Michael Bay

Florida Movies

“Kim Jong-un doesn’t understand that we aren’t afraid of him. What that guy doesn’t get is that we already have an unstable peninsula that will ultimately bring down America. It’s called Florida.” The above quote comes from Conan O’Brian’s keynote speech at Saturday night’s Whitehouse Correspondents’ Dinner. O’Brien, of course, doesn’t explain the joke. He doesn’t need to. Not because he’s referencing a specific, recent event in Florida, but because the joke taps into a vast catalog of associations with Florida as a whole. It’s hard to pinpoint one adjective that adequately describes the ways in which Florida’s culture appears to the rest of the nation, but The Sunshine State is certainly in a class all its own. On the one hand, Florida made news this past year for its absurd, unjustifiable gun laws, its bureaucratic bulwarks against democratic participation, and even its cannibals. But in less serious terms, Florida is also known for hosting an astonishing number of bizarre petty crimes and a few emerging one-of-a-kind industries. Many lists, articles, editorials, and even a Twitter feed chronicling the life of the worst superhero ever have all taken part in attempting to surmise why, exactly, the Florida is so damned special. But perhaps recent movies that take place (and were shot on location in) Florida provide the real keys to understanding the idiosyncratic culture of Voldemort’s state. Michael Bay’s Pain and Gain is the third of a string of high-profile films to investigate the lives of that routinely exceptional brand […]

read more...

movies_pain_and_gain_on_set_2

Welcome to another edition of the Reject Recap, where we highlight the past week’s best news and original features from this very movie site and others around the web. You might notice the format is slightly different this time around. You also might notice that we’ve only selected stuff posted to FSR. Part of this is because I’m at a film festival this weekend and didn’t have as much time to browse our friends’ sites. Part is because our writers banged out a lot of great stuff the past few days. Surely you’ll agree while playing catch up. Start your weekend right after the jump.

read more...

Corddry Pain and Gain

The last time we spoke to actor Rob Corddry, he told us how director Michael Bay “kicked his ass” and how he’d tell us about it next time. Now, almost a year after promoting Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, Pain & Gain is finally hitting theaters and Mr. Corddry is here to tell us how Bay went about that ass-kicking. Some actors haven’t always taken to Bay’s blunt style, but Corddry embraced it. A director can’t get much more honest than telling one of his actors they “fucked up,” something Bay would tell the creator and star of Children’s Hospital after a take gone wrong. If Corddry didn’t respond to that approach, then he most likely wouldn’t have done a pool stunt for Bay, considering he isn’t a fan of the water. But Corddry is a fan of Michael Bay’s tireless work ethic, and here’s what else he had to say about him, along with a New York theater experience gone bad and why talking to Ari Fleischer wasn’t the best idea for Oliver Stone‘s W.

read more...

FILM JOCKEYS HEADER

What happens when a legendary film critic brings is geriatric crankiness to an internet movie show? Film Jockeys follows the adventures of Carl Barker, his far-too-young production staff, the filmmakers and the movie characters that inhabit their world. Written and illustrated by Derek Bacon, it’s the perfect webcomic for passionate movie fans (especially ones who agree with this). For your consideration, Episode #20:

read more...

Armageddon

This week, Michael Bay did something that I thought was only possible if you were named Joel Schumacher: he apologized for a loud, bloated late-’90s summer stimulus-athon. In an interview with the Miami Herald promoting his Florida-set Pain & Gain, Bay said, “I will apologize for Armageddon, because we had to do the whole movie in 16 weeks. It was a massive undertaking. That was not fair to the movie. I would redo the entire third act if I could. But the studio literally took the movie away from us. It was terrible. My visual effects supervisor had a nervous breakdown, so I had to be in charge of that. I called James Cameron and asked ‘What do you do when you’re doing all the effects yourself?’ But the movie did fine.” It’s unclear exactly what Bay’s problem is with the third act of Armageddon that isn’t also characteristic of the film as a whole (cloying sentimentality, a rushed pace, the central premise), or whether or not, in typical Bay fashion, his real problem is solely with special effects or the film’s box-office performance (“the movie did fine” here seems to relinquish any issues he may have had). But one thing’s for sure: Armageddon, according to its maker, is not a pure, ideal Michael Bay vision. (Bay, of course, later refuted the story and says he’s proud of the film, as he should be.)

read more...

