Jordan Vogt-Roberts updates on his Metal Gear Solid plans
1st look at Taron Egerton in Robin Hood adaptation
Get a peek at Wonder Woman's villain in toy form
New action-heavy trailer for King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
Natalie Dormer is the HOTM for February 2017 (video)
Kevin Smith plans to release Clerks 3 & Mallrats 2 scripts
Win big bucks in our annual Oscar Prediction Contest!
Explore paradise in new Alien: Covenant image
Cool new poster & image from Guardians 2!
Shane Black shares cast pic from The Predator & touts R-rating
Face Off: Emma Stone vs. Natalie Portman
Vote NOW for the 16th Annual Golden Schmoes Awards!
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Two of Pixar's top grossing films are getting the 3D treatment.
OUR TAKE: Two of the best animated films of the last decade are getting the unneeded 3D conversion process. But, if the conversions for both TOY STORY 1 and 2 are any indication, these will be the best post-converted films you will see. The painstaking animation in both of these movies should look amazing in 3D. Since both have sequels coming soon (MONSTERS UNIVERSITY hits next year), these should be perfect family films to check out during the holiday season.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Heather Mason (Adelaide Clemens) and her father (Sean Bean) have been on the run, always one step ahead of dangerous forces that she doesn't fully understand. On the eve of her 18th birthday, plagued by horrific nightmares and the disappearance of her father, Heather discovers she's not who she thinks she is. The revelation leads her deeper into a demonic world that threatens to trap her forever.
OUR TAKE: The first SILENT HILL was a creepy and surreal film aided by the direction of Christophe Gans and the screenplay by Roger Avary. This sequel has the handicap of being directed and written by Michael J. Bassett, whose SOLOMON KANE is being universally panned. But, the footage released so far looks to hold up the creepy quality of the first film. If anything, this should be a nice Halloween romp.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? A city in Washington state awakens to the surreal sight of foreign paratroopers dropping from the sky – shockingly, the U.S. has been invaded and their hometown is the initial target. Quickly and without warning, the citizens find themselves prisoners and their town under enemy occupation. Determined to fight back, a group of young patriots seek refuge in the surrounding woods, training and reorganizing themselves into a guerilla group of fighters. Taking inspiration from their high school mascot, they call themselves the Wolverines, banding together to protect one another, liberate their town from its captors, and take back their freedom.
OUR TAKE: Stuck in legal limbo for almost two years, the new version of RED DAWN is finally making it to theaters. With the villain updated from the Russians to the North Koreans, the movie looks to follow the original very closely. Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson have found their Hollywood stock skyrocket since they made RED DAWN, so here is to hoping they turned in that same level of quality before they hit the big time.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? An airline pilot saves a flight from crashing, but an investigation into the malfunctions reveals something more troubling about the pilot's exact condition during the flight.
OUR TAKE: Robert Zemeckis has been making craptastic motion capture movies for so long that I almost forgot he was still alive. Hopefully FLIGHT marks a consistent return to film for the director. Denzel Washington seems to be playing a variation on the same role he has been routinely been portraying since he won his Oscar for TRAINING DAY. But, routine Denzel is better than a lot of actors on their best days. The story looks like it may have a few twists awaiting viewers and that is enough to get me into a theater to check it out.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? From creative genius Tim Burton (“Alice in Wonderland,” The Nightmare Before Christmas”) comes “Frankenweenie,” a heartwarming tale about a boy and his dog. After unexpectedly losing his beloved dog Sparky, young Victor harnesses the power of science to bring his best friend back to life—with just a few minor adjustments. He tries to hide his home-sewn creation, but when Sparky gets out, Victor’s fellow students, teachers and the entire town all learn that getting a new “leash on life” can be monstrous.
