5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kratos' Next Victim Will Not Be A God

Breaking News!

With yesterdays excellent news of Kenneth Branaghs possible involvement in Thor, I felt that there would be some sort of nerd backlash and sure enough there is. A series of films based on the God of War games has been in hell for quite some time. Today there has been a new piece of news. Brett Ratner has signed on to direct this video game juggernaut. Please join me video game fans in a collective sob.

-Mark (is crying) Donica

Monday, September 29, 2008

Marvel's Thor to have a Classical feel?

Breaking News!

For those of you who are fans of this blog, you know that we loves ourselves some comic book goodness. One of the next installments of Marvel's new and improved movies is going to be Thor. Though the title actor is still yet to be determined (Come on Triple H!), the topic of director has recently been brought back up because Kenneth Branagh has been talking to the studio about doing it.

This announcement comes as a welcome shock. Not only as an actor, but as a director is Mr. Branagh well versed in the classical "sauce" as some may put it so we can't wait to see how Shakespearean Thor will turn out.


Sunday, September 28, 2008


I loved this movie the way I loved National Treasure. If you can get past the fact that every event is so totally unbelievable, so totally unrealistic, and so totally outrageous, it is nothing but a thrill ride sparkled with some big laughs, and some really good acting. To me, it is acceptable to make a movie that is ridiculous, if the performances and effects make it truly worthwhile - which they do.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Death of Cool: Paul Newman 1925 - 2008

If you haven't heard the tragic news by now, Paul Leonard Newman passed away on September 25th, 2008 - a day which will be a little bit sadder for years to come. His death arose from issues stemming from his lung cancer, a legacy of his earlier chain smoking years. He was survived by his 5 daughters, his older brother Arther, and his wife of over 50 years Joanne.

First off, lets just get this out on the table: has there ever been anyone as magnanimous and cool as Paul Newman? Nope.

Rarely does a person come along who redefines the meaning behind the family of adjectives to which words such as "cool" and "awesome" belong.

Rarely does a person's scope of cool extend so far beyond the pale that the only way to justify writing his obituary is by paying homage to him through a variety of foods associated with his awesomeness - in this case, a medium well done hamburger, a Heineken and a side salad garnished with Newman's Own Balsamic Vinaigrette.

And rarely does a human come along who is really really really ridiculously good looking until the day they die.

Paul Newman was just such a rare piece of man. As I sit here, it truly is difficult for me to not tear up knowing that the world is without him, because we have all lost an enigmatic actor, a disgustingly generous philanthropist and a man whose personal character was a model for all around him.

The greatest aspect of Paul was his refusal to participate in what he referred to as the 'rubbish' of Hollywood celebrity. Despite the fact that he was awarded or nominated for nearly 20 Golden Globes or Academy Awards. Despite the fact that he got second place in the prestigious Le Mans auto race and then proceeded to found and fund one of the most successful Indy Car racing teams in history. Despite the fact that he had flawless good looks that didn't seem to really change with age, Paul never gave in to the idiosyncratic behavior that so many other iconic actors have succumbed to over the years. He instead chose to pursue his personal interests and charitable venues as far away from Hollywood as he could get - on the East Coast. As he is famously quoted saying about Hollywood, it was "too close to the cake."

From the early days of his career on Paul was turning heads. In fact, his very first film role was initially intended for James Dean, who died in a car accident before filming began and (rather tragically) opened the door for Hollywood's next main man to step up to the plate.

Many of Paul's performances may be amongst the greatest pieces of acting that Hollywood Cinema has seen since the industry's creation. He has given life to such legendary characters as Cool Hand Luke, Butch Cassidy, Fast Eddie Felson, Basil (haha), Rocky Graziano, Reggie Dunlop and my personal favorite Henry Gondorff (who is responsible for the title quote).

It is a testament to Paul's likablility and excellence as an actor that he was able to survive the difficult transitions that disrupted Hollywood between the 50's and 60's, and even thrive. His appeal as an actor never lost its steam from generation to generation, eclispsing time, age and cultural changes, all the way up to as recently as Road to Perdition in 2002 and Cars in 2006.

Throughout his career in Hollywood, Paul worked with some of the most famous directors and actors in the industry; John Huston, Robert Redford, Tom Hanks, Martin Scorsese, James Dean, George Roy Hill, Robert Shaw and fellow badass-awesome-betterlookingthanyou actor Daniel Craig.

