No formal “In theaters” Column This Week

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Every now and again the messy business of reality intrudes its way into my writing schedule and knocks it right the heck off track.  I have an extremely …life-intensive weekend upcoming that will may see sparse posting until Monday.  Can’t be avoided.  Well, in this case, I actually HAVE avoided it successfully for quite a long time, but my intentionally vague…thing does not dovetail well with breezy, witty cinema banter.

And, no, it is not my annual depression following the release of yet another Transformers film that makes me launch into my “LET’S SHOOT MICHAEL BAY INTO THE SUN!” speech.  Though….imagine the YouTube traffic for that video.  Given that the current fifth installment in slowly curb-stomping my childhood involves Transformers interacting with King Arthur, and that they’ve STUCK MY LAST NAME ON THE MAIN HUMAN CHARACTER IN THIS FARCE, I could easily go into my annual apoplexy….but, no, we’re breathing, we’re breathing, aaaand there.  Transformers: The Last Knight will win the weekend, but its take looks like the record-low reviews (even for Transformers sequels) are catching up with it, but-have no fear-as China seems to love our crappiest films, there will be more than enough overseas gross to continue my annual torment.  Cars 3 had an underwhelming opening for Pixar, and I am wondering how much of a drop it will see in week 2.  I’m expecting Wonder Woman to keep holding strong with repeat business.  Sequel insanity continues next week with Despicable Me 3, which will get an actual column, not a rant (well the rant may be INSIDE the column).  Stab the minutes, time killers, stab the minutes.

Disney Fires Han Solo Directors With 3 Weeks Left in Filming. What Now?

Han Solo Star Wars Spin-off

UPDATE 6/22/2017: RON HOWARD HAS OFFICIALLY SIGNED ON TO TAKE OVER DIRECTING THE FILM AND IT LOOKS LIKE SIGNIFICANT RESHOOTS ARE COMING.

Recently, I wrote an article urging Disney to keep Star Wars at Christmas release dates.  The changeover was to begin with next year’s Han Solo spin-off being released in May 2018 (click here to read that article).  It looks like that’s a given, at least for Han Solo as the entire project has been thrown into upheaval following the announcement that Disney had fired directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The LEGO Movie) from the project just three weeks before the completion of principal photography.  Directors leaving a project before a film begins isn’t uncommon.  Directors leaving during a project is a huge deal.  Directors, who seemed absolutely perfect for this sort of film, being fired three weeks before they finished their cut is astounding.  I have never seen directors removed this late in the process.  While Disney scrambles to find a replacement, fans are freaking out on Twitter, and the entire future of the project seems in doubt. Continue reading Disney Fires Han Solo Directors With 3 Weeks Left in Filming. What Now?

My Favorite Scene: Beauty and the Beast (2017) “Evermore”

Beauty and the Beast was a polarizing film (that still managed to end up being #8 on the all-time U.S. box office chart). Some felt it bettered the 1991 animated classic, some felt that film could never be touched, and some-like me-feel that both can be spectacular. I don’t think the live-action film surpasses its original the way 2016’s The Jungle Book did, but I loved Beauty and the Beast (you can read my review here), despite some flaws, and a huge reason why is Dan Stevens and his musical number: “Evermore”. Continue reading My Favorite Scene: Beauty and the Beast (2017) “Evermore”

Brad Pitt’s 10 Best Movies

Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt has already put together an amazing resume of memorable performances in the 25 years he’s been in Hollywood. Initially ogled more for his looks than talent, Pitt seems to embrace even more challenging roles as he ages, though it looks like he’s going to be on magazine covers for the rest of his life no matter how old he gets.  Pitt does a fantastic job of character creation, be it Aldo Raines, Tyler Durden, Billy Beane, Tristan Ludlow, Benjamin Button, or any one of a dozen more memorable screen turns.  What people may not realize about Pitt is that he is one of the most powerful producers in Hollywood.  Pitt’s won an Emmy, an Oscar, and a Golden Globe, but only the Golden Globe is for acting.  Similar to George Clooney and Tom Hanks, Pitt gets deeply involved in projects you may not even realize he’s attached to, and that’s a talent that may even outlive his still vibrant acting career. Continue reading Brad Pitt’s 10 Best Movies

Goodbye Christopher Robin Trailer #1 (2017) “We’re Having Fun AND Writing a Book”

It’s easy to dismiss the Winnie the Pooh books as fluff, and in modern incarnations for kids they’re often presented that way, but they’re absolutely brilliant.  Goodbye Christopher Robin, directed by Simon Curtis, and starring Domhnall Gleeson and Margot Robbie, tells the story of A.A. Milne’s creation of the Hundred-Acre Woods and the inhabitants therein.  The first trailer is a bit precious, but this is clearly a father and son story, as the stories that Milne told his son (who was actually named Christopher Robin) slowly evolved into a brilliant series of adventures.  They’re just fun stories as a child, but read as an adult, you begin to understand that Milne’s Woods are the mindscape of his own child and each character within represents an aspect of his own personality.  This reminded me a bit of Finding Neverland, and if it can meet that bar, then it will have succeeded without qualification.  Goodbye Christopher Robin opens October 29, 2017.  official synopsis below.

GOODBYE CHRISTOPHER ROBIN gives a rare glimpse into the relationship between beloved children’s author A. A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) and his son Christopher Robin, whose toys inspired the magical world of Winnie the Pooh. Along with his mother Daphne (Margot Robbie), and his nanny Olive (Kelly Macdonald), Christopher Robin and his family are swept up in the international success of the books; the enchanting tales bringing hope and comfort to England after the First World War. But with the eyes of the world on Christopher Robin, what will the cost be to the family?

Goodbye Christopher Robin Poster

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