Sunday, November 30, 2008

Benjamin Button

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The trailer looks interesting and all, but a 150+ million dollar budget?!? That's an awful big gamble.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Saving Story

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Maybe Shyamalan was on to something... or not. Interesting article in last week’s New York Times about the sad state of storytelling. There is an unfortunate trend of big special effects strong-arming story into a corner, but I don’t believe we need an updated “Hero’s Journey" for today’s ADD audiences.

Screenwriting is more art than science -- which is why everyone thinks they can do it. Maybe if writers were given more respect, there would be better stories. Of course, better stories don’t always translate into box office success... is Hollywood willing to take that risk?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Underworld Prequel

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I’m guessing there’ll be other posters, this one is kinda... meh. Still, with the phenomenal success of “Twilight” over the weekend -- 70.5 million, expect to see more vampire flicks. I’m not a big believer in chasing trends, it’s fool’s gold. What’s hot now, might not be so hot 6-8 months from now.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Might come as a shock to some, but “Supernatural” has been the best genre show of the fall. Better than “Heroes” or “Sarah Connor Chronicles”, probably cheaper too. It flies completely under the radar on the CW -- which only seems to have eyes for “Gossip Girl”. Great episode tonight. They’ve ventured into areas that even “Buffy” was reluctant to explore with the whole angels vs. demons stuff. It’s like a beefed up “Frailty” meets "Prophecy". The show is still about good battling evil, but there’s a murkiness to it all that really works. Will definitely get this season on DVD.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Worst Enemy Axed!

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Can’t say I’m surprised about this one -- kinda shocked the low rated “Sarah Connor Chronicles” and “Knight Rider” were picked up for the rest of the season. “My Own Worst Enemy” was a good idea on paper, just didn’t pan out in the execution. Is this a harbinger of things to come for Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse"?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Beyonce as Wonder Woman?

She’s lobbying for the role... I think the closest she’ll get is the theme song. Fanboys still haven’t gotten over Halle Berry as “Catwoman” and this would generate an even bigger outcry. If Beyonce’s serious about playing a superhero, go with Vixen. She’s a lower tier black superhero/model with cool powers -- seems tailor made for her. Actually, Vanity’s role in the “Last Dragon” remake would be more appropriate. My fantasy pick is still Eva Mendes, but casting is irrelevant. A “Wonder Woman” movie seems destined to fail. Joss Whedon couldn’t pull it off. The WW spec set in “World War II” was good enough to buy, but not good enough to make. Now there are rumblings about McG at the helm. No one has figured out the big screen formula for comic book heroines.

It is curious how the Sci-Fi and Horror genres have succeeded where others have failed. One of the arguments I hear is that strong women are a turn-off, but horror flicks have tons of strong female protags. Of course, you could make the argument that many female protagonists start off as victims and really don’t become empowered until the third act. In superhero flicks, the protagonist is kicking butt after the first fifteen minutes...

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Invasion

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Dear Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig,

You’re both talented and accomplished actors, but please stop making movies together. You're like some bizarro Wonder Twins couple, canceling each other out. I gave you a pass after the average “Golden Compass”, but this stinker is just plain indefensible. “The Invasion” makes Lindsay Lohan’s “I Know Who Killed Me” look like “Silence of the Lambs”. You've moved on to bigger and better projects, but if you ever get the inkling to hook up on screen again... don't!

Your pal,

Okay, so I’m being a bit facetious, but it’s still an awful movie. How do you screw up a concept that’s been done a million times over? Maybe that’s the problem. A Hail Mary pass to be bold and daring, instead turns into a flat, uninteresting film. And don’t get me started on that ending. I honestly expected the “real” ending to pop up after the closing credits.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008


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Sometimes the best stories are also the most unlikely.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Legend of the Seeker

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It’s been a long time since “Xena” and “Hercules” ruled the syndicated airwaves. This new fantasy series “seeks” to regain the crown. The production values were pretty decent, cast likeable and New Zealand always makes a great fantasy locale. Action wasn’t that bad, but the slow-mo stuff might start to grate after a while. I thought the dialogue was weakest aspect -- that and the main villain, all he lacked was a long mustache to twirl.

As far as the plot goes, there’s a reason why folks keep going back to the same well, bringing up Arthurian elements: it works! Some ideas just resonate with the masses -- it’s important to keep that in mind. Dunno if “Legend on the Seeker” will last, but its heart seems to be in the right place.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The Reaping

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Totally forgot I had this. Kind of a throwback to those bad seed, evil children flicks that were popular in the 70s and 80s -- but with much better special effects and a big twisty ending. Like “True Blood”, it doesn’t do the South any favors.

“The Reaping” isn’t a bad film, but there’s a TV-movie quality that it can’t seem to shake. I just don’t think the stakes are high enough. Will Hilary Swank kill the evil child and save the townsfolk from those nasty plagues? And it’s not quite the horror movie that the trailer suggests either. A couple of creepy scenes, but you’ll have to look long and hard for scares. With all that said, I’m surprised the film didn’t fare better at the box office, only 25 million. There’s a very specific audience for this, but the marketing department folks didn’t get enough of ‘em.


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