Here are some of the other facts about Paul that make him the best ever.

He has his own holiday which is celebrated in many parts of the United States called "Newman Day".

After making the film Silver Chalice Paul was so appalled that he was in what he percieved to be a very low quality film that he took out an ad in Vanity Fair apologizing to the general public and begging them to not go and see it.

When he finally got his Oscar for Best Actor (after nearly 40 films!) he said in response "I'm thrilled. I'm on a roll now, and maybe now I can get a job."

His line of salad dressings is the greatest thing to be put on the shelves at Costco ever (and now they make grape juice. game over Welch's)

One of his favorite achievements in his lifetime was being placed on President Richard Nixon's infamous 'Enemies List'. He was even prouder of the placing (#19 babay)

He is the only person to ever win a medal in the world famous LeMans auto race AND win an Oscar.

He is so awesome that he recieved a lifetime achievement honorary Oscar for his dedication and contributions to the world of film.

His old fraternity Phi Kappa Tau changed their national philanthropy to honor Newman and his role in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid - "Hole in the Wall"

He was the main character in Slap Shot. Win.

And the my favorite statement made by him (outside of a movie). When asked about possibly cheating on his wife or sleeping around he replied, "Why go out for hamburger when I have steak at home?" PIMP.

To conclude, Paul Newman was one of the greatest men who ever lived. He was the perfect example of a person who knew what he wanted in his life and made it happen. But more importantly, he was a perfect example of a person who touched every life he came into contact with. The same is said many times a day in obituaries for men and women all over the world, yet it has never been truer than with Paul. Through his example of a celebrity that was not a celebrity, his philanthropist mentality and his endless acts of humanitarianism Paul made more of his life than the next person could hope to do in three lifetimes, and he had still had some to spare.

Farewell Paul, you will be missed forever.

"There is a point where feelings go beyond words. I have lost a real friend. My life — and this country — is better for his being in it." — Robert Redford.

"I was blessed to have know him. The world is better because of him. Sometimes God makes perfect people and Paul Newman was one of them." — Sally Field.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Who Ya Gonna Call?

Hey look it's the Ghostbusters! Thank goodness you guy are here! Wait a sec.... are you Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd? You're not the Ghostbusters I remember...

That's because, soon you will begin to hear a lot about the new Ghostbusters, for the upcoming film "Ghostbusters 3" In case you have no idea what I am talking about, Ghostbusters was an 80's film franchise that starred Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, Bill Murray, and Harold Ramis in 2 films that were pretty much about them building intense machinery and using it to catch ghosts in traps.

This is them.

Okay, now that we are all caught up to date with 80's comedy franchises lets bring this full circle. Harold Ramis wrote and starred in "Ghost Busters" and "Ghostbusters II" (yeah the first movie is two words, the second movie is one word), then many years later he played Seth Rogen's dad in "Knocked Up", which was directed by Judd Apatow.

Judd Apatow is producing Ghostbusters 3.

I think that it will be a very interesting blend as long as Ramis' writes this new installment so we keep the original style of the films. I feel that Apatow is a brilliant choice of producer, because he and his gang of actor-friends essentially is a reincarnation of the 1980's comedy troupes, and even while Apatow has filthy humor, the films essentially progress in similar ways with just as much heart which is why we loved 80's comedies so much.

It is speculated that this film will have the old Ghostbusters come out of retirement in response to a new threat, but when they are too old to handle the occurrence, they bring in some newbies to train. Presumably, those newbies will be: Paul Rudd, Seth Rogen, Craig Robinson, and either Bill Hader or James Franco. Then we will see the fun and games of old Ghostbusters teaching new Ghostbusters who also have their own life problems to deal with but pulling through at the end to stop the threat. And who knows... maybe with the good visual effects that exist these days, we'll get to see what happens when you 'cross the streams'.

More on this when it develops...

I'd get a major kick out of it if Jack Black would make an appearance singing the song below:

Maybe the movie's plot will be about trying to find Rick Moranis... because nobody knows where he has been for the last 7 years... Now that would be a cool cameo.

If you want to see more Ghostbusters sooner, check out the upcoming video game which was written by and stars all the original Ghostbusters!

To give credit where credit is due, the art was done by
on Check out their stuff!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Kevin Smith Makes a Porno

Why is that the word 'porno' is so much funnier than 'porn'?

Whatever the reason, Kevin Smith knows his comedy, and is back with an all new film, Zack and Miri Make a Porno.

