Michael Jackson’s This Is It
While I am a fan of MJ’s music and do think he was the greatest solo artist of all time, I am in somewhat of a quandry with this release. While I could easily watch him perform rehearsals on a constant loop for the rest of time, I have to question the morals of this documentary. The man was a great performer, but mentally and physically unwell for a long time before his death and had been accused of quite a large number of horrific acts. Also, a lot of people came out of this film on release saying how it showed how MJ was manipulated by those around him – surely buying this DVD would just fund these people? I think a different type of documentary would have still raised the same concerns but surely a more appropriate documentary could have been created with a little more insight into the man? This is still going to shift a massive stack of DVDs, because a lot of people idolised the man and some of the songs are phenomenal.
Listen to Episode 45 for more on this film. I have to say NOTHING could get me to see this movie. I really dislike Diablo Cody and my disdain for Megan Fox (less an actress, more of a prop) knows no bounds and the two of them together sounds like my idea of hell.
Really enjoyable but very flawed ‘stitchpunk’ movie which while being entertaining, is never challenging Pixar or Disney. The visuals are fantastic and the voice cast is a nice mix of well known actors , but the story is a little disjointed and it tries to appeal to the masses a little too much. It ends up being a little too creepy for small children and too childish in plot to fully work for adults. So while it is more than watchable, you can’t shake off the feeling that it could have been a lot better.
Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever
I thought the original Cabin Fever wasn’t a bad little horror/thriller. It was a mix of traditional and teen horror and was well received after being made for only $1.5 million, and a great example of how to use a low budget well. Which is why it is such a shame that this terrible film shares it’s name. I think it was made for at least the same amount of money as the original, but boy, does it show! There were rumours that the Director Ti West (the director of the fantastic House of the Devil) disowned the film after claiming that the film was edited in such a way as to dwell on the gory elements of the film. Although without seeing his original version, I couldn’t tell whether studio intervention hurt the film, the fact that House of the Devil was so good does make me question it.
The Crazies (1973)
The George Romero original set in Evan’s City, Pennsylvania where a biological virus turns the townfolk insane. This is a classic, but under appreciated horror which hopefully will become more popular with the soon-to-be released remake starring Timothy Olyphant (which looks like it could also be very good, if the trailer is anything to go by)
Also out this week: Shinjuku Incident – The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard – Katalin Varga
It’s only fair to talk about another awards ceremony at this time of year, one which has managed to maintain its staunch anti-commercial stance and has never sacrificed its history to allow higher-grossing films into its top categories. This is partly because the films which tend to get given Razzies are often seen by millions of foolish people, a pattern which dictates future movie release schedules and therefore repeats the feat, making more bad movies which more people see and therefore perpetuating the need for the Razzies.
This year’s bunch, in full here, are particularly righteous, with Land of the Lost and Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen leading the ignominious. So, a few bulleted thoughts on the nominations:
- Sandra Bullock ‘does and Eddie Murphy’ and gets nods for Best Actress at both The Oscars and The Razzies. She gets it here for All About Steve, a film which I have not seen but is purportedly so awful as to have made some member of the MOD’s extended family spew expletives beyond the recognition of well-bred English-speaking people. Whether this nod will hurt her chances for winning for The Blind Side, as I would suggest Norbit did for Murphy when he got his Dreamgirls nod, remains to be seen.
- Nice barbed stab at The Jonas Brothers as Worst Actors. A band which appears to be attempting to disseminate abstinence-only teachings to your children, a tactic which will only end in massive number of underage pregnancies amongst fans of the stupifyingly pointless band, deserve to be kicked, beaten and knocked down at every possible point.
- Shia LeBoeuf and Megan Fox for Worst Couple is perfect. The entire pair of those films looks as though he is frightened to touch her for fear of having his hands smeared in sweat-ravaged fake tan or the germs of other men. Her nod for worst actress though perhaps should be paired with her comically inept performance in Jennifer’s Body, in which she mistakes ‘sexy’ for ‘late-80s New York hooker’.
