spidey sense vs. Radar sense. I actually think I saw a cartoon of DareDevil vs. Spiderman in the video store once. If you saw it, let me know what the outcome was. To be honest, I think this once would be a pretty even fight on almost all levels. However, the blindness factor would eventually kick in and Spiderman also has the edge when it come to pure strength. It would be close, but I’d give Spiderman an 7th round T.K.O.

Jet Li (any character) vs. Jackie Chan (any character)
I would give one of my kidneys to see them make this movie. These two guys are amazing to watch on the big screen (when they aren’t talking that is). Jet Li is younger than the aging Chan, but Jackie is just way too fast and SMOOTH. Not to mention, Jackie Chan is a big guy. Most people often overlook just how much big muscle he has packed on to that short frame of his. It would be close, and probably the most entertaining match on this list, but I give the edge to Jackie.
John’s Winner: Jackie Chan with a 9th Round T.K.O.

Axle Foley (Eddie Murphy) vs. John McClane (Bruce Willis)
Beverly Hill Cop against the Die Hard man. No one is going to like my prediction here. Although the Die Hard films are much better than the Beverly Hills Cop movies, I’d have to give the edge in this one to Axle Foley. Axle is younger, faster, a little more street and just in better shape than the often hung over McClane. So, give this one to Foley.
John’s Winner: Axle Foley with a 4th Round K.O.

Batman vs. Wolverine
This would be another great one. Personally, I think Batman would kick the crap out of Wolverine for all 10 rounds. But for arguments sake, lets say there was no time limit in this one. After a while, Wolverine’s healing factor would be just too much and Batman would tire out and then POOF, adamantium claws through the Bat Belly. So, as much as it pains me to say it, give this one to Wolverine.
John’s Winner: Wolverine with a 87th Round K.O.

Heavyweight Championship: Darth Vader vs. Superman
Ok, perhaps my bias will show a little here, but you know Vader would make Sups his girlfriend within about 2 minutes.
John’s Winner: Darth Vader with a 1st Round K.O.

When writing your thoughts in the comments, please remember that like Nemo I am always right in all things and any other opinions other than my own are deviant and wrong. Have a great day! :)

Peter Jackson + King Kong

Peter Jackson + King Kong = Ka-Ching!

While I’m not totally convinced of the need to remake King Kong, it is nice to see Peter JAckson get some recognition as a first-class film maker. What am I talking about? Check out for more.

For you Kevin Smith fans

For you Kevin Smith fans out there…

There’s a little tidbit about a new Kevin Smith project in the works at

The title alone is almost worth the price of admission. Add a touch of Kevin Smith hilarity and we’re talking Oscars! Remember, you heard it here first, on

Thinking about starting a boycott

Thinking about starting a boycott
It should really come as no surprise that I love movies. I love just about everything about them. I love going to the theater with friends, I love popcorn (although I don’t love paying $5 bag a bag for it), I love the atmosphere and the chatter just before the lights go down, I love watching trailers for movies that are “coming soon” and of course I love the films themselves.

Unfortunately the price tag for this experience goes up almost every time I pick up the paper to check showtimes. For instance, yesterday I went to see a matinee of S.W.A.T. and paid $8.75 a person to get in… for a matinee. You’d naturally think that with such a high admission price the operators would be going that extra mile to make sure your theatrical experience would be a positive one. Everything seems to be going fine, UNTIL…

COMMERCIALS! More commercials, then bloody more commercials! I sat through 12, yes 12 minutes of painful annoying commercials. I’m not talking about trailers, oh no no no, those I enjoy. I’m talking about pure product marketing of everything from cars to feminine hygiene products. I was forced to endure a gum commercial, then a fruit juice commercial, then a dating service commercial, then a “buying your movie tickets online” commercial and a car commercial. I sat in my humble little seat feeling myself slipping into a murderous rage as my fingers dug deeply into the arm rests of my chair, all the while a haunting question ringing through my mind: “I paid for this?!?!”.

