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Entries in King Kong (7)

Sunday
Mar122017

Was King Kong a Box Office Monster?

What did you see this weekend?

check out that monster-sized beard on KONG SKULL ISLAND director Jordan Vogt-Roberts!

After catching up on TV shows like Big Little Lies and Feud, I went to Kong: Skull Island with a friend. Afterwards I eagerly read Chris's review, nodding a long at most of it. It's an easy-sit with surprising charm (mostly by way of John C Reilly's ad libbing... he seriously saves the movie from its paint-by-numbers blockbuster strategy) but wow was it disposable. Will anyone remember anything about it in a year's time?

And this to build a whole franchise on? Not too many of my audience members stayed for the stinger after the credits but that it was an enjoyable visual tease of other iconic kaiju like Godzilla, Ghidra, and Mothra. While the film opened at #1 it seems likely that Warner Bros was looking for much bigger numbers to launch a whole franchise on. The last installment of Godzilla, for example, opened to over $90 million.  Perhaps by pairing them in Kong vs Godzilla (due in 2020) they can get closer to $100? Box Office charts for the weekend and some related news items are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Mar102017

On This Day: Globes for two goddesses. Plus a non-jolly green giant

On this day in history as it relates to showbiz...

1892  One of Old Hollywood's most undersung but talented 1930s directors Gregory La Cava is born. Classics include Stage Door and My Man Godfrey
1913
 Famed abolitionist and American hero Harriet Tubman dies of pneumonia. So glad she's getting biopic treatment soon. And twice over!
1938
The 10th annual Oscars are held with The Life of Emile Zzzzzola winning Best Picture and Louise Rainer taking her consecutive Best Actress prize but the most enduring anecdote was of course the theft of Alice Brady's Oscar for In Old Chicago.
1958 Sharon Stone is born in Pennysylvania

The 1959 Golden Globes (and more) are after the jump...

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Thursday
Mar092017

Review: "Kong: Skull Island"

by Chris Feil

Kong is back for another franchise chasing smash-em-up with a slight reimagining in Kong: Skull Island. This time director Jordan Vogt-Roberts is aiming almost exclusively for amusement park thrills after Peter Jackson’s high gloss, Very Serious take a decade ago. While the film does deliver the fun with its own visual zeal and resistance to some of the staples of Kong’s past, Skull Island is best met with limited expectations...

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Friday
Mar032017

On this day: Carmen, Moonlighting, and the Star Spangled Banner

Yesterday we missed celebrating Zodiac's 10th anniversary (the shame the shame) so we'll have to be more careful moving forward. So let's jump right back into daily anniversaries to reflect on and / or celebrate...

1845 Florida becomes the 27th State. It's been a problem ever since! I was born there so I can say that but seriously, Florida, get your act together. Between alligators, hateful politicians, legalized murder under deplorable Stand Your Ground laws, it's seriously a mess. Have y'all ever seen John Sayles Sunshine State? What other good movies about Florida are there besides Moonlight of course which just won Best Picture - woohoo!  

1875 Bizet's Carmen premiered in Paris. It would go on to considerable global fame and the story would be adapted several times for cinema...

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Friday
Mar252016

Good Movies v Terrible Movies

Josh here to talk battles.

Currently yelling in cinemas is Batman v Superman, a dazzling acting showcase about Batman and Superman getting divorced and having a heartwrenching custody battle over their son Billy. Both characters were created in the 1930s and onscreen in one form or another since the 1940s. It's surprising that it's taken this long for the powers that be at Warner Bros to put them in the same movie, and have them spar. The Avengers beat them to it by a blockbuster mile with characters created in the 1960s an onscreen much later. It, too, had its iconic heroes having a tiff even if only ever mildly sparring (until Civil War hits cinemas later this year). There's an audience itch that is scratched seeing two things we know, putting them into the same box and shaking it to see what happens. For Batman v Superman? A 33% Rotten Tomatoes rating.

Let's look as the history other Vs to see if they fare any better. 

