<p>Yep. That&#39;s the Justice League.</p>

Yep. That's the Justice League.

Credit: DC Comics

It's official: Zack Snyder set to direct 'Justice League'

But let's hold off on calling this a shared universe, okay?

Today's not-remotely-shocking news is that Zack Snyder will officially direct "Justice League" for Warner Bros as soon as he's done with "Man Of Steel 2."

For the most part, all this does is clarify the situation. After all, since the moment the conversation about the sequel to "Man Of Steel" began, the question about Warner's entire game plan regarding the DC universe has been in play. Each new announcement about the film has added new characters to the mix. Ben Affleck's onboard as Batman. Gal Gadot is set to play Wonder Woman. Just last week, they hired Sam Fisher to play Cyborg. It seems obvious that they're seeding things for more movies down the road, and now they've called the shot.

Greg Silverman, president of worldwide production for the studio, made it official in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. There's a hilariously breathless quote midway through his story that pretty much explains why they were given the story. "The plans for three superhero movies in relatively quick succession show how intent Warner is on catching up with rival Walt Disney Co.'s Marvel Studios in building a cinematic superhero universe after years lagging behind."

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<p>When is someone going to photoshop this image of Sandra Bullock into the ending of &#39;2001&#39;? Asking for a friend.</p>

When is someone going to photoshop this image of Sandra Bullock into the ending of '2001'? Asking for a friend.

Credit: Warner Bros.

Has life in the age of casual magic made moviegoers numb to the amazing?

And if so, whose fault is that?

Certainly no one would accuse me of being shy about offering an opinion.

There are times, though, where that opinion isn't welcomed by a reader, and that's normally when I'm writing up a news story and I can't resist a wee bit of cynicism. I know that any time there is news about "Alice In Wonderland 2," I am openly skeptical of the need for that film. I understand that the first one made a billion dollars, but I'm not sure I actually know anyone who enjoyed it. I recently wrote about that when they picked a release date for the film, and I got several angry e-mails from people who resented my attitude, claiming once again that I was being too rough on the movie.

Taking a second look at what I firmly believe may be Tim Burton's worst film, I was struck by two things. First, it is a terrible movie, a frustratingly wrong-headed adaptation of the Lewis Carroll classic. Second, it is filled with visual marvels from start to finish, a technical accomplishment that would have, at one point in time, been impossible to realize.

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<p>Leslie Mann, Cameron Diaz, and Kate Upton struggle with the witless &#39;The Other Woman&#39;</p>

Leslie Mann, Cameron Diaz, and Kate Upton struggle with the witless 'The Other Woman'

Credit: 20th Century Fox

Review: Leslie Mann struggles valiantly but can't save the rotten 'The Other Woman'

HitFix
D+
Readers
n/a
I never thought I'd feel bad for Kate Upton

While I can't say "The Other Woman" is a good movie, I can say that it features at least one thing that is genuinely worth seeing.

The film that I kept thinking of as I watched this one was the Colin Higgins mega-hit "9 To 5," with Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dolly Parton teaming up to kick the living crap out of their chauvinist boss Dabney Coleman. While I'm not sure I'd feel like that film held up if I saw it now, it tapped a very potent sense of simmering outrage. It was a well-timed shot across the bow in the cultural conversation on changing roles for women in the workplace.

"The Other Woman," on the other hand, is a largely ridiculous look at crappy rich white people who seem to have nothing to worry about besides what they do with their naughty bits. This is the feature debut of screenwriter Melissa Stack, and it strikes me as so resolutely phony from beginning to end that I'm not sure who the target audience is supposed to be. It doesn't help that Nick Cassavetes seems to have a real problem with maintaining a tone over the full running time. This thing swings from broad gross-out comedy to something that seems to be struggling to be a reflection of real life, and it never establishes a baseline reality. It is a strange misfire that is only saved from being a complete disaster by the efforts of the film's two leads.

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Review: 'Amazing Spider-Man 2' gets so much right but still has first film's flaws
Credit: Sony Pictures

Review: 'Amazing Spider-Man 2' gets so much right but still has first film's flaws

HitFix
B-
Readers
n/a
There is no other franchise that confounds me more at this point

Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone have chemistry that seems almost absurd. Marc Webb has gotten better at staging comic-book action and seems to have a real feel for why Spider-Man is a great and enduring character. From scene to scene, "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" is the most Spider-Man movie that Spider-Man has ever been in.

So why doesn't it feel like a movie?

In some ways, "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" is the perfect modern franchise film. I'm sure that any executive in town who sees it is going to walk away raving, and it won't matter if they like it or not. It is an exercise in franchise management, and it hits every single entry on the checklist perfectly. By the end of this film, they've done a very good job of setting up the next three or four films in the series, but at the expense of this film telling any sort of cohesive story.

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Theater actor Ray Fisher signs to play DC's Cyborg in 'Man Of Steel' sequel
Credit: DC Comics

Theater actor Ray Fisher signs to play DC's Cyborg in 'Man Of Steel' sequel

This movie gets more crowded every day

Zack Snyder is already hard at work on the "Man Of Steel" sequel that will also feature the introductions of a number of other heroes from the DC Universe, and word comes today that the character Cyborg will now play a part in the film.

Ray Fisher's name has been in play for the last month or so as one of the many names being considered for a key role in "Star Wars: Episode VII," and while I'd never accuse Warner Bros. of intentionally hiring him just so Disney and Lucasfilm can't, it would seem that casting him as Cyborg would make it hard for him to also show up a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.

