09 June 2006

MTV Movie Awards Highlight

Presenting Gnarls Barkley and his Sith band. Nice to finally see the Empire and the Rebels getting along.

Pajama Party - Subtitle of Doom

I have been wondering what the next Fantastic Four movie would be titled. Perhaps The Fantastic Four Return. Maybe an outside chance of The Fantastic Five. Surely Fantastic Four 2 would be too confusing for the masses. And I never would have guessed the ultra lame Fantastic Four: The Next Chapter. Unfortunately, that is just the title that has been selected. So, what is this "next chapter" about? I guess another love triangle, a silver dude, and an uberpowerful inliberated girl. Should be fun. We should know more soon, when the actual production begins. I guess the X-Men's monster opening has only encouraged the Fox Factory too keep up their brisk production schedule with F42 starting filming in August for a June release.

In other news, it was announced that Spidey would face 4 nemesises in Spider-Man 3. So who are these nemesi? Venom, and Sandman are a lock, and a Green Goblin 2 showing is fairly likely. But who is Mr #4? Dr. Lizard Connors? The sultry Black Cat? A hint of Carnage? Whoever it is, an announcement should be made sometime next month.

Oh, and also, this new poster showed up for a little film called Transformers.

07 June 2006

Disappearing Ink XVI - A Grand Day Out with Wallace and Gromit

If there is one thing these guys like, it's cheese. So, when inventor Wallace and his straight man mutt Gromit run out of queso, there is only one logical course of action -- A trip to the moon. This 1989 stop-motion short was created by Nick Park of Aardman Animation Studios. While nominated for an Oscar, this first Wallace short would lose out to one of Park's other creations Creature Comforts. Two other Wallace shorts and a feature length movie have followed, all winning Oscars. What makes them so award worthy? They all have the subtle wit and charm that only the British can produce.

In this particular adventure, finding that the proverbial cupboards are bare, Wallace builds a rocket ship (oddly consisting mostly of lumber). Then he and Gromit blast off to Luna. There, on that large heavenly ball of cheese, they have themselves a picnic. There is an element of danger added when Wallace activates a coin operated robot, who has dreams of going to the mountains to ski on Earth. The mecha hopes to steal the rocket away for a little joy ride. Do Wallace and Gromit escape? Are the robot's dreams crushed? Watch the film, it is only 24 minutes long.

This is a cute tale, and my judgment may be a bit unfair as I can't help but compare it to the other adventures of W&G that followed. This is easily the weakest and least fine tuned. The plastacine models are not as smooth as those in the later shorts, nor is there much of a supporting cast. Also, the humor compared to the later installments is much less intense. Still, there is a charm and originality that make this short worth watching and enjoyable. This is a worthy first episode in the adventures of Gromit and Wallace. Grand Day Out earns a B, with a bit of room to grow on.

Oh, and by the way, This month's theme is cosmic journeys (which is more or less space sci-fi).

Check out my past reviews:
The Last Unicorn
Fire & Ice
The Sword in the Stone
Tim Burton's Corpse Bride
Princess Mononoke
The Black Cauldron
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
Grave of the Fireflies
The Iron Giant
Kaena: The Prophecy

05 June 2006

B.O. Derby

The mutants fell to second place this past weekend, getting beat by The Break-Up of all things. Many people are citing the second place finish and 67% drop from last weekend as proof that X3 was a turkey. The thing is, last weekend was a record breaking take, and this weekend's 34 million bucks are both pretty good hauls. Look for X3 to close in on $250 million.

Also impressive has been Over the Hedge's strong performance after a fair debut. This weekend, the rodents outgrossed Da Vinci. If it weren't for a little film by a little studio called Pixar opening this week, Hedge might have been able to overtake last year's Madagascar.

Lastly, I added RV to this watch, as its out performance of Poseidon makes me laugh.

Current Rankings:

5) Poseidon - $51,679,000
5) RV - $61,806,000
4) Over the Hedge - $112,357,000
3) Mission: Impossible III - $122,664,000
2) The Da Vinci Code - $172,656,000
1) X-Men: The Last Stand - $175,681,000

My Top 9 Predictions

9) Lady in the Water - $160,000,000
8) Poseidon - $175,00,0000
7) Mission: Impossible III - $205,000,000
6) Over the Hedge - $220,000,000
5) X-Men: The Last Stand - $225,000,000
4) Cars - $260,000,000
3) The Da Vinci Code - $275,000,000
2) Superman Returns - $325,000,000
1) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest - $350,000,000