Phil Lord and Chris Miller continue their expectation-defying run with this week’s release of 22 Jump Street. When the pair directed the big-screen reboot/update/comedic riff on the early Fox TV show 21 Jump Street, the very concept seemed like a joke. But stars Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill turned out to be a perfect pair. Lord and Miller knew it was all little more than a joke, and turned out a film that was consistently funny and kept characters in mind as it also played with familiar comedy setups.
22 Jump Street applies Lord and Miller’s character-based approach to comedy but layers in a healthy cynicism about the sequel-making process. “Meta-sequel” is a term that has been applied to this movie as reviews roll in, and for obvious reason. The first act is almost entirely about the fact that, yeah, they’re doing it all again. Yet no matter how frequently the film is self-aware, it keeps its sights on comedy and character. This is still a frothy sequel, but in acknowledging and embracing the film’s nature, Lord and Miller skate through the setup and deliver another entertaining two hours.
Below, tell us what you thought of 22 Jump Street — spoilers, as always in these posts, are fully encouraged in the discussion thread. Read More »
The X-Men franchise is back in this weekend’s X-Men: Days of Future Past. Director Bryan Singer‘s return to the franchise combines the original cast from Singer’s first two films and Brett Ratner’s third, and new cast of Matthew Vaughn’s First Class. The result is a tight, exciting, time-travelling sequel. The time travel story allows Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen to share the screen with Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and so many more.
Make no mistake, though. While the original X-Men actors are all in the film, Days of Future Past is first and foremost a sequel to First Class. The character issues and relationships developed in that film continue here. That helps give the film many options to explore character dynamics, action, and history-making (and -breaking) narrative events.
What exactly are those narrative events and what do they mean going into X-Men: Apocalypse? Now that X-Men: Days of Future Past is in theaters, you can discuss all of the answers below. Tell us if you liked the film as much as we all did, or if you were disappointed. Does Singer’s work with the new cast compare to Vaughn’s? What story points did you love, and which did you hate? Did you like the Sentinels? Any and everything you can think about X-Men: Days of Future Past can be said below. Give us your X-Men Days of Future Past reactions! Read More »
The new version of Godzilla, from Monsters director Gareth Edwards, is now in theaters. The film isn’t cut from the well-established blockbuster template. Edwards keeps things quiet, and really holds back when it comes to showing monster action. He gets to the big effects pieces, of course, but tries to ground all the setpieces in a relatable human point of view. We’ve talked about the film, and reviewed it. Now we’d like to know what you think .Talk about Godzilla in the comments section after the break. Full spoilers are encouraged to facilitate conversation, so don’t hold back. Read More »
Marc Webb‘s second Spider-Man film has been out in much of the world for a couple weeks, but it just hits the US this week. So let’s talk about The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
The film brings back some of the primary cast from the first movie — well, the most recent movie. Andrew Garfield is Peter Parker and Spider-Man; Emma Stone is Gwen Stacy; Sally Field is Aunt May; and Campbell Scott is Peter’s father Richard Parker. Spider-Man’s origin is reworked a bit more, by tying the story of the radioactive spider that bit Peter even more tightly to the machinations of Oscorp. In fact, this sequel ties everything to Oscorp: the put-upon wage slave Max Dillon (Jamie Foxx), who becomes Electro; the crazy Russian gangster (Paul Giamatti) who becomes Rhino; the new Green Goblin (Dane DeHann), of course; and likely future members of the bad-guy collective The Sinister Six.
So what did you think of The Amazing Spider-Man 2? Tell us in the comments below, where spoilers are fully encouraged. Read More »
Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe gets one step closer to completion this weekend as Captain America: The Winter Soldier finally hits theaters. Anthony and Joe Russo take the next logical step in the story Joe Johnson started in The First Avenger and Joss Whedon continued in The Avengers. Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is coming to terms with his unique reality after waking from decades frozen in ice, and doing his job as a general bad-ass for S.H.I.E.L.D. He begins to discover a plot, however, that will put in danger everything he stands for, and put him face to face with an old friend who now goes by the name The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan).
Featuring great performances from Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Anthony Mackie as Falcon, Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce and many more, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is going to change everything you thought about Marvel leading into next summer’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.
