Random assortment of movie musings and news

Hope everyone’s had a nice weekend, it’s first weekend of Summer for us here in the States. I didn’t see any new flicks this weekend, but my girlfriends and I had our monthly movie night this Friday and saw Jane Austen’s Persuasion (1995). I still love it the second time around, though from the comments my friends made during and after the movie, some of them don’t share my sentiment. Amanda Root and Ciarán Hinds might not be as stunning as other Austen’s movie couple, but I thought that their subtle-yet-heartfelt love story is one that leaves a lasting impression on me than the more famous Pride & Prejudice. Oh well, maybe I’ll let them pick the movie next time around.

Anyway, moving on. Here are just some random stuff I noticed this past week:

  • Christoph as Green Hornet's villain
    Christoph as Green Hornet's villain

    Is it just me or lately we see more and more talented actors who gets noticed in a certain role sort of ‘graduate’ to being cast in superhero/comic book movies? What I mean is, it’s almost a given that previously ‘unknown’ actors whose certain performance garnered rave reviews(even major awards), immediately got offers in a comic book genre. Is it supposed to be a ‘sign’ that they’ve made it? The people that came to mind are Christoph Waltz (Green Hornett), Michael Fassbender (Jonah Hex, X-Men: First Class), Mark Strong (Kick-Ass). Now A-Team isn’t a comic-book genre, but it’s sort of superhero-ish, and we see Sharlto Copley who made a splash in the critically-acclaimed District 9 as one of the four main leads.

  • Where's your mega-watt smile now, Tom?

    Tom Cruise must not be having a very happy weekend. His action comedy Knight & Day opened to a paltry $20.5 mil, which is terrible for a megastar such as him. But really, can he still even live up to that moniker? Methinks the ‘megastar’ days are behind him now. This Yahoo! article asked whether  the Cruister can re-establish himself as ‘the guy,’  you know, the owner of what the article called billion-dollar grin that have a lifetime worldwide box office gross of nearly $3 billion (per BoxOfficeMojo). Well, based on this weekend’s K&D b.o. results, the answer seems to be a resounding ‘NO.’
    Even when CS Monitor declared that the movie’s bomb means this is the official “fall from grace” of Hollywood stars (which Castor @ Anomalous Material already discussed back in March), I don’t think that’s completely true. I think there are still actors out there who still have the ‘it’ factor that can still open a movie on their own name alone. Here are ten 80s/90s movie stars who I think are still pretty bankable:

    1. Adam Sandler
    2. Bruce Willis
    3. Robert Downey Jr.
    4. Leonardo DiCaprio
    5. Harrison Ford
    6. Clint Eastwood
    7. Tom Hanks
    8. Wil Smith
    9. Keanu Reeves
    10. Ben Stiller
  • The jury is still out whether M. Night Shyamalan can still get his mojo back and whether his next movie The Last Airbender is poised to be his “comeback” flick (as Marc from Go-See-Talk pondered last April), but I can’t help but getting a bit excited to hear this Total Film news that he might be reuniting with Bruce Willis in his next movie. The last time he and the A-lister worked together, the result was the awesome comic-book-themed thriller Unbreakable, which could very well be my favorite M. Night’s movies that warrants much repeated viewings that the crowd’s fave The Sixth Sense. Not sure what he’ll tackle next, though I must say I’d welcome the idea of an Unbreakable sequel, as a few commenters in the article suggested.
  • Last week, we’ve got a couple new stills from Johnny Depp’s long-in-limbo project Rum Diary. Can’t believe it’s almost a year ago that I posted pics from the set in Puerto Rico, courtesy of my colleague Dave who took the shots on his family vacation. Heh, you’d think we’d get a trailer by now, but instead we only got these first official photos below:

    Boy, what fountain has he been drinking to still look this good? The eternal youthful actor is 47 but looks forever ‘stuck’ in mid 30s. And the mind-boggling part is the guy is a chain smoker!
  • On a related note, now that A-Team is out, another TV-show based series is not far behind. 21 Jump Street, the cop show that made the Deppster famous is getting the big screen treatment courtesy of Jonah Hill. Despite being reportedly interested in a cameo role, his involvement hasn’t been confirmed. Not sure how I feel about this, it’s probably worth only a rental only if Depp is on board.

