Category Archives: Movies

Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders Trailer

Warner Bros. Animation and DC Entertainment take Batman fans on a journey into the iconic past with the full-length animated Batman feature film – Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders. The film features the vocal performances of Adam West (Batman), Burt Ward (Robin) and Julie Newmar (Catwoman). Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders will be available November 1, 2016 on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack ($24.98 SRP) and DVD ($19.98 SRP). Order due date is September 27, 2016.

Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders will be available to own on Digital HD starting October 11, 2016.

It’s back to the 1960s as Batman and Robin spring into action when Gotham City is threatened by a quartet of Batman’s most fiendish foes – Penguin, The Joker, Riddler and Catwoman. The four Super-Villains have combined their wicked talents to hatch a plot so nefarious that the Dynamic Duo will need to go to outer space (and back) to foil their arch enemies and restore order in Gotham City. It’s a truly fantastic adventure that will pit good against evil, good against good, evil against evil … and feature two words that exponentially raise the stakes for both sides: Replicator Ray. Holy Multiplication Tables!

Adam West steps behind the microphone to bring Batman to fully animated fruition. Burt Ward joins the fun as Batman’s sidekick, Robin, giving The Boy Wonder his voice in animated form. And Julie Newmar, star of stage (Tony Award winner for The Marriage-Go-Round) and screen (Seven Brides for Seven Brothers), dons her feline ears to bring Catwoman to life.

Rick Morales (LEGO® DC Comics Super Heroes – Justice League: Cosmic Clash) directs from a script by Michael Jelenic (Teen Titans Go!) and James Tucker (Justice League vs. Teen Titans). Tucker and Jelenic also serve as Supervising Producer and Producer, respectively, on the film. Sam Register is Executive Producer. Benjamin Melniker and Michael Uslan are Executive Producers.

Suicide Squad is #1 Three Weeks in a Row

Suicide SquadSuicide Squad was once again the top of the box office as new releases failed to ignite interest. The film earned an estimated $20.7 million, over $5 million more than the second place Sausage Party, which earned an estimated $15.3 million. The Suicide Squad has now earned $262.3 million domestically, $310.4 million in foreign markets, and $572.7 million worldwide.

Suicide Squad still has money coming its way. The film opened in Germany this past weekend and opens in Japan September 10. Its success has helped drive the August box office to a record high.

As I said, Sausage Party was in second place and the film has earned $65.3 million domestically after two weeks. Worldwide, the film has earned $71.3 million.

A trio of new films rounded out the top five. War Dogs debuted with $14.3 million; Kubo and the Two Strings earned an estimated $12.6 million, and finally the Ben-Hur remake earned $11.35 million.

In comic related movie earnings….

Captain America: Civil War continues to bring in money. The film added $93,000 to its domestic total bringing it to $407.7 million. The movie has earned $1.152 billion worldwide.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows added an estimated $61,000 to its domestic total over the weekend. The film has earned $81.9 million domestically and $239.3 million worldwide.

X-Men: Apocalypse continues to earn money at the foreign box-office. The film earned an additional $3 million over the last week.

Next week sees the release of the buzzed about Don’t Breathe, Mechanic: Resurrection, and Hands of Stone. It’ll be interesting to see if Suicide Squad battles off the competition and remain in the top spot once again.

Mary Jane Watson Isn’t Just Any Redhead

Zendaya_by_Gage_SkidmoreCertain racist fans are angry that Marvel and Sony have reportedly cast a black actress as Mary Jane Watson in the new Spider-Man movie because “Mary Jane has to be a red head”.

Aside from the fact that some black people have red hair.

Aside from the fact that red hair dye exists and lord knows an aspiring actress is probably going to care a lot about fashion

Aside from all of that, if you’ve actually read Spider-Man over the years you’ll know that Mary Jane isn’t just a redhead.

Here are some of her defining traits:

She’s outgoing, ambitious, creative, artistic. Not particularly intellectual but she’s certainly no dummy. She’s not shallow.

She’s an actress both on and off the stage often putting up a confident and carefree facade even at times when she’s full of fear and doubt.

She wishes she was as carefree as she pretends to be.

Recent canon established that she grew up poor — that’s how she ended up living with her grandma and not her parents.

All along, Marvel comics had intended Peter to end up with Gwen Stacy, the “good girl” as his one true love. Mary Jane had just been added as a plot twist to bring Peter’s romantic plot-lines some tension. Mary Jane was written as a more independent woman and they realized that this made MJ a more interesting and dynamic character in their stories. Stan Lee said “we finally decided to let Peter end up with her, but it was … as though the characters had taken over!”

