30 September 2005

The Funniest Thing You'll Click On Today

Hey guys, it's Donnie...That title is not even remotely an exaggeration, because this thing is absolutely brilliant. I'm debating whether or not to tell you the context of the clip, but I think it'll be funnier if I give you a very basic set-up.

Movies are often mis-marketed. This is a fact of the entertainment industry. When a movie doesn't fit into a nice little cubby hole classification, the studio will run ads that make the movie seem like something else entirely. Donnie Darko was marketed...well, it wasn't really marketed much at all. But when it went to DVD, the powers-that-be wanted to market it as a teen horror movie. All the ads for What Lies Beneath showed basically the second half of the movie only, so when they spent the first hour of the movie chasing down a red herring, everyone in the theater sat there going, "What the hell is going on? This isn't the movie I signed up for!"

Well, a post-production company in NY, PS 260, held an internal contest among its employees. The goal? To take footage from a movie and re-edit it into a trailer for a different genre than the movie actually is. The winning trailer has made its way out onto the internet and it's hilarious. It's a new take on Kubrick's classic The Shining, which I just saw on the big screen recently, so this was extra funny for me.

Anyway, click it here for the greatest music cue ever.

Kevin Smith Wishes He Was Peter Jackson

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Kevin Smith just launched the website for Clerks 2: The Passion Of The Clerks, and you know what? It actually makes me less worried about this movie than I was before.

Smith is always his worst critic, and rather than try to defend this movie, he lays it all out on the line. So far the site only contains two things: A "teaser", which is basically just a series of clips from the first Clerks with Passion music over it. But there's also a video diary, ala KongIsKing, ala BlueTights, and it's fuckin hilarious. Since it's just an intro, (entitled "Back To The Well") it's basically just a few minutes of Kevin Smith talking to the camera, but he's absolutely hilarious. There's even a sneak peak at a future journal entry!

Don't get me wrong, I still think that Clerks 2 is a bad idea, but at least Smith seems to know it too, which makes me hope he's gonna buckle down to make this thing work. Plus he's got Rosario Dawson onboard, and that's a good thing in my book. No word on whether or not The Affleck will make an appearance, but last I checked, he didn't really have anything on the horizon, except for the Gone Baby Gone, the flick he's gonna direct based on the novel by Dennis Lehane. Some of you may think he's never directed a movie before, but you would be wrong. Don't believe me? Go ahead, check out IMDB to find out the name of the movie he directed in college. It has the most brilliant title I've ever heard in my life.

Click it here to jam gum in the locks, you bunch of savages...

X3: I'm A Girl Ya Know...

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I shudder in fear.

X3 "mastermind" Brett Ratner has just signed Omahyra Mota onboard in an unspecified role. Omahyra Mota is a model, leading many to believe that she's being brought in to play Stacey X, aka The Mutant Whore, a character whose mutation is a pheramone that allows her to seduce any man she wishes.

Omahyra Mota would need a mutated pheramone in order to seduce men.


Because Omahyra Mota looks like a 15 year old boy.

So I guess she could to alright at the local rectory. Zing!

Granted, this picture is rather overtly boyish, but go ahead. Google her. Even in the girlier pictures, she still looks like a dude.

God this movie makes me so worried.

Broken Lizard CRACKS Your NUTS

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Broken Lizard recently snagged themselves a pretty killer 3 year first look deal with Warners to develop new talent and projects and we've just gotten word on the first of what is sure to be many tasty fruits of that deal. The project is called Nutcracker, and it certainly has potential. The story follows the biggest, meanest, most violent asshole football player in the NFL. When he starts to lose his game, he logically turns to ballet to help him get his skills back.

The Broken Lizard boys will write and produce, although it's unclear at this point if they would be starring ala Super Troopers, or providing supporting roles ala Dukes of Hazard. My gut says they'll probably stay in supporting roles, as they have a few other projects that have been on the back burner for much longer, namely Beerfest about underground Beer Olympics, and The Greek Road, which is a big budget ancient Greek comedy.

I loves me my Broken Lizard, and while I didn't get to Dukes of Hazard, I'll probably check it out on DVD. More Broken Lizard sounds like more powerful goodness to me.

Mike Meyers Career Continues To Go Down The Shitter

Hey guys, it's Donnie...We've received word on Mike Myers next project, and I can't help but think back on his career, and compare it to another talented slapstick comedian who came into the public consciousness right around the same time: Jim Carrey. Both made names as great physical comedians with a myriad of wacky voices at their disposal and a penchant for the absurd. The major difference between the two in 2006?

Jim Carrey's filmography doesn't make me cringe.

I used to love Mike Meyers. So I Married An Axe Murderer was one of my favorite movies as a kid, and I think that Meyers may have hit his comedic peak with that movie, which is truly unfortunate. I mean, I really enjoyed the first Austin Powers movie at the time, but all the funny has been beaten out of it by over exposure/over merchandising and the series has gotten worse as time has gone on. The Shrek movies are also enjoyable the first time around, but they have a half-life of about 12 seconds before they become dated and not-so-funny. He did Cat In The Hat in order to settle a lawsuit, so I'm almost willing to cut him a break on that. Almost. But, between the Austin Powers and Shrek franchises, Meyers pretty much never has to work another day in his life, so....gah.

Another big difference between Carrey and Meyers...Carrey can successfully pull of the serious acting thing. The Majestic is far from great, but Carrey does a decent job. He's certainly not unwatchable, which is more than I can say for Meyers in 54. And Eternal Sunshine...well, enough said. He's got another dramatic role in the works for Joel Schumacher called The Number 23, and I'm really rather looking forward to it.

Anyway, Meyers seems determined to give serious acting another go around, as he's just signed on to do an untitled biopic about Keith Moon, the insane(ly talented) drummer of The Who. Roger Daltry is onboard as a producer. I can't say I'm particularly familiar with the work of The Who, but I hear that Moon was an absolute madman, so maybe acting totally schizo will help soften the transition to real acting for Meyers.

Either way, the prospect of Mike Meyers as Keith Moon gives me a serious sinking feeling, as opposed to the prospect of Elijah Wood as Iggy Pop, which just may be fucking brilliant.

29 September 2005

Trailertown: Total Confusion

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Welcome back to Trailertown!

Looking over today's crop of new residents, I feel like I'm surrounded by immigrants from Bizzaro World. All of today's trailers have at least one thing about them that just makes me shake my head in puzzlement.

Annapolis: The story of a determined young man who gets accepted to the elite Naval Academy at Annapolis, where he clashes with his hardened instructor seemingly at every turn. Think of it as Top Gun meets Stripes, but minus the funny. The flick looks fairly unremarkable, and the best thing about it will probably be the performance by James Franco, who can pretty much play these "troubled youth" parts in his sleep. Tyrese Gibson plays his unsympathetic instructor, and here's where I started to scratch my head. While it appears that Gibson puts in a pretty good performance, I can't really get over the fact that he and Franco are EXACTLY THE SAME AGE and they look it on screen. Are we really supposed to buy Tyrese as the uber-experienced, battle-hardened Naval instructor at a mere 28 years of age? Cuz I really don't. Also, it's directed by Justin Lin, who was previously responsible for the underrated film Better Luck Tomorrow. That movie showed real promise in him as a director, so why is he doing this middle of the road crap? (I'm sure there were many dollar signs involved.) After this he's directing the third Fast And The Furious starring Bow Wow, and that's just downright depressing, especially since his next flick after that will probably be the ill-conceived American remake of Oldboy. At one point I though Lin was a nice choice, but this little detour through Schlock City just serves to increase my already-sky-high nervousness about the impending Park Chanwook bastardization.

Click it here to shamelessly rip off one of the best scenes in Top Gun...

