Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Clips from 'Silent House' -- Shot in One Take!



This whole 'shot in one take' gimmick can't be taken seriously. Can't be done. Alternatively, 'presented as a single take' is a used car sales pitch.

The cut, or opportunity to cut, in this clip comes at :54. At this point, with the shot almost completely black and out of focus, you could stop shooting while the upstairs rooms are lit and set up. Then you could go back and pick up at the same spot, pan over and find Elizabeth Olsen at the foot of the stairs. Any fine tuning of the imagery could be done in post, but that would be minimal if you were careful. Certainly, any director and DP would do tests as to the best way to accomplish what looked like a seamless take before production started.

When the flick comes out I'll bet it's loaded with bits where someone or some object gets very close to the camera and blocks it totally, or the light levels drop to black for a second, or other some such thing, allowing for cuts every minute or two. The takes may be impressively long, but not seamless. The logistics of that effort would be mind boggling. The ruined takes would drive cast and crew crazy. Really, even if you tried it, the studio would step in and tell the director to just make it look seamless and quit throwing money away trying to get the whole 88 minute movie in one take.

Of course, it's all in good fun, but I can't help myself.



Have to say, I'm impressed by the quality of footage. Olsen is looking good. Movie has a flow.















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Hard-Sell TV Spot for 'Silent House'

They're trying a tad too hard here. Doesn't bode well.













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'Neighborhood Watch' Trailer














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More Logic: by David Poland



(Photo: Kim Robeson, from Jim Emerson’s blog)


For those who may not know, David Poland runs Movie City News (MCN) and writes a blog called The Hot Blog. He is well known in the movie blogosphere, especially as a box office pundit. Though he is very popular, I don’t read him. Not anymore. I stopped a while back because I was tired of his heavy-handed style, self-important rants, attack pieces, sentences that often make little sense, and the repetitive nature of his posts. If you’ve read one piece breaking down box office minutiae and its implications for the industry you’ve read them all. What could be the point of reading his stuff? By my estimation, not much. 

The other day, though, for some reason -- I forget what, I ended up at MCN and decided to poke around a bit. At THB I found a blog entry that eviscerated the New York Times...again (Poland has a penchant for this). Well, I was there, one click away, so I checked it out.

He begins with typical posturing. “Oh, the irony,” Poland chirps, setting the table (although, for the record, he does not point out, anywhere in the piece, anything that is ironic. I’m sure he used the turn of phrase because it sounds smart, literate.), and continues, “The New York Times, since Sharon Waxman created the first fake slump in 2005, has taken a “get off of my lawn” take on Hollywood in pretty much every circumstance in which it has the opportunity. Whether it is the constant and misleading meme about the interest of Americans in going to the movies or today, The Oscars, there is a theme about young people abandoning Situation X, but almost no detail to go with a lot of alarmist writing.”

Poland refers to this piece at NYT.

Looking at his opening salvo I find a few problems (and suddenly remember why I quit reading this guy). Firstly, vague though Poland may have been, the slump he accuses Sharon Waxman of ‘creating’ must be the decline in DVD sales and movie theater attendance. Anyone knows this is not ‘fake’, and certainly not something Waxman created to spice up industry coverage. The decline is real, there’s no point in offering supporting evidence. A cursory examination shows the numbers are down. In fact, the DVD industry, once a mighty bastion of profit, has keeled over. (See: Blockbuster). To argue box office take, especially when you compensate for soaring ticket prices, is not in decline is a waste of time. So, Poland is off to a bad start. However, this is normal.

Poland continues with an inflammatory assessment of NYT’s reporting, which can be dismissed: They have a ‘get off my lawn’ tone, use misleading memes, their writing is alarmist, etc. Then, he says the piece in question provides almost no detail. I find this completely fascinating. How Poland can say Brooks Barnes and Michael Cieply’s write up is lacking in detail is beyond me.

Take this quote, for instance: ABC estimated that this year’s Academy Awards broadcast, with two sparsely seen movies, “The Artist” and “The Iron Lady,” sweeping the top categories, drew about 39.3 million viewers, up 3.7 percent from last year. That’s about 13 percent of the United States population. Among adults 18 to 49, viewership was flat, at 14.9 million.

This lacks detail? It seems quite specific. Poland reiterates his point (repeating is something he does in almost every piece to plump it up a bit. Word count, and all.): “To start, these writers are very comfortable playing fast and loose with limited details. Gladiator‘s Oscar year, as a high point, was ELEVEN years ago. And it didn’t have 45 million viewers, as they use “about” to spin, but just under 43 million.”

