Monday, April 27, 2015

Summer 2015 Box Office Predictions

Hulk...want...your money...

Summer is here, so you know what that means: tan lines and air conditioners. And also, of course, my predictions for this season's box office. This year was particularly difficult with a number of films that are teeter-tottering on the edge of being either complete bombs or surprise hits (Mad Max, Tomorrowland), and there's really just no telling what will happen!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Furious 7, It Follows, Maps to the Stars Reviews

Furious 7
Dir. James Wan

Above all, the Fast and Furious series focuses on the theme of family - I'd argue even over the cars. While the films are extremely stupid, totally illogical, badly acted, and shamelessly panders to its audience, its central cast somehow works well together, and the characters' loyalty to each other (and the hilariously bonkers physics of the car chases), is what holds them all together. When Paul Walker tragically died in 2013 midway through shooting Furious 7, it was unclear exactly how the series would proceed. Ultimately it was decided that instead of re-shooting and re-writing the story to exclude Walker, director James Wan (and Universal) made the difficult decision to keep his character in, splicing in a combination of CGI, unused footage from other films, Walker's brother as a body double, and some re-writes to finish the picture. With all the complications behind the scenes, and with Wan, both a newcomer to the franchise and new to big budget action movies, I was pretty worried this would be a complete disaster. Happily, I can report that Furious 7 doesn't suffer from any issues not already present with the series, and overall is just as loud, dumb, and shut-your-brain-down fun as the last few movies.

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