- Also, praise to the board for the dumps taken on Hugh Hefner, Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley Cyrus and Steve Martin, on of whom can do better and the rest of which should be consigned to a dumpster to live in shame.
As it’s the end of the decade, they’ve also released their nominations for Film, Actor and Actress of the Decade, worst that is. My predictions and views are below.
- Picture: I think Battlefield Earth may have to take it on this one, though the competition is tough. I Know Who Killed Me probably didn’t offend enough people to take the prize, but Gigli is a worthy challenger. Freddy Got Fingered probably has too many dumb revisionist cult movie fans to win this one.
- Actor: Travolta and Murphy will battle it out for Worst Actor. The nod for Myers is absolutely right, especially after he attempted to shit on Inglourious Basterds this year, as if he had yet to destroy enough over the past ten years. Affleck been okay in some stuff so doesn’t really deserve it and Rob Schneider, everyone just wants to forget about Rob Schneider.
- Actress: For Worst Actress, Madonna has always been terrible but she may not have done enough to earn the title. Lohan has Mean Girls to prevent her dropping in to the race. Gigli places Lopez in a strong position to win while Carey has had Precious to redeem her a little. So it has to be Hilton, an STD which has blighted cinema for ten years now and should be deservedly eviscerated.
The Movie Overdose’s newest, and essentially lone writer Chris Inman outlines his most anticipated movies of the coming year. Listen to Sam, Tom and John’s choices on Episode Number 48.
The Rum Diary
Why the buzz? : Johnny Depp has been a little disappointing of late, starring in major films where he seems to play a caricature of himself, so a return to a more intimate character-driven role will hopefully see a return to form. His performance in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas shows that he is able to ply his trade in supposed ‘unfilmable’ Hunter S Thompson adaptations. Giovanni Ribisi and Aaron Eckhart also star in this story of a freelance journalist writing for a paper in the Caribbean who develops a fixation for rum and a businessman’s fiancée.
Apologies for the horrendous use of colons in that headline, in penance this week we present our mind-shattering remake of 2001: A Space Odyssey…
Tom: we’ll do 2001 next 😛
John: i’m not sure i like you any more
Tom: first thing we do….remove all ambiguity
audiences dont like to think
John: so it’ll be the first film released with the director’s commentary as part of the overall sound mix
the film needs a lot more work than that
where are the A-list actors?
where is the CGI?
HAL is fine, but he needs an evil face
John: you’re pushing me tom, you’re testing our bond
Tom: also what the fuck is a Space Odyssey? no one knows. We’ll call it 2001: A Space Adventure
well it’ll have to be 3001 since 2001 is a little dated
3001: A Space Adventure!
John: but then some people might assume it’s based on the book 3001: A Final Odyssey
Tom: with the exclaimation mark as mark as part of the title
like anyone reads these days
John: people will have to read our script though
or is this pure improv?
as long as i can retain the rights to the lunchbox merchandise on this project then you can do what you like
Tom: with actors like Paul Walker, David Arquette and Chris Klein in the lead, who needs a script?
Tom: AND despite it being a little weird, we’re keeping the big baby at the end
played by Billy Zane
the investors will be on board because of the big monkey battle at the start
John: this is starting to sound like planet of the apes
planet of the apes: in space
Tom: funny you should say that. we’ll just use longshots from the tim burton film for that
no one saw it and it’ll save money
John: and then the apes battle the fierce HAL for control of the universe?
Tom: the monkeys will have to speak too
Brian Blessed is the head gorilla
John: monkeys + robots = cashprofitmoney?
