Garbage coming out at the theater. One decent movie coming out on DVD.
But lots of good sports to watch this weekend.
In looking back at last year, it's really not that much different now. In the time period between New Year's Day, 2008 and the start of the Blockbuster Season last year (with "Iron Man" being the first out of the gate), there was only two movies that I saw in that four month period that didn't totally stink, and that was "Cloverfield" and "21". Neither of which were that good, but at least they weren't as awful as the rest of the junk Hollywood threw at us.
This year? More of the same. We've had "Taken", which was a big surprise, and "Watchmen", which has really disappointed at the box office. I also saw "Duplicity", which was OK, but given the talent involved, it's a bigger failure than "Body of Lies".
This year, however, I think we'll at least get a little head start on the Blockbuster season, starting in two weeks with the Russell Crowe political thriller "State of Play", and then the next week with the Robert Downey, Jr. weeper "The Soloist", before diving headfirst into the Sound and Fury with "Wolverine".
In other words....entertaining movies; like good weather...are just around the corner. It's just been a LONG wait, and we're impatient.
News and Rumors
~ Big buzz coming out regarding Christopher Nolan's next project, "Inception". I talked about it a few weeks ago, mentioning that although plot details are very hush-hush at this point, it is said to be a sci-fi action flick "set within the architecture of the mind". Nope...I have no idea what that means either. But when you look at the case connected to this; I'm seeing a major film. Leonardo DiCaprio is set to star, and will be joined by Cillian Murphy (Scarecrow in "Batman Begins"), Marion Cotillard (Oscar winner in 2008 for "La Vie en Rose"), and Ellen Page.
~ Michael Caine has revealed possibly the worst kept secret in Hollywood; that the next Batman film will focus on The Riddler. No additional news on that front. Johnny Depp (yes!) and Eddie Murphy (hell, no!) are still the two people most rumored to be in line for the role.
~ There is a story out that Robert Patrick will be making an appearance in the second Terminator movie to be directed by McG. Patrick played the ultimate villain in "Judgment Day", the shape shifting T-1000. No idea yet what his role will be.
~ In that same line, there are rumors that William Shatner might actually make a cameo appearance in the next J.J. Abrams Star Trek movie. I'm personally hoping that they have him playing a Klingon, and that we can't recognize him.
Stupid Remakes and Sequels
~ "Sex in the City 2" to open May 28, 2010. The Breakfast Burrito is already tuning up his motor scooter.
~ A new film is going to be made from Jay McInerney's 1984 novel "Bright Lights, Big City". Why? Wasn't the first one with Michael J. Fox bad enough?
~ Ahhhhh. Zac Efron has dropped out of the lead role on the remake of "Footloose". Maybe the kid isn't so dumb after all, and can recognize a disaster when he sees it. Oh, wait: He did appear in High School Musical 3...so maybe not.
~ There will be a remake of the campy 1981 film "Clash of the Titans", starring two actors with ties to the Daniel Craig 007 movies; Gemma Arterton and Mads Mikkelsen. Supposedly, the script will be quite different from the Harry Hamlin/Sir Laurence Olivier cheese-fest, and will focus more on Perseus' mission, and how he deals with being the son of Zeus.
This week's new movie releases:
Fast & Furious
Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Michelle Reodriguez
Plot: The feud between and ex-con and a law enforcement agent is reignited back in LA.
The BeerBuzz: Guess which actors' careers have been stuck in neutral for so long that they agreed to come back and do another one of these rotten films? That would be the three mentioned above, plus Jordana Brewster (who is still great to look at, so she has that going for her). For the movie itself? Nothing more than rehashed bits and pieces from the first three. Awesome stunts; awful script.
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Ryan Reynolds
Plot: During the summer of 1987, a young man just graduated from college takes on what he thinks will be a going-nowhere job at a local amusement park, only to discover it's a perfect opportunity to prepare for the real world.
The BeerBuzz: This one is actually getting a lot of really good reviews, currently hitting 87% positive on Rottentomatoes. It's from the same director as "Superbad", but a little less raunchy...playing more towards the sweet and nostalgic side of things. For any of you out there in the Cleveland area that spent summers working at either Cedar Point or Geauga Lake; this may be a perfect little movie to watch.
New DVD Releases for Tuesday, April 7
Doubt - This is the "prestige" movie being released this week. The story of a strong willed Mother Superior taking on a young parish priest in 1964 in the Bronx. Strong performances from Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, and Viola Davis make this a "must-see" film.
The Day the Earth Stood Still - If "Doubt" is a "must-see" movie, then this one is a "must-avoid" movie. Keanu Reeves is flat out awful in this remake of the classic 1951 film. To make things worse, they decide to change the message away from the cautionary original tale regarding nuclear Armageddon, instead turning it into a ham-handed, beat-people-over-the-head film regarding Global Warming, and how evil humans are to other living things. That over the top method sucked in "The Happening", and it sucks here as well.
Bedtime Stories - Adam Sandler in a kiddie movie about a goofy uncle who tells his niece and nephew lavish bedtime stories that magically start to come true. The fact that it was a kids movie stopped Sandler from his normal PG-13 mugging that makes him so popular with his fans...which didn't leave much else.
Yes Man - Jim Carrey plays a character who challenges himself to say "yes" to everything for an entire year. Let the wackiness begin! In truth, this might not have been such a bad idea except for the fact that it is so close to the plot and the character Carrey played in "Liar, Liar"...just no magic spell this time. Zooey Deschanel does add a great deal of charm to it, however.
The Tale of Despereaux - A mouse who prefers reading books to eating them, an unhappy rat who schemes to leave the darkness of the dungeon, and a bumbling servant girl come together to aid a princess. Very much a children's movie; one that will probably keep the under 8 set amused, but boy, will it bore the tears out of the adults.