Zack and Miri (Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks) star as two life long friends who, in order to make money to keep their apartment, decide to make a porno. But sex on camera isn't all daises and bundt cake, and soon the two realize that they may have more feelings for each other than they previously expected.

The cast looks great. While not part of the Askewniverse, Smith has endeavored to cast a bunch of his regulars, including but not limited to Jeff Anderson and Jason Mewes.

But the cast is also riddled with Apatow's gang. Besides the obvious Seth Rogen, Smith has cast Justin Long, Craig Robinson, and Gerry Bednob. I haven't seen Bednob in a movie since his memorable cameo in Walk Hard, so I am looking forward to that with great excitement.

This movie is sure to be hilarious. The trailer has been released, so definitely check it out. I know I'll be there opening night.

Here's the trailer. It's Pretty NSFW, but hilarious and Craig Robinson seems to steal almost every laugh.

PS - The poster that I uploaded is pretty great. However, it's the Canadian one. This was banned in the US. Oh, that Kevin Smith.

Zack and Miri discharge October 31.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Give ‘Em A Fighting Chance

An Editorial by Mark Donica

All right, so as I have mentioned in a previous blog, I am a born and bred wrestling fan. Starting in 2006, World Wrestling Entertainment (grumble) started exclusively producing film content utilizing their wrestling talent as the leads of the projects and lesser-known actors as the supporting cast. So far, WWE Films has produced the horror film See No Evil starring Glen “Kane” Jacobs and the action films The Marine and The Condemned starring John Cena and Stone Cold Steve Austin, respectively. Future films include 12 Rounds starring John Cena, Journey of Death starring Triple H, Suckerpunch starring Big Show and (sigh) The Marine 2, not starring John Cena. (found out this morning)

What I’ve noticed is that the general public dismiss these films because they star “wrestlers” not actors. If people had a lick of sense, they would know that PROFESSIONAL WRESTLERS ARE ACTORS! They do more than “regular” actors because they perform verbally as well as physically. It’s usually the writers that I have gripes with in terms of WWE Television, but there are several performers that excel no matter what is written for them. Also, there is sense of originality in these films. See No Evil was one of the few original horror films since 2000. The Condemned borrows some elements from the Japanese novel/film Battle Royale, but allows for more carnage by replacing the children with death row convicts. The upcoming 12 Rounds deals with a man getting back at the cop (John Cena) that accidentally killed his wife in the process his capture. Blaming “Cena” of course, after he gets out of prison, he creates a series of seemingly impossible puzzles and tasks in order for Cena’s character to save his fiancé.

HOW AWESOME DOES THAT SOUND!? A real life Batman/Riddler situation. It sounds like it’s going to be a good movie with a respectable and solid performer at the helm. What if instead of John Cena, it was an actor like Jason Statham? WWE doesn’t appeal to the populous on as large of a scale as mainstream actors, but what has to be realized is that these people act. I know full well as a fan that these people are acting, especially in the ring. Wrestlers VERY rarely have “shoot” matches anymore, they have scripted matches. They may or may not know how the entire match is mapped, but they at least know the finish. Also, these people perform live on a several times a week basis, so having them on the set is so handy because a lot of the shots have the possibility of needed one take.

The professional wrestling performers would be a huge advantage for Hollywood. Triple H was brushed aside as a possibility of playing the title character in the upcoming Marvel Studios Film Thor because the director didn’t think a “wrestler” could pull it off. Most people today still know who Triple H is because he was a big contributor of “The Attitude Era” when everyone watched WWF. He is one of the WWE’s top performers and currently the reigning WWE Champion. Don’t think that this is just a wrestling fans opinion, but also a fan of good films and knowing good workers when I see them. Hollywood needs to realize the potential that the WWE, TNA and other promotions can do for the business, but let’s forget that David Arquette won the WCW Championship as a promotion for Ready to Rumble.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Now on DVD: The Foot Fist Way

Okay, that title was a lie. Kind of. The Foot Fist Way is not available on DVD until tomorrow. But it is on Itunes movie store now.... so maybe you should check it out.

