TOP 5 SCARIEST KIDS IN HORROR MOVIE HISTORY

“I believe the children of our future – teach them well and let them lead the way” – Whitney Houston 
Why, when it comes to horror movies, the general takeaway is the little scary ass Disney peapods, which in reality are seemingly harmless, typically sweet, and dimly attached, are the ones that affect us, lasting with us as much as their adult “slasher” counter-weights? Horror movie kids always end up burning in our pop culture consciousness in a tokenism sort of way, where you feel sad that they are even part of the madness in the movie instead of doing what’s real important say like algebra homework. After awhile, the kids seem to somehow punctate the movie’s engine, by either driving it, or falling as a plot device by way of it, and often times breaking through to where they become their own little “kid’s incorporated Haley-Joel-who-cares" celebrity in the Halloween creaky casket mythos of the very celebrity it chews and spits out.

Historically in horror movies, some prey on your mind while others attack your fears with a Freddy Kruger like enjoyment. To delight the audiences that are laid out in front of them to frighteningly watch, horror movies are built on a well placed terrifying subjectivity that can leave others trembling from its viscera and intelligence while leaving others mortified by lack of creative thought falling into quotidian genre clichés. In society, when it comes to children in general, all people can relate on wanting to persevere the dogmatic idea of that child’s life and innocence, regardless of archetypical familial relations or not i.e. being a parent, older sibling, teacher or whatever. It's naturally healthy in wanting to care for a child not yours as long as you’re not Jackie Earle Haley from Little Children, creeping out the neighborhood. Symbolically, a child is something that inherently and empirically, doesn’t need convincing from the narrator to passionately want to guard, to protect. It’s in our damn DNA to look out for these little cute bastards, lovingly, no matter if there is an obligation or not. It’s what a child, especially in film, represents personally to the viewer that makes us want to emotionally care

Children or childhood take different representations cinematically depending on the director’s usage and intent pertaining to that genre. For example, the acclaimed Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki uses children to be the “spirit guide” through of all his movies. He touches his movies with wonderment, softness, and a pre-existing innocence that is reflected in the adulthood of those films. He has a way in which the viewer knows what it’s like to feel protected (Howl’s Moving Castle) or want someone to protect like (Ponyo). And complimenting those sensibilities, Miyazaki has a way of making us feel innocent again: harking back to an easier, less strenuous time and place in our past. In comparison, less than serene styled movies have also cemented a foundation that is inescapable but of a different ilk - having children trapped in a purveying world of danger, torment, fright, but serving mostly as a fable or cautionary tale, in which it forces the child to either learn a lesson or walk away the hero. Historically, this thesis roughly began when the Brothers Grimm composed the sinister Hansel and Gretel, or regretful Rumpelstiltskin, which gave way to a thematic charge of children being used in a manner in which, unlike Miyazaki’s hopefulness, children are the prey, but not before an important lesson of "don’t grow up to be an ass" isn’t embedded first. Normatively, children are in danger, and they are representational lambs for the slaughter. Contemporary films, Like The Neverending Story, Labyrinth or even Del Toro’s brilliant films like the wrenching Chronos or vivid Pan’s Labyrinth use children in a myriad of ways to enrich a dark story.

The brilliant thing with children in horror movies is that since there is a development throughout adolescence, children as a character are not fully formed into who they are or what they will become. With that stasis brings narrative depth. From that depth a director can take that character and put them through a wealth of ideas because, back to my earlier assertion, we want to protect the child because we want to keep their innocence. When the innocence is threatened, we in some way feel threatened as well, thereby creating a tension - a differential resonance - an intemperance - towards that film. We develop feelings whether we like to or not.

The beautiful complexity of making a child or children the focal point in a horror movie is that they are little rays of light playdoh in the hands of the director, where he or she can do as she pleases in whatever twisted confounding way they can come up with to further push the genre’s line of what’s acceptable. Throughout the 20th century, in film, children were either the hunted (The Nighthunter, Halloween, Friday the 13th or Nightmare on Elm Street) or the hunters (Village of the Damned, Children of the Corn); however, in the latter part of the 20th century, from the 70’s onward, children were no longer the family sidepiece or the callow youth to be preyed upon that you forgot was left in the car when the family moved to the new haunted estate. Now children, tweens and teens became a force onto themselves where there was a supernatural empowerment endowed onto children in a whole new form of storytelling. The best example of the good girl/scary kid paradigm was Heather O’Rourke as little sweet Carol Anne. O’Rouke best exemplifies the duality a director can use a child in supernatural/horror films, which, like in this case, if used correctly, can be both the hair-raising cause and also the effect to thrilling horrific intent in the most purest escapist pleasures. Throughout the duration of the film we are wanting to protect her little sweet self as she is clamping on the t.v. in her all white baby doll nightgown – saying “They’re here” in her best Kavinsky Nightcall impression, and therefore, little Carol Anne, you got to go by verdict of guilty by association.

In recent years children can be used all kinds of ways now to effectively visualize the director’s voice, like adults are only with more at stake as humanely possible. There is a certain maturity with kid actors these days that lends itself to the multifaceted iconography in horror films, where even though they grow up, the iconic character is trapped in a time capsule-corner time out. Case in point, as recently as in Gore Verbinki’s emerald nightfucker of a movie The Ring, with the little boy Aidan, who is terrified about something wicked this way comes; or how in the same movie Samara is played for both empathy and fear. She is a metaphorical cautionary tale of parenting gone wrong. How about the little boy from 2007’s Trick R’ Treat where he is a symbol of all the dead little kids that creepily terrorize the neighborhood with the same nickel and dime store costume that wasn’t even cute back then, but is still tragic for being a haunted hangover. All you see is his Jack-o-Lantern mask, and little round body and cute peppered feet, but you know he is fucking cray! He is representational o f how dichotomous the kid in horror film premise lies to where it’s no longer kids that are afraid of the boogie man, it’s the kids that have become the boogie man. Even if the kid in the movie isn’t the boogie man himself per se, they are still used as metaphysical representation through the film built around the boogie man. In the words of my best friend, and self proclaimed “horror-buff” William: “You don’t trust kids in films, and you especially don’t trust them in horror films.”

So here are the top 5 scariest kids according to a guy that wouldn’t hesitate to punch ‘em in the face if cornered by them.
#5. The kid from Ju-on (The Grudge
This kid is creepy in a number of ways. First of all he looks like I did when I was that age which led to some serious questions lined up for my parents (which were never fully answered). NEVERTHELESS – this kid called by some “Cat Boy” never does anything harmful, but is a good example of how the director chooses to use him to amplify the atmosphere, while also serves the purpose of The Grudge’s narrative. This kid’s claim to fame came during a TV commercial in which he passes down twice in the same elevator while yelling like a cat! Buffy slain Vampires, but this is a whole new level of crazy. Also, what makes this kid bizarre is that he isn’t wearing any clothes except I guess a samurai diaper or something. Either way, this kid is number five. Deal with it! 


