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Entries in Fast and Furious (7)

Sunday
Apr052015

Review: Furious 7

Michael C. here admitting upfront that I was wary about the prospect of reviewing an entry in the Fast/Furious franchise. The risk is that a movie like this turns one into a caricature of a film critic, a Frasier Crane type watching the movie through a pair of opera glasses, scoffing and harrumphing at the schlock on the screen. The kind of killjoy who cranks out the cane-shaking screed about how 'in MY DAY car movie had GRAVITAS, not the weightless, video game CRAP that these damn KIDS shell out for! Something, something, Steve McQueen.'

So I am relieved that seventh entry in the franchise did not force me into that unappealing position. Unlike the recent Kingsman, which spoiled the fun of its goofy action with a rancid attitude, I can endorse Furious 7 if only for the tone of goofy positivity maintained by director James Wan. These films are, as they never tire of repeating, all about family. Family and loyalty and introducing every third scene with a shot of a babe’s bikini-clad ass. Getting worked up over the lack of realism on display is like chastising a toddler smashing his Tonka trucks together because, actually, that’s not how to use a cement mixer properly.

More...

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Sunday
Apr052015

Furious #7, Cinderella #1

As expected the big loud noisy high speed franchise on wheels Furious 7 broke April box office records and earned the biggest opening weekend of 2015... until Age of Ultron arrives.

WIDE RELEASE
01 Furious 7 $143.6 new Review
02 Home $27.4 (cum. $95.6)
03 Get Hard $12.9 (cum. $57) 
04 Cinderella $10.2 (cum. $167.2) Review
05 Divergent: Insurgent $10 (cum. $103.3)
06 It Follows $2.4 (cum. $8.5) Review
07 Woman in Gold $2.1 new
08 Kingsman: Secret Service $1.7 (cum. $122.2) Review
09 Do You Believe $1.5 (cum. $9.8)
10 Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel $1 (cum. $30)

The other story is leggy Cinderella. The lux live action adaptation -- which has spurred on much future live-action remake planning from Disney animation (see that bizarre Winnie the Pooh news and next year's possibly even bigger Beauty & The Beast film) has just become the #1 biggest grosser of 2015. Not that the glass slippered princess will wear that particular tiara for more than a day or two at the rate the Fast & Furious company is collecting coin. 

What did you see this weekend?

Friday
Apr032015

Posterized: Fast & Furious

Furious 7 went from 0 to 4004 (theaters) today and is certain to collect huge box office bounty this weekend. The other films have been hits and then there's the morbid curiousity factor of saying goodbye to Paul Walker which may lure back moviegoers who haven't really been paying attention. That would include me. I only realized today, looking over this list, that the first film is the only one I've seen in theaters... though it seems like I've seen them all (is it cable showings, or their interchangeability as suggested by their very similar posters, minor variations in titles, and cast lists?)  

Cast List by numbers: Vin Diesel & Paul Walker (6 films); Jordana Brewster & Sung Kang (5 films); Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges & Gal Gadot (4 films); Dwayne Johnson & Elsa Pataky (3 films); Lucas Black, Luke Evans, Eva Mendes, Laz Alonso, Don Omar, John Ortiz, Matt Schulze, Shea Wigham (2 films)

The Fast and The Furious (2001, Rob Cohen)
2 Fast 2 Furious (2003, John Singleton) - aka the only one without Vin Diesel
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006, Justin Lin) - aka the only one without Paul Walker... but its the biggest detour as the cast list is mostly different. Only Vin Diesel shows up of the originals and one the fourth film hits, everyone seems to be back for good.
Fast & Furious (2009, Justin Lin) - the principle cast all returns
Fast Five (2011, Justin Lin) - aka the one where The Rock joins
Fast & Furious 6 (2013, Justin Lin)
Furious 7 (2015, James Wan) aka Paul Walker's swansong

So how many have you seen?  And are you hitting the seventh entry this weekend? 

Sunday
Dec012013

Linkville

Television Blend Baz Luhrmann may direct Napoleon as a miniseries for television
House Next Door on the Oscar prospects of August: Osage County. Yet another critic who thinks Julia is the MVP. I'm mystified but congrats, Julia!
In Contention wonders if The Wolf of Wall Street is just what Oscar season ordered? We know that the SAG screening went sensationally well in Los Angeles. Our friend Paul, who we just featured in Reader Spotlight, thinks Leonardo DiCaprio is now the Best Actor frontrunner and tweeted this photo from the festivities:

 

 

Cinema Blend Jurassic World not a reboot (thank god) but a sequel set 22 years in future. Chris Pratt, suddenly in demand since slimming down and bulking up for ZDT, rumored for lead.
Variety Fernando Eimbcke's Club Sandwich wins the Turin Fest. We interviewed its actress icymi. 