Mary Jane PanelBack in the Silver Age Marvel’s characterization of the Gwen Stacy/ Mary Jane Watson / Peter Parker love triangle often veered towards a sexist Madonna/Whore complex. Gwen Stacy was the shy, studious “good girl” and MJ was the outgoing party girl.

Fans really responded to Mary Jane. More so then Peter’s intended true love, Gwen Stacy. Yes, MJ’s a hot redhead but they also liked her because she had a fun personality and seemed like someone you’d want to grab a drink with.

So why are certain fanboys today reducing her to the color of her hair?

Some writers haven’t actually conveyed her personality in their work. Sometimes they just write her as Peter’s dream girl with no inner life. Many artists have reduced her to her looks. Or her thong. And her trademark red hair IS legitimately iconic.

But countless writers have written her with a pretty damn consistent personality, not just in decades worth of comics but in many cartoon shows and movies.

Our sexist culture and the generally fetishistic nature of a lot of super hero art explain why certain readers don’t notice MJ’s personality even when she is well written.

So if you think that the only thing that matters about MJ is her hair you are reading the wrong comics. Or maybe you are objectifying the real women you interact with too.

Maybe do something about that?

Addendums: I haven’t read a new Spider-Man comic in years. But if Slott et all have completely erased her personality since I last picked up an issue, that would sort of prove my point. But I suspect she’s still the same old MJ fans have loved for decades.

Also, Rob Wilson tweeted me that the Spectacular Spider-Man animated series played the study-party dichotomy without making it “Madonna/whore Complex” and did an admirable job calling out Peter on his BS. That sounds like great progress.

Movie Review: Suicide Squad

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As one of my most anticipated films of 2016, it’s safe to say Suicide Squad had a lot to live up to! It seemed like it would be the stepping stone for DCEU, after the abomination of a movie that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was. The teaser trailer was spectacular. The first trailer was very good as well. Then, for some reason, Warner Bros. went in a completely different direction with the second trailer. Even though I found it alright, it wasn’t as captivating as the other two; as it seemed like the generic blockbuster. Suicide Squad was supposed to be unusual, distinctive and crazy. Unfortunately, it was none of these.

The movie follows Amanda Waller as she assembles a team of extremely dangerous prisoners because she feels the world needs to have a contingency plan if the bad version of Superman comes down to Earth. Followed by a million intros for the characters, coupled with a most obvious choice of music for each of them.Subsequently, they are sent to fight the belly-dancing Enchantress trying to destroy humanity by building ‘a machine’. That is the entire plot: a bunch of crazy, self-absorbed individuals without superpowers (most of them anyways) have to fight this extremely powerful witch and her plain-obvious CGI brother. There’s no second act or plot development.

Harley Quinn, Diablo and Deadshot are the only characters with some barely perceptible character development. Everyone else was either pointless (Boomerang, Slipknot, Katana), or contradicting in their beliefs (Waller). With Harley Quinn we get some flashbacks about how she became the way she is; but even those are equivocal and scarce, as they are too short to figure out exactly what’s happening.

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The main problem with this film is that we are supposed to believe these characters are the most dangerous people on the planet! However, throughout the film we never really get a sense of this – save for, possibly, Harley. On a number of occasions, we are told they are ominous – although we are never actually shown how.

It’s not all gloom and doom though! There are moments when the humour works, and these scenes are wonderful – if not far too negligible . The actors do their best with the lines they have. Most of the so-called villains throw one-liners, and just a few of them land. The music score (not the soundtrack) also has some curious cues, which work when put into practice. The soundtrack, on the other hand, is awful in its usage! Whenever on, it is overbearing, distracting and even unpleasant. It serves only to prevent one from becoming entirely acquainted with the characters and tells you how to feel too insistently.

The action is as memorable as the editing is abhorrent! Half the time you are lost, due to the bad geography and constant cuts. In addition, the film doesn’t flow – the chronology is all over the place and there is no consistency.

The Joker was heavily featured in the ad campaign, however, we only see fleeting glimpses of him during the film itself. Turns out it wasn’t so that we are amazed by the end result, but because there isn’t much of him in the film. He pops up every once in a while for 30 seconds in either a flashback or as a deux ex machina. On that front alone, I was truly disappointed!

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Suicide Squad is non-refutably a box-office success, for now at least. Nevertheless, due to rushed decisions, it feels like two films have collided into one; just like Fantastic Four. It is not as bad but has more flaws than strengths.

In conclusion, it’s entertaining enough that you won’t fall asleep, but do not come with high expectations, otherwise you will be let down. I am sure Warner Brother will try to fix the film for the Blu-Ray release, by including a lot of the missing scenes shown in the trailer; however, as this is the second time this year they have done so, isn’t it becoming a pattern?