Hey, I understand the need for commercials in general. Look at television. Aside from paying your cable bill, you basically get to watch all the shows for free (aside from pay-per-view) and the programmers need to make their money some way, so we sit through some commercials. No problem. But when I come to your theater on a Friday night and plop down $14 for a frigging ticket, I expect that included in that price is the freedom to not have to sit through a bunch of ads before seeing the film I PAID to watch.

Let’s jump back to television for a moment. When I watch a movie on basic TV for free, I understand I need to watch some ads with it. No problem. BUT, when I fork out a few bucks on pay-per-view to see a flick, THEY understand they shouldn’t subject me to 10 minutes of advertising before showing me the film. After all, I paid. Why is this concept so difficult for theaters to understand?

Perhaps I wouldn’t mind the commercials so much if theaters hadn’t nearly doubled the price of admission in the last 6 years. Perhaps I wouldn’t mind the commercials so much if 2 small bags of candy and a small bottle of water didn’t cost me $11.35

Theaters have raised prices faster than inflation and have a profit margin on their concession stands that would any business major reason for singing. These commercials are not “helping to keep prices down for our consumers”, they are extra revenues for the corporation pure and simple. And hey, who would knock any business for finding new ways to make money? That’s fine, except when you’re getting that extra revenue at my expense without giving me anything in return for my time. That bothers me.

You make me pay $14 to get in. At least I get to see the movie. You make me pay $10 for a popcorn and a Coke. At least I get to eat and drink them. You take up my personal time and make me sit through 10-12 minutes of commercials. I got NOTHING out of that.

With all this in mind I got the idea to start a boycott of any company or product that advertises before movies. So, if “Chewy Fruit” gum puts an Ad up before the movie starts, then I’m just not going to buy it. Who’s with me? Let’s us rise up and bear our consumer arms against our corporate oppressors! Ok, maybe I’m getting carried away, but the idea sounded really good while I was watching the commercial.

“The Rundown” Trailer and my About-Face Thereof.

“The Rundown.”
Off-hand, my intentions of seeing this movie were slim to none until I saw….
…….the trailer. Good Yummy Stuff.

S.W.A.T., brought to you by:

S.W.A.T., brought to you by: Dr. Pepper, Power Chords and the Number: Infinite.
Folks, it could’ve been called “The Random Police Squad from Burmingham, Alabama” but that title would’ve told you right up front that that movie wasn’t good, and who’d want that?

Okay fine, granted, you’ve got a couple of good scenes in there… Some though, were downright painful.
Things I learnt from SWAT:
- Planes with no landing gear, skidding down pavement at 200 miles an hour, will stop dead after 15 feet.
- If you, or parts of you get run over by a train, nothing will get cut off.
- If the bad guy is too far ahead of you, have the editor splice the movie to the part where you’re caught up. No one will notice.
- Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE in L.A. has an automatic weapon.
- And they all want to kill you.
- And they have master plans whipped up in 4 seconds.
- S.W.A.T-ing consists of driving a guy around and getting into one on one fights with your old buddy.
- Dr. Pepper is truly everywhere.
- When you push the gas pedal, the radio gets louder.

If I see a “SWAT” movie, I want to see SWAT Tactics. I want to see trained actors pitting brains over evil brains. With guns. I want breakdowns and weird scientific toys that can take your pulse from 8000 years away. I don’t want to watch an hour of SWAT training (which included, get this… Running Uphill !!! Ohhh!!!). Only to watch them follow the ‘bad guys’ footprints. FOOTPRINTS!?!?! Gimme a sandy beach and a lost puppy fer cryin out loud! I’ll follow yer blasted footprints!.. I want something cool dammit!!!
Sigh…. No worries, Freddy vs. Jason in 3 days.

Tuesday Top Ten Hello, and

Tuesday Top Ten

Hello, and welcome to another Tuesday Top Ten. Sticking with the geek theme that was suggested last week (by me) I have decided this week to present the top ten comic book to movie adaptations.

