Paul Feig's Ghostbusters: Answer The Call

Paul Feig‘s Ghostbusters is a moderately entertaining comedy with all of the usual blockbuster trappings, but as a Ghostbusters movie I found it to be disappointing. What follows is my mostly spoiler-free explanation of why I was disappointed with Paul Feig’s Ghostbusters.

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I carried two secrets with me as a I grew up.

Secret number one: I was a Star Trek fan, a kid raised by an old-school fan of the original series who made sure to plant me in front of Star Trek: The Next Generation, which arrived at the perfect time to sink its hooks into me. Half of my life was spent devouring the adventures of Captain Jean-Luc Picard (and eventually Captain James T. Kirk and Captain Benjamin Sisko) while the other half was spent pretending to know nothing about Star Trek in public because that was a social death sentence. To admit that you liked Star Trek in the days before “geek culture” went mainstream was an easy way to be branded and ridiculed and thrown under the bus by desperate kids looking for any way to gain leverage in a hierarchy where appearances were everything.

Secret number two: I was attracted to both men and women, another social (and possibly literal) death sentence and a great way to have a target painted on your back in a world where gay marriage was still a pipe dream and “faggot” was the insult of choice.

For too long, my two secret shames weighed on me, dragging me down, triggering anxiety and depression. Years ago, I was finally able to get over myself and talk about my Star Trek fandom in public. In retrospect, it was easy and my reluctance silly. But my bisexuality remained a truth known only to handful of people, an aspect of myself that I was never ready to talk about. That changed last week, and all it took was a little help from my good ol’ friend Star Trek. Read More »

SUICIDE SQUAD - Joker and Harley Quinn

Even your average non-geek will have a pretty good idea of who the Justice League or the X-Men or the Avengers are. But in comparison, the characters of Suicide Squad are a relatively unknown bunch. Aside from Harley Quinn, none of them are really what you’d call household names. And even if you do know these guys from the comics, the versions in the movie are all-new. No one’s met these iterations yet.

So during our set visit, we got the skinny on all the new bad guys and not-so-bad guys, from Amanda Waller to Deadshot to (of course) the Joker. Get all the new Suicide Squad character details below, including info on their backstories, costumes, and storylines.

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SUICIDE SQUAD

Warner Bros. expanded its DC cinematic universe in a big way this spring with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, but fan reactions were mixed. Many complained the franchise was too dour, too grim, too serious. But Suicide Squad could just be the film to change all that.

When I visited the Toronto set of Suicide Squad last July, it was just days after the very first trailer had killed at Comic-Con — absolutely slaughtered, really. Suddenly, people who’d never even heard of the Suicide Squad a month ago (which is to say, pretty much everyone who doesn’t self-identify as a DC nerd) was dying to know more about this playful, colorful group of baddies. Who were these weirdos? What were they going to do in the DC universe? On day 68 of the film’s 98-day shoot, I joined a group of other journalists on set to find out.  Read More »

Ghostbusters Reviews

The first Ghostbusters reviews have hit the web today after the film held its world premiere in Los Angeles last night. After months of passionate debating from fans who were enraged that this reboot was even happening to those who have been hoping that it would just be good, we can finally talk about the movie as a whole.

So is Ghostbusters the Antichrist in the form of cinema or the second coming of Jesus? It turns out, Paul Feig‘s reboot starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones is just a movie that some critics liked and others really didn’t. You know, just like every other movie. More specifically, it sounds like the movie is much funnier than the trailers indicated, and while it really works when Paul Feig does his thing, it falters when it has to adhere to the tropes of the modern blockbuster reboot.

Get the early buzz on Ghostbusters after the jump. Read More »

Ghostbusters

Ghostbusters was always going to have a tough hill to climb. Even before Paul Feig signed on, fans were skeptical about the very notion of another Ghostbusters movie. After he did, there were fans upset at the idea of female Ghostbusters and fans unhappy about getting a reboot instead of a sequel and fans still annoyed that a new Ghostbusters movie was happening at all. This project has been under intense scrutiny since before a single frame was shot, and the fuss and furor over it has only intensified as the release date approaches.

But the movie itself isn’t terribly concerned with all that. Feig’s Ghostbusters is more interested in carving out a new space than it is in retracing the steps of the original. While it may not reach “instant classic” status, it’s still an entertaining addition to the franchise, bursting with humor and personality that’s all its own.  Read More »

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The Neon Demon ending questions

Nicolas Winding Refn‘s The Neon Demon is a beautifully shot yet polarizing film. It’s either shallow, pretentious, sensationalistic and self-indulgent or a bold haunting hypnotic work of suspense. I’m still not sure if I liked it or not, but It has certainly remained with me since my viewing of the film over the weekend. My reaction is typical — the movie has gotten a very mixed reaction from critics and film geeks.

My viewing has prompted a deep dive into interviews and analysis of the film, and I thought I’d share some of the insights into The Neon Demon ending, the symbology and metaphors both obvious and more hidden. I’ll also attempt to answer some of your The Neon Demon questions.

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summer 2016 sequels

One of the big stories of this summer is what Hollywood is calling “the sequel slump.” The average sequel makes more than eight times the average original release, which explains why we have more of them than ever before. But the sequels of summer 2016 are failing to find audiences. Why aren’t movie theatergoers flocking to sequels as they have in the past? Let’s examine the possible reasons.
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Zack Snyder Directors Cut

Last week I watched Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition. I’m sure you’ve read about this — it’s Zack Snyder’s three-hour director’s cut of the film. The Ultimate Edition has had quite a few positive reviews as opposed to the half-hour shorter theatrical cut which was eviscerated by critics and moviegoers. The Ultimate Edition is a better film than the theatrical cut, I’m sure of that. So why did they release an inferior version of the movie in theaters? Why can’t the Zack Snyder release his director’s cuts theatrically?

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