Random Thread for April 2012

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I find it interesting that they were able to get the entire cast back for the American Pie Reunion. Of course, most of them, like Chris Klein and Tara Reid, were probably waiting by the phone. They even got Natasha Lyonne, who is lucky to be alive. The only actors from that cast who have done anything significant with their careers are Seann William Scott and Allyson Hannigan.

About Jackrabbit Slim

Location: Vegas, Baby! I’m much older than the other whippersnappers here, a baby boomer. I tend to be more snobbish about film, disdaining a lot of the multiplex fare for “cinema.” My favorite films: Woody Allen’s oeuvre (up until about 1990), The Godfather, The Graduate, A Hard Day’s Night, Pulp Fiction. Politics: Well, George McGovern was my political hero. I’m also a prickly atheist. Occupation: Poised to be an English teacher in Las Vegas. For many years I was an editor at Penthouse Magazine. My role on this blog seems to be writing lots of reviews and being the resident Oscar maven.

53 responses »

  1. I think American Reunion’s audience aged right out of the demographic that will actually go to see this film, ala Scream 4.

  2. Lockout with Guy Pierce looks like the type of cut-rate, trashy, pre-summer action picture that used to be a staple in the 90’s.

    I really hope it’s as much bad fun as the trailer suggests. For God’s sake, a character actually says “He’s the best there is…but he’s a loose cannon!”

  3. Titanic 3D is estimated to make 53 million for the Wed-Sun weekend. Holy crap! Are there that many people who are willing to shell out extra money to see a movie they’ve already seen in a technology that is unlikely to improve the experience (early word is that the film is terribly murky)? P.T. Barnum was right.

  4. The theater nearest me also has a single 2D showing in the morning. But I’m content to wait for the Blu-ray to watch it again.

  5. I think American Reunion’s audience aged right out of the demographic that will actually go to see this film, ala Scream 4.

    I reckon there’s a bit more appeal with this, because whereas Scream 4 was just a repetitive rehash of earlier films, this does at least oblige to have the characters at a different stage of their lives (which the trailers do demonstrate) so that adds a layer of appeal. And I think this type of film and it’s pop culture status has potential for more appeal than the Scream franchise did.

    I’m not saying that as any great fan of the franchise – thought the original (which everybody says was the best) was a pretty lousy movie.

  6. So … Titanic did not make $53 million over the five day weekend.

    Actually, it didn’t pull half of that, with only $17.4 for the 3-day and $25 cume. I think Jackrabbit Slim needs a new box-office source before we start AGEBOC back up next month.

  7. I do, indeed. Glad to see the public didn’t fall for it as much as anticipated.

    Speaking of AGEBOC, with Nick being a phantom here lately, will he be doing it? Nick?

  8. Hey Nick, if you’re around … you’re a big New Order fan, right? Could you throw together a top 5 songs? Been listening to them a lot lately but I’m having trouble getting past their best-known songs. Please be specific (where applicable), since they have a lot of different mixes of their songs out there.

    Also, am I a NO philistine for preferring “Temptation ’87” to the earlier versions? Because I do.

  9. New Order keep evolving, remixing their songs and trying new soundscapes on old ones (all their 7″ and 12″ releases). Evolution is part of the DNA of their band, so preferring one version over another is being in tune with them, so to speak.

    I prefer their darker side.

    1. Ceremony (Original 7″ Single Version)
    2. 1963 (Substance, 1987)
    3. Dreams Never End (Movement)
    4. Leave Me Alone (Power, Corruption and Lies, Collector’s Edition)
    5. Sunrise (Low-Life)
    (6. Elegia (Low-Life), 5 and 6 are blended together in my mind)

    Best album would probably be Substance, in my opinion. But Low-Life and Power, Corruption & Lies are worth anyone’s time.

  10. Thanks … “Ceremony” is my favorite, too. I tend to like their guitar-driven stuff more than their more overtly electronic songs, I’ve noticed.

  11. Hmm … I’ve probably listened to most of their songs at least once, but only a handful more than once or twice. So it’s hard to say.

    Loosely:

    1. Ceremony (rerecorded 12″) (I think)
    2. Temptation ’87
    3. Age of Consent (album version is the only one I know)
    4. Procession
    5. Crystal (album version)

    “Dreams Never End” is a good one, too, it was used by Assayas in Carlos if you haven’t seen that. I really like “Krafty” musically speaking, but the lyrics are such a groaner that it’s hard to say it’s a favorite. “Regret” has its moments, especially the “Just wait til tomorrow” ending. I love the melody of “Bizarre Love Triangle” but the 80s-synth production doesn’t really do it for me. I’ve been playing “Cries and Whispers” a lot.

