Five for the Fifth: MAY 2016 Edition


Welcome to FlixChatter’s primary blog series! As is customary for this monthly feature, I get to post five random news item/observation/poster, etc. and then turn it over to you to share your take on that given topic. You can see the previous five-for-the-fifth posts here.

1. Happy Cinco de Mayo! Well, per tradition on the Fifth of May, I always feature a Mexican actor/actress (or actors of Mexican descent). I’ve been a fan of Michael Peña for some time and I think he’s a terrific actor. I can’t tell you where I first saw him, it might have been Crash, as his scene is no doubt one of the most memorable out of that overrated film.


He’s the kind of actors who’s memorable even in small supporting roles. He was such a hoot in American Hustle and recently, Antman and The Martian. My friend Nostra made this awesome ‘many faces’ post on the actor, which you should check out here. I look forward to seeing him in CHiPs which I think will be a hoot because he’s in it!

So what’s your favorite role of Michael Peña?


2. I was going to post this trio of trailers last week but I had to change it to a tribute to Prince instead 😦 Well these three movies couldn’t be more different from each other and that’s kind of the point.


The Girl on the Train

The first two trailers here feature an actress I haven’t heard before, Haley Bennett. Boy she seems to have come out of nowhere and getting some really high-profile roles. But the main draw for me here is Emily Blunt and Rebecca Ferguson, and the premise sounds intriguing as well. The fact that it’s based on a mystery/thriller novel by a woman (Paula Hawkins) with female-driven characters automatically made me think of Gone Girl, but director Tate Taylor (The Help, Get On Up) ain’t no David Fincher so we’ll see how this one fares.

The Magnificent Seven

I totally forgot this film was even in development. I’m not a big Western fan but with THIS cast, it certainly piqued my interest. The story still centers on seven gun men in the old west gradually come together to help a poor village against savage thieves. The new remake stars Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio, Byung-hun Lee, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Martin Sensmeier, and Peter Sarsgaard. Well it’s certainly a pretty diverse cast! Heck, if Brit Sam Riley can play a German-speaking American cowboy in The Dark Valley, who’s to say you can’t cast a Korean actor as a cowboy? Confession: I haven’t seen the original yet. Yes I probably should get on that before this one comes out.

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie

Now I didn’t watch the British tv show regularly, but of the episodes I saw they were hilarious!! Jennifer Saunders & Joanna Lumley as BFFs Edina (Eddy) & Patsy respectively are a pair of hard-drinking socialites and this time they’re thrown into a media firestorm when they accidentally kill Kate Moss. The trailer looks like a hoot and it’s got a great supporting cast too, not to mention a slew of celeb cameos. I adore The Vicar of Dibley and Dawn French, so I’m excited to see her in a cameo as well.

Any of these trailers strike your fancy?

3.  One of the movies I re-watched this past weekend was The Mummy. I still enjoyed it immensely as it was one of my fave movies from the late 90s. But man, I couldn’t help but think about Brendan Fraser’s career trajectory. You might’ve read articles why Hollywood won’t cast him anymore and it’s just sad. I mean, I’m not a huge fan of his or anything but he was likable and some of his earlier movies were pretty fun.


In any case, The Mummy reboot is well underway with the still-as-hot-as-he-was-in-the-80s Tom Cruise as the star. As with anything with Cruise in it, projects always get made… and fast! The new release date is June 9, 2017 and as of today, there’s reports per Variety that Russell Crowe is joining the cast! WOW!

Thoughts about Brendan Fraser and/or’The Mummy’ reboot? 

4. This question is inspired by my recent viewings of films with open-ended endings. I’ve watched quite a few of ’em in the past surely, but I haven’t really brought up this topic before on this blog. I mentioned in my review of A Copy of My Mind, which happens to be from my home country Indonesia, how the ending frustrated me even though overall it was a good film. Then a week later I saw The Lobster which also had an ending that’s very open to interpretation.

I don’t expect (or want) every film to be wrapped neatly with a pretty red bow, but I often wonder if certain films have open endings because the filmmakers simply don’t know how to end it. Of course that’s not always the case, and some open-ended films can be really thought-provoking and more profound the more you think about it. There are also seemingly ambiguous ones perhaps aren’t that ambiguous after all, but that’s for another discussion.

