Tuesday, September 30, 2014

'Inherent Vice' Gets a Smoky, Fun Trailer

One of the fall's most anticipated films is Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice, and it finally got a trailer last night. Some people have been curious about the comic tone of Anderson's latest since his critically-acclaimed The Master and There Will Be Blood were so serious. This might be one of my favorite trailers of the year. 

Phoenix plays Doc Sportello, a private investigator who gets lured into a kidnapping plot by his ex-girlfriend, played by Katherine Waterston. The cast is pretty awesome, and it includes Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Maya Rudolph, Jena Malone, Martin frickin' Short. It will also let us see Phoenix reunite with his Walk the Line co-star Reese Witherspoon, even if it's only for a scene or two. 

I love Waterston's voice in the beginning and end of the trailer ("coming just in time for Christmas," she assures us), and the blazing colors of the cast match well with the loud music playing in the background. It looks fun. 

Personally, I could watch Phoenix get hit over the head and fall over on a continuous loop.  

Sunday, September 28, 2014

I'm Embarrassingly Behind on My Movie Watching...

I haven't seen anything in the longest time, and, to me, that's shameful. Miami doesn't seem to get films on the same schedule as Pittsburgh, so it's a bit trickier for me to see things.  All of the films pictured above are playing somewhere in Miami, and I was wondering if any of my readers were looking forward to any sort of reviews.  

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Fifty Shades of Suck: Silver Balls...Silver Balls...

Silver balls...silver balls...it's domming tiiiiiiime in the city!!!

Yes, the latest chapter of Fifty Shades Darker mainly revolves a pair of ben wa balls that Christian has Ana...uh...wear?  Do you wear them, or do you carry them?  Serious questions are being asked here, people!  

Again, nothing really happens in this chapter.  EL James has decided to tease us with more sex that goes absolutely nowhere.  I have to point out that at least the sex in the first Fifty Shades had a point.  It furthered the plot a bit in order to have Ana process it (her thoughts on the sex itself are horrible, but at least James sets it up for some thought), but the sex in Fifty Shades Darker is pointless. Look at me trying to make sense of this pointless fuckery! 

Christian takes Ana to a masked fundraiser in this chapter, and I was hoping that it would turn into the orgy scene of Eyes Wide Shut.  My hopes are dashed yet again. I didn't know masquerade balls actually had a purpose. Doesn't it seem like masquerade parties are just masquerade parties, and benefits are just benefits? Are they really mixed together like that?  Maybe I need to get invited to more masquerade balls...

My favorite single moment from the chapter, though, is when Christian takes Ana into his library, and she quite literally has the same reaction Belle had in Disney's Beauty and the Beast.  Yup, Fifty Shades has ruined yet another Disney classic.  

If you are new to Fifty Shades of Suck, my best gal pal Megan and I meet up every week to read a chapter from the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy, but we provide our own snarky commentary.  Last year, we subjected ourselves to the first book, and now we are chugging right along through the first sequel, Fifty Shades Darker.  If you would like to play catch up, the first set of podcasts are available here, and Fifty Shades Darker chapters are available below.  We hope you enjoy, and share them with your friends!!!

Monday, September 22, 2014

I'm Making a Pie for No Reason!

I've been missing fall a lot lately.  As one could imagine, living in Miami means perpetual sunshine and humidity, so I don't get the usual leaves changing colors or pumpkins on every front porch.  I decided to make a cheesecake pumpkin pie (go big or go home), and it reminded me of Sweeney Todd and Waitress.  So this is what I have to contribute to the world today.  

Suck it, Betty Crocker.

The two examples of joyous pie-making that I could think of were of Mrs. Lovett and Keri Russell.  I almost made it a trifecta with Jason Biggs in American Pie, but I didn't want to soil my first pie-making experience with thoughts of Biggs' rump on my pie.  Hopefully, my first pie doesn't taste horrible.  To celebrate, I thought we'd look at Lovett and Russel talking about pies!  

Friday, September 19, 2014

A Call to Arms for Glenn Close?

I was just putzing around IMDB (exciting Friday night for me, obviously) when I came across the trailer for Low Down, a music drama starring John Hawkes, Elle Fanning and Glenn Close.  I had never heard of it before.