Running Scared: The story centers on Paul Walker as a lower middle class family man/mob pion who is supposed to get rid of a gun used to kill a cop. Instead he keeps the gun, only to see it get stolen out of his house. Now he has to find the snub .38 and get rid of it for real before the cops and/or the Russian mob find it and make him a corpse for real. The premise is kinda cool, although you've got Wayne Kramer at the helm. Kramer directed the wonderful Bill Macy film The Cooler, but he also wrote the addle-brained disaster that was Renny Harlin's Mindhunters, so in my book, Kramer is a toss-up at this point. Plus you've got Paul Walker, who is a total void of any and all presence and/or personality. And herein lies my confusion: This flick actually looks pretty fuckin solid. Chazz Palminteri looks to be doing some good old fashioned scenery chewing and there seems to be a great sense of visual style at work here, (although I really could have done without the Schumacher-esque blacklight/neon hockey scene at the end) Hell, even Paul Walker looks to be pulling his dramatic weight here. Did I really just say that? I'm feeling a little dizzy...

Click it here to see a car that's way cooler than the guy driving it...

Match Point: I just...I don't know what to do with this. I'd heard a bit about this movie already, mostly good things, but I just was not prepared for this trailer. In fact, I'm not gonna say anything more about it, mostly because I want you to have the same what-the-fuck moment that I just had. So check out the trailer, and then come back and we'll discuss.

Click it here to wonder where all the tennis is at...





Alright, I'm just gonna say it.

WOODY ALLEN?!?! What the hell? Where the fuck did that come from? Talk about a departure of style. Seriously, how many of you thought that it was a Woody Allen movie before you saw his name at the end? All of you who raised your hands...you're LIARS, each and every one of you! Don't get me wrong, I think the film looks fantastic. The cast is phenomenal (Brian Cox!) and I'm certainly not going to complain about seeing Scarlett Johansson in the soaking rain. I'm just astounded that Woody Allen made this movie. Since when does he make dark sexual thrillers? And was that a gunshot at the end? Good lord, who is this Woody Allen and where the hell has he been hiding for the past 30 years?? You can click it here to see the international trailer, which not only has at least a reference to tennis, but paints the picture of a very different movie, one much more traditional Allen. Apparantly the movie screened at Cannes and blew people away, and I can see why.

Alright, I've got to go take a Xanex or something. My brain is about ready to shut down from a total lack of logic in the world around me.

Did I really compliment the performance of Paul Walker? Jesus...

28 September 2005

a video game movie not involving Uwe Boll!!!

Hi from Billy! Been a while since I've posted.

I just want to post a quick review/preview of something I watched last night. Upon the advice of an old roommate, I pirated me a copy of Final Fantasy: Advent Children (Don't worry, Square Enix, I'll still buy it later). For those of you who have never heard of it, it is the long-anticipated sequel to the IMMENSELY popular Playstation game Final Fantasy VII (1997). Before I get into the movie, I just want to say a little about the game. When I say IMMENSELY popular, I'm not kiddin around. This is the game that brought RPGs into the mainstream (at least, that's how I see it, and any and all reviews I've read seem to agree with me). With a story line that just sucks you right in, visuals that were truly remarkable for the time, memorable characters, and great gameplay, it was a mega-mega-hit. Gamespy places it as the #10 playstation game of all time. It's spawning a host of sequels, a practice which, up until recently, was totally unheard of from Square Enix (It was Squaresoft back in 1997). They come in various forms, from cell phone material to games on various systems, and, of greatest interest, this movie.

I don't want to give anything away, and, honestly, I'm not sure I totally understand this movie yet. I'll say this, though: the story needs some work. As an avid fan of FF7 (it's my second-favorite FF), I got what was happening, but things seemed a bit rushed/underdeveloped. But that perception might be skewed for a couple of reasons, such as the fact that the game's storyline is so thorough and fleshed out. Also, my copy was a rip of the Japanese release of Advent Children with not-so-great English subtitles (U.S. version on January 10th).

Despite plot troubles, however, I REALLY enjoyed this. The visuals are spectacular. SPECTACULAR .. as in, watch out, Pixar. The file I downloaded was a 700 mb .avi, which, granted, is huge. But that's not DVD quality by any means. Even so, this movie is gorgeous. If I were to casually walk into a room and just see it in passing, I would have thought they were real people shot on DV (the images are so clean). A big part of that comes from the physics models they are using .. they really nailed it. Hair moves naturally. Muscles tug. Walking is smooth. Water is perfect. Depth, texture, and shadow are great.
Ok, that's really all I want to say. Even if you don't care for Final Fantasy, see this, for the eye candy if nothing else. You'll be amazed at the tech.

Click it here to pine for CGI Donald Sutherland...

Time For A Little Housekeeping...

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I bet you thought I'd forgotten about you. After all, it has been almost a week since any new content has hit the site. Well, to you, my faithful reader, I must offer my most profound apologies. My office has been really hectic, I've been having some problems with Blogger, and it's also been a really slow fucking week for news that I actually give a crap about. Seriously, when the biggest entertainment news item of the day is that Dakota Fanning has joined the Girl Scouts, there should be no doubt in anyone's mind that's it's a slow news day. So I caught up on some flicks this weekend, (I highly recommend both A History Of Violence and Thumbsucker) I did some reformatting to the site, and today you get a gaggle of good stuff.

Things worth noting: As I've now been intently rockin the site for about four months now, I noticed that the sidebar was getting extremely large, what with four months of archived posts listed weekly. I've therefore listed the Archives monthly. This means that one link gives you a very large page with every post on it for the entire month, at which point you'll probably want to take advantage of your browser's search function. I felt it was more important to clean up the front page than to have the archived posts super-organized, mostly because I don't think too many people are really tracking back through the Archives. But if you are and you really find it too annoying to bear, let me know and I'll try to work some magic.

Anyway, as summer has drawn to a close, I'd like to open the floor for a little debate. Those of you who have been reading the site regularly, as well as those who may be stopping in for the first time. What do you think? What features do you like? Dislike? Despise? What would you like to see more/less of in terms of content? I'm gonna try and do some more reviews, and maybe some regular themed articles. Comments? Questions? Suggestions? Speak up! Comment on this post or drop me an email

Input!!! More input!!!

Spidey Villians Locked And Loaded

Hey guys, it's Donnie...You know, I really feel geniuinely bad for Avi Arad and Sam Raimi. They've done an amazing job of containing the various rumors as to the identity of the Spidey 3 villians. Sure, there have been about a billion rumors floating around, but none that could really be considered credible.

That was, of course, until Kirsten Dunst opened up her big yap.

Yes, that's right, at a recent press conference for Elizabethtown, someone asked her a question about Spidey 3, expecting to get the same roundabout, "Well, I'm sworn to secrecy" line. But instead she uttered the following reply, which probably made more than one reporter fall out of chair and choke on his pencap:

"We have really great people though as the villains in this film, Thomas Haden Church and Topher Grace -- Venom and Sandman. (pause) Maybe I wasn't supposed to say that."

Yeah, maybe you weren't. After all the hulabaloo, after stonewalling everyone at ComicCon, I can't imagine that this was how Avi Arad was planning on revealing their identities to the public, even though Venom and Sandman was already the consensus of just about anyone who gives a crap. Kirsten Dunst also said in a later interview with MTV that the film had "two and a half villians", which I'm gonna assume is a reference to Harry pulling an Anakin Skywalker and becoming the Hobgoblin at the end of the film. There are still possibilities for Curt Connors to become The Lizard and I would even buy that Doc Ock may have survived somehow, but I think the smart money is on young Osbourne.

I have very high hopes for Peter Parker's next outing, especially now that there's a black symbiote suit involved. I echo my previous assertions that casting Topher Grace as Eddie Brock/Venom is probably the smartest move he could have made. They've got the opportunity to set Venom up as a real dark mirror to Spiderman, and despite the recent outcry from Danny Elfman, I still have a lot of faith and trust in Sam Raimi.

Production gears up in January, so here we go...

Trailertown: Everyone's A Winner

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Welcome back to Trailertown!

Today we're going to take a look at two very...different sides of the athletic community.

