Archives for posts with tag: movie news

VIFF 2013

Looks like the old man has been busy judging by the vast number of reviews that have been coming down the pike. So fresh from a cinema filled weekend at the “Vancouver International Film Festival” (for more info go to http://www.viff.org) here’s my dad Michael Coleman with the good and bad on everything from violence to paperclips – enjoy!

CINEMA OF OUR TIME

VIFF 2013

“Dormant Beauty” – A political examination of how divided Italians are about the issue of euthanasia, “Dormant Beauty” is a grueling experience. From the jumbled and unrelated multi-threaded story lines to the bleak dark cinematography, audiences can count on either falling asleep or tuning out. Handled with little flair, the emotionally heavy subject and films’ message ends up getting lost in the quagmire – this beauty will make you dormant. 1/5 stars

VIFF 2013

“The Future” – Showing damaged people moving forward in their screwed up lives can be powerful, but in “The Future” it’s just plain dull. With disinterest creeping in slowly, “The Future” makes the mistake of losing the audiences’ attention with poor direction, music that irritates and shots that act as filler. Both pretentious and convoluted, not even the great Rutger Hauer (he gets the star here) could save it this one. 1/5 stars

VIFF 2013

“Fanie Fourie’s Lobola” – Despite Mandela’s ideals, racism and South African life are forever linked, but the stereotypes and daily behaviors of it are skillfully handled in this delightful Romeo and Juliet themed film. When a white Afrikaner man meets a black Zulu woman the sparks fly and he must pay a lobola (aka dowry) to her father. It’s their love that keeps you interested in getting to the happy ending that Shakespeare’s wasn’t. Do they get there? See the modern twist on the dowry of old. 4/5 stars

VIFF 2013

“Miss Violence” – Right from the shocking opening sequence, “Miss Violence” traps you in a whodunit web and then peels away the layers of its dysfunctional family story with skill. Starting subtly by appearing mundane, it wonderfully builds to a mind numbing conclusion that lingers. A brilliant depiction of man’s inhumanity to man, “Miss Violence” is a must see for those with a strong stomach. 5/5 stars

CANADIAN IMAGES

VIFF 2013

“Chi” – What is it like to die of cancer? Anne Wheeler’s doc is a moving depiction of the life force – or chi – being sucked out of her friend, Babz Chula. And while chi is the ying and shows itself in flashes of energy, determination and resilience in the spirited Chula, it’s the yang that creeps forever forward to its inevitable conclusion. A real tear jerker handled with style, compassion and mostly love, “Chi” is a fitting tribute. 4/5 stars

DRAGONS & TIGERS

VIFF 2013

“Anatomy of a Paperclip” – A more unique film this year you will not see. At first “Anatomy of a Paperclip” is repetitious to the extreme, but this clever, quirky and ever weird film eventually wins you over for one reason – Tomomatsu Sakae in brilliant Buster Keaton-esk deadpan performance. Plagued with bandits, a bullying boss at the paperclip factory, fickle women, kanage juice and a butterfly fantasy, Sakae’s contributions captivate – you can’t take your eyes off him. 3/5 stars

Stay tuned to Starpulse.com for more reviews and fest coverage via Michael Coleman from the “Vancouver International Film Festival.”

VIFF 2013

Photo Credits: Photos Courtesy of Vancouver International Film Festival

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Katy Perry

The mayor of Hartford, Connecticut blasted Dave Chappelle over his performance walk-out last Thursday night, telling him to “quit whining” following a gig in Chicago, Illinois where he blasted the city. Some might say he got racist, and he also called for North Korea to nuke the city. (story)

Katy Perry’s video for her latest single, ‘Roar’, has arrived, and the song has also knocked Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” from the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. (story)

Naomi Watts stars as Princess Diana in the new movie biopic “Diana”, and she dazzled on the red carpet for the film’s London premiere. (story)

Unfortunately, British critics are blasting the movie, calling it as awful as the car crash that took her life in 1997. (story)

Nobody can seem to get their Lamar Odom facts straight. The NBA star reportedly checked into rehab on Wednesday, but that story wasn’t confirmed and he reportedly fell off the radar. Now they’re saying he spent a day in rehab and left already. He’s also suppopsedly gone on a crack binge. (story)

Gina Gershon will be playing fashion icon Donatella Versace in a new movie, and she looks exactly like her — well, without all the weathering. Naturally, since we’re talking about Gina Gershon, it’s a made-for-TV movie that will air on Lifetime (you didn’t seriously think she’d land a leading role for a big Hollywood production, did you?) (story)

Jack Osbourne’s wife has reportedly suffered a miscarriage. The reality star’s wife, Lisa Stelly, announced that the couple was ecpecting their second child last month, but things took a turn for the worse last week. (story)

Justin Bieber‘s hanging around with Chris Brown now. This should be good. (story)

Everyone’s talking about the recent casting for “Fifty Shades of Grey”. No one likes who producers picked for the lead roles of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey. We came up with 10 stars who would be better in each role, both lists are based on who we’d want to see getting it on hardcore S&M style, of course:

Better Christian | Better Anastasia

Katy Perry

Sharknado

The people have spoken! Five thousand fans helped decide the title of the highly anticipated “Sharknado” sequel via Twitter, and the winner is – “Sharknado 2: The Second One.”

