THE EXPENDABLES 3 Review

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The Expendables movies have never really thought beyond their casts.  The thinking has apparently been: “We’ve got classic action heroes, some new blood, and we shoot stuff.  The end.”  It’s been an action franchise without any memorable action, and a big cast of likable actors devoid of almost any charisma.  Although there’s something admirable in how the franchise has sought to be lo-tech in comparisons to today’s CG-loaded blockbusters, it rarely tries to even match the likable characters of those blockbusters.  The Expendables 3 is the same old bag of tricks, and while there’s a hint of passing the torch to a younger generation, Sylvester Stallone and his co-writers Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt have no intention of really moving forward.  The cast just got bigger, the action remains bloated and unimpressive, and only magnetic performances from Mel Gibson and Antonio Banderas manage to break through this tired series.

First DOWNTON ABBEY Season 5 Images Released

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Apparently, season four of Downton Abbey was a letdown according to EW, although I’m with our TV editor Allison Keene in thinking it was quite good.  Then again, all of Downton Abbey blurs together for me, and the first Downton Abbey season 5 images could easily be from previous seasons with the exception of Sybbie and George going from babies to young children.  So while there will be another time jump, I’m sure everything will be as prim and proper as ever, and I will continue to watch Downton Abbey as if it were a trashy reality TV series (“He did NOT just think he could keep the estate’s affairs in order while refusing to modernize!”) and enjoying every one of Carson’s harrumphs.

Hit the jump to check out the Downton Abbey season 5 images.  Season five will premiere in the U.K. this fall, and premiere in the U.S. on January 4, 2015 on PBS.

Martin Lawrence Says BAD BOYS 3 Script Is Still in the Works

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Michael Bay‘s Transformers movies are like a kid who’s trying not to swear.  He’s saying “shoot” and “fudge”, and we know there’s a little vulgarian aching to get out, but instead he sounds like an idiot.  Transformers films pay the bills, but the Bad Boys movies (especially Bad Boys II), feel like Bay’s true artistic expression.  The second film has bags of ecstasy being smuggled inside of a dead woman’s fake breasts.  Later, the heroes invade Cuba.  That’s how delightfully bonkers Bad Boys II is, and it makes me want to see if and how Bay could top himself when freed from the confines of a PG-13 rating.  Unhinged Michael Bay is the best Michael Bay.

There’s always been word of Bad Boys 3, but now it looks like it might be inching closer to reality.  Hit the jump for more.

New BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE Rumors Reveal Ending Details, Timeline, and Luthor’s Plan [Spoilers, Obviously]

by     Posted 5 days ago

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Filming on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice has been underway for over a month now, and the production has done a good job thus far at keeping leaked photos and videos to a minimum.  I assume some of that it just because they haven’t done much outdoor shooting, but all we’ve really seen so far is Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne, which looks like Ben Affleck with slightly graying temples.  Beyond that, there’s been a statue, some rubble, and Zack Snyder calling a local radio station.

But spoilers will still leak out, and we now might have information on the Batman v Superman ending, Luthor’s plan, and where this film falls chronologically in relation to Man of Steel.  So I will put this as clearly as I can: There are spoilers after the jump.  Do not click “Continue Reading” if you do not want to know these plot points.  Now that you’ve been warned, hit the jump if you don’t have a problem knowing new details about the movie.  Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opens March 25, 2016.

Check out 13 Pieces from Hero Complex Gallery’s Upcoming I AM THE LAW / A LIFE OF CRIME Show

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This Friday, Hero Complex Gallery will begin its new show, “I Am the Law / A Life of Crime”.  Per the press release, the gallery is an “art tribute to cops and criminals, authority figures, buddy cop films, cons, prison films, heists, gangsters, gangs, westerns, spies, murders, whodunits, private eyes,” and more.  The gallery will feature works based on RoboCop, Taxi Driver, The Killer, Se7en, Dirty Harry, Manhunter, The Wire, and many more.

Hit the jump to check out thirteen of the pieces that will be featured at the show.  “I Am the Law / A Life of Crime” will have its opening reception Friday, August 15th from 7-10pm.  The additional hours will be Thursday to Sunday, 11am-6pm.  Go to Hero Complex Gallery’s Facebook page to RSVP.  Online sales will begin Sat. August 16th at approximately 1pm Pacific time here.

