Sunday, March 29, 2009

I'm sure a lot of you want to know things

By things, I mean my opinions of recent motion pictures. That's usually what I mean. And as usual, I have a glorious excuse for my lack of posting. It's a two-fold excuse, in which the 2 primary ingredients are my day job combined with laziness. We've discussed the laziness and the procrastination in a post last year, involving Grand Theft Auto. But my day job has been, once again, sucking the lifeforce out of me, like that vampire alien who sucked energy out of people in that movie Lifeforce.

(Fun fact: After writing that post about Grand Theft Auto IV, I have since played the game only one more time).

I'll get more into my job a little later down the line, once the project is wrapping up and I can talk more freely about it. I will say the awesome thing about is that is stars James "Dawson" Van Der Beek, and he's kind of the poor man's Matt Damon in this movie. And I mean that as a compliment. Because dude's kicking a lot of ass. I predict a comeback for the Dawson, or at the very least, a monster truck named after him, simply called "Vanderbeek", and it has a giant eagle on it.

No, seriously, he kicks so much ass I was obligated to temp score his fight scenes to music from Death Race. So, that's pretty badass.

I've definitely seen a lot of movies lately, and I wanted to give you all some nutshell tweeners, or "NUTWEENERS!" as I have some unfortunately dubbed them. I'll start from what I just saw and work my way back. I'm sure I'll forget something.

I Love You, Man
: This is a pretty great movie. It's really funny, but it has a lot of uncomfortable humor that makes it a lot of squirm inducing fun. On top of which, I feel that perhaps I should force my vendetta a little more towards Jason Segel's way, as I feel I'm probably going to wind up just like him in this movie, sans vespa. Still, a very funny, very honest, good time.

: Yeah, I never really got into my opinion of this movie. I'll tell you this: As a movie, I thought it was pretty fucking amazing. I loved the look of the movie, I thought certain sequences just kicked major ass (T-Bone puts it best when he says "I could watch an entire movie of Roarschach in prison"), I thought the acting was pretty good, with Jackie Earle Haley kicking major amounts of ass, and Malin Ackerman not annoying me as much as I thought she would. I thought the score was pretty cool and worked well, but a lot of the source music cues were bizarre and off putting. Regardless, I thought it was an outstanding film, and I can't wait to see it again on IMAX if I still can.

That being said, I can't honestly think of a reason why this movie should exist. I'm happy it does, but I still don't understand why.

Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li: This movie is pretty terrible. Almost face meltingly awful, especially whenever Chris Klein comes on screen. I wish more of my friends have seen this, so that I could end conversations with "Nash Out"! Oh my. This will make for a great double feature with something much cooler, but equally as terrible. Probably 12 Rounds. This movie is pretty awful, be warned.

Coraline: I loved this movie also. it's dark and twisted enough to hold my attention, but it still captures childhood well. The visuals are a treat (I caught it in 3_d and it kind of blew my mind) and the music is so tasty, I actually went on to iTunes, and legally purchased the soundtrack! first time I ever did that. (Probably the last time, too). It's my favorite movie I've seen this year.

Doubt: Yeah, so it's from last year, and I'm late to the party on it. It's pretty damn solid, though. Well worth checking out. Especially for Phillip Seymour Hoffman going on about how he likes to keep his nails a little long, but clean.

The International: This movie was stupid. Except for the gunfight in the Guggenheim museum, which kicks a supreme amount of ass. then it's back to nonsense. There is a brilliant line in the film, though. "The great thing about fiction is that it doesn't have to make sense". Or something along those lines. Maybe it was non-fiction. But see how stupid these thoughts are? Imagine a 2 hour movie just as dumb, and you get a sense of The International.

Friday the 13th:
This movie has got some problems. As far as Michael Bay-produced horror remakes go, it's fine. It's certainly the best looking movie to bear the name Friday the 13th. But this movie is pretty stupid, too. However, I give it credit for one bizarre choice: Apparently Jason grows pot. I'm not sure if he uses this to lure the kids his way, like a hormonal teen catnip, or if he's merely just a farmer trying to protect his land and his crop. I prefer this second option, as it makes his murders justified. Get your own damn pot, hippies, this is Jason's bad-ass chronic stash.

