Category Archives: Movie Reviews

Blade Runner 2049 Delivers Box Office Oblivion

No good news seems to be coming out of the box office performance of Blade Runner 2049. The film opened with soft box office numbers. Fans and insiders tried to put a positive note on the weak opening. Perhaps the film would do much better overseas than it did in North American theaters. Maybe the feature would draw consistent numbers each week and build a following leading to eventual impressive numbers. All this wishful thinking turned out not to be rooted in the reality of the financial truth.

Blade Runner 2049 hasn’t even earned $100 million at the North American box office, which is horrible for a $150 million-budgeted film. Overseas, the film isn’t doing any business. The film failed miserably in China, a market that has often helped deliver tremendous ticket sales for films that did not necessarily do well elsewhere.

What makes all this so sad is the fact Blade Runner 20149 stands as an outstanding sequel. In terms of quality, this is an outstanding science-fiction film that brilliantly builds on the mysterious ending of the original 1982 film. Blade Runner 2049 came along at the wrong time. Few films seems to be connecting with audiences. Superhero films and the outlier Stephen King’s It did extremely well. A tremendous number of movies, sadly, underperformed. Quite a few films turned out to be massive box office flops. Even some truly excellent features performed poorly.

What is causing films such as Blade Runner 2049 to underperform? Competition from so many other forms of entertainment do keep people away from theaters. Blade Runner 2049 surely suffered from alternate media competition. The film, however, also couldn’t overcome the fact the audience interested in the sequel was comprised of only a small number of classic sci-fi movie fans.

Avengers: Infinity Wars will feature some unusual frienships

If new reports from Screenrant can be believed, it appears that Hulk is going to have a brand new friend in”Avengers: Infinity War”. It appears the green rage monster is going to become buddies with the furry raccoon looking rage monster in Rocket.

Excitement over the Marvel movie universe is ramping up thanks to “Thor: Ragnarok” being right around the corner. That excitement has led to more news about an upcoming movie, that’s still months away. Mark Ruffalo was recently talking about the continued evolution in the Marvel comics tales. Thor: Ragnarok showed a bit of a change in the way the character interacts with his teammates. The fact that there is even an understanding that he has teammates is something quite different for the Hulk.

Mark Ruffalo recently talked about how the green giant will find himself interacting with Rocket in a way that should be quite endearing to fans of the comic book franchise. “It’s a very funny relationship that the two of them have: First of all, it’s the biggest superhero and the smallest. Just keeping them in a frame together is a feat and hilarious in itself.”

One of the reasons the two might become an interesting pairing is because they have something in common when it comes to simply making the film. They are both done using CGI. That might make it easier to have them onscreen together the way Rocket and Groot have been paired up in Guardians of the Galaxy movies. The two are also similar in temperament. This could lead to rather hilarious hijinks. Members of the Marvel movies are quick to point out that while there has been comic relief in their movies, that never takes away from the overall enjoyment of those films. For now we’ll have to take Mark Ruffalo’s word for what it will look like, but we won’t have to wait that long to see the two on screen together in “Avengers: Infinity War.”

Marvel Director Supports DC’s Right to “Original Captain Marvel”

James Gunn, in his ongoing effort to bring peace between the warring tribes of comic book fans, has tweeted a defense of Shazam actor Zachary Levi.

Levi, who was announced to be playing a DC Extended Universe superhero last Friday, October 27, has been referring to his character as “the original Captain Marvel.” Some fans of Marvel Comics’ character of the same name have taken that as a subtle jab at them, as though he was calling their preferred captain less legitimate.

Enter Gunn, a Marvel director who has become extremely successful turning the relatively minor Guardians of the Galaxy property into two mega-hit films and mainstays of Marvel TV adaptations. He has lately been speaking up for fans of the two companies to put aside their differences, and for that cause, gave his own opinion about Levi’s comments on Twitter.

