April 27, 2013 § Leave a comment
Pain and Gain is exactly the kind of movie that stands to lose the most money due to illegal download. Its core audience makes up the core illegal download populace. I bet Pain & Gain will be at the top of the most downloaded movie of the year list, as well as most money lost due to illegal downloading.
Michael Bay had to have been aware of this during the process. There is no way this was an overlooked error. Some sort of missed calculation? It cost just 26 million, that’s what it cost to storyboard Transformers. No this was a gift from the benevolent Michael Bay. To his fan base, the dudes and bros just like him. So while they sit at home on their computers watching his movie, he doesn’t have to worry about how much money hes losing on the front end. This film solidifies him with his base, and they will support him in the primaries, Transformers 4, by being first in line at the midnight showing at every IMAX 3D, digital 3D, or regular 2D screen in the country.
This was a brilliant move by Bay and it keeps him sharp and gives him a more rounded character. It will be interesting to see how the physicality of this Pain and Gain affects how he tackles Transformers 4. There have already been reports quoting him saying as much. Suggesting that there would be something different about the next film in the saga.
I think this weak weekend says as much about Bay as it does about his fans. Not only his fans but the movie going public in general. They want big loud action fests, on the best speakers and on the best screens. They want to be wowed, and it looks like they will be this summer. However, the fact that this small film by Bay is not doing well right now can mean two things, the first being that the average movie goer can tell the difference between a small movie that they feel will be entertaining to them or not. We have seen this time and time again, this year and last, and in 2011 and every year before that. People go see the movies that are marketed in such a way that it appeals to their sensibilities, and not so much which actor happens to be starring in it.
This also means that this kind of action dark comedy genre film is better left to the ranks of horror, and that means cheaper is better. I like the 5 to 15 mil range for something like this if it comes from a studio. The right indie project could do big numbers in this genre.
But that’s kind of the point. This is an indie for Michael Bay. And how much it grosses doesn’t matter, It’s just a heavily priced commercial for Michael Bay’s brand, along with its two stars, Wahlberg’s main fan base his action movie dudes, and The Rock’s main fan base is Wrestling fans. I think that’s a cross section of fan base, Wrestling, Action Movie, Michael Bay movies, and illegal downloaders. The studio takes a hit, but they will recoup in the long run, they always do, and it’s a gift to Bay for the billions.
– W.B. Preston
- Musclebound Mayhem In Pain & Gain (eventful.com)
- Download Pain & Gain Movie US Digital Millennium Online Streaming (brownkatty8.wordpress.com)
- Weekend Box Office: “Pain” shows few gains, “Big Wedding” is a bust (rogersmovienation.com)
- Pain and Gain Review: A Roided-Out Crime Movie (thehollywoodgossip.com)
- Movie Review: Pain and Gain (cwtampa.cbslocal.com)
- ‘Pain & Gain’ Reviews: Should You See Mark Wahlberg On Steroids? (hollywoodlife.com)
- Dwayne Johnson and Mark Wahlberg Talk PAIN AND GAIN, G.I. JOE 3, and the Prospect of a G.I. JOE/ TRANSFORMERS Crossover (collider.com)
- Michael Bay’s ‘Pain & Gain’ – What Did You Think? (slashfilm.com)
- Download Pain & Gain Movie Online Hd/dvd/ipod format Online Streaming (oblivion2013.wordpress.com)
- Movie Review: Pain and Gain (cwpittsburgh.cbslocal.com)
February 10, 2013 § Leave a comment
I was reading Mendelson’s Memos as I often do in the mornings and I came across this article he wrote about the mega-conglomerate media corporations swallowing up any and all lucrative properties. While this is certainly a strange turn of events, they are not without precedent. Though the entertainment monopolies were not the first to fall under the ire of trust busting U.S. Ant-Trust Laws, the studios were eventually forced to give up ownership of theaters and cinemas across the country. These laws were put in place to keep one corporation from cornering the market and putting all the wealth into the hands of a wealthy few. In this case the wealthy few are the Big Media Corporations Disney and Warner. In his article Mendelson suggests a possible dystopian future in which Disney and Warner own the rights to all of the major tentpole properties including the likes of Star Wars, Marvel, D.C., Harry Potter with the eventual acquisition of Transformers, Star Trek, Mission Impossible and a few other titles owned by Paramount, Fox, Sony, and Universal.
