Screen Junkies » Search Results » mall http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Fri, 12 Sep 2014 17:22:47 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Arnold Schwarzenegger Removes Ex-Wife From Portrait http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/arnold-schwarzenegger-removes-ex-wife-from-portrait/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/arnold-schwarzenegger-removes-ex-wife-from-portrait/#comments Thu, 11 Sep 2014 16:09:39 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264937 Her cameo in 'Last Action Hero' remains for the time-being.

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The world’s oldest emo teenager, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has expressed his angst through painting. While exhaling sugar y puffs from the Djarum Black pressed between his lips and Joy Division cranked to ten, the former governor of California revealed his official portrait at the Sacramento statehouse, newly revised to remove ex-wife Maria Shriver.

Arnold originally wore a small lapel pin featuring Shriver’s face when he sat for the portrait back in 2003. Since that time, the couple decided to terminate their marriage after evidence that each carried on extramarital affairs surfaced. There is no word whether or not he will digitally remove her cameo from Last Action Hero.

The picture of Shriver has been painted over with a hard-to-ignore smudge of blue paint like looks like a grease stain. It was either applied in a hurry or Schwarzenegger for got to take his jacket off before applying his shiny muscle oil.

“It was softball sized, right there on his left lapel,“ Capitol tour guide Richard Granis told The NY Post. “Whoever touched it up did not do a very good job.”

I’d hate to point fingers and implicate anyone as the clumsy artist, but…

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The Leftovers Recap, Season Finale: “The Prodigal Son Returns” http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-episode/the-leftovers-recap-season-finale-the-prodigal-son-returns/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-episode/the-leftovers-recap-season-finale-the-prodigal-son-returns/#comments Mon, 08 Sep 2014 22:15:31 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264803 The questions that still remain are many, but minor in relation to the brilliant, hopeful manner in which season one resolved.

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By Jared Jones

“Look what I found.”

I must give credit to these closing words from last night’s season finale of The Leftovers, in that they were a lot more clever than I originally perceived them to be. As was the case with Lost, Damon Lindelof managed to wrap everything in the world of The Leftovers up without really wrapping much up in last night’s finale. Only this time, the ancillary questions didn’t serve to the show’s detriment. While the mystery of Dean the Dog Killer, the national Geographic magazine, and Kevin Garvey’s mental state remain open (among other things), Uproxx’s Dustin Rowles put it best when he said that “they didn’t matter anymore.”

Amidst the chaos and backbreaking depression that The Leftovers has created over the course of 9 episodes, last night’s finale was surprisingly, beautifully hopeful. Order had been restored to Mapleton (or at least, to the Garvey family) through destruction. The Guilty Remnant, of all people, gave the townspeople the catharsis they needed in an act that was equal parts disgusting, demented, and oddly selfless. By placing the fake corpses of the Departed in the homes of those who lost them, the GR actually provided everyone with the motivation they needed to truly deal with their grief and confusion caused by the events of October 14th. So it appears, at least.

As it hinted at in the penultimate episode, “The Prodigal Son Returns” alluded to the idea that those left behind were somehow responsible for the disappearance of their loved ones, which had in turn led to the overbearing grief that fueled their lives in the years following the Departure. That’s the revelation Kevin came to at least, thanks in no small part to Reverend Jameson. Kevin, who previously pondered why having a loving family was simply not enough for the man he was in his pre-Departure life, was suddenly struck with the realization that his family *was* his greater purpose. Although the events of October 14th provided him with a temporary release from the life he felt trapped in, it also condemned him to a life that could never be fulfilled without the very people who occupied it before.

Kevin Garvey wanted his family back. He wanted everything to return to the way it was. That was surely what he wished for after finding a dying Holy Wayne in that bathroom stall. To Wayne’s credit, it appears as if the Holy one was able to make that miracle happen. Tommy returned to Mapleton with one of Wayne’s children, who was then scooped up by Nora Durst. Kevin rescued his daughter Jill from certain death and appeared to finally earn her love back in doing so. Laura spoke, for Chrissakes! The sense of “family” Kevin was seeking had seemingly been restored (albeit a different incarnation of that family) through an all-cleansing fire.

The questions that still remain are many, but minor in relation to the brilliant, heartfelt manner in which season one resolved. The questions now, however, are all the more pressing. Will Laurie return to her family, or will she and Tommy begin a new chapter of their lives together? Was the Memorial Day stunt the culmination of the Guilty Remnant’s plan, and did they foresee the violent reaction the townspeople would have to it? What the hell happened to Aimee and the twins? I’m suddenly hopeful that season 2 will answer some of these.

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How Does ‘The Identical’ Compare to Other Poorly Reviewed Double Identity Movies? http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/how-does-the-identical-compare-to-other-poorly-reviewed-double-identity-movies/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/how-does-the-identical-compare-to-other-poorly-reviewed-double-identity-movies/#comments Mon, 08 Sep 2014 21:39:01 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=264802 For whatever reason, film critics really, really hate double identity movies.

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By Jared Jones

One wouldn’t think there would be many ways to turn a Christian-themed dual identity musical starring an Elvis impersonator and Ray Liotta into some kind of sham, but wouldn’t you know it, Hollywood found a way.

Oh, have you not heard about The Identical, the Christian-themed dual identity musical starring an Elvis impersonator (*the* Elvis impersonator, I’m told) and Ray Liotta that opened in 2,000 theaters over the weekend? Or are you just covering your ears and trying to pretend like it never happened? Well, it did, and the story of The Identical goes a little something like this (from the film’s official site):

The Identical is a redemptive movie about a young man, the son of a preacher, who rejects his father’s desire for him to join the ministry and instead embarks on a career as a rock singer. As he struggles to pursue his dream and rise to stardom, he finds love, pain, success and failure, and ultimately uncovers a hidden family secret that reveals who he really is. It’s a captivating story about a family restored, and a life discovered.

Not that it really matters — because this year’s other Christian-themed offerings, God’s Not Dead and Heaven is for Real have collectively grossed over 150 million dollars despite holding a combined 63% rating on Rotten Tomatoes — but The Identical has been nothing short of crucified by critics thus far (jokes, I got ‘em). It’s currently tracking at 4% on RT, and the reviews for the film have been almost as surreal as the idea behind the film itself.

With The Identical, it appears that we may have another so-bad-its-good classic on our hands, so let’s take a look at a few of the most glowing reviews, shall we?

Matt Prigge, Metro: “It’s not ‘The Room,’ but it might be something stranger: a film that knows what it’s doing, but which thing is completely nuts.”

Sheila O’Malley, RogerEbert.com: “All we have in ‘The Identical’ are songs that make you feel like you’ve stepped into a community theatre production of ‘Footloose‘ mixed with ‘Les Miserables.’”

Dustin Rowles, Pajiba: “The only thing preventing this film from being the worst movie of 2014 is the fact that no one will remember it a week from now. No one will see it. People who accidentally stumble into it while looking for the bathroom will blackout from boredom and leave urine puddles in screenings across the country. People will remember the urine stains. No one will remember The Identical.”

Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader: “[The Identical] feels like one of the biopic parodies from Mr. Show played completely straight.”

Vince Mancini, FilmDrunk: “Imagine if Tommy Wiseau from the The Room was an evangelical Christian Elvis impersonator who made a royalty-free biopic starring himself as twins. Hell yes you should see this, probably twice.”

Alonso Duralde, The Wrap: “‘The Identical’ is the most woozily misguided flop to grace the screen since the ‘Oogieloves’ movie.”

Yowza. A critical and box office failure The Identical may be, but the truth is, it never stood a chance. Critics have long shared their collective, unjust hatred of dual identity movies, and if you don’t believe me, just check out how poorly these classic double identity movies were reviewed.

Double Impact

Tomatometer Rating: 14%

Choice Pull Quote: “Bonecrushingly stupid — but one of Van Damme’s better efforts.”

In the early-to-mid 90′s, moviegoing audiences literally could not get enough of Jean-Claude Van Damme. The kicks, the splits, the *spot on* American accent; it was gold, Jerry, GOLD!! With filmmakers running out of plausible options to cash in on our JCVD obsession, it was only a matter of time before a dual identity film was discussed. Hence, 1991′s Double Impact, a movie which applied a boy band philosophy to its dual Van Dammes by making the “good” character (Chad) wear polo shirts and the “bad” one (Alex) slick his hair back.

You would think that doubling down on a nearly incomprehensible protagonist would be detrimental to a film’s success, but you just aren’t getting how obsessed we were with JCVD in the early 90′s, are you? Despite bombing with critics, Double Impact doubled it’s 15 million dollar budget with a 35 million dollar take and even reached No.2. at the US box office. Double Impact even released an official soundtrack, which I can guarantee you I will be ordering as soon as I’m finished with this sentence.

Fun fact: Double Impact was the first of *four* dual identity movies to star Jean-Claude Van Damme, the other two being 1996′s Maximum Risk and 2001′s Replicant and The Order. 

The Man in the Iron Mask

Tomatometer Rating: 33%

Choice Pull Quote: “This version of The Man in the Iron Mask owes more to Star Wars than Star Wars owes to Dumas.”

While 2014 Leonardo DiCaprio can pretty much pull off any role, character, or accent imaginable with spot-on accuracy, 1998 Leonardo DiCaprio was somewhat less convincing. Sure, he was coming off his breakout role in Titanic just one year earlier, but asking babyfaced Jack to convincingly portray both a ruthless, tyrannical king and his compassionate outcast twin was a leap too far for The Man in the Iron Mask to accomplish.