Tom: i won you back with that one
John: you always win me back with monkeys
if it works on hard-nosed film investors then it’ll definitely work on a sap like me
i want to get Calvin Harris to do the soundtrack
Tom: every 10 minutes there needs to be an action beat
open with the monkey battle
the last monkey standing throws the bone up in the air
people expecting it to cut to a spaceship
it cuts to a freaking laser rifle
huge laser rifle battle
then main character wakes up
it was just a dream
which proves our movie is so badass, people dream action set pieces
John: or maybe our main character is secretly a laser rifle-toting ape in a past life
Tom: you seem desperate to tie the apes from the start of the movie with the rest of it
John: but where’s the link?
audiences don’t like ambiguity, you said it yourself
Tom: i dont know
they just saw an epic monkey battle
but fine…we can make HAL the disembodied brain of the last surviving ape after that battle
all the other apes are dead
turns out this surviving ape was behind every one significant event on earth
he shot Kennedy
erm. invented velcro
and then becomes a mass computer brain
John: i think you’ve gone mad with power
you need to calm down
Tom: hey i was happy to leave the ape battle seperate. this is the only logical way how we can tie it into the rest of the movie
John: ok fine
can we also have a bad CGI John Colicos saying to the camera at the end “deep down we’re all a bunch of monkeys”
Tom: wow thats a sucker punch
John: roll credits
not a dry eye in the house
everyone is giving us money
Tom: dont know what to do about those monoliths
they seem irrelevant to the story so maybe remove them
no one will miss them
John: or make them into massive orbital cannons
HAL invented them
Tom: well thats works too
also HAL can have two robotic henchman, called Stanley and Kubrick, for a nice in-joke
John: won’t that involve a level of intelligence on the part of the viewer? i’m deeply troubled by a movie that starts out simply to entertain the audience with a massive monkey laser fight only to have a somewhat subtle in-joke later on
Tom: well you have to please the original fans too
John: i don’t think any of this will even remotely please the original fans
i feel that we may have to go into hiding
Tom: as a comprimise, we’ll still call it 2001: A Space Odyssey
so they know what we’re trying to do
John: that’s somehow worse
but i like it
can we have a scene of someone being put into a rubbish bin and thrown down a hill?
this is the only thing i feel the film is missing
what’s a space odyssey without a man in a bin
Tom: the bad guy will have to do that ‘Taking out the trash…the SPACE trash’
John: bin rolls slowly down the hill and exploooodes
cue Calvin Harris
Chris Klein rolls in on a trained ape
defeats HAL somehow
Arquette and the other guy help a little
someone is singing
HAL is singing to Chris Klein
Klein weeps and turns on Arquette and the other guy
Calvin Harris gets louder and appears on screen
HAL and Klein destroy everything
i want my money now please
Tom: i have a huge problem with this
drama, intrigue, sexiness
Klein riding a monkey
Tom: when i see the poster for ‘2001: A Space Odyssey- A visionary reimagining of a Stanley Kubrick movie’
i dont want to be looking at just apes and Chris Klein. that’s a bit homoerotic
i want to be looking at MEGAN FOX
and some other talented actresses
wearing skimpy space suits
John: let’s get Elisha Cuthbert in then
i want my bin scene though
it can be a real bin too. a nod to the lack of CGI used in the original
that’s two winks
John: i feel you’re playing a risky game here
Tom: we need a video game too. for the monkey battle, it can use the LOTR: Conquest engine
John: i’m off the project, you lost me at that one
going to call time on this one, here’s your last chance. what’s the tagline on the poster going to be?
‘a remake of a film that time (and space) forgot’
John: good luck with this
So I’ve been extremely busy with film-watching and outings all this week, so I have had no time to put together nice posts and news for you all to enjoy. Today though, sitting in bed and vegging like a pro, I will provide a round-up of all the interesting happenings from the past week in film.
It’s been confirmed that Jonathan Nolan will not be credited for writing Terminator Salvation. In laterally-related news, Christian Bale said he will commit to the next Batman movie, with or without the presence of Christopher Nolan.