So far, Fisher's got nothing we can point to on film as a calling card, but he's well-known as a theater performer, with his performance as Muhammad Ali in "Fetch Clay, Make Man" winning him a good deal of acclaim. It's always interesting to me when someone goes from being essentially unknown to suddenly being a hot commodity, before they've even had a film released. In this case, it seems like whoever represents FIsher has been getting him into rooms and that he's been impressing the people he's met.

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'Wolf Creek 2' is less brutal than the original and plays its killer more broad

'Wolf Creek 2' is less brutal than the original and plays its killer more broad

HitFix
B-
Readers
n/a
It's still a dark, grim piece of work, though

It is incredibly unusual for a sequel to take eight years, and it's even more uncommon for a sequel made after that kind of delay to actually be made by the creative team behind the original. Normally, if it had taken this long to get a sequel made, it would most likely be a whole new group of people working with a property, but here, we've got writer/director Greg Mclean back in the driver's seat, working with co-writer Aaron Sterns (who has worked with Mclean in other capacities on earlier films) and with John Jarratt, who once again plays outback serial killer Mick Taylor.

I hadn't seen the original in so long that I had to go back and find my original review to try and remind myself what my issues with it were. I knew I liked the original, but that something had made me hesitant to give it a whole-hearted recommendation. It's a brutal movie, with some truly horrible violence, but I admired the way Mclean handled it. He played rough, but for good reason, and the best moments in the film were genuinely difficult to watch.

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<p>Scarlett Johansson plays the title role in Luc Besson&#39;s upcoming film &#39;Lucy&#39;</p>

Scarlett Johansson plays the title role in Luc Besson's upcoming film 'Lucy'

Credit: Universal Pictures

Luc Besson on casting Scarlett Johansson as 'Lucy' and his philosophy of action

Plus guess who's going back to large-scale science-fiction

My favorite moment during the Saturday afternoon panel I moderated for Universal's upcoming movie "Lucy" was when an audience member asked director Luc Besson if he'd be interested in directing a Marvel Studios movie about "Black Widow" starring Scarlett Johansson.

"I am afraid of spiders," he answered, and then just looked at me, ready to move on to the next question.

If you've seen the first trailer for the movie, you get the general idea. Besson says he started noodling with the idea a decade ago, the first time he heard someone mention that "we only use 10% of our brains" idea. "I know it is wrong," he said, "but I liked the idea and I just wanted to start there. What happens if we take a character from that 10% to 100%?"

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<p>I hope they bring back a whole bunch of CGArnold for &#39;Terminator Genesis&#39;</p>

I hope they bring back a whole bunch of CGArnold for 'Terminator Genesis'

Credit: Warner Bros

Second episode of 'Ask Drew' digs into 'Terminator Genesis' rumors and more

Plus tips on writing and a new round of 'Movie God'

This week's "Ask Drew" covered some ground, which is exactly how we want to do it. You guys hit the video team with a ton of questions, and every single one got read by someone.

I was worried that after the first episode, this was going to turn into some sort of oddball game of "Truth Or Dare" each time. I should have trusted the awesome video team here, though. They selected the questions, and I saw them for the first time as we began recording the episode.

You gave us some great valuable feedback last time, and we've made some small adjustments to the format and the staging this time. No more sealed envelopes. We let things run a little longer.

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<p>There&#39;s little doubt Kirk and Spock will be back, but with who as a director?</p>

There's little doubt Kirk and Spock will be back, but with who as a director?

Credit: Paramount Pictures/Bad Robot

'Star Trek' and 'Spider-Man' in question as Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman split

And are Universal's monsters lurching back to life as well?

Here's the thing: whatever the next "Star Trek" film is, it needs to be special since it will be released (most likely) during the 50th anniversary of the original series first making its television premiere.

I'm not a Trekkie who believes that the series has to be done one particular way or it's wrong, but I think it's an important overall property for the studio, and I would like to see it treated with a certain degree of respect. I am an unabashed fan of the 2009 film, and the more I've seen it, the more convinced I am that it's pretty close to a perfect way to kick off a brand-new version of a very familiar property. They nod to the original series in a nice way, they reinvent familiar characters, and they made something that had a new flavor that was all its own.

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<p>Amy Acker finally brings Coulson&#39;s cellist to life in a new episode of &#39;Marvel&#39;s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.&#39;</p>

Amy Acker finally brings Coulson's cellist to life in a new episode of 'Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.'

Credit: ABC/Marvel Studios

Everyone's got something to hide as the lies fly on this week's 'Agents Of SHIELD'

A character-oriented week shows off the best of the series

This week's episode opened strong with a sequence that established Marcus Daniels. I like scenes that are staged primarily to introduce someone's superpowers, and I thought this one was pretty simple and effective. Daniels is sort of a generic off-the-shelf bad guy who can absorb energy, and his only real purpose in the episode is to give Coulson and his team a reason to reconnect with the Cellist who was mentioned in "Iron Man 2" and "The Avengers."

This is also the first time since we've learned that Agent Ward is such a piece of garbage that we've seen him spend an entire episode interacting with his team. Honestly, the reveal has made him more interesting than he's been the entire time the show's been on the air. One of you in our comments section made the comparison to David Boreanaz once he got to play Angelus on "Buffy The Vampire Slayer," and it's spot on in this case. Being garbage suits him, and it becomes fun to watch him play his team when he's been such a drag so far.

We see at the start of the episode that Coulson knows what's going on but only through Ward's account. They know, for example, that the entire population of The Fridge have been released, and Coulson wants to go after them. As Agent Koenig, Patton Oswalt's having a ball so far. He's perfect as this kind of cheerily bureaucratic agent who is in charge of all the secrets, and he's got every right to treat the entire team with suspicion at this point.

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