Overall Rating: 4

Guillermo Del Toro Begins Principal Photography on The Shape of Water

Guillermo Del ToroFox Searchlight Pictures announced that principal photography on The Shape of Water began today in Toronto, Canada. The film stars Academy Award nominee Sally Hawkins, Academy Award nominee Michael Shannon, Academy Award nominee Richard Jenkins, Doug Jones, Golden Globe nominee Michael Stuhlbarg and Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer. Academy Award nominated Guillermo del Toro will direct and co-write with Vanessa Taylor. The film is being produced by del Toro and J. Miles Dale.

The Shape of Water is an other-worldly story, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1963. A mysterious and magical journey from Guillermo del Toro.

Joining del Toro on the film are long time collaborators costume designer Luis Sequeira, director of photography Dan Laustsen, visual effects supervisor Dennis Berardi and editor Sidney Wolinsky.  New to the team is production designer Paul Austerberry.  Co-Heads of Production David Greenbaum and Matthew Greenfield and Vice President of Production DanTram Nguyen are overseeing the project for Fox Searchlight Pictures.

Suicide Squad Remains #1 While Sausage Party is Strong

Suicide SquadSuicide Squad held on to first place this past weekend with an expected large drop after its first week. The film earned an estiamted $43.7 million and dropped 67.3%. The film had an estimated budget of $175 million and so far has earned $222.9 million domestically, $242.5 million in foreign markets for a total of $465.4 million worldwide after 12 days.

Sausage Party opened in 2nd and earned an estimated $33.6 million. That’s solid for the “R” rated animated film. The budget for the film is an estimated $19 million, so this is a definite success.

Pete’s Dragon came in third with an estimated $21.5 million. The film’s opening number is debatable as Disney has scored success with live action takes on animated classics. The opening is similar to The BFG which I’d label a misfire. We’ll see how much legs the film has.

When it comes to comic adaptations….

Captain America: Civil War earned an additional $174,000. The film sits at $407.5 million domestically and $1.152 billion worldwide. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows earned an estimated $100,000. Domestically the film sits at $81.8 million and $239 million worldwide. Finally, X-Men: Apocalypse opened in Japan. It earned an estimated $3.1 million to bring it’s worldwide total to $539.7 million so far.

Top 10 Suicide Squad Moments

How’s this for a task? With Suicide Squad in theaters, DC All Access gathered its squad in an attempt to figure out the ten best comic book moments from the team formally known as Task Force X. Fortunately, they managed to assemble our list without anyone losing their head. (Too bad they can’t say the same for all of the characters on our list!)

DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year – Exclusive Clip + Cast Interviews

The girls of Super Hero High are graduating…to their first full-length feature! In this DC All Access animation clip, they talk to the cast of Hero of the Year, the first movie featuring the DC Super Hero Girls and get treated to an exclusive clip from the movie. Will the girls be able to save the day when Dark Opal and Eclipso attempt to harness the power of the school’s amethyst? And you thought YOUR high school was brutal!

Long Way North Comes to Theaters September 30, 2016

Shout! Factory Films announced today that acclaimed animated feature Long Way North, a film by Rémi Chayé, will open theatrically on September 30, 2016 in Los Angeles, New York and select major markets, to be followed by openings in additional cities.

Directed by celebrated animator and filmmaker Rémi Chayé and produced by Sacrebleu Productions, Maybe Movies and Norlum Studios, France 3 Cinéma and 2 Minutes, Long Way North won the coveted Audience Award at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival and the winner of Grand Prize and the Governor of Tokyo Award at Tokyo Animation Festival 2016. This captivating animated adventure, bolstered by emotionally resonant storytelling and visually exquisite hand-drawn animation, has continued to attract universal acclaim as it enchants movie audiences around the world.

Long Way North is set in the late 19th century Saint Petersburg. Sacha, a young girl from the Russian aristocracy, dreams of the Great North and anguishes over the fate of her grandfather, Oloukine, a renowned scientist and Arctic explorer who has yet to return from his latest expedition to conquer the North Pole.

Sacha has always been fascinated by the adventurous life of her grandfather and has the same calling as Oloukine to be an explorer. But Sacha’s parents, who already made arrangements for her marriage, strongly disapprove the idea to say the least. Defying her destiny, Sacha flees her home and launches an adventure-filled quest toward the Great North in search of Oloukine and his ship.

The New Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Trailer

Watch the official trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in which a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story arrives in theaters December 16, 2016.

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