Review: Where'd You Go, Bernadette

Starring Cate Blanchett, Directed by Richard Linklater

Review: Good Boys

From Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg

Review: Blinded by the Light

Directed by Gurinder Chadha

Review: The Angry Birds Movie 2

Featuring the Voices of Jason Sudeikis, Leslie Jones, Josh Gad, and more

Review: The Peanut Butter Falcon

Starring Shia LaBeouf, Dakota Johnson, and Zack Gottsagen

8/21/2019

Director Jon Watts Not Signed For Future 'Spider-Man' Movies As Jeremy Renner And Ryan Reynolds Weigh In


We've reached the finger-pointing stage of the conflict between Disney and Sony over Spider-Man, a sure sign this situation won't be resolving in a way fans hope. It's becoming increasingly clear that Tom Holland's Spidey will be making his home in Sony's cinematic universe, but we also have a better idea what the future holds for director Jon Watts. We also know what Holland's Avengers co-star Jeremy Renner thinks of what is going on.

Let's start with Watts, who when this whole story broke was reported to be on board for two more Spider-Man movies along with Holland. Deadline clarifies that's not the case as Watts was only contractually obligated through Far from Home, with Sony having an option to offer him a third movie. I have a hard time believing Sony would change directors at this point. Watts has done an incredible job and gave Sony their highest-grossing movie ever. To let him go would be just one more thing to piss off fans who are already in Marvel's corner. I also doubt Watts would want to go anywhere, unless he's worried doing another movie for Sony would hurt his standing with Disney. As of now, he simply isn't signed to anything.

Meanwhile, we have a pretty good idea where Jeremy Renner stands in this whole situation. Hawkeye posted to Instagram an image from Avengers: Endgame with the caption “Hey @sonypictures we want Spider-Man back to @therealstanlee and @marvel please, thank you #congrats #spidermanrocks #???? #please




There ya go, problem solved! Or more likely, any dream teamups with Spider-Man will have to be found elsewhere. Ryan Reynolds has an idea for those hoping to see a Spidey/Deadpool crossover someday...

'The Sound Of Silence' Trailer: Peter Sarsgaard Struggles With Tuning Rashida Jones' House


When asked who you wanted to be when you grew up, did you answer "house tuner"? Probably not since it's a totally made-up occupation, but you wouldn't know it by checking out the trailer for The Sound of Silence. The directorial debut by Michael Tyburski stars Peter Sarsgaard as scientist Peter Lucien, who adjusts the sonic environment of homes.

Tyburski co-wrote the script with Ben Nabors, based on the latter's short story. Sarsgaard's character tunes homes to help affect moods. Rashida Jones plays Ellen Chasen, whose home is proving to be a problem he can't solve. The film also stars Alex Karpovsky, Tony Revolori, Kate Lyn Sheil, Austin Pendleton, and Bruce Altman.

SYNOPSIS: There are a symphony of almost undetectable sounds that make up a moment of silence, and Peter Lucian (Peter Sarsgaard) is determined to catalogue them all. Through his job as a New York City "house tuner," the hyper-methodical Peter works meticulously to diagnose the discordant ambient noises-produced by everything from wind patterns to humming electrical appliances-adversely affecting his clients' moods. When he takes on the particularly difficult case of Ellen (Rashida Jones), a lonely woman plagued by chronic exhaustion, Peter finds that the mysteries of the soul may be even greater than the mysteries of sound.

This is a totally weird concept for everybody but Sarsgaard, who seems to gravitate to offbeat films like this. It reminds me a little bit of his role in Experimenter, which like this also debuted at the Sundance Film Festival. 

The Sound of Silence hits NY/LA theaters and VOD on September 13th via IFC Films. 

Robert Rodriguez To Direct Priyanka Chopra Jonas In Kid-Friendly Superhero Film For Netflix


When the book is written on Robert Rodriguez's career, we may find the films that were his most successful were the Spy Kids franchise. Despite his indie grindhouse sensibilities, Rodriguez can make movies that skew younger, as well. And that's what he's doing next for Netflix on a new superhero movie starring Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Deadline reports Rodriguez will write, direct, and produce We Can Be Heroes, a kid-friendly superhero film about a group of kids who must team and save the world when their superhero parents are kidnapped by alien invaders. Chopra's role is unclear at this point, but her casting is a big feather in Netflix's cap as they continue to make movies that appeal to a global audience. While her American roles in films such as Baywatch and Isn't It Romantic haven't been great, she is a gigantic star internationally.