Now I'll tell you what 'The Foot Fist Way' is. (Spoilers May Occur - Not Major Ones Though)

'Foot Fist' is the delightfully indy tale of a guy named Fred 'King of the Demo' Simmons (Danny McBride - Pineapple Express/ Tropic Thunder). Fred runs a Tae Kwon Do school, where he spends 60% of his life teaching children the fighting art of Tae Kwon Do. He's cocky, but sure of himself, and when it comes down to it, the school is just like any other Tae Kwon Do school that you may or may not have attended. On the weekends they set up a tent in a parking lot and Fred demonstrates Tae Kwon Do to potential new classmates (Hence: King of the Demo), and during the weekdays, they practice Tae Kwon Do in the classroom. The class is full of a whole assortment of characters. Usually Fred wanders away from class to attend to his own business and leaves one of the younger students, Julio (Spencer Moreno), in charge.

At home, Fred has his problems too. His wife Suzie (Mary Jane Bostic) is cheating on him, and he wants to figure out how to get his Tae Kwon Do hero Chuck 'The Truck' Wallace (Ben Best) to come to his class for the final testing. Naturally, this is a lot more action than Fred is used to handling, and soon he has to figure out how to be 'the bigger man' and handle it all to prove he really is 'King of the Demo'.

After Pineapple Express came out this summer many people sad 'Where did Danny McBride come from, and how did he land a role like this?" Well the answer is simply 'The Foot Fist Way". McBride's character of Fred is never really like-able, but you can't hate him either, just because he is so innocent. With most likely 90% improvised dialogue, McBride does well with making the viewer laugh with almost all of his lines. Chuck 'The Truck' is played by Ben Best almost as if Chuck Norris, and Willie Nelson were fused together into an epic Tae Kwon Do master. He's kind of a jerk and Chuck 'The Truck' is in no way a hero, at least in the way that Fred looks up to him. Jody Hill has a fun, but small role as well as Mike McAlister, a Tae Kwon Do maven, who is pretty quiet, but dresses pretty much like Draco Malfoy, from the Harry Potter franchise.

Also, watching Fred sign up students is a pretty good laugh as well, because Fred is so cocky that he does not seem to care if students join his school or not. Jonathan Ewart has a quick but funny spot as a guy who just wants to take Tae Kwon Do, but is literally berated out of the office by Fred. Collette Wolfe (Semi Pro) is a girl who does join the class, much to her disappointment when Fred falls in love with her and talks as if she is the one having relationship problems with him, instead of the other way around.

Written by Ben Best, Jody Hill, and Danny McBride, and shot in 2005 (Directed by Jody Hill) on a $70,000 budget, this is the true epitome of an indy comedy. A totally independent film, not like the kind of 'indy movie' you see today that were backed by big studios from day one. After premiering at the LA Film Festival in 2006, it was picked up by the Sundance Film Festival and subsequently picked up by Will Ferrell and Adam Mckay... who loved the movie and wanted to to gain cult status, but it seems they did not promote their new baby as much as they should have.

I don't know what the behind the scenes are, but I hear there may be an alternate ending, and probably interviews with the cast and a line-o-rama or something like that.

Pick up your copy of THE FOOT FIST WAY tomorrow!

Here's a trailer. It's pretty NSFW (Not Safe For Work - Language wise) so if you are in an office, standing next to grumpy elderly people, or substitute teaching at a nursery school - you may wish to turn your sound down a bit.

2 stars

Saturday, September 20, 2008


Ricky Gervais just might be the funniest guy around.

He sure doesn't make a show of it like Will Ferrell, or even Seth Rogen. Every line he speaks comes naturally to him, and his comedy flows beautifully because of it.

Such is the reason I was laughing, hard, for almost all of Ghost Town.

Friday, September 19, 2008


I have absolutely no idea how to review this movie.

This probably stems from the fact that I have no idea what I thought of this movie.

I walked in with little to no expectations. I am a fan of Jason Biggs. He was very funny in the American Pies, and Saving Silverman. I am a fan of Dane Cook's stand-up, but not really of his movies. However, I was still looking forward to him in this. Kate Hudson had never made an impression on me, and I didn't know what this movie would be like.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Avatar: The Last Airbender

By guest contributor Patrick Lundberg

In the new emerging trend of animated series to full length films, Nickelodeon has informed its legions of fans that Avatar Aang is coming to the big screen. Yes, they are making a live action film of the animated series. In fact, they are making a trilogy of films. Production begins in May of next year (2009) between Philadelphia and, of all places, Greenland. Of course, Greenland is a logical choice for the film set as the first movie will be based off of Season 1 (also known as Book One: Water) of the animated show, which took place largely at the North Pole fortress of the Northern Water Tribe.

