<p>Sam Worthington, dressed in his 'Clash Of The Titans' costume, burns his hand while trying to pick up an Academy Award.</p>

Sam Worthington, dressed in his 'Clash Of The Titans' costume, burns his hand while trying to pick up an Academy Award.

Credit: Warner Bros.

Titans will 'Clash' again, whether we like it or not

Some details about follow-up to the spring's fantasy hit are announced

Evidently, if you want to work at Warner Bros right now, it is important that your name is "Greg Berlanti."

In addition to the "Green Lantern" that's in production now and the "Green Lantern 2" and "The Flash" treatments he's working on, Berlanti is supervising the treatment for "Clash Of The Titans 2" for the studio.  That's an astonishing quartet of tentpole pictures to be handed by the studio.  That's like if Paramount asked JJ Abrams to pick up the slack and pump out a reboot of "Top Gun" and a new "Godfather" while also producing "Star Trek" and "Mission: Impossible" sequels.  It's pushing all the chips to the middle of the table on one particular sensibility.

What's obvious is that Warner Bros. likes whatever Berlanti did on "Green Lantern."  Will audiences feel the same way?  We won't know until next summer.  That's what makes it an interesting gamble to let him supervise all these other properties that are moving forward in the meantime.

And to be fair, he's not working alone.  On "Green Lantern," he's sharing credit with Michael Green and Marc Guggenheim, and they're working with him on both "GL2" and "Flash."  And on "Clash Of The Titans 2," he's not writing it, but is instead working on the treatment with Dan Mazeau and David Leslie Johnson.

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<p>Chris Hemsworth stars as 'Thor' in next summer's superhero epic.</p>

Chris Hemsworth stars as 'Thor' in next summer's superhero epic.

Credit: Marvel Studios

See Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins and 'Thor' himself during 'ET' set visit

Behind-the-scenes glimpse offers up some tantalizing clues

Ooooooh, I am chomping at the bit at this point to start really talking about what I saw on the set of "Thor," but for now, I'm still under a gag order, so the most I can do is share some impressions with you that might offer up some context for what you saw if you checked out the "Entertainment Tonight" set visit that was just posted.

I was surprised both by what they did show and how little they actually revealed.  If you've got keen eyes, you can catch a glimpse of Heimdall's Observatory, a remarkable set and a major puzzle piece in understanding the difference between the typical approach to Thor and Norse mythology that has been part of the comic series since its creation.  You also get a look at Odin, the uber-god being played by Anthony Hopkins, and a hint of the Earth-bound action that occurs when some of the most dangerous Asgardians come looking for Thor, who has been banished to our world by the All-Father so he can learn some humility.

That was always one of the core concepts of "Thor," the notion that Thor is an arrogant god whose actions endanger himself, his fellow Asgardians, and the people they rule.  Odin wants to entrust his kingdom to his son, but he knows he's not ready, so in the comics, he strips him of his powers and forces him to take the human form of Donald Blake, a crippled doctor, a physical form that is almost the exact opposite of Thor's.  In helping others and dealing with his infirmity, Blake learns to be everything that Thor was not, so that when Blake finds a cane that transforms into Mjolnir, an enchanted hammer, and which transforms him into the God of Thunder, he assumes his original shape with a new appreciation of his responsibilities.

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<p>Jaden Smith strikes a pose in a climactic moment from the new remake of 'The Karate Kid,' in theaters this weekend.</p>

Jaden Smith strikes a pose in a climactic moment from the new remake of 'The Karate Kid,' in theaters this weekend.

Credit: Sony Pictures

The M/C Review: 'Karate Kid' remake lands all its punches

Jackie Chan lays strong foundation for solid update of '80s classic

I stepped in it earlier this week.

On the anniversary of the release of "Goonies," the fans of the film spent much of the day celebrating online.  And instead of just observing it and being glad that people have that sort of passion about film... ANY FILM... I did that thing that I always hate when other people do it to me:  I rained on their parade.

I posted something on Twitter about how nostalgia turns "bad movies into classics."  And that's all it took to rile up a whooooole lotta people for the rest of the night.  And I think I knew what I was doing.  I knew that phrasing was going to poke people, and I said it that way anyway.  The truth is that "The Goonies" can easily be described as beloved.  There is an age range of film nerd who grew up in that sort of Amblin' Stage II era, the same ones who bond over the way they used to think hoverboards were real "because Robert Zemeckis told me they were," who love "The Goonies" dearly.  It is significant to them.

