Monday, August 13, 2018

The Meg in 250 Words or Less

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The Meg feels like a first draft, which is nuts seeing as how it's been in development for twenty years. I never read the book upon which it is, uh, based, but something tells me the book filled all 337 of its pages with more than the word "shark" scrawled in increasingly frantic scribbles.

Anyway there is indeed a shark, and there is indeed Jason Statham, and you're already halfway to a movie there so it's not all bad. There's also a scene where leading lady Bingbing Li stares at Statham fresh out of the shower as if she's the shark and his abs are smeared with delicious chum, and that goes a little ways further. 

But there are so many missed opportunities, imagination-wise - there's a scene early on where the scientists (I use that word lightly, in the "Tara Reid holding a clipboard" vein) discover the hidden ocean from which the Megalodon (bonus points for getting to hear Statham say the word "Megalodon") will emerge, and instead of offering up a slew of CG wonders we get a couple of squids and one confused Anglerfish gently going about his business.

Give me some strange beasties, y'all! Have some fun with it! Don't give us a shot of the 400 foot tall Guanyin of the South Sea of Sanya sculpture and not make the gigantic shark bite that fucker in half! This isn't actual science, guys! It's a shark movie starring Jason Statham! Act like it!
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Tyler Hoechlin Two Times

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(click to embiggen) I really have been trying to write some reviews and get some proper shit done today but the studs of the world just won't allow it! They keep distracting me with their Instagrams. Just a bit ago it was Jai Courtney and now here Tyler goes. I mean the least they could do for me (wait wait it wait for it) is do it together. Do it together, Jai Courtney and Tyler Hoechlin! It's the least you could do, for me. 


Today's Mood

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If you guys could've heard the involuntary groan that issued forth from me upon seeing this new Instagram picture of Jai Courtney... you'd have to have been standing on the other side of my office, where I am sure everyone just heard me make this strange noise. Oh well. I'm sure I'm making these noises all day long anyway.
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Oh Wait I Spoke Too Soon

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I just called the shirtless picture of Shia LaBeouf in The Tax Collector today's "Pic of the Day" but then about five seconds after I posted that I saw this new picture of TIlda Swinton in costume in Luca Guadagnino's Suspiria remake and uh I need to reassess. Hopefully this means that the Academy might see fit to right last year's snub for costume designer Giulia Piersanti, whose Call Me By Your Name short-shorts should've strutted off with that statue - throwing Tilda in an orange goddess caftan is eye-catching in the big sort of ways they appreciate. Oh and speaking of eye-catching then there's the other new image released this weekend...
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Pic of the Day

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First things first I just want to point out that my issues are between me and my religious advisers (read: the alcoholic "paranormal investigator" I dated for thirty-six excruciatingly awesome hours in college) and y'all without sin can stick those stones right up your butts before you even thinking about throwing 'em. That's my religious advice. That said! That right there is the first image of Shia LaBeouf in character for director David Ayer's next movie called The Tax Collector, and... I am so into it I'm gonna need a moment. Click the image, it embiggens, just like my therapy bills are gonna be doing real soon. Read more about the movie here.
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Cheers To Tears

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This week's "Beauty vs Beast" over at The Film Experience is traveling abroad and over into the sordid drunken fashion den of Miss Petra von Kant, Rainer Werner Fassbinder's muse-to-nobody - she's her own bitter pill to swallow thank you very much! Head on over to vote, and while you're at it stop stinking so goddamned much, men.
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The Not So Secret Now History of Hollywood

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Even though they came out seven years apart I personally read Tab Hunter's autobiography right around the same time that I read bisexual pimp to the stars Scotty Bower's book, and so they're pretty mashed-up in my head. That's not that weird, given the fact that they're both about The Closet in Classic Hollywood. And then they each got turned into buzzy documentaries, too. Anyway it seems Hollywood itself has them mashed up in their minds as well because not even a month after announcing a film is being produced about the secret romance between Tab and Anthony Perkins comes word that Bowers' book is itself being bio-pic-ized

The director of the Bowers documentary is producing the bio-pic but that's all we've got so far, name-wise; still it's a pretty juicy chance given all the huge Hollywood stars that Bowers says used his services - Rock Hudson, Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor (!!!), oh and that threesome Scotty says he had with Cary Grant and Randolph Scott. Not to mention that Bowers himself was movie star handsome - it'd be a killer role for an up and comer. Who might you cast?