#4. The little boy from Pet Cemetery
Oh the little dead boy from Pet Cemetery. For those of you who don't remember this movie, the little kid dies, and his father learns that if he buries the little boy in the, you guessed it “Pet Cemetery” the little boy would come back to life. HOLD IT RIGHT THERE – what parent in their right mind would want to bring back a dead kid? A father who still needs to claim dependants on IRS tax returns - that’s who! I mean what other reason is there??. Anyway, the kid comes back to life and of course there is something “wrong with him” – yeah, he’s fucking dead, and probably confused, and it’s also nap time. No wonder he’s a little out of hand dealing with him. Well the little fucker grabs a scalpel and starts running amok through the house slicing people’s tendons along the way, while his hair is always nicely combed. This is why experts say you should put up gates when your child starts to learn how to walk, run or kill. 


#3. Damien from The Omen 
This little kid is scary but is still a walking magnificent pimp cup. Look at that suit, look at that hat – how could you not envy this kid’s Barney suits game? He has a face only the devil could love. The effectiveness about this kid is that, like the little girl in poltergeist – there is a complexity with this kid where looks can be deceiving. He looks so cute and innocent on one hand, but then he is a fucked up little lord fourtneroy of inferno daycare proportions. This kid has the swag of P. Diddy mixed with Snoop Dogg’s permed press, making groupies fall off rooftops, because they got caught up in his demonic hype beast shine. 


#2. Linda Blair from The Exorcist 
Linda “MuthaFuckin” Blair: She is on this list not so much on her acting (which was misrepresented at the time by a best supporting actress nomination. It was actually Mercedes McCambridge that did all of the harrowing voice acting, that I can still hear to this day) as much as it was the physical performance and the special effects that came with it. Scenes from the movie are iconic, with most of them searing back to the bedroom where Blair’s Reagan was trapped. One can only imagine the great Max Von Sydow say “I’m out” and “I played chess with the devil." We get glimpses of her prior to the “obsession possession” (btw great song by Hall and Oates) but it’s the possessed Reagan that still intimidates. She didn’t sleep walk the role and it was her going through enormous physical stress to sell the lip synch, the possession and the realty itself overall. She was so good in this, that she was typecast; never having the talent to disassociate from the role ever again, something that our little buddy, Daniel Radcliffe, is combating with as we speak.


#1. The Grady twins from The Shining 
Come play with us Danny...we can be friends forever...and ever...and ever – I get it girls, settle down, and the answer is um...no. I’m good. I’m going to continue talking to my best friend, Mr. Finger. This goes down as number one for many reasons of the kid/horror movie trope that I laid out earlier, but I will reiterate. Here we have a kid with supernatural powers (Danny) against two kid girls (Grady twins) in which both are dealing with the same deck of age cards. Naturally we want to protect Danny, as he is innocent and sweet, fresh with the 70s standard issue mop top haircut that all little boys had. Danny has powers but we don’t know which kind. We first see the twins in the beginning in the rec room holding hands and facing Danny as if they want to be friends. Danny doesn’t feel so good about this encounter. Kids naturally have an immediate fascination with other children. Kubrick heightens the moment by telling us that Danny is the only child and will be cabin-fevered to death by boredom in the traitorous hotel his father signed the family up for. Additionally, the moment lends itself to the famous deathly encounter where Danny traverses on his little tri-cycle and runs smack dab into their little miss easy bake oven of a death party, which Danny crashes. The scene doesn’t need to be repeated as we have all seen it, but it does bear that similar theme of – what’s more scarier than one fucked up thing? Make a second and make sure it’s an identical copy. Two is not better than one in this circumstance. Long story short: The twins are thrilling, weird and unexplainable to even Danny, and shit! He has the shining and is still scared, so what are the chances for the rest of us surviving this duplicity death by horribly but intentionally made “meetcute.” Put a fork in it Kubrick, we’re fucking done. 
 
 
CINEMA PONTIFICATION:
- the gchat sessions -

This Week, Audy and Elvin discuss the brawny John Wick, if there is a franchise forming and its place upon action films.
Also they discuss how the box office wasn't receptive to John Wick, and how that might not that bad as you think. 

 Audy:  “Yeah, I’m thinking I’m back” - John muthafuckin wick homey, so how we do we feel about the movie?

 Elvin:  Man..Can i get a prequel and a sequel?

Audy:  At the same time lol - what did you think about the movie?

Elvin:  I’m going to give it 3 and a quarter solid stars and hell yeah..im making a small deduction for being a little short on time and so bad ass that I wanted more

Audy:  What did you like about it man, specifically?

Elvin:  first, the music really added to the story..I mean it’s not Hans Zimmer level, but it worked perfect for the story second, there really wasn’t a whole lot of dialogue but what was there was perfect mix of serious and humor like they just acted without words and it said more than if they were speaking

and the action..Damn if i was writing a tagline, it would be “Neo finally came to the real world”

Audy:  Man I wholeheartedly agree

I give it 3.0 stars and a fuck yeah - this is a walking & talking “Esquire Magazine” action film - I mean how banging was the Club scene with the song beats synced up with him blastin’ off dudes faces?

 Elvin:  fuck yes man reminded me a bit of that scene in the second matrix where they are about to go into the club

Audy:  You know I'm a bigger fan of second Matrix than most people, it’s much better than people give its credit for I really loved the humor and self awareness

Elvin:  Exactly my point..yeah..like I said I really want a prequel because there seemed to be so much mystery about the group and their rules and procedures and the Continental

Audy:  LOL, I mean my man went fucking H.A.M. cuz they killed his fucking dog!!

Elvin:  Its like my man shorty died (fine ass Brigette Moynihan) and then in two days you steal his car and kill his dog..best parts of the movie were when people were like you did you know what.. you did and to who?..even the Russian kids dad was like oh fuck

Audy Yeah - that is what also separated this movie than others - it was the workmanlike day to day energy you see, like the real business decisions and world you have to abide by - the code if you will. The bad guys were scared of Wick, but they still had a job to do its usually the other way around where is the good guy afraid of the bad guys but, not this time

 Elvin:  Yeah..like Russian dude was torn he didn’t want to give up his son but he didn’t want to feel that repercussions..

Audy:  The Russian dude was funny as a muthafucker he had me dying in the whole film

What didn't you like about it man?

Elvin:  honestly..only real thing was just that it was short for an action movie..

Audy yeah - It was fine as far as the length because I could tell taht cause Stunt Doubles were the directors of this, and the script was real basic, which was fine - What did you think of Keanu? Considering his line of work recently?

 Elvin:  Definitely the best thing he has done in years..I kinda liked the Man of Tai Chi he did, 47 Ronin was just not that good..but he def needs to do more things like this..guess he part of the over 50 club of badassness with Denzel and Liam

Audy:  Basically, what worked in this film with him, the material?

Elvin:  I think it drew from his fighting skill, stuff he learned in Matrix..probably some of the stuff he has done the past few years when he was mostly MIA

Audy:  Well it’s never the action that is in question with Keanu - It’s that when directors ask more from him to emote, you are not going to get an effective Keanu. I loved him in this movie because he was essentially a man with no name - cept for his is John Wick. I mean he reminded me of those early Clint Eastwood movies archetype the silent Cowboy, says little with his words, but speaks volumes with his actions what do you think?