Sony to Digitally Alter THE INTERVIEW to Remove Military Buttons; May also Cut Face-Melting Scene

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Last week, Sony moved Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg‘s comedy The Interview from October 10th to December 25th.  It seemed like a savvy bit of counter-programming where the R-rated comedy, which is about a TV interviewer (James Franco) and his producer (Rogen) being tasked with assassinating Kim Jong Un, would play against family films and dramas.  However, it now looks like the delay is due to technical reasons.  According to THR, Sony “is digitally altering thousands of buttons worn by characters in the film because they depict the actual hardware worn by the North Korean military to honor the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un, 31, and his late father, Kim Jong Il (showcasing military decorations would be considered blasphemous to the nuclear-armed nation).”  That’s how crazy you can be when you have nukes: You can make people spend time and money in order to hide buttons.

There’s also concern over a face-melting scene, which is a bit more understandable.  Hit the jump for more.

THE COLLISION: Episode 100 – Why We Love Talking about Movies

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This week on The Collision, we have reached our 100th episode.  To commemorate the milestone, we get to the most basic aspect of this podcast: why we love talking about movies.  During our conversation, we explore how discussion enriches our understanding of movies, the means of expressing differing viewpoints, controversial opinions, dealing with hype, our favorite films, and so much more.  It feels incredibly rewarding to have come this far, and I think this is one of the best episodes we’ve ever done.  Our deepest thanks to all our listeners.

Click here to listen to the new episode of The Collision, click here for the previous episode (“Guardians of the Galaxy and the Lack of Female-Led Superhero Movies”), click here to add the podcast to your RSS, and click here to find us on iTunes. To keep up to date with The Collision, you can follow us on Twitter at @MattGoldberg and @AdamChitwood.

VERONICA MARS Cast to Reunite for Parody Web Series PLAY IT AGAIN, DICK

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The existence of the Veronica Mars movie was an achievement.  I doubt we’ll see another one, but the Kickstarted picture was nice for fans who had been waiting a decade for the return of the acerbic private detective.  However, the show will return in a new form…kind of.  Creator Rob Thomas is launching the web series Play It Again, Dick, which will star Ryan Hansen, who played Dick Casablancas on Veronica Mars.  But rather than retool the show into a spin-off intended for computer screens, Thomas is going into the self-parody route, and the web series will have more with his other cult-hit show, Party Down.

Hit the jump for more.

Exclusive: Marvel Moving Forward on THE INHUMANS Movie; Screenplay by Joe Robert Cole

by     Posted One week ago

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Guardians of the Galaxy was Marvel’s big gamble on whether or not they could sell a group of unknown characters in a unique world based on the studio’s brand alone.  They won that bet, and now it’s given Marvel the confidence to move forward on another team of mostly unknown, strange characters: The Inhumans.  As we reported back in March 2011, the studio was considering adapting the comic into a movie.  In July 2012, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige told Entertainment Weekly that if either Guardians or The Inhumans became a movie, audiences could expect an “X-Men-style ensemble, a la The Avengers.”  In a broad sense, that’s true: A team of misfits and outsiders comes together to battle a larger foe; beyond that, I doubt many would compare Guardians to X-Men or The Avengers.  But for over two years, there was no word on The Inhumans.

The other day, Vin Diesel dropped a hint about being part of The Inhumans, and it turns out he wasn’t just blowing smoke.  The studio is happy with the existing script by Joe Robert Cole, and now the next logical step is to take it out to filmmakers.  Hit the jump for more.

First MORDECAI Trailer Has Johnny Depp as a Debonair Rapscallion alongside Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Goldblum, and Ewan McGregor

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Lionsgate has released the first Mortdecai trailer, and it looks rather amusing.  The film stars Johnny Depp as the roguish Charlie Mortdecai, an art dealer who finds himself in a race to recover a stole painting rumored to contain the code to a lost bank account filled with Nazi gold.  None of those plot details are mentioned in this trailer.  Instead, it quickly conveys the goofy character, and even though this is yet another oddball/eccentric part for Depp, at least it comes off as quite entertaining.

Hit the jump to check out the Mortdecai trailer.  The film also stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Ewan McGregor, Olivia Munn, Aubrey Plaza, Jeff Goldblum, Oliver Platt, and Paul BettanyMortdecai opens February 6, 2015.

