Friday, July 30, 2010

Cats and Dogs - Revenge of Kitty Galore

Like the original Cats and Dogs, the fate of mankind rests in the paws of the animal kingdom in the sequel Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore. However, the filmmakers seem compelled to up the story’s edginess by adding a heaping helping of adult content. The inclusion of drug use, allusions to a serial killer and the title (which plays on the name of the famous James Bond bombshell, Pussy Galore) made me wonder if double entendres were really necessary to keep audience members engaged. Since the depiction of an army tank labeled PU55 is unlikely to lure older viewers into a PG movie, why not leave the sexual innuendo out and let the four-legged spy story stand on its own?

To be honest, the hairless Kitty Galore (voice by Bette Midler) is anything but the sex symbol played by Honor Blackman in the 1964 Goldfinger. After Kitty has an unfortunate encounter with a vat of hair removal cream, she is rejected by her human family. Heartbroken, she vows to wreak revenge on all two-legged creatures.

Meanwhile, Diggs (voice by James Marsden) is an exuberant German Shepherd who works on the San Francisco police force with his human partner Shane (Chris O’Donnell). However his canine enthusiasm—and inability to follow orders—gets him in trouble once too often when he causes an explosion at a used car dealership during a hostage taking. Impounded in the police kennel, he faces a long stint of solitary confinement.

Luckily for him, his sentence is cut short when he is recruited by a secret society of dog agents devoted to keeping the planet safe. The organization is on the tail of Kitty and needs some extra teeth to bring down the criminal. But it doesn’t take Diggs and his partner Butch (Nick Nolte) long to realize they are going to need even more help to capture the rogue cat. Resigning themselves to the situation, they are partnered with the furry feline Catherine (voice of Christina Applegate) from MEOW and a pea-brained pigeon named Seamus (voice of Katt Williams).

Filled with typical cartoon-type violence, moments of peril and a scene of cats on a catnip-induced high, the script is only a mediocre rehashing of the original story. It does, however, offer some positive messages about cooperation and overcoming personal fears. Yet even with all the up-to-the-minute, canine-adapted spy gear, this tale of undercover espionage with its vague sexual comments will leave many parents wondering if children’s movies have finally gone to the dogs.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The Usefulness Of Movie Reviews

A movie review gives an indication as to whether or not others will find the movie worth watching. The purpose of most movie reviews is to help the reader in determining whether they want to watch, rent or buy the movie. The review should also give enough details about the movie so that the reader can make a right choice. For that the review must deal with all important aspects of the movie such as the plot or the story. In this article, we will be discussing the guidelines, which should be followed while writing a movie review. Before starting to write a review, the writer should select the movie he is going to write about. Knowing the details of the movie, such as its director, actors, story and such things is important. Then the reviewer should formulate his own opinion in one sentence. Lastly, special scenes from the movie or other things that will support the writer's opinion have to be selected and given. The first step in writing the review is to watch the movie. Most movie reviewers take notes as they watch the movie itself. Watching the movie a second time helps to absorb a lot more details about the movie. Most movie reviewers give their opinion of the movie only after watching it a second or third time. In all good journalism, the reviewer should always give impartial details, and allow the readers to make their own opinion about the film. Reviewer's opinions should be explained to allow the reader to determine whether they would agree with his opinion. The reviewer also needs to consider the audience. Writing a movie review for children requires a different approach than writing for a general movie audience. The review should always be written keeping the targeted audience in mind. The main essence of the movie should be retained in an outlined sketch. But it should always be remembered not to give away any essential details like surprises or a sudden turn in the plot. Details of actors, crew members, and directors should be mentioned. It should also be mentioned how well they have acted and how well the movie has been made technically. The technicalities are an important part of the movie review. Technicalities include art direction, music, editing, lighting, cinematography and the like. Movie reviews even include a little bit of criticism if needed. Criticism says what could have been done to make the film better or what the weak points of the movie are. Though critical analysis is not always needed, a word or two in that manner can be very good at times. A reviewer must always remember to give an outline of the whole story, but not give away details which hold surprises or the special essence of the film. It should be kept untold to keep the suspense. The movie review should be written keeping a note of the types of readers who would be reading the review. The language, presentation and the technicalities of writing would also depend on the types of readers. The medium in which the review will be published is also important, because if the review is published on the net the reviewer will get mostly young readers but if it is going to be published in a local language in a local daily the approach should be different.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Green Lantern

Here is the new cover to Entertainment Weekly.  The images of The Green Lantern are getting me excited for the movie. 