Elvin:  oh i agree..the strong silent kind of character..i definitely picked up early on he was going to speak few words but carry a big ass whooping stick

Audy:  right keep him limited emotionally but let his stoic-ness, if that's a word, play off the comedy and the players around him.

What did you think of the other people like Dafoe, our buddy Alfie Allen from GOT etc

Elvin:  it was a pretty well rounded cast..basically everyone was someone i knew..not really super mega stars but all played their parts perfectly

Audy:  I love Ian McShane and Defoe

Elvin:  yes..i give Defoe my MVP I did think he was gonna try to sell out his boy but then you see he really had his back..at least one person value friendship above money..oh and i also love how the movie just ends, not with a tease like oh we want to do a sequel..but fuck I want more john wick

Audy:  Dafoe was good, he was Defoe, but it’s not only his character that made his role worth it, it was what it represented, him McShane, Iguzamo all of them even the guy from those insurance commercials, it makes sense cause the movie didn't take its message seriously, as it took the action. My MVP is the father he was brilliant

Elvin:  yeah he had a lot of balls..especially at the end, like did you really think you were gonna win a one on one battle with John with nothing more than a knife

Audy:  Right it was like come-on and I'm not mad at the lack of a quality opponent because moves were done in a real time reality -  So why didn't anyone see this movie you think?

Elvin:  well I think Keanu has been out the mainstream for a bit..

Audy But it’s not like Keanu is a complete stranger, yes he had dipped since Matrix - but that can't be it. This movie, like Edge of Tomorrow deserved better don't you think?

Elvin:  I do think so especially with its rotten tomato rating maybe word of mouth will help

definitely exceeded my expectation

Audy:  true, I feel we are at a shift in moviegoers where the millenlienal generation is now dominating box office receipts. And everything now is Franchise driven especially with Superheroes - I feel people want more of a guaranteed thing nowadays. Do you agree with that man?

Elvin:  True it’s all about getting good numbers and getting repeat business..but i am seeing more of a trend this fall with movies that are lower budget with big name stars that are killing it lower more profitable films should be the new trend - like Birdman I want to see alot

Audy: Yeah saw Birdman. Birdman is an arthouse movie that conceits as a big budget film of the very genre is destroys critically in the film of commercialism v. true art

I feel with Wick man, one hand it saddens me cause I like to see people watch good movie's compared to the bullshit 'The Judge' with Robert Downey but then another part makes me feel like I'm in this cool underground, skull and crossbones club that exclusively supports and knows about only Wick you know?

Elvin:  Yeah true that

Audy:  So where do you think Wick will stand in the action genre say in five years, what is this movie's legacy?

Elvin:  box office numbers I don’t think it’s gonna do too much higher in the US..maybe one of those that makes more money overseas..but perhaps it gets life when it hits dvd..gains a cult following

Audy:  I won't say this is Raid Redemption but pretty damn close man so what do you give it ultimately?

Elvin:  I’ll stick with my 3 1/4  absolutely hell yeah..please movie gods give us more wick

Audy:  I'm going to give it a 3 out of 4 "SICK WICKS" and a hell yeah
 
 
DR. WHO: SEASON 8, EPISODES 1 - 8 RECAP
Sorry miss, heaven must wait.

written by Jermaine Lowery

Hello I’m the Doctor.
Dr. Who? That is the question burned into the minds of Dr. Who fans across the world!  With the onset of season 8, we are introduced to yet another regeneration of the ancient Time Lord, played by Peter Capaldi. With each regeneration, the Doctor is faced with the enigma of himself, and often asks - “Who am  I?” “What kind of man am I?” Capaldi brings a sense of darkness to forefront that his predecessors only revealed in very small doses. If I had to sum this Doctor up in one word, it would be deliberate. The fluff of Doctor’s past has blown away as this Doctor means business, and does what he must to get things done. You may not want to be standing in his way.

Armed with two hearts, a sonic screwdriver, and angry eyebrows that can open bottle caps, the Doctor is accompanied by his fashionable companion, Clara Oswald, portrayed by Jenna Coleman. Together they set off through all of time and space using brilliance to overcome catastrophic situations without dying.  It’s tougher than it sounds.  Season 8 does not disappoint taking us through the journey of learning to love a new Doctor,  while enjoying the spacecapades he and Clara endure. Yes I said spacecapades, moving on. 

Keywords:
Intentional, emotional, perplexing, morally ambiguous, intense, brilliant.

The Good:
The mystery surrounding the Doctor
The  show’s divergence away from the normal cast of characters
Character development of the new, no nonsense Doctor
Creative plots and exciting  delivery

The Uncomfortable:
The Doctor’s overbearing, calculating nature
The unfamiliar tension between Dr. Who and Clara
Clara’s delicate balance between life with the Doctor and her new love interest Danny Pink

The TARDIS Ride:
This week brought the 8th episode of the 8th season of Dr. Who. Our new Doctor has stumbled into dinosaurs, robots, Daleks, more robots, fear itself, bank robberies, Clara’s school, the moon, and mummies. That’s a lot to take in while still looking for your moral compass, but Capaldi does so in a fashion that’s all his own. Spinning around in the TARDIS and flashing the red-lining of his fancy suit jacket, the Doctor plays each moment like another move on the chessboard.  Sacrificial pawns are all around and we are introduced to a concept new to Doctor Who… the afterlife in heaven. We are also left wondering, who is this mysterious woman in heaven to greet everyone, and what string connects these seemingly random events from one adventure to the next - and just who is pulling it?

Episode 1 - Deep Breath
A disoriented Doctor and a confused Clara appear in England after being coughed up by a startled T-Rex. The Doctor is greeted by some old friends, Madame Vastra, her wife Jenny, and the pride of the Sontaran Empire, Strax. Having just regenerated the Doctor is in desperate need of rest. After waking and finding the dinosaur he promised to save burst into flames, the Doctor moves to solve the case.  Robots who have been repairing themselves with human and dinosaur parts for millions of years surface as the key to the Doctor’s new puzzle. A glimpse of the Doctor’s cold, calculating self, forged over the past 2,000 years peeks through the cracks when he utters the words, “I have a horrible feeling I’m going to have to kill you” with his drink in hand. The storyline also lightly touched on the tumultuous inner conflict of the Doctor that asks, after you’ve replaced the parts so many times, is there anything left of the original? That is what we will find out as the season unfolds. 

Clara, with a little help from the previous Doctor and a firm pep talk from Lady Vastra, begins to find it in her heart to trust this new Doctor. As trust is a long term task, Clara is having a difficult time letting go of the past and accepting the possibility that the Doctor’s change has left any part of who he was before. The Doctor isn’t making it any easier… he’s Scottish!