Rodriguez is coming off another movie that had an all-ages appeal, the James Cameron-produced Alita: Battle Angel. While that one wasn't a huge hit, there have been talks of a sequel that Rodriguez may or may not be involved with. That would seem to be impacted by the launch of We Can Be Heroes, an original property that Rodriguez could be spear-heading for a long time just as he did Spy Kids.


'The Irishman' Release Has Netflix In Power Struggle With Theaters


Martin Scorsese's The Irishman has been a long time coming, and I think it's safe to say this will not be just another movie. Not only should it be an awards contender this season, but Netflix has made it the biggest movie they've ever invested in. And of course, they are going to go full tilt in making sure it has every opportunity to succeed...but under their own terms. That's where they might be running into a problem.

According to The New York Times, Netflix is in the middle of contentious negotiations with some of the biggest theater exhibitors about release plans for The Irishman. Netflix is talking with AMC and Cineplex about a full theatrical release, something the streamer rarely does, before making it available to subscribers shortly thereafter. 

However, most theater chains have a rule that has been in place for a while, stating that no movie they show can be released in any other medium for at least 90 days. Netflix, obviously, doesn't want to wait that long because it would go against their own business model of making movies available immediately.

The longest Netflix has ever kept one of their films in theaters exclusively is 21 days, and that was for last year's acclaimed, Oscar-winning drama Roma. Most likely they would want The Irishman to follow a similar strategy.

Theater chains rightly counter that to make an exception for Netflix is to make an exception for all.

“We can only do so, however, on terms that respect AMC’s important and close relationships with our longstanding studio partners, including Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, Sony, Paramount, Lionsgate and so many other filmmakers who are the lifeblood of our substantial business.”

As for Regal theaters, they aren't even willing to negotiate with Netflix on this issue, so you definitely won't be seeing it through them.

There will be a  certain segment of devoted movie fans who will go out of their way to see a Scorsese movie on the big screen. But if there's an option to just wait a bit longer and watch it on Netflix, I'm guessing most will be just fine with that. However, if Netflix wants to recoup some of that $160M investment, they're going to need a theatrical component. How this whole situation plays out could change the way movies are distributed, so I'm definitely going to keep my eyes on it.

'Bombshell' Trailer: Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, And Margot Robbie Take Down Fox News' Roger Ailes


Over the last few years, as the #MeToo movement has grown, we've seen a number of powerful men face the consequences for their actions. None come more powerful than Roger Ailes, the Fox News CEO who helped build the network into a force for spreading right-wing ideology, with its power spreading all the way into the Oval Office. But all of Ailes' control over the media couldn't protect him from a series of sexual harassment allegations that exposed the abusive culture within the network, and that's the story being told in Bombshell, which features a trio of Hollywood's top actresses as Ailes' accusers.

Leading the film are Charlize Theron as Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, Nicole Kidman as host Gretchen Carlson, and Margot Robbie as Kayla Pospisil, the latter a composite character based on associate producers. In the role of Ailes is John Lithgow, who is unfortunately kept out of this teaser. He's got a tough act in following Russell Crowe's incredible performance as Ailes in Showtime's The Loudest Voice. The film also stars Allison Janney, Kate McKinnon, Malcolm McDowell, Mark Duplass, Alice Eve, Brigette Lundy-Paine, Liv Hewson, and Alanna Ubach.

SYNOPSIS: Based on the real scandal, BOMBSHELL is a revealing look inside the most powerful and controversial media empire of all time; Fox News, and the explosive story of the women who brought down the infamous man who created it.

After beginning his career doing comedies such as Austin Powers, Jay Roach has fully turned his attention towards politics with films such as Recount, Game Change, Trumbo, The Campaign, and All the Way.

Bombshell hits theaters on December 20th.