So what do you think of films with an open-ended ending & what are some of your favorites?

5. This month Five for the Fifth’s guest is Jordan from Epileptic Moondancer blog! Well, as we both have been watching quite a few indie foreign films (that is films set in a language other than English), we’re curious what some of your faves are.

In Jordan’s own words:

My favourite foreign film of this year was Son of Saul, which was an incredibly confronting holocaust drama from Hungary, a first-time effort from Laszlo Nemes.


The un-subtitled German orders and unique camera-work makes it an immersive and almost horrifying experience about a group of men in Auschwitz who had a particularly horrifying duty.

What’s YOUR favorite foreign film(s) from the past few years?

Well, that’s it for the MAY edition of Five for the Fifth, folks. Now, please pick a question out of the five above or better yet, do ‘em all! 😀

45 thoughts on “Five for the Fifth: MAY 2016 Edition

  1. Brendan Fraser… wow, flashback! Haven’t heard that name in a while. I also need to see The Magnificent Seven, I had no idea they were remaking it.

    1. Ahah yeah, a small dose of nostalgia for everyone w/ Brendan 🙂 Boy he was a big star in the 90s, amazing how far he’s tumbled down since. They’re remaking everything these days man, but yeah, I’m curious about the original Magnificent Seven.

  2. 1. Ant-Man…. he was so funny and also adorable in a weird way. I just love him talking about this and that. I have yet to see him in a bad role. He could be one of the few where if you put that person in the worst film ever. He might be the only person who will still give an awesome performance.

    2. The Girl on the Train…. blah. The Magnificent Seven… maybe but I’ll just watch The Seven Samurai again if I end up buying the DVD on the next Criterion sale. Absolutely Fabulous…. darling! I love those ladies.

    3. Brendan Fraser is someone that had a lot of talent but really made some idiotic career choices. I think the moment that your career is absolutely fucked when you decide to make a movie with CGI animals and dance with them in the end to the point that you become one of those derp-de-derp films that Johnny Depp and Nicolas Cage are making these days.

    4. I think films with open-endings are the most interesting depending on the film as I would cite Knight of Cups as a great example as it relates to everything Christian Bale’s character had been through in the film.

    5. Wow… uh… I don’t know. I’m going to say Laurence Anyways by Xavier Dolan for now.

    1. Yeah I really like Pena in Antman, he’s quite the scene stealer! But he made me laugh so hard in American Hustle!

      Glad to hear you’re a fan of Absolutely Fabulous!! Those ladies are so adorable!

      The thing w/ Cage and Depp is that they’re both quirky & odd but also hugely charismatic, I don’t think Fraser’s got that. I agree he’s talented but man, I can’t believe his career choices. Idiotic is one way to describe it.

      I think the ENTIRE movie of Knight of Cups (and other Malick films) are ambiguous, not just the ending, ahah.

  3. 1. I like Michael Peña but since he’s always been cast as the token minority character, I don’t really have a favorite role of his. He’s definitely funny in Ant-Man.

    2. The Girl On a Train’s trailer looks interesting but I’m afraid it might just turn into another one of those TV of the week kind of movies. I’ll see The Magnificent Seven remake but I don’t have high hopes for it. The original was good but I’m not the biggest fan of it.

    3. I was never a fan of Brendan Fraser, he’s more suited for comedies but I was surprised that Hollywood tried to turn him into an action hero. Also, I hated The Mummy, I was so excited to see it when I first saw the trailer, thought it’s going to be like Indiana Jones but then I saw it and thought it’s awful. As for Frazer’s career, I know he tried to get into more serious films, The Quite American was very good and underrated film; he’s actually good in it too. But I’m not surprised that his career as a leading man is pretty much dead now.

    4. I don’t mind open-ended endings as long as there’s a reason for it. I thought the ending to The French Connection made sense even though you don’t really know what happened. But my favorite would have to be the ending to No Country For Old Men.