When the made-for-television film first aired on Syfy in July, only 1.4 million watched, but there were more than 5,000 tweets-per-minute about the B-movie on the night of its debut, grossing over 604,000 in total.

Buzz for the film was so intense, Regal cinemas even hosted midnight screenings of “Sharknado” on over 200 screens on Aug. 2.

The first film centered on Los Angeles where a tornado picks up a school of hungry sharks and sends them flying through the air. The man-eating storm wreaks havoc on a small town that becomes the site of a feeding frenzy.

Stars Tara Reid and Ian Ziering return for the sequel, which will be set in New York City and will air in July 2014.

Reid told U.K. newspaper the Sunday Mirror about making the film: “I read it and I was laughing so hard because it was the most ridiculous movie I’d ever heard of. It was so insane.”

Sharknado

Photo Credits: Syfy

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We’re The Millers, which hasn’t been embraced by critics (only 39% on Rotten Tomatoes) had a really strong first day, pulling in 6.8M to easily take first place. This figure does include some box office from the Tuesday night opening, but is still a strong opening. We’re The Millers has also received an A- cinemascore from audiences, which will help give it legs over the weekend.

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters also opened on Wednesday, and grabbed an impressive 5.4M. With only 33% positive on Rotten Tomatoes, the audiences have spoken again and declared that Percy is a B+. With the two stronger movies opening tomorrow, this is going to be a very crowded box office weekend. It is likely all four films will break 20M this weekend, but can they all break 30? Elysium and Planes open tomorrow.

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Photo Credits: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

The first Percy Jackson didn’t really light up the box office. 88 million domestically would make the sequel a little bit of a gamble. So why would they choose Freudenthal to direct? There is absolutely nothing about either Hotel for Dogs or Diary Of A Wimpy Kid that would make me believe that he could handle an ambitious sequel. He is not Chris Columbus, and the film feels it too.

Percy (Logan Lerman) is still struggling with issues of not being able to see his father, or speak to him. He’s off living at the Demi-God camp with everyone else. We learn the story of the camp, and how a young demigod girl that was the daughter of Zeus, died, which caused Zeus to create the force field around the camp to protect the demigods. Of course, this is massive foretelling, as that field breaks, and Percy learns about the Sea Of Monsters, and how the Golden Fleece can help save the demigod camp.

Percy isn’t the first to be chosen to go after the golden fleece. That honor goes to Clarisse (Leven Rambin), a badass daughter of Ares who thinks Percy is a joke. But when Percy finds out that Luke (Jake Abel) is still alive, and going after the fleece so he can revive Kronos, he realizes there is a prophecy that puts him in that place anyway. So he decides to grab his gang and go. His gang includes his Hermoine and Ron from the first film (Alexandra Daddario and Brandon T. Jackson), and new entry Tyson, who is also a son of Poseidon. He’s not a human though, he’s a Cyclops. Can Percy and the gang get to the fleece before Luke, or will Kronos be reawakened and destroy the world?

The sequel is inferior to the original. Definitely. The first film did have some artistic merit brought to it by Columbus, but the sequel lacks any finesse. This is a paint-by-the-numbers sequel, and they apparently refused to pay the actors from the original to return. Percy no longer has a mother (Catherine Keener) or a father (Kevin McKidd). Pierce Brosnan apparently got fired too, and replaced with Anthony Stewart Head. Stanley Tucci replaces the actor they cast briefly in Dionysus’s role in the first film. The budget was really tight here.

Luckily, the special effects team weren’t shorted. I thought the effects here were more believable than in the higher-budgeted Jack The Giant Slayer. I saw this film in 3D (an absolute waste), so it did look “grainy” in some shots, but I often find that with 3D films that were probably done post-conversion. I would not recommend this as a 3D venture. They don’t throw things at the screen, which leads me to believe it was an afterthought. Unless you just LOVE pop-up cinema, skip it.

I feel like this should have been a better sequel. They entrusted a shaky franchise, essentially, to a manchild. And he did what we would all expect him to do with it. Nothing. You could have picked a random film student to get the same result (possibly better). I left disappointed, but still hoping for a third Percy film. The writing is solid, the characters are likeable, and I would enjoy continuing following them on another journey. Just as long as Thor isn’t directing.

FINAL GRADE: C+


STARRING: Logan Lerman, Alexandra Daddario, Brandon T. Jackson, Douglas Smith, Leven Rambin, Jake Abel, Stanley Tucci, Anthony Stewart Head, Nathan Fillion, Yvette Nicole Brown, Missi Pyle, with the voices of Craig Robinson, Octavia Spencer, Ron Perlman, and Shohreh Aghdashloo.

WRITTEN BY: Marc Guggenheim

DIRECTED BY: Thor Freudenthal

Photo Credits: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

The Butterfly Effect

Ashton Kutcher’s drama The Butterfly Effect is winging its way back to cinemas in a reboot less than 10 years after its original release.