Episode 2 - Into the Dalek
Into the Dalek shows the doctor in a role that he seldom embraces, a medical doctor. His patient also happens to be his worst enemy, a Dalek. On the brink of death, the Dalek spouts his words of hatred, as they always do; though this Dalek shared a hatred all too familiar to the Doctor, a hatred of the Daleks. Unable to resist a good puzzle, the distrustful Doctor agreed to be miniaturized and enter the Dalek that begs so desperately to be healed. The Doctor continues to wonder if he is a good man as he flies to the rescue of his worst enemy.  If asking a man to take on a task like this isn’t a test of his character and heart(s), I don’t know what is. Unfortunately, the same rules don’t apply to a Time Lord, so the question remains unanswered. The Doctor is driven deeper into the mystery of himself when he is deemed to be a good Dalek by the healed Dalek. Equipped with a unique connection to the Doctor and knowledge of the true depths of his hatred for the very creature he has saved, one must take this statement as one from a valid source. While the Doctor and his brows try to figure themselves out, Clara is introduced to her new love interest, Danny Pink, a retired soldier turned school teacher. Knowing how the Doctor despises soldiers, there are sure to be interesting times to come.

Episode 3 - Robot of Sherwood
At the request of Clara, the Doctor seeks out Robin Hood while adamantl insisting that he doesn’t exist. Like Stella, the Doctor is getting his groove back as he defeats the legendary Robin Hood with a spoon, not a spork, a spoon. Robin Hood and the Doctor don’t play very well together as they are easily captured by the Sheriff of Nottingham and his fleet of gold stealing robots, with lasers. It becomes clear that the Doctor, in all his accomplishments, in all his brilliance, doesn’t believe in heroes and legends, because he is still uncertain about himself. Fortunately for him, Clara believes in legends and heroes and is able kick the Doctor back into hero mode where he belongs. A spoon!

Episode 4 - Listen
Faced with a being that is always present, but never seen, the Doctor and Clara attempt to unravel a mystery for the ages. The Doctor asks the question that if there was a being that was always present, and never seen, what would it do? He receives his answer - listen.

Juggling travel with the Doctor and dates with Mr. Pink, Clara finds herself in a difficult situation time and time again. Using Clara’s timeline to chase this unseen terror, Clara gets a glimpse into her future family tree as well as a part of the Doctor’s past that has been well hidden over the years. Diverging from the saving a planet, or universe, this unseen enemy, hidden, listening, proves to be a personal demon of the Doctor. Clara’s presence presents itself to be invaluable in putting this enemy to rest, for now.

Episode 5 - Time Heist
As if we don’t already suspect the man, the Doctor finds himself leading a group, including Clara, in a bank robbery. What would make the Doctor agree to rob a bank? The answer to this remains a mystery until tail end of the episode. The time heist begins with the Doctor and Clara sitting at a table with their memories erased and a clear plan to rob a bank. The bank is armed with the ultimate security system that is able to sense guilt. “Soup anyone?” The rag tag team that the Doctor leads each discover what unique talents they bring to the heist. Motivated and led by the last child of Gallifrey sans TARDIS, this adventure begins in mystery and ends in A-HA!.   

Episode 6 - The Caretaker
Clara arrives to work to find that her school has hired a new caretaker, John Smith, the famous alias of the Doctor. Seeing the Doctor at her school, she thinks the worst, alien invasion, hideous monster, and yes... she’s correct. Though this episode has crazy mechanical alien technology, it’s not what makes this story special. The double life that Clara has been leading between the Doctor and Danny come to a head. Unable to hide it any longer, Clara must reveal her true relationship to Danny, the soldier turned teacher.  Danny doesn’t take to secrecy too well. She also reveals Danny to the Doctor, who returns the favor with scorn and contempt, "a soldier." In their climactic confrontation, Danny delivers some pretty harsh words to the Doctor in an attempt to let Clara see his true nature. With everyone’s relationships being put to the test, the final outcome of what has begun here is uncertain.

Episode 7 - Kill the Moon
Now he’s gone too far. After insulting one of Clara’s students to the point where she may need therapy, like Amy Pond, the Doctor sets out to make things right. A trip to the moon anyone? The seemingly harmless field trip turns into an event that will mold mankind’s very future. Should we kill the moon? Left with an astronaut, a school teacher, a scared teen, and 100 tons of explosives to make that decision, we shall soon find our answer. The Doctor pulls a disappearing act leaving the female trio to live, or die, with the decision they make. Not cool Doctor, not cool. After a season of being treated like an abused caretaker, Clara makes a tough, emotional decision about her relationship with the Doctor.

Episode 8 - Mummy On the Orient Express
Ah the Orient Express, wait, it’s in space? The Doctor and Clara take a relaxing ride on the Orient Express of the future, until people begin to die. As if the weeping angels weren't creepy enough, this creature can only be seen by the person it’s going to kill. An ancient mummy finds its way onto the luxurious Orient Express and the Doctor is forced to figure out its secrets to put a band-aid on the killing. The Doctor reminds us that the time for nonsense is over as he coldly watches the bodies pile up while he searches for his answers.  Can he really be this bad, or is he that good? 

Conclusion:
The Doctor, a name chosen by the Time Lord to stand for healer may take on a new meaning when Capaldi is finished. He embraces all of the scientific knowledge, calculation, and brilliance required to be the best, but his bedside manner resembles that of Dr. Gregory House, without his pills. Not knowing where the Doctor is going with his new demeanor is a source of excitement, wonder, and intensity that is very welcomed by many Dr. Who fans. I believe the Doctor’s kind nature is still in there somewhere, possibly on vacation while he is setting things right in the universe. We have to keep watching to be sure. 

 
 
TRAILER BREAKDOWN: FOCUS
Will Smith’s comeback movie and the sexual over-reliance of it.

written by Audy Elliott
The ironic thing about this film titled ‘Focus' is just how unfocused the presentation of the trailer is arranged in this stylistic double-crossed underworld, Romeo and Juliet, heartache. Does the mood want to be sardonically funny? Does it want to be “Sinatra” jazzy cool? Or does it want to be a madcap embodiment of a cautionary titled track of one of Rick Ross’ faux-luxurious crime capers? We don’t know with this movie but it’s apparent that certain scenes are drenched in clichéd angst hip-hop “ride or die chick” thug life misguided allusions. What we do know is that Will Smith is back and this is the role he intends to come crashing through movie aisles with. As always he looks slick, wearing clean esquire photo shoot suits, and extra fitted muscle shirts while exuding the right amount of Michael Bay arrogance. Focus is a con movie in which Margot Robbie flaunts her Australian goods with an eagerness to prove that there is a brain in there somewhere behind the high voltage of her blonde off-centered looks. A lot of the setup, jokes and conflict is played off of Robbie’s clichéd pin-up presence. There is one scene where an associate lustfully-verbal daps Smith, inquiring if indeed Will is sleeping with her – He claims he not, and she confirms it by actually being in the back seat during the misogynistic inquiry. It’s not as if Robbie can be mad. It’s clearly this sex kitten trait that got her in Will’s backseat to begin with. The ultimate question is, can Smith keep it under control as smoothly as he sells himself to be? It’s clear that chemistry sizzles with her and any unsuspecting B Actor she shares the screen with in this trailer: as she knows what she possesses and how to use it in getting Smith to lapdog scene to scene after her with the least questions asked. This role doesn’t challenge Smith as he can sleepwalk backwards with it after taking a whole bottle of unisoms and still courageously “heroing” his way to the end, due to his professional talent alone. 

