Last weekend seems like such a long time ago. It seems like it was in another galaxy far, far away, in fact. We now live in this strange new world in which Disney not only owns Lucasfilm but is also putting out a new live-action Star Wars movie in two and a half years. And yet, that’s still not the biggest thing to happen in the last seven days. This is, of course, the destruction of Hurricane Sandy, which has affected the film industry to a degree.
For one thing, as we reported, it destroyed a major piece of movie memorabilia — the HMS Bounty replica used in Mutiny on the Bounty and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest — and two human lives with it. Also, a number of films that opened or were supposed to open in limited release in New York City this weekend have been delayed until power is restored to the venues hosting them.
Meanwhile, individuals without electricity in the wake of the storm have been unable to read FSR all week. The least of their problems, obviously, and I’m not saying it’s any priority of theirs to catch up with our content, but if they are looking to do so once they can, the recap is here. Seriously, though, join us in helping the people in need post-Sandy by maybe skipping just one movie and donating the ticket money instead.
If you are catching up or looking for highlights, let us first remind you of our reviews of new releases (Flight, Wreck-It Ralph, The Man With the Iron Fists, The Bay and This Must Be the Place) and of our interviews with Iron Fists co-writer/director RZA and co-writer/producer Eli Roth, as well as horror film composer Tyler Bates and Satellite of Love writer-director Will James Moore. Also this week, we watched trailers for Despicable Me 2, John Dies at the End, West of Memphis, Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (red band) and Steven Soderbergh’s supposed next-to-last film, Side Effects.
Now, check out our biggest and best stories and original content from the past week after the break.
The bomb was dropped on all level of movie fan with the announcement of Disney’s Lucasfilm purchase and plans for more Star Wars movies. And it was revealed they will be original stories, so no adaptation of Timothy Zahn‘s novels. Speaking of SW novels, this could be the end of those. Once the news settled in and the hangover subsided (sort of; we’re still in a state of shock), we had some fun with the news. Nathan looked at good and bad ideas for who should direct Episode 7. Top pick seemed to be Brad Bird: “his first film as a director of live action, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol,not only proved that Bird could be trusted to resuscitate a floundering franchise, it also proved that the guy could flat-out make an awesome, balls-to-the-wall action tentpole.”
Other recommended Star Wars-related posts:
5 Weird Ways Disney Buying Lucasfilm Just Changed The Future
Three interesting pieces of news for comic book movie fans arrived this week, and the Guillermo Del Toro had us the most curious. He is rumored to be doing a multi-character team-up called Heaven Sent involving Swamp Thing, John Constantine, Deadman, The Spectre and others. Nathan commented: “If Del Toro gets his hands on all of these characters, or even if one or two should prove to be unavailable, that would give him a pretty huge and pretty weird sandbox to play around with his spooky design aesthetic in, and could produce one of the coolest comic book movies ever, even in a world where Joss Whedon’s The Avengers has already become a reality.”
More recommended comic book movie news:
Jamie Foxx In “Early Talks” to Play Electro in The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Bryan Singer Now Official to Direct X-Men: Days of Future Past
We have a new column covering the Oscars and awards season, and it is the best damn Oscar blog ever, if we do say so ourselves. In the first installment Daniel looked at the ambition of Cloud Atlas and compared it to similar films in the past that were or weren’t recognized by the Academy, while highlighting its worthiness and potential in specific categories: “Alexander Berner’s editing (one editor on a film with three directors, mind you), might be less likely to make it to a nomination given how closely that category tends to mimic Best Picture. Yet it deserves the attention, somehow darting from scene to scene without ham-handedness or brutality.”
With less than a week until the U.S. opening of Skyfall (which is already breaking records overseas), we get our second to last Countdown column for 007. Brian looked through the many years of James Bond toys, including action figures, guns, cars, games and trading cards. Also caviar and cigarettes. And rubber bands. “Repeating that: James Bond rubber bands. For the man who believes keeping his potato chips fresh when the chip clip has gone missing is an act of espionage.”