Although The Man in the Iron Mask was financially successful thanks to the insane popularity boost that Titanic had provided DiCaprio, it was skewered by critics, even earning DiCaprio a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screen Couple. His career never recovered.

I Know Who Killed Me



(Funny how the juxtaposition of these two images could serve as a dead-on metaphor for Lohan’s career, no?)

Tomatometer Rating: 7%.

Choice Pull Quote: ”Horror/thriller/pile of excrement.”

In 1998, Lindsay Lohan was a promising 12-year-old actress capable of playing not one, but two parts in a rom-com starring Dennis Quaid. Less than a decade later, she was phleming her way through a movie about a down-on-her-luck stripper and her stigmatic twin being tortured by a serial killer. It’s one of the only times that “a rom-com starring Dennis Quaid” could be considered the high point of anyone’s career, but such is LiLo.

Multiplicity 

Tomatometer Rating: 44%

Choice Pull Quote: “Try not to double or triple-up laughing.”

In 1996, moviegoing audiences literally could not get enough of Michael Keaton. Hence, Multiplicity, a movie that attempted to answer “Just how much of The Keat is too much?” The answer: Four Keatons.

Jack and Jill

Tomatometer Ranking: 3%

Choice Pull Quote: “The apocalypse starts here.”

Well, here it is. The nadir of not only filmmaking, but perhaps American culture as we know it. And as I predicted, Adam Sandler is involved.

I can only say one thing about Jack and Jill that hasn’t been said by thousands of enraged movie critics or the record number of Razzie nominations/wins it received: This movie grossed 150 million dollars. 150. Million.

When humanity reaches its final 90 minutes, I’d like to think that this movie will be projected on every television, computer, and movie screen across the country, as a reminder that we are solely responsible for our own demise. And in it’s closing credits, God himself will open the sky and bellow, “You not only allowed this cinematic abortion to happen, but paid to witness it. And for doing so, you will now pay the highest price of all: Your souls.” Flames will follow, tearing across nations far and wide with the power of a thousand suns, toppling buildings, destroying families, and cleansing the world of any traces that we were ever here. But on the bright side, the all-consuming fire will also cleanse the world of Jack and Jill, which is honestly a fairer trade-off than we deserve.

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Freakers Ball: The Full Trailer For ‘American Horror Story: Freak Show’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/freakers-ball-the-full-trailer-for-american-horror-story-freak-show/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/freakers-ball-the-full-trailer-for-american-horror-story-freak-show/#comments Mon, 08 Sep 2014 18:17:51 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=264772 Things are going to get weird(er) this season.

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Last week we showed you the preview of the scary clown who just needs to STOP IT. Thankfully, he’s nowhere in sight in this full-length trailer for American Horror Story: Freak Show. Get a load of these freaks: Kathy Bates as Prince Vultan from Flash Gordon, a two-headed Sarah Paulson, Michael Chiklis as The Mountain, and Angela Bassett with three boobs. That’s one way to get your groove back.

Because this is American Horror Story, Jessica Lange also makes an appearance as the Ringmaster. It’s unknown at this time what makes her a freak but let’s assume it involves her having penises for nipples or something.

 

 

Kathy Bates as a bearded lady, Angela Bassett as the three-breasted woman, Sarah Paulson as two-headed woman Bette and Dot, and Michael Chiklis as a strong man. The trailer closes on ringmistress Jessica Lange, with Jyoti Amge, the world’s smallest woman, at her side.

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‘American Horror Story: Freak Show’ Scary Clown Teasers Live Up To Their Promise http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/american-horror-story-freak-show-scary-clown-teasers-live-up-to-their-promise/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/american-horror-story-freak-show-scary-clown-teasers-live-up-to-their-promise/#comments Fri, 05 Sep 2014 18:38:38 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=264739 Pants soiled.

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When it was announced that American Horror Story would be stopping by the circus for its fourth season, Freak Show, it was a given that there would be a scary clown involved. Today we lay eyes on that clown. Tonight, we never sleep again.

Here’s a second clown-centric teaser to further make your butthole pucker.

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The Walking Dead: Which Did it Better, The Comic or the TV Show? http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-walking-dead-which-did-it-better-the-comic-or-the-tv-show/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-walking-dead-which-did-it-better-the-comic-or-the-tv-show/#comments Tue, 02 Sep 2014 19:32:02 +0000 DustinSeibert http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264604 The comic book is awesome. The show is awesome. But which is better? We take a look at seven major differences between them and break it down for all you zombie lovers. [Warning: Spoilers ahead!]

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The Walking Dead is justifiably one of basic cable’s most popular shows ever, and the most successful show in AMC’s history by a wide margin. It wasn’t until the success of the show that the ongoing Image Comics book on which it’s based caught fire as well.

The fantastic black-and-white title’s first issue predates the show’s first episode by four years, and the show follows the narrative of the book — albeit loosely at times. If you’re a stalwart fan of the show, which returns to the screen for Season 5 on October 12th, there’s very little excuse not to catch up with the 132 issues (at press time) of the book, which which can be easily consumed via tomes; for those of you Game of Thrones fans who don’t like to actually read, The Walking Dead has pictures!

In my opinion, the book is generally superior to the show, as is often the case with literature translated to screen. It explores the zombie apocalypse with a hard-R approach inaccessible to basic cable, so writer/creator Robert Kirkman (who also executive produces the show) has far more leeway and less meddling opinions to impede him from doing what he pleases.

Though there are numerous things big and small that the book did better with the same narrative, several of the show’s deviations — including characters and story lines — have been rock-solid and serve to make up for some aspects of the book that could never make it to the show for various reasons (e.g. the too-heinous-for-television death of Lori and her baby; the fact that Rick lost his right hand to the Governor years ago).

Here, we compare the show with the book to see which does better in what department. WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD…



1.
The Governor vs. Michonne: Sure, David Morrissey’s Governor has some rape-y vibes, evident in how he dealt with Maggie after her capture in season 3. But the comic’s Governor, a mixture of a young Danny Trejo and Nick Fury, is a flat-out sadistic rapist. He captures Michonne, ties her up by her arms, tears off her clothes, beats her, and…well, you know the rest. Michonne later metes out her revenge, I Spit On Your Grave-style, taking way more than just the eye she took on the show. The whole thing is too much for basic cable, and even sensitive readers might have to turn away from it.

Winner: Book

 

2. Andrea: Andrea’s treatment in the show is likely the most annoying deviation from the book. Laurie Holden did just fine by the character, but her arc was ridiculous. Shacking up with the Governor and being taken in by his deception, leading to her own demise? F*** outta here, son. The book’s Andrea is a still-living badass with a scar on her face whose sniper skills are the reason a bunch of characters are still alive. As Rick’s right-hand partner inside and outside of the bedroom, the two serve as the guardians of the flock in the comic, living by the mantra “We don’t die.” For incontrovertible proof of how much more awesome comic Andrea is than show Andrea, look no further than issue 113, in which she engages in a fist-knife fight with one of Negan’s cronies and comes out on top.

WINNER: Book

3. “Days Gone Bye”: The pilot episode and the book’s first collection are likely closer in narrative than at any other point. They also remain one of the very best story lines of both. Rick waking up in the hospital, encountering the cafeteria full of zombies and stumbling out into a world that’s very different than before he was shot in the line of duty will likely remain one of the best zombie apocalypse intro stories. Frank Darabont, the man behind the greatest movie of all time, The Shawshank Redemption, directed that first episode with a beautifully haunting quietude; Rick’s encounter with Morgan and his son, his eventual ride into downtown Atlanta and the spectacular, nail-biting pilot-ending encounter with an unmanageable sea of city walkers established the show instant must-watch television. The book’s story arc is concurrent with Season 1′s successive episodes, including the death of Andrea’s sister Amy and the Shane-Rick-Lori triangle. The book arc, however, ended with Shane’s death at the hands of Carl, which happened much later and a bit cooler — on the show.

WINNER: Tie

4. Carl: For reasons I have been unable to properly comprehend (which means they probably aren’t that good), people have big problems with Lori on the show. But Carl is my least favorite character on the show by miles. All pre-pubescent, adolescent boys are obnoxious by nature, but Carl kinda takes it to the next level. The Season 4 episode “After,” in which he castigated his unconscious, ailing dad and wished for his death before sneaking off and running through bullets like they were rice in China made me want to dunk him in that tub of chocolate pudding, seal the top and ship him off to Abu Dhabi. He’s more centered and humble in the book, which might have something to do with the fact that he got half his head blown off and is missing an eye.

WINNER: Book

5. Daryl Dixon: The show’s shining beacon, Norman Reedus‘ Daryl Dixon doesn’t exist at all in the comic, and is perhaps the best deviation from the book. Daryl went from being a morally muddy racist to the show’s dark hero, winning the hearts and loins of women everywhere while maintaining his cool factor for the rest of us. One of my favorite scenes to date is Season 3′s reunion with and forced showdown between Daryl and his more polarizing (and even more racist) older brother Merle. Problem is, Daryl’s so beloved that the show runners are sort of locked into him; to off him would be to court fan ire. I would love to see the powers that be not go out like a bunch of scared chumps (a la The Sopranos) and kill off Daryl regardless of the fans. That alone would give the show legendary status.