If his prediction comes to pass it would mean the further homogenization ad assimilation of what once was geek culture. The obliteration of what is already a retreating idea. What once was ostracized and niche has become main stream and passé. If now you are seen wearing a Wolverine shirt you are some how hip, ironic, or cool. When I was in college wearing the exact same shirt would have made you a nerd, geek, or loser. It no longer matters. That’s the point. It doesn’t matter if you like Star Wars or Star Trek, Batman or Iron Man, Captain Jack or Sherlock Holmes. All of those movies are written, directed, or produced by the same couple guys, and ushered through one of two studios, with Star Trek on its way to Disney according to Mr. Mendelson.
What’s it all mean? A geek by definition is an outsider, if what made you a geek is no longer outside of the main stream do you immediately lose your geek status? Unfortunately not. What makes us geeks, well geeks is that we seek out new and ever more obscure media to consume. So while the entirety of my geeky childhood is ripped from my room and put on display for all to see all I can do is sigh and give a half-hearted I told you so. I mean, I’m not sure if any of the other geeks feel this way, but I’ve been reading, watching, and playing these stories for 20 years. The rest of you are just now showing up. SO let Disney and Warner buy the rest of my childhood toys. Perhaps it will encourage the other studios to give some new talent the opportunity to create new heroes,and put new stories up on the screen.
- Scott Mendelson: What Will the Next Wave of Blockbusters Bring? What 2013 Release Will Be the Next Star Wars/Batman/Harry Potter? (huffingtonpost.com)
- Would Disney Make a Film Starring Jar Jar Binks? (mainstreetops.com)
- Is Disney A Better Buy Than Time Warner And CBS? (seekingalpha.com)
January 25, 2013 § 1 Comment
For those of you that have not heard the rumors, and I can not imagine that there are many people reading this who have not, JJ Abrams has been selected to helm the first installment of the new Star Wars Trilogy. Lens flares a side for a moment, I can not honestly say that I am surprised. I knew they would choose some one established with a strong foundation in Hollywood and entertainment, and, with regards to George Lucas, comparatively young. JJ is experienced and hungry for what has proved elusive in his relatively short feature film career, a huge money-making, crowd pleasing, all four quadrants, billion dollar hit. The aims of this joint venture between Disney and Abram seem to jive in terms of final product. He is a commercial filmmaker, Star Wars is a commercial product, I get it. But I suppose I was hoping for a little more innovation. Something to really make us say wow. And by ‘us’ I mean we in the geek community who follow these kinds of insider behind the scenes comings and goings. The majority of the people who will watch this film, the very same people Disney and all other major studios hope to market to, have no idea who JJ Abrams is. We, the film/sci-fi/ fantasy/ comic book fans are the only ones that actually care who makes this film.
We care because damn it we love it. It’s more than just entertainment, or a product. We love it for different reasons. Some love it because of the light sabres, some find the heroics thrilling, others love the characters, and others love the comedy. Some find the morals and philosophies (especially in the original trilogy) to be thought-provoking and worthy of further exploration outside of the films themselves. For whatever reason we love Star Wars, it has nothing to do with money.
So where does that leave us? Michael Arndt is writing it, which is a cause for celebration, and JJ, supposedly, is going to direct. I guess my only concern is will there be the kind of moments in the film that will make us love again. Obviously these films are for children and merchandising is a large driving force behind these, and most, blockbusters. But what is largely lost when you start with a toy and try to build a story or franchise or film around that toy, is soul. You get this soulless, film by committee, corporate, scientific, algorithmic, commercial masquerading as a film. There is no heart or warmth in a story whose characters were never loved by their creator. Just a prepackaged, previsualized, simulation, the story, the characters, the setting don’t matter because the kid watching his favorite cartoon is going to have the toy flashed in his eyes a million times before the movie premiers. Then he’s gonna go to the store and his mom is gonna buy it.
And I like JJ, it’s a fine choice, I’m sure he loves Star Wars just as much as the rest of us. He will deliver a fun adventurous rollicking movie, that we will all enjoy. But will it have soul? Will it have life? Will it have heart? I still hope so.