The 10 Must-See Movies of November 2012
In an amusing political viral video, filmmaker Joss Whedon came out as endorsing Mitt Romney for President, though not necessarily because he thinks the former governor of Massachusetts would make a good commander-in-chief. Neil wrote: “a vote for Romney is a vote for the zombie apocalypse. And if movies have taught we movie fans anything, it’s how to survive such an event. So grab your sword and your sawed-off shotgun and head to the polls, friends.”
This year’s AFI FEST has begun, but before the event kicked off we continued our preview coverage with more anticipated titles and some recommendations (also some negative reminders) of films we’ve already seen, including West of Memphis, which Kate seemed to really be pushing for this week: “One of the most haunting films I’ve seen this year (and I’ve seen it twice), Amy Berg‘s West of Memphis packs a punch. Yes, it’s yet another documentary on the West Memphis Three, but Berg’s comes with new access and interviews, and in my Sundance review for the film, I pointed out that “Berg uses a number of documentary filmmaking techniques to present the story – all are exceedingly well-executed and, despite the film’s vast number of players and Berg’s decision to flit back and forth between time periods, it’s both easy to follow and to engage with.” Also, you’ll cry.”
Other recommended AFI FEST preview posts:
Kate’s 5 Most Anticipated Films
Allison’s 5 Most Anticipated Films
6 Must See Films of AFI FEST 2012
Young Americans and New Auteurs Program
Centerpiece Galas and Special Screenings
Full AFI FEST 2012 Lineup
In this week’s Culture Warrior column, Landon looked at six comedies released in 2001, all of which he claims must be seen for their audacity alone. Here is part of his write-up on Louis CK and Chris Rock’s Pootie Tang: “an evident mess to anyone with eyes, was edited heavily by the studio, and flopped at the box office. But, looking at the film over ten years later, it’s clear that these behemoths in the comedy world were attempting something compelling in their dogged pursuit of the anti-movie.”
More audacious comedies can be found in David Christopher Bell’s latest list, which looks at 10 silly comedies that dealt with serious issues. Among those well-known works by Kubrick, Brooks, Smith and the Monty Python players is the less familiar (perhaps because of its subject matter) Four Lions: “I’m surprised I haven’t heard more offense in regards to this film. After all – it’s a comedy about four dim-witted suicide bombers of Muslim faith. That’s kind of a touchy subject for more than a few reasons. However watching the film there really isn’t much to be offended about. In fact, during production the filmmakers consulted heavily with former Guantanamo Bay guest Moazzam Begg in order to determine this very thing. Beggs, along with two other former detainees, apparently loved the film.”
One of the directors highlighted by Nathan as a long shot for the next Star Wars is Tim Burton. If the main villain is a Hutt, then this could happen, given Jack’s theory that the filmmaker hatest fat people/characters: “That’s the conclusion I reached from watching Frankenweenie, an otherwise very pleasant return to form for for the director. What isn’t so pleasant is how every paunchy character — the mayor, the gym coach, and the chubby kid whose name doesn’t matter — is cackled at by Burton and turned into a visual punch-line.”
With the passing of months occurring mid-week, we also got the conclusion of another year of our 31 Days of Horror series, but not before getting at least five more installments. Among the final titles were Planet Terror, Slugs – The Movie, The Fog, Wake in Fright and Frankenweenie (the original — not the new anti-fat one). Robert Fure commented on the last, which seemed an odd choice: “Halloween time isn’t always about scares, boobs, blood, and more boobs and boobs with blood on them. It’s about a feeling. It’s about that change in the seasons, that creeping darkness, that chilled air. Frankenweenie is good family fun that sits a bit further into darkness than some children may be comfortable with, but ultimately it’s a great story about a boy and his dog and the lengths they’ll go for each other. While it isn’t scary, violent, or boner inducing, it does make you feel good to watch it and you’ll have some laughs and feel right at home in the season.”
Other recommended horror and Halloween-themed posts:
10 Terrifying Non-Horror Films From The Criterion Collection
8 Trick-or-Treating Scenes We Love
25 Things We Learned From ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’ Commentary
Junkfood Horror: Worst Halloween Costumes in B-Horror