I look at the film, and I see a noisy mess that sort of falls apart from scene to scene with a young cast that was energetic but uneven.  It's a fantastic score doing most of the heavy lifting for a film that I don't much like.  And that's my critical opinion of it.  It doesn't mean anything to me as an artifact.  It had no significance for me when it came out.  I was 15, and I certainly remember the hype for it.  I remember giving up on it before I even made it out of that first screening.  I just didn't buy into what it was selling.

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<p>I&nbsp;love it when a cast comes together, like Bradley Cooper, Liam Neeson, Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson, and Sharlto Copely in 'The A-Team'</p>

I love it when a cast comes together, like Bradley Cooper, Liam Neeson, Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson, and Sharlto Copely in 'The A-Team'

Credit: 20th Century Fox

The M/C Review: 'The A-Team' offers up the textbook definition of dumb fun

Joe Carnahan's big summer movie seems like a plan came together

"The A-Team" is a completely ludicrous movie.

Everything about the movie is ridiculous.  The casting is absurd, with pros like Liam Neeson and Bradley Cooper sharing pretty much the entire running time with Quentin "Rampage" Jackson and Sharlto Copely.  The TV show that the film is based on was a formula so simple even 12-year-olds felt like they were smarter than the storytelling.  The action set pieces in the film are an affront to the laws of physics.  The story is an aimless mess of cliche.

It's also heaps of fun.

From the moment this one was announced, I've had my arms folded in stern disapproval, annoyed not because the material is sacred, but for the exact opposite reason.  It seemed like the bottom of the barrel.  And yet sitting in the theater, watching the chaos and madness that Joe Carnahan orchestrated, it's such well-orchestrated chaos and madness that I stopped thinking about this as a remake or an update or whatever it is, and just started enjoying the lunacy of the ride.

Last week, Universal sent over a van-shaped box set of the original series, which I never really watched as a kid, and I threw on a few episodes.  It seems silly to own 100-plus episodes of this, since every one of them seems to be exactly the same.  That's what TV used to be... an excuse to watch the exact same thing every week.  One of the reasons I actually watch more TV these days is because it's evolved past that, and in some ways, movies are starting to play that role.  When people go see a sequel or a remake or a reboot, it's not because they want a brand-new experience... it's because they're chasing the familiar.  They want the sensation of watching something new that is the exact same thing, the exact same sensation and feeling that they enjoyed before.

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<p>Yep... that's a desert.&nbsp; And not a single chameleon in existential crisis in sight.&nbsp; Or is there?</p>

Yep... that's a desert.  And not a single chameleon in existential crisis in sight.  Or is there?

Credit: Paramount Pictures

What is 'Rango'? The strangest teaser trailer of the year arrives

That mechanical fish is freakin' me out

According to Paramount, what I'm linking to today isn't technically a teaser trailer.  It is "an announcement piece."  Now, I'm not familiar with that term, but I guess it's good that they describe this as something other than a trailer, because by any conventional standard, this would fail as a piece of advertising.

Paramount's in an interesting position on this one.  After all, "Rango" is the follow-up collaboration of director Gore Verbinski and Johnny Depp, the first thing they've done together since the release of the final movie in the "Pirates Of The Caribbean" trilogy.  Verbinski intrigues me because despite this enormous financial success of that trilogy, I don't get the feeling he's a mainstream guy at heart.  I've met him and spoken to him a few times, and even when he was battling deadlines and dealing with the international salesmanship that goes with making a blockbuster, there was a piece of him that felt like it was watching all of that with bemused detachment.

This project has the vaguest synopsis possible at this point:  "The story of a chameleon with an identity crisis."  That's all the studio has released.  That and a cast list that includes Depp, Isla Fisher, Abigail Breslin, the newly-omnipresent Alfred Molina, Bill Nighy, Harry Dean Stanton, Ray Winstone, and, most intriguingly, Timothy Olyphant as "The Spirit Of The West," whatever the heck that means.

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<p>Wait... maybe I'm crazy, but how does John C. Reilly resemble a jaguar?&nbsp; You'll have to watch our exclusive clip from 'Cyrus' to find out.</p>

Wait... maybe I'm crazy, but how does John C. Reilly resemble a jaguar?  You'll have to watch our exclusive clip from 'Cyrus' to find out.