Well anyways, happy Monday folks. Any thoughts about any of this topic, please chime in below.

Updates on FC’s Top Ten Most Anticipated 2010 Flix: Part 2

Here’s the second part of my earlier post. Two of the last five have ‘fallen out’ of my anticipated list, but I might still check ’em out on DVD.

6. Rum Diary (TBD, 2010)

Photo courtesy of http://www.thebadandugly.com

Wow, this movie still has yet to find a distributor, despite having Johnny Depp and Aaron Eckhart as the lead actors. As I said in my previous post back in July with the on-set pics in Puerto Rico, the movie is based on a novel by Hunter S. Thompson with the same name, Depp plays an American journalist named Paul Kemp, which is loosely based on the author’s own life journey.

According to CinemaBlend, “…the rumor is that the movie may show up at Cannes or barring that, the movie’s producer may show up at Cannes looking for someone to distribute [it].” Well, I hope we get to see it this year yet.

7. Robin Hood (May 14th, 2010)
Two of my favorite Aussie actors Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett in a movie that echoes one of my beloved movie Gladiator. What’s not to love? This is one of the few critics-proof movie for me this year. The second trailer wets my appetite even more!

8. The TownSeptember 10th, 2010

I think Ben Affleck is probably a better director than he is an actor, as proven by his excellent effort in Gone Baby Gone. He’s going to do both in this crime thriller set in his hometown of Boston. The plot: As he plans his next job, a longtime thief tries to balance his feelings for a bank manager connected to one of his earlier heists, as well as the FBI agent looking to bring him and his crew down. Based on the novel Prince of Thieves by Chuck Hogan, NOT to be confused with the Kevin Costner’s Robin Hood flick 🙂

The movie’s got two hot TV stars: Jon Hamm (Mad Men) as the FBI agent and Blake Lively (Gossip Girl) as Affleck’s troubled ex-girlfriend, who happens to be Jeremy Renner’s sister (fresh out of his Oscar nom for The Hurt Locker). Chris Cooper will play Affleck’s father and Rebecca Hall as the bank manager. Great cast, though I’m primarily curious to see how Affleck’s direction on this one will pan out.

9. The Next Three DaysNovember 19th (replacing Leaves of Grass – I was stoked when I first heard about this almost a year ago, but as soon as I saw the trailer let’s just say I lost interest, double Ed Norton notwithstanding)

Per SlashFilm, this crime drama is a remake of a French film, about a husband (Russell Crowe) looking to break his wrongly imprisoned wife (Elizabeth Banks) out of jail. At least, she says she’s wrongly imprisoned.

The film also stars Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde, Jonathan Tucker, Brian Dennehy, and RZA. Paul Haggis (Crash, Million Dollar Baby) pens the script AND directs the film, which is now listed to be in post-production. I hope this is more Casino Royale than Quantum of Solace, which were both written by Haggis, but I’m always up for seeing two great thespians (Crowe + Neeson) square off on-screen!

10. The A-Team June 11 (replacing Mel Gibson’s Edge of Darkness)
Suffice it to say the second trailer won me over. “They’re the best and they specialize in the ridiculous!” Jessica Biel’s FBI agent quips. Yeah, BRING IT ON! It’s the quintessential summer popcorn flick and this one looks darn entertaining! Love the part when BA whistles the A-Team tune before he blew off the skyscraper window. I find myself humming that tune every so often now 🙂


Honorable mentions:

  • The Expendables (August 20)
    I know I’m going to get flak for putting this on the honorable mentions, but I was kind of meh about the trailer (which I said to Marc in the comment section of his post). I still might see this in the theater, I’m just not as psyched about it as when I first heard about it.
  • Knight & Day (July 2)
    I’m not a huge Tom Cruise fan by any means, but the trailer of the action-comedy looks like fun. Plus, director James Mangold did Walk the Line and 3:10 to Yuma, so how bad can it be, right?
  • Paul (TBD)
    Simon Pegg/Nick Frost team up again in this sci-fi comedy about two British comic-book geeks traveling across the U.S. encounter an alien outside Area 51. As a fan of Shaun of the Dead & Hot Fuzz, naturally I’m intrigued by this one. I’ll spotlight this project sometime soon.