In 2013, the action film battle royale was between two competing White House thrillers, Olympus Has Fallen and White House Down. The former film, seen as the scrappy contender, hit theaters three months before Sony and Roland Emmerich’s supposedly bigger movie. But the contender ended up winning the battle, with a sequel already set to re-team its cast and director. White House Down, meanwhile, is going to walk out of 2013 seen as an underperformer.
Now Lionsgate is going to see if the same pattern can work twice, as it has purchased distribution rights to Renny Harlin‘s Hercules: The Legend Begins, starring Kellan Lutz. The film will be in theaters five months before Brett Ratner‘s own Hercules, starring The Rock. Which strongman will end up on top? Read More »
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Horror films are big business, and we’re entering into a phase where we’ll probably see more action movies influenced by the real-world exploits of special forces such as the Navy SEALs. So why not combine the two tendencies?
That’s what SEAL Team 666 is going to do. Weston Ochse wrote a book in which military special ops forces fight the supernatural — it’s basically a special Call of Duty mode put on the page. And now it will be put on screen as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is attached to star in an adaptation of the book. Read More »
Cast your mind back to the release of 2 Fast 2 Furious, a film that was derided from nearly all corners, and then look at this week’s release of Fast & Furious 6. It took a decade, but Universal’s car-racing franchise has evolved into “event” status. Whether you like the films or not, there’s no arguing that under the stewardship of Justin Lin, who took over as director with the third movie, this series of films has exploded as a fan favorite. Lin knows how to manage action, and he’s had a long-term plan to consistently up the ante on that front.
Much more importantly, Lin realized that consistent characters are what bring people back to the films. He talked Vin Diesel back into the fold and then developed a suite of characters to fill out four individual films that ultimately work as one interlocked narrative. It’s an action-movie soap opera, sure, but one featuring precisely the sort of reliance on character that very few other action series get right.
The sixth film pushes outward in every direction: there are more characters and amped-up drama, and the action setpieces are more improbable and ridiculous than ever. Fast & Furious 6 won’t ever be held up as a major moral statement, but there’s a lot to be said for the series’ general tendency to trumpet values in friendship and family. There’s a sense of values here that could also be present in, say, the Die Hard movies, if the last couple McClane sequels weren’t such botch jobs.
With Fast & Furious 6 in theaters now, we’re curious to know how you feel about the film. Does the action work, and do the interlinked stories and characters provide enough meat to flesh out all the time between setpieces? Let us know in the comments below, where spoilers are allowed and encouraged. Read More »
Michael Bay is spending his time in between Transformers making a film based on the true story of Miami bodybuilders who kidnapped a guy in order to make some easy money, and ended up enmeshed in a cycle of torture and murder.
And yet, on the poster for the movie, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Mark Wahlberg look like pretty OK guys. They’re the leads of Pain & Gain, and as such are the two guys who start that violent get rich scheme. We know things go wrong in the movie eventually — there’s a photo of the Rock doing things with a human body part that you don’t see all that often — but based on this poster you’d never know it. Read More »
Snitch is based — probably very loosely — on a real story in which a father tries to dig himself into the drug trade in order to help his son out of prison. The father here is played by The Rock, with Susan Sarandon showing up as the hard-ass prosecutor who doesn’t want to let his kid off easy, leading Dad into a gig driving for some pretty bad men in the hopes of taking down the people responsible for putting his kid behind bars.
Ric Roman Waugh (Felon, with Stephen Dorff) directs, and the supporting cast looks like the best part of the film: in addition to Sarandon you’ve got Michael K. Williams, Nadine Velazquez, and Jon Bernthal. Check out the trailer below. Read More »
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In Fast Six, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson returns as DSS agent Luke Hobbs. This time, his crew’s power is bolstered by the addition of Gina Carano, the former MMA fighter whose first film, Haywire, led to her gig in Fast Six.
The film is shooting now under the direction of Justin Lin, who returns to the director’s chair, and Johnson has tweeted a photo of he and Carano in costume on the set of the film. Read More »
Yesterday, Dwayne Johnson (aka The Rock) tweeted this vague response, igniting rumors that Johnson is in talks or cast in an upcoming DC Comics movie adaptation. Many fans responded to The Rock’s tease, but got no response. So what might The Rock have up his sleeves? Could there be a Warner Bros/DC Comics movie in the works? Or is The Rock just trying to get his fans talking (sometimes a lot of nonsensical buzz can turn into reality).
I remember back in 2007 that Johnson was attached to play Black Adam in a big screen adaptation of the Captain Marvel comic book Shazam!. Somewhere along the line, that project fell off the board. Has the project been rekindled? Or more likely, is Johnson in talks for another DC Comics property? If so which one?
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson was initially famous for his presence and swagger in the wrestling ring, and for his goofy but memorable tagline “can you smell what The Rock is cooking?”
As an actor the guy has taken a few steps beyond that initial image (only a few) but now Michael Bay is bringing him right back to that original question. In a new set photo from Pain and Gain, Bay’s ‘ripped from the headlines’ movie in which a couple juiceheads kidnap a local businessman, the Rock is cooking something crazy. See the full image below. Read More »
Cinemacon delivered a new trailer for G.I. Joe: Retaliation earlier this week, and now a new international trailer features a great deal of new footage. It’s pretty much entirely big, cheesy stuff in which the betrayed Joes battle the devious forces of Cobra with high tech and charming brawn, the latter courtesy of The Rock and Bruce Willis.
But like most of the other footage from Jon M. Chu‘s sequel, it looks like it might be just as entertaining as it is fluffy. Is it possible that Chu has his the sweet spot for summer movies with this cartoonish action film? Let’s hope. Check out the new stuff below. Read More »