For those of you not familiar with Avatar (HOW DARE YOU), I would like to take this opportunity to further ruin your social life by addicting you to this show. To truly describe and explain the depth and bredth of the series and its background would take far too much space on this blog, so allow me to direct your attentions here. In true Wikipedian style, the article tries to describe far too much in far too little space, but the extensive linking pages will give you a much better understanding of the universe itself. But in order to really appreciate (and become addicted) to the Avatar phenomena that is Aang, Sokka, Katara, Zuko, Toph, Suki, Appa and Momo, you MUST WATCH THE SHOW.

Go here to watch episodes online for free, or watch the various re-runs on Nick (usually on Friday evenings). Try to start from episode one if you can. I guarantee that you will not only become addicted to the characters and the storyline, but you will so immerse yourself that by episode 6 you will have the entire opening sequence memorized. And then you will buy Season 1, 2 and 3. As the count down to the films wears on I will try to sell you more on this amazing series, so I will leave it at that for now.

In regards to the title strikeout, James Cameron is currently wrapping up a project similalry titled "Avatar" and has (for lack of a better phrase) thrown a temper tantrum about what he percieves as title infringement. Thusly, the films will be titled The Last Airbender, which most likely will be followed in a Star Wars-esc chronology such as "Book One: Water".

For real fans, if the concept of a live action version of our favorite animated show doesn't sound appealing, take consolation in the knowledge that a trilogy of animated movies following the Avatar universe (possibly following the Season 3/Series Finale) will also be made in the next year and a half (for TV) and will be under the guidance of the show creators Mike DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.

Now here is the make or break factor: the films are going to be directed by M. Night Shyamalan, infamous hit or miss director of such brilliant films as Signs, Unbreakable and the Sixth Sense. He also was responsible for such grandiose garbage as The Happening, The Village and Lady in the Water. I am terrified (and am joined by literally millions of other fans) that M. Night is going to kill the franchise for Nickolodeon and destroy a film trilogy with enormous potential. The man has told the fans and writers that he is totally dedicated to the story and will transform the animated show into faithful live action. He reassurance isn't so reassuring to me; M. Night has a reputation in Hollywood for being far too full of himself on occasion and making catastrophic decisions based entirely off of pride and ego. If he messes this up I will break him like Toph breaks rocks. For now though, I will believe in him.


Patrick Lundberg is a crime fighter AND a drug smuggler tycoon. Occasionally he is called upon to stop himself, making for some rather paradoxical and eventful evenings.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Spaceballs Spinoff Animated Series continues to look awful

The first commercial for G4's long in development Spaceballs: The Animated Series has recently gone online here (very NSFW). If you set aside the offensively bad and stiff Flash animation, you still have an incredibly juvenile looking series that retains the Spaceballs franchise in name only. The most depressing thing about this latest trailer is that the series was penned by none other than Mel Brooks himself, he's even including two voices in the series. This is not even just a dumb advertisement on G4's behalf either, but it represents the entire marketing campaign for the series (again, NSFW).

Mel Brooks would be rolling in his grave...if he was dead...and he didn't write this.

Added Note***

Taken From Wikipedia:

Spaceballs is a 1987 science fiction parody film of Star Wars co-written, directed by, and starring Mel Brooks. It was released on June 24, 1987, and earned only modest returns, but has gone on to become a cult classic on video.
Its plot and characters contain numerous parodies of elements from the original Star Wars trilogy and Star Trek in particular, as well as other popular science fiction films. The script was written by Mel Brooks in only six months, and was approved by George Lucas, as he was a big fan of Brooks's previous films.[1] Lucas' Industrial Light & Magic was also involved in the special visual effects for the film. As of 2007, an animated sequel TV series is in preparation.

Monday, September 15, 2008



There's some spoilers here. Not major ones. You'll deal.

If this movie is about breaking down racial barriers, and presenting the idea that not all Muslims are terrorists, it pretty much fails. If anything, I feel like I am likely to start racially profiling more after seeing this movie.

Don Cheadle pays Samir Horn, a man born in Sudan, and trained in the United States as a Special Op. He has an American accent.

Also, is Muslim.

He spends his life as a terrorist helper, making bombs, delivering bombs, and overseeing flashy Islamic terrorist attacks. Right away, we get a sort of sympathetic feel from him, and it makes you wonder why our protagonist is a terrorist.