Everything You Ever Need To Know About Life...

... you can learn from:


Gilbert: My father always taught me:
never desert a lady in trouble.
He even carried that as far as marrying Mother.

A happy 119 to ol' Al Hitchcock today - I figured I'd go with one of his lesser known masterpieces for this off year and make no mistake, The Lady Vanishes is a real under-appreciated gem. Any fans? The man who spoke that terribly typical Hitch line of dialogue quoted above (the use of "Mother" is such a Hitch standard) was Sir Michael Redgrave, father of Vanessa and Lynn, who had a forty plus year career and yet save this film I remain fairly ignorant of his work. Anybody want to educate me on his best?


Today's Fanboy Delusion

Today I'd rather be...

... staking it out with Oscar Isaac.

I hadn't been paying attention to Operation Finale, Chris Weitz's upcoming nazi-hunting drama starring Oscar and Ben Kingsley and Melanie Laurent and Joe Alwyn...

... but then I saw the trailer in the theater and that shot up top focusing on Oscar's Infamous Chunky Bum was enough to grab my attention, and quick! Here's let's look again:

Best Picture!
Right there!
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I took a few more grabs of Oscar, 
see 'em after the jump...


Great Moments in Movie Staches

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There are two quality mustaches in John McTiernan's action masterpiece Predator but Carl Weathers never calls anybody "slack-jawed faggots" so he wins - stick that up your sore ass and chew it like a cigar, Jesse Ventura. In all seriousness I stumbled upon this fun examination of the film as an extended AIDS metaphor this weekend over here and y'all should give it a spin!

There are a few bits that're probably over-thought but I prefer overthinking movies to the opposite. Clearly. We've been doing it for fifteen years. In related news it's one month until The Predator is out! (Watch the trailer here.) How great is it that the original film's "Hawkins" aka writer-director Shane Black is directing this one? I hope he does her right.


Five Frames From ?

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What movie is this?
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Good Morning, World

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Crazy Rich Asians is finally out this Wednesday and we've been criminally quiet about this before now - well, expect that to change this week. We'll be ogling one of its gorgeous actor fellows every morning between now and then as (delightful) recompense - today we start with Pierre Png seen above who plays the character of Michael, brother-in-law of Henry Golding's leading man as well as the owner of the trailer's most exploited set of abs...

... and for good reason. They're a real showstopper! That's not just me talking - Elle wrote a whole article about it! Donald Trump is wrong about everything but he's especially wrong about the media - the media is our friend! Here's the CRA trailer in case you've missed it until now:
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Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Chris Hemsworth Sticks It In

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My normally short summer work week just got cut shorter with a bonus day off tomorrow, so it looks like we're closing up shop tonight for the rest of the week? I might actually pop back up between now and Friday with a review of something out this weekend, we'll see, but in case laziness takes hold and I don't this is my "have a nice weekend, everybody" so you take it and you appreciate it, dammit. These pictures of Chris are via here (thx Mac) - that link has a few more pictures along with a behind-the-scenes video that's kinda swoony, so click yourself silly. Bye now!


Madeline's Madeline Strike Me a Match

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When I was home visiting with family last week my cousin blurted out a dark family secret involving her mother (my aunt) and my own mother, something I had never heard and was totally unaware of. My cousin's tone was nonchalant and I believe she meant no ill will in blurting this out - it seemed as if she really thought I knew. I haven't brought this revelation up to my mother yet, but ever since the thing sits there, like a cat, purring on my chest when I try to sleep - something's got to be done at some point.

The thing was still there purring away the day after my trip home when I went to my screening of Madeline's Madeline, a film about the wily and oft-threatening relationship between mother and child but even more than that a movie about who gets to tell whose story. I have injected a lot of myself and my personal experiences into my reviews over the past couple of years - I Tonya got me talking about the abuse and poverty I grew in, Call Me By Your Name had me reminiscing about my first sexual experiences, and so forth. But those were mine.

This isn't my story to tell - indeed my mother has never shared it, never told it herself, and I came about it by a backhanded fashion. So what do I do with it? How do I fold and shape these things, not my things, into my things? I don't have the answer, and neither does Madeline's Madeline, but Madeline's Madeline takes the general idea, woozy and forbidden, invasive, and turns it into some fucking fantastic and challenging art.