Monday, July 12, 2010

Grown Ups Review

While I was looking forward to seeing the latest Happy Madison product, I left somewhat disappointed.  The basis of the movie is:  after their high school basketball coach passes away, 5 friends reunite for the funeral during the 4th of July weekend. 

After the funeral, Lenny (Adam Sandler), Kurt (Chris Rock), Eric (Kevin James), Marcus (David Spade), and Rob (Rob Schneider) spend the weekend at a lake house that they used to hang out at when they were teens basically reliving their glory days. 

The story has been done many times in the past and with the comedians involved in this film, I expected more.  There are funny moments in the film that will have you laughing but its hit or miss.  Two hours are spent with the guys making fun of each other.  Their is a good message in the film where Sandler realizes his kids are to "hollywood" and wants them to do things he did as a kid, like skipping rocks, playing outside. 

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Scream 4 Troubles

Scream 4 is currently shooting in Michigan, where the movie is reportedly experiencing script issues. According to Zap2It, script changes are frustrating the cast, particularly Hayden Panettiere, who is "beyond frustrated with the changes" since her formerly "really sharp" role has been "dumbed down significantly." Lauren Graham, once attached to the movie, left after her role was reduced to almost nothing.
Accusing eyes would normally target Scream co-creator and Scream 4 screenwriter Kevin Williamson, however, the report indicates that Williamson has left the project, and Ehren Kruger, screenwriter for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is currently in charge of the script.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Red State

It seems that Kevin Smith is finally starting this project after 3 years.  He is in the process of casting as we speak, but says, "he doesn't want any actors that are known as that will ruin the film."  After this project is wrapped up, he will team up with Sean William Scott for the hockey comedy "Hit Somebody."

Sin City 2

Robert Rodriguez has stated that the current script needs rewriting.  That hasn't happened yet, but will soon.  He is in the process of finding a time slot to start the writing.  Maybe he should cut back on some of his other projects and get this one going.  I'm certainly looking forward to it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Last Airbender Box Office

According to Box Office Mojo, The Last Airbender ranks #2 behind The Twilight Saga in box office take between July 2 and July 4 taking in over 40 million dollars.  This should be great news to M. Night Shyamalan and the executives at Paramount studios.  Most of the early reviews about the movie were negative, but that isn't swaying anyone away from the movie. 

Saturday, July 3, 2010

2 New Mad Max Films?

George Miller is shooting 2 Mad Max films back to back.  Movie #1 is titled Mad Max: Fury Road and #2 is Mad Max: Furiosa.  Stayed tuned for more information on this.

Twilight Stars Set To Get Big Raise

It was minor players in the Twilight franchise like Ashley Green and Kellan Lutz
who held up progress on Breaking Dawn by demanding higher salaries, but the three major players in the saga will be the ones taking home the biggest paydays. Vulture has learned that Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner will each earn $25 million for appearing in the two Breaking Dawn films, which amounts to about $12.5 million for each emotion the actors are capable of expressing in the films.

And that's before the actual gross of the movies are factored in. The stars are earning the $25 million against 7.5% of the theatrical gross for both films, which Vulture estimates could net them an extra $16 million based on how well the first three films have done.

Friday, July 2, 2010

The Other Guys Preview

The Other Guys is set to hit theatre's August 6, 2010.  I've been looking forward to this film for some time now.  Here is the plot for the movie:   NYPD Detectives Christopher Danson and P.K. Highsmith (Dwayne Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson) are the baddest and most beloved cops in New York City. They don't get tattoos - other men get tattoos of them. Two desks over and one back, sit Detectives Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) and Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg). You've seen them in the background of photos of Danson and Highsmith, out of focus and eyes closed. They're not heroes - they're "the Other Guys." But every cop has his or her day and soon Gamble and Hoitz stumble into a seemingly innocuous case no other detective wants to touch that could turn into New York City's biggest crime. It's the opportunity of their lives, but do these guys have the right stuff?

The Other Guys Trailer

M. Night Shyamalan-The Last Airbender Trilogy

Apparently, this all depends on the success of The Last Airbender part 1.  Judging from early reviews, thats probably not going to happen.  I'm hoping he can turn it around as I have enjoyed some of his earlier work. 

Here's the story.  The Last Airbender Trilogy

The Expendables

This movie is set to hit theatres August 13, 2010.  The Expendables has about every known action star at least having a cameo.  If your looking for some of that 80's action nostalgia, then this should be the movie for you.  Tons of explosions and action make this a must see for me.  Here is the synopsis. 

