ericvespe FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

from Austin, TX

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    • Holy Shit! Avengers: Infinity War Moved Up! You Can See It April 27th!!!

      2 weeks ago



      Well, well, well... Looks like we're all going to get to see Avengers: Infinity War earlier than expected! Marvel and Robert Downey Jr. teamed up to make the announcement on Twitter via a smart bit of cheeky PR. Check it out here

      It's such good news! It means we all get to see it earlier than expected and lets us have a chance to go back a couple of times before Deadpool 2 and Solo come out. It's quite possible that was the point of the move, to minimize the overlap between Infinity War's Box Office and Solo's and also don't forget that Deadpool is soon enough going to be welcomed into the Disney Marvel family, too.

      Excited yet? I'm excited. That's next month! I mean, it's still, like almost two months away, but technically this is March and it releases in April, so I'm still right! 

    • Tarantino Titles His Next Flick, Casts Brad Pitt & Leonardo DiCaprio

      2 weeks ago



      First of all, I know there's some controversy around this project and I myself am not all that interested in seeing a Manson Family-ish movie, but you know what I am interested in? Anything that Tarantino wants to do. If he wants to tell this story then he'll tell it in his way and that in and of itself is more interesting than 90% of other Tinseltown news. 

      He's calling the new project Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, which automatically frames the new film in an epic light. Sergio Leone started the Once Upon A Time trend with Once Upon A Time In The West, which is just flat out great. Seek it out if you haven't seen it. It uses Widescreen unlike just about any other movie ever made. 

      Many years later Leone made Once Upon A Time In America, another fantastic film that gave the epic treatment to a whole new genre. It was more a Godfather-ish Italian Crime story. 

      Robert Rodriguez took that title trend and applied to a goofy action flick called Once Upon A Time In Mexico that is distinctly Rodriguez, even if it's nowhere near the same league as Leone's movies. 

      The point is Once Upon A Time In... has come to mean something to cinephiles. If you use that title you think epic story told in the unique style of its director and shot in wide-wide-widescreen. 

      So Tarantino using the title paints a picture already of his plans of doing a period '60s film set in Hollywood. Knowing his tastes I'd expect a long film overflowing with colorful, richly drawn characters.

      Two of those characters will be played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt. DiCaprio will play Rick Dalton, former western TV star, and Pitt will be his stunt double, Cliff Booth. Both are trying to figure out their place in the world as they age out of the system they know. Also, Rick happens to live next door to Sharon Tate, the most famous victim of the Manson Family. 

      We know that Tarantino has approached Margot Robbie to play Sharon Tate, but we don't know if she's signed on yet. 

      Anyway, that's the news. Pitt and DiCaprio are onboard and the movie's called Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. I personally can't wait to see how this one comes together. 

    • 9 to 5 is getting a reboot-sequel and I couldn't be more psyched!

      3 weeks ago


      I know it's not exactly cool to taut the love of the very, very '80s comedy 9 to 5, but a constant cable rotation of this movie in my youth has endeared it to me on a pretty deep level. 

      9 to 5, about three women standing up to sexual harassment in the workplace, is sadly still relevant today. Hell, in the era of #MeToo it's almost begging for a remake... and that's exactly what's going on. 

      But it's not a straight remake, thank God. It's what I like to call a "rebootquel." It's really a sequel, but since there's not really an audience for 9 to 5 Part II, it'll just be called 9 to 5 and focus on a new generation of women struggling against the patriarchy. But it doesn't ignore the first movie and is in fact a sequel. 

      Deadline is reporting that Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda are in talks to return, likely as mentors to a new group of young women. Fox wants a young, sharp female voice behind the script and Rashida Jones is at the top of their list. Holy shit, a movie studio exec with a good idea! Someone write this down for posterity! 

      The only way I'd be more down for this rebootquel would be if they announced they were pulling Dabney Coleman out of retirement for a cameo. He is first rate, after all

    • Ralph Wrecks The Internet in this new trailer (and takes some pot shots at clickbait along the way)!

      3 weeks ago


      The new trailer for the Wreck It Ralph sequel dropped today and it takes the lovable brute Ralph and darling little Vanellope into the big, wide world of the internet. The trailer nods to King of Kong with an arcade owner who looks suspiciously like Walter Day, owner of Twin Galaxies and the self-appointed referee of high scores, takes the piss out of clickbait, jokes around with goofy mobile games and even shows us what eBay looks like inside the internet itself. No word yet on how they handle porn, which is scientifically about 97% of the entire internet.