Pain and Gain

Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) believes in fitness – and the American dream and bettering himself and making money and a whole mess of other stuff – but he mainly believes in fitness, and he believes that it is his unique dedication to fitness that will turn him into a success. And, if that doesn’t work, he can always just rob someone. Based on a true story (a claim that gets progressively harder to believe as the film goes on because this stuff is bonkers), Michael Bay’s Pain & Gain centers on the 1990s crime spree committed by Miami’s own “Sun Gym Gang,” one that saw personal trainer Lugo (along with his equally stupid cohorts, Paul Doyle, played by Dwayne Johnson and Adrian Doorbal, played by Anthony Mackie) hatch the brilliant (sarcasm all-around) scheme to trick a gym customer out of everything he owned. What started as a simple plan – kidnap millionaire moron Victor Kershaw (Tony Shalhoub), get him to sign over all his worldly possessions and funds, release him, and enjoy the spoils – goes hilariously, disastrously, and almost immediately awry. Crime does not pay, but crime really does not pay when you’re an evil idiot.

read more...

Michael Bay

When a Transformers film or Bad Boys II washes over its audience with gigantic, thunderous popcorn-scented waves, they know the man behind those tsunamis. No, it isn’t Poseidon, but someone even more mythic and powerful: director Michael Bay. He is one of the most successful auteurs working today, and mass audiences love visiting the worlds he presents to them through the colorful, bombastic prism of Awesome. They connect to his movies, but maybe not for the obvious reasons. A Michael Bay picture is many, many things. The global showman has made his career off shiny money shots, a broad sense of humor, solid on-screen pairings, well-orchestrated chaos, and much more. We all know a Bay creation when we see it, and much of that comes from the mind’s more subconscious, inner workings. Bay doesn’t necessarily repeat himself, but there are reoccurring details which appear in most his movies, all of which further his status as an auteur. Since an auteur is generally labeled as a filmmaker with a “strong personal style,” even Bay’s harshest critics should admit he has personality and a well-established brand, whether they like his particular brand or not. The director’s newest movie, the abrasively entertaining Pain & Gain, carries on those trademark signatures in many ways. It’s not the explosions which make him an auteur, it’s the little things that make his human stories more meaningful than what we see from most blockbuster directors. Michael Bay a true visionary auteur, and here’s why:

read more...

mnad_mitchell

Tonight we explore the world of art, Matt Murdock’s new home and supporting TV characters who should have their own show. It’s all here in Movie News After Dark.

read more...

Drinking Games

With the upcoming release of Pain & Gain this week, the cinematic world looks back on director Michael Bay’s filmography. However, instead of focusing on his billion-dollar franchise installments, we can look back to his more modest days when he worked on character-driven stories: movies like Bad Boys II. The only sequel Bay has directed outside of the Transformers series was made right before his biggest domestic disappointment (The Island) and marks one of his final films in recent years that doesn’t feature giant freaking robots. Love him or hate him as a director, Bay’s films serve as big-screen beer commercials. So why not enjoy one of his most revered and reviled movies by sampling some appropriate beer?

read more...

the rock shower massacre

Given all the positive buzz we’re hearing for Pain & Gain, Michael Bay could very well have his first critical hit since 1996 when the movie opens this Friday. And it might just be an even fresher tomato than the lonely red orb affixed to The Rock seen here. Interestingly enough, this new release stars someone named The Rock, further proving that Dwayne Johnson isn’t just franchise viagra but also a kind of Hollywood miracle in general these days. Not that Bay has been struggling as far as the industry is concerned. At all. It’s not important for us to defend the quality of Bay’s movies. They are what they are. Some are more entertaining than others. Most fulfill a certain demand by audiences for action, broad humor and flag-waving. And occasionally they do surprise us, especially in times when our expectations are at their lowest — or simply on that horizon to which we anticipate his work, neither high nor low, just there. We do enjoy some of it. Maybe not even whole films but individual bits. So, this week’s Scenes We Love highlights six favorite moments. And as usual we invite you to share your own picks.

read more...

