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Our 2014 Thanksgiving Week Movie Guide - 'Rosewater' to 'Penguins'

Thu, 27 Nov 2014 01:14:34 +0000

Continuing our annual tradition of posting Thanksgiving and Christmas Movie Guides every holiday season, our San Francisco contributor, Marco Cerritos, has once again put together a holiday movie guide for Thanksgiving 2014, giving a recap and rundown of what's playing and what's worth seeing (or skipping). Marco has seen everything playing, and while you may not always agree with his opinion, he provides the best reviews he can to make it a bit easier for everyone to choose. There are quite a few wonderful films now playing in theaters, so if you're still a bit unsure of what to watch or need extra tips, then look no further! "Sometimes it is the people no one imagines anything of who do the things that no one can imagine." -Alan Turing / The Imitation Game "It is the things we love most that destroy us." -President Snow / Mockingjay This is an alphabetized list containing 10 films that, as of today, are playing in ...

'Independence Day 2' Gets a Greenlight, Nothing Else Has Changed

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:28:18 +0000

Briefly: Draining what little news there is left out of Hollywood as the holiday weekend approaches, Deadline delivered a sparse update on the development of Independence Day 2. The film has now officially been given a greenlight for production with an eye towards shooting in May. As of now, Will Smith is not involved, and likely won't sign on. But that's fine, because you might remember there's a script written just in case he did come back, and one written as if he didn't. At this point, the film is slated for release on June 24th, 2016, though it seems a shame to miss that July 1st date to match the exact 20th anniversary. Roland Emmerich is closing his deal to direct, and we'll keep you posted as the film progresses.

Review: 'Horrible Bosses 2' is Filthy, Funny & Much More Outlandish

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:14:10 +0000

Comedy sequels are not easy to pull off. Unlike the horror, action and sci-fi genres, it's seemingly more difficult to improve upon what made the original film so enjoyable to begin with. While all of those genres are able to up the ante with bigger setpieces, explosions, scares and whantot, a comedy can usually only be funnier than its predecessor (or at least as funny) in order to appease audiences. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues and Dumb & Dumber To fell short this year, but 22 Jump Street stepped up to the challenge magnificently. And I'm happy to say that this weekend's Horrible Bosses 2 is another comedy that not only matches wit with its predecessor, but may even be superior comedically, despite faltering elsewhere. Horrible Bosses was a welcome, surprise hit back in 2011 from director Seth Gordon, but this time the reins have been passed to Sean Anders, who also co-wrote the script with John Morris (both of That's ...

When Will It Stop? Enough With the Two-Part Finale Quadrilogy Fad

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 22:22:40 +0000

Hollywood loves repeating itself. This week alone we're getting new trailers for brand new Star Wars and Jurassic Park movies, like it's the 90s all over again. But there is a new trend that is becoming increasingly frustrating - the two-part split finale of film-to-book series like Twilight, Harry Potter and now Hunger Games. With the first half of Mockingjay, the finale of The Hunger Games, now playing in theaters (my full review) the unsettling feeling of "why?!" has grown in me. This film once again proves that the quality of the work diminishes in exchange for a desire to make more money on a franchise that's temporarily popular. When will this fad end? Because it needs to stop. Don't Hollywood executives already own enough yachts? To properly dive into this editorial, I wanted to look at where this fad came from, how we even got to this point. Along with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, ...

Whoa! New 'Punisher' Comic Kills Cast of the 'Fantastic Four' Reboot

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 22:07:33 +0000

Earlier in the fall, we reported on the tension between 20th Century Fox and Marvel escalating to the point that the comic book company was ending their run of Fantastic Four comics in an effort to dilute interest in the forthcoming feature film reboot from Chronicle director Josh Trank. Indeed, the comic book has been ended for the time being, but there's no indication that this was done with malicious intent. However, you might raise an eyebrow when you see some frames from Punisher #12, the latest issue written by Nathan Edmondson and drawn by Mitchell Gerads. What unfolds is funny, but pretty messed up. Here's the frames in question from Marvel Comics Punisher #12 (via Comic Book Movie): Did you pick up on that? The name "Trang" is clearly a reference to Josh Trank, director of the forthcoming reboot of Fantastic Four, and the three people seen on the page certainly resemble Miles Teller, Kata Mara and Jamie Bell, with the ...

