Cinemaholics Podcast: Summer Movie Preview 2018

preview 2018

The next few months promise a lot of big and small delights at the theater, so we decided to preview 2018 summer movies on Cinemaholics, noting our most anticipated films from May through August. From Incredibles 2 to Deadpool 2, there are plenty of blockbusters to get excited about, but to be honest, a lot of our picks happen to be smaller flicks this year that we seriously can’t wait to see.

Special guest Sam Noland joined us to help unpack the summer, and we started with some listener emails and light discussion about how our letter grade system “works” and where we stand on theater experiences versus staying at home to watch a movie. Toward the end of the show, we went through a few Mini Reviews, tackling I Feel PrettySuper Troopers 2, and The Endless.

Question for you: What are your Top 3 most anticipated summer movies?

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Incredibles 2 Will Be Way More Successful Than (Some) Think

I don’t usually dive into the prediction game, but this year I’m feeling uniquely compelled to weigh in on the box office future of Incredibles 2, a Pixar film some are strangely underestimating as we close in on Summer 2018.

Will it be #1 for the whole summer? Not necessarily, thanks to Avengers: Infinity War. But here’s my breakdown on how I envision the summer playing out in general, from Deadpool 2 to Solo. Spoiler alert: it involves Disney making way more money than everyone else. In part thanks to Pixar’s latest sequel based off of one of their most beloved movies.

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Cinemaholics Review: Rampage

rampage

Rampage has been a huge hit at the box office so far (no surprise for a Dwayne Johnson blockbuster), but reviews are about as divided as many expected. Is this the best video game adapted film, so soon after Tomb Raider? If you ask Will Ashton, not so fast. We had a great discussion, but this is a pretty packed episode with other reviews and topics at hand.

I’ve been at San Francisco International Film Festival all week, so I briefly shared my thoughts on a few new movies you might remember from our Sundance episode back in February. I discussed Leave No TraceSorry to Bother YouThe Guardians, and Eighth Grade (which won honors at the festival). Will and I also spent some time explaining the Netflix controversy related to Cannes Film Festival, which poses some big questions for the future of streaming movies and what constitutes as “true” cinema.

For Mini Reviews, we dove into the new Netflix reboot series Lost in Space, plus a few under-the-radar flicks you might want to check out. Paterno just came out on HBO, which stars Al Pacino as the Penn State coach during the final years of his life. I saw You Were Never Really Here, which stars Joaquin Phoenix and is already a contender for my favorite movie of 2018. And we finished with Lean on Pete, a new A24 film from the director of 45 Years.

Question for you: What is the “best” Dwayne Johnson movie?

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Loki’s Role in the MCU Doesn’t Make Any Sense

Loki, God of Mischief. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he’s been the most consistent villain with actual lines (sorry, Thanos). He’s also been a fan favorite for years, often cited as the “best villain” of these movies since obvi-betraying Thor in Thor and puny god-ing his way through The Avengers.

But let’s be honest. Loki’s role post-Avengers doesn’t really make a lot of sense, especially after Thor: Ragnarok. To make my case, I parked my car in front of a park a few miles away from Facebook headquarters (incidentally) and recorded my unfiltered thoughts on the subject. As you’ll observe, I didn’t really prepare for this, but I stand by every word I say. For now.

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Cinemaholics Review: A Quiet Place and Blockers

quiet place

Special guest Rebecca Pahle came on the show this week to help us break the silence on A Quiet Place, a new horror film that’s impressing at the box office and earned an A- from me in my review. Directed by perennial camera-shrugger John Krasinski (AKA Jim Halpert and that guy you actually recognize in the indie movie you’re watching), A Quiet Place is sure to take some moviegoers by surprise with its tense, emotional storytelling, and with Krasinski starring alongside real-life wife Emily Blunt, it’s safe to say this is a film worth talking loudly about.

Later in the show, we reviewed Blockers, a new teen comedy starring Leslie Mann, John Cena, and Ike Barinholtz. I shared my thoughts on King in the Wilderness, a new Martin Luther King Jr. documentary on HBO. Will finally saw Isle of Dogs and Unsane. And Maveryke caught Wind River, a 2017 movie that just hit Netflix streaming.

Question for you: How would you survive in a world where you can’t make a sound?

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‘A Quiet Place’ Is Scary For Kids, But Terrifying For Adults

QUIET PLACE

I don’t have children, so I have to imagine the new film A Quiet Place is far more frightening for a parent than it could hope to be for someone like me. It’s probably more impactful, too.

In A Quiet Place, most of the world has been eradicated. A young family of survivors has to live as silently as possible to avoid the blind, super-hearing creatures who prey upon anything making a sound. Danger is everywhere. The family can’t escape these bulletproof nightmares.

So the family perseveres by creating strict, logical rules. They communicate with lights and sign language. They walk barefoot. They make soundproof trails and play board games with cloth materials. The message is quiet, but it’s clear. To parents in any context, the world is a scary place, and every family has a set of idiosyncratic methods for raising their children. In this case, it’s playing a high-stakes version of “the quiet game.”

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Jon in Theory: What Makes a Movie Character Likable?

Have you ever heard a film critic or general film-loving person tell you the characters in a movie were “likable?” I’ve done this too many times to count in reviews and podcasts, but what does it really mean? What do different people mean when they invoke “likable” characters?

I’m not sure if I thoroughly tackle the topic, but hopefully this quick recording lays out a guideline for how I think we should talk about movie characters in ways that are more useful for others. Whether you’re talking to a coworker about the latest Marvel movie or writing a think piece about Midnight Cowboy (which, admittedly, has some seriously unlikable characters).

My main point, which goes beyond general film discourse, is to stop assuming people understand what you mean when you say something that’s commonly said. This applies to basic communication on a whole range of topics, but when recommending a film or telling people what you dislike about a film, this can be especially useful to keep in mind. We all want to be likable ourselves, right?

Hope you enjoy the video, and you can find the Twitter thread I mentioned right here, as well as the video essay thread I brought up and the Marvel Symphonic Universe video.