RIP Paul Walker (1973-2013)
And finally, as you've undoubtedly heard by now, Paul Walker died yesterday in a car accident in California en route to or from a charity event of all things. Terrible. He was 40 years old. The actor starred in all but one of the six episodes of the big screen series The Fast and Furious. It's worth noting that The Fast and the Furious 7 is currently filming. There's no word yet on exactly how and what they'll do to finish it without him but the movie will undoubtedly move forward.

The original F&F franchise director Rob Cohen told Variety:

His American beauty, his athleticism, the directness of his approach to the character, his effusive, down-to-earth personality brought joy to me and everyone around him."

Aside from the F&F franchise we'll remember him most for that All American b&w jock beauty in  Pleasantville (1998) and one of the best B movies of the early Aughts Joy Ride (2001).

Monday
Jul112011

Box Office: Dark of the Horrible Zookeeper's Moon

I've got those whirling clanking gear-spinning metallic vibration noises clogging my brain today. Thanks a lot Greg P. Russell! ;) The 14 time Oscar nominated mixer had another epic job to perform with Transformers Dark of the Moon and how. Will he finally win the Oscar? Stay tuned.

Yes, readers I did see the latest Michael Bay spectacle. After that shot of glossy violent shot of testosterone I watched Far From Heaven and The Lady Eve back to back as schizophrenic counter-balance.  What did you see this weekend?

Weekend Box-Office (Estimates)
figures via box office mojo

01 TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON new $47.1 (cum. $261)
02 HORRIBLE BOSSES new $28.3
03 ZOOKEEPER new $20 
04 CARS 2  $15.2 (cum. $148.8)
05 BAD TEACHER $8.9 (cum. $78.6)


Nation Somehow Failed To Predict Attack By Michael Bay


06 LARRY CROWNE  $5.9 (cum. $26.1)
07 SUPER 8 $4.8 [thoughts] (cum. $118)
08 MONTE CARLO $3.8 (cum. $16.1)
09 GREEN LANTERN $3.1 [review] (cum. $109.7)
09 MR POPPER'S PENGUINS $3.1 (cum. $58)

Number two, bitch.Talking Points: Transformers is now the top US hit of 2011, outgrossing The Hangover Part 2 and Pirates of the Caribbean Part Another One. Worldwide grosses paint a different surprising picture of the film year with Pirates way out front of everything having grossed a billion dollars and Fast Five the second biggest hit of the year with over half a billion. I did not know this. Everyone loves action movies starring cars I guess. But regardless of how you count beans it's a sequel world out there. It's shocking when anything original breaks through.

Meanwhile Bridesmaids and Midnight in Paris, which had both been hanging on to the top ten despite being two months old (the box office equivalent of senior citizens) finally slipped out. Even though they're losing theaters each week they still have tinier percentile drops than any other pictures indicating that word of mouth continues to draw in the curious... or maybe repeat visitors? 

Monday
May022011

Links: Carrey, Turner, Pearce, Jordan (Hal), Thurman

Serious Film Jim Carrey's Oscar snubs. Will Mr Popper's Penguins bring more?
Variety Will The Hurt Locker team triumph again? Turns out the movie Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal were already working on to shoot this summer was about the very team that just killed Osama Bin Laden.
The Film Doctor questions why Fast Five is so popular... and attempts to answer.
i09 worries about Green Lantern in advance. Too much mythology?
Hollywood Reporter Wait. I thought Soderbergh was retiring? And now he's doing Magic Mike, a male stripper drama with Channing Tatum?

AV Club Remember when we were discussing Guy Pearce and why he doesn't get major parts? Well Ridley Scott to the rescue. Pearce has been cast in Prometheus, the is-it-or-isn't-it-an-Aliens-sequel?
Scott Feinberg likes Kathleen Turner in The Perfect Family. Will it find distribution and warm reception outside of Tribeca's fest?
La Daily Musto bizarre story about the Tribeca screening of the documentary Carol Channing: Larger Than Life. I was there and was very close to this row where Security was called. It was quite odd but here's the whole story.

Remember when Nicole Kidman did a commercial for Schweppes? Now Uma Thurman is making bank with the beverage. Here it is.

How many of my favorite actresses will they employ?