WINNER: Show

6. Willingness to Off Little Girls: The comic, much like the show, is beloved for its shameless disregard for the lives of its main characters (many of the stars still alive in the show, for example, are long perished in the book). But the way the show relishes in knocking off small children is really f&$@ing awesome. The show arguably hit its stride when, after everyone spent the first half of season 2 searching for Carol’s daughter Sophia, she came hobbling out of the barn full of zombies as an undead herself, only to be put down by Rick. But the show’s most speechless moment came in season 4, when a battle-hardened Carol — unencumbered by that petty empathy that gets people killed in the zombie apocalypse — laid Lizzie down like the broken dog she was (a result of Lizzie killing her young sister Mika). “The Grove” remains one of the most controversial episodes of the series, and the last truly great one as of this writing. It’s the best reminder of the harrowing, unflinching world in which the characters exist.

WINNER: Show

7. Negan’s Reign of Terror: Though sadistic overlord Negan will allegedly show his face in the upcoming season 5 (Ed. Note – Don’t click the previous link if you don’t want a big book spoiler and potential show spoiler!), I’m going to preemptively state, sight unseen, that there’s no way he can be better on the show than the comic. The best part of Negan is the freewheeling insouciance Kirkman applies to the character’s, ahem, “colorful” language. (Perhaps no comic character has so gleefully utilized the F-bomb in every other word). I’ve been a comic reader since I was a sprout in the mid-1980s, and I’ve never encountered an easier-to-hate character so ripe for the fall. I think the show ultimately dropped the ball with the Governor, so I’m not expecting a lot from a character who basic cable simply cannot contain.

PREEMPTIVE WINNER: Book

Buy ‘The Walking Dead Compendium One and Two’ on Amazon to catch up on the first 96 issues.

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The ‘Vacation’ Reboot Starring Ed Helms Will Also Feature Christina Applegate, Charlie Day, And Chris Hemsworth http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/the-vacation-reboot-starring-ed-helms-will-also-feature-christina-applegate-charlie-day-and-chris-hemsworth/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/the-vacation-reboot-starring-ed-helms-will-also-feature-christina-applegate-charlie-day-and-chris-hemsworth/#comments Tue, 26 Aug 2014 15:31:27 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264471 I hope everything goes smoothly in this one.

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We probably all put the news of an Ed Helms-starring Vacation reboot far in the back of our minds after hearing it, but the film is becoming more and more real every day. It’s now slated to being shooting in September, and it won’t just be Ed Helms with a camcorder in his garage.

Nope. The producers of the franchise of Chevy Chase films have cast, in addition to Helms as grown-up son rusty, Christina Applegate as his wife, Chris Hemsworth as his sister Audrey’s husband, and Charlie Day with a small part as a rafting guide.

So there’s gonna be rafting? Sweet!

Of course, Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo are expected to make cameos, though what the hell they’re going to do remains a mystery. Probably just hang around the old folks home or something, talking about that cat in the Jell-O mold.

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The Leftovers Recap, Episode 9: “The Garveys At Their Best” http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-episode/the-leftovers-recap-episode-9-the-garveys-at-their-best/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-episode/the-leftovers-recap-episode-9-the-garveys-at-their-best/#comments Mon, 25 Aug 2014 22:42:46 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264462 Laurie speaks, Kevin cheats, and a deer wreaks (havoc) in the first season's penultimate episode.

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By Jared Jones

“I need to cancel.”

It has taken 9 long episodes for us to finally hear Laurie Garvey speak, and my God was it glorious. That her first line of dialogue involved the potential abortion of a child she had yet to tell her husband about was a fitting touch for The Leftovers, a show so wrought with secrets and grief that you’d have to be a glutton for punishment to make it this far into season 1. Luckily, I am one such glutton.

Told entirely through flashback, “The Garveys At Their Best” attempted to shed some light on what the lives of Kevin, Laurie, Norah Durst, and countless other citizens of Mapleton were like before the events of October 14th. And to be honest, most of them were quickly headed for disaster. Kevin, for instance, felt trapped in his mundane existence (not unlike the deer running amok throughout last night’s episode) and in constant search of his “greater purpose”, which equated to a lot of cigarette smoking and cheating on his wife. Nora, on the other hand, was trapped in the underappreciated (and intellectually lacking) life of a stay at home mom, growing increasingly frustrated with an unappreciative husband and plain annoying children. And of course, there was Laurie, who was stuck in a dead-end marriage with an unplanned child on the way.

These people wanted out, and in a way, the Departure was that out — an event that freed them from the suffocating normalness of their previous lives. Kevin was given an out from his marriage, Laurie an out from her unplanned child, and Nora an out from the (albeit temporary) frustrations of her family. “The Garveys At Their Best”, ironic as the title may be, showcased more about who these people were than any episode before it, and it couldn’t have come at a better time, with the first season finale a mere two weeks away.

Perhaps the most interesting development in “The Garveys at Their Best” was not the reveal that Laurie was carrying a child that was lost in the Departure, nor that Kevin was cheating on his wife with a woman who vanished during it, but that the event itself might have been brought about, or at least coincided, with the wishes of those left behind. It adds a whole different level of grief to an already grief-ridden show, but also some perspective on why those left behind might be so insistent on forgetting those who were lost — because they feel responsible for their departure. In a sense, last night’s episode made you understand, if not sympathize, with the Guilty Remnant, who are facing their grief head-on rather than suppressing it like many of the townsfolk of Mapleton.

Oh right, I almost forgot about Jill, who was a brace-faced teen working on a entropy project (get it?) for a science fair and basically living the average teenager lifestyle before the Departure. We didn’t really learn much about Jill, other than that she had a much closer relationship with Tommy prior to October 14th and might have known that her parents were headed for splitsville. She and Tommy also happened to witness first hand the disappearance of a classmate during a particularly intriguing sequence involving a human “circuit.”

Last night’s episode also revealed several smaller revelations. Firstly, that Laurie used to be a successful psychiatrist and that the Garvey’s were, like, stupid rich because of her success. We also learned that Paddi used to be a patient of Laurie’s, potentially foresaw the Departure, and that the “Neil” whose name she scribbled on a bag before defecating it and leaving it on his doorstep was in fact her abusive ex-husband who had recently kicked her out of her house. Oh, and Gladys was a dog-breeder before she went off the reservation, which begs the question: Were animals taken in the Departure as well? You have to admit, no one would have seen that twist coming.

After a short break for Labor Day, The Leftovers will return for what is set to be a gripping season finale. If I were to guess, it will be anything but uplifting.

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NBC, In A Moment Of Wisdom, Cancels Its Gritty ‘Wizard Of Oz’ Series, ‘Emerald City’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/nbc-in-a-moment-of-wisdom-cancels-its-gritty-wizard-of-oz-series-emerald-city/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/nbc-in-a-moment-of-wisdom-cancels-its-gritty-wizard-of-oz-series-emerald-city/#comments Mon, 25 Aug 2014 17:26:02 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264428 Thank God.

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In what can only be seen as a victory, however small, for originality on network television, NBC has announced that it’s not going forward with its Game of Thrones (?)-inspired Wizard of Oz spinoff Emerald City. Why? It hasn’t been explicitly stated, but the hunch is that no one wanted to see the Wizard of Oz get tossed in among the glut of other TV adaptations of works in the public domain.

The show had been given a straight-to-series order, making the news all the more surprising. Normally the network would order a pilot, then decide based on that. But this time, the network was TOTALLY sure it wanted the show. Until it decided it didn’t at all.

The producers will keep shopping the show around, but if our God is a merciful and just God, this thing will die on the vine and maybe the networks can air an original show with new ideas and characters.

(A.V. Club)

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The Film Cult Presents: American Gigolo http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/the-film-cult-presents-american-gigolo/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/the-film-cult-presents-american-gigolo/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 16:56:10 +0000 Philip Harris http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264389 The Film Cult Presents: American Gigolo, the 1980 film about sex and fashion that became a cult classic for its eighties aesthetic.

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After a few weeks of overly personal, emotional Film Cult columns, I thought I’d write on just a plain old campy mess of a movie called American Gigolo. Many of the movies I write about aren’t particularly well made but have some sort of lasting resonance with a small, but devoted fan base. Well, American Gigolo is a poorly made movie that I’m not sure has any devoted fan base beyond those of us who love eighties fashion and over-the-top kitsch.

Not unlike other classic cult films, say Showgirls for instance, the film makers made American Gigolo in complete earnest. Paul Schrader wrote and directed the film and really thought it was going to be a provocative gem. You may know Schrader from his work as writer (and co-writer) of such greats as Taxi Driver and Raging Bull. American Gigolo is not among his most well made films, but it’s certainly my ironic favorite.

Let me set the scene for you. It’s early 1980 in the City of Angels. Pastels rule landscape, and money flows down Rodeo Drive like cheap rosé. Women aren’t as powerful as they will be in the following decades and therefore are forced to stay home while their power-broker husbands work in wood-paneled offices in Century City. What’s a lonely and rich woman-of-a-certain age supposed to do with her days? Macrame? That was for their mothers. Soap Operas, sure, but all those commercials for wheel chairs and panty liners. Nope, in the land of palm trees and wide streets, a wealthy older woman with nothing but time on her hands wants one thing: to fuck a hot younger guy for money. The king of those male hustlers? Julian Kaye, portrayed by the baby-faced (but man-bodied) Richard Gere.

Julian is a man of distinguished taste and many languages. He owns a black Mercedes convertible, snorts only the best cocaine, and is exclusively bedecked by Giorgio Armani. He runs a fast life, zooming up PCH or out to Palm Springs for whatever adventures his clients have planned for him. But, is his life too fast? He encounters “rough tricks”,  run-ins with drug dealers. Is he dancing to close to the edge?