He refers to this paragraph in NYT: In the 1990s and shortly afterward, when populist movies like “Forrest Gump” and “Gladiator” won top prizes, the Oscars telecast routinely delivered about 45 million total viewers. The high point came in 1998, when the telecast delivered a peak audience of around 57.3 million.

Again, these aren’t ‘limited details’. This paragraph is very clear and as detailed as you can get. I don’t see what bearing the fact that ‘Gladiator’ played ELEVEN years ago has. This is one of those things you get in Poland write ups -- an accusatory quip that’s pure smoke and mirrors. Not only is the sentence not clear, it’s irrelevant. NYT clearly states they are talking about the 1990s "and shortly afterward". Poland offers nothing which undermines the selection of this time period as a reference to illustrate that viewership of the Oscars is in decline, he only implies there is something suspect in this by using all caps. That, and that alone. A ploy which, perhaps, appeals to readers of his blog on a certain level -- those who must resort to visual cues to know when something is bad (or EVIL) so they don’t have to read for content -- but one which has no substance. (Again, for those who are unfamiliar, typical from Poland).

Continuing, Poland criticizes NYT for saying the Oscar telecast, in the year ‘Gladiator’ won, had 45 million viewers. That’s not what they said. They said that, in the 1990s, “the Oscars telecast routinely delivered about 45 million total viewers.” The NYT piece does not offer specific numbers for the year ‘Gladiator’ won, but Poland criticizes them as if they had.

This is another of Poland’s traits -- he simply twists the facts to support his grandiose attacks. As such, his attacks are unsupported. They are huge plumes of hot air, yes, but well-founded critiques they are not.

Okay, at this point, I’m going to skip down a bit in Poland’s write up. Then, I’ll backtrack. It makes more sense this way. You’ll see what I mean.

Let’s take this bit in which Mr. Poland defends the continuing relevance of the Oscar telecast and its importance in regard to box office success after nominations are announced: “Last year, five of the nominees were released before November. The November releases were 127 Hours, which increased its gross by more than 50% after nominations in late January...”

Here, Poland is in his element: Box Office Numbers. However, he is very selective. He somewhat misrepresents the impact of the nomination for ‘127 Hours’ in that he fails to mention the movie, though it opened in November, was in limited release at that time (an Oscar qualifying run) and was on just a few screens. It didn’t go wide until January 28, 2011. While Poland heralds the nomination as being so revered by the public that it resulted in a 50% increase in box office, the fact is the announcement came January 25, 2011 -- three days later (on January 28) it went into wide release. ‘127 Hours’ had not been available for mass consumption in the weeks leading up to the nomination announcement.

In its limited opening ‘127 Hours’ made $264,851 (from boxofficemojo). In its first weekend in wide release (Jan. 28) it made $2,136,801. To suggest the Oscar nomination announcement (of Jan. 25) was responsible for the increased box office take is ludicrous. What was primarily responsible was, of course, the increased number of screens the movie was on three days after the announcement.

You may wish to suggest the movie’s take was larger than it would have been had the announcement not been made, but Poland does no such thing. He simply touts the increase in box office as being a direct result of the announced nomination and, by extension, to be a reflection of the continuing importance of the Oscars. However, any movie, when going from a limited release of a few screens to a wide release of hundreds or even thousands of screens, may be expected to make, say, 50% more money. This would happen whether there was some kind of awards announcement related to the movie or not.

The fact the movie went wide a few days after the announcement it was an Oscar contender practically negates any perceived effect the nominations could have had on box office take. If the movie had been in wide release for, say, a few months when the announcement was made then, in that case, a 50% bump in box office take would certainly strengthen Mr. Poland’s contention the Academy was still important to the average person. This, however, was not the case with ‘127 Hours’.

Poland offers similar evidence of the boost Oscar nominations had for other movies however, for the most part, it is just as flawed as his case for ‘127 Hours’.

There may be wiggle room here. There may be a modest increase in box office take after a nomination announcement for one or two of the movies Poland cites, however, there are also movies for which the timing doesn’t work, just as it doesn’t for ‘127 Hours’. As such, Mr. Poland’s  point lacks credibility and examining each film he cites, case by case, is not warranted. So, I won’t waste your time.