Kinda makes you wish they'd do a film mash-up of Friday, with Ice Cube and Chris Tucker, and this movie. That idea kinda makes me wish I had Photoshop skills.

This movie loses points, however, when the kids stop to get gas and start pumping it themselves. Being that the movie takes place in New Jersey, the filmmakers should have done their homework, as NJ is a state where you are not allowed to pump your own gas. (This fact has become fodder for many an East Coast open mic night stand-up routine). This lack of attention to detail took me out of the reality of the movie. Not the beheadings.

Fanboys: If ever there was a movie that screamed out to me, it would be this movie. Well, technically, it would be this movie if they let me make it. Because what we have here is a bizarre mess of a movie that's not really funny, not really touching, and sort of a broad perspective on Star Wars fanaticism. It needed to go deeper, in all aspects. And Dan Fogler made the list of dudes taking my life and putting it up on screen, as he drives around in a van and listens to Rush. Which as we all know is my lifelong dream. Regardless, this movie's not really that worth it, which is a shame because it should be awesome.

(The last line of the movie is pretty classic, though).

My friend Omar texted me in the middle of the movie to confirm that this is ndeed the most kick ass movie of the year. My own mother loved it. This movie will kick your ass hard. Why haven't you seen it yet? Liam Neeson will get angry with you, and he's had a hell of a year so far. (Too soon?) Anyway, see Taken.

Outlander: I've been meaning to write something up about this movie for awhile. It's a movie where vikings team up with a good alien, played by Jesus, and together they fight an evil alien. It's a pretty badass movie. I have two complaints about the movie: It needed to be even MORE badass, and they if ever a movie is BEGGING to star Karl Urban, it is Outlander.

However, it has Ron Perlman swinging giant war hammers on dudes' heads. That sounds pretty terrific right there, doesn't it? And believe me, it is. If this movie had twice the budget, I'm sure it could've done all the cool things a logline pitch of "Vikings vs. Aliens" stirs up in my imagination. Alas, this is the movie we get, although it kicks you in the man-zone hardcore, so it's got that going for it.

What makes my viewing of Outlander so ridiculous is the circumstances under which I saw the film. It was only released on 81 screens, and none of those screens were in the greater Los Angeles area. Having just come off a terrible working experience, and finding myself with a day off, Dan and I decided to drive down to San Diego, the closest location Outlander was playing. As it turns out, the theater was about a mile and a half away from the Mexican border. Which is how I drove straight to Mexico to see a movie where vikings fight an alien.

And that is why I am your hero.


Box Office Vs. Report

Dude here again. And I have but one question for you: Are you ready for some numbers? Now, I mean REALLY ready for some numbers? These numbers are gonna blow your mind and melt your face off. I'm serious. Take this as a surgeon general's warning. Speaking of surgeon general warnings, how come in the US the warnings are very mild, while in Canada the warnings flat out say "SMOKING WILL KILL YOU!"? Maybe I should do that here: THESE NUMBERS WILL KILL YOU!*

(*They really won't kill you. Unless you have personal investment in 12 Rounds).

This weekend, a return to obscenely large box office numbers, as some newcomers dominated over last week's releases, just as they always do. Let's go to the numbers, shall we? (All in millions, remember, and these are the studio estimates. The actuals will be available on Monday).

1. Monsters Vs. Aliens (Par/DW) - $58.2, 4104 screens, week 1, $58.2 total

2. The Haunting in Connecticut (LGF)- $23.0, 2732 screens, week 1, $23.0 total

3. Knowing (Sum) $14.7, 3337 screens, week 2, $46.2 total

4. I Love You, Man (Par/DW)- $12.6, 2717 screens, week 2, $37.0 total

5. Duplicity (Uni)- $7.5, 2579 screens, week 2, $25.6 total

6. Race to Witch Mountain (BV) - $5.6, 3268 screens, week 3, $53.2 total

7. 12 Rounds (Fox) - $5.3, 2331 screens, week 1, $5.3 total

8. Watchmen (WB)- $2.7, 2010 screens, week 4, $103.2 total

9. Taken (Fox) - $2.7, 1961 screens, week 9, $137.0 total

10. The Last House On The Left (Uni) - $2.6, 2251 screens, week 3, $28.4 total

So those are the numbers, but what do they mean? Well, it means that when an Alien versus a Predator, but it's a cartoon and more family friendly than a normal bout between aforementioned creatures, that you'll make a boatload of money. The 3-D gamble paid off as audiences flocked to see who won in the epic showdown, only this time whoever wins... we ALL win! I should write ads for movies with brilliant gems like that.