The short answer is yes, he is. There’s danger everywhere he turns, from drugs to his gay pimp, with whom he’s always slightly flirting but also slightly afraid of. Of course, back in 1980, the gay community was something to be afraid of–men in leather, making out in dark clubs with chains and loud music. But the true danger Julian encounters is not the gay men whom he’s always seemingly just about to join. The real danger is Michelle Stratton, played by the eternal Lauren Hutton, with whom he’s in danger of falling in love. There’s not much to say about the plot as there isn’t really a plot. There’s a murder, some running, and some rock-bottom moments, and then of course, Michelle vouches for Julian and they finally allow themselves to be together. One doesn’t watch American Gigolo for the plot. That is, of course, if one’s getting drunk with their friends and wants a good laugh for the night. No, one watches American Gigolo for the aesthetic.

Not unlike Grey Gardens, American Gigolo is one of those cult classics that really only has a life because it so perfectly captures a specific moment in fashion. In Grey Gardens it’s the quirky, DYI fashions of Little Edie, while in American Gigolo, it’s the ultra-glam Beverly Hills set of 1980s Los Angeles. Mr. Schrader really doused American Gigolo with syrup in this respect. I know many a designer who has been influenced by this film, many men and women who cite American Gigolo as their style muse for evening looks and seasonal fashion lines.

Having Richard Gere and Lauren Hutton wear all of these fabulous clothes doesn’t hurt. Lauren Hutton was (and is) a model for all time, a beauty discovered by legendary fashion editor Diana Vreeland and heralded for not fixing the gap in her teeth. She is known for her philanthropy and activism, often spending months in Africa helping those less fortunate. All of that is ignored in this film however, since Mr. Schrader has essentially turned her into a mannequin. If she were a great actress, this would be different. Alas, she’s not. She’s beautiful, knows how to carry a woven red leather clutch, and is just vulnerable enough to believe she can crack Richard Gere’s muscled shell. And let me tell you, that’s enough reason to watch the movie.

Gere and Hutton dance around each other, surrounded by a world of shoulder pads, jersey dresses, and chunky jewelry. Their chemistry is real, which I can only imagine is another reason the movie was made. Re-watching it this week, I like to believe that if the movie were remade, Julian would be played by James Franco. Both are hams, and both are hot enough to pull off the whole vaguely gay hustler thing the character demands. Who would play Michelle? Hard to say. I think Idina Menzel would be great in the part. Maybe make it a musical and really gay it up.

God bless Paul Schrader. He had no idea he was making a mess, and he didn’t learn his lesson, seeing how he was also the director of The Canyonswhich was so awful it’s now masterpiece in debacle. That said, thank god Paul Scrader made American Gigolo. It’s the perfect post card for the fashion, decadence, and insanity of early eighties Southern California.

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The @dadboner Twitter Feed And Book Are Getting Spun Into A Comedy Central Cartoon http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/the-dadboner-twitter-feed-and-book-are-getting-spun-into-a-comedy-central-cartoon/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/the-dadboner-twitter-feed-and-book-are-getting-spun-into-a-comedy-central-cartoon/#comments Thu, 21 Aug 2014 15:54:33 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264354 Margs, Camaros, and Bob Seger.

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It’s pretty easy (and normally correct) to say that you shouldn’t spin long-form entertainment from something as thin and disposable as a Twitter feed. Just ask CBS and the guy behind “@shitmydadsays.” But because we’re greedy, and we crave too much of a good thing, we insist on getting more and more from certain jokes than Twitter has to offer. Granted, the novelty account @dadboner also has a book, entitled Power Moves: Livin’ The American Dream, USA Style, so that’s helpful.

And while the similarities between @shitmydadsays and @dadboner are many, it’s much harder to say no to the novelty account that follows a Michigan man, Karl Welzein, as he loves rock n’ roll, babes, and other awesome things. The Comedy Central adaptation of the account will be animated, which leaves more room for the absurd (though Shit My Dad Says getting William Shatner was pretty absurd).

But what’s not to like about this?:

There is nothing not to like about that.

(Deadline)

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New ‘Dumb And Dumber’ Poster Takes A Cue From ‘Lucy’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/new-dumb-and-dumber-poster-takes-a-cue-from-lucy/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/new-dumb-and-dumber-poster-takes-a-cue-from-lucy/#comments Mon, 18 Aug 2014 14:59:47 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264255 They totally redeemed themselves.

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After years of speculation and hope, the new Dumb and Dumber To marketing effort is in full swing. And lest you think it would just draw from its previous success…nope. They’re taking aim at the big dumb actioner Lucy, comparing that film’s premise of using an abnormally high portion of the brain with their characters, who use abnormally low portions of their brains.

Ok. At this point I’m just explaining the joke, which is something I hate doing.

See for yourself:

It took me a while to get past the block letters to see if it was really Jim Carrey. Yup. Story checks out. He looks happy.

 

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‘Let’s Be Cops’ Performs Pretty Well Despite People Not Loving Cops This Week http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/lets-be-cops-performs-pretty-well-despite-people-not-loving-cops-this-week/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/lets-be-cops-performs-pretty-well-despite-people-not-loving-cops-this-week/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 16:53:11 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264228 Not the best week to be cops.

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America’s never been a place to let harsh realities get in the way of a good time. When a film gets pushed back due to real-life events, it’s normally a proactive move by the studio, not because of public outcry. However, the protests and violence in Ferguson, Missouri happened so close to the unfortunately-named Let’s Be Cops, that there wasn’t time to do much of anything. The film was released on Wednesday, and has done pretty well for itself.

How well? It’s hard to say, but it’s looking like a $25 million opening weekend for a lowbudget comedy starring two emerging stars. Not bad.

My guess is, if this thing performs well this weekend, FOX will send some folks to Ferguson and get this whole situation straightened out so that we don’t see fall-off in the second weekend.

(Deadline)

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Wanna Know How ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Leatherface Came To Be? There’s A Prequel For That http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/wanna-know-how-texas-chainsaw-massacres-leatherface-came-to-be-theres-a-prequel-for-that/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/wanna-know-how-texas-chainsaw-massacres-leatherface-came-to-be-theres-a-prequel-for-that/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 16:40:55 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264224 Did he start with a saw, then invest in a chainsaw?

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People rarely ask, “Why?” in horror movies. And they probably should. Some pretty crazy shit goes down at in these types of films, and we normally aren’t exposed to the motives of the killers or villains until far later in the canon.

Better late than never, say the producers of Leatherface, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre prequel that will let us know how a little Leatherboy in 1970′s Texas became a LeatherMAN. And also why he’s running around killing these guys with a chainsaw.

What does this mean for the timeline of the franchise? Nobody could figure that one out. This thing has been spun and sequeled and rebooted so much that the timeline looks like a spider web. Let’s just pretend it’s a standalone prequel, beholden to nothing.

(The Wrap)

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‘Godzilla 2′ Must Wait For Director Gareth Edwards To Do ‘Star Wars’, Gets 2018 Release Date http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/godzilla-2-must-wait-for-director-gareth-edwards-to-do-star-wars-gets-2018-release-date/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/godzilla-2-must-wait-for-director-gareth-edwards-to-do-star-wars-gets-2018-release-date/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 16:29:49 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264203 Outer space beats lizards every time.

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Godzilla managed to perform strongly at the box office and did generally well critically, so the question of a sequel was more “if” than “when.” Yesterday, Legendary Pictures gave us the “when.” June 8, 2018.

It’s a long way off, and studios normally like to crank these things out before audiences catch on to the next big thing and leave giant lizard movies in the dust. So why the long lead time?

Because director Gareth Edwards has to go make the second Star Wars film first. And those are fairly high-profile films, so maybe they don’t want to rush him? As big as Godzilla was, it’s a drop in the bucket compared to the money that Star Wars can bring in across various platforms.

So it all comes down to money. Remember when Star Wars and Godzilla films were about the art? I don’t, but I assume they may have been at one point.

(Deadline)

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‘American Horror Story: Freakshow’ Buys Into The Old Adage ‘When All Else Fails, Cast The World’s Smallest Woman’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/american-horror-story-freakshow-buys-into-the-old-adage-when-all-else-fails-cast-the-worlds-smallest-woman/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/american-horror-story-freakshow-buys-into-the-old-adage-when-all-else-fails-cast-the-worlds-smallest-woman/#comments Thu, 14 Aug 2014 16:12:00 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264162 We get it, already. You're creepy. Gosh.

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If you thought that the subtitle for American Horror Story (Freakshow!) was just a clever name: Nope. They’re going to have an assortment of “freaks,” political correctness be damned. The fourth season has recruited the presence of Jyoti Amge, who’s claim to fame is that she’s the world’s shortest woman at 26 inches tall. And at 20 year’s old, she’s probably done growing. Probably.

Prior to getting cast, Amge had appeared in a documentary called Body Shock as well as an Indian reality show.

In keeping with the name, American Horror Story: Freakshow will take place in the circus town of Jupiter, FL in 1950. You can catch Amge, Jessica Lange, and the other American Horror Storytellers in October on FX.

(Deadline)

 

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In Its Strangest Plot Twist To Date, HBO’s ‘The Leftovers’ Gets Renewed http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/in-its-strangest-plot-twist-to-date-hbos-the-leftovers-gets-renewed/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/in-its-strangest-plot-twist-to-date-hbos-the-leftovers-gets-renewed/#comments Wed, 13 Aug 2014 17:42:23 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=264136 We'll keep watching it, because it's on HBO on Sundays, and that's what really matters.