Glory Road: I'm a huge Josh Lucas fan. I'll say it. I think he's got charm oozing out of his ears. And look at his filmography: Wonderland, Secondhand Lions, Hulk, A Beautiful Mind, Session 9, American Psycho, You Can Count On Me, just to name a few. The guy is fantastic, he just can't seem the find the right project to really catapult him up to major star status, although I would argue that I'd rather he be exactly where he is. Otherwise he'd never do great little films like Around The Bend. His next is called Glory Road, and it's a basketball flick about the first NCAA coach to start 5 black players. It looks okay, which is to say it looks exactly like all the movies it refers to in the trailer, i.e. Remember The Titans, The Rookie, etc. However Lucas's wife is played by Emily Deschenel, one of my new favorite actresses. Check out Bones on Fox Tuesday nights. She's great.

Click it here to see make friends with a gator...

The Ringer: Well, I gave you the lowdown on this flick earlier when the poster was released, and now we finally have a new trailer. The teaser was released about a year ago and if you haven't seen it or don't remember it, watch it, cuz it's a great teaser. The new trailer is also pretty damn good, I must admit. It still looks like it's gonna fall short of its potential, but I'm sure it'll be an entertaining time at the movies. Plus it has Brian Cox. Nothing makes your movie shine like the original Hannibal Lecter. Too bad the love interest seems to have absolutely no presence whatsoever...

Click it here to snag the choice parking spot...

Next Time Gadget...Next Time!

Hey guys, it's Donnie...While I was certainly sad to hear about the recent passing of Gilligan, (and later mortified to hear that Rob Schnieder is trying to launch a big screen adaptation with himself as the titular "little buddy") I have to admit that I was never a tremendous fan of the unforunate passengers of the S.S. Minnow. Gilligan's Island was something I would watch because it was on TBS for like 4 hours a day when I was growing up. For whatever reason, I just couldn't really get on board (pun only slightly intended) with that show. Maybe it was because they could make a two-way radio out of a pair of coconuts but they couldn't fix the 3 foot hole in the damn boat.

On the other hand, when I learned of the passing of Don Adams, my heart just about sank into my shoes. What's that? You say you've never heard of Don Adams? Well, perhaps you may know him better as Maxwell Smart, aka Agent 86, bearer of the shoe phone, defender of the Cones Of Silence, almost-defeater of the nude bomb, and star of the legendary series Get Smart. Still not ringing any bells? Well in that case you must be closer to my age than my father's age, and you know him better as the greatest cyborg slueth the world has ever known: Inspector Gadget. If you still don't know what I'm talking about, then go back to your home planet, we don't serve your kind here.

Inspector Gadget is at the pinnacle of the animated iconography of my youth, right up there with The Real Ghostbusters, Ninja Turtles, Thundercats, and Voltron. Go Go Gadget [insert way cool contraption and/or body part here] was one of my favorite catch phrases as a kid. When I finally discoverd Get Smart a few years later, I just about crapped myself with glee. This guy was a comic genius, and it's with great sadness that I mourn his passing.

The only possible silver lining is that perhaps the powers-that-be will finally get off their asses and get moving on the feature adaptation of Get Smart starring Steve Carrell, although I would have loved to see Adams make a cameo appearance...ah well. I guess we'll just have to start rumors on who'll be playing the lovely Agent 99...hmmm, he and Elizabeth Banks had some pretty good chemistry...

Goldman Throws a MONKEY WRENCH into Hardwicke's GANG

Hey guys, it's Donnie...The name William Goldman might not leap off the screen at you. At best, he probably elicits a reaction of "The name sounds kinda familiar..." Let me assure you, however, that most of you are probably very familiar with his work, and if you aren't you should be. Princess Bride, the nothing-short-of-brilliant All The President's Men, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and Misery. The man is pretty much a legend. I'm willing to forget his recent work on Hearts in Atlantis and Dreamcatcher, because, hey, maybe he just can't wrap his head properly around Stephen King's work. I don't know.

Either way, I have high hopes for his future, as he has just been brought on board to punch up the latest draft of The Monkey Wrench Gang (not to be confused with The Sasquatch Dumpling Gang) the next film on the directorial plate of one Catherine Hardwicke, whose recent Lords of Dogtown was on my Top Ten of 2005 up until this past weekend, when it was forced out by A History of Violence and Thumbsucker.

The story is based on the book by Edward Abbey. Here's what Amazon says about the book:

The story centers on Vietnam veteran George Washington Hayduke III, who returns to the desert to find his beloved canyons and rivers threatened by industrial development. On a rafting trip down the Colorado River, Hayduke joins forces with feminist saboteur Bonnie Abbzug, wilderness guide Seldom Seen Smith, and billboard torcher Doc Sarvis, M.D., and together they wander off to wage war on the big yellow machines, on dam builders and road builders and strip miners. As they do, his characters voice Abbey's concerns about wilderness preservation ("Hell of a place to lose a cow," Smith thinks to himself while roaming through the canyonlands of southern Utah. "Hell of a place to lose your heart. Hell of a place... to lose. Period"). Moving from one improbable situation to the next, packing more adventure into the space of a few weeks than most real people do in a lifetime, the motley gang puts fear into the hearts of their enemies, laughing all the while.

Goldman was brought on to give the story a more sweeping, mythic feel, so here's hoping he return to his former greatness and deliver something really special for Hardwicke...

Tupac: Dead And Loving It

Hey guys, it's Donnie...There seems to be a never ending string of jokes to be made concerning the plethora of albums and whatnot that have been released since the unfortunate death of Tupac. He has formed a virtual post-mortem media empire. Well, the hits just keep on coming, because in addition to the countless albums and the recent documentary, we can now add screenwriter to the list of Tupac's posthumous accolades.

That's right, Insomnia Media Group just purchased the rights to a screenplay written by the infamous rapper way way back in 1995, a film he had intended as a star vehicle for himself. Live 2 Tell (a sequel to Cradle 2 the Grave perhaps?) tells the story of a young scrapper who builds up a drug empire, only to turn his life around at the end.

Not entirely original at this point, as it sounds very reminiscent of Hustle and Flow, Never Die Alone, (criminally underrated film) the upcoming Get Rich Or Die Tryin. That doesn't mean it won't be good though. I'm a fan of all of those films, so I guess we'll just have to see if Tupac is as good a dead writer as he is a dead rapper...

PosterTime: Three Headed Retarded Kids

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I suppose that title is "a wee bit offsides" if you will, but I was trying to come up with a clever title that combines both of today's posters and that was honestly the first thing that popped into my head. Who knows where ideas come from, they just appear. Ah well, guess I'm gonna burn in hell. At least I'll be with friends.

Today we've got two posters, one for an foreign import and one for a long delayed flick with a lot of potential. First up: Three...Extremes. Similar in concept to the recent Eros trilogy, this film collects three great Asian filmmakers who each give us a short film that is sure to be full and sick and twisted horror fun. Takashi Miike, Fruit Chan and Park Chanwook will each be presenting a glimpse into their respective dark genius just in time for Haloween. I'm certainly looking forward to it, and while I don't love this poster, I still think it's pretty interesting.

We've also got the poster for The Ringer, the not-a-Farrelly-Brothers-movie. They're listed as producers, although they actually had a great deal of influence on this flick, i.e. they were on set every day and told everyone what to do. The premise is quite solid: Johnny Knoxville is deep in debt so he decides to pretend to be retarded so he can compete in the Special Olympics and bet on himself. Tell me that doesn't have potential for a boatload of funny. They didn't want the public as well as advocacy groups to write it off as "The Farrelly Brothers making fun of retarded people" so they took a producing credit and let Barry W. Blaustein come in as the actual director. Blaustein is apparantly an Eddie Murphy addict, as he wrote Coming To America, Boomerang, Nutty Professor (1 and 2) and an upcoming spin on Romeo and Juliet for Murphy to star in. This movie has been sitting on a shelf at Fox Searchlight for the better part of a year now, so let's hope it's worth the wait.

I'm not really crazy about either of these posters, but I have pretty high hopes for both films and I wanted to put them on people's radars.

21 September 2005

Tarrantino Spills On Grindhouse...And Perhaps Discovers Time Travel??