After escaping from a prison in Yemen, he decides to help his newfound friend Omar (Saïd Taghmaoui) in a complicated, but professional nation-wide terrorist attack. We spend half the movie watching him help Omar to recruit young kids from around the world to help in this impending attack. We get to see the terrorist point of view - Americans have spilled innocent Muslim blood for centuries, and now it is time to take back their honor. Attack and kill as many Americans as possible.

I couldn't help but feel uncomfortable for most of this movie. Really? Our protagonist is a terrorist? Just a guy who follows Allah and helps to kill Americans. For an American, it is odd to watch.

And all the while we have Detective Roy Clayton (Guy Pearce) on the case, looking to stop Samir. Pearce is a personal favorite actor of mine, and I naturally thought he did a great job. His accent was spot on.

So here's the problem: we have no antagonist. The film sets it up so that we want to hate Clayton. But how can we really? He's an FBI agent, a good one, a guy that wants to stop innocent people from dying. Sure, his assistant Archer (Neal McDonough) is a douche, but that is not enough for us to label Clayton as the bad guy.

Then I began to think it must be Samir that is the "bad guy". After all, he is setting off bombs and killing people all around the world.

And then he became the good guy! That's right, we find out about half way through that he is not in fact working for the terrorists, but he is in on something secret with FBI agent Carter (Jeff Daniels). Samir Horn is a not a traitor of the US, but a traitor towards the terrorists.

So now we have Clayton hunting an innocent guy, and he has no idea.

This movie takes you through too many loops. You have no one to hate, and no one to root for. You never find out Samir's plan until the end, so you feel like you are just waiting on something to go off, kind of like a bomb.

It seems like they wanted to make a "Bourne" style movie, but about terrorists. The movie is shot like it, Samir fights like it, and the music is a straight up knock-off.

It has decent action and decent performances, but it leaves you with nothing. You don't have to see it. If you want to, rent it. Don't waste your ten bucks.
3 stars

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Dragonball: What The Fans Have Been Waiting For?

All right, as of five minutes ago I have been the dubbed the official Opinion Editor, so you guys and galleons are going to be hearing my opinion more often. I would like to shed some light on and, duh, give my opinion on the upcoming “Dragonball” movie.

So here is the skinny on the film, they changed Goku’s age to a young adult so it wouldn’t seem cruel to have an alien beat the crap out of him. They cast James Marsters, known as Spike on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel”, as the villain Lord Piccolo. Fans know Piccolo as a green alien from the planet Namek. As seen in the first screenshot, the studios have taken it in a different direction. Bulma, the American character, is lacking her blue hair. One of the biggest changes with the script is the abandoning of the anthropomorphic characters Oolong, Puar and Turtle. I guess this choice was made to make the movie seem more realistic. Yeah that’s a bunch of crap, they didn’t want to waste money on any sort of digital effect or costume.

First Released Picture of Lord Piccolo

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not that everything has to be perfect. No movie adapted from any source can get it perfect; there will always be gripes. With Dragonball, they are trying to make certain things too animated. For instance, Goku’s hair was attempted. Below is a side-to-side comparison of the animated character and the movie adaptation.

Are Either of Their Hairdos Real?

There is definitely going to be more action than Superman Returns, ahem I believe that was a burn, and the studios hope to not disappoint. The studios in Hollywood have found success in superhero movies, but now Dragonball is going to try its hand at anime adaptations. This turnout of this movie will have one of two effects. It will either do well and start different studios’ buying of anime properties to adapt and this will be the new fad or the movie won’t do well and in a few years they will try to reboot the series in order to have the first effect.

The writers of different anime know how to write fantasy stories to a constant degree of excellence, except maybe Naruto, that American writers don’t have. I’m afraid of the proverbial “Ghostrider” or “Batman and Robin” that is bound to happen to any of the other anime series that I am glad to call a fan.

I thought I was going to rip this movie a new one, but I guess my biggest worry is that it may spark a big crock of crap that Hollywood doesn’t need right now. This is definitely going to be a fan service movie, but that is about it. There hasn’t been too much promotion for this film, and with an April 2009 release, a teaser would give everyone an idea of how this movie will play out for the masses. With saga after saga of happenings in the Dragonball, Dragonball Z and Dragonball Z GT, at least 9 movies could be made in terms of different stories that can be told. I will definitely be going to see this film, who’s with me? No one? Thought so.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Why I Trust Randy Newman

Many people are excited for next years "The Princess and the Frog" by Disney Feature Animation Studios. To do a quick recap on an earlier post about the film - It is a new traditionally (2d) animated musical by Disney. It features the first black Disney Princess, and is basically the story of 'The Frog Prince' but in 1920's New Orleans and from the princess's perspective. Also, is it directed by John Musker and Ron Clements, the directors of fine animated films such as 'The Little Mermaid', 'Aladdin', 'Hercules', and 'Treasure Planet'.

