Review: Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far On Foot

Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Jonah Hill, Jack Black, and Rooney Mara

Review: The First Purge

Witness the Annual Night of Murder's Deadly Origin

Review: Sorry to Bother You

Starring Lakeith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson, and Armie Hammer

Review: Shock and Awe

Starring Woody Harrelson, James Marsden, and Tommy Lee Jones

Review: Skyscraper

Starring Dwayne Johnson

7/17/2018

Keanu Reeves Says 'Bill & Ted 3' Isn't A Reality Yet


Lesson learned, I should trust my own instincts. Back in May there was tremendous excitement when Bill and Ted Face the Music was officially confirmed by MGM. Fans had been waiting decades for Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter to rock on for a third film, despite all sides wanting to return and a story long having been in place. And now comes word from Keanu himself the sequel may have already been unplugged.

Speaking with Yahoo, Reeves cautioned the film may not happen at all. The reason he gives have nothing to do with the story, but the stuff that actually kills projects all the time: boring legal and rights issues.

“I don’t know if [Bill & Ted 3] is a reality. We’ve been trying for a long time to get that film made, and it still has its challenges. I really love the characters, and I think we have a good story to tell. Part of it is business stuff—financing, rights, deals. Nothing creatively.”

Ehhhh, that's not good. Bill & Ted 3 has faced a long hard road, and it sounds like the same issues that have always plagued it are still there. Don't hold your breath on this one.

If it happens, Bill and Ted Face the Music will be directed by Dean Parisot with a script by franchise creators Ed Solomon and Chris Matheson.

'The Darkest Minds' Trailer: Mutants...Er, Super-Powered Teens Lead A Revolution


A film that I fully expect to be a sleeper hit later this summer is The Darkest Minds, which has clearly been inspired by Marvel's X-Men. Starring Amandla Stenberg and Harris Dickinson, with Jennifer Yuh Nelson (Kung Fu Panda) making her live-action directing debut, the adaptation of Alexandra Bracken's book series follows a group of teens with dangerous superpowers fighting against an oppressive government.

The plot could easily have been ripped from Marvel's merry mutants, and that could be one of the film's biggest draws. There's all of the teenage angst you'd come to expect, with mutant...er, superpowers as a metaphor for puberty and the raging whirl of emotions that come with it. In the latest trailer we see romance blossom between Stenberg and Dickinson's characters as they race to find a safe haven for others just like them.

While the story does resemble your classic YA franchise in a lot of ways, it's impossible to ignore similarities to current immigration policies. Scenes of kids rounded up in prisons, held in cages and presumably separated from their families hit hard...perhaps too hard. I'm curious to see if Fox downplays those images in the future because nobody wants to see a movie to be reminded of the terrible things happening in reality.

Joining Stenberg and Dickinson in the cast are Skylan Brooks, Miya Cech, Golden Brooks, Bradley Whitford, Gwendoline Christine, and Mandy Moore.

Here's the synopsis: When teens mysteriously develop powerful new abilities, they are declared a threat by the government and detained. Sixteen-year-old Ruby, one of the most powerful young people anyone has encountered, escapes her camp and joins a group of runaway teens seeking safe haven. Soon this newfound family realizes that, in a world in which the adults in power have betrayed them, running is not enough and they must wage a resistance, using their collective power to take back control of their future.

The Darkest Minds opens August 3rd.


Denis Villeneuve's 'Dune' Remake Eyes Timothee Chalamet For Lead Role


How's this for a sweet package deal? Oscar-nominated Call Me By Your Name actor Timothee Chalamet, Arrival director Denis Villeneuve, and the sci-fi classic Dune. It could be a reality very soon.

Deadline reports Chalamet is in final talks to join Villeneuve's Dune remake, taking on the lead role of Paul Atreides, played by Kyle MachLachlan in David Lynch's infamous 1984 adaptation. The Frank Herbert novel weaves politics and sci-fi in an epic story about those warring for control over the universe's most precious commodity, a spice called Melange. The novels have been popular for decades, but Lynch's film is pretty divisive. Some have elevated it to cult classic status while others are eagerly hoping Villeneuve can wash it from history.

Frankly, I'm not a fan of Dune even though I get the many Star Wars comparisons. Villeneuve has said he plans to do two movies and make these films decidedly for adults, which sounds like a good way to have another dud like his Blade Runner 2049 was. Keep in mind how much I love that movie, but can acknowledge it was too much of a niche property to be successful financially. Dune will likely be the same whether it's Chalamet starring in it or not.

