A father, a son, and a random tough weirdo on the run, pursued by both a fanatical, Branch Davidian-style cult and a shadowy branch of the government that includes members of the FBI, NSA, and probably others. That’s the core of writer/director Jeff Nichols’ Midnight Special, but there’s much more going on than this relatively simple premise. His follow-up to Mud and Take Shelter, this is a genre-defying mixture of science fiction, family drama, road trip movie, conspiracy thriller, and more, one that marks Nichols, yet again, as one of the most intriguing, exciting, original American filmmakers currently working.
Monday, March 28, 2016
You probably already know this, but Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is getting an R-rated Blu-ray release that will be 30 minutes longer than the already 151-minute theatrical cut. This may hit in June, but even though the movie has only been out for a weekend at this point, there’s already a deleted scene available online. Check it out below.
Saturday, March 26, 2016
James Wan’s 2013 horror joint, The Conjuring, didn’t break any new ground, but it was a solid, effective genre outing, one that was a surprisingly large financial success. It got a rushed prequel with the less-than-scary Annabelle, but this summer it gets a proper follow up. Cleverly titled The Conjuring 2, the main trailer just hit he airwaves. Check it out below.
A tense, brutal, expectation defying supernatural nightmare, director Can Evrenol’s feature debut, Baskin, is the kind of movie that haunts your dreams and keeps you up at night. There is quite a bit to set this apart and elevate it from its peers, but with the level of brutality and straight-up meanness, Baskin is chiefly going to be for the hardcore horror hounds out there. Simply due to some of the imagery and the aesthetics, it’s difficult not to invoke Pascal Laugier’s Martyrs.
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Just in case you forgot, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice isn’t the only movie the Dark Knight-starring movie we’re getting. No, I’m not talking about the upcoming Justice League movies, or the rumored Ben Affleck-directed solo adventure. I mean The Lego Batman Movie, which just dropped its first teaser trailer.
Wednesday, March 23, 2016
There are a number of elements in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice that I think are great, and that fill me with hope for the future of the burgeoning the DC Extended Universe. Which makes it that much more frustrating that the latest superhero throwdown is such a jumbled misfire, such a bloated, tedious slog, that it’s ultimately just not good. Maybe it’s time that we, as a people, stop letting Zack Snyder do things.
Monday, March 21, 2016
When it comes to film in Seattle, the Seattle InternationalFilm Festival gets most of the press and love—and with good reason, it’s a near-month-long marathon of incredible movies from all around the globe. But SIFF isn’t the only game in town, and if you’re tastes run to the twisted, horrific, and occasionally downright strange, BoneBat’s annual “Comedy ofHorrors” film festival may be just what your warped mind requires, and this year’s fest just dropped a new trailer and announced the full line up.
Thursday, March 17, 2016
There’s a definite hierarchy in the world of dystopian young adult movie adaptations. The Hunger Games obviously ruled the roost for four movies, and The Maze Runner films have found a nice spot in the marketplace. But for every successful franchise there are a handful of nonstarters—I Am Number Four, The Mortal Instruments—that never find an audience, despite the popularity of the source novels. The Divergent Series films are a kind of middle ground. They’re not huge, record-shattering affairs, but they’re popular enough that they keep coming, and while they’ve never been particularly egregious, they’ve been, at best, innocuous. The latest chapter, however, The Divergent Series: Allegiant, takes a precipitous nosedive from bland and forgettable to straight up terrible.
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
If you totally forgot that Paramount is dropping a big-budget remake of Ben-Hur, you’re not alone. And maybe it should have stayed forgotten, because the studio just dropped our first trailer for the wannabe biblical epic, and it’s…not great.
When you talk about grim Korean thrillers, names like Park Chan-wook, Bong Joon-ho, and Kim Jee-woon are likely the first names that spring to mind. And with good reason, they’re goddamned hit machines responsible for some of my favorite movies of all-time. A filmmaker who doesn’t get name dropped as much, but sure as hell should, is Na Hong-jin. His The Chaser and The Yellow Sea are two of the best recent examples of gritty, suspenseful crime thrillers. It’s been years since his last movie, but he has another, Goksung, on the way this year, and now there’s a trailer that you need to watch. This is good enough news that I may have squealed and clapped my hands like an idiot.
From the early responses at fall film festivals like Toronto and Fantastic Fest last year, it’s abundantly clear that Ben Wheatley’s High-Rise isn’t going to be for everyone, but it certainly appears to be for me. It’s set to finally hit in a month or so, and there’s yet another new trailer to keep you occupied until then.