Before we get to the actual top ten though, some things need to be cleared up. First, this top ten, as is the case with any top ten that I write, should be considered as an official document full of nothing but truth. These movies that I’m about to rank from one to ten are in fact the greatest comic book to movie adaptations ever made, and that includes movies I haven’t seen about comic books I’ve never heard of. If they were any good, I’d of seen them. I mean, obviously everyone’s entitled to there own opinions, it just happens that mine are the right opinions, and any opinions that differ from mine are deviant and wrong and stupid.

Secondly, I’ll just come right and and say that I don’t have anything that even resembles a consistent standard when judging these movies. Perhaps one movie makes in on because it is particularly faithfull to the comic, or maybe it’s extremely entertaining, or maybe it just made me laugh for some reason that the filmaker never, ever intended.

Whatever. You don’t care. If you’re reading actually taking the time to read this, odds are you’re my Mom and you’ll love me no matter what I do.

1. X2
Now, this movie has everything going for it. A) it’s a pretty faithful representation of the comic, the most notable difference being that Cyclops is not nearly that much of a loser in the book. Still, that made me laugh anyways, so no harm done. B) It’s just an awesome movie, period and C) We get to see alot of Nightcrawler, who was always my favorite X-Man. I’ve never been a huge fan of the comic. I think the only X-Men comics I still own are the Age of Apocolypse series (which are probably the greatest X-Men comics ever made. For more info, you could click here. I just picked this site from google, in case you’re wondering), not because I disliked the comics, I just didn’t like having to buy five titles a month to keep up with the story, although I’m told that hasn’t been the case for awhile now. Anyways, to get back on topic, X-Men 2 is just a great movie, period.

2. Spiderman
Some people will, and have, disagreed with me about this (for more info on that, see above), but I’ll stand by it. Spiderman, to me, really did an excellent job of conveying the feeling and emotion of Spiderman comics. Now, Spiderman is the only marvel or DC comic I seriously read, so I’m a bit biased, but I think you’ll find most Spiderman fans agreeing that Spiderman the movie stayed more or less true to the comic, especially in regards to Tobey Maguire’s portrayal of Peter Parker. Of course, there were some notable exceptions, the most notable being the absence of Gwen Stacy. For one of the most famous pieces of spiderman art in existence, click here. Plus, the Green Goblin’s costume was ridiculous. I’ve got to believe they couldv’e done better than that. Still, all in all, a great movie.

3. Mystery Men
While not really faithful to the comic, this is still an awesome movie that pokes fun at alot of the comic book/superhero conventions. Any fan of comics will get a big kick out of this movie.

4. X-Men
Everything that made the sequel great is here, only less of it. Plus, they gave Halle Berry more lines in this one, which was a mistake. Basically, for the sequel they took everything that made this movie good and gave us more of it, creating that oh-so-rare situation where a sequel is better than the original. Still, the original is a great movie, and would probably have been as good as the sequel, if the necessity of introducing the situation and characters had not eaten up alot of the movie.

5. Blade
Again, this movie was both reasonable faitful to the comic, and well made. The movie attempts to make vampires plausible and believable, using comic book science of course, which is like Star Trek science without the particles. After going to alot of trouble to establish this scientific reason for vampires existing, the movie proceeds to throw all of it out of the window in the end scene, where Blade fights the god of the vampires, who’s name I don’t remember and don’t care enough to look up. This really was too bad, as not only did it undermine much of the framework set up by the movie, it also involved some really bad cg and effects.

6. Batman
While Michael Keaton was a pretty mediocre Batman, Jack Nicholson was a freakin’ awesome Joker. Personally, I believe that this movie paved the way for the current glut of comic book movies on the market, so we have alot to thank it, and to a lesser degree it’s sequels, for. A good show and definetly something and reader of comic books should see, if they haven’t already.

