Monday, July 30, 2012

The Week That Was and the Week That Will Be - 7/31

It doesn't seem like we've had just a whole lot of news worth reporting as of late. Even Comic Con was decidedly low on exciting news blurbs this year. This week, though, was jam packed with goodness so I'm sure I'm missing a few things. Just FYI: check the Twitter feed on the right side of the page for instant news blurbs throughout the week. I'm pretty good about linking to the big stories as soon as they come across my Twitter feed.

Check out the newest poster from Mondo, this one for the cult classic The Goonies. I want to go to there. 

There were, of course, TONS of entries around the web regarding The Dark Knight Rises. /Film published a piece titled 15 Things That Bothered Us About The Dark Knight Rises, which I found to be excessively nitpicky while Indiewire nitpicked the nitpickers. Hitfix delivered the Top 10 Things Christopher Nolan Got Right. And Nolan himself issued a eloquent, heartfelt goodbye to the Dark Knight. I truly cannot wait to see what he does next.

Much more importantly, Christian Bale visited the victims of the Aurora theater shooting and spent over two hours with those touched by the appalling tragedy. Very, very classy action from Bale and I loved the way in which he went about it: no media, no cameras, just a genuine show of humanity. Well done, Mr. Bane. 

In the wake of the shooting, Warner Brothers has moved Gangster Squad, which includes a pivotal scene involving a shoot out in a theater, from its slated fall release to January 11th next year. I'm usually not in favor of this sort of reactive decision making but in this case, it makes sense. 

It has been reported by numerous outlets that Peter Jackson and Warner Brothers are in "deep" discussions to turn The Hobbit into a trilogy. It shocks me how many fanboys have lashed out about this. In my book, there's no such thing as too much of The Hobbit. Bring it on, Peter.

And in, "Weirdest News of the Week" news, apparently seeing Hugo in 3D can cure a form of blindness. Seriously, check this story out, it's amazing. The unfortunate side effect, however, is that now we have a legitimate reason to embrace 3D. Dangit. 

Weekend Box Office Results
Yeesh. Not exactly the sort of returns the studio behind The Watch had in mind. Having already undergone a title change after the death of Trayvon Martin, The Watch failed to hit the mark with audiences and was DESTROYED by critics. I would have never guessed that this film would fare worse on Rotten Tomatoes than Step Up Revolution. Critics and analysts throw the term “box office bust” around quite a bit; John Carter and Battleship come to mind as recent “busts”, even though both reached high levels of profitability overseas. Here, though, we’ve got a REAL bust on our hands, considering the $68 million spent on The Watch and the fact that it won’t make much money overseas. Tough day for Ben Stiller and his pals.

Meanwhile, The Dark Knight Rises continues its outstanding run, despite not quite reaching the standard set by The Avengers. Since we didn’t run a Week That Was and Will Be last week, let me take a moment to praise Christopher Nolan and Warner Brothers for choosing integrity over money. Nolan has always stated a dislike towards 3D and while a 3D release might have pushed TDKR into the same atmosphere as The Avengers, he and the studio stuck to their guns. Bravo. Also, as I stated in my review, I truly believe this is a film that will get better with multiple viewings and that seems to hold up considering many critics and bloggers have enjoyed their second TDKR experience more than the first go round. So check it out again if you weren’t a big fan originally.

1. The Dark Knight Rises - $64.07M ($289.08M)
2. Ice Age: Continental Drift - $13.3M ($114.84M)
3. The Watch - $13M
4. Step Up Revolution - $11.8M
5. Ted - $7.35M ($193.61M)
6. The Amazing Spider-Man - $6.8M ($242.05M)
7. Brave - $4.23M ($217.26M)
8. Magic Mike - $2.58M ($107.58M)
9. Savages - $1.75M ($43.89M)
10. Moonrise Kingdom - $1.38M ($38.39M)

What I’ll Be Renting This Week
Hatfields and McCoys – Kevin Costner, Bill Paxton, Tom Berenger
I’m more than a little frustrated with myself over not having watched Hatfields and McCoys to this point. I used to be fascinated with this story and then the trailer for this film blew me away. Unfortunately my DVR didn’t agree with my excitement as it decided to screw up the first episode of the miniseries, rending the subsequent entries useless. I’ve heard so many good things about this that I might just go ahead and buy the thing sight unseen, something I never do. Also, let it be known that I’ve never gotten off the Kevin Costner bandwagon.

Also New
LOL – Miley Cyrus, Ashley Greene, Thomas Jane
ATM – Alice Eve, Josh Peck

New to Blu
Total Recall: Mind-Bending Edition (1990) – Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside
A whole lot of Marilyn Monroe movies

Coming to a Theater Near You
Since I wasn’t able to write this column last week, I didn’t get a chance to make Rotten Tomatoes predictions. This is a relief since I would have missed badly on The Watch, which received a dreadful 15% score and I probably would have gone considerably lower on Step Up Revolution than the 35% it managed to pull in. The new indie entries, however, fared much better, with both Ruby Sparks and Killer Joe grabbing a 75% score. Looking forward to seeing Ruby Sparks myself.

We now enter August, the biggest “who knows” month of the year in my book. By my count there are four legitimate blockbusters left this summer and one of them opens this week.

Total Recall – Colin Farrell, Jessica Biel, Kate Beckinsale, Bryan Cranston
While undergoing a procedure to implant a memory in his brain, a lower class factory worker (Farrell) discovers the truth about his identity. I had high hopes for Total Recall was announced. I’m a Farrell fan and I think he has sneakily had a strong career despite a few misfires (see: Alexander). I am also NOT a member of the camp that think the original Total Recall is some sort of classic and I’m actually in favor of a remake. The trailers, though, did nothing for me and at this point I’m not expecting much. The effects look video game-ish, something I despise, and far too much importance has been placed on a fight between Beckinsale and Biel. I’m just very, very skeptical at this point. Rotten Tomatoes prediction: Rotten, 47%

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days – Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron, Steve Zahn
Greg (Gordon) struggles to find activities during the summer. Shenanigans ensue. I caught a snippet of the first Diary of a Wimpy Kid recently and it actually made me glad that I don’t have kids. I really and truly hated my life for the few minutes that it hung around on my TV and I had a hard time believing even kids like it. Rotten Tomatoes prediction: Rotten, 50%

Also new: Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones play best friends going through a divorce in Celeste and Jesse Forever…a host of known actors get together for 360, a Crash-like tapestry of interconnected stories…and a couple (Paul Schneider and Olivia Munn) struggle to get pregnant, comically, in The Babymakers.

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