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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Peter Wayland Gives A TED Talk on PROMETHEUS

This video was intended to be viral campaign for Prometheus. It features Guy Pierce as a young Peter Wayland, giving the world a TED Talk. It is an interesting effort, and Guy Pierce does an amazing job as the young corporate visionary who will, indirectly, end up destroying the Earth (that is if we are still counting Alien: Resurrection as canon). Anyways enjoy:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


If a Facehugger from the Alien franchise ever face-raped 2001: A Space Odyssey, the resulting Xenomorph bastard would not be unlike Prometheus, Ridley Scott’s long awaited return to the genre many claim he revolutionized. Prometheus is an ambitious science-fiction film with the lofty goal of presenting questions about the origins of life. Like all great science-fiction literature, it is a blend of thoughtful speculation, great story, awe-inspiring effects, and wonder. And because the Alien franchise is its predecessor the package also includes chilling rape allegories, a nauseating birth scene, and a good amount fetal imagery. All in the name of brilliant filmmaking. 

Monday, June 25, 2012


I believe it was Socrates who said, the unexamined life is not worth living; at 76 and with over forty films attributed to his name, Woody Allen has now examined his life and then examined himself examining his life. After Midnight in Paris -his most successful film in terms of revenue- Woody Allen takes a step back and returns to his more traditional depiction of neurotic characters observing, describing, philosophizing about, and suffering because of love, life, universal inconsequence, and - for the first time - Rome. 

To Rome With Love, is a collection of four vignettes all set in Rome. Each vignette could have been separate stand alone film. And some of them would have likely been more enjoyable that way. We are introduced to the four vignettes by a traffic cop; who from his pedestal in the middle of the road observes everything. Or so he claims. 

Traditionalist may criticize Allen for abandoning New York and “selling” to tourism boards that want to show off the most beautiful cities in the world - London (Match Point, Cassandra’s Dream), Barcelona (Vicky, Cristina, Barcelona) and Midnight in Paris (Paris)- but, personally, I like how my pseudo-intellectual self can relax and enjoy a Roman holiday alongside my giddy low-brow tourist self, while enjoying these romantic Euro locales, and conversing with characters as neurotic as... my neurotic self. 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Review: BRAVE

Can Pixar beat Disney, its parent company and corporate partner, at its own game? That is, could Pixar create en emotional fairy tale with a moral core that will survive beyond its current generation? That was probably the question in every creative and executive working for Pixar during the production of Brave. The answer is not simple; Brave is a lovely film, with endearing characters. And like most of Pixar’s it is at its core strength is being a well-told story, but it is also missing a certain oomph for a Pixar film.

Thursday, June 21, 2012


Most people, including myself, can appreciate a dumb joke. Hell, every now and then they are even refreshing. But for Adam Sandler there is no such thing as too dumb a joke or too low an audience. By now I suspect that his movies are conceived by team drunken twelve year olds and afterwards typed by the laziest intern at Happy Maddison. Sandler’s movies are the lowest common denominator of humor; to which I’ll admit I laughed, though most of the time I didn’t feel good about myself afterwards. 

Saturday, June 16, 2012


Well, this is one silly movie. I never quite understood if I was laughing with the movie, at the movie, or if the movie was some sort of joke being pulled on me. Was I supposed to sing along? 

At the opening, Sherrie (Julianne Hough) rides a bus with her headphones on listening to Sister Christian; she starts singing out loud and soon enough the entire bus joins in. Once again, was I supposed to sing along? Most of the audience laughed but didn’t join. It is understandable; in real life singing along is only acceptable if said song happened to be Bohemian Rhapsody. But in a musical film like this it could be any song. And it could have been any song for that matter; the number is not really memorable. Actually, none of the numbers are particularly memorable. But, at the very least, they do happen to zesty and entertaining while they last. With an extra punch they might have gotten someone in the audience to sing along.

Monday, June 11, 2012


It seems that Wes Anderson has been practicing with every movie he makes to one day deliver a masterpiece. That day may never come, but it doesn’t matter. Each of his films, so far, have been a hell of an exercise towards that  goal. And as a spectator, I've been enjoying the ride. Moonrise Kingdom may not be very different from your typical Wes Anderson film; after all, it is still part of these exercise. But then again- aside from centered frames and dry humor- what is a typical Wes Anderson film? 

Consider the film's opening, which is told against an educational breakdown of the variations and instruments on a theme by Purcell. Anderson is bluntly telling the audience he will be playing by his own rules- as he usually does. And like the educational soundtrack the film is broken down, and each element is introduced separately before it all comes together in a litteral cliffhanger. 


 CULVER CITY, Calif., June 11, 2012 - TONKA, the Hasbro brand that for 65 years has stood for its line of toy trucks for children, will bring its TONKA toughness to the big screen in a fully animated motion picture to be produced by Sony Pictures Animation, Hasbro and Happy Madison Productions. The announcement was made today by Bob Osher, president, Sony Pictures Digital Productions, Michelle Raimo-Kouyate, president of Production for Sony Pictures Animation and Brian Goldner, president and CEO of Hasbro. The film will also be produced and developed by Goldner and Hasbro’s senior vice president and managing director of motion pictures, Bennett Schneir and will be written by Fred Wolf.

The new TONKA project strengthens the growing ties between Sony Pictures and Hasbro, following the announcements that Sony Pictures is developing motion pictures based on Hasbro’s RISK and CANDY LAND brands. CANDY LAND is also a Happy Madison project.

Commenting on the announcement, Osher said, “In its 65 years, TONKA has become more than a toy or a brand – TONKA trucks are a rite of passage for kids all around the world. Time spent with these toys creates memories that last a lifetime as kids are inspired to play using the boundaries of their imagination. We look forward to creating a family friendly motion picture that brings the TONKA experience to life.”

Raimo-Kouyate added, “Fred and our friends at Happy Madison and Hasbro have a truly inventive take on what it means to be ‘TONKA tough’ that will translate the multi-generational appeal of this world-renowned brand into a fun animated adventure for the whole family.”

“We’re thrilled to be working with Bob, Michelle, and the amazing team of artists and storytellers at Sony Pictures Animation,” said Schneir. “Together with Happy Madison, we’re excited to bring TONKA trucks to life in a terrific story for audiences around the world.”

One of the most recognized brands in Hasbro’s portfolio, TONKA has been the bestselling toy truck globally since 1947. Giving children real-life, relatable experiences, TONKA trucks help kids learn the confidence to get the job done.

About Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 159 countries. For additional information, go to

Sunday, June 10, 2012


If you are broke and looking for retirement look no further; The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel for the Elderly and Beautiful is -well- it is supposed to be a retirement center in Jaipur, where Westerners can outsource their elderly; the latest venture of the young entrepreneur Sonny Kapoor (Dev Patel). Sonny inherited the shabby inn from his father; against his mother’s wishes, and without any previous experiences Sonny reopens it. But this is not the story of Sonny; this is the story of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’s guests, seven elderly english-folks who found themselves retired in Jaipur for some reason or other. If you can’t see where this is going, then you need to get out more.

Friday, June 8, 2012


The first American Pie film was very-likely the first R-rated film I snuck into the theater for; I remember it fondly. By the time the second one came out, I was still in middle-school but the characters felt like all friends and it was cool to see them once again reunited after a year in college or two years of middle school for me. American Reunion follows the same formula of American Pie 2. After a long time away the four guys - Jim, Oz, Finch and Kevin - along with Stifler get together to re-live old times. This time it is their high-school reunion. Sadly while most of their behavior is appropriate for high-school seniors and college freshmen it comes out rather awkward coming from thirty-year-olds. Age hasn’t been good to this franchise. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

FLIGHT Trailer

Well, I am extremely pleased that Robert Zemekis has gotten over mo-cap and gone back to real movies.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


By now we all aware that John Carter will be known as the largest flop in history (for now), but this is unfortunately undeserved. John Carter might have not been the best movie of all time but it was a sincere attempt to recreate the wonder upon which early science fiction writers looked upon the sky, and to breathe life into a retro-futurism world. Unfortunately for Disney, and any fan of late-Victorian pulp fiction, the result is somewhat clumsy and despite 21st century special effects, it still feels antiquated. 

Friday, June 1, 2012


There is something delightful about a movie in which the handsome Prince insists that it must be him who saves the lovely damsel, and not vice-versa, because “it does well with carefully studied focus groups”. This comes right after the damsel, Snow White (Lily Collins, daughter of Phil Collins) exclaims that “it’s time to change that ending”. Mirror Mirror is the type of self-reflexive, sly in-joke fairytale within the tradition of the original - just the original and not the sequels - Shrek, and it carries a freshness we haven’t seen since. 
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