OUR TAKE: If there is one thing that we know Tim Burton is good for, it is stop-motion animation. With the excellent PARANORMAN already released this year, FRANKENWEENIE has some competition for the sub-genre. A black and white movie for kids may be a tough sell, but FRANKENWEENIE looks like an inspired homage to the classic Universal monster movies. It remains to be seen how the 3D will appear without color, but you can be sure the movie will be vibrant, funny, and above all, weird.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? More than a collection of the well-known childhood legends, Rise of the Guardians tells the story of a group of heroes – each with extraordinary abilities. When an evil spirit known as Pitch lays down the gauntlet to take over the world, the immortal Guardians must join forces for the first time to protect the hopes, beliefs and imagination of children all over the world. This epic 3D adventure stars Chris Pine as Jack Frost, Alec Baldwin as North (Santa Claus), Hugh Jackman as Bunnymund (Easter Bunny), Isla Fisher as Tooth (Tooth Fairy) and Jude Law as Pitch (The Boogeyman).
OUR TAKE: The last Dreamworks animated film to be distributed by Paramount, RISE OF THE GUARDIANS looks to be the kickstart to another lucrative franchise. Based on a series of novels, William Joyce's film is a dark fantasy that should appeal to adults as much as children. The animation looks top notch and the voice cast is excellent. RISE OF THE GUARDIANS should be a big hit for fans of animation and rich fantasy.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Based on Yann Martel's coming-of-age survival tale. The novel revolves around a youth who is the lone survivor of a sunken freighter and winds up sharing a lifeboat with a hyena, an injured zebra, an orangutan and a hungry Bengal tiger.
OUR TAKE: The novel has a huge fan-base, but there is a lot you can do with the written word that does not translate to the big screen. Ang Lee had quite the task in bringing this adventure to life and early buzz indicates he has done so in an amazing way. LIFE OF PI could be this year's SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE: a quirky, feel good story that surprises everyone and takes the big awards by storm.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Three dumb guys who think they’re smart rob a Mob protected card game, causing the local criminal economy to collapse. Brad Pitt plays the enforcer hired to track them down and restore order. KILLING THEM SOFTLY also features Richard Jenkins, James Gandolfini, Ray Liotta, Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn and Vincent Curatola. Max Casella, Trevor Long, Slaine and Sam Shepard also make appearances. KILLING THEM SOFTLY is written for the screen and directed by Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) and is based on the George V. Higgins novel, “Cogan’s Trade.”
OUR TAKE: Movies about hitmen with unique principles and rules have become somewhat commonplace in recent years. What sets KILLING THEM SOFTLY apart is the timely economic backdrop of the story which gives the tale a unique presence. Add Brad Pitt in the title role and you have a movie worth checking out. Director Andrew Dominik's THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD was a nice lead-off to a film-making career. Lets see if he can go two for two.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann are reprising their characters of husband and wife from Judd Apatow's KNOCKED UP in a new story by the writer-director-producer. Many of the character details are being kept secret but it is understood that Ryan Lee will play the son of Melissa McCarthy, a mom at the school that Rudd and Mann's children attend.
OUR TAKE: Judd Apatow's name has become synonymous with a particular brand of comedy and yet after FUNNY PEOPLE, he seems to have gained more detractors than fans. THIS IS 40 aims to capitalize on the success of KNOCKED UP while continuing to tell more a more adult story. Paul Rudd is always welcome in a starring role and Leslie Mann looks to be pretty funny. This will likely not be a blockbuster but it should be a good movie.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Walt Disney Animation Studios and director Rich Moore (TV’s “The Simpsons,” “Futurama”) take moviegoers on a hilarious, arcade-game-hopping journey in “Wreck-It Ralph.” Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly) is tired of being overshadowed by Fix-It Felix (voice of Jack McBrayer), the “good guy” star of their game who always gets to save the day. But after decades doing the same thing and seeing all the glory go to Felix, Ralph decides he’s tired of playing the role of a bad guy. He takes matters into his own massive hands and sets off on a game-hopping journey across the arcade through every generation of video games to prove he’s got what it takes to be a hero. On his quest, he meets the tough-as-nails Sergeant Calhoun (voice of Jane Lynch) from the first-person action game Hero’s Duty. But it’s the feisty misfit Vanellope von Schweetz (voice of Sarah Silverman) from the candy-coated cart racing game, Sugar Rush, whose world is threatened when Ralph accidentally unleashes a deadly enemy that threatens the entire arcade. Will Ralph realize his dream and save the day before it’s too late? “Wreck-It Ralph” crashes onto the big screen on November 2, 2012, in Disney Digital 3D™ in select theaters.
