By: Sean Kelly, Caesar Martini, Brian Last and Rachel West
Summer may be months away, but in Hollywood it’s already hot, hot, hot! Join some of our regulars for some educated speculation as they weigh in on May’s big titles: Wolverine, Star Trek, Terminator, Angels and Demons, the return of Raimi, and more! What’s worth your while and what’s a waste? Enjoy the epicocity and start planning your May.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Man-crush you to death!
First, I have to say it is a shame that some idiot leaked an unfinished cut of this film to the net since it already has the challenge of revitalizing the X-Men series after the poor reception of the third film (which was actually an OK film). That said, all the footage I have seen seems to prove that this solo-adventure isn’t just the cheap cash-in that it initially seemed to be (though, as for that planned Magneto film…).
As a comic book fan/geek/collector, and closeted Hugh Jackman man-crush victim, I’m pretty much obligated to see this film. It doesn’t help that the trailer is hella awesome. I do have a few worries about it, namely that it seems to have every mutant ever created in it (Wolverine, Gambit, Sabretooth, White Queen, Cyclops, Blob, Maverick, and John Wraith, to name a few). Also, Sabretooth is played by Liev Schrieber, who is a fine actor but will not necessarily be fine at being a seven-foot-tall mutant, feral killing machine. Perhaps most worrisome is the fact that Will.I.Am is acting in this movie. I swear to God, if I hear anything resembling the word “Fergalicious,” I’m going to walk out, go home, and poop on my Black Eyed Peas records.
This fourth instalment of the X-Men Franchise tackles the complicated back story of Logan, A.K.A. James Howlett, A.K.A Wolverine – no easy task. The story also covers the Weapon X Project, and a slew of other characters that are being introduced in this origin story (Sabertooth, Deadpool, Cyclops, and Gambit). Too much on the plate?
Upon first viewing of the trailer, it looks like an interesting film with good action, and it looks like the director has a good handle on the character and the story. The X- Men franchise may just redeem itself for the sub par X3.
C'mon, they're like, 17!
I’ve been a “Trekkie” since childhood, so it’s a no-brainer. In an interesting bit of trivia, this will be the first Trek film to receive a summer release since Star Trek V: The Final Frontier twenty years ago. Trailers have proven to me that Trek is in very capable hands. Who knows, maybe this film will spark a reverse of the Star Trek series’ “even/odd” rule (especially considering the lukewarm reception Star Trek: Nemesis received).
A reimagining of the classic sci-fi series with an all-new, young and sexy cast. Star Trek is decent, but I was never a full-blown fan. I rarely watched The Next Generation (though I did think Deep Space Nine was a fantastic series and that it was horribly underrated). I have seen almost every movie in the theater, because, shit, it’s got spaceships and lasers. How am I not gonna go see that? The real reason I’m psyched for this flick, though, is the trailers. Other movie companies should take note, THIS is how you put together an awesome trailer.
As long as Kirk punches out every man he has a problem with and has sex with at least three babes (one of them alien), and Spock uses the word “illogical” before nerve pinching the shit out of someone, I don’t see how this could fail.
I’m deeply concerned here. I don’t consider myself a true Trekkie because I only enjoyed The Next Generation. And you know what the best episodes of TNG didn’t have? Laser fights, running around, and sex! TNG was about diplomacy. It was about testing our principles when we encounter cultures and customs that challenge our own. It was about negotiation and the triumph of tolerance.
I love me the Lost as much as the next man, but this movie here looks like a violent popcorn muncher, and much less than Star Trek could be. (Oh yeah, I’m totally still seeing it!)
Angels and Demons
Hanks minus mullet stands a chance!
The general consensus among people that read Dan Brown novels is that Angels and Demons was the better read, even though The Da Vinci Code was the popular one. I believe this is a less controversial story than the last one (though the crew was banned from filming in pretty much every religious location). Also, Tom Hanks has a more conventional haircut in this one.
Dr. Robert Langdon is called back into duty to investigate a murder victim branded with a suspicious mark. It turns out to be the mark of an ancient secret society known as the Illuminati. Langdon discovers a plot to kill four cardinals from the Roman Catholic church.
As for Angels and Demons I can say with confidence it will be a commercial success. It will attract a wide array of audiences, and whether they hated it or loved it, they will leave how they left The Da Vinci Code – in discussion. The Da Vinci Code left people talking about religion, and this will leave people talking about secret societies. It’s a topic of unlimited interest, and I think Ron Howard will top The Da Vinci Code here.