When people heard that these guys were making another film (and it's about time), everyone naturally assumed that Alan Menken would be returning as well. (For those who don't know, he is responsible for the catchy music from about every Disney musical including and after The Little Mermaid, excluding Tarzan, Mulan, and a few others). However, John Lasseter (the current head of Pixar and Disney Feature Animation) decided that the studios history with Menken, including last years 'Enchanted', was getting a bit repetitive. So, he decided to replace Menken with a composer new to Disney, but with a long list of Pixar credits... Randy Newman.

When one asks "what is the first animated Randy Newman song you can think of?" The answer is usually 'You've got a friend in me.' from Pixar's first feature, Toy Story. Then one assumes that all songs by Newman are just like this one. This lead many people to groan with horror when they found out that Newman was creating the songs for "The Princess and the Frog", not in the sense that he is a bad composer, because he is great, people just could not imagine songs like that in a classic Disney musical.

Now, here is why I believe Randy Newman should be looked at for this film in a much more positive light.

Cat's Don't Dance.

Cat's don't dance was the first and only film made by Turner Entertainment. It was produced by David Kirschner, producer of The Pagemaster, An American Tale, Curious George, and Miss Potter. However many people have not heard of this film, and if they have heard of this film, they rarely know that Randy Newman was responsible for all the fantastic big band Jazzy songs.

The film revolves around Danny, a cat in the 1930's who wants to break into Hollywood. The film is a lively piece of work, and every song sounds both original and is very catchy. For further proof of why I trust Randy Newman, I point you towards the film clip below.

I think he can be trusted to handle 1920's New Orleans music for at least this reason, if there aren't any others. There are other reasons though... perhaps this blog post will get a follow up in a few months time.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Former WWE Champ Becomes A Fairy

In 2009 the world will be treated to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson wearing a Tutu and carrying a wand in this Michael Lembeck (The Santa Clause) film. Little is known about the film since it’s announcement in February, yeah I know I really got on the ball with this one, but a new piece of news about the film was released.
The film will center on Johnson, who plays a minor league hockey player who ruins a child’s dream and is thusly sentenced to a week long stint as a tooth fairy. This goes with Johnson’s current stream of comedies that put a bigger guy in funny situations, kind of like the Schwarzenegger “Kindergarten Cop”, “Twins” and “Junior”. Julie Andrews will play an administrator at the Tooth Fairy Department and Johnson’s boss. Ashley Judd is also set to star.

Hopefully Hollywood hasn’t given up on Johnson’s pulling power as an action star. “The Rundown” was a thoroughly entertaining film, actually one of my favorites, and “Walking Tall”, though a poorly planned remake, was enjoyable. “Escape from Witch Mountain” will be a switch for him, but I think he should end his partnership with Disney and go back to action films. People may think of him as a professional wrestler first and in turn fault him for that, but I never understood that. As an avid wrestling fan, The Rock was always one of the best characters, and still is in my opinion, which had the proper amount of whoop-ass to back it up. Yes I know wrestling is “fake” events and words are scripted, but the physicality is real. The Rock was one of the greatest workers in general and has been physically active for the world to see for years, further legitimizing his prospected action movie career. Until then, I guess we’ll have to see him dress up in funny outfits and making kids laugh. Good Luck Dwayne.

- Mark

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Transsiberian is about trains. There are lots of trains in this movie. About 70% of the movie takes place on trains. The characters are like trains. The entire structure is a train - a movie on a long, twisting, turning track, where you feel like you are just along for the journey, and you are not exactly sure of your destination, and not exactly sure if you are heading towards a big wreck.

This is just one of the hundreds of feelings you get during Brad Anderson's indie film, Transsiberian.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Apatow Goes Prehistoric, With a Hint of Caddyshack

By Guest Contributor
Wilder Shaw

It seems that the old 80's comedic forces of Harold Ramis are back, and this time under Judd Aptatow's wing.