Review: 'Kingdom' Starring Kento Yamazaki, Ryo Yoshizawa, And Kanna Hashimoto



Kingdom is about a young orphan named Li Xin (Kento Yamazaki) during the warring states period of China. After his best friend, Piao returns to him dying Li Xin must journey with Ying Zheng (Ryo Yoshizawa)to reclaim his throne from his treacherous brother Cheng Jiao (Kanata Hongō). Li Xin and Piao (also Ryo Yoshizawa, he dies as the King’s double) had a shared dream of becoming the greatest generals in the world through their sword fighting ability. Ying Zheng’s dream is to unify China into one country. The main course of the film is how Li Xin and Ying Zheng come together so that their dreams can come together for each of their goals. During this journey the two gain allies and engage in many battles to reclaim Zheng’s throne. Now honestly this movie starts out pretty slow, being this movie is based on a successful manga you can tell with how the story flows and how the character act. Li Xin is pretty impetuous and annoying at times like you’d expect from a shonen manga hero like Naruto or Asta from Black Clover. Li Xin can overcome any obstacle in his mind because he never gives up and he tough. That’s it. His character is very simple and has clear emotions. His best friend Piao dies so he hates everyone that causes it and mourns his friend with huge tears constantly. Ying Zheng is cool and calculated, always level headed yet can seem like an asshole. Much of the other characters are a bit one-note but are entertaining.

The film really gets going in the second hour as they go full into a war battle movie. At this point, the characters stop stagnating in how they are trying to cement the dynamic between the two main characters and the one tag-along character He Liao Diao who’s the comic relief through most of the film. Here the actors really get to show their characters more than in any of the talk scenes, you understand the stakes once all these characters begin their forward push into the city to take the throne back. The action here is great and clear. Now even though all these characters are Chinese this is a Japanese movie with Japanese actors so the action here isn’t set like you’d expect from the China martial arts epic but more like those in Japan. A lot of jumping and wirework with people doing feats that you’d expect to see in an anime or a video game from Japan. While you don’t get a lot of tight combat choreography but sweeping swordplay with heroes overcoming distinct and cool looking foes. The movie ends leaving you feeling good as the heroes win and the bad guys lose with set up for more and I’d be interested in watching this continue. This movie is fun and at times a bit goofy but still an energetic action period movie. It was definitely worth going to go see.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

First Trailer For Venice-Bound Dramedy 'Babyteeth' With Ben Mendelsohn And 'Sharp Objects' Breakout Eliza Scanlen


One of only two movies with a female filmmaker to be selected for the Venice Film Festival, a lot of eyes have been on Babyteeth. Not only does the directorial debut of Aussie director Shannon Murphy feature an incredible cast for a first-timer, but the film went straight into competition, another rarity. Now the first trailer has arrived to give us an idea what all the fuss was about, and see if this is one of those movies that comes out of nowhere to be a sleeper during the awards season.

The oddly-named Babyteeth stars Eliza Scanlen, who really emerged in HBO's Sharp Objects, plus Ben Mendelsohn, The Babadook's Essie Davis, and Toby Wallace. The film, which centers on parents coping with their seriously ill daughter's relationship with a petty drug dealer, was adapted by Rita Kalnejais based on her own stageplay.

SYNOPSIS: What might have been a disaster for the Finlay family leads to letting go and finding grace in the glorious chaos of life, as Henry (Mendelsohn) and Anna (Davis) realize their seriously ill teenage daughter Milla has fallen madly in love with a drug dealer, Moses. This romance is Milla’s protective parents’ worst nightmare – but Milla doesn’t want to play it safe anymore. Things get messy, and morals go out the window, as the lives of those around the family – their disarmingly honest pregnant neighbor, a brilliantly flawed music teacher, a child violin prodigy and Moses’ family – become intertwined.

Babyteeth premieres in Venice on September 4th, and I expect a release later this year will follow.

New Trailer for 'Ad Astra' Sheds Light On Interstellar Adventure



Is it just me or has there been a steady steam of astronaut themed films, Interstellar, Gravity, The Martian, among others have been an almost yearly entries to the big screen. Now Brad Pitt has decided to don a bubble helmet and head off to the great beyond in the upcoming Ad Astra which I admittedly knew very little about until this trailer hit other then he was an astronaut and so was his father. This new trailer sheds light on quite a bit while still keeping the big picture shrouded in mystery which is appropriate since the movie we are getting now seems to be more of a mystery type story itself. The, almost, three-minute clip shows Pitt training on a "Top-Secret Psychological Mission" then headed off to Mars where it's revealed that he's trying to stop a device that will end the universe which may or may not have been created by his father (Tommy Lee Jones), with the cast (Pitt, Jones, Liv Tyler, Donald Sutherland) in place this film will be two things without question; brilliantly performed and, judging from the stunning visuals, beautiful to look at. Whether the story teased here holds up is yet to be seen but it's won my confidence. Check out the trailer below and let me know what you think!