    5. I haven’t seen many foreign films lately but some of my favorites from the last few years are Mother, The Lives of Others and 13 Assassins.

    1. Yeah, I hope Peña lands a leading role at some point. Looks like he does in one of his upcoming projects.

      I hope The Girl on a Train is gonna be eons better than another TV of the week, ahah. But yeah, this director doesn’t have the street cred of Fincher.

      Yeah I don’t get it when Hollywood tries to push certain actors to be a dramatic leading man or whatever. He really should’ve stick to comedies, I mean if he were successful in dramatic roles then do a few more. But he somehow chose silly cartoonish movies w/ talking animals and stuff, man whoever his agent was should’ve been fired from the industry. Ahah, not a fan of The Mummy eh? I thought it was entertaining, I mean it’s no Indy obviously, but fun enough. Rachel Weisz was sooo cute then, boy she’s kinda stayed away from such roles nowadays, and all the better for her.

      1. I still remember seeing the trailer for The Mummy and was super excited to see it, I think it came out a couple weeks before Star Wars Ep. 1, then I saw it on opening weekend and just hated it. I didn’t find anything fun about the film, the action scenes lacks creativity and boring. I think the only thing I was impressed with were the special effects, of course those will probably look pretty awful now but it’s cool back then.

  4. Remakes of westerns can be great(2007’s 3:10 to Yuma is proof) However The Magnifcent Seven is a remake of a remake, so I doubt I’ll bother, as I’ve seen Seven Samurai (1954) & The Magnificent Seven (1960)

    4. I love open-endings, because real life is open-ended. I just watched The Drop w/Tom Hardy and the ending is interesting. The most iconic ambiguous ending is probably 2001: A Space Odessey (1968).

    5. I’ve seen Son of Saul and I agree with Jordan it’s well done, and I’ll be looking out for László Nemes’ next project. My favorite foreign film from 2015 is German drama “Victoria”, directed by Sebastian Schipper.

    1. Hi Chris! I LOVE 3:10 to Yuma with Crowe & Bale, but then again I haven’t seen the original version. So Magnificent Seven is basically similar to Seven Samurai with cowboys instead of ninjas then? I know I’m oversimplifying things 🙂

      “I love open-endings, because real life is open-ended” I suppose so, and it adds a dose of mystery which can be intriguing. But sometimes the ending feels incomplete instead of open-ended, y’know, it’s frustrating instead of leaving you wanting more.

      Man I need to see Son of Saul and Victoria. The latter especially because of the unique filmmaking style I read about.

  5. Wait, you think Crash was overrated? Have to disagree with you on that one. Ensemble films are hard to pull off, but It thought it did so beautifully.

    And no to a Mummy reboot! I was and still am a huge fan of the first two. The third one was ok but would have been much better if Rachel Weisz had decided to do it. I don’t mind Brendan Frasier, and it’s a shame what’s happened to his career. He was really good in School Ties.

    1. Hey Tiff! I think Crash is a very good film, but I think at the time it was highly regarded and showered by a bazillion awards (including best picture Oscar) and I don’t know if it was THAT good. It’s true though, ensemble films are tough to pull off and for me, I end up only remembering parts of it. The bit w/ Michael Pena and Thandie Newton are the only ones I remember.

      I haven’t seen The Mummy sequel, not sure if I ever will. Oh right, School Ties was good, boy so many good actors in that one, some have become big stars too, esp Affleck and Damon.

  6. 1. I don’t have a favorite Michael Pena role, but he’s good in what I’ve seen him in.

    2. I would watch The Girl on the Train and Magnificent Seven for the cast, although the trailer of The Girl on the Train was horrible. I’m not familiar with the last one.

    3. Brendan Fraser was never a memorable actor for me even if I’ve seen some of his movies. I also feel indifferent towards the Mummy franchise, but I’m interested to see how Tom Cruise will fare. Despite it being an action/adventure of sorts, it doesn’t seem to be his kind of movie.

    4. Open-endings can be good or bad, depending on the film. Although when I say ‘bad’, I mean that I want the satisfaction of having closure in a film.

