brett ratner directing

Director/producer Brett Ratner believes that the film review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes is the worst thing we have in today’s movie culture. Is Rotten Tomatoes to blame for the destruction of Hollywood’s movie business as Ratner suggests? Of course not.
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netflix logo

(Welcome to The Soapbox, the space where we get loud, feisty, and opinionated about something that makes us very happy…or fills us with indescribable rage. In this edition: why Netflix may be kind-of, sort-of right about film fans needing to stop romanticizing movie theaters.)

Watching a movie at home on TV simply isn’t the same as going to the movie theater and watching a film on the big screen with an audience. Streaming giant Netflix believes we need to get rid of this romantic notion around the moviegoing experience…and I think I agree. Kind of.

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netflix mobile crop netflix mobile specific cuts

Netflix plans to explore creating mobile-specific cuts of its original movies and TV shows, which could transform your experience based on the device you’re viewing it on. Is this the evolution of how we consume non-interactive narrative stories…or is this the pan and scan atrocity repackaged for a new generation? Let’s take a closer look at those Netflix mobile specific cuts.

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the matrix

Yesterday, a shocking piece of news was unleashed upon the world: Donald Trump’s 2005 income tax papers finally proved that rich people pay much less percentage-wise than you and me and that tax changes he’s trying to get approved will allow people like him to pay even less! And then, Hollywood responded with some shocking news of its own. The Hollywood Reporter broke a huge entertainment news story: Warner Bros is developing a reboot of The Matrix without the involvement of original franchise creators Lilly and Lana Wachowski and possibly starring Michael B. Jordan.

My immediate response is that this is a horrible idea. After dwelling on it, I compiled a list of reasons to leave this franchise alone…and then decided to play devil’s advocate and also look at the reasons why The Matrix should be rebooted.

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Why Diversity in Film Matters More Than Ever

Star Wars Rogue One Character Names

In the wake of this shocking election and in the face of massive uncertainty, the question of diversity in movies may seem trivial. What does it matter what race a new comic book hero or action star is when the next president is taking advice from a proud white nationalist? Who cares whether female characters are well written when the incoming Republican government is drooling over the opportunity to gut Roe v. Wade?

The answer is it still matters. It may matter now more than ever.  Read More »

imdb rating system

Could the Internet Movie Database be considering a switch to a 5-star rating system, down from the 10-point user rating system they have employed for the last 25 years? IMDb users have recently been asked to take a survey which suggests the movie database is considering changes to the way they present opinionated information on the site. The study even indicates that they are considering expanding the opinions of film critics on the site. Could the IMDb rating system be in for a dramatic change?

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rogue one bits

Last night it was revealed that Academy Award-winning composer Michael Giacchino would be replacing Alexandre Desplat to score Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. When I heard the news after arriving at a press screening of The Magnificent Seven, I was met with two conflicting emotions: excitement and dread. Here’s why.

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Jason Bourne

I’m a die-hard Bourne film fan. I’ve watched Matt Damon’s Bourne films more than 15 times collectively. I’ve listened to John Powell‘s scores for each more than 100 times. I was disappointed when the Damon / Paul Greengrass combo didn’t return for Legacy, but I always held out hope that if they did ever come back, it would be because they had a compelling adventure in store for us.

This weekend, nine years after the release of The Bourne Ultimatum, Jason Bourne hits theaters and it is, by far, the weakest of Damon’s Bourne films. Not only does it bring nothing new to the table for the franchise, but the film just feels like a shambling corpse of its former self. Continue after the jump to read my Jason Bourne review.
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Jordan Vogt-Roberts skull island - Storytelling In The Social Media Age

Last night, filmmaker Jordan Vogt-Roberts went off on a Twitter rant about his worries that content and quality might be the losers in our modern society when it’s the easiest it’s ever been to create and share filmed stories and content. I thought this rant was worth sharing, not just because it comes from a filmmaker whom I admire (this Sundance breakout The Kings of Summer was great) or because he’s currently finishing a big blockbuster franchise film (Kong: Skull Island), but because his point is interesting to consider.

Browsing YouTube or the bevy of short films we get sent on a weekly basis, I often wonder the same things. So after the jump I present to you Jordan’s complete rant in a more readable configuration.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

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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