With midnight screenings underway, I think it's time to poll that masses. Zack Snyder's "Man of Steel," produced and written by the one-two punch that brought Batman back to the screen -- Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer -- has finally flown into theaters. I liked it quite a bit. Drew McWeeny was over the moon. "No one has ever staged superhero action like this," he said. "What a great film about fathers and sons," I said. The critical reception has been...typical, I guess. I don't disagree with some of the criticisms, just the intensity of them. But I guess I'm just a geek. Speaking of which, we've offered up elements from the Superman mythos that we'd like to see in subsequent installments and we've outlined key Superman arcs that would make a great primer. But now we're interested in hearing what you think, so let us know in the comments section and feel free to vote in the poll below.
If you thought Tom Hardy being mooted to play Elton John was the week's unlikeliest Brit-related biopic story, think again. (Incidentally, the Elton John project, "Rocketman," found a US distributor today in FilmDistrict.) Eddie Redmayne is in line to play Stephen Hawking in "Theory of Everything," a biopic of the famed, ALS-afflicted theoretical physicist currently being developed by UK company Working Title.
Susan Lucci couldn’t catch a break. For 18 nonconsecutive years between 1978 and 1998, she was up for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series at the Daytime Emmys for her work on "All My Children" and lost. That’s a hell of a track record, accent on “hell.” Her losing streak ended with a win in 1999 (though losses in 2001 and 2002 twisted the knife), but her many, many strikeouts transformed her into the go-to talking point for anyone who hasn’t won a Primetime Emmy.
2013 is evidently the year for South Korean genre masters to spread their wings. Earlier this year, Park Chan-wook ("Oldboy," "Thirst") made his English-language debut with the wild Southern Gothic noir "Stoker," still one of my favorites of the year; somewhat less successfully, we also had Kim Jee-woon ("I Saw the Devil," "The Good, the Bad, the Weird") directing Arnold Schwarzenegger in "The Last Stand." Now their compatriot and colleague Bong Joon-ho -- who last hit our screens in 2009 with the acclaimed thriller "Mother" -- is making the switch as well, with his post-apocalyptic action film "Snowpiercer."
"Diana," German director Oliver Hirschbiegel's biopic of the late Princess of Wales, is eagerly awaited in many quarters -- it's hard to underestimate the devotion the so-called People's Princess still inspires in millions across the globe, nearly 16 years after her death, and this is the first major feature film to take her as its principal subject. Two-time Oscar nominee Naomi Watts is filling the princess's chic shoes, and the wordless teaser trailer below promises a reasonable physical approximation.
I hate that this project doesn't have a title yet so I can give it a proper headline, but anyway, Legendary Pictures announced start of production today on Michael Mann's untitled latest feature. The director hasn't gone back to the feature film well since 2009's "Public Enemies," which was widely dismissed, but I was a fan. There was a detour into television (and some nasty brawls with David Milch, as I hear it) with HBO's short-lived "Luck," but he's getting back on the horse with a Morgan Davis Foehl-scripted cyber-theft thriller starring Chris Hemsworth and Viola Davis.
Oh yeah, "This is the End" hits theaters today. Well, sneak previews in advance of tomorrow's official release. YOU SHOULD ABSOLUTELY GO SEE IT. Seriously, I laughed so hard in this movie that my face hurt. But lest you think it's brainless humor, the film is actually very smart about how it pitches its theme, while at the same time sending up Hollywood image and culture. There have been few times this year that I've had this good a time watching a movie. Here's Drew McWeeny's review. So with that endorsement, I'll be waiting here to hear back from you on what you thought. If you're way ahead of me, rifle off your take in the comments section and vote in our poll. The rest of you: GO!
When "After Earth" crashed and burned at the US box office last week -- the latest in a long line of commercial misfires for director M Night Shyamalan, though a comparatively rare one for star Will Smith -- many column inches were spent dissecting, explaining and, in some cases, frankly revelling in its failure. After it dropped a calamitous 61% in its second weekend Stateside, tumbling to seventh place and inching to a total gross of just $46 million, casual box office surveyors eagerly prepared to read the film's last rites.
When AMPAS last year set the unprecedentedly early date of January 10 for the unveiling of their nominations, several other precursors -- those that feel duty-bound to precede the Oscars, come what may -- duly felt the crunch. None more so than the BAFTAs, which have been fashioning themselves as the Oscars' principal shadow event since 2000, and thus found themselves announcing their nominations a mere day before the Academy. It was a slightly chaotic bit of scheduling, and not one we're in a hurry to repeat.
At the stroke of 8pm PT last night, reviews for Zack Snyder's "Man of Steel" hit the internet like a speeding bullet. The verdict? Mostly positive, in some corners, breathlessly so. HitFix's Drew McWeeny gave the film a glowing A+ review, calling it the Superman movie he's waited his whole life to see, "a winner top to bottom." Some will find the spectacle overwhelming, others will warm to its exciting vision, but few can argue that it's not a unique entry in the franchise to date.
All eyes are on the Father's Day weekend, when this first contact story of an alien with two dads crashes onto screens nationwide, bringing with it the hopes for a new DC universe on screen. It enters a long legacy of screen incarnations that stretches back to 1951's "Superman and the Mole Men" and features a bold new take on a legendary icon and myth. So how does it stack up in that legacy, and what can be expected as it soars into theaters? In another "3 on 3" installment, a trio of HitFix's staffers ponders that and more.