The 'Minions' Deliver a Musical Holiday Greeting for AMC Theatres

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 21:31:33 +0000

Just after the inventive and fun trailer for Illumination Entertainment's Despicable Me spin-off Minions arrived at the beginning of the month, a special holiday greeting can be seen if you happen to be seeing movies at any AMC Theatres locations leading up to Christmas. Those lovable little henchman give their own rendition of a classic Christmas carol, but in that weird, gibberish language they all speak. You're bound to find kids cracking up to this in theaters, and maybe some adults too, but we've still got awhile before the actual movie hits theaters since it doesn't arrive until it gets much warmer in July. Watch now! Here's the special Minions holiday greeting playing at AMC Theatres from the chain's YouTube: Watch the teaser trailer for Universal & Illumination Entertainment's Minions right here. Minions is co-directed by Kyle Balda (The Lorax) and Pierre Coffin (Despicable Me, Despicable Me 2). The story of Minions begins at the dawn of time. Starting as single-celled yellow organisms, ...

Natalie Portman Now in Talks to Join Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs Biopic

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 21:09:57 +0000

Now that Universal Pictures has grabbed the Steve Jobs biopic from Sony Pictures, the studio is starting to round up a supporting cast to surround star Michael Fassbender in the film from Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle. Deadline has word that Natalie Portman is now in talks for a role in the film, and while specifics of her character have not been revealed, it's said to be a major role for the Oscar winner. The script from Aaron Sorkin has been said to focus on the launch of three separate Apple products, which will end up spanning 16 years in the life of the technology innovator, but more details have come to light now. Sorkin recently revealed (via The Wrap) that there are seven other characters besides Jobs himself in the movie. The writer says: “I've spent a lot of time with the other seven characters who are in the movie, like Joanna Hoffman, who's a fantastic character. She was the head ...

Watch: Visual Effects Reel Shows Off the Magic of the New 'Godzilla'

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 20:20:20 +0000

The reboot of Godzilla has come and gone on the big screen, and it's now available to purchase on Blu-Ray & DVD, and while the film didn't impress some audiences, it still ended up landing director Gareth Edwards a gig directing the first Star Wars spin-off (which may be about a heist obtaining the plans to the original Death Star). While some might have a problem with Godzilla as a movie, you can't deny that the King of Monsters and all the creatures he fights have never looked better, thanks to some truly spectacular visual effects by the company MPC. Now a visual effects reel breaks down how they came together. Watch! Here's a visual effects reel for Gareth Edwards' Godzilla from MPC (via Legendary Pictures): Godzilla, being directed by Gareth Edwards (of Monsters), comes from a screenplay written by Drew Pearce, Max Borenstein and Frank Darabont. The cast is lead by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, with Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen, David Strathairn, Ken ...

There's More Going On Than We Know - Insights on 'Jurassic World'

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 19:23:55 +0000

Up until this week, many of the most secretive projects in development at Hollywood have been kept very private, with few details and even less imagery. A few Star Wars tidbits have leaked out, but in regards to Jurassic World, a number of major details were finally revealed in the footage in the first official trailer. It's hardly a teaser trailer, even though it is labeled as that, but it does show quite a few shots of dinosaurs, the full theme park, Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and raptors. So what do we know? It's not a story about dinos on the loose, it's actually about genetically-modified hybrid dinosaurs that end up on the loose. One of the first interesting discussions to hit the web following the trailer debut is this piece on SlashFilm by Peter Sciretta titled: "Stop Complaining, 'Jurassic World' Almost Featured Dinosaur-Human Hybrids; Filmmaker Defends Genetically Modified Dino Concept". Sciretta republished and then updated a story they originally ...

Vince Vaughn Hits the Road in 'Unfinished Business' Red Band Trailer

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 17:59:07 +0000

In case you didn't know, Vince Vaughn is officially part of the cast of "True Detective" for the anthology show's second season next year. But for those of you who prefer the fast-talking actor in comedy roles, you still get what you want too. Unfinished Business is an R-rated comedy that sees Vaughn playing a businessman who heads overseas to land a big deal, but he doesn't have the best comrades on his endeavor with Dave Franco and Tom Wilkinson at his side. Plus, there's James Marsden and Sienna Miller as a competing duo going after the same deal. It looks a little better than what we've seen Vaughn deliver lately in the comedy world, especially with this supporting cast, and the red band trailer is pretty raunchy. Watch! Here's the red band trailer for Ken Scott's Unfinished Business, originally from Yahoo: And if you don't like all the swearing or you're at work, here's the green band trailer: Unfinished Business is directed ...