Next week; Observe and Report, Hannah Montana - the Movie, Dragonball Evolution
Upcoming Biggies (click on the hyperlink to view the available trailers).
State of Play - April 17 - Russell Crowe and Ben Affleck in a political thriller about reporter and his assistant looking to uncover the truth about a picture-perfect U.S. Congressman. Another Tony Gilroy script.
The Soloist - April 24 - Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr. as a street living mentally disturbed man who is also a virtuoso cellist. Downey Jr. plays the down and out reporter who discovers and befriends him.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine - May 1 - Hugh Jackman goes it alone as the adamentium enhanced anti-hero. With Live Schreiber as Sabertooth, and Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool.
Star Trek - May 8 - J.J. Abrams and a young cast reboot the franchise, going back to Kirk and Spock's days at Starfleet Academy.
Angels and Demons - May 15 - Tom Hanks and Ron Howard follow-up to "The DaVinci Code"
Terminator: Salvation - May 22 - Christian Bale as John Conner as the franchise moves into the apocalyptic future.
Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian - May 22 - This time, Ben Stiller's hapless security guard has to break into the Smithsonian Museum to rescue some of his peeps who've been shipped there by mistake. The biggest mistake is scheduling this movie on the same weekend as Terminator.
Up - May 29 - Pixar's latest movie certain to be an Oscar winner for "Best Animated Feature". This time, it's an old man who ties hundreds of balloons to his house so he can go on an adventure while staying home.
Land of the Lost - June 5 - Will Ferrell will now do his completely predictable mugging as a scientist sucked into a space-time vortex into an alternate universe complete with dinosaurs. Based on the lame TV series.
The Taking of Pelham 123- June 12 - Denzel Washington, John Travolta, and James Gandolfini in a remake of the classic 1974 film about a hijacked subway car.
Year One - June 19 - Jack Black and Michael Cera as a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers on an epic journey through the ancient world. Harold Ramis directs
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen: - June 26 - The next chapter of Robots In Disguise!
Public Enemy - July 1 - Johnny Depp as John Dillinger. Co-starring Christian Bale, and directed by Michael Mann
Bruno - July 10 - Sacha Baron Cohen attempts to recreate the magic he found in "Borat"; this time featuring his flamboyant Austrian fashion reporter character.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - July 17 - The sixth of J.K. Rowling's seven books, setting the stage for the two part conclusion in 2010 and 2011.
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - August 7 - Every year, there is one big-budget movie that bombs. My prediction is that it will be this one.
Inglourious Basterds - August 21 - Quentin Tarantino directs Brad Pitt in this violent (of course) tale of a group of WWII commandos who conducted high-profile executions/terrorist acts against the Nazis in occupied France prior to D-Day.
Astro Boy - September 23 - They are really making a full length animated feature about this Japanese Anime chestnut?
Shutter Island - October 2 - Martin Scorsese working once again with Leonardo DiCaprio in this mystery set in 1954.
The Wolf Man - November 6 - Benicio Del Toro and Anthony Hopkins in the retelling of the classic horror tale.
2012 - November 13 - Roland Emmerich's ("The Day After Tomorrow") tale of global cataclysm and the struggle of the survivors.
Nine - November 27 - Tim Burton's latest animated strangeness, with Elijah Wood and Jennifer Connelly voicing characters fighting aliens in a post apocalyptic world.
The Lovely Bones - December 11 - Peter Jackson's latest, about the ghost of a young, murdered girl watching over her family and friends' reactions to the event. Mark Wahlberg and Rachel Weisz star.
Blockbusters on the Distant Horizon (movies that would seem to be big hits...as soon as they get made or released).
Avatar - (unknown) - James Cameron's sci-fi/CGI extravaganza. The C.I.A. should take lessons about secrecy from Cameron, as he's keeping info about this film very much to himself at this time.
The Road - (unannounced 2009) - Viggo Mortensen as a man walking with his son for months across a ravaged, post-apocalyptic landscape in search of civilization. Charlize Theron co-stars.
Nottingham - (unannounced 2010) - Ridley Scot and Russell Crowe together again in a retelling of the Robin Hood legend, this time through the eyes of the Sheriff of Nottingham (Crowe). With Cate Blanchett as Maid Marion.
Iron Man 2 - May, 2010 - Right on the heels of the success of the first one, Marvel is quick to get Robert Downey Jr. back into his titanium suit. Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson to co-star.
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader - May, 2010 - The series goes off in a bit of a different direction, as those of you who love the books already know.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I - 2010 - The start of the End for the boy wizard and his battle against He-Who-Shall-not-Be-Named
Lincoln - 2010 - Steven Spielberg directs the biographical film of the 16th President (Liam Neeson)
The Hobbit - 2010 - Guillermo del Toro directs and Peter Jackson will produce the prequel to "Lord of the Rings". Ian McKellen will return as Gandalf
Fantastic Voyage - 2010 - Roland Emmerich ("The Day After Tomorrow", "10,000 B.C.") remakes the classic 1967 movie about a miniaturized sub and crew operating on a scientist from inside his brain.
Spider-Man 4 - May 2011 - Tobey Maquire is back as the angst ridden arachnid powered hero.
Thor - June 2011 - Another Marvel superhero...but the Nordic God is about as bland personality-wise as Superman, so we'll see how it goes. Kevin Kidd (Rome) is said to be playing the title role.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II - 2011 - The end of the line for what will be beyond doubt the most profitable series in the history of film making.
The Hobbit 2 - 2011 - del Toro and Jackson again, this time covering the time between the end of Tolkien's book, "The Hobbit" and the start of LOTR.
The Avengers - 2012 - Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, and Captain America open up a can of whoopass on bad guys everywhere.
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