So apparently, Smith is given an apprenticeship to Robbie’s character for her junior girl scout long-con merit badge. The movie is obvious in the way that you can’t trust anyone and regardless of what your trade, craft, or expertise in criminal activities warn you against, Smith just can’t say no to the “unicorn in the forest” white woman at the pool party winking back to him in the black Prada bikini. This marks Robbie’s opportunity to show people that she is more than a real life Barbie by aligning herself with a real life Ken Doll: Smith, (who seems to work on his physique more than his filmography) by throwing herself to play off of his chemistry and bankability as a follow up from Scorsese. Ff she can’t be taken seriously as an actress, at least she is “name fucking” the right people for her resume. In one scene it appears that she uses the same “cat-daddy” voice to Smith at the dinner table as she used to DiCaprio in Wolf of Wall Street. If you blink fast you could be confused that both movies merged with the same character. She is just about one note as you can get in a limited amount of trailer time. This is not Sharon Stone we are talking about here. Stone’s sexuality came from her understanding how to harness it, and defy it by daring the audience to not believe in it. Stone owned it. Robbie’s sexuality comes pre-packaged with no assembly required thus objectifying her attractiveness more than making it elemental to the plot and movie itself in an understated way of not having to say it, repeat it and force it. Unfortunately the trailer can’t move on until we are browbeaten into believe it.

The lens, and film of the movie look artificially good but only because its copycat good. There isn’t anything pervasive or tangible that screams anything other than glorified music video, nor are we given an opportunity to see Smith in anything else other than the sensitive, macho, tough, gentleman that emphasizes the “OH HELL NAW” caricature. Again he looks good in designer sunglasses being stoically chiseled like John Shaft’s millennial nephew, but do you expect Smith to show you anything else? The movie is delivered with hokey-narcissism in the vein of a smiley emoticon burnout.  

We all waited for Will Smith to come back, but this looks less than overwhelming but more than underwhelming – it’s perfectly just whelming. I would like to see Smith challenge himself in a way where immediately you know he gave a shit as an artist and would turn off the movie star auto pilot template. Smith at this point in his career, is the marketing “brand” everyman instead of a self-challenged crafted actor. If it fits within his brand, and template, he will say yes. If it’s too controversial he will denounce it with a politician’s impunity like his backwards ass excuse for turning down Django. In the past there were three guarantees: death, taxes and a big Will Smith movie opening weekend. Shit, thank god we can still count on death and taxes. I find it hard to believe that audiences will accept this movie to make it number one opening weekend, not with Will Smith sheepishly busting his ass over a caper plotted film. The long-con is on him with the self indulgent hopes this hackneyed premise, one dimensional co-star and ho-hum trailer will exceed its delusional expectations. Unfortunately, this time he doesn’t have any aliens or robots to play off nor the luxury of Martin Lawrence "yahooing" shared scenes to a disarranged hysteria. Now he’s got the pop-tart co-star doe eyeing her way into his belt buckle to less than promising cinematic contrived influences of better movies.
0:06  |  Opening overhead shot. Never seen that before, how original.

0:29  |  Establishing shot of the city, just to make sure we know which anonymous city we're in.

0:31  |  Camera shot of Will Smith’s back as he is walking (aka Shady Bad Guy camera trick #714)

1:11  |  Self reverent, Will Smith wants us all to know that he is still aware of his blackness and he reaches for his card at the bar.

1:27  |  Second camera shot of Will Smith’s back shot in a white suit and brightly lit hallway, implication of a character “turn." He is no longer an antagonist but going to be the good guy now.

1:46  |   Will looks longingly up the stairs at Margot Robbie... the Feels… ooooh the feels!! 

 
 
ENTERTAINMENT REWIND
The need... the need for your pop culture news feed.

MONDAY
Steve Carrell joins Gore Verbinski thriller. Excellent news about Carrell, a very good actor who doesn't get enough talent for his dramatic work. Verbinski has a new thriller coming out without much information attached to it except that it's termed as a paranoid thriller.

Purge 3 is in the works because part two worked and had a strong performance of new badass heartthrob, Frank Grillo. Part three is coming and frankly, can’t get here quick enough.

New mom ScarJo is going to do a passion project drama based on someone named Edith Wharton (yawn) where she plays a Midwesterner trying to make it in the bright lights and big city of NYC. Coming to Sony Pictures TV and seen by no one.

TUESDAY
If there is no Downey, there is no Iron Man. Downey is Iron Man and right now in the middle of negotiations to renew his contract of the watershed avenger. Earlier in the week, Downey hints that things were positive, then later in the week declared that things were off. All I know is someone better kiss his self congratulatory ass, 'cause this man jump started Marvel studios bankability and that is the truth! Anyone who tells you otherwise is semi-stupid.

The corpse formally known as Jeff Goldblum, stated earlier this week that a sequel for Independence day is “brewing” like a watered down bitter pot of shitty morning coffee. Roland Emmerich stated that as of right now it’s not looking as if Will Smith will be a part of it since his price is out of the range of level of movies Emmerich terribly makes. Look – No Smith, no movie. Goldblum is not the one.

WEDNESDAY
WB’s TV hero series, The Flash, whiplashed ratings coming in big its debut episode.

 Heisenberg is starring in a thriller called The infiltrator or, a movie where people declare Heisenberg is in another movie.

Jay Leno is coming back to TV. He is looking to stab someone in the back and steal their show about cars. He hasn’t found that person yet ,or that show, but he has the set of knives ready. All I’m saying is beware to those fugly british blokes from Top Gear.

NERD ALERT! Holy “I’m going to buy these but don’t know what to do with them” Batman! USPS has a set of limited edition Batman stamps out. Anything with Batman is a gift that keeps on giving. 

THURSDAY
EW explains why the Secret Wars movie or cinematic saga could be too much. I say you can never have enough Secret Wars, the seminal most visionary story arc of Marvel in the late 80’s. Oh...you know what EW, SHUT UP!! Just give the movie a “B+” like everything else that comes out.

Waka Flocka arrested for gun possession in Atlanta. In other news, water makes you wet. Plus, if Waka Flocka Flameout walked by you on a street would you even recognize him? Remember the good old days when DMX, would raise shit and we would laugh it off and still buy his CDs? Oh man, hip hop, where did you go?

Lebron and his new show on Starz. Um ok – I can’t wait for the day when basketball players are no longer “crossovers meet conglomerates” celebrities and focus on their defense, not their twitter handle and brand.

This is a good move by Archer. ISIS is really running some foul shit out there that is making Obama’s head spin. Never one to see creative artistic control changed, but this is a good move.

FRIDAY
One of SNL’s underrated players, Jan Hooks, died. She was the precursor to Maya Rudolph, Ana Gasteyer and Tina Fey and made it ok to be laughed with but still keep femininity sexy without spoofing it. R.I.P.

Lena Dunham can do know wrong. If she wanted to make the Bible into an HBO half an hour short set in Brooklyn it would be on point. Mostly everyone in the old testament comes with hipster beards anyways.