680x478-7

Michael Bay‘s wacky true-life passion project, Pain & Gain, is finally set to explode on to our theater screens in a mess of steroids, sweat, tank tops, fire, blood, and greyhounds later this month, and if you’re still unconvinced that this thing is going to be some sort of insane masterpiece, we’ve got a batch of new stills for you to eyeball. This new gallery includes plenty we’ve seen before - Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson looking swoll (as the kids say), Anthony Mackie looking ever-so-slightly dubious, Rebel Wilson looking like she’s having the best time ever, and Tony Shalhoub getting the crap kicked out of him – but it also comes complete with some new stuff, like said greyhound. Seriously, if you came up with a harebrained scheme to knock over a rich guy, wouldn’t you celebrate by buying a new purebred pup? Of course you would. After the break, soak up some roid-laced rays with a fresh look at Pain & Gain and its inherent nuttiness.

read more...

Pain and Gain Red Band

While the original trailer for Michael Bay’s upcoming project, Pain & Gain, revealed that it was telling a story that was too bizarre not to be true, it didn’t do all that much to actually sell the movie. Sure, Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson playing a couple of insecure meatheads who find themselves in over their heads while planning a heist is an amusing concept, but the trailer seemed to try to sell the film as an aspirational story about struggling characters trying to make their way in the world—and that is not what we go to see Michael Bay movies for. We go to see Michael Bay movies because they’re ridiculous. There’s no need to worry though, because a new red band trailer for Pain & Gain is here, and it reveals that this story of testosterone-soaked goons in silly outfits trying to become elite criminals isn’t being played nearly as dramatically as we may have first feared. This trailer focuses almost exclusively on the film’s comedy, and it turns out there’s a ton of stuff in it to laugh about. Wahlberg is always at his best when he’s playing clueless, and, given his professional wrestling experience, Johnson is presumably at his best when he’s tossing midgets, so this one is allowing both actors to work right in their comfort zones, which seems to have paid off, because their chemistry is palpable. Throw in some strong deliveries from comedic powerhouses like Rebel Wilson and Rob Corddry, and suddenly I’m on […]

read more...

mnad_uhura

New shots from Star Trek, a bit about Michael Bay’s ninja turtles and some fun facts about why Will Smith may or may not want to kill Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s all there in tonight’s edition of Movie News After Dark…

read more...

TMNT

Fans can have very different ideas of what the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are supposed to look like, depending on how old they are. Old fogies may have first come across the team in the pages of Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird’s gritty, twisted comic book, and like them that way. Slightly more spry gray hairs could remember them from the wisecracking, late ’80s cartoon series. If your memory doesn’t quite go back to the ’80s, maybe your first introduction to the Turtles was from their 1990 live action film, that split the difference in tone and presented the team as actors in foam rubber costumes. And then there are whole groups of young kids who may have been introduced to them in their 2007 computer animated feature, TMNT, or babies who know them from the almost claymation-looking TV series that started airing on Nickelodeon last year. The point is, though there are slight variations in how the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have been presented down through the years, they’re well-known characters at this point, and there are several generations of fans out there who could potentially be horrified by the upcoming Michael Bay-led reboot of the film franchise. And seeing as the Turtles in this movie are not going to be played by stuntmen in cumbersome costumes, but are instead going to be brought to life through motion capturing actors in a method that we keep getting reminded will look quite a bit like what James Cameron did to […]

read more...

Jack Reynor

What is Casting Couch? It’s a casting roundup that’s knee deep in nostalgia as it reports on movies based on comic books and toys from its childhood. Due to a little bit of inspiration from the Internet, Michael Bay gave Mark Wahlberg a pretty big part in his upcoming fourth Transformers movie. It’s always been understood that Wahlberg was playing a placeholder character though, who would pass the franchise off to a couple of young kids who would be pushed into the forefront as it went forward. Well, today Bay announced that he’s found the male half of this new duo. Apparently little known Irish actor Jack Reynor is his guy. Bay says that he saw Reynor in an Irish movie called What Richard Did, which a quick Googling tells me has nothing to do with acting opposite giant robots, so let’s all hope he knows what he’s talking about.

read more...

