After a long promotional runup that included a never-ending string of parody trailers, photo shoots and gleeful audio experiments, The Muppets is finally in theaters. Jason Segel‘s loving ode to Jim Henson‘s puppet troupe combines some winking modern showmanship with a whole lot of love for the Muppets and what they have always represented in pop culture. Because the Muppets mean a lot to many of our readers, it is possible that the film has a difficult standard to live up to.
So the question is: did director James Bobin, co-writers Segel and Nicholas Stoller, songwriter Bret McKenzie, co-stars Amy Adams, Jack Black, Chris Cooper and all the Muppet puppeteers manage to craft a modern Muppet vision that jibes with the classic image of the characters? Tell us what you thought in the comments after the jump. As always, spoilers are fully cleared to go in this discussion. Read More »
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Posted on Friday, September 9th, 2011 by David Chen
There really is nothing like a sprawling film covering a complex topic directed by Steven Soderbergh. Soderbergh’s Contagion hits theaters today boasting a cavalcade of big film stars, all trying to make sense of a world being torn apart by an infectious virus.
So with the insane amounts of talent behind it, does the film live up to its promise? Does it measure up to that other Soderbergh epic, Traffic? And most importantly, does Gwyneth Paltrow make it out of the film okay? Hit the jump for some of my thoughts and feel free to share your own in the comments. Assume SPOILERS lie after the jump and in the comments.
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The success of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is already a foregone conclusion; the film grossed over $40 million from midnight showings alone last night, an amount most films are lucky to take in over an entire opening weekend. But does David Yates’ final entry in the franchise make for a satisfying conclusion to one of the most critically and financially successful film series of all time?
/Film’s Germain Lussier seems to think so, and so do the vast majority of the film critics. But what did you think? Were the battle sequences suitably epic? Did the decision to split the last book into two films make sense? Share your thoughts in the comments and assume SPOILERS lie after the jump.
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It’s been a couple of years since Michael Bay unleashed his last filmic atrocity upon us in the form of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. An overlong, numbing, and mildly racist abomination, Revenge of the Fallen nonetheless went on to make one quadrillion dollars at the worldwide box office during its theatrical release.
I was pretty certain that we’d never ever get a good film out of Bay again, and certainly not very hopeful for Transformers: Dark of the Moon, which hits theaters this week. After all, when audiences not only accept your complete creative failure, but financially reward it generously, it probably doesn’t inspire much desire to change your style. Amazingly, Bay actually ended up acknowledging some of that film’s shortcomings, and early buzz from the film was fairly positive.
So, is Transformers: Dark of the Moon Michael Bay’s redemption? Or is it the nail in his creative coffin? Leave your thoughts on the film and assume SPOILERS lie after the break in the comments.
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I’m a huge fan of Martin Campbell. This is the guy who successfully rebooted the Bond franchise (twice), and brought a kickass version of Zorro to the big screen. A superhero film based on Green Lantern seemed like a bit of a stretch, but with Campbell’s action sensibilities and his ability to portray characters broadly yet compellingly, I was more than willing to give it a chance.
Green Lantern finally hits theaters today. Is it an action adventure on par with Casino Royale? Can Ryan Reynolds hold together an entire superhero film? Hit the jump and share your thoughts. Assume SPOILERS lie after the jump.
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The X-Men series hasn’t seen a genuinely great film in over eight years. It was way back in 2003 when Bryan Singer’s X2: X-Men United was released, a skillful blend of superhero action, social commentary, and strong performances. While the last two films, X-Men: The Last Stand and X-Men Origins: Wolverine performed extremely well at the box office, both were almost universally reviled by critics and fans.
Matthew Vaughn’s X-Men: First Class, which hits theaters today, has a hugely challenging task before it. Not only does this prequel seek to revitalize a moribund franchise, it must also tell an interesting story while not betraying the most beloved elements of the original series of films. On top of all that, it seeks to be an origin story. Can the film thrill the audience with a story they already know the ending to?
Let us know what you think in the comments below. Assume that SPOILERS lie after the jump.
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Todd Phillips’ The Hangover really came out of nowhere, featuring no big-name stars and a plot that seemed recycled from Dude Where’s My Car? Nonetheless, something about this hapless band of roofie’d child men resonated with audiences, allowing “The Wolf Pack” to scare up over $450 million in worldwide grosses.
The Hangover: Part II, which hits theaters today, is Warner Bros. attempt to re-capture the magic of the first film. They have a lot riding on this film, spending much more on the budget and on stars’ salaries, and bringing the action from Vegas all the way to Bangkok.
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Try to recall, if you will, the atmosphere when Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl burst onto the scene in 2003. Films based on Disney land rides weren’t being released in theaters every other week yet, Gore Verbinski’s biggest claim to fame was The Ring, and the world had yet to be introduced to Captain Jack Sparrow, a delightful side-character in the film from the twisted mind of Johnny Depp.
Today the story is a bit different. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides hits theaters this weekend and it comes after two mind-numbing sequels have driven the series to creative oblivion. This time, Depp’s Jack Sparrow has been thrust into the spotlight as the main character, while Penelope Cruz and Ian McShane also tag along in some kind of quest for the fountain of youth. The film will most likely be a hit financially; audiences will buy tickets in droves whether it’s any good or not. But do you think the new film reinvigorates the franchise? Or does it send it deeper towards Davy Jones’ Locker? Leave your thoughts in the comments below and assume SPOILERS lie after the jump. Read More »
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