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After seven weeks of getting our hopes up with spikes of action, then letting them simmer with 120 minutes of restless boredom between them, HBO has decided that, year, they’re going to keep doing that to us with The Leftovers. Because it’s been picked up for a second season (in case that roundabout criticism wasn’t clear).

Ratings for the post-rapture study of a small town started off fine, but have been growing across all platforms despite the fact that the show keeps testing viewers’ patience for SOMETHING to happen, just as patiences were tested producer Damon Lindelof‘s previous TV event, Lost.

No word yet on timing, but barring something weird, I think expecting the show back in about 10 months should be about right. In the meantime, just enjoy the silence and cigarette smoke.

(Deadline)

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The Film Cult Presents: Go http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-film-cult-presents-go/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-film-cult-presents-go/#comments Sun, 10 Aug 2014 18:32:56 +0000 Philip Harris http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263980 Warning! Spoilers Ahead! In the spring of 1999, just before I graduated from high school, I met a young man named Zoe. He was a few years older and, I...

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Warning! Spoilers Ahead!

In the spring of 1999, just before I graduated from high school, I met a young man named Zoe. He was a few years older and, I thought, far worldlier than I. We met on a now defunct chat room late one night after my parents had gone to bed. I fell instantly in love with him and a few weeks later he took a bus into Hollywood one morning so we could meet. He had a black eye and over the course of that day he stole my watch, confessed that he lived in some detention camp for wayward youth, and told me he loved me. He’d told the authorities that he was going to his grandmother’s funeral. As an innocent kid from the LA burbs, all of this seemed terribly attractive and exciting to me. I lived with my parents in Glendale, where there was always fresh watermelon, newspapers, and plenty of protection.

Because of his lie to the authorities, Zoe was kicked out of his living situation and went to live with a friend who had a mobile home out in Yucaipa. The last time we spoke, after my parents’ banned me from seeing him, was on the phone one night after he’d gotten high with his friend, had sex with said friend, and called to tell me that he wanted me to see a movie called “Go.” He said this movie was exactly the kind of life he wanted us to live together—running wild, going to raves, taking drugs. As he spoke of this movie, of how much it meant to him, I realized that we would never be together. After all, I wasn’t even eighteen, and something about “Go” felt dangerous, like it had unleashed a devil in him from which I quickly withdrew.

I never saw Zoe again. I graduated from high school and went to community college. After Y2K failed to bring the melodrama it had promised, I became bored with life, caring nothing for my own future, giving no time to the venture of self. Then, one Saturday afternoon, my brother rented “Go” from Blockbuster.

“Go” is three interweaving story lines of multiple young people on the verge of danger at the end of the twentieth century. A girl tries to scam a drug dealer. A traveling Brit tries to outsmart a pimp, and two gay guys try to escape a pyramid scheme. The jokes are fast, not particularly smart, but always sarcastic, which resonated with me instantly. The plot is all right. It’s not brilliant, but it’s entertaining. The cast is phenomenal. Scott Wolf, Timothy Olyphant, Taye Diggs, Jay Mohr, and even Katie Holmes, each play major roles throughout. In fact, Wolf and Mohr are the aforementioned gay couple. It’s fascinating to watch each of these now mega-famous actors cut their teeth in a quirky film about a rave and drugs. Katie Holmes was still wholesome, while Timothy Olyphant made the perfect skeezy drug dealer who was equal parts hot and hilarious. Also, keep your eyes akimbo for a then unknown Melissa McCarthy toward the film’s end.

My brother and I loved it. We integrated quotes into our daily vernacular almost immediately: “Don’t go all 818 on me.” “I don’t even give my friends head.” “Look at your shirt, bitch. This ain’t Hawaii.” I saw what Zoe had loved about the film. None of the young characters appear to have parents. They all have cars and clothes and schedules fit for middle-aged, full-time workers. They were all pretending to be adults, not realizing that pretending to be something you’re not always turns out bad. Zoe wanted his life to be a movie in which beautiful teens are hit by cars and don’t die, in which your friends are always available to get high and go on adventures. As you can imagine, his life was not this. He was doing drugs in a mobile home out in the desert.

I knew my life wasn’t like the characters’ in “Go.” Hell, my life wasn’t even like Zoe’s. I didn’t do drugs and until then only ever did anything as dangerous as meet strangers off the internet, which, granted, was dangerous enough. Still, I knew that the characters in “Go” were still the cool kids in high school. That is, not me, which I’d grown to accept years earlier. Still, I wanted a taste of that life. The danger from which I’d originally detracted now seemed exciting to me.

Over the years, “Go” has actually become a family favorite. We watch it at least twice a year, each family member delighting in their own contained excitement of vicariously living a fictional character’s story arch. The jokes seem less funny, but the actors are all still beautiful, especially Timothy Olyphant who is shirtless throughout. I wonder if my family members ever wonder what their lives could have been had they gone on more dangerous adventures. To me, now a man in my thirties, “Go” seems almost innocent in its depiction of pre-2000 debauchery. Everyone thought the internet was going to take us to different worlds, never once thinking that it would eventually just make the world smaller. Justin Bieber was a six-year-old living in Canada. Facebook didn’t exist.

When my family now suggests we watch “Go” I always have to convince myself to watch it with them. I recently realized that the comfort of living vicariously through a character’s life is not something I need. In the years following my initial viewing of “Go”, I flew to Chicago to meet another man I met on the internet, spending a weekend with him in his dorm room and subsequently cheating on my boyfriend back in Los Angeles. I did the same a year later, this time going to a rave in San Francisco with a stranger, only to be stranded in a Sacramento parking lot at five the next morning. That same year, when I was nineteen, I popped a blood vessel in my right eye during a long weekend in Las Vegas. I shortly after dropped out of community college and soon found myself in Hollywood apartments at three in the morning with strangers, frequently allowing myself to dance in West Hollywood clubs until I was so dehydrated that I had to make out with bartenders for free bottles of water.

No, “Go” is not a way for me to live something I never got the chance to. “Go” is a reminder of the innocent kid I was and how that kid, because of a black-eyed druggie named Zoe, learned to never let any of my crazy, and sometimes idiotic, adventures go too far. For when I thought I might be in too much danger, when that devil would appear, I could hear Jay Mohr whisper a single word in my ear.   

 

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How Not to Do a Female-Led Superhero Film http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/how-not-to-do-a-female-led-superhero-film/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/how-not-to-do-a-female-led-superhero-film/#comments Fri, 08 Aug 2014 18:14:27 +0000 DustinSeibert http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263894 Marvel's planning a female superhero-driven film in 2017. But will it be any good? Here's how the studio can blow it — and how they can make it great.

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Sony reportedly has a Marvel-based female superhero movie on deck for 2017.

Have reasons to fear.

It’s high time for a movie of its type, especially considering the increased demands for one in the face of the myriad ultra-successful, male-driven comic book films we’ve seen in the past decade or so. While there hasn’t been a female lead in a comic book film since the genre got a massive injection via the Marvel Cinematic Universe — which became the highest-grossing franchise in U.S. history —  there’s absolutely a precedent for female-led superhero films, despite what many headlines would have you believe in order to earn your click. The problem is, none of them have been especially memorable. (Raise your hand if you can describe the plot of 2005′s Elektra without consulting Wikipedia.)

If Sony makes a female-fronted Marvel superhero movie, it would have to be in the Spider-Man universe, which really leaves room for only one of three characters: Spider-Woman, the mercenary Silver Sable, or the shameless Catwoman rip-off Black Cat, who was already introduced in this year’s Amazing Spider-Man 2, albeit only as her alter ego Felicia Hardy. Since Sony doesn’t own the characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, forget about seeing Scarlett Johansson head up her own Black Widow film anytime soon.

Any ideas about Sony’s plans for the movie are mere speculation at this juncture, so we have to sit on our thumbs for a while. But there are certainly ways that Sony or any other studio, for that matter — could blow a successful female-led superhero film. Here are a few:

 

Overly sexualize the hero: The very second thought I had the first time I saw a picture of Halle Berry’s Catwoman (right after “Hmm, where’d I put the Jergens?”) was, “This movie is gonna be a massive failstick.” Lo and behold, it was totally execrable. Tim Burton got away with camping up Batman and Catwoman in 1992, but in 2004 — during a period when superhero films were moving away from silliness — Halle’s take on the character was the essence of eye-rolling. Any contemporary female superhero in film needs to be sexy by default, but her sexuality needs to be matched by a heaping helping of smarts and savvy for her to be taken seriously.

Crappy casting: I wrote a little about this already, but the importance of good casting to the success of a female-driven superhero movie can’t be understated. It’s arguably even more important than a male character-driven film, because nerdboys have very specific ideas in their minds about the women they see in comic books and the actresses they see playing them – it’s like a spank bank for which Bob Kane is the proprietor. I was surprised Elektra even got made considering the spectacular awfulness of its predecessor, 2003’s Daredevil, but Jennifer Garner never belonged in this role to begin with. Elektra needed to be a played by a kick-ass, dark-haired, olive-skinned Latina or Greek goddess (think Maria Menounos with a dye job and some acting skills), not the chick who relegates herself to bad Matthew McConaughey rom-coms.

