Cars 2

Whereas Pixar has dominated the category in recent years, the sense that Cars 2 isn’t a shoe-in for awards season is offering a spotlight to a wider field. In fact, it’s also a wider field that will beget more nominees – if there are 16 eligible in the given year, 5 nominees will make the short list. If the numbers stay steady, this would mark the third time since the Best Animated Feature‘s inception in 2001 that there are more than 3 films up for the big prize. According to The Wrap, the list of films that have been submitted for consideration include: The Adventures of Tintin, Alois Nebel, Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, Arthur Christmas, Cars 2, A Cat in Paris, Chico & Rita, Gnomeo & Juliet, Happy Feet Two, Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil, Kung Fu Panda 2, Mars Needs Moms, Puss in Boots, Rango, Rio, The Smurfs, Winnie the Pooh, and Wrinkles. Just because they’ve been submitted doesn’t meant they’re all eligible. Several haven’t done qualifying runs in Los Angeles theaters, and many are questionable because of their use of motion capture or live-action blend. In the mo-cap cases of Tintin, Happy Feet Two and Mars Needs Moms, filmmakers have been asked to discuss their methods and intentions with the process in order to prove eligible. The Smurfs and Alvin and the Chipmunks are also animation/live-action hybrids, so their fate is unclear at this time. Without them, and without, say, the Czech Republic’s rotoscoped Alois Nebel, the […]

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This Week in DVD

Another week, another pretty solid group of DVD titles released for your viewing pleasure. Our wallets and bank accounts will be a lot happier this week too as compared to last Tuesday when the number of DVDs worth buying numbered eight. Eight! That’s more than most DVD columns feature in their entirety! But like I said, this week is filled with rentals (and one title worth buying) including Crazy Stupid Love, Cars 2, Bunraku, Trespass and more. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Adventures of Mark Twain (UK) “Naked people have little to no influence in this society.” So says the always wise and wonderful Mark Twain as captured in clay in this funny and whimsical claymation adventure. The film mixes bits and pieces of several of Twain’s works, short and long, into an adventure that sees Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, and Becky Thatcher join Mr Samuel Clemens himself on a steam powered airship across the sky. Twain is hoping to find Halley’s Comet so he can end his life in its flames, but the children attempt to convince him that he still has much to offer mankind and that mankind has much to offer him. Fanciful visuals and eminently quotable observations from Twain’s writing make this a fun film that speaks to kids as well as adults. **NOTE – This is a region2 DVD which requires either a region-free player or the willingness to watch on your PC.**

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Drinking Games

This past summer, Disney/Pixar continued their string of sequels with Cars 2. It may not have been the most popular Pixar film with critics, but kids loved it, and it’s one of the most merchandised movie of the year. That’s gotta be worth something, right? Now that Cars 2 is out on DVD, Blu-ray and 3D Blu-ray, parents around the world will be watching it over and over and over again with their kids. Whether you liked the film or not, this might begin to wear on you. So uncork a bottle of wine or crack open a beer and find a new way to get through the film for the 50th time.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news and editorial column that doesn’t ask much of you, just your affection. That’s right, it’s completely free — all you need to do is tune in. That’s not a bad deal, friends. We begin with another shot from A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. Because why the hell not. Warner Bros. released a bunch of promotional photos for the ‘stravaganza, due out November 4, expanding a universe in which Neil Patrick Harris is still alive, Paula Garces is still gorgeous and Patton Oswalt is Santa Claus. Oh yes, this is happening.

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There’s an old maxim that states that everyone in show business is fake. The traditional interpretation of that is that everyone in Hollywood is ready to be kind to your face, but stab you in the back and probably piss on the wound. That may be an exaggeration, but in the case of these 6 comedians, though, they really are fake. As in literally fake. Their public personae are carefully crafted, and you only occasionally see the real person behind it. Most of the time it’s just an extension of the person’s actual personality, but some of them are completely and totally fictitious people. For example, Bono is an experimental attention-seeking robot. Or take Neil Patrick Harris, who is actually a shaved ferret. You had no idea, right? Here are six comedians that almost never break the fourth wall to reveal their true selves.

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The Reject Report

So now Harry Potter’s patronus is in the shape of a giant dump truck loaded with million dollar bills. Is there such a thing as a million dollar bill? There probably should be. And while you’re at it, go ahead and put Alan Rickman’s face on it. In J.K. Rowling we trust. Okay, I’m done with all that. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2, the last film of the 10-year series, has demolished all kinds of box office records. After breaking advance day records with $32m in tickets sales, it went on to make $43.5m in midnight showings. It wasn’t a shock to anyone when the Friday numbers came in and Deathly Hallows 2 had beaten The Twilight Saga: New Moon‘s $72.7m opening day with its own $92.1m. But the young wizard wasn’t done there. No, satisfaction was not met at the defeat of New Moon, though we’re all pretty thankful for it. Deathly Hallows 2, and probably Warners had something to do with it, too, had its eyes set on that opening weekend. Another Warners film, The Dark Knight, was holding the #1 weekend slot for three years with its $158.4m three-day take. Now that Sunday’s numbers have come out, Deathly Hallows 2 has pretty much swept the floor with that record, too.