Low Down is a drama centering on the relationship between jazz musician Joe Albany (Hawkes) and his daughter (Fanning), and she watches him struggle with drugs in the 1960's.  It also stars Flea (yes, him), Lena Headey, and Glenn Close as Hawkes' mother.  As the trailer ended and it listed the actors, Close's face appeared with "And six-time Academy Award Nominee" above her name.  Is the studio gunning for an Oscar nomination?  It's kind of like they are saying, "come one...enough is enough...give her an Academy Award."  

It looks like a pretty good drama.  I love Hawkes and Fanning has been working nonstop.  What else can you say about Close really?  She looks solid as always.  

Did Disney Rename Some 'Into the Woods' Characters?

(Entertainment Weekly is now reporting that this is untrue.  The post on Disney.com was incorrect.)

Remember when people heard rumors that stuff was getting cut from the big screen adaptation of Into the Woods, and everyone (myself mostly) freaked the hell out?  People were complaining that Disney was wrecking everything and blah blah blah, and then Stephen Sondheim came out and said we have nothing to worry about?  If you know who Sondheim is you are probably aware of all the drama that went down.  People's fears seem to have been squashed by the stills and trailer for Woods, but now BroadwayWorld is reporting something very strange.  

If you go onto the official Disney Into the Woods site, the cast is listed, but they have changed some of the names.  Cinderella's Mother is now Lady Tremaine and her prince is now billed as Prince Charming.  It doesn't stop there.  Rapunzel's Prince is listed as Flynn Rider.  Excuse me?  Is Disney taking control of these characters, or is it just an oversight?  

Hopefully, someone just got the list wrong, because this would be really unfortunate (I'm ready to blame some pimply-faced intern).  I don't really recall the names of the characters being said to one another, but Into the Woods doesn't use the Disney versions of these characters.  

Cue freak outs in 3...2...1...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

What 'Big Eyes' and Award Chances You Have, Amy!

Before I posted my 25 Most Anticipated Movies of the Fall, I wrote up a small piece detailing five other films I wanted to check out.  One of them was Tim Burton's art drama, Big Eyes.  

It tells the true story of the marriage of Margaret and Walter Keane, played by Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz.  She was a divorced parent, and when Walter entered their lives, it appears that she owed him a lot.  Margaret painted pictures of seemingly lonely, waif-ish children with this huge eyes.  At the time, Walter explains that "no one buys lady art," and he attaches his name to them.  The paintings become a huge success, and Margaret has to fight to sign her own name. 

Amy Adams has been nominated for the Oscar five times, and this definitely feels like an Oscar hopeful.  People have been saying this is her time, but can she unseat Julianne Moore (who is supposed to be astonishing in Still Alice).  Not matter if Adams is nominated or not, this looks like a very strong leading performance.  Waltz is in full dastardly husband mode here, and his Inglorious Basterds/Django Unchained voice patterns only make me angry while watching this.  Get away from Amy's art!!!

These are my two favorite shots from the trailer.  In the first, Margaret stares back at her while she works, and her eyes seem to grow in the split second they are on screen.  I love the second shot, because I love all the art staring right back at us all at once.  Can't wait.  

McConaughey's Out! MacDowell's In!

I obviously didn't write anything about Matthew McConaughey not returning for the Magic Mike sequel, because I was in mourning.  Okay, that's a total lie since I am the only person in the world who doesn't Mr. McConaughey attractive.  Why isn't he returning to the stripper opus?  Well, no one really said.  Maybe he has moved on since winning Best Actor this year?  Or maybe he is too busy filming other projects.  Dallas Buyers Club really did dance his last dance.

In case you are sad over McConaughey's departure, you can watch his entire strip right here:

If it were up to me, though, I would have made Matt do more of this:

It's rather hypnotic, ain't it?

In other casting news, it appears that Andie MacDowell has landed a role in XXL.  There is no official news as to who she will be playing, but there are a few possibilities.  XXL is a road trip movie that culminates in a stripper convention.  Perhaps she is one of the patrons who is lucky enough to see Channing Tatum, Matt Bomer, and Joe Mangeniello take it all off?  Maybe she is a mother of a trouble daughter determined to go to the convention.  Or maybe, just maybe, she will be a love interest for one of the boys.  May-December romances happen all the time with younger women, so why not have Mr. Tatum shacking up with Andie?  I'm down.  

