Star Wars The Clone Wars - Anakin Skywalker

The weather is finally getting warmer, and that means more time outside. But you can always set aside part of your day for a little bit of Netflix. Thankfully, there’s not a mass exodus of TV shows and movies leaving Netflix, but we’ve picked out some of the ones you might want to watch before they disappear from the library, including a bunch of James Bond titles, an animated series that will disappear from streaming for months, arguably Michael Mann‘s best movie, and more. Read More »

Best Movies Streaming Right Now Casino Royale

(Welcome to Now Stream This, a column dedicated to the best movies streaming on Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and every other streaming service out there.)

It’s time for a fresh batch of streaming titles, hot from the oven. As usual, I’ve scoured the streaming service landscape to bring you back the goods. In this edition, you’ll find the best Bond movie ever, a ground-breaking horror anthology film, a mind-blowing documentary, a strange slasher flick, a wuxia masterpiece, a water-logged action film, and more.

These are the best movies streaming right now, and beyond. Let’s get streaming!

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Singer Chris Cornell Has Died at 52

Chris Cornell Dead

When James Bond returned to the big screen with Daniel Craig in the lead role of Casino Royale in 2006, the new run of 007 movies needed a theme song to bring the franchise into the 21st century the right way. Sony Pictures and MGM called upon Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman Chris Cornell‘s signature growling singing voice to make it happen, and he created what I think is one of the better James Bond theme songs of the entire series.

Therefore, we’re sad to report that the rock musician and singer has passed away suddenly at the young age of 52 after performing with Soundgarden in Detroit last night.  Read More »

james bond lawsuit

Completion is often an important facet of one’s fandom: you have all of The Beatles’ studio albums on your iPod, or sitting on your shelf is every novel Virginia Woolf ever wrote, or you own multiple versions Cinema Paradiso. But what if you planned to have everything and you didn’t get what you thought you were paying for?

That’s the core issue of a class action lawsuit brought against MGM Studios and 20th Century Fox by plaintiff Mary Johnson of Washington, who bought the Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond DVD box set, and filed the complaint when she realized the set did not include the 1967 film Casino Royale (the one with Woody Allen – yes, you read that correctly) and 1983’s Never Say Never Again. It’s a matter of whether this is necessarily false advertising, as there’s legal precedent for why these films weren’t included. But should these films be included in Bond box sets in the future? And do their very existence say about the 007 series in general?

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guardians of the galaxy opening scene

How a film opens says a lot about its style and tone, and can turn people off or make them sit forward in their seats with curiosity. This week’s big new release, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, has a hard act to follow; its 2014 predecessor had a memorable opening in which hero Peter Quill/Star-Lord dances through an alien world, blasting “Come and Get Your Love” on his old Walkman. As we wait to see if Vol. 2 lives up to the original, let’s look at 15 of the best opening scenes in movies.
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Blonde Bonds and Batmobiles: 7 Times Fans Overreacted

movie fan controversies

Fandom is a group of people united by a shared passion. They all love something enough to follow it, to memorize it, to criticize it, and to get genuinely angry when it lets them down. Fans tend to feel a smidgen of ownership over the movie or TV show or book series that has appropriated so much of their time. In other words, fans tend to overreact. A lot.

And can you blame them? After all, you surely know the feeling. You know what it’s like to watch from outside the bubble as something you love is put through the wringer by creatives who have no idea what the hell they’re doing. When you’re not in the room, when you don’t know the reasoning for a certain casting choice or a certain creative decision, it can be nerve-wracking. What are they doing to the thing that you love?

However, not ever knee-jerk fan reaction has been accurate. Movie fans have recoiled against some truly great ideas and they have recoiled against aspects of films that, in the end, simply didn’t matter. You may very well remember these movie fan controversies. You may have tried to do the wise thing and forget these controversies. As these examples show, sometimes movie fans are the absolute last people you actually want making decisions in the moviemaking process.

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Watch A Brief History of Movie Title Designs

As part of the screening put together in relation to the SXSW Title Design Competition, Ian Albinson from the website The Art of the Title Sequence put together a nice two and a half minute compendium of excellent film titles. (That features an occasional piece of television, too.) For any long-time film lover, this little video will probably elicit quite a few responses simply on the strength of the title cards on display. I queued several films to re-watch after exposure to just a few seconds of their titles.

Check out the collection after the jump. Read More »

What happens when a Larry The Cable Guy-caliber trailer park hillbilly buys into James Bond’s super secret poker game? I missed this one last week. /Film reader Sam K sends over Saturday Night Live’s “Live Another Death” James Bond Spoof featuring Bill Hader as 007.

Movie Review: Quantum of Solace

It’s impossible to talk about Marc Forster’s Quantum of Solace without first reflecting on how far the Bond franchise has come in recent years. When Martin Campbell’s Casino Royale debuted in 2006, it rebooted the franchise and heralded the age of a bold new Bond. The suave secret agent of previous years was replaced by a rough-and-tumble soldier, who relied more on fists, knives, and guns to get things done, rather than outlandish gadgets. The lifestyle of a double-O, which had seemed intensely appealing over the course of the last few decades, was suddenly transformed into one filled with self-sacrifice, self-reflection, and self-loathing. While the card game sequences might have been a bit hokey and some of the dialogue was a bit too Haggis-esque for my tastes (“I have no armor left. You’ve stripped it from me.”), make no mistake: Casino Royale was completely badass, filled with spectacular action set pieces and a brave portrayal of 007 by always-stellar Daniel Craig. Heck, Casino Royale was so good that it almost made us forget the filmic atrocity that was Die Another Day. Almost.

These are the expectations that Quantum of Solace steps into this weekend, even as it’s already well on its way to a critic-proof, record-breaking box office take. But does the movie live up to its promise?
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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

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, Devindra, and Adam, discuss their memories of Bond and Casino Royale, reflect on the influence of Seth MacFarlane, and compare their geekiest moments of all time. Katie Spence and Ben Brown join us from Hooray Movies. Also, Peter Sciretta forces his way onto the podcast to warn about the upcoming desecration of a revered childhood film.

Your voicemails (781-583-1993) and e-mails are always welcome. Join us next Monday at 10 PM EST / 7 PM PST as we review Quantum of Solace with Adam Kempenaar from the Filmspotting podcast.

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