Super Troopers 2 is happening. Why not, the first one was funny for 3/4ths of the movie with a bizarre end. Still enjoyable, and its not like any of these guys amounted to shit outside of there little known sophomoric stunted humor. Basically, I can’t wait. Don’t Judge.

Clooney shut down nerd world with his handsomeness. He is doing promo’s for Brad Bird’s tomorrowland. Oh did I mention “Clooney” and “handsomeness”? Just checking.

This is the movie that created itself. Lego Batman is getting his own movie. Really though, The Lego Movie was all about Will Arnett and the character, so couldn’t we say this is a sequel of some sorts? Either way, Lego, you are some smart MOFOS.

 

 

 
 
CINEMA RETROSPECTIVE: GRAVITY
One girl's professed love for the great unknown.

written by Jessica Elliott


Just about this time last year, I was sitting in a darkened movie theater waiting for “Gravity” to start. Feelings of excitement, intrigue and inspiration wafted over me as I anxiously hoped the movie would live up to the promise the trailers advertised. To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect so I imagined a movie that was extremely artistic in composition and colors because, as my husband pointed out, the masterful Alfonso Cuarón was directing. For 91 minutes, gripping my arm rests was mandatory and blinking was for the weak. I walked out of the movie theater extremely impressed and emotionally spent. Naturally, the blu-ray was bought, immediately watched, and then rewatched. And when it started showing on cable? You better believe I was there front and center. For me, it was the best film I had seen in 2013. The movie fit my own personal criteria of excellence: simple storyline, perfect acting, and superb directing.

A year later, I continue to be reeled in by Gravity’s pull (see what I did there?). It is a layered film of intense emotion and beauty. Let’s talk about Cuarón’s camera movement – that fluidity capturing the weightless sway from Bullock to Clooney to the aircrafts and earth; the graphic quality of each scene and perfect composition; and the guts Cuarón had to fill the entire screen with a black sky peppered with stars and Bullock floating into it – WHAT?! My designer brain always pulses with excitement at the graphical perfection of this scene. Casting Sandra Bullock was a great choice, too. With roles for strong women probably being the most sought after in Hollywood, I firmly believe that Bullock was the only one capable of portraying the vulnerability and determination much needed for Ryan Stone. Plus, there’s relateability to Bullock as a person I am attracted to, allowing me to believe completely in every emotion she relays on screen as Stone. On top of all that, she defies all odds because she’s just fucking smart! She uses her head and figures out how to survive – a trait that most women have when push comes to shove. Thus, the relateability factor goes up tenfold.

This segues into my next point – the emotion of the movie. Stone experiences loss, fear, determination, hope and acceptance in the span of an hour and a half. This movie is a roller coaster but it all happens in a way that feels very natural. Every time I watch this movie, I never feel like I’m being rushed or waiting for a more convincing human emotion. Everything feels legit and that’s also a testament to Bullock’s acting. I can’t leave out Steven Price, either. His score heightened the haunting and nervous feeling that fueled the movie. Perfection.

Here’s the biggest difference I noticed from the first and second viewing to right now – I always tear up towards the end when Stone is on the last leg of her journey home, when it’s basically do or die time. She says, “Either I, make it down there in one piece and I have one hell of a story to tell. Or I burn up in the next ten minutes. Either way whichever way, no harm no foul. ‘Cause either way, it’ll be one hell of a ride. I’m ready.” Whenever she says, “I’m ready” I have to visibly hold back tears. Every. Single. Time. With each viewing of the movie, it gets harder to refrain from crying (and apparently, even if I just type those words, my tear ducts are welling up). After everything Stone goes thru in this movie, for her to accept her fate, whatever that might be, is one of the most courageous things I have ever seen and it’s beautiful. In a weird way, I feel like, “Fuck, if Stone can make it back home after almost dying in space, I can get my act together and [insert trivial goal here].” It sounds silly, I know, but the message of survival and strength is universal and relatable and completely drew me in, hook, line and sinker. This is the biggest reason the movie still holds up a year later. Despite the surroundings, the feelings and turmoil she faces are very much real and ones that many of the viewers face on a daily basis. At the heart, Gravity is about being courageous.

When I told my husband my reaction to the film and how much stronger it gets each time I watch the movie, he told me that I could be reacting to Gravity’s female empowerment. I never thought about it that way. However, if it were Clooney in Bullock’s place, I can’t say it would be as powerful as it is with a female lead. I don’t know many people who would watch this movie in the same way I did or the same level of investment. It’s one of those movies that will refrain from being branded or part of a certain culture or era. I know with the next viewing, I’ll find another genius camera trick, another spoken line in the script that moves me, and another part of the score I didn’t notice before. How often can you say a love for a specific movie grows? Usually, that love turns into appreciation and enters a plateau-like land. But Gravity is unlike those films. It will continue to age beautifully with each passing year.
 
 
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE REPORT
of October 5, 2014

“Not so Gone Girl” –Annabelle has her lifeless doll eyes set on the Buzzy matrimonial mood killer. 

This past weekend, two movies were independently operating hurriedly at separate times and space velocity but ultimately ended up simultaneous fighting over the same gross receipts. Fincher’s brilliant adaptation, Gone Girl of Gillian Flynn’s novel of the same name – is the thundercats homing beacon in all of its buzzy soap box ecstasy whose demographics are women with ‘Anthropologie’ mail catalogs who casually sip their apple martinis while waiting to find their Ben Affleck-y, good looking, 3L Law Graduate. This weekend came to a feverishly middle-aged pitch. From all accounts, Gone Girl presents everything needed in a film to be an engrossing domestic violence gasser: smarmy, lunkheaded, emotionally terse Affleck, a crystalline Rosamund Pike,the weaseley devoid slickness of Neil Patrick Harris along with Tyler Perry doing his best “I can do other things, white people, besides the whole shucking and jiving shtick like Larry Johnson’s Grandmama." Fincher’s movie has a great but manipulative trailer, tight plot, and principals converted from the book (the author wrote the screenplay); couple that with the director’s unique ability to craft a genuine overrated, sharp, angled thriller, that looks like it was inspired from a Bang and Olufsen showroom. Gone Girl will continue to fascinate audiences in the upcoming weeks.

In addition, the movie has a lot of intrigue with it, and is now part of the “have you read the book before/yet" conversation. Furthermore, critics that had written their reviews recently needed to preface the spoilers, so as not to give away any crucial plot points even though you can’t talk about the movie without divulging said information for it’s the information that is the movie. You can’t separate the two! You would have an easier time splitting the atom than writing a review for Gone Girl without touching purposefully, or accidentally the carefully placed clues. Gone Girl harbors a cohesion of people that had read the book, and know what happens, while also desperately wanting to tell you but can’t – just as much as you want to find out before the movie but can’t. It’s like Fincher birthed a fucked up cinematic speakeasy when discussing the movie. The trailer and promo spots look absolutely predictable, manipulated and a white guilt sensational, as Pike’s character declares quite slithery in her breathy voice, “I’m afraid this man might kill me," while also saying at the same time schizophrenically “I may just disappear." Whatever she does, let’s hope she can make up her mind while Affleck is distracted putting on the cape getting ready to "street sweep” gothamites.