James Cameron Says 'Avatar' Sequels Will Make You 'Sh*t Yourself'

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 16:53:11 +0000

With all the hype surrounding Star Wars: The Force Awakens lately, plus all of the films coming from Marvel Studios and also Warner Bros. Pictures and DC Entertainment, it's easy to forget that James Cameron is working on three sequels to his 2009 blockbuster Avatar. Thankfully, Empire caught up with the filmmaker to find out how the back-to-back sequels are coming along. Production will begin soon with the first film scheduled to arrive late in 2016, and Cameron couldn't reveal much but did say, "I can tell you one thing about them. They’re gonna be bitchin’. You will shit yourself with your mouth wide open.” Yep, that's a real quote from an Oscar-winning filmmaker and not a comment from YouTube. And while he's certainly serious about hyping up the movies, he did start speaking a little more eloquently about what he has in store. For example, Cameron is no longer shooting the films at 60 frames per second. Instead, he's going ...

Snoopy Dreams Big on 'Peanuts' Poster for Charles Schulz's Birthday

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 16:25:54 +0000

After Snoopy "leaked" the latest trailer for Blue Sky Animation's adaptation of the classic Peanuts comic strip, a teaser poster has arrived with the iconic beagle and his bird friend Woodstock sleeping the Thanksgiving holiday away on the dog's trusty red doghouse. And in case you didn't know, it just so happens to be the birthday of the late Charles Schulz, creator of Charlie Brown and the whole gang. Honestly, this is a gorgeous teaser poster, simple in execution, and it doesn't try to sell Peanuts as something that it's not. Can it shake a stick at the classic cartoons that people watch every year around the holidays? We'll see. Here's the teaser poster for Steve Martino's animated Peanuts movie from 20th Century Fox: If you haven't seen the latest trailer for Peanuts, you can watch it right here. Peanuts is directed bey Steve Martino (Ice Age: Continental Drift, Horton Hears a Who!) and written by Craig & Bryan Schulz (sons of comic ...

'The Hobbit' Retrospective Trailer Relives Entire Middle-Earth Legacy

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 16:07:58 +0000

While the music video for Billy Boyd's credits song for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies proved to be a touching retrospective look at both the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit trilogy (concluding next month), a legacy trailer has just debuted looking back at both of these long adventures across Middle-Earth. Even though the prequel trilogy hasn't lived up to the quality of Peter Jackson's original ambitious jaunt into the world of J.R.R. Tolkien, there's no doubt that the filmmaker has achieved something massive and grand by giving fans the adaptations that most of them have always wanted. Watch! Here's the legacy trailer for The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings from Warner Bros. Pictures: Watch the final trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies right here. In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit... J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, being directed by Peter Jackson as three separate movies, is set in Middle-Earth 60 ...

Mel Brooks Lends Voice to Dracula's Father in 'Hotel Transylvania 2'

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:48:54 +0000

Next fall brings the return of Adam Sandler as Dracula in the animated sequel Hotel Transylvania 2. We have heard anything about the sequel since it was announced back in 2012, but now we have word on some of the returning voice cast, which includes Selena Gomez, Andy Samberg, Kevin James and Steve Buscemi, with Keegan-Michael Key stepping in for Cee-Lo Green this time. But the real news is one of the new cast members, and that's the legendary comedian Mel Brooks, director of the iconic monster comedy spoof Young Frankenstein, lending his voice to the ancient vampire Vlad, the cranky old father of Dracula. And we also have a first look at his character and the rest of the gang too. Look below! Here's a first look at Genndy Tartakovsky's Hotel Transylvania 2 from USA Today: Hopefully Brooks can make the animated sequel a little more amusing than the first film, which was fine for what it was, but nothing spectacular. ...

Pick a Puppy in the New UK Trailer for 'Kingsman: The Secret Service'

Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:22:11 +0000

"Give me a farfetched theatrical plot any day." From across the pond, a new trailer has emerged for Matthew Vaughn's big, fun spy action thriller Kingsman: The Secret Service, and fans of spies movies of all kinds are going to find something to love. It's like James Bond meets kick ass with all sorts of meta talk of other spies and their movies between Colin Firth and villain Samuel L. Jackson. Plus, the action looks to be pretty insane, especially with that henchwoman with giant blades for legs (she's also featured on four new character posters). This one also continues the trend of featuring adorable dogs (specifically a pug) in action thrillers, if that's something you love. It certainly looks like it'll be outlandish fun. Watch below! Here's the latest UK trailer for Matthew Vaughn's Kingsman: The Secret Service from Empire:   brightcove.createExperiences(); And here's four character posters for the film (including one for the puppy) form IMDb: You can ...

