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Tag Archives: Movies

The Han Solo prequel cast looks so damn white


The Han Solo prequel anthology film doesn’t have a name — but as of today, it does have a cast. And boy, it’s uh ... kinda super white. Lucasfilm Left to right: Woody Harrelson (top), co-director Christopher Miller (bottom), Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Alden Ehrenreich, Emilia Clarke, Chewbacca (presumably Finnish actor Joonas Suotamo), co-director Phil Lord and Donald Glover It’s not helping that baby-faced directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are in the mix, blending in too well, age-wise, with the young Han Solo crew. It’s also not helping that confirmed cast member of color Thandie Newton is absent, leaving Donald “Lando Calrissian” Glover as the lone representative of the Han Solo prequel’s racial bonafides. Lucasfilm TFW you...

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Why Jimmy Kimmel needs to make the Oscars political


Late night host Jimmy Kimmel confirmed in a recent interview that he wasn’t going to make the Oscars overly political. Speaking to Variety ahead of the biggest award show of the year — the third most-watched special event from last year — Kimmel said while acceptance speeches from actors were sure to get political, he didn’t want to come out attacking President Trump or the controversy surrounding his executive orders for 10 minutes straight. “I don’t think it will be very political,” Kimmel said. “There will be some element of that to the show. A lot of it depends on what happens.” Kimmel’s attitude toward the monologue and the way he’ll approach the biggest stories of the day is a direct contrast to the way award shows have been playing out this year, and also how last year’s Oscar...

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The Lego Batman Movie is a necessary model of trauma — for kids


“Batman doesn’t do ’ships… as in ‘relationships,’” Batman declares to the Joker in the beginning of The Lego Batman Movie. Batman (Will Arnett) and the Joker (Zach Galifianakis) hold on to two ends of a taut zipline, unwilling to let each other go. The Joker wants Batman to declare him his greatest enemy, and for Batman to tell the Joker that he hates him; but hate, of course, is a feeling, and feelings equal vulnerability. Batman holds tight to the loss of his parents, shutting out new experiences and relationships — as anyone dealing with trauma might do. In the book, Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, Dr. Daniel G. Amen shows neural pathways that have been severed by emotional traumas, and then he shows brain pathways that actually reconnect and grow based on psychological growth....

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Revisiting Band of Brothers in the era of prestige television


Band of Brothers was released in 2001, and the 10-episode HBO miniseries has either gained a reputation as one of the best pop culture takes on war ever created or has been completely forgotten ... depending on who you talk to. My friends and I have been re-watching the show — it’s the first time for one of us — at a pace of one episode per week. The attraction is easy to explain: We’re watching a uniquely unqualified and ignorant reality star destabilize the world in real time, and the uncertainty of that situation makes World War II entertainment, ironically enough, somewhat of a comfort. This was an era of American history where we both know we won conclusively and it’s easy to cast ourselves as the “good guys.” An informal polling of friends and colleagues has hinted that I’m not...

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The Resident Evil movies have what other game adaptations are missing


With high profile releases like Warcraft and Assassin’s Creed, 2016 was supposed to be the year that video game movies finally got good. Now that 2016 is over, that optimism seems almost comically misguided. Warcraft was a pretty yet lifeless mess, while Assassin’s Creed had none of the historical flair that makes the game series so beloved. The latest flops — a list that also includes Sony’s forgettable Ratchet and Clank — reinforced conventional wisdom about video game adaptations. Video game movies will never be good because Hollywood is unable to capture gaming’s interactive spirit. However, that fatalism overlooks one very important fact. There already is a long-running video game film franchise that proves the commercial and artistic viability of video game adaptations. Most...

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Suicide Squad director expresses regrets over the film


Suicide Squad made a whole lot of money at the box office while disappointing a whole lot of people. A fan recently tweeted in support of the movie, which inspired director David Ayer to post a lengthy, thoughtful and candid look at what he regrets about how it all turned out. “I know it’s a controversial film, I really tried to make something different, with a look and a voice of its own,” he wrote. “If you set out to make a mass appeal movie, it’s easy to end up with vanilla,” Ayer continued. “But I went for it. And I know Suicide Squad has flaws, Hell, the World knows it. Nothing hurts more than to pick up a newspaper and see a copy years of your blood, sweat and tears ripped to shreds. The hate game is strong out there.” He notes that the movie was a success financially and...

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We need a good Wolverine movie


Hugh Jackman has played Wolverine nine times, if you include Logan. The most passable films have included the X-Men, with each stand-alone film being uniquely disappointing for different reasons. This is Hugh Jackman’s last chance with the character, and if it doesn’t work out the actor will have spent a significant portion of his career on a series of films that can, at best, be considered OK. The stakes are as high for him as they are for us. Everyone involved, including the audience, deserves a good Wolverine film before Jackman bows out of the franchise. They weren’t all bad, right? The first X-Men film came out in 2000, which makes it 16 years old. If it were a person, it would be driving. This was before the era of mainstream superhero films and cinematic universes, which...

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Fox is spinning up a new games group


A new division at Fox, called FoxNext, is being spun up to oversee video gaming, virtual reality, augmented reality and theme park installations. The new business unit will have access to Twentieth Century Fox Film and Fox Networks Group franchises. A press release issued this week says the goal is to “drive the company’s next-generation storytelling experiences.” Salil Mehta, a veteran of both NBCUniversal and The Walt Disney Company, will be the business unit’s president. The unit was created in part due to the success of The Simpsons: Tapped Out on mobile and Alien: Isolation for PC and modern consoles. One stated focus will be VR, and Fox said they hope to combine the efforts of multiple gaming groups to commercialize that space. One such project that would fall under the group is...

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January is for movies that suck, but it doesn’t have to be


In an ideal cultural environment, any film would be able to find the audience it deserves and the audience that wants to find it. In reality, any number of factors — chiefly the whims of studios and the effectiveness of movie marketing — can undermine a film’s impact commercially, critically and among spectators and the culture-at-large. Around year-end time, many will talk about movies they saw in the preceding 12 months that they felt were forgotten or underserved, that didn’t receive the attention they should have. And there’s no more fertile ground for movies like that than the frigid month of January. The truth is, often January films have qualities that many different audiences appreciate, and if they were properly marketed, they could succeed. The idea that all that matters is...

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Studio Ghibli’s best movies transcend simple cinema


Studio Ghibli has been a leading animation studio for the past 32 years, and in that time, it’s produced 20 beloved films. Since the dawn of the studio in 1985, Ghibli has built a community of diehard fans. While it’s not as successful as studios like Pixar, it has caught the eye of cinephiles everywhere. Many of its films have been nominated for Academy Awards. In 2003, Hayao Miyazaki’s celebrated Spirited Away won the award for Best Animated Feature, beating out strong contenders like Lilo & Stitch and Ice Age. Miyazaki is probably the most recognizable name to come out of the studio, and for good reason. He directed nine of the films produced at Ghibli — and Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, which was technically released a year before the studio was founded — and has become the...

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