  12. Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson are going to do a television crime series together. Producers are taking it to cable networks now, but I’d imagine there will be no shortage of suitors for that level of star power.

    I do wonder if McConaughey is prepared for the rigors of television work. The schedule on features is allegedly a cakewalk compared to a regular series.

  13. Bridesmaids was a remarkably poor movie for being involved in the Oscars-oh, wait-Crash actually won the Oscar. Never mind.

  14. Bridesmaids was terrible. It benefitted from the female cast and writers, but it really is just “The Hangover with women”, which is not a good thing.

  15. Awesome. I thought it was just me. It was kind of atrocious. I can’t believe it was even so much as in a commercial that was run during the oscars. Baffling.

  16. I’d have more respect for the film if it didn’t fall into all the standard romantic comedy cliches (they had to include a love story, rivals that eventually become friends, etc) just because every comedy starring women is expected to have those elements.

    The romantic comedy is the most damaged genre out there, dying for a fresh take.

  17. I received a random marketing survey call last night and a great deal of the questions revolved around Prometheus, particularly the title. I wonder if FOX is having trouble with it and they’re considering a last minute “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” switch? Dreamworks/Paramount did the same thing with the last Shrek film (changing it from Shrek Forever After to Shrek: The Final Chapter) but only in marketing materials.

    They also asked if I was a fan of the Alien series, what words come to mind when I hear the word “Prometheus” and whether knowing a film is directed by Ridley Scott makes me more likely or less likely to see it.

  18. I’m trying to think how I would respond to the question “what do you think of you hear the world Prometheus?” Do you think “the God who gave fire to the humans and was chained to a rock for eternity as punishment” would throw the questioner for a loop?

  19. They actually gave me options, I think they were “a robot”, “the Greek myth”, “a city in Greece”, “a spaceship”, “a planet”. I answered “no, yes, no, yes, no”.

  20. I think if I had said anything outside the boundaries of her questionnaire her head would have exploded. When she originally started asking about Ridley Scott I was going to say that the first thing I think of when I hear his name is “A Good Year” and “White Squall” just to mess with Fox’s data.

    One of the questions was whether I would consider taking my four year old to see The Hunger Games.

  21. whether knowing a film is directed by Ridley Scott makes me more likely or less likely to see it.

    I hate questions like this, because I’m pedantic enough that my first thought is, “more or less likely than what?” I mean, I’m more likely to see a movie by Ridley Scott than by, say, Shawn Levy. But I’m less likely to see a Ridley Scott movie than one by Christopher Nolan. I have no idea how a Ridley Scott movie would compare to a movie by a director I didn’t know; it would just depend.

    I see a lot of movies, so I’m pretty likely to see a Ridley Scott movie regardless. But even still, it’s not automatic that I’ll see a Ridley Scott movie. Since I’ve been of the age to make my own decisions at the movies, I’ve skipped White Squall, G.I. Jane, and Matchstick Men, and it was all I could do to drag myself to see Hannibal, which I instantly regretted.

    I guess what I’m saying is that it’s a relative question.

  22. For no real reason, here’s a list of Ridley Scott’s movies by IMDb rating. It’s interesting to see how they rank in relation to each other. I have no idea why American Gangster is so high up.

    The top 3 are on the Top 250 list; in case of ties, the movie with the most votes is listed first:

    Alien 8.5
    Gladiator 8.4
    Blade Runner 8.3
    American Gangster 7.8
    Black Hawk Down 7.7
    The Duellists 7.4
    Matchstick Men 7.3
    Thelma & Louise 7.3
    Kingdom of Heaven 7.1
    Body of Lies 7.1
    Robin Hood 6.8
    A Good Year 6.8
    Hannibal 6.5
    Black Rain 6.5
    White Squall 6.4
    1492: Conquest of Paradise 6.3
    Legend 6.2
    Someone to Watch Over Me 6.0
    G.I. Jane 5.6

  23. re: the Scott rankings. Pretty accurate, I’d place Alien at the top by a wide margin.

    I haven’t seen White Squall, 1492 or Legend – but I have trouble believing they’re not better than Hannibal. Man, I hate that movie.

  24. I’ve just seen the best action film since Die Hard. Parts of it are so good it’s almost unbelievable. It has the best fight scene I’ve ever seen, and another fight scene that is the most affecting I’ve ever seen. The only misstep was the ‘drug processing room scene’ and even that is redeemed by the final fight on the table. The sound design, editing and direction are so tight and concise, with such an economy of form, it’s like an amalgam and template for every Hong Kong and Korean action film ever made. So, so good. Unbelievably well-done.

