Review: 'Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales' Stalls in Stagnant Waters

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

As far as swashbuckling adventures on the high seas go, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales – what a mouthful – is running on stagnant tides. It's amazing to think a film series based off of an amusement park ride would get to its fifth entry in the first place, a much wilder notion being that that fifth time out of the gate may actually offer up something new and inventive. That isn't to be the case, though, and this latest outing featuring the eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow, still played by Johnny Depp and all of his crazy mannerisms, offers nothing special beyond the typical excitement to which we've been privy many times before. Dead Men Tell No Tales attempts to reenergize the Pirates franchise with fresh blood and a younger cast, but, without any creativity to back it up, it all ends up treading the same blockbuster waters.

 Posted 5 hours ago in Review | Comments

Full US Trailers for 'The Hitman's Bodyguard' with Jackson & Reynolds

The Hitman's Bodyguard Trailer

"You won't last one hour without me!" Lionsgate has debuted the second official US trailer for the summer comedy The Hitman's Bodyguard, about the world's best bodyguard assigned to protect a hitman who has been killing his clients all along. This wacky action comedy stars Ryan Reynolds as the world's top bodyguard who is hired to protect a hit man who must testify at the International Court of Justice. Samuel L. Jackson plays the notorious hit man, and they must get over their differences in order to make it to the trial on time. Also starring Gary Oldman, Salma Hayek, Elodie Yung, Joaquim de Almeida, and Sam Hazeldine. This full trailer finally spends time setting up the story and features lots of new footage that we haven't seen at all yet, and it still looks hilarious. Tons of action packed into this preview and I'm in.

 Posted 14 hours ago in To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Official Trailer for Netflix's 'Shimmer Lake' Film with Benjamin Walker

Shimmer Lake Trailer

"Once you open that door there's no going back!" Netflix has unveiled an official trailer for a new film titled Shimmer Lake, the feature directorial debut of screenwriter Oren Uziel. This small-town crime mystery is told in reverse, going backwards day-by-day, telling the story of the local sheriff's attempt to solve a bank robbery and find the criminals. Benjamin Walker (from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) stars as the sheriff, with an eclectic cast of indie actors including Rainn Wilson, Stephanie Sigman, Rob Corddry, Wyatt Russell, Ron Livingston, Adam Pally, and John Michael Higgins. This seems like it's riding the coattails of all the buzz about small-town crime TV shows and films, but I'm still curious to check it out.

 Posted May 25 in To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Cannes 2017: Accepting the Challenge of Viewing Provocative Cinema

The Square Cannes

Challenge accepted. What kind of world would we live in if there were not any art, or books, or discussions that made us question our own beliefs. This kind of intelligent provocation is how we grow, and learn, and progress, and step forward together as people from different countries and different cultures all over the world. Over the last few days at the Cannes Film Festival, cinephiles and critics have been treated to a few unique films that challenge the audience. These are the kind of films that are designed to deliberately challenge viewers, to make them feel uncomfortable, or upset, or angry, or frustrated. Great artists know that it's possible to create work that challenges us in just the right ways, that makes us think and question ourselves as a process of learning, and critiquing who we are. And it's refreshing to come across these films.

 Posted May 25 in Cannes 17, Editorial | Comments

First Official Trailer for Taylor Sheridan's Snow-Noir Film 'Wind River'

Wind River Trailer

"You're looking for clues, but you're missing all the signs." The Weinstein Company has unveiled an official trailer for the indie thriller Wind River, the feature directorial debut of screenwriter Taylor Sheridan (of Sicario and Hell or High Water previously). This film is a "snow-noir" thriller about a murder mystery set in the snowy mountains of Wyoming, mostly around an Indian Reservation where the locals clash with the government authorities. Jeremy Renner stars, with Elizabeth Olsen as a FBI agent sent to investigate. The cast includes Jon Bernthal, Martin Sensmeier, Julia Jones, Kelsey Asbille, Graham Greene, and Gil Birmingham. I first saw this at the Sundance Film Festival and loved it - saying in my review that "Sheridan is as talented of a director as he is a screenwriter." It's also showing at the Cannes Film Festival.

 Posted May 25 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Third Trailer for 'Despicable Me 3' Sequel Takes Gru Back to His Roots

Despicable Me 3 Trailer

"Become a villain again!" Sometimes you just gotta get back to your villain roots. Universal has revealed the third trailer for Illumination Entertainment's next sequel Despicable Me 3, hitting theaters at the end of June. The story brings back the lovable villain Gru (and his minions) for another misadventure, this time involving his long lost twin brother Dru (who is also voiced by Steve Carell) who tries to get him back into the villain business. The voice cast includes Kristen Wiig returning as Lucy Wilde, along with Miranda Cosgrove, Russell Brand, Michael Beattie, Dana Gaier, plus also "South Park's" Trey Parker as the stuck-in-the-80s supervillain Balthazar Bratt. This trailer really sells the complete story and packs in tons of finished footage from this sequel, which looks pretty much just like the other two films before it. Have fun.