The 2004 film, which marked one of Kutcher’s first drama roles, was mauled by critics but was a commercial success, garnering around $96 million at the worldwide box office.

Film bosses are now using a new cast to revive the movie, about a troubled college student who finds he can alter his past using time travel.

Eric Bress, who co-wrote and co-directed the original film, is back on board to pen the script for the reboot, reports Variety.com.

The original film spawned two less successful follow-ups, 2006’s The Butterfly Effect 2 and The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations in 2009.

Syfy

The strange success of Syfy’s Sharknado movie – which former “90210” star Ian Ziering called his “John Travolta ‘Pulp Fiction’ moment,” by the way – can probably be attributed to the same cultural normative (or abnormative, we should say) that made “Bubba Teeth” a hit: Every now and then, people just like to drop all pretense and participate in the humor of things.

But it looks like it may just be those producers who took a chance on such an utterly ridiculous movie concept who get the last laugh when this thing hits actual theaters. ‘Cause that’s happening now.

Yep, “Sharknado” took the TV-observing world by storm, pun intended, for several reasons, not the least of which was an out-right social media frenzy over the unashamed ridiculousness of the film. Live-tweeting it was kind of the thing to do that night (’cause what else is going down on some random Thursday evening?).

While viewership itself was ultimately just so-so, it was the web impact that really had teeth; at one point, the title was reportedly the subject of 5,000 tweets a minute.

And though Syfy’s been responding to the interest with shark-themed marathons and, yes, even plans for a sequel (!!), they’ve now got even bigger aspirations to see what kinda damage this thing can do on the big screen.

That’s right. Regal Entertainment will be hosting midnight screenings of “Sharknado” on Aug. 2 at some 200 theaters across the country.

“‘Sharknado’ has become a force of nature in its own right,” a rep for the theater chain explained. “The project transcends the original television platform and has created tremendous buzz. There’s just something epic about watching these huge beasts on the big screen with your friends and family. The crowd reactions will make for a memorable experience in our theatres … Regal is proud to be giving our guests this chance to fuel the social media whirlwind by inviting friends to come to the show and tweeting reactions.”

So … sticking with the weather-y theme, will lightning strike twice with this “Sharknado” thing?

Photo Credits: Syfy

47 Ronin

Keanu Reeves returns to action on the big screen this Christmas in the sprawling fantasy epic 47 Ronin.

Reeves stars as the warrior Kai, a Samurai who was once rejected by his kind for being a half-breed. Kai joins with the last remaining Samura to seek vengeance on the ruthless warlord who killed their master and eradicated their people.

With only 47 soldiers left, the warriors embark on a quest through a land of mythic beasts, witchcraft and other terrors in order to restore honor to their homeland.

Kai becomes the hero of the 47 Ronin, who seek to “seize eternity.”

Rinko Kikuchi, Hiroyuki Sanada, Tadanobu Asano and Rick Genest (aka Zombie Boy) also star in the film, which opens on Christmas Day.

Check out the trailer below…

47 Ronin

47 Ronin

47 Ronin

Angelina Jolie

Finding out who wins an Academy Awards is great, but the real competition is on the red carpet. Check out five leading ladies who really got it right!

Angelina Jolie (above) made waves in 2004 in a white satin Marc Bouwer gown with a plunging neckline.

That same year Charlize Theron looked stunning in a white sequined figure-huggin Tom Ford for Gucci gown. Va va voom! Unfortunately, she had a fashion misstep a few years later.

In 2003, Jennifer Lopez took a chance in a mint green Valentino one-shouldered kaftan-styled robe based on a design for Jackie Kennedy.

Penelope Cruz turned heads in 2009 in a vintage Balmain 50’s gown, while Halle Berry sizzled in 2002 in a burgundy Elie Saab gown. She also won “Best Actress” for Monster’s Ball that year.

Check out all the looks in the video below:

Photo Credits: PR Photos

Ethan Hawke

Ethan Hawke has branded the Oscars “destructive” and “fake” in a scathing criticism of the Hollywood awards season just days before the movie industry’s biggest prize giving.

The two-time Oscar nominee, who received nods for 2001’s Training Day and 2004 romance Before Sunset, fears the annual tradition of handing out prizes is detrimental to the industry because it encourages such a fiercely competitive culture.

He is also convinced the Academy Awards have very little value because they have been won by so many “stupid movies” and “mediocre performers” over the years.

In an interview with Gotham magazine, which has emerged online just days before Sunday’s Oscars ceremony, Hawke says, “People want to turn everything in this country into a competition… It’s clear who the winner is and who the loser is. It’s why they like to announce the grosses of movies, because it’s a way of saying, ‘This one is No. 1.’ It’s so asinine…

“If you look at how many forgettable, stupid movies have won Oscars and how many mediocre performers have Oscars above their fireplace. Making a priority of chasing these fake carrots and money and dubious accolades, I think it’s really destructive.”

Watch "Ethan Hawke’s Shocking&Creepy New Look"

Photo Credits: PR Photos

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