Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A few observations from this week

Couple things I wanted to comment / spout about...

O.K. here's my first sour note: the present day Chris Evans Captain America costume in "The Avengers".

Have to say...not liking it! They did such a perfectly amazing job of making the costume believable and functional during the WWII era!! But I guess here's another time where "The Avengers" is seriously mucking up the works as far as solid first movies in a new potential franchise are concerned..."Iron Man" being the first. Cap's uniform on the streets of NYC just looks like a Halloween costume.

"Iron Man" was seriously grounded. Then, "The Avengers" came calling and it felt like things started to go down hill fast. Director Jon Favreau left Marvel after "Iron Man 2" because he didn't like the direction the third movie would more than likely take, post "Avengers". Too many characters were crammed into "2", all leading to this ultimate team-up that, as I look at more and more photos and read more and more articles, just continues to look bad. Sorry.

Next..."The Dark Knight Rises".

JEEZ, stop ruining all the cool new stuff we'd rather see when the movie ACTUALLY COMES OUT!!! The Anne Hathaway Catwoman-on-the-Batpod shots were fine, but now these extended clips of what some are calling the 'Batwing' just seem to blow the wait-for-it wad that should only be revealed in a darkened theater! I'm having to turn away from these repeated on-set, supposedly 'covert' videos! But again that's what the current generation of young moviegoers seem to want; spill everything in advance so there's no surprises later. Good job!

BTW, I say covert because I've learned recently that a number of these bystander-with-an-iPhone videos are actually planned out by the studios as a viral ploy. Apparently this is something that's starting to be built into pre-production meetings on big tent-pole movies; make it look like someone with a camera phone's digitally stealing something precious when in fact the studio wanted it to look that way all along. These 'pirate' images certainly get your attention as well as answering the question of why do so many of these clips exist on an extremely secure Christopher Nolan set.

Remember back in the day (before the internet of course) where any and all info about an upcoming movie (ie "The Empire Strikes Back") would be found in the occasional magazine and just sparsely. Nothing major was blown months or even a year before the release of a particular film and that's the way it should be today. Ah, my continued love / hate relationship with the fanboys.

Oh yeah, and why is everyone taking such issue with Anne Hathaway's Catwoman outfit??!! I mean seriously! BACK OFF!! It's still early! We don't even know at what point in the movie this stunt with her on the Batpod takes place! Fucking CHILL!!!! Cool image: check out this really nice fan rendering of how Anne Hathaway's full costume will likely appear in the film. Great design, I absolutely approve!

Saturday night's American Cinematheque 25th Anniversary screening of "Highlander" at the Egyptian Theatre was very cool and we were actually able to go sit front and center for the Q&A with director Russell Mulcahy and producer Peter Davis.

They showed a beautiful 70MM international print that had been in storage in Chicago. I was amazed when I saw two extended and very different versions of a scene already in the original film. One contained quite a bit more dialogue where Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert) says goodbye to his assistant Rachel before going off to fight the Kurgan in the finale. The other more revealing moment was right before the end credits.

On the Scottish Highlands, Brenda and Connor have a very different moment as they open a bottle of champagne bottled in 1976, a direct counter moment to when MacLeod describes historic events from 1783 after he opens a bottle of brandy bottled in that year. Instead of hearing a voice over of Connor talk about knowing what scientists and leaders are thinking and how he can help them, he speaks of finally realizing what it's like to be truly alive and his new-found connection with all living things. Is it possible I somehow missed this on the 'Immortal Edition' DVD I own?...because I've never witnessed these scene extensions and inclusions before! Have to re-check the disc. At any rate, I REALLY like this very different ending!

Unfortunately, Richard Dreyfuss was unable to attend the American Cinematheque Q&A screening of "Down and Out in Beverly Hills" at the Aero Theatre due to some type of family problem. We were kind of bummed by this, but still enjoyed the screening plus Nick Nolte's and director Paul Mazursky's musing about the casting and making of the movie.

Saddened to see that "30 Minutes or Less" is kind of bombing due to bad reviews. I love "Zombieland" and of course this is by the same director, Ruben Fleischer, and starring Jesse Eisenberg. Seemed like a sure thing for laughs but I guess not.

And finally I was overjoyed to see "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" continue to take the #1 spot at the box office while new entry "Glee: The 3D Concert Movie" sank under it's own hubris. HA-HA-HA-HA!!! Oh wait....HAAAA!!! This weekend I'll be seeing "Apes" for the second time, now with Rebecca whose back home from Scotland, and of course there will be a second viewing of "Captain America" as we both really enjoyed it!


At August 18, 2011 at 3:16 PM, Anonymous Allen said...

I think Cap is gonna look just fine on film. I'm keepin' the faith!
*sips more Kool-Aid*

YES!!! Stop the damn Dark Knight leaks NOW!!! I avoid any announcement of video or pix from the set of that movie. I've already seen enough, and some of it I'm not happy about. I'm having an 'Avengers-like' reaction to some of the shots.

So true, so true. Today's movie-going audience is spoiled by quick DVD releases and megaplexes showing 18 different movies at one time.
Here's one for you: Do you remember when "Star War" celebrated ONE YEAR in theaters?!?! I defy any filmmaker/studio to ever do that again!

I think Selena Kyle/Catwoman looks great!

Jealous as always of your Q&A experiences!

Don't know enough about "30 Minutes," but I will say that I'm unimpressed with what I've seen of it in trailers.

Welcome back Apes! And sorry "Glee," your 15-minutes are up.

Nuff said.

At August 19, 2011 at 4:32 PM, Blogger LA Filmcutter said...

Cap's costume...we'll see. ;)

YES!!!...I DO remember the one year anniversary of "Star Wars" with the birthday cake 1-sheet! Something like that will never, EVER happen again!!! Considering how fast movies go to DVD and download now!!

It amazes me how after something's been out for a month or even two it's old news. This not only holds true for movies but music as well. Everything resonated more back in the day and didn't seem quite so disposable.

Hey, if you were out here we'd being going to these Q&A screenings together!

"...sorry "Glee," your 15-minutes are up." Don't I wish!! LOL!


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