CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2 Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 66 days ago

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It’s a shame that some still feel like animated films are primarily made for children.  The advent of Pixar and films like Shrek and The Fantastic Mr. Fox have more than proved otherwise, and in 2009 directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller delivered a wonderfully goofy animated take on Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs that appeals to adults and kids alike.  That film reveled in its offbeat sense of humor, and while Lord and Miller stepped back into executive producer roles for the sequel, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 is a worthy follow-up that delivers a hefty dose of adorable buoyed by colorfully inspired designs and a heartfelt theme of friendship.  Read my review of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 on Blu-ray after the jump.

Bill Hader Is a TRAINWRECK; Chadwick Boseman in GODS OF EGYPT; Kate Hudson, Danny McBride, Shia LaBeouf & Zooey Deschanel in ROCK THE KASBAH

by     Posted 77 days ago

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Take a look at the latest casting news below:

Hit the jump for more on each story.

Sundance 2014: THEY CAME TOGETHER Review

by     Posted 83 days ago

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When director David Wain does his own thing, it may not be for everyone, but he’s also at his best.  His more mainstream films, Role Models and Wanderlust, are entertaining, but his work on The State, Stella, and the classic Wet Hot American Summer is distinct, absurd, bold, and painfully funny.  His latest, They Came Together, is Wain embracing his unique comic voice as he turns to mock one of Hollywood’s easiest targets, the romantic comedy.  Despite the easily apparent flaws of that genre, Wain and co-writer Michael Showalter not only poke fun at the obvious tropes, but also let their delightfully twisted comedy burst through.  Further supported by Paul Rudd brilliantly and brutally skewering his familiar leading man persona, They Came Together doesn’t bring the rom-com to its knees, but it does deliver a well-deserved gut punch.

Sundance 2014: THE SKELETON TWINS Review

by     Posted 88 days ago

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Comedic actors moving into dramatic territory is not a new concept.  Many make the transition with ease, while some have trouble crossing over or getting audiences to buy into them doing “serious” things.  SNL veterans Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig make a striking move to drama to excellent results in The Skeleton Twins, a darkly comic drama from director Craig Johnson.  This isn’t a “look how serious I can be” performance from the Hader/Wiig duo, as the film does have some very funny moments, but the two bring a formidable about of weight to the characters, with Hader in particular turning in a stellar performance as one half of the troubled sibling pair.  Read my full review after the jump.

Bill Hader and Anna Faris Talk CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2

by     Posted 202 days ago

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Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, 2009’s surprisingly terrific animated feature, deftly adapted a children’s picture book into a hilarious genre-blending mix of mad science run amok and action adventure disaster. Since its release, original writer/directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have moved on to helm 21 Jump Street and the forthcoming The Lego Movie. Now the reigns of the Cloudy franchise have been left in the capable hands of the original film’s storyboard artist and story team member Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn. Instead of a Frankenstein-ian/Roland Emmerich mash-up, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 entwines a riff on Jurassic Park with a surprisingly pointed satirical denouncement of corporate culture. It’s strange to think that the most pointed critique of Steve Jobs & Apple can be found in an animated sequel to an adaptation of a children’s book.  For more on the film, read Matt’s review.

Anchoring the sequel yet again, Bill Hader and Anna Faris provide the voices to lead Flint Lockwood and his paramour Sam Sparks. The animated characters almost feel like doppelgangers to Hader and Faris, natural extensions of their live-action comic personas. In the following interview with Hader and Faris, the duo discuss having so much in common with their animated alter egos, the secrets to being a voice actor and how the success of the first Cloudy influenced their performances in part two. In addition, Bill Hader briefly touched upon providing voice performances for the two upcoming Pixar releases: The Good Dinosaur and Inside Out. For the full interview, hit the jump.

CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2 Review

by     Posted 203 days ago

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I adore Cloudy with a Chance of MeatballsPhil Lord and Christopher Miller’s adaptation of the classic children’s book is one of the most unexpected and successful book adaptations of the past several years.  Most movies based on children books are belabored, tiresome affairs, and Cloudy turned the simple idea of food falling from the sky into a weird, adorable, and hilarious animated comedy.  It set an incredibly high bar for Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, but new directors Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn have come close to giving us a movie as wonderful as the original.  Everything that made the first Cloudy a success is still in place, even though there’s more reliance on some cheap gags.  The sequel has cemented the identity of the series even though the story leaves some residual guiltiness about being a carnivore.

