As I was driving home from talking to Joel and Ethan Coen about their latest film, I called my parents, laughing about the way the film folds Hollywood truth into Hollywood fiction. I mentioned that the Loretta Young story was an obvious inspiration for one thread of the film, and my parents seemed confused by the reference. They knew who Loretta Young was, no doubt, but they had never heard the defining story of her personal life because back when Young was still an active movie star, my parents were part of the audience who were protected from the truth to help keep those movie star images squeaky-clean.
If I could, I would sit in on every single creative meeting between F. Gary Gray and Vin Diesel regarding the next film in the Fast & Furious Saga, as they're calling it now in press releases. Those are some strong personalities, and Disel is, rightfully, very possessive of the movies.
Universal sent out a quick press release late last night announcing that Fast & Furious 9 will be in theaters on Friday, April 19, 2019, with the tenth film set for Friday, April 2, 2021.
First and foremost, I can't believe this movie actually finally exists.
In development since 1921 or thereabouts, this is one of those films that has had roughly 300 different directors attached since it was first announced. At one point, this was going to be a David O. Russell film with Natalie Portman starring, and I'm still not sure what that would have looked like. The thing is, when Seth Grahame-Smith first published his mash-up novel, built onto the skeleton of Jane Austen's classic, I'm going to bet he never imagined how long it would take for this to become a movie, or even that it would be one someday. It felt like a sort of English major goofing around, only to somehow see it become this publishing smash.
Green Room wasn't just one of the best movies I saw at last year's Midnight Madness. It wasn't just one of the the best movies I saw at the entire Toronto Film Festival. It was one of the very best movies I saw anywhere in 2015, and you're going to get your chance to see it very soon.
"But, wait, if it as so good, why wasn't it on your end of the year list?"
If I could spend a half-hour looking at an accurate representation of what entertainment is going to look like in, say, fifty years, I imagine I would walk away equally dazzled and confused.
There is little doubt we are heading towards immersive entertainment, created in technical ways that we are just now beginning to see established or even suggested, and that the dream of the Star Trek holodeck is not an impossible one. This year's Sundance Film Festival featured some remarkable demonstrations of what various companies and artists are up to, and it really does feel like new ground being broken. These demonstrations weren't on the traditional movie screens, though, and there's nothing about the examples I saw demonstrated that I would consider typical entertainment.
I sincerely hope Archer runs for another 100 seasons, and that I am somehow alive long enough to marvel at the lunacy of each and every episode.
There have been plenty of spy parodies over the years, but as an animated show, Archer goes places that few live-action films or TV shows can follow. Blisteringly filthy, weird on top of weird, and filled with characters who are so horribly deficient as basic human beings that it's almost thrilling, Archer makes me laugh so hard it is is physically punishing. I think Jon Benjamin may have the single funniest animation voice of all time, and he's a really gifted comic actor on top of it. He has positively deadly timing, and the entire supporting cast is full of insane people.
As one of the foremost high-visibility fans of Zack Snyder's Man Of Steel, I have listened to several years now of people telling me why I'm wrong, and why Superman would never do the things he did in that film.
I suspect we're going to hear that same conversation turned up to a deafening roar once Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice arrives in theaters. In the newest issue of Empire magazine, producer Chuck Roven described Batman in this film as an older angrier version of the character, someone who has decided to play "judge, jury, and executioner," setting off a flurry of thinkpieces about how they've ruined the character.
I don't know what to say about this. It's like Liar, Liar for crazy cat ladies.
That is not something that happens often, but then I am confronted with what can only be described as Barry Sonnenfeld directing "this generation's Oh Heavenly Dog," and I find myself… stumped.
It looks like an entire film designed to be broken into gif form. Whatever Venn diagram there is of people who love Kevin Spacey when he's being a contemptuous prick and people who love cute kitties, the people who exist in that intersection are probably dancing in the streets right about now.
One of the things I enjoyed most from my entire time at Ain't It Cool News was when we reached story #10,000 and I decided to do something special. I wrote a piece about what was at that point my most anticipated potential project, a collaboration between the Wachowskis and John Milius, King Conan: Crown Of Iron, a sequel to what I still consider one of the best films Arnold Schwarzenegger ever made.
Grief is a terrible animal, red of claw and tooth, and once it gets hold of you, there is no way of knowing what it will do to you. Over the last year, I've watched a dear friend of mine struggle with back to back losses of two of the most important people in her life, and at times, I've genuinely worried that it would be too much for her to take. This is a strong, vibrant person, and grief landed on her in a way that very nearly crushed all of that joy and vitality right out of her. I've had my own bouts with profound sorrow over the last year as a result of the end of my marriage, and while I feel like I've reached the other side of all of that, I remain shaken by just how damaged I was by things. For the first time in my adult life, I had to turn to a professional for help, and it turned out to be exactly what I needed.
One thing I've learned for sure is that no one can judge anyone else's sorrow from the outside, and we are not all built to bounce back when life kicks us in the teeth.