Tuesday, March 15, 2016
You know what, being in a band and being on tour sucks. It’s not all Almost Famous and epic parties and groupies and rock and roll. It’s endless driving, sleeping in your van, being broke as hell, and finding yourself in dicey situations far from anyone who might come to your aid. And no tour has ever sucked quite as much as the one in Jeremy Saulnier’s Green Room. Need proof? Check out the latest trailer.
Holy crap, this snuck up on me, but we’re only three days away from Netflix dropping the entirety of Daredevil Season 2 for your binging pleasure. To mark the occasion, the streaming giant has released a final trailer. Take a look after the jump.
Friday, March 11, 2016
One of my most anticipated movies of the year is Ben Wheatley’s High-Rise. Reviews out of the Toronto International Film Festival, where it debuted, were mixed, but it looks right up my alley, I adore the J.G Ballard novel that serves as the source, and Wheatley is the perfect director to bring it to the big screen. We still have a while to wait for High-Rise, but anytime Ben Wheatley makes a movie, it’s near the top of my must-see list. And now we have word that he has another, Free Fire, on the way. It just got picked up for distribution, which means we’ll get to see in in theaters for ourselves, and it sounds damn near perfect.
Thursday, March 10, 2016
Since it came out in 2008, there’s been chatter about a follow up to found footage creature feature Cloverfield. Just a few months back, the notoriously mysterious Bad Robot dropped a surprise trailer for something called 10 Cloverfield Lane (up to that point it had been developing under the working title Valencia), which appeared to be, at least tangentially, related to the earlier film. To be honest, it’s really a sequel in name only. While Cloverfield is big and bombastic—and, in my opinion, wildly overrated—10 Cloverfield Lane is a small, taut, claustrophobic psychological thriller with a serious Twilight Zone vibe. If it wasn’t for the title, there’s very little to connect it to its predecessor, but that doesn’t matter because it’s a damn good time.
Monday, March 7, 2016
Apparently I need to figure out a way to get WGN. I only have a vague awareness that the network even a thing, with shows like Manhattan and Outsiders, which looks like something I might dig. But now they’ve got my attention as they’re working on a series based on Jason Aaron’s incredible Native American-noir comic Scalped.
Sunday, March 6, 2016
If you’ve watched John Wick, and you should, it was hands down my favorite movie of 2014, you know that star Keanu Reeves plays a convincing total badass. Sure, a lot of it is due to your usual cinematic tricks like props, editing, stunt performers, and the like. But in this particular instance, a great deal of that is down to Reeves. Need proof? Check out this video of him training for John Wick: Chapter 2, blasting targets with live ammunition and looking like a man who can handle his business.
Friday, March 4, 2016
As much as I love Death Wish (one of my dogs bears the name of the lead actor, after all), the story of how one man goes from a bleeding heart intellectual liberal to a vaguely racist vigilante who murders various “undesirables,” is a dicey proposition. The prospect of remaking it in the current political climate is extra challenging. It’s been a while since we heard much about this project, but apparently it’s back on and rolling, will star Bruce Willis, and the duo behind the Israeli thriller Big Bad Wolves will take the helm.
All you gore hounds and horror heads out there have been keeping an eye on the Turkish nightmare factory Baskin for a while. After a successful run on the festival circuit, it’s finally hitting U.S. shores to scare the hell out of us all. To mark the occasion, IFC has released a dark, twisted new trailer. Check it out after the jump.
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Back in 2013, Antoine Fuqua teamed up with Gerard Butler for a gritty take on what would happen if the White House was attacked by terrorists with Olympus Has Fallen—a few months later we got the more humorous, bro-tastic take on the same story, with Channing Tatum’s White House Down. Well, it wasn’t enough for the White House to go down, and now we have the follow up, London HasFallen. Handed off to Snabba Cash 2 director Babak Najafi, London Has Fallen is a ridiculous, direct-to-video-style blast of full frontal action. If a DTV movie had the budget to mostly level one of the major metropolises in the world, that’s what this is. So much better than the first movie, this knows exactly what it is and what its audience wants, and delivers with gusto and glee.
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Disney Animation’s Zootopia is a gorgeous, brightly colored visual spectacle; a sweet, moving tale of friendship and acceptance; a shadowy, noir-style crime story; and some of the greatest on-screen world building in recent memory. Oh yeah, it’s also a sharp, pointed, timely indictment of systemic racism and deeply ingrained, largely unspoken intolerance in our society. All told through adorable, relatable, anthropomorphic animals wearing clothes and acting, at times, uncomfortably human. There is so much more going on here than just another “cute” animated feature—cute is also something of a racial slur in the world of Zootopia.