Arnold Schwarzenegger Cares for Zombie Daughter in First Images from MAGGIE

by     Posted One week ago

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There were plenty of films I thought would end up at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, but an Arnold Schwarzenegger zombie flick was never among them.  But today, TIFF announced additions to this year’s Galas and Special Presentations lineup, and released the first images from Maggie.  The film stars Schwarzenegger as a Midwestern farmer who cares for his teenage daughter (Abigail Breslin) as she slowly turns into a cannibalistic zombie.  While that sounds like a delightfully goofy premise, these images convey a surprisingly somber tone, and now I’m even more eager to check out this odd picture.

Hit the jump to check out the Maggie images.  The film also stars Joely Richardson.  The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 4 – 14th.

New Images from BOYCHOIR, THE CONNECTION, ESCOBAR: PARADISE LOST, and THE FORGER

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Earlier today, the Toronto International Film Festival announced new additions to their Galas and Special Presentations programs. Among the films with new images and synopses are:

  • Boychoir (Directed by François Girard) starring Dustin Hoffman, Kathy Bates, Josh Lucas, Kevin McHale, Eddie Izzard, Debra Winger, and Garrett Wareing
  • The Connection (Directed by Cédric Jimenez) starring Jean Dujardin, Gilles Lellouche, Céline Sallette, and Benoît Magimel.
  • Escobar: Paradise Lost (Directed by Andrea Di Stefano) starring Benicio del Toro, Josh Hutcherson, and Claudia Traisac.
  • The Forger (Directed by Philip Martin) starring John Travolta, Christopher Plummer, Tye Sheridan, Jennifer Ehle, Marcus Thomas, Anson Mount, Abigail Spencer, and Travis Wade.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses. The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 4 – 14th.

TIFF 2014 Adds Tom McCarthy’s THE COBBLER, Michael Hazanavicius’ THE SEARCH, Sophie Barthes’ MADAME BOVARY, and More

by     Posted One week ago

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As if the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival wasn’t already crowded with must-see films, TIFF has now sent out a press released announcing the addition of 24 films to their Galas and Special Presentations lineup.  Sundance premieres Infinitely Polar Bear and Laggies will be coming to Toronto as will Cannes’ debuts such as Olivier Assayas’ Clouds of Sils Maria as well as The Search, the new film from The Artist director Michael Hazanavicius.  Among the world premieres, I’m incredibly excited for Tom McCarthy’s new film, The Cobbler and Sophie Barthes’ adaptation of Madame Bovary.  As for movies that probably won’t be entering the Oscar-race but could still be highly entertaining, there’s Henry Hobson’s debut Maggie, which stars Arnold Schwarzenegger as a Midwestern farmer who stays by his daughter’s side as she starts turning into a zombie.

Hit the jump for the full list of new additions.  The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 4 – 14th.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Gives a (Droid) Hand to Everyone Who Contributed to “Force for Change”; Reveals Winner of Grand Prize

by     Posted 8 days ago

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Several months ago, director J.J. Abrams revealed “Force for Change”, which gave fans a chance to win a visit to the set of Star Wars: Episode VII and cameo in the film in exchange for making a donation to UNICEF.  The campaign has now wrapped, and it raised $4.26 million for UNICEF Innovation Labs, which will support the equivalent of seven to eight new innovation labs to aid children and families.  While I know few movies are as popular as Star Wars, I would love to see other studios and productions follow Disney’s lead on this one when it comes to marrying a charitable cause with fan enthusiasm.

Hit the jump to check out an image of a “Thank You” note from Abrams being held by a droid hand.  We’ve also included video of Denver, Colorado resident D.C. Barns learning that he’s won the grand prize.  Star Wars: Episode VII opens December 18, 2015.

New MAPS TO THE STARS Trailer: Director David Cronenberg Highlights the Madness and Paranoia of Hollywood

by     Posted 8 days ago

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Entertainment One UK has released a new Maps to the Stars trailer online.  David Cronenberg‘s latest film follows an archetypical Hollywood dynasty including a writer of self-help manuals, his wife who manages the career of their 13-year-old son, and their daughter, who was recently released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania.  The plot also includes Havana, an actress who wants to remake a movie that starred her now-deceased mother.  I’m still not 100% sure what to expect from Cronenberg’s new picture, but that’s one of the reasons it’s one of my must-see films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.

Hit the jump to check out the new Maps to the Stars trailer.  The film stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, and Sarah GadonMaps to the Stars opens in the U.K. and Ireland on September 26th.  There is currently no U.S. release date.

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