Credit: Fox Searchlight

EXCLUSIVE: Jonah Hill tortures John C. Reilly in new clip from 'Cyrus'

This preview showcases the twisted relationship at its very funny core

I quite liked "Cyrus" when I saw it at Sundance in January, and the more movies I've seen this year, the more I'm convinced that "Cyrus" is something special.

On the surface, the idea of two people locked in a secret antagonistic relationship is an old comedy trope, and John C. Reilly just played a variation on this recently in the Adam McKay film "Step Brothers," where he was pitted against Will Ferrell.  That was an overtly ridiculous comedy version of the idea, and worked well.  But the Duplass Brothers don't really do the broad comedy thing.  Their films are frequently funny, but they are also more grounded in simple observation than in trying to build big comedy set pieces.

"Cyrus" feels a lot like a natural extension of what they did in "The Puffy Chair," and fans of the awkward are going to eat this one up.  Reilly plays a decent guy nursing a broken heart who meets a woman played by the good-god-so-hot Marisa Tomei.  At first, their relationship seems to be going well, but then Reilly follows her home and realizes she has an adult son who still lives with her.  Jonah Hill's work as Cyrus, the overly-dependent son, is flat-out disturbing at times, exactly as it should be, and as Reilly works to build a new life with this woman he loves, Cyrus works overtime to ruin things.

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<p>Nicolas Cage stars in 'Bad Lieutenant:&nbsp;Port Of Call New Orleans,' one of the odes to bad behavior that is the subject of today's Blu-ray review round-up.</p>

Nicolas Cage stars in 'Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans,' one of the odes to bad behavior that is the subject of today's Blu-ray review round-up.

Credit: First Look Pictures

Bad behavior on Blu-ray: Will Smith, Nic Cage, The Ramones and more

What makes it so much fun to watch someone else do wrong?

When I say I'll give almost anything a chance, I mean it.  The question isn't whether or not I'll watch something I've been sent.  The question is when will I get to it.

With much of what I'm sent, that's random chance.  I put things in stacks and then just watch my way from top to bottom.  What's interesting is when themes emerge over a series of movies that you put on by chance.  For example, last week I watched a stack that turned out to be half chick flicks, half anti-social bad behavior.  I didn't mean for it to split down the middle like that, but it just worked out.  So it makes sense to split the stack in half for review.

Let's start with the bad behavior, because the undeniable truth is that bad behavior is just plain fun.  That's why so many movies love to revel in the ridiculously anti-social.  These are things we would ever ever do... so why not watch someone else do them?

I'm shocked that "Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans" exists, and that it's even remotely good.  The idea of anyone doing a requel to the Abel Ferarra wallow seems pointless.  That film was all Catholic guilt and unrelenting squalor, and despite the extreme nature of the material, it was one of the most accessible things that Ferarra ever made, due at least in part to Harvey Keitel's self-eviscerating work in the lead.  I guess if you're going to try to follow up that kind of organic freakshow, you've got to pick your ingredients wisely.

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<p>This is a good example of what not to expect from a new 'Mortal Kombat' film if today's proof-of-concept leak is anything to go on.</p>

This is a good example of what not to expect from a new 'Mortal Kombat' film if today's proof-of-concept leak is anything to go on.

Credit: Midway Entertainment

What is that mysterious 'Mortal Kombat' video?

The director of 'Fame' and the choreographer for 'Undisputed III' revamp the franchise

Since 2001, I've had a "Mortal Kombat 3" listed on my IMDb page.  The film's title has changed several times, and the film has had tons of false starts and stops.  At various points, I've been in contact with different directors who were temporarily attached to the project, but no one's ever rolled film on it at all.

Until now.

When I was at ActionFest in Asheville, North Carolina, one film really stood out, a direct-to-video action film called "Undisputed III."  I'll have more about that in the next couple of days, but for now, the most important thing about that film is the way Isaac Florentine shot the action, and the way Larnell Stovall choreographed the fights.  Stovall is a guy who I think we're going to end up hearing a lot about in the next decade, a guy who has a genuine hunger to change the way action happens on film.  He comes from a fight background himself, and as a result, he has very strong ideas about what he wants to see when he looks at fights onscreen.

