It's getting very difficult to come up with new ways to talk about how bad the movies of August have been (other than "The Simpsons Movie" and "The Bourne Ultimatum").
So I'll try something a little different later on.
News & Rumors:
~ Janeane Garofalo has signed on to the cast of "24" for next season, in what is considered a surprise given her outspoken liberal views and the admitted right wing leanings of the show itself. Garofalo will play an FBI analyst investigating a crisis surrounding Jack and his crew. Please, please tell me that this won't be the "24" obligatory "stupid government bureaucrat getting in Jack's way and helping the bad guys inadvertently" that we get every single season on this show. If so, trust me to be bringing the hammer down on them in my recaps.
~ Follow-up to an earlier report #1. Carla Gugino has been added to the cast of "A Righteous Kill". Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino will play two NY cops tracking down a serial killer. Gugino's character will be a crime scene investigator who is involved with DeNiro's character.
~ Follow-up to an earlier report #2. George Miller of "Mad Max" fame has been chosen to direct the film adaptation of the Justice League. Batman and Superman will be in it, but they won't be played by Christian Bale or Brandon Routh. Instead, they are looking to make this another motion capture CGI movie, like "Polar Express" and "Beowulf".
~ Follow-up to an earlier report #3. The remake of "Logan's Run" is back on the "Go" list after several delays. Commercial director Joseph Kosinski will make his feature debut with Joel Silver producing. The script is said to be closer to the actual novel than the original Michael York film. No news yet regarding casting.
~ Another classic Sci-Fi adventure to be remade...Roland Emmerich ("Independence Day", "The Day After Tomorrow") will pen a remake to "Fantastic Voyage", the 1968 Rachel Welch/Steve Boyd film about a group of scientists and doctors shrunk down to microscopic size to do brain surgery on an important scientist from inside his brain.
~ And one for the dog lovers (and Michael Vick haters) out there. Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston will star in an adaptation of the best seller "Marley & Me", by Philadelphia columnist John Grogan. Grogan writes of the escapades of his family in dealing with Marley, a headstrong, havoc wreaking Labrador Retriever who grew into a loving pet. I know what my wife will be taking me to see on its first weekend.
~ Donald Trump thinks it would be a good idea to have Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, and Brittney Spears on a celebrity version of "The Apprentice". Donald Trump also thinks that his hair looks good, so there you go.
This week's new releases:
Welcome, Ladies and Germs to the new and exciting game show called "Suckardy!" where you supply the questions to the answer I'll give regarding really crappy movies!
I'll take Sucky Action-Adventures for $400, Mitch.
The answer is: This movie will make more than the other new films this week, but will still be sucky enough to not beat out "Superbad" for the #1 position at the box office.
What is "War"?
Starring: Jason Statham and Jet Li
Plot: Bad-assed FBI agent (Statham) goes after the assassin (Li) who killed his partner.
The BeerBuzz: Jason Statham needs to hope that "The Brazilian Job" comes out really soon and makes people forget about the fact that he's quickly becoming the British Steven Seagal.
I'll take Sucky Weinstein Class Warfare Comedies for $600, Mitch
The answer is: This movie will continue the streak of the Weinstein Company of putting out nothing but garbage, despite a great cast.
What is "The Nanny Diaries"?
Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Laura Liney, and Paul Giamatti
Plot: A college student takes a job as a nanny to a rich NY couple, and tries to juggle her studies, a new boyfriend, her wacky employers, and their bratty kid.
The BeerBuzz: This one is getting hammered by the critics, and doesn't seem to have an audience. Is it a regular comedy? A romantic comedy? A satire of class inequalities? A feel-good drama? Who knows, it's so muddled. The only thing getting constantly praised, as expected, is the acting of the three leads.
I'll take Sucky British Family Comedies for $800, Mitch
The answer is: This "three-quel" from England makes you wonder if it's possible to come from the same country that gave us "Hot Fuzz".
What is "Mr. Bean's Holiday"?
Starring: Rowan Atkinson and Willem Dafoe
Plot: The near silent bumbler takes a vacation to the south of France, where his video diary somehow ends up as a world premier at the Cannes Film Festival.
The BeerBuzz: I am looking forward to seeing the Cannes Film Festival as part of something...but that would be part of "Entourage" as Vince and the boys head over for the premier of "Medellin". This? Bleh. How do you make a movie that's very much aimed at kids and try to get them to understand the inside jokes about Cannes?
I'll take Schmaltzy Sports Movies for $1000, Mitch
The answer is: This Samuel L. Jackson flick is the best of the new releases, but the presence of Josh Hartnett will ultimately doom it.
What is "Resurrecting the Champ"?
Give that man a cookie!
Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Josh Hartnett, and Alan Alda
Plot: A young reporter thinks he has found his break-through story when he encounters a homeless man that he thinks is a forgotten former boxing champions, previously believed to be dead.
The BeerBuzz: The movie is said to be pretty decent for the most part, but it's drug down by the Hartnett sub-story about his political battles at the newspaper.
I'll take Horribly Sucky Westerns for $2,000, Mitch
The answer is: This movie is getting way too much free publicity in the form of "controversy" from Far Right Radio due to its "Mormon Bashing".
What is "September Dawn"?
We have a winner! (and several losers)
Starring: Jon Voight, Trent Ford, and Terrance Stamp
Plot: Fictional take on the Mountain Meadow Massacre in 1857 where followers of John Smith killed 120 settlers passing through Utah.
The BeerBuzz: The "big deal" about this movie from Talk Radio is that it's supposedly a "liberal plot" to sabotage the campaign of Mitt Romney, a Mormon, by showing how some Mormons used to be crazed, murderous lunatics. Whatever. All I know is that this is a really bad movie, and will be totally forgotten in about 10 days, and it has nothing to do with politics. You want a good Western? Wait two weeks for "3:10 to Yuma". Want to see crazed Mormons? Watch "Big Love" or Donny and Marie.