Watch 5 Clips from CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2

by     Posted 213 days ago

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Sony Pictures Animation has released five clips from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.  In the follow-up, Swallow Falls is under attack by mutant foods known as “foodimals”, so Flint (Bill Hader), Sam (Anna Faris), Brent (Andy Samberg), Manny (Benjamin Bratt), Earl (Terry Crews), and Steve (Neil Patrick Harris) must contain the creatures before they overrun the planet.  I’m going radio silent on the movie since I love the first one, and I like everything I’ve seen from the trailers, so I don’t need more to sell me on this flick.  However, if you still need some convincing, these clips are for your viewing please.  Also, if you live in Atlanta, you still have a time to enter for a chance to win passes to an early screening.

Hit the jump to check out the clips.  Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 opens in 3D on September 27th.

First Clip from CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2

by     Posted 234 days ago

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Sony Pictures has released the first clip from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.  In the upcoming sequel, Swallow Falls is under attack by mutant foods known as “foodimals”, so Flint (Bill Hader), Sam (Anna Faris), Brent (Andy Samberg), Manny (Benjamin Bratt), Earl (Terry Crews), and Steve (Neil Patrick Harris), must contain the creatures before they overrun the planet.  The clip is part of the footage we saw at Comic-Con, and it shows that the movie isn’t just the food puns we’ve seen in the trailers.  The same zany humor is back in full force, and this looks like it will be an incredibly fun ride.

Hit the jump to check out the clip.  Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 opens in 3D on September 27th.

Christina Hendricks Photobombed by Bill Hader While Talking THE PIRATE FAIRY, Ryan Gosling’s HOW TO CATCH A MONSTER, and More at D23

by     Posted 251 days ago

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One of the many people who took the stage at D23 today was Christina Hendricks (Mad Men).  She was there to talk about her work in DisneyToon Studios The Pirate Fairy, in which she’ll play a new fairy named Zarina.   Shortly after getting announced as a voice in the Spring 2014 release, I was able to talk with Hendricks on the red carpet backstage.  She talked about her work on the animated film, the process of watching the animators work, changing during production, the experience of shooting Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut How to Catch a Monster in Detroit and more.  In addition, as you watch the interview, you’ll see a great photobomb from Bill Hader.  Hit the jump to watch.

Bill Hader on Doing a Voice for STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS, Voicing a Few Roles for PIXAR, SNL, SOUTH PARK, Future Projects, and More at D23

by     Posted 251 days ago

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Did you know Bill Hader did a voice in J.J. AbramsStar Trek Into Darkness?  And did you know he recorded it just a short time before the film was released?  While I’d heard about it through a friend of mine, I’d never heard the real story from Hader himself.  So when I got to speak to him backstage at D23 earlier today, I made sure to ask him about it.  In addition, he talked about how taking a personal tour of Pixar led to him landing roles in some of their upcoming films, the upcoming season of South Park, SNL, plus future film projects, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Pixar Announces Voice Casts and Reveals Concept Art for THE GOOD DINOSAUR and INSIDE OUT; Voice Actors Include Bill Hader & Amy Poehler [UPDATED]

by     Posted 251 days ago

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Pixar has announced the voice casts for two of its upcoming films during the D23 convention today.  Director Bob Peterson’s The Good Dinosaur, which opens next summer, takes place on an Earth where the asteroid never killed the dinosaurs and the creatures now live happily alongside humans.  The lead character, a dinosaur named Arlo, will be voiced by Lucas Neff (Raising Hope), while Bill Hader, Neil Patrick Harris, and Judy Greer voice his siblings.  The dinosaur mother and father will be voiced by John Lithgow and Frances McDormandThe Good Dinosaur opens in theaters on May 30, 2014.