Universal has confirmed plans to remake Drop Dead Fred, the cult classic early-90s movie starring Rik Mayall, with Russell Brand to take over the lead role. This will go alongside the previously announced remake of Dudley Moore-vehicle Arthur for our cheeky chappy.
An interview with Lauren Shuler Donner has seen her say that spin-off vehicles for both Gambit and Deadpool will come, if she has her way. Given the utterly awful Wolverine, that would be something of a result to have a movie which will provide us with easily the two most interesting characters from the film.
Todd McFarlane has entered talks over bringing Spawn back to the screen. It was made before to a very poor reception in 1997. During the interview, with IESB, he also talked a little about the David Fincher-helmed Torso, the adaptation of the Brian Michael Bendis graphic novel. That was dropped by Paramount but McFarlane believes another house will pick it up given the presence of Matt Damon in the lead and Rachel McAdams alongside him.
Some photos have emerged of Megan Fox in Jonah Hex, the adaptation of the John Albano-penned DC series. As you would imagine from a movie about a gonzo version of the Wild West, Fox has eschewed the demure look in favour of chicken house chic. Fox did experience a mild disappointment this week, beat to the FHM 100 Sexiest Women poll’s top spot by Girls Aloud’s Cheryl Cole.
Rainn Wilson, Joseph Gordon Levitt and Natalie Portman have joined the cast of Hesher, an indie dramedy to be directed by Spencer Susser. /Film has a host of extra information on this, including a really bewitching zombie short directed by Susser.
Here’s an odd one. The next movie coming from Zhang Yimou, the helmer of the astounding Hero and House of Flying Daggers, is reportedly a remake of the Coens’ Blood Simple.
McG and Michael Bay could well end up slapping ’em out on the table and bringing out the rulers, should the challenge put forth by the former to the latter become reality. Yes, McG has challenged Bay to a dick-measuring contest.
So apparently Oliver Stone, Michael Douglas and Shia LeBoeuf have signed up to take on a sequel to Wall Street, Stone’s visceral attack on the lack of ethics involved in big money trading. It seems a little late at this point but, praise be, no Charlie Sheen.
On the business side, the merger between agency giant William Morris and Endeavour has been approved. Relativity and Lionsgate have brokered a distribution agreement which will cover around five movies per year. Time Warner has announced a 14 per cent fall in profits in the first quarter, primarily owing to problems with AOL, which it is looking to spin-off imminently, and in Time Inc, the magazine side of the conglomerate.
Cinematical has a review of Departures, the Japanese foreign film Oscar winner from this year.
Francis Ford Coppola’s Tetro will open the Director’s Fortnight at Cannes.
Benicio del Toro is reportedly in talks to play Brett Easton Ellis in an adaptation of his Lunar Park.
Here’s a first look at Robert Downey Jr in Iron Man 2.
The Forgotten, the indie comic series by Evan Young and Jareth Grealish, has been optioned for a movie adaptation.
Bruce Willis is reportedly being courted to star in Red, an adaptation of the Warren Ellis-penned series.
The BBC has commissioned more The Thick of It from Armando Ianucci, coming on the back of the success of In the Loop.
Warner Bros has acquired the rights to Death Note, the manga series written by Tsugumi Ohba.
Mike Newell is in talks to direct a new version of The Lone Ranger.
Fox Searchlight has picked up Whip It, the directorial debut of Drew Barrymore starring Ellen Page.
Iran’s About Elly has won the jury prize at Tribeca.
Megan Fox has apparently signed on to star in The Crossing, a thriller written by Byron Willinger and Philip de Blasi about a couple returning from a vacation in Mexico when their car is hijacked and the husband kidnapped. The wife, played by Fox, then has to smuggle heroin across the border to try and spring him from this conundrum.
This is part of a stream of new projects Fox has signed up to in the past few months, the expected wave which was forecast by all and sundry following her exploding onto the scene with Transformers.