He's been working in stunts for a while now, and thanks to the buzz that's building from "Undisputed III" and "Bunraku," the upcoming film he also did the choreography for, he's starting to become one of the most in-demand names in town.  One of the things Stovall has been doing is proof-of-concept test shoots for possible blockbusters, some big movie geek/comic nerd properties, and I think if he ends up landing these jobs, fans of the material are going to flip out.

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<p>Jennifer Lawrence and John Hawkes go digging into family secrets in the hillbilly noir film 'Winter's Bone'</p>

Jennifer Lawrence and John Hawkes go digging into family secrets in the hillbilly noir film 'Winter's Bone'

Credit: Roadside Attractions

The M/C Review: 'Winter's Bone' showcases star-making work by Jennifer Lawrence

Debra Granik's second film marks her as a strong independent voice

Debra Granik's first feature, "Down To The Bone," was my introduction to Vera Farmiga, and as introductions go, it was impressive.  The film is a solid if familiar tale of addiction, distinguished by Granik's eye for detail and her work with actors.  Farmiga's natural, honest approach won her wide acclaim, and I'm fairly sure the same will be true for Jennifer Lawrence in "Winter's Bone," the latest film from Granik, which opens Friday in limited release.

Granik's new film is hillbilly noir, a deliberate, moody little story about a girl chasing the ghost of her bad-boy father, desperate to provide for herself and the family he left behind. Ree Dolly (Lawrence) has been raised hard, so when her father disappears and leaves her in charge of her younger brother and sister and her mother, who is so severely mentally broken that even the most basic tasks of motherhood seem beyond her, Ree is more than up to the challenge.

Problem is, unless she produces her father, she's going to lose the land and the house they all live in.  Her father skipped bail, and everything they own is on the line.  Ree knows who to ask to figure out where her father is, but the more she asks, the more she realizes her father vanished for a reason, and maybe she doesn't want to know what that reason is.

Lawrence is in pretty much the entire movie, and she's an arresting presence.  Stripped down and real, with a strength in the face of some serious adversity that is convincing.  Her extended family is explained as a sort of Ozark mountain people Mafia, a loose network of meth dealers and manufacturers and runners and users, all bound by blood and marriage, and the further she digs into it, looking for her father, the more she upsets the order of things.  Women don't get to challenge the men about the way things are run, and if there are question, they don't get to ask them.  Ree refuses to accept that, though, and she challenges her way up the ladder, eventually putting herself in harm's way when she crosses lines that simply aren't crossed.  And especially not from some little girl.

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<p>Justin Long, seen here in this summer's new film 'Going The Distance,' is one of the stars of a new short film that is meant to help turn the tide against Proposition 8 before this fall's vote in&nbsp;California.</p>

Justin Long, seen here in this summer's new film 'Going The Distance,' is one of the stars of a new short film that is meant to help turn the tide against Proposition 8 before this fall's vote in California.

Credit: Warner Bros.

Justin Long and Mike White are getting married

This new short film from the writers of 'Blades of Glory' makes a hilarious point

Marriage is hard work.

In a way, it's amazing that the institution has lasted in its current form as long as it has.  Socially, we've changed so much that the purpose of marriage is different now than it used to be.  I am three days away from my eighth wedding anniversary, and each and every one of those years has been worthwhile, but difficult.  The stresses of career and parenting and money and everything else can take a real toll on both parties in any marriage.

When you add in the difficulties of prejudice and hatred from the outside, it's got to be damn near insurmountable.  And over the last few years, it's been a hotly debated topic around the country thanks to the efforts by many to make marriage legal for gay couples.  In California, we gave those couples that right before Proposition 8 took it away again.

And, yes, I know that voters were part of passing Proposition 8, but anyone who thinks the system wasn't gamed on that particular proposition isn't paying attention.  It's a fairly easy system to manipulate, especially when you're selling fear and hatred, which unfortunately is still a fairly easy thing to use to mobilize voters.

Right now, work is underway to get Proposition 8 reversed, and I'm impressed by the various efforts being made to win hearts and minds.  I personally will never understand why anyone would try to deny someone else the right to be married to whoever they love, and I think we'll look back at this particular scuffle over a fairly fundamental civil right and be embarrassed at some point, sooner rather than later.

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