THE EXPENDABLES is a hard-hitting action/thriller about a group of mercenaries hired to infiltrate a South American country and overthrow its ruthless dictator. Once the mission begins, the men realize things arent quite as they appear, finding themselves caught in a dangerous web of deceit and betrayal. With their mission thwarted and an innocent life in danger, the men struggle with an even tougher challenge one that threatens to destroy this band of brothers.

Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) is a man with nothing to lose. Fearless and void of emotion, he is the leader, the sage and the strategist of this tight-knit band of men who live on the fringe. His only attachment is to his pickup truck, his seaplane and his team of loyal modern-day warriors. His is a true cynic who describes what he does as removing those hard to get at stains. The team behind him is made up of Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), former SAS and a savant with anything that has a blade; Yin Yang (Jet Li), a master at close-quarter combat; Hale Caesar (Terry Crews), who has known Barney for ten years and is a long-barrel weapons specialist; Toll Road (Randy Couture), a skilled demolitions expert and considered the intellect of the group; and Gunnar Jensen (Dolph Lundgren), a combat veteran and an expert in precision sniping who struggles with his own demons.

When the mysterious Church offers Barney a job no one else would take, Barney and his team embark on what appears to be a routine mission: overthrow General Gaza (David Zayas), the murderous dictator of the small island country of Vilena and end the years of death and destruction inflicted on its people. On a reconnaissance mission to Vilena, Barney and Christmas meet their contact Sandra (Giselle Itie), a local freedom-fighter with a dark secret. They also come to learn who their true enemy is: rogue ex-CIA operative James Monroe (Eric Roberts) and his henchman Paine (Steve Austin). When things go terribly wrong, Barney and Christmas are forced to leave Sandra behind, essentially giving her a death sentence. Haunted by this failure, Barney convinces the team to return to Vilena to rescue the hostage and finish the job he started. And to perhaps save a soul: his own.

The Expendables Trailer 

Major League 4

Apparently the first 3 films in this franchise weren't enough.  While I enjoyed the first 2, Major League 3: Back to the Minors really ended it for me.  But nonetheless, here is the synopsis.

20 years after the events of the first Major League, the pitcher, Wild Thing, comes out of retirement to mentor a young new player.  Charlie Sheen is in talks, while Wesley Snipes and Corbin Bernsen are rumored.

Despicable Me

Universal Studios is releasing Despicable Me on July 9th starring Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Kristen Wiig, Will Arnett, and Russell Brand.  I saw previews for this movie when my 3 year old daughter and I were watching Toy Story 3.  

Synopsis: In a happy suburban neighborhood surrounded by white picket fences with flowering rose bushes, sits a black house with a dead lawn. Unbeknownst to the neighbors, hidden beneath this home is a vast secret hideout. Surrounded by a small army of minions, we discover Gru (voiced by Steve Carell), planning the biggest heist in the history of the world. He is going to steal the moon in Universal’s new 3-D CGI feature, "Despicable Me".

Gru delights in all things wicked. Armed with his arsenal of shrink rays, freeze rays, and battle-ready vehicles for land and air, he vanquishes all who stand in his way. Until the day he encounters the immense will of three little orphaned girls who look at him and see something that no one else has ever seen: a potential Dad.

The world’s (second) greatest villain has just met his greatest challenge: three little girls named Margo, Edith and Agnes.

Predators Preview

So July 9th brings us the newest Predator movie.  This installment is produced by Robert Rodriguez and directed by Nimr√≥d Antal.  The cast includes:  Adrien Brody, Topher Grace, Danny Trejo, Laurence Fishburne, Walton Goggins, Oleg Taktarov, and Alice Braga.  

Some critics are saying its worse than Alien Vs. Predator.  The previews look promising but one thing you can count on with Robert Rodriguez involved is plenty of gore.  

According to the LA Times article, Predators is a reboot of the franchise but also a sequel of sorts to the original 1987 film that starred Arnold Schwarzenegger. The Predators, amazed that a human (Arnold) was able to take down one of their own, immediately hatch a plan to wrangle up some of the most dangerous humans around the world. They then dump this band of mercenaries, thieves and other nefarious types that include Adrian Brody, Topher Grace, Lawrence Fishburne and Alice Braga into a "preserve" where they can be hunted. To add a wrinkle, one of the humans may be a serial killer amongst a group not known for embracing the concept of working as a team.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Twilight Saga: Eclipse Sets Records

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse scored when it had a biggest Wednesday opening ever.  Despite setting the midnight record with over $30 million, Eclipse's full day came in at $68.5 million, falling short of New Moon's $72.7 million record ($26.3 million of which from its midnight debut). Their first days, though, didn't have a precise apples-to-apples comparison, because Eclipse started on Wednesday, while New Moon was on a Friday.