Pain & Gain

“I’ve watched a lot of movies, Paul, I know what I’m doing!” If you think that the plot of Michael Bay‘s Pain & Gain is insane, or clearly just rooted in action cinema lore, or too damn bizarre to be true, that’s completely understandable – which is why Bay has splashed the film’s first trailer with a big, bold, brazen “THIS IS A TRUE STORY.” Because it is. Don’t believe us? Check out the original Miami New Times report that Bay based his film on. It’s okay. We’ll wait. Now treat yourself to the film’s first trailer after the break. We are so pumped.

read more...

Michael Shannon

What is Casting Couch? It’s the roundup of casting news that knows what Gillian Jacobs is going to be doing with her upcoming break from Community. All that time in the bushes finally paid off. Most people probably thought Wild Things director John McNaughton’s career hit its zenith when he directed Wild Things. That movie was basically the most ’90s thing ever, and it practically introduced the concept of the three-way to the square community through the communicative power of Denise Richards’ boobs. He may yet top that work though, because Deadline reports that he’s just recruited the best actor in the world, Michael Shannon, to star in his upcoming thriller The Harvest. The film will star Samantha Morton as a successful heart surgeon and Shannon as her co-dependent husband. Its conflict comes in when their sick son meets a new friend, and suddenly the very controlled routine that Morton’s character has created starts to break down. Sounds like a creepy mom.

read more...

Pain and Gain Poster

Sometimes, Michael Bay‘s balls-to-the-wall, guns-blazing, explosions-popping approach to filmmaking really does work out. And working out in its many forms is at the heart of his new project, the Dwayne Johnson- and Mark Wahlberg-starring Pain & Gain. In case you haven’t quite caught on just yet, Johnson and Wahlberg play body builders in the deranged true-life tale of crime gone buff…and stupid. Seriously, have you read the original Miami New Times report that Bay is basing his film on yet? Do that now. The film’s first poster took a similarly yoked-up approach to the material, so now is perhaps a good time to just get comfortable with seeing guns blazing when it comes to this project. The film also stars Anthony Mackie, Ed Harris, Rob Corddry, Tony Shalhoub, Bar Paly, Rebel Wilson, Ken Jeong, and Yolanthe Cabau. Pain & Gain arrives in theaters on April 26, 2013. [Paramount Pictures]

read more...

When I first heard there was going to be a Red Dawn remake, I didn’t see the need. Even in a post-9/11 world, in which we have experienced a foreign attack on U.S. soil — unlike when the 1984 original could tout its related tagline of “In our time, no foreign army has ever occupied American soil. Until now.” — we don’t have the sort of Cold War worries of being taken over by an enemy superpower, regardless of the plausibility. We’ve entered a different kind of era of fear, of terrorists striking rather than foreign armies invading. In the last 20 years it has made more sense to see alien invasion films like Independence Day and War of the Worlds, because extraterrestrials seemed the more likely foreigners to conquer America if any. And to an extent — especially given a certain ID4-ish plan involving defeating the invaders via their own communications system — the producers could have just changed the enemy in the Red Dawn remake from Chinese to aliens rather than to North Koreans. For one thing, it would remove any claims of racism or direct xenophobia on the part of the film. For another thing, we once saw aliens often employed as stand-ins for our “red” enemies and could just reference that as logic for how it could still be “Red Dawn” but now be science fiction (actually, the original Red Dawn is a kind of sci-fi). More than anything, though, it just doesn’t matter who the […]

read more...

Isla Fisher

What is Casting Couch? Today it’s a casting column that’s relying on the dreaded “short list” for content. You can’t really say that The Switch is a Jackie Brown prequel. Its story doesn’t really connect with the goings-on of Jackie Brown in any way, and Quentin Tarantino isn’t involved or anything. But it is an adaptation of an Elmore Leonard novel that features many of the same characters Jackie Brown did. Case in point: Variety reports that fiery redhead Isla Fisher is in negotiations to play Melanie, the same stoner surfer girl that Bridget Fonda played in Tarantino’s film. The Switch also features Mos Def and John Hawkes in the roles Samuel L. Jackson and Robert De Niro originally played, and Jennifer Aniston as a kidnapped housewife. Fisher’s character is said to be the manipulator of the story, and isn’t that always the case with these pretty girls?

read more...
  PREVIOUS PAGE
NEXT PAGE  
Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Comic-Con 2014
Summer Box Office Prediction Challenge
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3