Watch: Jennifer Aniston Enters the Oscar Race with First 'Cake' Trailer

Tue, 25 Nov 2014 23:48:49 +0000

Awards season is heating up, and one of the potential Best Actress contenders, believe it or not, may be Jennifer Aniston. The actress rarely goes down the indie road, but when she has before (The Good Girl), it's resulted in some solid work. This time she's getting plenty of acclaim for Cake, a film that strips down Aniston to being a plain, scarred, troubled woman, angry at the world and everyone around her. And there's an interesting supporting cast here too with Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington and Adriana Barraza appearing as well. The buzz indicates the film may not be as good as Aniston's performance, but we'll see. Here's the first trailer for Daniel Barnz's Cake, originally from ABC News: Cake is directed by Daniel Barnz (Beastly, Won't Back Down) from a script by Patrick Tobin (No Easy Way). Claire Simmons (Jennifer Aniston) is in pain. Her physical pain is evident in the scars that line her body and the way she ...

'Blade Runner 2' Still Coming But Ridley Scott is No Longer Directing

Tue, 25 Nov 2014 20:55:15 +0000

As we wait for Exodus: Gods & Kings to hit theaters next month, many are more interested in director Ridley Scott going back to sci-fi. He's already got The Martian with Matt Damon in the works, set for release next year, but there's also been development on Blade Runner 2. For awhile, it's been understood that Scott was going to direct the follow-up with a script that was originally coming from the first film's writer Hampton Fancher, but may now be coming from Green Lantern scribe Michael Green. However, in an interview with Variety (via The Playlist), Scott says he will produce the film, but not direct this time. Scott doesn't give a reason for not directing the sequel, but he's still involved with the script as the project develops. More than likely, Scott just doesn't have the time to fit the film into his schedule as soon as the producers would want him to get moving. There's still no major ...

Check Out Mondo's First 'Pulp Fiction' Print, For Sale on Black Friday

Tue, 25 Nov 2014 20:37:20 +0000

If you're not venturing out to catch the Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer this Friday, or waiting in line for ridiculous bargains, then you may want to be near your computer in order to grab Mondo's latest print, their first one honoring Quentin Tarantino's modern classic Pulp Fiction. Yes, believe it or not, this is the first time Mondo has released a print with artist Laurent Durieux commemorating the film. The print is chock full of references to various characters and events from the movie, and the good news is that you'll have a much easier time getting ahold of one than you normally would with Mondo's releases. Look below! Here's Laurent Durieux's Pulp Fiction print for Mondo (regular on top, variant on bottom): The print is 36x24 inches and will run you $60 plus shipping, and it will be a timed edition available for purchase from November 28th through December 1st. That means as long as you go buy one ...

Watch: Take to the Skies in First Trailer for Joe Wright's New 'Pan'

Tue, 25 Nov 2014 17:21:50 +0000

After getting a first look at Joe Wright's new take on the infamous Lost Boy, the first trailer for the prequel story Pan has arrived. This time we find the title orphan living in the World War II era where he's kidnapped by pirates and taken to Neverland. There the boy slowly realizes his destiny to save this magical place. Hugh Jackman plays the villain Blackbeard, and Captain Hook (Garrett Hedlund) is here too, but he's not a captain yet, and he still has both hands. In fact, he's more of a dashing hero than a dastardly villain, but we all know how he turns out. This looks big and grand, but I'm not entirely sold just yet. Watch! Here's the first theatrical trailer for Joe Wright's Pan, straight from Warner Bros. Pictures: Click above to see the first look photos and character posters from Joe Wright's Pan movie. Pan is directed by Joe Wright (Atonement, Anna Karenina, Hanna) and written by Jason ...

Must Watch: Park Opens Early in First Official 'Jurassic World' Trailer

Tue, 25 Nov 2014 17:10:01 +0000

"Remember, if something chases you, run." Arriving ahead of schedule, the official first trailer for Jurassic World has arrived, and the park is most definitely open. Not only does the trailer introduce to just how expansive and immersive the theme park of Jurassic World actually is, but it introduces us into their new project: a genetically modified hybrid. Chris Pratt doesn't seem all too happy with Bryce Dallas Howard's endeavor, especially when their creation escapes. There's some awesome stuff here, including seemingly trained velociraptors and barely a hint of what this new terrifying dinosaur looks like. Watch it! Here's the first trailer for Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World from Universal Pictures: Jurassic World is directed by Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed), who rewrote the script with Derek Connolly from an earlier draft by Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes). No plot details are available yet, but the film has been ...