7/16/2018

'Patient Zero' Trailer: Stanley Tucci, Natalie Dormer, & Matt Smith Try To Survive A Deadly Pandemic


The difference between zombie movies and pandemic movies is subtle, but important. Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later? Pandemic. Dawn of the Dead? Zombie movie. The latest in the former category is Patient Zero, which finds Stanley Tucci, Matt Smith, Natalie Dormer, and others trying to survive a pandemic that has turned its victims into rabies-fueled savages. So yeah, it's very 28 Days Later.

The film is directed by  Stefan Ruzowitzky, the German director who helmed The Counterfeiters, the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award winner in 2008. Shooting was completed on this in 2015 and has been on the shelf for a while, which isn't a good sign, but the trailer suggests a solid entry in the genre. Here's the synopsis:

In the pandemic thriller, PATIENT ZERO, humanity is battling intelligent, adrenaline-fueled creatures born from a viral super-strain. After being bitten, human survivor Morgan (Matt Smith) realizes he is asymptomatic and can communicate with the infected, leading the last survivors on a hunt for Patient Zero and a cure.

Patient Zero hits theaters on September 14th, preceded by a digital release on August 14th.

DC's 'Birds Of Prey' Team Confirmed, Including First Major Openly Gay DCEU Character


Well, here it is, the BIG Birds of Prey news promised earlier today. And it turns out the rumor was mostly accurate, although some key details were left or may have been off. The Wrap reports Margot Robbie's all-girl gang will consist of Harley Quinn, the Huntress, Dinah Lance aka Black Canary, the Cassandra Cain version of Batgirl, and Gotham City detective Renee Montoya.

So let's take stock for a sec: today's rumor had all of these characters except for Montoya, and honestly she's the biggest surprise by far. Montoya is a GCPD detective who has been very active in the Bat-books. She's also openly gay, making her the first ever in the DCEU. Montoya has no powers, but her keen intuitive skill helped her take on the mantle of The Question, an investigative hero in DC Comics.


The addition of Cassandra Cain is also surprising. She's best known as "the mute Batgirl", although I hesitate to say she was a very popular character under the mask. When people talk Batgirl they still tend to be referring to the Barbara Gordon version of the character. I'll be curious to see if they keep Cain mute.

Black Canary aka Dinah Laurel Lance and Huntress aka Helena Bertinelli are to be expected. Both are mainstays of the Birds of Prey team and have worked well as part of CW's Arrowverse for years.

As for the villain, the story promises it to be a "Batman comics villain who has never before appeared on the big screen."  That could still be Cassandra's father, David Cain, as was previously suggested, but that seems too small for a film of this scope.

Shooting begins in January with Cathy Yan behind the camera. Look out for more details in the coming days.


DC Readers: Attend A Free Advance Screening Of 'Blindspotting'


We're happy to invite our DC readers to attend a free advance screening of Blindspotting, the powerful new film from stars and co-writers Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal.

SYNOPSIS: Collin (Daveed Diggs) must make it through his final three days of probation for a chance at a new beginning. He works alongside his troublemaking childhood best friend, Miles (Rafael Casal) as movers forced to watch their old neighborhood become a trendy spot in the rapidly gentrifying Bay Area. When a life-altering event causes Collin to miss his mandatory curfew, the two men struggle to maintain their friendship as the changing social landscape exposes their differences.

Lifelong friends Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal co-wrote and star in this timely and wildly entertaining story about friendship and the intersection of race and class set against the backdrop of Oakland.  Bursting with energy, style and humor, Blindspotting, boldly directed by Carlos L√≥pez Estrada in his feature film debut, is a provocative hometown love letter that glistens with humanity.

The screening takes place on Tuesday, July 17th at 7:00pm at Regal Majestic in Silver Spring. If you'd like to attend, simply download a pass at the Liongsgate ticketing site here. Please remember all screenings are first come first served and you will need to arrive early to ensure receiving a seat. Enjoy the show!

Blindspotting opens July 20th.

'On The Basis Of Sex' Trailer: Felicity Jones Fights The Good Fight As Ruth Bader Ginsburg


Ruth Bader Ginsburg is having one heck of a year. She's become more prominent in the news lately with all of the stolen Supreme Court positions that Trump has been asked to fill. And the documentary about her, RBG, has gone on to become one of the highest-grossing independent films of 2018. It seems nothing can stop the Notorious RBG, and certainly she's going to see a boost from the upcoming biopic, On the Basis of Sex, in which she's played by Oscar nominee Felicity Jones.