      Check out the trailer:

      It's good, right? Loved the first movie, which felt the most Pixar-ish of all the modern day Walt Disney Animated movies. Can't wait to see what they do with the sequel!

    • Wait a minute, Baby Groot is actually Groot's son?

      3 weeks ago



      I guess I'm a bad geek. I assumed Baby Groot was kind of like Groot reborn, but according to James Gunn's tweets today he's actually more like Groot's kid. I suppose there's an argument to be made that children are pretty much quasi-clones of their parents, but that doesn't help my nerdy-ass mind from reeling at this bit of information.

      Is this how all beings from Groot's race procreate? Just splinter off? Thinking about it that's not too far off from how Earth trees handle that, but then you've got to consider pollination and all that weird stuff. You can also clone trees from cuttings, which is what I assumed happened in Groot's case.

      I'm dangerously approaching the line where I have my virginity reinstated with this discussion, but damn it if this isn't today's biggest geek revelation. 

      What do you folks think? 

    • DC Just Can't Catch A Break. Joss Whedon Exits BATGIRL.

      3 weeks ago



      Joss Whedon has stepped away from Batgirl. His official reasoning for departing the project is that he spent a year trying to come up with a story to match the badass character and just couldn't quite do it. I'm sure there's other things at play, like how he didn't quite fix Justice League enough to make it less of a flop and the overall chaotic state of everything behind the scenes at the DCEU, but that's the reason he gave to The Hollywood Reporter.

      Man, DC just can't catch a break. It's getting real frustrating as a comic movie fan seeing them squander so much potential and I say this as someone who likes both Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck as Superman and Batman. 

      There's no reason there can't be amazing movies made out of these properties but the brass at Warner Bros seems less concerned about making good product than just making product period. Any and everything you got, throw it at that wall! Something will stick! 

      Whedon has shown a lot of talent at writing female characters, but maybe this cloud will have a silver lining and they'll actually bring in some, you know, females to write and/or direct these female characters? It certainly worked for Wonder Woman. Something tells me a talented female screenwriter might not have to spend a year trying to find a decent Barbara Gordon story. 

    • Disney rebooting The Muppet Show For Its Streaming Service

      1 month ago


      I'm making a big assumption here, saying that Disney is rebooting The Muppet Show specifically. All that has been revealed in a Hollywood Reporter piece is that Disney is going to be rebooting the Muppets for its streaming service they aim to have ready next year. They say it won't be a movie, but a series, so I'm just going to say that it's a reboot of The Muppet Show because that's a great idea and we'll all forget about whatever the hell they did on ABC in 2016.


      Having a weekly Muppet Show that throws back to the edgy, but kind-hearted wit of the original show with modern celebrity guests sounds super up my alley. 

      Disney's going all out with this as yet unnamed streaming service, promising a live action Star Wars show, some kind of Marvel content, access to their huge library of films and now this Muppets thing. They had me at "Star Wars Show" and everything they're announcing after is pure nostalgic gravy for me. Hrmm... Let's forget I put the words "nostalgic gravy" out there, shall we? We'll put it in the same "it didn't happen" box that we're putting the shitty ABC Muppets reboot in. 'kay? 'kay. 

    • Ready or Not, Jurassic World 3 is coming June 11th, 2021!

      1 month ago


      You may think it's weird that Universal is announcing a release date for a third installment in a franchise before the second installment is even released, but that's kind of the way Hollywood operates these days.

      Look at their fumble with the Dark Universe. They announced cast and projects bringing their monsters into a giant shared universe and then oops, The Mummy fizzled, public interest was flatlining and suddenly all those projects are gone now.

      It's a little less of a gamble here. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom would have to flop big time for them to rethink this because the first Jurassic World made so, so, so, so much money. Jurassic World 2 would have make Pluto Nash money to derail this franchise at this point.

      People like dinosaurs, they like Chris Pratt and they want to see those two things together in big, spectacle films. It's not a hard formula to figure out.

      According to The Hollywood Reporter Colin Trevorrow will return to co-write alongside franchise newcomer Emily Carmichael, who seems to have been picked by Spielberg himself after Amblin picked up a script of hers called Powerhouse. She has also written a remake of The Black Hole for Disney and worked on the Pacific Rim sequel hitting later this year.

      No director is attached yet.

      Early days, for sure, but again... barring catastrophe this is a no-brainer for Universal. 

    • Not surprising, but still good news: Jessica Chastain in talks to play adult Bev in It: Chapter Two!!!