Now, on to the last pertinent argument Poland makes: That viewership of the Oscars telecast has remained fairly constant over the last 35 years. He says:

The Average viewership for The Oscars in the last 35 years is… 42.9 million people in the US. Six of the last ten shows were within 10% of that figure.

and

IN CLOSING – The New York Times, like so many, are egregiously guilty of taking a bunch of small factors and FALSELY synthesizing them in to memes. It is a brutal reality in this era of media. And sadly, seemingly intelligent people like Tom Sherak come to believe these lies and fail to challenge them aggressively when presented with them by the media.

and

This is not Wall Street. The Academy does not need quarterly growth… or even annual growth. They need to maintain an even strain. And they have. A little up, a little down.

Here, Poland fails on a fundamental level. While it may be true that viewership of the Oscars has remained somewhat constant, when the increase in U.S. population is taken into account, it is clearly in decline.

Using the same reference Poland does, it would seem the telecast is doing okay. On average, roughly 45 million people, plus or minus, have tuned in every year since the 70s. Poland beats us over the head with this as evidence the NYT is alarmist and not to be trusted. However, simple math bears out the point NYT and many others have made: Interest in the Oscar telecast and viewership has declined every year going back, perhaps, to the 70s.

As a reference point, let’s start in 1974. ‘The Sting’ won best picture. The Oscar telecast garnered a (whooping) 68% share with 44 million viewers. Well. This year’s telecast got about 40 million viewers with a 35% share. About the same, yes? Mr. Poland says so. No. It’s not about the same.

In 1974 the population of the U.S. was about 215 million. The current U.S. population is about 310 million. If you haven’t already done the math, 44 million is 20% (I rounded percentages up for convenience) of 215 million, whereas 40 million is 13% of 310 million.

In 1974, 20% of the people living in the United States watched the Oscars. In 2012, 13% of the population watched the show. While the population increased by roughly 50% from 1974 to 2012, viewership declined by 7%. In 1974, the show got a 68% share. In 2012, it got a 35% share. (Not to put too fine a point on it, but the stats for 2012 were cited in the NYT piece Poland sought to undermine, and are excerpted above).

In order to indicate that interest in the Oscars telecast has stayed roughly the same over the past 35 years, as Mr. Poland vociferously asserts, the show in 2012 would had to have been watched by about 62 million people. (20% x 310 million people = 62 million viewers).

Conclusion any dolt would come to: Interest in and viewership of the Oscars telecast is in decline and continues to decline just as reporters at NYT and other sources (including just about anybody you might care to stop on the street) have said for years.

How it is Mr. Poland could not see this...well. There are three possibilities: 1) He is not as sharp as the average dolt or, 2) He sees only what he wants to see, twists what is known to fit his attacks, and hopes his readers don’t look too carefully or, 3) He doesn’t really care what common sense dictates even if the average person knows a thing to be true, and is willing to insult highly respected journalists at venerable news organizations from the pulpit of his movie blog just to feed his own self-importance or to give himself a reason to exist even if his criticism is ridiculous beyond belief.

While I continue to have no interest in David Poland’s inflated point of view, elegantly articulated though it may be, I have had a change of heart in regard to reading his work. I’ll keep checking his posts and, from time to time I’m sure, will let you know if I find anything interesting. It’s a dirty job but, in the interest of keeping the blogosphere from becoming any more of a three-ring circus, someone has to do it.

I suppose though, if pressed, I’d have to admit it’s not without its rewards.














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'The Avengers' Trailer
















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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Prometheus Viral: Guy Pearce's TED 2023 Talk

video


Here's a snip from the TED blog interview with 'Prometheus' screenwriter and exec producer Damon Lindelof:

How did you come to the idea of writing a TEDTalk connected to Prometheus?


In really, really good science fiction the line between the science and the fiction is blurry. When I started attending TED, that line got even blurrier — I started hearing about ideas that were, in my own imagination, more far out than some of the science fiction I was seeing. 


Prometheus takes place in the future, but it’s a movie about ideas, and I just felt like it would be really cool to have one of the characters from the movie give a TEDTalk. Obviously, since the movie is set in the distant future, it would have to be a little more contemporary. But wouldn’t it be cool if it was a TED talk from a decade in the future? And what is a TEDTalk going to look like in 10 years? And what would this guy have to say?





















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'The Deep Blue Sea' Trailer/Poster

Great photography. Tactile look, like you're in the room.



Here's the posters:
























I'm liking these quads better.























