Why J.J. Abrams Returning to Star Wars Is A Good Thing

2 10 2017

J.J._Abrams_by_Gage_Skidmore

Was Star Wars: The Force Awakens really such a copy of A New Hope? And is it possible to write about The Last Jedi without mentioning Porgs? Find out why I’m optimistic about Abram’s return here.

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100% Accurate Movie Predictions for 2015

4 01 2015

Well it’s that time of the year again, where I make shockingly-on-point predictions about upcoming cinematic offerings. These have all been carefully selected using Google and an impossibly low level of effort. Are we in for a treat this year, or a big, steaming pile of sequels?

 

Tak3n

Stop taking his blasted stuff!

January 9- Taken 3

Haha! That last question was a joke! Get ready for the third Taken movie- hot on the heels of the first mediocre sequel. So, what gets taken this time, besides Liam Neeson’s soul? Well it turns out the only thing taken this time (SPOILER ALERT) is Bryan Mill’s wife- permanently. Yep, remember those happy endings, where he saves his family and reunites with his wife Lenore (Famke Janssen)? Well, to quote the studios, “Forget that junk, let’s have Neeson get framed for her murder!” Meanwhile, the CIA, FBI and police all try to hunt down our hero.

Prediction: It’s Liam Neeson kicking butt, so you can bet this will at least enjoy mild success for a weekend or two. Word of mouth will ultimately kill it, because some people will miss the whole American-beating-up-foreigners aspect.

 

mila_kunis

I see we’re trying the Matrix outfits again.

Feb 6- Jupiter Ascending

Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) is found on Earth by Caine (Channing Tatum), a genetically engineered action hero, who tells her she’s important (because of confusing reasons or something) and will “alter the balance of the cosmos” (I swear that’s a quote from the official description). Also, Jupiter Jones is a terrible name.

Prediction: The promos say “From the Creators of the Matrix Trilogy,” which isn’t the best reference, but honestly have the Wachowski siblings come out with anything else that’s worth mentioning? If all people mercifully remember is the first Matrix movie, and nothing else about the other two, you may get some tickets from an audience that’s willing to forgive Mila Kunis for her awful witch in Oz the Great and Powerful.

 

Feb 13- Fifty Shades of Grey

I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this article, you are already an educated and discerning individual who doesn’t need my sarcasm to know a bad movie.

Prediction: Some will say this embarrassing pimple of a film didn’t go far enough, and others too far. Either way, let’s have a moment of silence for all the poor bro’s who will get forced into the theater by their emotionally-unstable significant others.

 

Kevin James

Wow! April looks awful!

April 17- Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2

Paul Blart (Kevin James) continues his cautionary tale for washed-up comedians in the sequel to the critically-acclaimed Mall Cop. I sure hope there’s some fat jokes in this one!

Prediction: Adam Sandler and Eddie Murphy will be jealous they weren’t involved. The positive side is you can instantly de-friend anyone on Facebook who mentions this film in a positive light.

 

Avengers_teaser

*Spider-Man not included.

May 1- The Avengers: Age of Ultron

Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and the rest of the Avengers reassemble to further build their retirement funds. Expect awkward conversations about why they didn’t assemble to help out on Thor 2, where the universe practically imploded, or why not even one of them called to check up on Captain America after his near-death experience. Also count on Captain Cameo (Stan Lee) making an appearance.

Prediction: Hah, you don’t need a blog to tell you that this movie will create a shower of gold bars over Marvel Studios, and will push them full steam into their next 75 comic book movies.

May 15- Pitch Perfect 2

Because the ladies need something to watch while their guy friends watch Avengers the third weekend in a row.

Prediction: See above.

 

Comic-Con

Because Disney World was closed.

June 12- Jurassic World

Imagine a world where citizens are willing to pay to see dinosaurs up-close again, even after one or two disastrous encounters where lives were lost. Imagine this awful business plan is again picked up by well-meaning but ultimately profit-driven people in suits who know that the jaded public will fall for anything. Are the story writers being intentionally ironic with us?

Prediction: Obviously this isn’t going to be better than the original, so the most I can hope for this is gentle critics and lowered expectations from fans. Because profits…find a way.

 

Jai Arnold Schwarzenegger

Terminator heads hate sunny fields.