I bought into the Da Vinci Code hype, and when the movie didn’t deliver, I was disappointed that an action-packed book couldn’t translate well onto the big screen. Maybe it was the miscast Tom Hanks and his inappropriate mullet or Ron Howard’s lacklustre direction. This time, I’m hoping that Hanks’ and Howard’s sophomore efforts do justice to the (arguably) better prequel, Angels & Demons. Gone are the mullet and the irritating Audrey Tatou. Instead, we have the powerhouse supporting team of Ewan McGregor and Stellan Skarsgard, who should breathe life into their characters and provide for some exciting on-screen chemistry. Sure to be a box office monster amid a blockbuster-filled May.
The Brothers Bloom
It seems that forces beyond my control have been preventing me from seeing Rian Johnson’s follow-up to Brick ever since I tried to get a ticket for it at the Toronto Film Festival and it was sold out. The release date for this film has flopped around like a fish out of water, and I really hope I finally get the chance to see what looks like a fun caper film.
I caught this one at TIFF, and while the casting is bang-on and the story is original and entertaining, the movie lacks any punch to raise it above the position of an okay indie dramedy that you’ll probably forget about in a few months. The film suffers from a poor marketing campaign and a horrendous trailer that’s more likely to drive people away from the theatre than to it. The Brothers Bloom has counter-programming on its side as it competes at the box office with testosterone-filled action films, but this one’s really only worth a look at on DVD.
Jennifer Aniston irritates me. Okay, I have a long-standing and unnatural hatred for her that’s probably only marginally deserved. Her acting choices certainly aren’t doing much to win me over from Team Jolie in recent years. Based on the trailer, Aniston appears stiff and wooden next to Steve Zahn, who has had moments of real comic inspiration over the years, while Woody Harrelson peppers the film with an off-beat, “weird boyfriend” type of role. All those involved seem uncomfortably old for their roles, much like the recycled plot and lame jokes.
Is it time for Bale to do more than wham bam parts?
I still have yet to see the Terminator films (something that prevented me from seeing Terminator 3 a few years ago). However, this fourth film doesn’t look as reliant on the past history, since it now takes place during the war that the original films were all about preventing. Right now, this film is in the “maybe” department, but it does look exciting. Now, about that PG-13 rating the film is supposed to have…
Another film with a great trailer. I don’t see how anyone with a soul can watch giant Terminator robots kick the hell out of things and not want to see this film. Plus it’s got Christian Bale, who hasn’t turned in a bad performance yet, and Bryce Dallas Howard, who I may or may not be in love with (I am). Not to mention, with all the advancements we’re making with artificial intelligence and robotics these days, the threat of the robot apocalypse is looming ever closer, making Terminator: Salvation a relevant cautionary tale. You laugh, but we’ll see who’s laughing when the metal horde comes to process your brain-meat for lubricants.
Hey Wolverine, here’s another fourth instalment of a flagging franchise. In T4: Salvation Christian Bale plays John Connor in the future (2018 to be exact). Surprise, he’s still the one who is destined to lead the Human resistance against Skynet.
While we have everything we should for a good popcorn flick – action, guns and director McG - nothing in the trailer really blew me away or made me want to see it. The franchise is getting steadily further from James Cameron’s vision. There’s been Judgement Day, Rise of the Machines, and now Salvation - between these films we should either be saved or all killed, but they should stop dragging it out. Have we learned nothing from Rocky V, Die Hard 4, and Indy 4?
Drag Me to Hell
"Can we make the next Spidey also about a witch?"
Sam Raimi returns to horror! After spending most of the decade with the Spider-Man films, Sam Raimi decides to return to his roots before starting production on Spider-Man 4. While it is probably unlikely that the film will reach the cult status of The Evil Dead, it is at least nice that someone is making an original horror film in a world full of remakes (some of which Raimi produced).
Does it look good? No, not really, in your traditional definition of quality. But it is almost guaranteed to be skin-crawlingly frightening and bloody as director Sam Raimi leaves Spiderman behind to return to his roots as a horror auteur. Demons, curses, and, uh, Justin Long, come together in what seems to be your average young-girl-is-haunted-by-demonic-spirits movie. Certain to deliver chills and thrills, Drag Me to Hell (unfortunately only PG-13-rated scary) will be a devilishly good time.
Well, this is simple. It’s a Pixar movie. Can anyone name a Pixar movie that hasn’t been great? If you can, please meet me in the alley out back for your complementary groin-punching. Even my least favourite Pixar flicks (e.g. Cars) are on par, if not completely superior, to other CGI movies. Plus, hello, it’s in 3D! And 3D is AWESOME. This new generation of 3D films (Bolt, Coraline, The Jonas Brothers, Monsters v.s. Aliens) has been astounding and ridiculously fun to watch.