(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)
The Movie: Rise of the Guardians
Where You Can Stream It: HBO Max
The Pitch: Here’s the one-sentence pitch: what if famous children’s characters were superheroes? Here’s the slightly longer version: Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and the Sandman are collectively known as the Guardians, and they stand guard over important ideas like Wonder, Hope, Memories, and Dreams. But when the evil Pitch Black, aka the Boogeyman, returns from dormancy, the Guardians call upon the mischievous winter scamp Jack Frost to join them and fight to keep the world from covering the world in darkness.
Why It’s Essential Viewing: Before he served as a co-director on the Oscar-winning Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Peter Ramsey made his feature directorial debut with this excellent but under-seen 2012 gem. The film somehow failed to reach a large audience upon its initial release, but now that the holiday season is upon us, it’s the perfect time to give it the attention it has always deserved. Read More »
(Welcome to Let’s Get Animated!, a column that spotlights the best of film animation. In this edition: the best animated Christmas movies.)
It’s the most wonderful time of the year: the time when we rank the holiday movies that were staples of our childhoods as if some sort of numerical value can be applied to joy. Well, I’m no Grinch, so I’m not ranking them. But I am picking out the best animated Christmas movies because this is my column and I can do what I want. And what I want in this case is to spread Christmas joy for all to hear and perhaps give the spotlight to a few animated holiday movies that may have flown under your radar.
So, without further ado, here are the five best animated Christmas movies.
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Ethan Jones has created a series of compilation videos showing how various animated logo openings have changed and evolved over the years. Most recently Jones has released videos of the Walt Disney Pictures and DreamWorks logo openings.
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Posted on Friday, August 1st, 2014 by Angie Han
As Big Two superheroes go, the Guardians of the Galaxy are a pretty obscure bunch. So much so, even the trailers for the movie poke fun at that fact. Still, you’d think they’d be pretty well known now, what with a $100+ million budget and the power of the Marvel Studios marketing machine to back them up.
And yet, that didn’t stop a few cinemas from getting these Guardians mixed up with a different ragtag group of world-saving Guardians. According to reports, some theatergoers bought tickets to Guardians of the Galaxy last night… only to be treated to a screening of Rise of the Guardians instead. Hit the jump to learn how it all went down.
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This morning Megan Fox, Ed Helms, and Jessica Alba announced the nominations for the 2013 Golden Globes. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the organization behind the event, is famous for nominating films and performances simply based on their star factor — if there’s an actor that members of the HFPA want to hang out with, they’re sure to get a nomination.
But the HFPA is great at putting on a show, and so the Golden Globes generate a lot of attention every year. And, as the NY Times points out, with the Globes nominations coming just days before Oscar nomination voting starts, there’s a possibility that nominations here could affect Oscar voting. The Best Picture nomination set includes what is already becoming a standard set of awards favorites, such as Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook, and Zero Dark Thirty, but there are also nominations for Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, and Django Unchained. Salmon Fishing in the Yemen picked up a few nominations, actually, which was one of the big surprises.
The Golden Globes will air on January 13, 2013, hosted by Amy Poehler and Tina Fey. The full nomination list is below. Read More »
A simple tweet expressing my love for Rise of the Guardians was a pretty good indicator the film was going to struggle. I loved the film, likening its action-packed team up idea to The Avengers, but the backlash against the movie was immediate. Critics, for the most part, liked the movie — it sports a solid 74% on Rotten Tomatoes — but with strong competition at the box office for all quadrants, and no real word of mouth, the film flopped. The animated film, produced by Guillermo Del Toro with a reported budget of $145 million, opened at number four with just under $24 million. For most movies, that would be great, but not so much for a 3D family-oriented animated film.
Early reports now state DreamWorks Animation is braced to lose a massive $50 million on the film, putting their upcoming slate in hot water. Is this a sign of things to come? Read more after the jump. Read More »
It’s been a big day for awards, as the New York Film Critics Circle kicked off awards season, handing out the first accolades for achievement in filmin 2012. (Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln were the big winners.) Now here are the nominations for the animation-specific Annie Awards, and these might make people happy who were puzzled by the NYFCC award given to Frankenweenie as the best animated film of the year. Those tallying numbers here might want to see more noms for Wreck-It Ralph, but in general the year’s releases are well represented, with the expected nods towards Brave, Hotel Transylvania, ParaNorman, and more.
Get the full list below. Read More »
Rise of the Guardians is an animated, family-themed version of The Avengers. In both films, a team of superhuman beings join forces to defeat an evil threat (one with a dashing British accent) before it can destroy the world. But rather than featuring superhero characters only some audiences are familiar with, in Guardians the team is made up of mythical beings such as Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and the Sandman.
Directed by Peter Ramsey, written by David Lindsay-Abaire and co-produced by Guillermo Del Toro, Rise of the Guardians is full of wonder and excitement. The myths of these characters build off our preconceptions to create an imaginative world that’s both gorgeous to look at and teeming with possibilities. If anything, the film’s biggest downfall is that it is so dead-set on creating audience excitement through elaborate action set pieces that it ends up losing a little steam and resonance. Read more after the jump. Read More »
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Posted on Thursday, October 11th, 2012 by Angie Han
With the fall movie season well underway, we have new promos for two releases due out in November. The first is a 90-second spot for Flight, Robert Zemeckis‘ long-awaited return to live action. Denzel Washington stars as a pilot who’s lauded as a hero when miraculously saves a plane full of passengers with a deft crash-landing. But as an investigation digs deeper into the circumstances surrounding the incident, the story and his life begins to unravel.
The other is an extended TV spot for Rise of the Guardians, a DreamWorks Animation tale about all the mythological figures of childhood imagination — Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc. — banding together to save the world from an evil spirit called Pitch. Watch both videos after the jump.
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Ever wanted to see the Easter Bunny incarnated as an angry Australian
rodent kangaroo bunny, voiced by Hugh Jackman? If so, Rise of the Guardians is going to be a treat. The film adapts William Joyce‘s book in which modern mythological figures such as Santa Claus (Alec Baldwin), the Tooth Fairy (Isla Fisher), the Sandman (Tom Kenny), and the aforementioned bunny recruit Jack Frost (Chris Pine), to save the world.
We’ve seen a bit of footage in the past from this latest DreamWorks Animation offering, but a new trailer for Rise of the Guardians is the most substantial look at the film to date. As has been the case with other recent work from DreamWorks, the animation is very technically accomplished, and there’s a liveliness to some of the camerawork that I really like. Whether the story works will be a different matter, but there’s enough cute work from the voice actors that it might be worth a look for that alone. Read More »