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

First 'Into the Woods' Poster Drops

What a nice surprise for this Tuesday morning!

The first poster for Disney's musical extravaganza Into the Woods just dropped, and it's all about The Streep.  Remember the first image of the film?  The one with Meryl hanging out in the tree?  This looks like it was from the same photo shoot.  She is just slithering around making sure you are getting those items from the woods that she needs to badly.  

The only thing I think is kind of strange is the "And Johnny Depp as The Wolf."  I didn't realize that the Wolf's character was so stooped in fame that it needed that.  It at least reassures his fans that he will be taking on another role suited for his career.

I feel like some character posters are going to be on the way.  There are enough characters in the movie to justify it, right?  That's a poster set I would love to get my hands on.  

Five Reasons Why 'I Know' This Reboot Will Suck

Remember when people said they should just remake bad movies and make them better instead of touching the classics?  Well, I don't think I was ready to hear that I Know What You Did Last Summer was getting the reboot/remake/re-imagining treatment.  

Yes, the Jennifer Love Hewitt slasher flick is getting another chance to rake in some dough, but I doubt the legions of teenagers will be able to appreciate how campy and bad the original was.  I Know came out in 1997, and it tried to capitalize of screenwriter Kevin Williamson's success of writing Scream--he didn't sell his script for I Know until after Scream became a hit.  

Let's look at the five reasons why I think it's a bad idea.  

Yeesh, that title is STILL awful
I mean, it's very specific title, that's for sure.  I can just imagine movie theater running out of those small plastic letters to put on roadside signs all across the country, because the title is so effing long.  And then there's the issue of a sequel when it comes out.  Are you going to make it even long like the original's sequel did?  

If you insist on using the original idea, at least change that lame ass title.  Please, and thank you.  

Where are all the bodacious blondes?
Ok, I am a bit impartial on this one.  I was obsessed with Sarah Michelle Gellar back in high school, so I loved her as beauty queen Helen in the original.  Granted, Helen wasn't very smart since she was about to get away from the killer and then she turned around!  Who the hell does that?!  You could almost see Gellar rolling her eyes at the script's directions.  Gellar was the queen of Buffy at the same time, and she would later go on to appear in a small role in Scream 2 that same year.  She could have been a major scream queen if she wanted to.  

Not only was Sarah a blonde highlight from the movie, but Anne frickin' Heche popped up as a backwoods, chicken-raising crazy!  

Can someone find her a role in the reboot?  Maybe she can just be the same character.  Do it!  

You will NEVER be able to top Ryan Phillippe's shirtless scene
Maybe every generation of girls and gays has that moment in a horror movie when an upcoming actor takes his shirt off.  Ryan Phillippe's shirtless shower scene was the sexual awakening in many people's lives.  

Phillippe doesn't age.  His body is still insane, and he can put anyone else to shame.  Don't even try to put any CW star in a towel, because you will fail.  End of story.

This is the greatest cinematic moment from all of 1997
When Julie James finds a body in the trunk of her car, she runs to Sarah and Ryan for help, but the body magically disappears.  It must be noted that this killer knows how to really clean up.  The body is covered in crabs and other New England exporting good, but the back of her car is freshly vacuumed by the time she gets her friends to help.  

By that point, Julie has had enough, and she yells to the horror movie gods in one of the most dramatic moments to ever be committed to film.  Ms. Hewitt's gifts are on full display, and a casting directer puts her on a shortlist for The Client List.  

I really hope that spin was improvised.  

Roger Ebert isn't here to make fish sticks jokes...
In Mr. Ebert's review of the movie, he refers to the killer as the Fisherman.  The killer dresses in a slicker and wields a huge hook to kill his victims, and it might be the most inconvenient weapon every used in a slasher movie.  Sure, it's a pretty ominous image, but it can't be that practical.  By the time that the first sequel came out, Ebert starting referring to the killer as the Gorton's Fisherman.

Yes, the I Know movies manage to make me miss Roger Ebert even more.  No one could write a bad review of a horror movie like him.  Sigh.    

Monday, September 15, 2014

War & No Peace: 'Mockingjay' Trailer is Pretty Bad Ass

When I read the final book in Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy, I thought it read like a war novel.  Mockingjay is arguably everyone's least favorite book (is it because she doesn't pull punches with characters we love?), but the movie (out November 21) looks like it's going to be just as dark.  The calm, grey-ish tones from District 12 are gone, and a dark, depressing world seems to lie ahead. 