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Tarantino is one of those guys who will make a movie that totally dominates the public consciousness for a full 6 months...and then he'll totally drop off the face of the planet and not talk to anyone for a year and a half. So whenever someone talks him into an interview, you can bet that I'm gonna read it. MTV caught up with him at a recent promotion for Daltry Calhoun, the Johnny Knoxville flick about a grass man with a kid that Tarantino executive produced. (Sidenote: I really enjoy that Tarantino has gotten into producing. It not only keeps him more involved in the industry but it also means that we get more films with his influence, or, at the very least, his vague approval, and that's pretty much a win-win scenario.)

The interview is pretty much kept to short sound bites and he doesn't say a whole lot that we haven't heard before. Inglorious Bastards is probably next flick, although it's still quite a ways off. He might be involved in Sin City 2. He wants to do a third Kill Bill focusing on The Bride's daughter B.B. in about 10 years, once everyone has aged a bit. He is also still contemplating a prequel-ish film about Vicent Vega (Travolta in Pulp Fiction) and Victor Vega, (Madsen in Reservior Dogs) and he even says "I've actually figured out a way, even though the characters have gotten older, to do it. I just have to have the ambition to write it." which I guess means that QT is building a Way Back Machine in his basement.

Anyway, the real dirt is when he gave up come details on his upcoming collaboration with Robert Rodriguez, Grind House. Here we get the first really substantive info on what is sure to be one of the most intriguing flicks of 2006:

"His movie is called Planet Terror, and mine is called Death Proof...Mine is sort of a slasher film, but instead of a knife, it's a car. ... His, he's dealing with zombies and all that stuff. I think his might end up being more violent, but I'm not finished with my [script] yet, so you never know...One of the things we're looking the most forward to [is] shooting the phony trailers that will play in between the movies. I'm working out my blaxploitation trailer, and possibly a kung-fu trailer, a sexploitation trailer, a spaghetti-western trailer. I just need to kind of work them out a little bit. I'm just getting them down there, but I think for sure I'm going to do the sexploitation trailer, which is called 'Cowgirls in Sweden.' "

Man I can not wait for this freakin movie. Now all he has to do is hurry up and finish Inglorious Bastards, actually cast Michael Madsen, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Eddie Murphy, Sylvester Stallone, Adam Sandler, and Bruce Willis, (as previous rumors have foretold) and then get to work on the physics-bending Vega Brothers movie and I will be a happy camper.

Click it here to check out the only thing worth reading on the MTV website today...

When Did Mel Brooks Remember How To Be Funny?

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I'll say it right up front: I hate musicals. My two favorite musicals of all time (and pretty much the only ones that I tolerate) are the Buffy musical Once More With Feeling (because Joss Whedon is clever as all hell) and, first and foremost, The Blues Brothers. But, then again, how can you hate a musical featuring some of the greatest rhythm and blues musicians ever assembled and not one but TWO of the greatest car chases of all time.

That being said, Mel Brooks will soon be double plagurizing himself by producing a big screen musical of his Broadway musical based on his own original movie The Producers. I like the original, (Gene Wilder is brilliant as always) although I never had any desire to see the Broadway version. However, even I have to admit that the British trailer for the newest incarnation starring Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Will Ferrell and Uma Thurman indicates a fun time at the theater.

It's in flash, so it looks like crap, but I actually laughed once or twice. It's much funnier than I expected it to be. I figured this would be somewhat of a toothless crowd pleaser, but there's clearly something else going on here. I'm curious what the American trailer will look like...

Click it here to have a standing ovation...

More Mutant Malfeasance

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Bratt Ratner has been drawing upon a number of different sources as inspiration for his upcoming X3, including seemingly every mutant every created and most every storyline ever contemplated by an X-Men writer. But now I seriously think he's basing his ideas on Anchorman, and that frightens me just a little bit.

XMenFilms.net has run a massive spoiler filled story concerning various plot points of the next flick, including details on Phoenix, The Sentinels, and a massive mutant melee the likes of which have not been seen since Brick killed a guy. (There were horses and a man on fire and he killed a guy with a trident!) In what I can only assume will be the film's climax, we're going to witness a fight between not 8, not 17, but TWENTY TWO characters. I don't know what's more disturbing, trying to stage that fight, or the fact that there are twenty two characters in this movie that all warrunt a fight scene.

Click it here to eat my chocolate squirrel and read the rest of the spoilerage...

Sic Semper Harrison Ford???

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Harrison Ford has just gotten really...awkward of late. First there was Six Days, Seven Nights, in which he had a really bizarre onscreen love interest in Anne "I'm Not Crazy, I Swear...Well, Okay Maybe A Little Crazy...But Only On Tuesdays..." Heche. Then he pierced his ear and found an even more bizarre offscreen love interest in Callista "Why Doesn't David E. Kelley Return My Phone Calls?" Flockhart. Then there was Hollywood Homicide. I tried to watch that movie, but all I remember was that Officer Josh Hartnett was teaching yoga and Officer Harrison Ford was trying to sell a house to a rapper, and then I think I blacked out.

Well, while he waits for George Lucas to accept the end of the Star Wars and get off his ass to do Indy 4, Ford has just signed on to do Manhunt, which is based on a book that hasn't actually been published yet. The book is an hour by hour account of the the 12 day search for the assassin of Abraham Lincoln. Ford would play Col. Everton Conger, commander of the New York Cavalry and leader of the titular search effort. This is easily the coolest sounding project he's been attached to in quite some time, so let's hope it pays off. Between this and Spielberg's Lincoln biopic starring Liam Neeson (which he'll probably shoot over a long weekend), the cinematic future looks bright for that guy on the five-spot in your pocket.

Matador Poster Features Lack Of Livestock...

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I feel like Pierce Brosnan's next flick The Matador has been in production forever. Maybe it's just that everytime someone runs a story about a Bond rumor, it gets mentioned as his next film, so it just seems that way because I've seen the title in print pretty much every three days for the past 8 months.

We haven't seen much in the way of stills or promo stuff pop up online yet, but the film did screen at the Toronto Film Fest last week. I heard it was pretty good, but a little out of place at the festival. Well, this morning the folks at BlackFilm snagged the poster and I've gotta say...me likey. I don't know if the movie will capture the creative spark behind this poster, but if it does, you can pretty much count me in. Then again, any lack of floating heads tends to make me a happy camper.

Click it in the crosshairs to see the full sized fun...

Rosario Dawson Fills Her Dance Card

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Rosario Dawson is definitely an acquired taste, but I'm certainly starting to come around. She was a ton of fun in Sin City, which more than makes up for her getting raped in the knees in Men In Black 2. (See pic. Something ain't right with that game of Twister...) She'll probably be fantastic in Rent as well, although the chances of me going to see that movie probably fall somewhere between slim and no fucking way, if only because I'm sure there will be many more things in theaters that I want to see way more.

Well, yesterday word broke that she's recently been added to two upcoming projects. She'll play the girlfriend of Joseph Gordan Levitt (the kid from 3rd Rock From The Sun with the girl hair) in the upcoming Elmore Leonard adaptation Killshot, which is really shaping up to be an outstanding project, and will likely continue to do so until it hits theaters and massively disappoints everyone ala The Big Bounce.

She'll also play a supporting role in Kevin Smith Clerks sequel. That just confuses the dick out of me. Then again, that whole movie kind of confuses the dick out of me, so I guess I should at least be greatful that at least Dante and Randall will be interacting with someone who's actually attractive this time out, as I assume that Caitlin will not return and I pray that Veronica won't either.

20 September 2005

Edgar Wright vs. The Pentaveret

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Well, it's a well known fact, Sunny Jim, that there's a secret society of the five wealthiest people in the world, known as The Pentaveret, who run everything in the world, including the newspapers, and meet tri-annually at a secret country mansion in Colorado, known as The Meadows. So who's in this Pentaveret? The Queen, The Vatican, The Gettys, The Rothschilds, and Colonel Sanders before he went tits up. Oh, I hated the Colonel with is wee beady eye! And that smug look on his face, "Oh, you're gonna buy my chicken! Ohhhhh!"

Sorry about that. Had to be done.