July 1- Terminator: Genisys

It’s a new Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) and a new Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke)…with an aging Terminator robot (Aging Arnold Schwarzenegger) in an alternate timeline. Apparently Terminators actually age now. They probably will have a crazy shootout scene in the Terminator Retirement Home, with all the other time-traveling robot assassins who couldn’t take out one dude.  At least the misspelled title will drive my OCD friends crazy.

Prediction: Arnold hasn’t been the biggest draw lately, and this is a tired series that should have gone to bed a couple of decades ago. They’ll probably draw a profit, but we won’t be telling our grandchildren about where we were when we first saw Terminator: Genisys.

 

Hunger Games Jennifer Lawrence

(Cue whistling)

Nov 20 – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2

It’s the second part of a sequel to a sequel, based on the least popular book of The Hunger Games trilogy. Even with all that cynicism, you and I will probably be in the ticket line opening weekend.

Prediction: If I remember correctly, Part I didn’t do as well in theaters, partly because of the extra fluff inserted to make the book into two movies. However, it’s the last entry of the movie series, so it’ll draw in enough profit to finance a giant party in The Capitol.

Star Wars

Admit it. You just stopped breathing for a moment.

December 18 – Star Wars: Episode VII

Like a jilted lover who doesn’t know any better, the nerd in everyone will return to the Star Wars universe this winter. Our favorite characters are now 30 years older, but there will be no Jar Jar Binks or whiny pre-Vader. Could this be the movie that finally brings balance to the Lucas? Or is it a trap?

Prediction: It’s probably a trap. But a very effective trap that will take all our money.





How Can Person of Interest’s Season 4 Succeed?

17 09 2014

Banner POI Reese Shaw Root Finch Season Four

In one week, Person of Interest returns with its fourth season, but fans will know this time things are not the same. One of the biggest villains in the show’s rogues gallery, Decima, successfully convinced the government to adopt a new machine in last season’s finale. Since this Machine (called Samaritan) is a bit more hateful than Finch’s creation, the entire USA has become a sort of Orwellian nightmare of hyper-surveillance. Team Machine only survived because of some brand-new identities that Samaritan has been hard-coded to overlook (thanks to Root, because who else?). They’ve (sorta) officially disbanded the team and quit taking numbers, but of course that won’t last too long since CBS doesn’t want to end its show just yet. That said, Season 3 got a lot of things right, and a few things not-so-right (just look at some particularly vocal commentators on Facebook). So, like any fan with a blog, I decided to throw my wish list out there for Season 4, with the end goal being enough ratings for Season 5…

 

Keep balancing the serialized with the procedural

Jonathan Nolan has stated numerous times that The X-Files was one of the inspirations for the show’s structure. That is, there’s a crazy, evolving mythology with a main story (or stories) that connect the episodes, but also every hour there is a smaller case of the week. That’s awesome to me, because some shows burn through story so fast the latter seasons really go off the deep end or just starts repeating themes. Mixing the serialized and procedural storytelling helps even it out, and most shows haven’t been able to pull it off like POI has. Some fans have voiced concerns over too much extra big-picture story arcs and recurring characters, but honestly I think Season 3 balanced things nicely. Keep it there. And, keep putting some love into the weekly stories.

Finch and Reese time

One of the main reasons Person of Interest originally took off was how well Finch (Michael Emerson) and Reese (Jim Caviezel) work together as leads. Lately, they just haven’t had that much quality time together. Their characters naturally play off each other, so why not a mission where they aren’t split up, like in the old days?

Ease off  a bit on Root 

Yeah, I get that Root is a favorite of the writers, and some fans. Heck, does any guy not have a little crush on Amy Acker? However, since becoming Cyborg Root and in constant contact with The Machine, she’s become way too much of a crutch for the show to get out of rough situations. Basically, she’s way overpowered and stifles any sense of danger. Have her do her own thing- “Root Cause” was a great episode. But she doesn’t have to take center stage every other scene. I’d say out of all of the members of Team Machine, she overwhelms the scene/dialogue/fight the most. It’s not the Root show (see above).

Team Machine relational twists and turns? Please no.

