A little before 2000, Disney began to phase out its animated movie musicals. It wasn’t that people stopped wanting enchantment at the movie theater, but rather a cold, hard fiscal decision: the films continued to gross less and less and newer ideas for family entertainment were capturing audience attention and dollars.
Aardman Animations has probably been more consistent than Pixar, especially of late, yet the stop-motion powerhouse doesn’t get half the attention. “The Pirates! Band of Misfits” didn’t buck the box-office trend, but it proves that even with the most generic of premises, Aardman knows how to appeal to a diverse audience.
For those not easily smitten by J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy tales, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” was a substantial letdown from “The Lord of the Rings” films, and the thought of enduring another immensely long trilogy too much to bear. But even they’ll agree with the biggest fans of “An Unexpected Journey” that part two, “The […]
Aging is hard, as it accepting your lot in life. “Nebraska” adds another poignant story about life’s tragic beauty to Alexander Payne’s filmography and it’s likely the most universally accessible of all his previous efforts.
You’ve probably already seen “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” and if not, you’re still in luck. Thanks to awards season, plenty else is coming your way for the next five weeks to close out 2013 at the movies. Below I’ve listed the 10 films I’m most excited for that I believe will deliver, and six films […]
In telling chapters of history, films have the benefit of hindsight. As obvious as that statement sounds, Oscar-winning screenwriter Brian Helgeland takes advantage of almost 70 years of history in writing/directing “42,” to the point where he can set the stage with the perfect emotional tone for telling the story of Jackie Robinson, one of […]
Chips falling as they did, the odds of “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” equaling its predecessor were not exactly ever in its favor. Director and adaptor Gary Ross left the burgeoning film franchise, Suzanne Collins’ series undoubtedly lost a little luster with its increased exposure and “Catching Fire” takes on a much larger scope than […]
Most moviegoers probably didn’t realize Thor was a comic book character in the Marvel universe before his big-screen debut in 2011. Flash forward just two and a half years later and Chris Hemsworth has portrayed the Norse god of thunder three times already. “Thor: The Dark World” looks to continue riding the post-“Avengers” wave, but […]
It’s been nearly 30 years since “Ender’s Game” etched itself into the canon of important science-fiction novels, and like so many important science-fiction novels, a film adaptation has toiled in movie development hell, with the “unfilmable” label frequently cast upon it. Gavin Hood (“X-Men Origins: Wolverine”) has taken a stab at adapting and directing Orson […]
We waited long enough to see what Alfonso Cuarón had in store for us next, but no one expected a visual effects game-changer. “Gravity” is an experience, something you might expect to see at a science museum in IMAX but with an intense plot. And even though its minuscule cast and real-time feel expose it to […]
Who says all “based on a true story” movies have to take themselves seriously? Regardless of how true-to-life the events of “Pain and Gain” are, the film offers a ballsy take on a crime thriller, namely in being unafraid of comic territory.
A two-headed thriller, “Prisoners” is one part conventional kidnapping mystery and one part psychological drama. While the mystery of who abducted two little girls haunts the entirety of the 153-minute runtime and will keep audiences glued for every minute, the film also serves as a portrait of a desperate parent willing to cross any line […]
When the credits roll, Joe Swanberg’s “Drinking Buddies” will at least leave you thirsty. Whether you’ll be drinking to toast or drinking to forget is another matter.
For a totally preposterous magician caper, “Now You See Me” has a surprising meta edge to it. The film talks a big talk about deception with its Morgan Freeman voice-over narration (“the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see”), but in spite of its high levels of ludicrousness, it delivers exactly […]
The story being told in “Searching for Sugar Man” is 15 years old, yet it didn’t become a documentary until 2012. Seeing as the film centers on a man who never received the fame he deserved until long after the fact, that’s quite fitting.