Sony "Disappointed" By Collapse Of Marvel Deal, Puts Blame Squarely On Disney


This collapse of Sony's deal with Marvel is only going to grow more contentious, especially now that sides are starting to lay blame. Unfairly, Sony has taken the bulk of the heat from fans ever since it was learned the partnership with Disney to produce Spider-Man movies had fallen through. Well, now in a statement to THR the studio has promised to continue making Spider-Man movies without Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios. They also put the blame on Disney for how things went south so quickly.

“Much of today’s news about Spider-Man has mischaracterized recent discussions about Kevin Feige’s involvement in the franchise. We are disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision not to have him continue as a lead producer of our next live action Spider-Man film.”

The statement continues, “We hope this might change in the future, but understand that the many new responsibilities that Disney has given him – including all their newly added Marvel properties – do not allow time for him to work on IP they do not own. Kevin is terrific and we are grateful for his help and guidance and appreciate the path he has helped put us on, which we will continue.”

That last part is interesting. Sony is casting blame on Disney for burdening Feige with so much that he can no longer produce Spider-Man movies, a claim that sounds good but doesn't make a ton of sense. While Marvel has unveiled a very ambitious slate of projects over the next few years, we've always known Feige to give each enough space to breathe creatively. Doubtful that would change even with the Disney+ shows and eventual Fox Marvel properties.

More importantly, Sony's statement ignores any mention of reported financial disagreements as the major bone of contention. That avenue doesn't paint them in the best light, either, since fans don't want to hear about money they only want their favorite characters playing in the same sandbox. Putting the responsibility squarely on Marvel suits Sony's purposes from an optics standpoint, which they are going to need if they plan to roll Tom Holland's Spider-Man into their newly-formed cinematic universe alongside Venom.

I guess the ball is in Disney/Marvel's court now. Feige is a pretty open and available guy. I wouldn't be surprised if he issues some kind of statement.

JK Simmons And Betty Gilpin To Join Chris Pratt In Sci-Fi Film 'Ghost Draft'


Straight sci-fi movies haven't always been kind to Chris Pratt, but Ghost Draft is putting together a cast that could turn things around.  THR reports Pratt will be joined by JK Simmons in the film from Lego Batman director Chris McKay. Meanwhile, Variety adds that GLOW and The Hunt actress Betty Gilpin is in talks for a role, while Deadline finishes things up with the addition of Good Boys and Veep standout Sam Richardson.


Ghost Draft has a script by Deadfall writer Zach Dean and Bill Dubuque, and that title is said to be a working one only, so it may change. The story sounds a little bit like Edge of Tomorrow, described as a grounded sci-fi film set in a future when humanity is losing a battle against invading aliens. To turn the tide, scientists reach into the past to draft soldiers for the fight. Pratt would play one of those soldiers, with Simmons as his father. Gilpin and Richardson's roles are uncertain. Chuck and The Handmaid's Tale actress Yvonne Strahovski is also part of the cast.

Simmons was most recently seen in Hulu's Veronica Mars revival, along with a crowd-pleasing appearance in Spider-Man: Far from Home. He'll be seen next in 21 Bridges opposite Chadwick Boseman. The incredibly funny Betty Gilpin can be seen right now in GLOW season 3, and she's an unfortunate victim of Universal's cancellation of The Hunt. Richardson is part of the #1 movie in the country right now, the R-rated comedy Good Boys.

A lot of conflicting info on the film at this point, but all agree on a start date at the end of summer. There's a ton of talent here, at least in front of the camera. I'm not as gung-ho on McKay who is unproven as a live-action director, and Dean's previous screenplays don't inspire much confidence. We really need to see something before passing judgment, but the potential is undeniable.