How to Train Your Dragon

MPI

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Death Spa The hottest health spa in in town uses a state-of-the-art computer to help its clientele get the most out of their workouts, but the business is threatened when people start dying on the premises in wonderfully gory ways. Well, it would be threatened if the customers cared more about their safety than they do their bodies. It seems the owner’s wife, a woman who burned to death under mysterious circumstances, has returned for some supernatural vengeance. I won’t pretend that this late ’80s horror flick is a “good” movie per se, but there’s definitely a lot to enjoy here from the bloody gore effects to the decade-glorifying production design to its unabashed love of nudity to dialogue that delivers unintentional laughs. It’s a fun little movie that also earns points for finding a different angle on the haunted house tale. Gorgon Video’s new Blu-ray offers a solid HD transfer alongside new and entertaining extras, and while it’s not the best new release this week (and it’s more than a little over-priced) it’s a joy to finally see this somewhat forgotten gem find new life. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Commentary, making of, trailer]

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Aural Fixation - Large

Whether purposely sending a helicopter into the eye of a tornado or believing you are a real life fairy tale character, it seems that no matter what films oriented towards the younger generation may be about (or who my star in them), the music featured in these films is not only well done, it is also (maybe more surprisingly) impressive. This fact is proven most handily in animated films like How To Train Your Dragon (with a score composed by John Powell) and Rango (composed by Hans Zimmer) which had the kind of full-bodied, moving sound you would expect to hear in an Academy Award winning film rather than a movie aimed at kids. That’s probably why Powell got his first Oscar nomination for Dragon. Granted Powell and Zimmer are accomplished composers in their own right and regardless of the genre they work in, their music is sure to be impressive, but lesser known composers working on these types of films also seem to create music that stands out. This question has come up several times, as each kid-oriented film would be entertaining enough, but the music would always stand out the most. This question came to the forefront of again while I was watching Journey 2: The Mysterious Island this past week and could not deny that even though The Rock was riding a giant bee with Luis Guzmán holding on for dear life behind him, the music driving the action was decidedly impressive. Composer Andrew Lockington was the […]

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MTV cameras were at the recent Freaks and Geeks/Undeclared cast reunion, and they managed to corner actor Jay Baruchel and grill him about the sequel to his Oscar nominated animated film How to Train Your Dragon. When asked if he knew anything about the movie yet, Baruchel showed enthusiasm for the project by practically bragging to the reporter, “Yes I do. I know everything about it. I read it last week!” Oh you cocky Jay Baruchel, with your smug five o clock shadow. Someday you’ll get put in your place! Baruchel went on to explain, “It’s phenomenal. And it’s not a sequel; it’s a chapter two. Because there are eight books, so it’s not just finding crazy situations to put our characters in. It’s very much a second act of a three act thing.”

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This article is part of our Oscar Week Series, where you will find breakdowns and predictions for all of the major categories. There are few categories as enigmatic as Best Score. What do voters even consider when marking their ballots? Which music was the best? Which music aided the film the most? How many synthesizers and tribal drums were used? That mystery is part of the complexity which speaks to how difficult film scoring is and how truly transcendent the music of movies can be. It’s a diverse field this year, but there can be only one. With my proposed winner in red, here are the nominees:

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There’s no secret that the certified sub-sections of “best picture” are not only somewhat backhanded, they’re getting increasingly more robbed of any shred of surprise at who the potential winner is as the Academy expands the number of films qualifying for the biggest prize. Increasing the number of nominees to ten whilst retaining the sub-categories of, generally, the same award (best animated *film*, best foreign *film*, best documentary *film*…) seems nearly needless; especially in this particular category because Pixar has removed any degree of competitiveness the past two years.

It isn’t because Pixar has a stronghold on the award of Best Animated Film itself (despite their current 4 for 6 record and running on 3 consecutive), but mainly because now that the Best Picture category has been extended to 10 films they’re more likely to have already announced the winner of a sub-category film by having announced the nomination of one (and only one) of the sub-category films in the larger category.