 Posted May 24 in Animation, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Neill Blomkamp is Testing Ideas for Original Sci-Fi Projects on Steam

Oats Studios

What is Neill Blomkamp up to now? Ever since the sad news broke that his Alien reboot with Sigourney Weaver was being canned thanks to Ridley Scott taking over the franchise again, we've been curious about where Blomkamp would head next. Is he working on any movies? What is he developing next? We don't have any definitive answers yet, but we do have some exciting teases for potential science fiction projects in the works. Blomkamp has been tweeting since April about a partnership he has with Steam (the video game platform/distribution service). Apparently he has launched a new development studio called Oats Studio, where they're creating all kinds of crazy cool sci-fi projects. And what they want to do is release teases for them as short films on Steam in order to test and see which ones might become feature-length films. I'm in.

 Posted May 24 in Movie News, SciFi, To Watch | Comments

Stunning Final Trailer Lands for Luc Besson's New Sci-Fi Epic 'Valerian'

Valerian Trailer

"You have less than 10 hours to find the threat and eliminate it." EuropaCorp has launched the third and final trailer for Luc Besson's epic new sci-fi movie, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, or just Valerian for short. Based on the graphic novel series, the movie stars Dane DeHaan as Valerian, and Cara Delevingne as Laureline, special operatives for the government of the human territories charged with maintaining order throughout the universe. They must travel to an intergalactic city full of different species called Alpha on a mission. The full cast includes Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Rutger Hauer, Mathieu Kassovitz, Sam Spruell, Kris Wu, Alain Chabat and others. This is looking better and better the more we see, and despite seemingly packed with CGI, I'm still very excited for it. Bring it on!

 Posted May 24 in SciFi, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Watch: Jacob Tremblay Has a Unique Face in First Trailer for 'Wonder'

Wonder Trailer

"You're the toughest kid in that school - show them!" Lionsgate has revealed the first official trailer for an upcoming film titled Wonder, adapted from R.J. Palacio's book of the same name. Wonder stars acclaimed young actor Jacob Tremblay (seen in Room, Before I Wake, The Book of Henry), who plays Auggie, a kid with an awkward facial difference who decides to go to public school despite being made fun of by all the other students. He makes a few new friends who help him learn to be himself. The full cast includes Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson as Auggie's parents, also featuring Daveed Diggs, Mandy Patinkin, Sonia Braga, Izabela Vidovic, Ali Liebert, and Bryce Gheisar. This looks incredibly charming and, I don't mean to be so cheesy, but "wonder"ful. It's set for release in the fall right in the middle of the awards season.

 Posted May 24 in To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Spidey Keeps NYC Safe in Latest Trailers for 'Spider-Man: Homecoming'

Spider-Man: Homecoming Trailer

"What are you hiding, Peter?" Sony has unleashed two more trailers for Spider-Man: Homecoming, hitting theaters in the middle of the summer. Tom Holland stars as (the new) Peter Parker, who was first introduced in Marvel's Captain America: Civil War. This story continues with Parker returning from the events in that movie, still trying to figure out his place as a teenager in NYC. The focus seems to be entirely on the city, and it's cool to see him caring about stolen bikes and old ladies. The full cast includes Marisa Tomei as Aunt May, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Michael Keaton as The Vulture, as well as Donald Glover, Robert Downey Jr., Martin Starr, Logan Marshall-Green, Angourie Rice, Hannibal Buress, and Zendaya. I like the US version of these trailers more, better footage. Looking forward to this.

 Posted May 24 in Marvel, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Cannes 2017: Sean Baker's 'The Florida Project' is Vibrant & Full of Life

The Florida Project Review

What an exhilarating experience. Tangerine director Sean Baker has premiered his latest film, titled The Florida Project, at the Cannes Film Festival and it's truly worthy of the standing ovation it received. It contains some of the best performances I've seen on screen this year, from very young kids and the talented Willem Dafoe, with a drifting story about childhood and poverty in modern America. The title The Florida Project refers to Disney's domain in Orlando. When Disney first started buying up land and planning Disney World, they referred to it as "The Florida Project." The film is about the many "hidden homeless" living near Disney, and follows a wily group of very young kids living in motels who run around all day causing trouble.

 Posted May 23 in Cannes 17, Review | Comments

Iconic James Bond Actor Sir Roger Moore Has Passed Away at Age 89

Roger Moore

"I enjoy being a highly overpaid actor." He was the James Bond that I grew up with, and adored even more than Sean Connery. We're sad to report that English actor Sir Roger Moore has passed away today at age 89. His death was announced by his family on Twitter after Moore had an unsuccessful battle with cancer. Moore's last Bond movie was A View to a Kill in 1985, and ever since then he has been appearing in various smaller roles but nothing too big, including a few appearances as himself in movies like Incompatibles and The Carer. Moore was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003 for "services to charity", and also became a UNICEF ambassador in his later years. He starred in a total of seven James Bond movies from 1973 to 1985.

 Posted May 23 in Movie News, Obituaries | Comments

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