“Fan sites: @ZacharyLevi calling Shazam ‘the original Captain Marvel’ is not throwing shade at Marvel. He IS the original Captain Marvel,” he wrote.

The issue is a complicated one that draws on a lot of comic book history. The short version: Levi’s “original Captain Marvel,” Billy Batson, was created in 1941 by the now defunct Fawcett Comics, and purchased by DC Comics in 1972. In the meantime, however, the rights to the name had expired, and Marvel Comics snatched them up. Since then there have been several Marvel characters using the title, most recently Carol Danvers.

DC Comics is still allowed to call the Billy Batson character “Captain Marvel,” as long as they do not use the name in advertisements. It is unclear at this time if Levi will be called that in his film, but in any event, his comments could easily be taken as an attempt at clarification rather than an attempted insult.

A Smarter Hulk Appears in Thor: Ragnarok

The God of Thunder takes center stage in Thor: Ragnarok, but he does share the spotlight with another classic hero. The Incredible Hulk has been featured prominently in the commercials hyping the new Thor film. The Hulk isn’t the brutish beast of Avengers films. The Green Goliath speaks and shows he is a bit smarter than the lumbering, silent giant of previous film appearances.

Director Taika Waititi noted The Hulk was made “smarter” in order to make him more “engaging” in the film. Giving The Hulk the ability to speak allows for more interaction with Thor and other characters. There is only so much that can be done with a Hulk that limited in his ability to interact with others.

The silent version of The Hulk was not a Marvel Comics creation. It was the CBS Incredible Hulk television series that went with a non-speaking Hulk. The movies followed this concept. When The Hulk debuted in the early 1960’s, he not only spoke but came off as a calculating and sinister anti-hero. In time, The Hulk took on a child-like personality. Eventually, The Hulk returned to becoming a speaking, more adult character but without the air of a Mr. Hyde-style menace.

The possibility exists that The Hulk could steal quite a bit of Thor’s thunder in the new film. Even though both The Hulk and his alter ego Dr. Banner play supporting roles, they could overshadow the lead hero. Consider this ironic. For decades, Thor was barely a B-level hero in the Marvel Comics Universe while The Hulk was firmly A level. In the movies, things changes. Two disappointing solo films hurt The Hulk’s ability to carry a film. The two previous Thor films did well at the box office. The third film looks like it will outdraw every other entry in the trilogy.

Deadpool 2 Isn’t Your Regular Movie Sequel – T.J Miller

We can all agree that the Deadpool Franchise took off on a high note, and that’s why movie goers from all corners of the globe are eagerly waiting for the sequel. Deadpool 2, a protraction of Deadpool, is slated to hit theaters come the Summer of 2018. On the outside, everything seems to be running smoothly production-wise with the franchise retaining the Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese, the witty script writers of Deadpool.

This duo promises Deadpool lovers that the upcoming movie will be much funnier than the first one, which was undoubtedly one of the funniest superhero movies to have ever graced the big screen. They also promised a fair share of darkness and plot twists that fans aren’t expecting and therefore won’t see coming. Some fresh faces joining the cast of Leslie Uggams, Karan Soni, and the enigmatic Ryan Reynolds.

The trailer of Deadpool 2 was released a while back. And judging by the number of views and comments it has received, it goes without saying that more than a fair share of people is indeed waiting for its release. You can check out the adrenaline-induced trailer of the highly anticipated superhero movie by clicking here ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLeGWcVeIZ4 ).

Upon being interviewed, T.J. Miller went on to reveal that some characters will always be themselves even though the tempo, as well as storyline of the movie, will shift from the norm. He also promises that the movie is action packed and the fans should grab an extra bag of popcorn because the movie is riddled with nothing but exhilaration, from start to finish.

With 2017 almost coming to a close, we all look forward to summer 2018 hoping that it will bring nothing but the very best of action movies among them, Deadpool 2.

