Gnomeo and Juliet

This Week in Blu-ray

Looks like we’ve got another week of This Week in Blu-ray being right on time. After a few bumpy weeks, we’re back on scheduled and its right on time, as we’ve got a lot of great titles to talk about this week. We visit with Charlie Chaplin and one of his finest efforts, we take a walk through the blood-soaked battlefields of the American Civil War, we get closer to two American film icons and when we’re done with America, we follow a South African Kevin Bacon to Thailand to save some drugged-up hookers. Also making an appearance: Natalie Portman, Charlie Sheen, Gnomeo, Juliet and some alien kids with super-powers that will bore you, then excite you. It’s all part of this week’s fully loaded Blu-ray selection. The Great Dictator I spent a greater deal of my childhood than I’d like to admit thinking that Charlie Chaplin simply couldn’t talk. I was good at math, but I was a dumb little kid. Luckily he could talk and he did so in one of his most controversial, subversive and hilarious films. There are some wonderful, classic Chaplin moments of physical comedy and some silly, ambitious moments of what we now consider traditional comedic elements. Some call The Great Dictator his masterpiece, his send-up of the his generation’s most reviled figure. Having been given the Criterion treatment, it is all that and more. Not to hyperbolize, but this is the Charlie Chaplin Criterion you’ve been waiting for. The black and white presentation […]

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The Reject Report

Literally. The entire city literally came to life and fought its way to the top of the box office this weekend. Not unlike Fightin’ Around the World with Russell Crowe but with less Australian accent. Yes, while that idea may lead to an amazing film, it probably wouldn’t end up doing as well as Battle: Los Angeles did this weekend. It may not have opened quite as big as some analysts were expecting – some had predictions of the film opening in the low $40-millions – it did do quite well for itself. In domestic sales, it has already reach the halfway mark of its reported $70-million budget. Not much indication how the film, which is very Amurrican, will play overseas, but Sony can stand proud knowing their domestic opening weekend is considered a grand one.

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The Reject Report

That’s right. It’s a battle in here sometimes. Two or three or maybe even four films enter. One film leaves. Which film is it going to be this weekend? The science fiction endorsement for the Marines? The Twilight-esque take on a werewolf classic? The Disney computer animated film from the guy who directed 2002’s The Time Machine. Hint: it’s not gonna be that last one. They’re all in here, and they’ve taken their corners. It’s time to see who’s going to knock some aliens out of the sky and who’s going to be wearing a hood of shame.

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The Reject Report

Of course you can’t really fit many dollars in your hand. Even if you’re rocking Benjamins, the most you could fit in one hand would be a couple of hundred thousand. Rango made a whole lot more than that this weekend even if it wasn’t able to manage $40+ million. In fact, Rango gave Johnny Depp his highest weekend outside of the Pirates series and a collaboration with Tim Burton. Considering he makes a new movie with Burton every other month, that may not seem like such an accomplishment. It was also able to break into the 10 highest March openings of all time, sliding in between Robots and Wild Hogs. You know, those marks of groundbreaking cinematic achievement. Even with this nice of an opening weekend and the overall positive buzz it’s been able to generate, Rango will have a hard time matching its $135-million budget in worldwide sales let alone what it brings in domestically.

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The Reject Report

Reject Reports. Adjustment Bureaus. A talking gecko. You’d think we were shilling for an insurance company this week. Not the case, and Johnny Depp as Rango is infinitely more adorable than the Geico lizard. That might have something to do with the latter’s Cockney accent. Also on board this week are Topher Grace making a move to top billing and a Beauty and the Beast for the Twilight crowd. Of course, a blind Neil Patrick Harris might be cuter than anything the other three films have to offer. Let’s see who’s in line to make some cash.

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The Reject Report

The third weekend was a charm for Disney’s Gnomeo and Juliet. While it had a modest drop from the previous weekend, the two new films – yes, including the film I said would be #1, but we’ll get there momentarily – were unable to pull in much audience. Gnomeo and Juliet came out on top in a weekend that wasn’t ground-breaking in terms of box office receipts. The era of computer generated animation is long from over, and that’s not just thanks to PIXAR. With films like Tangled and now Gnomeo and Juliet, Disney is continuing to prove they are THE force to be reckoned with when it comes to this type of film. The immediate future looks inundated with like animated fare. Two computer animated films hit  in both March – Disney’s Mars Needs Moms and Rango – and April – Rio and Hoodwinked Too!. The animated market is flooded, and with Summer right around the corner, its looking to be quite a success for the industry, as well.

