weekend box office doctor sleep

Has the Stephen King movie adaptation bubble burst? Or was opening a big horror movie a week after Halloween a huge misstep? In any case, Doctor Sleep, Warner Bros.’ big sequel to The Shining, failed to generate much steam over the weekend. The Mike Flanagan-directed King adaptation was tracking toward a $25 million opening weekend, but the real result was an underwhelming $14.1 million. To add insult to injury, the film came in second to Roland Emmerich’s abysmal Midway.

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midway trailer new

For much of the 1990s, Roland Emmerich was the king of blockbuster cinema. The Stutgart born director found in Hollywood the perfect toolbox for his grand visions, hitting big with sci-fi thrillers like Stargate and Independence Day, the late-90s Godzilla chapter, and old-school disaster films like The Day After Tomorrow and 2012. After 2016’s sequel, Independence Day: Resurgence, he returns to the big screen with his Word War II epic Midway.

The film, with an ensemble including the likes of Ed Skrein, Patrick Wilson, Luke Evans, Aaron Eckhart, Nick Jonas, Woody Harrelson, Tadanobu Asano, Etsushi Toyokawa, Mandy Moore and Dennis Quaid, tells the events surrounding the attack on Pearl Harbor and eventual battle in the mid-pacific through the eyes of these characters. Splitting the decision-making of the leadership from quotidian bravery (or cowardice) of the regular soldier, the film’s expansive look at the battle rarely descends into dogma, instead tries through its mix of spectacle and character beats to provide a thrilling film that still feels at its core more than mere escapism.

/Film spoke to Emmerich about this push to provide nuance in the telling of the story, how other productions shaped the long genesis of this production, and what how he feels the creation of these kinds of stories have changed over the last few decades.

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midway review

In 2001, Michael Bay unleashed Pearl Harbor, a big, dumb, corny, effects-driven war epic about the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the battles that followed. Featuring a lifeless romantic subplot and an exhausting runtime, it’s not what anyone would consider to be a good movie. But watching Midway, the new catastrophe from disaster movie maven Roland Emmerich that covers similar material, one finds themselves pining for the nuance of Bayhem. For all his flaws, Michael Bay at least knows how to stage a scene with human characters interacting (sometimes). The same can’t be said for Emmerich.

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midway trailer new

Remember Pearl Harbor? Not the actual attack, but rather the endless 2001 faux-prestige drama from Michael Bay? Well, Roland Emmerich, master of blowing shit up, decided to wait a few years and then remake it. Enter Midway, a big-looking action flick starring Ed Skrein, Patrick Wilson, Luke Evans, Aaron Eckhart, Nick Jonas, and more. Watch stuff go boom in the latest Midway trailer below.

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midway trailer

At some point, Independence Day director Roland Emmerich must have watched Michael Bay’s Pearl Harbor and thought, “I can do that.” And so he did! The result is Midway, which might as well be called Roland Emmerich’s Pearl Harbor Remake. The visual aesthetic of the film, right down to the digitally enhanced destruction and oversaturated lighting, looks nearly identical to Bay’s WWII flick. But hey, at least he did away with that love story stuff. Girls – yuck! Watch the Midway trailer below.

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In this edition of Casting Bits:

  • Benicio del Toro is set to star in Oliver Stone‘s next drama, White Lies.
  • Mark Hamill joins Knightfall as it’s renewed for season 2.
  • Disney’s live-action Mulan remake adds Jimmy Wong and Doua Moua.
  • Roland Emmerich‘s Midway enlists Patrick Wilson, Aaron Eckhart, Nick Jonas, Tadanobu Asano, and Keean Johnson.
  • Jesse Plemons to co-star with Keri Russell in Scott Cooper‘s Antlers.
  • Patton Oswalt joins Disney’s live-action Kim Possible movie.
  • Joel Kinnaman joins Ron Moore’s space drama at Apple.

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