Okay, let me start by saying I thought the kiss between Reese and Carter (Taraji Henson) was a little out of left field, but I didn’t let that spoil my day. That said, a lot of people hated that non-scripted addition (thanks Jim Caviezel) because they thought it was out of character, and it weirded out the team dynamic right at the end of her run. Everyone knows the audience generally loses interest after the will they/won’t they couple finally gets together (see The Office). I don’t want to see any more random pairings with other team members, please (including Root and Shaw). These are characters who are supposed to be borderline psychotic (Root), already in love (Finch), or just incapable of emotion (Shaw). We really don’t want to see another moment that changes what the show has already established. If anything, maybe a Harley Quinn/Poison Ivy flirty pal relationship could work between them, but gosh how long did the show take to continually show how incapable of emotion Shaw is?

Elias’ Return

This is self-explanatory. Elias was the first Big Bad, and he’s been rebuilding his empire in the background. He’d be great as a friend-enemy of Team Machine, depending if he still feels he owes them something. If an uneasy ally, he could help them stay undetected from Decima.

 

What do you think? Am I off base here, or would this be a dream come true for you? Either way, you can bet I’ll be watching the premiere next Tuesday…

 

Person-of-Interest-wallpaper-season-4

 

 





Why Outcast May Be This Year’s Best Worst Movie Ever

26 08 2014
(No Caption Needed)

(No Caption Needed)

 

Judging from the new trailer, Outcast is the answer to the question, “Will Nicolas Cage ever stop starring in horrible movies?” No. The answer is no. If you haven’t already, check out the amazing trailer below. If you have seen it already, watch it again, because you can never watch too many train wrecks. Don’t worry- I’ll wait.

 

 

Now that we’re all either laughing our faces off or heading to the antidepressants aisle, let’s talk about this giant dump Hollywood is about to unleash on us. First observation- Nicolas Cage is still broke and needs money. Second observation- Hayden Christensen has literally gone from starring in Star Wars to co-starring in…well, a Nicolas Cage movie. His haircut alone reeks of broken dreams. That’s quite a fall from grace, but honestly, doesn’t he deserve it after his whiny portrayal of pre-Vader?

However, unlike Hayden, none of us either asked for or deserved this lingering dog fart of a movie. Next year, when this movie releases, the good citizens of this nation will be going about their business, when BAM! Nicolas Cage appears with a horrifying case of stink eye and a terrible accent  (“ow’d you find me, boyh?”). But hey, at least it’s another story about how Western Caucasians can save those poor Easterners! Heck, Cage (playing a former European Crusader) is probably better at martial arts than those guys too, because at this point, why not?

So why will I still probably watch this once it reaches RedBox? Because bad Nicolas Cage movies can be hilarious. I watched Stolen and it was side-splittingly awful, and he wasn’t even squinting with one eye the whole time pretending to be British. Also, consider how Hayden’s inability to  act could mix with Cage’s crazy over-acting. There’s no way even Disney World could rival that kind of movie magic.

nicolas-cage-mem-gordan-ramsay





Person of Interest’s End Game- Will This Be The End of Fusco?

7 11 2013

Person-of-Interest-wallpaper

Holy cow, Person of Interest ! For those that missed it, last episode’s ending contained a preview for a three-episode story arc with the ominous promise, “A Hero Will Fall,” set to the brooding song “Heron Blue.” Watch it. It’s dark- especially for this series. But, as Double Rainbow Man would ask, “what does it MEAN?!”

I’ve broken down all the possibilities I can think of below. Although Fusco seems to be in the most trouble, we may lose a different character instead. Let’s speculate, shall we?

Option 1: Lionel Fusco

Why they may kill him off-

Oh, boy. Will they kill off Fusco? He’s been around since the series pilot and has undergone quite a transformation from dirty HR cop to a lovable, genuinely good guy. And that’s just it- he’s almost been used only for comic relief and short scenes (boo!). He hasn’t been in any sort of arc lately, and his character’s become static. But!