We’ve already weighed in with our opinion, now we want you to do the same. Below, tell us Captain America The Winter Soldier reactions and feel free to discuss all the major spoilers it contains. Which is a lot. Then, check back Monday for exclusive quotes from the directors and producer Kevin Feige discussing all those big spoilers. Read More »
It’s a holiday weekend, which means hopefully you’ll head out the movies. And while the smart choice would be to go see The Lego Movie again, there’s probably a good chance you’re curious about Jose Padilha‘s remake of RoboCop. We don’t blame you. A reimagining of Paul Verhoven’s classic 1987 film, this new RoboCop has been a topic of much interest since we first heard about it. Even before there was a director, star, or spy images of the suit we wondered if a new RoboCop would be worthy of the name or just another example on the long list of Hollywood missteps.
Personally, I think it’s a little of both. You can read my review here. Below, tell us what you thought of Jose Padilha’s RoboCop. Read More »
Peter Jackson‘s fifth J.R.R. Tolkien adaptation and second Hobbit film, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, is now in theaters. It picks up right where 2012’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey left off, with Bilbo (Martin Freeman), Thorin (Richard Armitage), Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and a company of Dwarves en route to the Lonely Mountain to defeat the dragon Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch) and rightfully reclaim Dwarven fortune and lands.
The Desolation of Smaug not only continues that storyline, but introduces a ton of new characters and also considerably ups the level of action, giving Jackson plenty of room to play with special effects. Characters like Bard (Luke Evans), Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly), Thranduil (Lee Pace) and Legolas (Orlando Bloom, reprising the role) add even more scope, but also more story for the film to work through.
There’s lots to talk about in regards to The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, and here’s where you can do it. I’ve weighed in with my review but we want to hear yours. Did you think the film improved on An Unexpected Journey? Which format did you see it in? Was the effect of high frame rate any different this time out? How about the IMAX? What did you think of the additions and computer graphics? All spoilers are allowed below. Read More »
The second film in the Hunger Games series is out this week, and with it comes a new director, and a layer of extra complexity that fans of the novel series have been eager to see on screen. Now that we know the general outline of life in Panem, and how the Hunger Games are used as a tool for population control, it’s time to get into what really happens when the “winners” of the games learn how the Capitol really works.
With those elements, the addition of new characters, and a great load of footage shot in IMAX, there’s a lot to talk about with The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. We’ve had Germain’s review and interview with Jennifer Lawrence, but now it’s your turn. What did you think of the film? Let us know in the comments below, where spoilers are encouraged.
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The Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 2 continues this weekend with the release of Alan Taylor‘s Thor: The Dark World. Coming from Game of Thrones, Taylor was hired to bring a new level of reality and action to the Thor universe, and many think he succeeded. Others do not.
Fresh off the events of The Avengers, Loki (Tom Hiddleston) is imprisoned in Asgard and a new threat rises: Malekith (Christopher Eccelston), head of the Dark Elves, who hopes to destroy not only Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Asgard, but Earth, Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) and the entire universe.
After you see Thor: The Dark World, there is so, so much to discuss: Its effect on the rest of the MCU, the two credits teases, some major plot points and other surprises. Here’s where you can do that. Below, tell us and your fellow /Film readers what you thought of Thor: The Dark World. Read More »
For years we’ve heard that Alfonso Cuarón, director of Children of Men, wanted to make a space-set film like no other. Gravity has been the subject of rumor almost from the start, about how it would feature a very long unbroken “shot” as its opening sequence, about how a mixture of practical photography and CG would be combined to create an immersive and realistic vision of being stranded in space.
Unlike most rumors, most of the ones about Gravity were true. The film follows two astronauts, played by George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, and tracks Bullock’s character as a fairly routine spacewalk turns to disaster. It was shot with unusual methods and features an atypical soundtrack to create the sensation of being in space. And the general reaction to the 3D in the film has been very enthusiastic, especially when seen in IMAX. Our contributor Laremy Legel loved the film in Toronto, and now you have the chance to see it for yourself. So let us know; what did you think about Gravity? Read More »