7. Hulk
There was a time I might of rated this movie a little higher, if only for the fact you have to use your brain a little more than in your standard superhero movie, and the comic panel effent used throughout the movie was really cool. However, after seeing this movie four times (it’s a long story and it’s not interesting. Suffice to say that it wasn’t my idea.) I’ve come to the realization that it’s really boring in some parts and doesn’t make much sense in others. What bothers me the most is the fact that Bruce’s father, Dr. Eric Banner, changes personality about 15 times in the movie, from loving foather, to mad scientist, to regretful father, to power hungry maniac, to nihlistic anarchist (that one really caught me off gaurd), etcetera. Still, see the Hulk himself in action covers over a multitde of sins.

8. Men In Black
Great idea that was sucessfully transfered from the comic to the big screen. I don’t have alot to say about this movie, except that it’s good and you should see it and read the comic and send me five dollars.

9. The Punisher
Ha ha. Just kidding. Still, if you’re ever bored and this movie happens to be on TV, then it’s worth watching, if only because it’s funny seeing Dolph Lundgren trying to act.

9. Road to Perdition
Now, I’m going to be honest, which doesn’t happen often, so you should listen. I haven’t ever read the original comic this movie was based on, so I can’t speak to the faitfulness of the movie translation. I’d really like to, because I enjoy comics that tell stories not usually found in comic books, such as 30’s gangsters tales. I did enjoy the movie quite a bit though, so go see it.

10. From Hell
A pretty cool movie based on a pretty cool comic. Alan Moore, the comics creator, is a tremendous writer. Once again, I’m a fan of comics with original storylines, and there nothing conventional about this. For those of you who may not know, ‘From Hell’ was how Jack the Ripper would sign the letters he wrote after a killing.

There you have it. As a final closing note and a service to the public in general, here are some comic to movie projects that you should never, ever, under any circumstance watch: Any version of Captain America or The Fantastic Four (there are several of each), Batman and Robin, Howard the Duck and Tank Girl.

Actually looking forward to Open

Actually looking forward to Open Range
The rise and fall of Kevin Costner has been well documented and probably also well deserved. After directing one of the most powerful films I have ever seen (Dances With Wolves) and putting out a couple of other decent films like JFK, The Untouchables, Field of Dreams, Bull Durham and the mildly entertaining Robin Hood, Costner went on to put out some of the most unforgivable films made in recent history. Films like Waterworld, The Postman, and Wyatt Earp almost completely destroyed his reputation and credibility.

In more recent years, many have turned a blind eye to some semi-respectable offerings from Costner. Films like For the Love of the Game, Message in a Bottle and 13 Days didn’t win any Oscars, but they were good enough to give me a slight glimmer of hope in this once brilliant filmmaker. Open Range looks like it COULD be the project that returns Costner to the realm of respectability.

There are a couple of reasons I think this movie has a chance:

1) Costner is going back to a western. Costner has a winner under his belt in the western genre already with Dances with Wolves. Going back to a genre he’s displayed some comfort in could go a long way.

2) Robert Duvall. Duvall brings a presence to a movie like few actors do. He carries a strength and power that draws you into whatever story he’s telling, even if it’s sometimes a bad story. Having a bigger name than Costner in the film was a brilliant move.

3) The setting itself is a character. Many movies take place in beautiful settings, but few movies actually allow the setting to take on a life of its own and play an important part of the story, almost like it’s a character. Lawrence of Arabia did it, Dances with Wolves did it, The Godfathers did it and it looks like Open Range will do it as well.

IF this film works, it will reintroduce Costner as a legitimate star. If it doesn’t work… well… I doubt anyone will ever take him seriously again. I know I won’t.

Positive and Negative buzz for

Positive and Negative buzz for Gibson’s ‘THE PASSION’
I found this interesting article on CNN today relating to Mel Gibson’s new film chronicling the death of Jesus Christ called “The Passion”. Very few people have seen it since Gibson is being extremely selective about screening the film. Those who have seen it are saying quite positive things. Most of those who are complaining about the film have yet to see it.

