The LEGO Movie was one of the best surprises I’ve had at the movies this decade. It combined a wildly inventive animation style with a script that had laughs and feels in it for anyone from 1 to 100. Future LEGO installments haven’t been able to touch the magic of the original, and the sequel arrives early next year after a number of rewrites. While the original voice cast returns, original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller are only producers this time and the final script is only based on a story idea of theirs.
Everything is not awesome in Bricksburg. Five years after Taco Tuesday, our heroes are in a post-apocalyptic DUPLO-created nightmare. The first trailer for the sequel has some laughs and made me smile, but I’m honestly a more than a little worried that without Lord & Miller running this show it’s going to be hard to recapture the magic of the first film. The LEGO Movie 2 will open in February 2019. More from Coming Soon below. Continue reading The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part Trailer #1 (2019) *They Come in Pieces*→
In the endless debate over “Who is the best Batman?” a strong case can be made for someone most people have never seen: Kevin Conroy. Conroy has been the voice of Batman since Batman: The Animated Series in the 1990s, though all subsequent appearances of the character in the various Justice League series, and in the majority of Batman’s animated films (beginning with Batman: Mask of the Phantasm in 1993). Conroy also voiced the character in the Batman Arkham video games, without a doubt, the best comic book video games ever made.
IGN has put together a list of the best of Batman’s animated exploits (most of which have been voiced by Conroy), and his batting average in animation is at least as good (if not much better) than his success rate in live-action films. My favorites are Phantasm, Sub-Zero, and Under the Red Hood, but which of Batman’s animated adventures are your favorites? What did you think of IGN’s list?
I was really hoping that WB would release an extended cut of Justice League to flesh out the film, and perhaps refine some of the issues with the theatrical cut. At the very least, I was hoping we’d get more deleted scenes than are being offered, but this seems like a pretty boilerplate blu ray release. Oddly, their big selling point is that if you can play the 4K version, it’s more colorful than the theatrical release was. However opinions may vary, I don’t think the color palate was something that a ton of people were hyper focused on after the film came out.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has officially announced that it will release on 4K Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray, and Blu-ray Zack Snyder’s blockbuster Justice League. The three releases will be available for purchase on March 13.
Ben Affleck has had a number of phases to his career in the 25 years plus he’s been in Hollywood. Starting out, Affleck and a number of young actors first gained notoriety in a number of Kevin Smith’s films (Mallrats, Chasing Amy, etc.) back when Kevin Smith actually made movies. Then he and his best friend Matt Damon had their Hollywood dream come true when their indie film, Good Will Hunting, in which they both wrote and starred, became one of the most critically acclaimed pictures of 1997 and the duo’s Oscar acceptance is one of the best of all-time. From there, Affleck entered a blockbuster phase that didn’t take. The scripts kept getting worse until he hit rock-bottom with Gigli, one of the most mocked films in recent memory.
Affleck, though, didn’t burn out. He started out as a writer, and he started picking quality scripts again. He also began directing, and he showed tremendous talent with Gone Baby Gone, The Town, and Argo. Currently, his career is intertwined with being the current Batman (at least for the moment), and while I may not be a huge fan of any of the films he’s been Batman in (funnily enough he played Superman first in 2006’s Hollywoodland), I like his take on the character, but I’m not certain where the DCEU goes with a Batman in his mid-to-late 40s. Whatever’s next, I think Affleck should get back behind the camera, pick projects that highlight his strengths as an actor (he’s not the strongest, but his overall knowledge of the process gives him an edge), and make the movies he wants to make. Getting sucked into commercial Hollywood blockbusters is what broke his career the first time; I’d hate to see it happen again.
Justice League has seemingly been on the way forever and has endured one of the more tortured roads to the screen of any blockbuster in recent memory. First it was two films; then it was one. Then backlash from Batman vs. Superman changed things; then success from Wonder Woman and input from the always meddlesome WB demanded reshoots. Then director Zack Snyder’s family tragedy caused him to drop off the picture. Then Joss Whedon (who was already on-board to do the reshoots) took over the picture and cut the running time by 50 minutes, and then the tone was changed to be more in line with the hopeful note set by Wonder Woman. Take a second to breathe. So after all of that, what is the dominant impression walking away from Justice League? There isn’t one. It’s a film that makes no impact, has no presence, or lasting punch. So many cooks have been in its kitchen that the final product is just an average, bland waste of an opportunity. Continue reading Movie Review: Justice League (2017) *Just Mediocre*→