I’ve been a little harsh with her in the past, owing mostly to her pretty awful performance in Transformers and her mere presence in the execreble Two and a Half Men. But I’m learning to be a little more open minded and I’m going to give little Meggy a change to redeem herself. Whether this movie will do it, impossible to know. But good luck to the young lady.
In a true piece of stunt casting, Megan Fox has joined the cast of indie drama Passion Plays, being written and directed by Mitch Glazer.
Fox will star as an angel alongside Mickey Rourke, the latter playing a struggling trumpet player in 1950s Los Angeles who finds salvation in Fox’s angel after he tries to save her from a gangster.
Fox’s stock is certainly rising, as Rourke’s continues its resurgence, so this could bring a good deal of attention should those two facts remain true. Fox playing an angel though?
Already signed on are Josh Brolin, John Malkovich and Megan Fox for a story about a bounty hunter tracking a voodoo master who is seeking to raise an army of undead soldiers and liberate the south.
It’s being directed by Jimmy Hayward who co-directed the entertaining Horton Hears a Who and is a former Pixar animator.
I wouldn’t say I’m overly excited about the film at present but the presence of Brolin in the lead role is encouraging and the story itself sounds terrific. Should Hayward be able to levy all the visual prowess he must have learnt during his time with Pixar, it could well end up a very interesting work.
Kevin Smith is to launch outside of his comfort zone (no View Askew, no Scott Mosier producing) to direct A Couple of Cops, a buddy movie to star Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan. Could provide an interesting view on how Smith is developing as a director and possibly give the world another really good buddy movie which, on premise, seems closely in the vein of late-80s Shane Black-style stuff.
Zack Snyder is forming an all-girl cast for Sucker Punch, about girls in a mental asylum who fantasises about escaping with all her inmates. Likely to star the likes of Amanda Seyfried, Vanessa Hudgens, Abbie Cornish, Evan Rachel Wood and Emma Stone. Doesn’t specifically make me too excited but I would be interested to see what Snyder does next because he handled the entire Watchmen saga, the build-up and movie, with aplomb.
Megan Fox has begun to take up some new offers which are likely to offer very little new to her current persona. Fox has reportedly joined the cast of Jonah Hex alongside Josh Brolin and will star in Fathom, an adaptation of the comic series. Cinematical reports that Fox has been a fan of the comic series for some time and is helping to bring it to the screen, likely making her the dream girl for many, many JoBlo readers around the world. Maybe however she should get a little praise for understanding that she has limits and using her talents in the most lucrative way possible. Hats off to Ms Fox.
Leonardo DiCaprio is to team with Christopher Nolan on the latter’s post-Dark Knight project, Inception. the film has been described as a science fiction piece ‘set in the architecture of the mind’ and was also written by Nolan. You’d have to suggest that this won’t garner anything near the level of business Dark Knight did but it’s good to see Nolan is nourishing his filmmaking skills elsewhere, something that would have been advisable to Sam Raimi back in the day and would most likely have provided the world with better Spiderman sequels.
Talk is rife on what the next Danny Boyle movie will be. Reports emerged early in the week, very speculative, that he could direct the next James Bond. Later however, it seems he is closing in on doing a remake of My Fair Lady, putting of another project called Hanna, about a teenage assassin.
Also in the news: Jim Jarmusch’s Limits of Control has a trailer; Mickey Rourke, Vince Cassell and Alice Braga will star in an adaptation of Paulo Coehlo’s 11 Minutes; A viewpoint from Slate on how a Tarantino Watchmen would look; Barry Sonnenfeld will direct an adaptation of Korean film Scandal Makers; Keira Knightley is to star in Never Let Me Go, an adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro’s amazing novel, which you should probably read instead now Knightley has signed up; A three minute clip of The Boat that Rocked has turned up; Ed Zwick is to direct In the Heart of the Sea by Nathan Philbrick; Ridley Scott has talked a little more about his Monopoly movie.