Katniss explains that she never wanted any of this.  She didn't want to be a part of the Games, and she only wished to save the ones she loves.  Miss Everdeen has to make the hard choices.  This trailer looks brutal.  Gunfire, destruction, and lots of blazing fire are present in this trailer.  We even get to see Effie Trinkett stripped of her trademark opulence.  

The only time we really get to see some light is when Jennifer Lawrence is on screen.  It radiates around her like a halo (lest we forget that she's our hero), and she just shines in 2 minutes of darkness.  

My favorite image, though, has to be the brief shot of Josh Hutcherson and Stanley Tucci sitting opposite each other.  I would love to know what those two are talking about!  It looks like some bitchy, dystopian gabfest that I would definitely tune into every chance I got.  

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Sun's Out, Guns Out. '23 Jump Street' is a Go!

The Jump Street movies are now a franchise.  It was announced today that a screenwriter was hired to pen a second sequel to the Channing Tatum-Jonah Hill buddy cop comedies.  No word on who will direct or whether Tatum and Hill will return.  

At the end of this summer's 22 Jump Street, the credits made fun of all the different kinds of schools they could infiltrate and look for drugs.  They've done high school and college, so where are they going to go now?  Where can it go?  

What the Actual Hell is Happening Here?

Yes, that's Lea Thompson, and she's on a Back to the Future II Hoverboard.  

Yesterday, I watched the pilot episode from NBC's upcoming romantic comedy serial, A to Z (the first episode is available here before it premieres on October 2).  I didn't like the show, because I thought it was too coordinated in its cuteness.  It also resembles 500 Days of Summer too much for my liking.  Perhaps the next episode will be better.  I'm not writing up a full review for it, because Megan expertly sums up the premiere in her piece.  

The above picture of Thompson comes from the premiere episode as well.  There's a subplot about the leading man putting all his stock into Hoverboards being real, and Thompson makes a cameo appearance as herself outside a theater showing Back to the Future II.  It's a gag that isn't really fleshed out.

Why the living hell doesn't Lea Thompson have her own show?  Why couldn't A to Z be about people in their 40's (or above) looking for love in amid all those cliches and blah blah blah?  That would be a better hook that this overly structured theme that A to Z has going for it.  

What's with all the Musical Hate?

Last year, NBC broadcast The Sound of Music Live!, and over 18 million people tuned in to watch Carrie Underwood teach the Von Trapp children.  It was inevitable that NBC would try to replicate that success by putting on another show, and this December Peter Pan Live! (I love how dramatic! these titles are, by the way) will fly into living rooms.  The first still appeared online last week, and it appears that the knives are out for it.  Has the yearly televised musical become a long-awaited punching bag for audiences?  Or does it simply have to do with who stars in the show?

When it comes to musical theater, people usually fall into 2 very separate camps: the lovers and the hate it! hate it! haters.  As a former musical theater major, I'm sure you can guess where I fall.  When the musical film genre got revitalized at the beginning of the 2000's, I was definitely on board with it.  I loved Chicago, Moulin Rouge!, and I admit that I liked The Producers.  The opportunity to see a musical in any medium is something that I welcome with open arms.  

When Sound of Music Liiiiiiiiive! was announced, the big talk was mainly about who was going to play Maria, the coveted role immortalized by Julie Andrews.  It went to Carrie Underwood, and the poor thing was subjected to torture from day one.  I admit that I was never in Carrie's camp, but that was after I saw the first promotional poster.  She looked a bit possessed, but that's not her fault.  The one time that photoshop is called for, and no one decides to use it?  

Before Music (Liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiive!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) was broadcast, people were against Underwood's performance.  The real Von Trapp's even went as far to say that they would've replaced Underwood with recent Oscar-winner Anne Hathaway (seems Myles von Trapp Derbyshire thought Underwood carried a tabloid persona along with her name).  Underwood was called out for not having that much acting experience, and people noted that she would be surrounded by Broadway regulars such as Audra McDonald and Christian Borle.  