Ya see, the latest addition to the list of Edgar Wright's possible follow up films to Shaun Of The Dead is Them, an adaptation of the novel by Jon Ronson, whose name sounds like it was arranged in the wrong order. The book chronicles Ronson's humorous interactions with the members of numerous political and sociological fringe groups, the the Ku Klux Clain to Scientologists, in an effort to get closer to The Bilderberg Group, the "real leaders of the world". The movie, to be written by Mike White (School of Rock) and produced but not starring (for now) by Jack Black and their Black and White Production company, will fictionalize the novel into one woman's quest to find the secret rulers of the world, and it sure to be freakin' hilarious.

Between this, Ant-Man, and the number of other projects that Wright has lined up, it looks like everybody wins, including we lucky members of the film-going public.

19 September 2005

BlueTights: Call In Cole Hauser

Hey guys, it's Donnie... BlueTights has posted the latest of entry in Bryan's Blog, entitled Stoparazzi. It's certainly not spoiler heavy or process heavy or even content heavy really, it's just sort of amusing. It shows Bryan shooting a scene with Spacey and Parker Posey on a public beach, and various paparazzi members trying to take photos while the crew members creatively get in their way.

When I worked on Fever Pitch, this guy from the Boston Herald kept loitering around on the day we shot out on the street, trying to take pictures of Drew Barrymore and Jimmy Fallon. We had a guy basically just chase him around, stand in front of him and wave his hands around while he tried to take pictures. It was pretty hilarious.

Click it here for fun with umbrellas.

Serenity: The Mediocrity Continues

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Despite the fact that my excitement to see Serenity is pretty much off the charts, my excitement for their promotional campaign could not be any lower. In my staff meeting today, someone mentioned that they were taking a "Creative Marketing" class, and that struck me as an odd title for a class. Shouldn't all marketing be creative? I certainly wouldn't want to take a class in "Boring Marketing" or "Uninspired Marketing". Apparantly the folks running the Serenity account for Universal are of a different opinion.

I already wrote up a little mini-rant about the various craparific posters they've released, but now we've got another international poster of marginally better design. When I saw the smaller, thumbnail version, I thought, "Angel wings? What the hell? Is River Tam supposed to be Jesus or something?" But no, she is not in fact a member of the order of cherubs. But at least someone seemed to put some sort of creative thought into this guy. Even if the thought is stupid, like, "Let's give the hot jailbait girl illusionary angel wings", that's still better than, "Let's put some big floating heads against a blue, nebula-esque background."

I'm still not a fan of River being so much more prominently displayed than the rest of the crew, especially since one of the strengths of Firefly was it's great ensemble work. I'm also not a huge fan of of this white shite palette they're working with for the international campain, but the French will probably love that shit, so whatever.

Thirsty Till 2006

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Just yesterday, one of the rookies I was training at the Helpdesk asked me about my favorite directors, and I mentioned Aronofsky because the man is pretty much batting a thousand in my book, although it's more than a little bit of a copout because he's really only directed two films. Although I immediately mentioned that we were gonna be getting his third, The Fountain, very soon and that I had very high expectations, despite the fact that I've yet to see anything more than a handful of still images and that fantastic screen saver.

Well, it seems I spoke too soon. While there has yet to be an official announcement from the folks at Warners, a number of sources, namely Hollywood Reporter and Entertainment Weekly, are now reporting that the film has been pushed back to an undetermined date in 2006. Moreover, in Warners' Fall/Holiday Preview press release, The Fountain was nowhere to be found.

There are a number of VERY high profile projects that will be hitting theaters during the fall and holiday season, contrasting a somewhat lackluster summer. Granted I thought there were a number of good films this summer, but they seemed to be spread very thin amongst a lot of utter crap. Anyway, the point is that perhaps by delaying The Fountain's release, it will stand out a little more amongst the general crap that tends to get unloaded in January and early February, ala Eternal Sunshine.

I always try to hope for the best when it comes to the delay of a movie I'm really excited for. The idea that a delay might make the movie EVEN BETTER helps me get over the fact that I have to wait another two months before it gets to theaters. Grrrrrr.....

15 September 2005

"...And The Venerable Robert K. Wise."

Hey guys, it's Donnie...It's with a heavy heart that I must report the death of Robert K. Wise, a name that all movie geeks should know. I first heard of him as a Star Trek geek, because he directed Star Trek: The Motion Picture. But the man was responsible for some of the most enduring films of our time. He directed The Sound Of Music, West Side Story, The Day The Earth Stood Still, and The Haunting, just to name a few. He was President of the Director's Guild and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He directed Oscar nominated performances by nine different actors. And, oh yeah, he also edited the greatest film ever made, Citizen Kane. The man did it all, and I've never heard a bad word spoken about him. I'm sure he's going to be greatly missed in the industry and I'm sure the Academy will give him a very nice little tribute moment during the In Memorium bit at this year's Oscars, although I think he's actually deserving of his own segment.

Robert K. Wise had just turned 91 this past Saturday.

Harry Potter Finally Impresses

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I will say it, the new Harry Potter trailer absolutely blew me out of the water. Granted, that's mostly because I'm used to being totally underwhelmed by Harry Potter. The trailers usually bore me to tears, and then the film itself is only moderately more interesting, although I did enjoy the last one quite a bit. I was therefore more than a little nervous that Alfonso Cuaron was not returning, but from the look of this, Mike Newell has not only brought us his own vision of Hogwarts, but he's seemingly knocked it out of the park. Before today, my only real interest in going to this movie was to see the Superman Returns trailer, but I now have genuinely high hopes for this flick. Maybe suffering through the first two lame ass Chris Columbus iterations was simply the price I had to pay in order to see more exciting movies later on down the line. Or maybe Columbus just got the shaft because the characters were too young to do anything really cool with, although, considering this was the guy responsible for Millenium Man, somehow I doubt that was the problem.

Click it here to see Potter do his best Jenna Jameson...

Van Sans Van

Hey guys, it's Donnie...We should all look back fondly upon Van Wilder for not only catapulting Ryan Reynolds to stardom, but also for reminding us of a time when the words "National Lampoon" did not denote a pronounced lack of funny. Apparantly the folks at Lampoon must have realized this and will therefore try to capitalize on the burgeoning popularity of Reynold's co-star Kal Penn, who knocked me on my ass in Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle and will probably do the same in next summer's Superman Returns. Thusly we're getting a Van Wilder sequel without Van himself.

Van Wilder Deux: The Rise Of Taj seems reminiscent of the recent news of Steve Carrell doing Evan Almighty in that it sounds like a giant leap BACK for Kal Penn. Seriously, this kid craps charisma, and having him return to the character of Taj, who will be attending Oxford University and "showing the stuffy Brits how to party" just sounds like a disaster in the making. Wait a minute, what's that smell? Could it be the stench of Direct-To-DVD?

Bruce And Billy Bob Switch Places

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Way back in 1998, Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thornton were in a little known flick called Armageddon, in which Thornton played a NASA official and Willis was a simple down home kinda guy. Well it seems the two wanted to stretch their artisitc boundaries, and so the two are teaming up again for The Astronaut Farmer, which, along with 2001's Bandits should complete their Trifecta of Crap I Don't Care About.

Actually, I'm just being fesicious, as this movie actually sounds really interesting. Thornton will play a midwest farmer enamoured with spaceflight, to the point that he builds a rocketship in his barn, which gets the locals whispering, which then draws the attention of the national media as well as NASA, who sends Bruce Willis out to investigate. Considering that, at this point, no one trusts NASA to launch a spitball, let alone a spacecraft, and NASA is so scared of failure they have to call their mom to help them tie their shoes, I think this project has the potential for some really insightful and clever commentary, like if at any point in the movie Bruce Willis starts taking notes.

Virgina Madsen and Bruce Dern will also appear in the flick as Thornton's wife and father-in-law, respectfully. I'm a big fan of the whole Madsen clan, while the Derns are a little more hit or miss for me. Gotta love Down Periscope though...

14 September 2005

Who Is Legend? Lawrence, That's Who!

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Holy crap today is a slow news day. There's a new entry in The Poseidon Journals posted over at Freeze Dried Movies, and other than the following little nugget of news, there's nothing else of note. Granted, most folks are wrapped up in the Toronto Film Fest right now, where most things are performing as expected except for Atom Egoyan's Where The Truth Lies, which, according to one reviewer, started out well but ended up sucking balls, and apparantly the rest of the theater seemed to share his opinion.