Why they may not kill him off-

He’s a fan favorite. Every comment section on any fan site always bemoans the fact that he hasn’t been around as much this season (and even last season’s finale). Also, he has a purpose in the show. At the New York Comic Con, Kevin Chapman said this about his character:

“I think that’s one of the things that makes the show so interesting is that if you line each of the cast members up shoulder to shoulder there, are no two cast members alike,” Chapman said. “Everyone brings their own dynamic to the thing. What I think Fusco does is he gives it a sense of gravity. It grounds the entire piece. Just for the simple fact that you have this CIA operative, this billionaire – you don’t know how much money he has — you have this cop who has this military background but you’re not quite sure what her military background is. These are all characters that could very easily take flight into a place of disbelief. You see these characters and you see them unfold and then you see this schlep of a cop and you go, I see that. This looks real so the rest of it looks real and it brings the piece down and gives it a keep it to a place of levelness.”

Would they take this ambassador to the audience away? Also, he almost seems too obvious- since when has Person of Interest spoiled everything, or had not twists in the story? Why would they show him in the teaser so explicitly?

Option 2: Joss Carter

Why they may kill her-

Lately Taraji P. Henson‘s character has been driven by one thing only: taking down HR. With her knowing who the boss is now, it doesn’t seem like they can last much longer. So, would the writers decide that the most dramatic way to end the HR dirty cop saga would be to have Carter go out with them? After all, with Sarah Shahi and Amy Acker joining the show, there’s still plenty of female leads.

Why they may not kill her-

Because that would be insane! She’s part of the original four, has had incredible scenes lately, and don’t forget she’s had the longest evolution as a character- she hunted Reese for half a season. She’s got great chemistry with Reese as well, and honestly, I don’t know how they could fill the space that she would leave.

Option 3: Root

Why they may kill her-

Okay, I love Amy Acker, but a lot of people don’t. For some reason they just don’t enjoy an attractive sociopath running around the show (is that weird?). She’s also a new series regular, so the original four would remain intact. What if her delusion causes her to throw herself away?

Why they may not kill her-

She has had nothing to do with HR’s plot line at all, and the story arc is obviously about them. Not to mention, she doesn’t really match the “hero” description.

Option 4: Shaw

Why they may kill her-

Whoa, here we go! There’s a lot of hate out there for Shaw. A large amount of the more vocal POI fans dislike how she takes the spotlight away from Reese. By definition of her “disorder,” she doesn’t really have that much of a personality, at least not as much as the others, who experience normal emotions (except Root). She also is someone that the audience hasn’t invested too much emotion in either- she’s only been around about 10 episodes. Also, I could very much see her sacrificing herself to save Fusco from his peril.

Why they may not kill her-

They’ve gone to a lot of trouble to set her up as a character, and I’m not sure they’re finished yet, or how her death could advance anything (except maybe sending Reese on a warpath).  There’s also claims of fans seeing her present on recent filming sessions.

Option 5: Nobody Dies!

That’s right, what if it’s all hype and nobody is whacked? “A Hero Falls” could technically mean other things, such as going too far to the dark side, like Jack Bauer in the final season of 24. What if Reese or Carter goes too far trying to rescue Fusco or taking down HR? What if “A Hero Falls” just means Fusco tripping over Bear? If everyone makes it through alive, would you be ecstatic, or think it was a cop out? Personally, I wouldn’t be hurt if this proves to be a publicity stunt- just keep Fusco man around, please.





If Michael Bay Was Directing Dark Knight Rises

18 05 2012

So, there’s a few people in the world looking forward to Nolan’s final bat-epic, Dark Knight Rises. As I have already pointed out, Christopher Nolan prefers dark and realistic-ish takes on Batman. However, what if Warner Bros. decided to lighten the mood a little (Avenger-rize)  with a new director? How about Michael Bay? What’s the worst that can happen with him in charge? Shia LaBeouf. Or maybe Megan Fox. Maybe even Nicolas Cage! Probably all working together to create a masterpiece! Let’s take a look.

 

Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox posing at the Trans...

Not a good sign.
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

     Michael Bay Presents Dark Knight Transforms

(The film opens with 45 minutes of no BATMAN or BANE, just SHIA LABEOUF going to COLLEGE.)

MICHAEL CAINE: What the heck did that have to do with the plot?

(CAR EXPLODES behind them)

SHIA LABEOUF: Oh, no, no, no, no, NO!

(The BATMOBILE races in)

MICHAEL CAINE: Master Wayne!

BAT-CHRISTIAN BALE: Alfvred, wefghahlph ardk trulfed pseveaiemivfhysl.

MICHAEL CAINE: Oh, come, Mr. Bay! His voice has never been close to that bad! Those aren’t even real words!