Year One is the result.

Harold Ramis is writing and directing this new primordial romp, and he and Apatow are sticking in a great looking cast. Starring in the two main roles are Jack Black and Michael Cera as Zed and Oh, respectively. They play two cavemen who go looking for the meaning of life.

Cera and Black have said that the movie is basically a Monty Python style comedy instead of a 'Knocked Up' style comedy, and set in biblical times.

Other Apatow favorites such as Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Paul Rudd, and Bill Hader have been cast, as well as many other great names in comedy like Hank Azaria, David Cross, Vinnie Jones, and Oliver Platt.

Year One hits theaters Summer '09, and I will definitely be there.

Wilder Shaw is a writer, actor, and comedian who enjoys long Italian food on the beach.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Spoilers May Occur (but not major ones)

Role Models is the story of two energy representatives Danny (Rudd) and Wheeler (William Scott) who, after a over stimulating day, find themselves faced with the option of prison or joining a child mentorship program known as 'Sturdy Wings'. Paired with Augie (Chris Mintz Plasse {Superbad}), a shy nerd obsessed with a real life role playing game known as L.A.I.R.E, and Ronnie (Bobb'e J. Thompson {That's So Raven}), a young boy with an obsession for breasts and foul language. Danny and Augie get caught up in a crazy world of L.A.I.R.E, headed by the fictional/proud King Argotron (Ken Jeong {Knocked Up}), and Wheeler exposes Ronnie to a players life of sex, drinking, and women. But raising someone else's kid's is harder than it seems, and soon, to Danny and Wheeler, the idea of 30 days in jail does not seem that bad.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Voice Acting Legend Dies At 68

Don LaFontaine is one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to getting into the entertainment industry. The tone of his voice is so immitated, but never duplicated. Hell, I have movie trailers up on my YouTube account where I mimic the “LaFontaine form”. I found out about his passing this morning and I’ve been down all day. This man single handedly changed the way American movie trailers or any sort of promotional voice over work was handled. He made the phrases “In a world”, “A one man army”, and “Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide and no way out” famous and a part of the regular vernacular.

A little background of the man with the world famous voice, he started his career doing a voice over for “Dr. Strangelove: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Atomic Bomb” in 1962. As a result of that, he started a two-man operation with friend Floyd Peterson. Due to a spot being freed up for a movie called “Gunfighters of Casa Grande”, MGM gave Don LaFontaine his first professional job as well as his next 16 year/several thousand spot portion of his career. In 1976, he started LaFontaine Productions and began his independent career with “The Godfather Part II”. In 1978 he spent three years being Paramount Pictures “trailer man”, but returned to being independent in 1981 and stayed that way until the end.

Don LaFontaine’s career spanned 46 years before his untimely passing. He did hundreds of thousands of spots for movies, car companies, television, radio, award shows, insurance companies and more. There is definitely going to be a gap in the entertainment industry that will have to be filled, but for now let is try to live “In a world where people are saddened by the loss of a legend, one man will live in on the hearts and minds of us all. This fall, Don LaFontaine is: ‘Missed’”. He will be truly missed.

-Mark Donica

Monday, September 1, 2008

Apatow, Stoller, Hill, & Brand re-team for "Get Him To The Greek"

For those who the loved character of Aldous Snow in 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall's ' from earlier this year, get ready to see him again. The entire team from 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall' (minus Jason Segel) are teaming up again for what is surely to be a hit known as "Get Him To The Greek."

According to Writer/Director Nick Stoller:
During the table read on 'Sarah Marshall,' Jonah and Russell had such a great chemistry," said Stoller, who described "Greek" as a very dirty take on "Almost Famous." "Even though they are such different actors with different styles, I thought there could be a great buddy comedy there."

The film follows Russell Brand as Aldous Snow, who is a rocker in England, and Jonah Hill, a fresh out of college Insurance Adjuster, who has the responsibility of getting Aldous to his next gig at the Greek Theater in Los Angeles. Here's the catch. The once clean Aldous, is back on drugs and booze, at a lower point than ever before.

It seems that it is indeed going to be another hit. Meanwhile, Nick Stoller is writing the upcoming Jim Carrey movie, "Yes Man." Due in theaters this holiday season.

Ps. While it is known that Russell Brand is still playing the character of Aldous, it is unknown if Hill is reprising the character of 'Matthew' from 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall'. Time will tell I suppose.
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