Anyway, forget about that, because here's the good news: I Am Legend seems to have been resurrected from the dead so to speak. Warners has handed control of the long gestating graphic novel adaptation to Constantine director Francis Lawrence and I couldn't be happier about this news. I thought that, while Constantine suffered some script problems, Lawrence's direction was excellent throughout. His vision of hell blew me away. It was simple, and yet it connected with me. As soon as I saw it, I just thought to myself, "Oh, of course that's what hell looks like." I think that this project has the perfect tone for Lawrence and having tested the waters with Constantine, he'll really be able to spread his wings and sink his teeth into this project. Wow, could I have used any more metaphors in that last sentence?

For those who don't know, I Am Legend is a graphic novel about the last man on earth, the sole survivor of a global plague who is left to fight nocturnal, blood sucking mutant survivors. At one point, Ridley Scott was going to direct Schwarzenegger, and then Michael Bay and Will Smith were going to take up the fight, but it all seemed to fall apart. Warner's seems determined to get it done this time and they've fast tracked the project for a 2006 start. Mark Protosevich wrote the script seemingly forever ago, but we can expect some futzing about with it before production starts, which is too bad because I'm told it's close to perfect. I haven't read the graphic novel, but I have read the first half of the script (check it out here) and what I read I liked quite a bit. Here's hoping.

13 September 2005

EXCLUSIVE!!! Shane Black's Kiss Kiss Bang Bang Leaves Me Staggering, Bloody, and Asking For More!

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Holy Crap.

I haven’t had this much fun at a movie since…Christ, I can’t even remember.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is the newest opus from writer and now director Shane Black. It marks his first work in over five years, and I now can’t help but wonder if there aren’t some other writers and directors out there who might benefit from a five year hiatus from filmmaking. Shane Black is clever, brilliant, slick, imaginative, and, most importantly, he keeps the audience on its toes throughout the film. But, first things first.

I saw Kiss Kiss Bang Bang screen as part of the Boston Film Festival this past weekend, and while some people got their tickets for free at a local music store, I actually paid admission. Don’t worry, I got every penny’s worth. You see, not only was the movie showing, but Shane Black was scheduled to appear and do a Q&A afterwards. That in and of itself was worth the price of admission, although I wish it had gone on a bit longer. But fear not, I went up to him after the official Q&A was over to ask my own question and you won’t BELIEVE what the answer was.

I’m getting ahead of myself again. You see, I can’t help it. This movie is just infused with so much sheer joy, whenever I try to talk about it, I start going in a million directions at once. Let’s just lay it on the line, so to speak.

This film serves two purposes simultaneously, and just like a Johnny Gossamer case, while they might seem totally unrelated, they are actually one and the same. The film is both Shane Black’s love letter to the detective genre, and Shane Black’s total “Fuck You!” to Hollywood. And after listening to Shane speak in person, it was clear that both his infatuation with the genre and his total frustration with the Hollywood machine had become totally palpable influences on his work. But, back to the flick.

Harry Lockhart is a small time thief in New York. While evading the cops after trying to rip off a toy store to get an action figure for his nephew, Harry stumbles into a Hollywood audition, where the producers mistake him for an actor and instantly have him read for a role in the movie. Harry sort of breaks down while reading the side, and the producers love him so much they fly him out to Hollywood for a screen test, invite him to parties, and have him take “detective lessons” from “Gay Perry”, a gay private investigator played by Val Kilmer. While there he also falls for a girl, Michelle Monaghan, who believes him to be an actual detective and convinces him to investigate the death of her sister.

I can’t really say too much more than that. I mean, I could tell you all about the plot of this movie without giving away the ending because the thing is so damn complex, but half the fun is in the journey. We, the audience, have absolutely no idea what to expect around the next corner, mostly because neither does Harry. However, his narration serves as an excellent compass throughout the film, despite his own tendency to wander off the path and tell parts of the story somewhat out of order. Kilmer is the perfect foil to Downey Jr. While Downey is playful, emotional and bordering on ADHD, Kilmer is all business, the voice of reason in a world that spiraling out of control. Michelle Monaghan is not only oh-so-tasty, but she gives a total breakout performance in a role that could easily be overshadowed by two larger than life personalities like Kilmer and Downey Jr. She not only holds her own, but challenges Downey Jr. throughout the film.

Shane Black’s directing is pretty damn impressive for a first timer. The cinematography is an exercise in simplicity. Every shot is exactly what it needs to be, no more, no less. One particular scene in which Downey Jr. is trapped under a bed and the actions that ensue…one person in the theater called it exquisite and that is exactly the word for it. The film cost a mere $15 million, but it never shows. John Ottman’s score keeps the film moving at a quick pace that helps drive the urgency of the situation, particularly since the film is more talking than action. The time away from Hollywood certainly hasn’t dulled Black’s razor sharp wit or inimitable sense of style. His writing is like the mutant lovechild of Joss Whedon and Aaron Sorkin, chock full of pathos and hopped up on ultra clever pills. I’m certain we can look forward to more greatness from him in the near future.

Speaking of the near future…The Q&A after the film gave a great insight into the mind of Shane Black, and oh what a mind it is. They told us before the movie that Val Kilmer was going to be there, but at the last minute his transportation fell through and he was unable to make it, which obviously disappointed more than a few people, but it also cleared out some of the suckers from the Q&A. Black spoke of his early attempts to start writing again, and how his friend James L. Brooks gave him some crucial guidance. “I would hand [Brooks] a draft and he’d read it and say, ‘This reads like one of my movies. I never saw you doing this type of stuff. You should try more of a genre thing, like a murder mystery,’ which then led me back to my love of pulp detective novels.” He also said that nobody wanted the movie to get made, partially because he had Kilmer and Downey Jr. onboard to star and no studio wanted to spend the money to insure them; that is until Joel Silver came to the rescue. Since the Boston Film Fest is a public festival, the audience was a surreal mix of socialites, film buffs and more than a few college kids, so a few of the questions were a little asinine, including one kid who asked Black to read his script, for which he was all but booed by the rest of the audience.

Now, for the icing on the cake: Over the course of the Q&A, Shane made numerous comments like “My next one will probably suck,” and “I’ll probably do three more movies and then die.” So as the crowd began to disperse, I went up to Shane and asked him what he’s got going on in the future, to which he replied, “Well there’s this attractive young Asian girl…” After we all finished chuckling he let slip the good stuff. His next project is going to be a horror film, not a slasher flick, but more about atmosphere, like “an old English ghost story, or The Exorcist. I’m writing it now and I’m gonna direct it.” Holy crap I want to see a Shane Black horror movie so bad it hurts.

Well, that’s all from Beantown. If any more screenings of note blow through Boston, you can expect to hear from me. I’ve been raving about this movie to anyone and everyone for the past two days now, and it’s already leaped into my top five movies for the year. I urge you to check this puppy out when it hits theaters in October and November. And bring a friend. Or bring 12.

Syrianna: Land Of Awesome Posters

Hey guys, it's Donnie...The poster for Stephan Gaghan's Syriana hit the web today and I absolutely love it. The presence of the poster means that we should be getting a trailer soon, and I can't wait. The George Clooney vehicle gets a limited release on November 23 and a wide release on Dec 9, at which point Clooney will be in fierce competition with...his own movie Goodnight and Good Luck. We are so lucky.

Tell me this isn't cool.

Trailertown: Yummy Funny Girl

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Welcome back to Trailertown!

Sarah Silverman is passing through today, with her new flick Jesus Is Magic. The film is a combination of her stand up show, a number of sketches and some hilarious musical numbers. There was a quasi-trailer of some sort floating about the interweb last spring, and this is only slightly different from that one. We've heard alot of positive buzz coming out of the Toronto Film Festival this week, and personally I can't wait.

Sarah Silverman is easily as sexy as she is hilarious, and it looks like she's gathered quite the posse of fellow comedians to join her in this little romp. Not only that, but the film is directed by Liam Lynch, who's currently hard at work on the Tenacious D movie The Pick Of Destiny. My hope is that his work here will get me psyched up for The D, and I have to admit that I like what I see.