MICHAEL BAY: I know! It’s the perfect filler! And it’s still more meaningful than my usual dialogues!

SHIA LABEOUF: Hey, guys, I’m gonna find some monkeys to swing with. (Walks away to DESTROY INDIANA JONES)

Indiana Jones Disaster

Well there goes everyone’s childhood down the poop chute.

EXT. ROOFTOP OF GOTHAM BANK

(BANE is carrying a BOMB, but is stopped by CATWOMAN)

BANE: You are not Anne Hathaway.

MEGAN FOX: (Pouting expression)

BANE: There’s not a acting bone in your body, or anything real at all, for that matter.

(Camera continually OGLES MEGAN FOX during the conversation)

BANE: REALLY? First Shia Lebeouf, now you? Screw it.

(BANE detonates  bomb, MERCIFULLY TAKING HIMSELF OUT OF THIS TRASH)

(MEGAN FOX runs in SLOW MOTION from the massive EXPLOSION, which has started a chain reaction of MORE FIREBALLS)

MORGAN FREEMAN: WHOOOHOO! Now that’s some REAL messed-up, heavy– sigh,  really Mr. Bay? This is NOT how my character has acted in the other movies.

MICHAEL BAY: I know, but you were the main black character, and I have to have some good old-fashioned racist stereotyping in here somewhere, right? Now let’s see you put those gold teeth back in.

INT. OF THE BATCAVE

BAT-BALE: I think I’m going to need help cleaning up this city, SHIA LEBUTT. Will you take your place as ROBIN?

SHIA LABEOUF: Well, gee, I would love to-

MICHAEL BAY: -And that’s great! Enough character development! Let’s hit the good stuff! AUTOBOTS, ATTACK!

(The ending of the MOVIE is replaced by 45 minutes of CGI BATTLE)

Image of the Batwing filming in Pittsburgh in ...

Right before turning into a DECEPTICON. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SHIA LEBEOUF: NO NO NO NO NO NO!





100% Accurate Predictions for 2012 Movies- Part 1

23 01 2012

Look out! I’m releasing my fashionably late predictions for this (month-old) new year! First up, lights! Camera! 3D price inflation! Get ready for your must-see movies this year!

Haywire- January 20

OK, so this may already be out, so at least this prediction will be right. “Haywire” pits Gina Carano, former MMA fighter, against Obi-Wan Kenobi, in a very Bourne-ish way. Without the writing, dialogue, and story of Bourne, that is. This falls into the “Could’ve Been Good But They Showed The Whole Thing In The Trailer” category.

None of these characters are really used.

Star Wars: Episode I- The Phantom Menace….IN 3D!!!- February 10

George Lucas has pooped out a new golden egg! It’s the same movie that disappointed you back in the 1999, but this time, the wasted opportunities jump out even more in glorious 3-D! Rumor has it that Lucas makes a cameo as young Han Solo.

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace

The ticket even costs twice as much as it did then!

The Hunger Games- March 23

Fans will annoy non-readers about how much better the books were. Reviews will contain at least 3 bad puns, such as, “left me HUNGRY for more,” or, “a decidedly four-star MEAL.”

Cover of "The Hunger Games"

The Dark Knight Rises- July 20

The Dark Knight Rises is released and crowned “the definitive comic book movie,” leading to the cancellation of all other planned comic book movies for the next 10 years. Critics cite the only drawback in the movie to be the animatronic Heath Ledger, who “makes Batman’s enunciation sound natural and clear by comparison.”

The Bourne Legacy- August 3

Alternate title: The Bourne Sellout.

Too hard to find the movie poster.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part II- November 16

The final “Twilight” entry stuns the world, receiving the ever-elusive 100% rating on rottentomatoes.com. Roger Ebert eats crow, calling the installment, “quite frankly, beautiful.” Time calls it “THE visual and creative triumph of this century.” Congress responds by declaring acid trips during movie reviews illegal.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn

OHMYGOSHTHEY’RESOHOT.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey- December 14

Disappointment ensues when the much-anticipated prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy turns out to be a mash-up of deleted scenes, Youtube parodies, and fan videos, all cobbled together into one semi-coherent plot. Peter Jackson still doubles his wealth.

The poster should have tipped everyone off.