- JJ Abrams to Direct Next Star Wars Movie (newser.com)
- J.J. Abrams Directing ‘Star Wars: Episode 7′? (screenrant.com)
- J.J. Abrams: ‘Star Wars’ Director? (justjared.com)
- J.J. Abrams to direct next Star Wars film (thetimes.co.uk)
- J.J. Abrams will reportedly direct the next ‘Star Wars’ film (theverge.com)
- ArtsBeat: J.J. Abrams to Direct Next ‘Star Wars’ Movie (artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Reports: JJ Abrams to direct next ‘Star Wars’ (sacbee.com)
- Film: Newswire: Today in Star Wars rumors: J.J. Abrams is directing Star Wars after all (avclub.com)
- Report: J.J. Abrams Will Direct The Next Star Wars [UPDATE] (kotaku.com)
- J.J. Abrams to direct next ‘Star Wars’ (bizjournals.com)
September 22, 2012 § Leave a comment
So I just finished watching The Hunger Games on Blu Ray. This is my first time watching this film, and I have never read any of the books. I went into the film with zero expectations, I was not overly hyped for the film, nor was I expecting anything bad. What I got was a competently made, poorly written film. I’m not sure what all the fuss is about with this movie. Perhaps there is something in the book that I am missing, but I should not have to read the book to enjoy the movie. I’m still wondering what Katniss Everdeen‘s motivations are, as we never get any insight into who she is as a character. Yeah ok, she loves her sister and is willing to die for her, got that, but beyond this simplistic expression of inner thought she’s basically a blank slate. This has been a problem with all of these novel adaptations turned blockbusters. Whether it’s Potter or that Twilight girl, they never seem to be able to express themselves in any human fashion.
I’m sitting here watching this film intently, and I can’t tell whether or not she likes this Peeta kid or not. He tells the world he has a crush on her, she attacks him and then they sit quietly by a window? If two teenagers who supposedly have feeling for each other, are spending what could be their last night together, you’re telling me they wouldn’t be all over each other? It’s just implausible relationship after another, with no buildup or pay off. No one seems to have any chemistry with each other, except Katniss and Gale and we get all but 5 minutes of that relationship. And then we’re supposed to believe that Katniss and Rue have built up this relationship so strong and so powerful, that Katniss would risk her life on the battlefield trying to save and protect this girl? It’s all just so unbelievable and unearned. There is nothing throughout the ghastly two hours and twenty minutes that proves that any of these people should be likeable, should be rooted for, or should have relationships with each other, besides being coincidentally in the same movie. Its literally like, “Hi, I’m a person.” “Oh hello, I’m a person too.” “Now we have a relationship.”
And it’s not even like they tried to build these relationships and they just don’t work, there are zero attempts at showcasing any bonds between these characters, no human moments, no truths uncovered. Oh Peeta threw out some bread in the mud for Katniss to eat. Why was Katniss laying beneath that tree in the rain? She has a home and a mother. Utterly ridiculous. All of a sudden 4 or 5 of the tributes are in a pack and have decided not to kill each other? When did this happen? How did they come to this agreement? After they kill the rest of the tributes, how will they decide who dies next? Am I supposed to just take it on faith that these issues were squared away sometime during this blood soaked battle? How do people get away with scripts like these? By the time they are in that cave, which admittedly is the best relationship building scene in the film, it’s completely unbelievable because no foundation for this level of affection between them has been built.
I give this movie 1 out of 5 Rows, for being filled with implausible relationships, and ridiculous leaps in plot without informing the viewer of reason or purpose. Just because a movie is for young adults, it does not give the writers license to produce junk. This is a first draft script at best, perhaps even a detailed outline of a film, before all the nuance and depth of character has been added to it. FRONT ROW
- How to Get Katniss Everdeen’s Look For Halloween (bellasugar.com)
- Learn How to Create Katniss’s Iconic Hunger Games Braid (bellasugar.com)
- ‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ First Look: Jennifer Lawrence Back as Katniss (EXCLUSIVE PHOTOS) (celebuzz.com)
- Easy Halloween Costume Idea: The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen (bellasugar.com)
- ‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ Starts Filming – First Pics (hollywoodlife.com)
- ‘Hunger Games’ success mind-blowing for Hutcherson (todayonline.com)
- ‘Hunger Games’ sequel moves NC off stage (newsobserver.com)
- ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ begins shooting in Georgia, before moving to Hawaii (insidemovies.ew.com)
- 101 Ways I Would Have Killed Katniss (adventureamigos.net)
- Jeffrey Wright – Jeffrey Wright Lands hunger Games Sequel – catching Fire – Role (contactmusic.com)
February 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
New Spider-Man trailer, with a few new scenes.
February 12, 2012 § Leave a comment
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