No Redemption, Just Action – Here’s The New Trailer For The Raid 2: Berendal

One of the biggest surprises of the past couple of years was The Raid: Redemption, a Taiwanese film that quickly took it’s place as one of my favorite straight-up all-out non-stop here’s-how-you-do-it action flicks of all time. This year, we’re going to get the sequel, The Raid 2: Berendal. How well will it stand up to the original? Well, we won’t know until the movie actually hits theaters, but we do at least finally have a trailer to give us a clue:

So, action fans, what do you think? All I know is that I’ll definitely be there to see this one when it opens.

Top 250 Tuesday: #153 – The Wizard of Oz (1939)

Continuing to wend my way through the Sight and Sound Top 250 Greatest Movies of All Time. This week, it’s #229 on the list,Victor Fleming’s The Wizard of Oz. For a longer introduction to this series and a look at the full list, just click here. And if you want a heads-up on what I’ll be watching for next week in case you want to watch along, just head on over to the Facebook page or follow me on Twitter (both of those links are in the sidebar) where I’ll generally be posting that info later in the day.

WIZARD_OF_OZ_ORIGINAL_POSTER_1939As a kid, I suppose I loved The Wizard of Oz. It was one of those movies that would come on television every year, and watching it was, as it was for many families at the time, something of an annual ritual.

As I’ve gotten older. however, I seem to have very much fallen out of love with the movie, to the point that when it was re-released to theaters this year in it’s 3D’d IMAX’d version, I didn’t even bother to go see it. Sorry, I told those who invited me to come along with them, I’m simply not interested.

It’s not that it’s really become a movie that I “hate”, though I suspect I have probably expressed myself that way from time to time as a kind of shorthand rather than go into all of the flaws that I find with the film, and I certainly can appreciate the beauty and artistic mastery of the film, it’s just that I find nowadays that its flaws, especially at the script level, overwhelm my enjoyment of the on-screen spectacle, and I can’t really accept the “it’s all a dream so logic doesn’t have to come into play” excuse as one that works for me.

Wizard-Of-Oz-Witch-1Of course, this is one of those movies the phrase “your own mileage may vary” definitely applies to.

So, if you are a lover of this film, that’s fine with me. I’m certainly not going to try to talk you over to my point of view. If it’s one that you hate, well, in my opinion, that’s fine, too, I can certainly see that emotion, and have, as I noted above, claimed that myself at times. At the moment, though, I will simply say that for me, it is a film full of technical brilliance and beauty, but ultimately one that I no longer really enjoy watching.

Anyway, here’s the trailer

and as an added bonus, here’s a special feature from my good friends over at Cinema Sins (and I mean that literally, as one of the guys behind this particular YouTube channel is someone that I used to work with and whom I still see from time to time):

So what are your thoughts on The Wizard of Oz? Is it a movie that you’ve seen or would like to? If you have seen it, is it one that would make your own Top 10 list? Or would it not even crack your Top 250? Let me know below.

Was This The Worst Movie Released To Theaters In 2013?

Storage_24_posterIn answer to the question in the headline, I’d say “probably not”. However, according to this article and Box Office Mojo (where the figures come from) Storage 24, which was directed by Johannes Roberts and stars Noel Clarke, Colin O’Donoghue and Antonia Campbell-Hughes was the lowest grossing film to hit screens this past year, raking in an astounding total of $72. If you figure an average ticket price of $12, that would mean a total of six people actually paid for a ticket to see it.

Heck, just from his time on Doctor Who, Noel Clarke ought to be able to draw in more than six people.

Which in some ways begs the question (if one assumes that the director and stars had a special screening for family and friends so it wasn’t them paying for tix) under just what circumstances did those six people actually wind up paying actual cash money to see it?

Certainly it wasn’t the best-reviewed film of the year – it currently stands at 43% fresh at Rotten Tomatoes as opposed to 29% for Kick-Ass 2 and 7% (yes that’s seven percent) for Grown-Ups 2, both of which opened in multiple theaters and made millions of dollars during their opening weekends – with Jeremy Clarke from The Guardian writing “Johannes Roberts’ warehouse-set monster flick is unexpectedly entertaining”, giving the film four stars out of five and Kim Newman from Empire awarding the film three stars out of five and calling it “a superior British horror sci-fi.” So why did this flick wind up only opening in one theater and making no money at all? Or is the question actually “how did it wind up in that one theater in the first place”?

Anyway, here’s the trailer – take a look for yourself and see if it looks like something you might have paid to see if it had come to your local theater.

Can Depp “Transcend” Playing To Type Yet Again? – Here’s The Trailer For Transcendence (2014)

While I suspect Johnny Depp‘s actual onscreen time in the upcoming Wally Pfister film Transcendence (as opposed to his time in the film as a voice over and through various computers and video screens) will be rather limited, it is nice to see him getting back to actual acting as opposed to simply playing that far, far too familiar character that has become known as “Johnny Depp” yet again.

Perhaps this is the beginning of a positive trend” We can only hope so.

Saturday Double Feature: American Hustle (2013) and…

Saturday on the blog means Saturday Double Feature, right? Remember, the basic idea here is to take a movie that is out in theaters now, and pair it up with another movie from the 1980s or before. Sometimes the connection will be obvious, and sometimes it’ll be a little less so, but that’s part of the fun.

So it’s been an incredibly busy but for the most part good week, but now I’m back, and ready to resume regular posting, I hope, so let’s start things off with the last double feature of the year.

This pairing was actually suggested by a cinephile friend of mine who made the comparison while walking out of the theater having just seen American Hustle

So what did he say? “It’s a lot like The Sting.”

Now I haven’t had a chance to see American Hustle for myself yet, but considering how much I like the 1973 Paul Newman and Robert Redford pairing Sting, to me that’s high praise. And even if the new movie doesn’t live up to the older one, it still seems like it could make for an interesting (if kind of long) double feature. So there you go.

So, do you have any other ideas for pairing films with American Hustle? if so, let me know below. And also let me know of any other upcoming movies you’d like to see “double featured”. Consider it, if you will, your chance to challenge me to come up with an interesting pair.

Until next time, Happy Viewing!

Just A Short Note…

Just wanted to put up a quick post to mote that due to all the busyness of the holiday week, the regular features will not be appearing this week. (Though there may be a couple of posts along the way if I can get them finished up in a relatively short time.)

Here’s hoping everyone out there has a safe and happy holiday week in whatever way you celebrate, or even if you don’t.

And most of all, thanks to each and every one of you who read and support the blog. I’ve often said I’d be doing it even if no one was reading, just because writing is something that’s in my blood, and because of my love for movies, but knowing that you are out there and reading and commenting just makes it that much better.

Until next tine, Happy Viewing!

Can Arnie Keep The Enjoyable Action Flick Run Going? – Here’s The New Trailer For Sabotage (2014)

I have to admit. I’ve rather enjoyed Arnie’s last few cinematic outings in that “just don’t worry about plot logic, simply sit back and enjoy the ride” kind of way, so I can’t help but wonder if his upcoming Sabotage is going to hit that spot, too. Certainly hoping so. Anyway, here’s the new trailer: