When you create a series of films as magical as the Pixar universe, you’re going to get your share of fans trying to puzzle your history out. That’s always been the case with movies like Toy Story and Monsters, Inc. Since each movie often features easter eggs that hint at the interconnected nature of each film, people have gone to great lengths to try and understand the elements of the movies not explicitly stated onscreen. Take, for instance, this past week’s video about the tragic story of Andy’s father in Toy Story. According to the host , Woody actually belonged to Andy’s father, who sadly passed away from complications due to polio before the first film. The video caught the internet by storm and was widely circulated over the weekend by most major entertainment sites.
Does anyone else think that Dwayne Johnson’s blockbuster movies are starting to blur together a little bit? Given that Johnson tends to play variations of the same character — the tough-as-nails and compassionate ex-military whatever — while things blow up around him, what matters most is the type of thing that’s blowing up. Sometimes they’re cars (The Fate of the Furious), sometimes parts of California (San Andreas), and sometimes monsters (Rampage). Don’t worry, though, because Johnson will really show off his range with his next film: this time, it’s a building that blows up. Oscar, please!
Look, I’m no stranger to college acapella groups. When I was an undergraduate, a ragtag group of choir kids — myself most definitely included — organized the first men’s acapella group in the modern history of the university, and a quick Google search shows that the group is still alive and well to this day (no, I won’t tell you the name of the university or the name of the ensemble, so don’t bother asking). So am I pretty much as cool and influential as the Bellas in the Pitch Perfect movie series? Why, yes. I’d like to think so, yes.
Alright, I’m going to be completely honest: when I saw that Power Rangers director Dean Isrealite had commented on his film’s PG-13 rating, I thought we were in for another round of confusing comments about the need for R-rated summer movies. Given the worldwide success of Deadpool, we’ve seen plenty of studios succumb to the siren song of mature adaptations. Warner Bros. has openly pledged to make more R-rated DC animated movies. 20th Century Fox will reportedly push for an R-rating with its upcoming Venom cinematic universe. Even Marvel, the current lead dog of superhero films, has felt compelled to weigh in on the issue (spoiler alert: it’s not going to happen). So sure, why not add Power Rangers to the mix?
This has been a good weekend for Planet of the Apes fans. Not only did we get our first look at some of the early buzz for the final film in the trilogy — buzz that suggest that War for the Planet of the Apes might just be the best and bleakest movie in the series yet — we’ve also been treated to a special Father’s Day trailer that explores the universal truths of fathers, sons, and legacy. Sentient apes or human, we’re all just trying to leave behind a better world for our children.
For months now, we’ve assumed that any possible Spider-Man spinoffs would exist in a world separate from that of Spider-Man: Homecoming. With Sony and Marvel weaving a complicated web of licensed properties and revenue sharing, the safe bet was that Sony would choose to build up its own parallel world independent of Marvel’s, giving them complete ownership of those characters and their events without having to plug into a larger established canon. This seemed to be confirmed by Marvel boss Kevin Feige earlier this week, when Feige said in no uncertain terms that Venom would not be invited to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Disappointing for some, curious to others, but on the surface, it did make sense.
If you only look at the surface numbers, this was a pretty predictable week at the box office. Wonder Woman did well, The Mummy did not, and everything else shook out accordingly. That being said, there’s some pretty interesting narratives emerging in the how and why of this weekend’s box office report. Let’s take a look at the rankings as of Sunday afternoon and dive into some of the specifics:
As excited as we are for this summer’s Atomic Blonde — you can read our own glowing review from this year’s SxSW if you still need a gentle nudge — you’d think we’d be all over every new piece of footage from the movie. But it seems a few clips managed to slip through our fingers this past week, so I’m taking this opportunity to bring you back up to speed. Two new Atomic Blonde clips, each themed to a piece of period-appropriate music? Plenty of Charlize Theron kicking [expletive] and taking names? Yeah, that’s definitely worth circling back a little bit for those of you who may have missed these clips.
Look, we all know that there’s a moment for every movie. Sometimes you want to watch the challenging documentary about a group of people struggling against a broken system; sometimes you want to watch the award-winning foreign film that exposes injustices in another country. And sometimes, just sometimes, you want to watch the movie where Antonio Banderas plays a mall cop who shoots a bunch of bad guys in the head. We may not be able to help you with the first two, but today? Today we’ve got enough Banderas goodness to make your Sunday just a little brighter.
Is Tom Hardy doing OK? I mean, financially? After years of alternating between prestige films (The Revenant, Dunkirk) and more idiosyncratic projects (Legend, The Drop), Hardy seems to have accepted a streak of surprisingly mainstream blockbuster roles. After being attached to Ubisoft’s video game adaptation Splinter Cell for several years, Hardy recently shocked fans by accepting the title role in Sony’s Venom spinoff. And now, perhaps most surprising of all, is the rumor that Hardy is very close to signing on for the role of Jafar in Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake. At this point, maybe we should create a GoFundMe for whatever gambling debt Hardy seems to have racked up.
There are two diverging narratives surrounding Paul Feig’s 2016 Ghostbusters remake. On the one hand, fans of the original films were irrationally upset to see Hollywood give their (suddenly untouchable) films an all-female cast. For them, the film was a deserved flop. On the other hand, countless stories were written about a new generation of female Ghostbusters fans who were thrilled to see the movie reach out to new audiences. These fans believe the movie did more than enough to warrant sequels. And while the box office numbers and critical scores didn’t signal the slam-dunk hit that most fans were looking for, it sounds like the producers side in the second camp, with Ivan Reitman promising earlier this year that he was hard at work weaving together a cohesive universe from the games, movies, and animated films.
Rejoice, parents: you’ll soon have a new Christmas movie to add to your family’s holiday rotation. If your family was anything like my own, you probably grew tired of placating screaming nieces and nephews with the same ratty DVD copies of A Christmas Story, Elf, or Home Alone. That makes any new holiday movie — regardless of quality — a welcome change of pace. Arthur Christmas? Fine. Rise of the Guardians? It’ll do in a pinch. Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale? Maybe save that one for the time in the evening when the uncles break out the adults-only eggnog. But a Melissa McCarthy Christmas comedy? That could be quite a boon for tired family members everywhere.
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