Pixar’s next film, Up director Peter Docter’s Inside Out, takes place within an 11-year-old girl’s mind as she is forced to move to San Francisco.  The fantastic voice cast—playing the girl’s emotions—includes Amy Poehler as the lead character, Joy, Bill Hader (there’s no such thing as too much Bill Hader) as Fear, Lewis Black as Anger, Mindy Kaling as Disgust, and The Office’s Phyllis Smith as Sadness.  Inside Out opens in theaters on June 19, 2015.  Look for Dave’s full recaps of the D23 Pixar panels later today. [Update: We've added new concept art images and the official synopsis for both films after the jump.]

Bill Hader, Anna Faris, and Benjamin Bratt Talk CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2, Upcoming Projects, and More

by     Posted 252 days ago

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This week I was invited to take an early look at the hilarious new animated adventure, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, directed by Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn.  The press day was held at Sony Pictures Animation Studios where I had an opportunity to talk to Anna Faris, Benjamin Bratt and Bill Hader who return in the sequel.  The plot picks up right where the first film ends and reveals what happens after the island of Swallow Falls is evacuated to clean up the food disaster and Flint (Hader) discovers his infamous invention is still active and churning out deadly food monsters.

During our roundtable interview, Faris, Bratt and Hader talked about returning to their characters, working with new directors, why mining the funny in an animated feature is a unique challenge, how they often don’t know how their work looks until they experience it in a theater, why El Gallo Negro would be a cool addition to the Cloudy universe, and how they’d return if there was a Cloudy 3.  They also discussed their upcoming projects including Faris’ new CBS TV show, Mom; Bratt’s PBS documentary, American Latinos; and Hader’s roles in The To Do List, The Skeleton Twins, and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, and writing on South Park.

Bill Hader Talks CLOUD WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2, Comic-Con, Writing for SOUTH PARK, the Final Stefon Sketch, Whether He’ll Ever Cameo on SNL, What He Collects, and More

by     Posted 261 days ago

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Like most of you, I’m a huge fan of Bill Hader.   I think he’s one of those rare performers that can do anything, and over the past few years on TV and in a number of different movies, he’s made me laugh again and again.  So when I had the opportunity to speak with him last week at Comic-Con, I jumped at the chance.

During our wide ranging interview we talked about being at Comic-Con, what he collects, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2Saturday Night Live, whether he will ever cameo on SNL now that he’s left the show, coming up with the idea for the final Stefon sketch, and so much more.  He also revealed that he will be writing for the entirety of South Park‘s upcoming season and talked about what it’s like to work with Trey Parker and Matt Stone.  Hit the jump to watch.

Bill Hader and Scott Porter Talk THE TO-DO LIST, Sex Stories, What They Collect, Artist Tyler Stout, and More

by     Posted 266 days ago

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With writer/director Maggie Carey‘s comedy The To-Do List opening tomorrow, I recently did a video interview with Bill Hader and Scott Porter.   The film stars Aubrey Plaza as a sexually inexperienced teenager with a type-A personality who decides to engage in numerous sex acts before she goes to college.  Loaded with an amazing cast (Alia Shawkat, Donald GloverRachel BilsonAndy Samberg, Mae Whitman, Johnny Simmons, Connie Britton, Clark Gregg, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse), The To Do List is extremely funny and a welcome addition to the sex comedy genre.

During my interview with Hader and Porter we talked about how this movie allows reporters to ask questions you normally never get to ask (about sex), Porter tells a funny story about his friend, what they collect, artist Tyler Stout, the way Hader stores his DVDs (seriously), and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

THE TO DO LIST Review

by     Posted 266 days ago

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As plenty of sex comedies have proved, sex acts can be hilarious when attempted by the inexperienced.  The awkwardness is overwhelming, and the trick is to find the comedy rather than just making the audience uncomfortable at watching a teenager fumble through dry humping.  The To Do List follows its close relative American Pie in pressuring its uptight protagonist to achieve sexual adequacy, but the “twist” is that the teenager is a woman because hey!  Women want sex too!  Despite writer-director Maggie Carey providing a welcome gender swap for the genre, the picture is surprisingly tame until it occasionally manages a sneak attack with some of the most shocking gross-out gags in recent memory.  Unfortunately, the overbearing 90’s setting and an unfortunately miscast Aubrey Plaza undermine the sympathy we’re supposed to feel towards our protagonist.

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