    5. Some of my favorites include Pan’s Labyrinth, Pure (2009) and Amelie.

    1. I think that seems to be the consensus w/ Michael Pena.

      Yeah the trailer of The Girl on the Train didn’t wow me, but I like the cast and premise so hopefully the film itself would still deliver.

      I’m instantly intrigued by The Mummy reboot because of Cruise & Crowe’s involvement!

      Yep, I’m the same way in that I want a more satisfying ending to something. Some stories require that more than others.

  7. You ask too many questions 😉
    Absolutely Fab will my guilty pleasure of the year. I’m sure to rent it.
    I liked Brendan Frasier when he acted instead of being a dufus. The Mummy charmed me (the first one) but it was cheesy and adolescent. I really liked him in “Gods and Monsters” and “The Quiet American”. I can’t believe it’s time already for a frickin reboot!

    1. Ahah, it’s just five Cindy, and it’s a monthly tradition 😉

      Glad to hear you love AbFab too, those ladies are a hoot aren’t they? You’ve seen Vicar of Dibley, haven’t you? I LOVE that series, if you like British comedies I think you’ll enjoy it!

      Wow I forgot about “Gods and Monsters” and that Brendan was in it! Yep, it seems that it’s always time for reboots in Hollywood :\

  8. Paul S

    I’m not sure about a Magnificent Seven remake, but you really should watch the original. It’s got a fabulous cast and Yul Brynner was Hungarian, so casting a Korean as a cowboy isn’t too much of a stretch.

    1. Hi Paul! Well I think it’s still easier for Caucasian *foreign* actors to get jobs than other races, so to have a Korean actor as a cowboy is more unusual in Hollywood than Hungarians. In any case, I think from the casting alone, both the original & remake sounds intriguing to me.

  9. 1. Not a big fan of his, he was acting horrible in the press room after AH won Best Ensemble at SAG

    2. The Girl on a Train was a pretty good book but the music in this trailer is just terrible. Also the trailer managed to make Ferguson look quite bland

    3. Never seen those movies and I don’t think I will, never been a big fan of Fraser but I have Extraordinary Measures to watch, which apparently flopped massively. But hey, Ford is in it 🙂

    4. Hm open endings…find them quite frustrating too, but the one I like is Vanilla Sky

    5. Well Respire from last year made my end of the year list quite a few times

    1. Oh no, really? What did he say? I never watch any video in the press room.

      Yeah I barely recognized Ferguson in that trailer, I hope she’s not underused in the film though.

      Oh right, he’s w/ Ford in Extraordinary Measures! Well for sure Ford will still be worth a watch 😉

      Haven’t seen Vanilla Sky, that’s a remake of a Spanish film wasn’t it? Oh and yes I need to see Respire soon!

      1. He was just all around rude to the journalists and the most obnoxious person in the room and that room included JLaw 🙂 You should see Vanilla Sky and Respire! Both terrific, especially VS

        1. Maybe it’s the JLaw effect that rubs off on him. I think usually he’s an affable guy. Oh ok, I will, esp Respire given that it’s Melanie directing!

  10. You should watch The Magnificent Seven! It’s so cool.

    Also here’s a fact I just remembered – one of Idris Elba’s first ever roles was in an episode of Absolutely Fabulous. Not sure if that’s interesting or not.

    My fave foreign film of the last few years is The Raid. Actually do American movies count as foreign films?! 😊

    1. OMG!! I have to find that episode of AbFab w/ Idris straight away!!! Was he naked in that? ehm 😉

      Oh yes The Raid counts, that’s definitely a foreign film as it’s in Indonesian. I should watch that one as I wouldn’t need to read the subtitles, though there’s not much dialog in that one I reckon. Ahah, no Mikey! It has to be set in a language other than English, as much as you think we speak an entirely different language than in the UK 😉

  11. 1. End of Watch. I’ve loved him in just about everything I’ve seen him in, but what he does combined with Jake Gyllenhaal is a cut above the rest.

    2. Definitely looking forward to The Girl on the Train and The Magnificent Seven remake. I’ll probably pass on the Ab Fab movie. I didn’t like the couple episodes of the TV show I saw.