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Just a quick question to stir up the imagination. What do you think 4th of July is like at Michael Bay’s house? You think his friends and family sit around in lawn chairs sipping Corona while Bay sets off a bottle rocket every four or five minutes, or do you think it’s a blockbuster show of spectacle. I like to think he takes it easy on the one day when the rest of the country is making their own ‘splosions fest. But that’s just me. After this weekend, actually after the week since last Wednesday, Bay will have a whole lot more firework money to toss around.

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Culture Warrior

I’m not a parent, but I know that you’re a bad one. You know why? Because you probably took your kids to see Cars 2 this weekend. I know what you’re thinking: “What’s wrong with Cars 2, it’s just a harmless little kids movie.” Well, it’s destroying America with it’s anti-oil message, indoctrinating our children to become Prius-buying, David Simon-worshipping tree huggers so the late-term-aborting hippie liberals at Pixar can do their part in carrying out Hollywood’s takeover of family values. You’re probably thinking, “But Landon, children typically don’t understand subtext. And when children grow up in a free democratic society such as ours they often question for themselves the values and ideas they were exposed to as children and eventually adopt a perspective that makes the most sense to them, thus making your use of ‘indoctrination’ hyperbolic and short-sighted. Anyway, even if they did understand what Pixar was doing, children don’t give a ratatouille’s ass about politics, the free market, offshore drilling, or our over-reliance on fossil fuels. They just want to watch a movie about talking cars. Also, being a child of the late 80s/early 90s, you grow up with a lot of environmentally-aware children’s entertainment like Jim Henson’s TV show Dinosaurs and movies like FernGully and The Brave Little Toaster, yet those didn’t inform your political perspective in either direction just as they didn’t make you think dinosaurs wore clothes and acted like the cast of All in the Family.” That would all be fine and dandy […]

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We applaud you, Pixar. Your cash-cow generating skills are unmatched even when you don’t seem to be putting in the same amount of effort as usual. Such is the case with Cars 2, a Pixar movie that isn’t exactly universally loved. I know. That’s groundbreaking in and of itself. But despite being a critical underachiever, Cars 2 still managed to lap its competitors and fall in line with much of Pixar’s slate. It’s $68m weekend puts it at #5 on the opening chart for the studio, ahead of Wall-E and just under 2009’s Up. This opening also puts the movie at #4 on the all-time biggest June opening in history, a list whose top five includes three Pixar films. Wall-E’s $63m opening weekend in 2008 and Toy Story 3’s $110.3m opening from last year are the other two.

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The Reject Report

And around and around it goes. Kind of like the box office. It comes and goes, and sometimes you look around and wonder what exactly is changing? Well, the movies are getting bigger. The animation is getting slicker. And the sequels are starting to take over. They’ve even got PIXAR in their grubby claws this weekend. Cars 2 is the big Summer movie, the likeliest candidate to the the top spot, but where will it rank among the rest of Pixar’s slate? Does Bad Teacher have a shot at a big opening? Is Ryan Reynolds still flying around space or did he get eaten by the Super 8 monster? Okay, that last question probably won’t be broached, but we’ll hit on everything else in this week’s Reject Report.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr is inspired by Larry the Cable Guy and his character of Mater in the Cars movies. After all, if a buck-toothed rusty redneck pick-up truck can travel the world, why can’t a bald-yet-hairy fat guy from Ohio can do so as well. Kevin lurked in the streets of Tokyo, hoping to stumble onto some classy British spies and uncover a plot to undermine green energy sources. Then he brushed off his teaching degree and got a job at a middle school where he drank profusely, slept through the day and threw dodge balls at the kids. When he tried to explain to the cops that he was just following in the way of Cameron Diaz’s character from Bad Teacher, they just laughed at him and hauled him away.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It is not a sentient being sent to Earth to bring you nightly doses of absolute and unquestionable brilliance. It is not the wittiest chap at the tea party. It is not an ad-free experience. It is, however, a nightly gathering of entertainment news and views that works very hard to win your affection. Except for last night, when its usually diligent author felt pain so bold that it had him contemplating watching Glitter again… Breaking tonight is the news that Seth Gordon, director of such films as The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters and Four Christmases, is now attached to direct a remake of the 1983 film WarGames. This news will undoubtedly be met with mixed reactions, as their is a delicate balance between people’s hatred for remakes and their enjoyment of the works of Seth Gordon. Which will win out? More at 11…