Click it here to be a role model for little girls...

Val Kilmer Needs A Paycheck

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Val Kilmer does some fantastic work in Shane Black's Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, (a movie I'm gonna be trying non-stop for the next two months to get you to see) but since the movie was made for only $15 million, my guess is that it wasn't exactly a big financial payday for the star of Real Genius. But that's okay, cuz Iceman and Maverick are wingmen, so it looks like Tom "Yes I Really Am That Crazy" Cruise is gonna throw the man a bone.

Dark Horizons is reporting that Val Kilmer will be filming a role in Mission: Impossible 3, currently lensing in China. Kilmer will apparantly play the head of the IMF, which is interesting as Laurence Fishburne is apparantly already playing Ethan Hunt's mentor or something to that effect. Most took this to mean that he'd be playing the Anthony Hopkins role from M:I2, but if this Kilmer-news is correct, perhaps that means we'll be heading back into the inner machinations of the IMF, ala the first Mission: Impossible, a flick that takes more shit than it deserves.

Hell, maybe they can get Principal Strickland to play an evil henchman and Anthony Edwards to play the new gadget guy and it could be a whole Top Gun reunion...

12 September 2005

Coming Soon: The Monkey Can Only Say Ficus

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Holyshitholyshitholyshit last night I went to a screening of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, the latest from multi-million dollar writer Shane Black and my god I was totally blown away. Nothing can prepare you for this movie. The performances are amazing, the direction is surprisingly adept for a first timer and the writing is out of this world. Seriously, this thing leaped to number three on my favorites of the year. Suck on that Paul Haggis.

It's just about time for me to get the hell outta my Cubicle O' Fun, but expect my review up later this evening/tomorrow morning. I'm so pissed I have to wait over a month to see this fucking movie again.

Trailertown: Grassmen and Puppetmen

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Welcome back to Trailertown!

We've got two new residents today...both of which kinda frighten me.

Saw 2: I was a moderate fan of the first flick. Danny Glover was kind of wasted I felt, and Carey Elwes...well...he kind of fumbled the ball in the 4th quarter, but whatever. I did like the idea behind the flick, although since we all know who the killer is now, I guess the killer's identity won't really be the big shock of the flick. Then again, this movie's got Donnie Wahlberg, Dina Meyers and Frankie G, so it sounds like the cast is on par with the first go around. I wouldn't exactly hold my breath for greatness though.

Click it here to go down like Frank The Bunny.

Daltry Calhoun: This just looks phenomenal, I must say. Knoxville seems to have created a wonderful, larger than life character who is suddenly dragged back into reality. Meanwhile, Elizabeth Banks continues a streak of great performances. Seriously, this girl is on fire, and she's seemingly in everything these days. Did I also mention that she's gorgeous? I love the way the titles are done in this trailer, similar to the titles from the Lord Of War trailer. If we're not careful, Johnny Knoxville is gonna turn into a real actor. Actually, I think he's already there, he just hasn't found the right film to show off his talents yet.

Click it here for the most thinly veiled pot reference ever.

Elf-Man and Spider-Man Part Ways

Hey guys, it’s Donnie…and this is possibly some of the saddest news I’ve heard in a while. Ya’ know, aside from the death of Gilligan, poor little buddy.

At a recent press junket for Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride, the often-hated Devin over at CHUD had the good thought to ask Danny Elfman if Sam Raimi had told him the villains for whom he would be scoring themes. Danny then dropped a bomb: He’s not scoring Spider-Man 3. Not only that, he’s never planning on working with Sam Raimi ever again:

My connection to Sam got completely severed. As far as I’m concerned, he went to sleep and somebody put a pod next to him and when he awoke, he wasn’t the same person I’ve known for a decade...

No [I won’t work with him again]. He went from right there, number 2 on my list of favorite directors, to the last – to the exact opposite of everything I look for in a film experience. Everything I could do on Spider-Man 1 I couldn’t do on Spider-Man 2. He got so intensely attached to the temp music, I couldn’t even adapt my own music. I couldn’t get close enough to me....

It’s the first time I’ve ever walked from a director in twenty years, and hopefully the last time. He became intolerable. I’ve been on some heavy duty films, so to say that it had to be pretty bad. I have been in war zones you wouldn’t believe in 55 films. But this is the first time I’ve said, I’ve had it. It’s just not worth it. I would rather go back to waiting tables than to do Spider-Man 2 again.

That’s just depressing. Certainly we can still look forward to much collaboration between Elfman and Burton in the near future, but his work on both Spider-Man films was sublime. I hope they’ll still be able to use his excellent main theme in the next installment, which now currently has no one at the musical helm. Let’s also hope that Raimi hasn’t actually gone totally off the deep end as a director, cuz I’m really rather excited to see what he decides to do once he’s finished playing with Peter Parker.

Scorcese Walks Softly And Carries A Big DiCaprio

Hey guys, it’s Donnie…The Marty/Leo Lovefest continues! Now that they’ve finished skulking around the stripclubs near my apartment for The Departed, Scorcese and DiCaprio are looking for yet another project to do together. We’ve already heard some talk of the dynamic duo remaking Kurasawa’s Drunken Angel, but apparently that ain’t enough. Paramount just optioned the rights to The Rise Of Teddy Roosevelt by Edmund Morris and rumor has it that the gruesome twosome have this lined up in their sights, although it’s unclear if this would be in addition to or instead of Drunken Angel.

I’m gonna join with the popular opinion on this one and say that on the surface DiCaprio seems like more than somewhat of a stretch to play the rather rotund Ruff Riding President, but then again I trust Scorcese almost implicitly at this point, so if he thinks Leo’s got the goods, let’s hope he’s got the goods. He certainly pulled off Howard Hughes more convincingly then I thought he would. Then again I can’t think of Howard Hughes without thinking of The Rocketeer, so….

John Hinkley Is Totally Psyched

Hey guys, it’s Donnie…I love Taxi Driver as much as the next guy, but for some reason I just can’t seem to get myself too excited about this news. Robert DeNiro and Jodie Foster will be teaming up for the first time since Scorcese’s assassination-attempt-inducing masterpiece. This time the flick is called Sugarland and it’s about sugar cane workers in Florida. Foster will play a civil rights attourney while Big Bobby D will be the evil plantation owner. I do hope he’s mustachioed.

Maybe it’s just that I hear the description and I feel like I could probably tell you the entire movie without seeing a frame of footage. Of course I could be wrong, and maybe this will be some magnificent, award winning opus from a director to be named later. But somehow I doubt it. Besides, I feel like there will be a marked lack of underage prostitutes and oversized hang cannons this time around.

So sad.

Forster Runs With Kites

Hey guys, it's Donnie...as I drove home from my mini Cape Cod vacation this weekend, we passed a park where a child was flying a kite. The kite was of a large black shark, prompting my friend Ian to exclaim (and by exclaim I mean calmly state in a manner that, relative to his normal tone of voice, denoted an exclamation) "Shit! A flying shark. Somehow they skipped a few thousand years of evolution. We're fucked." And while I maintain that a flying shark is not nearly as threatening as it would seem, (Just go indoors. They may have mastered flight but they still can't handle doorknobs.) that really has nothing to do with the rest of this article. I just find flying sharks to be rather amusing.

In other kite news, Marc Forster has signed on to direct an adaptation of The Kite Runner, the best-selling novel by Khaled Hosseini. The story centers on a man who returns to his native Afghanistan while it's under the strict rule of the Taliban. While there he attempts to rescue his best friend's son, presumably not from evil flying sharks.

The screenplay was written by David Benioff, who is also responsible for the impending Wolverine spinoff movie as well as the upcoming psychological thriller Stay, directed by Marc Forster, who previously brought us Monster's Ball and the luscious Finding Neverland. Between Stay and The Kite Runner, Forster will bring us Stranger Than Fiction, a Will Ferrell comedy about an IRS auditor who starts to hear a voice narrating his life as he lives it. I guess he's trying to stretch his talents, as well as the boundaries of my sanity.

