The Legend of Tarzan nearly functions as a sequel of sorts, picking up where most other Tarzan movies leave off. It’s 1890 and the man formerly known as Tarzan, John Clayton III the Earl of Greystoke, and his beautiful wife Jane are happily married and living as aristocrats in England.
The world of the battle-bred Orcs is dying. They must find a new domain to inhabit, which requires brutal conquest. Their chief sorcerer, Gul’dan, has devised a way to open a mystic portal into the human world of Azeroth and… oh, who cares? We’ve seen all this before. Warcraft follows the paint-by-numbers formula for wizards, warriors, and witchcraft, taken from the sacred scrolls of the Dungeons & Dragons playbook; shamelessly lifting countless elements from the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings sagas, and vainly trying to replicate the dramatic scope and gravitas of Game of Thrones. And all while trying to carve its own niche in the genre.
The year is 1977 in Los Angeles, California. Disco reigns supreme, the porn industry is flourishing, killer bees are emigrating from South America, and smog has reached epidemic levels. Jackson Healy (Russell Crowe) is a hard-hitting thug for hire, taking work wherever he can find it. Most times, it involves beating the crap out of some guy who’s bothering a young lady and breaking numerous bones in the process. Holland March (Ryan Gosling) is a burnt-out ex-cop now private detective who’s not above deceiving a client to maintain a steady paycheck. And these are the Nice Guys.
Henry is part of a radical military experiment that merges cybernetic machinery with biological tissue to create the ultimate super soldier. When Henry wakes up in a high-tech laboratory missing two of his limbs, he is unable to speak. He also has no memory of who he was beforehand. A fetching lab technician named Estelle attaches his new cybernetic limbs to his body, and very shortly thereafter, the door to the lab explodes open and all hell breaks loose… and pretty much stays on the loose for the next 90 minutes.
The successful sketch comedy duo of Key and Peele has made the transition from their Comedy Central series to motion pictures with their comic adventure Keanu. The Shakespearian plot unfolds thusly: Rell (Peele) is depressed and hasn’t left his couch or his bong in days because his girlfriend has just dumped him. His straight-laced cousin Clarence (Key) sympathizes but is of little consolation. A timely miracle shows up on Rell’s doorstep in the form of a lost kitten that meows plaintively and is adorable beyond all reason.
Following up the release of the standard HD Blu-ray by only two months, Warner Bros. has reissued Point Break in the 4K Ultra HD format. Not to be confused with the original 1991 Point Break starring Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze, this new version stars two relatively unknown actors, Edgar Ramirez and Luke Bracey, in the central roles; and while it generally follows the same basic plot of the original, it also departs substantially from the pre-established formula.
It’s been said that true genius is never appreciated in its own time. Some of the most brilliant minds in human history have challenged the status quo, pioneered their field, and changed the world with their groundbreaking ideas and their seemingly limitless creativity. But the flip side of that coin almost always meant that their personal eccentricities left a gaping void in their capacity for being likable human beings. The film Steve Jobs explores that theme at great length and begs the question: Just how much leeway should geniuses be allowed before we dismiss them as the douchebags they are?
I sometimes wonder if the filmmakers behind those cheesy science-fiction/horror B films of the 1950s ever believed that they were creating high art. Certainly films like Creature with the Atom Brain, Invasion of the Saucer Men, and I Married a Monster from Outer Space must have seemed pretty ridiculous to the moviegoers of the time too, don’t you think? And yet since then, those films have been elevated to a near-mythic cult status.
Actor Ryan Reynolds, director Tim Miller and actor Ed Skrein at the Deadpool press event in Beverly Hills. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision.)
What Can You Get for 47 Dollars and a Bag of Skittles?
On Monday, April 11, 2016, the good folks at Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment were kind enough to invite a select few of us to a special global media event at the ever-so posh Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills, California to herald the video release of one of its biggest box office successes, Deadpool on May 10. And I was lucky enough to attend...
Ted, the foul-mouthed, pot-smoking teddy bear, has married his longtime human girlfriend, Tami-Lynn, and a beautiful wedding it was. But as with most marriages between stuffed animals and human beings, the honeymoon ends all too soon, and after only a year, the newlyweds are already fighting. Naturally, the best remedy to soothe a decaying marriage and revitalize the spark is to bring a baby into the equation. But since Ted is lacking in the genitalia department, their choices are reduced to either adoption or artificial insemination.