OUR TAKE: Disney has turned out some good non-Pixar animated films in the last few years and WRECK-IT RALPH looks to continue that trend. Any movie with John C. Reilly is a good movie, but when you add video game characters you have something all the more interesting. WRECK-IT RALPH looks like it wants to be TOY STORY meets MONSTERS, INC., which could be very good or very bad. From the trailers released so far, I say WRECK-IT RALPH will be a contender for best family film of the season.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Written and Directed by Oscar®-winner Martin McDonagh, the comedy Seven Psychopaths follows a struggling screenwriter (Colin Farrell) who inadvertently becomes entangled in the Los Angeles criminal underworld after his oddball friends (Christopher Walken and Sam Rockwell) kidnap a gangster’s (Woody Harrelson) beloved Shih Tzu. Co-starring Abbie Cornish, Tom Waits, Olga Kurylenko and Zeljko Ivanek.
OUR TAKE: IN BRUGES was a really good movie that most audiences didn't get to see until it hit DVD. Martin McDonagh has a nice feel for the darkly humorous side of the criminal mindset. Bringing back Colin Farrell along with a cast of heavy hitters, SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS should succeed where IN BRUGES did not. Christopher Walken and Tom Waits look to have the kookiest roles in the film, but Sam Rockwell has my vote for the character we will all probably be quoting for years to come.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? A city is thrown into chaos following a sniper shooting that leaves five dead. What at first seems like a simple case to solve becomes complicated when the accused requests that Jack Reacher be put on the case.
OUR TAKE: Tom Cruise and Christopher McQuarrie are enough to get me interested in a movie, but for some reason JACK REACHER just does not click for me yet. Maybe it was the less than stellar trailer or the outcry from fans of the Lee Child novels who don't think Cruise is the right fit for the role. I think the deciding factor will be a toss up between what the MPAA rating ends up being and whether a second trailer can redeem this poorly titled film.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Set against the backdrop of 19th-century France, Les Misérables tells an enthralling story of broken dreams and unrequited love, passion, sacrifice and redemption—a timeless testament to the survival of the human spirit. Jackman plays ex-prisoner Jean Valjean, hunted for decades by the ruthless policeman Javert (Crowe) after he breaks parole. When Valjean agrees to care for factory worker Fantine’s (Hathaway) young daughter, Cosette, their lives change forever.
OUR TAKE: Ever since MOULIN ROUGE, I have been waiting for a movie musical to actually live up to the potential of the format. So far, none of succeeded. But, LES MISERABLES has always been the one musical that took itself completely seriously without sacrificing the story. Tom Hooper will have a lot to prove after winning his Best Director Oscar. If he is able to deliver on the quality seen in the trailer, LES MISERABLES will be a definite Oscar contender.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? The future America is an irradiated waste land. On its East Coast, running from Boston to Washington DC, lies Mega City One- a vast, violent metropolis where criminals rule the chaotic streets. The only force of order lies with the urban cops called “Judges” who possess the combined powers of judge, jury and instant executioner. Known and feared throughout the city, Dredd is the ultimate Judge, challenged with ridding the city of its latest scourge – a dangerous drug epidemic that has users of “Slo-Mo” experiencing reality at a fraction of its normal speed. During a routine day on the job, Dredd is assigned to train and evaluate Cassandra Anderson, a rookie with powerful psychic abilities thanks to a genetic mutation. A heinous crime calls them to a neighborhood where fellow Judges rarely dare to venture- a 200 story vertical slum controlled by prostitute turned drug lord Ma-Ma and her ruthless clan. When they capture one of the clan’s inner circle, Ma-Ma overtakes the compound’s control center and wages a dirty, vicious war against the Judges that proves she will stop at nothing to protect her empire. With the body count climbing and no way out, Dredd and Anderson must confront the odds and engage in the relentless battle for their survival.
OUR TAKE: DREDD 3D hopes to erase any memory of the Stallone version of the film and utilizing a similar story to THE RAID: REDEMPTION may do the trick. Karl Urban looks like he was born to play the Judge and the no holds barred quality of the film should make for a gritty action adventure worth seeing a second time.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? In feudal China, a blacksmith who makes weapons for a small village is put in the position where he must defend himself and his fellow villagers.
