Review: Into the Grizzly Maze

Starring James Marsden, Thomas Jane, and Billy Bob Thornton

Review: In Stereo

Starring Beau Garrett and Micah Hauptman

Review: Terminator Genisys

Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, and Jason Clarke

Interview: Stephen "tWitch' Boss

The Magic Mike XXL star talks about working alongside Channing Tatum

Review: Magic Mike XXL

Starring Channing Tatum, Joe Manganiello, Matt Bomer, and more

7/03/2015

Ava DuVernay won't be Directing Marvel's 'Black Panther'


As anyone who has seen filmmaker Ava DuVernay's films like Middle of Nowhere and Selma, or been a follower of her Twitter feed can attest, she has a creative perspective all her own. That's part of the reason why fans were excited when her name surfaced as a possible contender to direct Marvel's Black Panther. Just days ago it seemed she was a shoe-in for the job, too, when Kevin Feige admitted that the two sides had been in negotiations. Unfortunately, DuVernay just revealed to Essence magazine that things haven't worked out and she's moving on...

“I guess I’ll declare my independence from this rumor on 4th of July weekend and Essence weekend! I’m not signing on to direct Black Panther. I think I’ll just say we had different ideas about what the story would be. Marvel has a certain way of doing things and I think they’re fantastic and a lot of people love what they do.”

“I loved that they reached out to me. I loved meeting Chadwick and writers and all the Marvel execs,” she adds. “In the end, it comes down to story and perspective. And we just didn’t see eye to eye. Better for me to realize that now than cite creative differences later… I love the character of Black Panther, the nation of Wakanda and all that that could be visually. I wish them well and will be first in line to see it.”

So not a total surprise here, but does that mean Marvel will now turn to Rick Famuyiwa (Dope) as their fallback option? With Black Panther set to debut in Captain America: Civil War before starring in his own solo movie in 2018, an announcement could be coming soon.

Review: 'In Stereo', Starring Beau Garrett and Micah Hauptman


David (Micah Hauptman) and Brenda (Beau Garrett) are content being with one another. That is, until Brenda drops the big bomb and suggests they move in together. David, too scared to take that step, doesn't and 18 months later the two of them are living very separate lives. A photographer, David is on the brink of having his photos shown in a gallery and he's seeing Jennifer (Melissa Bolona), who is cheating on him with his best friend Chris (Kieran Campion). After a series of bad events has them crossing paths again, the true question becomes whether or not they should start fresh with each other.

The film's lead actors stand out in their roles and their characters are fascinating and have a lot to say, but this is halted by the movie's inability to spin a focused story and lead it down a certain path. The latter part of the film is focused on David and Brenda, and it takes off but never quite reaches its potential before crashing through to its final scene.


There is so much potential that is lost when the film shifts its focus to its supporting characters, who are both equally less interesting than their lead counterparts. In Stereo talks about love and whether any relationship can actually withstand longevity. David's cynicism, coupled with his long ranting reasoning that he uses on his shrink (Sean Cullen), is fun to listen to but doesn't seem like it ever goes anywhere. Brenda's cynicism for her acting auditions and career are just as entertaining to follow because her use of words while pissed off is clever. And the audience can see that these two people make each other better, however the film doesn't take enough time to explore this.


In Stereo has all the makings of a thoughtful take on love and relationships, but the film is too jumbled and messy. The entire second act is a back and forth of inactivity that will drive the audience toward impatience. If the focus of the film didn't shift so much, then our attentions would have lingered longer on the point of the story than on a script that was trying to be more clever than it came off. The film's cast has a whole lot of potential and without them the movie wouldn't have been as enjoyable. Full of potential and very enjoyable in some places, but ultimately underwhelming.
Rating: 2 out of 5

Paul Rudd wants the Avengers' Help in the Final 'Ant-Man' Trailer


While all of Marvel's heroes have flaws, some bigger than others, none of them are fresh out of prison like Ant-Man's Scott Lang (Paul Rudd). He's basically just a petty thief, but that particular skill set makes him valuable to Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), who needs him to steal something very important. The only problem? Lang isn't exactly the hero type, and he'd rather they just call the Avengers to do it.

