Just last week, Rhythm & Hues was given an infusion of $20 million by three major studios – Universal, Twentieth Century Fox and Warner Bros. – to keep it afloat through April. At that time, R&H was expected to be sold to an Indian effects company, Prime Focus, but that deal fell through, and now the studio has publicly announced it has been forced to reorganize. Buyers are still circling the troubled studio, but for now, it has become the latest victim in the increasingly tough visual effects industry.
Following the success of Peter Jackson‘s Lord of the Rings trilogy (the third installment of which went on to become only the second entry in that elite “Billion Dollar Club”), it seemed like every studio wanted to jump on the fantasy-adventure bandwagon. And increasingly, the inspiration for such films has seemed to come from books targeted primarily at younger readers. The more popular franchises to arise from this trend were the Harry Potter and Chronicles of Narnia series. (The seventh and eighth Potter films are in theaters now and next summer, and the third Narnia film hits in December.)
But for those tired of the big franchises and looking for more one-off adventures, there is a pair of films that were produced by Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies in the past decade that offer plenty of thrills and spills, and entertaining journeys into fantastical realms. They are clearly targeted at family audiences, but it is my opinion that there’s plenty to enjoy in them for adults as well, and I like them both more than the average Potter or Narnia film. So step into the Reel Rumbles ring for a battle of fantastic proportions as we take on The Spiderwick Chronicles vs. Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.
Frank (Johnny Depp) is an American tourist visiting Venice, Italy to mend a broken heart. Elise (Angelina Jolie) is a woman who crosses his path in order to mislead all those following her former lover, Alexander Pearce, a criminal wanted in fourteen countries who has stolen money from a gangster.
Based on the play of the same name by William Shakespeare, featuring Helen Mirren.
Set a year after the events of the second film, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, the two younger Pevensies Edmund and Lucy are transported back to Narnia along with their cousin Eustace Scrubb. They join the new King of Narnia, Caspian in his quest to rescue seven lost lords to save Narnia from a corrupting evil that resides on a dark island. Each character is tested as they journey to the home of the great lion Aslan at the far ends of the world.
The film adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s novel of the same name. Starring Mena Suvari.