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items tagged with Peter Jackson

Where There’s a Will, There’s a Way: "Annie" and "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2014-12-20 00:50:41

Cameron Diaz, Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhane Wallis, and Rose Byrne in AnnieANNIE

Sony’s last-remaining grab for the holiday box office, the much-downloaded reboot of Annie, opened this weekend, and it must be said that as a musical – especially as a musically faithful interpretation of the stage show – it kind of sucks. The choreography’s a shambles and the mixing is poor and the original numbers are terrible, while familiar, enjoyable Annie tunes such as “Little Girls” and “Easy Street” are merely sampled, their melodies and lyrics awkwardly woven into new pop and hip-hop arrangements. (Three of the film’s myriad producers are Jay-Z and Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, so I guess we should just be grateful that the titular orphan is played by Quvenzhané Wallis and not Willow. Or Jaden.)


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Smaug Alert: "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" and "Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-12-16 04:34:43

Martin Freeman in The Hobbit: The Desolation of SmaugTHE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG

The first great sequence in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – and, sadly, one of the few truly great sequences in Peter Jackson’s second (or fifth, if you’d rather) J.R.R. Tolkien installment – is an escape scene. At its start, hobbit protagonist Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) and his dwarf companions sneak out of the Elven dungeon cells in which they’ve been imprisoned, and hope for clean getaways by stashing themselves in empty wine barrels and floating down a nearby river. Sounds simple. And it might have been if it weren’t for the rapids, and the waterfalls, and the whizzing arrows, and the savage orcs, and Orlando Bloom gingerly bouncing atop our heroes’ heads.


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Hobbit Forming: "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-12-16 16:12:21

Andy Serkis in The Hobbit: An Unexpected JourneyTHE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY

In all honesty, I was a little bored by Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey before the movie even started. A nearly three-hour fantasy adventure with a colon in the title based on (one-third of) a beloved J.R.R. Tolkein title? A tale of dwarfs and elves, and a kindly old wizard played by Ian McKellen, concerning a perilous trek across New Zealand? An epic narrative involving an innocent’s coming of age, and inanimate objects that prove surprisingly ambulatory, and a shriveled schizophrenic with bulging eyes who mourns the loss of his “Precious-s-s-s”? Haven’t we all been here before? And beyond securing gazillions of dollars for New Line Cinema, was there really any need to go back?


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Goner, Baby, Goner: "The Lovely Bones," "The Book of Eli," and "Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-01-18 12:00:00

Saoirse Ronan in The Lovely BonesTHE LOVELY BONES

The Lovely Bones, director Peter Jackson's long-awaited take on Alice Sebold's beloved novel, is a stupefyingly bad movie, the kind of big-screen debacle that makes you wonder if its entire creative team wasn't suffering through some hideous, collective blockage of talent all throughout filming. You can feel it going wrong in the first minutes, when a car's quick swerve results in an unconvincing and inappropriately comedic loss of a hubcap, but the shock of Jackson's endeavor is that practically nothing in it goes right. Tonally, just about every scene here feels a little bit off, and the rest feel way, way off; it's almost as if Jackson, screenwriting collaborators Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, and a (usually) wildly gifted cast purposely set out to make the absolute worst Lovely Bones adaptation possible.


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Jollier Green Giant: "The Incredible Hulk" and "The Happening"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-06-18 08:16:38

The Incredible HulkTHE INCREDIBLE HULK

Up until its final reel, when the movie lapses into a tiresome big-screen adaptation of Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots, The Incredible Hulk is a pretty entertaining superhero blockbuster, in large part because it doesn't much feel like a typical superhero blockbuster.


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