The Walking Dead Celebrates A Milestone

The Walking Dead’s season 8 premiere will mark a milestone. The debut episode will also be the 100th episode of the season. When the “zombie apocalypse” series first appeared on AMC, few expected it to flop. Horror fans definitely would have tuned in. The massive success of the series surely has taken everyone involved with it by surprise. The 100th episode truly is a monumental achievement.

The celebratory nature of the 100th episode is in the air at the San Diego Comic Convention. A banner honoring the 100th episode hangs at the convention for all to see.

The banner’s visuals are impressive. On the left side, images from earlier seasons are prominent. On the right side, the present and future of the series are depicted. In the middle, a proclamation about the 100th episode is joined by a simple “Thank you” to fans.

The series definitely is relying on the consistent approval of its long-time fans. Ratings have been dropping for the series, which is no real secret. While current ratings remain strong, the numbers are dropping. If the ratings continue to drop further, this could prove to be a very serious — if not disastrous — situation for the series.

The combination of poor pacing and an uptick in violence along with fewer zombies has been blamed for the series’ woes. Hopefully, all this will change in the next season. Really, changes do need to be made or else The Walking Dead probably won’t last on the AMC lineup for much longer.

Riverdale Gets A Season Two Premiere Date

The CW has announced its fall premiere dates, and Riverdale fans are in luck. No longer a midseason show like it was for its freshman season, Riverdale will be back on the network in October, though it is on the move.

 

The series, inspired by Archie comic books, aired on Thursdays during its inaugural season. It followed Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) and friends Betty (Lili Reinhart), Veronica (Camila Mendes), and Jughead (Cole Sprouse) in the small town of Riverdale after it was rocked by the unexpected death of one of it teenagers. The mystery of just who killed him played out over 13 episodes and brought to light student-teacher affairs, incestuous relationships, and financial scandals, not to mention another attempted murder in the season finale.

 

For its sophomore set, it’s moving to Wednesdays at 8PM. Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead will return for more soapy small town mysteries on October 11.

 

Showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa has been giving fans hints at what’s to come by releasing episode titles on his twitter account while the show’s team is back at work in the writers’ room. Their first foray back into television will be “Chapter Fourteen: A Kiss Before Dying,” picking up not long after the season one finale left off. That will be followed up by “Chapter Fifteen: Nighthawks.” The titles continue the method of naming the episodes after classic films that the writers have used since the pilot, so fans will have plenty of fun dissecting those episode titles over the next few months to see if they can learn anything about what’s next for the Riverdale residents.

 

Riverdale fans can currently relive season one on Netflix, where it became available to stream in its entirety in May.

 

 

Time After Time Fades Away

The modern television version of Time After Time is a remake of a classic science-fiction film from 1979. The TV show shares an additional connection, a dubious one, with entertainment from the 1970’s. The TV was canceled after six episodes aired. 12 episodes were filmed for the first season. The remaining six won’t be given an airing on the ABC network.

 

The original 1979 film featured an intriguing premise. H.G. Wells invents a time machine in order to travel into the future to chase Jack the Ripper. The evil Ripper plans on continuing his murderous ways in the United States of the 20th century. The film was quite enjoyable and did well at the box office. After nearly 40 years of building a small cult following, the movie was resurrected as a TV show. The result were underwhelming and akin, ironically, to failed TV shows of the 1970’s.

 

In the 1970’s, competition for TV viewers was fierce. A show that did very poorly in the ratings would be shelved quickly. The networks would often cut their losses by removing a television show from the prime time schedule even if original episodes had yet to be aired. Quick cancellations are not uncommon in the present day, but this very abrupt cancellation of Time After Time is somewhat shocking. The show was pulling in 2.2 million viewers. Fear the Walking Dead draws about as many viewers on AMC. Yet, the zombie apocalypse show is deemed a hit and is hyped for an upcoming third season.