We first meet Madeline (Helena Howard, an absolute revelation, make her the next big thing please and thank you) as a blur, a fuzz of hair and a lilt of meow, as she play-acts out a cat. Slowly from the murk stories form and we're able to suss out that Madeline is taking an acting class, and reality shifts to whatever she makes of it - call her a sea turtle and suddenly she's a makeshift sea-turtle flopping in the surf, soggy sleeves sand-logged.

I'm usually wary of films about the "craft" of acting because it's often treated a little emotionally precious for my tastes - I get why actors have to do what they do but I prefer the process remain mysterious, like making hot dogs; I don't need to crawl into the meat grinder with all the lips and assholes, but thanks. Just feed me. But writer-director Josephine Decker shakes out all the violence and manipulation from the process that she can, making it an act of abuse by excuse of psycho-therapy; creators smashing creation into jagged little chunks, angular shards of diamonds that leave everybody bloody on their way down. And that, to me, seems the truth of it.

This film's a hot stew of truth - thick, grunting and a scald, coating your throat as it goes, a beautiful song choked off turned into a hash of elbows and lips, delicious and fortifying assholes. It is an angry song - a reclamation of our own obscure identities, our own. We are the foggy mish-mash we make of ourselves, ours to make, to sup. It is the sound of our skeletons growing into their shape, ship shape, and their shapes alone. It is a particular, mood.
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Everything You Ever Need To Know About Life...

... you can learn from:

Coco (2017)

Miguel: [after watching Chicharrón disappear]
Wait... what happened?
 Héctor: [sadly] He's been forgotten.
When there's no one left in the living world
who remembers you, you disappear from this world.
We call it the Final Death.
 Miguel: Where did he go?
 Héctor: No one knows.
 Miguel: But I've met him! I could
remember him when I go back.
 Héctor: No. It doesn't work like that, chamaco.
Our memories, they have to be passed down
by those who knew us in life - in the stories
they tell about us. But there's no one left alive
to pass down Cheech's stories. [shrugs]
Hey, it happens to everyone eventually.

A happy birthday to Pixar director Lee Unkrich today!

survey hosting

Look For The Fog

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Asking me to choose my favorite John Carpenter movie would be like asking me to choose which of the many penises growing off of my body I like the best - I love them all! It depends on my mood! But there among the best of the best stands his 1980 ghost story classic The Fog, starring Jamie Lee Curtis with her mom Janet Leigh, and a never better Adrienne Barbeau as the DJ Stevie Wayne - just that name gives me happy place goosebumps - who warns us to "look for the fog." And we do! And we shall - the film has just gotten a big-time 4K restoration and it's going to play The Metrograph theater here in New York as well as a slew more theaters across the country just in time for Halloween. They even released a trailer!
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If you want more details here's the 
entire press release after the jump...

Good Afternoon, Gratuitous Harris Dickinson

I know I can't be the only person who thinks it's really funny, imagining all the tween girls who're gonna be googling Harris Dickinson after watching the latest YA adaptation The Darkest Minds and finding themselves faced with mind-blowing images of him shaving his pubes on the toilet and getting a hard-on while rolling around with a dude in Beach Rats, right? Lucky tween girls. That's wake ya right up. 

Anyway Harris has TDM in theaters now and he just recently joined the cast of the Maleficent sequel as the Prince, so he's doing fine, as well he should. But we haven't posted that much of him here in MNPP (see a few here) and since he's got a new photo-shoot in Flaunt this month it reminded me I had some pictures laying around, so I'm gonna post 'em. Hit the jump for about two dozen shots...

Five Frames From ?

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What movie is this?
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Who Wore It Best?

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Yesterday I was looking at this week's banner of Patrick Wilson in Little Children (which I'm really personally enjoying, I don't know about you) while simultaneously reading our post on Kathleen Turner's fantastic new interview when a vision of a shot of William Hurt in Body Hurt occurred to me (as it often, often does)...

... and I realized there was an homage to Body Heat in Little Children that I had never noticed before! How perfect! And riddle me this -- wouldn't you kill to see a remake of Body Heat starring Kate Winslet and Patrick Wilson? Brains, blown. Anyway I clearly must now ask...


Bye Bye Romain

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If you head on over to The Film Experience this morning you can see my lil' round-up of reviews I wrote from this year's Fantasia International Film Festival - six movies and six reviews, including my review of Fleuve Noir starring Mr. Duris seen above, although never quite so jazzy as he is seen above. You can't have everything! Sometimes Vincent Cassel's cock has to be enough.
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