OUR TAKE: I was completely prepared to ignore this movie as another rapper making a lackluster vanity project. Instead, we got a trailer for a movie starring Russel Crowe and Lucy Liu that also features the Quentin Tarantino seal of approval. I should have trusted The RZA seeing as he has always been the most cinematic member of the Wu-Tang Clan. This should be one hell of a fun movie.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? The Navy SEAL Team 6 tracks down wanted terrorist Osama Bin Laden.
OUR TAKE: Kathryn Bigelow's film seems like it will be a companion to THE HURT LOCKER and yet has much more riding on it. There was no news story in the past couple of years as significant as the death of Osama Bin Laden and yet almost nothing is known about what actually happened. It seems hard to believe that the government would reveal details for a Hollywood movie, but whether completely true or not, ZERO DARK THIRTY will be a must see movie.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? ased on true events, "Argo" chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis--the truth of which was unknown by the public for decades. On November 4, 1979, as the Iranian revolution reaches its boiling point, militants storm the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking 52 Americans hostage. But, in the midst of the chaos, six Americans manage to slip away and find refuge in the home of the Canadian ambassador. Knowing it is only a matter of time before the six are found out and likely killed, a CIA "exfiltration" specialist named Tony Mendez (Affleck) comes up with a risky plan to get them safely out of the country. A plan so incredible, it could only happen in the movies.
OUR TAKE: ARGO and ZERO DARK THIRTY have a lot in common: both are based on major historic events and both were classified. What ARGO has going for it is that it's star is also one of the best young directors in Hollywood. Ben Affleck has proven that he has the chops to take on bigger and bigger projects and the globetrotting nature of this film looks to signal that Affleck is not content until he gets some hardware above his fireplace.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? In Istanbul, retired CIA operative Bryan Mills and his wife are taken hostage by the father of a kidnapper Mills killed while rescuing his daughter.
OUR TAKE: Reuniting Liam Neeson, Famke Janssen, and Maggie Grace from TAKEN, Olivier Megaton and Luc Besson have crafted a direct sequel that picks up the story where the first film left off. Essentially, if you loved TAKEN you will probably love TAKEN 2 as it seems to be the same story in a different setting. Based on the positive feedback from the trailers, TAKEN 2 will be number one when it opens in October.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? The political collision of Abraham Lincoln and the powerful men of his cabinet on the road to abolition and the end of the Civil War.
OUR TAKE: LINCOLN comes to theaters will the highest pedigree behind it. Steven Spielberg is a master director and Daniel Day-Lewis is one of the finest actors of all time. Combine that with a screenplay by Tony Kushner, music by John Williams, and a supporting cast to amazing to list, LINCOLN is already the film to beat at the Oscars and we have not seen a single clip from the movie. I have no doubt that this film will go down as one of Spielberg's best, but will it be good enough to be considered "the" best?
WHAT'S THE DEAL? In the futuristic action thriller Looper, time travel will be invented – but it will be illegal and only available on the black market. When the mob wants to get rid of someone, they will send their target 30 years into the past, where a “looper” – a hired gun, like Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) – is waiting to mop up. Joe is getting rich and life is good… until the day the mob decides to “close the loop,” sending back Joe’s future self (Bruce Willis) for assassination.
OUR TAKE: Rian Johnson's BRICK was one of the best all-time directorial debuts. It was unique, smart, and surprised everyone. Here, he reteams with Levitt to make an unconventional science fiction action drama. Adding Bruce Willis to the mix just gives me echoes of TWELVE MONKEYS and any semblance to that film would be a big plus. I look forward to the original time travel conceit that functions as the center of this movie. Here's hoping it lives up to the quality of it's predecessor.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Daniel Craig is back as James Bond 007 in Skyfall, the 23rd adventure in the longest-running film franchise of all time. In Skyfall, Bond’s loyalty to M (Judi Dench) is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.