    3. I’d always thought Brendan Fraser’s career went south because he kept picking crap projects. I’ll have to read that article. I’m kind of lukewarm on the idea on another remake of The Mummy, itself a remake. I’ll probably see it, but I won’t rush out to do so.

    4. I enjoy films with open-endings. They give us more to think about, and debate. Some I love: No Country for Old Men, Inception, The Thing (1982 version), Total Recall (original), Black Swan, The Wrestler.

    5. Too hard to pick one favorite, right now. I do really like Two Days, One Night, Mommy, Blue is the Warmest Color, and The Raid movies.

    1. Hello Dell!

      I still need to see End of Watch! I should get on that.

      Ahah, AbFab is definitely an acquired taste. I do love wacky British humor and they’re definitely one of the wackiest.

      Yeah, The Mummy is a remake of a remake, but hey w/ Cruise/Crowe combo I’d think it’ll be worth a watch.

      I suppose you’re right that open-ended endings do give us more to think about, but some of them REALLY do frustrate you. Some of those you mentioned that I’ve seen are good though.

  12. 1. I first saw him in Crash and I can’t see him without thinking of how touched I was by his performance.
    2. All 3 really (well, not so sure about The Magnificent Seven) but couldn’t put down The Girl on the Train so am particularly looking forward to the adaptation.
    3. Nothing comes to mind about Brednan Frasier but can’t say I miss him. I’m not too excited about The Mummy reboot yet but am getting a little tired of Tom Cruise in genre movies.
    4. I don’t mind movies with open endings as long as it’s clear that the filmmakers wanted the audience to have something to think about, not so that we could do their job for them.
    5. The first one that comes to mind is Force Majeure, one of my favourite films of 2014.

    1. Hello Matt!

      He’s one of the memorable ones amongst the large ensemble cast of Crash!

      I hope the film lives up to the book then. But that’s a good sign that The Girl on the Train’s source is a good one.

      I think Cruise is great in genre movies but I hear ya, I wish he’d do a small film here and there to balance his schedule nowadays.

      Yeah, I think if it’s done right, open-endings can be great. I guess it depends how ‘open’ to interpretation it is and how it’s done.

      Oh I still need to see Force Majeure!

      1. Oh it’s a comedy? Boy now I’m looking forward to it even more. I’ve been impressed w/ a few Danish films lately but mostly thrillers, curious to see the Scandinavian humor in Force Majeure.

        1. Its quite different to US humour, sorta similar to UK humour but a little more bizarre. There are some great moments, I must get the blu-ray and watch it again. It is also amazing to look at, highly recommended!

  13. I think Inception is a wonderful film with a brilliantly justified open ending. Favourite foreign movies of recent years? Off the top of my head I’ll go Girlhood and Blue is the Warmest Colour. Kudos France! Not a huge fan of the Mummy series, though I do have a soft spot for The Rock as The Scorpion King. Really looking forward to The Girl on the Train — like you Ruth, Rebecca Ferguson and Emily Blunt have piqued my interest! And I’d echo your praise of Michael Peña in Ant-Man, he’s really funny. Apologies for answering in reverse order, I started and figured it wasn’t worth stopping. 🙂

    1. Hi Adam! Hey totally ok to answer this in whatever order you like 🙂

      Yep I agree about Inception, that’s one of the best open-ended endings IMO. LOVE Girlhood too, I still need to see Mustang which is also a French female-led coming of age film.

      I actually haven’t seen Scorpion King, not really interested for some reason.

      I’ve been a big fan of miss Blunt for some time but I REALLY like Rebecca Ferguson in MI5, so looking forward to seeing more of her!

  14. Another great list Ruth! I didn’t realise they were doing a Magnificent Seven remake. Hmmm, not sure what I think about that (even though that film was a remake of Seven Samurai)…

    1. Hey thanks Mark! Yeah I didn’t know it either until I saw the trailer. I still need to see the original one AND Seven Samurai, so I guess this one is a remake of a remake, wow!

  15. I used to fancy Brendan Fraser soooo much. Not sure The Mummy needs a reboot though. I am not sure how to feel about The Girl on the Train but I really did not love the book.

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