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Super Slow Motion Owl from Prey's POV

Best at 720p (control appears lower right corner after you click play)




















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'The Avengers' Rollout Continues with Beautiful Character Posters/Banners

So -- we started the day with two new posters and a new title: 'Avengers Assemble', now we get some character posters and banners.

These, I gotta say are very nice. Fanboy, I ain't, but this is very good work. How often do you call this kind of stuff beautiful?







 (Click for larger images)

Love the water color on crumpled paper look.

Here are some banners:



A good day for Avengers fans.
























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New Poster for 'The Avengers'!!! And...a new Poster for 'Avengers Assemble'!!!


















































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Monday, February 27, 2012

New Stills from 'Wrath of the Titans' vs Old Stills from 'John Carter'

We've gotten a bunch of new stills from 'Wrath of the Titans'. I like these:



They have a presence. Hard to just glance at them and move on, dismissively. CGI in the top one perhaps needs another pass at texturing, but these may not be fully finished products. Still, optical polish aside, they have a core, a spine. Based on them and trailers, I'm looking forward to Wrath.

I get a completely different vibe from similar stills from 'John Carter', which I think bears comparison considering genre, storyline, setting, etc. Like this one:


























Again, needs some polish -- elements don't sit quite right, angle and intensity of lighting is off -- but this may not be a finished product. Beside the point. It's the feel of the imagery I'm talking about. I know this is a Disney product but, still, the creatures are off. They're too hokey for older viewers (how they got a purely computerized monster to look like guys in suits I don't know) but a bit too much for younger kids. There's also a disconnect between Taylor Kitsch and what's going on behind him (his expression just doesn't fit):














Look at the guy's face -- he may as well be launching a row boat at the lake on a summer afternoon, a beer and sandwich within arm's reach. This has to be due to some generic direction during green-screen shooting. (Really, I hope there's another pass or two in the works for the CGI. This is just not there yet).

Compare it to this still from Wrath.

















The creature is more appropriate and (even though we can't see his face) Sam Worthington seems more engaged. I know, it's totally subjective, but I get a more visceral feeling from this one whereas the JC still is has no emotional center. Here's a crop from the Wrath image above that reflects the quality of direction.






















Looks better to me.

Here's another good example. Compare this shot from 'John Carter':


To this one from 'Wrath of the Titans':


Very close, both in lighting and mood. Objectively you can't say one's better, of course, but to me there's a sense of wonder in the Wrath shot that's a result of more dialed-in direction. They're going for the same feel in the JC scene but neither actor seems sure where they're supposed to be, mentally. One shot resonates on a character level, the other has an 'assembly line' feel, like TV from the 60s -- 'Star Trek' maybe.

So far, everything about 'John Carter' has struck me as superficial, while 'Wrath of the Titans' comes across much better, with more depth. Wrath director Jonathan Liebesman (Battle Los Angeles) seems more at home than JC director Andrew Stanton (Wall-E, Finding Nemo).

Both sets of stills need some tuning. However, the ones from JC are too rough and were not ready to be released.




















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Jimmy Kimmel's 'Movie: The Movie' -- The Best Thing You'll See All Day

Starring, get this: Tom Hanks, George Clooney, Helen Mirren, Antonio Banderas, Meryl Streep, Christoph Waltz, Matt Damon, Gabourey Sidibe, Ryan Phillippe, Jessica Alba, Taylor Lautner, Edward Norton, Josh Brolin, Colin Farrell, Charlize Theron, Bryan Cranston, Jeff Goldblum, Gary Oldman, Cameron Diaz, Samuel L. Jackson, Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Jason Bateman, Kevin James, Daniel Day Lewis, John Goodman, Don Cheadle, Kate Beckinsale, Danny De Vito, AND MANY MANY MORE!!!!!





























































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Saturday, February 25, 2012

The New (Secretly Plotting) Reese Witherspoon


Like that title? Don't worry. This won't be one of those long pseudo-analytical pieces. I just noticed a change in Reese Witherspoon's look over the past few years and how it seems to coincide with a change in the type of movies she has lined up. Witherspoon appears to be in the middle of a make-over both in the way she presents herself and the kind of movies she does and, seemingly, we've been getting clues for some time now.

But, before I get to my investigative reporting, let's look at Witherspoon's latest, 'This Means War'. It's looking pretty bad with a total of around $30m closing out its first full week -- worse when you take into account the $65m budget plus marketing. Just not a lot of demand for Reese in that cutesy Legally Blonde/Tracy Flick mode anymore and that (at least in trailers) is what she delivers in War. The problem is she's too old for that kind of role and, at age 35, she probably has been for a while. Can't blame her for hanging on, but the writing is on the wall.