  25. The Raid.
    Holy hell, I still can’t stop thinking about how good so many parts of that movie are.

  26. Have heard nothing but good things.

    I’m pretty impressed by Sony’s handling of the picture. It’s playing at several mainstream multiplexes locally (alongside 25 showings a day of The Hunger Games and The Three Stooges) rather than art house cinemas.

    I have no idea how that strategy is working out financially, but it’s pretty unusual for a non-martial arts Asian film to get that type of rollout. I’d say “unprecedented in modern distribution” if I weren’t too lazy to research it.

  27. Look, I know I’m given to hyperbole and I know I lost some respect with my slavish fanboy love for Dark Knight, but you guys have *got* to believe me when I say that The Raid is *that*. *good*.

  28. GIRLS:
    The logical, insufferable and ultimate extension of the ‘mumblecore’ movement. A rambling, unfunny talk-fest that doesn’t say a ‘thing’, the very point of which supporters will uphold as the reason it’s so good.
    It’s not.
    My brother has a theory about strippers and porn stars. He says “There is nothing strippers and porn stars do that’s any different than anyone else. They just don’t have the pretense to hide it.”
    Sex and the City never disguised what it was. GIRLS believes it’s something it really isn’t while still being the very thing it tries to ignore it is.
    And if this is what ‘Tiny Furniture’ wrought upon the world, then……I guess it’s time to change the channel.

  29. Nick:
    Why can’t I find what you wrote about The Raid? I keep searching, but I can’t find it.

  30. Cannes lineup announced:

    Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
    Rust and Bone (Jacques Audiard)
    Holy Motors (Leos Carax)
    Cosmopolis (David Cronenberg)
    The Paperboy (Lee Daniels)
    Killing Them Softly (Andrew Dominik)
    Reality (Matteo Garrone)
    Love (Michael Haneke)
    Lawless (John Hillcoat)
    In Another Country (Hong Sangsoo)
    The Taste of Money (Im Sang-soo)
    Like Someone in Love (Abbas Kiarostami)
    The Angels’ Share (Ken Loach)
    In the Fog (Sergei Loznitsa)
    Beyond the Hills (Cristian Mungiu)
    After the Battle (Yousry Nasrallah)
    Mud (Jeff Nichols)
    You Haven’t Seen Anything Yet (Alain Resnais)
    Post Tenebras Lux (Carlos Reygadas)
    On the Road (Walter Salles)
    Paradise: Love (Ulrich Seidl)
    The Hunt (Thomas Vinterberg)
    Therese Desqueyroux (Claude Miller)

    What a fantastic list of films. I want to see almost every single one of these. I didn’t even know that Jeff Nichols had another film already.

  31. It’s been a good year so far. I’ve seen three films that have a good shot at making a top ten list: Killing List, Footnote, and now Monsieur Lazhar. Review tomorrow.

  32. For shits-and-giggles, yeah? If you have 23 minutes…check it out. The first short in the Modern American Outlaws character trilogy. :-)

  33. THE AVENGERS is fantastic. The other Marvel films have been hit or miss, but this one works like gangbusters to be pure entertainment from beginning to end. The only real criticisms are nitpicks, and it assumes you have some knowledge from the earlier films (but just about every viewer will). Whedon does a great job balancing the action, very funny dialogue, and character interactions to the point that just about every one of the main characters has time to shine.

  34. Alright, I loved Iron Man and really was kinda enamored with Thor and I’ve always had a soft spot for the first Hulk and didn’t hate the Norton one and though I have a strong aversion to Johannson as Black Widow…
    I should be WAY more stoked to hear that than I am.

  35. Oh, and even though I heart Joss Whedon immensely…I mean, Serenity and Firefly were all kinds of awesome, especially Serenity. Man, Serenity is so good, and I’m really happy that he’s making bank on this one…why the hell am I not more stoked to read that?

  36. I enjoyed The Avengers, it’s a lot of fun at times, but I wasn’t as blown away as Rob.

    Cast is good, Ruffalo is great as Banner and the Hulk gets a lot of the best scenes, and in general the film manages to balance out the characters.

    But the great threat that binds them all together feels arbitrary, still don’t quite get who the alien invaders were supposed to be, and while the film has been the climax that the previous films have been building up to, it’s more of a pop than a bang. Few things will surprise anyone in the film, aside from a few character moments, which are definitely the highlight, but the story and plot are standard been-there-and-definitely-done-that-before.

    I figure I know The Avengers mythology better than most who will see the film, and I’ve really liked the previous films, so I’m a bit surprised I didn’t get into it more. It’s good, but right now I’d rank the Marvel Studios films like this:

    Iron Man
    Captain America
    The Avengers
    Incredible Hulk
    Thor
    Iron Man 2

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