That one mention of the Avengers is pretty important to the latest international Ant-Man trailer as Marvel REALLY wants audiences to remember these movies are connected. Similar to Guardians of the Galaxy, this film stands a little bit apart from the others, but when all is said and done everything is happening in the same universe, which is why Lang will be seen in next year's Captain America: Civil War.

Ant-Man hits theaters on July 17th.

The Bennet Girls Ready for Battle in 'Pride & Prejudice & Zombies' Photos


One of the most interesting things about Seth Grahame-Smith's Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is that for the most part the twisted story matches the tone of Jane Austen's classic. It's not some kind of comedy spoof where the Bennet gals are tripping all over their corsets while the undead attack, but is largely played straight with all of the romantic entanglements intact. And that's what director Burr Steers hopes to keep in place for his film adaptation, which is hitting Comic-Con next week and has debuted a few new images. He tells EW...

“The idea was that it was 'Pride and Prejudice' set in this alternate world and then for everyone to play it straight. The movie’s big wink is that there is no big wink."

The film stars Lily James (Cinderella) as the most badass Bennett girl of them all, Elizabeth, a martial arts master and one of the most dangerous zombie killers around. Her equally adept sisters are played by Bella Heathcote, Suki Waterhouse, Ellie Bamber, and Millie Brady. Sam Riley plays Mr. Darcy, who is considered the only one more lethal than Elizabeth. Jack Huston, Lena Headey, Douglas Booth, Matt Smith, and Charles Dance co-star.

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies opens February 5th 2016.






Katherine Heigl and Alexis Bledel get Hitched in Trailer for 'Jenny's Wedding'


It's surprising that producers didn't push to release the trailer for Jenny's Wedding last week following the Supreme Court's momentous decision on gay marriage, but this is still a pretty advantageous time. The film stars Katherine Heigl and yes it's another romance in which she's looking to find love, only this time she's not chasing after some dude. Instead she's set to marry a woman, namely Alexis Bledel. Color me jealous.

Surprisingly, the emotions at play here are fairly serious rather than played for laughs, a nice change-of-pace. Written and directed by Mary Agnes Donoghue (Beaches), the film centers on Jenny (Heigl), who must reveal to her conservative parents (Tom Wilkinson and Linda Emond) that her roommate Kitty (Bledel) is really her girlfriend and that they plan to get married. This causes all kinds of conflict within the family, and that seems to be what the story is about more than the wedding itself. 

Jenny's Wedding hits theaters and VOD on July 31st, and if you review it be sure to hit it with the #lovewins hashtag. 


Jenny's Wedding Trailer #1 by Movies Trailers

The Netflix 'Iron Fist' Series is Proving Tough for Marvel to Figure Out


Marvel and Netflix have hit on something big with Daredevil, with the first season debuting to near universal acclaim. And that has spurred them on to a second season that fans are already eager for, plus AKA Jessica Jones is already casted up and ready to go. Following that is Luke Cage, which has a star in Mike Colter and nearly half of the first season's scripts already written according to Birth.Movies.Death. But they also say that the one series we haven't heard anything about, Iron Fist, is proving difficult to get off the ground.

The problem appears to be the mystical kung fu nature of the character, which has proven difficult even for Marvel Comics writers to get a handle on over the years. Iron Fist, aka Danny Rand, is more than just some martial arts master, he's gifted with super chi-channeling powers passed to him from a long line of previous Iron Fists. Those powers manifest themselves in a magical glowing fist and other abilities, and Marvel is unsure how far to go with all that. It's possible they decide not to even give Iron Fist superpowers in order to keep the show grounded similar to Daredevil.

Fortunately, Marvel has a long time to figure Iron Fist out as the character likely won't appear in any of the other shows.

New 'Deadpool' Images Feature Negasonic Teenage Warhead; Director Compares Film to 'Fight Club'


Marvel's Merc with a Mouth has long been one of their most popular characters, arguably their most popular outside of the Avengers. And while fans have been dying for a proper Deadpool film since his dreadful debut in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, the one thing they really demanded was that it be R-rated. But there was some worry that Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick's screenplay would get diced down into a soft PG-13. Ryan Reynolds promised that wouldn't be the case, and now producer Simon Kinberg assures fans Deadpool will be as out-of-bounds as fans hoped. He tells EW...

“Deadpool is a hard R. It’s graphic. Nothing is taboo. You either commit to a truly outrageous boundary-pushing kind of movie or you don’t.”