On the subject Roger Ebert writes:

I could comprehend this story gimmick in a movie involving 16-year-olds. Witherspoon and her co-stars, Chris Pine and Tom Hardy, have an average age of 33.33, and that's how old they look, 33.33-ish. Their agents should be old enough to warn them against this movie. That they are all single is possible. That the two guys meet the same girl and fall instantly in love and engage in bitter romantic struggle is … not. Reese Witherspoon is as cute as a button on Raggedy Ann's overalls, but irresistible raw sex appeal is not one of her qualities.

Okay. Witherspoon doesn't sell (or hasn't sold) sultry sexiness too well. Thing is, she doesn't sell cute anymore, either (see: TMW box office results). And, she's kinda stuck -- too old to play smart and girlish, but too smart and cutesy girlish to play anything else.

About that, in her review of TMW, Manohla Dargis said:

For whatever reason (box office, looks, lack of imagination about women), industry sages keep putting Ms. Witherspoon in romances, which is like putting a shark in a tank with a bobbing basket of kittens. She can be a fine actress and a brilliant comic, but she’s too calculating and self-contained a presence for most romances, particularly those comedies that try to squeeze laughs from female submission or humiliation. Ms. Witherspoon doesn't register as the yielding type. (She’s good in battle, as in “Walk the Line” and especially “Election.”)

Agree. Can't argue with that. But, look at the still (from TMW) above. The two guys Reese's character has been stringing along (who've been playing her the whole time as they've known they were being strung along) are pretending (apparently. I haven't seen the movie) to meet for the first time, I suppose as some kind of gag at her expense. That's submissive (or at least passive) and kind of humiliating. Reese's expression says it all.

And, that leads us to Witherspoon's magazine covers from a few years back. Let's peruse a sampling:
























All from 2005-2007 and as far as I can tell, all typical. Reese was very 'girl next door', the totally wholesome all-American blonde -- always had been. Granted, the two Elle covers are more flirty, but I don't buy it. One is too shy and comes off a bit unsure, while the other is more steamy, yes, but again, all little false. It's a bit of a stretch for her, something of a put-on. Otherwise, she might be someone you'd run into at the coffee shop or supermarket on a Sunday morning.

Nothing surprising about any of this. These covers are a variation on the Elle Woods theme. The Reese we've always known. We've never known another.

However, if you compare the above to these, we see a different girl:




















































All from 2011 and 2012, all featuring a range of sexiness from brassy and fun, to sultry and in-control -- and, again, all fairly typical. I don't get the feeling she's forcing it. She looks good, especially on the Vogue cover -- that's a nice one. Anyway...different. More sexier, less Flickier. I'm sold.

However, I remain confused. Why, if Ms. Witherspoon had been cultivating this new brand of come hither steaminess did she bother to make 'This Means War'? Certainly her character was clearly outlined by the screenplay: chirpy, girly, not what you'd call sexually aggressive (again, judging from trailers -- I haven't seen the movie and almost certainly never will. But, in fairness, all the other people who did not see the movie based their decision on the trailer and little else. I did, however, see the 9-minute preview, about which I said: "Yeah...that doesn't help. Kinda like sugar-coated James Bond, if James Bond was a one-hour TV show from the 80s or 90s. I'll take the nine minutes, guess what the rest of the flick has going on, call it a done deal, and get on with my life. Thanks anyway.")

What about TMW attracted Witherspoon if she was in the middle of transforming herself from a frilly girl next door you'd like to date to the sizzling woman at the end of the bar you wish you had the gumption to talk to? Who knows. A contractual thing? A promise to a friend? Whatever. Not sure it matters. What does matter is that TMW may very well be the last such project for Witherspoon, the last such character she portrays.

Let's look at what she has lined up. First, as a reference point, here's the IMDb write-up for 'This Means War':























Two top CIA operatives wage an epic battle against one another after they discover they are dating the same woman.

Director: McG

Uh...those three things, that made-for-TV poster, made-for-TV synopsis, and that McName, kind of knock the wind out of you.

Moving on. Witherspoon's next movie is:























'Mud'

A drama centered on two teenage boys who encounter a fugitive and pact to help him escape from an island in the Mississippi.