The Haunting in Connecticut, which is not, as I was lead to believe, a sequel to the movie "The Haunting" that happens to take place in Connecticut this time around, had an impressive debut as well. I'm sure it had something to do with the PG-13 rating, or the "based on a true story" tag. But I think a fair amount of the paying audience for that film believed, like I did, that it was a sequel to The haunting that takes place in CT.

12 Rounds- 2 weeks left in theaters. I'm willing to put money on that. Oh Fox, when will you learn to not bother releasing action movies while Taken is still around, taking down whoever gets in its' way.

I'm a little upset that this Monster Vs Aliens movie has kicked Watchmen off almost every IMAX screen. Now how will I see Dr. Manhattan's omnipresent blue wang 60 feet tall? Instead I get farting Seth Rogen and Reese Witherspoon voiced creatures. Thanks a lot, Dreamworks animation!

There you have my amazing break down. Next week, 4 Fast, 4 Furious-est! And Adventureland, which looks pretty good.

Until next weekend.......

Monday, March 23, 2009

Box Office Report: Back from vacation

Dude here again. Back from an awesome vacation, recharged and ready to report on some box office estimates. I'm gonna go ahead and say I was WAY off on my previous Watchmen predictions. Had I the money, I would've made sure my prediction came true. But I'm broke. It didn't even get my $7. I paid to see Taken again and snuck in. I'm sorry, I went way off topic.

This weekend, a three way "Cage" match happened, and while we may "Know" who won out, the top three showed no "Duplicity" when telling each other "I Love You, Man". I can't decide if I'm proud or ashamed for having written that last sentence. Let's go to the numbers, shall we? (All in millions, remember, and these are the studio estimates. The actuals will be available on Monday).

1. Knowing (Sum) $24.8, 3332 screens, week 1, $24.8 total

2. I Love You, Man (Par/DW)- $18.0, 2711 screens, week 1, $18.0 total

3. Duplicity (Uni)- $14.4, 2574 screens, week 1, $14.4 total

4. Race to Witch Mountain (BV) - $13.0, 3187 screens, week 2, $44.7 total

5. Watchmen (WB)- $6.7, 3510 screens, week 3, $98.0 total

6. The Last House On The Left (Uni) - $5.9, 2402 screens, week 2, $24.0 total

7. Taken (Fox) - $4.1, 2661 screens, week 8, $133.1 total

8. Slumdog Millionaire (FoxS) - $2.7, 2067 screens, week 19, $137.2 total

9. Tyler Perry's Madea Goes To Jail (LGF) - $2.5, 1835 screens, week 5, $87.2 total

10. Coraline (Focus)- $2.1, 1431 screens, week 7, $72.8 total

So those are the numbers, but what do they mean? Well, it means Nicolas Cage can always attract moviegoers, no matter what his hair looks like. I'm a little punned out from that previous paragraph, so just take comfort in knowledge that Knowing surprised many and took a lot of money.

I Love You, Man managed to score great reviews and make a nice amount. I don't really have too much to say about that either. Same with Duplicity. Really, I'm just bummed out at how off I was with that Watchmen prediction. I could've sworn that flick would shatter records. It's 3 hours long and has countless shots of blue wang! How does that not break records.

It is with great sadness that Taken, after 8 weeks, finally drops out of the top 5 movies. I don't believe a movie has done that in several years. Fickle business, these numbers. But there certainly were a lot of strong earners these past few months.

I'm not gonna lie to you, I'm still on vacation in my mind. I'll let the numbers speak for themselves.

There you have my amazing break down. Next week, some movie about a dude throwing up ghosts in Connecticut, and a movie starring John Cena, which will most certainly rock my face off.

Until next weekend.......

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Box Office Watch: Lazy Sunday edition

Dude here again. So, being the lazy man that I am, I've gone on vacation. And because I'll be on vacation, I decided to write this ahead of time. What I provide for you is pure conjecture, and in no way whatsoever represents actual numbers in any way shape or form. Except possibly in the minds of studio execs.