It is still nice to see as many films as possible get deserved recognition even though there’s about as close to a guarantee that they will lose as can possibly be without actually being able to guarantee a guarantee. Though, assuming the illogical can actually occur it would be interesting to see the black hole in the Oscarverse that would develop if Toy Story 3 is not announced as the victor.

As such, the Winner and two “Waydagoers” are…

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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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At the end of the 90s, famous Oscar show writer and Celebrity Fit Club contestant Bruce Vilanch claimed that, “Generally with the Oscars…there isn’t much you can do until the nominations are announced. Then you know what kind of year you’re dealing with – what’s been overlooked, what the issues are.” He was talking about preparing to write the show, but it applies to everyone from the directors, producers and stars on down to the fans. It’s fun to guess around the water cooler (your office still has a water cooler?), but until now, it’s all been speculation. Thankfully, almost all that speculation has been spot on, so we can all continue our conversations about whether Black Swan will beat The Social Network for Best Picture. Whether Natalie Portman has any true competition for Best Actress. Whether, most importantly of all, Colleen Atwood will beat Mary Zophres for Best Costume Design. Here they are. The 2011 Academy Award nominees:

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The Producers Guild of America is known for aligning its picks with the Oscar nominations with the startling regularity that can only come when two groups share the same voting pool. That’s why groups like, say, the Hollywood Foreign Press (who I think actually nominated a nip-slip video this year) doesn’t match up at all. The PGA, which announced its award nominees today, went 9 for 10 last year, and by the looks of this list, they might just do it again in 2011.

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Iron Man 2

The dust has settled on the first, Summer, weekend box office of 2010. While Iron Man 2 didn’t break too many records, it still came out pulsar cannons blasting, and comic book/movie fans gave it 133 million votes of confidence.

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How to Train Your Dragon Box Office

As predicted, it was a rather abysmal weekend at the box office. After being edged out slightly last weekend by newcomer Kick-Ass, the Dreamworks Animation pic How to Train Your Dragon returned to the top of the charts with a vengeance this weekend, slicing up both The Losers and the J-Lo led rom-com The Back-Up Plan.

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The Losers Box Office

It’s another beautiful and sunny week here at The Reject Report. Alright, that’s a lie. It’s rather depressing. John Cairns is no longer writing this column, and it looks to be a drab week for Hollywood’s bean counters…

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It’s not nearly as bad as everyone’s making it out to be, but it wasn’t nearly as huge as most fans seemed to expect.

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Well, when I said 3-D would fall from the top spot at the box office I once again spoke too soon. How to Train Your Dragon has apparently won what proved to be yet another weekend photo-finish.

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Date Night

We had a sense that this was going to be a very tight “Clash” at the top of the box office — and indeed, this weekend’s box office result turned out to be too close to call.

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3d-image2

Over the past few years, I have been a very vocal supporter of 3D films, and unlike many of the voices in the blogosphere, I don’t see the technology as a gimmick or a fleeting element of the cinematic experience. Now there is a veritable war for 3D with Clash of the Titans battling with How to Train Your Dragon and even Alice in Wonderland for digital screens, and from the noise created on the Internet, you’d find it hard to believe the general public cares.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, learn the horrifying truth behind the Lincoln presidency and how to train dragons.

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How to Train Your Dragon Box Office

It’s not on the same level as Monsters vs. Aliens, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, Kung Fu Panda or some other movies, but it’s still $43 million for the much-acclaimed How to Train Your Dragon, in 3-D.

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kevin-reportcard-header

This week, chubby man about town Kevin Carr takes a look at How to Train Your Dragon, Hot Tub Time Machine (which sounds right up his alley) and Greenberg. You may want to wear a helmet.

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Hot Tub Time Machine

It’s shaping up to be an interesting weekend at the box office with a couple of promising-looking new movies How to Train Your Dragon and Hot Tub Time Machine rolling out in an attempt to finally knock off Alice in Wonderland as the top-grossing movie in North America.

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How to Train Your Dragon

Here we take a one dimensional view on the latest 3D film from Dreamworks Animation of which we saw only in two dimensions. The major lesson learned is that you apparently don’t need polarized glasses to tame a reptile.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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