When the big night came, it was a tweeting massacre.  You couldn't twirl atop a mountain without hitting at least 100 tweets about someone's opinions about the live show and Underwood's performance.  The rest of the production received high praise, and McDonald's "Climb Every Mountain" earned raves.  

When the news broke that NBC would be continuing their live Broadway the following year, there was lots of chatter as to what musical would be chosen.  It had to be something family-friendly--surely, NBC wanted to repeat the success of Music again and, probably, make this a yearly event.  It's something they obviously want families to tune into every winter.  When Peter Pan Live! was announced, the heckling began.  And it didn't stop.  

Are we all just theater bitches?  I've been involved with theater pretty much my entire adult life (yes, I'm only 30, so that sounds like such a stupid statement), and people can be catty just for the sake of catty.  It could also be attributed that people tweet and comment on whatever they want, because they are hidden under their twitter handles.  

Allison Williams will be playing Peter Pan in this December's production.  When her casting was announced, it seemed that everyone rolled their eyes.  No one thinks one of the girls from Girls is right to play Captain Hook's young nemesis.  A lot of opposition seems to come from Williams' work on the HBO show, and I have to say something about it.  People will bitch either way.  I don't think all the people that gripe about Girls actually watch Girls.  Somewhere along the way, bashing it (it still happens) became the "it" thing to do.  Williams' Marnie isn't an easy character.  God forbid we have someone difficult to read.  

Are people really complaining about the musicals themselves, or are they just bashing the leading ladies?  Christopher Walken is set to play Hook, and I personally didn't hear a peep about his casting.  Is it just easier to make comments about the women, because they are at the forefront?  If musicals aren't your thing, it must be super easy to log onto Twitter and just make mean comments about all the stuff that's happening.  Or even if you do love musicals, it's easy to judge the work of others.  In Underwood's defense, it must have been terrifying for her.  She was headlining the entire thing, and she was surrounded by other veteran Broadway performers.  If she appeared wooden or nervous, it's completely understandable.  

I admit that I don't know Sound of Music (I know, I know, shut up), so it was easy for me to judge.  I do, however, like Peter Pan (you know, for what it's worth), and I genuinely like Allison Williams.  Perhaps that's why I feel the need to defend it.  While some people are looking forward to NBC's annual musical extravaganza, it appears that others are sharpening their knives.  

If you are a fan of musicals, you should be thankful that some of these Broadway performers get to stretch their legs a little more--something that I didn't realize right away while I watched Music.  It was pretty awesome to see McDonald, Borle, and Laura Benanti getting to do what they do best for a larger audience.  For Pan, Borle is set to play Mr. Darling and Smee, and Kelli O'Hara will play Mrs. Darling, respectively.  

Maybe the initial reactions are just loud, and it will die down?  Who knows.  

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

We Got Your Back, Katniss

I don't know how I missed this poster.  

The Hunger Games series is pretty good at releasing sets of posters, but the promos have been focusing mainly on other characters.  We get a glimpse of the back of Katniss Everdeen in this dark one sheet.  The back of her, with her quiver of arrows at the read, is shrouded in dark gear and her dark brown hair is also braided.  The only light we get is from the Mockingjary movie logo that promises it will come in November.  

From Boy with the Bread to Boy with the Blow?

Let's hope that Josh Hutcherson doesn't fall victim to Lautnerism and fall off the face of the world when his young adult fiction adaptation series comes to a close.  An international trailer for Paradise Lost (or Escobar: Paradise Lost...I'm not sure which is the real title) came out a few days ago, and our favorite "boy with the bread" has fallen into the seedy underbelly of cocaine dealers--namely one Mr. Pablo Escobar.  

Hutcherson plays Nick, a doe-eyed, oft-shirtless (fingers crossed) young man who meets the girl of his dreams in Columbia.  Turns out his lady love, Maria, has a rather famous uncle, and Nick soon finds himself becoming very close with Benicio Del Toro's Escobar.  

Remember when Taylor Launter was the hottest, tan thing in the whole, wide world?  It seemed he was everywhere when the Twilight Saga came to a close, but his career has sort of sputtered since the vampire series ended.  

I'm sure he's doing this somewhere right now...

I do not with the Lautnerism on Mr. Hutcherson since he's a pretty good actor.  Peeta is kind of a bakery heartthrob, so seeing him stretch his legs in a leading man-ish part will be interesting.