Unfortunately the box office couldn’t make up its mind either. Annabelle, the scary yet complacent raggedy Ann doll (if raggedy Ann had finely interwoven braids and rouge made in blood on its cheekbones) came in a close second at the box office at $37.2 million, second only to Gone Girl's" $38 million. For Annabelle it was mission accomplished as it was made for only $6.5 million whereas Gone Girl was made for $61 million. It’s not all bad news for the Real Housewives of Murder Framing: Rated “R” dramas generally take time, and with its inherent strong reviews, glossy direction, and a legitimate Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted screenplay dark horse come Oscar season, Gone Girl will out distance the doll, that doesn’t do anything but smile you to death. 

Annabelle, for intents of purposes, sold its premise on a doll - that’s right, a fucking doll! It received only 24% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is a certifiable stinker that will make 15-year-olds on their first date all over the country happy. However hardcore fans will continue to turn out, just like they did this week, but it won’t see opening day dollars again and with other movies being released and also with Gone Girl still lingering like a vacant half-assed Ben Affleck trying to hide the murder weapon at a frantic but deliriously pace with the help of the ghost of Colonel Mustard. Annabelle’s strength is the doll itself. It’s truly creepy and terrifying at the same time. It’s smiling but it’s a crooked smile. It’s an inanimate object that can talk by demonstrating meta-physical syntax without having to break its chasm look. She may be scary for what she represents, which is possession, and horror itself, but you walk away gagging at the smell of mothballs on her. Annabelle may kill you, and you won’t do anything about it because you are a waste of her time as she is a waste of yours.

Denzel Washington’s The Equalizer dropped off as anticipated after last weekend’s number one debut. It grossed $19 million making a two week total $64.5 million, which is nothing to shake a disgruntled old man fist at! The Boxtrolls is holding strong at four with $12.4 (32.5) with the solid The Maze Runner grossing $12 million making its total a whopping $73.9!! All in all, a healthy box office for the past week. It surprised me that Annabelle grosses made it a close of a margin it did against Gone Girl. I seriously doubt that will happen again this upcoming week – Gone Girl is the type of movie you see a second time, willingly. In comparison Annabelle is what you sneak into at the theaters, ninja-warrior style, after you’ve just seen Gone Girl.

Top five films of the weekend:
  1. Gone Girl — $38 million 
  2. Annabelle — $37.2 million
  3. The Equalizer — $19 million ($64.5 million domestic total)
  4. The Boxtrolls — $12.4 million ($32.5 million domestic total)
  5. The Maze Runner — $12 million ($73.9 million domestic total)


Source: Entertainment Weekly www.ew.com 
 
 
ENTERTAINMENT REWIND
The need... the need for your pop culture news feed.
MONDAY
Big Paul T. Anderson fan here and so glad to see he is collaborating with Phoenix after the studious ‘The Master.’ This looks to be one of Anderson’s funnier movies, with Josh Brolin making the most impact in an already impactful trailer.

Amanda Bynes is up to no good per usual. Could be worse, she could be coming out with ‘She’s the Man 2,’ which is plausible due to reports of a “disheveled appearance” when pulled over. This girl is a white hot mess!

So, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon is getting a sequel, titled ‘Green Dragon’.

Fincher acknowledged that he had minor talks to become involved in Star Wars Episode 7. To the shock of no one, Fincher was looking for a darker tone, and from the point of view of the droids, with their internment, as essential space opera slavery.

William Shatner decided that travel commercials weren’t enough to stay relevant, now he is trying his hand at cooking shows. After that, he will be fixing up and repairing old broken down starship vessels on the DIY Network, that are landlocked in the backyards of suburbia everywhere titled “This Old Enterprise.”

Johnson is starring in the "Jansen Directive" as a secret agent. This sounds like the right project for him to come in third again at the box office opening weekend. 

TUESDAY
During a recent Q&A Larry David, mentions that he feels after 8 seasons, since 2011, he doesn’t have enough ideas to warrant another season of Curb Your enth Let me be the judge of that. You stick to being my Meta George Castanza. 

Yes, the Tetris movie is a real thing.. But I will wait to the Dr. Mario game is released as a trilogy, because folks, honestly THAT’S the film we are all waiting for. 

WEDNESDAY
Everyone loves Tom Hanks and everyone loves ‘BIG’ the movie, so everyone should love the TV show in production with some guy that isn't Tom Hanks. Makes sense to me. Actually, this might not be a bad idea for FOX, cause Jack Bauer isn’t getting any younger, and may now need TWO days to save the world instead of one.

FOR THE FUCKERY OF FUCK'S SAKE! Why? I’m sure Stephanie Meyer is somewhere purchasing a new island.

THURSDAY
Speaking of Netflix forcibly taking souls like fat kids taking more than their share of Halloween candy –  signed Adam Sandler's his dumb ass and his dumb ass movies to a four picture deal that no one but analyst insiders give a shit about. Thank you for taking him, and bigger thank you if you don’t bring him back. 

The long awaited and highly anticipated zombie parody flick, ‘Zombieland’ is finally getting its sequel.

More turnover at Greendale. Shirley is leaving, and the show will never be the same as more and more of its members are dropping off the wayside of this once brilliant, but flawed not-so-mainstreamed show.

This, in my humble opinion, would have been Marvel’s best character casting since Downey Jr. for Iron Man. It felt right, looked right and smelled so right, that we all knew it wasn’t meant to be.

FRIDAY
Gus Fring is bringing his delicious bucket of chicken to feed all of those starving 99 cents a day kids in the Maze Runner. With the fight of child malnourishment vanquished, we can see Giancarlo Esposito back on the big screen, where he belongs, suavely fucking up somebody’s maze sprinting groove in the sequel.

Why the hell is "Now You See Me" getting a part 2? And why is Daniel Radcliffe attached to it?! Was the first one that great or made that much money where we all need this in our lives before we all pass on?

The Rock confirmed proudly that he will be in the new Baywatch movie because obviously the Rock can do no wrong when it comes to choosing roles. Oh Rock, I hope one of your mindless eye candy to be co-stars knows CPR because after this, your career is going to need resuscitation. 
 
 
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE REPORT
of September 28, 2014

Maze Runner and Boxtrolls get nailed gunned to the head by Denzel’s grown ass man swag!!! 

