You may not know this, but the main character in Machete first appeared in the Spy Kids movies. It's true! Okay, so technically, it wasn't exactly the same character, but Danny Trejo played another guy named "Machete" who was the uncle to the titular child agents, and also a spy and inventor himself. He wasn't a bloodthirsty killer, but Trejo certainly made the franchise more awesome simply by being in it -- just as he did in the From Dusk Till Dawn movies, as well as the last two Mariachi flicks. Now he's got his own franchise, with two more Machete movies supposedly on the way, but why is Robert Rodriguez the only one taking advantage of his awesomeness? The man would make a valuable addition to any existing franchise -- here are seven we think should grab him while he's hot.
A new adaptation of Beverly Cleary's Ramona Quimby novel Ramona Forever hits theaters this weekend with a new name (Ramona and Beezus) and some fancy Disney royalty casting in Selena Gomez as Beezus. But, despite some fun supporting casting (Sandra Oh, Ginnifer Goodwin), the movie looks like generic tripe. Which is terribly sad, considering how much fun the Ramona novels actually are. It's so sad that it makes me want to focus on movie adaptations of kids novels that are actually good instead. Like these!
Harry Potter is going to need another vault at Gringotts, because the opening weekend of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One made more money than any HP installment so far, and landed the number-six spot on the list of biggest opening weekends of all time. It's almost as if a lot of people really want to see how the seven-part story is going to end, even though it won't actually be concluded until Part 2 comes out next summer! Who would have thought it?! In bigger news, the HP franchise is only $80 million behind Star Wars, which means it will be the highest-grossing franchise within the month. Somewhere, George Lucas is realizing that a successful cartoon series doesn't mean squat in the annals of motion-picture history.
I realize that this review is entirely pointless. Either you're going to go see the final chapter in a seven-part fantasy epic, or you're not. Even if you haven't read the books they're based on, I'm pretty sure you didn't walk out of the sixth movie and go, "Eh, I'm done with that." Either you're definitely going to see it, or you have zero interest, having never gotten involved. That said, if, by some slim chance, you once tried the series and disliked it, I would urge you to reconsider. Just like the books, each film has gotten progressively darker and more adult, and director David Yates, who's done the last two entries, has taken advantage of the two-part split for this chapter and given every scene the time it deserves, allowing it to deliver the full dose of emotion and/or creepiness. Plus, it's got quite possibly the best movie cliffhanger of all time.
To reverse that old T.S. Eliot line, the highly anticipated climactic chapter in the Harry Potter film franchise, based on the blockbuster books by J.K. Rowling, ends not with a whimper but with a bang. Lots of bangs, to be precise. If the first half of the protracted two-part finale suffered from a surfeit of set-up with no payoff, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 is nothing but climax.
Harry Potter may embark on his final adventure in the just-released Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2, but that doesn't mean we have to leave J.K. Rowling's wizarding world behind for good. Check out our gallery of potential spin-offs we'd like to see and sound off with your own picks for characters that deserve their own movies.
I'll admit it: I love theme parks (I visit at least a couple each summer) and I love Harry Potter, so I've pretty much been excited for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios in Orlando since it was announced. The footage and images coming out of this park (opening June 18th) look pretty awesome. (See for yourself!) I'm seriously considering booking a flight and braving the crowds so I can indulge in some ButterBeer and chocolate frogs. The only real disappointment I have is that while the rides haven't totally been revealed, there seem to only be three. Perhaps that number will grow, but to start there is just Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey (a magical ride inside the castle), The Dragon Challenge (dueling roller coaster) and the Flight of the Hippogriff (a family friendly roller coaster). The reason I go to parks is for the thrill rides, not necessarily for the merchandise, but since Wizarding World is planted next to the Hulk roller coaster that I still love and the Spider-Man attraction, I suppose that I could find something else to do while I was there. Anyway, not everyone needs to be spun upside down constantly in order to be entertained, and what WW sounds like it has an amount of detail sure to please Muggle and wizard alike. Here are the five things that I think look the most impressive about it:
In Hollywood, apparently all you need to establish "nerdy" is a pair of glasses, limp hair and some frumpy clothing. Unfortunately, while unusual-looking leading men are plentiful in Hollywood, unusual-looking leading women must be in short supply, because the movies have a tendency to "nerd up" gorgeous young starlets and try to convince us that they are friendless outcasts. In Jennifer's Body, Amanda Seyfried dons the glasses to play the nerdy, less-popular friend of Megan Fox, despite being every bit as pretty -- as if her friend wouldn't give her any fashion tips! Ellen Page will similarly nerd up for Whip It next month, and the pair have gotten us thinking about the other adorable women of Hollywood who have worn the glasses, the lab coats and the sweats of the nerd. Keep in mind that this list doesn't include the generally frumped-up (Cameron Diaz in Being John Malkovich), the nerdy-in-flashback (Drew Barrymore in Never Been Kissed) and the supermodel scientists that aren't even trying (any female mathematician or computer tech in a James Bond movie).
Director Ridley Scott recently announced that he was about to begin work on a prequel to one of his most popular films, the sci-fi/horror/genre-defining movie Alien. While we can't deny that we'd love to see a good Alien movie, a prequel seems like the wrong way to go, since Sigourney Weaver's Ripley, the fan-favorite character from the series, couldn't be in it, and to show where exactly the xenomorphs come from would take all of the mystery out of them. We came up with a list of genre films that need prequels -- good ones -- more than Alien does, starting with another Ridley Scott film...
Guy Ritchie, director of Snatch and wife -- sorry, husband of Madonna, will be directing an adaptation of a new Sherlock Holmes comic, featuring a reimagined, "more adventuresome and less stuffy" version of the detective than has been previously seen on film. Which means it could very well be closer to the original original Sherlock Holmes stories -- he's kind of a badass in them. I wonder if anybody in Hollywood has read them...