Meanwhile, director Tim Miller says his approach was influenced by a David Fincher classic, one that should kick up anticipation even further...

“I felt Fight Club and Tyler Durden were good corollaries. We are in strip clubs and dive bars and crappy apartments and far away from the shiny X-Men world.”

Now that sounds like the Deadpool I remember, not the ridiculous wannabe X-Man that Marvel Comics has turned him into.

Two new images have also been released. The first one has Deadpool checking out a sketchy drawing of his violent handiwork, while the other features an appearance by Negasonic Teenage Warhead, played by Brianna Hildebrand.

Deadpool hits theaters on February 12th 2016. [Empire]


7/02/2015

Two Images from 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2' Tease an Emotional Finale


The days leading up to Comic-Con are pretty much owned by everything that's headed to the event. Next up is The Hunger Games: Mockingjay part 2, which hits Hall H on Thursday, July 9th and will feature some of the cast and new footage. For now, eager fans will have to settle for two photos courtesy of EW, showing a somber moment between Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks). Here's the official synopsis:

With the nation of Panem in a full scale war, Katniss confronts President Snow (Donald Sutherland) in the final showdown. Teamed with a group of her closest friends – including Gale (Liam Hemsworth), Finnick (Sam Claflin), and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) – Katniss goes off on a mission with the unit from District 13 as they risk their lives to stage an assassination attempt on President Snow who has become increasingly obsessed with destroying her.  The mortal traps, enemies, and moral choices that await Katniss will challenge her more than any arena she faced in The Hunger Games.

Director Francis Lawrence calls the finale the "most emotional" of the films yet, and also the one he considers the most satisfying. Sounds like a good way for the franchise to go out.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay part 2 opens November 20th. [EW]


New Image from 'The Hateful Eight'; Quentin Tarantino Discusses the Film's Humor


Guess who's riding into San Diego Comic-Con next week in his covered wagon and a barrel full of buckshot? Quentin Tarantino, who plans to unveil some new footage from his western The Hateful Eight, and some of the cast will be in attendance to join him. But before any of that, EW has released a new image featuring Kurt Russell as John Ruth and Samuel L. Jackson as Major Marquis Warren in what Tarantino calls the funniest snow western ever...

“I can definitely say that as bleak as our movie is, we are definitely the funniest snow Western ever made. This is funnier than 'The Great Silence,' it’s funnier than 'Day of the Outlaw.'...Oh, yeah, funnier than 'McCabe & Mrs. Miller.'

If Tarantino goes into Hall H talking about all of the old movies that influenced him, the audience may start to glaze over. They may be more interested in hearing him talk about the 70mm presentation and the cross-country roadshow he plans to take the film on.

Also starring Jennifer Jason Leigh, Michael Madsen, Tim Roth, Walton Goggins, Bruce Dern and Demian Bichir, The Hateful Eight opens Christmas Day in limited 70mm release, then goes nationwide two weeks later.

Mark Wahlberg Joins Ronda Rousey and Iko Uwais in Peter Berg's 'Mile 22'


Are there enough faces in the world to withstand the brutal punching delivered by the likes of Mark Wahlberg, badass UFC champ Ronda Rousey, and The Raid star, Iko Uwais? We're about to find out, as all three are set to star in Mile 22, an action flick directed by Peter Berg.

Remember how Wahlberg and David O. Russell used to be like kindred spirits and stuff? Well, that's pretty much how things are with him and Berg now. Berg is currently directing him in Deepwater Horizon after replacing JC Chandor. Plus they've worked together on Entourage, Lone Survivor, and the new HBO series, Ballers.  In Mile 22, Wahlberg will play a CIA agent in Indonesia who must battle corrupt cops, criminal overlords, and heavily-armed locals to escort an informant 22 miles to the nearest airport. The screenplay was written by Graham Roland, and hopefully he didn't script a lot of dialogue scenes. Rousey and Uwais entered talks for the film back in March, but their deals appear to be good to go.

Rousey has been building up her big screen cred nicely with roles in The Expendables 3 and Furious 7, while Uwais starred in both The Raid and its sequel, The Raid: Redemption, the two best fight flicks in recent memory. He also has a role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. No word on when Mile 22 shoots but it will likely be Berg and Wahlberg's first project after Deepwater Horizon wraps up. [THR]