There’s no month quite like January on the movie release calendar. It’s the worst. January is a month to catch up on the awards contenders released in the weeks prior and for studios to drop all their wide releases they have no idea what to do with. The reasoning is simple. There are no major vacations for one. And two, if a movie is really good, the studio would’ve either released it earlier over the holidays, or will hold it until the summer.
Basically, if a movie comes out in January, most of the time you know it’s going to stink. Over the past few years, however, the early calendar-dump months have been getting slightly more competitive. In the near future, we’re going to start getting legitimate blockbusters in March. But that’s a new practice. For the past several decades, January has been a horrible month to release movies.
With that knowledge, we decided to go back through history. Were there any really good movies released in January? The answer is “Yes,” but it’s not as many as you’d think. In fact, in the past 35 years, I found only about 30 films most people would consider “good.” We’ll mention them all below, then dive a bit deeper on the better ones. Below, read about the 15 best January movie releases of the past 35 years. Read More »
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As we get older, Halloween becomes less about candy and more about being scared. When I was a kid, there was nothing better than walking around my neighborhood and getting as many sweets as possible but, in recent years, that tradition has been replaced with finding haunted attractions to attend with friends. These type of attractions, everything from haunted mansions, mazes and hayrides to converted amusement parks, pop up all across the country. And, in Hollywood, their attraction comes officially licensed by some of the biggest names in horror.
Every Halloween, Universal Studios Hollywood transforms into Halloween Horror Nights and this year not only will Eli Roth himself help design a maze based on his Hostel series, there will be a maze themed around the upcoming prequel to The Thing. They’ll both be open from September 23-October 31. Read some additional details after the jump. Read More »
Over the last few months, it’s been revealed that the first entry in the new Scream trilogy, aka Scream 4, is set in Sidney Prescott’s hometown roughly a decade after Scream 3. And contrary to old rumors, the first film will not be in 3D. Courtney Cox and David Arquette were signed to reprise their roles from the get-go, and following a prolonged declination, Neve Campbell signed much to the relief of writer/creator, Kevin Williamson. (He had expressed dismay on Twitter at rewriting the trilogy without her). The final puzzle piece, Wes Craven, remains in talks to direct, which is arguably the most important to its success besides the script(s).
But that still leaves doubt as to whether Williamson—who’s had renewed Dawson’s Creek-like success with the CW’s Vampire Diaries—still possesses an irreverent sensibility to update the franchise for a contemporary world of tailspin pop culture and younger, less established horror tropes. Williamson has now revealed several of his influences for the first film, and expressed the complexity of achieving the right tone…
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The old saying goes that the greatest gift a man of considerable resources can give a friend is immortality. After basking in the intoxicating, cocksure beauty that is Inglourious Basterds, it’s clear that Quentin Tarantino has done this for his pal, the horror director Eli Roth, by casting him as Jewish-American soldier Sgt. Donny Donowitz. Proudly nicknamed The Bear Jew by his fellow Basterds, Donowitz’s preferred method of Nazi disposal involves an American baseball bat accented with the names of Jewish survivors and supporters. Minding spoilers, Donowitz is largely responsible for the most unanimous, violent act of revenge fantasy for an entire Jewish people. It’s a helluva role to have on any filmography, one sure to become storied with time; and now it’s forever on Roth’s, right above “alleged torture-porn purveyor and creator of the Hostel franchise.”
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The /Filmcast: After Dark is a recording of what happens right after The /Filmcast is over, when the kids have gone to bed and the guys feel free to speak whatever is on their minds. In other words, it’s the leftover and disorganized ramblings, mindfarts, and brain diarrhea from The /Filmcast, all in one convenient audio file. In this episode, David, Peter, Devindra, Adam, Christina, and Sean, make grossly unfounded predictions about Wall-E’s opening weekend box office gross, agree on the meaninglessness of “Top” lists, and try and figure out what makes a good spoof film. Neil Miller joins us from Filmschoolrejects.
Have any questions/comments/suggestions? Want to advertise your movie/product/service with the /Filmcast? E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Join us for our next broadcast, live on Monday night at 10 PM EST / 7 PM PST, for an epic episode as we review Wanted and Wall-E with some special guests.
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The franchise that floated “torture porn” into news offices this decade like a message in a bottle now looks to join the endless straight-to-DVD knockoffs it spawned. We’re speculating that Hostel 3 will bypass a theatrical release, but Bloody Disgusting has confirmed that early talks have started inside Lionsgate/Screen Gems to make a second sequel a reality. The series’ creator/director/spokesperson, Eli Roth, will reportedly not serve as writer or director on the sequel. We expect him to update his MySpace with an endorsement or a rant soon enough, and if so, we’ll update accordingly.
Last summer, Hostel 2 failed to reach $20 million at the domestic box office after a boatload of hype, and Roth later announced a big budget action/sci-fi film (not Cell) that remains under wraps. That news drew insta-press because of the PG-13 rating, leaving many outlets to report Roth’s detour from horror as the end of an era/”new low” for the genre.
Discuss: Interested in Hostel 3? Is there a “so bad it’s good” Hostel knock-off? Personally, I’m glad that the brightest days for hooks-and-meat DVD covers are behind us. What about you?
“Saw films are below par.”
Brooklynite actor Michael Pitt has come a long way from starring on Dawson’s Creek, and in the current issue of Giant magazine he delivers, in context, some particularly vapid-funny-traditionally-hipster quotes about the Saw franchise, U.S. soldiers and people who won’t/don’t “get” the March remake of Funny Games.
On his film preferences…
“I don’t even know what Saw or Hostel are. Are they like Texas Chainsaw Massacre? I guess I’m drawn to things like Lawrence of Arabia.”
And then he adds…
“[Audiences that don’t like Funny Games] can kiss my ass. I hope they do [get angry with] Funny Games. It challenges you. If you’re not up to the challenge, go see Saw.”
And not to get Fox News-y, but coming from Pitt, “one of the faces of Emporio Armani and a friend of author J.T. Leroy,” this quote equating being a soldier to regression is ridiculous…
“People think that, until you’ve killed someone or had someone shoot at you, you’re not a grown-up. Going to war isn’t growing up; it’s moving backwards.”
The latest Batman The Dark Knight casting rumor has Maggie Gyllenhaal to replace Katie Holmes as Assistant D.A. Rachel Dawes. Not a bad idea. But I’m guessing that like most of the other Batman casting rumors, it’s not true.
All Star directors helm The Office: Lost Co-creator JJ Abrams, Serenity/Buffy The Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon, and Groundhog Day director Harold Ramis have directed episodes of the Office. Whedon’s episode airs tonight, while the Abrams episode will air next week.
James Cameron has confirmed more Avatar castings: Wes Studi, Sigourney Weaver, Peter Mensah, and Joel David Moore.
Cast-a-date allows people in the entertainment industry to meet romantically. Very sad.
Comedian Al Franken (Saturday Night Live, Stuart Saves His Family) has finally announced his bid for Minnesota Senate. I hope he wins. His departure is bad news for Air America.
Magnolia Pictures will release The Signal in theaters on August 10th 2007. We loved this horror flick at Sundance. I hope is gets a wide release. Knowing Magnolia, probably not.
Universal has acquired the rights to make a movie about Milli Vanilli, the pop rock duo who were exposed as frauds. Sounds like it would make a better television movie to me.
Sideshow Collectables announces limited edition Hostel 12-inch figures. I wish I had more money.