Gideon Lewis-Kraus | The Exacting, Expansive Mind of Christopher Nolan:
Nolan’s movies are often about people doing their best to get back in touch with consensus reality — against our tendency to be swept away by delusion (“Inception”) or demagogy (“The Dark Knight Rises”) — so it feels organic, rather than gimmicky, that they would periodically gesture toward their own stagy conceits.
“Interstellar” regrets the diminished ambitions of the space age, but it also regrets the diminished ambitions of the same age in cinema — the art form that, for the moment at least, reaches the most disparate people in the most far-flung places. “Interstellar” is about the recovery, in the greatest mass medium, of hope and drive and intelligence, about the very promise of a robust, elevating middlebrow. Perhaps all Nolan does, as one of his critics has put it, is “invest grandeur and novelty into conventional themes.” But at interstellar scale, that’s good enough.
This is quite easily the best, most complete analysis I’ve ever read about Christopher Nolan, who is rapidly becoming the next generation’s Spielberg. I highly suggest you give it a read, especially with Nolan’s Interstellar only being a week away (of which I’ve heard remarkably good things).
One highlight from Gideon’s piece is that Nolan’s last three movies have a place in the top 100 movies of all time (in box office sales). And eight of his fourteen films have accrued over $3 billion. And that’s without making movies about transforming robots.
It’s been a year since Paul Walker tragically passed away, leaving behind his “family” of costars to grieve his untimely loss. This trailer for the next and possibly final Fast and Furious franchise very much feels like his epitaph.
Even on its own, the movie shows off exactly what we love about these movies, along with some new upgrades. Jason Statham is looking like he’ll make a pretty perfect villain for the anti-heroes, and the Rock flexes out of a cast.
Furious 7 come out April 3, 2015.
Hollywood Salaries Revealed, From Movie Stars to Agents (and Even Their Assistants) | The Hollywood Reporter:
Despite the huge sums still being raked in by such superstars as Robert Downey Jr. (his $75 million comes from his 7 percent, first-dollar slice of Iron Man 3, as well as his $12 million HTC endorsement deal) and Sandra Bullock (a 15 percent, first-dollar deal on Gravity and about $10 million more for her summer hit The Heat), most actors are feeling a definite squeeze, especially those in the middle.
“If you’re [a big star], you’re getting well paid,” says one top agent, “but the middle level has been cut out.” Sometimes with a hacksaw. Leonardo DiCaprio made $25 million (including bonuses) for The Wolf of Wall Street, while co-star Jonah Hill got paid $60,000. Granted, that’s an extreme example — Hill offered to do the part for scale (and got an Oscar nomination for his trouble).
But studio cost-cutting has meant that mid-level stars are being nickel-and-dimed in ways that would have been unheard of in the gilded ’90s (i.e., Marvel Studios’ reportedly offering Mickey Rourke a mere $250,000 to star opposite Downey in Iron Man 2). Before breaking out the violins, though, remember that even mid-level stars are far better off than most other actors. According to the most recent SAG statistics, the average member earns $52,000 a year, while the vast majority take home less than $1,000 a year from acting jobs.
Your gut reaction to these findings may be, “Who cares?” It’s hard to feel sorry for actors still reaping pretty big salaries for their roles.
But the issue, in my opinion, is that this gouging of the “middle-tier” actors causes a lack of segmentation for talented actors. To save money, studios have to skim on great secondary actors in order to afford the high-priced “star” who is consuming the budget.
And without a diverse wealth of talented actors breaking into bigger and bigger roles, you’re bound to see the same actors repeatedly being called in to breathe life in the latest adaptation, sequel, remake, reboot or what have you.
I can’t remember the last time I was excited about anything related to one of my favorite cartoons as a kid. Actually yes I can. Ahem
“Spongebob” became a cultural icon in the early 2000s for a reason. The combination of fluid animation, hilarious writing, and unforgettable characters accompanied by incredible voice talent cemented the show as a classic.
But a lot of people don’t realize that the (pelvic) thrust of the show’s success had a lot to do with the man who created it: Stephen Hillenburg. The man was fittingly a marine biologist before conceptualizing the show in 1999, and he’s responsible for much of the show’s early success.
Sadly, and for reasons we won’t get into, he departed from the show creatively after the release of the first Spongebob movie in 2005.
After that, the show took a dip in quality due to his absence (though that is ultimately subjective). Despite this, the show’s laurels allowed it to finish out the decade with increasingly good episodes as the team adapted to a new phase for the show.
This movie signals, I think, a return to form for the people who still make the show. Yes, it caters to an ever-younger audience by trading edgier content for cheap laughs. But this trailer shows that the spirit of this character and his oceanic pals is able to find new ways to keep older audiences like me watching.
Also, the animation is terrific. Bring on the new Spongebob movie, Nickelodeon.
Theodoros II | 25 Halloween Movies For Those Who Can’t Handle Horror Films
So what happens if just the thought of horror movies and graphic scenes of violence make you nearly pass out from the gore and fear? We have the solution to your problem; here are 25 amazing Halloween movies that combine humor with horror in the most joyful, cheerful way possible.
Now this is a list I can get behind. Below are some of the highlights in case you don’t want to go through the whole list. Happy Halloween!
- Corpse Bride
- Monster House
- Hocus Pocus
Dennis Upkins | Comicbook.com
Variety reports that Bay is in preliminary discussions to direct Paramount’s 13 Hours. Based on actual events, the story recounts the attack on the U.S. Special Mission Compound and a nearby CIA Annex in Benghazi, Libya, on the 11th anniversary of Sept. 11.
While Transformers: Age of Extinction has banked more than $1 billion worldwide, the 49-year-old director recently announced that he wanted to pursue other projects.
“I have a lot of stories to tell,” Bay said. “And it’s about flexing new muscles.”
I wouldn’t get your hopes up. He said the same thing about doing a fourth Transformers movie, but that happened anyway.
And I’m sure he’ll handle Benghazi with about as much grace as you’d expect.
As for the future of the Transformers franchise, fans have little to worry about. At this point, the formula has been pretty much nailed down, so any director who takes the reigns will find it easy to carry on what’s made the franchise such a consistent success at the box office.
It would take a franchise-killer director like Shyamalan to mess this up.