I haven't read this book, but I do know many people who have enjoyed it, including many females that I wouldn't mind spending some extra time with. So I guess I should pick it up, that way we can hold an intellectual discussion about the film's important societal messages, as well as the important societal messages in my pants.

09 September 2005

UPDATED!! Gambit No More!!!

UPDATE: So I talked to SK, my inside man at X3, and I can confirm that Gambit is indeed absent from the film. In fact, I don't think he ever really made it past that first 6-day draft of the script. Also, I'm told that Shawn Ashmore is a good foot taller than Ellen Page, the new Kitty Pryde, thus making her look even more like a 12 year old than she already does and making their scenes together more than a little silly looking. Sigh...

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I'm gonna make this short and not-so-sweet.

TheXVerse.com is reporting that producer Ralph Winter has confirmed to them that the planned appearance by Gambit in X3 has, in fact, been scrubbed. I'm a little wary of the source, (both Ralph Winter, who I've never heard of before today, and TheXVerse, as no one else seems to have the story yet) but logically this news makes sense to me in a way. They've added about 8 new characters in this flick, (including, perhaps, Bishop as well?) and from what I've heard, Gambit wasn't going to make much more than a cameo in this outing, so if I was planning on making more X-films, I'd wanna save Gambit for later and really be able to flesh him out into a full blown character.

Then again, speculation continues on whether or not this will be the last real X-Men movie. Yes, we've got a Wolverine spin-off movie and Magneto spin-off movie in the works, and apparantly Zak Penn and Simon Kinberg have a multi-picture deal with Fox that may or may not involve an X-Men spinoff with a number of other characters from the X-Men universe. But it's all very amorphic right now. Either way, at this point I think I'll be more surprised if Gambit is actually in the movie than if he isn't.

Venomous Claims Continue

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Say what you will, but Avi Arad is a goddamn genius.

By announcing that Thomas Hayden Church and Topher Grace will be playing the Spidey 3 villians but not announcing which villians they'll be portraying, Arad has created probably the biggest movie rumor mill on the internet, with the identity of the next James Bond a close second.

Aside from that brief claim of The Cameleon, a claim that I never even deemed serious enough to mention here before now, I think most people pretty much agree that Thomas Hayden Church will be playing Sandman, and the big mystery has been who Eric Foreman is gonna play. Quint at Ain't It Cool is pretty certain that it's gonna be Electro, while the rest of the people who give a carp (no, that's not a typo, some people are just generous with their fish) are still hoping that it will be Venom, despite minor details that would seem to point to the contrary, like when Sam Raimi repeatedly says things like "I've never really liked Venom," and "Venom will definitely not be the villian in Spider-Man 3."

Nonetheless, people still claim to have seen screen tests with black fabric and whatnot, so rumors persist. Freeze Dried Movies is now asserting that they have it from an anonymous source that the villians will be Sandman and Venom, with Harry becoming the Hobgoblin at the film's end. They claim that they've "confirmed this with various sources and apparantly it's quite well known." Look, it's certainly a possibility that Venom will make an appearance. A quick glance over at Wikipedia will tell you that there was a fairly important storyline which involved both Venom and Sandman, so it's certainly a possibility,

Personally, I don't really take this rumor as any more or less significant than the countless previous claims that "Venom is definitely in Spider-Man 3" and really what it comes down to is that there's no real solid, definitive evidence. Unless someone gets a hold of a picture of Topher Grace screen testing in a black jumpsuit with a large white spider on the front, we're not gonna know "definitely" what character he's playing until the powers that be at Marvel and Sony decide to tell us, which will most likely be at the pre-filming press conference sometime in November.

But please, by all means, continue to spread rumors and gossip. It's certainly entertaining.

I Think The MPAA Is Just Sexually Frustrated...

I mentioned a few days ago that the MPAA was threatening Atom Egoyan with an NC-17 rating on his newest flick Where The Truth Lies, a title that sounds cooler every time I say it. Well, here's the skinny:

They gave Egoyan suggestions as to four scenes he should cut in order to give the film an R rating, which he was apparantly contractually obligated to do by ThinkFilm, the movie's distributor. They appealed the rating and even got stars Rachel Blanchard and Kevin Bacon to speak on the film's behalf, but to no avail. Egoyan trimmed three out of the four scenes in question, saying that the last scene, a menage a trois between Bacon, Blanchard and Colin Firth could not be cut because it was a crucial plot point of the film and if it was cut the movie would make any sense. The MPAA, being the understanding folks that they are, told him tough luck and maintained the MC-17 rating specifically because of the "explicit sexual content" of this menage a trois scene, despite the fact that there is no full frontal nudity in the scene. (There is, however, full frontal nudity in other scenes that the MPAA apparantly had no problem with. Go figure.)

Egoyan and ThinkFilms are now left with three options. They can reshoot the scene in question, which probably won't happen cuz the film is scheduled for release October 14th. They can digitally blur and obscure the scene until it meets with MPAA approval, a decision that Egoyan has characterized as "foolish" and I agree. Thus, the only other option, and the option that will most likely come to pass, is that ThinkFilms will waive the R rating clause in Egoyan's contract and they'll either release the film unrated or rated NC-17. If this is the case, then I would expect Egoyan to go back and add back in the three scenes that the MPAA had him edit out.

Whatever happens, I'm still left with the following two thoughts:

1. I think this movie is gonna be pretty damn good and I'd certainly rather see it in it's entirety than chopped to shit because Reagonite cronies think they know what's best for me.

2. The MPAA seriously needs to get laid.

Ewan To The Fourth Power

Hey guys, it's Donnie...I'd heard about The Great Pretender a few months back, but significant progress seems to have been made it now it looks like it's really gonna happen. Relativity Media is footing the $18m bill so the film can start lensing in London this January.

The Great Pretender (sadly, no affiliations to Michael T. Weiss) stars Ewan McGregor, Ewan McGregor, Ewan McGregor and, in a very strange bit of casting, Ewan McGregor. McGregor will play a 1930s Hollywood actor named Leslie Grangely shooting a movie about Bonnie Prince Charlie and Scotland's Jacobite Rebellion in 1745. However, Grangely pulls a drunken disappearing act, forcing the producers to replace him with an extra with a starting resemblence to the star. Not only that, but within the movie in the movie, Bonnie Prince Charlie uses a look-a-like to evade capture. That means that McGregor will be playing four characters in two time periods: The prince and the double in 1745 and the actor and the extra in 1938.

If you're not a big Ewan McGregor fan, you'll probably want to steer clear of this one. But then again, I think very few people really dislike McGregor, and any movie where he actually gets to use his Scottish accent makes me smile. It was easily the best part of The Island. That and Scarlett Johansson in a white track suit.

Children of the DMD

Hey guys, it's Donnie...when I was in high school, one of my favorite teachers and one of my mentors was a named Dale. (I'll omit his last name out of respect.) Dale was an english teacher, and he was a stickler for grammar and proper writing style. He also used to be the speech and debate coach, so suffice it to say, he's a very precise and respectable fellow. However, he had "a thing" for Julianne Moore, and whenever she would come up in conversation, he would get this mischievous glint in his eyes and we all knew he was imagining her in ways to explicit and dispicable for words to describe. Thusly, whenever where Julianne Moore was concerned, we often refered to him as The Dirty Minded Dale, or, The DMD for short. I can only imagine the bizaarre and pruient thoughts that will be running through his head during this flick...

The movie is called Children Of Men, and it stars Julianne Moore as the last pregnant woman on Earth. Set in a near future where mankind is no longer able to procreate, a lone pregnant woman becomes the focus of numerous groups around the globe and it's up to Clive Owen to protect what is seemingly the last hope for humanity. Recently added to the cast are up-and-comer Charlie Hunnam (who has been blowing reviewers away in the upcoming Green Street Hooligans) and the always reliable Gary Oldman. Since the cast is really starting to shape up nicely, and the film will be the next by director Alfonso Cuaron (the guy who made Harry Potter not-so-boring) I felt the need to report on it.

I'm expecting good things. I'm sure The DMD is too.
Little Giant Ladder