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Posts Tagged With ‘ tessa thompson ’

 

New Team, New Place, Same Flashy Thing

June 16th, 2019

Let’s say you get the idea stuck in your craw that you wanted to write or direct a summer blockbuster. To do that, you’ll want to study the best of the best. What you don’t want is something stupid, cynical, or pandering. Look, I get it. For many of us, the summer movie season is a nightmare. We’re ritually bludgeoned with special effects, broad humor, and cloying animation. Ask the average filmgoer, and they might tell you that summer movies aren’t even intended to be good. They exist to move a franchise forward or sell toys. The average filmgoer might even think that an entertaining... Read More

The Top Tier of Telemarketers

July 15th, 2018
Sorry to Bother You

“Pictures were made to entertain. If you want to send a message, try Western Union.” That quote was originally attributed to film mogul Samuel Goldwyn.* It proves that, ever since the dawn of the motion picture business, studio heads usually didn’t give a damn about making an artistic statement. They are, as a great American philosopher once said, all about the benjamins. Sometimes that’s cool! Sometimes we just want pure entertainment for a couple of hours, a way to escape from a chaotic and hostile world. We don’t want to think of movies as Art, because we think Art is work. I think... Read More

Cell Theory

February 25th, 2018

How do you solve a problem like Annihilation? Don’t get me wrong, it’s a very good and very challenging film, and one that everyone should see as quickly as possible. Before we get into the specifics, let’s talk about the tragedy of its release, and why it bodes ill for intelligent art. Paramount Pictures ponied up $55 million to adapt the first book in Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy. Alex Garland, the director of the superb Ex Machina, was hired to write the screenplay and direct. An impressive team of actors was hired. Things were a go. Upon the film’s completion, as always... Read More

What The Hela?

November 5th, 2017

What happens when the title of a movie promises one thing but delivers something entirely different? That goes to the larger issue with moviegoing, I suppose. You see a trailer, spy a poster, even just hear a title, and an imaginary movie with a very particular look and feel starts playing in your head. If the movie in your head aligns with reality, even somewhat, you’re likely to be a happy camper. In 1994, audiences saw a trailer for When a Man Loves a Woman. It starred Meg Ryan, long considered to be the alpha and the omega of romantic comedy. What the trailer showed was a light romp,... Read More

The Sweet Science

November 29th, 2015

I believe in the concept of parallel universes, alternate dimensions that exist alongside our own. Within these universes, things are largely the same, with a few differences here and there. In one of these universes, a young actor named Sylvester Stallone made some slightly different decisions regarding his budding film career. As a result of his wise choices, he was lauded as one of the greatest actors of his generation, and not, say, as a wildly inconsistent performer content to coast on past victories. But we do not live in the best of all possible worlds, as our pal Candide would have us... Read More