“This is the worst summer for movies ever.”
I’ve made that statement a number of times over the last four or five years, and every summer seems worse than the one that preceded it. Two years ago, I declared 2010 to be a total waste, but then 2011 rolled around and I found myself thinking, “Man, 2010 was great: Inception, Toy Story 3, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World… so many good movies!”. I have higher hopes going into 2012, if only because a summer that features Batman and Wes Anderson can’t be all bad (then again, Dark Shadows). Still, it seems like the summer movie season isn’t what it was when I was younger. Yes, summer is generally synonymous with the loudest, dumbest movies the studios have to offer, but that doesn’t mean they all have to be disposable junk. Consider some of the great movies of summers past: Jaws (the original summer blockbuster), Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ghostbusters, and Back to the Future are all crowd-pleasing entertainments that have stood the test of time and become bona fide classics.
For many moviegoers of a certain age, there is one summer three decades ago that stands apart from all the rest: the summer of 1982. It may well be ground zero for an entire generation of movie lovers: E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Blade Runner, The Thing, and even Tron were all released within a few weeks of each other, collectively blowing the minds of BMX-riding kids with feathered hair across the country. I was only seven years old that summer, which means I didn’t see all of the movies on that list until later in life, but several of them (sorry, Tron) hold a spot on my all-time favorites list, and are titles I return to again and again for entertainment and inspiration. I’m not alone; in fact, many of the films released that summer are considered groundbreaking, even epochal, and they’ve influenced countless others (even you, Tron) in the ensuing decades. Read the rest of this entry »
A (not so) long time ago, in a galaxy (not so) far, far away…
It is a period of intergalactically-themed humor. A group of friends, striking at George Lucas‘s fortified base, have launched an attempt to steal a copy of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace before its 1999 release date.
Meanwhile, two British nerds, fresh from attending their first ComicCon, attempt to help a drug-addled alien with the voice of Seth Rogen escape our planet.
They are loving and raucous odes to science fiction fandom, locked in deadly combat. Two films will enter, one will leave. Even now, the first bell rings, and the epic battle of Paul vs. Fanboys is under way… Read the rest of this entry »
In a small town in 1979 Ohio, four friends decide to make a zombie film together using their parent’s Super 8 camera. The four boys, along with their new co-star Alice, go out to shoot an important scene one night when they witness a train accident and narrowly escape the wreckage.
Warner Bros. intends to digitally alter the tattoo sported by actor Ed Helms in The Hangover Part II for the movie’s DVD and Blu-ray release, according to court documents. Tattoo artist S. Victor Whitmill – who gave Mike Tyson the Maori-style tattoo that the film references – sued Warner Bros. for copyright infringement. The company countered Whitmill’s request for an expedited trial with this statement from their lawyers:
“If the parties are unable to resolve their dispute, Warner Bros. does not intend to make any use of the allegedly infringing tattoo after the film ends its run in the theaters because Warner Bros. will digitally alter the film to substitute a different tattoo on Ed Helms’s face. As a result, there is no reason for the highly accelerated trial Plaintiff has asked this Court to hold on Plaintiff’s request for a permanent injunction.”
It’s not quite like Steven Spielberg substituting walkie talkies for guns in E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, but a bizarre alteration of a popular movie nonetheless. The Hangover Part II grossed over $86 million US in its opening weekend, and is still in theaters.
A mediation hearing for the case is set for June 16, with a court date slated for Feb. 21, 2012.
There’s been a little controversy over some particular flicks popping up on Flickchart for ranking. Some users seem to figure that Flickchart is a bit too liberal in the material it approves for ranking. WWE wrestling specials? Pixar animated shorts? Television pilot episodes? Looney Tunes? Captain EO?
Well, it all started there, didn’t it? Captain EO is a “4-D” film that debuted in Walt Disney theme parks in 1986 and ran there exclusively through the ’90s. The 17-minute sci-fi film (at the time, the most expensive movie ever made on a per-minute basis) starred Michael Jackson, and was essentially a giant music video with 3-D imagery, flashing lights and plenty of smoke. Following Jackson’s death, the film made a return to Disney parks in 2010, but it has never had a theatrical release.