Last night I had the opportunity to check out a late showing of Pain & Gain during which I encountered a few thoughts that I couldn’t shake: 1) I wish Michael Bay would make more films like this and less of the transforming car variety. 2) Why can’t Dwayne Johnson be in every movie? 3) This is probably the craziest “Based on a True Story” movie I’ve ever seen. I’ve heard Bay say that some of the most extreme elements of the plot are also the most true to the original story. This is good to know because had someone written a lot of what shows up in the film I would likely call it too farfetched for my suspended disbelief to withstand. Make no mistake, this is a wild, entertaining ride that utilizes layers of action, crime, comedy, sex, and even a touch of sadism to keep you invested from beginning to end.
My mini-review aside, this week’s Top 5 includes the first trailer for Thor: The Dark World, Pain & Gain interviews with Michael Bay, Mark Wahlberg, and more, a recap of our visit to Pixar for Monsters University, news that Zack Snyder could take the helm of Justice League pending Man of Steel‘s success, and the first entry in a new interview series from Steve: “Breaking Down the Movie” with The Place Beyond the Pines director Derek Cianfrance. As is customary, a brief recap and link to each of the above is ready and waiting after the jump.
1. First Trailer for THOR: THE DARK WORLD
I sometimes receive surprised looks when I tell people that my favorite individual hero film from Marvel’s Phase One is Thor. It’s not that I run across a lot of people who dislike the movie, just that I rarely find someone who loved that first trip to Asgard like I did. Obviously, this makes going into Thor: The Dark World with similar little-to-no expectations near impossible. By the looks of this first trailer, though, I really don’t think meeting/exceeding expectations is going to be an issue.
2. PAIN AND GAIN Interviews with Michael Bay and More
I’ll mostly let today’s opening paragraph speak for me regarding Pain & Gain. It’s a thrilling, at times shocking, movie that will force you to accept that “Based on a True Story” being associated with its story means that we really do live with crazy people who do insane things without batting an eye. And with that said, I simply recommend checking out Matt’s own review, Steve’s video interviews with Michael Bay and Tony Shalhoub, and Steve’s text interviews with Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson and screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.
3. MONSTERS UNIVERSITY Set Visit
At the beginning of the year I preemptively named our Dave Trumbore the winner of 2013 for riding in a freaking tank with Arnold Schwarzenegger. Then, as if he needed to pad his resume any further, he visits Pixar where they staged a tailgate in anticipation of the big game between Monsters University and Fear Tech. If you’re not already too filled with envy to carry on, then check out Dave’s set visit recap, his review of 40 minutes of film footage, and an on-set interview with director Dan Scanlon. In case you need more Monsters coverage, be sure to check out the new trailer that landed online just a few days ago as well.
4. Zack Snyder May Direct JUSTICE LEAGUE Pending Success of MAN OF STEEL
It’s more common sense than news to consider that Man of Steel‘s success or lack thereof will directly influence Warner Bros.’ cinematic future in the DC Universe. That said, we learned a little more about the relationship between Supes’ latest effort and Zack Snyder’s own future in the DC Universe when word broke this week that a successful Man of Steel would likely mean a Snyder-directed Justice League.
5. ‘Breaking Down the Movie’ Episode 1: THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES
There’s no question that a lot of what we do around these parts is bringing you the latest news, reviews, interviews, etc. in what we would like to consider is our own unique, collective voice. Additionally, we’re always tossing around/developing ideas for original content that we hope you the reader will find even more unique, interesting, and worthy of your highly fragmented Internet time. All this in mind, Steve debuted a new interview series entitled “Breaking Down the Movie” recently that will give readers a glimpse into the mindset of a filmmaker by breaking down specific footage from their own films and getting their take on how and why the footage turned out the way it did. For anyone interested in the art of filmmaking, I would think this is invaluable insight or, at least, a cool way to drop 25 minutes online (although watching “Keyboard Cat” 13 consecutive times is also a valid option). Without further ado, check out Episode 1 of “Breaking Down the Movie” with director Derek Cianfrance talking his The Place Beyond the Pines by clicking here.