New DVD Releases on Tuesday, August 28th
Blades of Glory - Will Ferrell and Jon Heder as former skating rivals who are disgraced and banned from singles competition, so they decide to join forces and compete as a pair. Typical Will Ferrell nonsense that will be good for two hours of laughing.
Kickin' It Old Skool - Jamie Kennedy as a doofus who hits his head as a 12 year old while breakdancing, and wakes up from the coma 20 years later, still with a 12 year old's mentality...which isn't much different from Kennedy's normal brain function levels. Stay far away from this bomb.
Next week: Halloween, Balls of Fury, Death Sentence
Upcoming Biggies (click on the hyperlink to view the available trailers).
Shoot ‘em Up - September 7th - Clive Owen and Monica Bellucci protecting a baby from sinister Paul Giamatti. I was so there anyway, and then I found out that in one scene Owen and Bullucci are having sex while in a shoot out. Check out the trailer, as it is one of the best I have seen.
3:10 to Yuma - September 7th - Russell Crowe and Christian Bale in a remake of a classic Western with Bale as a farmer volunteering to escort a criminal (Crowe) to Yuma by train, with a battle of wits ensuing.
The Brave One - September 14th - Jodie Foster going all Charles Bronson-DeathWish on some thugs.
Eastern Promises - September 14th (limited) - Naomi Watts as a London midwife drawn into the Russian Mob, headed by Viggo Mortensen.
The Kingdom - September 28th - Jamie Foxx, Chris Cooper, and Jennifer Garner in a story about an American team sent into the Middle East to investigate a terrorist attack on Americans in Riyadh.
Michael Clayton - October 12th - George Clooney as a top law firm's "fixer" (the type of person played by Jodie Foster in "Inside Man"...IOW, a shady power broker/dirty tricks expert).
Hitman - October 12th - Deadwood's Timothy Oliphant follows up his portrayal as the chief villain in "Live Free or Die Hard" in this action/adventure film where he play...what else...a hitman. Look for it to be in the same vein as "The Transporter", and a hit (heh...I kill me).
The Golden Age - October 12th - Cate Blanchett and Clive Owen in a follow up of the award winning "Elizabeth"...this one looks to be better than the first, with much more action as it focuses on England's defeat of the Spanish Armada.
We Own the Night - October 12th - Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Wahlberg, and Eva Mendes in a story of a nightclub owner (Phoenix), his police officer brother (Wahlberg), and the conflict with the mobsters who run Phoenix's nightclub. And yes, if you are counting, that's FOUR movies I deem "interesting" debuting on the same day. I get the feeling that will change, and some of them will move their release date.
Rendition - October 19th - Reese Witherspoon, Jake Gyllenhaal, Meryl Streep and Alan Arkin in a political thriller with Gyllenhaal as a CIA agent troubled by witnessing questionable interrogations.
American Gangster - November 2nd - Denzel Washington as a heroin kingpin from the Vietnam War era (he smuggled it back in the body bags of dead soldiers) and Russell Crowe as the investigator on his trail.
Bee Movie - November 2nd - Animated flick with Jerry Seinfeld as a bee who files a lawsuit against mankind for eating honey.
Lions for Lambs - November 9th - Robert Redford directs himself, Tom Cruise (yeck) and Meryl Streep in this political thriller.
Fred Claus - November 9th - Vince Vaughn as Santa's embittered little brother. With Paul Giamatti. Another slightly naughty Christmas fairy tale that will make a bundle of cash.
Beowulf - November 16th - Robert Zemeckis gets all medieval on us with a motion capture (like "Polar Express") adaptation of the epic poem. Crispen Glover as the monster Grendel and Angelina Jolie as Grendel's mother? I'm there.
The Golden Compass - December 7th - Major, major push from the studios for this big budget fantasy...designed to be the first of a franchise. Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig star (their second collaboration this year, let's hope it's better than "The Invasion"), along with Sam Elliot and Eva Green.
Leatherheads - December 7th - George Clooney in an old fashioned screwball comedy set in 1925. George is an aging football legend who now owns a pro team, and is competing for the affections of Renee Zellweger with his star player.
I Am Legend - December 14th - Will Smith in what is basically a remake of the Chuck Heston apocalyptic film "The Omega Man".
National Treasure: Book of Secrets - December 21st - Follow-up to the hugely popular guilty pleasure "National Treasure" with Nick Cage back at his wacky best.
P.S., I Love You - December 21st - Hillary Swank, Gerard Butler, and Harry Connick Jr. in an award contender about a widow who discovers love letters written by her recently deceased husband (Butler) that are meant to help her begin the next chapter of her life.
The Other Boleyn Girl - December 21st - Natalie Portman as Anne Boleyn, Scarlett Johansson as her sister Mary, and Eric Bana as King Henry VIII. I expect this to blow the tepid Showtime series "The Tudors" out of the English Channel.
Charlie Wilson's War - December 25th - Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman in an Oscar contender about the charismatic and eccentric Texas Congressman who orchestrated the funding of the Afghans against the Soviet Union in the early 80s.
Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street - Limited release in December - Tim Burton's adaptation of the macabre Steven Sondheim musical about a deranged barber bent on revenge (Johnny Depp) and the meat pie baker that assists him (Helena Bonham Carter), who uses the bodies to make delicious snacks.
Untitled J.J. Abrams Project - January 18th - You've seen the buzz generating hand held camera trailer during "Transformers", and wondered what it's all about. We don't know yet, but we're thinking it should be fun.
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