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The redeeming quality of the Cars franchise has nothing to do with spectacular visuals, high-octane action or universal bathroom humor. No, when it comes to the automotive Pixar series, it’s all about the plethora of celebrity voices and their 8-cylinder caricatures. Jay Leno as Jay Limo. Jeff Gordon as Jeff Gorvette. John Lasseter as John Lassetire. Gene Shalit couldn’t come up with names this golden. Cars and Cars 2 are wackier examples of animators porting over celebrity likenesses for the purposes of their characters, but it’s a more common practice than we realize. Hey, if the voice fits the real face, why not whip up a character that fits the bill? Here are a few examples of actors whom animators didn’t have too much trouble dropping into their cartoon feature films (with varying degrees of punny names):

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Five years after the success of Cars, Pixar finally drops the second installment on waiting audiences in Cars 2. I am unabashedly a Pixar fan; I’ve loved almost everything they’ve offered up since ’95’s Toy Story. This noted, Cars 2 is one of the most unintentionally weird and schizophrenic mainstream features I’ve seen in theaters in a long time. Film-goers are thrust into the current plot via a violent, ten minute intro to the newest character in the Cars universe, Finn McMissile (Michael Caine), as he attempts to uncover the nefarious scheming of Professor Zündapp (Thomas Kretschmann) on an ocean oil rig. It’s showy and fun, but the eventual payoff is, again, very weird.

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Every week, Landon Palmer and Cole Abaius log on to their favorite chat client of 1996 as DogEatsHeart and 5Obstructions5 in order to discuss some topical topic of interest. This week, the pair apply some sun screen and some green screen in order to forecast how the movies of Summer 2011 might shape up. Is there a secret weapon to its inevitable success? Is its success inevitable? Anything would be better than last year, right?

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Jaws didn’t mean to do it, but Summer has become the biggest business in movie-making. This summer, we’re getting a new batch of movies that the studios are hoping to be gigantic, but thankfully for us, they fit into 6 handy categories. Rob Hunter and Cole Abaius have worked tirelessly (except for five or ten naps) in order to break these movies down and present them to you. What will you be watching this summer? What excites you the most? What do you have the highest hopes for? These films all have the potential to bust blocks, but will it be your block they’re busting? Here they are, the six types of films coming out in the following months.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It ain’t messin’ with you, bub. You should know that up front. It’s only bringing you the best of the weekend’s news, tidbits and otherwise noteworthy items. It believes that you shouldn’t mess around either. That’s why it recommends reading it every single night before you go to bed. Today begins with a project that I know many of you are excited about, 20th Century Fox’s Deadpool. A perfect fit is Ryan Reynolds in the titular role, as are Zombieland writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick on scripting duties. This week the project got a director, effects artist Tim Miller, whose credits include X-Men, X2 and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. He has also served as the Inferno Supervisor (read: Guy Who is In Charge of Digital Explosions) on several other projects. That’s a pretty wicked line of work.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a focused, coordinated strike upon the oppressive barrage of movie blogs who think you should really be reading 700 words on the latest third-tier casting rumors for the next Adam Shankman movie. We take all the interesting news and otherwise notable articles of the day and bring them together, in one place, where you can kick ass and gain knowledge quickly. It also includes some funny videos. Because everyone loves funny videos. With Jason Eisener’s Hobo with a Shotgun finally getting to theaters (and iTunes — go watch it!), Canuxploitation is on its way. To celebrate, Quiet Earth asked Canadian grindhouse cinema expert Paul Corupe to write of Canuxploitation’s weidest, wildest Canadian exploitation movies. Yes.

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What is Movie News After Dark? This is a question that I am almost never asked, but I will answer it for you anyway. Movie News After Dark is FSR’s newest late-night secretion, a column dedicated to all of the news stories that slip past our daytime editorial staff and make it into my curiously chubby RSS ‘flagged’ box. It will (but is not guaranteed to) include relevant movie news, links to insightful commentary and other film-related shenanigans. I may also throw in a link to something TV-related here or there. It will also serve as my place of record for being both charming and sharp-witted, but most likely I will be neither of the two. I write this stuff late at night, what do you expect?

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Despite Toy Story 3 wrapping everything up in a neat little package and putting it away, Pixar isn’t finished with Woody and Buzz and all of their other little marketing machines from the franchise. While no new Toy Story feature has been announced (and I think to make one would be a mistake), there are some shorts featuring the characters that will be attached to upcoming films. It was first reported that the short attached to this summer’s Pixar movie Cars 2 would feature the Toy Story characters, and would be about the gang creating a tropical paradise for Barbie after she is left home during a Hawaiian vacation. Today it has been announced that yet another Toy Story short is being produced, this time to be attached to The Muppets, which is coming out in the fall.

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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
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