If you think about it, it’s kind of surprising that Tom Hiddleston is still sticking around the Marvel universe. Marvel has rarely brought back a villain for multiple movies; with the exception of Sebastian Stan’s Winter Soldier, Loki is a unique character within the Marvel universe. Of course, that shouldn’t be read as a criticism; even before characters like Spider-Man and Ant-Man were being brought to the big screen, it was Hiddleston’s god of mischief who brought charm and humor to the MCU. Any self-respecting Marvel fan will be happy to have him back.
Well, that’s kinda awkward timing. On Thursday of last week, the New York Times published an article titled “Attacked by Rotten Tomatoes,” an in-depth look at the popular review aggregation site and the role it may have played in this summer’s disappointing box office numbers. The article ends with a prolonged examination of the various ways that studios are trying to “battle Rotten Tomatoes on multiple fronts,” seemingly accepting the idea that Rotten Tomatoes has been bad for the movie industry (despite the fact that Rotten Tomatoes is, in fact, owned by said members of the movie industry). The article may have been an interesting read for those unfamiliar with the controversy, but for those in the know, it was old news, part of an ongoing debate that tried to argue that critics were duping poor, easily misled moviegoers.
Oh, Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele. When are those two crazy kids ever going to get together? There’s is a love story we can all relate to: she, the inexperienced college student and would-be journalist, and he, the millionaire Seattle playboy, willing to teach her in the practice of love. Would their shared appreciation for BDSM be enough to overcome their differences and help them find true love? I don’t know for sure, but based on this first teaser trailer for Fifty Shades Freed, I’m going to venture that the answer to that question is yes.
As we head deeper into September, two things have become pretty clear about 2017 box office numbers: one, Hollywood desperately needs to bounce back a little bit from the doldrums of August, and two, whoever decided to hedge their studio’s bets with a September release date for a movie about a killer clown is looking like a [profanity] genius right about now. We’ll get to all of that in a moment, but first, here are the box office numbers as of Sunday afternoon:
If you’ve never had the pleasure of encountering Halo Top ice scream, I’ve got some world-changing news for you: no longer will you need to feel bad for eating ice cream by the pint! The California ice cream company, which recently passed Ben & Jerry’s and Häagen-Dazs to become the highest-selling ice cream in grocery stores, is the current zeitgeist of low-calorie sweets. Sure, maybe the flavor is a little more bland than you’d prefer, and sure, maybe eating ice cream by the pint — regardless of its constitution — is probably not the best idea, but at only 240 calories a pop? You could do a lot worse with your stress-eating.
One of the fun parts of film criticism is trying to identify which blockbuster movies that open to middling reviews will undergo a critical re-appreciation in the years to come. For example, while audiences were generally disappointed with Ridley Scott’s Prometheus on its release, the movie has slowly gained steam with critics, becoming something of an under-the-wire classic in the last few years. And now, just a few months after the release of Kong: Skull Island, there are already those who have argued that its unique aesthetic makes it one of the better action movies of the year.
Of all the news stories you expect to be fake, “Black Sergeant Infiltrates the Klu Klux Klan” would have to be pretty far up there. Only it really happened. For years during the ’70s and ’80s, Officer Ron Stallworth dedicated his life to infiltrating gang cultures, in particular that of the KKK. This is what led Stallworth to become (against all odds) a black card-carrying member of the Klu Klux Klan in the 1970s; unsurprisingly, this is also what makes Stallworth’s story ripe for cinematic adaptation in the year 2017.
If there is any upside to James Cameron (again) putting his foot in his mouth — this time by talking about Wonder Woman — it was the resulting conversation about how female action stars should be presented in Hollywood. As our own Emma Stefansky wrote at the time, feminism and depictions of femininity onscreen aren’t a one-size-fits-all equation; creating a false dichotomy between two types of female action stars — where everyone has to be either a Diana Prince or a Sarah Connor — only places limits on the ways women can be depicted in film and television. Filmmakers should be free to find the depictions of femininity that works for their characters.
Here’s a fun question for you: how many evil droids have there been in the Star Wars universe? There was the interrogation droid that tortured Dr. Leia in the original Star Wars; IG-88 and the jet-black C-3PO unit in The Empire Strikes Back; and a handful of trade federation robots in the Star Wars prequels, as well as K-2SO (sorta) in Rogue One. Come to think of it, while both Death Stars have always had a bunch of R2 and MSE units wandering around in the background, the Star Wars series has always been a little short on recognizable droid baddies.
Given that David F. Sandberg launched his career on the basis of a viral YouTube short film, it only makes sense that Warner Bros. would look to leverage that narrative for the release of Annabelle: Creation, the fourth film in The Conjuring cinematic universe. Back in July, Warner Bros. announced the contest on its site, encouraging fans to create their own new additions to The Conjuring universe. The contest would feature winners in multiple countries, meaning multiple chances to win.
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