When it comes to action movies, audiences still root for the older ass-kicking cosmonaut, because who are we fooling, we all still look up to our fathers to get us out of trouble one way or another: like needing their help to change a flat-tire, fixing a busted pipe in the house to giving permission to borrow the car while simultaneously patting us on the head. The point is we still look to older men to lead the way and take care of us. Expendables, finally expended, Liam Neeson, is more bankable and reliable now than 10 years ago because if you are trapped in troubling eurotrash emergencies, he is the wooden fire hatchet behind glass you break, and Denzel is just status quo'ing with is own brand of AARP justice. Washington’s ‘The Equalizer’ opened to a justifiable $35 million dollar domestic box weekend opening. This is the stuff of late September box offices are made of - kinetic fandom, built in audience, track record of previous successful commercial collaborations with Fuqua, were going to astronomically rally around this movie. I was wrong but not mistaken. This is the likeable dumb bro movie that guys who think Fast and Furious 5 is not good enough. Who else could had pulled this movie off? Not anyone younger than a baby boomer. Denzel did what he came to do and that is pick up where he left off in the highly flammable ‘Man on Fire’. We’ve seen him in this role, but weren’t clamoring for it. Reinterpretation is the name of the game with reboots, especially television ones. I dare anyone of any consequence after the Reagan era to truly tell me they know what the original source was beyond the show’s entitled ‘moniker’. This movie is two thirds Denzel’s paunchy reliability and one third a cool ass name. Didn’t matter what the movie is about, he is about to “equalize” it the hell out if it!

This opening pleased Sony Pictures very much, as we know as sequel is on its way, but don’t worry - Denzel will be two years older, so there should be twice as much implausible ratcheted up action. ‘Maze Runner’, the young adult, post-apocalyptic summer camp acid held steady coming in second at $17.5 million dollars, which gives it a domestic total of a little over $58 million. Not bad actually, but not good enough to take out Denzel in a café at night. The movie made its dent had time in the glade’s bankable sun. Maze Runner didn’t sprint around the competition in M.C. Escher-like circles, but a planned sequel is going to hit our theaters in two years, forcibly to hold its place among audiences Hunger game’s doggiebag stuffed tween leftovers.

Boxtrolls? I don’t even know what that is, but when Traci Morgan and Toni Collette (who I respect very much) are your lead voices, your movie will suffer. There is no box office “come hitherness” with either actor and when a movie is called “Boxtrolls” it makes me want to hide in a box and seal myself up with packing tape. Kids come out in droves for movies, and typically slays the adult competition like a little pixilated buzzsaw with parent permission slip included. However, this movie sounds like an April Fool’s day present for someone you really don’t like. It did come out at $17.25 million for animation studio LAIKA which also previously released the peculiar ‘Coraline’ and disappointing stylish ‘Paranorman’. I refuse to believe that ‘Boxtrolls’ is better than those movies, and just write off the $17.25 million to inflation. Star studded Tina Fey ‘This is Where I Leave You’ came in fourth at $7 million and just a drop of 39 percent from the previous weeks earnings.  And lastly, ‘Dolphin Tale 2: Electric Boogaloo’ finished 5th at $4.8 million too much (what the hell is wrong with people???). Anyways the moral of the story here is that Denzel is still Denzel, but also attribute the relative opening weekend success to a lazy competition, excellent marketing but more importantly, the right calendar date. Also, right now is the in-between season for Hollywood where we are exposed to the sleepy little known titles that may surprise or ultimately end up as a Netflix recommendation. We are not yet to the awards season where quality will match quantity, but we finally shook off the Guardians of the Galaxy roofied hangover fog. Kudos, Denzel, be proud of your opening because it’s nothing but a Fleetwood Mac "Landslide" from here on down for your gross dollars. You will not “Equalize” the box office next week. Here are the top five in order for the weekend ending on September 28, 2014.

Top five films of the weekend:
  1. The Equalizer — $35 million
  2. The Maze Runner — $17.5 million
  3. The Boxtrolls — $17.25 million
  4. This is Where I Leave You — $7 million
  5. Dolphin Tale 2 — $4.8 million

Source: Entertainment Weekly www.ew.com

 
 
TRAILER BREAKDOWN: INTERSTELLAR
Nolan's time and space epic that no one is talking about.
TEN... NINE… EIGHT… SEVEN… SIX… FIVE... A looming countdown is the connective spine at the heart of the trailer adding to the anticipation of the characters launching into the great unknown frantically gripped with a mix of fear and wonderment. Han Zimmer’s score, per usual soars and gives the trailer a feeling of not aspiring to reach the stars but actually able to do so. Love is the most apparent theme that drives McConaughey to become a heartlanded, yahoo, earnest astronaut, as he promises to his young daughter that he is leaving, and he is leaving to prove his love for her. You get the usual wonderful placement and blocking with Nolan’s IMAX compositions with strong side to side camera action. Anne Hathaway, ditched the catskin and night goggles, to be the female concerning monotone voice of reason. Predicated by all of this is that there seems to be strong parallels of flashbacks in McConaughey’s reality merging with Chastain’s adult longing real timeline. 

So, with the demonstration of tremendous thundering cinematic power placed into the trailer, and the brand name of Nolan, why is no one excited or anticipating this movie? This is Christopher Nolan we are talking about here. He is box office money. Big Box Office money. He set the IMAX world on its over-leansed ears and practically reinvented what direction you could go with superheroes. But for some reason or another a collective meh is transcribed with a casual malaise. Interstellar is impressive, but at a cost - we expected it to be. Are we at the point with Nolan’s films that because he doesn’t have to prove anything, we don’t have to prove our anticipation with film nerd gusto? I don’t think so, but I do think with this particular movie, based upon its limited news, and purposefully crafted trailers that seemed creatively contractually bound by narrative non-disclosure agreements, there is a groundswell of people clutching dollar bills. I honestly still feel this movie will do well and by all accounts be another solid to very good movie feather in Nolan’s cap. It doesn’t look like Inception as much as it’s looking like Prestige. And I own Prestige, but it didn’t light the world of fire. To me, after all, he is commandeering at certain filmmaking level where no matter what he does, his fans will turn out, and honestly how many directors now a days can pull that feat off? 

I for one like the trailer and feel it gives me enough but not the whole plot. And to their credit, I say "HA-ZA" with movie trailers practically giving you all the details in 2 – 3 minute spots and some with four different trailers coming out in succession on Youtube; it’s shamefully to the point where you could faintly put together a jigsaw puzzle to the actual critical details of a movie. Interstellar has a lot of promise that will obviously transcends themes, just as much as Hathaway’s didactic speech about love. However, I hope we are not at the point of taking Nolan for granted, because his filmmaking deserves much more than that: regardless of whether we don’t know or care to know what retread space ideas could be explored, or possibly won’t be, in this movie, I’m buckling my safety belt. Nolan is Nolan and that is good enough for me and definitely more than good enough for anybody else.
0:33  |  You get the first shot of the ship, which looks cool and expected. No Xenomorph’s were killed in the making of this movie!!    

1:04  |  What is that??? Three things stood out to me: 1) It looks like a Black guy not named Morgan Freeman is in this film 2) It looks like a liquid sleeping chamber perhaps? 3) It’s a black guy in a liquid sleeping chamber. I hope it doesn’t foreshadow a death cause we got to keep out minority characters alive, Nolan! 

1:18  |  McConaughey’s character says to a little girl, “I love you” who I assume is his daughter, and is Jessica Chastain’s younger self.

1:44  |  The first time you see an actual planet that the crew lands on. The ice planet looks vivid under Nolan’s IMAX camera, but my gut is telling me there is danger with this planet than meets the eye. This IS Nolan we are talking about after all.     

2:07  |  Topher Grace sighting?? He still alive and making films??? Damn... :mind blown: