I wish I could summon up more enthusiasm for Jack the Giant Slayer because it’s not a terrible film. There’s plenty of adventure, fun action, and good actors to make any subject matter lively. Unfortunately, all of those things are buried underneath the type of slick, bland filmmaking and unnecessary 3D Hollywood thinks will win over audiences. This lack of imagination and verve keep this jaunty simple adventure film from reaching any kind of height. Read more on Jack The Giant Slayer (**)…
One of the latest fairy tales to receive a film adaptation, Bryan Singer’s version of Jack and the Beanstalk, has a newly confirmed title and release date. Previously titled Jack the Giant Killer, the film will now be called Jack the Giant Slayer, in an attempt at sounding a bit less harsh for the intended PG-13 audience.
Read more on Bryan Singer’s Jack and the Beanstalk Adaptation Gets New Title, Release Date…
Tags: Bill Nighy
, Bryan SInger
, Cinema of the United States
, Disctict 9
, Ewan McGregor
, Ian McShane
, Jack and the Beanstalk
, Jack the Giant Killer
, Neil Blomkamp
, Neill Blomkamp
, Nicholas Hoult
, Stanley Tucci
KON TIKI (***)…When I was 12 my grandparents gave me the book about Thor Heyerdahl, a 20th century photographer and ethnographer who in 1947 set out on an extraordinary adventure that everyone told him was impossible. Heyerdahl set out on the 8,000 mile voyage across the Pacific Ocean on a raft built of balsa wood, manned by an under experienced crew. Heyerdahl believed that man early settlers from South America populated Polynesia and their only method of crossing would have been in a manner such as this. The danger of such a crossing is obvious, the madness behind it, perhaps not so clear, but the adventure was right out of the movies. Consider the madness of the lead character in Herzog’s Fitzcarraldo (1978), a half-crazed visionary seeking to do the impossible, and you see that Heyerdahl’s quest is not so terribly different. Read more on TIFF: Pleasant “Tiki,” Sarandon steals “Company,” and Watts isn’t enough for “Impossible”…
Tags: Anna Kendrick
, Chris Cooper
, Ewan McGregor
, Juan Antonio Bayona
, naomi watts
, Robert Redford
, Stanley Tucci
, Susan Sarandon
, Terence Howard
, the Academy Award
, The Company You Keep
, The Impossible
, TIFF 2012
As a film reviewer, I seem to stumble into the same conversations time and time again when I share my thoughts on a film adaptation of a widely acclaimed and/or massively successful book I have yet to read. I often find the talk comes to rest with the individual who has read the book informing me…”Well, you haven’t read the book, so…”.
In the case of a film like The Help for example, several folks made mention that I simply did not like the movie near to the level of someone who experienced the book. In the case of Twilight, I am often told that I simply don’t get it. And now we have The Hunger Games, a cinematic adaptation of the massively popular Suzanne Collins trilogy, which is also the most eagerly anticipated film to arrive in months. And I have yet to read the book. So, pardon me “Hunger Games” fans as I tread ever so lightly through the next few paragraphs.
And to those Twilight Saga fans out there…
This is how you make a proper book-to-film adaptation.
Read more on The Hunger Games (****)…
The rare film of this particular subject matter without an overt political axe to grind, ‘Margin Call’ is able to dive right into the financial collapse of 2008 without stopping to bash any one group. The result of that is a rather smart drama, interested in details instead of politics. In many ways, this is the movie that Oliver Stone might have made with his ‘Wall Street’ sequel had he not let his worst instincts get the best of him. While it’s a bit too talky and low-key to make a real play with Oscar voters, it’s well made, undeniably well acted, and well worth your time as a viewer. A classical greed vs. morality tale set in the financial sector, young writer/director J.C. Chandor has made a rather noteworthy debut. He gets strong yet un-showy performances from his ensemble cast, and aside from one or two repetitive scenes, does a fine job at pacing his movie. Keep an eye on this filmmaker, he’s one to watch. The film as a whole is strong, but it’s particularly good as a calling card for Chandor and his talents.
Read more on Margin Call (***)…
Fantastic and visually accomplished, "Captain America" concludes the prelude to 2012's "The Avengers" in terrific fashion…
Delivering the final cinematic chapter before the upcoming “Avengers” blockbuster in 2012, “Captain America: The First Avenger” is an entertaining and visual marvel, aiming for a story more straightforward and classic in tone than its predecessors “The Hulk”, “Thor”, or “Iron Man”. Featuring a solid performance by Chris Evans in the title role, “Captain America: The First Avenger” may lose its focus at times, but is a well made and entertaining ride from start to finish.
I acknowledge that going into “Captain America: The First Avenger”, I knew very little about the story, while a number of my friends were kind enough to fill me in with their knowledge and memories from the comic books of their younger days. For me, the story felt fresh and fairly original and I came in with some anticipation in learning how Steve Rogers not only fit into the “Avengers” storyline, but also how he transformed into the superhero who sets out to save the world during the heyday of World War II and Nazi supremacy.
Told almost entirely in flashback to the early-to-mid 1940s, we are first introduced to Adolf Hitler’s head of weaponry, Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving), who has long been seeking the Tesseract, an energy source that will enable Schmidt to design and develop weapons that will virtually guarantee the Nazis the winning of the War. The discovery also gives Schmidt designs on what may ultimately lead to his own opportunity to takeover the world. Read more on Captain America – The First Avenger (***)…