Making a movie around a throwaway character(s): Perhaps the most obvious challenge of a female-driven comic superhero flick is the disproportionately small number of lady characters that matter to the public at large. Sure, you have folks coming out in droves to see The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen and Divergent’s Beatrice Prior (a.k.a. Family Dollar’s Katniss Everdeen) on the big screen, but the YA set has way more cred among money-dropping moviegoers than buxom comic characters. Even Wonder Woman arguably the most popular female comic book character of all time — has been plagued by failure in attempts to adapt her for the big and small screens. There’s no way any of the female X-Men could carry their own film with their current actresses (except maybe Ellen Page’s Shadowcat), and I’ve seen nothing about a She-Hulk film. Vampirella has been done so poorly in the movies that I can’t see anyone turning around that bus. DC’s Birds of Prey is a cool group, but Christopher Nolan set the bar so high for films in the Batman world that I don’t know if anyone can tackle it again without face-planting…though we’ll find out soon enough.

A new film without introduction from a previous film: Again, Wonder Woman is probably the safest bet for her own movie in 2014, but even she’s getting ushered in via Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Marvel Studios could absolutely make a movie where Johansson carries the mantle as the lead in a Black Widow film, but she’s been in three films already. Sony releasing a Black Cat flick makes the most since the studio is boning up to create a “cinematic universe” around Spider-Man, and she’s already been introduced. But not enough people appreciated ASM2, and if Sony can sh*t out three or four more movies in that universe that moviegoers will care about, I’d be surprised. Under the right author, Jessica Drew’s Spider-Woman is a fantastic, compelling character, so hopefully Sony can incorporate her in future Spider-Man sequels so she can get her own film.

Think inside the box: As an avid comic reader, I realize that the world of comic book adaptations shouldn’t begin and end with Marvel and DC. My favorite female comic book lead in recent years is the titular character in Garth Ennis’ excellent Jennifer Blood. She’s a complicated anti-hero in every way, and a well-done, hard-R-rated movie around her could truly resonate with people. Hack/Slash, an indie title that sends up the slasher film genre – complete with ample blood and boobs – is reportedly being worked into a film. However, the lead character, Cassie Hack, has to be carefully cast: she’s smoking hot and frequently scantily clad, but she’s not a bimbo, and methinks whomever will be at the helm of that film will have difficulty navigating those waters. While not technically a super power, I’d love to see S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Maria Hill get her own vehicle, as she’s one of the most ass-kicking female characters who also has a personality. Finally, Greg Rucka’s Batwoman, an open lesbian forced out of the military for “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” is ripe for a film that the big studios probably aren’t progressive enough to tackle just yet.

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Do Movies With Intentionally Misspelled Titles Always Suck? An Investigation http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/do-movies-with-intentional-misspellings-always-suck-an-investigation/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/do-movies-with-intentional-misspellings-always-suck-an-investigation/#comments Thu, 07 Aug 2014 17:18:03 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263828 You can tell a lot about the intentional misspelling of a word in a film — mainly, that it is poison and should be avoided at all costs.

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By Jared Jones

Just yesterday, we all learned that the title of the new, completely necessary Terminator film will be Terminator: Genisys. You see, it’s clever because the non-Terminator word in that title is normally spelled “genesis.” Apparently, the film’s assertion is that illiteracy, not technology, will be the cause of man’s ultimate undoing at the hands of our future robot overlords. It’s an interesting premise, I’ll give it that much.

As luck would have it, you can actually tell a lot about the intentional misspelling of a word in a movie title, band name, MMA fighter nickname or whathaveyou — mainly, that any person or product that opts for one is terrible and should be avoided at all costs. An intentionally misspelled movie title is like the shake of a rattlesnake’s tail, warning you that it would be stupid bordering on deadly to proceed any further with the thing you are looking at. A few prime examples…

Se7en

Well, my theory is off to a rough start, because David Fincher’s Se7en is an undeniably awesome film. Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, and a box with Gwyneth Paltrow‘s head in it is, like, exactly how I’d describe my dream vacation, you guys. That said, whoever chose to replace the “v” with the number 7 should have their head placed right beside Gwyneth’s in that box.

How am I even supposed to pronounce that? Se-seven-en? Sev-even? Sussudio?

It’s probably Sussudio. It’s always Sussudio.

Simon Sez

It took me a good half hour to realize that Simon Sez was not Double Team, that *other* late 90′s action movie starring Dennis Rodman. I probably should have realized that one of them co-starred Jean-Claude Van Damme while the other co-starred…Dane Cook?! That can’t be right. The timelines of fame don’t line up, and plus, there is no union on the Venn Diagram between Rodman and Cook fans.

This is ridiculous. We should all probably give this one a look…

Well, that’s definitely Dane Cook all right. In 30 seconds, I counted a Chewbacca impression, a dinosaur impression, and a dog impression. The man is truly the Michael Winslow of non police-themed comedy. And if you somehow make it past all that, you will find John Pinette (R.I.P), a Grey Poupon joke, and a villain who uses the phrase “Tea time!” to commence nuclear destruction. I am so goddamn depressed right now. Like, with humanity.

Antz

It’s bad enough that this movie was a cheap, transparent ripoff of A Bug’s Life which owed its creation to a grudge between movie studios, but if you were to ask me (which you are doing by virtue of reading this article), the most shameful atrocity Antz committed was that upon the English language.

Replacing an “s” with a “z” is neither, hip, chill, cool, or clever, and our country has arguably never recovered from the S to Z movement spurred by this film. I don’t care how important your main character is, he is not allowed to have an impact on the nomenclature of his species. What, are we all suppose to start calling ourselves Homobama Sapiens because Barry O’s in the White House? And do the people who created this bastard Bug’s Life abomination honestly expect to us pronounce the “z” as an actual “z”, making it sound as if we are buzzing in on a game show while discussing movies with our friends? And if they wanted that, why not make the movie about bees and call it Buzz?

There. In three seconds, I have come up with a better film than you, Dreamworks. Enjoy your studio that was built on a throne of lies.

eXistenZ

WHAT DID I JUST SAY, EXISTENCE?!!

This movie was actually OK though.

Click the “next page” link for more movie titles that were too hip for their own good…

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Get Those Sweaters Out Of Mothballs: Bill Cosby Is Returning To NBC http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/get-those-sweaters-out-of-mothballs-bill-cosby-is-returning-to-nbc/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/get-those-sweaters-out-of-mothballs-bill-cosby-is-returning-to-nbc/#comments Wed, 06 Aug 2014 16:04:03 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263798 JUST MAKE IT LIKE 'THE COSBY SHOW', OK?

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You missed Bill Cosby. You didn’t even know you did, but you did. With his crescendos into that high-pitched voice, the dancing while the eyes roll upward, and the sweaters. Oh those, glorious sweaters. Come January you won’t have to subsist on late night TV Land reruns any more. Sony, NBC and The Coz have gotten together to bring NBC a multigenerational sitcom, starring the comedian.

The project will star Cosby as Jonathan Franklin, a grandfather who lives with his extended family, yada, yada, patriarch, etc.

It’s going to be the Cosby show with more people. That’s what this sounds like. The show will be written and produced by TV veteran Mike O’Malley and will likely stick to the multicamera format, so it sounds like they’re not going for anything terribly groundbreaking here. Take Cosby, put him in front of a camera, let him do stuff.

That’s how you make a hit show.

And here’s this in celebration:

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The Leftovers Recap, Episode 5: “Gladys” http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-leftovers-recap-episode-5-gladys/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/general/the-leftovers-recap-episode-5-gladys/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 21:49:15 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263487 The tl:dr version: Gloom, doom, and a good old fashioned stoning highlighted television's consistently most depressing show.

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By Jared Jones

It’s a testament to The Leftovers – or perhaps the skills of Mimi Leder, who directed last night’s episode, “Gladys” — that the show can still make me feel bad for a person who refused to help a fallen stranger when she is brutally stoned to death mere moments after doing so. Karmatic comeuppance* is my jam, yo, and toss in the somewhat Biblical twofer that Gladys a.k.a Cathy Geiss from 30 Rock met her demise via a good old fashioned stoning, and you’d typically have my bell ringing louder than a morbidly obese opsophagos at a Long John Silvers (Author’s note: Dennis Miller has been crashing at my place all week and sometimes hijacks my computer. I am sorry.).

Rather than fill me with the sardonic joy of Daria on a two-day pleasure cruise through Transylvania (God damn you, Dennis!), however, last night’s opening sequence somehow made me, an emotionless drone of a human that the Guilty Remnant would probably aspire to be, feel something. I don’t know if it was guilt or sorrow or plain anger, but it was something and I honestly resent The Leftovers for making me feel it.

Gladys’ untimely death, horrific as it may have been, was arguably the high point of the season in terms of levity for HBO’s The Leftovers, a show so goddamn dark and depressing that I often find myself wandering through a Hot Topic in search for a pick-me-up in the days after watching it. At the center of all this gloom and doom lies Sheriff Kevin Garvey, who in addition to dealing with an awol wife and a rebellious daughter ripped straight out of a sitcom starring Charlie Sheen, now has to deal with uproarious/murderous townsfolk, secretive “Feds” attempting to eliminate the GR entirely, and either incompetent or plain deceitful dry cleaners.

Even his name sounds depressing. Garvey. As in “Garvey, go fish that dead baby out of the river, will you?”

Beyond our initial reaction/revulsion, the mystery over who killed Gladys Geiss should serve as a compelling turn of events, I suppose. Except that, as Liv Tyler‘s character stated after discovering her body, it was only “a matter of time” before one of the cultists wound up dead. The Guilty Remnant has given us less than zero reasons to care about whether its members live or die, and even less insight into what exactly the cult’s endgame is. Other than “to feel nothing”, which I assume is a classic Lindelofian nod to the masochists like myself who actually watch this show. In either case, watching Gladys’ body engulfed by flames at the episode’s end did not register nearly as much as it probably should have. Bitch be dead. Nothing to see here, folks.