With Matthew McConaughey. Directed by Jeff Nichols, who wrote and directed the sublime 'Take Shelter' with Michael Shannon in a pitch-perfect performance, supported by Jessica Chastain, who is absolutely convincing as the concerned wife. (Really, if you haven't seen this one, check it out. Part domestic drama, part psychological horror -- it's very rewarding).

Wow. What a difference. Compare the pedigree of these two movies. Again, why would the actor that had this lined up make TMW?

Next up:























'Devil's Knot'

Three children were savagely murdered in 1993. Weeks later, police announced the arrest of three teens accused of committing the murders as part of a satanic cult ritual.

Based on Devil's Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three written by Mara Leveritt. Directed by no less than Atom Egoyan (The Sweet Hereafter), co-starring Colin Firth as Ron Lax, the investigator who worked pro bono for Damien Echols (one of the men convicted of the murders).

This is must-see. I almost can't believe my eyes.

Seriously. Why did Witherspoon do 'This Means War' when she's trying to change her image and has this movie lined up? With this director and Colin Firth? I don't get it.

As for Witherspoon, she portrays Pam Hobbs, the mother of one of the victims.

You can see Pam Hobbs' reaction to the news the men convicted of killing her son would be set free here.

From WREG's coverage:  The little boy's mother, Pam Hobbs, does not share the same fury, and has changed her mind about the killers in the last 18 years. "I felt like those three guys were guilty and they did it. 

Now, I'm a little confused over things that have come up over the years as to whether they actually committed the crime or if they're innocent," Hobbs said. "It's a terrible nightmare that I have to live with from day to day and I want to rest and I want my son to rest," she said. 


Up next:























'Big Eyes'

A drama centered on the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane, her phenomenal success in the 1950s, and the subsequent legal difficulties she had with her husband, who claimed credit for her works in the 1960s.

Witherspoon plays the painter Margaret Keane and Ryan Reynolds plays her husband. Written and directed by Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski who did a good job writing stuff like '1408', 'Ed Wood', and 'The People vs. Larry Flynt'.

A nice sounding movie. Looking forward.

Next:

'Wish List'

Life changes for a thirtysomething career woman when a coin she threw in a magic fountain as a girl finally reaches the bottom.

Really, that sounds totally charming. Could be very special. Might be a step backward, but I'll give it the benefit of the doubt. Let's say it has that 'Forrest Gump' vibe, for now. No director yet, but written by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger who wrote 'Kung Fu Panda' and 'Monsters vs. Aliens'

Good news. I like Witherspoon but can't watch most of her movies. These upcoming movies, and the characters she plays, are about as different from 'This Means War' as you can get and I couldn't be happier. They, most undoubtedly, are not the Reese we've always known. In fact, with the exception of a very nice turn as June Carter in 'Walk the Line', they sound like a Reese we've never known.

It's a head-scratcher. She's had this career change in mind for years (judging from the magazine covers she decided around 2009 to make a move) but still produces stuff like 'This Means War'? Why? As a misdirection so we don't suspect she's got some fantastic stuff lined up down the road? So we don't catch on to her diabolical plan to win an Oscar a year, every year thank you very much, starting with 'Mud' in 2013? Is the title itself a clue: 'This Means War', as in, I'm declaring war against vapid screenplays and silly characters. (Yeah, I know. But, I couldn't help myself).

That's some hella good sleight of hand, Reese. You go girl! After 'This Means War' nobody suspects a thing. 





















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'The Raven' Rolls out a Nice TV Spot

This is looking very good. Has a soul, especially compared to recent period pop pieces like Sherlock Holmes.















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Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Fluff: Michael Barryte on Rewriting 'Star Wars: Episode I'

















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New 'John Carter' Preview/Extended Scene

Watching this the term 'aggressively non-engaging' occurred to me. Some of the VFX are fun but in a 'volume-off' kinda way. Not a good sign. Sequences play out okay, but there is little connection between the eye-candy and what it represents storywise. That is, this movie seems like a series of vapid sequences that rely on strong visuals, but is populated with characters you can't care about in a story you don't want to know.

There is an element, at 3:32, that drew me in both because of its look and the story implications. But, that's it -- just that one. Otherwise, the longest four and a half minutes I can remember.



















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'MiB3' Still -- Josh Brolin and Will Smith Haggle over who gets the Little Gun

Remember: Size doesn't matter.













































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Cue Lute Music -- Story Placards for Pixar's Brave



























































































































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Pixar's 'Brave' Character Images/Posters

There's a bunch of them. I like these.





































































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