Freddy Vs. Jason.
Once Destiny's Child disbanded, Kelly Rowland was not going to let Beyonce be the only break out star, so she did the only thing anyone would do to ensure mega-stardom: appear in a horror movie where the human characters don't matter at all, and still get murdered anyway. The premise isn't that bad; people have forgotten Freddy and forgotten fear so he resurrects Jason to pave the way. But then they get fed up of each other playing with each others toys and THEY want to be the one to impale post-coital teenagers not the other facially challenged undead monster! The execution is as sloppy and lacking in tension as the stomach muscles on the other end of Freddy's machete.
Sequel/Prequel to: Direct sequel to Friday the 13th (1980) and Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). The last film in each franchise before they were both rebooted.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 41%

4 more battles after the jump

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Saturday
Jun222013

It's Kind of a Big Link

i09 King Kong the Musical - check out that enormous expressive ape puppet! But what's with that song and the vague speech-impediment style singing?
Bleeding Cool Harmony Korine is recutting Spring Breakers for a "sizzurped" version. Thankfully Bleeding Cool defines "sizzurped" for us
Coming Soon Anne Hathaway to star in The Lifeboat which is not a remake of the Tallulah Bankhead picture but does involve passengers in a lifeboat. Unfortunately since Hathaway is involved you know the internet will want her thrown off the boat or eaten by the other passengers first to survive.

Empire Robert Downey Jr signs up to be Iron Man until he's old and grey. The check must have been big
Empire and here's a handy infographic of the Marvel Universe plans but if you ask me Phase Two looks pretty UNAMBITIOUS considering what they pulled off for Phase One.
/Film the zombie apocalypse at cinemas will last forever. Arnold Schwarzenegger will soon star in Maggie about a father whose daughter is becoming a zombie. No word on who will play the title character just yet
The House Next Door "Poster Lab" takes on the teaser for Anchorman 2 - the 'stache!
Los Angeles Times on Michael Douglas's third act 
Playbill and as you've undoubtedly heard and probably griped about August: Osage County has been delayed and will now open on Christmas Day because the studios just can't help themselves with their Oscar contenders! Christmas or Bust

Off Cinema
Slate Simon Doonan on the American man's Freudian fear of the Speedo. So true and funny.
Vulture on a cute gender-flipped Robyn video "You Should Know Better". Love Robyn. Miss her. 
Towleroad Madonna debuts the trailer to #secretproject which plays like a modern dance music video without a song to go with it but with lots of black and white violence. Why? Who knows with that one. I prefer "Sex" to this "Violence"

Today's Watch
Since Takeshi Kaneshiro (House of Flying Daggers, Red Cliff) is so rarely on my big screens *sniffle* I will settle for watching the world's most beautiful man in an airline commercial for Taiwan.

 

I will buy a ticket for any destination in the world if Takeshi is complimentary with purchase. 

Saturday
Mar022013

All Hands on Link

IndieWire ABC may forge a miniseries out of Oscar nominated AIDS doc How to Survive a Plague
Hollywood who said it: The Pope or "Fifty Shades of Grey"?
MNPP ways not to die celebrates King Kong for his 80th anniversary 
The Advocate interesting take on Seth MacFarlane's Oscar night hosting gig, in which the author believes his entire performance was satire of sexism. I think that's an optimistic forgiving stretch but more power to you for enjoying the show so much! 

Clothes on Film the shoes in Stoker
Empire Emma Watson may play Cinderella
French Films about Trains points to 14 directors whose films are worth obsessing about in advance  
/Film Whoa. They're STILL trying to get Pride & Prejudice & Zombies made? You'd think Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter's fate and the free zombies on TV would have finally decapitated that project.
The Talks with Brian de Palma on violence in cinema and the staying power of Scarface
Unreality a pitch to Netflix. If you're going to revive beloved series, why not Firefly?
The Credits talked to Gavin Bocquet production designer for Jack the Giant Slayer about his work and the new visual fx demands of Production Design:

...if we were around during the Gone With The Wind time, you know the production designers job was more or less the same, you still had to create what you wanted to be the image, and then you broke it down into how you produced it. So the process is the same for the production designer, but the tools and the palette are a lot more variable in terms of what you can do, and also at times much more expensive. 

Weekend Must Watch
Brava to Chelsea Davison for this incredible mimicry job & spoof: here's "Lena Dunham" auditioning for Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty. So funny.

So... you know this silence is literally torturing me. And yes I do realize now that in this situation that choice of words might have been a little inappropriate. But, you know, it makes *me* feel like an asshole that I have to threaten to torture you every day. So... if you could just tell me I'd really appreciate it and we wouldn't have to keep doing this"