OUR TAKE: Daniel Craig returns to a Bond movie that finally feels like a Bond movie. We finally get Q and a villain (Javier Bardem) that looks like he could hold his own with a Blofeld or Auric Goldfinger. Bardem plays stunning bad guys so this should make for a memorable showdown. Could this be the final bow for Judi Dench's M? Rumors abound, but we will all have to find out together this November.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? A 1950s-set drama centered on the relationship between a charismatic intellectual known as "the Master" whose faith-based organization begins to catch on in America, and a young drifter who becomes his right-hand man.
OUR TAKE: Whether it is about Scientology or not (it is), THE MASTER looks to be a companion piece to THERE WILL BE BLOOD, both in message and execution. Anderson has become the master himself of making films about men who live in their own shadow. Will music composed by Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood, everything about THE MASTER exudes greatness. With the buzz already through the roof, this movie will be yet another masterpiece from one of the best directors we have today.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? CLOUD ATLAS explores how the actions and consequences of individual lives impact one another throughout the past, the present and the future. Action, mystery and romance weave dramatically through the story as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero and a single act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution in the distant future. Each member of the ensemble appears in multiple roles as the stories move through time.
OUR TAKE: With a trailer that runs close to five minutes and runs the gamut of every conceivable genre, CLOUD ATLAS looks to be the triumphant return of the Wachowskis. Along with director Tom Tykwer, they have crafted what looks to be a film unlike anything we have seen from Hollywood. Spanning centuries and featuring an all-star cast playing multiple characters of every race, gender, and age, CLOUD ATLAS is going to blow everyone away. With such a complicated and intertwining story, it may turn off some viewers. But those of us adventurous to give it a shot are going to have something to talk about the next day.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? Set in the South two years before the Civil War, DJANGO UNCHAINED stars Jamie Foxx as Django, a slave whose brutal history with his former owners lands him face-to-face with German-born bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz). Schultz is on the trail of the murderous Brittle brothers, and only Django can lead him to his bounty. The unorthodox Schultz acquires Django with a promise to free him upon the capture of the Brittles – dead or alive. Success leads Schultz to free Django, though the two men choose not to go their separate ways. Instead, Schultz seeks out the South’s most wanted criminals with Django by his side. Honing vital hunting skills, Django remains focused on one goal: finding and rescuing Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), the wife he lost to the slave trade long ago. Django and Schultz’s search ultimately leads them to Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), the proprietor of “Candyland,” an infamous plantation. Exploring the compound under false pretenses, Django and Schultz arouse the suspicion of Stephen (Samuel L. Jackson), Candie’s trusted house slave. Their moves are marked, and a treacherous organization closes in on them. If Django and Schultz are to escape with Broomhilda, they must choose between independence and solidarity, between sacrifice and survival...
OUR TAKE: The ultimate Christmas present, DJANGO UNCHAINED is another genre attempt by Tarantino. His "southern" features the trailer-stealing DiCaprio, a badass Foxx, and the always awesome Waltz chewing the scenery with the best of them. Fully expect another eclectic soundtrack from QT along with some of the most quotable lines of the year. If you aren't excited for DJANGO UNCHAINED, you are on the wrong website.
WHAT'S THE DEAL? "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" follows title character Bilbo Baggins, who is swept into an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor, which was long ago conquered by the dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior Thorin Oakenshield. Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Giant Spiders, Shapeshifters and Sorcerers. Although their goal lies to the East and the wastelands of the Lonely Mountain, first they must escape the goblin tunnels, where Bilbo meets the creature that will change his life forever... Gollum. Here, alone with Gollum, on the shores of an underground lake, the unassuming Bilbo Baggins not only discovers depths of guile and courage that surprise even him, he also gains possession of Gollum's "precious" ring that holds unexpected and useful qualities... A simple, gold ring that is tied to the fate of all Middle-earth in ways Bilbo cannot begin to know.
OUR TAKE: Do we really need to go into any detail on this? Peter Jackson is returning to Middle Earth with quite a number of the original cast members in tow. Add in Martin Freeman as young Bilbo and the promise of even better effects than last time and you have more than enough reasons why this is our number one most anticipated movie of the season. Plus there is the whole 48fps debacle which will be enough to keep the most ardent cinephiles and fanboys talking until 2013.