It’s difficult to comment since I have not personally seen the film, but I can’t help but wonder if certain people have a very legitimate reason to be concerned about this film and how it may portray the Jewish people. On the other hand, could this just be a group of Christophobics (bigots who are biased against Christians and Christianity) complaining about the project just due to the fact that it deals with the person of Jesus?

Realistically, all judgment will have to be reserved until the film is released. Personally, even though Gibson is a devote conservative Catholic, I have a hard time believing he would purposefully make a film that directly or intentionally offends people of other religious groups. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Here’s a portion of the article:

In recent weeks, the actor-director had been building support with invitation-only screenings for film industry insiders, conservative commentators, evangelical Christians and sympathetic Jews.

Trailers of the two-hour movie have turned up on some Web sites. A 4 1/2-minute preview was shown Friday for thousands of people attending a Christian festival at Anaheim, California.

Ted Haggard, president of the National Evangelical Association, saw a screening in late June with about 30 evangelical scholars. The scholars are very strict about adherence to scripture, so Gibson “had no assurances that we would be friendly toward that movie.”

But Haggard loved it. “I thought it was the most authentic portrayal I’ve ever seen.”

Cal Thomas, a conservative syndicated columnist, called the film “the most beautiful, accurate, disturbing, realistic and bloody depiction of this well-known story that has ever been filmed.”

Internet personality Matt Drudge told MSNBC: “It depicts a clash between Jesus and those who crucified him and speaking as a Jew, I thought it was a magical film that showed the perils of life on earth.”

But critics of “The Passion” — who have not seen the film — worry that the popular Hollywood superstar will attract millions to see a violent, bloody recounting of the crucifixion that portrays Jews as a frenzied mob eager to watch Jesus die.

“For too many years, Christians have accused Jews of being Christ-killers and used that charge to rationalize violence,” said Sister Mary C. Boys, a Catholic professor at the Union Theological Seminary who read an early draft of the script. “This is our fear.”

Read the entire article here.

I know I’ll get mocked

I know I’ll get mocked for this, but…
It was a quite night on the home front this evening, so my family watched Armageddon on TV. You know what, I really like the movie. I know that most people usually talk about how dumb it is, or cheesy it is, but I thought it was a lot of fun. I thought the characters were very likeable, the tension felt real, the stages of the story unfolded at a nice pace, it was funny and the visuals weren’t half bad (in some parts the effects were actually wonderful). Is it a little corny? Sure it is, but that didn’t take away from the “fun” factor for me.

I always forget just how stacked the cast in the movie is too. Think about it, the cast includes no less than Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, Liv Tyler, Ben Affleck, Will Patton, Steve Buscemi, Owen Wilson and Michael Clarke Duncan. So mock me all you want! I love Armageddon! There, I said it, and I’m proud. Well, maybe not “proud”, but I said it anyway.

Yes it’s true, Garfield the

Yes it’s true, Garfield the movie is coming
When I was a kid in grade 6, Garfield was THE funniest thing in the paper. I loved it. I even loved the short lived cartoon series when it came out. Although you don’t really hear much about the character anymore, I’m really stoked about the idea of a live action film. Apparently the amazing Bill Murray has signed on to do the voice of Garfield which is probably the best move they could have made. I mean come on! Who doesn’t want to see Garfield with Bill Murray doing his voice?!?! I also like the supporting cast they have lined up. Breckin Meyer (who was in the hilarious Rat Race) is playing Garfield’s owner Jon Arbuckle, while Jennifer Love Hewitt plays Jon’s love interest and Garfield’s vet Liz. I’m excited about it. Oh, and by the way, Odie IS in it too! The film is already in production and has a set May 14th 2004 as it’s release date. I’m such a looser. (Thanks to the good forlks at FilmForce.Net for the picture)

Just for fun Here’s a

Just for fun
Here’s a quick list of my top 10 favorite 2003 films so far. Notice I didn’t say “Best films of 2003″. These are just the ones I personally enjoyed the most

