“Captain America: Civil War” trailer: Bucky! Black Widow! BLACK PANTHER!!!

civil war whose side are you onIt’s getting close y’all.  Six months ’til Captain America: Civil War hits theaters.  And to help gear folks up, Marvel released a new trailer during Jimmy Kimmel last night.  It does not disappoint.

I’m liking the slow burn on the Superhero Registration Act, and how Bucky and Cap are back as a team.  I’m guessing there’ll be no hints of Avengers Disassembled here, as the MCU hasn’t touched on any of the comic book backstories (yet….)  Still, it’s awesome to finally see Black Panther, even if it’s just for a few seconds.  (Remember; his stand-alone film doesn’t hit ’til 2018.  Gads – the waiting y’all!)


Victor Frankenstein: what’s scarier, monsters or a man obsessed?

victor frankenstein
Nutshell:  A fascinating look at the friendship/partnership between Victor Frankenstein and his right-hand-man Igor.  But this film also shines a light on obsession and its various forms, including a stellar performance by Sherlock‘s Andrew Scott as a driven police officer determined to bring the pair down.  Grade: B

So.  You thought you’d seen the last of the spooky for the year?  Well, no.  Frankenstein, his monster, and Victor’s dogsbody Igor are comin’ at’cha, and it’s a film that’s well worth a look even for folks who don’t “do” horror.  Why?  Because Victor Frankenstein manages to keep the rip-roaring “It’s alive! ALIVE!” action of James Whale’s 1931 classic and add in a look at how obsession of any type can ultimately bring about your downfall.  Read More…

Baltimore Screening Pass-palooza: The Big Short!

the big short onesheet
UPDATE: all PDF passes have been given out. Thank you to everyone who entered!

Yaaaay — turkey day week!  Okay, I’m reaching.  But I do so love holidays.  And free screenings.  So how about passes for The Big Short, a film about the banking bust of the double-aughts, the one that has left us still reeling?  Synopsis!

When four outsiders saw what the big banks, media and government refused to, the global collapse of the economy, they had an idea: The Big Short. Their bold investment leads them into the dark underbelly of modern banking where they must question everyone and everything. Based on the true story and best-selling book by Michael Lewis (The Blind Side, Moneyball), and directed by Adam Mckay (Anchorman, Step Brothers) The Big Short stars Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt.

Passes?  Of course.  Right this way…

Read More…

“Creed” a worthy successor to “Rocky”

CREED one sheet

Nutshell: Director Ryan Coogler delivers a TKO of a film, one that celebrates what’s come before while bringing the Rocky/Creed story into the present.  Michael B. Jordan is a powerhouse in more ways than one.  Grade: A-

“That bell don’t mean schools out.  That bell means hell.”

I won’t lie, I bawled like a baby when I saw Apollo Creed go down for the last time in Rocky 4.  Bawled.  Then went home and tried to re-write the story in my head, because Apollo had gone from Rocky’s nemesis to a trusted friend, and a character I’d grown to care about.  Apollo’s death was devastating, and while the rest of Rocky 4 is so-so (great ‘roid-pump-up soundtrack & revenge film, maybe not so great with its thin skim of plot), that moment is forever etched upon my mind.

So when I heard that there was a film coming out that would look at Apollo Creed’s son Adonis (aka “Donny”, if you ask Rocky)?  I worried.  Let’s face it; while Rocky Balboa was a fun ride, it strained credulity.  Then I heard the film would have the one-two punch of Fruitville Station‘s Ryan Coogler and Michael B. Jordan, and that Creed would work not only as a new Rocky installment, but as a stand-alone story.  I got interested. Read More…

The Night Before: a thinking man’s stoner film, and a holiday treat

the Night before onesheet

Nutshell:Who’da thunk that a film about three guys who can’t seem to stop acting like children would be such a grownup treat? Gordon-Levitt, Rogen and Mackie deliver performances that are funny and heartfelt. Director/writer Jonathan Levine delivers a film that goes beyond stupid stoner clichés and digs into universal truths about friendship and growing up.  Ho ho go. Grade: B+

“It’s harder to stay friends when you’re older…you have so much of your own shit going on.”

Well, ’tis the season y’all.  No, it’s not Thanksgiving yet.  But each year it creeps up a little earlier, tick by tick.  So why not give in and haul out a little holly?  Full disclosure here; I wasn’t particularly looking forward to this film.  I feared the sloppy, haphazard stoner brofest of This Is The End and Your Highness.  You know, the story about how thirty-somethings who should at least attempt halfway decent adulting instead try to cling to the “high schoolers with a real I.D.” hijinks that by this time are just embarrassing.  (Not to mention tedious for any filmgoer over the age of 21.)  Don’t get me wrong, a little of the ol’ stupid for stupid’s sake is a hoot (see: This Is The End).  But this genre can fall into overkill fast.  WAY Too many references to how getting baked is hee-lay-ree-ous, nudity thrown in only for shock value, and the amazing insta-high movie drugs seem to give everybody can send a stoner film spiraling around the drain. Read More…

The Huntsman Winter’s War: trailer and spiffy new Girl Power posters!

Huntsman Winters War Collage

Well, Snow White and the Huntsman was…a thing.  Okay; it was beautiful, but a bit wobbly.  A lot wobbly.  That whole KStew thing didn’t help that poor film either.  But hopefully with the Snow White story jettisoned and a new director at the helm (that’d be Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, the man responsible for the gorgeous FX in the original Huntsman), here’s hoping that things will fare much better.  Or at least the film will have more of an even tone.

The trailer shows a war between sisters — the Ice Queen (Emily Blunt) and the Evil Queen (Charlize Theron).  And it looks like this is when Hemsworth’s Huntsman meets his much-beloved wife Sara (Jessica Chastain), [PREQUEL SPOILER ALERT] whom he was still mourning in the first film.  Guessing Chastain’s character will be an incredible badass, but one that won’t make it past the end credits.  Unless she’s trapped by magic…?  Hey, this series is supposed to be a trilogy.  So guess we’ll see.

Not sure I love the borderline silly singsong narrative in the trailer; it doesn’t quite work for me.  But I do love the girl power vibe with these posters, and am happy to see Dominic Watkins’ breathtaking production design and Colleen Atwood’s gorgeous, Oscar-nominated costumes are coming back for this sequel.  Plus, who doesn’t want to see Theron and Blunt throw magic around?

The Huntsman Winter’s Tale hits theaters April 22nd, 2016. Check out the trailer below, and clicky on the picture above for the high-res deets!

Zoolander 2 trailer: what happens when models get old? They become spies, of course!

zoolander trailerzoolander 2 still

Zoolander and Hansel hit the runway during Fashion Week. They teased us with a tidbit trailer. And now the full Zoolander 2 trailer is here!  And while I was both looking forward to another installment and fearing sequelitis?  This trailer looks solid.  Peep this:

Glad to see that Will Farrel is back, and that Penelope Cruz, Kristen Wiig, Olivia Munn and Benedict Cumberbatch will be on the scene too.  And okay, I even give Bieber some credit for making fun of his image.  Zoolander 2 hits the runway theaters February 12th, 2016.  #BLUESTEELFOREVER y’all.



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