      1 month ago



      Forgive me for the bragging I'm about to do, but I swear I have a point to it. I'm a big Stephen King nut. Like I've literally read every one of his novels and I started doing so in the 6th grade (Cujo was the first book I read). So I let it be known to the powers that be at Warner Bros that I was interested in visiting the set of the film adaptation back when I was with Ain't It Cool and got an invite to the press day.

      While there I got to see a lot of cool things and talk to pretty much everybody, including every one of the kids in the Losers Club. Way back then, when they were still shooting the first one, I asked them to fancast their adult selves should It prove to be popular and warrant a sequel that finishes the second half of the story told in King's giant book.

      They all had great answers (read them all here in more depth if you wish)... Jeremy Ray Taylor pointed out that Ben buffs up when he gets older, so he wanted Chris Pratt, Jack Grazer said in another interview closer to release he saw Jake Gyllenhaal as grown up Eddie (if you saw Okja you know he could pull this off), Finn Wolfhard chose Bill Hader for grown up Richie (brilliant, by the way), Wyatt Oleff thought Joseph Gordon-Levitt would be good for Stanley, Chosen Jacobs liked either Chadwick Boseman or David Oyelowo for Mike (I think Oyelowo is about as perfect casting as possible for that character), Jaeden Lieberher was drawing a blank for Bill and one of the press people attending suggesting Alexander Skarsgard. Jaeden seemed to like it, but Finn loved it, said it would be a big f-you to their Pennywise, Bill Skarsgard, who is Alexander's little brother.

      The very first person who we asked to fancast their adult selves was Sophie Lillis and her response was short, but sweet: "Jessica Chastain. No brainer." 

      Andy and Barbara Muschietti seem to agree as Variety has revealed that Chastain is officially in negotiations to star in the sequel. 

      No surprise. She's the obvious choice with or without the support of her younger self and she also has a history with the Muschietti's, having starred in their first feature film Mama. 

      I'm psyched. I adored the first chapter and I can't wait to see them build up this cast and finish out this story. Looks like that September 2019 release date might still hold since they're casting up now. 

      One other tidbit from the set visit: Andy Muschietti talked about his desire to bring the kids back for the sequel, wanting to film some flashbacks that would influence the adults' story, stuff that wasn't in the first film. He's gotta work fast because all those kids are at an age where 6-12 months will radically change their voices and appearance!

    • Yep, Black Panther Is Pretty Great! Check Out My Review!

      1 month ago



      The hype is strong for Black Panther. I certainly felt the weight of it as I sat down for the press screening. Not only was this movie supposed to be an all-timer, but it's also super duper important culturally and anyone who doesn't love it probably hates black people and donates to Donald Trump on the regular.

      Thankfully the movie is really damn good so I don't have to question my own progressiveness. Phew, that was a close one.

      Is it in danger of being overhyped? Yeah, for sure. At the end of the day it's a good superhero movie, but I didn't walk out of it feeling like I did after credits rolled on The Dark Knight or even The Avengers.

      To be fair, Black Panther is about something way different than either of those films. Avengers was a big feel good ass-kicking actionfest that was all about dazzling you with the first ever superhero team up of that scale and The Dark Knight was a dark, gritty examination of how good people deal with the injection of chaos into their world. Black Panther isn't going for either of those two feelings, falling somewhere between the two, actually.

      There isn't much action in the movie. In fact it plays a little more like a modern era James Bond film than a typical Marvel superhero story for almost all the action in the first half. The fights are one on one as T'Challa proves his worthiness for the throne and there's a mission to a South Korean underground casino that reminded me a ton of Skyfall in how it was shot and the political intrigue on display.

      This film is more concerned with character and world-building than it is on dazzling you with an action set piece very 15 minutes. Instead it cranks up the emotional stakes until you get the big final action scene, filled with warring tribes on the ground, dogfights in the skies and, yes, armored rhinos, that leaves you exiting the theater feeling fulfilled on that front but when you look back you realize just how little action is actually in the movie.

      That's a testament to a few things working very well. There's the wonderful direction from Ryan Coogler that keeps the pace going and puts an emphasis on bringing out the most personality he can out of his actors. There's the incredible production value on display. Wakanda is bright, detailed, vibrant and just about every single shot, interior or exterior, offers a visual feast for the eyes. From cinematography to production design to wardrobe to makeup, all departments are way on point.


      I suppose there could be human beings in this world that will be upset that Black Panther is isn't wall to wall kicking and scratching and stabbing and punching, but they'd be overlooking some pretty great character work to complain about it. Hard to believe comic book fans would complain about the little stuff, though, right?