 

Time After Time, of course, is born of a different genre and has a different fan base. Zombie and action-oriented science-fiction fans are going to buy tie-in merchandise related to their favorite programs. A lower-rated show can still generate revenue. Time After Time is more of a melodramatic time travel series. No one is going to produce a video game based on the program.

 

The unaired episodes of Time After Time are sure to turn up on home video or streaming. The mere fact the DVD collection contains unaired episodes should appeal to sci-fans and collectors.

 

Kong: Skull Island Does “Fine” at the Global Box Office

The box office receipts are in for Kong: Skull Island. The film performed in a decent manner. Ticket sales, however, were not great. Above average would be the best way to sum up the movie’s impact with audiences around the world.

 

The new King Kong film, a prequel of sorts, was produced by the same company that remade Godzilla to massive success. Legendary Pictures, working with Warner Bros., came up with the brilliant idea of a “MonsterVerse” that would bring back King Kong and set up a remake of King Kong vs. Godzilla.

 

The trouble here is King Kong is not as hot at the box office as Godzilla.

 

In the 1930’s, King Kong ruled the box office. The original film was an incredible sight to behold. The film pulled in millions of dollars when a movie ticket could be purchased for ten cents. The sequel, titled Son of Kong, did not do anywhere near as much business. King Kong would live on in remakes, sequels, and Toho giant monster movies.

 

None ever surpassed the success of the original King Kong. Still, Kong: Skull Island needed to earning around $400 million at the worldwide box office to break even. The film is going to top the $400 million mark, but not by much. There are other sources of revenue such as home video and television that will eventually roll in. Kong: Skull Island is far from a flop. The film will go down as a modest hit. Sadly, the film’s ticket sales reveal King Kong can’t carry a movie on his own anymore.

 

With King Kong vs. Godzilla on the horizon for 2019, the giant ape won’t have to carry a film by his lonesome. Godzilla has remained a much more bankable pop culture icon thanks to consistent appearances in television programs, video games, cartoons, and, of course, movies. Scores of Godzilla toys on shelves assisted with keeping the radioactive dinosaur popular with kids.

 

King Kong is still an iconic character in his own right. Kong will continue to be part of the entertainment landscape for years to come. Maybe one day he will show up in Jurassic Park.

 

DC’s Batgirl Film Continues Rolling to Production

On the heels of DC Films’ announcement of a Batgirl movie, rumors have been circulating that Lindsey Morgan will be playing the starring role. Known for her performance as “Raven Reyes” on The CW’s The 100. Although it’s not a sure-fire pick for the upcoming movie, her twitter account continuously retweets messages regarding the choice.

 

Although, it’s not fully known if this film will be part of the burgeoning DC film universe, but it has been announced at the same time as a Nightwing film. Releasing live action versions of Batman’s supporting characters is not unprecedented in recent years. FOX’s prime time show Gotham has been a big success for the network and introduced a number of characters to the average viewer’s lexicon.

 

Warner Brothers, DC’s parent company, is seeking Joss Whedon to write and direct this latest superhero outing. Since he’s had ample comic book film experience, Whedon’s addition is being looked at because of his commercial successes. He took the helm on Marvel’s The Avengers, but fans are hoping it will be another along the lines of Buffy the Vampire Slayer – a tough, acrobatic girl who is also naive and adventurous.

 

Whedon is believed to bring one major thing that he’s well-known for, namely a sense of humor to the situations. Batgirl can add a bit of the fun that has lacked in DC’s film universe to date. Due to the timing, it may also cross over with the Nightwing film, since both characters are very tightly-knit in the comic books.

 

The real question thus far for fans of the character is how they intend to present her. The character started in the comic books in 1961 but became a household name due to her addition for the final season of the Batman television series in 1967 as portrayed by Yvonne Craig. She later ended up paralyzed by the Joker and took up the mantle of Oracle, a computer hacker and spy. The comics returned to her roots in the late 1990s and 2000s. While most are convinced that the Barbara Gordan version of the character will be represented as a way to tie it into the current films.