Actually, given the GR’s “feel nothing” agenda, it would be no stretch of the imagination to declare that Gladys was just as likely killed by some of her fellow GR members than by the angered townsfolk whose family photos the GR stole in last week’s episode. Pattis interaction with Gladys in the opening scene of the episode, in addition to her well-documented pattern of underhandedness, only reinforce this theory.

But back to Sheriff Garvey: Retriever of Waterlogged Dead Children. You see, ol’ Garvey is hoping that the people of Mapleton don’t declare an open season on the members of the GR, with his wife/soon to be ex-wife being one of them and all, so he tries to impose a curfew, to which the townspeople declare a unanimous “But, ‘Merica!” and overrule him. This upsets Kevin, who has himself fallen into such a deep depression that he completely forgets what to do when a pretty lady (Carrie Coon/”Nora Durst”) is obviously flirting with him at the dry cleaners. Or when his daughter’s pretty friend (Emily Meade/”Aimee”) entices him with the promises of pancakes in her smallest nighty.

Kevin’s game is undeniably weak, ye, which might be why his wife left him in the first place. Too soon? That was probably too soon.

Here’s my problem with The Leftovers, a show I have until now attempted to recap with 100% earnesty and seriousness: I don’t see how all the pieces are coming together, or more importantly, why they are. As with Lost, a show that will forever be used as a barometer for Lindelof’s works to come after it, I don’t know whether to place any emotional or intellectual investment in things like the ambiguity of the GR’s cause, or the absence of Kevin’s shirts, or the significance of Kevin’s repeated “Stop Short” moments in his car**, or just write them off as another Lindelofian thing that will be hinted at repeatedly but never actually resolved. My masochism has its limits, and Lindelof has pushed me beyond them before only to punish me for my loyalty. I should probably be praising his sadism, now that I think about it.

And just like with Lost, The Leftovers is too busy creating new mysteries to even attempt and resolve the old ones that have been compelling the narrative thus far. Old ones like: What is driving Liv Tyler’s character? Why are the GR members allowed to take “a day off?” Who is Dean the Dog Killer, and what is his place within Mapleton? How can Laurie be so empathetic one moment and unfeeling the next? How many times must we see Kevin violently jarred from his sleep to understand that he is not sleeping well? I call this American Horror Story Syndrome, and after a certain point, no amount of “Oh Shit!” moments can possibly do the buildup justice.

If this is all sounding incredibly cynical, it’s only because that’s precisely the mood that The Leftovers seems to want to extract from its audience (“We *are* the 99% Guilty Remnant!”). But as with every episode of the show thus far, “Gladys” was not without its fair share of well-captured moments. From Reverend Matt’s story about wanting to “bring the GR back to life” to the heartbreaking moment between Kevin and his daughter, there’s no denying The Leftovers ability to captivate when it needs to. If everything else about the show wasn’t wrapped in such obvious allegory and simultaneously confounding plotting, it’d be much a less tasking viewing experience.

By episode’s end, Laurie, Kevin, and the audience have been put through the emotional ringer. The former resisted the temptation to give into useless “emotion” and likely propelled herself into Gladys’ no. 2 position with the Guilt Remnant for doing so (no idea if she was actually involved in Gladys’ death, though). The latter has finally accepted that his wife is never coming back, and likely stole a bunch of people’s shirts because he is an occasionally (often) drunk asshole.

And yet, I am still intrigued. And yet, out of some diluted sense of loyalty, I still want to know what will happen to this group of mostly unsympathetic a-holes. Once again, I must give daps to The Leftovers for making me care whose particular a-hole it is and why it’s farting (to loosely borrow a phrase from a much smarter man than myself), despite their blatant insistence that I shouldn’t. It breeds the kind of masochistic viewing tendencies that I thought only reality television could.

*New band name, called it. 

**For those keeping track, those have happened as Kevin was saying “God Damn it!” and “funeral” so far. 

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Woman Hit By Car At Comic-Con ZombieWalk, Gets A Little Closer To Being Actual Zombie http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/woman-hit-by-car-at-comic-con-zombiewalk-gets-a-little-closer-to-being-actual-zombie/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/woman-hit-by-car-at-comic-con-zombiewalk-gets-a-little-closer-to-being-actual-zombie/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 16:03:33 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263467 This goes from upsetting to very upsetting when learning kids were scared by the fake zombies.

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It wouldn’t be Comic-Con unless someone got run over by a car. Normally, it’s just Twilight fans, or some guy dressed in a goofy costume, but it stings a little more when you learn it’s a 64 year-0ld woman. Fortunately, her injuries are not being reported as life-threatening, and the common thought is that she may have a broken arm.

And yes, she was participating in the ZombieWalk, in which people dress up like zombies and…walk.

She was hit by a 48 year-old deaf man driving with his deaf family, who were apparently very scared by the sudden presence of hundreds of zombies (JESUS), and his children’s reaction may have led to the crash. Ugh. It gets worse.

According to reports, the kids were freaking out by the presence of zombies, so despite the fact that the driver had to stay put to allow the throng of zombies to pass, he started to inch forward to get his kids out of there. The mob turned against him, punching windows and jumping on his hood (DOUBLE JESUS). No charges have been filed against the poor dad. Poor kids. Poor lady. Poor everyone.

 

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Yup, Quentin Tarantino Revealed At Comic-Con He Is Making ‘The Hateful Eight’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/yup-quentin-tarantino-revealed-at-comic-con-he-is-making-the-hateful-eight/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/yup-quentin-tarantino-revealed-at-comic-con-he-is-making-the-hateful-eight/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 15:49:50 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263463 Then it's settled.

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After lots of speculation and discussion on our end (see here, here, and here) Quentin Tarantino finally owned up to what we all assumed and admitted he’ll be making The Hateful Eight after all, leaked scripts be damned. The film will be an out-and-out western, as we knew all along.

So, we can stop the contrived speculation, and just start reporting developments. That’s good for those who don’t like writing and reading small pieces of conjecture or having to read into weird little developments in the world of QT.

Tarantino made the announcement during a panel for the upcoming Zorro-Django crossover comic, which Tarantino did so that he could control the mythology of Django without having to keep making movies. I think we can all get on board with that.

One of the most uproarious moments on the panel came when Tarantino was asked if he would ever make a film that wasn’t rated R.

“Fuck no,” he replied.

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How Many Of These 300 8-Bit Pop Culture Figures Do You Recognize? http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/how-many-of-these-300-8-bit-pop-culture-figures-do-you-recognize/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/how-many-of-these-300-8-bit-pop-culture-figures-do-you-recognize/#comments Fri, 25 Jul 2014 16:26:42 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263405 16-bit would have been overkill.

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God bless Paul Robertson. On a day that’s normally brimming with niche Comic-Con news that is only newsworthy because it happened at Comic-Con, we’re given something a little more permanent. A little more fun. We’re given, courtesy of Mr. Robertson, an animator by day, 300 pop culture figures imagined as 8-bit NES-type characters.

Go through the following three pics and see how many you can get, then determine which one is the most obscure. BOOM. Carl Winslow. Top left of page 2.

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You Won’t Be Binge-Watching ‘Community’ On Yahoo http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/you-wont-be-binge-watching-community-on-yahoo/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/you-wont-be-binge-watching-community-on-yahoo/#comments Fri, 25 Jul 2014 16:16:07 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=263401 Ok, maybe you will, but you're going to have to wait for one episode per week to be released.

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For a show that basically lived on the verge of being cancelled, Community sure does take up a disproportionately high percentage of entertainment news. For instance, in addition to the “Will it get cancelled/Will it be brought back?” stories, we’ve also got things like this:

Community will not be released all at once, as is normally the M.O. with original series on streaming services. Rather, Yahoo Screen will offer up the show once a week, for 13 weeks. To let us know who’s boss.

If that wasn’t already brutal enough to your instant gratification desires, the show also won’t be popping up until around Christmas-time, so take a few months to go outside, take a walk, maybe interact with some people face to face.

Or just stick around your computer and watch Community get cancelled and brought back like 15 times between now and then.

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Jake Gyllenhaal Is Looking For Work http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-is-looking-for-work/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/jake-gyllenhaal-is-looking-for-work/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 18:14:27 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=263250 Help a brother out?

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If you’ve been cruising Craigslist and happened to come across a poor soul who looks like a gaunt Jake Gyllenhaal pretty much begging for work, don’t get your hopes up. That actually is Jake Gyllenhaal making fun of the less fortunate. The post is a viral ad for the actor’s next film, Nightcrawler, and reads, “My name is Louis Bloom. I’m looking for full-time employment. No job too big or too small. I have my own car and phone. Persistent, punctual, polite and hardworking. Will work nights.”

The actor dropped a good amount of weight to play an unemployed man whose quest to eat food that contains calories leads him into Los Angeles’s world of freelance crime journalism. You’d think that Peter Sarsgaard, flush with Flightplan royalties, would throw him a bone.

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The Screen Junkies Top Six: Damn Dirty Ape Movies http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-screen-junkies-top-six-damn-dirty-ape-movies/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-screen-junkies-top-six-damn-dirty-ape-movies/#comments Thu, 10 Jul 2014 14:09:15 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=262886 By Jared Jones The conjunction-heavy Dawn of the Planet of the Apes hits theaters this weekend and is all but guaranteed to dominate the box office. Why? Three words: Oldman, bazooka, monkeys....