Spider-Man News

It's Official! Andrew Garfield to Play Spider-Man!

Source: Sony Pictures
July 1, 2010

Sony Pictures has officially announced that Andrew Garfield has landed the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man in director Marc Webb's Untitled Spider-Man Film! The film focuses on a teenager grappling with both contemporary human problems and amazing super-human crises. The action adventure will open in 3D and 2D theaters on July 3, 2012.

Here's the official press release:

After a comprehensive worldwide casting search, Andrew Garfield has been chosen to portray Peter Parker when Spider-Man swings back onto the screen in 3D on July 3, 2012. The new film will begin production in early December directed by Marc Webb from a screenplay by James Vanderbilt. Laura Ziskin and Avi Arad will produce the film from Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios.

Today's confirmation culminates what has been one of the most eagerly anticipated casting announcements in recent memory. Bloggers, pop culture speculators, and everyday fans have pored over and analyzed every conceivable online rumor in an attempt to discover the identity of the next actor to play Peter Parker. Garfield will immediately begin preparing for the coveted role.

The Spider-Man franchise is one of the most successful in film history and the three previous motion pictures have collectively grossed more than $2.5 billion in worldwide box office.

On selecting Garfield, director Marc Webb said, "Though his name may be new to many, those who know this young actor's work understand his extraordinary talents. He has a rare combination of intelligence, wit, and humanity. Mark my words, you will love Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker."

Commenting on the announcement, Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Matt Tolmach, President of Columbia Pictures said, "Spider-Man is a classic superhero -- a young man who balances his responsibility to serve humanity and crush evil with the shyness and normalcy of someone struggling to find himself. The role demands an extraordinary actor. You need someone who can magically transform himself from Peter Parker into Spider-Man. An actor who will depict the vulnerability of youth and the strength and confidence of a legendary figure at the same moment. We have found that actor in Andrew Garfield. From the first time we saw him in the upcoming film The Social Network, to his glorious screen test, which floored all of us, we knew that we had found our new Peter Parker."

Producer Avi Arad added, "I'm incredibly excited about Andrew Garfield. In the Spider-Man tradition, we were looking for a smart, sensitive, and cool new Peter Parker who can inspire us and make us laugh, cry, and cheer. We believe we have found the perfect choice to take on this role and lead us into the future."

Producer Laura Ziskin said, "We are thrilled to have Andrew Garfield for this new incarnation of Spider-Man under Marc Webb’s direction. We were fortunate enough to meet with a group of fantastically talented young men. In the end, we all agreed that in addition to being an extraordinary actor, Andrew had the right mix of humor, youth, and pathos, along with an underlying sense of strength and power necessary to bring Peter Parker and Spider-Man to life on screen."

The selection of Garfield was revealed at a press event in Cancun, Mexico for international journalists attending a media tour promoting upcoming films from Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Garfield is fast becoming one of the most respected and sought-after young actors working in the industry today. In a short career, spanning only five years, he has already been directed by, and starred alongside, some of the greatest names and received a BAFTA for a role that won him international praise.

Garfield most recently worked with director David Fincher on the upcoming film The Social Network. He previously starred for Spike Jonze on his robot love story I'm Here, which premiered at Sundance this year. He plays the lead male opposite Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan in Mark Romanek's Never Let Me Go, due for release later this year.

Other notable screen credits include Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus playing opposite Christopher Plummer, Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell, Jude Law and the late Heath Ledger, Robert Redford’s Lions For Lambs, where he starred alongside Redford, Tom Cruise and Meryl Streep; Revolution Films' "Red Riding Trilogy – 1974" directed by Julian Jarrold, where he lead a stellar cast including Rebecca Hall and David Morrissey, and his unforgettable portrayal of a young ex-con in John Crowley's "Boy A," for which he earned the best actor BAFTA in 2008.

Garfield’s career began in theatre and in 2006 his performances in "Beautiful Thing" (Sound Space/Kit Productions), "The Overwhelming," and "Burn / Chatroom / Citizenship" (Royal National Theatre) won him the Milton Shulman Award for Outstanding Newcomer at the Evening Standard awards and the Jack Tinker Award for Most Promising Newcomer at the Critics Circle Theatre Awards. Other notable theatre credits include "Romeo and Juliet" (Manchester Royal Exchange) and "Kes" (Manchester Royal Exchange), for which he received the Most Promising Newcomer Award at the Manchester Evening News Awards 2004.