#1) X-Men 2 - The first X-Men gave the genre new life
#2) Finding Nemo - Can Pixar do anything wrong?
#3) Seabiscuit - Watch for this film at Oscar time
#4) Hulk - Completely not what I expected. Who could have imagined a deep comic film?
#5) Matrix Reloaded - Ignore the bad wrap many are giving it. This film rocks.
#6) Terminator 3 - 2 hours of pure brainless fun. What else did you expect from Arnie? Sorry Ghent :)
#7) Pirates of the Caribbean - Biggest surprise of the year.
#8) Identity - Big unwritten rule in Hollywood: You can’t go wrong with John Cusack
#9) DareDevil - In my humble opinion, a severely underrated film
#10) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days - What can I say? I laughed an awful lot

What Happened to Batman: Year One?

Speaking of Which…
Okay, The Movie Blog isn’t a bunch of guys blabbing about movies like “High Fidelity” talked about music… There’s some stuff I plum don’t know..

And in light of Johnny talking about Superheroes and directors, I recall being bloody excited about Darren Aronofsky directing “Batman: Year One”. It was in the discussion phase, and then it vanished… anyone know what happened to it?

(Off hand, if you haven’t seen Darren’s “Requiem for a Dream”, it’s the most amazing film that will, at the same time, make you feel like you got punched in the stomach with a truck. Be serious for a couple hours and watch it.)

New Superman movie moving forward.

New Superman movie moving forward. Unfortunately.
According to Ain’t It Cool News, the new Superman project is on. When I first heard they were going to remake Superman about 2 years ago, I was thrilled. At the time Oscar winner Nicolas Cage was going to don the tights. Then, for several reasons the whole project fell apart. Now, I’m hoping this film NEVER gets made for 3 very important reasons:

1) McG is signed on to direct. The only real film credits to his stupid name (come on… what kind of name is “McG”?) are the Charlie’s Angels flicks. Neither of them was brilliant, and the second one was just painful. To let this guy direct Superman is an abomination against nature and all that is holy (perhaps I’m exaggerating a little). He’s good for films like Angels, and maybe even other comic based films, but Superman needs to be approached much differently.

2) Ashton Kutcher is rumored to play the Man of Steel. I feel myself slipping into a murderous rage. Are they kidding!?!? “Dude where’s my car” boy as Superman? Why do they feel the need to rape whatever dignity the big “S” deserves? Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with Kutcher. He’s fine on projects like the 70’s show, and you’ve got to tip your cap to any man who’s dating Demi Moore, BUT HE’S NOT SUPERMAN! He’s a Hollywood hottie who makes little pre-teen girls scream, that’s it, and apparently that’s all Warner Brothers really cares about. By the way, have you seen the HORRIBLE trailer for his new film My Boss’s Daughter yet?

3) Drew Barrymore is said to be the front runner for Lois Lane. Do I really have to point out how much of a travesty this would be?

It’s obvious our friends at WB are only interested in making a teenie bopper version of Superman. This is truly sad. Couldn’t they get even one actual grown up to work on this film? It looks like instead of the epic I’ve been hoping for, we’re just going to get a pathetic Saturday morning WB cartoon version. How very very sad for us all.

S.W.A.T. finally in theaters, the

S.W.A.T. finally in theaters, the critics aren’t really impressed
Despite 2 early thumbs up from Ebert and Roppel, a quick browse through the various critics reveals they aren’t all that impressed with S.W.A.T. Chris Barsanti of FilmCritic.Com was on the lower end of the scale saying “S.W.A.T. is such an abominable waste of time and resources that I barely know where to begin.” While E!Online was a little more generous “the camaraderie is realistic and heartening, the escape plan is exciting, and the ladies will love it when LL flashes his abs.”

For the most part the critics are saying it’s ok, but nothing to write home about. Personally, I’m looking forward to it. Just give me some exploding cars and giant guns and I’m happy.

Go Bowling. On Dvd. August

Go Bowling.

On Dvd. August 19th. Go Get It.. And Stop Killing People.

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