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By Jared Jones

The conjunction-heavy Dawn of the Planet of the Apes hits theaters this weekend and is all but guaranteed to dominate the box office. Why? Three words: Oldman, bazooka, monkeys. But most importantly, monkeys. Dancing with toothbrushes, sniffing-their-own-butt-before-falling-out-of-a-tree monkeys.

Our cultural obsession with primates runs deep, ye, and goes far beyond the secret desire to fling feces at one another which WE ALL HAVE. To most of us, the monkey represents not just our primitive precursor on the evolutionary scale, but the carefree, childlike state of being we once possessed before life crushed it out of us. And while, scientifically speaking, there has never actually been a bad movie about and/or featuring apes, there are a few films in particular that rise above rest.

Which is why for our inaugural installment of The Screen Junkies Top Six — a new recurring column which previews an upcoming release by highlighting the greatest movies of its kind to come before it — we pay tribute to the greatest monkey movies of them all.

I swear to God, if even one of you dares point out that there is a difference between monkeys and apes before I’m done, I will turn this car around.

#6: The King Kong Franchise

Look, we all know that the King Kong movies are great (except Mighty Joe Young. F*ck Mighty Joe Young.) but I’ll be damned if I’m going to use this brief opportunity to talk about a bunch of movies you’d have to be an amoeba to not have seen by now. My personal favorite is the 1976 version starring Jeff Bridges and a prime Jessica Lange‘s barely-clothed body. That waterfall scene where a puffy-faced Kong literally blowdries Dawn…I wouldn’t know what it felt like to be so turned on and simultaneously disgusted again until I saw Halle Berry bang Billy Bob Thornton in Monster’s Ball.

#5: Congo 

Nonsensical, overly long, and surprisingly dull for a movie that features silverback gorillas and lasers, Congo has nonetheless garnered a huge cult following for being classic “so bad it’s good” filmmaking. It’s the kind of movie that was destined to be discussed on the very excellent How Did This Get Made? podcast, and thankfully, it was. It’s also a movie that tries to pass off  ”communication diamonds” as something other than an idea plucked from the head of a small child who had been rendered comatose by his father’s baseball bat.

Was that too dark? It sure felt that way. The point is, Congo is an absolute trainwreck of a movie that has somehow earned a memorable place in the annals of film history despite its inherent ridiculousness.

#4: Link

In this movie’s grand finale, a super-intelligent orangutan dressed in people clothes triggers a gas leak explosion by lighting a cigar. The entire scene is set to carousel music. You can check out the entire film on Youtube right now. You are welcome.

#3: Every Which Way But Loose

If the idea of watching a young Clint Eastwood and an orangutan named Clyde bare-knuckle box their way across the country doesn’t sound appealing to you, we cannot be friends. Before I even knew that this movie existed, that last sentence was literally the context of about 95% of my dreams. Every Which Way But Loose takes your classic buddy comedy and swaps a in a monkey for the Nick Frost/Chris Farley role, which marks the only time in the history of words that David Spade has ever been tangentially compared to Clint Eastwood. For which I am deeply, deeply sorry.

Anyways, Eastwood beats people up, Clyde flips them off (see above), and the result is cinematic gold. Two years later, Turner and Hooch would rip off this idea and become another late-’80s hit for Tom Hanks, despite the fact that dogs can neither tear apart cars piece-by-piece nor flip some proper birdage.

#2: The Jungle Book 

Did you know that those greedy corporate fat cats over in Hollywood are planning a live-action remake of Dumbo? Or that it will be penned by the guy who wrote Transformers 2-4? This can only mean, of course, that a live-action Jungle Book is on the way to sweep up whatever shattered memories of our childhood remain after that atrocity finishes destroying them…

What’s that? You say they already made a live-action Jungle Book movie? And that it starred Jason Scott Lee? Welp…

#1: Dunston Checks In

Finally, a true classic of American cinema.

The IMDB page of Dunston Checks In describes the plot of the film as such:

Young boy befriends larcenous orangutan in luxury hotel.

Classic undersell, IMDB. Sure, DCI is about a boy and a monkey and the hotel-based hijinks they commit on a surface level, but whoever wrote that poorly-worded synopsis was clearly missing the film’s subtext. Dunston Checks In is more than just interspecies bubble baths and cake fights (although both those things do happen), playing with the themes of isolation, animal rights, and the importance of family over all else.

Anchored by an absolutely masterful Jason Alexander performance as a workaholic father trapped beneath an unrelenting bitch of a boss, Dunston Checks In is to the hotel business what Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle was to the meatpacking industry, and I am being dead serious about that. So if you haven’t seen Dunston Checks In by now, close your damn computer, hit up the nearest Blockbuster that still carries VHS, and start doing something with your life.

Honorable mentions: Monkey Shines, Tarzan, your mom’s sex tape 

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The 10 Most Badass Survival Films Ever http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-10-most-badass-survival-films-ever/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-10-most-badass-survival-films-ever/#comments Mon, 07 Jul 2014 12:45:42 +0000 bgoldstein http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=262582 By the ScreenJunkies Staff Survival movies are inherently badass. When you’re faced with zombies, angry mobs, and the cruel forces of nature, you can either lie down and accept your...

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By the ScreenJunkies Staff

Survival movies are inherently badass. When you’re faced with zombies, angry mobs, and the cruel forces of nature, you can either lie down and accept your fate, or look Death in the eyes and say “Not today, buddy.” And so, in honor of The Purge: Anarchy (which hits theaters on July 18th) here are our ten all-time favorite survival flicks, in which ordinary men and women go to heroic lengths to save the most important life of all: their own.


Road Warrior — Mel Gibson reprises his role in this sequel to Mad Max, as the lone former cop tries to survive in a post-apocalyptic world, where gasoline is worth killing and dying over. There was a time when Gibson was one of the coolest movie stars out there and this movie — and it’s legendary climactic chase scene — is one of the reasons why.


Black Hawk Down — Ridley Scott directed an unflinching account of a real-life U.S. Army helicopter mission that turned into a disaster and a fight for survival in war-torn Somalia. Our advice: Don’t get too attached to the characters.


Deliverance It’s too bad the “squeal like a pig” scene is all most people remember about this movie (that and the “Dueling Banjos” scene), because it really is a tense and gripping movie about survival. Burt Reynolds was fantastic in this movie, and so were Jon Voight, Ned Beatty and Ronny Cox, as city boys who take a canoe trip in the Georgia wilderness, and aren’t exactly welcomed by the locals.


127 Hours — Danny Boyle’s 2010 classic is the true story of Aron Ralston (played by James Franco), who becomes trapped in a canyon while adventuring in Utah. When help doesn’t arrive, an increasingly delirious Ralston is forced to cut his own arm off — with a damn pocketknife — to save his own life. A grim but exhilarating tribute to the power of the human spirit.


Dawn of the DeadSurvivors of a zombie apocalypse are holed up in a shopping mall, using whatever they can find to survive. On one hand, it’s a subtle and surprisingly funny critique of unchecked consumerism. On the other hand, that helicopter blade scene is friggin’ sweet.


Warriors This cult-classic from the Seventies follows the efforts of the Warriors crew — wrongly framed for a gang leader’s murder — to get back to Staten Island by daybreak, while fending off attacks from other rival gangs, who all have their own unique visual aesthetics. It’s a guilty pleasure, for sure.


Cast Away Robert Zemeckis directed Tom Hanks in this story of a FedEx executive who lives by the clock and winds up spending years alone on a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean. It’s funny, tense, and will bring you to tears over a lost volleyball.


The Edge As if surviving a plane crash in the Alaskan wilderness weren’t bad enough, Charles Morse (Anthony Hopkins) and Bob Green (Alec Baldwin) are forced to fight a big damn Kodiak bear — and eventually each other. Gruesome maulings ensue. Filled with breathless expanses of the Alaskan wild and two incredible performances by Hopkins and Baldwin, the film is one of the most unforgettable wilderness survival movies ever.


AliveA rugby team crashes in the Andes and does the unthinkable to survive. Like 127 Hours, it’s an incredible true story of human beings who went to almost super-human lengths to stay, well, alive. As John Malkovich puts it in the opening scene, “Many people come up to me and say that had they been there they surely would have died. But it makes no sense, because until you’re in a situation like that, you have no idea how you’ll behave.”


Predator An elite team of commandos, composed of Hollywood hulks like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jessie Ventura, and Carl Weathers, is stalked in the jungles of Guatemala by a demented alien with the ability to turn invisible and who, apparently, has a jones for skinning people alive and hanging them upside down. As with almost every action movie starring the muscle-bound Schwarzenegger, the Governator is the only one left standing.

Did we leave out any of your favorite survival movies? Let us know on twitter @ScreenJunkies.

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Sherlock Fans, You Will Be Getting A Fourth Season AND A Special http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/sherlock-fans-you-will-be-getting-a-fourth-season-and-a-special/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/sherlock-fans-you-will-be-getting-a-fourth-season-and-a-special/#comments Wed, 02 Jul 2014 17:23:39 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=262639 The special comes first.

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American fans of British television are used to being jerked around a little bit. Entire series will run for a combined ten episodes, broken into two comically short seasons, with about two years in between. It makes Mad Men seem like it’s on a rush order.

Well, you can set your cynicism aside for Sherlock, which will be returning for a fourth season (of probably only three long episodes) and a special before that airs, or even shoots.

The special will adhere to the storyline and resolve some season 3 questions, so think of it more as an early first episode of season 4 than something standalone. You know, like you would normally think of a special.

The special begins filming early next year, and the season starts filming late next year. In the meantime, get reacquainted with the first 9 episodes. That should take you a day or so.

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