      Oddly enough Black Panther himself is one of the least interesting characters in this film. He's not a bad character by any means and Chadwick Boseman is more confident in his performance than he was in Civil War, but the very nature of T'Challa's place in this story forces him to be a bit more serious. He's taking on the mantle of King. There's no conflict about that even if he does feel the weight of the throne. His struggle in the movie is all about his desire to be a good King, but not knowing if he can be. He's terrified of letting his country down, but even from early on he doesn't let that fear control him.

      So as a character he doesn't grow too much. He's steadfastly good-hearted, a rock for his people, but with the weight of that responsibility on him the whole time.

      That allows the movie to get stolen by some more colorful, looser performances. Everybody is going to walk away from this movie adoring Letitia Wright's Shuri. She's T'Challa's sister and kind of Q from James Bond folded into Tony Stark. She's smart, but young and so, so full of smart-ass that she brightens literally every scene she's in just by being there.

      Then there's Danai Gurira, playing Okoye, the head of the royal guard and loyal to the throne above all else. Gurira could have played this more serious and been badass and intimidating, but by going the more human route she becomes so much richer. She's cocksure and an incredible warrior, but she's also kind and funny and willing to call it like it is, no matter who she's talking to.


      Okoye also happens to have the most internal conflict in the movie. She's incredibly loyal, but her oath is sworn to the throne, not a specific king. So when the big bad guy comes in and challenges T'Challa to the throne her alliance is tested. She knows Erik Killmonger is bad news and doesn't like his politics. She also knows that T'Challa is a better king, but that's not her choice to make.

      It's a fascinating place to put the greatest warrior asset in this film and Danai Gurira sells every aspect of it; the doubt, the resolve, the badassness, the conflict... it's all there and Gurira makes it look effortless as she somehow expresses it all from scene to scene.

      I brought up Michael B. Jordan's Erik Killmonger, who we know is the bad guy because he spells his name with the evil 'K' instead of the heroic 'C'. Another of this film's strengths is we actually have a good, well-rounded villain. That's not to say Killmonger isn't diabolical at certain points. There definitely fun had and some rhetorical mustaches get twirled, but you can see things from his point of view.

      In many ways he's a stronger leader than T'Challa. He may not be as wise and good-hearted, but he has a plan to save his people... not just the safe, hidden world of Wakanda, but all repressed people of color all over the world. It's time to shift the power away from those who enslaved and back to the people who were wronged. He's not wrong that societies are built to prevent that power from shifting and his plan isn't about making him ruler of the world, really. There's an altruistic undercurrent to the reason he wants the power.

      The easy comparison is that T'Challa is MLK and Killmonger is Malcolm X. They have similar goals and desires, but Killmonger is impatient and willing to use more aggressive tactics. This leads to a faceoff that is actually very dramatic and not just CGI dudes punching each other a lot. There's that, too, of course, but there's meaning behind it and the stakes for winning or losing this fight is high. The result will define the conscience of a whole nation.

      Coogler brings all this to screen in an authentic way that can't be denied. The Afrofuturist look executed so well and automatically makes this a different kind of superhero film. The uniqueness is a fresh flavor for the MCU and on a deeper societal level carries with it a level of representation previously unseen. Yes, we've had great roles for people of color in tentpole cinema, but this isn't just about having a strong black man in a costume, it's about embracing a culture and giving it the same love and signal boosting attention as we do with our traditional European heroes.

      I know I started this review kinda making fun of the woke reviewers, but it is something you can not separate when watching this movie. At least I, a white man quickly approaching middle age, couldn't. That feel of something new is so tied in with the character and the story being told and the world they've built is unquestionably at the forefront of this movie, which could piss off a lot of the more right-leaning white folks that see the movie, but the counter to that is it's going to inspire so many more people on the other side of that coin for exactly the same reasons. Black Panther doesn't hide its differences. It celebrates them. That is the takeaway here and that is what feels revolutionary about the whole project.


      I hope this if the first of many like giant mega blockbuster films. The box office predictions seem to indicate it might be. There's one thing Hollywood like above all else and that's money. If it become financially safe to make these kinds of movies with this kind of diverse cast then the door will be blown wide open.

      That's exciting, not just from a politically progressive standpoint, but also a cinema-loving standpoint. More diverse voices means more diverse storytelling, which means better, less predictable movies. Also, as a comic book movie fan, it means at least Marvel is still in the business of changing things up. Guardians of the Galaxy changed the feeling of what superhero movies could be. Black Panther does it as well. That will be why Marvel succeeds for another 10 years.

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