Directed by Mimi Leder (The Leftovers), the film journeys back to one of Ginsburg's most important early cases as she teams with her husband Marty to bring a groundbreaking case before the U.S. Court of Appeals and overturn a century of gender discrimination. It's a battle that would become a recurring theme throughout Ginsburg's legal career, and it's a fight she continues to wage to this day.  Playing the role of her husband, tax lawyer Martin Ginsburg, is Armie Hammer who is also having quite a moment in his career right now.

Also starring Stephen Root, Kathy Bates, Sam Waterston, Jack Reynor, Stephen Root, Cailee Spaeny, and Justin Theroux, On the Basis of Sex opens December 25th.

Rumor: 'Birds Of Prey' Full Team Revealed, And Harley Quinn's Unexpected Role In It


It's Comic-Con week and already some big rumors are swirling around. It always happens in the days leading up to the biggest fan event of the year, and today there's some buzz around DC's Birds of Prey movie. I don't like the source on this one, so as always I'll just remind you to take it with a graint of salt.

So apprently there is supposed to be some big Birds of Prey news today, but video blogger Grace Randolph, whose track record is spotty at best, says she has the goods before anybody else. Her sources say the team's roster will include Black Canary, Huntress, Lady Shiva, Katatna, and Harley Quinn. Margot Robbie will be reprising her role as Harley Quinn, but what's interesting is the unhinged antivillain will be taking on the Oracle role, meaning she'll basically be running team logistics, providing intel, etc. We'd previously heard that Batgirl aka Barbara Gordon, who is usually Oracle on the team, wouldn't be in the film at all despite having her own solo movie in the works. This, I suppose, backs up that rumor.

So with one version of Batgirl out, another version may be included. Cassandra Cain is reportedly in need of rescue from her villainous father, David Cain, and only the Birds of Prey can do it.

This doesn't quite stack up to me as a fully credible rumor, but some aspects of it may be true. Hopefully we'll find out more in the coming days.

Unproduced Stanley Kubrick Script 'Burning Secret' Discovered


It's a big deal whenever a long-lost project by a renowned filmmaker is discovered out of nowhere. When that filmmaker is the legendary Stanley Kubrick, who only directed 13 movies in his career, that excitement goes through the roof.  Kubrick historian Nathan Abramas has found a completed screenplay for Burning Secret, a film that never went into production.

Kubrick co-wrote the screenplay with Calder Willingham in 1956, but for unknown reasons MGM kept it on the shelf. The story is based on the 1913 novella Brennendes Geheimnis by Austrian writer Stefan Zweig, and centers on a young boy who befriends a mysterious baron whose real agenda is to seduce the boy's mother. The book has been adapted a couple of times, once in 1933 in a film that was attacked by the Nazis because of its adulterous themes. A more modern version was released in 1988 and starred Faye Dunaway among others.

The script is currently in the possession of the son of a Kubrick collaborator.

Abrams says, “I couldn’t believe it. It’s so exciting. It was believed to have been lost. In ‘Burning Secret,’ the main character befriends the son to get to the mother. In ‘Lolita,’ he marries the mother to get to the daughter. I think that with the 1956 production code, that would be a tricky one to get by. But he managed with ‘Lolita’ in 1962 – only just."

So what happens now? Does it get made into a movie? That would be the preferred scenario for those who have missed the director's work since his final film, 1999's Eyes Wide Shut. It would be a shame if nothing comes of this, so here's hoping one of the taste-making studios out there is willing to give us something new from Kubrick because it's very unlikely this opportunity comes around again. [TheGuardian]

The 'Unfriended: Dark Web' Trailer Is A Warning To Stay Away From Strange Laptops


Blumhouse has a number of surprising success stories under their belt, and 2014's Unfriended was another. Costing approximately $1M, the horror film earned $64M, powered by good buzz and a twisted concept that found a bunch of high schoolers terrorized by a haunted Skype call. There's been genuinely hot buzz for the upcoming semi-sequel, Unfriended: Dark Web, which takes a similar conceit and tells a more horrifying story.

The directorial debut of The Grudge writer Stephen Susco finds a group of college kids dealing with the dangers of technology, albeit in a different way than the typical message movie. This time it's a laptop full of snuff films that sets things off, followed by the revelations that what's happening in them is real, and that the laptop's owner has plans for them next. They should've just taken the laptop to the Lost 'n Found and been done with it. Now they gotta die.

Starring  Colin Woodell, Rebecca Rittenhouse, Betty Gabriel and Andrew Lees, Unfriended: Dark Web opens July 20th 2018.