This weekend, Watchmen breaks every conceivable record ever. Let's go to the fake numbers, shall we? (All in millions, remember, and these are the studio estimates. The actuals will be available on Monday from a more reputable source than myself).

1. Watchmen (WB)- $194.4, 3611 screens, week 1, $194.4 total

2. Space Chimps (Fox)- $15.6, 2698 screens, week 38, $128.1 total

3. Slumdog Millionaire (FoxS) - $12.1, 2943 screens, week 16, $115.1 total

4. Taken (Fox) - $9.9, 3089 screens, week 5, $107.8 total

5. He's Just Not That Into You (NL) - $5.8, 2858 screens, week 4, $78.5 total

So those are the numbers, but what do they mean? Well, it means that Watchmen is just about the most successful motion picture of all time. In my mind. But wow, look at those numbers!

And hey, how about Space Chimps rocketing back up to the top of the charts, too! Yeah, Space Chimps! Naturally

And Taken continues it's dominance in the field of kicking your butt. Go Liam Neeson, Go!

not for nothing, but being that these are imaginary numbers, I'm impressed I kept it reasonably realistic in terms of not going over the top. Seriously, though, can you tell I've already checked out? I'm outta here, people.

There you have my amazing break down. Next week, I should be back with actual numbers. And hopefully a tan. That you will never see. Being that I write this.

Until next weekend.......

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Box Office Report: Today.

Dude here again. I heard about this movie that's coming out next week. It has superheroes in it. Robots would make it better. But I still think it has the potential to be a decent movie. I don't know, has anybody heard about this movie Watcherman?

This weekend, however, we finally see an end to the ridiculous numbers. Or at least a lull. Surprising lull, to be honest. Let's go to the numbers, shall we? (All in millions, remember, and these are the studio estimates. The actuals will be available on Monday).

1. Tyler Perry's Madea Goes To Jail (LGF) - $16.5, 2052 screens, week 2, $64.8 total

2. Jonas Brothers 3D Concert Movie (BV) - $12.7, 1271 screens, week 1, $12.7 total

3. Slumdog Millionaire (FoxS) - $12.1, 2943 screens, week 16, $115.1 total

4. Taken (Fox) - $9.9, 3089 screens, week 5, $107.8 total

5. He's Just Not That Into You (NL) - $5.8, 2858 screens, week 4, $78.5 total

6. Paul Blart: Mall Cop (Sony)- $5.6, 2698 screens, week 7, $128.1 total

7. Coraline (Focus)- $5.2, 2063 screens, week 4, $61.1 total

8. Street Fighter: Legend of Chun Li (Fox) $4.6, 1136 screens, week 1, $4.6 total

9. Confessions of a Shopaholic (BV)- $4.4, 2534 screens, week 3, $33.6 total

10. Fired Up (ScrGms) - $3.8, 1811 screens, week 2, $10.1 total

So those are the numbers, but what do they mean? Well, it means that the Disney empire on tween concert movies might be dwindling. The Jonas Brothers 3D Experience opened far from the amazing take of that Hannah Montana nonsense. Maybe people are sick of the Jonas Brothers. They're certainly no Hansen, I tell you that.

Madea Goes To Jail retains the top spot, while Slumdog Millionaire shoots up to number 3, proving that a Best Picture Oscar win can make you more movie. So my next step in life is to make a Best Picture Winner. Hey kids, dream big.

Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li opened up to a piddling 8th place, which is just about right. The movie is, however, worth checking out as it is spectacularly awful. Happening-levels of awful, people. Check it out!

Not for nothing, but Taken, Blart, Coraline, and He's Not That Into You have all done pretty terrific business for an economy that's toeing the edge of a volcano. Just saying.

Below the radar, a film called Crossing Over, which stars Indiana Jones and is being hailed as "Traffic, but about immigrants instead of drugs" opened up on 9 screens and took in $75,600. As long as there isn't a scene involving an immigrant hiding in a fridge as it's blown across the border, I think that can be considered a success.

There you have my amazing break down. Next week, the Watcherman watches.

Until next weekend.......