July 2009 Archives
You've seen them on DVD store shelves, and they've made you do a double-take: The Da Vinci Treasure. Sunday School Musical. Snakes on a Train. They certainly look and sound familiar, and that's the point. They're all movies by The Asylum, a production company that made low-budget horror movies until they realized that their sales spiked whenever they themed, timed and named their releases to coincide with mainstream theatrical films. Four years later, they're turning out at least one tie-in film, or "mockbuster," per month in addition to films with no tie-in, but usually some crazy premise all its own. This week, their newest movie, The Land That Time Forgot, hits rental stores and Redboxes near you, so we talked to producer and Asylum co-founder David Michael Latt about their business model, the C. Thomas Howell connection and how Mega Shark met Giant Octopus.
Apparently, Funny People wants to be all things to all people. In a trend hinted at in 40-Year-Old Virgin and attempted in Knocked Up, Judd Apatow seems to want Funny People to be a raunchy comedy and a touching romantic drama about second chances. We have no idea if he can pull that off (Knocked Up doesn't give us much hope), but you have to give him credit for trying, especially since he's assembled one of the pound-for-pound funniest casts we've seen in a while. Of course, for every funny movie one of these stars has been in, there's been a dud, so there are no guarantees. We ran down the cast's capacity for funny in our Funny People Risk Assessor gallery, so check it out before you decide whether to roll the dice on your comedy.
I didn't go into The Ugly Truth with very high expectations. I had watched the scene of her with the vibrating underpants a few weeks ago, which tipped me off to the fact that this might be worse than your standard rom-com. But I tried to put all my pre-judgment aside, muster up all the Katherine Heigl goodwill I had leftover from Knocked Up and that scene in 27 Dresses where she tries on all the hideous bridesmaid gowns (her in ugly dresses makes me laugh), and remind myself repeatedly that Gerard Butler is awfully attractive and can sometimes be the best thing about a not-very-good movie, like Timeline for example, before I headed to the theater.
Stephen King is not only one of the most prolific, best-selling and -- in this writer's opinion -- most talented authors of our time, he's probably the author who's had the most movies based on his work, right up there with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and whoever writes all of the books those Lifetime movies are based on. Beginning with Carrie in 1976, nearly all of King's books, novellas and short stories have been adapted for the screen or for TV miniseries, and now we've received word that one of his earlier adaptations, the franchise-spawning horror film Children of the Corn, will be re-made. And that got us thinking -- as great a writer as King is, a lot of the movies based on his work are terrible, or at the very least wildly inaccurate. King doesn't seem to mind the latter ones, but we certainly do. Here are a selection of King films, good and bad, that need do-overs.
What a difference a year makes. Around this time in 2008, geeks were buzzing about the Watchmen teaser trailer and the exclusive footage presented by director Zack Snyder and the complete cast at San Diego Comic-Con. This was going to be the superhero movie that would Change. Superhero. Movies. Forever. Now, on the eve of another SDCC, the director's cut of the film has just been released on DVD in a decidedly different atmosphere -- one in which Watchmen is considered not only a box-office failure (despite being the second highest-grossing R-rated release of the year so far) but also a huge disappointment to large pockets of its core audience, nerds who have been message-board screaming their displeasure like an abattoir full of retarded children (sorry, couldn't resist).
Finally, the literary adaptation we've waited years for! The fantastic imagery! The unspeakable terror! The parallels to our own world! That's right, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry is finally out on Blu-Ray! The long, hard, gay-innuendo-filled wait is over! Also, some other stuff came out.
Despite being a devoted fan of Neil Gaiman's printed works, I somehow didn't get the chance to see Coraline in the theaters, due to various life interferences. However, I was thrilled with delight when I received a copy in the mail the other day... complete with a little promotional mobile (it went right next to the one that I had from the Stardust graphic novel). I wanted to watch the film in its 3D format, as all of my friends had raved about how cool the stop-motion looked, but I ended up feeling like a fat kid from a Kevin Smith movie staring at a Magic Eye poster and never getting to see the sailboat.
In a world where prisons are overcrowded, and reality shows have gone too far, and men are made slaves for our amusement, and Michael C. Hall is extremely creepy... there are these two guys named Omar and Pablo who have a show where they talk about movie trailers. That show is called "Trailers Without Pity," and this week they're talking about the trailer for Gamer, starring Gerard Butler, Kyra Sedgwick and Michael C. Hall. In it, a kid is able to remote-control convict Butler through a kill-or-be-killed real-life video game, until Butler decides that he wants out to see his family. See what Omar and Pablo think of all this below, or click here!