Indians in the ALCS...Browns hosting the Phish...Buckeyes in another exhibition game against a 7th tier MAC team...
And three movies coming out that I want to see.
Somebody's going to be quite busy over the next week.
News and Rumors
~ Will Smith will be starring in the next Michael Mann directed drama "Empire". The script is to be penned by John Logan, who wrote "The Aviator" and "The Last Samurai". Not much has been released about the plot, only that Smith is to play a contemporary media mogul. Smith last worked with Mann on the acclaimed "Ali".
~ A political thriller involving George Clooney? I bet all you Rush Limbaugh fans are running for the door. Not so fast...this may be good. Clooney is in discussions to direct and produce the film adaptation of the upcoming Broadway play "Farragut North", about a young, idealistic communications director who works for an inspiring, though unorthodox, presidential candidate. The communications director is reported to be Leonardo DiCaprio.
~ That will have to wait until Leo is done with his current project, the Ridley Scott Iraq War film "Body of Lies", with frequent Scott collaborator Russell Crowe. The film will be about a former journalist injured in the war who is hired by the CIA to track down an Al Qaeda leader in Jordan.
~ More cast notes for J.J. Abrahm's "Star Trek" movie. Eric Bana has been cast in the role as the main villain. Leonard Nimoy will be in the movie in some capacity...not sure if it's as Future Spock or Spock's grandfather. As noted earlier, Zachary Quinto, the murderous Sylar in "Heroes" will play the young Spock, with Zoe Saldana ("Guess Who") as Uhura and Anton Yelchin ("Alpha Dog") as Checkov. Still no news about who will be Kirk, McCoy, Scotty, or Sulu.
~ Life Imitates Art. Jack Bauer is going to jail for 48 days. Kiefer got popped for DUI last month, which was a parole violation for his 2004 DUI case. The sentence will be served during his December break in shooting "24".
~ The first trailer has been released for Tim Burton's "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street". Check it out here. This is a "can't miss" for me.
This week's new movie releases:
As noted last week, we at The Cleveland Fan have been pretty busy covering sports to devote much time to movies lately...but there are three movies coming out in wide release this week that I intend to get to over the next two weeks; so look for the reviews scattered here and there as we go.
As last week, no estimated ratings for movies I plan to review in the future
Starring: George Clooney, Tilda Swinton, Tom Wilkerson
Plot: An in house "fixer" at a top NY law firm risks everything on a sabotaged class action suit that pits him against a rival litigator.
The BeerBuzz: This has been getting unbelievable reviews so far. Clooney's performance is being called Oscar worthy, and the script for this legal thriller, from the same man who gave us "The Bourne Ultimatum" (Tony Gilroy) is said to be superb. This will be the first of this week's releases that I'll be seeing, so look for the review in the next week or so, in between Indians and Browns coverage.
Elizabeth: The Golden Age
Starring: Cate Blanchett, Clive Owen, Geoffrey Rush
Plot: The legendary Queen of England struggles to maintain her crown in the face of conspiracies to overthrow her, and an impending invasion by the Spanish Armada
The BeerBuzz: Ten years after the award winning "Elizabeth", Cate takes up the crown once again. The early buzz is that the acting is excellent, but the script quite weak. Don't expect the same bevy of awards coming to this one.
We Own the Night
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Joaquin Phoenix, Robert Duvall
Plot: Two completely opposite brothers; Bobby, a nightclub owner, and Joseph, a police officer, unite after a near fatal incident to confront the mobsters who finance Bobby's club.
The BeerBuzz: More Russian Mobsters! This time, it's 1980s New York, with Robert Duvall playing the police captain father to Wahlberg and Phoenix. Mixed reviews so far, but I get the feeling this will be a worthwhile movie for all us mob-thriller junkies.
The Final Season
Starring: Sean Astin, Powers Boothe, Rachael Leigh Cook
Plot: A town rallies behind their championship baseball team during their last season before their school is merged with another.
The BeerBuzz: Rudy does baseball! A true life story that is an Iowa (and baseball) version of "Remember the Titans"...except this looks at the "before", not the "after" as far as the merger goes. The fact that it's being shown in so few theaters (about 1,000 nationwide) tells me that this isn't going to find it's way onto my Best Sports Movie list.
My Estimated Rating: Charles Nagy (2 baseballs)
Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married
Starring: Tyler Perry, Janet Jackson, Sharon Leal
Plot: An adulterous incident causes four couples to take a hard look at their respective marriages during their annual week-long mountain vacation.
The BeerBuzz: If Tyler Perry is not in drag, no one wants to see his movies.
My Estimated Rating: Tim Couch (1 ½ footballs)
Across the Universe (expanding)
Starring: Jim Sturgess, Evan Rachel Wood, Joe Anderson
Plot: Musical based on the Beatles songbook about a love story between Lucy and Jude, set amongst the turbulent 1960s.
The BeerBuzz: For those of us old enough...remember how BAD Peter Frampton and the Bee Gees were in "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"? This looks to be even worse.
My Estimated Rating: Jeff Garcia (1 football)
New DVD Releases on Tuesday, October 16th
Transformers - One of the most entertaining movies of the summer, but don't expect much in the way of plot or logic, as Michael Bay is still to directing what Charlie Frye is to pocket composure. But it's got everything a teenaged boy could want; sensational special effects, huge explosions, manly men battling impossible odds, plucky teens showing incredible bravery, sly humor throughout the film, and a smokin' hot girl as the main sidekick to the hero.
The Hoax - Richard Gere as Clifford Irving, the man who published the bogus "autobiography" of Howard Hughes. Well reviewed film with a topic that is still relevant today.
The Invisible - Teenage Horror Film about a dead kid who is still hanging around earth, trying to figure out what happened. The title is the perfect description for this movie's performance at the box office
The Reaping - Hilary Swank doing her best to follow the leads of other Best Actress Oscar winners; by choosing a really stupid movie after a career defining bravura performance. Crappy movie about a debunker of paranormal occurrences who runs into real life biblical plagues in a backwater community.
A Mighty Heart - Another movie that disappeared at the box office. Angelina Jolie portrays Miriam Perl, the wife of Daniel Perl, the journalist brutally butchered by Islamic terrorists in Iraq. Reportedly an excellent film, but the entire subject matter is just too damn depressing to appeal to most people. In fairness, I will try to rent this at some point.
Planet Terror - The Robert Rodriguez half of "Grindhouse" is now available as a stand alone movie with scenes added back in. Generally considered the weaker half of the movie when compared to Quentin Tarantino's "Death Proof", the movie should still be a lot of fun to watch in the same over-the-top fashion as Rodriguez's earlier flicks "Desperado" and "From Dusk til Dawn".
Next week: Rendition, The Comebacks, 30 Days of Night, Gone Baby Gone, Things We Lost in the Fire, Sarah Landon and the Paranormal Hour, Lars and the Real Girl (Expanding), The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (Expanding)
Upcoming Biggies (click on the hyperlink to view the available trailers).
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.
Hitman - November 21st - 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 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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