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The Reject Report

Nic Cage SMAAAAASH!!! With his car, of course. I’m sure he’d be more than happy to step into the Incredible Hulk role. Until that glorious day, though, we’ll have to be satisfied with watching him bust out of Hell and taking on William Fichtner as the Devil’s accountant. Plus it’s all in 3-D. Hall Pass isn’t, but who really wants Jason Sudekis in 3-D? Those are the two big movies this weekend, and where they stack up on this week’s box office charts might surprise you.

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The Reject Report

It was supposed to be a weekend of franchise makers, a President’s Weekend that kept the upswing in the overall box office alive and thriving. Unfortunately, none of the new films in wide release this weekend lived up to their expectations. Even Unknown, which surprised by pulling ahead of I Am Number Four early in the weekend, was unable to match the mid $20-million target anticipated for it.

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The Reject Report

In the end, the Beliebers came out en masse, but the Valentine’s Day weekend was won by Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston. Well, maybe more Sandler than Aniston. It’s probably at about 65%/35% if you get right down to it. Regardless, the gap between Just Go With It and Never Say Never was less than $1 million, not much of a gap at all when considering opening box office numbers.

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The Week That Was

Chances are that over the course of the week, you missed quite a bit of action here on the pages of FSR. I know, I’m the one who sits around staring at the traffic statistics hoping that a decimal point will become disoriented and move one or two spots to the right. So here’s your chance to make it up to us by heading back over the best content of the last seven days. I know that if I bring it all together in a handy list format, you’re more likely to take notice. It’s just the way these things work. So come and get it, dear reader, the best articles of The Week That Was…

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr spent the night in jail after trying to sneak in and see Justin Bieber: Never Say Never 3D. The cops didn’t believe him that he was trying to watch the latest remake of Thunderball. Sadly, they just saw a pervy looking fat guy squealing and crying with a group of thirteen year old girls. Fortunately, he had a chance to catch the other movies of the week, including Gnomeo and Juliet, Just Go With It and The Eagle. He also gives a little bit of love (what’s left of it anyway after spending the night in lock-up) to the Oscar-Nominated Shorts.

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Whether you’re trying to avoid the releases this week or augment them with even more movies, your alternate box office offers some options for movies that would play perfectly alongside of (or instead of) the stuff studios are shoving into the megaplex this weekend. This week features Adam Sandler getting sand in his career, a couple of gnomes only Shakespeare could love, a desperate search for a piece of metal, and an immoral ambulance chaser growing a heart three sizes larger.

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The Reject Report

Not really. However, this week does see the release of concert footage from the Bieb (along with his life-long struggle to become famous and have Ellen Degeneres’ haircut). Plus, Adam Sandler adds to his tally of generic romantic comedies and Ed Helms finally makes it out of the house. The big question – which one of these masterpieces will take the top spot?

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I’m not one for hyperbole, but sometimes a movie warrants some. So, here goes: Gnomeo & Juliet is the greatest film ever made about living, breathing garden gnomes. Throw in the whole Shakespeare element, including references to a Rosencratz and Guildenstern moving company and an animated statue of the Bard himself, and you can be sure that there will never again be another picture quite like it.

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We realize that you’re probably sitting at home right now, chewing your own nails off and wondering what movies are coming out this month. Maybe you’re even wondering why no one on the entire internet has said anything about them. Strange, we know. Fortunately, Rob Hunter and Cole Abaius spent the entire month of January combing through Wikileaks, calling Cleo, and building balsa wood trailers to make sure that you, dear reader, are in the know about what’s coming out in February. You watch movies, so this guide’s for you.

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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 shit late at night, what do you expect?

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published: 12.19.2014
A-
published: 12.18.2014
C-
published: 12.17.2014
B+
published: 12.15.2014
B


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